Ada E HALL married Martin Luther BALL in London 1896


Research reveals that Ada Elizabeth HALL married Martin Luther BALLS (surname recorded) Marriage is registered at Poplar London in September quarter of 1896


Ada Elizabeth HALL was born 9th May 1875 in Bromley London

Birth is registered at Hackney London in June quarter of 1875


Ada’s Parents

Father is William HALL

Mother is Laura M HALL nee POWELL


Research through the UK CENSUS has revealed the following information regarding Ada’s direct family and the places where they are recorded as residing.



Ada BALLS 25yrs old born Victoria Park London Widow a Laundry Washer

Martin D BALLS 3yrs old born East Ham London

Susan HALL (first name is recorded by what appears to be a middle name in previous census) 69yrs old born Lambeth widow

All the family are residing at 20 Swinburne Avenue East Ham London the Parish of St Barnabas Little Ilford


1901 UK CENSUS ( Ada’s Brother)

Arthur HALL 30yrs old born Victoria Park South Hackney a GPO Sorter at Circulation Branch

Margaret HALL 29yrs old born Bow London

Maud HALL 7yrs old born Bromley London

Mabel 3yrs old born Clapton London

All the family are residing at 149 Rushmore Road South Hackney London the Parish of All Saints Clapton.


William HALL 61yrs old born Newington a Painter

Laura HALL 59yrs old born Lambeth

Arthur HALL 19yrs old born Victoria Park London

Ada HALL 15yrs old born Victoria Park London an Assistant in a Coffee House

All the family are residing at 27 Blackthorn Street Bromley by Bow London the parish of All Hallows



William H HALL 50yrs old born Newington a Painter

Laura L HALL 50yrs old born Lambeth

George R HALL 19yrs old Born Bethnal Green London a General Labourer

Arthur E HALL 9 yrs old born South Hackney a Scholar

Ada E HALL 6yrs old born south Hackney a Scholar

All the family are residing at Exeter House Pratts Road London Middlesex



William Henry HALL 41yrs old born Newington a Tobacco Pipe Maker

Laura L HALL 39yrs old born Lambeth a Tobacco Pipe Maker

Laura L HALL 14yrs old born Bow London an Evening Scholar

Henry HALL 12yrs old born Bow London an Evening Scholar

Emily HALL 11yrs old born Bow London an Evening Scholar

George Hall 8yrs old born Bow London an Evening Scholar

Mary Ann POWELL 63yrs old born Lambeth Mother-In-Law Widow a Nurse

All the family living at 9 Clapham Road South Hackney London.



Henry W HALL (recorded first name appears to be middle name in other CENSUS records) 30yrs old born Newington a Tobacco Pipe Maker

Laura S HALL (middle initial appears different from other CENSUS records) 29yrs old born Lambeth a Tobacco Pipe Maker

John N HALL 9yrs old born Newington a Scholar

Laura M HALL (middle initial appears different from other CENSUS records) 4yrs old born Mile End London

Henry W HALL 2yrs old born Bethnal Green London

Emily J HALL 1yrs old born Bethnal Green London

All the family are residing at 8 Providence Place Bethnal Green London the Parish of St Johns



Swinburne Avenue & East Ham

At the time of the UK Census 1901 when Ada is shown recorded at the home address of 20 Swinburne Avenue East Ham it would have been considered relatively plush due to having been recently built but my research has established that Swinburne Avenue is no longer standing as the whole street is now part of a school ground.  Swinburne Avenue was situated in the north of East Ham and this area is now part of Manor Park London E12 postal address today.


Ada’s home address of 20 Swinburne Avenue is an address, which was part of what is still known today as ‘Poets Estate’ with many of the streets named after poets.  Swinburne Avenue was a small street with only 22 houses in all that run in between Ruskin Avenue and Sheridan Road with Essex Primary School at the top end of the street.  Directly behind Sheridan Avenue the London, Tilbury & Southend Railway (LTSR) runs, this was opened on 9th July 1894 prior to the estate having been built. When Ada lived at this address she would have frequently heard the sound of the whistling steam engines of the goods & passenger trains rattling along the railway track making their way from Southend or Tilbury Docks to London from inside her house.


From the old ordnance survey maps of East Ham & Barking, it can be seen on the 1894  map that the address  was no more than a open field for farming and East Ham is recorded as an old village.  By 1915 the ordnance survey map reveals a different view, the address is part of a well established prosperous new town set in the heart of the London and Essex boarders.  The 1901 UK Census has recorded the address as part of Essex and not London, but today East Ham is part of the London Borough of Newham.  This seems quite apt, as the London Borough of Newham is now the host for the 2012 Olympics, which will coincide with the anniversary of 100 years since the Titanic disaster. Once again the borough is finding itself being fully redeveloped and the London Docks and the industrial areas that Ada would have known are now being transformed into a 21st Century Olympic City.


Many of the roads and avenues that Ada would have walked down are still standing and not much has changed since these streets were first built. It is evident today that the splendour of the grand Victorian and Edwardian buildings are completely enveloped by the modern transport of today with cars now parked outside every house on each side of the roads and the sight of black plastic rubbish bins adorn the foot paths and front gardens of the hundreds of terraced houses.


Ada would have seen and been part of one of the most exciting times in London’s history having lived in the heart of an area and witnessed right before her eyes one of the biggest new residential developments of the 19th & 20th centuries. 


To give some idea of the scale of this development that Ada witnessed it has been recorded in 1801 that the population was approximately 7,800 with most of the occupations recorded as agricultural. A large proportion of the land was known for its market gardens growing onions and pickling onions, which were sold by the gallon. Potatoes were also largely grown in the old village of East Ham.  Marsh land was a prominent part of the area as you travel south towards the River Thames, which was known as the East Ham Level, famous for its grazing. By 1901 when Ada & her young son Martin were residing in East Ham the entire area had transformed from a village with its vast farm land to a grand town with its hundreds of Victorian terraced houses with an aggregate population of 363,000 residing. 


There is no doubt that when Ada boarded the Titanic in April 1912, and on seeing the grand scale design bestowed on such a vessel with all of its luxurious fittings, this would not have come as such a shock to Ada because as a young mother and widow Ada did witness the Victorian & Edwardian opulent architecture being built before her very own eyes as she went about her daily business when she lived at 20 Swinburne Avenue East Ham.


Ada would have walked through the poet named streets to shop in East Ham’s main High Street North & South, which stretches from the Romford Road in the north down to the Barking Road in the south. Ada would have visited the local Town Hall on the corner of High Street South and the Barking Road which still stands today in all its regal glory of an era and time long gone by. Opposite the Town Hall stands the Victorian building of East Ham Police Station where Ada would have been able to see the horse stables in the police stations courtyard. Next to the Town Hall is the library built in the same ornate brickwork as the Town Hall and besides the library the towns baths were built which I can remember still being used by the public as my father used them in the early 1960’s.  


I have included a poem by the Poet - Algernon Charles Swinburne whose surname was used to name the street where Ada once lived. The poem simply titled Sorrow, a feeling that would have been felt by Ada after her night on the Titanic.



Algernon Charles Swinburne (1873-1909)  

Sorrow, on wing through the world for ever,
Here and there for awhile would borrow
Rest, if rest might haply deliver

One thought lies close in her heart gnawn thorough
With pain, a weed in a dried-up river,
A rust-red share in an empty furrow.

Hearts that strain at her chain would sever
The link where yesterday frets to-morrow:
All things pass in the world, but never







BMD UK data

RG13/1599/60             Page 17
RG13/218/159             Page 27
RG12/322/132             Page 35
RG11/0305/91             Page 9
RG10/334/59               Page 46
RG9/257/73                 Page 43
1894 Ordnance Survey Map
1915 Ordnance Survey Map
Authors Personnal Knowledge Home Town of East Ham

Related Biographies:

Ada E. Balls


Marion James

Comment and discuss


Copyright © 1996-2020 Encyclopedia Titanica ( and third parties (ref: #4953, published 1 January 2006, generated 21st February 2020 01:00:23 AM)