George Thomas Boreman HARRIS (1840–1887)
St Mary Magdalen section: Row 15, Grave D60½
[Side of kerb facing camera] George Harris passed away March 12th 1887 aged 47
Bostock recorded the initials M.A.H. on this grave, but they are not visible now and it is hard to see who it could have been
George Thomas Boreman Harris was born at Brown’s Court, Oxford in 1840 and baptised at St Peter-in-the-East Church on 29 July. He was the son of Richard Harris and Emma Boreman who were married at St Thomas’s Church on 23 June 1839. At the time of his marriage his father was a milkman of Park End Street, but by the following year was a servant of Magdalen College.
At the time of the 1841 census George (1) was at home with his parents in the area at the east end of the High Street, near the college where his father worked. George had two younger sisters, both baptised at St Peter-in-the-East Church: the family was living in Merton Street when Eliza Jane was born in 1842, and at Tanner’s Yard when Emily Maria was born in 1843.
By the time of the 1851 census the family had moved to 3 Boxall’s Court, Broad Street in St Michael’s parish. George was then a schoolboy aged ten, living at with his parents Richard (41) and Emma (30); he now had four younger siblings: Emily (8), a second Eliza (4), Frederick (2), and Richard (four months).
George is hard to find in the 1861 census. By 1866 he was a baker, living in Marylebone.
On 16 July 1866 at St Marylebone Church, George Thomas [Boreman] Harris married Henrietta Nyren, who was born in West Dean, Sussex in 1838, the daughter of the carpenter John Read Nyren. They had the following children:
- Percy Harris (born in Paddington in c.1869)
- Lillie Christina Harris (born in Paddington in 1874/5)
- Algernon Harry Harris (born in Paddington in 1877, reg. third quarter)
At the time of the 1871 census George Thomas Boreman Harris (30) was a baker in London, living at 3 Coburg Place, Paddington with his wife Henrietta (33) and their first child Percy (1). He was described as employing three men, all of whom were journeyman bakers living with him, namely his brothers Frederick (22) and Richard (20), and his servant Samuel Russell (50). Also living with him was his widowed mother-in-law Mary Nyren (60), who was described as a nurse and probably looked after the baby while his wife worked in the shop; and his sister-in-law Mary Nyren (18), who was a shopwoman.
George’s first wife Henrietta died at the age of 41 in 1879 (reg. Kensington third quarter).
At the time of the 1881 census George, a widower of 40, was working in London as a baker and living at 3 Cobourg Place with his children Lillie (6) and Algernon (4). His brother Harry (30), also a baker was now living with him, as well as Harry’s wife Ada, who doubtless helped with the children. George’s eldest son Percy (11) had been sent to Oxford to board at John Thorogood’s school in Walton Street, Bedford House.
Near the end of 1881 at Christ Church, Paddington, George Thomas Boreman Harris married his second wife, Eliza Donaldson Geddes.
It appears that they came to Oxford to live, as George died there just over five years later in 1887:
† George Thomas Boreman Harris died at Gloucester Green at the age of 47 on 12 March 1887 and was buried at St Sepulchre’s Cemetery on 15 March (burial recorded in the parish register of St Mary Magdalen Church).
His second wife Eliza returned to London where she was born, and continued to look after her stepchildren. At the time of the 1891 census she was a boarding house keeper of 48, living at 3 South Side Terrace, Hackney, with Percy Harris (21) and Lillie Christina Harris (15). The youngest child, Algernon Harry Harris is hard to find in 1891: he died in the West Ham district at the age of 21 near the beginning of 1899.
The two surviving children of George Thomas Boreman Harris
- Percy Harris (born c.1869) married Mary Jane Bilbe at St Thomas’s Church, Hammersmith on 28 September 1900, and they do not appear to have had any children. At the time of the 1901 and 1911 censuses they were living in Hammersmith and Percy was a grocer’s clerk. He is likely to be the Percy Harris whose death at the age of 74 was registered in Paddington in 1944.
- Lillie Christina Harris (born 1874/5) married José Prieto, a Spanish-born British subject, in the Hackney district near the end of 1895 and their daughter Margaret Elvyna H. Prieto was born on 8 July 1896 in the West Ham district in the third quarter of 1896. At the time of the 1901 census Lillie (26) and José (27), who was a bank clerk, were living at Belle Vue, High Road, Hayes, Middlesex with Margaret (4). Her husband died in Leytonstone, Essex at the age of 33 on 3 November 1906. Her only daughter Margaret never married, and died at Brighton at the age of 80 in 1976.