C. E. Small
Service no. 960469
Driver, Royal Field Artillery, “A” Bty. 302nd Bde.
Enlisted in Fulham; lived in Stockwell
Killed in action on 31 October 1917, aged 21
CWGC: “Son of Charles Edward and Laura Louisa Small, of 61 Mordaunt Street, Stockwell, London.”
Remembered at Jerusalem Memorial and St Andrew’s Church, Landor Road, London SW9
British Army WWI Service Records 1914-1920
Charles Edward Small presented himself at the Fulham recruiting office early in the war – on 16 September 1914. We do not know what kind of occupation he left behind, as this was not recorded in the service records. However, it was a settled kind of life.
His family had lived in the same house for at least 13 years, and although his father had died, his mother, Laura, earned a living through dress-making. They were doing well enough to order headed paper, on which Laura wrote on 24 April 1918 to the War Office enquiring about the “watch and silver mizpah ring” which should have been among her son’s effects. “Will you kindly make enquiries for me,” she wrote, “as I should value them much.” The mizpah ring, popular during the 19th and early 20th centuries, was given and worn when close relatives or lovers were about to be separated, often by catastrophic events such as war.
Small was 19 and a good 5 feet 7half inches tall when he enlisted. His vision and physical development was noted as “very good.”
Information from the censuses
Lambeth-born Charles Edward Small, 14 in 1911, lived with his widowed mother, Laura Louisa Small, 46, a dressmaker from Eastman, Southampton, and his siblings, Winifred Small, 21, a business clerk; Kathleen Small, 18, a student teacher; and Leslie Allan Small, 9, in 4 rooms at 61 Mordaunt Street. The family at been at this address since at least 1901 Charles’s father, also called Charles, was on the 1901 census described as a 37-year-old coach painter, born in Reigate, The girls were born in Reigate, but Charles (junior) and Leslie was born in Stockwell.