Joseph Wood, Private PO/1923, Royal Marine Light Infantry
Died of pneumonia 11th May 1916 in Macclesfield, aged 56
Joseph Wood was born in Macclesfield on 24th May 1860, the son of Sarah and Samuel Wood, a sawyer. In 1871, ten year old Joseph was employed as a fancy trimmer and living at House 3 Court 5, Chestergate, with his parents and siblings Isaac (20), Samuel (12), William (6), Hannah (2), and baby Alice (2 months). Joseph was later employed by Mr F Stanway, a local coach-builder.
At the age of twenty, Joseph joined the Royal Marines (Portsmouth Division) on 24th May 1880, serving for about twenty-one years and seeing active service in Egypt.
On 2nd October 1899, at the age of 39, Joseph married Elizabeth Hollinshead at St Michael’s Church; at that time he was employed as a cotton weaver. The marriage register shows that Joseph was unable to write but Elizabeth signed her name. Two years later in 1901, Joseph was employed as a general labourer and living at 6 Chestergate with Elizabeth and her 18 year old son John William Hollinshead.
By 1911 the couple had moved to House 1 Court 2 West Street, off Chester Road; Elizabeth was employed as a silk hand and Joseph was an Army Pensioner.
At the outbreak of war, Joseph was recalled to his Regiment and served at Gosport, near Portsmouth, but returned to Macclesfield after contracting pneumonia which eventually proved fatal. His death was reported in the Macclesfield Courier of 20th May 1916:
The death took place on Thursday last week of Mr Joseph Wood, of 16 King Street, Macclesfield. The deceased served 21 years in the Royal Marines, and at the outbreak of war was called up for service. He went on barrack duty at Gosport, but some time ago contracted pneumonia, which proved fatal. Fifty-two years of age, he was formerly employed by Mr F Stanway, coach-builder, and held the following medals and clasps: Alexandria (1882), expedition to Witu, Egyptian War, Khedive, and Ashanti. The late Mr Wood’s brother, Private William Wood, has been to the front with the 3rd Cheshire Regiment; and he has had seven nephews serving, one of whom was killed.
The funeral took place at the Macclesfield cemetery on Monday with military honours…
Joseph Wood is buried in grave ref. N. 11224 in Macclesfield Cemetery. The Commonwealth War Graves Commission holds casualty details for Private Joseph Wood, and he is listed on the Imperial War Museum’s Lives of the First World War website.
Brother of William Wood, who served with the 3rd Cheshire Regiment.