The Commonwealth War Grave certificate for Albert Roberts tells us that he was the Son of Mrs. Elizabeth Davies (formerly Roberts), of Nurses Home, Brymbo, Wrexham, Denbighshire, and the late Edward Roberts.
The census of 1891 records the Roberts family living in a cottage on Wrexham Row (in what is now 9 Dispensary Row), Overton. Head of the household was Edward Roberts an Agricultural Labourer aged 57 who had been born in Overton. His wife Elizabeth was 59, she had been born in Bangor (On Dee) and their listed ‘children’ were George 33 an Agricultural Labourer, Edward 21 was a Gamekeeper, William 18 was a General Labourer and Albert was 13 and a scholar. All the boys had been born in Overton.
The next census of 1901 records the family still living in Wrexham Road. Elizabeth aged 71 was by then a widow. Three of her sons were still living with her. George 34 and William 29 were both Bricklayers’ Assistants. Albert, then 23 was a House painter.
At some point after this census, Elizabeth remarried a Mr Davies and she moved to Brymbo. Her sons appear to have gone to live with their Uncle, William Roberts, their late father’s younger brother. At some point after the 1911 census, William Roberts became the Landlord of The White Horse, High Street Overton and his nephews moved in too.
There is an index card for Albert Roberts in the Flintshire Roll of Honour in the County Record office in Hawarden. Card (Overton F 21). It gives his address as the White Horse Hotel, Overton-on-Dee and confirms his regiment and number as above. The card tells us he served for a period 2 years. It says he served in France and was Killed on April 22nd 1918. The card was signed by Wm. Roberts (Jun) There are cards in the Roll of Honour for Albert’s two brothers, William (Jun) and Edward who survived the war. Their address was The White Horse Hotel Overton.
UK, Soldiers Who Died in the Great War, 1914-1919, accessible on www.ancestry.co.uk includes an entry for Albert. It tells us that his place of birth and enlistment was Wrexham and confirms the regimental details above. His WWI Medal Rolls Index Card also on Ancestry, tells us that he had another Regimental Number . – 9282.
The UK, Army Registers of Soldiers’ Effects, 1901-1929 also on Ancestry, tells us that Albert Roberts’s sole Legatee and Executor was his Uncle William who received £8 15s 5d on the 16th January 1919 and his War Gratuity of £8 10s on the 22nd December 1919.
Albert Roberts left a will which is listed in the England & Wales, National Probate Calendar (Index of Wills and Administrations), 1858-1966, 1973-1995. Albert Roberts of The White Horse Hotel, Overton, Flintshire – Private No. 54649 13th Battalion of the Royal Welsh Fusiliers, died 22nd April 1918 in France on Active Military Service. Probate St. Asaph 30th August to William Roberts Hotel Keeper. Effects £44 0s 6d.
According to the census returns Albert was born in 1878. This would make him aged 40 when he died. The Commonwealth War Commission have his age as 24. Is this their error or ours? Can anyone help please?
Many thanks to Jill of the ‘Overton Oracle’ for help with this soldier’s story.