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Person Details
Samuel was the son of Benjamin Gurden and Mary Alice Gurden (formerly Nicholls). Benjamin was born in Croughton, Warwickshire, in about 1860 and his wife was born in Crudwell, Wiltshire. They were married in 1894 (J/A/S Nottingham) and had seven children of whom five survived infancy: Sydney (Sidney) Benjamin b. 1886 (J/A/S Hendon Middlesex), Samuel Thomas Henry b. 18 January 1888 (J/F/M Nottingham), William Frederick b. 1890 (J/A/S Nottingham), Florence May b. 1892 (J/A/S Basford) and Albert George birth registered 1895 J/F/M Basford. Their mother also had a daughter, Rosannah Nicholls, born about 1877. In 1891 Benjamin (31) an engine driver, and his wife were living at 51 Briar Street, Meadows, with their three children, Sidney (4), Samuel (3) and Frederick (10 months). The family was still living on Briar Street by the time of the next census in 1901. Mary's daughter, Rosannah (24) was in the household together with her five half-siblings, Sidney (14) an office boy, Samuel (13), William (10), Florence (8) and Albert (6). Mary Ann Gurden died in 1910 (J/F/M Nottingham) aged about 51. By 1911 the widowed Benjamin (51), who was still working as an engine driver, was living at 101 Rupert Street, Meadows. Only two of his children were still at home: Florence Mary (18) who was acting as his housekeeper, and Albert George (16) a clerk in a warehouse. Also in the household was Edith Mary Sutton (7, birth registered 1904 J/F/M Nottingham) who was described as 'adopted'. However, by the time of his son Samuel's death in 1915 Benjamin was living at 64 Harcourt Street, Kirkby in Ashfield. Samuel, was serving in the Royal Navy by 1911. William (20) was probably working as a coal miner by 1911 and was a boarder in the household of Frederick Ward, also a coal miner, and his wife at 35 Duke Street, Cresswell, near Mansfield. Sidney, a police constable (No. 407) had married Mary Lizzie Smith in 1909 (J/A/S Nottingham) and in 1911 they were living at 62 City Road, Dunkirk, Nottingham, with their son Samuel Benjamin (10 months). Sidney and his family probably emigrated to New Zealand before the war as there is a record of him on the New Zealand Army WW1 Reserve Rolls and another record of his death/burial in New Zealand. The youngest child, Albert George, also emigrated to New Zealand and served in the New Zealand Expeditionary Force, being wounded at Gallipoli. He survived the war and continued to live in New Zealand working as a tram conductor, but died in Wellington Hospital on 28 August 1919 following a tram accident. Florence married Uriah Stacey in 1915 (J/A/S Nottingham) and after her husband's death at the age of 24 in 1918 (September Basford) married John F Marshall in 1919 (J/F/M Basford). She was executor of her father's will in 1923. William Frederick served in the Army Service Corps (Motor Transport) during the war. He attested on 11 December 1915 and transferred to the Army Reserve the following day; he was not mobilized until September 1916. His record survives only in part and it seems that he might have been discharged unfit as there is a note that he made a disability claim. He married Lily Onions (19), the daughter of Joel Onions (glassblower), on 1 January 1916 at Birmingham St Paul. He was then working as a dairyman driver and living at 16 Moreton Street, Birmingham while his wife was living at 46 Pope Street, Birmingham. They lived at Pope Street after their marriage. Benjamin Gurden died on 11 January 1923 at about the age of 63. His home was still at Harcourt Road, Kirkby in Ashfield.
Samuel was serving in the Royal Navy in 1911. He joined the Post Office in August 1913, but rejoined the Navy in October the same year.
12 Aug 1915
3033660 - CWGC Website
Stoker 1st Class
HMS Grafton Royal Navy
Samuel was serving in the RN at the time of the 1911 Census, probably on a 12 year engagement (5 years RN, 7 years in Royal Fleet Reserve) and possibly completed his engagement in 1913 as he was employed by the Post Office in August 1913. However, on 17 October 1913 he rejoined the Royal Navy as a Stoker 1st Class on a 12 year engagement. Samuel served in the following ships and shore establishments from 1913: Victory II (17 October 1913-31 October 1913 (Stoker 1st Class), HMS Dolphin, 1 November 1913-21 August 1914), Victory 2, 22 August 1914-27 November 1914; HMS Vernon, 28 November 1914-27 June 1915; HMS Grafton, 25 June 1915-12 August 1915. His service record was annotated: ‘NP 4137/15. DD 12 August 1915. Killed in action in the Dardanelles.’ The RN&RM War Graves Roll records that he was buried at sea and he is commemorated on the Portsmouth Naval Memorial. HMS Grafton was a first class cruiser of the Edgar class launched in 1892. On the outbreak of the First World War, Grafton was part of the 10th Cruiser Squadron, which was employed in enforcing the naval blockade of Germany. It was decided to refit four ships of the Edgar class, including Grafton, for shore bombardment work for the planned operations in the Dardanelles. Grafton, along with her sisters Endymion, Edgar and Theseus, served in the Gallipoli Campaign from July 1915. Grafton carried out shore bombardment during the landing at Suvla Bay and the Battle of Sari Bair in August 1915. She was struck by Turkish shells off Suvla on 12th August, killing nine of her crew including Samuel Gurden. Grafton helped to cover the evacuations from Anzac Cove on 20 December 1915 and from Cape Helles in January 1916.Grafton was later awarded the battle honour ‘Dardanelles Feb 1915- Jan 1916’ for her service off Gallipoli. (Wikipedia)
Probate: Gurden Benjamin of 54 Harcourt-street Kirkby-in-Ashfield Nottinghamshire died 11 January 1923 Probate Nottingham 9 February to Florence May Marshall (wife of John Frederick Marshall). Effects £99.
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