CFHS code : PL138

Parish : St Paul

Inscription : LMO ELIZABETH BARKER d Feb 1 1898 aged 78 also of OBADIAH BARKER husband of the above d Sept 2 1906 aged 84 also of JULIA HARWOOD BARKER daughter of the above d Jan 2 1914 aged 68

Monument : Headstone

Above information from Cambridge Family History Society Survey


The headstone in September 2021.

This headstone, in the parish of St Paul, stands 2 rows west of the central path and 2 monuments north of the south path. Although very close to the path it is often obscured by bramble. The  carved inscription is still legible although most of the black pigment used to highlight the letters has now faded.


In Loving Memory  Of  ELIZABETH BARKER died  Feb 1 1898 aged 78 years

Also of OBADIAH BARKER husband of the above died Sept 2 1906 aged 84 years

Also of JULIA HARWOOD BARKER daughter of the above died Jan 2 1914 aged 68 years
1 line illegible

Elizabeth Barker  (née Harwood) (d1820 – 1 February 1898)

Elizabeth was born in Comberton and baptised there on 30 July 1820. She was the daughter of Gray and Anne Harwood and married Obadiah Barker on 25 June 1844 at All Saint’s Church, Great Chesterford.  Elizabeth and Obadiah had at least eleven children; Julia Harwood (1846-1914),  Louisa Mary (1846-1874), William Alfred James (1849-1923), Frederick Gray (1850-1932), Ann Emily (1852-1910), Elizabeth Sarah (1854-1940), Robert Malcolm (1857-1919), Emma Jane (1858-), Esther (1859-1879), George (1862-) and Annie Eliza (1864-1925).

Obadiah worked as a gardener and the family lived in Great Chesterford (1851) and then Chrishall Grange, Chrishall (1861).  In 1861 Elizabeth was documented as being a school mistress.  They later moved to live at 61 Coronation Street (1871) and  8 Coronation Place (1881) and 71 Mill Road  (1891). By at least 1883 Obadiah had become a domestic coachman and was working for Mr Deighton in June of that year.  He was involved in  a ‘serious street’ accident when the horse he was driving bolted and collided with both a coal cart and a  greengrocer’s cart.  Mr Deighton was unharmed, but Obadiah suffered a broken rib and various bruises.

In 1896 Elizabeth and Obadiah were successful in obtaining a home at the Royal Albert Homes on Hills Road.  Places were allocated via a voting system and  in 1895  their application had been unsuccessful, but the following year they had the most votes.  They lived at 12 Royal Albert Homes and Elizabeth died there at 78 years.

An ‘In Memoriam’ notice placed  in the Cambridge Daily News in February 1900 read ‘in loving memory of our darling mother and dearly beloved wife of Obadiah Barker…who after long suffering, borne with Christian fortitude, stepped into glory February 1st 1898. Oh! so deeply missed’.

Obadiah Barker (29 April 1822 – 2 September 1906)

Obadiah was born in Saffron Walden and baptised at St. Mary the Virgin Church on 27 September 1822. He was the son of agricultural worker Robert and his wife Mary and by the age of 19 was working as a gardener.  After he was widowed he continued to live at 12 Royal Albert Homes with his daughter Julia (1901) and died there aged 84 years old.

Julia Harwood Barker (1845 – 2 January  1914)

Julia was the eldest daughter of Elizabeth and Obadiah and was baptised in Great Chesterford on 13 July 1845.  In 1871 she was working as a housemaid for farmer Samuel Webb at Reed Farm in Babraham.  She  then lived with her parents from at least 1881 until her father’s death in 1906. In 1911 she was living at 3 Merton St, Newnham Croft with her aunt Lydia Barker and cousin Esther and died at 68 years old.



Newspaper archives

by Claire Martinsen

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Elizabeth Barker; Julia Harwood Barker; Obadiah Barker