Christmas is the perfect time for catching up with family and friends, as most people are usually able to have some time off work. So it is also the perfect time to get all those old photos out, the ones in old albums, boxes stored in your parent’s loft or the old biscuit tin that grandmothers seemed to keep the old family photos in. Have some pencils handy and write full names and dates if you can, on the backs of the ones you recognise, do your Mum and Dad know anyone you don’t or Grandma and Grandad, Aunts and Uncles, maybe with a bit of prompting they might remember. Get all these memories down and write as much as you can on the backs of the photos. Because if you don’t while you have the older generation still with you the memories will fade and be lost forever. It would be such a shame for these stories and faces to be forgotten by the younger generations.
These photos I’m sharing today wouldn’t now be back together if it wasn’t for someone writing some names on the backs. I do suspect that they were probably just part of a larger collection of family photos and ephemera, maybe as a result of a house clearance for a member of the family, so it’s likely there are more photos of the family somewhere out there. On August Bank Holiday Monday this year, we went to Alweston Car Boot sale, our first for two years, and I bought an assorted bunch of Wedding and other mixed photos out of a large box from one seller, some had writing on the backs I noticed so that was great. Then forward on to October and over a few days, I bought a few more Wedding photos from a seller on eBay. When I scanned them after they arrived I was surprised to see a similar surname on the back of this first one below, too much of a coincidence for me, so I started a tree on Ancestry and indeed the surnames were actually the same HUDSPITH, it was just the writing I couldn’t read clearly. It was good to find the family members I had photos of and find out more about them.
This beautiful Wedding above took place in Jan 1920 in Wandsworth, Surrey, London. It turned out that this lovely couple above were very special as they were the parents of the chap in this second photo with his new wife cutting their Wedding Cake. Just beautiful isn’t it, with the sun shining through the window and what a spectacular Wedding Cake!
The Photographers stamp on the back of this photo above was really helpful as it also confirmed my research with the correct area for this family Wedding.
The couple above were attending the Wedding of the first couple Maurice Hudspith and Bertha Gray. We have Victor John Gray 1896-1976, he was the younger brother of the Bride Bertha Gray. Victor had married Glady’s Evelyn Hussey 1894-1977 in Jan 1920. Their eldest son John Gains Gray was born on 15 October 1920, he served in the Royal Navy and was aboard the ship HMS Jaguar and that was his place of death on 26 March 1942 in WW2. Records state he was an Ordinary Signalman, Service No: C/JX 225331. He is remembered on the memorial in Chatham Naval Memorial, Chatham, Kent. I found this information about how and where he tragically died among many others on Wikipedia: “HMS Jaguar helped to escort convoy MF 2 into Malta on 7–8 January 1942. She left Malta later that month, and from 13 to 16 June escorted the Malta-bound three-ship Convoy MW 9, but two of the merchant ships were sunk and the third damaged and forced to put into Tobruk. On 26 March 1942 HMS Jaguar and the Greek destroyer Vasilissa Olga were escorting the tanker RFA Slavol when Slavol was torpedoed by the German submarine U-652 and set on fire. Jaguar came alongside Salvol to rescue the oiler’s crew, but the destroyer was then struck by two more torpedoes from U-652. HMS Jaguar broke into three parts and quickly sank off Sidi Barrani, Egypt, 31°53′N 26°18′E with the loss of 3 officers and 190 of her crew. 8 officers and 45 crewmen were rescued by the South African naval whaler Klo“.
Victor and Glady’s Gray had another son Donald Victor Gray who was born on 27 Apr 1924 and he married in 1950 to Sylvia M Bulpitt. They had two children.
So this group below I also bought from the same seller at the car boot sale, but had no idea if they were related or not as sadly there is no writing on any of these photos. Then I had an amazing stroke of luck, I was looking through other Public Trees on Ancestry for the various members of the family and came across another photo of this Wedding below but this time it gave me all the names! Yes, it was a Wedding of the same family and was actually Donald Victor Gray and Sylvia M Bulpitt in 1950! So I shall get in touch with the owner of the tree after Christmas and tell her about my small collection of photos of the family and this Blog.
I was able to find out more information on this Wedding couple due to the family tree I had made. The groom is David George Gray 1898-1965 and the bride is Mary Quilter 1906-1975 they married 6 Jun 1929 at Christ Church, Sutton, Surrey. (Image below) Looking at the 1939 Register, they were living 20 Montrose Avenue, Eton, Buckinghamshire. David was a Bank Clerk and in brackets (Chief Clerk) No children were mentioned.
This is a direct link to the Public Tree I have made on Ancestry for the families: https://www.ancestry.co.uk/family-tree/tree/178569104/family?cfpid=262324430556
This next group of photos look like they could be related to the same family, but I’m not sure, they have similar pencil writing as on the first ones, again bought from the same seller at the car boot sale, but no surnames, very frustrating!
But I’m always hopeful that someone out there might recognise some faces! Are they your Ancestors? Do you know of a Jack & Mary?
This last photo is another beautiful Wedding day photo taken in the 1920’s but sadly has nothing written on the back but doesn’t it look familiar, could the groom belong to the Gray family? Most definitely a family resemblance I think.
Isn’t this last wedding photo just gorgeous, but again no writing, do they also belong to the Gray or Hudspith family. Any help would be wonderful to identify the mystery people above.
Till next time then………..