Author Topic: Mystery of William Ryan, born 1878  (Read 8984 times)

Offline BR

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Mystery of William Ryan, born 1878
« on: Sunday 25 August 13 14:39 BST (UK) »
I'm trying to solve the mystery of my great-grandfather's life and family and would really appreciate it if anyone could help me find more pieces of the puzzle. I have found some information scattered around but he is proving to be an extremely difficult person to research. I have tried to ask members of my family about him but they haven't been able to give me very reliable information.

I can't find his birth certificate or any census records for him up until 1911, I have no information about his family and even though he only died in 1963 I can't find any record of his death certificate.

So the information I do have:
  • Born late 1878 in Bethnal Green (taken from army enlistment, pension and gravestone)
  • Father was John Ryan who is listed as being in the Royal Merchant Navy and was deceased by 1917 (taken from William's marriage certificate but could be false information)
  • Worked as a hotel cook in London. Listed previous employment as the Horse Shoe Hotel, Tottenham Court Rd on army records and the family say he worked at the Hotel Russell
  • Married Ellen Sankey in June 1917 just down the road from their home at 11 Munster Square, Regent's Park
  • He signed up to the army just a few weeks later in July 1917. His army records list him as initially serving in the London District Labour Corp, then moved to the 366 Res Employ Coy and then moved again to the 8th Coy Royal Army Medical Corps. He was stationed in Dewsbury and Blackpool and never saw combat
  • He lost his wife Ellen in child birth on 15 March 1918 however his son, William Charles Ryan survived. He was present as he is listed on her death certificate as the informer.
  • He died on 1 Feb 1963 in Liverpool however no death certificate exists. I have found a probate published 8 March 1963 which confirms this information is correct so I don't know why the records don't exist.
Other information I have been told by the family include he remarried a Kate, that he settled in Mitcham, Surrey after the war and ran a cafe and he also worked in the buffet car of the trains from Liverpool to London. My grandfather, William Charles, grew up in Liverpool with Ellen's family so he didn't really know his dad very well.

I really want to know more about him and his family and it's so frustrating to constantly hit this brick wall! Any tips/hints/help would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks so much.

Online heywood

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Re: Mystery of William Ryan, born 1878
« Reply #1 on: Sunday 25 August 13 14:59 BST (UK) »
Hello and welcome  :)

There is a William H Ryan death registered in march quarter 1963 but the age is 70-yrs.
It may be worth checking this for the address to see if it matches the address you have.
Although I can see the military records with the information you give.

regards
heywood
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Offline BR

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Re: Mystery of William Ryan, born 1878
« Reply #2 on: Sunday 25 August 13 15:20 BST (UK) »
Thanks Heywood.

I actually ordered that death certificate just in case and it doesn't match any of the details on the probate. The place and date of death is completely different.

So it was back to square one again...

Offline ChrissieL

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Re: Mystery of William Ryan, born 1878
« Reply #3 on: Sunday 25 August 13 15:23 BST (UK) »
Welcome to Rootschat
There is a William Chs Ryan born 1880 in Stepney on the 1881 census
RG11/476/105/33
John Thos Ryan.  33  sailmaker
Susannah Ryan.    25
Susannah S Ryan. 6
Jessie Eliza Ryan.  3
William Chs Ryan. 1
John Urlwin Ryan.  4months

All living at 79 Jamaica Street Mile End Old Town
Staffordshire: Lawton Probyn Horrobin
Durham: Bamlett Hardman Winship Robinson
Suffolk: Leggett


Offline BR

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Re: Mystery of William Ryan, born 1878
« Reply #4 on: Sunday 25 August 13 15:44 BST (UK) »
Thanks ChrissieL.

That's the most likely link I've found to William's family however the entire family disappear from all future censuses. I didn't want to have it as a definite link without further evidence just in case. I can't find any supporting records of birth, marriage, death or census listings for any member of the family.

Online heywood

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Re: Mystery of William Ryan, born 1878
« Reply #5 on: Sunday 25 August 13 15:48 BST (UK) »
Thanks Heywood.

I actually ordered that death certificate just in case and it doesn't match any of the details on the probate. The place and date of death is completely different.

So it was back to square one again...

There is a Walter Ryan - maybe a mistranscription - clutching at straws I know!
Also wondered about that 1881 post.
Was he a cook on his marriage certificate?
Do the witness names help at all?
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Offline carol8353

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Re: Mystery of William Ryan, born 1878
« Reply #6 on: Sunday 25 August 13 15:56 BST (UK) »
There is this death cert (age is correct)

Deaths Mar 1963

RYAN    WALTER  age   85    LIVERPOOL N.    10D    440

I wondered if an error was made when completing the GRO indexes?

Carol

Snap Heywood...........I was typing that as you posted yours!
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Offline carol8353

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Re: Mystery of William Ryan, born 1878
« Reply #7 on: Sunday 25 August 13 15:57 BST (UK) »
Maybe he WAS actually born a Walter,which is why you can't find anything on him.
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Offline BR

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Re: Mystery of William Ryan, born 1878
« Reply #8 on: Sunday 25 August 13 16:06 BST (UK) »
I think the only way I'll know is to order the certificate. Thanks for picking that up.
It's possible he was born Walter but his probate lists his name as William Ryan and I would presume it would have to have his legal name. But I could be wrong.

His wedding certificate lists his occupation as hotel cook. It says he was a bachelor aged 38 (is that considered old in those days to be a first marriage?). His residence was 60 Osnaburgh St (just around the corner from Munster Square). The witnesses are Alfred Carey and Hilda Shephard.