John Smith's Family Tree Website


Close up of Tijou Screen at Hampton Court Palace

Sutcliffe family


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Part 5: Sarah Louisa Sutcliffe (1883 - 1941)


Sarah Louisa Sutcliffe was the second child of James Sutcliffe and Ann 'Annie' Beswick. She was born 02 September 1883 in Syke Lane, Sowerby, Yorkshire, and was baptised 13 October 1886 at St George’s Church, Sowerby. Sarah was possibly known as ‘Sissy’ and unlike her siblings, she left home before she married. It is not known when she left, but in the mid-1890s her family had moved to Mirfield and she may have gone with them. However, by 1901, aged 17, she was boarding with a family in Halifax while she worked as a cotton twiner.

She married Wilfrid Lister (1885 - 1966) 04 October 1904 at the Halifax Registry Office and they had one child, Constance, who was born five months later. (More information about Wilfrid and Constance appears in the Lister section.)

What happened to Sarah after 1911 is the subject of family gossip with no official records to prove or disprove anything! At some point, perhaps in the early 1920s, Sarah left her husband and daughter and ran off with another man, purported to be a member of the Salvation Army. Another story says that she changed her name to ‘Lois Philman’ and went off to London to “have a good time”. It seems she had no contact with her family and was not present when her daughter married.

Sarah arrived home to Mirfield, penniless, sometime in the early years of World War II. Her brothers Fred and Albert met her at Mirfield Station and “sorted her out”. However, she died 27 August 1941, aged 57, in Mirfield Memorial Hospital, suffering from cancer and was buried three days later at St Mary’s Church, Mirfield.