On 13th September 1916, Walter Stewart (1889-1953) married Frances Ellen Field (1891-1981) in the Quaker Meeting House on Chapel Street, Badsey. Six months earlier he had appeared before a Military Tribunal and was granted total exemption as a conscientious objector. Walter was born at Aldington, the son of William Henry Stewart and his wife, Charlotte (née Hartwell). Frances was born at Aldington, the daughter of James Field and his wife, Elizabeth (née Cook).
This document was the standard certificate used in Society of Friends’ weddings; all the wedding guests signed at the end as witnesses.
Walter Stewart of Aldington near Evesham in the county Worcester, son of William Henry Stewart of Aldington in the county of Worcester, and of Charlotte his wife, and Frances Ellen Field, daughter of James Field of Aldington, near Evesham in the county of Worcester, and of Elizabeth his wife, the latter deceased. Having duly made known their intention of taking each other in marriage and public notice of their said intention having been given, the proceedings of the said Walter Stewart and Frances Ellen Field were allowed by the proper officers of Worcestershire and Shropshire Monthly Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends. Now these are to certify that for the solemnization of their said marriage this 13th day of the 9th month in the year 1916, they the said Walter Stewart and Frances Ellen Field appeared at a public meeting for worship of the aforesaid Society in their Meeting House at Badsey, and the said Walter Stewart taking the said Frances Ellen Field by the hand declared as followeth: Friends, In the fear of the Lord, and in the presence of this assembly, I take this my friend, Walter Stewart, to be my husband, promising through Divine assistance to be unto him a loving and faithful wife, until it shall please the Lord by death to separate us. And the said Walter Stewart and Frances Ellen Field as a further confirmation thereof and in testimony thereunto did then and there to these presents set their hands.
Walter Stewart, Frances Ellen Field
We having been present at the above said Marriage have also subscribed our names as witnesses thereunto the day and year above written.
Emily Payne M Caroline Pillett Maria B Thorne James Field
Evelyn Stewart Charles E [?] Arthur E Thorne William Stewart
Elizabeth Cook F G W Perkins Edith M Thorne Elizabeth [?]
May Field C V Pillett Sarah Ann Geden Elsie Stewart
William Bertram Field F H Gillette Ella Geden Charlotte Stewart
Dick Ashby J E Knight Asher Davidson
Alice Ashby May Blake Eliza Hall
Edith Field Fanny Keyte
Kathleen [?] Beatrice Keyte
Walter and Frances remained in Badsey for the rest of their lives. They had one son and eventually lived above the Friends’ Meeting House.
We are grateful to Peter Stewart for providing us with a copy of this certificate.