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CAMPBELL, Emily Elizabeth

b.1871-d.1953

Pauline Powell, Emily’s great niece, researched, wrote and supplied the trace material for the story and from whom we have permission to publish the story.

Emily Elizabeth Campbell was my great aunt, my Grandmother’s elder sister, born on 13th December 1871 in Buckingham, Buckinghamshire. She was the daughter of Henry John and Fanny Campbell, formerly Cox.

I am 99% convinced that this is Emily.

1881

Emily appears in the 1881 census with her family at 13 Railway Place, High Wycombe as Emma Campbell age 9.

1891

In the 1891 Census she is a housemaid aged 21 living in East Pallant House, Chichester West Sussex, born in Ilsden (Hillesden most likely), Buckinghamshire.

East Pallant House, Chichester in 2021

I can’t find her in the 1901 census.

1911

I believe I have found her in the 1911 Census living at 61 Coleherne Court, Kensington recorded as age 36 single, a domestic servant born in Hill(e)sden, Bucks. It states that she is of Scottish nationality (why?), with an English speaking mother.

Princess Diana lived at number 60 Coleherne Court between 1979 and 1981. Today the building has a Blue Plaque.

1921

In the 1921 Census Emily was living at 159 Coleherne Court, Kensington, London and Middlesex, a servant aged 49.

The head of the household was Alice Anne Read aged 71. Emily’s not very well transcribed birthplace is Burkinghamshire, Hillsdenson. More likely Buckinghamshire, Hillesden. Hillesden is a village near Preston Bissett (where her grandmother Mary Cox came from) and Buckingham, Buckinghamshire.

Mary Cox had given birth out of wedlock to four girls, Maria, Ann, Eliza and Fanny (Emily’s Mother). She had married (as a widow) in 1874 to William Stuchberry, in Hillesden parish Church Buckinghamshire. In the 1841 and 1851 Censuses, she was living and working in Buckingham Union Workhouse.

Emily is diagnosed

Emily had a history of mental illness and spent the last 29 years of her life in mental hospitals. She was certified on 12 June 1924, aged 53, as “a person of unsound mind” and admitted to London County Mental Hospital, Hanwell. Her employer’s address in 1924 is given as 159 Coleherne Court, Kensington, telephone Kensington 3919. A widow called Alice Anne Read died there on 13 July 1924, who was Emily’s employer.

Emily was diagnosed initially as possible “nervous breakdown” but later was diagnosed as having Non Systematised Delusional Insanity.

On examination, Emily Elizabeth Campbell was “depressed and imagines she cannot do any more work. She crys (sic) when spoken to, her conversation was rambling and incoherent and she thinks people are persecuting her”.

Annie Powell, 33 Filmer Road, her sister and my grandmother, says EEC has behaved strangely for the past three weeks; she imagines people are talking about and coming after her. She hears voices talking to her.

Transfer to St. Ebba’s, Epsom

Emily later transferred to St Ebba’s Hospital in Epsom:

Admitted: to St Ebba’s on 25 May 1927
Informant: Mother, Fanny Campbell
Education: Elementary

Not married, one pregnancy 28 years ago, brought up by mother
Rheumatic fever when 14

Occupation: Housekeeper
Alcohol: not known but mistress took spirits to excess
Temperament: very reserved

Suggested causes: “nervous breakdown”

History: One month ago, mistress phoned to her sister, said she was depressed and cried a lot. Three weeks ago visited by relatives, they found her very depressed and crying and afraid she couldn’t do her work.

12 months ago relatives noticed that she rambled in her speech, imagines things, delusions of persecution, improved later.

Family History: parents married; mother 18; father 20; not related. Father died in paralysis, in stroke.

Height – 5’ 0.5”
Weight – 10st 13lbs
Hair – greyish-black
Dentures
Eyes – hazel
Hearing – fair
Diagnosis – Non Systematised Delusional Insanity.

Transfer to Long Grove

Emily was transferred to Long Grove Hospital, Epsom on 29 March 1938, to Area 6, Ward A1, Hospital Number 5811, as “not improved”.

She is recorded in the 1939 Register in Long Grove Hospital, Horton Lane, Epsom, Surrey.

Emily died on the 7 March 1953 in The Grove, (Long Grove Hospital) Horton Lane, Epsom, aged 82 of senility and cardiovascular degeneration. The record notes that he was formerly a housekeeper.

Emily never married. She was the mother of Harry Mitchell Campbell, born 15 December 1896, when she was 26.

Emily was buried in Horton Estate Cemetery, Epsom on 14 March 1953 in grave number 3151b. The superscript b (apparently) means furthest away from the footpath. The cemetery is now covered in trees, bushes and bramble patches and is completely neglected.

Pauline Powell


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