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Thread: Elusive grandad

  1. #1
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    Default Elusive grandad

    My paternal grandad - Frank Henry (Holroyd)Robertson - died 2nd Jan 1946 aged 64,so apparently born abt 1882.My grandmother was Harriet Daisy Reeve,b.19 Mar 1887;died in Sept 1963.She was always k/as Daisy.They had 6 children,but I have never been able to find a date of marriage,therefore have never had a father's name for Frank,& can't track him in the relevant censuses.He & Daisy appear in the London Electoral rolls from 1923-1938.In the 1923-1927 lists he is listed as Frank Henry Holroyd Robertson.After that the Holroyd seems to disappear.He was in the Army Service Corps in WW1 & his Service number was M1/7111.This appears on a copy of his eldest son Frank's death cert in 1918.Frank snr.was based in Southport with the Army at that time.By 1920 they were back in London.They are both on the 1939 Register,but the dates of birth do not tally.daisy's is totally different to the one on her birth cert,of which I have a copy.
    After asking a question on the FMP forum I was given the name Holroyd Robertson & Medal Card details showing the Army service number M1/7111! This man was listed as a Pte & also Acting Cpl.had served in France in 1915 & had a wound stripe. I have since found a Percival Holroyd Robertson,born in Marylebone,Middlesex in 1880,married in 1900 & with one child,but he disappears after the 1911 census.I am now totally stuck & hoping someone can help me take my search further. thank you for looking at this.

  2. #2
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    It certainly seems possible that Percival, Holroyd and Frank could all be the same man.

    The M1 prefix on the service record indicates mechanical transport within the ASC, and I see that Percival was a Chauffeur in 1911 and a railway engine stoker in 1901. What was Frank's line of work?

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    Percy Holroyd Robertson's birth registration strongly suggests that his mother was unmarried, and his naming (Percy Holroyd) possibly gives a clue to his biological father:

    ROBERTSON, PERCY HOLROYD (no mmn)
    GRO Reference: 1881 M Quarter in MARYLEBONE Volume 01A Page 606

    In 1881 I think he may be at 9 Brindley Street, Paddington as visitors to John & Jane MacDuff & family
    Emily Robertson 26? visitor Domestic Servant b Scotland
    Percy Robertson 2months b Middlesex, Paddington

    By 1891 there's no sign of him, but John & Jane McDuff (nee Moore)are at Crampton Street, Newington and have a 9-year-old son named Percy, born Paddington. John McDuff & his son Robert both work as railway porters.

    A Percy McDuff, DoB 18 Feb 1881, mother Jane, was admitted to Moberley School on 21 Apr 1884 and again on 19 Apr 1887.

    There is also a Percy McDuff born c1881 in the 1896/7 railway employment records at St Pancras, employed as a van boy. He was just under 5 ft tall. He appears again in Jun/July 1899, discharged 13 Sep 1899 due to lack of work. This is the last sighting I have of him

    There is no birth for a Percy McDuff around the relevant time, and certainly no-one by that name in John & Jane McDuff's household in 1881 - which there would have been with the DB in the school record being 18 Feb 1881 - so it seems highly likely that this is actually Percy Holroyd Robertson aka Holroyd Robertson aka Frank Henry Holroyd Robertson.
    Last edited by Jomot1; 18-08-2020 at 12:38 AM. Reason: added info

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    Just to quickly add a couple more bits.

    It looks like the daughter in he 1901 & 1911 census was born before Percy & Maud had married:

    PAGE, LILIAN GEORGINA (no mmn)
    GRO Reference: 1899 M Quarter in LAMBETH Volume 01D Page 326

    There is an online tree that has a copy of Lilian's marriage certificate attached, and her father is named as FRANK Robertson, Chauffeur

  5. #5

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    Excellent sleuthing, Jomot.

    Lilian Georgina Robertson married William Percy Wallis and there's a Lilian Georgina Wallis and William Percy Wallis on Australian Electoral Rolls in 1943, Perth, their address; 93, Bagot Road, William is a soldier.
    Alma

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by almach View Post
    Excellent sleuthing, Jomot.

    Lilian Georgina Robertson married William Percy Wallis and there's a Lilian Georgina Wallis and William Percy Wallis on Australian Electoral Rolls in 1943, Perth, their address; 93, Bagot Road, William is a soldier.
    They're on various Australian electoral rolls, the earliest I've seen is 1922.
    Alma

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    Default Elusive Grandad

    Hello Jomot,thank you so much for your reply - I have a Memorial Card for John Mcduff which was with documents I found after my parents had both died,& it has puzzled me for years! Your research has certainly made things a lot clearer.I checked back on all my Dad's siblings birth certs,& Frank's occupation was always a motor mechanic.Mr Dad also said he worked as a chauffeur & I have a photo of him driving a very large car & wearing what could certainly be a chauffeur's uniform. I shall send for Percy's birth cert.Also,Lilian was born in 1899,before Percy & Maud married. On the copy of the marriage cert online,Percy was Percival & gave his father's name as Wm Robertson. I found Maude Maria in the 1939 Register with the marital status as Divorced. I shall certainly be looking at all the info you have given me . I am so grateful for your help on this. I couldn't understand how someone could be so difficult to trace . Many thanks again.
    Last edited by Soozi-B; 18-08-2020 at 12:14 PM. Reason: further info

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    Just to say thank you for your input on my Elusive Grandad.I shall be checking out the Australian connection.It's so good to have some info to work with after 15 years of nothing!!

  9. #9

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    Jomot1, may I echo Almach's sentiments, a cracking piece of work.

    I have spotted a Percy Robertson, chauffeur, St Ives in 1914 (Cornishman, 1 Jan 1914) but nothing to link him to the Percy subject of this post.
    "dyfal donc a dyr y garreg"

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