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John Matthew Greenwood

Date of birth: 1880
Date of death: 1993
Area: Brotherton
Regiment: King's Own Yorkshire Light Infantry
Family information: Husband of Sarah
Service number: 19916

War Service

John was enlisted on 9.11.1914 at the age of 34 years and 8 months. At the time of enlisting he was described as being 5’6 1/2” tall, weighing 10st 7lbs, having a 38 1/2” chest and being of pale complexion with blue eyes and dark brown hair.
He was given the service number 19916 in the KOYLI but was discharged on 18.11.1914 under para 392 iii (b) of the King’s regulations - not being likely to become an efficient soldier; recruit passed by medical officer, but rejected by a recruiting officer stationed away from the headquarters of the recruiting area, or by approving officer.

Family Life

The Greenwood’s can be traced back to about 1833 when John Greenwood, who came from Salterhebble near Halifax, married Elizabeth Wadsworth of Brotherton. He was John Matthew’s grandfather. John was a ‘Waterman’ by trade probably plying the Aire-Calder rivers and canals.
By 1851 the family had expanded to include Gregory aged 13, Elizabeth (12), Ann (10), Manasah (8), John (6), James (4), Sophia (3) and Samuel (1). All but James (Knottingley) were born in Brotherton which indicates John and Elizabeth had been in the village for some years but so far no trace of them can be found in the 1841 census.
By 1861 48 year old John seems to have done well insofar as he was employed as a ‘Captain’. Some of the children had flown the nest but additional ones were Rachel (9), Joseph (6) and Lucy A (5).
Gregory was married to Elizabeth Wadsworth in 1862, the marriage being registered in Castleford.
Ten years on in 1871 he was employed, like his father, as a ‘Waterman’. They had four children at the time including Eliza Ann (7), Elizabeth (6), William (4) and Walter (1) and were living in Low Street..
By 1881 Gregory had changed occupations and was a ‘Miner’. They were still living in Low Street and other children included Harriet A (9), Arthur (6), James (3) and John born 1880.
In 1891they were still in Low Street. Elizabeth had left and the four eldest boys were all employed at the‘Pit’ as was Gregory.
In 1901 Gregory seems to have retired whilst Walter, James and John were all ‘Coal Miners’. Also living with them was a grand daughter called Nellie Greenwood aged 2 but it is not clear who her parents might have been.
By 1911 John (Matthew) was married to Sarah and living up Nancy Taylor Yard which connected the High Street with the Great North Road. John was a ‘Coal Miner - Hewer’ and the couple had one son called Hodgson Greenwood
At the time of his enlistment John Matthew gave his address as Taylor’s Fold, Brotherton and his next of kin as his wife Sarah.
John Matthew died in 1933 at the age of 53 years and his wife Sarah in 1960.
Their son, Hodgson Greenwood died in 1983 aged 80.

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