My husband is Michael Murray and his grandfather was Maurice John Arthur Murray.
Maurice had a sister, Mary Ann Jannette Murray who was born on this day, 23rd February 1884.
Click here to read Mary Ann Jannette's story..
Mary Ann Jannette Murray and Maurice John Arthur Murray were baptised in St Botolph's Church in Aldgate, London.
Mary Ann Jannette and Maurice John Arthur were the children of James William Murray and Kezia Penn. All their children were baptised at St Botolph's and the records of the baptisms are in the parish registers.
Edward William Murray 1872
Alice Mary Murray 1874
Esther Rose Murray 1877
Maurice John Arthur Murray 1880
Mary Ann Jannette Murray 1884
Elizabeth Maria Murray 1885
George Henry Murray 1887
Francis Murray 1890
Florence Louise Murray 1890
Amy Ellen Murray 1893
Edith Nelly Murray 1896
There has been a church on the St Botolph's site since Saxon times and the Saxon foundations were excavated when the present church was built. The church was re-built in the early thirteenth century and survived the Great Fire of London (1666). However, by the early eighteenth century St. Botolph's had fallen into disrepair and the decision was made to build a new church. The old church was demolished in 1725 and the present church was completed in 1729. The building was designed by James Gould in the classical style. Unusually, the tower is at the East End with the chancel underneath. The font, pulpit and organ all date from the eighteenth century.
So, Michael's grandfather and all his grandfather's siblings were baptised in the eighteenth century font at St Botolph's.
The great actor Edward Alleyn, contemporary of William Shakespeare, was baptised at St Botolph's in 1566 and the poet John Keats was actually baptised in the present font in 1795.
Sir John Cass 1661 - 1718
Inside St Botolph's church there is a memorial to Sir John Cass who was a was a merchant, politician and philanthropist. He served as both Alderman and Sheriff of the City of London; he was also MP for the City and knighted in 1712.
In 1709, Cass founded a school for fifty boys and forty girls in buildings in the churchyard of St Botolph's, Aldgate. He planned to leave all his property to the school but when he died of a brain haemorrhage in 1718 he'd only initialled three pages of his Will. His heirs contested the Will and it took thirty years before the Court of Chancery found in favour of the school and the endowment re-commenced.
Fast forward to about 1890 to find that Maurice John Arthur Murray was a pupil at Sir John Cass School.
This is according to Michael's mum, Rose Murray. She told us that her father was a pupil at the school for which his parents paid a small amount of money each week.
The Sir John Cass Foundation exists to this day and provides education for young people in London through grants and its support for a number of institutions bearing Sir John Cass’s name. The school building attended by Maurice John Arthur Murray remains but is now used for the Sir John Cass primary school.
In his turn, Michael Murray (my husband) attended Sir John Cass School for his secondary education. This cheeky chap in his Sir John Cass school uniform is Michael in about 1959. And outside the school, on a walk down Memory Lane a couple of years ago.
Founder’s Day takes place at Sir John Cass School every year as near as possible to Sir John Cass’s birthday on 20th February. When Michael attended the school, the pupils were told that when Sir John Cass died suddenly in the middle of signing his Will his quill pen was stained red with his blood. So, each year on Founder's Day the pupils wore a red feather to honour Sir John Cass and the tradition continues to this day.