Mrs Sophia ARIES, née Howard (1811–1883)
Her son James ARIES (1858–1867)
St Paul section: Row 8, Grave A3 [St Paul ref. A.5]





Affectionate Remembrance

JAMES the Beloved Son of
Who departed this life
NOV. 15 1867.
In the 10th Year of his Age.



Mother of the above
Who died Oct. 28. 1883.
Aged 72 Years.



Sophia Howard was born in Poyle (now in Berkshire, but then in Middlesex, near Stanmore) on 9 September 1811 and baptised at Bethel Independent Chapel there on 11 October. She was the daughter of John Adolphus Howard and Rosamund Hancock, known as Rose, who were married in Wooburn on 30 March 1807. Three of Sophia's siblings were also born in Poyle: John (1809), Henry (1813), and Mary Ann (1816). The family then moved to Oxfordshire, and Sophia's next three siblings were born and baptised at Hampton Gay: George (1818), Fanny (1821), and Joseph (1823). Her next brother, William, was born in Oxfordshire in 1833. At the time of the 1841 census Sophia (aged about 29) was a lace-maker, living at Church Street (now Rogers Street) in Summertown with her father John Howard, who was a rag dealer, and her younger brothers Joseph (aged about 15) and William (7).

On 3 July 1842 in Oxford's Registry Office, Sophia Howard, described as a sempstress, married her first husband Joseph Cantwell. She was about 34, and Joseph, who was born in Marston in 1821/2, was ten years her junior. They had two children:

  • Josiah Cantwell (born in Summertown on 8 February 1848)
  • Ann Cantwell (born in Summertown in mid-1850; died aged 18 months, buried at Summertown on 14 December 1851
  • John Adolphus Howard Cantwell (born in 1852 and baptised at Summertown Congregational Church in October; died aged ten weeks, buried at Summertown on 5 December).

The 1851 census shows Sophia (39) living in Summertown with her husband Joseph (29) and their children Josiah (3) and Ann (nine months). Joseph was working as a dairyman, and his nephew Charles (13), a dairyman’s labourer, was also living with them. By the end of that year, baby Ann had died, and was buried at Summertown Church on 14 December 1851. Their next baby John was born and died the following year.

On 11 April 1857 Sophia’s first husband Joseph Cantwell died of consumption, aged about 35.

In the third quarter of 1857 in Oxford, just months after her first husband’s death, Mrs Sophia Cantwell (46) married another milkman, James Aries (23) in Oxford. He was born in Bodicote in 1833/4, and was exactly half her age. They had one son:

  • James Aries (born in Summertown in 1858 and baptised at St Paul’s Church, Walton Street on 29 May 1859).

Early in 1859 (between James’s birth and baptism) Sophia, now Mrs Aries, and her second husband, who was still working as a milkman, moved to Clarendon Street in Jericho with Sophia’s son Josiah Cantwell from her first marriage.

At the time of the 1861 census Sophia (49) was living at 41 Clarendon Street with her husband James Aries (27) and her sons Joseph Cantwell (13), who was already working as a milkman, and James Aries junior (2).

Sophia and James Aries then moved to Wellington Street, also in Jericho, where their young son James junior died in 1867:

† James Aries junior died at 39 Wellington Street at the age of nine on 15 November 1867 and was buried at St Sepulchre’s Cemetery on 19 November (burial recorded in register of St Paul’s Church).

The following death announcement appeared in Jackson’s Oxford Journal on 23 November 1867: “Nov. 15, at 39, Wellington-street, St. Paul’s, after a few hours’ illness, James, the beloved child of James and Sophia Aries, in his 10th year.”

Mrs Aries's son Josiah Cantwell was married in 1870:

  • On 11 May 1870 at St Mary's Church, Witney, Josiah Cantwell, described as a dairyman of Oxford, married
    Mary Ann Brooks, the daughter of the fuller Solomon Brooks. Josiah's first name was wrongly registered as Joseph.

In 1881 Sophia Aries (69) and her husband James (47) were living at Wellington Street (with the number now given as 37 rather than 39). James now described himself as a grazer, cowkeeper, and dairyman. Two years later Mrs Aries was dead:

† Mrs Sophia Aries died in Oxford at the age of 72 on 28 October 1883 and was buried at St Sepulchre’s Cemetery in the same grave as her son (burial not recorded in register of St Paul’s Church).

Sophia’s second husband

James Aries (57) was living alone as the farmer of Home Farm, Marston at the time of the 1891 census. He died at the age of 61 at the very end of 1894 and was buried in the churchyard of St Nicholas’s Church, Old Marston on 2 January 1895.

Sophia’s only surviving child (by her first husband)

Josiah Cantwell (born 1847/8) continued to work as a dairyman. After his marriage in 1870 he became the first leaseholder of the present 174 Kingston Road (then numbered 1 Kingston Road), which was in the parish of Ss Philip & James at this time).

At the time of the 1871 census Josiah was living in Kingston Road with his wife Mary Ann and their three children: Joseph (9), Mary (8), and Gertrude (3); and also living with them was his mother Sophia’s brother, the widower John Howard (71), who was also born in Poyle, Middlesex.

They were still at 174 Kingston Road in 1891 and 1901, but by 1911 Josiah Cantwell (63) had retired and moved to Cranford at 137 Windmill Road, Headington with his wife Mary Ann (62), their unmarried daughter Gertrude (33), and their grandson Leslie Wreford Baker (2). Josiah Cantwell died there on 14 April 1915 at the age of 67. His effects came to £2,055 8s., and his wife Mary Ann was his executor.



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