William SAVAGE (1836–1911)
His first wife Kate SAVAGE, née Besley (1826–1872)
His second wife Mrs Susannah SAVAGE (c.1838–1913)
St Giles section: Row 2, Grave B27 (bis)
THE BELOVED WIFE OF
SEPTEMBER …, 1877
AGED 46 YEARS
ALSO OF WILLIAM
HUSBAND OF THE ABOVE
WHO DIED JUNE 21, 1911
AGED 74 YEARS
SECOND WIFE OF THE ABOVE
WHO DIED … 1913
AGED 78 YEARS
Bostock wrongly referenced two graves that are quite unconnected as Row 2, Grave 27. This is the second of the pair, which should properly be Grave 28; but that number has been given to the next grave along
William Savage was born in Bladon in 1836 and baptised there on 30 October. He was the son of Abner Savage (born in Bladon in 1810) and Jane Green (born in Shorthampton in c.1816), who were married at Shorthampton on 4 December 1833. In 1841 William (5) was living at Market Place, Woodstock with his mother Jane, who was described as a baker, and his brothers Abner (7) and Charles (2), and Elizabeth (ten months). His father was away from home.
By October 1843 the family had moved to St Clement’s in Oxford, and William’s father was working for the police. They first lived in Cherwell Street, but by 1845, when his father was Inspector of the University Police, they were living in London Place. William’s seven youngest siblings were all baptised at St Clement’s Church: Jane (1843), Mary Anne (1845), George (1847), Emily (1851), Henry (1853), and Albert (1856).
By 1851 William (14) was working as a law clerk, and his family was now living at London Place St Clement’s. William’s mother now described herself as the wife of an Inspector of Police, and his father did not spend census night at home (which is not surprising, as the University Police took care of Oxford by night, and the City Police by day). From 1853 their address is given as The Plain
Kate Besley, William Savage’s first wife, was born in East Hendred in Berkshire in 1826 and baptised there on 24 December 1826. She was the daughter of Charles Besley (also born in East Hendred in c.1775) and Elizabeth Wiggins (born in Cote in c.1777). Kate’s older sister Mary Ann was baptised at East Hendred in 1825, and her five younger siblings on the dates in brackets: Robert (1827), Sarah (1829), Jane (1831), Joseph (1832), and Frances (1834). Kate’s father was a master blacksmith, and by 1851 her brothers Joseph and Levi were working with him.
On 24 April 1859 at East Hendred, William Savage married his first wife Kate Besley. They had the following children:
- Frances Elizabeth Savage (born at Tyndale Road, east Oxford in 1859 and baptised at St Clement's Church on 30 December); died at St Giles's Street in May 1862 aged 2½ and buried in St Clement's churchyard on 17 May
- Louisa Savage (born at Tyndale Road, east Oxford in 1861 and baptised at St Clement's on 24 June);
died aged two months and buried at East Hendred churchyard on 22 August)
- Kate Louisa Savage (born at 10 St Giles’s Street, Oxford in 1864 and baptised at St Giles’s Church on 28 October)
- William Savage (born at 10 St Giles’s Street, Oxford in 1863 and baptised at East Hendred Church on 1 October); died at 10 St Giles’s Street near the end of 1863
- William Besley Savage (born at 10 St Giles’s Street, Oxford on 9 March 1866 and baptised at St Giles’s Church on 6 May)
- George Robert Savage (born at 10 St Giles’s Street, Oxford in 1867 and baptised at St Giles’s Church on 7 April)
- Percival Charles Savage (born at 10 St Giles’s Street, Oxford in 1869/70 and baptised at St Giles’s Church on 6 January 1870).
When their first daughters was born in late 1859 and mid-1861, the family was living at Tyndale Street (then called William Street) in east Oxford.
At the time of the 1861 census William Savage (26), described as a law clerk, and his wife Kate and their baby daughter Frances were paying a visit to Kate's parents at Church Street, East Hendred.
Their next daughter Louisa was born at Tyndale Road soon after that census but died there aged two months and was buried at East Hendred on 22 August.
By 1862 the family had moved to 10 St Giles's Street. This house was behind the present No. 9, and was demolished in 1906 to make way for the Rawlinson Building (the north end of the north quadrangle).
Their eldest daughter Frances died at 10 St Giles's Street in May 1862 and was buried in St Clement's churchyard.
William Savage was described as a law clerk at the baptisms of his children up to 1867, but in directories from 1867 to 1869 was listed as the Butler of University College.
In 1871 William Savage (38), described as a college butler, was living at 10 St Giles Street with his children Kate (6), William (5), and George (3) plus one servant. His wife Kate (40) and baby Percival spent census night with her parents Charles and Elizabeth Besley in East Hendred.
William Savage’s first wife Kate died in 1872:
† Mrs Kate Savage née Besley died at 10 St Giles’s Street at the age of 45 in September 1872 and was buried at St Sepulchre’s Cemetery on 12 September (burial recorded in the parish register of St Giles’s Church)
Their eldest son William Besley Savage was taken to the USA by the Revd Prescott of St Clemens Church in Philadelphia, and he became one of the country’s first boy soloists.
Susannah, William Savage’s second wife, was born at King’s Heath, near Birmingham, Worcestershire in c.1838, but is hard to identify. She is likely to have been a widow, and she may well be Susannah Hunt (birth reg. Kings Norton district third quarter of 1838) who married George Lacey in in 1867 (reg. Kensington third quarter); in that case she may have been the Susannah Lacey who married a William Savage in the East Retford district in 1874.
William and Susannah Savage began their married life in a house on the Iffley Road (whose number was then 63 but is the present 109): this was in St Clement’s parish. They had just one child:
- James Savage (born at the Iffley Road in 1877 and baptised at Cowley St John Church on 23 December).
In 1881 William Savage (44), a college butler, was living at 43 Iffley Road with Susannah (42) and their son James (3), plus three of his children from his first marriage: Kate Louisa (16), George Robert (14), and Percival Charles (11).
In 1891 William Savage (54), still described as a college butler, was living in the Iffley Road with his wife Susannah (52) and Kate (26), his daughter by his first marriage, who was a schoolteacher. Susannah’s son James (13) may already have been dead, but it is hard to find his burial. He was certainly dead by 1911.
In 1901 William Savage (64), now working as a coal assistant, was living at 109 Iffley Road with his wife Susannah (62).
By 1911 William (74) and Susannah (72) were living at South View in Old Road, Headington (now numbered 133 Old Road). William Savage died there in June that year, and was buried with his first wife:
† William Savage died at South View,  Old Road, Headington at the age of 74 on 21 June 1911. He was buried at St Sepulchre’s Cemetery on 24 January (burial recorded in the parish register of St Giles’s Church)
His effects came to £322 18s. 7d., and probate was granted to his widow Susannah.
William Savage’s second wife Susannah appears to have moved to 76 Argyle Street, where she died in 1913:
† Mrs Susannah Savage died at 76 Argyle Street at the age of 75 on 26 December 1913 and was buried at St Sepulchre’s Cemetery on 30 December (burial recorded in the parish register of St Giles’s Church)
Her effects came to £317 2s. 11d., and her executor was the commercial traveller William Henry Lawley.
Surviving children of William Savage and his first wife Kate
- Kate Louisa Savage (born in 1864) was was headmistress of a church infant school in Reading in 1901; by 1911 she was headmistress of an elementary school there.
- William Besley Savage (born in 1866) married Anna May Sutphen in New York in 1890, and they had two children: Gordon Prescott Savage (born 1895) and William Sutphen Savage (born 1898). William Besley Savage qualified as a doctor in 1893, and was naturalized in 1894. He married his second wife Adele Louise Halsey Ingersoll in 1908. He died on 29 October 1931 in East Islip, New York.
- George Robert Savage (born in 1867) was a bank clerk lodging in Chard in Somerset in 1891. He moved to Mombasa in East Africa and was still living there in 1931.
- Percival Charles Savage (born in 1869/70) was a gunner in the army in 1891, living at Woolwich Barracks. He married Benia Martin in Derbyshire near the end of 1901, but they had no children. In 1911 he was working as a postman and living at Chadderton in Lancashire with his wife. He died at Hensington House, Woodstock on 26 October 1956 and his effects came to £34 14s. 6d.