Edward John Hollins was baptized at St. Deniol’s Church, Hawarden on 25th September 1890 and the parish registers tell us that he was born to Joseph & Annie Hollins, (nee Ellis) on 16th August 1890. Joseph was a boilermaker and they lived in Ewloe. Edward John’s sister, Mary Jane Hollins was baptized on 29th December 1892 having been born 7th November 1892.
Edward J Hollins, was the Grandson age 7 months, of Edward Ellis and his wife Mary at Old Hall Cottage, Hawarden on the 1891 census. Edward Ellis was 58 and a coal miner. His wife Mary was 54. Their sons were Thomas, 24, unmarried and a coal miner like his father and Joseph 18, was a Brickmaker’s Labourer. Their daughter Annie Hollins was 27, married and living with her son Edward J. Hollins who was 7 months old. Granddaughter Minnie Ellis was 6 and a Scholar. All were born in Hawarden.
1901 finds the family still living at Old Hall, Wood Lane, Ewloe. Edward Hollins continued to live with his Grandfather Edward Ellis, 68 who still coal mining and by then, a widower. His son Edward Ellis 34 was also still a Coal Miner and his daughter Mary J. Ellis was a Domestic Housekeeper. Granddaughter Minnie 16, was a Dressmaker. Grandson Edward H. Ellis was 6 and Grandson Edward Hollins was 10.
The 1901 census, however, finds Edward John’s mother, Ann Hollins living at the home of her brother, his wife and daughter (Joseph Ellis 28 was a Labourer in the brickyard and his wife Esther Ellis was 28. Mary E Ellis was 1) They lived in Hawarden Road, Aston, Hawarden, 2 doors fron Ewloe Post Office. Ann Hollins 37, was married and had with her, her three daughters, Mary J. Hollins 8, Esther M. Hollins 5 and Lilly Hollins 1. They had all been born in Ewloe.
In 1911 Edward Hollins was once again recorded as living with his Grandfather at Old Hall, Wood Lane. Grandfather Edward Ellis was 78. He, had conveniently for us, stated on the form that he had been married for 52 years, that 8 children had been born and 2 had died. ( This had been crossed out by the Enumerator because Edward was then a widower). Edward Ellis, the son was not working. The daughter Mary Jane Ellis was single and 40. Edward Hollins, Grandson was single, 16 and a Labourer at the Brickworks. Granddaughter Hilda Ellis was 6 and at school, Grandson Thomas was 1.
As on other censuses, Edward John Hollin’s mother Ann was not living with her son. Ann had married a Thomas Bond in 1901 in a civil ceremony in Chester. The 1911 census records that she was living, at Old Stores House, Ewloe, Flintshire. Annie Bond, as she called herself on this census was 47 and had been married 2 years with no children born. Two stepdaughters were listed, Esther May Hollins was 14, and Lily A. Ellis 11.
It is interesting to note that from the 1871 census when Annie Ellis age 17, (Edward John’s mother) was a servant living in the household of Obadiah Jones & his wife Isabella and one son Edward I. Jones age 1 at 47, Mill Street, Toxteth Park, Liverpool as a servant, Annie’s husbands’ never appeared in the same household as Annie & children up to and including the 1911 census. (Obadiah Jones was age 39 and had been born in Saltney, Flintshire )
His Flintshire WW1 Index Card F11 was signed by his mother Ann Bond on the 14th October 1919, she said that he got killed 26th October 1917 near Poperinge & buried Lyissenthoek Military Cemetary, Poperinge. (sic)
UK, Soldiers Died in the Great War, 1914-1919 accessible on www.ancestry.co .uk. confirms Edward’s regimental information as detailed above and adds that he enlisted in Hawarden. His medal card also on ancestry details his medal entitlement, but does not tell us what his first Theatre of War was and when his entered it.
Edward John’s Army Service records have survived and are accessible on www.ancestry.com
His records tell us that he was 25 years and 4 months when he joined. He was an iron worker who was 5 ft 8 3/4 inches tall. His chest measured 37 inches with a 2 1/2 inches expansion. He named his mother, Annie Bond as his next of kin.
The records tell us that he enlisted on the 11th December 1915 and was placed in the army reserve the next day. He was mobilised on the 1st June 1916 and posted to the regiment and became Gunner 92464 on the 3rd of June 1916. He embarked from Southampton on 28th November 1916 and disembarked in La Havre the next day.
He received a gunshot wound to his right leg on the 26th October 1917 and died of his wounds the same day. He died at 10 Casualty Clearing Station and was buried in Lijssenthoek Military Cemetery which is near Ypres.
There is correspondence in the records between the army and Edward’s mother. These concern arrangements for receiving his medals, commemorative plaque and scroll and the return of his possessions. These possessions were listed ‘letters and photos, pipe, religious book, cigarette case and purse’.
There is a relatives form in the records which was completed after his death. It listed the following family members but it doesn’t tally with the census information earlier on this page.
Mother of the Soldier:- Ann Bond, Old Stores, Ewloe, Nr. Chester.
Father None. Children of the Soldier:- None
Brothers of the Soldier:- Full Blood:- None
Brothers Half Blood:- None.
Sisters Full Blood :- Hellie Bond, age 22 Old Stores, Ewloe, Nr. Chester. & Lilly Bond age 18
Sisters Half Blood:- None.
No Nephews, Nieces, Aunts, Uncles by blood.
Declaration signed by Ann Bond,Mother, Old Stores, Ewloe, Nr. Chester on the 14th May 1919 signed In the presence of John Millington, J.P. crossed out and J.M. written instead. Wood Lane, Hawarden.
It would seem that Annie had filled in the Army Form regarding the Full-blood and half-blood sisters wrongly. Perhaps someone will be able to clarify this. Any help gratefully received.
There is an index card for Edward in The Flintshire Roll of Honour at The County Record office in Hawarden. (Flintshire WW1 Index Card F11). It was signed by his mother Ann Bond on the 14th October 1919, she said that he was killed on the 26th October 1917 near Poperinge & buried Lyissenthoek Military Cemetery.
2 cuttings from the Hawarden Parish Magazine November 1917
Family grave -Monumental Inscriptions Hawarden Vol. 1 (Green Thin Book) (March 20014) – Page 9 No 54
In loving memory of Thomas BOND, beloved husband of Annie BOND, who departed this life August 7th 1912 aged 57 years.
“A sudden change, at God’s command he fell,
He had no chance to bid his friends farewell.
Affliction came, without warning given.
And bid him haste to meet his God in Heaven.”
In loving memory of my beloved son Edward John HOLLINS, R.G.A. who was killed in France Oct. 26th 1917, aged 27 years.
“Greater love hath no man than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.”
Also Ann beloved wife of above, who died Feb 21st 1935, aged 71 years.
“A silent thought, a secret tear keep her memory ever dear.”
The above is also recorded on the Imperial War Museum – Memorial Project Website – http://www.iwm.org.uk/memorials/item/memorial/60366 – Description – Addition to gravestone