Poppy

First World War in Headington and Marston, Oxford

Joseph Bailey CROSS (1891–1918)

Joseph Cross

Joseph Bailey Cross was born in New Marston in 1891, the son of Joseph Cross (born in New Headington in 1856) and Harriet Sarah Bailey (born in St Ebbe’s in 1858 and registered as Sarah Harriet Bailey).

His parents were married at St Clement’s Church on 3 June 1879 and had seven children:

  • Mary Ann M. Cross (born in New Headington in 1880 and baptised at St Clement’s Church on 27 June)
  • Joseph Cross (born in New Headington in 1881 and baptised at St Clement’s Church on 25 December; died aged 2 years 4 months and buried in St Andrew’s churchyard on 5 February 1884)
  • Harry Joseph Garfield Cross (born in New Headington in 1884 and baptised at St Clement’s Church on 27 July)
  • Arthur Bernard Cross (born in St Clement’s in 1886 and baptised in St Clement’s Church on 25 July)
  • Joseph Bailey Cross (born in New Marston in 1891 and baptised at St Clement’s Church on 30 August)
  • Lily Harriet Cross (born in New Marston in 1896 and privately baptised by St Nicholas’s Church in Old Marston on 22 March)
  • Ivy Doris Cross (born in New Marston in 1899 and baptised at St Clement’s Church on 29 October).

At the time of the 1881 census, Joseph’s father (24), described as a master baker employing two men, and his mother Mary (22), described as a grocer, kept the shop at 39 New High Street in New Headington village. His parents were living over this shop with their first child Mary (eleven months). Also living with them was Joseph's uncle William Cross (18), who worked for his brother.

By 1886 the family had moved to New Marston. At the time of the 1891 census his parents were living on the Marston Road near Edgeway Road. Joseph Bailey Cross was born there very soon after that census.

At the time of the 1901 census Joseph Bailey Cross (9) was at school and, living with his family on the Marston Road; his father was still baking bread on his own account, and they appear to have had a shop in St Clement’s at this time. His older brothers were both factory hands: Harry (16) was a packer, and Arthur (15) a cutter-out. His sister Mary Ann (20) had gone into service, and was the parlourmaid of the Omond family at Elsfield Road in Old Marston.

Joseph’s father Joseph Cross died on 12 July 1909 and was buried at St Nicholas’s churchyard in Old Marston.

The 1911 census shows Joseph (19) working as a dairyman and still living on the Marston Road with his widowed mother Harriet (52), who is described as a milk vendor, and his two younger sisters. His two older brothers had already married and left home.

Memorial to Hussars

 

 

Poppy In the First World War Joseph Bailey Cross served as a Private in the Queen’s Own Oxfordshire Hussars (Service No. 285440). He was killed in action in France at the age of 27 on 5 November 1918 (just six days before Armistice Day).

He is buried in the south corner of the Obies Communal Cemetery in France, and is remembered on the New Marston War Memorial on the Marston Road, Oxford.

 

 

Right: Memorial in the Town Hall, Oxford to the men of all ranks of the Queen’s Own Oxfordshire Hussars who died in the First World War


Postscript

New Marston War Memorial

Joseph’s mother
  • Mrs Harriet Cross died at the age of 77 on 8 April 1936 and was buried with her husband in St Nicholas’s churchyard, Old Marston. There does not appear to be any remembrance of Joseph junior on their grave.
Joseph’s brothers
  • Harry Joseph Garfield Cross (born 1884) became a shoeing smith. He married Beatrice Annie Kimber at St Andrew’s Church, Old Headington on 5 October 1907 and their son Joseph was born in Headington on 13 July 1909 and baptised at St Andrew’s Church on 29 August. They were then living in New High Street, but had moved to Stapleton Road, Headington by the time of the 1911 census.
  • Arthur Bernard Cross (born 1886) married Ethel May E. Kimber (known as May) at St Andrew’s Church, Old Headington on 22 November 1908. Their daughter Ethel May Hilda Cross was born on 16 May 1909 and baptised at St Andrew’s Church on 4 July. Their address was then simply given as New Headington, but in the 1911 census their address is given as 2 Hope Villas, High Street, New Headington (now 13 New High Street), and Arthur is described as a groom and gardener.

See also
  • CWGC: Cross, J B
  • The shop over which Joseph lived as a child: 39 New High Street
  • Oxford Journal Illustrated, 11 December 1918, “Heroes of the War”: photograph of Joseph Cross of Marston, who had died just over a month earlier (shown above with kind permission of Oxfordshire County Council, Oxfordshire History Centre)
  • Wikipedia: Queen’s Own Oxfordshire Hussars

Back to New Marston War Memorial

Back to War Memorials page on Headington Community Website