Edward Lloyd was born on 1st January 1878 in Gresford, Denbighshire.
The 1881 Census for Wales on Ancestry.co.uk shows that the Lloyd family were living in the Village of Gresford, Denbighshire. Head of the household Robert Lloyd was 33 years of age, born in Gresford, his trade was Gardener. His wife, Mary was 35 years old, born in Burley Dam, Cheshire and their children were Edward age 3 and John age 11 months both children were born in Gresford. There is also a boarder by the name of Edith Foster age 7 born in Llanfyllin, Montgomeryshire.
Ten years on we find that the 1891 Census shows the Lloyd family are still in Gresford and Head Robert Lloyd has the same trade. There have been additions to the family, William age 8 and Joseph age 6, all the children were attending school at this time.
The 1901 Census shows the Lloyd family living at Plas-yn-Roe Cottage, St. Asaph, Flintshire. Robert Lloyd age 53 was a Domestic Gardener, his wife Mary was 58 years of age and there are threee sons still living with their parents, Edward age 23 a Railway Porter, John age 20 a Domestic Gardener and William age 18 a General Labourer.
In 1911 there have been some changes to the circumstances of the Lloyd family. Robert Lloyd died in 1906 and William Lloyd age 28 died in 1910 as a result of a severe chest infection that seeems to have been a problem for some time.
The 1911 Census for Wales on Ancestry.co.uk reveals to us that Edward’s mother Mary Lloyd was still living at Plas -yn-Roe Cottage, St. Asaph. Her trade was Laundress and she lived with two of her sons, John age 30 a Domestic Gardener and Joseph age 26 a Jobbing Gardener.
Edward Lloyd age 32 was, in 1911 living at 1 Glanrafon Terrace Lower, St. Asaph, his age being 32, his trade Domestic Gardener. His wife Annie was 31 born in St. Asaph and their children were Edith Mary age 6, Katie age 4 and Elizabeth age 6 months.
Edward Lloyd and his family are shown on the Outgoing Passenger List for U.S.A. on Ancestry.co.uk, on board the S.S. Cymric leaving from Liverpool on 7th May 1913 for Portland Maine, their final destination was Winnipeg, Canada as they gave their postal address as the Post Office, Winnipeg and Edward’s mother’s address in St. Asaph as previous address. Also they gave a Mr W Jones as a friend (sponsor).
Cymric was intended to be White Star’s last cattle carrier, but the cattle space was omitted during construction and additional third class space was added instead. Launched at Harland & Wolff on 12 October 1897, she was White Star’s largest ship ever (and the fourth largest ship in the world) when she took her maiden voyage, Liverpool-New York, on 11 February 1898.
Cymric remained on that service for almost six years, although she also made two Boer War trooping trips from Liverpool to Cape Town in 1900. Then, in December 1903, when White Star took over the Dominion Line’s Boston-Liverpool service, Cymric was transferred to that route. Except for one New York trip in January 1913, she remained on the Boston-Liverpool service until December 1914, when she resumed New York-Liverpool service.
At 4 pm on 8 May 1916, 140 miles (225 km) off Fastnet, en route from New York to Liverpool with only six passengers, all of them British consular employees, Cymric was torpedoed three times by U20, the submarine which also sank Lusitania. Cymric sank at 3 am on 9 May, with five deaths; 105 were rescued.
Sadly Annie, Edward’s wife died on 16th January 1915 and is buried in Brookside Cemetery, Winnipeg, the children were placed in a Children’s Home in Winnipeg. The 1915 Census for Canada shows the three girls, Edith age 11, Katie age 8 and Betty age 5 living at the home.
In 1915, the Children’s Home of Winnipeg acquired this nearly 10-acr site to better support its child welfare work in the city, replacing their previous and much smaller 198 River Avenue location. Based on the designs of local architect John Hamilton Gordon Russell, two buildings were erected by the Hazelton and Walin Company Limited along Godfrey Avenue [now Academy Road] to support their philanthropic efforts in caring for single parent, orphaned, and abandoned children. During the First World War, the Home also housed children of soldiers serving overseas. The cornerstone was laid at a ceremony on 15 June 1915 and later officially opened by Mayor Richard Green Stone on 18 March 1916 before a crowd of several hundred residents. Stone used in the construction was sourced from the Wallace Sandstone Quarries. The main building hosted girls quarters, while boys and infants each had their own sections within the adjacent structure, with the costs of completion being around $125,000. School classes were housed in these structure until a separate building was established on the Home grounds two years later.
Edward enlisted into the Canadian Overseas Expeditionery Force on 21st February 1916, he gave his address as 329, Carlton St. Winnipeg, Manitoba and trade as Salesman, marital status, Widower and next of kin, Mary Lloyd, Mother, Plas-yn-Roe Cottage, St. Asaph. Wales.
After basic training in Canada, Edward embarked for England on the S.S. Olympic from Halifax, Nova Scotia on 18th September 1916 and arrived in England with the 144th Battalion of the Canadian Expeditionery Force on 25th September 1916.
He was posted to Seaford Camp to complete his training and was transferred to the 18th Reserve Battalion on 12th January 1917 and then the 44th Battalion of the Canadian Infantry on 30th January 1917, proceeding to France and joining his unit on 19th February 1917 when he was transferred to the 4th Entrenching Battalion. The 44th battalion was in the 10th Brigade of the 4th Canadian Division.
Edward was “Killed in Action” on 12th April 1917 during the Battle of Vimy Ridge.
The following information is from the of the Library of Canada
Battle of Vimy Ridge
The Battle of Vimy Ridge began at 5:30 a.m. on Easter Monday, April 9, 1917. The first wave of 20,000 Canadian soldiers, each carrying up to 36 kilograms of equipment, attacked through the wind-driven snow and sleet into the face of deadly machine gun fire.
The Canadians advanced behind a “creeping barrage.” This precise line of intense artillery fire advanced at a set rate and was timed to the minute. The Canadian infantrymen followed the line of explosions closely. This allowed them to capture German positions in the critical moments after the explosions but before the enemy soldiers emerged from the safety of their underground bunkers.
Battalions in the first waves of the assault suffered great numbers of casualties, but the Canadian assault proceeded on schedule. Most of the heavily-defended ridge was captured by noon. Hill 145, as the main height on the ridge was called, was taken on the morning of April 10th.
Two days later, the Canadians took “the Pimple,” as the other significant height on the ridge was called. The Germans were forced to withdraw three kilometres and the Battle of Vimy Ridge was over. The Allies now commanded the heights overlooking the Douai Plain, an occupied portion of France that was still controlled by Germany. The Canadian Corps, together with the British Corps to the south, had captured more ground, prisoners and guns than any previous British offensive of the war. Canadians would act with courage throughout the battle. Four Canadians would earn the Victoria Cross, our country’s highest medal for military valour, for separate actions in which they captured enemy machine gun positions. They were: Private William Milne, Lance-Sergeant Ellis Sifton, Captain Thain MacDowell and Private John Pattison.
The Battle of Vimy Ridge would prove a great success, but it would come at great cost. The 100,000 Canadians who fought there suffered approximately 11,000 casualties, nearly 3,600 of them fatal. By the end of the First World War, Canada, a country of less than eight million citizens, would have more than 650,000 servicemen. The conflict took a huge toll with more than 66,000 Canadians losing their lives and 170,000 being wounded.
Edward was awarded the British War Medal and the Victory Medal.
Edward Lloyd is commemorated on the Vimy Memorial, Pas de Calais.
He is also commemorated on the Canadian Virtual War Memorial.
Edward named his daughter Edith as benefactor of his will, she was still living at The Children’s Home in Winnipeg, the children’s Guardian was William Lloyd.
The 1921 Census for Canada shows that William Jones adopted all three of Edward Lloyd’s children.