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Lucy Hannah White 1885-1959

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Lucy Hannah White and her sisters, 1896

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Lucy Hannah White aged 9, 1894

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Lucy Hannah White and her two sisters, 1902

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Lucy Hannah White, 1909

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Lucy Hannah Jenkins (neé White) aged 27, 1912

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Visits to London, 1910 diary by Lucy White

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Visit to Llangefni, 1910 diary by Lucy White

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Visit to Goodwick, 1910 diary by Lucy White

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Extracts of Carmarthen entries, 1910 diary by...


My grandmother, Lucy Hannah Jenkins ( née White), was born in 1885 and died in 1959.  Lucy was the daughter of John Davies White (1837-1886) and Lucy Thompson White (1843-1891) of Carmarthen.

John Davies White, like his father, was a chemist and wine merchant with a pharmacy at 7 Guildhall Square, Carmarthen.   John and Lucy had eight children, although three (Ernest, Trevor and George) died young. The others were: Elizabeth Marie Powell (known as Lillie, 1874-1918); Norah Catherine (1875-1946); John White (known as Jack,1877-1904); Henry Thompson (known as Harry, 1879-1916) and Lucy Hannah (1885-1959).   John Davies White died on 17th November 1886 and the death certificate indicated that he died from “the effects of an overdose of laudanum which was accidentally taken.”

Lucy Thompson White, died of pneumonia on 6th March 1891, aged 47. The family of five children, Lillie, Norah, Jack, Harry and Lucy were then brought up by their mother’s other sister - Georgie (Georgiana Marie Elizabeth White) , or Aunt G in the diary entries, and their mother’s brother-in-law John Clutton.

In his will, dated 23rd August 1870, John Davies White left his assets (which amounted to £2,670 16s 9d) to his wife. Lucy Thompson White left considerably more money - £7,644 10s 4d. The executors of her will were Henry Brunel White (brother), John Clutton (brother-in-law) and Georgie (sister).   By the 1891 census the three girls Lillie (then 17), Norah (then 15) and Lucy (then 6) were living in Holmleigh, Barns Road in Carmarthen. In the same census the two boys, Jack (then 13) and Harry (then 11), are recorded as being boarders at Emanuel School in Wandsworth, London. Their Aunt Georgie was 41 and lived at 22 King Street, Carmarthen. She was described in that census as “living on her own means”. Indeed, Aunt Georgie continued to live there until her death on 7th September 1926. In her will, she left £11,974 19s 9d to her brother Henry Brunel White.  

In 1891 Lillie went on a three week visit to London with her Aunt Georgie and went on another visit there in 1894. Lillie never married as, like many women of her generation, her ‘young man’ was killed during the First World War. Norah, married Humphrey Evan Parry in 1908. Jack, married Gussie (Augusta Vincente Rees) in 1902, but died in South Africa in 1904. Harry, continued to live in South East England after he left school and married Kathleen Marion Beatrice Vereker in 1911. As many of the young men of the time, Harry was called up to fight in the Great War of 1914-1918. He was a Lieutenant in the First Battalion Welch Regiment. Whilst on active service in France he was wounded at Loos on 3rd October 1915, and later died during an assault at High Wood, on the Somme in 1916.   Lucy attended school in Carmarthen.

In 1898 she passed the Preliminary Local Examination run by the University of Oxford in:  Writing from Dictation, Arithmetic (both were required by all candidates) as well as Religious Knowledge; English history; English; Geography and French.  Her school report for the following year, 1899, indicates that “with more steady effort she could do better”! In 1902 she was awarded an Associate in Arts of the University of Oxford . In those days many pupils left school at 14 or so to start work but Lucy remained at Carmarthen High School until she was 17. In May 1899 she gained 60% in Trinity College London’s Junior Division for piano playing.  This skill was no doubt put to good use when she was a Sunday School teacher at Towyside Mission Church in Carmarthen  in 1903.  

During the period of this collection of postcards (1901-1910)  and diary Lucy continued  living,  with her sister Lillie, at Holmleigh, Barns Road and would frequently visit  her Aunt G in 22 King Street, Carmarthen. Lucy’s future husband, James Jenkins, became a curate at St Peter’s Church Carmarthen in 1900 and, following a seven –year engagement they were married in 1911. James features in many of the postcards as well as the diary entries as they wrote to each other almost every other day, following James’ appointment as Senior Curate at the parish of Llanwnda with Manorowen in Pembrokeshire.      

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