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ProfilePosted byOptionsPost Date


David Report 4 Mar 2017 13:19

Does anybody have any information on the descendants of Herbert Smith (b.1865) married to Lilie nee Courtenay-James (b.1867). They were my grandparents but I never met them. I am the only son of their son's (Stewart Underwood-Smith) second marriage, but there is a mystery surrounding his first marriage and I have absolutely no information about his first wife and my half-siblings.

So Herbert and Lilie had 2 Children; my aunt Irene Courtney-Smith (1890-1987) born in Wimborne, Dorset, and my father Stewart Underwood-Smith (1899-1950) born in Truro, Cornwall. As a family they appear in the 1901 census when they lived in Otley, West Yorks; then in 1911 living in Shipley, Yorks. My father died when I was 9 and I did know my Aunt Rene, his sister, but she would never speak about his "other" family, neither would my mother (Audrey nee Dyer).
Can anybody help please?

David Underwood (b. 1942)

Marked As Answer Marked as Answered


KathleenBell Report 4 Mar 2017 14:47

Welcome to the boards David.

Is this the birth of your father (if so his surname was Smith and Underwood was a middle name):-

Last name SMITH
Birth year 1899
Birth quarter 1
Registration month -
Mother's last name -
District Truro
County Cornwall
Country England
Volume 5C
Page 132
Record set England & Wales Births 1837-2006

I can't find a marriage for him at all.

Kath. x


KathleenBell Report 4 Mar 2017 15:00

Do you know where your father died, as I can't see a death for him at around the time when you were 9.

Kath. x

Gwyn in Kent

Gwyn in Kent Report 4 Mar 2017 15:20

Any connection...?

Marriages Sep 1939

Dyer Audrey F M..... Underwood..... Southampton 2c 256
Underwood Peter...... Dyer...... Southampton 2c 256


AustinQ Report 4 Mar 2017 16:59

1911 England, Wales & Scotland Census Transcription
102 Bingley Road Shipley, Shipley, Yorkshire, England

Herbert Smith Head Married Male Operating Dists 47 1864 Wiversted Essex
Lilie Smith Wife Married Female Royal London 46 1865 St Anthony Cornwell
Irene Smith Daughter Single Female Mutal Insurance Office 19 1892 Wimborne Dorset
Stewart Smith Son Single Male School Boy 11 1900 Truro Cornwall

1939 register:

Botting Household (4 People) 45 Dimond Road , Southampton C.B., Hampshire, England

William F L Botting 30 Jun 1894 Male Railway Clerk Married
Elsie E Botting 11 Sep 1895 Female Unpaid Domestic Duties Married
Peter Underwood 28 Dec 1899 Male Railway Construction Unemp & Maintenance Engineer Married
Audrey F N Vine (Underwood) 28 Jan 1912 Female Unpaid Domestic Dutie Married

First name(s) PETER
Gender Male
Birth year 1900
Age 51
Death quarter 1
Death year 1951
District Surrey South Western
County Surrey
Volume 5G Page 1340

Irene's death?
Last name SMITH
Gender Female
Birth day 24 April 1890
Death quarter 1
Death year 1988
District Louth
Register number 188
County Lincolnshire
Volume 7 Page 2084

Biggin Household 99 Harcourt Road , Sheffield C.B., Yorkshire (West Riding), England

Tom Biggin 20 Feb 1865 Male Actor Retired Single
Closed Record
Clara A Hardcastle 30 Jul 1860 Female Retired Single
Closed Record
Eliza Smith 21 Jul 1861 Female No Occupation Widowed
Courtenay I Smith 24 Apr 1890 Male Artist Teacher Arts & Craft Single


AustinQ Report 4 Mar 2017 17:28

Do you have your parents marriage certificate? Does it say divorced or 'marriage dissolved' for your father?


AustinQ Report 4 Mar 2017 17:42

British Army Service Records 1914-1920 Transcription

First name(s) Stewart
Last name Smith
Age 18
Birth year 1899
Birth town Truro
Birth county Cornwall
Service number 649696
Regiment Labour Corps
Unit / Battalion 296th Company
Year 1917
Residence town Sheffield
Residence county Yorkshire
Series WO 363
Archive The National Archives
Record set British Army Service Records

Father first stated to be Herbert Smith, 20 Alroyd? Road
Single (Unmarried)
Next of Kin: Father, Upperthorpe Sheffield
Allowance paid to Mrs L Smith, Upperthorp Sheffield


greyghost Report 4 Mar 2017 17:49

Stewart's birth from the GRO register shows surname as Smith and mmn as James

Name: Mother's Maiden Surname:
GRO Reference: 1899 M Quarter in TRURO Volume 05C Page 132


PricklyHolly Report 5 Mar 2017 09:57

I am confused.

Who is Peter Underwood?

Did Stewart Underwood Smith change his name to Peter Underwood?

Peter Underwood in the Surrey, England, Church of England Burials, 1813-1987
Name: Peter Underwood
Birth Year: abt 1900
Abode: 33 Liphook Road
Burial Age: 51
Burial Date: 21 Feb 1951
Archive Provided Parish: Shottermill, St Stephen
Parish as it Appears: Shottermill


AustinQ Report 5 Mar 2017 10:16

It looks as though he did- but I think we need David to get back to us.

I did wonder if this lady was connected somehow? But can't see anything else for her:

Death: (Also registered under Anne Martha U Smith)
First name(s) ANNE MARTHA
Gender Female
Birth day 11 August 1910
Death quarter 2
Death year 1988
District Reading & Wokingham
Register number 688
County Berkshire
Volume 19 Page 297

EDIT:- Not sure if this is connected, there is an Anna M Under-Smith on the 1964/ 1965 electoral register with a Charles J Smith.


PricklyHolly Report 5 Mar 2017 10:29

As David is a new member.....i will send him a PM to let him know he has received replies.

Prickles. ;o))

Gwyn in Kent

Gwyn in Kent Report 5 Mar 2017 10:32

I had the same thought.

..Just sent one Prickles...



PricklyHolly Report 5 Mar 2017 10:35

Me too!!



AustinQ Report 5 Mar 2017 11:18

Age for Lilie a little different to what you have:

1891 England, Wales & Scotland Census Transcription
Abersham Road, Hackney, London, England

Herbert Smith Head Married Male 31 1860 Grocers Assistant Wivenhoe, Essex,
Lilie Smith Wife Married Female 28 1863 - Helston, Cornwall, England
Irene Smith Daughter - Female 1 1890 - Dorset, England

Marriages Mar 1888 (>99%)
Hocking Thomas Helston 5c 233
JAMES Lilie Helston 5c 233 <<<<<<<<<<<
ROBERTS Phillippa Charlotte Helston 5c 233
SMITH Herbert Helston 5c 233<<<<<<<<<<<<<

1881 England, Wales & Scotland Census Transcription
Boden, St Anthony in Meneage, Helston, Cornwall, England

Samuel H James Head Married Male 47 1834 Farmer 35 Acres St Keverne, Cornwall,
Eliza James Wife Married Female 48 1833 - Manaccan, Cornwall, England
Lilie James Daughter Single Female 19 1862 - St Anthony, Cornwall, England
John C James Son Single Male 17 1864 (Wesl Local Preacher) St Anthony, Cornwall
Annie James Daughter Single Female 15 1866 - St Anthony, Cornwall,
Elizabeth M James Daughter Single Female 13 1868 Scholar St Anthony, Cornwall,
Cordelia B James Daughter Single Female 8 1873 Scholar St Anthony, Cornwall,
Richard James Brother Married Male 55 1826 Farm Servant Indoor St Keverne, Cornwall,
First name(s) LILIE
Last name SMITH
Gender Female
Birth year 1863
Age 85
Death quarter 2
Death year 1948
District Sheffield
County Yorkshire
Volume 2D Page 59


AustinQ Report 5 Mar 2017 11:23

Age also out for Herbert:

SMITH, HERBERT (Mother's maiden name: UNDERWOOD)
GRO Reference: 1858 D Quarter in LEXDEN & WINSTREE UNION Volume 04A Page 241

1861 England, Wales & Scotland Census Transcription
High Street, Wivenhoe, Lexden, Essex, England

John Smith Head Married Male 45 1816 Porter Merchant Wivenhoe, Essex,
Thirza Smith Wife Married Female 45 1816 - Brightlingsea, Essex, England
Arthur J Smith Son - Male 13 1848 - Wivenhoe, Essex, England
Walter S Smith Son - Male 11 1850 - Wivenhoe, Essex, England
Ellen M Smith Daughter - Female 8 1853 - Wivenhoe, Essex, England
Alfred H Smith Son - Male 6 1855 - Wivenhoe, Essex, England
Herbert Smith Son - Male 2 1859 - Wivenhoe, Essex, England

1871 England, Wales & Scotland Census Transcription
Cambridge Road, Barking, Romford, Essex, England

John Smith Head - Male 55 1816 - Essex, England
Thirza Smith Wife - Female 55 1816 - Essex, England
Alfred Underwood Son - Male 16 1855 - Essex, England
Herbert Smith Son - Male 13 1858 - Essex, England
John R Corbett Boarder - Male 26 1845 - Ireland


PricklyHolly Report 5 Mar 2017 11:41

Marriages Mar 1842 (>99%)
SMITH John Lexden 12 157
UNDERWOOD Thirza Lexden 12 157

1851 England, Wales & Scotland Census Transcription
High Street, Wivenhoe, Lexden, Essex, England

John Smith Head Married Male 35 1816 Malster Imploying 1 Man Wivenhoe, Essex, England
Thirza Smith Wife Married Female 35 1816 Malsters Wife Brightlingsea, Essex, England
Walter Edward Smith Son - Male 1 1850 - Wivenhoe, Essex, England
Tamathine Rand Servant Unmarried Female 18 1833 House Servant Elmstead, Essex,


PricklyHolly Report 5 Mar 2017 11:56

Marriages Dec 1856 (>99%)
Hocking Eliza Helston 5c 412
James Samuel Henry Helston 5c 412


David Report 6 Mar 2017 16:31

Wow! I'm absolutely gobsmacked by all your replies and the speed with which I received them. Thank you all so much for all the info you gave me. There is a lot there that is new to me, but I will answer the questions that each of you asked as far as I know. So.......

Kathleen Bell - Yes my father's birth details are correct; 1899, Truro, Cornwall
He died at the time he lived at 33 Liphook Road in the Parish of Shottermill. By that time he was known as Peter Underwood, changed from Stewart Underwood Smith after his marriage to my mother

Gwyn in Kent - Marriages Sep 1939 - Dyer Audrey FM.... Underwood.... Southampton 2c 256
Underwood Peter ...... Dyer.......Southampton 2c 256
Yes, definitely my parents

AustinQ - I'm afraid I do not have my parents' marriage certificate, in fact I have no certificates at all for my father, ie birth, marriage or death! Your info has added a little more to the story relating to both Stewart and Irene, thank you! Curious to know why Irene is down as Male in the 1939 records. She was definitely an Artist and a very good one, I have several of her pictures. Father's WW1 Army Service Record is appreciated. He also served in WW2 when he was torpedoed and left a very long time in the water; and he became very ill with pneumonia which left him with a very weak chest which eventually contributed to his death at age 51.

Greyghost - yes his grandmother's maiden name was James. She comes from a long line of Courtenay's which I have traced back to Edward the First and beyond that. The females were always given the middle name Courtenay which they carried through their marriages, but Stewart's middle name of Underwood came from his grandmother's maiden name (Herbert Smith's mother) as per info supplied by AustinQ.

PricklyHolly - To clear the confusion, Who is Peter Underwood? Stewart Underwood Smith did indeed change his name to Peter Underwood after his second marriage to my mother Audrey Dyer. It is rumoured it was done by Deed Poll. So yes, that is the same person at 33 Liphook Road. Thank you!

AustinQ - Re Anne Martha Underwood-Smith. Interesting! Could she be Stewart's first wife? Would it be possible to dig up any other info relating to her?
Re Anna M Under-Smith on the 1964/1965 electoral register with a Charles J Smith. Could she be their daughter and maybe my long-lost half-sister? (and half-brother, or nephew?)
This is exactly where the missing pieces lie.
THANK YOU all once again

:-D :-D :-D


AustinQ Report 6 Mar 2017 17:36

Hello David. If it were my family, I would get get the marriage certificate for your parents. If your father was previously married it should say 'widowed', 'divorced' or 'marriage dissolved'.

Above you have put that he changed his name after marrying your mother- However, if he changed his name, this happened before married in 1939.

You can order the marriage certificate here:

Using the names, page and volume number (below) certificates cost £9.25 including postage.

Marriages Sep 1939
Dyer Audrey F M Underwood Southampton Vol: 2c Page: 256
Underwood Peter Dyer Southampton Vol: 2c Page: 256

Oh- and just to add the transcription on the 1939 register for Courtenay I Smith is wrong- it does list her as female.


David Report 6 Mar 2017 21:11

Thanks for your advice Austin. I will order the certificate and will let you know what it says. Yes of course he must have changed his name before the marriage if that is how he's registered.