Frederick Baker

Date of birth: 1880
Place of birth: Southampton
Service No.: RX4 / 235864
Rank: Private
Regiment: Royal Army Service Corps (RASC)
Battalion: Remount Department (Shirehampton)
Died: 5th November 1916 aged 34 years
Death location: At home


Life before the War
Frederick was the eighth of 11 children born to parents Charles  Edward, b.1848 in Southsea and d.1923 in Southampton, and Marina Julia Bastow, nee Purdy, b.1849 in Dartmouth, Devon.  Charles and Marina married in Portsea on 21st March 1870 at St. Mary’s Church, Portsea Island, Hampshire.

The 1881 census, the year before Frederick was born, shows that the family were living at 65 Grove Street, St Mary’s, Southampton. George’s occupation was given as General Labourer, formerly Seaman.  Charles and Marina have 6 children, the eldest 4 were born in Portsmouth, the younger ones in Southampton:

Edward Purdy   b.1870 Portsea Island and d.1952
Elizabeth M G   b.1873 Southsea
Charles Frederick    b.1874 Southsea and d.1932
Thomas   b.1875 Southsea and d.1935
William   b.1876 Southsea and d.1948
Dick   b.1879 Southampton
Albert   b.1881 Southampton and d.1948

The 1891 census records that the family had moved to 20 Kentish Road, Freemantle, Southampton.  Charles gave his employment as a Mariner of the Seas.  Edward Purdy was a Milkman, Charles Frederick was working as a General Labourer, Thomas worked as a Baker and William was an Errand Boy.  Elizabeth is no longer living at home and the family have been joined by 4 sons, all born in Southampton:

Robert   b.1886 and d.1969
James   b.1888
John P   b.1891 and d.1926

In 1901 the family had moved a few houses and now lived at 30 Kentish Road, Freemantle, Southampton.  William was now a Wood Dealer which was his own business being run from his home, Charles was employed as a Bricklayer’s Labourer, Albert worked for his father as a Wood Dealer, Frederick was employed by Bricklaying Company as an Apprentice.

The family are still at the same address at the time of the 1911 census except that only Charles junior and John are still living with their parents.  Charles senior is now a General Dealer as is 20 year old John, whilst Marina and Charles junior have not changed their occupations.

By 1911 Frederick was living at 36, Randolph Street, Freemantle, Southampton with his daughter Nelly Olive Maud who was born in 1905 Southampton. He showed on the census return that he had been married for 7 years, had had two children, however one had died prior to 1911, then these figures were erased.  He confirmed he was still married but his wife was not with him. No record can be found for a marriage for him 7 years prior to the census, the only one to a Mary was in 1911 and her full name was Mary A Croker.  Frederick was working as a Bricklayer and employed by Mr Smith Builders.


War Service

Frederick is Remembered with Honour at Southampton’s Old Cemetery, Hill Lane. The memorial register reads:
“Baker, Pte. Frederick, RX4/235864. Remount Depot (Shirehampton), Army Service Corps. Died, 5th Nov., 1916 of accidental injuries received on 4th Nov. Age 36. Son of Charles and M. Baker, of Kentish Road, Freemantle; husband of Mary Baker, of 28, Randolph St., Freemantle, Southampton. Grave/Panel Reference 182 D. 205”

A personal inscription was written on the headstone and provided by Mrs. M. J. B. Baker (mother) reads:

Loved in Life
Cherished in Death
God Grant Him
Eternal Rest

Frederick is also remembered in the Shirehampton Book of Remembrance. The Southampton Cenotaph and Memorial Wall have his name inscribed for Remembrance.

Personal Effects
Mary J B was paid £2 7s 8d on 2nd March 1917, an outstanding amount which was owed to Frederick. The document shows that a War Gratuity was “not admissible” the document also confirms that her husband died in “Southern General Hospital, Southampton”

For his service to his country, Frederick was entitled to the British War and Victory Medals.

Please note – there is some confusion concerning the names given on both the Personal Effects document and the papers regarding the Headstone inscription. His mother’s name was Marina Julia Bastow Baker and his wife was Mary A Baker. These papers gave the wife’s first name but the initials of his mother i.e. J B. This information needs some confirmation. Also, the correct marriage details for Frederick need to be confirmed.


Researcher: Shaun Connolly
Published: 14th October 2015
Updated: By Becky Lonergan 3rd November 2015

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