Adolphus Careless Wright (1851-1914) was born at 70 Princes Road, Bermondsey, on 21st March 1851, the third of four children of James Wright, a commercial traveller, and his wife, Fanny (née Careless). Adolphus (as yet unnamed) was just one week old at the time of the census and a professional nurse, Ann Barrat, was staying with the family. He was baptised at St James’ Church, Bermondsey, on 28th March 1852 (the officiant incorrectly put his year of birth down as 1852 instead of 1851 and his address as 7 Princes Road instead of 70). When his sister, Sarah, was baptised in 1853, the address was correctly put down as 70 Princes Road.
Adolphus was just under three years old when his father died in February 1854. It is thought that the family then returned to his mother’s native Worcestershire as, by 1861, Fanny and three of her children were living with her widowed mother in North Littleton. Where Adolphus was is not known.
No more is heard of Adolphus until 3rd January 1871 when he married Emma Smith at St Luke’s Church, Leicester. The couple then settled in Badsey where, by then, both their families were living. They lived with Emma’s parents in the house which is now No 18 High Street. Emma’s father, Joseph Smith, was described as an “occupier of land”, and Adolphus was acting as farm bailiff, presumably for the Byrd family who owned the property. Adolphus’ mother, Fanny Wright, lived nearby at The Wheatsheaf where she ran a grocery business.
Adolphus and Emma had two sons and three daughters, all born at Badsey: Frederick William (1871-1951), Gertrude Emma (1873-1914), Kate (1874-1926), Edith Melinda (1878-1912) and Edgar Adolphus (1881-1960). Emma’s father died in 1877 and her mother had moved from Badsey by 1881. At the time of the 1881 census, Adolphus and Emma had moved next-door to the building which is now occupied by The Spar Shop. Adolphus was described as a market gardener of 9 acres, although in the latter part of the 1870s he had been involved in the beer trade, presumably when The Wheatsheaf, where his mother lived, began to sell beer. In Trade Directories for the Midlands in 1876 and 1880, Adolphus appears in a list of beer retailers. When his daughter, Kate, was baptised in 1875, he was described as “Farmer and Publican” and when Edith was baptised in 1878, he was described as “Innkeeper”.
In 1883, the family left Badsey in order to seek a new life overseas. Their destination was Geauga County, Ohio, where several Badsey families had emigrated to in the 1870s. A passenger list for 1899 reveals that Adolphus and Emma returned to England for a visit in 1899. They embarked at New York on “Servia” and arrived at the port of Liverpool on 21st September 1899. They left Liverpool on 28th October 1899. Adolphus’ mother died just six days later, so perhaps they had returned home to England for a final visit if they knew that Fanny was ailing.
At the time of the 1900 census, Adolphus and Emma and two of their children were living in Bainbridge Township, Geauga County, where Adolphus was farming. By 1910 they were living in Auburn Township, fairly close to Oliver and Ruth Rogers who had emigrated from Badsey in 1873 (they were in the same enumeration district, the Rogers living at house No 121 and the Wrights living at house No 185).
Adolphus died at Auburn on 28th October 1914 and was buried at Maple Shade Cemetery, Auburn. Emma died two years later.