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  1. #1

    Default John (Jack) SHAW, Belfast

    Looking for any information on the family of John (Jack) SHAW MBE, electrician in the Belfast docks and Divisional Superintendant, St John's Ambulance Brigade, both in the early 1940's. Had a mother in Bangor with initial M but cannot find any info on either

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    Have you looked at the Belfast City Council burial records at http://www.
    belfastcity.gov.uk/community/burialrecords/burialrecords.aspx

    It's free to search, but you can't order images for anything less than 75 years old, which may be a bit of a drawback.

    Arthur

  3. #3

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    Thanks Arthurk. Unfortunately he died in 1950/1 and I have a copy of his death certificate, a Belfast Gazette announcement in 1942 and the press death announcement . Perhaps if I go back and visit the Council offices I can find a gravestone with a useful inscription. What I have NOT got is a marriage or birth certificate or any idea where he came from. I have tried the St John's Ambulance Brigade (he was a Divisional Superintendent on the Belfast docks), and the Society of Saint John of Jerusalem (he was made a serving member). The former has simply sent me a couple of death announcements and the latter no reply.

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    Do you have DOB and wifes name?

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pamelawagster View Post
    Do you have DOB and wifes name?
    Thanks for the thought.
    No to both. I have an age at death (which could make year of birth one of two years). The other problem is that he was probably born in Northern Ireland about 1898 and almost all records were destroyed in the big fire in about 1920. Yes, I know that the government has taken major steps to reconstitute records but the fire included not only state but also most church records. His name is all too common.
    As for wife, only an initial, M. At the time of death his mother was living in Bangor (presumably Co Down) and was responsible for the newspaper entry; I have her single forename and have investigated that link, even speaking to a genealogist in Bangor whose grandmother had the same name!
    Also investigated occupants of his house - M Shaw and someone who was probably a lodger; they had moved a year later. Records then were not so complete so haven't found her again at a different address.

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    I've just had a quick look at the 1901 and 1911 censuses for a John Shaw born about the right time, with mother's name beginning "M". I only checked Co. Down, and found three contenders; as Belfast straddles the county boundary you would as a minimum need to check Co. Antrim as well, but the more counties you can check, the better.

    These are the ones I found:
    1901 & 1911 in Ballymacarn North - John (John R in 1901), 1 in 1901 & 11 in 1911, parents Andrew & Margaret (Presbyterian)
    1901 & 1911 in Ormeau - John, 3 in 1901 & 14 in 1911, parents Andrew & Margaret (Presbyterian)
    1901 in Backnamullagh - John, 2, parents John W & Margret (Methodist)

    I didn't look any further for the third one in 1911. Anyway, notwithstanding the possible difficulty in differentiating between the first two families, is it possible to eliminate any of these from your enquiries? For example, do you know anything about his mother's age, or any siblings?

    Another possible line of research might be to see if he left a will. According to the PRONI website, there's an index that can be consulted in their office - I don't know if they could do it for you, or if you'd need to hire a researcher. And since he apparently died before his mother, her death certificate and/or will might give useful clues as to other family members.

    I don't know how urgent this research is, but if you can wait a little while, I believe some of the Northern Ireland BMD indexes will be going online some time this year, and that might make life quite a lot easier for those of us who don't live there.

    Arthur

  7. #7

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    Arthurk. Obviously you have gone to a lot of trouble; thank you very much. Unfortunately I know next to nothing. The town names you mention are meaningless in this area of interest. I was adopted, perhaps twice and eligible a third time!
    I have been told some of my history, know who my biological parents were and I have a photo of my father John Shaw in uniform and a short note written by him which gives no help at all.
    Given the next para I have deleted the evidence showing the man referred to is the John Shaw I an researching.

    Whilst researching this answer I have just made what could be a useful discovery; his medals etc were auctioned at Sotheby's, London in 2012. He was in Orange Order 631. I am going to try Sothebys for information on the vendor

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by onlyme View Post
    Arthurk.

    Whilst researching this answer I have just made what could be a useful discovery; his medals etc were auctioned at London in 2012. He was in Orange Order 631. I am going to try the auctioneers for information on the vendor
    To follow up, the lot did not apparently sell at the auction.
    I found the record of two campaign medals (Mercantile Marine and British War Medal); he was actually recorded as born 1895 in Belfast (no address given). He also got the 1914-15 Star which indicates he also acted in a military capacity at some time. The address they were sent to in Sept 1919 was in Henderson Avenue off Old Cavehill Road but the directory for 1918 shows a boot buyer at that address. Despite having a seaman's certificate number (857142) I cannot find him in seamens records which only started 1920.

    I am trying the auctioneers and the Orange Order. I've been trying to find something for almost a decade ('there is an entry here some time ago and I have tried other places, all with no result)
    Again, many thanks

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    Quote Originally Posted by onlyme View Post
    The other problem is that he was probably born in Northern Ireland about 1898 and almost all records were destroyed in the big fire in about 1920. Yes, I know that the government has taken major steps to reconstitute records but the fire included not only state but also most church records.
    Not so. The statutory birth, death and marriages records were unaffected by the 1922 fire. (They were stored elsewhere). The originals all still exist. They start in 1845 (for marriages) and 1864 for births & deaths. The birth records around 1898 are intact.

    I go to PRONI from time to time, and if you want me to look for John/Jack’s will, please let me have his date of death and I'll look for it.
    ELWYN

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    Quote Originally Posted by arthurk View Post
    Have you looked at the Belfast City Council burial records at http://www.
    belfastcity.gov.uk/community/burialrecords/burialrecords.aspx

    It's free to search, but you can't order images for anything less than 75 years old, which may be a bit of a drawback.

    Arthur
    You have probably checked this and it may be a different John. There is a John Shaw who died 21 June 1950 buried 23 June 1950 at Dundonald Cemetery, Grave E6 259. Died Royal Victoria Hospital. Address 17 Ardgreenan Gardens.
    In 1943 Street Directory there is a J Shaw , electrician at that address.

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