Death in a Cinema


When I first saw this stone about ten years ago, I wondered what sort of SCOTT parents would name their son Adolphe. Mark and Alice actually registered him as Adolphus Louis. At the age of 34, he would marry Amy Eveline ROE as Adolphe, though later census enumerators would use the name given at his birth.

Either way, the boy’s name had, I thought, a continental flavour to it and a whiff of high class. Both notions didn’t survive my discovery yesterday that Mark, at the age of fourteen, worked as a miner in the Durham coalfield. Ten years later he was a Railway Clerk in Leeds. In 1871, six months married and living with his wife and widowed mother, he gave his occupation as Tobacco Manufacturer. His business grew and in 1881 he was employing 30 men and girls. At home in Mount Preston were Amy, three daughters and “Adolphus L”., age 6.

23BlackmanLane_GSVIt isn’t possible to determine how successful Mark’s business was. Clearly, he moved out of the working class into which he was born, and for six years he was a member of the City Council. But after a period of poor health, he died suddenly in 1904 at home in Blackman Lane, and if it is the same dwelling that you can see on Google Street View, you might think he had fallen on hard times. (Hanging out her washing is the 21st-century “lady next door”, at No.25.)

Three years earlier, 27-year-old Adolphus was living at 4, Mount Preston with his father, stepmother and half-sister Hilda, his occupation Cigar Manufacturer. (His father is still manufacturing tobacco.)

In 1911, Mark’s widow has turned 23 Blackman Lane into a boarding house. Living with her is stepdaughter Alice, 38, a Librarian, and her own daughter, Hilda, 23 and without occupation. Both young women are unmarried, as is the boarder, Margaret GRIFFIN, aged 30, working for a National Children’s Orphanage.

Four miles to the south, Adolphe Louis, now a “Traveller for Cigars and Cigarettes”, occupies a small terraced house in Beeston with Amy Eveline and their year-old son Adolphe Clarence.

I have found registrations for two more sons born to Amy, in 1912 and 1916, but I can’t find a record of her death. Perhaps she divorced Adolphe and remarried.

The headstone in St Oswald’s churchyard marks the grave of “beloved wife” Elizabeth. I haven’t found the marriage but a Death Notice in The Aberdeen Press and Journal states:-

Suddenly, on the 13th September 1937, Adolphe Louis Scott, (of L. Hirst & Son, tobacco and cigar merchants), beloved husband of Elizabeth Burnett, 17, Stanmore Street, Leeds.

The house Adolphe didn’t return to from his business travels is another small terrace property, a short walk from the Vue IMAX Cinema in Kirkstall. The name of the cinema in which Adolphe breathed his last isn’t reported but it was in Carlisle, and he was watching The Mill on the Floss. He suffered a cardiac arrest and, at the risk of seeming insensitive, I wish the newspapers had told us what was onscreen at his heart-stopping moment.

Screenshot, ‘The Mill on the Floss’, 1936, dir. Tim Whelan.

If it was when the mill dam burst…

Adolphe left Elizabeth a “net personalty” of £1,117, which is about £60,000 in today’s money. She was 44 and had 37 more years ahead of her. I don’t know when, why or how she moved to Filey but in 1929, aged 79, Adolphe’s stepmother, Mary Elizabeth Scott, had died somewhere in Scarborough Registration District. It isn’t much of a connection, but the only one I have found.

Elizabeth’s stone has recently fallen.


I will put an upstanding photo of the stone as a Memory on FamilySearch Tree sometime, but there’s work to be done on the SCOTT pedigree. There is just this to go on –



On the 3rd July 1882 Charles Henry SAWDEN, a bricklayer, suffered a serious accident while taking down scaffolding. The next day it was his mother’s 52nd birthday.

Annie Banks was about twenty when she married Abel SAWDEN, ten years her senior. I haven’t yet determined how many children they had together. So far I have found five in the GRO Online Index, there are seven in Filey Genealogy and Connections and four baptisms (at least) recorded on FamilySearch Tree. You will know by now that the FST System’s plucking of baptismal records from the old IGI is a Make Work Project for anyone who may feel obliged to do some pruning. In twenty minutes or so I found that Abel had six duplicate IDs and Annie five. Abel’s extra one was his own baptism, the shared others his marriage to Annie and the christenings of four of their children – Alfred, Arthur Jabez, Charles Henry and John William. There may be more dupes but this is what you see when you search for Abel on FST.


The eagle eyed among you may already have noticed that I searched for Abel’s birth in 1821 and the one record that strongly matched my search terms confidently gives his baptism in 1819. The Monumental Inscription in St Oswald’s Filey, as recorded by both John & Maisie Crimlisk and the fine team of recorders from East Yorkshire Family History Society give “Also of ABEL SAWDEN born July 17th 1821 died Oct 5th 1895”. What to do?

I must say I’m not keen to don gloves and pick up my secateurs but I may have a go tomorrow – and set the timer to see how long the job takes. There must be a million tasks just like it at FamilySearch and my bet is that “the community” is as enthusiastic as I am to get stuck in.

There will be SAWDON/SAWDEN details to add and perhaps more isolated bits of the family to bring together. It could take hours!

My old LaF post had Charles Henry leaving Filey a single man. A chip off the old brick, he married an Annie over ten years younger than himself. I have found three children so far.

Not to be outdone, after his wife died Abel married another Annie, the daughter of John KING, whitesmith, at All Saints  Scarborough on 13th September 1890. Annie 2 was a spinster of full age and the most compelling evidence I have found so far is that she was about sixty years old. Six months after the marriage the census enumerator called and found Abel and Annie together at Rutland House, Rutland Street – but it was Annie Dinah, Abel’s  26 year old daughter. The pair of them departed for the West Riding a short time afterwards. Dinah married Henry SCOTT in Huddersfield in 1893 and Abel died in Sheffield in 1895. I don’t know what happened to the former Annie KING.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe scene of Today’s Image looked very different this morning. (I’m going to stop adding “previous post” from now on.) No Everyboy radiating joy in the world, just a mizzly sky and the distant placid sea dotted with a few small fishing boats (their twin wheel carriages parked up against the Coble Landing wall).