Frank Arthur BELLAMY (1863–1936)
His older sister Miss Ada Maria BELLAMY (1857–1923)
St Mary Magdalen section: Row 4, Grave D69

Frank Bellamy



BORN FEB. 7, 1858 [actually 1857]
DIED MAY 26, 1925


BORN OCT. 17, 1864 [actually 1863].
DIED FEB 15, 1936.


See the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography for the full career of
Frank Arthur Bellamy, astronomer and philatelist

Ada Maria Bellamy was born at Albert Place, St Ebbe’s, Oxford on 7 February 1857, the fifth child of the Oxford bookbinder Montague Bellamy and his wife Zilpah Butwell. She was baptised at Holy Trinity Church in St Ebbe's on 17 May. At the time of the 1861 census Ada (4) was living with her parents at 57 St John Street

Her younger brother Frank Arthur Bellamy was born at 57 St John Street, Oxford on 17 October 1863 and was their seventh and last child. He was baptised at St Mary Magdalen Church on 27 January 1864.

See separate grave for more about their parents and other siblings.

At the time of the 1871 census Ada (14), who was still at school, and Frank (7) were at home in St John Street with their parents and their four other siblings Montague (20), Frederick (17), Zilpah (15), and Harry (10). By 1874 their father was described as a college butler as well as a bookbinder.

Their brother Frederick was Second Assistant at the Radcliffe Observatory when he died in 1878 at the age of 25, and their brother Harry took his place in the post.

By the time of the 1881 census Ada (24) and Frank (17), who was then at Magdalen College School, were living at 44 Wellington Square with their parents and their sister Zilpah (26). Their father was now a lodging-house keeper.

Frank's brother Harry emigrated to the USA, and in July 1881, just a few months before his eighteenth birthday, Frank became the third Bellamy brother to be appointed Second Assistant at the Radcliffe Observatory.

Ada and Frank’s father Montague Bellamy died in 1882 at the age of 52 and their mother Zilpah Bellamy in 1887 at the age of 59, and both were buried in another grave in St Sepulchre’s Cemetery. Frank at the age of 22 became the head of the household and henceforth had to look after his two older unmarried sisters Ada and Zilpah.

In 1889 Frank Bellamy helped to found the Oxford Photographic Society.

On 13 December 1890 a meeting to consider forming a “postage stamp collecting club or society in Oxford” was held in the Boys’ School Room at Gloucester Green, and the Jubilee Philatelic Association was formed on 27 January 1891, with Frank Bellamy as its Honorary Secretary and Treasurer: this merged into the Oxford Philatelic Society on 22 March 1892. Frank appears to have continued as Secretary and Treasurer of the Society until 1930, and by 1934 had taken up the role again.

At the time of the 1891 census Frank (27), who described himself as a tutor in meteorology, astronomy, and botany, was living at 4 St Bernard’s Road (which was then called St John’s Road) with his sisters Zilpah (38) and Ada Maria (33), who were both described as living on their own means. Also staying with him was his cousin Minnie Bellamy (19), and his sister-in-law Frances Mary Bellamy (32), the wife of Harry (28), who was a professional singer with the D’Oyly Carte Opera Company and currently lodging in Penzance.

Frank and Ada's sister Zilpah Bellamy died on 30 July 1892 at the age of 36 and was buried in their parents' grave.

In June 1893 Frank was promoted to First Assistant at the Radcliffe Observatory.

At the time of the 1901 census Frank Bellamy (37) was living at 4 St Bernard’s Road with his only surviving sister Ada (43). His niece Ethel Frances Butwell Bellamy (29), the daughter of his brother Montague, had also come to live with them.

All three were still there in 1911, and his niece Ethel (39) was now working as an astronomical assistant at the Observatory. Meanwhile Ethel's sister Edith (26) was working as a draper's shop assistant in Winchester.

Frank Bellamy remained at 4 St Bernard’s Road until about 1915. He does not appear to be listed in Kelly's Directory for 1916/17.

Frank Bellamy's older sister Ada died at Cumnor in 1923 and was the first person buried in this grave:

† Miss Ada Maria Bellamy died at Chawley Farm in Cumnor at the age of 65 on 26 May 1923 and was buried in St Sepulchre’s Cemetery on 30 May (burial recorded in parish register of St Mary Magdalen Church).

The grave is in the St Mary Magdalen section of the cemetery, where her parents had lived in the 1860s, and they may have reserved this plot at the same time as their own.

Bellamy blue plaque

In 1925 Frank Bellamy donated his photographs of changing Oxford to the Oxford City Library, and 195 of his photographs are recorded on the Picture Oxon website (search for “Bellamy”).

By 1928 he was living at 28 Polstead Road.

In 1930 Frank Bellamy moved to 2 Winchester Road, also in north Oxford, with his niece Ethel Bellamy (an astronomer who had helped her uncle in the photographic survey of the sky). On 8 October 2019 a blue plaque commemorating both of them was unveiled at that address.

Frank Bellamy died in Oxford in 1936 and was buried in the same grave as his sister Ada:

† Frank Arthur Bellamy died at 2 Winchester Road at the age of 72 on 15 February 1936 and was buried at St Sepulchre’s Cemetery on 18 February (burial recorded in parish register of St Mary Magdalen Church).

His wealth at death was £1577 10s. 5d.

Frank Bellamy's nieces who lived with him

Miss Ethel Frances Butwell Bellamy (born 1881) was granted an honorary M.A. by the University of Oxford on 30 January 1934. She retired in 1947 and in about 1949 moved from her uncle's house at 2 Winchester Road to 36 Church Street, Upway, Dorset. She died at the Rodlands Nursing Home in Ullswater Crescent, Weymouth on 7 December 1960. Her effects came to £2,139 10s. 6d.
See her Wikipedia entry and her section under Frank Bellamy's entry in the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography

Miss Edith Winifred Bellamy (born 1884) came to live with her older sister. She predeceased her, dying at Weymouth on 15 June 1958. Her effects came to £146 18s. 8d.

Two other graves have additional information about the family
of Frank Arthur BELLAMY and his sister Ada Maria BELLAMY:

Their parents Montague & Zilpah BELLAMY and their sister Zilpah Marquitta BELLAMY

Their brother Montague Edward James Butwell BELLAMY

Bellamy ceremonyCeremony organized by the Oxford Philatelic Society at the grave of Frank Bellamy
to mark the eightieth anniversary of his death on 15 February 2016



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