CFHS code : BE91

Parish : St Bene’t

Inscription : Sacred to the Memory of THOMAS RUSSELL d Dec 9th 1908 aged 46 also of MARY ANN RUSSELL d June 19th 1937 aged 78

Monument : Kerb stones

Above information from Cambridge Family History Society Survey

Russell kerb stones April 2021.


This set of kerbs in the parish of St Benet lie 4 rows east of the west path. The kerbs and inscription of metal letters are intact.


Sacred to the Memory of THOMAS RUSSELL  died  Dec 9th 1908 aged 46 years

Also of MARY ANN RUSSELL died June 19th 1937 aged 78 years

Thomas Russell (1862 – 9 December 1908)

Thomas and Mary Ann

Thomas was born in Haddenham, a village nine miles south west of Ely and was the son of John and Mary Ann. He grew up on Main Road, Haddenham and his father worked as an agricultural labourer.  Aged 18 he was lodging at 11 Gwydir Street with his sister and her family and was working as a furniture porter.  He married Mary Markham, who was also from Haddenham in 1885 and the couple had seven children: Lily (1885-1887), Herbert (1886-1892), Sidney Thomas (1889-1971), William John (1891-1980), Elsie May (1894-1974), Leonard (1896-1977), Albert George (1900-1958)

Thomas worked as grocer’s porter and later as an assistant corn merchant.  The family lived at 9 Gwydir Street (1891), 53 Cavendish Road (1901) and eventually Sedgwick St. He died in hospital aged 46 years old, and was buried in St Benedict’s  as it is the parish that served the hospital.

Mary Ann Russell (née Markham)  (1859 – 19 June 1937)

Mary was the daughter of William and Phoebe (née Okey) and was baptised on 5 February 1859 in Haddenham. Her mother died in 1861 when she was only 2. William Markham worked as a labourer.  In 1881 Mary was working as a domestic servant in Chiswick, London.  The house she and Thomas occupied in Gwydir St looked onto the cemetery and family remembered that she would sometimes stand sadly at the bedroom window where she could see the grave of 3 year old Lilly and 6 year old Herbert. This graven the parish of Andrew the Less did not have a headstone.
After she was widowed she lived at 76 Sedgwick Street (1911).  The family was in great hardship for a number of years and narrowly avoided going into the workhouse.  The boys were put out to work as soon as possible., Leonard, was partly brought up by relatives on a farm in Aldreth near Haddenham. William became a hotel chef and eventually head chef at Trinity College.

In later life Mary lived with her son  Leonard in Cambridge then her daughter Elsie in Wisbech where she died in 1937. Her body was brought back to Cambridge so she could be buried with Thomas.



Russell Family Archive

Newspaper archives

by Claire Martinsen and the Russell family.

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Mary Ann Russell; Thomas Russell