William John appears for the first time on a census in 1881. His family was living at Brook Side, Northop, Flintshire. Father, John Jones 27 was a coal miner who had been born in Flint. His Wife Mary, 27, formerly a Dairy Maid Servant had been born in Northop. Their listed children were William John 5, Edward 2, baby Sarah Ann was 5 months
In the 1891 census, Father John Jones 37 was still a coalminer. His wife Mary was 37. William John 15 was now a Coalminer too. Edward was 12, Sarah Ann 10, Jane 7 and baby daughter Mary E. was 11 months old.
On the 1901 census the family had moved to 9, Spring Street, Connah’s Quay, Flintshire. John, 46 was still hewing Coal. His wife Mary was 45. William John was 25 and like John, his father, was a coal miner ( hewer). Mary E was 11 and Jane was age 17. They had 2 Boarders.
The 1911 census shows the family had moved again to 33, Wellington Street, Shotton, Flintshire. John Jones 56, and Mary 56 had been married for 37 years and 5 children had been born, 1 of whom had died. John worked at the Iron Works as a labourer in the galvanised sheet iron works. William John Jones was 35, single and also an Iron Worker. He was a ‘Cutter down’. Mary E. had been married 1 year to her husband Charles Randles 30. Also in the household was Mary E. Bennett, a Grand-daughter aged 4.
William is mentioned in the book ” Soldiers Died in the Great War 1914 1918 Royal Welsh Fusiliers Volume 28″ It tells us that Jones, William John had been born in Northop and enlisted in Wrexham . He resided in Shotton. He had died of wounds at sea on the 12th August 1915.
William John’s medal card accessible on www.ancestry.co.uk, records his medal details and also tells us that his first theatre of war was the Balkans and that he entered it on 28th June 1915, however there
There is another British Army WWI Medal Rolls Index Cards, 1914-1920 for a W. JONES with the same number 5841 but who was in the Army Cycle corps, so was this him or another W. JONES with the same Reg. No. 5841? I do know that different regiments can have the same regimental number.
William John Jones in the UK, Army Registers of Soldiers’ Effects, 1901-1929 tells us that he died of wounds on the Ship “Clacton” * and was buried at sea and his Legatees were his mother Mary who was paid 10/2d, sister Jane, 10/ 1d and Brother in Law Benjamin Bennett 10/1d for William John’s Niece, they were all paid on the 19th January 1916. Then his War Gratuity of £3 was paid out to his mother Mary who was paid £2. 10s 0d on the 9th August 1919, then his brother Edward received 10/1d and his mother again received 10/0d both on the 8th September 1919.
*HMS Clacton, built in 1904, was a screw minesweeper, pennant number M30. Displacement was 820 tons and she carried two 12-pounder guns. From 1914 until September 1915 when she became the T04 she served in the Dardanelles, transferring wounded to hospital ships. She was torpedoed on the 3rd August 1916 by U73 at Chai Aghizi in the Levant. – See more at: http://www.wartimememoriesproject.com/greatwar/ships/clacton.php#sthash.7xVYUPUV.dpuf
There is an index card for William John Jones in the Flintshire Roll of Honour at The County record Office in Hawarden. (Flintshire WW1 Index Cards Connah’s Quay F 18) It confirms the regimental details above and adds the address 17, Wellington Street, Shotton, Flintshire. It tells us that he served for 11 months and that he was Killed in Action in the Dardanelles 12th August 1915. The card was signed on the 20th January 1920 by Mrs. M. Jones.
William John’s Service Records survive and can be accessed at www.ancesty.co.uk. They are in fairly poor condition but we can glean some information from them. He signed up for the war on the 2nd September 1914 at Wrexham. His attestation papers tell us he was 38 years old and an ironworker. He was on the ‘National Reserve’
He was medically examined at the time of his attestation and there is a description of his physical appearance. He was 5 feet, 5 and 1/2 inches tall. He weighed 114 lbs. His chest measured 36 inches with 2 and a 1/2 inches expansion. His eyes: were hazel, his hair brown. He had a scar on his mid right forearm. His religion was noted as C of E. He was certified fit for service.
His records contain a statement of his total service in the army which amounted to 345 days.
There is correspondence between the army and his named next of kin – his mother. These are concerned with the receipt of his medals and her application for a pension but this is almost impossible to read.
William John was named on 2 other memorials – the Hawarden War Memorial and the memorial screen at St Ethelwold’s Church. Somebody made an effort to ensure he was remembered.
I have excerpts from the War Diary of the 8th Bn Royal Welsh Fusiliers which may help to explain when and how William John died. The 7th August excerpts may well explain where many of the Connah’s Quay men received the wounds from which they later died. Please contact the website and I will send them to you, or they can be seen on Ancestry.co.uk
Commonwealth War Graves Commission additional Information:Son of Mrs. Mary Jones, of 48, King Edward St., Shotton, Chester.