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Joseph Scott Upton


Joseph Scott Upton was born in January 1881 in Broughton. He was the third of six children born to William Edward and Emma Upton (née Whittaker). William and Emma married in 1875 in Chorlton and by the time of the 1881 Census, they were living at 72 Lowcock Street, in Broughton. William was employed as an Assistant to a Wholesale Stationer and Emma was looking after their three young children: William Edward junior (born in 1877); Samuel (born in 1878) and Joseph (aged just three months).

Early Life

By 1891, William and Emma had three more children: Walter (born in 1882); Lilian (born in 1884) and Emma (born in 1886). Their son, Samuel, had died in 1882, aged just four years old, and in early in 1887, William Edward died, leaving Emma a widow with five children to support. In the 1891 Census, Emma is recorded with four of her children (William, Walter, Lilian and Emma) at 54 Lowcock Street. Emma had taken a job as a Machinist making pinafores; William had a job as an Office Boy, and the family income was supplemented by the rent paid by their two lodgers: Edwin and Jane Curry. Joseph was not living with them.

In 1891, Joseph was recorded as a student at Nicholl’s Hospital, on Hyde Road, in Ardwick, Manchester. By 1901, the family were living at 145 Russia Street, in Broughton. Emma and Lilian (aged 16), were both employed as Pinafore Machinists; William was a Cellarman for a wine merchant; Walter a Commercial Clerk; Emma junior worked in a confectioner’s and Joseph was still a student.

By 1911, the family had moved again and were then living at 28 Clement Street, in Broughton. Walter had left home, Emma was no longer working as a Machinist, though her daughter, Lilian, was still sewing pinafores. William was employed in a mineral water factory as a Bottler, Emma as a Worker with electrical apparatus and Joseph was employed as an Assistant Schoolmaster for Manchester Education Department.

Chester College

Joseph attended Chester College and graduated in 1901.

Military Service

The 17th (Service - 2nd City) Battalion, Manchester Regiment, was formed in Manchester on August 28, 1914. In April 1915, it became part of the 90th Infantry Brigade and went to France early in November 1915. Joseph’s service papers have not survived, so we don’t know exactly when he enlisted. It may have been in 1914, but it is more likely that it was at some time in 1915. He was not eligible for the 1914-1915 Star, so he did not land with the Battalion in 1915, which points to enlistment in 1915. We do know that he was serving with the Battalion when it fought on the Somme in the summer of 1916.

Lest We Forget

Joseph was killed in action on July 30, 1916. He is buried at Delville Wood Cemetery, in France.

Post Mortem

Joseph was entitled to the British War and Victory Medals, which would have been sent to his mother Emma, his next of kin.