Samuel Austin Griffin and Clara Gertrude Smith

Samuel Austin Griffin

When Samuel Austin Griffin was born on July 5, 1878, in Kingston Seymour, Somerset, England, his father, Samuel Bird Griffin (1834-1890), was 44 and his mother, Jane (née Wallis) (1835-1909), was 43. As he was named for his father, he went by his middle name Austin. He had nine brothers and two sisters.

In 1911, Austin is living with his sister, (Hannah) Isabella Griffin. At the age of 41, Isabella is unmarried and the postmistress for Kingston Seymour. Austin, 32, is a grocer provision assistant.

1911 England Census (image via
Post Office, Ham Road, Kingston Seymour

Austin married Clara Gertrude Smith on August 18, 1913, at the Church of All Saints in Kingston Seymour. At the age of 35, the marriage registration suggests that Austin is still a grocer. No occupation is given for Clara, age 27 at the time of the marriage, but on the 1911 census, she was a “school assistant mistress” to her father, who was a schoolmaster in Long Ashton.

Marriage Registry, All Saints Kingston Seymour (image via

When Clara Gertrude Smith was born on November 29, 1885, in Kingston Seymour, Somerset, England, her father, James Smith (1855-?), was 30, and her mother, Clara (née Williams) (1856-?), was 29.

Given their age at the time of marriage, it’s not surprising that the couple had only one child:

  • Leslie Austin Griffin (1916-1998) married Edith Jesse Kingcott (1924-2000)

It’s possible that Austin took over the post office after his sister. Details in a January 7, 1921 article in the Wells Journal suggest that a “Mr. Griffin” was the postmaster at the time of a burglary that week.

Wells Journal January 7, 1921

On the 1939 Register, we find the family living in Yatton. No physical address is given, just “West End Stores,” presumably they lived above the grocery store where Austin, aged 60, is a “Master Grocer” and Leslie (23) is his assistant. Also in the home are Austin’s brother Edward and his wife Ellen, and his mother-in-law, Clara Smith who is described as “incapacitated.”

1939 Register (image via

Austin died in 1953 in Weston-super-Mare, Somerset, England, at the age of 75. I have not identified a matching burial or probate record.

Clara died on October 29, 1960, in Weston-super-Mare, Somerset, England, at the age of 74. Clara’s estate was probated on November 30, and the residue of her estate went to her son. While this record, like the 1939 census refers to the “West End Stores Yatton,” it suggests that Clara was living at 23 Coleridge Vale Road East in Clevedon.

Probate Record (image via
23 Coleridge Vale South, Clevedon (image via GoogleMaps)

Main image: Clara, Leslie and Austin Griffin (image via user AlanCrawlings)


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AG Knapper

I’ve been researching my tree for over twenty years…and I’ve found some easy branches, and some gnarly ones…

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