Mary Smeed was the fifth child of Edward Smeed & Sarah Ann Hayward born February 16th, 1867 at East Grinstead & christened June 30th, 1867 at St. Swithun’s Church, East Grinstead.
In 1871 Mary was living at Fairlight Cottage, East Grinstead with her parents & 1 brother & 3 sisters.
Mary & her family were living at Fairlight Farm in 1881 where her father was a farmer.
Mary married Charles Baldwin on February 6th, 1892 at East Grinstead. Charles was born in 1868 at Watchet, Somerset, the son of Mary Nicks Simons & Alfred Kennard Baldwin, a printer.
In 1901 Mary & Charles were living at White Cottage, Withyham, East Grinstead & Charles was a printer & stationer working at home. They had 4 children at this time – Herbert (8), Reggie (7), Cecil (6) & Dorothy (2).
Mary & Charles, a printer & stationer, were recorded at 38 White Rock, Hastings, Sussex in 1911 visiting Elias Cima, a proprietor of a café, restaurant & apartment house. With them was son Herbert, a printer’s apprentice. It was noted on the census that they had 5 children, all alive. Son Reggie was working as an electrical engineer in Tunbridge Wells at this time. Reggie served with the Royal West Kent Regiment during WW1. In 1918 he obtained a commission in the Indian Army Reserve of Officers. Son Cecil Frank was working on his ‘cousin’s’ farm at Horne Park Lingfield in 1911. His ‘cousin’ was in fact his mother’s cousin, George Edward Smeed. Cecil also served with the Royal West Kent Regiment & was awarded the military medal. Daughters Dorothy & Evelyn Daisy (9) were both boarding at Oaklands, Keymer, Sussex, a Girls’ High School whose headmistress was Lilian L Davies.
Son Herbert married Ella Mary Collier in 1920 at St John’s, East Dulwich, London. Brother Cecil was a witness at the wedding.
Son Reggie married Cissie Gladys Marjorie Kite in 1923 in Hastings, Sussex.
In 1924 daughter Dorothy married Frederick Edwards, a clerk & solicitor, at Withyham.
Mary died on May 5th, 1927 at the White House, Withyham, Sussex in her 61st year. Her funeral at Withyham Parish Church was attended by many family members & local people with whom she was extremely popular. She took a keen interest in local affairs & was associated with the Withyham Womens Institue, Women’s Conservative Association & the local Nursing Association. Having suffered with ill health for a few years, she became very ill a week before her death & passed away in her sleep. Her grave was lined with flowers from the garden at the White House & the coffin was of unpolished oak. (Kent & Sussex Courier, May 13th, 1927)
Following Mary’s death Charles had electric light installed in St Michael’s Church as a memorial to her.
The children of Mary Smeed & Charles Baldwin were:
sm.11.5.1 Herbert William Baldwin born December 10th, 1892 at Withyham, Sussex; died October 31st, 1969 at Tunbridge Wells
sm.11.5.2 Reginald Alfred Charles Baldwin born January 4th, 1894 at Withyham; died February 1980 at 19 Blatchington Rd, Tunbridge Wells
sm.11.5.3 Cecil Frank Baldwin born January 1895 at Withyham; died March 30th, 1967 at Cape Town, South Africa
sm.11.5.4 Dorothy Mary Nicks Baldwin born March 3rd, 1899 at Withyham; died August 11th, 1951 at Esher, Surrey
sm.11.5.5 Evelyn Daisy Baldwin born September 10th, 1901 at the White House, Withyham; died May 11th, 1984 at Holts Cottage, Fordcombe, Kent
Daughter Evelyn married James Frederick Stanley Reeves, a clerk, in 1928 in Withyham.
Charles married again on April 12th, 1930 at St George, Hanover Square. His second wife was Blandina Sarah Frances Mutter who was a 51 year old spinster. She was born December 11th, 1878, the daughter of Charles Cartwright Mutter (deceased), a carrier & shipping agent, who was born in Llanelly, Carmarthen, Wales. Blandina was working as a schoolmistress in 1911.
Charles died on August 25th, 1935 at the White House, Withyham & was buried with first wife Mary at St Michael & All Angels, Withyham. Probate was granted to son Herbert William, printer & bank managers Alexander Webb Perkins & William Bates Keywood. His effects were £44,435.7s.10d. Charles, a keen gardener & member of nearly every local organisation in Withyham, was of the Grosvenor Printing Works, Tunbridge Wells.
The 1939 register shows widowed Blandina living at the White House, Withyham & described as living on her own means. With her was gardener George Fuggle.
Blandina of the White House, Withyham died March 28th, 1947 at The Clarence Nursing Home, Tunbridge Wells. Probate was granted to William Bates Keywood, banker, Herbert William Baldwin, printer & Geoffrey Sandford Hall, solicitor & her effects were £9,624.16s.5d.