Hannah Adams was born in Marden, Kent in 1850 and was the daughter of a farmer from Girsby in Lincolnshire. She married Thomas Ross (3) in 1870 (week 34), a grandson of my 3 x great grandfather on my adopted tree, William Bird, and they had a daughter, Alice, in 1872, and a son, Percy in 1873 (week 27). It is not until after her husband died in 1896 that newspaper articles showed the extent of her work raising money for, and actually visiting, the injured and dying on the battlefields during the Boer War.
I believe Hannah lived at 69 St Helens Road, Tudor House, Hastings (TN34 2JJ) from at least the 1890's until the late 1930's. It seems that, after her husband's death, she donated money and artifacts to the Hastings Museum, which had opened in 1892. "A great many contents of the museum are gifts or loans from Mrs Ross of Tudor House and similar public spirited ladies and gentlemen."
and a few weeks later,
"the Fund has this week received a fillip from several sources and we have another canine friend in Mrs Ross's pug, Pasha, which has collected £1 1s 3d."
During her visit to South Africa she saw the principal battlefields and spent some time visiting Howick and the large hospitals at Pietermaritzburg. "The more you did for the poor fellows the more you felt you wanted to do." They were under canvas at Howick though she wasn't there long, "only till I got my permit to go to Ladysmith." She went to Ladysmith Hospital and "there I was able to give a good many comforts to the poor fellows." There was obviously a lack of water as she said "it was locked up and given out a pint at a time." She visited the Nazereth Home (presumably for injured soldiers) and found "the Tommies very grateful for everything done for them and I used to think it was so little after all. We took papers and games to them and they were delighted, especially with the games. They would play with boxes of draughts and dominoes like a lot of children."
The article ends by saying how sorry they are that, although Mrs Ross appears in excellent health and spirits, she had the misfortune of spraining her ankle before leaving for England. "All will wish her a speedy recovery from this troublesome accident. Her gallant son, Mr Percy Ross is still fighting the battles of his country." It is his story which I will tell next week.
Hannah lived to the ripe old age of 82 and died in 1932. She is buried in Hastings Cemetery.
Quotations are from articles extracted from the Hastings and St Leonards Obsever.