CFHS code : AG66
Parish : St Andrew the Great
Inscription : In Loving Memory of EMILY HANNAH beloved wife of HENRY MASON upwards of 30 years servant at Christs College d 26 Jan 1893 aged 57 In Loving Memory of GEORGE JOHN LENOX MASON was accidentally drowned in the River Ouse August 5 1888 aged 24 In Loving Memory of HENRY MASON d 1902 In Loving Memory of WILLIAM MASON d Jan 10 1896 after a long affliction aged 28
Monument : Column (broken)
Above information from Cambridge Family History Society Survey
Lat Lon : 52.202678, 0.13706487 – click here for location
Located seven rows from the central path. In the southern section of the parish. A central pediment surrounded by four ground slabs. The ground slabs tend to get covered by grass. George’s is broken in three places and Henry and William’s are very eroded.
east ground slab
In Loving Memory of GEORGE JOHN LENOX MASON who was accidentally drowned in the River Ouse August 6 1888 aged 24
south ground slab
In Loving Memory of EMILY HANNAH beloved wife of HENRY MASON upwards of 30 years servant at Christs College
d 26 Jan 1893 aged 57
north ground slab
In Loving Memory of HENRY MASON d 1902
west ground slab
In Loving Memory of WILLIAM MASON d Jan 10 1896 after a long affliction aged 28
Relationship: Husband and wife and two adult children.
Emily Hannah Mason (d 1893)
Emily was born in Felixstowe on 26th March 1836, the daughter of John, (a bookmaker) and Maria. By the age of 15 she was working as a servant.
Emily married Henry on December 28th 1859 at the church of St Andrew the Great, Cambridge. As Henry was only 20 years old consent was given by his father.
They had at least three children: Henry John (b 1862), George Lenox (b 1864) and William (b 1867),
They lived in Christ’s Lane in the centre of Cambridge, where Emily worked as a bedmaker. Emily’s niece Amelia was with the family in the 1891 census and listed as a domestic servant. It seems that she stayed on as housekeeper for Henry after Emily’s death as she was still there in 1902 when Henry died.
George John Lenox Mason (d 1888)
George was the second child of Henry and Emily Mason. He worked as a clerk for Eaden and Knowles, solicitors, and was a non commissioned officer in the Cambridge Rifle Volunteers. There was a inquest into his death held at the Ship Inn, Quay Side Ely, and reported on in the Cambridge Independent Press on August 10th 1888. George’s friend William Harper explained how they had taken a boat down the river and spent the day fishing. On their return, in trying to let two barges overtake them the boat capsized, and although he (William) had managed to swim to the the shore George had not been able to. George’s father confirmed that his son was not a good swimmer.
The funeral took place on August 9th with military honours. It must have been an impressive occasion with people lining the streets, from the family home in Christ’s Lane, along Parkside, and Mill Road. The regimental band played the Dead March and the coffin was presumably carried on a horse drawn carriage. At the graveside three volleys were fired.
Henry Mason (1841- 1902)
Henry was born in Fulbourn, Cambridgeshire, to John (a school teacher) and Elizabeth.
He was for many years a “Bull Dog” (university policeman) at Christs College. One of his duties would have been to patrol the streets looking for any student who may have been breaking college rules such as not wearing their gown, being drunk or talking to a local girl.
He also played 1st class cricket for Cambridgeshire between 1869 and 1871.
Due to the suddenness of his death an inquest was held where it transpired that he had had a fall from a ladder whilst gathering plums in the college gardens. Although a doctor had bound his broken rib he had had a further fall in his bedroom after which he developed pneumonia. He was fondly remembered in the local press.
William Mason (1867 – 1896)
William was the youngest son of Henry and Emily Mason, born 13th May 1867. He was baptised at St Vigor’s Church Fulbourn on 22nd September 1867. In 1891, aged 24 he was working as a post office clerk. He died aged 28 years.
Henry and Emily’s eldest son Henry John Mason married and lived in Cambridge for the whole of his life. He worked as a print compositor. He had four sons – three of whom died before he did, in a pattern which was to repeat his own parents situation.
CFHS transcripts of Parish & Census records
British Newspaper Archive online – CIP 10/08/1888 pg. 7 inquest and pg. 8 funeral report. October 17th remembered in a letter page 5.
by Mary Naylor and Claire Martinson