Mrs Rhoda EDWARDS, née Munt (1790–1853)
St Michael section: Row 7, Grave C49
BORN [JAN] 22, 1790.
DIED DEC. 11, 1853.
… … … her affectionate Son
Rhoda Munt was born in Wheatley on 22 January 1790 and baptised at Cuddesdon on 21 February. She was the daughter of Francis Munt and his wife Rebekah. Wheatley was then part of Cuddesdon parish, and her five siblings were also baptised at the same church: Rachel (1785), Francis (1792), James (1799), Sarah (1802), and James (1804).
On 15 October 1823 at St Ebbe’s Church, Rhoda Munt married John Edwards: both were then living in that parish, and John, who was a shoemaker, signed his name with a cross. They had two children:
- Thomas Edwards (born at Newland in 1824 and baptised at Cogges Church on 14 November)
- Elizabeth Edwards (born at George’s Yard, St Clement’s, Oxford in 1828 and baptised at St Clement’s Church on 19 October)
The couple evidently began their married life at Newland, near Witney, but had moved to one of the overcrowded yards of St Clement’s by 1828.
Rhoda’s husband John Edwards died in the St Clement’s cholera outbreak of 1832 at the age of 36 in George’s Yard (which may have been in Cave Street, as its name was then George Street). He was buried in the new St Clement’s churchyard on 4 October.
At the time of the 1841 census Rhoda Edwards, aged about 51, was a servant of James Prior at the Bell Inn (on part of the site of the large block in Cornmarket Street on the north corner of Market Street). Her daughter Elizabeth (12) was living in Merton Street, where she was the servant of the tailor William Giles and his family.
Rhoda's employer died in 1850. At the time of the 1851 census Rhoda (recorded as 50 but in fact 61) was working for James Prior's daughter May Prior (25) who was now the innkeeper of the Bell, and her sisters Emma (20) and Harriet (17).
Rhoda's daughter Elizabeth (21) spent the census night of 1851 in Headington Workhouse.
Mrs Edwards died in 1853:
† Mrs Rhoda Edwards née Munt died in St Michael’s parish, probably at the Bell Inn in Cornmarket, at the age of 63 on 11 December 1853 and was buried at St Sepulchre’s Cemetery on 15 December (burial recorded in the parish register of St Michael’s Church).
Thomas Edwards must have been the “affectionate son” mentioned on the headstone. Her grave lies between that of her employer John Prior and his daughter Mrs Emma Thompson.