Maybery Men and Boats

Alfred arrives in 1904

Lately I have looked at passenger lists for a lot of ships.  Mostly I look because I have had a hint that one or more of the Maybery family members have  arrived in either England or Canada on that particular ship . I thought I could figure out the comings and goings of the family members to ascertain  when they were just visiting Canada and when they finally came to stay.

Here is a timeline I have contrived to explain some of the boat rides.

Let’s go back to the Census of 1881 in Bristol,  England.

It has been 5 years since Rev. Valentine Maybery died, and for the last two of those years, his wife has been gone as well, and their 5 children have lived at 4 Arley Hill in Bristol with their Uncle  and Aunt, William and Eliza  Gibbons.

Now we look at the census for 1891 .




The difference that happens when the children are 10 years older is that the boys are now working in the business with Uncle William.  Little Ada is on the next page of the census listed as a scholar at age 14.

As we saw in the last post, 1901 takes us to the last Maybery census entry in England.  Their next Census document entry is in 1906 in the new Canadian province of Saskatchewan.  It has been reported that Frank and Alfred spent some time in Moose Jaw in 1904 while en-route home to England from the Far East. (Some sources say Japan).

By 1903, Arnold has wedding plans and marries Edith Louisa Jennett, a teacher, in July of that year.  Meanwhile the youngest brother Frank and oldest brother Alfred seem to be travelling, not always together. Frank goes from Liverpool to Montreal on the BAVARIAN  in May of 1903 at age 27. Frank travels second cabin.

The first voyage that shows Alfred coming to Canada  departs  from Liverpool to Halifax , Nova Scotia. He is travelling  “Saloon” on the TUNISION on April 23, 1904. Alfred would travel with  a smaller number of people who would have access to special services and shared lounge areas for music, letter writing, private dining etc. Usually there would be a second class group of travelers who also have cabins but fewer shared areas with limited services and luxuries.  The other classification of passengers is “Steerage”,  and that is the largest group. These people have little to no privacy and very few privileges.  This is probably a return visit after his world trip and first visit to Canada.  That trip would have landed him in Canada at the west coast, and he would have had a train ride from west to east.

If Alfred did travel to Japan and end up in Canada, it is possible that he traveled on one of the three new Empress ships that had been launched in the 1890s to follow the Pacific route and end up on the West Coast of Canada.  The Empress of Japan  was also known as the “Queen of the Pacific,” and along with her two sister ships formed the foundation of the Canadian Pacific Railway Company’s expansion into world wide shipping.

“The ship left Liverpool on 11 April 1891 on her maiden voyage via Suez to Hong Kong and Vancouver, arriving in British Columbia on 2 June.”

The ships were more luxurious than the steamships that were working in the Atlantic and that were used by the Maybery family to return to England several times in the length of time they lived in Moose Jaw.  The Mayberys (Frank and Alfred) can be found on passenger lists for several steamships on the Atlantic route between 1903 and 1905:  BAVARIAN,  TUNISION,  MAJESTIC,  SAXONIA,  CARMENIA, departing usually from Liverpool and arriving at either Montreal, Halifax, New York, or Boston.  Sometimes they traveled  together, sometimes alone.

Then in 1906, we find more of the family arriving  including Mrs. Eliza Mary Gibbons,  Arnold and his wife Edith Louisa, Annie Maybery, and Ada Winnifred.   By the time of the  June 1906 Census of the prairie provinces,  Eliza and Annie are staying in a house on Athabasca.  They are four “roomers” in the home headed by Mr. and Mrs. Bastien  and assisted by one servant girl of 16.

By the next Census in 1911,  the Mayberys are in  a large house on Stadacona W.  (#60 was the old number.)  The  lot now has a more modern house, but the Mayberys lived out their days in Moose Jaw at 310 Stadacona W.

The Tramway Centre in Bristol gives us a chance to compare the city they were leaving behind  to Moose Jaw as it was in 1906.

Canadian Pacific Office in Bristol where tickets were likely purchased.

On the 10th of June in 1907, Frank married Frances Ella Hadfield at the Greenacres Chapel, Oldham Lancashire.  When he arrived in Moose Jaw with his bride, the three brothers went into partnership as Real Estate Agents, and for some time Alfred specialized in farm land around the Mortlach area.  Both Alfred and Arnold became very involved in the development of Moose Jaw as a city.   Frank and Ella had two daughters here in Moose Jaw: Joyce in 1908, and Enid in 1910. However, Ella was “troubled with a serious eye complaint”, so in 1911, Frank brought his wife and their two daughters back to England where up-to-date medical treatment was possible.  Frank then returned to Moose Jaw to settle his affairs.  He bought a second class ticket  at Southhampton: Ticket number 239059.  On the Titanic.  You can read his story at this Titanic site.

Moose Jaw Library Archives Lewis Rice Collection   The Seaborn house on                                     the corner of Clifton and Hall.

I like to imagine that Mr. Frank Maybery took a Sunday afternoon drive during his short stay with his two little daughters and his wife in Moose Jaw.  I know our house wasn’t here yet in 1912, but I still imagine that he showed his family the streets  called Henleaze and Grafton and Redland.

Then he turned down the last street before Main St. and he said “Look here, Joyce and Enid, this street is named for the place where your Grandma Clara was born.  It’s called ‘Clifton Avenue.’   And look at this big house on the corner.  That’s where the Seaborns live. That is a pretty big house for Moose Jaw!   Now look here, girls.  Here’s a smaller house just being built.  I wonder who will live here.  We’ll have to ask Uncle Alfred.  I’ll bet he knows. Don’t you think Clifton Avenue will be a special place for someone to live?”







Five Little Mayberys and How They Grew

How very wonderful to have two pictures sent to me this week from Ipswich, Suffolk.  The first picture is of the house on Burlington Road where the Maybery family lived while Rev. Maybery was the minister at Tacket Street Congregational Church from 1873 to 1876.   Laura Cloke shared the picture of the home she and her mother have been researching.

Maybery home in Ipswich: 1873-76
Arnold and Frank were babies in this house.

The second picture this week was from a gentleman associated with the church (Tacket Street , now called Christchurch) where Rev. Maybery served until his death in 1876.  The picture is very old and thus a bit spotty but is a real treasure, don’t you think?

Rev. William Valentine Maybery (1843-1879)  Permission: Michael Smith

Back now to five Maybery children who have been taken in by a childless aunt and uncle  after their parents have both died: one in 1876, and the other in 1879.  Their father had been a minister, and their uncle is a  merchant. They had been living with their mother in Bristol for 3 years after their father died.  We don’t know if Mrs. Maybery was sick during that time. We do know that there were family members near.  Their maternal grandparents lived just around the corner.  One house was on Freemantle Square and and the other on Freemantle Road.  Coincidently, there are houses for sale on both of those streets this week in Bristol.  You can see the modern refurbishment of houses that were there in Bristol of 1871 or earlier.

Freemantle Square House today. Follow the link for now. It won’t last.

In contrast with Georgian houses that have been refurbished, there is in Bristol a Georgian House Museum where the house  has been restored to the way it was in the Georgian period when it was built.  The house at this link seems similar to the house on Chantry Road where the Mayberys were living with Eliza Sinnock in 1901.

Census documents do not provide answers to all our questions about the upbringing of the 5 children by their aunt and uncle, William and Eliza Gibbons. Being a teacher, of course I have wondered about the education that the children had.  Sometimes in the census documents children after a certain age are labeled as a “scholar”  in the space where employment is to be recorded.  In the 1881 census, there is no record of that nature for the 5 children who range in that year from 4 to 10.  Other 9 and 10 year olds in the document are listed as “at school” or as “scholar”, but mostly the designation is used for children over the age of 10.  Although there is no “governess”  listed, there is domestic help in the Sinnock home.

I found one reference to Crofton House School that Alfred  attended.   After education became compulsory in England in 1870, there were many kinds of schools.  One website attempted to list the many schools in Bristol and give a little information about each.  A Mr. Charles E. Cooper started a school called Crofton House  and  advertised his school as providing ‘high class education for sons of gentlemen’.  It is not clear how long the school remained in operation or if the other two boys attended.

By the time the next census is taken in 1891, the children are ranging from 14 to 20.  They now have on the job training provided by apprenticeship in their uncles’ business. Perhaps the girls attended a “school for young ladies”.  There were several nearby.

Only the 14 year old is listed as a scholar.

At the young ages of 19,16, and 15, the three boys are listed as Provision Salesman (Alfred), Apprentice Provision Warehouse (Arnold) and  “ditto”  for Frank.  According to the Dictionary of Old Occupations , the meaning of “Provision” is food supplies.    The main import for Mr. Gibbon’s business was flour.  William Gibbons was a partner in a business called Gibbons, Sinnock and Co.  His partner was his brother-in-law, Alfred Howard Sinnock. The business of Provisions involved  importing, wholesale and retail levels. According to one source, the company had been started by 1879 with the help of a loan from St. Augustine bank.

Instead of 5 adopted children, Alfred Howard Sinnock had his own large family.  Alfred had married Emma Clara Richards  in Bristol, Gloucestershire, England, on April 15, 1862, when she was 18 years old.  After giving birth to  Edith, Ethel, Harold, Gilbert, Edgar, Edna, Annie, Hilda,  Gertrude,  Emma Clara Richards died in September 1890 in Bristol, Gloucestershire, England, when she was 46 years old.  It’s hard to know if her death was a factor in the break-up of the business of Gibbons and Sinnock, but she died in September of 1890, and the company dissolved in June of 1891. After she died  it seems both Alfred, her husband, and William, his brother-in-law, continued in the wholesale importing trade but with different relatives for partners.

Mr. Sinnock continues in the importing and wholesale business with another brother Frederick William Sinnock while William Gibbons is in business with his nephews who had been raised as his sons.

The years  around the turn of the century also brought more changes for the Maybery family.  By the 1901 census in England, Mrs. Gibbons,  is now a widow, and  with the grown Maybery children, is living on Chantry Road  Number 12.  The information about William Gibbons legacy to Eliza follows.

The Mayberys are living here with Eliza Sinnock in 1901.

This house seems to be a step up, looking larger than the previous house called Grafton Villa on Arley Hill.  On Arley Hill, the family had been close to their mother’s mother, Susan Matthews Sinnock, who lived with a maid-servant in a house nearby.  But in 1897, William Gibbons had died, and then in 1900 Grandma Susan had died.  William had lived for 61 years, and his mother-in-law who had given birth to 13 children had lived for 87 years.

When William Gibbons died,  he left a legacy of  £12763  pounds.   

UK Inflation Rate, £12,763 in 1897 to 2018

According to the Office for National Statistics composite price index, prices in 2018 are 12,523.81% higher than prices in 1897. The pound experienced an average inflation rate of 4.08% per year during this period.

In other words, £12,763 in 1897 is equivalent in purchasing power to £1,611,177.44 in 2018, a difference of £1,598,414.44 over 121 years.

Please note:
I do not understand  how the above figures were calculated.  I just visited a site that seemed to know how to figure out what  the buying power of old wages or legacies would be today.  I used it once before to figure out how rich Mr. Darcy from Pride and Prejudice  really was.

Who’s Who in Western Canada

What was it in the growing up, studying, working, and grieving in Bristol of the late Victorian years that would culminate in a decision to take a trip to Japan and come home the long way through Canada.  Were there funds available now that had been tied up before?   Why Japan, why Canada, and why Moose Jaw?   Tune in later folks for Mayberys on the move.  It’s time for a Transportation Theme:  Boats and Trains.

Frank Maybery on his way home from Japan in 1903 decides to see if Alfred would like to take the long way home.
Alfred gives his surprisingly unexpected response, “Why not?’  Photos courtesy of Moose Jaw Public Library Archives.




From Wales to Ipswich to Bristol to Canada Part 1.

Rosedale Cemetery, Moose Jaw

There were three Maybery brothers who formed a Real Estate Company in Moose Jaw around 1906. I have been interested in the Maybery brothers because they were the ones that participated in the drawing up of a plan for the quarter section of land that Mr. John R. Green had purchased amid such controversy in 1903.  The Moose Jaw Times reported that the lots in the newly renamed  Parkside area would now be available for sale.  Since the Maybery men had their name on a title to our property,  and had been owners of the land while it was only a lot,  I was interested in them and began to try to find out more about them.

1907 Clipping from Moose Jaw Times
Another Green to Maybery Transaction “PARKSIDE”

Imagine my surprise one day when I was searching for information about the Mayberys when a letter popped up on my screen that had been clicked on to the internet in 2005 by a woman in Ipswich, Suffolk:


My name is Lxxxx Cxxxx and I live in Ipswich, Suffolk UK. I am doing some research into the history of my house and everyone who has lived in it.

One of the people that I have come across is Frank Maybery….

Imagine….the two of us on opposite sides of the Atlantic trying to find out about the same people and just running into each other that way. She wasn’t writing to me.  She was just posting a query on a message board for a geneology site.  The information in her letter and some of the replies that had been posted to her query were very helpful to me and I was off and running around the Maybery bush early every morning!!

First of all, there was a man who was born in Wales on February 14th, 1843. The story of his short life is told movingly in an obituary published in a 1877 Journal called Evangelical Magazine and Missionary Chronicle. There is  information about his journey of faith and his short career as a minister in Stoke  (the most common place name in England) sub-Hampton,  Somersetshire and across the country in Ipswich, Suffolk.  Yes, readers, he was only 34 years old.  He had served 5 years in Stoke, and 3 years in Ipswich.

When William Valentine Maybery died in in Ipswich in 1876, he was father to 4 children, 3 sons and 1 daughter.  The children were quite young: Annie Edith 6, Alfred William  4, Arnold Hugh 2, and Frank Hubert , not quite a year.

A second daughter, Ada Winifred, was born in April of 1877, a few months too late to meet her father. William had been born on February  14th ,1843, in Monmouthshire, Wales.  And now, at age 34 he has left his young wife Clara Susan (nee Sinnock) with 5 children.  He seems to have been a man with much potential and with gifts and graces for ministry.  So says his obituary:

It was no small task for a young man to follow one who had taken such a high position in Ipswich as his predecessor, the Rev. Eliezer Jones; but, so far as spiritual power and mental ability are concerned, Mr. Maybery proved himself equal to the task.  the congregation soon increased, and new life was infused into the church.  Every trace of debt was wiped out, many useful organisations were started–all the societies of the church were brought to a flourishing condition; he was daily ripening in the affections of his people, and growing in the respect of the inhabitants of the town.  But his physical constitution was not strong enough to enable him to carry out the work which was in his heart to do.

The obituary is quite detailed with reference to the text of his first sermon, the financial situation of the church,  and the illness that brought about his demise.  However, we are left to our imaginations with regard to the next few years for his wife and young family.

Valentine Maybery served at this location for 3 years.

The story of the family that Rev. Maybery left behind begins as the widow, Clara moves back from Ipswich to Barton Regis, (now a part of Bristol)  in Gloucestershire where  Ada Winifred was to be born. The first two children had been born in Somersetshire,  during the 5 year ministry at Stoke, sub-Hampton, and the second two children had been born in Suffolk, during the 3 years at Ipswich.   If one were to take this trip now, from Ipswich, Suffolk to Bristol in Gloucestershire. (Just say “Gloster” to rhyme with “Foster”)  it would be a four hour train ride.  Some pretty famous people have come from Bristol including John and Charles Wesley.   Clara herself had been born very near here in a region of Bristol called Clifton.

Clara Susan (Sinnock) Maybery appears to have taken up residence very near a relative, William Sinnock.  In the Bristol Post Office Directory for 1879,  Mrs. Maybery’s address is 13 Freemantle Road, and  her parents are living at  10 Freemantle Square.

1879 Post Office  Directory for Bristol

By the 1881 Census the Maybery children’s story has taken a turn

Although there is no record found to explain the details of the death of Clara Susan Sinnock Maybery, we do know that she died 3 years after her husband in 1879 at Bristol. It seems that Valentine’s parents who were still living in Wales, and Clara’s parents  who were still living in Bristol were all getting on in years, and therefore,  the most eligible caregivers for  five young children were William and Eliza Mary Gibbons.  Eliza was an elder sister of Clara, and therefore aunt to the 5 little Mayberys.  She and her husband were childless themselves and took all five into their home called Grafton Villa at 4 Arley Hill.

At Census time in 1881, William and Eliza Gibbons were 45 and 44 years of age, and the children ranged from Alfred at age 10 down to Ada Winnifred at age 4.  William was a “Provisions Merchant”.  Fortunately there was some domestic help available as two young women are listed  with the family in the census.

Watch for the continuation of the Maybery story next time. There’s a reason we have a street called Maybery Crescent.