Tuesday, 4 January 2011

Bio of Norman James Darby 1912 - 1990

My grandfather Norman James Darby was born on 9 April 1912 in Chicago, the son of William Henry Darby and Jessie Hephzibah Pugh.  Both parents were born in Birmingham, England.  While Norman was still a baby, the family moved to Fort William, Ontario, Canada, so his father could take up a job as a policeman on the Canadian Pacific Railroad.

In June 1914, Norman, his two sisters and his mother sailed for England to visit family.  They never returned to Canada.  War broke out and the family decided to stay in England.  Back in Canada, Norman's father, William Henry Darby, joined the Canadian Expeditionary Force in late May 1915, and shipped to England in early 1916.  He died at Ypres on 13 November 1917.

Norman grew up in Birmingham, and as a young man holidayed in Aberystwyth, where he met Phyllis Pugh.  They married in 1938 and set up home in Birmingham.  After the war they moved to live with Phyl's parents in Hay-on-Wye, and Norman worked as a commercial traveller covering the south west of England.  In the 1950s the family moved to Wiltshire, then in the late 1970s, following Norman's retirement, they moved to Devon.  The final move was to Sunderland in north-east England, where Norman died on 9 May 1990.

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