Sunday, 10 March 2019

The Lewis Family and Silver Street Baptist Church

Josiah Lewis and his family were active members of the Silver Street Baptist Church in Taunton, Somerset through out their lives.

The records for the Silver Street Baptist Church are not available online so I visited the Somerset Heritage Centre in Taunton, Somerset, England - https://www.swheritage.org.uk/somerset-archives - to refer to the records that they have and obtained a photograph licence to take images of the relevant entries.

The first mention of Josiah with his wife name given as Eleanor is in the notes from the meeting held on April 9 1874 [1]. It states:

"Transfers sent for Josiah and Eleanor Lewis of North Street from the Baptist Church of Wincanton."

They are mentioned again in the following month's meeting on May 7 1874 [2]  as follows:

"Transfers received from Baptist Church of Wincanton for Josiah and Eleanor Lewis"

They are listed on the 1878 Church List [3] with the following information given:

"107 - Lewis, Josiah - 57 60 Alma Street, Received on April 9th 1874 by Letter"
"108 - Lewis, Eleanor - 57 60 Alma Street, Received on April 9th 1874 by Letter"

They are listed again on the List of Members as revised February 1880 [4] with the following information provided:

"94 - Lewis, Josiah - 60 Alma Street The Crescent, Received on April 9th 1874 by Letter"
"95  - Lewis, Eleanor - 60 Alma Street The Crescent, Received on April 9th 1874 by Letter"

On the List of Members revised in February 1887 with additions [5], the following members of the Lewis Family are listed:

"68 - Lewis, Josiah - Silver Street, Received on April 9 1874 by Letter"
"69 - Lewis, Eleanor - Silver Street, Received on April 9 1874 by Letter"
"208 - Lewis, Helena - The Crescent, Received on May 16 1886 by Baptism"
"209 - Lewis, Annie - The Crescent, Received on May 16 1886 by Baptism"
"396 - Lewis, Edith - 2 The Crescent, Received on April 15 1894 by Baptism"

There is a further Revised List of Members copied from the Church Manual in May 1895 [6]. The following members of the Lewis family are listed along with someone who was living at the same address:

"Lewis, Josiah, 2 The Crescent, Received on April 9 1874 by Letter"
"Lewis, Ellen N (Mrs), 2 The Crescent, Received on April 9 1874 by Letter"
"Lewis, Ellen, 2 The Crescent, Received on May 16 1886 by Baptism"
"Lewis, Annie, 2 The Crescent, Received on May 16 1886 by Baptism"
"Lewis, Edith, 2 The Crescent, Received on April 15 1894 by Baptism"

Also listed in the 1895 list at the same address as the Lewis Family [7]:

"Oaten, Teresa (Mrs), 2 The Crescent, Received on June 4 1891 by Baptism"

According to a newspaper article in The Chard and Ilminster News on Saturday 3 October 1903, Josiah Lewis was a part of the Silver Street Baptist Sunday School and attended a Mass Meeting in Taunton [8].

(c) The British Library Board - All Rights Reserved

It has been really interesting to research this aspect of the Lewis family and maybe one day I will investigate more on the Silver Street Baptist Church in Taunton as I was able to source two books, 'Taunton Silver Street - A Baptist Chapel and its Town - the Early Years 1814-1851' and 'Taunton Silver Street - A Baptist Chapel and its Town - The Confident Years 1851-1914' both written by Ian Kember.

Next time, I will looking at a new family who was living at 1 The Crescent at the time of the 1881 census as there was no listed as living there during the 1891 census.

[1] Somerset Heritage Centre; Taunton, Somerset, England; Taunton Baptist Church Silver Street Baptist Records 1814 - 2012; Reference Number: D\N\tau.b/4/2/2 - Church meeting minutes. 1853-1879
[2] Somerset Heritage Centre; Taunton, Somerset, England; Taunton Baptist Church Silver Street Baptist Records 1814 - 2012; Reference Number: D\N\tau.b/4/2/2 - Church meeting minutes. 1853-1879
[3] Somerset Heritage Centre; Taunton, Somerset, England; Taunton Baptist Church Silver Street Baptist Records 1814 - 2012; Reference Number: D\N\tau.b/4/2/2 - Church meeting minutes. 1853-1879
[4] Somerset Heritage Centre; Taunton, Somerset, England; Taunton Baptist Church Silver Street Baptist Records 1814 - 2012; Reference Number: D\N\tau.b/4/2/3 - Church meeting minutes. 1880-1897
[5] Somerset Heritage Centre; Taunton, Somerset, England; Taunton Baptist Church Silver Street Baptist Records 1814 - 2012; Reference Number: D\N\tau.b/4/2/3 - Church meeting minutes. 1880-1897
[6] Somerset Heritage Centre; Taunton, Somerset, England; Taunton Baptist Church Silver Street Baptist Records 1814 - 2012; Reference Number: D\N\tau.b/4/2/3 - Church meeting minutes. 1880-1897
[7] Somerset Heritage Centre; Taunton, Somerset, England; Taunton Baptist Church Silver Street Baptist Records 1814 - 2012; Reference Number: D\N\tau.b/4/2/3 - Church meeting minutes. 1880-1897
[8] Britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk, Chard and Ilminster News, Saturday 10 October 1903 - Image (c) The British Library Board - All Rights Reserved.

Thursday, 8 November 2018

The Lewis Family - The Later Years at 1 The Crescent

This update continues with the Lewis family who lived at 1 The Crescent, Taunton, Somerset.

Josiah, who died on 15 May 1915, was evidently a well respected public servant, first as a local Councillor then going on to be Mayor and Deputy Mayor of Taunton and a Justice of the Peace. He was also a Tailor employer, member of the Silver Street Baptist Church and Father to 9 children. There are many articles on the British Newspaper Archives website (https://www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk), too many to feature in this blog, of works that Josiah and his wife Ellen Norah undertook in the local community. 

Ellen continued to live at 1 The Crescent. In the school holidays of 1916, Ellen's daughter, Ellen Norah, commonly known as Nellie, along with her husband, Alfred Samuel Tetley, and their three children, Ethel Norah, John Lewis and Elizabeth Gertrude, visited Taunton from their home in Scarborough, Yorkshire. Sadly on Monday 4 September 1916, Alfred Samuel was taken ill and passed away. He was 48 years old. An article was featured in the Western Times on Friday 8 September 1916 [1].


Image © THE BRITISH LIBRARY BOARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
An article regarding his burial was also featured in the Taunton Courier and Western Advertiser on Wednesday 13 September 1916 [2].


Image © THE BRITISH LIBRARY BOARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

I have not been able to locate Alfred Samuel Tetley's grave in St Mary's Cemetery at this time. 

This was sadly not the only bereavement which occurred in 1916 for the family. On Thursday 5 October 1916, Fanny Elizabeth and her husband Frederick William Penny, suffered the sad loss of 2 of their 3 sons. Leslie, their eldest, was 13 years old, and Stephen, their youngest, aged 6 years. On Wednesday 11 October 1916, an article was featured in the Taunton Courier and Western Advertiser, relaying the Alderman and Mrs Penny's 'Severe Loss' [3].


Image © THE BRITISH LIBRARY BOARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
A further article also appeared on the same date in the Taunton Courier and Western Advertiser with details of the funerals of the brothers with a service being held at their home, Greenaway House, prior to burial at St James Cemetery. I have still to locate the brother's graves.

There is no further mention of Ellen Norah or 1 The Crescent in the local newspapers, which can be found online at https://www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk until November 1922, when, on request of the trustees of the late Mr J Lewis, the property of No 1 The Crescent is advertised for auction by William J. Villar & Co. The article in the the Taunton Courier and Western Advertiser on Wednesday 8 November 1922, gives us a good insight to the layout of the house, its dimensions and also about a separate lot of a garage [4]


Image © THE BRITISH LIBRARY BOARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
A second article in the same newspaper on Wednesday 24 January 1923 details the contents of the house that are also being auctioned [5]


Image © THE BRITISH LIBRARY BOARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
On Tuesday 23 March 1926, Ellen Norah died her home, 5 North Town Crescent. An article was featured in the Taunton Courier and Western Advertiser on Wednesday 31 March 1926 [6]


Image © THE BRITISH LIBRARY BOARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
Her burial took place at St Mary's Cemetery, however, I have been unable to locate her grave. Her residence, listed as No 5 North Town Terrace, along with its contents, were later placed up for auction according to a notice in the Taunton Courtier and Western Advertiser on Wednesday 21 April 1926 [7].


Image © THE BRITISH LIBRARY BOARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

This brings to an end the Lewis family time living at The Crescent, first at number 9, then number 2, before moving to number 1. They have been a really interesting family to research as part of my One Place Study of the The Crescent in Taunton, Somerset, England, and I found out much more about Josiah and Ellen Norah and their children. I will be writing further articles on this family in the future including one about their history with the Silver Street Baptist Chapel in Taunton following my research of the Baptist records held at the Somerset Heritage Centre (https://swheritage.org.uk)

I hope that you have enjoyed reading about the Lewis family as much as I have enjoyed researching them. It would be wonderful to hear from you via the comments section on this blog or via my facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/groups/lucythecrescentops/ - If you would like to see the tree that I have been building for my One Place Study of 1 The Crescent, it is on ancestry.co.uk under 1 The Crescent Taunton One Place Study

As a side note, the house at 1 The Crescent was listed as vacant on the 1939 Register [8]


[1] Britishnewspaperarchvie.co.uk, Western Times, Friday 8 September 1916 - Image (c) The British Library Board - All Rights Reserved. 
[2] Britishnewspaperarchvie.co.uk, Taunton Courier and Western Advertiser, Wednesday 13 September 1916 - Image (c) The British Library Board - All Rights Reserved.
[3] Britishnewspaperarchvie.co.uk, Taunton Courier and Western Advertiser, Wednesday 11 October 1916 - Image (c) The British Library Board - All Rights Reserved.
[4] Britishnewspaperarchvie.co.uk, Taunton Courier and Western Advertiser, Wednesday 8 November 1922 - Image (c) The British Library Board - All Rights Reserved.
[5] Britishnewspaperarchvie.co.uk, Taunton Courier and Western Advertiser, Wednesday 24 January 1923 - Image (c) The British Library Board - All Rights Reserved.
[6] Britishnewspaperarchvie.co.uk, Taunton Courier and Western Advertiser, Wednesday 31 March 1926 - Image (c) The British Library Board - All Rights Reserved.
[7] Britishnewspaperarchvie.co.uk, Taunton Courier and Western Advertiser, Wednesday 21 April 1926 - Image (c) The British Library Board - All Rights Reserved.
[8] The National Archives; Kew, London, England; 1939 Register; Reference: RG 101/7041B  - This information is licensed under the terms of the Open Government Licence (http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/doc/open-government-licence).

Saturday, 22 September 2018

The Lewis Family - A Son's Wedding & A Father's Death

This post continues with the history of the family of Josiah and Ellen Norah Lewis at 1 The Crescent in Taunton, going forward from the 1911 Census. 

The next big family event to occur was the marriage of Josiah and Ellen Norah's only surviving son, Harold Martin, to Gladys Mary Mead on 20 June 1912. The following article was featured in the Western Times on 21 June 1912.


Image © THE BRITISH LIBRARY BOARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

According the the Kelly's Directory of Somerset 1914, Josiah continues to be a Tailor employer with a store still trading at 11 North Street, Taunton [2]  as well as being a Justice of the Peace [3]

Sadly, on Saturday 15 May 1915, Josiah died at home, at 1 The Crescent, Taunton. A long article concerning his passing was featured in the Taunton Courier and Western Advertiser on 19 May 1915 [4]


Image © THE BRITISH LIBRARY BOARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

It is interesting to note from this article that Josiah is 'of Welsh extraction'. He also developed his tailoring skills in London before establishing his business in Taunton. 

Josiah's Memorial Service was held at the Silver Street Baptist Church on Thursday 20 May 1915 at 3pm. According to an Order of Service, the hymns sung were 'Still, still with thee' &  'Our God, our help in ages past' [5]. His body was interred at St Mary's Cemetery, although I have not yet located a headstone in his memory. 

Two further articles were featured in the Taunton Courier and Western Advertiser on Wednesday 26 May 1915, an 'In Memoriam' by the pastor of Silver Street Baptist, Rev Davies, [6]  and an article concerning the Funeral and Memorial Service which were held for Josiah [7].  
Image © THE BRITISH LIBRARY BOARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
Image © THE BRITISH LIBRARY BOARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
A notice appears in the Taunton Courier and Western Advertiser on 25 August 1915 [8] regarding Josiah's Will, with his business being left to his son, Harold Martin, and the residue of his property being left in trust to his wife of 45 years, Ellen Norah, with provisions made for his Daughter's and Son-in-Law's.  


Image © THE BRITISH LIBRARY BOARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

Josiah Lewis ~ 18 October 1845 - 15 May 1915

Image © THE BRITISH LIBRARY BOARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. [9] 

The next update will look at what happens to the Lewis family following Josiah's passing. 

[1] Britishnewspaperarchvie.co.uk, Western Times, Friday 21 June 1915 - Image (c) The British Library Board - All Rights Reserved. 
[2] http://specialcollections.le.ac.uk, Kelly's Directory of Somerset 1914, page 458 - Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.0 UK: England & Wales License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/2.0/uk/
[3] http://specialcollections.le.ac.uk, Kelly's Directory of Somerset 1914, page 445 - Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.0 UK: England & Wales License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/2.0/uk/
[4] Britishnewspaperarchvie.co.uk, Taunton Courier and Western Advertiser, Wednesday 19 May 1915 - Image (c) The British Library Board - All Rights Reserved. 
[5] South West Heritage Trust, Somerset Archives and Local Studies, Taunton, Somerset, England, Reference Number A\DSG, Scrapbook of Josiah Lewis - Mayor of Taunton, Order of Service for Memorial
[6] Britishnewspaperarchvie.co.uk, Taunton Courier and Western Advertiser, Wednesday 26 May 1915 - Image (c) The British Library Board - All Rights Reserved.
[7] Britishnewspaperarchvie.co.uk, Taunton Courier and Western Advertiser, Wednesday 26 May 1915 - Image (c) The British Library Board - All Rights Reserved.
[8] Britishnewspaperarchvie.co.uk, Taunton Courier and Western Advertiser, Wednesday 25 August 1915 - Image (c) The British Library Board - All Rights Reserved.
[9] Britishnewspaperarchvie.co.uk, Taunton Courier and Western Advertiser, Wednesday 19 May 1915 - Image (c) The British Library Board - All Rights Reserved. 

Sunday, 5 August 2018

The Lewis Family - From 1905 to the 1911 Census

This posting will look at Josiah and Ellen Norah Lewis and their children and wider family following the Mayoral year through to the time of the Census in 1911. 

In a long article, featured in the Taunton Courier and Western Advertiser on 15 November 1905 [1]  relating to the Statutory Meeting at noon on 9 November 1905 of the Taunton Town Council, which Josiah chairs, the first item of business was to elect a new Mayor. Mr John Giles Vile is nominated by Josiah and seconded by a Councillor A. Villar, and the resolution was unanimously passed. On retiring as Mayor, Josiah is immediately nominated as Deputy Mayor of Taunton by the new Mayor at the same meeting. Below is a snip of the article relating to Josiah.


Image © THE BRITISH LIBRARY BOARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

Following his year as Deputy Mayor, Josiah retires as a Member of the Taunton Municipal Council to then go on to be returned as the North Ward's member unopposed. This article was in the Taunton Courier and Western Advertiser on 31 October 1906 [2]


Image © THE BRITISH LIBRARY BOARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.


On 7 March 1907, their daughter, Winifred Elva, marries Herbert George Spiller, son of Mr and Mrs George Spiller, at Silver Street Baptist Church. Reverend J.P. Tetley officiated the wedding and there was a detailed article in the Taunton Courier and Western Advertiser on the 13 March 1907
[3] on their marriage. 
Image © THE BRITISH LIBRARY BOARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.


In November 1907, at the direction of the Lord Chancellor, Josiah was commissioned as a Magistrate for the Borough. One article was in the Taunton Courier and Western Advertiser on 13 November 1907 [4].


Image © THE BRITISH LIBRARY BOARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

A second article was in the West Somerset Press on 16 November 1907 [5].


Image © THE BRITISH LIBRARY BOARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

As a result of being elevated to the Aldermanic Bench, he was stood down from being a member of Taunton Municipal Council and a by-election was called. One of the men seeking election was Mr George Spiller, Father in Law to his daughter Winifred Elva. This article was in the Taunton Courier and Western Advertiser on 20 November 1907 [6].


Image © THE BRITISH LIBRARY BOARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

George Spiller was ultimately elected as a North Ward member of Taunton Municipal Council according to an article in the Western Daily Press on 27 November 1907 [7].


Image © THE BRITISH LIBRARY BOARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

In 1910, we see that Herbert George, Solicitor, and his wife Winifred Elva, appear on the Western Australia Electoral Rolls in the District of Fremantle, living on Suburban Road 
[8].

On the 1911 Census [9], Josiah and Ellen Norah are still living at 1 The Crescent. Both of their ages is given as 65 years. The form has been completed to indicate that they have been married for 40 complete years at the time of the census being taken and of 9 children born alive, 7 are still living and 2 have died. Josiah's occupation is given as Tailor and that he is an employer. Also listed living with them are the following children:
  • Elsie Gertrude Lewis, Daughter, 28 years, single, no occupation given.
  • Harold Martin Lewis, Son, 26 years, single, occupation of Tailor and an employer.
Also listed is a niece, transcribed as Norah Winifred Widsfield, aged 15 and at school. The family also have a servant called Edith Chidgey from Lillesdon, North Curry, who is 20 years and single. 

Their other children are all listed on the 1911 census in various parts of England. 

Ellen Norah, aged 39 years, is living with her husband Alfred Samuel Tetley, aged 42 years, and their 3 children, Ethel Norah Tetley, 10 years, John Lewis Tetley, 6 years, and Elizabeth Gertrude Tetley, 2 years, at 22 Avenue Road, Scarborough, Yorkshire on the 1911 Census [10]. Alfred is a Secondary School Headmaster. They indicate that they have been married for 15 completed years and have 3 children, all alive. They have 2 servants - Kate Featherstone, 25 years from near Hutton Buscot, Yorkshire, who is a Nurse and Rachel Watkinson, 19 years from Filey, Yorkshire, who is a Domestic Servant General

Annie Louisa is on the 1911 census [11] as a Teacher of Swedist Gymnastic at Nordrach, Blagdon near Bristol. She is 36 years and single. Her relation to the head on this census, James Palmer, a Head Steward in Sanatorium, is as a Patient. 

Edith Mary, aged 35 years, is living with her husband Horace White Goodman, aged 41 years, at Haines Hill in Taunton on the 1911 census [12]. They have been married for 10 completed years. Horace's occupation is given as Auctioneer and an employer. No children are listed on the census and none are listed in the born alive to present marriage. 

Fanny Elizabeth is on the 1911 census [13] living at Greenway House, Greenway Road in Rowbarton,  Taunton with her husband Frederick William Penny, a Builders Merchant and employer. They are both aged 33 years. They have completed 9 years of marriage and have detailed that they have had 4 children born alive but that one has died. The other children, 3 sons, are listed - Leslie T L Penny, 8 years, Richard H Penny, 7 years and Stephen John Penny, 7 months. 2 servants are also living with them - Nellie Mortimer Bennett, aged 23, single and a general servant (domestic) from Chagford in Devon and Winifred Clara Bowbyer, 29 years, single and a housemaid from North Curry in Somerset. 

Winifred Elva and her husband Herbert George Spiller, a Solicitor, are both aged 30 years on the 1911 Census [14]. They declare that they have been married for 4 completed years and have had 2 children born alive although one has died. They live at 11 Belvedere Road in Taunton with their 1 year old daughter, Elizabeth Lewis Spiller, who was born in Perth, Western Australia, and a domestic servant, Annie Channings, who is 20 years old and from Hatch Beauchamp. 

The next update with cover the later years of Josiah and Ellen Norah and their children.

[1] Britishnewspaperarchvie.co.uk, Taunton Courier and Western Advertiser, Wednesday 15 November 1905 - Image (c) The British Library Board - All Rights Reserved. 
[2] Britishnewspaperarchvie.co.uk, Taunton Courier and Western Advertiser, Wednesday 31 October 1906 - Image (c) The British Library Board - All Rights Reserved. 
[3] Britishnewspaperarchvie.co.uk, Taunton Courier and Western Advertiser, Wednesday 13 March 1907 - Image (c) The British Library Board - All Rights Reserved. 
[4] Britishnewspaperarchvie.co.uk, Taunton Courier and Western Advertiser, Wednesday 13 November 1907 - Image (c) The British Library Board - All Rights Reserved. 
[5] Britishnewspaperarchvie.co.uk, West Somerset Free Press, Saturday 16 November 1907 - Image (c) The British Library Board - All Rights Reserved. 
[6] Britishnewspaperarchvie.co.uk, Taunton Courier and Western Advertiser, Wednesday 20 November 1907 - Image (c) The British Library Board - All Rights Reserved. 
[7] Britishnewspaperarchvie.co.uk, Western Daily Press, Wednesday 27 November 1907 - Image (c) The British Library Board - All Rights Reserved. 
[8] Ancestry.com, Australia, Electoral Rolls, 1903-1980
[9] Ancestry.com, 1911 England Census, Class: RG14; Piece: 14241; Schedule Number: 181
[10] Ancestry.com, 1911 England Census, Class: RG14; Piece: 28945
[11] Ancestry.com, 1911 England Census, Class: RG14; Piece: 14633; Schedule Number: 7
[12] Ancestry.com, 1911 England Census, Class: RG14; Piece: 14242; Schedule Number: 266
[13] Ancestry.com, 1911 England Census, Class: RG14; Piece: 14239; Schedule Number: 53
[14] Ancestry.com, 1911 England Census, Class: RG14; Piece: 14238; Schedule Number: 159


Sunday, 15 July 2018

The Lewis Family - From Spring 1901 to the Mayoral Year of 1904/5

This post continues with the history of Josiah and Ellen Norah Lewis and their family.

The next big event for the family is the wedding of their 4th born daughter, Fanny Elizabeth, to Mr Frederick William Penny, on Tuesday 22 April 1902 [1]. The ceremony was held at the Silver Street Baptist Church, conducted by Reverend John Pickles Tetley. A long article was published in the Taunton Courier and Western Advertiser (too long to feature here!) on Wednesday 23 April 1902 [2], going into great detail about the event, including the weather on the day down to the details of the outfits worn by the bridemaids and wedding gifts given to the couple.

On Wednesday 2 November 1904, Josiah was unanimously selected as Mayor of Taunton at a private meeting of the Town Council. The following article was in the West Somerset Free Press on 5 November 1904 [3]:

Image © THE BRITISH LIBRARY BOARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

There were other notices in local newspapers including the Western Gazette, Taunton Courier and Western Advertiser, Chard and Ilminster News and Western Chronicle to announce the news. He is also listed along side other elected Mayors in the Times on Thursday 10 November 1904 [4].  

There is a Mayoral Portrait of Josiah Lewis, taken by John Chaffin & Sons of 65 East Street, Taunton, c1904 available to view at the Somerset Heritage Centre, Taunton, Somerset, England [5]. It shows Josiah in his Mayoral Chain of Office and formal Robes. 

During his year as Mayor, Josiah keenly advocated for the working classes, taking a particular interest in health, education and literacy. There are numerous articles in the local newspapers from the period when he and his wife undertook many public duties as the Mayor and Mayoress of Taunton.

One example is when Josiah as Mayor opened the Taunton Public Library on Corporation Street on 24 August 1905. The library was built following a donation from Mr Andrew Carnegie in 1902 of £5,000. Below is a clip from a long article which featured in the Taunton Courier and Western Advertiser on 30 August 1905 [6].


Image © THE BRITISH LIBRARY BOARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

A plaque was unveiled at this ceremony and now hangs in the new Taunton library on Paul Street [7].




The inscription is as follows:


Taunton Public Library
Built with funds provided by
Andrew Carnegie LLD   
On site purchased by Public Subscription and 
the work carried out under
TRUSTEES
 Josiah Lewis J.P. Mayor
       A E Perkins J.P.  Chairman of the Trustees        
          H J Spiller J.P.                                B Chivers          
H Corner                                        A J Spiller
A Hammett                                           C Tite
J E Kirkpatrick                                    J G Vile
T Penny J.P.                                  A Villar J.P.
T S Penny                                        W J Villar
W Poole J.P.                             W H Westlake

   A Colbourne Little &  } Architects T H Moggridge    
Ingleson C Goodison }                                Builder

Presented to the Corporation and opened  
by the Mayor the 24th August 1905

George H Kite
Town Clerk

Sadly, the library on Corporation Street closed in 1996 and today is home to a public house instead.

On October 13th 1905, as Mayor and Mayoress of Taunton, Josiah and Ellen Norah attended a Ball for the Lord Mayors and Mayors, and the Lord Provosts & Provosts of the United Kingdom in London. It was hosted by the Right Hon. Sir John Pound, Baronet, the Lord Mayor of London, at the Mansion House. According to the Mayor's Programme of Dances [8], he danced the first Valse 'Weinerhaft' with the Lady Mayoress. Others, whose names are handwritten onto his dance card, include the Princess of Wales, with whom he danced the Lancers 'The Earl & the Girl, the Princess Victoria, dancing the Valse 'Choristers', the Queen of Holland, stepping out to the Valse 'Phonographen' and the Duchess of Albany, for the Valse 'Bleu'.    

The next update will take us beyond 1905 for Josiah and his family. 

[1] Ancestry.com, FreeBMD, England & Wales, Civil Registration Marriage Index, 1837-1915
[2] Britishnewspaperarchvie.co.uk, Taunton Courier and Western Advertiser, Wednesday 23 April 1902 - Image (c) The British Library Board - All Rights Reserved. 
[3] Britishnewspaperarchvie.co.uk, West Somerset Free Press, Saturday 5 November 1905 - Image (c) The British Library Board - All Rights Reserved. 
[4] "Election Of Mayors." The Times [London, England] 10 Nov. 1904: 6. The Times Digital Archive
[5] Somerset Heritage Centre; Taunton, Somerset, England; Pictures of former councillors, aldermen, mayors and officers of the Borough. 1877-1964; Reference Number: D\B\ta/42/17.
[6] Britishnewspaperarchvie.co.uk, Taunton Courier and Western Advertiser, Wednesday 30 August 1905 - Image (c) The British Library Board - All Rights Reserved. 
[7] Photograph of the Taunton Public Library plaque taken by Lucy Sarson on 2 July 2018.
[8] Somerset Heritage Centre; Taunton, Somerset, England; Scrapbook of Josiah Lewis, Mayor of Taunton, 1882-1915; Reference Number: A\DSG/1.