William Edwards
Agnes Sarah Edwards

William Edwards
, the son of Thomas (a ganger) and Harriet (née Summers) Edwards, was born in Heathfield, East Sussex, about 1854. He married Agnes Sarah Hardy, the daughter of George (a labourer) and Martha (née Simmons or Symonds) Hardy on 3 April 1888.

William and Agnes Sarah were the parents of eight children: Edith Sarah (b. 4 October 1889; d. 11 November 1962), William Thomas (b. 28 December 1890; m. Janet Dorothy Pope 19 February 1923; d. 28 July 1957), Mary Isabel (b. 28 May 1892; d. 23 October 1898; bur. Eight Mile Plains Reserve 24 October 1898), Richard George (b. 22 February 1894; d. 17 April 1918), Albert John Edward (b. 28 September 1895; m. Gwendoline Ida Griffin 14 December 1918; d. 9 February 1943), Elsie Ethel (b. 21 December 1897; d. 17 October 1898), Daisy Irene (b. 1 November 1899; m. Robert Roy Kellett 2 September 1923); Eva Florence (b. 3 December 1901).

One of these children, Richard George Edwards, fell in battle in World War One. Born at Kuraby on the South Coast Line and educated at the Cooper’s Plains State School, he gave up his job as a grocer, enlisted in the 42nd Battalion Australian Infantry (2798) on 31 October 1916 and left for overseas service on HMAT Demosthenes on 23 December 1916. He was killed in action on 17 April 1918 in the battle of the Somme. A visitor to France may see his name on memorial panel 135 in the Bonnay Communal Cemetery Extension where 106 identified Commonwealth combatants were buried. Bonnay is a village and commune in the Department of the Somme, on the north-west bank of the River Ancre.

William Edwards was living at “Rosedale, Cooper’s Plains, when he had the misfortune to contract typhoid fever. His death in the Brisbane Hospital on 7 January 1918 was followed two days later by his funeral at ‘Grenier’s Cemetery, Cooper’s Plains’ in the presence of: Albert Alexander Hislop (undertaker), the Reverend A Higgins of the Church of England, and Tom William Spring and D Robinson (witnesses).

Agnes Sarah Edwards passed away in the Brisbane Hospital on 15 August 1935 and was laid to rest in the Cooper’s Plains Cemetery two days later. The Reverend P George Shaw of the Church of England conducted the service which was certified by WE Spicer and witnessed by J Dibble and William Milne.

For the record, the siblings of Agnes Sarah (b. 16 March 1866 Rockhampton) were as follows: Philip Edward (b. 8 May 1858), Edwin George (b. 2 July 1859), Alfred (b. 18 May 1861; d. 28 February 1867), Eliza Amelia (b. 11 March 1863), Henry John (b. 29 October 1864; d. 20 May 1865), Matilda Esther (b. 28 July 1868; d. 18 February 1869), Edith Jane (b. 29 January 1870), Albert Frederick (b. 25 September 1872), Isabella Caroline (b. 14 September 1874; d. 8 March 1894), Charles William (b. 24 May 1877; d. 6 December 1877), and Arthur James (b. 19 February 1880). For additional details of her parents, see the entry for her brother, Edwin George Hardy who is also buried in God’s Acre.