Tuesday, 5 August 2014

Wedding Wednesday - A 1913 Wedding with a Sad End

Looking through old newspapers gives us such a picture of another age,  and here is a poignant tale of a wedding in 1913 - with a sad ending.  

In the "Berwckshire News" of 4th March 1913,  I  came across a full page account of a society wedding, complete with portraits of the bride and groom  and great detail given on the guests,  the costumes worn, and the lavish  gifts.

The bride wore "a Princess robe of ivory velvet, with falling sleeves of applique, with pearl tassled ends.   The square decolletage being embroidered with pearls and Rhinestones.  The skirt drapery was caught up at one side showing an underskirt of lace. The train entirely of Brussels lace was lined with ivory chiffon.  The bridesmaids wore frocks of daffodil yellow satin, with soft ruffles of chiffon and sashes of blue to match blue suede shoes worn with shite silk stockings.  The costumes were comnpleted by white mob caps  tied with blue ribbons and they carried posies of daffodils."

The list of presents  painted a portrait of the age, ranging  from an opulent platinum and diamond watch,and crystal cigarette case set with rubies, to the slightly more mundane - a pair of cartridge pepper pots, an ivory tusk corkscrew (now very  environmentally incorrect!),  a fitted motor valise,  an  Irish bog oak carved inkstand, a  dark green Russian leather blotter. a mounted antelope  horn cigarette lighter, purple silk cushions embroidered in gold, a maeve parasol, a silver egg stand and  silver filigree  fan.  Of a more utilitarian nature were an umbrella, set of waistcoat buttons. a biscuit warmer, set of thimble, paste shoe buckles,  and a dog's biscuit tin. 

Like many newly married couples, the bride and groom ended up with numerous blotters, inkstands, photo frames, cut glass bowls, and butter dishes with knives.

The marriage had been delayed a few weeks, because the groom had suffered appendicitis. 

Perhaps this could be regarded as a portent.  For given the date of 1913,   further research gave this happy occasion a  poignancy in marking the end of an era.  Within three years the groom had been killed in Flanders, leaving a young widow and child.  

[Wedding Wednesday is one of many daily prompts from Geneabloggers to encourage bloggers to record family history] 


  1. I love those loquacious old newspapers! What a sad end though....I wonder how many marriages between 1910 and 1914 ended in death, or perhaps worse, a wife for whom it got too difficult, or a husband who was nothing like the man she married. Tragic times.

  2. Thank you for your perceptive comment, Pauleen. There must have been so many sad tales of broken families.


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