Poppy

First World War in Headington and Marston, Oxford

John Edwin EADLE (1880–1917)

John Edwin Eadle was born in Old Marston in 1880, the son of John Edwin Eadle senior (born in Marston and baptised at St Nicholas’s Church on 13 March 1836) and his second wife Emma Stringer née Collison (born in Cuddesdon in c.1844).

John Edwin Eadle senior married his first wife Elizabeth Mary Cummins (born in Marston in 1840 and known as Mary) at St Nicholas’s Church Old Marston on 6 October 1861. She already had an illegitimate child, Richard Cummins (born in Marston in 1858 and baptised at St Nicholas’s Church on 23 May 1858). They had the following children:

  • John Edwin Eadle (born in Marston in 1861 and baptised at St Nicholas’s Church on 10 November);
    died aged 15 months and buried in the churchyard on 18 January 1863
  • [probably] Charles Eadle, born in Marston in early 1863, died aged 6 months, and buried in the churchyard on 27 July 1863
  • William John Eadle (born in Marston in 1863/4 and baptised at St Nicholas’s Church on 24 January 1864)
  • Eliza Eadle (born in Marston in 1865 and baptised at St Nicholas’s Church on 5 June);
    died aged 16 months and buried in the churchyard on 29 August 1866)
  • Alice Mary Eadle, apparently known as Mary (born in Marston in 1867 and baptised at St Nicholas’s Church on 21 April)
  • George Eadle (born in Marston in 1868 and baptised at St Nicholas’s Church on 27 December)
  • Henry Eadle (born in Marston in early 1870 and baptised at St Nicholas’s Church on 28 August).

The 1871 census shows John’s father living in Old Marston with his first wife and their four surviving children and working as a farm labourer. His stepson, Richard Cummins, also lived with them and was already working as an agricultural labourer at the age of 13.

John Eadle’s first wife Mary Eadle died at the age of 32 and was buried in St Nicholas’s churchyard on 27 May 1872.

Five years later on 7 October 1877 at St Nicholas’s Church, John’s father married his second wife, the widow Mrs Emma Stringer. Formerly Emma Collison, John’s mother had married her first husband William Stringer at the same church on 14 December 1863, and they had one son:

  • John Stringer (born in Marston and baptised at St Nicholas’s Church on 3 April 1864)

Emma’s first husband, William Stringer, died at the age of 23 and was buried at St Nicholas’s Church on 9 July 1864. Just under three years later she had an illegitimate child, described as “son of Emma, widow”:

  • William Charles Stringer (born in Marston in the fourth quarter of 1866 and baptised at St Nicholas’s Church on 7 April 1867).

At the time of the 1871 census Emma (27) was living in Old Marston village with her two children at the home of her parents, John & Ann Collison.

Following their marriage in 1877 John & Emma Eadle had two more children together:

  • John Edwin Eadle (born in Marston in mid-1880 and baptised at St Nicholas’s Church on 9 January 1881)
  • Mary Elizabeth Eadle (born in Marston and baptised at St Nicholas’s Church on 16 March 1885).

At the time of 1881 census John (six months) was living in Elsfield Road, Old Marston with his parents and three of his four older step-siblings, who were already at work: William (17) was an agricultural labourer, Alice (14) was a domestic servant, and George (12) was a farm boy. Mary’s two older children, John Stringer (17) and his half-brother William Stringer (14) were also both farmer’s boys and living with her parents, the Collisons.

In 1891 John (11) was still at school and living in Old Marston (probably still at Elsfield Way) with his father, John Eadle senior (55) who was still working as an agricultural labourer, his mother Mary, his sister Mary, and his half-brothers George and Henry, plus William Stringer (22), who was described as a “boarder” rather a relation. Also living with them was Emily Mary Eadle (ten months), who was baptised at St Nicholas’s Church on 22 June 1890 and was the illegitimate daughter of John's stepsister (Alice) Mary Eadle.

The next year John’s father John Edwin Eadle senior died at the age of 56, and was buried at St Nicholas’s Church on 21 August 1892.

By the time of the 1901 census John’s widowed mother Emma (56) was living in Elsfield Road, Old Marston with her three unmarried children: John Edwin Eadle himself, now 20 and a cattleman on a farm; his sister Mary (17); and his half-brother William Stringer (34). Her granddaughter Emily (10) still lived with her, but was now described as her daughter.

On 13 April 1903 at St Nicholas's Church, Old Marston, John Edwin Eadle junior, described as a labourer of Marston, married Minnie Fleet of Marston, who was born in Bow, London in 1880, the daughter of the butcher William Fleet. They had two children:

  • Cecil Edwin Eadle (born in Old Marston on 7 November 1904, baptised at St Nicholas’s Church on 25 December 1904)
  • Minnie Louisa Eadle (born in Old Marston on 1 September 1910, baptised at St Nicholas’s Church on 23 October 1910).

The 1911 census shows John (30) living in Church Lane, Old Marston with his wife and two young children, and working as a pig man on a farm. Meanwhile his widowed mother Emma Eadle was now living at Tilehurst Cottages, Marston Road (then in Old Headington parish) with her son William Stringer (46), her unmarried daughter Mary Elizabeth Eadle (27), and Mary’s first three illegitimate children. By 1917, John’s mother had moved to Edgeway Road.

Poppy In the First World War John Edwin Eadle joined the army in 1916 and served as a Private in the 1st/4th Battalion of the Oxfordshire & Buckinghamshire Light Infantry (Service No. 203684). He was killed in action in Belgium at the age of about 38 on 16 August 1917.

J. E. Eadle on Tyne Cot Memorial

 

He has no known grave, but is remembered on the Tyne Cot Memorial (Panel 96 to 98) and on the Roll of Honour of St Nicholas’s Church, Old Marston.

Left: Photograph of J. E. Eadle’s name on the Tyne Cot Memorial, kindly supplied by the British War Graves project


Postscript

Old Marston memorial

John’s children
  • Cecil Edwin Eadle married Edith Mary Shirley at Cowley St John Church on 27 December 1926. He worked as a motor driver, and they lived at 7 Edgeway Road. Their first son Cecil William John Eadle was born on 6 June 1928 and baptised at St Nicholas’s Church in Old Marston on 15 July 1928, and their second son Raymond V. Eadle was born in 1932 (reg. Headington district fourth quarter).
  • Minnie Louisa Eadle married Albert G. E. J. Major in the second quarter of 1930 in the Headington registration district. They had eight children, all reg. in the Headington/Oxford registration district: Pamela J. Major (1930), Cynthia E. Major (1931), Audrey M. Major (1935), James A. Major (1937), Clive G. Major (1939) Michael J. Major (1941), Andrew L. Major (1947), and Judith Major (1953, died aged one day).
John’s full sister
  • Mary Elizabeth Eadle (born c.1885) had five illegitimate children: Alice Mary Eadle (born in Old Marston in 1904); Charles William Eadle (born at Tilehurst Cottages in 1906); George Nelson Eadle (born at Tilehurst Cottages in 1910); Harry Dean Eadle, baptised at St Nicholas’s Church on 17 February 1917; and Olive Surman Eadle (born in 1913). She married Edward J. Surman in the Headington registration district in the first quarter of 1921, and they lived at Tilehouse Cottages on the Marston Road. Their daughter Dorothy May Surman was born on 11 November 1925 and baptised at St Nicholas’s Church on 3 January 1926; and Olive Surman Eadle (born in 1913 and likely to be Edward Surman’s daughter) was finally baptised on 7 February 1926.

Back to War Memorials page on Headington Community Website