Born: 7th January 1875, Ipswich.

Died: 26th February 1917; age 42; Drowned as a result of an enemy submarine.

Residence: 25, Tyler Street, Ipswich.

Employment: from the 1st December 1899 Samuel took charge of the steam launch Orwell (commonly known round the Dock as the “Black Rat”) for the Ipswich Dock Commission. He held this post for 16 & 1/2 years, until June 1916 when he was asked to take the job of Engineer on Messrs. R. and W. Paul’s “Seagull”

Rank: Engineer; S.S. ‘Sea Gull’ ( Messrs. R. and W. Paul, of  Ipswich).


Memorial Reference:IMG_6590

Mercantile Marine Memorial Part VII.

Tower Hill,



Relatives Notified & Address: Son of Robert Shelley & the late Martha; husband of Lilian Edith Shelley (nee Belcher), of 25, Tyler Street, Stoke, Ipswich.




1881   North Side Waterworks Street, Ipswich.


Samuel was 6 years old and living with his parents & brother.

Robert Shelley, 33, a Stoker – Waterworks, born Ipswich.

Martha Shelley (nee Last), 33, born Earl Soham, Suffolk.

Robert Shelley, 8, born Ipswich.


1891   19, Pottery Street, Ipswich.


Samuel was 16 years old, a Shoe Rivetter. He was living with his father, step mother & step siblings.

Robert Shelley, 41, a Fireman at Foundry, born Ipswich.

Eliza Shelley (nee Groves), 37, born Lanham, Suffolk.

Arthur Shelley, 5, born Ipswich.

Annie Shelley, 3, born Ipswich.


1901   31, Wingfield Street, Ipswich.


Samuel was 26 years old, a Engine Driver – Steam Boat. He was married and Head of the Household.

Lilian, 30.

Samuel, 1.

2 boarders.


1911   25, Tyler Street, Ipswich.


Samuel was 37 years old, an Engine Driver – Dock Commissioners. He was Head of the Household.

Edith, 15.

Samuel, 11.

Martha, 8.

Joseph, 4.

Alice, 2.


Samuel’s mother, Martha Shelley, died 1882, Ipswich.

Samuel attended St. Clement’s School, Ipswich.


On the 13th January 1895, Ipswich, Samuel married Lilian Edith Belcher, born August 1870, Chelmondiston, Suffolk. They had 5 children:

Edith Annie Shelley, born 1895, Ipswich.

Samuel Robert Shelley, born 1899, Ipswich.

Martha Olive Shelley, born 1902, Ipswich.

Joseph Arthur Shelley, born 1906, Ipswich.

Alice May Shelley, born 1908, Ipswich.


Clement William Corner, age 23 years, the youngest son of Mrs. and the late Mr. William Corner, of 17, Ringham Road, Ipswich. Deceased was an old schoilar of Clifford Road School, where he won a scholarship for drawing. He started life as a telegraph messenger at the General Post Office, Ipswich. He then started as an assistant to Mr. William Sneezum, and finally leaving this employ to join the Seagull as fireman, in September , 1915. He was greatly respected by a large circle of friends.


Samuel Shelley, of 25, Tyler Street, Ipswich, was engineer in the Seagull. Deceased, who was born on January 6th, 1875, was an old St. Clement’s School boy, when the late Mr. Widgery was head master. After serving his apprenticeship he took to the sea as a calling, during the course of which he served in several tugs and boats sailing out of Ipswich. On December 1st, 1899, he took charge of the steam launch Orwell (commonly known round the Dock as the “Black Rat”) for the Ipswich Dock Commission. He held this post for 16 1/2 years till June, 1916, when he was asked to take the job of engineer on Messrs. R. and W. Paul’s Seagull. Deceased leaves a widow and five children.

Samuel is also remembered on the war memorial at St. Peter’s Church, Ipswich.

IMG_4741 (2)

 S.S. ‘Sea Gull’ (Ipswich).

S.S. ‘Sea Gull’ (Ipswich).

The S.S. ‘Sea Gull’ was built by J. Fullerton 7 Co., Piasley in 1893 and owned at the time of her loss by R.&W. Paul Ltd., Ipswich. She was a British steamer of 144 tons.

On the 26th February 1917, ‘Sea Gull’ was on a voyage from London to Boulogne with a general cargo. She was sunk by a mine from the German submarine UC-16 (Egon von Werner), 4 miles SxE of the Folkstone Gate; 2 persons were lost.

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