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Inquest Query?

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Chris Ho :)

Chris Ho :) Report 16 Oct 2019 07:40

(also below, poor chap, at least you have found him now)

Chris :)

06 May 1902 - Irish News and Belfast Morning News - Belfast, Antrim,

County Down Skipper Drowned at Liverpool.
Captain Smith, of Portaferry, master of the schooner Mary Ann, belonging to Mr. Elliott, of that place, was accidentally drowned at Liverpool on Saturday. His remains will arrive at Belfast on Wednesday morning by Liverpool steamer, and will be conveyed to his home for interment. He leaves a wife and a small family.

Ships of Co. Down
Mary Anne a schooner of 86 tons; built 1847 in Bridport; regd. Belfast;owned by James Elliott & James & Hugh Stewart of Portaferry 1877 until broken up in 1915 & used as a dumb barge.

Edits (6th May 1902, was a Tuesday. Looking google search)


Heather Report 16 Oct 2019 10:21

Many thanks to all who helped me with this one.

Regards Heather


Heather Report 19 Oct 2019 19:16

Can anyone help me out with a search for a Death Notice for Francis Smith age 28 born Portaferry. Who drowned in Liverpool Dock on 4th May 1902. His remains were to be returned on Wed 7th May by Liverpool Steamship to Belfast for burial. I can only assume the burial took place in the following couple of days. His wife lived at Springmount Street, Belfast.

Many thanks



Heather Report 24 Oct 2019 17:56

This piece of research seems to have stalled again. I have had no luck at all with a death notice, either in Liverpool or Belfast newspapers and have still been unable to establish where Francis Smith is buried. I have contacted Belfast City Council to check if he is buried in any of the cemeteries in their administration, no luck there. He must be somewhere, has anyone any suggestions. Inquest info has not survived. I have ordered his death certificate but do not expect it will provide too much further info.



ArgyllGran Report 24 Oct 2019 18:02

Perhaps he's buried in Portaferry?

Findagrave doesn't show anything for him there, but that's not exhaustive.


Heather Report 24 Oct 2019 21:00

I'm exploring the Portaferry option, when his brother John Smith (he lived in Portaferry) died in 1925 his death notice stated he was being buried in the family burial ground which I assume is connected to Ballyphilip Church of Ireland, and as both John and his wife Thomasina Smith, also Francis and John parents were all married there it could be a possibility. But I still think as Francis, his wife Agnes and 2 little daughters lived in Belfast it should be there somewhere, it must be 25 miles + from Belfast to Portaferry a long way in 1902!


Heather Report 14 Nov 2019 14:59

Update: Well have finally received Francis Smith's death certificate and I now know for sure when he died, (4th May 1902) how he died (drowning though evidence was insufficient to say how he got in the water)) and where he died! (Albert Dock) and that his inquest took place on 6th May. That clears some of the issues up, but I have still been unable to trace where he was buried. I have explored the option that he could have been buried in a family plot in Portaferry, or in Belfast nothing there and have been unable to trace any death notice in any of the local papers so I have now been left with the possibility that he was perhaps buried in Liverpool rather than his remains returned to Belfast. As his death certificate stated the Registration District of St Thomas Liverpool where do I start, I am unfamiliar with Liverpool and it's districts?


ArgyllGran Report 14 Nov 2019 16:28

Names of lots of cemeteries in Liverpool!

But no Francis Smith in any of them, at least as far as Findagrave is concerned.

St Thomas's church , near the Old Dock (if that's relevant) was closed in 1905. Maybe there isn't any grave in existence to put on Findagrave.

"Although the church was demolished and all remaining grave markers were removed, a small green space remains on the corner where the church and burial ground once stood."

Maybe Francis is under the carpark which replaced most of the churchyard.

I can't find anything(so far) re parish records.

Chris Ho :)

Chris Ho :) Report 14 Nov 2019 17:02

Well last heard his remains were due to arrive at Belfast Wednesday Morning (7th May)...

Chris :)


Heather Report 14 Nov 2019 17:20

Yes, so the newspapers said, but I have found nothing regarding a death notice or funeral, contacted the Belfast City Council who administer all the cemeteries in Belfast but they have no record of him. Checked Portaferry in Co Down where he was born and no record of him there either so perhaps he was buried in Liverpool in a pauper grave, I'm sure someone would have been expected to pay for his remains to be returned on the Liverpool Steamer, as his widow was only one step away from the workhouse I wouldn't think she could afford to pay for that.

Chris Ho :)

Chris Ho :) Report 14 Nov 2019 17:36

Wonder if worth contacting Liverpool Archives...(they might have more knowledge) if Catholic Burials, or any other Cemeteries near District.

Chris :)