Mrs Harriet GAMMON, née Tanner (1793–1871)
Her son Henry Moses GAMMON (1826–1871)
Her sister Miss Elizabeth TANNER (1798–1859)
Their housekeeper Miss Martha KING (1825–1882)
and her sister
Miss Susan KING (1838–1882)
St Michael section: Row 5, Grave C47
[Above] IN MEMORY OF HENRY MOSES GAMMON / WHO DIED JULY 31, 1871 AGED 44 YEARS
AND OF MARTHA KING / WHO DIED JANUARY 28, 1882 AGED 56 YEARS
AND ALSO SUSAN KING / WHO DIED JANUARY 30, 1882 AGED 43 YEARS
[Below] ALSO OF HARRIET GAMMON / WHO DIED APRIL …, 1871 AGED 78 YEARS
AND OF ELIZABETH TANNER / WHO DIED MARCH 20, 1859 AGED 61 YEARS
Harriet Tanner was born in Oxford on 9 January 1793 and baptised at St Michael’s Church on 13 January, and her sister Elizabeth Tanner was born their five years later on 9 January 1798 and baptised on 14 February. They were the daughters of Francis Tanner of All Saints parish and Mary Joy of St Mary Magdalen parish who were married on 5 October 1783 at St Mary Magdalen Church. Harriet and Elizabeth’s two other siblings were also baptised at St Michael’s Church: Thomas Tanner in 1784 (died just before his second birthday), and Mary Ann Tanner in 1789 (who married James Blake at St Michael’s in 1817). Their father Francis died at the age of 70 in 1823 and was buried in St Michael’s churchyard on 14 January.
On 10 January 1826 at St Michael’s Church, Oxford, Harriet Tanner (33) married the wine merchant Moses Gammon (46), who was born in Warborough, and her sister Elizabeth was a witness. They had just one son:
- Henry Moses Gammon (born in Oxford on 18 November 1826 and baptised at St Michael’s Church on 17 December).
Mrs Mary Tanner, the mother of Harriet and Elizabeth, died in 1833 at the age of 79 and was buried at St Michael’s churchyard on 14 February.
At the time of the 1841 census Harriet was living at 1 Ship Street with her husband Moses Gammon and their son Henry (14). Harriet’s unmarried sister Elizabeth Tanner, who was a governess, was living with them.
They were still there in 1851: Harriet (58) was described as a gentlewoman and her husband Moses (71) as a gentleman, and their son Henry (24) was now a wine merchant’s clerk. Miss Elizabeth Tanner (52) was still with them and working as a private governess.
Moses died in Oxford near the end of the following year with his age then given as 74. His will was proved at the Prerogative Court at Canterbury, and in it he expressed his desire that he be buried in Warborough churchyard, and the burial duly took place there on 31 December 1852.
Left: 1 Ship Street, the former wine merchant’s shop where the
Gammon family, Elizabeth Tanner, and the Misses King lived for over forty years
Mrs Gammon’s sister Elizabeth Tanner died in 1859:
† Miss Elizabeth Tanner died at 1 Ship Street at the age of 61 on 20 March 1859 and was buried at St Sepulchre’s Cemetery on 24 March (burial recorded in the parish register of St Michael’s Church).
At the time of the 1861 census Mrs Harriet Gammon, a widow of 62, was living at 1 Ship Street with her son Henry (34), who was now himself a wine merchant. Miss Martha King (35), who may have been a relation, was now living with them (see more on her below).
The situation was the same in 1871, but Harriet was probably ill as a nurse was in attendance. She died just after the census;
† Mrs Harriet Gammon née Tanner died at 1 Ship Street at the age of 78 in 1871 and was buried at St Sepulchre’s Cemetery on 9 April (burial recorded in the parish register of St Michael’s Church).
Her son Henry died of apoplexy just four months later:
† Henry Moses Gammon died at 1 Ship Street at the age of 44 on 31 July 1871 and was buried at St Sepulchre’s Cemetery on 4 August (burial recorded in the parish register of St Michael’s Church).
His death notice in Jackson’s Oxford Journal read simply: “July 31, at his residence, No. 1 Ship-street, Henry Moses Gammon, aged 44.” His effects came to nearly £35,000, and his executors were James Wicks the younger, also a wine merchant, of 4 Ship Street, and his housekeeper Miss Martha King, who had been living with the family since at least 1861.
An inquest was held into his death, and Jackson’s Oxford Journal reported on it thus on 5 August 1871:
SUDDEN DEATH OF MR. GAMMON
We regret to state that Mr. H. M. Gammon, of the well-known firm of Guy and Gammon, wine merchants, of this city, expired suddenly on Monday last. He appeared in his usual health only a short time before his death, and in the course of a walk he had had the same morning with two friends, the subject of Colonel Bowyer’s death, the news of which had just become known in Oxford, formed a chief topic of conversation. In a few hours afterwards Mr. Gammon was himself a corpse. An inquest was held on his body the next day at his residence in Ship-street, before W. Brunner, Esq., Coroner, when the following evidence was given:— Mr, Briscoe, surgeon, deposed that he had known the deceased for upwards of 25 years. He was subject to gout, and for several years past witness had attended him professionally, the last occasion being on the 5th of July, when he was suffering from indigestion and suppressed gout. Deceased had been from home for a short time since then. About two o’clock in the afternoon on the previous day he was fetched to deceased, when he found him lying on his back on the bed. He was insensible, but not dead; he was breathing with great pain. His face was dark, and foam was coming from his mouth, with every symptom of apoplexy. Miss King, the deceased’s housekeeper, told him (witness) that he had come home about one o’clock the previous afternoon, and complained of a strange sensation and dizziness. He went upstairs, and directly afterwards rang the bell, when Miss King went upstairs, and found him sitting on the bed. He complained of being very ill, and said he was dying. He soon afterwards fell back on the bed, and she sent for a medical man. Mr. Briscoe was of opinion that apoplexy was the cause of death, and a verdict to that effect was returned.
Mr. Gammon was 44 years of age, and was much respected by a large circle of friends.
Their shop and home at 1 Ship Street, were taken over by George Marygold (a printer corrector at Oxford University Press) and his wife Frances, and later their daughter, who ran it as a boarding house.
The Misses Martha and Susan King
These two sisters were both born in Wytham: Martha King was baptised there on 20 March 1825 and Susan King on 28 October 1838. They were the daughters of Robert King of Wytham and Susannah Townsend of Oxford, who were married at St Michael’s Church in Oxford on 16 October 1817. Robert King was a temporary land steward at Fulbrook when his eldest son Frederick was born there in 1818, and Bailiff to the Earl of Abingdon when his other nine children were baptised at Wytham: as well as Martha and Susan, there were Joseph (1819), Mary (1821), Charles (1823), Harry (1829), Charles Martin (1831), Miranda (1833), and Robert (1835).
In 1851 Martha King (25) was the housekeeper to a farmer at Stanton Harcourt, while her younger sister Susan King (12) was paying a visit to Botley with their father Robert (60), who was described as a former coal merchant, their mother Susannah (54) and her brother Charles (19).
In 1861 Martha King was living with Mrs Harriet Gammon (see above), while her sister Susan King (22) was the governess of the Jones family at Warkworth Hall, Northamptonshire.
Their father died in 1870, and was buried at Kidlington. His death announcement in Jackson’s Oxford Journal read: “Sept. 13, at West Lawn, Kidlington, Oxon, Mr. Robert King, aged 80, formerly of Wytham, Berks, for upwards of a quarter of a century the must respected Steward of the Estates of the late Earl of Abingdon.” His full obituary appears in the edition published on 22 October 1870.
In 1871 Miss Martha King was the housekeeper of Mrs Harriet Gammon, and then of her son Henry, who both died later that year. Her sister Susan (32) was the housekeeper of the Akerman family at Grafton, Oxfordshire in 1871.
It seems that Martha King inherited her employer’s business and received a large legacy from him, as at the time of the 1881 census the two sisters and their mother were reunited in Oxford. Miss Martha King (56), who now described herself as a wine importer, was living at 1 Preston Villas, Banbury Road with her younger sister Susan King (42) and their mother Mrs Susannah King (84). They had one servant.
The sisters Martha and Susan King died within two days of each other at the beginning of the following year and were buried on the same day in the same grave as Martha’s former employers:
† Miss Martha King died at 1 Preston Villas, Banbury Road at the age of 56 on 28 January 1882 and was buried at St Sepulchre’s Cemetery on 1 February (burial recorded in the parish register of St Michael’s Church).
Her effects came to £24,489 4s. 4d.
† Miss Susan King died at 1 Preston Villas, Banbury Road at the age of 43 on 30 January 1882 and was buried at St Sepulchre’s Cemetery on 1 February (burial recorded in the parish register of St Michael’s Church).
Her effects came to £716 7s. 3d., and her executor was her brother Frederick King, an auctioneer & surveyor of Tottenham.
The sisters had a joint death notice in Jackson’s Oxford Journal on 4 February 1882:
Jan. 28, at No. 1, Preston Villa, Banbury Road, Oxford, after a long illness, Martha, second daughter of the late Mr. Robert King, of Wytham, Berks, aged 56 years; and on Jan. 30 at the same residence, Susan, youngest daughter of the said Robert King, aged 43 years.
Their mother Mrs Susannah King died nine years later in 1891. Her death notice in Jackson’s Oxford Journal read:
March 27, at 47, Banbury-road, Oxford, Susanna, widow of the late Mr. Robert King, of Kidlington, aged 94.
Mrs King was buried at Kidlington with her husband.