Eliza Whiting 1866-1945?

Parents: Henry Whiting and Mary Scott (1)
Born: 3rd March 1866 in Burton End, Haverhill. (1,2)
Baptised: 1st April 1866 at St Mary's Parish Church, Haverhill.(1)
Married: George Basham, factory hand, son of David Basham, in the Risbridge District on 19th September 1885 (3)
Children: Albert George Basham b.1894
Died: in the Chelmsford District in 1945?(7)

Bio: Eliza was born in Burton End, Haverhill, in 1866 and features there on the 1871 census living with her parents and siblings. We see her there again on the following census in 1881 still living with her parents. In 1885 she married George Basham, and they are found on the 1891 census living with Eliza's parents Henry and Mary at 78 Primrose Hill, Haverhill. George is a factory hand along with Eliza. The couple stayed at the same address, and here they are again in 1901. Henry has since died, and Mary remains as a widow. George is working as a rag sorter at a clothing factory and there is a new addition in the form of son Albert Basham.

By the 1911 census Mary has died, and presumably ownership of the house at 78 Primrose Hill transferred to George and Eliza. Their son Albert, is still at home, and they have a boarder, George's brother William Basham, 64, who is a silk weaver. Eliza is a machinist at a clothing factory (most probably Gurteens), and George is a farm labourer.

During the Great War, George joined the Army Service Corps on 4th May 1915 as Private number SS10094. He was with a detachment known as the R.S.P depot (i've been unable to establish what this stands for) at Bath.

His discharge records(8) are available and they give his physical description. He was 5ft 5ins with a chest measurement of 34 ins. He had blue eyes, dark brown hair, and was a gardener.

It gives his address as 78 Primrose Hill, Haverhill, once more.

He was discharged on 20th July 1917 after being found to be no longer fit for service while at St Luke's War Hospital in Halifax. This was linked with rheumatism and several bouts of influenza he had suffered in France where it appears he had served from 12th May 1915 to 22nd February 1917, and again from the 1st May 1917 to 10th June 1917.

There is a interesting reference to his character that accompanies these records: 'Military character - very good. Character awarded in accordance with King's regulations: Has been employed as a dock labourer, is sober, reliable, intelligent. Understands gardening.'

My suspicion is that George died in the Braintree district in 1930.(5) The age is precise, and also we find an Albert G Basham of exactly the correct age to be his son dying in the same district in 1949.(6)

On the 1939 Register Eliza can be seen living at 59 South Street, Braintree, with her brother-in-law Robert Boreham, a chimney sweep. They are both widowed, and of around the same age and so it was probably an ideal arrangement as they must have known each other well(4).

There is an Eliza Basham of exactly the correct age who died in the Chelmsford district in 1945 who is likely to be her.


(1) Suffolk Records Office, Bury St Edmunds, Parish Registers of St Mary's Church, Haverhill. Fiche 578/4/p13 of 37
(2) Birth Register. 1st Quarter 1866, Risbridge District, Volume 4a Page 423
(3) Marriage Register. 3rd Quarter 1885, Risbridge District, Volume 4a Page 812
(4) 1939 Register, Ref: RG101/1483G/015/36 Letter Code: DBIF, Findmypast.co.uk
(5) Death Register. 3rd Quarter 1930, Braintree District, Volume 4a Page 742
(6) Death Register. 4th Quarter 1949, Braintree District, Volume 4a Page 362
(7) Death Register. 3rd Quarter 1945, Chelmsford District, Volume 4a Page 520
(8) British Army WWI Pension Records, National Archives, WO364, Piece 172