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Naval Marriages circa 1916

Discussion in 'Military records' started by GrahamC, Jun 27, 2015.

  1. GrahamC

    GrahamC LostCousins Member

    Albert Samuel Coward died in 1917 when the submarine E47 went down. "Deaths at sea, 1781-1968" on findmypast.co.uk tells me he had a wife named "Violet" but I can't find a marriage for them in Free BMD or anything derived from the GRO index.

    I suspect they were married in a Naval ceremony but here in the antipodes I can't access those records. Can anyone help in any way?

    A clue: In the 1911 census Chief Engine-room Artificer Albert Coward aged 34 was a boarder in the same house as 15 year old Violet Ford.
  2. Tim

    Tim Moderator Staff Member

    Name: Chief Engine Room Artificer Albert Samuel Coward
    Birth Date: 7 Nov 1877
    Death Date: 20 Aug 1917
    Cemetery: Plymouth Naval Memorial
    Burial or Cremation Place: Plymouth, Plymouth Unitary Authority, Devon, England

    It's what I can find for now.
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2015
  3. GrahamC

    GrahamC LostCousins Member

    Thanks Tim. I've got that and a few other things related to his death. What I want now is his marriage.
  4. Carolyn

    Carolyn LostCousins Member

    His service record may provide details of his marriage. I can find it in theRoyal Navy Register of Seamen's Services in
    The National Archives catalogue here. I thought it might be available via the same record set on Ancestry, but couldn't find it there. It costs GBP3.30 to download from TNA. I also wondered if they had any children. There are 2 entries on FreeBMD for Coward with mother's surname Ford - Dec 1914 Coward, Doris B Portsmouth 2b 881 and June 1917 Coward, Ivy J Portsmouth 2b 720.
  5. GrahamC

    GrahamC LostCousins Member

    Thanks Carolyn. His service record only contains a list of the ships he was in. He was a career sailor having joined up in 1898 at the age of 12. I'm only guessing that he married Violet Ford. Now I'm looking for proof. It seems there is a register of naval marriages but it's not on line yet.
  6. Heather

    Heather LostCousins Member

    Hi Graham, there is an entry for Albert on Lives of the First World War site by a Trevor Penfold maybe you could contact him and see if he knows the answer to your query.
  7. Carolyn

    Carolyn LostCousins Member

    Hi Graham, do you have access to Ancestry? There are a number of public family trees with Albert in them. Some have him married to Violet Beatrice Bertha Ford. At least one has him married to Louisa Fribbence before Violet.
  8. GrahamC

    GrahamC LostCousins Member

    Thanks Heather. There are several Albert Cowards there but not the one I want. :(

    Thanks Carolyn. I have looked at them before but don't think any have more reliable info than me. I'll look again though.
  9. Heather

    Heather LostCousins Member

    Hi Again Graham, I was sure that the one I found on the WW1 site was your Albert, so I revisited and found that one was in the support section. If you put Albert's name in Google you will get several hits, one links to this..........

    Albert Samuel Coward - Royal Navy - Chief Engine Room Artificer - 269238
    Name: Albert Samuel Coward
    Service: Royal Navy
    Rate: Chief Engine Room Artificer
    Official Number: 269238
    Proof: http://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/SearchUI/s/res?_q=albert+samuel+coward+269238
    Enlistment: 1897
    Died on H.M. Submarine E47 on 20/08/1917

    Trevor Penfold shared this idea · August 05, 2014 ·

    There is another link on Google to the findagrave site for your Albert with a picture of a memorial with his name on it.
  10. GrahamC

    GrahamC LostCousins Member

    Thanks Heather. You are right. This calls for deeper thought. I'll mull over it for while.
  11. Pauline

    Pauline LostCousins Star

    I wasn't sure from what you wrote above if you actually have a copy of the will? If not, it would probably worth getting a copy. The calendar shows that his brother (I think) administered his estate which implies someone else was named as executor in the will itself. This could be Violet, and it may be clear from the will if they were legally married or not - ie if she is described as a wife or as, say, a loving friend.

    The will may also say if there were any children, and if there were, then you would be able to find their mother's maiden name from the birth indexes.
  12. GrahamC

    GrahamC LostCousins Member

    I now have a copy of Albert's Will. He left his estate to his "fiancee", Violet Ford. As Carolyn has pointed out there are two kids on FreeBMD who are probably theirs too. Doris born Dec 1914, Ivy born Jun 1917. I am tempted to buy their certificates but can't justify the cost (not a close enough relationship). Strangely, Violet married as a single woman Andrew Watters in March qtr 1917, before Ivy was born and before Albert died and yet Ivy appears to have been registered as Albert's child. The 1921 census should throw some light on the matter but I understand it was destroyed.

    Seems to be a very convoluted family. Might have to leave that bit up in the air for now. Thanks to those who have made suggestions.
  13. emjay

    emjay LostCousins Member

    I was just thinking this morning about certificates I'd like to have, but roughly £10 each is just too much for me. I suppose I could have a little piggy bank just for this, along with a priority list.
    • Agree Agree x 2
    • Creative Creative x 1
  14. Liberty

    Liberty LostCousins Megastar

    I am ready to be corrected but I THINK it was the 1931 census that was lost; the 1921 should be extant, just not yet published.
  15. Alexander Bisset

    Alexander Bisset Administrator Staff Member

    The 1921 census should be available on 1st January 2022. Or perhaps 19th June 2021 as that would be 100 years to the day. The 1931 England and Wales census will never be available as it was destroyed in a fire in 1942.

    Note the 1931 Scottish census was stored in Edinburgh and so is therefore intact and is still due to be released on 1st Jan 2032.

    Note separate from that the National Register taken just before outbreak of WWII is due to be released by FindMyPast by 2017.
    • Thanks! Thanks! x 1
  16. emjay

    emjay LostCousins Member

    'The 1939 Register" There is a Facebook page to keep us informed of the latest news.

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