Henry Gillyon born 3rd May 1877, the younger twin


An exert from the Alan Godfrey map of Hull (West) 1908, showing the location of Hull Seaman’s and General Orphan Asylum on Spring Bank in Hull

Henry was born on 3rd May 1877 after his twin brother Thomas in Grovehill, Beverley.  When Henry and Thomas were 10 years old their father died.  Their mother, Sarah Jane,  moved out of the family home which had probably been a workers cottage, into a 4 room tenement at 3 Dyer Lane in the centre of Beverley.  During the 1891 census the twins, aged 13, were living at Hull Seaman’s and General Orphan Asylum on Spring Bank which took in the children of poverty stricken widows as well as orphans.  This can’t have been an easy decision for Sarah Jane to make. 

The Orphanage’s records are available to view at the Hull History Centre and these tell us that the boys were admitted on 6th August 1888. 

The “particulars of the case” is described as:

Father a labourer, died 2nd October 1887, eight children, five wholly dependent on the widow. 

Paid for until elected by Rev’d E Akenshaw, Beverley

Henry left the orphanage on 25th April 1891 and was transferred to McNidder.  A series of five certificates were issued by the orphanage after he left.  The first one with a writing desk which must have been nice to receive.  Henry’s were issued on the Founders Day in the years 1895, 1896, 1898, 1900, 1905.  On receipt of the last certificate there is also mention of £2.2.0.  I’m not sure what these certificates were for.  His record just records the fact that they were issued and on what.  The book also records his employment as follows:

Feb 1894                Pickard, butcher, Market Place, Beverley

1898                      Hull Tramway Company

Sept 1898              Hull Railway Company as porter

Unknown date        HB Holmes & Son


Thomas’ Orphange Record

Thomas left the orphanage a few months after his brother on 2nd November 1891 on the expiry of term and went to Mr Bradwick, presumably to work.  His subsequent history is described as follows:


Founder’s Day 1892

To London & . . . . . Drug . . . . Beverley as errand boy

Founder’s Day 1893

First certificate and writing desk

Founder’s Day 1894

Second certificate

Founder’s Day 1895

Third certificate

Founder’s Day 1896

Forth certificate

Founder’s Day 1898

Fifth certificate & £2.2.0 Hull Railway Co having entered companies service



Henry married Sarah A Powell on Christmas Day.1899 at St Johns Church, Newington, in Hull.  By the time of the 1901 census they lived at 11 Brighton Terrace, Brighton Street had one son, Henry, born 14 Oct 1900 as well as having custody of Albert, age 6, described as Henry’s brother.  During WW1 Henry served as a driver in the Army Service Corps, regimental number T/4 062138, disembarking in Egypt on 1st November 1915.  He earned the Victory Medal, the British Medal and the 1915 star and was discharged 26 December 1919.  His Pensioners Record Card shows that he suffered from bronchitis in December 1918 due to exposure and also suffered from malaria in June 1919.  There is also a mention of myalgia which was often used as a catch all for unknown illness such as trench fever in those who served in the trenches.  The medical report also mentions

1) Cough, sputum negative for TB, fairly well, heart slightly enlarged, some evidence of emphysema.

2) Malaria contracted in ………… (possibly Salonika)


There is no mention of Henry in any of the Kelly’s directories I’ve seen.  He died in 1957.  Henry’s second son George was born 14 May 1909 from whom Henry’s great-great-grandson James Andrew Gillyon (born Exeter in Jan 1997) is descended.  Henry also had a daughter called Sarah born in 1913 who died aged about 14 and a son called Albert who was born and died in 1915.


Back to Albert Gillyon’s brothers and sisters