John COX (1800–1873)
His wife Mrs Elizabeth COX, née Arnett (1797–1872)
St Giles section: Row 10a, Grave B32½

John & Elizabeth Cox





[The rest of the inscription to her husband
JOHN COX, who died the following
year, was seen by Bostock, but
has now worn away]





E - C

J - C


John Cox the younger was born in Holywell, Oxford on 25 March 1800, the eldest child of John Cox (a cook at New College) and Sarah Vick, who were married at New Hinksey (then in Berkshire) in 1797. His birth was registered at New Road Baptist Chapel the same day. In 1813 he was apprenticed for seven years to the printers John Bartlett and Thomas Newman. In July 1822 John, described as a printer of Holywell, purchased from Robert Townsend two messuages or tenements (formerly one messuage) in Standlake, and his uncle Thomas Cox, a cordwainer of Standlake, acted as his trustee..

Elizabeth Arnett was born in Holywell, Oxford on 25 October 1797, and her birth was registered at New Road Baptist Chapel. She was the daughter of John Arnett (born 6 March 1775), who had come to Oxford with Samuel Collingwood when the latter became Superintendent of the Press in c.1802, and Sarah Timberlake (born in Beckley on 17 January 1775). Elizabeth’s parents were married at St Ebbe’s Church on 23 May 1796, and in 1814 when her father became head of the Bible Department, the family moved from Holywell to North House in the Oxford University Press quadrangle. See grave of her brother Joseph Arnett for more about her siblings.

John Cox and Elizabeth Arnett were married on 9 November 1830 at St Thomas’s Church, Oxford. The Oxford University Press was then in that parish, and it is likely that John was already working for them, as one of the witnesses was Samuel Collingwood, the Superintendent of the Press. They had the following children:

  • John Lemuel Cox (born in 1832 and died on 16 January 1833, aged eighteen months; buried at New Road Baptist Chapel on 19 January)
  • Samuel Cox (born in Oxford on 12 July 1833 and baptised at St Thomas’s Church on 4 August, but also registered at New Road Baptist Chapel on 8 June 1835)
  • Martha Cox (born at 20 Walton Place (now 23 Walton Street), Oxford on 15 March 1836)
  • John Cox (born in Oxford in 1838).

John and Elizabeth Cox were living at Walton Street in March 1834 when John Cox sold his Standlake property for £75 to the surgeon John James Ireland. They were still there at the time of the 1841 census with their children Samuel (8), Martha (5), and John (3). They had a lodger and a servant.

Elizabeth’s father John Arnett died on 7 June 1845 and was buried at New Road Baptist Chapel.

By 1851 John (51) and Elizabeth (52) were living at the Clarendon Printing Office Manager’s House. Their eldest son Samuel (18) was now the apprentice of the chemist Edward Thurland at 10 Magdalen Street and was lodging with him, but their other children Martha (15) and John (12) were still at home, as well as their niece Elizabeth Clark (26), who was a milliner. They had one servant.

Their elder surviving son was married in 1857:

  • In the fourth quarter of 1857 in the Westbury district of Wiltshire, Samuel Cox married Lucilla Jane Sprigg.

By 1860 John and Eliza had moved to Wellington Place in St Giles’s parish. Their daughter was married that year:

  • On 11 September 1860 at St Giles's Church, Oxford, Martha Cox married John Williams, a banker’s clerk from Aylesbury.

At the time of the 1861 census John and Eliza Cox still had a boarder and a servant, but their three children had all left home: Samuel (27) and his wife Lucilla (30) were living in Maidstone with their daughter Ada (four months); Martha (25) and her accountant husband John Williams were living in Aylesbury; and John (21) was lodging at Station Street in Aylesbury, where he worked as a banker’s clerk.

The address of John & Eliza Cox is specified as 3 Wellington Place in 1871, and their unmarried son John (32), who was now an accountant, was paying them a visit on census night. Their daughter Martha Williams was still living in Aylesbury with her husband, who was now a bank manager, and they had two children, Charles (1) and Edith (5 months), and two servants.

Mrs Cox died the year after the census:

† Mrs Elizabeth Cox, née Arnett died at Wellington Place at the age of 73 on 16 March 1872 and was buried at St Sepulchre’s Cemetery on 21 March (burial recorded in the parish register of St Giles’s Church).

John Cox died one year after his wife:

† John Cox died at Wellington Place at the age of 73 on 20 May 1873 and was buried at St Sepulchre’s Cemetery on 26 May (burial recorded in the parish register of St Giles’s Church).

His death announcement in Jackson’s Oxford Journal on 24 May 1873 read simply: “May 20, at 3, Wellington-place, St. Giles’s, Oxford, Mr. John Cox, of the University Press, in the 74th year of his age.” His will was proved in Oxford just three weeks later on 10 June. His estate was initially valued at under £1,500, but it was valued at under £3,000 when his will was resworn twenty years later in August 1893. His executors were his sons Samuel Cox (a chemist of Maidstone in Kent) and John Cox (an accountant of Oxford), and his son-in-law John Williams (a bank manager of Aylesbury).

Less than four months after his death, on 11 September 1873 at St Peter-in-the-East Church, Oxford, his younger surviving son John Cox junior married Sarah Elizabeth Whiting, the daughter of the late Henry Whiting, Manciple of Magdalen College.



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