Saturday, 16 May 2009

Herbert Felix Cruse 1863-1921

Kit Elliott has sent me this lovely photograph of his ancestor Herbert Felix Cruse, who was more usually known by his middle name Felix. The photograph was taken in the garden of the family home at 3 Newby Terrace, Stockton-on-Tees, County Durham, and was sent by Felix as a Christmas greeting, presumably to family members, in 1915. Herbert Felix Cruse was the son of Edward Cruse (1807-1879) and Hannah Mary Brown (c.1826-1891). His father Edward was in his day a well-known organist and composer. Felix was born on 3rd August 1863 at 39 Buckingham Road, Brighton, Sussex. We understand that Felix was named after the composer Felix Mendelssohn. He also had an older brother named John Sebastian Cruse after J S Bach! The house in Brighton was known as Bach House for obvious reasons! Felix clearly inherited his father's musical talent and by the age of 17 he was working as an organist. Some time before 1891 Felix was appointed as the organist of St Peter's Church in Stockton-on-Tees, County Durham. The church was also the venue of Felix's marriage to Katherine Brown in 1894. Felix and Katherine had just one child, a daughter called Joan, who was born in 1896 in Stockton-on-Tees. Felix must have struggled to make money as an organist and by the time of the 1901 census he had taken on a job as a teacher of music to supplement the income from his organ playing. Felix died at his home at 3 Newby Terrace, Stockton-on-Tees, on 13th December 1921 at the age of 58 years. At the time of his death he was described as a chartered accountant's clerk. The reason for his change of career is not known.


Robert said...

There was an Edward Cruse born to Henry Cruse in 1807. Henry was born in Warminster but lived in Frome, where he was quite influential. I am descended from Thomas Cruse, son of Henry and therefore possibly the brother of this Edward. Another similarity is that Thomas was an accomplished musician, moved to Battle, then to Brighton (27, Kensington Street) for a short while, and then back to Battle. Thomas was an organist. One of Thomas's sons, Edward, was also a musician, playing in the church in Battle and composing music. This was a side-line as he worked as secretary to Battle Abbey Estate - the post his father had before him
It looks as if we are related

Robert Cruse

Debbie Kennett said...

Herbert Felix Cruse is the son of Edward Cruse, who was born in 1807 in Frome, Somerset. Edward was indeed the brother of your ancestor Thomas Cruse. There seem to have been a lot of musical genes in your Cruse family.

Frank said...

I am at an early stage of researching my family tree but believe that John Sebastian Cruse is my Great Grandfather. His son my Grand Father was also called John Sebastian Cruse!

Debbie Kennett said...

How exciting to find someone who is descended from John Sebastian Cruse! Do get in touch if you want more information.