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Remembered Today:

R. Williams, drowned at Goole, May 1917


BereniceUK
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A LOCAL MAN DROWNED. - The body of Mr. R. Williams, Pen Bonc, was found on Saturday morning at Goole. He had been missing from his ship for some days. Much sympathy is expressed with his parents and relatives. He was 29 years of age and was formerly employed in a hair-dresser's shop at Bangor.
(The North Wales Chronicle, 1st June 1917)

 

Presumably the ship was a merchantman. Can anyone help to add flesh to the bones of the above newspaper item, please?

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Free BMD:

https://www.freebmd.org.uk/cgi/search.pl

Deaths June 1917  

Surname               First name(s)       Age        District                 Vol         Page

Williams              Robert J              29          Goole   9c          1033

From FMPAST

Deaths at sea, 1781-1968 Transcription

First name(s)       Robert John

Last name            Williams

Gender Male

Birth year            1888

Birth date             1888

Birth place           Benllech Anglesey

Death year           1917

Death date           18 May 1917

Age        29

Vessel name        Primrose

Departure port    -

Series    BT 334

Box        0071

Page       43

 

Kath.

 

 

 

Edited by Kath
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Berenice,

I think I have a photo of the family gravestone on Anglesey which mentions him; alas, my pc is being repaired at present, so will try to post again when this is up and working.

 

Clive

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Hi Berenice,

 

According to the inquest it was "death by misadventure". He (presumably) fell into Victoria Lock, having last been seen alive at midnight, making his way back to his ship (a Goole based steamer), by a local policeman. The policeman warned him of the dangers of crossing the unlit docks but he replied that he knew his way.

 

Steve

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Thank you very much, all three of you, Kath, Clive and Steve. I came across the report of his death while doing some research into the community of Tan-y-gongl, just outside Benllech, during the war. 

 

Clive, that would be great - I did scour a few NE Anglesey church and chapelyards for war-related deaths while on holiday there earlier this year, but Williams' grave wasn't in one of them that I saw, not that I was looking for his.

 

Steve - maybe he'd had a couple of pints of beer. Probably not much else to do in Goole in war-time.

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5 hours ago, SteveMarsdin said:

According to the inquest

Steve, where did you find this, please?

 

Kath.

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23 hours ago, BereniceUK said:

I came across the report of his death while doing some research into the community of Tan-y-gongl, just outside Benllech, during the war. 

 

That will be Tyn-y-Gongl, not Tan-y-Gongl.

 

Edited by Dai Bach y Sowldiwr
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Correct, my apologies. I wrote it from memory, without checking first.

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6 hours ago, Kath said:

Steve, where did you find this, please?

 

Kath.

Via the British Newspaper Archive. I did a search and that was one that came up. It was a Yorkshire paper, I think the Leeds Mercury.

 

Steve

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  • 4 weeks later...

My data files having been recovered the other day, I found the gravestone photo taken at Llaneugrad parish church.  At present unable to resize the picture for posting here, but it says (in Welsh) after the initial dedications to Hugh Williams of Ysgubor Wen, Llanfair-Mathafarn-Eithaf died 1922 aged 61 and his little niece died 1918,

 

"In loving memory of the following brothers from Pant y Bugail / Robert J.Williams who was drowned and was buried at Goole.  May 19 1917 aged 35 / David Williams, who fell in France in the Great War, between 8 and 18 April 1918, aged 28 years."  (plus a commemorative verse and then further family members).  

 

David Williams was 44244 Pte. 9th Battn. RWF, missing presumed killed in the Battle of the Lys  during those dates.  Tyne Cot Memorial.

 

Clive 

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Clive,

I think the size limit for an image has now increased to a massive 500MB.

I don't think there are many images in existence of that size!.

I think the website reduces the image size automatically anyway.

Try posting it.

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Thanks for that Joe R...how odd, that the date she was shown as sunk  near the Scilly Isles 18 May 1917 is the date on the "Deaths at Sea register" for his death in Goole??  And per his tombstone, the day after she was sunk!  Is it possible that a different "Primrose" was involved?  

 

I attach the photo full size, we'll see what happens - 

5994a3e0be3a4_FMWilliamsD(LlaneugradChurchAnglesey).JPG.5a078e084b7f3d992010dbb8a6772bb8.JPG

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I had another look at the full version of Deaths at Sea, and noted that the Primrose was reg, no. 128044 of Liverpool.  She turned out to be a steamship of 611 tons, built 1910 and operated by Hughes Richards & Co.  She survived the Great War but on 30 January 1941 capsized when her cargo of maize shifted, on a voyage from Dublin to Cork.  So not the drifter which Joe R kindly flagged up - but what a coincidence!  A vessel of the same name as his own happened to be sunk on the day he died.  

 

I tried the 1915 Crew Lists but can't get a good match for him: maybe his nautical career began after that year?   The Primrose had a couple of lists, with a few other north Wales seamen aboard, and some had signed on at Goole.  

 

 

Edited by clive_hughes
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