Joseph Henry Rose

Petty Officer

Royal Navy 127149 HMS Doris WW1
HMS Impregnable

Photo courtesy Frances Ensikat

Joseph Henry Rose pre Ww1

Pre WW1 photograph of Joseph Rose

Joseph Rose was certainly working at Lea Mills in 1911 and appears on the list of recipients of parcels sent from the Mill to employees but there is no evidence of his leaving the Mill directly to serve. He was a Conservative political agent, an ally and friend of J.B.Marsden-Smedley. He had been one of the many who crossed swords with Charles White. White had taken a legal action against him for alleged slander at a meeting in Cromford where both had been speakers. The action was dismissed and Rose continued to support J.B. in his political career.
When he wrote to J.B. on 11th March 1915, he was serving as a Petty Officer in the Royal Navy and wrote from 40 mess on H.M.S. Doris. He had seen in the Derbyshire Times a report that J.B. Marsden-Smedley was still active in public life and in better health. He regretted when J.B.Marsden-Smedley ceased to represent South Derbyshire. Rose was the Conservative agent for that area. The letter was in appreciation of J.B’s work but also something of a political credo.
Rose noted that Major Lea had rejoined his old regiment and wished him luck. He was also interested in the number of men who were at that stage of the War on the Roll of Honour of the Company. He had himself had a fall on board and aggravated an old injury.
The military mission, on which Rose was engaged at the time, related to the threatened Turkish invasion of Egypt and he sent his good wishes to Master Jack, who was also serving in the Navy.
Perhaps most interesting is the political credo, a belief that no doubt J.B.Marsden- Smedley shared. Rose was adamant in his opposition to the Free Traders and advocated Tariff Reform. He pointed out that the Germans would ‘never have been in the position to challenge our (British) supremacy had Tariff Reform been in place’ and he condemned and blamed the rise of Germany on ‘a lopsided system called Free Trade.’ He attributed the loss of British lives and the pouring out of British capital on, what he considered, an economic error.
Rose had opposed the cutting of the shipbuilding programme as foolish and had ground his political teeth on this issue. He thought that the mistakes of earlier politicians and their misguided policies on tariffs had caused the waste of British lives in the immediate conflict in which the nation was engaged. He thought those politicians worse than the Germans.
He took part in the bombardment of Alexandria and was in the Battle of Jutland as Admiral's coxswain. (From obituary notice 1944)

His son Arthur Rose's Service Record shows a Death Certificate dated 06/05/18 for Sarah Mary Jane Rose aged 49, wife of Joseph Henry Rose, Petty Officer, HMS Impregnable. Died of pneumonia. The Parcel Book shows him to have served on HMS Doris.

Joseph died at Swadlincote in the last quarter of 1944 aged seventy-six years.

His son Arthur Ernest Rose was also a Lea Mills man and served in the war.

Photos courtesy– family album of Frances Ensikat

Sarah Rose wife of Joseph Rose

Joseph's wife, Sarah Mary Jane Rose (née Steer)

Adult children of Joseph and Sarah Rose

Adult children of Joseph and Sarah Mary Jane Rose

Arthur and Winifred Rose

Arthur and Winifred Rose, children of Joseph and Sarah Mary Jane

postcard sent by Joseph Rose in WW1

Postcard sent by Joseph to his daughter Winifred

rear of postcard sent by Joseph Rose to daughter Winifred

Rear of postcard sent to Winifred

Dear Winnie - Thanks very much for your letter. Try and take pains. You have every chance, and you will never be younger. Every day you miss now you can never regain. Try and learn as if you really meant it, and then you will succeed.
Remember always that it will please dad if you get on and try and push for all you are worth. I should dearly like to see you all again, but I am not so lucky as Mr Causer. Never mind dear we are too busily engaged and we shall be able to say we have done our share when it is all over, and well, we will have a good chat about when I come home again. Love to all, Dad.

Cartoon for Joseph Rose

South Derbyshire boxers, as seen by the humerous eye of the "Observer" artist in a recent contest.
Showing two gentlemen who are doing all they can to stimulate sport in the district.
Joseph was a local patron of sports.


Navy Medal Roll Index
He was awarded the Victory, British War and 15 Star Medals.

Navy Service Record
Joseph Henry Rose (alias Joseph Henry Roose), date of birth 25 April 1868 at Cromford. Height 5ft 5in, light brown hair and grey eyes. Tattoo on left forearm: "True Love and FP"
14/04/84 to 26/04/84 Impregnable
27/04/84 to 21/07/85 Ganges
22/07/85 to 16/11/85 Impregnable
17/11/85 to 09/09/86 Audacious
10/09/86 to 27/06/87 Cleopatra
28/06/87 to 03/03/88 Cambridge
04/03/88 to 30/06/88 Defiance
01/06/88 to 13/09/88 Cambridge
14/09/88 to 27/05/89 Agincourt
28/05/89 to 30/09/91 Anson
01/10/91 to 20/10/91 Vivid I
21/10/91 to 30/01/92 Cambridge
31/01/92 to 08/12/92 Defiance
09/12/92 to 10/03/94 Vivid I
11/03/94 to 20/08/94 Karrakatta
21/08/94 to 10/09/94 Orlando
11/09/94 to 30/09/94 Mildura
01/10/94 to 07/02/95 Orlando
08/02/95 to 31/03/96 Goldfinch as PO 2C
01/04/96 to 15/06/96 Endymion
16/06/96 to 27/07/96 Vivid I
28/07/96 to 22/10/96 Defiance
23/10/96 to 09/11/96 Melampus
10/11/96 to 11/08/03Kingstower as Boatsn
12/08/03 to 30/07/06 North of Ireland
06/07/07 Joined R/FR Devonport
02/08/14 to 15/01/17 Doris as PO II
16/01/17 to 21/04/17 Vivid I
22/04/17 to 15/10/19 Impregnable
Very good character throughout.

Newspaper Reports

Derby Daily Telegraph, Saturday, 11 January 1913

The case in which Mr C.F. White, J.P., C.C., of Matlock Bath, is plaintiff and Mr E.W.Barnes, journalist, Matlock Bath. Mr J.H. Rose, an agent for the Conservative party in South Derbyshire, and "The High Peak News," a Buxton paper, are the defendants, will be heard in London next week-end, or during the week commencing Jan 20.
Mr White is proceeding against the "High Peak News" for alleged libel, against Mr Barnes for alleged slander and libel, and against Mr Rose for alleged slander.
The cases against Mr Rose and the "High Peak News" arose out of a debate at Cromford, at which Mr White and Mr Rose were the speakers.

NOTE: Joseph Rose was politically active and came to the fore in a much publicised court-action against him by Councellor C.F.White. During a political debate at Cromford during 1911 Rose made mention of White's drunkenness, his having to be frog-marched by the police and he accused him of running naked into a lady's house only to be chased out by her wealding a poker. White lost all his court cases and was declared bankrupt shortly afterwards.This was reported in the Derby Daily Telegraph of 20 February 1918.

High Peak News 18 November 1916
Naval Officer J. H. Rose, who has done so splendidly for King and Country in the war crisis, makes a fine suggestion which emanates from a generosity which deserves publicity to the credit of our friend. In a letter this week from the ship he is fighting the German Fleet, he says, "Re Christmas parcels, I don't really think we sailors require them like the men in the trenches. We know how very much you all wish to show your appreciation, and we welcome it all. But in ships we are much better off for food, etc than soldiers in the trenches.
We would rather every pennyworth went to the trenches."
What a fine spirit this is!

High Peak News, 11 May 1918
Sincere sympathy. The wife of Naval Officer J.H. Rose died at Woodville on Monday.
It will be remembered that Mr Rose was Conservative agent for South Derbyshire when war broke out, and on his re-joining the Navy his wife and family continued to live in the Division. Much sympathy is extended to the bereaved.

Unknown newspaper 1944 [part of a long obituary]
Mr Joseph H Rose, Swadlincote
A Keen Conservative Worker

Mr Joseph Henry Rose passed away last Wednesday night after a long illness at 36, Eureka Road, Midway, Swadlincote at the age of 76.
Born at Cromford, North Derbyshire, he joined the Royal Navy at an early age and served 37½ years, retiring with the rank of chief petty officer.
He took part in the bombardment of Alexandria, and during the last war was in the Battle of Jutland, where he was the Admiral’s coxswain.
He was an energetic worker for the Conservative Party, and for 34 years was sub agent for the South Derbyshire Division, Southern Area.
Self-educated, until a few years ago his forceful letters to the “Burton Daily Mail” on many subjects, controversial and otherwise, were always read with keen interest. He never used a pseudonym. As a speaker and political debater he was able to hold his audiences and his bitterest opponents admired his fearless tenacity in arguments.

Joseph Rose obituary photo 1944
Always ready to help in any charitable cause he was one of the first members of the “Burton Daily Man” and “Observer” (South Derbyshire Uncle Jack Fund Committee, of the Boot Fund Committee and of the Smokes Fund Committee.
He was a strong supporter of the old “H” Company, 5th Battalion, the Sherwood Foresters, being a vice president.
He was a member of several RAOB Lodges and a Freemason.
Mr Rose was keenly interested in all forms of sport, particularly boxing.
His wife died 26 years ago, and there is a family of five sons and six daughters.

Letters to JB Marsden-Smedley

H.M.S. Doris
Cr of G.P.O.
11.  3.  15.
Dear Mr Smedley
I see by the D,T,  You are taking an active part in public affairs, & I guess, & I may say I hope very much, that your health has been fully restored.
Your giving up South Derbyshire was a very great blow to me, for I felt our chances to be two  to one, the next contest.
But for your continued interest in S, D, & your wish that I should fight on, I should have certainly have returned to West Derbyshire again.  However should I survive this little flutter, I will make my way over to Lea, as soon as I possibly can.
I see by the D,T, that Major Lea has rejoined his old regiment, I wish him good luck & a safe return.  Should very much like to know how many names you have upon the roll of honour at the works.
I myself am in right good health, but the old injury, which you will remember, causes me to be rather more carefull than I should have been but for the fear of renewal.   I was all but strong again, but a slight fall aboard here gave me warning to be cautious.
Since we left the trade routes on the 7th of November last, we have been employed in connection with the Turkish invasion of Egypt, & have had quite an interesting time.
I hope Master Jack is doing well & that he will get through & return sound & well.
My word when I return (if I do) I will make the Free Traders eat that popular cry "Your King & Country needs you".
Tariff Reformers will be able to point out that by a common sense policy of Tariff Reform in England - Germany would never have been in the position to challenge our supremacy.  We have paid her 10 millions per year in taxes with which to build her Navy to defeat us with if possible.  We are now losing many thousands of lives, & pouring out millions of capital to redeem the errors of a lopsided system called Free Trade.
All this could have been done without losing a single man, & the money now being expended would have been used in a manner more fitted to our national needs.
You will I am sure remember the very first speech I ever made, when I referred to the cutting down of the ship building programme as a penny wise & a pound foolish.
I never thought that night that I should ever be a politician, I spoke that which I then believed from experience to be true.  I felt that this would be the outcome, I said so that night, & how true it has become today.
Here today as the guns are firing over my head, I realize the truth.  Would to God, that common sense could have spared the lives of all the dear lads, who have gone out to fight for their country, & to redeem the mistakes of those place hunting politicians at whose door must be laid the blame.  They are our enemies.  Far worse than the Germans.
I have the honour to be
Faithfully yours
Joseph H Rose
Alderman JB Marsden-Smedley, Lea Green, Matlock Bath , Derbyshire

Dear Sirs
My mess is just a picture; for I have just opened your very kind present of the 14th Dec.  It has been to Madras & Salonica looking for its owner like many others.
Two other petty officers have also received parcels.  We share everything, & the table is now decorated with Mail puddings from Burton, & the contents of your, & the other two parcels.  Overhead is a motto "Not forgotten".  I think it very appropriate.
Thanks very much.  Be sure I'm proud to think that people at home are not unmindful of our services.
With best wishes for you all
I have the honour to be
Yours faithfully
Joseph H Rose
Messrs J, B, M & A M Smedley
Lea Green, Matlock Bath


1901: Annaghassan Village, Drumcar, Co. Louth, Ireland

Forename Surname Relationship Age Occupation Where born
Sarah M J Rose wife 32   Plymouth
Henry E Rose son 10   Plymouth
Arthur E Rose son 7   Plymouth
Liliam A E Rose daughter 2   Louth
May F C Rose daughter     Louth

In 1901 Joseph was serving in the Navy and was not with his family at the day of the census.

1911: Lea Bridge

Forename Surname Relationship Age Occupation Where born
Joseph Henry Rose Head 43 Garment worker hosiery mill Matlock Bath
Sarah Mary Jane Rose wife 42   Plymouth
Henry Edward Rose son 20 Cooper paint works Plymouth
Arthur Ernest Rose son 17 Frame worker hosiery mill Plymouth
May Florence Charlotte Rose daughter 10 School Co. Louth Carlingford
George Joseph Rose son 9   Co. Louth Dunlee
Winifred Violet Rose daughter 8   Plymouth
Reginald John Rose son 6   Co. Mayo Ballycastle
Albert Edward Rose son 5   Co. Dublin Ringsend
Bertha Annie Rose daughter 2   Cromford
Clare Selina Rose daughter 9 mo   Cromford
Florence Elizabeth Da? sister (married) 59   Matlock Bath
Harry Davies visitor 28 Brick layer. cotton mill Ashton u Lyne

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