Browse the collection
Sorted by occupation
Not knowm / Anhysbys
Place of birth: South Wales
Notes: This young woman moulding silica clay bricks was photographed for the Employment of Women collection at the newly established Imperial War Museum, c 1917.
Not known / Anhysbys
Place of birth: South Wales
Notes: This woman moulding silica bricks was photographed for the Employment of Women collection at the newly established Imperial War Museum, c.1917.
Edith Haines (Spridgeon)
Service: Bus Conductress
Notes: Edith Haines was one of the first women bus conductresses in Swansea
Edith Haines (right), with Maggie (unknown, left), and Nellie Spridgeon centre
Edith Haines (née Spridgeon, right), with Maggie (unknown, left), and Nellie Spridgeon centre
Gertrude Mary Bailey (née Buchanan)
Place of birth: Sunderland
Service: Businesswoman, Committee woman, Grand Dame, 1914 - 1919
Death: 1942, Cause not known
Notes: Gertrude Bailey moved to Newport following her marriage to the wealthy Newport ship-repairer C H Bailey in 1895. Following his death in 1907 she continued to run his successful business. From the outbreak of War she became involved in many war-related activities, included help for Belgian Refugees and the Red Cross, and serving on the War Pensions committee. In 1917 Gertrude established a crèche for the children of women munitions workers. She received the CBE in 1918; curiously there is no citation with her name. Perhaps she was involved in too many things to list. In 1920 she handed over the business to her sons, and became one of Newport’s first two women magistrates. Gertrude was anti-suffrage before the War, and patron of temperance societies. Who’s Who in Newport (1920) described her as ‘La Grande Dame of the place’.
Sources: Sylvia Mason: Every Woman Remembered. Saronpublishers 2018\r\nhttp://www.newportpast.com/gallery/photos/php/search.php?search=munition&search2=&Submit=Submit
Ethel Clara Basil Jayne
Place of birth: Llanelly
Service: Businesswoman, laundry owner, munitions welfare officer, government advisor
Death: 1940, St Albans, Cause not known
Notes: Ethel Jayne was born in 1874, daughter of the proprietor of the Brynmawr Coal and Iron Company Ltd. She trained in laundry work, and set up her own steam laundry company, Little Laundries Ltd, in Harrow in about 1906. At the outbreak of war she joined the Women’s Volunteer Reserve, and also worked organising canteens for the French Red Cross. In 1916 she was appointed chief welfare officer for the Armstrong Whitworth armaments company, becoming responsible for more than 20,000 women employed in the North of England and Glasgow. Her welfare innovations included steam laundries. In 1919 she gave evidence on welfare to the Parliamentary Committee on Women in Industry. She was among the first recipients of the OBE in August 1917. After her death her ashes were buried in the family grave in Llanelli.
Ethel Basil Jayne 1907
Ethel Basil Jayne driving to one of her early laundries in a pony and trap. This was her preferred mode of transport.
Miss Ethel Basil Jayne’s name in the first list of OBEs. London Gazette 24th August 1917.
Mabel Elsie Davies
Place of birth: Fforestfach
Service: Canteen worker, NEF Pembrey
Notes: Mabel was the eldest daughter of Eliza [qv] and Huw Davies. Fourteen when her father died, she started munitions work at Pembrey. When her age was discovered, she was transferred to work in the canteen.
Sources: People’s Collection Wales
Isabella Lilian Mitchell
Place of birth: Cattistock, Dorset
Service: Canteen worker, ambulance driver, French Red Cross, 1915 - 1918 ?
Death: 1970, Kent, Cause not known
Notes: Isabella was the only daughter of a Scottish family settled in Brecon. Her father A A Mitchell was an Alderman and JP, and both her brothers volunteered as army officers. In September 1915 she was working in the French Red Cross Canteen at Creil Station north of Paris. She is said to have received the Croix de Guerre in the summer of 1918 ‘for three years motor ambulance service with the French Army, and especially for good work at Creil’. Thanks to Marianne Last.
Report of Isabella’s canteen work in Creil, France. Brecon County Times 2nd September 1915.
Report of Isabella’s award of the Croix de Guerre. Brecon County Times 1st August 1918.
Beatrice Eveline Jones (Eveline)
Place of birth: Llanbedr, Crickhowell
Notes: Beatrice and her sister Auriol were professional musicians. She played at many concerts to raise funds for the Red Cross, as well as appearing professionally. She was a soloist at a Promenade Concert in the Queens Hall, London, in 1915. Her professional career developed further after the War. Her performance was admired by the poet and critic Ezra Pound in 1920, and she played in the first classical music broadcast on the BBC in June 1922, together with a pianist and a singer. Her professional name was Beatrice Eveline.
Elsie Agnes Courtis
Place of birth: Llandaff, 1894
Service: Chauffeuse, FANY, 1914 - 1918
Notes: Elsie originally signed up for ‘kitchen or nursing duties’, but later became an ambulance driver. She was awarded the Military Medal in 1917 ‘for bravery in rescuing wounded under fire in France’.
Women awarded the Military Medal
Photograph of women, including Elsie Courtis, who were awarded the Military Medal, 1918.
London Gazette, 26th June 1918
Elsie Courtis’s award of the Military Medal recorded in the London Gazette, 26th June 1918
Place of birth: Penbryn
Service: Chief Lady Welfare Superintendent , NEF Pembrey
Notes: Etheldreda, the daughter of the Welsh poet Lewis Morris, was awarded the MBE for her work at Pembrey, in a letter signed by Winston Churchill, who was Minister for Munitions 1917 – 1919.