Cymraeg

The Experiences of Women in World War One

A collection of information, experiences and photographs recorded by Women's Archive of Wales in 2014-18

A collection of information, experiences and photographs recorded by Women's Archive of Wales in 2014-18

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Sorted by unit

M Jane Owen

Service: Munitions Worker

Memorial: Cenotaph, Swansea, Glamorgan

Reference: WaW0041

Name of Jane M (or M Jane) Owen on Swansea Cenotaph

Swansea Cenotaph

Name of Jane M (or M Jane) Owen on Swansea Cenotaph


Louisa Parry

Place of birth: Holyhead

Service: Stewardess

Death: 1918-10-10, RMS Leinster, Drowning / Boddi

Memorial: War memorial, Holyhead, Anglesey

Notes: aged 22. RMS Leinster was torpedoed in the Irish Sea. LP died together with Hannah Owen

Sources: http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=15368549

Reference: WaW0042

Name of Louisa Parry on Holyhead War Memorial

Holyhead War Memorial

Name of Louisa Parry on Holyhead War Memorial

Name of Louisa Parry in the Welsh National Book of Remembrance

Welsh National Book of Remembrance

Name of Louisa Parry in the Welsh National Book of Remembrance


Doris Patterson

Place of birth: Swansea

Service: Munitions Worker

Notes: Aged 34. Doris Patterson witnessed the explosion that killed Gwenllian Williams and Eleanor Thomas, and was uninjured although she was only 'two yards away'.

Reference: WaW0095

Newspaper account: Doris Patterson's witness account of explosion, South Wales Daily Post 18 January 1919

Witness account of explosion

Newspaper account: Doris Patterson's witness account of explosion, South Wales Daily Post 18 January 1919


Emily Ada Pickford (née Pearn)

Place of birth: Penarth

Service: Entertainer

Death: -1919-07.02, River Somme, Drowning / Boddi

Memorial: War memorial, Penarth, Glamorgan

Notes: aged 37. A member of one of Lena Ashwell's Concert Parties, she died when the car in which she was a passenger skidded into the River Somme on the way back from a concert. Buried Abbeville Community Cemetery Extension Plot V, Row G, Grave 23

Reference: WaW0043

Name of Emily Pickford on Penarth War Memorial. She was a singer who drowned in an accident in the Somme January 1919

Penarth War Memorial

Name of Emily Pickford on Penarth War Memorial. She was a singer who drowned in an accident in the Somme January 1919


Arvona (Fona) Powell Jones

Place of birth: Gorseinon July 10th, 1915

Service: Small child

Notes: Fona confirmed her address and date of birth: July 10th, 1913. She recalled a story about her mother during the First World War asking her, because her father had received call-up papers, ‘You don’t want your father to go to war do you? She replied’ ‘Oh! Yes!’, because she had seen her uncle, who was at sea, in a uniform with a whistle around his neck. She thought therefore that her father would have a uniform and a whistle too. So she was delighted at the prospect of her father dressed in a uniform and whistle. But she remembers her mother’s face falling. ‘Oh! She was terribly disappointed that I had said that I wanted my father to go to war.’ But her father worked in the steelworks and since steel was required during the war he worked there for the duration of the war. Her parent’s names were Mary Ann Powell and Richard Jones; her father came from Cydweli and her mother was local to Gorseinon area. Her father had worked in the steelworks in Cydweli too. She also talks of her uncle, Brynmor, who was in the navy and who hated the war. At the end of the war he gave his navy clothes to her mother and told her to do what she wanted with them. She made Fona a dress from the bell-bottoms – they were of serge and added flowers etc onto it. She wore it all the time – to chapel and all. This was when she was about 5-6 years old. She remembers wearing it and swinging of a tree branch in it. Her mother’s brother (Tom in 1915 according to the family’s family tree)) died of typhoid in Crystal Palace during the war and she has a photograph of a wedding during the war with the men dressed in black in memory of him. Another of her mother’s brothers (Baden) was called up but when he arrived at the mess plates were being thrown all over the place. The Armistice – peace agreement had just been signed. And that’s all he saw of the war. Fona also recalled how, for the duration of the war, her mother removed a model of an eagle which was on top of the family’s grandfather clock and stored it away in a drawer, because it was a reminder and symbol of Germany. After the war it was restored to its place on top of the clock! ‘Memory is a strange thing isn’t it.

Sources: fona_jones_gorseinon.wave_sound

Reference: WaW0075

A family wedding showing a blurred Fona Jones, bottom left. The women were all dressed in mourning for Fona's uncle Tom, who had died in 1915.

Fona Jones bottom left (blurred) at family wedding.

A family wedding showing a blurred Fona Jones, bottom left. The women were all dressed in mourning for Fona's uncle Tom, who had died in 1915.

Fona Jones's mother Mary Anne Jones née Powell as a young woman.

Mary Anne Jones née Powell c.1905

Fona Jones's mother Mary Anne Jones née Powell as a young woman.


Lily Tobias (Shepherd)

Place of birth: Swansea

Service: Writer, activist, nationalist

Notes: Lily was the daughter of Russian Jewish parents who had fled Russia to avoid conscription, and settled first in Swansea and then in Ystalyfera; she was the first of their children to be born in Wales. She began writing for Lais Llafur at 14, and was heavily involved in suffrage, ILP and pacifist activities. Her brothers were conscientious objectors. She was described by the Labour politician Fenner Brockway as “an active and belligerent pacifist… showing great resourcefulness and courage in defying the authorities and assisting draft dodgers, and those in prison”. She later took up the cause of the establishment of a Jewish state, and wrote several novels.

Sources: Jasmine Donahaye The Greatest Need: The creative life and troubled times of Lily Tobias, a Welsh Jew in Palestine. Honno 2015 https://wciavoices.wordpress.com/2016/12/07/the-shepherd-family-of-ystalyfera-and-pontypridd-in-the-first-world-war

Reference: WaW0245

Lily Tobias, activist and author

Lily Tobias

Lily Tobias, activist and author


Gladys Irene Pritchard (née Harris)

Place of birth: Newport

Service: Munitions Worker

Death: TNT poisoning / Gwenwyno TNT

Notes: Gladys was a war widow aged 28. Her husband had been killed in July 1916. She had two small children. Her father was granted 2s a week for the upkeep of each child; the children also benefited from their father’s military pension.

Sources: http://1914-1918.invisionzone.com/forums

Reference: WaW0045

Gladys’s photograph was collected by the Women’s Subcommittee of the Imperial War Museum as part of its collection of women who died during the War.

Gladys Pritchard

Gladys’s photograph was collected by the Women’s Subcommittee of the Imperial War Museum as part of its collection of women who died during the War.

Letter to the Secretary of the women’s collection from Gladys’s sister, Mrs Summerfield.

Letter

Letter to the Secretary of the women’s collection from Gladys’s sister, Mrs Summerfield.


Report of maintenance grant to Gladys’s father, Joseph Harris, for the upkeep of her children.  Weekly Argus 11th November 1916.rn

Newspaper report

Report of maintenance grant to Gladys’s father, Joseph Harris, for the upkeep of her children. Weekly Argus 11th November 1916.rn


May (Mary) Prosser

Place of birth: Gilwern

Service: Munitions Worker, 1916 - 1917

Death: 1917-04-03, Rochdale, TNT poisoning / Gwenwyno TNT

Memorial: Recreation Ground gates; Market hall, Christchurch Govilon, Govilon, Monmouthshire

Notes: May, born 1891, was the fourth daughter of a farm labourer and his wife. She followed two of her sisters into domestic service in Rochdale. She began munitions work late in 1916, but soon became ill with ‘toxic jaundice’ and died at her sister Margaret’s home in Rochdale. She was also sister of Nellie Prosser [qv].

Sources: Ryland Wallace: May Prosser, Munitionette. AMC/WAW Newsletter, June 2016

Reference: WaW0046

Name of May Prosser on memorial, Christchurch, Govilon

Christchurch, Govilon

Name of May Prosser on memorial, Christchurch, Govilon

Name of May Prosser on Govilon War Memorial

Govilon War Memorial

Name of May Prosser on Govilon War Memorial


Death notice of May Prosser, Abergavenny Chronicle, 13 Aprill 1917

Death Notice

Death notice of May Prosser, Abergavenny Chronicle, 13 Aprill 1917


Mimmi (Sarah) Richards

Service: Mother

Notes: Mother, Mimmi (Sarah) and sister, Edith, to her left, at Tom’s graveside, c.1920; Gunner Thomas Sidney Richards,‘killed in action’, Armentieres, France, 14 March 1918, aged 20 in northern France, c. 1920

Reference: WaW0079

Photograph of Mimmi (Sarah) and Edith Richards, Mother and sister of Gunner Thomas Sidney Richards, at his grave in France, c.1920; Tom Richards  was ‘killed in action’, Armentieres, France

Sarah (Mimmi) and Edith Richards

Photograph of Mimmi (Sarah) and Edith Richards, Mother and sister of Gunner Thomas Sidney Richards, at his grave in France, c.1920; Tom Richards was ‘killed in action’, Armentieres, France

Tom Richards  was ‘killed in action’, Armentieres, France

Thomas Richards

Tom Richards was ‘killed in action’, Armentieres, France


Edith Richards

Service: Sister

Notes: Mother, Mimmi (Sarah) and sister, Edith, to her left, at Tom’s graveside, c.1920; Gunner Thomas Sidney Richards,‘killed in action’, Armentieres, France, 14 March 1918, aged 20 in northern France, c. 1920

Reference: WaW0080

Photograph of Edith and Mimmi (Sarah) Richards, Mother and sister of Gunner Thomas Sidney Richards, at his grave in France, c.1920; Tom Richards  was ‘killed in action’, Armentieres,France

Edith and Mimmi (Sarah) Richards

Photograph of Edith and Mimmi (Sarah) Richards, Mother and sister of Gunner Thomas Sidney Richards, at his grave in France, c.1920; Tom Richards was ‘killed in action’, Armentieres,France

Tom Richards  was ‘killed in action’, Armentieres, France

Thomas Richards

Tom Richards was ‘killed in action’, Armentieres, France



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