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Person Details
Londonthorpe Lincoln
Charles was the eldest son of Edward and Ann Watson (nee Stead). Edward was born in Londonthorpe, Lincolnshire, in 1851 (A/M/J Grantham) and married Ann Stead (b. Swayfield, Lincolnshire) in 1874 (A/M/J Grantham). Six children were named on the census between 1891 and 1911, the five eldest born in Londonthorpe and the youngest in Papplewick, Nottinghamshire: Charles birth registered 1880 (J/F/M Grantham), Harry birth registered 1883 (J/F/M Grantham) James b. 1885 (A/M/J Grantham), George Edward b. 1888 (J/A/S Grantham), Jospeh Stead birth registered 1891 (J/F/M Grantham) and Horace b. 1895 (J/A/S Basford). In 1891 the family was living in Londonthorpe, Lincolnshire. Edward was an agricultural labourer and he and Ann had five sons by this time: Charles (11), Harry (8), James (6), George (2) and Joseph (1 month). The family had moved to Nottingham by 1901 and living in Linby. Edward (49) was now a forester/woodman, presumably working on the Linby estate, and in the household on the night of the census were his wife Ann (47) and five of their six children; Charles (21) of no occupation, James (16) a carter, George (12), Joseph (10) and Horace (5). Their second son, Harry, has not yet been traced on the 1901 Census. Charles married Emily May Wharmsby in 1904 (A/M/J Basford). Ann Watson died at the age of 56 in 1910 (A/M/J Basford). The widowed Edward was still living in Linby at the time of the 1911 Census. Also in his household were Charles (32) a coal miner, Emily (30) and their son John Edward (7, b. abt 1905) together with Charles' unmarried brothers, Joseph (21) a groom/gardener, and Horace (16) who was unemployed. According to a report of Charles' death in the local paper, he and Emily had three children 'aged 12, four and three'. The eldest child, John Edward, was recorded on the 1911 Census, but it is likely that the two younger children were Lily A. b. 1912 (J/A/S Basford) and Sylvia E Watson birth registered 1914 (J/F/M Basford); both records give the mother's maiden name as 'Wharmsby'. Three of Charles' brothers had also married by the time of the 1911 Census; James in 1905 (J/A/S Basford), Harry to Maggie Sharp in 1907 (J/A/S Basford) and George to Bertha Hephizbah Hatfield on 11 February 1911 at Hucknall Baptist Church. In 1911 Harry (29), a coal miner, and Maggie (30) were living at 3 Albert Street, Hucknall. George, a colliery wages clerk, and Bertha were boarders at 14 Church Drive, Hucknall, in the household of Matthew Jennings, a colliery deputy. George and Bertha later had at least two children, Eric Stead (20 August 1911) and Colin (19 November 1916). Edward Watson died at the age of 58 in 1911 (J/A/S Basford). According to a notice of Charles' death in the local paper, three of his brothers were also serving in 1917. George's army service record survives; he attested in February 1915 and probably served in France. He was taken prisoner on 27 May 1918 (it is possible he was initially reported missing). He was repatriated and demobilized in February 1919 (49095 Lance Corporal, Northamptonshire Regiment). George probably died in 1974 at the age of 85 (Probate: 78 Vernon Crescent, Ravenshead). The CWGC record gives Emily Watson's address as 10 Wollaton Street, Hucknall Torkard, Nottinghamshire. Charles was living in Hucknall when he enlisted in 1915 and he and his wife may have moved there after the death of his father with whom they had been living in 1911. Emily may have later remarried as there is a record of the marriage of an Emily M Watson to Michael Coyne in 1918 (J/A/S Basford).
At the time of the 1901 census he did not have an occupation but by 1911 he was working as a miner, probably at Summit Colliery.
08 Apr 1917
66315 - CWGC Website
He was living in Hucknall when he enlisted
Royal Field Artillery
Charles Watson enlisted in Hucknall on 10th January 1915 and served with “A” Battery, 93rd Brigade Royal Field Artillery. He disembarked in France on 24 July 1915. He is buried in Ecoivres Military Cemetery, Mont St.Eloi, France. He qualified for the 1915 Star, British War Medal and Victory Medal.
Personal inscription on CWGC headstone: 'Rest in peace' Hucknall Dispatch 17th May 1917 : “It is our sad duty this week to again record the losses of Hucknall men whilst engaged in the great fight for freedom. The first is Gunner Charlie Watson, of 10, Wollaton-street, who enlisted in the Royal Field Artillery on January 10, 1915, and was sent out to France on July 10. He was killed in action on Easter Sunday [8th April 1917] and thus had served his country for two years and nine months. His loss is mourned by a wife and three children, aged 12, four, and three. Previous to joining the forces he worked at Summit Colliery. The deceased soldier was the son of the late Mr. Watson, the well-known workman on the Linby estate. He has three brothers engaged in the task of overcoming the Huns.” Article courtesy of Jim Grundy and his facebook pages Small Town Great War Hucknall 1914-1918.
Remembered on