John Winchurch's Pages

The faces of history – Elizabeth Prosser Sternberg 1854 – 1918

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Elizabeth Prosser Williams with two of her sons, possibly William and Sydney and the family maid (Clara Brittle?) at Kings Norton about 1905

Elizabeth Prosser Sternberg was the eldest daughter of Francis George Sternberg and Elizabeth (née Plucknett). Her second christian name, Prosser came from her great Aunt, another Elizabeth Sternberg, who married Frederick Prosser and was referred to by her family as  ‘Aunt Prosser’

Elzabeth Prosser Sternberg was born in Bristol, like her sister, my great grandmother, Alice Plucknett Sternberg, but spent most of her life in Birmingham. Her father died when she was fifteen, leaving a family of three boys and five girls. I know that Alice had to leave school at fourteen to help to support the family and I assume that Elizabeth did the same.

Six years later, in 1875 Elizabeth married John James Williams, a tailor from Corwen in North Wales and they had three sons

Francis John Williams, born in 1876

William Victor Williams, born in 1877 and

Sydney Sternberg Williams, born in 1879

John Williams is missing in the 1881 census and I think I have located him in Birmingham General Hospital as a patient. In any event, he died in the 1890s, leaving Elizabeth widowed with the three sons who all  joined the family trade of tailoring and it appears to have been a profitable business, since they lived in some style in Kings Norton, an expensive residential area of Birmingham in Victorian and Edwardian England.

Elizabeth Prosser Williams, reclining with a blanket over her legs, with her brother Alfred, his wife Caroline and possibly, two of their children. Marion Sternberg is on the right and the women at the back on the left may be Rosa, widow of William Sternberg, who had died in 1894. This photo taken about 1896

Elizabeth Prosser Williams, reclining with a blanket over her legs, with her brother Alfred, his wife Caroline and possibly, two of their children. Marion Sternberg is on the right and the women at the back on the left may be Rosa, widow of William Sternberg, who had died in 1894. This photo taken about 1896

There is a record of a patent granted in 1905 to Francis John Williams and Sydney Sternberg Williams for a tailoring design to improve the fit of clothing. See the web entry here

Williams patent 1905. Click to enlarge

Williams patent 1905. Click to enlarge

WilliamsTailorsPatentOrig051905_Page_5I do not, as yet, know much more about this branch of the family, partly because Williams is a common surname and produces lots of choices.

I would be grateful for more information about what happened to Francis, William and Sydney. There is a family rumour that one of them went to Egypt and disappeared !

16 July 2009

After some research, I now have some futher information about William Victor and Elizabeth.

WV was petitioned for divorce by his wife May (née Oldbury) in 1924. They had married in 1911.when she was 24. A son Arthur Oldbury Williams was born in 1911 in Kings Norton.

Elizabeth died from ovarian cancer on 3 June 1918 in Edgbaston, she was 63 and still a widow.

It seems that the Williams brothers were very keen on patents.

This one is from an application by William V Williams of 76, Bunbury Road Kings Norton in 1919 (the same address as that given for his mother on her death certificate)

GB Patent 155036

Publication Date: 1920-12-13

Abstract of GB155036 155,036. Williams, W. V. Sept. 13, 1919. Beer pumps.-The lever of a beer or like pump is connected to the piston-rod F of an air-pump A pivoted on an arm B, so that, when the lever is depressed to draw off beer &c., a jet of air is delivered by a flexible pipe D and nozzle C on to the surface of the beer. Where a number of beer pumps are in use the pump A may be replaced by a compressed-air main connected to the nozzles C and provided with taps actuated by the beer engines.

Improvements in and connected with apparatus for drawing beer and the like – GB Patent 155036 Drawing

 

William Victor Williams patent diagram 1919

William Victor Williams patent diagram 1919

07/07/2009 Posted by | Family History, Kings Norton, Sternberg, Williams, Winchurch | Leave a comment