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An Intrguiging Mystery of Indentity due to Amnesia

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Aunty Tory
14 hours ago, MBrockway said:

 

Could we have a scan of this document please?

 

Failing that, could you transcribe it exactly?  We'll need the date and location of the document too please.

 

Andy and I are both watching this topic, but there's too much uncertainty on the Rifle Brigade elements for us to get involved as yet.

 

Cheers,

Mark

 

Hi Mark, I don't have it, I'm going on the account from his daughters letter, but I will order a copy now, thank you.

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TEW

I've corrected my error now! I gave FMP as the souce of William J Hubbard's desertion, it was British Newspaper Archive.

Not sure of this is the same as Alf mcm's in post #56

 

Also the date, it was in The Police Gazette of 18/9/1917 and gave a date of desertion of 9th Dec, so it must be 9/12/1916.

 

A few points from Aunt Tory's pdfs;

William Henry Hubbard's birth was not registered. His baptism record seems bona fide. Has a GRO entry for his birth been located?

 

6/1/1966. One of Bessie's children relates the Shell Shock in France, amnesia story.

 

One of William Henry Hubbard's siblings goes with the 'he had trouble with the army' version.

 

He may well have been telling different stories to his wife and his siblings.

 

After the letter/visit between Bessie and Alice Maud/Matilda there was a big upset. Perhaps another marriage? and the shell shock/trouble with the army versions were cover ups.

 

One would think if you were evading as a deserter you would'nt give your battalion on a birth cert, unless he's on the ball and it's a red-herring.

TEW

 

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Susan Tall

His birth was registered but as William George Hubbard.  See dink999's post no 55.

He was registered in the Dec. quarter of 1887 in the Whitechapel district - mother's name Poole.

 

Although he was registered as Hubbard, his sisters were registered as Abbott:

Elizabeth Theresa Abbott 1876

Matila Alice Abbott 1887

Mary Beatrice Abbott 1889

 

I'm sure the changing of his name to Abbott is all tied up with Robert Samuel Hubbard being in prison.  Did his wife have children by another man, named Abbott, or did she change the children's names, although when they were baptised they are all down as Hubbard.  Be interesting to see just what the birth certificates say.

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Madmeg
On 16/01/2019 at 05:39, Susan Tall said:

His birth was registered but as William George Hubbard.  See dink999's post no 55.

He was registered in the Dec. quarter of 1887 in the Whitechapel district - mother's name Poole.

 

Although he was registered as Hubbard, his sisters were registered as Abbott:

Elizabeth Theresa Abbott 1876

Matila Alice Abbott 1887

Mary Beatrice Abbott 1889

 

I'm sure the changing of his name to Abbott is all tied up with Robert Samuel Hubbard being in prison.  Did his wife have children by another man, named Abbott, or did she change the children's names, although when they were baptised they are all down as Hubbard.  Be interesting to see just what the birth certificates say.

That was what I was wondering- except Robert was only in prison for two years- unless he was subsequrntly prosecuted NOT at the ol Bailey and the records are not showing up online. He would have been out c 1881. However, I can't find his wife or children in 1881 census- even looking under Abbott- that said Familysearch isn;t finding Robert in 1871 and I know he is on ancestry. Nor can I fin any of them in 1891.

I think some searching aroun the wife and chilren for 1881 an 1891 might open the field up? (sorry my "d" is only working intermitently and I can;t be bothered to go through an add them all in manually !

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Dai Bach y Sowldiwr
3 minutes ago, Madmeg said:

(sorry my "d" is only working intermitently and I can;t be bothered to go through an add them all in manually !

:lol:

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Aunty Tory

Evening all,

 

So, a couple of certificates I ordered have finally arrived, I attach the marriage certificate and the death certificate.  What's interesting is that in the marriage certificate our William Hubbard lists his father as Robert Samuel Abbott - for a soldier suffering from a case of amnesia that's so bad he can't remember his London based family, isn't it odd that he's remembered the first and middle name of his father?  This seems to support the deserter theory and a deliberate cover up of identity, rather than the amnesia/ identity mix up.  If he was a deserter, would there be a military record of that somewhere?

 

36 does seem pretty young to die, and I can't understand the cause of death on the certificate - seems like quite a list!  Any medical experts in the group who know what it means?

IMG_0237.jpeg

IMG_0236.jpeg

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Buffnut453

Seems like the coroner believed shell shock played a part in his death.  I'm no medical expert but it sounds like he had a heart attack brought on by post-traumatic stress (in modern terminology).  

 

We should consider that both stories might be true.  He may have deserted AND suffered shell shock.  The latter may have driven him to the former.  Alternatively, he deserted first, felt bad about it, and re-enlisted under a different name, but ended up suffering shell-shock as a result of that later service.  This is all conjecture without service papers to help us dig into his life in more detail.

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Dai Bach y Sowldiwr

Cause of death:

1a)  Atheroma (A pathological finding ="hardening of the arteries"- Unless made at PM, this is a vague diagnosis. Suggests Ischaemic Heart disease, but could refer to any artery).

       Auricular fibrillation. Nowadays called Atrial fibrillation. In those days, in a young person, it was often associated with Mitral valve disease following rheumatic fever. Nowdays in the elderly population caused by IHD or an overactive thyroid.

Myocardial failure = Heart failure. Again in a 36 year old, compatible with AF  either due to MVD due to acute or Chronic Valvular Heart disease, or IHD.

 [On a death certificate, the immediate cause of death is entered in 1a), this is then stated to be due to 1b).

 

1b) Shell Shock, Neuraesthenia.

 

No PM

Certified by Dr. A.W. McClelland MD

 

Not a 'Heart Attack' as we would understand it, but a plausible sequence of conditions in 1a).

 

Edited by Dai Bach y Sowldiwr

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Scalyback
51 minutes ago, Dai Bach y Sowldiwr said:

Myocardial failure = Heart failure. Again in a 36 year old, compatible with AF  either due to MVD due to acute or Chronic Valvular Heart disease, or IHD.

 

or familial cause? At the time not sure what diagnoses would be made in regards to family history and if this chap is hiding a past. 

Edit familial hypercholesterolemia I was thinking of but apparently not even looked at until just post second world war.

Edited by Scalyback

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Dai Bach y Sowldiwr
4 minutes ago, Scalyback said:

 

or familial cause? At the time not sure what diagnoses would be made in regards to family history and if this chap is hiding a past. 

There are hereditary causes of heart failure, IHD and arrhythmias, but I wouldn't have thought they would have been high up on a list of differential diagnoses in those days.

Anything is possible, but we used to say "Common things occur commonly..."

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Scalyback
11 minutes ago, Dai Bach y Sowldiwr said:

There are hereditary causes of heart failure, IHD and arrhythmias, but I wouldn't have thought they would have been high up on a list of differential diagnoses in those days.

Anything is possible, but we used to say "Common things occur commonly..."

 

Or eating lard? 

Given hindsight a lot of the diagnoses was there to modern eyes. As an aside life assurance was not given to people with hypertension into the 1970's. now seen a routine condition and if controlled may not increase the premium. Love to get my hands on a actuary table for life assurance from the great war. 

 

Edit found a paper that may lead to more leads, even though that paper has a few historical errors v statistical errors. Sorry OP for moving the thread slightly. 

Edited by Scalyback

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Dai Bach y Sowldiwr
6 minutes ago, Scalyback said:

Or eating lard? 

Yes, and smoking.

Poor nutrition resulting in reduced immunity to bacterial infectious dideases leading to outbreaks of Rheumatic fever was a big problem in the pre antibiotic era.

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Scalyback
8 minutes ago, Dai Bach y Sowldiwr said:

Yes, and smoking.

Poor nutrition resulting in reduced immunity to bacterial infectious dideases leading to outbreaks of Rheumatic fever was a big problem in the pre antibiotic era.

 

I will get back to you the whole mortality rate in the great war. There may be a wider interest to the forum. 

 

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Madmeg

Heart failure was extremely common in the past- often referred to as Dropsy due to build up of fluid in the body occasioned by the heart's failure to pump effectively (the term dropsy would also cover other causes of fluid build up but heart failure is probably the most common). Sufferers may sleep propped up on several pillows as the lungs fill up with fluid causing the sensation of drowning. Stories of the succubus ads incubus appearing in dreams may well be related. 

 

AF (atrilal fibrillation) is caused by mis- conduction of the electrical impulses running the heart making the atria (small top chambers) flutter rapidly (= fibrillate) so that the ventricles (large bottom chambers) do not fill properly with blood so pumping less around the body with each beat. 

 

Nowadays known as ACS- acute coronary syndrome- common in the elderly today. While it may be linked with Hypertension for some it is not necessarily due to eating lard :-) . 

 

Although his heart was not functioning properly this is NOT the same as a Heart attack or sudden cardiac arrest. It is a sign of a sick heart- chronic rather than acute- rheumatic fever causes heart problems so is a possible cause, or influenza or just general poor health.

 

The linking of heart problems with shell shock was quite common then I believe- whether it was the case or not to correlate these may not be scientific (correlation, cause , effect etc)

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Madmeg

So he marries as Harry abbott- but gives his father's name correctly as Robert Samuel- I' say hiding identity- the war is still in progress at time of marriage so if he had things to hide from the army he cold still have been iable to court martial. Wife knew him as William by the time of his death.

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Susan Tall

I've found his Service Papers!!  Well not his WW1 papers but prewar.

On FindmyPast in the Chelsea Pensioners British Army Service Records 1760-1913 are the Attestation Papers for William George Hubbard (remember he was baptised with this name) into the Princess of Wales's Own Yorkshire Regiment, dated 4th September 1911. His number is 9817. He was born at Stepney, Middlesex, father Robert Hubbard, 40 Anthony St, Stepney.  His occupation is a Town Carman and he was previously with the 5/Middlesex Regiment on Special Reserve. (possibly a Territorial?)

 

He joined the Yorkshire Regiment at Richmond on 5th September 1911, but by 15th November 1912 was discharged as medically unfit for further service (Para 393 (xvl) KT) "Neurasthenia.  He had served for a total of 1 year 73 days with the Yorkshire Regt and doesn't appear to have gone overseas.  Although on FindmyPast there is no explanation of the Neurasthenia, I've just found a similar set of his papers on Ancestry under British Service Records 1914-1920 (they look like part of the burnt documents). These have almost all the same details but add  "Concussion of brain "Serious", Court of Inquiry held at Blackdown 12 April 1912. Not on duty".

 

There is also a form filled out by an employer - Mr Hornblower a Grocer of 42 Leake Lane, Holborn, who knew him for 4 years and employed him for 3 years as a Grocer's Assistant. He said the reason he left his employ was "Ambition has a soldier".

 

His intended place of residence on discharge was 14 Brunswick Place, Stepney, London.  His conduct and character were good but he didn't get any qualifications and was not entitled to any medals or a pension. His discharge date was 15th November 1912, and he signed the discharge documents.  There are a couple of anomalies.  He gives his birth year as 1893, when he was baptised on 16 Oct 1887 - but his year of birth appears differently on different documents.  Also on his attestation papers to the Yorkshire Regiment he gives his father's name as Arthur Hubbard with an address in Holborn.  His own father Robert Samuel Hubbard had died in 1901 so I wonder if he was living with a relative.  His real father's name comes later in the papers.

 

I'm wondering if there is a way of finding the Court of Inquiry report to see just what happened to him to cause this Neurasthenia. 

The Court was at Blackdown on 12th April 1912.

 

I've a theory now that having been discharged from the Army in 1912 because of this Neurasthenia, when WW1 came along he enlisted under the name of Harry Abbott.  Abbott appears to have been a family name as his three sisters were registered in the name Abbott (although baptised as Hubbard).  

 

There could just possibly be another reason for him changing his name to Abbott but need to research this further.  There is a marriage between a William G Hubbard and a Harriott L Lightfoot in Stepney in 1917, but we know he married Bessie Price in Bristol in Feb 1918.  Could be another scenario for a name change.

 

Over to you now for comments etc.

 

Sue

 

 

 

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TEW

That's a cracking find! I can't find the Ancestry versions, are they under the same number?

 

As to the Marriage to Lightfoot 25/12/1917 WGH states he was a widower and that his Father is John Jealous Hubbard (deceased).

 

So, Lightfoot was his 2nd? Wife and Bessie the 3rd? Legitimate or otherwise.

 

Harriett Louisa Lightfoot is married to Robert Wm Lightfoot on 1911 census, 1 Garth St, Shadwell. 2 children. More children in previous census years.

 

TEW

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Aunty Tory
20 minutes ago, TEW said:

That's a cracking find! I can't find the Ancestry versions, are they under the same number?

 

As to the Marriage to Lightfoot 25/12/1917 WGH states he was a widower and that his Father is John Jealous Hubbard (deceased).

 

So, Lightfoot was his 2nd? Wife and Bessie the 3rd? Legitimate or otherwise.

 

Harriett Louisa Lightfoot is married to Robert Wm Lightfoot on 1911 census, 1 Garth St, Shadwell. 2 children. More children in previous census years.

 

TEW

Ah!  So father listed as John Jealous Hubbard is our mans grandfather, so this might relate to an uncle.  The tree I built around them on Ancestry showed quite a large Hubbard family, and first names were passed down and used on lots of different members - some of the confusion around birth dates etc might be because we've got dates that relate to a cousin possibly.  I don't know if you can see my tree by this link, but here goes: https://www.ancestry.co.uk/family-tree/tree/29463298/family.  So the marriage to a Lightfoot might be discountable if it's a relative and not him?

21 hours ago, Susan Tall said:

I've found his Service Papers!!  Well not his WW1 papers but prewar.

On FindmyPast in the Chelsea Pensioners British Army Service Records 1760-1913 are the Attestation Papers for William George Hubbard (remember he was baptised with this name) into the Princess of Wales's Own Yorkshire Regiment, dated 4th September 1911. His number is 9817. He was born at Stepney, Middlesex, father Robert Hubbard, 40 Anthony St, Stepney.  His occupation is a Town Carman and he was previously with the 5/Middlesex Regiment on Special Reserve. (possibly a Territorial?)

 

He joined the Yorkshire Regiment at Richmond on 5th September 1911, but by 15th November 1912 was discharged as medically unfit for further service (Para 393 (xvl) KT) "Neurasthenia.  He had served for a total of 1 year 73 days with the Yorkshire Regt and doesn't appear to have gone overseas.  Although on FindmyPast there is no explanation of the Neurasthenia, I've just found a similar set of his papers on Ancestry under British Service Records 1914-1920 (they look like part of the burnt documents). These have almost all the same details but add  "Concussion of brain "Serious", Court of Inquiry held at Blackdown 12 April 1912. Not on duty".

 

There is also a form filled out by an employer - Mr Hornblower a Grocer of 42 Leake Lane, Holborn, who knew him for 4 years and employed him for 3 years as a Grocer's Assistant. He said the reason he left his employ was "Ambition has a soldier".

 

His intended place of residence on discharge was 14 Brunswick Place, Stepney, London.  His conduct and character were good but he didn't get any qualifications and was not entitled to any medals or a pension. His discharge date was 15th November 1912, and he signed the discharge documents.  There are a couple of anomalies.  He gives his birth year as 1893, when he was baptised on 16 Oct 1887 - but his year of birth appears differently on different documents.  Also on his attestation papers to the Yorkshire Regiment he gives his father's name as Arthur Hubbard with an address in Holborn.  His own father Robert Samuel Hubbard had died in 1901 so I wonder if he was living with a relative.  His real father's name comes later in the papers.

 

I'm wondering if there is a way of finding the Court of Inquiry report to see just what happened to him to cause this Neurasthenia. 

The Court was at Blackdown on 12th April 1912.

 

I've a theory now that having been discharged from the Army in 1912 because of this Neurasthenia, when WW1 came along he enlisted under the name of Harry Abbott.  Abbott appears to have been a family name as his three sisters were registered in the name Abbott (although baptised as Hubbard).  

 

There could just possibly be another reason for him changing his name to Abbott but need to research this further.  There is a marriage between a William G Hubbard and a Harriott L Lightfoot in Stepney in 1917, but we know he married Bessie Price in Bristol in Feb 1918.  Could be another scenario for a name change.

 

Over to you now for comments etc.

 

Sue

 

 

 

So he may not have made it to WW1 after all?  This story is getting more and more intriguing!  Thank you for all you're doing to help solve the riddle! :-)

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Susan Tall

Hi Tew 

You've solved the marriage query - it's not our man.  It is in fact his uncle William George born 1862 son of John Jealous and Anna Hubbard. He was previously married to Priscilla Elizabeth Fricker (m 1895) and had children William Hubbard 1895 and Alfred Hubbard 1898.

 

To find our man on Ancestry I just searched on William George Hubbard born 1893 Stepney.  This comes up with the Chelsea Pensioner Records which are on Fold 3 which I can't access, but I think this must be the same as the ones I found on FindmyPast.  The second entry on this search are his Service Records and has his father as Arthur Hubbard.  

 

I think I've solved the mystery of this Arthur.  William George had an uncle Arthur Frederick (b1864) a Drover, married Matilda Jane Taylor 1891 Stepney, children Arthur F. (1893) and Edward S (1897).  

William George's father, Robert Samuel Hubbard died in 1901 and his mother 1902, so I'm wondering if he went to live with Uncle Arthur and looked on him as his father so gave his name when he enlisted with the Yorkshire Regiment.  Later on in that document under father's name is says Robert Samuel Hubbard and this is in an entirely different hand from that written for Arthur Hubbard.

 

 

 

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Aunty Tory

This forum is brilliant!

 

I think we might have several William Hubbards in the same area and around the same age.  William G Hubbard showed up as a brother to Robert Samuel and he had a son, another William Hubbard.  

 

Are there any other certificates I should order to help point us in the right direction do you think?
 

 

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Susan Tall

Hi Aunty Tory

Yes we can discount this marriage.  It could well be that he never took part in WW1 having had some sort of accident with the Yorkshire Regiment that caused Neurasthenia.  Wonder if anyone knows how we can access the Court of Inquiry records.

 

If he did lose his memory he may have come up with the name Abbott as it was there in the family way back - so got married under that name and then eventually remembered his family in Stepney.

 

One thing that puzzles me is that his Army papers for prior to the war seem to be filed in with the WW1 papers - would this suggest that he did enlist.  Anyone know?

 

They are a large family (I've already drawn up two very large family trees).  Haven't looked at yours yet but will now do so.

Sue

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Aunty Tory
2 minutes ago, Susan Tall said:

Hi Tew 

You've solved the marriage query - it's not our man.  It is in fact his uncle William George born 1862 son of John Jealous and Anna Hubbard. He was previously married to Priscilla Elizabeth Fricker (m 1895) and had children William Hubbard 1895 and Alfred Hubbard 1898.

 

To find our man on Ancestry I just searched on William George Hubbard born 1893 Stepney.  This comes up with the Chelsea Pensioner Records which are on Fold 3 which I can't access, but I think this must be the same as the ones I found on FindmyPast.  The second entry on this search are his Service Records and has his father as Arthur Hubbard.  

 

I think I've solved the mystery of this Arthur.  William George had an uncle Arthur Frederick (b1864) a Drover, married Matilda Jane Taylor 1891 Stepney, children Arthur F. (1893) and Edward S (1897).  

William George's father, Robert Samuel Hubbard died in 1901 and his mother 1902, so I'm wondering if he went to live with Uncle Arthur and looked on him as his father so gave his name when he enlisted with the Yorkshire Regiment.  Later on in that document under father's name is says Robert Samuel Hubbard and this is in an entirely different hand from that written for Arthur Hubbard.

 

 

 

That might explain it.  In the letter from my aunt it said she thought William had been raised by a sister (Matlida Alice - who is later referred to as Aunt Doll by my aunt and is married to a Richley later) but I suppose that William would still have needed a reference of an older relative, and could possibly have been cared for by Arthur along with his sister - seems very likely when I look at his own children - one of which he called Arthur - it does seem like he had a particular fondness for this uncle...

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Aunty Tory
6 minutes ago, Susan Tall said:

Hi Aunty Tory

Yes we can discount this marriage.  It could well be that he never took part in WW1 having had some sort of accident with the Yorkshire Regiment that caused Neurasthenia.  Wonder if anyone knows how we can access the Court of Inquiry records.

 

If he did lose his memory he may have come up with the name Abbott as it was there in the family way back - so got married under that name and then eventually remembered his family in Stepney.

 

One thing that puzzles me is that his Army papers for prior to the war seem to be filed in with the WW1 papers - would this suggest that he did enlist.  Anyone know?

 

They are a large family (I've already drawn up two very large family trees).  Haven't looked at yours yet but will now do so.

Sue

Great Sue, thank you.  Is it unusual that someone from London would have joined a Yorkshire regiment?  I don't know much about how the system works, but I would have assumed that regiments were organised by geography and therefore he'd be more likely to join a regiment based in London?

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Susan Tall

I'd noticed that uncle Arthur had a son William born 1895 and wondered if there had been some confusion here with birthdates. Will do a bit more digging and see if I can find what happened to this William.   Can't see he had any other cousins called William - but there is one named Robert Arthur !!  Born 1890 son of another uncle Albert Henry Hubbard (b 1859)

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Aunty Tory
On 30/01/2019 at 01:15, Madmeg said:

So he marries as Harry abbott- but gives his father's name correctly as Robert Samuel- I' say hiding identity- the war is still in progress at time of marriage so if he had things to hide from the army he cold still have been iable to court martial. Wife knew him as William by the time of his death.

Yes, I hadn't appreciated that when they married, the war was not over, so the only reasons a soldier would have to be back would be an injury, home leave or desertion?  Would that be right?

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