John Joseph Anstey, a member of the Exminster Ansteys, was born on 10 (or 11) August 1880 in Liverpool (registered as James Joseph Anstey) to parents John Anstey and Susan Coyle, baptised 18 August 1880 at Liverpool, St Peter as a Roman Catholic; he was brother to fellow Anstey Hero Peter Herman Anstey.
John grew up living at Sparling Street in Liverpool then on 13 July 1899 in Liverpool he enlisted in the Army. On his Attestation Form he noted that he was living at 24 Sparling Street; that he was “17 years 11 months old“; that he was Roman Catholic; that he was a labourer; and that he was unmarried – he signed up for a period of six years of service and was posted to the 3rd Battalion South Lancashire Regiment as a Private (Service Number: 6510)
He was “embodied” [with the 1st and/or 2nd Battalion] from 3 January 1900 to 3 August 1901 and “paid a £5 War Gratuity in accordance with Army Order 5 O/1901“. As such we can be sure that he served in the Second Boer War in South Africa between those two dates, though we have no further details of this.
The only other information we have concerning his service is that he was “discharged on termination of this engagement“, still a Private, on 12 July 1905, having completed his six years.
John married Margaret Ann Hutchinson [Hutchison] (known as Maggie Ann) as soon as he returned from South Africa, in q4 1901 in Liverpool, and they had children Susan Anstey (b 1902 Toxteth Park); John Anstey (b 1904 Toxteth Park); Maria Anstey (b 6 November 1911, baptised 11 November 1911 at Toxteth Park, St Patrick as a Roman Catholic); and Margaret A. Anstey (b 1921 Toxteth Park).
By the 1911 Census the family were living at 6 Prince William Street, Toxteth Park Liverpool where John was a carter. They were still living there at the time of the 1939 Register, by which time John was a sports groundsman.
John died in 1962 in Liverpool, aged 81.
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