A family who lost several children but had a number surviving
Thomas Thomas and Harriet his wife
Eldest son Thomas d. 1856, aged 21
John Richard, 2nd son, d. 1856 aged 17
Granddaughter Ethel d. 10th May 1881, a year old
And then just ‘Little Willie’ …
The Thomas family had come to the town in c.1838. Thomas, who was Welsh by birth, worked his way up through a variety of jobs – grocer (1841), Registrar of Births, deaths and marriages in the Town in 1851, Manager of the Gasworks (1861 – but also Newsagent and a Reporter), By 1871, the ever-resourceful Thomas had become Post Master and remained so until his death in 1882. He was a prominent mason, secretary of the Garden Society etc.
Thomas and Harriet had at least 8 children. Thomas (b 1835) and described as a ‘Reporter’ in 1851) Mary Harriet (b 1837) John Richard, (b. 1839), Lewis E. (b. 1842), Edward Ebenezer, (b.1845), and David, b. 1848), Fanny Augusta (b.1854) and Florence Elizabeth b. b.1858) (Harriet was 45 by this time). Florence had trained as a ‘telegraphist.’ (but died in 1888, aged 29) and David, who became assistant postmaster to his father, died in the same year as his father age 33. In 1881, Thomas also had 3 grandchildren, David Rowland, James Rowell and Edith H. Thomas living with the family, and Fanny Hilder, aged 61, had become a housekeeper as Harriet had died in 1873.
Little Willie, refers to William Reginald Thomas, who died 12th January 1884, aged 7 months, presumably another grandchild of Thomas and Harriet.