[20] Archibald Ainslie Price (1873-1925)

The youngest of William Samuel Price II’s children was probably named after distant relatives in Scotland. Mary Dodds may have been related to Archibald Dodds who was living with a family in the East Lothian area in the early years of the 19th century. Some notes on relations in that area in the 1840s refers to a “Mrs Ainslie”, who may have been a relative or family friend. He was born in Blackheath on 16th February 1873.

He was living with his family in Greenwich for the 1881 and 1891 censuses, being a medical student at the latter date. Archibald was the second Price child to qualify as a doctor, doing so in 1898. He has not been found in the 1901 census, so may have been abroad, but on 3rd October 1905 he married Beatrice Forster Denniston, at St Paul’s Church, Greenwich. He was described as ‘Surgeon and Physician’ of 80 London Street.

The Denniston Ancestry

Beatrice’s father was William Denniston (deceased in 1905) who had been a Secretary for a Charity Organisation and, earlier, a Staff Sergeant in the Army Hospital Corps, who had been born in Ireland in about 1844. Her mother was Jessie M Denniston nee Olivey, the daughter of Martha and Colin Thomas Olivey, who was born in Kent in about 1850. Beatrice’s birth was registered with the middle name Deborah, but at some point in the 1890s she and her six siblings all took an additional middle name of Forster.

Although the family in both the 1881 and 1891 censuses are recorded under the name ‘Denniston’, the births of the eldest two - Ethel Martha J. (1875) and Jessie Mary D. (1876) - and the youngest two – Dora Mabel D. (1881) and Archibald James D. (1883) – are registered under the surname ‘Forster’. The middle three children – William (1878), Beatrice Deborah (1879) and Reginald Thomas (1880) - are registered under the surname ‘Denniston’.

When it came to baptisms of the youngest five children in London (the eldest two were born in Portsea, Hampshire), those whose births were registered as ‘Denniston’ were baptised at St Mark’s Church, Battersea with the surname ‘Forster’. Those registered as ‘Forster’ were baptised at St John’s Church, Battersea with the surname ‘Denniston’. The reasons for all of this are unknown !

The marriage was a short one as Beatrice died, childless, on 3rd December 1908, from TB at 971 Romford Road, Manor Park, an area on the outskirts of East London.

Archibald Ainslie Price, 38, a 'Physical Surgeon' was living, as a widower, at the same address during the 1911 census. The only other person in the house was his 'General domestic servant' - Rhoda Marguretta Lulham, aged 31, and unmarried. Archibald went on to marry Rhoda in late 1915 and they had two daughters – Rhoda M. H. in 1916 and Muriel D. in 1919.

Before they were married, Rhoda had a son in 1912 and his birth was registered as Cyril D. Lulham. His father was probably Archibald Price, as after his marriage to Rhoda the boy's name was changed to 'Price'.

Rhoda later married Richard Bertie Compton in 1925, shortly after Archibald's death. When recorded in the National Register, in late 1939, they were living at 274 Lancaster Gate, Kensington, London and the occupations of both were recorded as 'Hotel Manager'. Also living with them was her daughter Rhoda M. Price. By then 23 years old, she had no occupation was was listed as 'Incapacitated'. The dates of birth of the family are recorded as - Rhoda Compton, 21st September 1879; Richard Compton, 9th August 1885 and Rhoda Price, 29th April 1916. Rhoda Compton died in Kensington in 1967, aged 87.

The Lulham Ancestry

Rhoda Marguretta Lulham, the daughter of Robert and Phillis Lulham (nee Older) and was born in Bermondsey, London in 1879. She was one of four siblings with an elder sister, Phillis Sophia (b.1877) and two younger brothers, Charles (b. ca 1882) and Frederick George (b.1883).

Robert Lulham was an agricultural labourer, born in Burwash, Sussex in 1856,one of six children of Richard and Sophia Lulham (nee Roberts). Richard had been born in Burwash in about 1833 the son of Richard and Elizabeth Lulham (spelled Lullam in the 1841 census). The Richard senior was a wheelwright, born in about 1799.

Rhoda Lulham had four sons and a daughter in the 1900s, fathered by Joseph Franklin (b. Co. Tyrone in ca 1868), a bricklayer by trade. These were - Joseph Lulham (b. 1900), Charles Robert (b. 1902), Wilfred Victor (b. 1904), Clarence Hedley (b. 1906) and May Phyllis (1909). There is no record of any marriage, so Rhoda was probably common law wife. (They may possibly have married in Ireland, but this seems unlikely).

At the 1911 census, while Rhoda Lulham was living with Dr Archibald Price, Joseph Franklin and his five children were split up and living at three different locations in Romford and Ilford, in all cases in workhouses or homes for the homeless.

Dr Price’s servant

In 1921, Annie Bridger was an unmarried servant in the household of Dr Archibald Price at 971 Romford Road, Manor Park. She became pregnant and, in May, entered The Mother’s Hospital, Clapton where she gave birth to a son on 7th July. She remained in the Hospital until December, an unusually long period of about 7 months. The relevant paperwork concerning her stay stated that she was very poor and that her parents could not afford the fees “at present”. When Annie left the Hospital, her son – Stanley George Bridger – was handed to Annie’s mother to care for and she returned to work for Dr. and Mrs Price. At that time she earned £26 p.a., but someone paid her mother 5/- a week to care for baby Stanley.

A number of things are unusual in this series of events – the long period of paid stay in Hospital, the fact that the child was not put up for adoption, the payments to Annie’s mother for child care and Annie’s return to her previous employment. The implication is that Archibald Price was the child’s father, and he was taking responsibility for mother and baby. In 2013, y chromosome DNA tests were done on samples submitted by Stanley George Bridger’s son, William and Paul Price, a grandson of Archibald’s half-brother, William Samuel Price III, to see if they were closely related. The result was negative, so the reasons for events happening in 1921 remain a matter of conjecture.

Archibald died of TB on 24th June 1925 at his Manor Park home. Probate was granted to his widow on 15th July and her left her £936 8s 8d.

The Descendants of Archibald Ainslie and Rhoda M. Price

Archibald and Rhoda’s daughter, Rhoda M. H. Price never married and died in Hastings (date unknown). Muriel D. Price married James Henry Ellis and the couple had two sons, Denis Richard Ellis and James Ellis. She died in 1998 and her husband pre-deceased her in 1991.