CFHS code : PL10

Parish : St Paul

Inscription : In Loving Memory of THOMAS LEE d Feb 18 1888 aged 55 MARIA wife of the above d Sep 21 1914 aged 81 TOM LEE d Sep 28 1942 aged 69

Monument : Headstone with cross on top

Above information from Cambridge Family History Society Survey

Lee headstone February 2017


The headstone has suffered some erosion and part of the inscription is now missing.


In Loving Memory of THOMAS LEE
Departed this life  Feb. 18. 1888. Aged 55 years

“Be ye also Ready.
He is absent from those that loved him.
His pain and his sorrows are O’re.
He ha ………………. of the blest.
A.  …………..    him no more

MARIA wife of the above d Sep 21 1914 aged 81 years

TOM LEE d Sep 28 1942 aged 69

Thomas Lee (c.1833 – 18 February 1888)

Thomas was born in Hillmorton, a suburb of Rugby in Warwickshire and was the son of labourer Thomas.  By the age of  18 he was working as an engine cleaner and lodging in Rugby.  He married Maria Webb on 1 November 1855 in Hillmorton and the couple had three children: Fred (1857-c.1928), Mary Ann (1860-) and Tom (1873-1942).

In 1861 the family were living in Lambeth and Thomas was working as a railway foreman – this is where their first two children were born.  He later worked as an engine driver and the family moved to live at 21 George Street , Cambridge (1871) and then at 6 Railway Cottages, Mill Road (1881).  Thomas died aged 55 years old.

Maria Lee (née Webb) (1833 – 21 September 1914)

Maria was also born in Hillmorton, and baptised there on 28 July 1833.  She was the daughter of  carpenter John Webb and his wife Ann Maria (née Barnwell) and  married Thomas Lee when she was 22 years old.

After she was widowed she lived at 4 Russell Street (1891) and then at 90 Russell Street (1901) with her son Tom and his family.  By1 911 however she had moved to Priory Grove in London to live with her other son Fred, who worked on the railway too and died in London aged 81 years old.

Tom Lee (23 April 1873 – 28 September  1942)

Tom was born in Cambridge and grew up at Railway Cottages on Mill Road.  In 1888 he was working as an engine cleaner for the London and North Western Railway Company and appeared at the magistrate’s court in June 1888 charged with stealing fourteen sovereigns from his mother.  A purse containing the money was in a locked  box in Maria’s bedroom and Tom had broken into the box and stolen the money.  Maria went to the police station to ask for her son to be apprehended and said she wanted to prosecute him. He was  arrested during the night but when the matter came to court Maria said she wished to drop the charges.  The magistrates ignored her request and he was sentenced to a month’s imprisonment with hard labour.

Tom appeared in court again in January 1890 when he was accused of assaulting butcher William Feaks of Fitzroy Street.  Maria Lee had accused Feaks of breaking a clothes prop the previous day, and when he saw Tom on the street, Tom had accused him of the same.  When Feaks denied having done so, Tom had apparently said ‘If you give me any more of your ‘chop’ I will hit you under the chin’. He afterward followed complainant and struck him in the eye and threatened to kill him’.  The charge however could not be proven and was dismissed from court.

He married Elizabeth Odell (1877-) in 1898 and worked as a electrical labourer (1901) and later as a labourer for a telephone company (1911).  Tom and Elizabeth are thought to have had at least nine children: Leonard (1901-), Leslie (1903-), Elsie (1904-), Florence May (1907-), Lillian Georgina (1909-1997), Jessie (1911-),  Norah (1914-) and two further children who died as infants. The family lived at 90 Russell Street (1901) and 14 Doric Street (1911). By 1939 Tom had retired and was living at 42 Cherry Hinton Road.  On the records of 1939 he was noted as being married, but was living in a household of 10, most of whom were male and unrelated to him.  Tom Lee died in Cambridge aged 69 years old.



Newspaper archives

by Claire Martinsen

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Maria Lee; Thomas Lee; Tom Lee
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