Mary Waddington HUBBARD
Born 27 Apr 1889 Hemel Hempstead
Died 27 Apr 1889 Hemel Hempstead
Died at birth, full term.
First child, first daughter of Arthur John HUBBARD and Charlotte Marion VIZARD)
The first child, a daughter, would have been ten years older than I, and my only sister. She was stillborn purely on account of her great size which so long delayed her arrival in the world that she was suffocated. She was a most beautiful baby, and looked more like a child of two months old than a new born infant. Mother had a photograph of her, surrounded by flowers, beautifully printed on porcelain, which, despite her own acute illness she had insisted, that Father should have taken. We used to be shown this photograph once a year on the baby’s birthday. Mother contracted puerperal fever and her life was despaired of for many months, during which time Father’s hair, originally a soft brown, whitened to the silvery snow which we all knew and loved so well. The shock of losing the longed for baby, and the subsequent illness, followed by years during which the hope of any further children was abandoned, seemed to have had an extraordinary psychological effect upon Mother. Her whole outlook on life appeared to have stopped short in the early 1890’s, which probably accounted for much of the fantastically old-fashioned upbringing to which I, as the subsequent daughter, was subjected.
All the dreams and desires which had been built around that child were transferred to me. My eldest brother, Jack, four years my senior, and the second brother George, two and a half years older than I, being boys were given far more individual liberty than I was. I always felt that Mother had strong preconceived ideas of what her daughter should be, in character temperament, and personality, and any deviation that I showed from this specification, and I deviated in every imaginable way, Mother took as a bitter disappointment and personal hurt. Her ideal of a daughter seemed to be a docile, home loving girl, keen on Sunday School teaching and sick visiting, in fact the epitome of the dutiful daughter of the 1890’s. The whole of my younger life, from the age of thirteen onwards, was one ceaseless struggle to develop my own individuality against the overwhelming odds of Mother’s personality and wishes.