Obit foreword

Looking Backwards

An introduction to the obituary  on the next page: written by Beryl Wood nee Fletcher for her cousins of the same generation.

Auntie Madge delighted to tell the story of Mr Bacon and his baby, and many years ago gave into my keeping an extract from The South London Times of 22nd July 1876, in which this anecdote is repeated.

I have always admired the independent mind of Mr Bacon, not unlike the robust determination of William Cobbett, of whom he was probably contemporary.

The original cutting is becoming fragile, and I have often thought of having it copied. Recent events and renewal of acquaintance with our cousins Algar have caused me to pause awhile and think of other days, and I have thought that I should pass on this reminiscence amongst my cousins. 

The extract concerns the life and death of one, SAMUEL BACON, and is in itself a little piece of social history: a record of bygone times and customs.

Auntie Madge also made for me a genealogical table, showing the branching of the Bacon, Luck and Algar families, but now I will just give a few details to show the origins of those family names handed on to some of us at our Christenings, and the persistence of that pleasant and Royal name Elizabeth.

Mr Bacon, a builder and farmer of Hatfield Broad Oak in the county of Essex, moved to London, as related in the story of his son Samuel, but left behind in Essex a young daughter, Elizabeth, who was brought up by her grandparents, and who married JAMES LUCK. The Lucks were the parents of four daughters, and one of these, another Elizabeth, married JOHN ALGAR; in the course of time becoming Grandma Algar, with whom my mother loved to stay, and to play with her Algar cousins. 

But I have skipped a generation. John and Elizabeth Algar named their eldest daughter Elizabeth Rosetta after his mother, and I should perhaps add, for the record, that their other children were Mary Ann Luck (Auntie Madge), John (the father of those cousins the young Wardens knew, and Eliza Ann (Auntie Di).

Elizabeth Rosetta married JAMES HENRY WARDEN, and I need perhaps go no further, except to remember their little daughter Rosa Elizabeth, who died when she was ten years old; and to recall that two of their great-grand-children still carry the name Elizabeth: one in Paris and Sheila Elizabeth in Hamsptead.

Others of us carry the family names with us, and so, for once I will sign my name in full

Your affectionate cousin

Beryl Lucy Algar Wood

27th November 1964