Albert Frobisher – not a survivor

 Albert Frobisher, Corporal 15/1786, 1st Leeds Pals

Albert Frobisher was born in Castleford in the first half of 1886.  He was the second child of Martin Frobisher and Mary Ann Watson, who had married in Pontefract in March 1881, but lived at various addresses in Castleford.  By 1911 they had had eleven children, but only five had survived.  Albert’s elder brother, Herbert, was four years older, and he had younger siblings Harry (died 1893), Charlie, Harry (died 1904), and Clara, plus five others.  There was also another Harry Frobisher whose death, age 0, was registered in Pontefract in June 1911, who may have been one of them.  Martin was a pork butcher from Kippax in 1891, but by 1901 had become a coal hewer.  Albert too was a coal hewer in 1911, having been a glass bottle apprentice ten years earlier.  He was also married by then, having married Ruthetta Smith in Tadcaster at the end of 1910, and they had a son of one month, Albert.  They were living with Ruthetta’s parents, John and Elizabeth Smith and son Arthur, at 41 William Street, Lock Lane, Castleford, Yorks (Allerton Bywater)

Albert’s service record has not survived, but his army number suggests that he enlisted some time in May or June of 1915.  He probably did not go with the battalion to Egypt, as it is not mentioned on his Medal Card, nor was he awarded the 1915 Star, but he would have gone to France, as it was there that he was badly wounded, at some point in the early stages of the Battle of the Somme.  He was treated in No.33 Casualty Clearing Station, France, but on 22nd August 1916 he died of his wounds, age 30.  He is buried in Bethune Town Cemetery, Pas de Calais, and he was subsequently awarded the British War Medal and the Victory Medal.

In 1939, when the Register was compiled for the next war, Ruthetta was listed as Ruth Frobisher, a widow, at 42 Pinfold Lane, Hemsworth, living with Edna Frobisher, a tailoress, born 17th June 1914, presumably her daughter, and Albert Frobisher, a bookstall manager, born 6th March 1911, along with his wife Lily, née Milner, who he had married in Pontefract in December 1936.


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Researcher: Peter Taylor

Please Note:

  • All opinions and inferences are the researcher’s own.
  • Please refer to our Glossary of Terms for further information on the terms and phrases used in this post.

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