Mother: Margaretta (aka Maggie) COCK
Birth: 1897, Devon
Birth Source: FreeBMD and census
Death: March 1918, France
Death Source: CWGC
Henry REEVES and his wife Margaretta (aka Maggie) nee COCK. His birth was registered, as Ernest Henry Reeves, during the third quarter of 1897 in the East Stonehouse Registration District of Devon. (His mother was Cornish by birth and his father from Wiltshire.)
Identification of Ernest on the 1901 census is only tentative. His father is recorded alone in the Oxford Road Military Barracks, Reading, Berkshire and his younger brother Albert's birth was registered in the Reading Reg.Dist. in 4q1900, suggesting the whole family had relocated to Reading. However, it is believed that Ernest is the individual recorded in the household of Alfred COCKS and his wife Louisa, at 121 Embankment Road, Plymouth. This Ernest Reeves is 3 years old, but no place of birth has been enumerated for any of this household. His relationship seems to be recorded as Son, but note it is probable that it is his mother Margurita who appears on the preceding row. She is noted as Daughter and also Married, but her surname by virtue of ditto is enumerated as Cocks (sic), rather than the expected Reeves. See Research Note 1 below.
On the 1911 census Ernest is recorded with his mother Maggie Reeves and four siblings living in married quarters at the Reading Depot Barracks, Oxford Road Reading. His father Henry is recorded elsewhere in the same enumeration book as a Colour Sergeant with the Depot of the Royal Berkshire Regiment.
Based on his regimental number of 9704, it is likely that Ernest enlisted in his father's regiment in early 1912. (See Research Note 2 below.)
Whilst serving as Bandsman 9704 in the 1st Battalion of the Royal Berkshire Regiment, the Commonwealth War Graves Commission's website notes that Ernest died in northern France in March 1918. He is buried in the Mont Huon Military Cemetery, which is just outside the port town of Le Treport in the Seine-Maritime département in northern France (FR-76). The CWGC additionally notes "Son of Henry and Margaretta Reeves, of Reading, Berks." and also that he "died of wounds (gas)".
The death of Private 8704 (sic) of the Royal Berkshire Regiment in 1918 is included in the GRO Index to War Deaths 1914-1921. Army (Other Ranks) page 3012 as Ernest H.V. Reeves, year 1918, vol I.53, page 67
There is also a record for Private 9704 Ernest Henry Victor Reeves of the 1st Battalion of the Princes Charlotte of Wales's (Royal Berkshire) Regiemnet in "Soldiers Died in the Great War 1914-1918". That gives his place of birth as Stonehouse, Devon and his place of residence as Stoke Newington, Middlesex. The CWGC Head Stone Schedule, which might not have been completed until the early 1920's notes that H. Reeves Esq. was then living in Rectory Road, Stoke Newington and he requested the inscription "Son of a Soldeier, He Died A Soldier's Death" be added to Ernest's gravestone.
The "UK, Army Registers of Soldiers' Effects, 1901-1929" entry for Ernest notes that his father Henry was his only legatee.
(1) On the 1901 census, in addition to Ernest Reeves (age 3), there is as second male child. The given name is indisticntly written, Edmund or perhaps Edward Reeves, whose age is most probably 7 months. This would match Ernest's known younger brother Albert Edward Reeves whose birth was registered during 4q1900 in Reading Registration District. However, on the side of caution, it should be noted that Ernest's elder brother Francis is not in this household and he remains to be identified on the 1901 census. Francis has been identified in a family context on the 1911 census.
(2) The likely date of Ernest's enlistment in the Royal Berkshire Regiment is based on information found at http://armyservicenumbers.blogspot.co.uk/2012/03/royal-berkshire-regiment-1st-2nd.html. It shows that soldier 9442 joined on 10th January 1911 and 9771 joined on 11th April 1912. Presuming a reasonably constant rate of enlistment over the period, regimental service number 9704 would have been allocated in about Januaary 1912, a few months after his fourteenth birthday.
Death: GRO Index to War Deaths 1914-1921 Army (Other Ranks) page 3012
CWGC http://www.cwgc.org/find-war-dead/casualty/120020/REEVES, ERNEST HENRY VICTOR
1901 Census: RG13, Piece 2097, Folio 31 face, Page 53
1911 Census: RG14, Piece 6579, Reg.Dist. 121 (Reading), Sub Dist. 1 (St Mary), Enum.Dist. 25, Page 11, Rows 13-18
From Soldiers Died in the Great War, 1914-1918 at FindMyPast
First name(s) ERNEST HENRY VICTOR Last name REEVES Service number 9704 Rank PRIVATE Regiment Princess Charlotte of Wales's (Royal Berkshire Regiment) Battalion 1st Battalion. Birth place STONEHOUSE, DEVON Residence STOKE NEWINGTON, MIDDX. Enlistment place READING Death year 1918 Death day 22 Death month 3 Cause of death Died of wounds Death place France & Flanders Theatre of war Western European Theatre