Dictionary of Family Biography
Ernest Alfred Paulin
Ernest Alfred Paulin (1864-1912) was born the 22nd of July 1864 in Henley-on-Thames, England. He was the son of Frederick Paulin, brewer, and his wife Mary Cutler. He was one of thirteen children, their fourth eldest, and their third son. He would go by the name Pauline between 1886 and 1897.
As far as can be determined, Ernest received a decent education. His eldest brother Frederick stated in an interview that he had attended Grammar school in Henley, and St Mary’s College in London. It is assumed that the boys who were raised in Henley received similar educational opportunities.
The family lived in Henley-on-Thames until 1873. Frederick Paulin, who had owned a brewery in Henley, sold it that year and used the profits to purchase the Union Brewery in Peckham, London. Frederick declared bankruptcy in 1874, and the family moved to the West Midlands. The family moved around the area for a few years, settling in Acock’s Green by 1880.
It was in Birmingham that Ernest began his working life. In the 1881 census he was listed as a clerk. It was here too that his love for sports becomes apparent. He was the captain of the Acock’s Green Star Football (soccer) club. His brother Frederick played forward.
On the 9th of March 1886 Ernest married Emma Jane Jennings at St Edburgha’s Church in Yardley. She was the daughter of Thomas Jennings, butcher who also ran the Swan Pub in Yardley, and his wife Emma Newberry.
Not long after, the newlyweds were boarding the SS Adriatic in Liverpool. With his brother Herbert Paulin and her sister Amy Jennings, they set off for North America. They left the 12th of April.
On the 25th of October that year Ernest and Emma welcomed their first child, a daughter, Dorothy Mary. Her birth was announced in the Victoria Colonist; her father was working as a reporter in the rival paper, The Standard. He later became an accountant/bookkeeper for the firm of Matthew, Richards and Tye.
Victoria’s newspapers are full of Ernest’s activities. He continued to be active in sports, competing in the city’s Caledonian games in the running high jump in 1887. He was also the skipper of the Albion Cricket Club in 1892. The whole family was musical, and Ernest was active in the Victoria Opera Company and was often noted in musical productions or performances.
In August 1887 Dorothy died of Cholera. The following year, on March 5th, they welcomed their first son, Harold Ernest. He was joined by a sister Irene Belle on the 17th September 1889, another sister Gladys Mary the 12th February 1891, and sister Grace Melona on the 8th of April 1893. Sadly Gladys died March 13th 1892 from whooping cough.
From interviews with his grandchildren, it was felt that Emma was not very happy living in Victoria. She packed up the children and moved back to Birmingham, England. Ernest followed. This was after 1894. He found work as an accountant.
In Birmingham they had three more children: Norman Frederick born 11 August 11897 (or 21 October – the date his mother insisted he was really born); Hilda Louise 25 January 1899 and Eric Cutler the 27 November 1900. Eric died in September 1901.
The family moved to Ilford, in London around 1905-6, where Ernest worked as a salesman for the Oliver Typewriter Company. The family then moved to Leigh-on-Sea. The move was precipitated by Ernest’s diagnosis of tuberculosis. It was believed that sea air would help.
In August 1912 Ernest travelled back to visit his family in Victoria, alone. The trip was in hopes that the change would improve his health. It did not. After several weeks in Victoria, he died on the 20th of November. He was buried at Ross Bay Cemetery.
Birth, marriage and death certificates
Scottish Field, December 1930
Oxon Brews: The Story of Commercial Brewing in Oxfordshire by Mike Brown, Longfield, Brewing History Society, 2004.
UK Census 1871-1881, 1901-1911
Canadian Census 1891
Daily Colonist, British Colonist, Birmingham Post
Shipping Records – manifest of passengers to the US; Canadian arrivals list; US Arrivals
Probate registry – England
Ross Bay Cemetery