Haley Bateson


Charles Bateson’s fourth son, born in 1853, was named Haley after his grandmother. He turned out to be rather a dark horse, an appropriate figure of speech given that he was often employed as a groom.
What little is known of his life is noted below, together with notes on members of his putative family.


Although he started his working life as a dyer, the 1881 census gives his occupation as a Horse Keeper, an experience that would later help him to find work as a Cabman / Groom. The enumerator has added “Huntsman (Allerton)”, which suggests that he worked for one of the estates that used dogs and horses to hunt for game over the hills and moors of Allerton, a village just to the west of his home in Manningham, Bradford. Haley would have known these verdant lands well and, as an exuberant young man in his early twenties, might have thought little of venturing out on a suitably dark night for a spot of poaching. Unfortunately, on the night of 25 August 1876, he and five accomplices were caught with nets and other poaching apparatus by the Countess of Rosse’s gamekeeper. A struggle ensued, during which the keeper was hit by a stone. Haley was sentenced to 4 months in jail and fined.


For at least 20 years at the end of the 19th Century, Haley lived with a married / widowed woman called Mary Midgley (née Shackleton) and her children. Her husband, Amos Midgley, was absent from the end of 1871 onwards. In the 1891 and 1901 censuses, Haley was described as a Boarder but in the 1881 census, he was the unmarried Head of Household. Mary and the last four of her children were present. Perhaps it was a slip of the enumerator’s pen but all the Midgley children were listed as being related to the Head of Household, despite not bearing his name.


This may suggest that he was their father but the definitive proof that Haley was more than he seemed comes in passenger manifests for the SS Saxonia and SS Cymric, which arrived in Boston from Liverpool in 1907 and 1908 respectively. These, as will be seen, show that two of the Midgley girls preferred to use the Bateson surname when travelling abroad.


But first, after the birth of Mary Ellen in July 1881, something seems to have persuaded Haley to accept an invitation to visit his brother John in America. Perhaps there was a family bust-up; perhaps he could not get adequately paid work and thought America would make his fortune. Whatever the reason, it was evidently decided that the family could do without him, and he crossed the Atlantic sometime in late 1881 or early 1882. According to the city directories for the period, he initially found lodgings in Birch St in South Fitchburg, Massachusetts but by 1883 had moved the short distance to Water St to lodge in his brother’s house.

He soon got work in a worsted mill, perhaps with his brother’s firm, the Fitchburg Worsted Mill Company, and established himself in the community. It was not long before he found a regular place in the works cricket team – he was a wicketkeeper, while his brother, an opening bat and occasional bowler, made less regular appearances.

Haley returned home in 1884 or 1885 – in the city directory of 1885 he is listed as “removed to England”.


Ten years later, Haley got the urge to travel again - his first documented visit to the United States was made on 16 September 1896, when he travelled alone on the SS Majestic to Ellis Island and on to Central Falls, Rhode Island, to stay with John. He returned to Yorkshire only a month later, on 18 October, sailing on the SS Teutonic.


On 18 July 1905 he again left Liverpool, this time sailing to Boston onboard the SS Ivernia in the company of his brother.


There is no record of his return to England but on 17 January 1907 he arrived in Boston onboard the SS Saxonia. The passenger manifest suggests that he was a US citizen who was going “home” to 444 Dexter St, Central Falls. He was described as 5' 3" tall with a dark complexion and grey eyes.

   The document also indicates that Haley was a married man. Here Haley was clearly anticipating his marriage to Mary Shackleton or Midgley later in the year. In early July 1907, Banns were read for the couple at Bradford Cathedral. Unfortunately, the clerk later wrote across the entry, in a neat, careful hand, the word "Lapsed", suggesting that the dues were not paid and the union called off.


Also onboard the Saxonia in January 1907 was a 26-year-old weaver who was on her way to stay with her sister at Central Street, Central Falls, just a block from Haley’s home. She was christened Ada Midgley in 1881 but preferred to be known as Ada Bateson. The sister she was visiting was Mary Ellen Ward, christened Midgley in 1881. She had sailed to Boston on 11 November 1906 and stayed temporarily with John Bateson at Dexter St before moving to Central St.


In the Pawtucket and Central Falls city directory for that year, 1907, Haley was listed as a baker at Dexter St.


On 9 May 1908, a 33 year-old Elizabeth Bateson was onboard the SS Cymric, travelling to Pawtucket, to stay with her sister Mary Ellen Ward at her new home in Power Rd. On the passenger manifest, Elizabeth’s father was given as Harry Bateson (Haley, being a fairly unusual name, was often misheard as Harry) and his address in Bradford would be registered to Haley in the 1911 census.


In the 1910 US census Elizabeth was registered at the Cooper St address of her sister Ada Coles but with the surname Baxter.


   These passenger records strengthen the case for Haley being father to the later Midgley children.

What’s more, while the eldest child, Hannah, has Amos Midgley’s name on her birth certificate of 1871, neither Elizabeth (1874) nor Mary Ellen (1881) have a father recorded on theirs. And, when all the children, apart from Hannah, were baptized en masse at the parish church of St Mary Magdalene in Manningham on 18 October 1881, the vicar did not record the name of a father.


It is not known for certain that Haley became a US citizen. The 1910 US census appears to say that he first ‘immigrated’ to the USA in 1882, but the column asking about Naturalization is blank. His occupation was given as a Hostler (sic) in a stables. The form again shows him as being married.


   He returned to England onboard the SS Ivernia on 2 June 1910.


In the 1911 English census, he was again noted as married.

None of these documents mentions a wife by name and, other than the 1907 Banns, there are no records of a union.


He died at 4 Field Street, Shipley on 18 May 1914 of acute bronchitis and heart failure. A wife would normally be the Informant noted on the death certificate. In fact the Informant was the householder, his elder brother George.



   Harry Bateson Midgley


   Notes on a chequered Army career


The only child that ever officially bore Haley Bateson’s name was born in Manningham, Bradford to Elizabeth Midgley on 23 February 1897. He was named Harry Bateson Midgley but there is no father recorded on his birth certificate. It is fruitless to speculate on the identity of the father. All that can be said about Harry’s middle name is that it may have been bestowed by his mother out of affection for her own (putative) father.


Harry was almost certainly brought up by Mary, his grandmother.
Although the 1901 and 1911 censuses list her as such, Harry was probably led to believe that she was his mother, a deception that would cost them dear in 1910.


Many members of the Bateson family crossed the Atlantic, some to emigrate, others to visit their relatives in Rhode Island.
Harry was no exception. On
17 November 1910 he arrived in Boston from Liverpool onboard the SS Ivernia. He was aged 11, sailing with Mary Midgley, aged 54.
The ship's manifest originally said she was Harry's mother.
Her contact in England was given as her daughter Mrs Lee (Hannah).
But to maintain the deception, Hannah was stated to be Harry's sister, when she was really an aunt.
They were going to visit Mary's daughter Mrs Coles (Ada) in Pawtucket.
Once again, to maintain the deception, Ada was said to be Harry's sister.
Sometime later, the entries were overwritten so that Mary became Harry's grandmother and he was her grandson.
It may have been changed by the immigration officer who was responsible for interrogating the steerage passengers to check the accuracy of the 29 items of information they had each given on the manifest.
Perhaps he thought Mary looked a bit too old to be the mother of a young lad and she was forced to reveal the truth.


People were denied entry to the United States for two main reasons. Contagious diseases were a common cause. Trachoma was the reason for more than half the medical deportations but, being a tropical disease, it is unlikely that the Midgleys would have suffered from it.

Lack of funds (or not having an onward ticket) was the other major reason. But Harry and his grandmother had $35, more than the required $25 per adult.

In addition, it seems unlikely that the immigration authorities would have overlooked attempts to deceive them.


Whatever the reason, the pair were denied entry and, on 2 December 1910, a hugely disappointed Harry, still coming to terms with the information about his mother, arrived back in Liverpool on the same ship, with his grandmother, having been deported from the US.


As a 14 year-old in 1911, Harry was employed as a Bobbin Carrier in a wool spinning mill, possibly at Illingworth’s Whetley Mills.

Three years later, on 10 June 1914, he enlisted in the 1st / 6th West Yorks Regiment, signing up for 4 years. His Regimental number was 235223 He appears to have been stationed at Clipstone, near Mansfield until 1916, when the first signs of trouble appeared. On 3 February he was “struck off the strength” for some misdemeanour and “restored” 3 days later. At a Court Martial on 15 February he was sentenced to 56 days detention.


Midgley’s unit was posted to France as part of the Expeditionary Force on 23 June 1916. At some point in the next 6 months he received a superficial wound to his left forearm. By January 1917 he was back in England and in trouble again. On 1 February, after another Court Martial at Clipstone Barracks, he was sentenced to 42 days detention for Desertion. A Dependants’ Claim Form dated 19 March (his grandmother in the family home at 57 White Abbey Road, Bradford received state benefits based on the war service of her son John and her grandson Harry) noted that 21/- would be stopped from his pay.


In October 1917 he was transferred to the Labour Corps and given a new Regimental number: 424696. He probably returned to France. Having been granted leave to the UK in January 1918, it seems that he did not return to his unit and was reported AWOL by his Captain on 28 January. He was found guilty by Court Martial. Whatever the sentence, by 27 April he was free. The Labour Corps got rid of him and transferred him back to his old regiment, the West Yorks. He must have mended his ways somewhat because on 2 October 1918 he was appointed Lance Corporal (Unpaid). But the old ways returned and on 6 December he was deprived of the stripe for being Absent from Parade.


   He was demobbed on 20 January 1919.


However, as the next instalment of his life shows, here was a man who appears to have loved army life, despite his frequent absences from it. And yet, knowing what we now know of the horrors of life on the Western Front, it seems inconceivable that any volunteer soldier would want to remain in the army.


On 20 October 1919 Harry Midgley re-enlisted in the 1/6th West Yorks Regiment, D Company, 16 Platoon, which was based in Halifax. His Regimental Conduct Sheet shows that he signed a Short Service (2 year) Attestation and joined his unit the following day. His new Regimental number was 54213.  Old habits die hard – on 24 October he was accused of Desertion and of the Loss of Clothing and Regimental Necessaries by Neglect. He rejoined his unit before the end of the month and was sentenced on 10 December to 29 days detention plus stoppage of pay for the loss of his boots, drawers & polishing brush – a total of £2 3s 1¾d.


The new year, 1920, failed to prompt any resolutions to modify his behaviour – on 2 January he was absent from a Tattoo and was AWOL until apprehended by Bradford civil police on 13 January. Two days later he was sentenced to 21 days detention and transported back to Halifax Barracks to serve his time. The following day he was taken to the bath house. His escort, a Private Mitchell, reported, “I saw him commence his bath and looked at him at intervals. When I thought he should be about dressed I looked for him but found he had escaped through the window of the bath house.” Midgley remained free until 22 January when he was apprehended by a policeman at Burnley’s Fold, White Abbey in Bradford (near his home). When he was handed over to the Regimental Police in Halifax he was wearing a civilian coat, waistcoat, cap and muffler over his regimental uniform. On an application form for a District Court Martial the following day, Harry Midgley’s character was described as “Indifferent”.


A Court of Enquiry was convened to investigate and report on his escape. The President of the Court and its 2 members were all officers of the Regiment. There were 4 Prosecution witnesses. Midgley did not appear to have any legal representation. The witnesses gave their evidence and he was asked if he wished to cross examine them but declined. Finally, he was cautioned and asked if he had anything to say. This was his chance to give his version of events and to explain his behaviour (and our only opportunity to learn something of his motives and personality) but he said only that “I reserve my defence”.

It is unlikely that the Court ever reported its findings because, as we shall see, it was overtaken by events.


In prison in Halifax on the night of 25/26th January, Midgley was not allowed a knife or fork, only a spoon. Lance Corporal Unsworth, who was in charge of the Depot Police, testified that he had been round the cells in the evening and found “all the prisoners including Pte Midgley correct”. He had used an electric torch and was confident he had not been deceived. He was sure all the cells were properly locked. Pte Stott stated that he had visited the prisoners at 01:00hrs & 02:00hrs: "I had heard that Pte Midgely had a bad reputation so I was careful". “I found him all correct on both my visits”. He had used a hurricane lamp and “saw Midgley’s face”. He insisted that the cells were properly locked. He was relieved at 04:00hrs by Pte B Hemmings. At 06:00hrs, Hemmings felt the door of Pte Midgley’s cell open easily on its hinges and saw that the lock was not in its usual place. The cell’s occupant was missing.


A new Court of Enquiry was convened “for the purpose of investigating and reporting on the illegal absence and deficiency of kit (if any) of No 54213 Pte H Midgley No 1 Company”.  Lance Corporal Unsworth got the blame for the escape but, in extenuation, the Court highlighted problems in the management of security at the prison and made recommendations to improve matters.

The Enquiry reported on 19 February but there is no information in the surviving papers on the verdict or the sentence or on Midgley’s recapture, if it was ever effected.


What happened next suggests that he remained at large, uncaptured. Paradoxically, he seems to have yearned to be back in uniform: perhaps he missed his mates; perhaps he needed the money; perhaps his grandmother needed the money. Whatever his motives for wanting to return to army life, he knew that as a deserter he could not do so without further punishment. In desperation, he took the only course available to him.


On 16 February 1920 a man claiming to be Harry Lee, a Carter born in Leeds in 1898 or 1899, enlisted with the Royal Artillery RA & RFA (No 1 Depot) as a Driver. His Regimental number was 277854. He joined 502 Battalion on 27 February but almost immediately absented himself and was arrested by the Military Police in Darlington 8 days later. He was sentenced to 168 hours detention for being AWOL and also for having an irregular Pass, for Deficiency of Kit and for wearing civilian clothes without permission. These clothes were probably stolen – on 16 March 1920 Lee was sentenced for the theft of a suit, a shirt, a hat and a mackintosh worth £6 5s 0d in all. He was committed to Durham Jail for 21 days of hard labour.


Around this time the Army must have realised that Harry Lee was not all that he seemed: a Royal Regiment of Artillery Conduct Sheet for Harry Lee has “Alias (Harry Bateson Midgley)” scrawled across the top.

Clearly, Harry had borrowed the surname from his aunt Hannah Lee, who lived for a time at the family home at 57 White Abbey Road, Bradford.

At a Court Martial on 27 April, Harry Midgley was charged with Fraudulent Enlistment, Absence and Losing Kit by Neglect. He was sentenced to 6 months detention at York Barracks and ordered to forfeit all his former service along with stoppages of £4 13s 2d.

On 17 May 1920 an Application for the Discharge of Harry Lee due to his conviction for theft was approved. His military character was described as “Bad”.



After his demob, Harry married Louisa Horne at St Michael’s Parish Church, Bradford (on 21 March 1919). True to form, his marriage certificate contained a tiny inaccuracy – he named his father as Alfred Midgley, a deceased dyer.
Such a man, who died between 1897 and 1919, has not been found in the records, so where did Harry get the name?
Well, Alfred (Keighley, the husband of his aunt Lily) was the name of one of his uncles....

Between 1920 and 1939 Louisa gave birth to 6 girls and 5 boys, at least 4 of whom died in infancy. Little is known of the others although it is thought that they stayed in the Bradford area.

All that is known of his mother Elizabeth is that she remained in Rhode Island as Elizabeth Baxter until her death in 1955, working as a housekeeper. There was no known contact between mother and son.

His grandmother, Mary Shackleton, probably died in Bradford in 1927.

She had a brother, George, who was unmarried when he died in 1900.


Luke, another brother, seems to have inherited the family’s maverick streak: he was a career mugger and burglar who served at least six terms in prison.

He was also a violent man. On 2 January 1872, he was convicted of assaulting his brother-in-law Amos Midgley. It was claimed that he had behaved indecently towards Midgley’s wife, his sister Mary Shackleton. On being upbraided by Amos, he had committed the assault. He was sentenced to 2 months hard labour.

On his release, in March 1872, he was convicted of mugging a farmer in Allerton, using a garotte to steal a silver watch and a quantity of gold. He was sentenced to 10 years and 20 lashes with a cat o’ nine tails. He must have committed further crimes on his release for at the time of the 1891 census he was a prisoner at Chatham, a bricklayer who was probably doing hard labour helping to reconstruct the dockyards.


Amos Midgley


Amos Midgley's family history has taken quite a bit of unravelling.


The only recorded birth of a suitable Amos Midgley was on 16 October 1854, in Illingworth (a district of Ovenden, near Halifax), to William Midgley, a Farmer and Hannah Sheard.  By 1863 this family of six children had moved to Bradford, where William sold beer.  By the 1871 census he was still working for a brewery and his son Amos was described as a Warp Dresser in a worsted mill.


Thirteen weeks later, on 8 July, he married Mary Shackleton in Bradford. A daughter, Hannah, was born just four days later.


At the end of 1871 an incident involving the Midgley family was reported in the Bradford Observer.

It was alleged that Mary’s brother, Luke Shackleton, had behaved indecently towards her. Amos had upbraided Luke and been assaulted for his trouble. One imagines that the assault must have been a serious one for it to have been brought before the court. On 2 January 1872, Luke was sentenced to 2 months hard labour.


This was the last event connecting Amos Midgley to the Shackletons. He was not present with his wife and child at any of the succeeding censuses and must have abandoned them.
It is likely that Haley Bateson took a central role in the family, possibly from as early as 1874.


The only other event of note at this time came on 21 February 1874, when his elder sister Mary got married: Amos and his younger sister Emma were the two Witnesses.


In the 1881 and 1891 censuses he declared that he was married to a woman called Sarah Jane or Jane, born in Pateley Bridge around 1852.
There is no official record of any marriage, however.

Sarah Gill had married a Samuel Parkinson in Windhill in 1870. She already had a child, Annie Tillotson Gill, who was born in 1868, presumably fathered by a man called Tillotson. By 1878 the Parkinson marriage, apparently childless, had broken down; over the next two years, Sarah Jane had a son, Bainbridge, and daughter, Florence, by Amos Midgley and took his name. Her illegitimate daughter, Annie Tillotson, retained the Gill family name until her marriage in 1934.


In the 1901 census, Bainbridge, Annie and their mother were living together in Manningham (Florence had died in 1882) but Sarah was described as a widow.


In fact, Amos was alive and living at 56 Clayton Place, near Barkerend Mills in central Bradford, where he remained until 1904. In the 1901 census he was aged 46, a married Warp Dresser born in Halifax.


Living a few blocks away in Garnett Street was his mother Hannah, the widow of William Midgley, sometime Farmer from Illingworth. At some point in the mid-1860s, William had moved to Horton, Bradford, where he worked in beer retailing; he then moved to Tong and became a self-employed Wood Turner. By 1891 he had moved to central Bradford, to Garnett Street, where he died in 1896. His Will made no mention of any of his children – his entire estate, an impressive £370, was left to his wife.


Amos died of heart failure at 4 Penn Street, near Bowling Station, less than half a mile south of Barkerend, on 28 August 1905.  Remarkably for one whose estate was valued at a mere £30, he left a Will. There is no mention of a wife or children; the sole beneficiary of his assets, which included a horse and wagon, was Annie Higgins, the recently widowed occupant of 4 Penn Street.

One of Amos’ executors was a Fred Whitehead of Garnett Street. Fred was a Chair Maker by trade. He had been placed in receivership in 1900, so may have been working for his brother John, who had a chair and stool making business in Tong. Chair makers work with wood and with lathes – the trade directory for 1900 actually lists Fred as a Wood Turner.

Since William Midgley had lived in Tong for a time, working as a Wood Turner, his son Amos might have known Fred Whitehead as a business associate of his father.


Hannah Midgley


Hannah, Amos Midgley's only legitimate child, was born on 12 July 1871 in the White Abbey district of Bradford. She married John Lee in 1895.  The couple do not appear to have had any children.


In August 1926 she travelled alone onboard the SS Laconia, sailing from Liverpool to Boston to visit her sister Ada Coles of 25 Hicks Street, Pawtucket RI.


She returned to England and died, aged 89, in 1961 in Bradford.
She left a substantial £776 8s. Probate was granted to her nephew, Norman Keighley.


Elizabeth Midgley


Elizabeth Midgley was born on 16 December 1874 at 112 Abbey St Bradford but the birth was not registered until the following year. There was no father on the certificate.


Her son, christened Harry Bateson Midgley, was born on 23 February 1897. There was no father on his birth certificate.
It may well be that Elizabeth rejected her son: in the 1901 census she was on her own in White Abbey while Harry was with the rest of the Midgley family in Weston Street. Mary, his grandmother, probably took on the responsibilty for bringing Harry up.
Once Elizabeth went to America, there is no evidence that mother and son ever communicated with one another.
Elizabeth married Harry Baxter, a Machinist, in Bradford on 13 January 1902. Her sister Ada was one of the witnesses, suggesing that the family had not ostracised her for having a child out of wedlock.
No children from the marriage have been found.
Elizabeth's next couple of appearances in the records show that she went to some lengths to avoid acknowledging her marriage.


On 9 May 1908, as Elizabeth Bateson, she was onboard the SS Cymric travelling to Pawtucket to stay with her sister Mary Ellen Ward in Power Rd. On the passenger manifest, her father was given as Harry (=Haley) Bateson.

She was recorded as an unmarried Weaver.

Curiously, on the UK departure record for the same voyage, she was listed as aged 33, a Male and a Mason!


In the 1910 US census she was registered at the Cooper St, Pawtucket, address of her sister Ada Coles - but this time as Elizabeth Baxter. Once again, however, she said she was single.


Elizabeth Baxter remained in the USA – she is noted as being there on her son’s Army record, and she was recorded in the 1920 and 1930 Federal Censuses and in the 1935 Central Falls Census as a widowed Housekeeper.


She stayed in touch with her husband Harry, who remained in Yorkshire. Just before the end of the War he enlisted in the Labour Corps. When he was demobbed in February 1919, his record states that a Separation Allowance of 14s 7d per week was paid to his wife in Pawtucket.
No further records have been found.


Elizabeth probably died in 1955.
The date is carved on a gravestone in Moshassuck Cemetery in Central Falls. Elizabeth Baxter's name and year of birth are given, below the names of a James and Eliza Biggs.
However, there is no record of her burial in the cemetery database, suggesting that she died and was buried elsewhere.
A study of the US Censuses shows that although she was not related to the Biggs family she was probably a valued friend.
In 1910 she was at 30 Cooper St, Pawtucket, next door to the recently bereaved James Biggs.
By 1920 she had become his Housekeeper.
James died in 1923, yet 22 years later, she was still so well-regarded that her name was added to the Biggs family gravestone.


John Midgley


John Midgley was born on 20 February 1876, according to his Army records.


Until his early teens, it seems that he preferred to be known as John Bateson. We know this because in 1896 he was arrested for housebreaking and sentenced, as John Shackleton, to 9 months in prison. But this was not his first court appearance - his life of crime began with the theft of clothing in 1888 at the age of 12. In 1889, as John Bateson, he received 4 years in Reform School for a similar offence. From 1893, when he was mostly known as John Shackleton, there were 8 further court appearances for petty theft and assault. His infamous uncle Luke was probably his evil mentor - Luke Shackleton was implicated in the 1896 crime and sentenced to 12 months. The local newspaper reported that during the hearing, one of the pair, presumed to be Luke, became very restless and, springing forward, assaulted the prosecutor, who happened to be the Chief Constable.


After 1900, when he may have been charged with assault, there are no sightings of him until 2 January 1917 when he enlisted, as John Shackleton, in the 89th Training Reserve Battalion. He was deemed to have enlisted on 2 March 1916 but not called up until the following year. His army career was not entirely unblemished: on 11 September 1917 he went AWOL for almost a month and was sentenced, without a trial, to 14 days detention and 5 days loss of pay.

Curiously, one of the witnesses to the offence was a Lance Corporal Midgley, probably no relation.
He was discharged on
28 February 1919.


He was probably recorded in the 1939 Register as John Midgley, a widowed General Labourer living in Bradford.
He may have died there in 1941.


Lily Midgley


Lily Midgley was born in 1878 in the White Abbey district of Bradford. She was a silk cleaner or gasser by trade – this appeared to involve passing the cloth over a flame to remove extraneous fibres.


She married Alfred Keighley in 1907 and had a son, Norman, who married Mary Boocock in 1939 and died in 1973.


When or where Lily died is not known.


Ada Midgley


Ada Midgley was born in 1880 and christened along with all her siblings, apart from Hannah, at St Mary Magdalene’s Church, Manningham on 18 Oct 1881 while the family were living nearby at 25A Regent St.


On 17 January 1907 she, Ada Bateson, was onboard the SS Saxonia sailing to Boston from Liverpool. She was a 26 year-old weaver going to 395 Central St, Central Falls, Pawtucket to see her sister Mary Ellen Ward. She was 5' 1" with dark hair and eyes. Haley Bateson was travelling on the same vessel, going “home” to 444 Dexter St, Central Falls.


In late 1908 or 1909 she married William Coles, an Englishman from Oldham and had a daughter, Mildred, born on 18 May 1910.


From her base in Pawtucket RI she and her family criss-crossed the Atlantic until 1929, as follows:


January 1908 Liverpool from New York on board SS Mauretania

July 1908 Boston from Liverpool onboard SS Saxonia

July 1920 Liverpool from Boston onboard SS Caronia with William and Mildred

September 1920 New York from Southampton onboard SS Olympic with William and Mildred

June 1924 Liverpool from Boston onboard SS Scythia with Mildred

July 1925 Boston from Liverpool onboard SS Laconia with Mildred

March 1929 Liverpool from Boston onboard SS Cedric with Mildred

May 1929 Boston from Liverpool onboard SS Cedric with Mildred


When William died in 1949, she was recorded as his spouse, Ada Bateson.


A year later, she was still travelling - as Ada Coles - on a flight from London to Boston, along with her grand-daughter Mildred. 


She died in 1972 and is buried in Moshassuck Cemetery in Central Falls.


Mary Ellen Midgley


Mary Ellen Midgley was born on 6 July 1881. There is no father noted on her birth certificate.


A son, Ernest Ward Midgley, was born on 13 March 1903, according to the official index. There is no father noted on his birth certificate.


Some six months later, on 22 October 1903, Mary Ellen married a 19 year-old Harry Ward in Bradford. The entry for her father is blank on the marriage certificate.


She gave birth to a daughter called Annie Ward on 19 September 1905.


Less than a year after the birth, on August 10 1906, Harry sailed alone to Boston onboard the SS Cymric. He was described as a Car Conductor visiting his uncle John Bateson in Pawtucket.


On 11 November 1906, Mary Ellen and her two young children followed him to Pawtucket, sailing onboard the SS Cymric.


The family was together at the 1910 Federal Census at Forest Ave, Pawtucket. Harry, aged 30, was working in an Insurance Office. His wife Ellen was aged 28 with Annie 4 and Ernest aged 8.


After this, Mary Ellen and her two children moved to New Bedford MA.

She was recorded in the city directories of the day but Harry's location at this time is less certain. His First World War Draft Registration Card of 17 September 1918 put him in Norwood, Norfolk MA. He disappeared from view for a decade, reappearing in 1929 in Laconia NH, where he resumed his former trade as a butcher. He died in Portland City in 1957.


The full history of Harry and Mary Ellen Ward and their children is detailed in the Ward / Walsh family tree posted on Ancestry.com.