Ann Elizabeth VIZARD 1837 - 1899
Born 25th November 1837, Woodstock, Upper Canada at 6am
Died 5th July 1899, at Hemel Hempstead
Written in the Bible that originally belonged to her grandmother
There is an air of mystery about Ann Elizabeth’s early years. Her father Edward was from Dursley, Gloucestershire and her mother Ann from Holt in Worcestershire. Edward had put his hand towards being a ‘Gentleman Farmer’ at Grimley in Worcestershire after finding his career as a dental Surgeon was too stressful. Victorian dentistry was somewhat horrific as the use of anaesthesia was still in its infancy.
The 1841 census form shows Ann Elizabeth aged three with her parents in Grimley but sometime before that, they were in Canada. The bible entry says Woodstock, Upper Canada. Woodstock is a city in Southwestern Ontario, Canada. However, we are still no nearer of knowing what took Ann Elizabeth’s parents there, all those years ago where Ann Elizabeth was born.
The only reference is found on census records.
The census of 1851 states Ann Elizabeth, now aged thirteen and at school in Marylebone in London was born in ‘Upper Canada.’
The census of 1861 she is now aged twenty-three, born in ‘Canada.’ The family are living in Scarborough and Edward is back to being a fully trained dental surgeon in practice. He has given up being a Gentleman farmer..
Looking at the above census entry the family have also lived in Ardingly, Sussex and Camberwell, Surrey, if the birthplaces of the children are anything to go by.
By 1881, Ann Elizabeth is forty-three and is the Superintendent of the Duke Street Infirmary in Burton on Trent. This was a health care facility that had opened in 1869 and expanded over the course of its history before the formation of the National Health Service.
The Duke Street Infirmary, Burton on Trent, Staffordshire.
In 1891, Ann Elizabeth is now fifty-three and on the night of the census she is described as a boarder, living on her own means in Walmer, Kent. The head of the household is a widow, a general domestic servant lives there as well. Interestingly ‘Canada’ has now been broadened out to ‘Woodstock, Upper Canada.’
In 1899 Ann Elizabeth VIZARD dies aged 62. The National Probate Calendar refers to her as being of Hemel Hempstead. She leaves all her effects to her youngest brother William George Vizard amounting to £1210 4s 3d
This gentle trawl through records hasn’t revealed the dates for Ann Elizabeth’s time at Hemel Hempstead. We know she was there sometime during the 1880s because we can go on the dates of her youngest sister Charlotte Marian VIZARD
1859 – 1940 who worked with her, marrying the local Doctor – Arthur John Hubbard
1856 – 1935 in July 1888.
Charlotte Marian was twenty-two years younger than Ann Elizabeth
Ann Elizabeth (Aunt Elizabeth) was a nurse, and eventually became Matron of the Kings College Hospital Convalescent Home at Hemel Hempstead, Herts. My Mother, also a trained nurse, became her Assistant Matron. As they were both trained nurses the home took in patients at a far earlier stage of convalescence than most similar establishments, and my father, Arthur John Hubbard, M.D. was the visiting consultant. He was at that time, junior partner in a firm of doctors in the town. It was there that my parents met and became engaged and subsequently married. My mother's father died quite shortly before the date set for the wedding, and it was his last wish that the wedding should not be postponed owing to his death. At that time the period of mourning was very long and strictly observed. My mother was married in grey, not white, on account of being in half mourning. I have seen her wedding dress of a very pretty grey silk with a small bonnet, in the fashion of the late Victorian period.
In 1956 I took a post as Locum Pharmacist for four weeks at the new West Herts Hospital, and immediately recognised the old Convalescent Home, now incorporated in the modern buildings, from photographs which I had seen at home.
King’s College Convalescent Home, Hemel Hempstead
This building became incorporated into the later hospital as the nurses’ home.
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