Elizabeth Resurrected

It seems that most of Filey was disconnected from the Internet for several hours yesterday. With a couple of hours of my online “working day” remaining, I thought I would write a brief post on the anniversary of Michael AGAR’s death. (The newspaper publication date erroneously gives the impression that the event took place on Christmas Day.)

William was the oldest of the children but he would follow his father’s calling – and drown before the age of thirty. Elizabeth, his wife, died with him.

In memory of WILLIAM AGAR, Master Mariner aged 28 years, and ELIZABETH his wife aged 27 years, who were lost on their passage from London to Shields during a severe gale on the 7th of January 1839.

I put this photograph on FamilySearch as a memory over three years ago. Elizabeth CHEW had two existing IDs back then and I chose the one generated by a marriage source to represent her on the Shared Tree. The other ID linked to her christening record and parents Robert and Elizabeth nee COOK.

Yesterday, I discovered that both of these IDs had been merged. “My Elizabeth” had been taken from her husband.

It gets worse. The gravestone memory is currently linked to an Elizabeth Chew who rose from a watery grave, married again and had a child. Look here.

And this is the Tree View –

Searching the GRO Births Index for a minute or two reveals Ann Elizabeth’s mother to be Elizabeth GREAVES. Investing a bit more time will gather up Ann Elizabeth’s eight siblings, all registered in Knaresborough. Then check in Free BMD Marriages –

I went a few extra yards to discover this William Agar was a farmer at Hopperton, near Knaresborough. He died aged 48 on 12 September 1855 and a newspaper notice said he was “highly respected”.

William and Elizabeth’s memorial stone stands at the head of an empty grave. Their bodies were not recovered. I haven’t found a definitive account of their ship’s disappearance, or discovered how many other souls were lost from it. Initially, I thought they were passengers but tantalizing circumstantial evidence points to the vessel being owned by William. Perhaps he had taken Elizabeth down to the capital to see the sights. The Shipping and Mercantile Gazette of 19 February 1839 records several casualties of the gale on 7 January, including Fama,under Captain RUSSELL, which went ashore on Spurn Point. Her cargo had to be unloaded and she did not reach Hull until 18 February, “with loss of foremast, bowsprit etc”. And in the Hull Packet of 22 February –

I will try to do right by William and Elizabeth.

Beach 123 · Filey Sands at Arndale