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.
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.
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
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.