On Another Coast

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© David Dixon shared under Creative Commons CC BY-SA 2.0 licence

These two cast iron iterations of Antony Gormley’s body gazed across the Elbe estuary for a while and now look from Brighton le Sands over the Crosby Channel towards North Wales.

In these waters 77 years ago, HMT Relonzo struck a mine and was sunk. There is a photograph of the vessel and a list of the nineteen crew at Wreck Site. The trawler went down near C10 Red Buoy and it seems that all the men aboard were lost. Relonzo had taken part in the Dunkirk evacuation the previous summer and in 1941 was engaged in The Battle of the Atlantic.

Frank HUNTER was one of the seamen who died on Relonzo.He was born in Hull in December 1908 to Filey-born parents George William and Elizabeth Ann née PEARSON. His memorial is in St Oswald’s churchyard and the stone also remembers his wife Lillian.

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Lillian was also born a PEARSON but I haven’t been able to determine her parentage. The following brief item appeared in The Driffield Times on 25th July 1941.

Filey Man Killed

Mrs. Hunter, of Ebenezer House, Queen Street, Filey, has received word that her husband, Frank Hunter (32), has been killed by enemy action at sea. He leaves three children.

The record for one of the children is “closed” on the 1939 Register and so may still be alive. I added Frank and his siblings to FST today but will leave it to his family to enter more recent information.

The Barque ‘Unico’

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Unico came to grief on Filey Brigg this day 1871. I favour her being the “barque” of the memorial obelisk rather than the “schooner” of this vivid report of her demise in the Driffield Times, 21 January.

Wreck and Loss of 13 Lives at Filey

The Italian three-masted schooner Unico, captain Angelo Dodero, coal laden from Newcastle for Genoa, which brought up in Filey Bay on Sunday, dragged her anchors in a gale of wind, before daylight on Monday morning, and struck upon Filey Brigg, and went to pieces immediately. Of the whole crew, thirteen in number, only one man, Litano Maccouchi, was found alive upon the rocks. A Newcastle pilot was also drowned.

The Inquest

On Wednesday, an inquest was held at the Ship Inn, before J. M. Jennings, esq., coroner, on the bodies of three men cast on Filey Brigg, whose names are Gaetano Paganetti (mate), Carlo Lavaggi (able seaman), and Francesco Bugino (apprentice). From the evidence of Litano Maccouchi it appears that the vessel Unico, with a cargo of 600 tons of coal, sailed from Newcastle-upon-Tyne for Genoa, on the 11th inst., having on board Capt. Didero, a crew of 12, and a Tyne pilot named Corbett. The vessel arrived off Flambro’ Head on Saturday 14th, and being hazy, with strong wind from S.S.W. the pilot requested her to be anchored under Speeton Cliffs; this done the vessel rode safely until Monday morning, when, thick with rain, a fearful gale sprung up from S.S.E., which caused the ship to drag her anchor. The pilot at once requested sail to be made, anchor to be slipped, and stand out to sea; this was done, but in doing so the Unico struck upon the extreme end of Filey Brigg. A heavy sea was running at the time and so great was the concussion that the ship’s bottom was stove in; at this momentary crisis part of the crew got into three boats, which were on deck, the other part of the crew took refuge on the fore-rigging; no sooner done than an awful sea broke upon the ship, swept the deck, and hurled the boats into the gaping sea, thus drowning at one blow eight of the poor fellows; a twin mountain wave followed, which burst upon the ship, carrying away the foremast, upon which were the other six clinging for life, but these were also thrown amongst the breakers, which were spending their fury upon the fatal rocks, only one rose to the surface to grasp a piece of timber to which he tenaciously clung, when another wave lifted and cast him upon a safer part of the rocks; fearfully bruised and bewildered he climbed upon a higher rock, and upon this rock he sat shivering for more than an hour, when he was found by two fishermen, who carried him over rocks and to the Ship Inn, where every care and comfort was bestowed upon him.

James Gondrill, fisherman, said: I left my house on Monday morning about 7.15 a.m. and went on to the Brigg, when I met two fishermen carrying a shipwrecked man; I proceeded further on the rocks and espied another one of whose hands was uplifted firmly grasping some seed weed: with assistance I lifted him up and found him cold and dead; a little further on I found another lifeless man, both of whom were taken to the Ship Inn.

The Coroner, having summed up, the jury returned a verdict of “Accidental Death.”

I think the reporter did rather better with the names of the unfortunate crew than whoever carved their names on the obelisk in St Oswald’s churchyard.

Here’s the Crimlisk transcription (the names are now obscured):

This stone is erected to commemorate a fearful shipwreck which took place

on Filey Brigg on 16 Jan 1871 of the Italian barque ‘Unico’ from Genoa

whereby 12 out of a crew of 13 including an English pilot perished

 

The following are interred in Filey Churchyard

ALGELO DODERO, Captain

GAETANO PAGANETTI, Mate

CARLO LAOAGGI, Seaman

FRANCESEAS BUGINO, Apprentice

and five others (Names unknown)

The East Yorkshire Family History Society transcription helpfully adds the Burial Register entries. These indicate that one body, supposed to be that of Captain DODERO, was not found for about ten days after the event and was interred with the others on 31 January.

*1871 Jan 19. Carlo Lauggi. Wrecked. 38.

*1871 Jan 19. Gaetano Paganetti. Wrecked. 37.

*1871 Jan 19. Francesco Bugiano. Wrecked. 17 yrs.

*These 3 men were washed up on Filey Brigg, from the wrecked barque Unico.

I walked to the overlook on Carr Naze this morning to photograph the scene of the wreck for Today’s Image. I was a little disappointed not be faced with a stormy sea and bruised sky but the upside was better light in the churchyard and Queen Street to picture two other elements of the story.

Fisherman “James Gondrill” was almost certainly James GOUNDRILL, born in Keyingham in 1839. At the census of 1871 he was living with his in-laws in Mosey’s Yard, off Queen Street, and working as a Gardener. Kath gives his occupation as Fisherman in Filey Genealogy & Connections but he began his working life as a Farm Servant (1851) and ten years later was a Servant to John Rook, the Miller at Mappleton. In 1881, still working as a gardener, he was living with wife Hannah and three daughters in Scarborough. The couple would return to Filey and be laid to rest in St Oswald’s churchyard. I didn’t have a photograph of their headstone in stock, probably because it is so hard to read, being well coated in lichen.

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In loving memory of HANNAH, the dearly beloved wife of JAMES GOUNDRILL, who died April 19th 1898 aged 52 years.

For to live in Christ and to die is gain.

Also the above JAMES GOUNDRILL, who died Sep. 9th 1905, aged 66 years.

The grass withered, the flower fadeth. The word of God stands forever.

James and Hannah are on FamilySearch Tree but without their full complement of offspring and for the most part disconnected from their forebears. When I find the time I’ll attempt to bring them all together. I had a quick look at Italian records for Unico’s named crew without success. I hope Litano Maccouchi recovered from his ordeal and lived well, to a great age.

I walked the short distance to Queen Street to photograph the Ship Inn, sometime after 1871 re-named the T’awd Ship, and now a private dwelling.

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There is a fine view of the Bay at the end of the street and from Cliff Top a cargo ship was heading north beyond the Brigg. It was the Mistral, a Ro-Ro flying a Finland flag, heading for Teesport from Zeebrugge. Calm sea certainly, prosperous voyage maybe.

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The Brothers Chow

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Eight years after Elizabeth Richardson searched the Filey shore for her husband’s body, the family CHOW sought two of their own – brothers, Francis and James. Robert and Mary née PEARSON have ten children listed in Kath’s database, Filey Genealogy & Connections but only three had PIDs on FamilySearch until today.

FG & C has Robert drowning with his sons on 14 January 1808 but I have yet to find an official record to confirm this. This headstone offers circumstantial evidence that Robert lies beneath with  Francis and James, and that two months of searching separated discovery of the brothers’ bodies. The following verse is mostly hidden now but it was recorded by George Shaw in his book,  Rambles Round Filey, 1886 and is included in the East Yorkshire Family History Society transcription.

Most epitaphs are vainly wrote;

The dead to speak it can’t be thought;

Therefore, the friends of those here laid,

Desired that this might be said.

That rose two brothers, sad to tell,

That rose in health, ere night they fell –

Fell victims to the foaming main;

Wherefore awhile they hid remain.

Friends for them sought, and much lament,

At last the Lord to those them sent.

So child and widow may bemoan

O’er husband’s and o’er father’s tomb.

The EYFHS transcription adds the burial records for the brothers; James being interred on 24 January and Francis on March 25th, 1808.

The family unit isn’t complete on FST yet but here is the link to husband and father, Robert CHOW. By the time George, his youngest son, died in 1864 the family name was CHEW.

Windows

I was surprised to see the church open this morning, so took the opportunity to look for the Thomas Norfolk JACKSON window (Thursday’s post). I was kindly offered the catalog but there is so much information about each window I missed Thomas on the first read through. I noticed, though, that Reverend WOODD’s widow and sister, Eleanor, had dedicated three windows to his memory in 1899: and “To the glory of God and in honour of His holy Apostle St. Paul and of the Northumbrian SS. Aidan & Oswald.”

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These windows are in the chancel. Reverend Thomas’ window is just around the corner in the south transept. I will have to return with a tripod one day to get a good photograph of the complete window but here is a detail, and the dedication beneath.

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Note: If you followed the link to Rev. Basil’s sister on FST you may have noticed her death is given as 25 November 1888 – the same day as husband Welbury James MITTON. There is a GRO Death registration for Welbury in that year, age 50 in Hampstead, but not for Eleanor. I think she died in Worcestershire in 1915, aged 74. This tallies with birth sources and guarantees her availability to dedicate the windows with Esther in 1899.

Some Day We Will Understand

Thomas Arnold MORLEY died while on active service on this day 1943. He was with the Royal Engineers and even with his service number, there seemed little chance of finding where he served without knowing his unit. The CWGC website gave me the names of his parents, wife and the cemetery details but I had to ask around to discover more. I learned that Thomas had been posted to the Falkland Islands, returning England in 1943. He was taken ill while stationed in the south of the country and taken to a hospital in Stow-on-the-Wold, Gloucestershire, where he died of pneumonia. His death was registered in the North Cotswold Registration District, Volume 06A Page 725, and his body brought home to Filey for burial on 4th December.

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A Mother’s Son

Ann BAXTER was 24 years old and unmarried when she gave birth to a boy she named Frank. He is Francis in Filey Genealogy & Connections and you will have to go to Kath’s database to see his forebears. His grandparents, Richard BAXTER and Jane CAMMISH, are on the FamilySearch Tree with some of their children but they haven’t been brought together yet. Frank was six in 1861 and if he is with his mother at the Census he is hiding as “Thomas”, Richard’s grandson. (Jane had died before Frank was born.)

Mother and son form a household in Chapel Yard in 1871. “Francis” is  16 and working as a fisherman. Eight years later he drowned from the coble Mary Ann about 25 nautical miles south of Filey. His body was recovered but ten days passed before he was buried in St Oswald’s churchyard. While he slept his mother lived out her long life, seemingly alone. Her death registration in 1912 gives her age as 81, the inscription on her headstone has 82.

In affectionate remembrance of FRANK, the beloved son of ANN BAXTER of Filey who was drowned from the Coble Mary-Jane off Atwick on the 27th of Nov. 1879, aged 25 years, and was interred here Dec. 7th 1879.

Also of the above ANN BAXTER who died February 15th 1912, aged 82 years.

He’s gone, the one I loved so dear

To his eternal rest

He’s gone to Heaven I hope and trust

To be forever blest

His morning sun went down at noon

Death cut him off just in his bloom

Prepare for death while you have time

For God called me just in my prime

Farewell mother and friends so dear

We now must part, I can’t stay here

For none can stay when God does call

So farewell mother, farewell all.

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