Private James Hiram Hanton
Thank you to Lenka Cathersides for the following research.
James Hiram Hanton was born in the 2nd quarter of 1883 in Old Ford in Middlesex to iron and engine turner Charles James Hanton and Hannah Hanton nee Grayston.
At the time of the 1891 Census, the family lived at 10 Great Whip Street, Ipswich, Sussex. Charles was still working as an iron turner and Hannah was looking after their children: Horace, James, Ernest and Daisy. The household further comprised of Charles ’ mother in law, the widowed Hannah Grayston. Hannah was working as a cook.
At the time of the 1901 Census, the family lived at 10 Hythe Hill, Colchester, Essex. Charles, still, as an engine turner and fitter and Hannah was at home. The household further comprised of their children: engineer’s apprentice turners and fitters James and Ernest, Daisy and Violet and the retired Hannah Grayston.
James’ father Charles James Hanton died in the 2nd quarter of 1906 in Colchester, Essex.
At the time of the 1911 Census, James was a boarder of his brother Horace at 2 Bumpstead Road, Haverhill, Suffolk. Both brothers were working as fitters. The household further comprised of Horace’s wife Daisy and their children: Horace Charles, Doris, Hilda Hannah and Charles Albert. The accommodation had four rooms.
James enlisted in December 1915 in Benthal Green, London into the 20th Battalion, the King’s Royal Rifle Corps. He was a Rifleman with regimental number: C/9797. At the time of his enlistment he lived in Dorking. Before joining the Army, James was employed as a fitter at the Gomshall Tannery.
James went out to France in March 1916. He was killed in action on the night of 27th of April 1917 in France.
He is buried at the Feuchy Chapel British Cemetery in France. His grave reference number is: I.C.28.
He received the British War and Victory Medals.
James ‘ mother Hannah Hanton received £5, 18s and 4 d on the 26th of September 1917 and a further £5, 10s on the 21st of November 1919 in Soldier’s Effects. In 1917 Hannah Hanton lived at 23 Church Street in Dorking.
James’s platoon officer wrote: “He was one of the remarkable men of the battalion, a man known, respected and liked not only in his unit, but in many others of the Division. He always did his work most zealously, courageously and ungrudgingly, and although older than most, and not always enjoying the best health out there, he bore the discomforts of campaigning most manfully. Moreover, he was a really great help to others. I used to regard him as a great help to me, often and often, on long trying marches and in other trying conditions, in positions of danger and difficulty. I have known him to keep up his comrades’ spirits most wonderfully by his outstanding gift of humour, which seemed never failing, however bad things might seem.” (1917 Dorking and Leatherhead Advertiser)
Hanton Family History
James’ father Charles James Hanton was born in the 1st quarter of 1854 in Ipswich to iron moulder Robert Hanton, born about 1810 in Sudbury, Suffolk and Mary Hanton, born about 1815 in Hanover, Germany.
His mother Hannah Grayston was born in the 1st quarter of 1852 in Ipswich to smith James Grayston, born about 1822 in Newton, Suffolk and Hannah Grayston, born about 1824 in Bedingham, Suffolk.
Charles James Hanton and Hannah Grayston married in the 3rd quarter of 1876 in the Registration District of Ipswich, Suffolk.
James Hiram Hanton had eight siblings, of whom five are known: Horace James born about 1879, Ernest Hanton born about 1886, Daisy Hanton born about 1891 and Violet Hanton born about 1893, all in Ipswich, Suffolk. And Lillie Hanton born about 1881 in Colchester, Essex;
At the time of the 1881 Census, the family lived in Park Lane, Colchester, Essex. Charles was working as an iron turner and Hannah was looking after their children: Horace and Lillie.
Born Old Ford, Middlesex
Son of The late Charles James and Hannah Hanton of 23 Church Street, Dorking
Enlisted Bethnal Green, London
Regiment 20th Battalion, King’s Royal Rifle Corps
Date of Death 27th April 1917
Place of Death France
Cause of Death Killed in action
Cemetery Feuchy Chapel British Cemetery, Wancourt, France