This is a story about three brothers

Born and raised during a time of war and struggle for many working class families in Britain this is a story worth recording if only for its complex web of intrigue and brotherly relationships.

It’s a story built to a large part on facts taken from genealogy data bases over a number of years as well as using a degree of imagination and one or two assumptions thrown into the mix as well.

These three brothers are ancestors on the main branch of my own family tree, one of them, Thomas Henry Matthews is my Great Grandfather.

John "Jack" Matthews 1882 - 1915

John Matthews was born in the village of Lye, Worcestershire, England in 1882 to George and Harriet Matthews nee Carpenter. He was the youngest in a large family of twelve children ranging from Harriet the oldest, born in 1863 to the more recent brother William born just two years earlier in 1880. Read more.......

James Davis 1891-1917

James Davis was born in the year 1891 to Charles and Elizabeth Davis in the village of Leominster, Herefordshire, England.

James was the youngest of eight children one of whom was my Great Grandfather, Thomas William Davies born in 1874. His family were hard working people, labourers mainly, involved in working for local farmers and landowners. Sadly, his mother Elizabeth or Betsy as she was also known passed away when James was just a young boy.

Read's a sad story but with a strong feeling of pride.

A Chance Encounter

I have been frustrated for some time searching for a maternal Great Grandmother Eliza Jane Davies (nee Tong or Tongue). Nothing on gave me any clues. I had just given up, accepting that I would never find out anything about her.

One day I found this website Sheffield Indexers and decided to post a message on it's forum.

What a bit of good luck that turned out to be!

One thing lead to another, one hint here, another there and suddenly I was communicating with someone who had information about Eliza Jane (which turned out to be only partially right but that kicked off with two people searching instead!)

We eventually found the real Eliza Jane, her father, her mother and Great, Great, Great Grandparents on the Davies branch of the family as well!

The best bit is that the person I am communicating with in the UK is in fact a 1st cousin 1x removed and not only that my sister, Alison, has met him and his sister, Margaret in Stocksbridge, UK.

There is no end of surprises when it comes to genealogy!

Margaret, Grant and Alison 5 April 2018