Dennison family

Ernest Christopher Dennison (1872-1954)

Ernest Christopher Dennison was born on 17 June 1872 at Eamont Bridge, Cumberland . He was the son of John Dawson Dennison and his wife Jane Dennison nee Grisenthwaite. 1

In 1881, Ernest was living with his parents and five siblings at 24 Great Dockray, Penrith. His father’s occupation was shown as Timber Merchant & Sawyer employing 7 men and 1 boy. The family had a live-in servant. 2

In 1891, Ernest was living with his parents at 103 Scotland Road, Penrith. Ernest was a Draper’s Assistant. His father’s occupation was Timber Merchant3

103 Scotland Road pictured in March 2009

Ernest married Mary Elizabeth Ducksbury (1870-1945) on 19 October 1896 at Kendal Parish Church. Mary was the eldest child of Henry Ducksbury (1847-1904), a house painter, and his wife Sarah Ducksbury nee Dent (1849-1914).

On 1 November 1897 their son Norman Dennison was born. He was baptised on 28 November at Holy Trinity, Kendal.

By 1899 Ernest and Mary were living at 12 Helmside, Oxenholme. Ernest appears to have owned a property at 18 Wilson Street, Kendal. Ernest must now have been working for the railway company as Helmside was the reserved for railway employees only. 4

12 Helmside, Oxenholme home of Ernest Christopher Dennison and his wife Mary Elizabeth and children Norman, Redvers and Gwendolen
12 Helmside pictured in May 2011

On 28 April 1900 their second son Redvers Ducksbury Dennison was born at Oxenholme.

In 1901, Ernest 28, Mary 31, Norman 3 and Redvers 11 months were still living at 12 Helmside, Oxenholme. Ernest was now a Foreman Railway Porter. 5

Ernest Christopher Dennison with wife Mary Elizabeth nee Ducksbury and children Gwendolen, Redvers and Norman
Ernest with daughter Gwendolen, wife Mary and sons Redvers & Norman
Photograph courtesy of D Robinson

On 30 April 1908 Ernest departed Liverpool on board the SS Baltic which arrived in New York on 9 May 1908. His age was given as 35 years 7 months. His occupation was shown as ‘Railway Service’. He was heading for St Louis, Missouri.

Mary and the children did not join Ernest until just under 18 months later. They departed Liverpool on 23 October 1909, also on the SS Baltic, and arrived in New York on 31 October 1909.

Extract from the SS Baltic’s passenger list

In 1910 Ernest and Mary were living at 1326 James Street, St Louis with their two sons, Norman 12 and Redvers 9, and their daughter Gwendolen 5. Ernest was shown as an electrician working for an electric company.6

In 1916, Ernest, still an electrician, and his two sons, both clerks, were living at 5891A Easton Avenue, St Louis. 7

Ernest Dennison, Nornan Dennison, Redvers Dennison, 5891A Easton Avenue, St Louis, Missouri

On 29 October 1917 Ernest enlisted with the Canadian Expeditionary Force at Toronto. His enlistment papers showed he was 5 foot 7 1/4 inches with blue eyes and dark brown hair. He was a Sapper with regiment number 2006817.

Ernest in his Canadian Engineers WW1 Uniform
Photograph courtesy of D Robinson

By 1920 the family were living at 5851a Garfield Avenue, St Louis. Ernest was still an electrician but showing as working for a Motor Car company.


Page updated 28 Oct 2020To be continued!

  1. DENNISON, ERNEST CHRISTOPHER Mother’s maiden name=GRISINTHWAITE GRO Reference: 1872 S Quarter in PENRITH Volume 10B Page 426
  2. Census Returns of England and Wales, 1881; Class: RG11; Piece: 5141; Folio: 30; Page: 17; GSU roll: 1342241
  3. Census Returns of England and Wales, 1891; Class: RG12; Piece: 4276; Folio: 22; Page: 37; GSU roll: 6099386
  4. Kendal East Ward Polling District F, Parish of Natland, Electoral Roll 1899
  5. Census Returns of England and Wales, 1901;Class: RG13; Piece: 4909; Folio: 50; Page: 8
  6. 1910 United States Federal Census, Missouri, Saint Louis City, St Louis Ward 9, District 0140
  7. Gould’s St Louis Directory for 1916

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