Harry was born 6thSeptember 1895 at 1 Lord Street, Chester – born within the city Wall’s, so a true Cestrian. He was the 11thof 12 children to parents Alexander Roylance Shepherd Smith (a joiner), and Jane Chesworth. He was baptised 20thOct 1895 in St Paul's Church, Boughton, Chester.
On the 1901 census when Harry was 5yrs old, the family were living at Rudale, Dee Banks, Chester, a red brick home that father Alexander built and kept extending for his growing family, which still looks out over the Meadoes and River Dee today. His family consisted:
Alexander R.S. Smith – age 51
Jane Smith – age 46
William D Smith – age 28
James G Smith – age 26
Thomas C Smith – age 24
Margaret Smith – age 22
Alexander R Smith – age 19
Mary A Smith - age 17
Jane Smith - age 14
Samuel M Smith - age 13
Elizabeth Smith - age 11
Harry M Smith - age 5
Fred A Smith - age 3
In 1903, Harry attended St Pauls's Junior School for two years prior to attending Chester's City Grammar School for Boys from 10th September 1908. His started in Form 2 and left on 26th July 1913 aged 18, a little over a year after his mother had passed away.
During the Great War Harry was in the Denbighshire Yeomanry, his service number was 755, and later, he transferred to the 24thBn. Royal Welsh Fusiliers becoming 34520. The battalion spent time in Egypt before returning to Europe arriving in Marseilles 7th May 1918.
Below: Harry middle row, 2nd from the right
He ended his army career as a corporal. He recieved the British and Victory War medals. Harry's brother Frederick Aitcheson Smith also served during the Great War in the Royal Army Medical Corps. (Pictured Harry and Frederick)
1919: After the war and 23 years old, "he had a business which lasted one week with an office and secretary, chopping up canal barges for fagots" (a bundle of wood, sticks or twigs bound together and used as fuel). He had wanted to be a vet, but according to Harry's daughter "his elder sisters wouldn't allow it and said accountancy would be better."
He married Marjorie Brown in January 1927 in Chester Cathedral. Their witnesses were Harry's younger brother Fred Aitcheson Smith & Marjorie's father Frederick George Brown. They were living at 15 Carlett Boulevard, Eastham, Wirral where they had 2 daughters, Beryl in and Daphne.
In 1933, Harry and his wife designed and had built Carrick House in Curzon Park, Chester. His wife’s family – the Browns – had owned since the mid 1800's, jewellers GJH Brown and Son, 2 Eastgate Row, by The Cross in Chester where Eastgate, Bridge, Watergate and Northgate Streets meet. Harry took over the business, so his wife could look after their 2 young daughters. He ran the business until 1963, when his son-in-law took over.
He spent his summers fly fishing for salmon at Pen-y-lan in North Wales and on Loch Awe in Argyllshire, Scotland. His trusty old grey Humber car would carry him up to Scotland, driving through the well-worn drover’s pass: Rest and be thankfulwhere he always made a point of stopping at the top for a rest from the driving and eating his sandwiches washed down with his flask of tea.
Harry in later years...
Harry died: 31stDecember 1971 aged 76yrs old. He was cremated in Chester and his ashes were scattered in January 1972 on the gentle waters of his beloved Loch Awe, from the shore of Fincairn Castle by his daughter Beryl, where he spent his happiest days salmon fishing with both daughters.
Passed down through the family, Marjorie wore this sweetheart brooch dipecting the Denbeigh Yeomary badge, to show Harry was serving or had served in the war; Harry's granddaughter will be wearing it on Armistice Day:
Cheshire County Memorial Project would like to thank Pippa Anderson, Harry's granddaughter for the family information and picture of Harry and Frederick.