The Hooson Family of Rhos

A long and detailed article by dave edwards

I have been aware of I. D. Hooson for a while, but in 2014 Graham Lloyd drove me to the Panorama to see Hooson’s monument.  Many words have been written about Isaac Daniel Hooson but I’d like to refresh a few memories by outlining some of the events surrounding his family background.  I am only skimming the surface of course, but if it helps to kindle an interest I’ll feel my efforts were worthwhile.

victoria-house-market-street-rhos-c-1900

On Market Street, Rhosllanerchrugog there is a shop called T. & C. Williams, known locally as Tony’s.  This was originally a house and a shop before being converted into one large shop.  The house was called Victoria House and to the left of Tony’s store is a wall-plaque which reads: CARTREF Y BARDD … I. D. HOOSON, 1880 – 1948.  Many accounts have been written of his life and I will now attempt to provide a little insight into his family background.

After lead mining became too costly during the first half of the 19th century, I. D. Hooson’s grandfather was one of a group of lead miners who left Cornwall for Wales and settled in Flintshire. In 1843, I. D. Hooson’s father-to-be, Edward Hooson, was born at Bagillt, three miles from Holywell.  Some of the Hoosons remained in Flintshire, but at the age of seventeen, Edward moved to Rhosllannerchrugog in November 1860, according to his contemporary, Isaac Jenkins of Johnstown.  Edward became a young apprentice to Mr. Ben Davies, who kept a grocery shop in Pant Street and he later established his own grocer’s and drapery shop in Rhos.

During the 1st Quarter of 1871, in the District of Wrexham, a marriage was registered between Edward Hooson and Harriet Rogers.

By April 1871, 27-year-old Edward and his 29-year-old wife Harriet were living at Hill Street, Rhos.  They had a 15-year-old servant called Joseph Powell, who was an apprentice in Edward’s Drapers and Grocery shop.

On 13th December 1871, Harriet Hooson gave birth to a son, but as there is no more mention of him we can assume he was the deceased child mentioned on the 1911 census.

During the 2nd Quarter of 1873, in the District of Wrexham, the birth was registered of Thomas John Hooson, son of Edward and Harriet.

23rd September 1874, Harriet Hooson gave birth to a daughter, Sarah Catherine Hooson.

On 16th February 1877 a number of names were nominated for the Ruabon School Board election, including Edward Hooson of 1 Hill Street, Rhos.  Here is the address he gave to be published in the Wrexham Advertiser for the electors: “Ladies and gentlemen, having being nominated a Candidate for election at the above Board, I beg to state that I am a Nonconformist Candidate.  I am not brought forward in company with the other four selected by a conference, but I am not a less Nonconformist for that.  If elected, I shall always support the true principles of Nonconformity, which are near to my heart; at the same time I shall always oppose all unnecessary expenditure of the ratepayers’ money.  The rates at the present time are high, and are sure to be much higher, but the work is scarce and wages low.  What will become of the ratepayers in the parish?  I have the honour to be, Ladies and Gentlemen, Your obedient servant, Edward Hooson”.  For some reason, Edward retired from the election before the results were called.

On 22nd August 1877, at Hill Street, Harriet Hooson gave birth to a son, Edward Hooson.

On Saturday 26th January 1878, the Wrexham Advertiser reported that Mr. Edward Hooson was moving from Hill Street to his new premises at Victoria House in Market Street; a dwelling built in 1877.  Edward had instructed Mr John Jones to sell by auction a surplus stock of drapery, woollen and other cloths, comprising of prints, fancy dress materials, skirts, corsets, calicoes, shirtings, men’s shirts, blankets, sheets, counterpanes, silk and felt hats, umbrellas and a large assortment of hosiery, plus an excellent sewing machine.

Edward was beginning to play an ever-increasing part in the life of the Ruabon district and in 1878 he was chosen to be a member of a deputation selected by the miners of Vauxhall Colliery; namely Messrs W. Griffiths, Hezekiah Jones and Edward Hooson.  On Wednesday, 4th September 1878, the miners returned to work, following a fortnight of disputes between the workmen and the manager.  This was acknowledged to be partly due to the negotiating skills of the deputation.

On 2nd September 1880, Isaac Daniel Hooson, or I. D. Hooson as he was later known, was born in Victoria House, Market Street, Rhosllanerchrugog, the son of Edward and Harriet Hooson.

In April 1881, Shopkeeper, Edward Hooson, and his wife, Harriet, were living at Victoria House, Market Street, Rhos.  Their son Thomas J. Hooson was 8 years old and a scholar; their 6-year-old daughter Sarah C. Hooson was also a scholar; Edward Hooson was 3-years-old and also a scholar.  Isaac Daniel Hooson was 7-months-old.  They had a 21-year-old domestic servant, Sarah A. Jones and a 16-year-old servant called Edward Edwards, who was a Grocer’s Apprentice.

I. D. Hosson of Rhos

In 1883, 41-year-old Edward Hooson was a member of the Rhos Burial Board which was at that time involved in a dispute.  To understand this dispute we need to have an idea of how the law then stood regarding burials.  Prior to the mid 19th Century Burial Acts, burials had to take place according to the rites of the Church of England. This meant that the deceased were buried in the churchyard of the parish in which they died unless they had not been baptised; had been excommunicated, or had committed suicide.  The Burial Acts of 1852-1857 enabled Burial Boards to be set up either as separate bodies or as part of the Borough Councils.

Around 1882 a new cemetery was created in Rhos, supervised by a Burial Board chaired by Rev. T. Jones, vicar of the Parish.  The Board consisted of seven members, three of whom were churchmen.  On the question of consecration, the majority declined to allow more than one third of the new cemetery to be consecrated and the minority insisted upon half the cemetery being consecrated.  The final decision was given to a largely-attended vestry meeting held on the 11th July, which decided in favour of having none of the cemetery consecrated.  Matters remained in that position until 18th July when the vicar held a secret meeting at which he presided and as half of the Board were absent, the Church party secured the approval of the Board for the consecration with the casting vote going to the Vicar in favour of paying the £14 consecration fees.  A “warm discussion ensued” during which the vice-chairman objected that the Church should ask for one half of the cemetery when the number of its members was not even one tenth that of the number of Dissenters.

On Tuesday, April 24th 1883 when the Bishop of St. Asaph visited Rhos for the purpose of officiating at a confirmation.  In the evening, following the confirmation service, the Bishop, accompanied by a group of people, which included the Vicar of Rhos, went to the new cemetery and consecrated one half of the ground.  This understandably caused a lot of consternation among the Dissenters and the Burial Board meeting held later that week was “a pretty lively one”.  The Wrexham Advertiser of Saturday, 12th May 1883, contained a letter from “Anti-Humbug”, claiming that Mr. Edward Hooson had been deliberately vague about the location of the meeting, in the hopes of preventing Churchmen from attending, but that through his “blunderings” he had in fact allowed the Vicar to have half the cemetery consecrated.  Anti-Humbug proposed a vote of censure on Mr Edward Hooson for his “ignorant bungling”.

The Wrexham Advertiser of 19th May 1883 published a letter from someone using the rather grand title of Alteram Partem Audi (“listen to the other side”).  He referred to Edward Hooson as “the Pope of the Rhos”, having established first that he considered “champions of civil and religious liberty” to be indistinguishable from the Pope of Rome and called them “loud-sounding and often ignorant agitators”.  He pronounced that Edward Hooson was “of the opinion that Church-people and Nonconformists who wish to bury their dead in consecrated ground have no conscience” (which Edward probably never said).  He drew attention to the fact that in Holywell, Flintshire, Edward and his parents were educated in the ways of the Church he (Edward) now so cordially hated.  Alteram Partem Audi ended his inaccurate rant by saying that Edward Hooson wanted all those who acted according to the dictates of their own consciences to be gagged and sent off at once to Siberia.  We will never know for sure what was said at those meetings, but whatever Edward Hooson did or did not say, he said it without needing to hide behind a non de plume.

On Friday, 25th May 1883, in the House of Commons, Sir R. A. Cunliffe asked the president of the Local Government Board whether he considered that the Vicar of Rhos in his correspondence with the Secretary of State had suppressed the fact that the Burial Board had passed a resolution against consecrating half the cemetery, and that the Vestry, when appealed to, had passed a resolution by 350 to 4 against consecrating any portion of the cemetery.  He asked whether the Vicar had given the Secretary of State to understand that the consecration of half the ground had been approved by a resolution of the board passed on 18th July 1882.  He asked whether the secretary would cause further inquiry to be made into the subject.  He also offered to lay upon the table of the House all correspondence between himself and the Vicar of Rhos with regard to such consecration. Also on Friday 25th May 1883, an ordinary meeting of the Rhos Burial Board was held with the vicar, Rev. Thomas Jones, in the chair.  Vice-chairman was Edward Hooson.  Also present were Messrs Robert Roberts, Isaac Jenkins, John Owen and Mr. D. C. Owen, clerk.  D. C. Owen read out a letter from Rev. Thomas Jones giving notice that he was retiring from the Board.  The resignation was accepted without remark.  Mr Hooson moved to rescind the resolution of April 27th respecting consecration fees of £13 17s 6d and this.  He pointed out that the consecration had taken place contrary to a resolution passed by the majority of the Board and the unanimous vote of the ratepayers who had to bear the expenses of providing the new cemetery.  Mr Hooson explained that on the 23rd June 1882, he had proposed that one third of the cemetery be given to the Church party for the purpose of consecration.  Mr Isaac Jenkins had seconded Mr Hooson’s proposition, yet the chairman had still insisted on claiming half.  Mr Gomer Roberts had wisely proposed that this matter should be settled in the vestry by the ratepayers and his proposal was seconded by Mr. Robert Roberts.  On 11th July 1882, the ratepayers met and resolved that no part of the cemetery should be consecrated.  Seven days after this meeting, on the Tuesday of 18th July 1882, a special meeting was called and the agenda made no mention of discussing the cemetery.  The mover and seconder of the consecration proposal were absent from this meeting and the vicar, in opposition to law and order, passed the resolution that one half of the cemetery should be consecrated.  In doing this he referred to members of the Burial Board as “agitators and fanatics.”  The business of July 18th was rescinded and this was entered into the minute book.  On the strength of the July 18th meeting the vicar had obtained from the Home Secretary a certificate granting his application to have half the cemetery consecrated.  Mr. Hooson then questioned the vicar as to why he had put in a claim for travelling expenses of £1 6s. 11d on behalf of the bishop (who consecrated half of the cemetery), when the bishop was already in the district to conduct conformation services.  The vicar claimed they were high, but they were fixed fees.  Mr. Hooson then proposed that “the Board should act according to the wishes of the ratepayers as expressed in the resolution passed in the vestry”.  The vicar refused to have anything to do with the proposal but Mr. Robert Roberts seconded it as one of those who had been present at the vestry meeting of 11th July with the ratepayers.

On Friday, 15th June 1883, the Rhos Burial Board met with Edward Hooson as chairman.  A letter was read out from the Secretary of State in which he voiced his opinion that had the vicar not withheld from the Board his communication to the Secretary and had kept the Secretary informed a wholly different colour would have been placed upon the transaction and the Secretary would have made further enquiry.  He accused the vicar of making use of his position as Chairman of the Burial Board to communicate inaccurate information to the Secretary of State.  At the meeting, Mr W. C. Hughes spoke of how once the portion had been consecrated it was done for ever.  Mr. Hooson proposed that the clerk be instructed to wrote to the Home Secretary thanking him for furnishing them with the correspondence between the Secretary and the vicar and to assure the Home Secretary that such correspondence was sent to him without the knowledge or authority of the Board.  Mr Hooson also proposed that the action of their late chairman (the vicar) be deemed an illegal act and that in the event of the consecration application being declared illegal, the Board would be prepared to treat with the Home secretary as to any application for consecration that may be sent to the Board and to give such application their consideration.

On Friday, 3rd October 1884 the Rhos Burial Board met again; this time to discuss the clerk’s fees given to Matthew Jones and those due to him.  A letter was read from W. Holloway Bott, Solicitor, who was instructed by Matthew Jones to request certain fees that he felt were owed to him.  Mr Edward Hooson, chairman, referred to a conversation he’d had with Matthew Jones on the previous Wednesday in which Mr Jones said he was sorry to have been discharged from the office of gravedigger.  After some apologetic words, Mr. Jones asked if the Board could give him a part of the grave-digging.  Mr. Hooson mentioned a claim made by Mr Jones, who denied this and said he had never instructed anyone to write or do anything else for him in the matter.  Mr. Jones admitted asking for the one shilling fee owed to him.  Rev. R. Roberts moved that their Clerk be instructed to write to the solicitor stating that the Board do not in any way recognise the claims of Matthew Jones.  This was seconded by Mr. Benjamin Williams and agreed to.

In the 11th October 1884 Wrexham Advertiser, Matthew Jones, Clerk and Sexton, asked for space to defend himself against the serious charges uttered about him by some members of the Burial Board and published in the newspaper.  He denied having the conversation quoted by Mr Hooson at the meeting of the Burial Board.  He denied saying that he didn’t instruct Mr Bott to sue the Board for his fees and he also denied calling upon Mr Hooson.

On Monday, 14th March 1887, Rhos Public Hall Company had a Shareholders Meeting at the Public Hall in Hall Street.  The meeting was presided over by Edward Hooson, vice-chairman of the directors.  Mr Hooson made mention of the death of one of their number, namely Mr. Richard Pritchard, builder.  Mr. Arthur E. Evans was elected to fill the vacancy.  Mr. Hooson alluded to the great services rendered to the company by their secretary, Mr. J. Denbigh Jones.

The Wrexham Advertiser carried a letter from Edward Hooson of Victoria House,  Rhos, dated 15th November 1888 and addressed to the electors of Ponkey and Pant District in Ruabon Parish.  He had consented to become a Candidate for a seat on the County Board of Denbighshire and mentioned how he had represented the electors on several Boards, such as the Rhos Burial Board, the Ruabon School Board and the Board of Guardians.  He wrote that he had endeavoured at all times to be a true representative of the electors’ opinions and considered his past service to be an advantage for future service.

In April 1891, Grocer and Draper, Edward Hooson and his wife Harriet were at Victoria House, with their children, 18-year-old scholar, Thomas J. Hooson; 16-year-old Sarah C. Hooson; 13-year-old Edward R. Hooson and 10-year-old Isaac Daniel Hooson.

On Friday, 16th October 1891, the Llangollen Advertiser told readers they were pleased to find that Mr. Thomas J. Hooson, son of Mr. E. Hooson, C. C., had been awarded a scholarship at the University College, Oxford, tenable for five years.  His examination consisted of modern history, modern languages, and philosophy; also an essay on the influence of civilization on forms of government.  Mr. Hooson, at eighteen years of age, was the youngest of the candidates, and it was much to his credit that he gained the scholarship in those circumstances.  He was preparing to move from Jesus College to University College.  His career was a most successful one: first at the Rhos Board Schools, then at the Ruabon Grammar School.  After his first year at Oxford he passed “moderations.”

On 26th December 1891 a Wrexham Advertiser article mentioned that Mr Edward Hooson was on the Rhos Burial Board.

On Monday, 31st October 1892, at the Public Hall in Hall Street, Rhos, Capel Mawr Sunday School held their annual literary meeting, with well over 100 competitors.  Mr. John Jones (Messrs Jenkins and Jones, Johnstown) presided.  12-year-old Isaac Daniel Hooson came First in the competition to answer questions on the history of Moses.

On Thursday, 6th July 1893 a number of Rhos people met at the Public Hall on Hall street in the evening to promote the movement for the construction of a railway between Rhos and Wrexham.  Mr. Edward Hooson was in the chair.  A map of the proposed route was shown and an address given by two gentlemen from Wrexham.  It was decided to call another meeting shortly.  Edward Hooson was prepared to take shares in the new company and felt that Rhos people were being held to ransom by the Great Western Railway as they had to pay to get their goods taken to Ruabon and then pay a further charge for transporting the goods from Ruabon to Rhos by road.

On the evening of Wednesday, 23rd May 1894, at a meeting held in Capel Mawr Calvinistic Methodist Church, Rhos, a presentation was made to Edward Hooson, J. P., in recognition of his twenty-one years as secretary to that church.  Rev. Robert Jones, Chairman, said that Mr. Hooson’s services had been a labour of love and that he had attained the very high standard of excellence looked for and expected from a church officer.  Mr. Isaac Jenkins of Johnstown told of how he and Edward Hooson had both arrived in Ruabon Parish “thirty-four years last Rhos Fair day”.  Isaac Jenkins told of how happy he had been to work with Edward in the church for many years.  Rev. John Jones of Ruabon remembered Edward Hooson being a lad living in Ruabon and told of how even then he was “noted for his zeal in connection with God’s cause”.  Mr. Benjamin Davies, of Beehive, Rhos, chairman of the Presentation Committee presented an address, previously read out by Mr. J. H. Thomas.  The address was mounted in a handsome gilt frame and contained a view of Capel Mawr and a sketch of the new school room then in course of erection. Benjamin Davies then presented Edward with a purse of money containing £41 3s.  Mr. Hooson expressed his gratitude for his humble services being appreciated by the church and said that he felt appreciation by the church was the next thing to the approval of Christ Himself.  He spoke of how he joined the Calvinistic Methodists at Ruabon in 1860.  The service ended with a hymn and a prayer was offered by Benjamin Williams.

On Wednesday, 27th February 1895, the contested election of the Ruabon School Board took place, with Mr. J. Oswell Bury as the returning officer.  Of the ten candidates, Mr. Edward Hooson gained the most votes (2,871).  The runner-up with 2,657 votes was William Griffiths, a draper, of Meirion House, Rhos; a close neighbour of Edward Hooson.

On Wednesday, 24th April 1895. Edward Hooson chaired the committee that met at the Public Hall, Rhos, to discuss the rejection of the East Denbighshire Railway Bill by the House of Lords Committee.  The Great Western Railway Bill No. 2, if passed by Parliament, would  mean the construction of a line of railway to Rhos which the committee felt would be most inadequate for the development of the district as well as being inconveniently laid out.  They felt that if it were to be constructed it would be the means of preventing future construction of a more suitable line.

In 1896, Mr. Owen Owen, M. A. of Oswestry, examined the County Schools and in his report on Ruabon County School he mentioned hearing 16-year-old I. D. Hooson, from Form VI, in a chapter from Livy, and in a number of Latin Idioms.  Mr. Owen considered Hooson’s translation to be very accurate and his answers on Latin Idioms were very prompt and correct.

In 1897, Isaac Daniel Hooson, entered the service of Messrs Morris and Jones in Liverpool.  I. D. Hooson had been educated at the Rhos Board Schools and Ruabon Grammar School.

A photo taken circa 1900 shows Councillor Edward Hooson, JP, grocer and draper, standing in front of the shop.

In April 1901, 57-year-old Edward Hooson was a grocer at Victoria House.  His wife, Harriet, was 59-years-old. Sarah Hooson was 25-years-old and Edward Hooson was 22-years-old and working as a grocer’s assistant.

On the week ending 14th March 1903, Edward Hooson completed twenty years’ service on the Ruabon School Board without having missed a single meeting.  In 1903, Edward’s nephew, J. R. Roberts, became headmaster of Ruabon Grammar School, a post he held for the next 14 years.

On the night of Wednesday, 17th June 1903 a county gathering was held at Johnstown, when Alderman Hooson of Rhos, chairman of the Denbighshire County Council for twelve years, was honoured in recognition of his “long and meritorious services to Wales as a veteran educationalist, both in connection with elementary and secondary education, as magistrate and chairman of several Welsh authorities”.  alderman Christmas Jones, presiding, testified to Edward Hooson’s determination, stern integrity, straightforwardness and genuine friendship.  Mr. Hooson was eulogised by Mr. Llewellyn Kenrick, clerk to the Ruabon Bench (of which Edward was a member); Mr. Isaac Jenkins and the Rev. Robert Jones of Rhos.  Mr. John Morris, High Sheriff of Denbighshire presented Alderman Hooson with an illuminated address, a purse containing £85, a gold watch chain and a gold seal.  Alderman Hooson accepted the gifts, saying that words almost failed him to adequately acknowledge the kindness shown to him.  He spoke of how he valued their kindly friendship, sympathy and good feeling more than their presents and would ever labour to promote the development and welfare of the rising generation educationally.  He looked back upon his twenty years association with elementary education with more gratification and pride than his connection with any other public body.  His words were met with applause.

On Wednesday, 30th September 1903, a meeting was held of the County School Managers.  Alderman Edward Hooson presided and made sympathetic allusion to the death of Rev. A. L. Taylor, who had occupied the position of head master of the school for almost half a century.  Mr. Hooson proposed a vote of condolence with the relatives.  Mr. W. Davies seconded this motion and it was carried out in silence.

Sadly, the Cheshire Observer of Boxing Day 1903 announced that Alderman E. Hooson was on Tuesday evening (22nd December) lying seriously ill at his residence at Rhos.

Edward Hooson’s health was beginning to deteriorate and at a meeting of Denbighshire County Council on Wednesday, 23rd March 1904, he was absent through illness.

On the night of Sunday, 22nd May 1904, Edward Hooson died at his Rhos residence, after a long and painful illness.  He had only recently been re-elected to the chairmanship of the Denbighshire County Council.

On Friday, 27th May 1904, the funeral of Edward Hooson took place at Wern Cemetery with the first part of the service having been conducted in Capel Mawr by the pastor of the church, Rev. R. Jones, who conducted an impressive service.  A portion of scripture was read by the Rev. Griffith Owen and the Rev. E. Jones of Adwy offered prayer.  Many tributes were given and a letter was read out from Major Leadbetter, chief constable.  Mr. S. Moss, M. P., spoke of the shock he felt when he realised his friend of twenty-five years had gone.  His fervent prayer was that God might comfort the widow and family.  At the graveside, the Rev. R. Roberts of Rhos and the Rev. R. E. Morris of Wrexham officiated.

I. D. Hooson left Messrs Morris and Jones in 1904 when his father died. He was afterwards articled to a Wrexham solicitor, where he stayed until the beginning of World War I.

In May 1909, I.D. Hooson left Rhos for London, to study for two or three months preparatory to his final examination.

In November 1910, I.D. Hooson, Solicitor, was appointed Election Agent to Mr Caradog Rees, the Liberal candidate for the Denbigh Boroughs.  The Rhos Herald newspaper praised Mr. Hooson by writing that he would be, “eminently fitted for this important work, being a young solicitor of brilliant attainments, and an energetic and skilful organiser.  What he lacks in experience will be amply made up in ability and ideas, and Mr. Rees can rest assured that the campaign on his behalf will be organised with vigour and initiative.”

The 1911 Census shows Victoria House, Market Street as a Grocer’s Shop occupied by 70-year-old Mrs. H. Hooson, a Provision Dealer.  Ena Woolford told us that Mr Hooson also owned the three terraced houses joined on, which are referred to as Victoria Terrace on the 1911 census.  The 1911 census showed us that 37-year-old Thomas J. Hooson was single and working as a journalist.  35-year-old Sarah Catherine Hooson was also single, as was her 33-year-old brother Edward Richard Hooson.  30-year-old Isaac Daniel Hooson was also single and working as a Solicitor.  They had a 30-year-old general domestic servant, Sarah Ellis and the entire household spoke Welsh and English.

On Friday, 20th October 1916, 36-year-old Isaac D. Hooson, a Wrexham solicitor, was appealed for by the Denbighshire Appeal Tribunal, for which he was the clerk.  The Appeal Tribunal was represented by Mr. Christmas Jones and Mr. James Darlington, who stated that the services of Mr. Hooson were indispensable to the Tribunal.  Mr. Hooson said he was not concerned in the least with the appeal made by the Appeal Tribunal.  He only desired to have time to close up his business.  Exemption was granted until 31st December 1916.

6th January 1917 – Rhos Herald reported that a renewal of exemption was requested for solicitor Isaac D. Hooson of Rhos, single and Clerk to the Denbighshire appeal Tribunal, who said that the former period granted him had proved insufficient for the winding up and transfer of his business.  Mr. Hooson himself was desirous of going but there were a number of applications for the clerkship which would be considered on Monday 8th January 1917 and exemption for Mr. Hooson was requested until 31st March (final), in order to enable the new clerk to get conversant with the intricacies of the office.  He was granted until 31st March 1917.

On Tuesday, 17th April 1917, there was an appeal tribunal presided over by Mr. Christmas Jones. Isaac Daniel Hooson, solicitor, withdrew his appeal and asked for three weeks in which to clear up his affairs.  The tribunal granted him to May 7th, applicant stating that he would join the army on that date.

On Sunday, 6th May 1917, Mr. I. D. Hooson, solicitor, of Victoria House, Rhos, joined the Royal Naval Flying Corps.  He was sent for training with the Royal Navy Air Services at Eastchurch on the Isle of Sheppey.  His first service date was 7th May 1917 and he served on the President II.  On that date a note was made of his appearance.  He was described as being 5 foot 5 inches tall, with a 36 inch chest, brown hair, brown eyes and a fresh complexion.  His Service Number was F28951.

During the week ending 25th August 1917, Mr. I. D. Hooson of the Royal Navy Air Service was home on leave and his many friends were glad to see him looking so well.

I. D. Hooson’s last Service date was 31st March 1918 and he served on the Daedalus.

The Rhos Herald of 27th July 1918 gave the news that Mr. I. D. Hooson of the R. N. A. S. was home on leave from France.

On demobilisation in 1919 he settled as a partner in a firm of solicitors in Wrexham .

From 1920 to 1943 he was Official Receiver in Bankruptcy in the Chester and North Wales area. He was a patron of Urdd Gobaith Cymru, and was a very useful member of the council of the National Eisteddfod and its committees. He had written a good deal of poetry between 1900 and 1914 and his poems are found here and there in Cymru.

During the 2nd Quarter of 1937, in the District of Wrexham, the death was registered of 64-year-old Thomas J. Hooson, brother of I. D. Hooson.

I. D. Hooson abandoned poetry for years and when he took it up again he was immediately recognised as one of Wales’s premier poets. His favourite forms were lyrics and ballads and all his poetry is characterised by a sureness of touch and a charm of vision and expression.

He published Y Fantell Fraith (1934), a Welsh language adaptation of the ‘Pied Piper of Hamlin ’ and Cerddi a Baledi (1936).  In January 1940 the Llenor magazine published a poem by him about a one-man band.  He also wrote about sleepers, spiders’ webs, the Gresford disaster, campfires and a poacher in prison.

In February 1943 the Liverpool Evening Express and the Chester Chronicle announced that in view of other interests, Mr. I. D. Hooson, Official Receiver in Bankruptcy for Chester and North Wales since 1920 had resigned his appointment, “notwithstanding the Board of trade’s urgent request that he should withdraw his resignation”.  It was mentioned that he was a well-known Wrexham solicitor and a partner in the firm of Messrs. Hooson and Hughes, Egerton Street.  He was described as “one of the outstanding Welsh lyric poets of the day and a member of the National Eisteddfod Executive Committee and prominently identified with Welsh cultural movements”.  He was also a Governor of Grove Park Schools Wrexham, and Ruabon Grammar School, chairman of the Wrexham Public Library, and chairman of the Appeal Tribunal Assistance Board for the Wrexham district.

In March 1943 tribute was paid at Bangor County Court to Mr I. D. Hooson, following his retirement from the office of official receiver for North Wales.  Mr. William George, solicitor, said Mr. Hooson had discharged his duties with efficiency and consideration, “especially for poor people who came to his courts”.  The Western Mail, reporting, made mention of Mr Hooson’s work being humdrum but felt it was eased by his gift for poetry and his national repute as a poet.  His Honour, Judge

His Honour Ernest Evans, K.C. hoped that Mr. Hooson would continue to contribute to the literature of his country.

In October 1943, Mr.Registrar Louis Jones made reference to I. D. Hooson’s resignation from his position of official receivership of Chester.  He spoke of the great ability and thoroughness with which Mr. Hooson conducted the cases before the court.  Mr. W. James Davies, deputy official receiver, who had been Mr. Hooson’s assistant for many years, also expressed regret at his resignation and endorsed the registrar’s tribute.

In 1948, I. D. Hooson was awarded an Honorary M.A. by the University of Wales.

Isaac Daniel Hooson died on 18th October 1948. He left effects valued at £50,302 13s 11d and probate of his will was granted to George Oswald Hughes and John Gwilym Jones, solicitors.  The London Gazette gave his addresses as Victoria House, Market Street, Rhosllanerchrugog and 24 Egerton Street Wrexham, where he carried on his business as a solicitor.  Any claims on his estate were to be made by 9th June 1949 to Hooson and Hughes, 24 Egerton Street.  In accordance to his wishes, his ashes were strewn on the mountainside above the Panorama in the Vale of Llangollen, where a stone monument was later erected to his memory.

A second collection of his work, Y Gwin a Cherddi Eraill, was published after his death in 1948.

I’d like to conclude by quoting a few words from Ena Woolford, who  was brought up in Victoria House and regarded I. D. Hooson as, “a very dear and loving uncle even though he was not related.  My mother’s family looked after the Hoosons for years then that privilege was passed down to my mother who was married from there and was treated as one of the family having lived there since she was sixteen, helping her sister who was the housekeeper.  I have written my memories of I. D. Hooson in Welsh and it was printed in the local paper NENE.  My brother was born in this house and I. D. was proud of the fact that only my brother and himself had been born in that house.  I unveiled I. D. Hooson’s Memorial stone on the Panorama Walks, near Llangollen, and felt it a great honour to have been asked to do this even though it wasn’t easy, as he was very dear to us”.

i-d-hooson-of-rhos-2

 

WRITTEN BY: Dave Edwards. November 2016

SOURCES: Census Returns; Births, Marriages & Deaths; Wrexham Advertiser (23rd December 1871; 26th September 1874; 17th February 1877; 24th February 1877; 9th March 1877; 25th August 1877; 26th January 1878; 7th September 1878; 12th May 1883; 19th May 1883; 2nd June 1883; 23rd June 1883; 4th October 1884; 11th October 1884; 19th March 1887; 16th November 1888; 26th December 1891; 5th November 1892; 8th July 1893; 26th May 1894; 2nd March 1895; 3rd October 1896); Llangollen Advertiser (9th October 1903; 16th October 1891; ); Heroes and Gentlemen All (Grev Jones); Rhos Herald (8th May 1909; 26th November 1910; 28th October 1916; 6th January 1917; 21st April 1917; 12th May 1917; 26th May 1917; 25th August 1917; 27th July 1918); W. R. Jones; The Times (30th April 1883); Ena Woolford;); Liverpool Mercury (25th April 1895;); Chester Courant (24th June 1903; 23rd March 1904); Cheshire Observer (14th March 1903; 26th December 1903; 20th January 1940); Denbigh Free Press (28th May 1904); Welsh Coast Pioneer (27th May 1904); Liverpool Daily Post (3rd April 1944; 20th October 1944); Liverpool Evening Express (1st February 1943;); London Gazette (25th March 1949); The Leader (27th January 1978); Western Mail (24th March 1943); Chester Chronicle (13th February 1943);



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