Francis Henry DAVENPORT (1846–1915)
His sister Susannah Maria DAVENPORT (1843–1917)
St Mary Magdalen section:
Row 10, Grave D67
Front (shown left)
FRANCIS HENRY DAVENPORT
BORN 20TH SEPT. 1846
DIED 17TH JANY 1915
Back (shown below):
SUSANNA MARIA DAVENPORT
WHO DIED 12TH MARCH 1917
Francis Henry Davenport (born at 62 St Giles’s Street, Oxford on 20 September 1846) was the third son of John Marriott Davenport (1809–1882) and his wife Sophia Walker (see separate grave)
Francis did not follow his three older brothers to the University of Oxford, and was probably destined to look after the family’s lands. In 1869 he was listed as joint occupant with his father of Davenport House in Headington (below).
By the time of the 1871 census Francis Davenport (24) was the head of the household at Davenport House, living alone with three servants and described as a “farmer of 111 acres employing 5 men, 2 boys, and 1 woman”. The immediate land belonging to Davenport House, the “Oxford Field” on which Headington School now stands, was only 19 acres, so he must have rented a considerable amount of extra land in Headington.
By 1881 Francis Davenport had emigrated to Queensland, Australia, and his brother Thomas moved into Davenport House with his large family.
Francis Davenport returned to England in about 1890 when he was appointed General Inspector of the Board of Agriculture. At the time of the 1901 census, when he was 54, he was staying at the Grand Hotel in Birmingham. In about 1905, he retired and returned to Oxford.
Francis’s sister Susanna Maria Davenport (born at 62 St Giles’s Street, Oxford in 1843) was an only daughter with six brothers, and it appears to have been her destiny to stay with her parents for life instead of marrying: as early as 1861, when she was only 18 years old, they give her occupation in the census as “spinster”.
In 1911, Francis (64) was back with his 92-year-old mother Sophia Davenport and his sister Susie (68) at 62 St Giles’s Street, the home where they had both been born.
Left: 62 St Giles’s Street is on the right of this photograph. It was demolished with its two neighbours nearer the camera to make way for Blackfriars.
Francis Davenport died in 1915:
† Francis Henry Davenport died at 62 St Giles’s Street on 17 January 1915 at the age of 68 and was buried in St Sepulchre’s Cemetery on 20 January (burial recorded in the parish register of St Giles’s Church).
The following short obituary (with a photograph of the deceased on horseback) appeared in the Oxford Journal Illustrated on 27 January 1915:
MR. F. H. DAVENPORT whose death occurred at , St. Giles’s, on Sunday, January 17th, was the son of the late Mr. John Marriott Davenport, of Oxford, and went out at an early age to Queensland, where he farmed successfully for many years, returning about 25 years ago, when he was appointed General Inspector of the Board of Agriculture. He retired from this post some ten years ago. His long experience of horses proved invaluable during the early part of the present crisis in helping the Government to select horses suitable for the Army. The above photo was taken at a meeting of the South Oxfordshire Hounds, of which pack the deceased was a well-known follower.
He left a personal estate of £8,618 11s. 5d., and his bank was his executor.
Francis’s mother Mrs Sophia Anne Davenport died at 62 St Giles’s Street at the age of 98 in 1916 and was buried in her husband’s grave.
Francis’s sister Susanna died in 1917:
† Miss Susanna Maria Davenport died at 62 St Giles’s Street at the age of 74 on 12 March 1917 and was buried in St Sepulchre’s Cemetery with her brother on 18 March (burial recorded in the parish register of St Giles’s Church).
Her effects came to £25,471 9s., and her executor was her brother-in-law Alfred Davenport.