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Frank Hyde's family and In-laws.

1st. Lieutenant Frank Hyde - Royal Engineers
(Circa 1871)

Constance Mary Louise Felgate
(Photo - Webster Bros. Bayswater)

Georgiana Rowley nee Catania
(Holding Florence's brother - Click on image for more details on the Rowley Family)

Florence Mina Georgie Leila Hyde
(1882 - 1962)

Dr. Sylvester Bradley

Major Francis Angerstein Clarendon Rowley-Hyde

Frank's two marriages:

Frank started his career in art as a war artist doing black and white drawings for The Graphic in the Franco-Prussian War of 1870-71, and held the rank of First Lieutenant in the Royal Engineers.

Frank married Constance Mary Louisa Felgate on the 16th November, 1876, but sadly she died less than a year later, at the age of 21, on September 28th 1877.

At St Luke's, Kensington, on November 1st, 1881, he married Florence Ellen Louise Rowley, the daughter of Captain John Angerstein Rowley. Florence's mother Georgiana Augusta Rowley (nee Catania) is pictured on the left with Florence's brother John Richard Frederick Rowley (1864-1921). Florence was a niece of a Royal Navy Admiral - Charles John Rowley (1832-1919).

They had two children, a daughter Florence (Mina, 1882-1962), and a son Francis Angerstein Clarendon Rowley Hyde (1884-1967).

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Divorce case against Florence:

In 1887 in the first petition Florence sought a decree of judicial separation, on the ground of the cruelty of her husband. Frank denied the charge, and in a cross petition he alleged misconduct on the part of his wife with the four co-respondents all of whom appeared and denied the charge.

At the outset of the proceedings Mr. Reid, Q.C. who appeared for the husband said that he did not propose to offer any evidence against the co-respondents Wallace and Neville, and suggested that their names should be struck out of the list.

The remaining two co-respondents were Douglas Felgate and his brother Percy Felgate who in June 1886 married her sister Evelyn Frederica Rowley, an actress. Another Brother Stanley Felgate married in 1886 Florence's sister Georgina Mina Rowley, an actress. All the Felgates were Frank's brother-in-laws in his first marriage, and were second cousins of Florence.

As reported in "The Daily Chronicle, Monday December 19th, 1887", His Lordship, Sir James Hannen, in directing the Jury stated:
"... before he dealt with the evidence which was relied upon in support of the charges there were one or two preliminary observations he had to make. The case was originally launched against Mrs. Hyde in a totally different manner in which it is now presented. The charge against her was of numerous acts of adultery, but before the jury were sworn two of the co-respondents were dismissed from the suit, and this justified Mr. Crump's statement that the charges had been made of a reckless character, which it was evident could not be relied upon.

Against these two co-respondents, who had been dismissed, there was a claim of 1000 pounds damages against each of them, while in regard to the two Felgates no damages were claimed.

In regard to the Felgates they were cousins of Mrs. Hyde, and had been brought up together from childhood. It was said that they used to kiss each other when they met, but it was remarkable that no evidence had been offered in this respect. It was to be remembered that two of the brothers were engaged to two of the sisters of Mrs. Hyde and married them soon after, showing the relationship between the two families. It was perfectly natural, therefore, that there should be a good deal of intimacy between them, considering that they were second cousins to Mrs. Hyde.

One of the dismissed co-respondents was a colonel in the army. His lordship proceeded to comment on the evidence. He said that Mr Percy Felgate's conduct had been criticised adversely, but it must be remembered that he came from India to meet the charge, previous to which application had been made on behalf of Mr Hyde's counsel to have this case tried in his absence. That was opposed, and the jury had been specially summoned to try this case.

Referring to the charge of cruelty, the learned judge pointed out that there had been no corroborative evidence as to the violence. She left him in October 1885, but in the letter she wrote she did not mention a word about cruelty, and returned to live with him six months longer. In considering the question of cruelty the jury had to consider whether it was dangerous to life, limb, or health of Mrs. Hyde to live with her husband."

At ten minutes past one the jury retired to consider their verdict. After an absence of half an hour they found that Mr. Hyde was not guilty of cruelty, and that Mrs. Hyde had committed adultery with both Percy and Douglas Felgate.

His Lordship granted Mr. Hyde a decree nisi, with costs against the co-respondents.

The outcome of the case must have severely affected the lives of all those involved and indeed Florence died in 1890 at about 28yrs with alcholism probably a contributing factor.

From reading the account of the trial as reported in the newspaper, I am not overly impressed by the quality of evidence from either party. It is sad for all those involved that a more discreet solution for a marriage dissolution could not have been found. The outcome for Florence must have been absolutely devastating, and she has my fullest sympathies. Frank never re-married.

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Frank's children and the sale of Hyde End:

Franks Daughter, Mina, married a Doctor Sylvester Bradley, and they had two daughters, Pamela and Betty.

Note:
The following extract is from Audrey's notes on what my father -Graham Hyde - stated :

"Frank inherited Hyde End when Captain John Francis died in 1903, and under the terms of the will of his Great Uncle Charles, Frank was to have Hyde End, and after he died, if he had no living sons it was to go to Frederick.

His son Francis, was a Captain in the Regulars before the Great War, in my Grandfathers old regiment the 4th Kings Own. He distinguished himself during the War and Frank told us he was killed in a battle in 1917. To all and sundry he announced, "If my son cannot have Hyde End, no other Hyde shall have it".

Frank sold Hyde End in 1917, and that was the end of my branch of Hydes, owning any land in Berkshire, after nine hundred years of continuous ownership.

After 70 years I have at last found out what really happened to Francis. He wasn't killed in battle!

The real story is Francis lived a lavish life in the Army spending his fathers money freely. He nearly ruined Frank, and to top this off he married an Irish woman, totally against his fathers wishes. Frank who had no love for the Irish completely lost his head when he heard of the marriage. ... (I have deleted this section as I am not sure of it's veracity) ... Once he calmed down he sold Hyde End, disinherited his son, and had nothing more to do with him, for the rest of his life.

Francis lived in Ireland, married twice but had no children. He died in 1965 in Durban South Africa and I am very sorry not to have known the real story over all these years, as I would have liked to have met a man who could stand up to Frank, none of us could."

Frank died in his 88th year on August 31st, 1937.

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