VAD Emily Bauer

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Emily Bauer 1882-1956

Emily was born in Shipley in 1882. Her parents were George Frederick Conrad Bauer (also known as Conrad) and Pauline (Paulina) nee Weegnamm. They married in 1868. They were both of German origin but were naturalised UK citizens according to the 1881 census. They had 7 children, one of whom died in infancy. Conrad was a pork butcher. There was a long history of German Pork butchers coming to the UK and settling, especially in the North of England.

I have not been able to establish Emily’s birth date but according to census and death records, it was in the year 1882. Tragically, her father died in an omnibus accident on a visit to London on 29th May 1882 (as reported in several local newspapers at the time). I believe Emily had been born before he died, as the newspaper reports that he left 6 children, which ties in with census records.
Following her father’s death, Emily appears to have lived with various family members and in 1911 was a boarder in Spurr Road. Her occupation was “Private School Assistant”

Her VAD record states that she as an assistant nurse earning £22 10/- a year on termination of her employment. She served from 12th July 1916 until 3rd June 1919, so she left quite some time after the War ended. Her duties were described as “surgical nursing”.
It is very interesting that Emily chose to serve her country at a time when it seems likely that her mother would have had to register as an “enemy alien” more info can be found here.

There were many stories of German businesses being attacked. I have searched but have been unable to find any specific instances in Shipley but of course any action could have taken the form of boycotting German businesses. On the other hand, maybe the family were so well integrated that this was not a problem for the family.
Emily’s and her siblings had been born in Yorkshire and were British citizens. Her brothers would have been in their 40s when the war started and so I do not think they served in the War. I have searched Lives of the First World War but cannot find any of them.

As was the case with many thousands of women after the War, Emily did not marry. I have been unable to find her on the 1939 register. However, her family’s name was misspelt on several documents. I am sure she is there somewhere!

I have found her death in Probate records which state that “She was last seen alive on 21st September 1956”. Maybe she died alone and the date of death was assumed, for legal reasons, to be the last known time she was seen alive. An announcement was made on 25th September 1956 by a niece and nephew. She was living in Hallfield Road, Shipley at the time.

Source information:
German Pork Butchers in Britain
Find My past
Lives of the First World War
Red Cross Records

This research has been carried out by volunteer Debbie Cameron.

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