Where did my 2nd great-uncle William Morris go after 1914?


My 2nd great-uncle, William Morris was born 10 May 1887 in Ashton-under-Lyne, Lancashire. His parents were Henry Morris and Mary nee Green Morris. I have his birth and baptism.

He is found on the 1901 census living with his parents and siblings, 14 Wyck Street, Ashton-under-Lyne. By 1901 he has moved to Usworth, Durham, and is living with his brother Henry Morris and extended family on Pump Row. He is working as a pony driver underground (coal mine).

By 1911 he has moved to Yorkshire, and is living Conisbrough,Yorkshire. 1911 Yorkshire census, Conisbrough, he's living with Martin Gerrity, Ellen Gerrity, their children, and Patrick Welsh, nephew of Martin Gerrity. William Morris is listed as a boarder, 23, married for 3 years, 3 children, 2 dead, one still living. Coal miner (feller). Born in Ashton/Lyne, Lancs. The census taker wrote down the children's birth numbers/death numbers in Martin's line on the census, as well. William Morris's wife is not living with him at that address.

Last known information on William Morris is when he is the informant on his mother's death, May 1914. She died in Leigh, Lancashire.He gave his address as 240 Valley Street, South Elmsall, Yorkshire. I did search 1908 for a marriage between any William Morris and unknown spouse but there are too many to make any sense. He did not have a middle name, so that narrows it down a little bit. Given that William Morris is a common name, I need to narrow down the possibilities.

I did find an entry on the 1939 register for a William Morris same birthdate, married to a Winifred. One of the early marriages (1908) was to a Winifred, but it was in Hackney, so I'm not sure it's him. In fact, the 1939 register could be someone with the same birthdate, and not my William Morris at all, as the register lists a middle initial of E and my William had no middle name.

Susan Mary Smith

Posted 2017-12-12T21:00:25.500

Reputation: 91

2Hi, welcome to G&FH.SE! Can you add a specific question to your question? Do you want advice on sorting out same-name candidates, on finding possible death registrations, or something else? What do you want to know most? We prefer one question per question -- you can link back to this one so you don't have to repeat all the information each time. – Jan Murphy – 2017-12-12T21:37:35.117

2Upvoted for showing your research effort. – Jan Murphy – 2017-12-12T21:38:21.013

1I've taken the liberty of treating this as a research-methods question. If you'd like to focus it a different way, feel free to edit. – Jan Murphy – 2017-12-12T21:40:16.607

What I'd like to learn most is his wife's name. But given the large scope of possibilities, I'm not sure how to go about it. One thing that may help is that we know he married circa 1908, and that by 1911 (according to the census), he had two children that had died, and one still living. Is the best way to do it go through every death aged 0-3 for each jurisdiction, and match to births, then get certs? Big undertaking, but it's possible it will work. – Susan Mary Smith – 2017-12-13T05:14:12.630

If he is aged about 27 when war breaks out in 1914, and he is not found after 1914, I think the possibility that he went to war, and may not have come back, should be considered. However, my quick look produced no obvious candidates. – PolyGeo – 2017-12-13T05:54:01.603

1Write that up (how to guess at his wife's name) as a new question! I'm about to log off for the night now, but I will answer it tomorrow. – Jan Murphy – 2017-12-13T07:58:28.553

1Thanks, everyone. I'll rephrase and repost the question in a few days once I wrap my head around all of this. – Susan Mary Smith – 2017-12-14T01:55:53.943



I have found William Morris's marriage in 1908 to an Eliza Buckley, and I have found his two children: John born 1909 in Yorkshire and Hannah born 1911 in Leigh, Lancashire. I believe I have also found Hannah's marriage in 1938 to a Mr Brennan. No death found yet for William or Eliza.

Susan Mary Smith

Posted 2017-12-12T21:00:25.500

Reputation: 91