A Late Victorian Wedding

This post is a newspaper report of my gg-aunt Elsie Maud Hewitt to Rev. John Carpenter Turner on September 13, 1892, which was sent to me by a family member.  I’m posting it for a few reasons:

– it’s an easy copy and paste!

– my grandfather was a pageboy, aged 4, and it sounds really cute

– it’s a splendid insight into an upper-middle class Victorian wedding including clothes and gifts (see here for an Edwardian Wedding in New Zealand)

– there’s a perception that Tabloid newspapers are a relatively modern phenomenon when they aren’t

I’ve added notes in italics of who people were, relative to the bride.  If you know any of the others, please let me know.  I’ve also added some paragraphs for easier reading!

Isle of Wight Observer (Ryde, England), Saturday, September 24, 1892; pg. 5; Issue 2091


On Tuesday, Christ Church, Surbiton-hill, was crowded to witness the marriage of Elsie Maud Hewitt, eldest daughter of the late Mr Walter A. Hewitt of Surbiton, with the Rev John Carpenter Turner, of Ryde. The Rev C.H. M. Spurrier accompanied the bridegroom as best man. The ceremony was performed by the Rev Canon Singleton, vicar of Melbourne, Derby, cousin of the bridegroom, assisted by Rev Augustus Field, cousin of the bride.

Shortly after 2 o’clock the bride appeared accompanied by her eldest brother, Mr Charles A. Hewitt. She looked charming in a gown of rich ivory satin trimmed with Brussels lace, and was attended by her two little nephews, Master Eustace Hewitt and Master Hubert Hewitt as pages. The bridesmaids were three in number, Miss Beatrice Hewitt, Miss Kathleen Hewitt, sisters of the bride and Miss Bessie Turner, sister of the bridegroom. They wore very pretty dresses of French grey crépon, trimmed with biscuit lace, black hats trimmed with grey tips and velvet to match, and wore gold brooches, the gift of the bridegroom.

The service was choral, and on the bride reaching the steps Bickersteth’s lovely hymn, “Rest in the Lord,” was sung. Before the exhortation “O perfect love” was sung, and at the end of the service “Now thank we all our God.”

Among the relations and guests at the wedding and subsequent reception at  “Aderholt” were: Miss Ada Hewitt (poss Constance Ada – sister), Mr W.E. Hewitt (Walter Ernest – brother), Mr R.K Hewitt (Reginald Key – brother), Mr and Mrs W. Carpenter Turner (new in-laws), Miss Turner, Miss C. Turner, Miss F. Turner, Miss M. Turner, Miss Hewitt (Clapham), Mr and Mrs A.S. Hewitt (poss Albert Spencer – uncle), Mr and Mrs T.H Hewitt (Thomas Hughes – brother), Mr Lifford Hewitt (Arthur Lifford – 1st cousin), Mr and Mrs Gros, Miss Gros, Miss E. Gros (brother Walter Ernest married Rosalie Louise Gros in 1892 so family friends/the next in-laws), Mrs Singleton, Miss Case, Mr H. Case, Miss Field (poss second cousin Maud), Miss M. Field (poss second cousin Mabel), Mr W Hughes Hughes (first cousin, once removed?), Mrs A.M. Walters, Mr and Mrs S. Wheeler, Mrs Corfield, Mr A. B. Corfield, Mrs Osborne Dawson, Mrs John Dawson, Miss Butler, Miss M. Butler, Mrs Strachan, Miss Maddock, Miss Unwin, Mr and Miss Walker, Rev W. H. Ranken, Miss Gilpin, Rev R Hosgood, Miss Clark, Mrs Thorpe, Mr Harold Beard, Mrs Curtiss, Mrs Carvell, Mrs Young, Mrs Hodgson, Miss Young, Mr E. Young, Miss Irene Hodgson, Mrs Wimble, Mr C. K. Reuss, Dr and Mrs Wray and Miss Bruce. The holiday season caused the absence of several relations and friends.

Great interest was taken in the wedding in the parish, as the bride had lived there all her life, and is well known and beloved. The bouquets and floral decorations were distributed between the Surbiton Cottage Hospital and the Great Ormand Street Hospital for Children.

The weather, which was a little doubtful in the morning, turned out lovely, and by the time the bride left the church the sun was shining brightly. The happy pair left soon after 4 o’clock amidst showers of rice and slippers ad libitum. The honeymoon will be spent at the English Lakes. The bride’s traveling dress was of soft grey cloth trimmed with black lace; grey jacket, black hat trimmed with feathers and velvet to match.

The presents, numbering nearly 200, were both beautiful and useful, and amongst them were a handsome old fashioned French drawing room clock, given by Mr Charles Hewitt: a pair of candlesticks by Mr and Mrs T. H. Hewitt; a picture, the two little nephews; a Dresden tea set, Mr Reginald Hewitt; and old fashioned Chippendale armchair, Miss Bee Hewitt; tea-pot, Miss Ada Hewitt; picture “Eventide,”  Mr W. E. Hewitt; silver mustard pot, Miss Kathleen Hewitt. The plate was given by the father and mother of the bridegroom, including a handsome spirit stand and a case of desert knives and forks. A very handsome wrought iron standard lamp was presented by Miss Turner; fish knives and forks by Misses C. F. B. and M. Turner; tea caddy by Miss Constance Turner. The teacher of the Christ Church Girl’s Sunday School presented the bride with a beautiful little traveling clock. The bridegroom was presented with a black marble dining room clock by the Guild of All Saints, Ryde; a beautiful inkstand by the choir of All Saints, and a biscuit box by the boys of his Bible class.

The bride and groom will reside at Ryde, where they have taken Anglesea Lodge.


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