CFHS code : BE145

Parish : St Bene’t

Inscription : JOSEPH PULLEN b Mar 16 1807 d Jan 20 1877 FRANCES ELIZABETH PULLEN wife of the above d May 5 1880 age 70 and is buried at Eton JOSEPH WILLIAM PULLEN their son b Apr 3 1850 d Aug 31 1880 age 30

Monument : Stone cross/Kerb stones

Above information from Cambridge Family History Society Survey

Lat Lon : 52.202596, 0.13615356 – click here for location

Joseph William’s inscription
The cross in 2017


This cross is located 2 rows west of the west path and 2 rows east of the west wall. It is in an area that is usually covered by bramble. The inscription is carved into the stone.


JOSEPH PULLEN b Mar 16 1807 d Jan 20 1877

east face
FRANCES ELIZABETH PULLEN wife of the above who died May 5 1880 aged 70 and is buried at Eton

JOSEPH WILLIAM PULLEN their son born April 3rd 1850 died August 31st 1880 aged 30

“Blesses are all they that put their trust in the Lord.” Psalm II-12

Joseph Pullen (16 March 1807 – 20 January 1877)

Joseph was the son of auctioneeer Joseph and Ann (née Stevens)  and was baptised at St. Giles Cripplegate Church on 14 August 1807. He went to St. Paul’s School and then up to Corpus Christi College in February 1826.  He was awarded a B.A. (6th Wrangler) in 1830, an M.A. in 1833, and a Batchelor of Divinity (B.D.) in 1841.  He was a fellow at the University (1835-1847) and tutor from 1842-1846.  Joseph also worked as Professor of Astronomy at Gresham College, London, a post which he held from December 1833 onwards.

In December 1843 he dived into the Cam  to rescue Eliza Atherton who had thrown herself into the deepest part of the river.  A witness had observed her jumping  raised the alarm. Joseph was passing the spot and ‘almost immediately plunged into the stream and brought the body to the bank, but life was extinct’.

In May 1848 Jospeh gave a sermon at Grantchester in aid of the school. It was reported ‘the rev. gentleman most elequently pleaded the cause of the uneducated poor, taking for his text ‘the multitudes who were fed with only five barley loaves and two fishes’.  The newspaper further commented ‘we regret that although a fine day, there were present (but with a few exceptions) only the resident parishioners, yet from those a liberal collection was made of eight guineas’. A sermon at St. Benet’s which he gave in November 1847  was evidently more positively received when the Mayor attended Joseph’s sunday service.  The Cambridge Independent Press reported it was ‘one of the most forcible discourses it was ever our good fortune to hear…most emphatically delivered by his Worship’s Chaplain, the Rev. Joseph Pullen’. One of his November 1848 sermons entitled ‘National education’ was published and sold for one shilling – the proceeds raised funds for the Old National Schools of Cambridge.

Rev. Joseph Pullen married Frances Carrow on 26 July 1847 in Loxton, Somerset and they had at least three children: Joseph William (1850-1880), Frances Mary (1852-1920) and John Henry (1854-).  The family lived at 7 St. Peter’s Terrace and Joseph was the Vicar of St. Benet’s Church from 1847 until his death.  He died at St. Peter’s Terrace aged 69 years old.

Frances Elizabeth Pullen (née Carrow) (24 July 1809 – 5 May 1880)

Frances was born in Clifton, Bristol and baptised there on 29 September 1810.  She was the eldest daughter of Rev. Richard and Mary (née Elton) Carrow and grew up at the Redland Parsonage in Westbury on Trym, Bristol where her father was the vicar.

Frances died at Eton College whilst visiting her daughter Frances Mary.  Frances had married Evelyn Shirley Shuckburgh (1843-1906)  in 1874, and he was assistant master at Eton from 1874-1883.  She was buried in Eton, but remembered on the family grave monument.

Joseph William Pullen (3 April 1850 – 31 August 1880)

Joseph was baptised on 12 May 1850 at St. Benet’s Church.  He went to Shrewsbury School and then to King’s College in 1867. He was awarded a B.A. in 1871, an M.A, in 1875 and then practises as a barrister from 1875 onwards.  He practised in Karachi, India and married Sarah McIver (1851-1910)  there on 15 December 1877. Sarah had been born in India and was the daughter of merchant Daniel McIver.

The couple had at least one son who was born prematurely stillborn in April 1879 at St. Peter’s Terrace. Joseph died at St. Peter’s Terrace aged 30 years old after what was described as ‘a result of an accident on board ship whilst returning from India’.

Sarah Pullen returned to India and married for a second time in 1886.

In September 1880 the contents of St Peter’s Terrace were sold at auction and included: a handsome carved oak hall centre table, suite of drawing room furniture consisting of 8 chairs, 3 easy chairs and 3 couches spring and hair stuffed, feather beds and bedding, 7ft spanish mahongany winged wardrobe, invalid chair lined with blue cloth with adjustable back and india rubber tires by J. Heath of Bath, and Levison’s portable invalid bedstead.

A further sale was conducted in November 1880 to sell the library of books, billiard table and various items including an astronomical telescope and magic lantern  with 23 slides.



Newspaper archives

Cambridge Alumni Database

by Claire Martinsen

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Frances Elizabeth Pullen; Joseph Pullen; Joseph William Pullen