William KNIBBS, son of Henry KNIBBS and Rosannah DIMMICK , was born 24 November 1879 in Braunston, Northamptonshire, England. He married Lily JONES bet. April and June, 1900 in Birmingham District, Warwickshire, England. He died 09 May 1969 in Braunston, Northamptonshire, England. Lily JONES was born 06 January 1882 in Birmingham, Warwickshire, England. She died bet. July and September, 1943 in Rugby District, Northamptonshire, England.


Children of William KNIBBS and Lily JONES are:
1. Emily KNIBBS, b. 13 October 1910 See Leonard HOUGH & Emily KNIBBS OR Martin F GARRATT & Emily KNIBBS
2. Leonard KNIBBS, b. 13 February 1924 See Leonard KNIBBS & Doreen Vera JOHNSON
3. Irene E J KNIBBS, b. 03 October 1928
4. Lily KNIBBS, b. bet. October and December, 1907 See Arthur W L SMITH & Lily KNIBBS
5. Arthur KNIBBS, b. bet. April and June, 1905
6. William Henry KNIBBS, b. 09 August 1903 See William Henry KNIBBS & Caroline GRIFFITHS
7. Edward KNIBBS, b. 27 September 1917 See Edward KNIBBS & Constance LLOYD
8. Evelyn Violet KNIBBS, b. 09 May 1922 See Kenneth George READER & Evelyn Violet KNIBBS
9. Thomas KNIBBS, b. 11 February 1920 See Thomas KNIBBS & Roma Ethel REED
10. May KNIBBS, b. 29 May 1901

Notes for William KNIBBS:



William's dad Henry, third from the left, with his five sons (from left to rigjht) Thomas, Henry, William, Edward and James Arthur. (click to enlarge)
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William aboard the Cactus during the 1940's. (click to enlarge)
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William aboard the Viceroy during the late 1930's. (click to enlarge)
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We can see William and his wife Lillie in the 1901 census, living in Barn Street 6 Court 3, Bordesley, Birmingham, Warwickshire, England:
William Knibbs Head Mar 21 Boatman Branston
Lillie Knibbs Wife Mar 20 Birmingham
Alice Jukes Boarder UnM 20 Screw Worker Birmingham
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In 1911, we see William's wife and children living at Cross Lane, Braunston Northamptonshire:
Lily Knibbs Wife 29 Married Boatwoman Birmingham Warwickshire
May Knibbs Daughter 9 Birmingham Warwickshire
William Knibbs Son 8 Braunston Northamptonshire
Arthur Knibbs Son 6 Braunston Northamptonshire
Lily Knibbs Daughter 3 Birmingham Warwickshire
Emily Knibbs Daughter 15 mnths Birmingham Warwickshire

William was away from home at the time I believe on a boat at the Canal Locks, Towcester, Northamptonshire. The Master of the boat was George Ayres, and one of the two engine drivers was a William Knibbs. Unfortunately, the details weren't fully completed on the census return form:
George Ayres Master Steam Boat Master
William Knibbs Driver Engine Driver
George Morris Driver Engine Driver
William Woodward Mate Mate

The address was given as Steam Factory The Drake.
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I know from William's grand-daughter, Susan Bruce, that one of Willliam's boats was called "Cactus".
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William's claims to fame was in 1927 when it is known that he saved a young boy from drowning at Leamington, as detailed below:

From the Warwick and Warwickshire Advertiser - Saturday 03 September 1927:
RESCUED FROM THE CANAL.
LEAMINGTON BOY'S NARROW ESCAPE FROM DROWNING.
The prompt action of a motor barge driver, William Knibb of Braunston, was responsible for saving the life of a Leamington child who fell into the canal on Monday.
The boy, George William Tennant, 6, was seen by Mr. Knibb disappearing under the water. His first impression was that the child was bathing, but he soon realized something was wrong. He proceeded quickly in his boat to the spot and succeeded in getting the boy out of the water. He then applied artificial respiration with the result that the child, who returned home in a passing minor car, was little the worse for his experience.

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We see William living on the Canal Boat "Cactus" at Fazeley Street, Birmingham, Warwickshire, at the time of the 1939 Register. Also with him was Canal Boatman's Mate, Philip Ward.
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Our gratitude goes to the members and volunteers at Find A Grave web site for recording the details, in memory of William.

Sources for William KNIBBS:

  1. 1881 British Census,
  2. Ancestry.com, England & Wales, Death Index: 1837-1983 
  3. Personal Contact with Susan Bruce,
  4. 1901 British Census,
  5. 1911 British Census,
  6. 1939 Register,

Notes for Lily JONES:

Also known as: Lillie

We see Lily together with sons Edward and Leonard and daughters Evelyn and Emily, at No. 6 Council Houses, Daventry, Northamptonshire, at the time of the 1939 Register.

William was working aboard the canal boat "Cactus" at the time.
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Lily is buried at All Saints' Cemetery, Braunston, Northamptonshire, grave number S3.
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Our gratitude goes to the members and volunteers at Find A Grave web site for recording the details, in memory of Lily.

Sources for Lily JONES:

  1. 1901 British Census,
  2. FreeBMD, FreeBMD gave surname 
  3. 1939 Register,
  4. Ancestry.com, England & Wales, Death Index: 1837-1983 
  5. 1911 British Census,

Notes for Irene E J KNIBBS:

Irene died aged just 19.
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Irene is buried at All Saints' Cemetery, Braunston, Northamptonshire, grave number S4, next to her parents.
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From the Rugby Advertiser, 17 June, 1949:
Knibbs. Treasured memories of our dear Irene. Called to rest 17th June, 1948. Every day in every way Memories bring you near. We never have, never will forget you Irene dear. Father, Sisters and Brothers.

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Our gratitude goes to the members and volunteers at Find A Grave web site for recording the details, in memory of Irene.

Sources for Irene E J KNIBBS:

  1. Ancestry.com, England & Wales, Birth Index: 1837-1983 
  2. Personal Contact with Susan Bruce,
  3. GRO England & Wales,
  4. Cemetery Records,

Notes for Arthur KNIBBS:

Sources for Arthur KNIBBS:

  1. 1911 British Census,
  2. FreeBMD, gave Daventry District 
  3. Personal Contact with Susan Bruce,

Notes for May KNIBBS:

May died aged 15.

Sources for May KNIBBS:

  1. 1911 British Census,
  2. FreeBMD,
  3. Ancestry.co.uk - Birmingham, England, Baptisms, 1813-1912,
  4. GRO England & Wales,