Parry, Samuel Pierce

Name of Researcher / Enw’r ymchwylydd: Mavis Williams

Name of Memorial / Enw’r gofeb: Connahs Quay

Name / Enw: Parry, Samuel Pierce

Regiment/Catrawd: Royal Welsh Fusiliers

Service Rank and Number / Rheng gwasanaeth a rhif: Pte – Sergeant 14915

Military Cemetery/Memorial / Fynwent milwrol: Llanasa (SS. Asaph & Cyndern) Churchyard and Extension.

Ref No Grave or Memorial / Rhif cyfeirnod bedd: H 8

Country of Cemetery or Memorial / Gwlad y fynwent neu gofeb: Wales

Medals Awarded / Medalau a ddyfarnwyd: Victory & British Medals and 15 Star

Date of Death: 14th May 1921

Date and Circumstances of Death / Dyddiad ac amgylchiadau marwolaeth:

Died 14th May 1921

An important starting point for researching this soldier was a small announcement in The County Herald on the 28th June 1917. In the list of dead, wounded and missing was the following:

Wounded. Parry 14915, Sergt. S.P. Connah’s Quay, Royal Welsh Fusiliers.*

* The cut off date to be added to the Commonwealth War Graves Commission database was 31st August 1921.

Samuel was obviously demobbed in 1919 but died of his wounds a few years later.  In the Absent Voter’s Lists of 1918 and 1919 Samuel is living at No. 1 Dock Road, Connah’s Quay – No. on the 1918 List – 1505 – PARRY, Samuel 14915 Sgt., 4th King’s A. Rifles. (693 on the 1919 list).

There is no Flintshire Index Cards, neither “Fallen” nor “Living.”

Samuel Pierce Parry was born in Prescot Lancashire in 1891. In  the 1901 census he was living with his family  at Rhewl Axton , Llanasa Holywell Flintshire. The father Thomas 40 was a lead miner. His wife Annie was 39.  Their children were Mabel 11, Samuel P 9,  Blodwen 6,  Evelyn Gladys 3 and baby daughter Lus Jane (Lena Jane? see grave inscription below) 9 months.  The family were bilingual.

I cannot find him on the 1911 census, but his family were still at Rhewl Axtyn, Llanasa, Via Holywell. (3 Rooms), Thomas, Annie’s husband was missing on the census, although a line was blank where his details should have been.   Annie, 49, born in Llanasa, states she had been married 23 years and 8 children had been born to her, but sadly 2 had died.   There is a daughter who was not shown on the 1901 census, Annie James Parry*, 24, “Assisting Housework,” and she had been born in London.    I am wondering if Annie James PARRY is Annie’s daughter born before she married Thomas, as she isn’t mentioned on any other census with the family.  I have now found out a probable marriage in 1888 of Thomas PARRY & Annie JAMES, and I think Annie James PARRY was born in the year before, 1887, so this might be right.   I can only presume that Annie JAMES was working in London in 1887, or she was sent away to have the baby in London.    All an hypothesis!   The children also living with Annie were, Mabel, 21, born in Ffynongroew, Blodwyn, 16, born in Huyton, Lancs., Norman, 8, Dora, 7, all born in Llanasa.   David James Parry, 14, Ivor Parry, 8, and Pierce Parry, 5, were all nephews and all born in Ffynongroew, Flintshire.

*I believe that on the 1901 census, Annie J. Parry, then age 13, may have been a Domestic Servant in the household of David & Elizabeth Hopkiss (or Hopkin), a Wesleyan Local Preacher, and his sister-in-law, Mary Williams, living at Railway Terrace, Aberystwyth, Cardiganshire.(All spoke Welsh).

I don’t know if this is Thomas on the 1911 census, but I do know that on the Monumental Inscriptions it is stated that the family were from Connah’s Quay, and although Shotton is not strictly Connah’s Quay, this is the nearest that I can get to a Thomas PARRY on the 1911 census, however I do not know where Samuel was in 1911 as yet.    Thomas was missing on his families census paper, so he must have been seeking work, and therefore it is not beyond speculation that he eventually moved himself and his family to the Connah’s Quay area, as Samuel is remembered on the Cenotaph there and must have had Samuel’s name put forward to be added there.   I will carry on searching.

I don’t know if this is Thomas on the 1911 census, but I do know that on the Monumental Inscriptions it is stated that the family were from Connah’s Quay, and although Shotton is not strictly Connah’s Quay, this is the nearest that I can get to a Thomas PARRY on the 1911 census, however I do not know where Samuel was in 1911 as yet. Thomas was missing on his families census paper, so he must have been seeking work, and therefore it is not beyond speculation that he eventually moved himself and his family to the Connah’s Quay area, as Samuel is remembered on the Cenotaph there and must have had Samuel’s name put forward to be added there. I will carry on searching.

Thomas could have been living at 70, Jubilee Street, Shotton, Flintshire, a Thomas Parry, described as “brother”, 49 (Married 22 years, 5 children born, 5 still living and strangely 2 died?) this was all crossed out by the Enumerator as there was no wife with Thomas, a Labourer, at the Steelworks, and born in Llanasa.   He was in the household of Ann Archer, a widow, age 35, also born in Llanasa, with her 2 sons, William, 10 and Jack, 8, both born in Thornton, Lancashire.   There were 4 “Boarders” there as well, all Steelworkers.   They would only have to walk to the bottom of Jubilee Street, go over the Hawarden Bridge and be in the works, I can remember how the Steelworkers walked over that bridge carrying their bikes.

There is a medal card for Samuel accessible on www.ancestry.co.uk and as well as confirming the above regimental details and listing his medals it adds that his first theatre of war was France and that he entered it on the 27th September 1915. Also written on the card was ‘Demob 10th May 1919’

It has proved impossible so far to find any further evidence of Samuel’s army life.   I cannot find any Service Records for Samuel Pierce Parry, so his may have been among the “Burnt Papers” that were destroyed in WW2.    I would have liked to find out about his wounds, as they were obviously a contribution to his death 4 years later.

There is a family grave in Llanasa. The monumental inscriptions tell  a very sad story.

Grave 135

Parry Lena J daughter of Thomas and Ann 8th March 1904 age 3 years

Parry Evelyn G daughter of Thomas and Ann 5th October 1906 age 8 years

Parry Norman son of Thomas and Ann 6th June 1917 age 14 years*

Parry Samuel Pierce son of Thomas and Ann 14th May 1921 age 29 years. from Connah’s Quay.

* Samuel was in the Army away from home when his little Brother Norman died on the 6th June 1917, 22 days later the news of his wounding was printed in the County Herald. (see above.).