Tuesday 11 September 2018

Joseph Franklin Kershaw (1884 - 1917) - British Artist

Joseph Franklin Kershaw was born on 2nd May 1884 in Oldham, Lancashire, UK. His parents were Joseph Kershaw, an ironmonger, and his wife, Hannah. Educated at Oldham Hulme Grammar School, Joseph then studied at Stockport School of Art and the Royal College of Art, gaining his ARCA Diploma in 1912. In 1907, he married Effie Gregory, an art teacher and daughter of a sculptor.

On 6th June 1916, Joseph joined the British Army as a Private, serving initially with the Border Regiment. During August he transferred to 126th Company of the Machine Gun Corps (MGC). Joseph was posted to the Western Front and was wounded in the shoulder in May 1917. He recovered, returned to the fighting and was killed on 14th October 1917 during the First Battle of Passchendaele.

Joseph was buried in Coxyde Military Cemetery, West Flanders, Belgium, with the wording on his headstone specified by Effie – ‘Artist, Oldham, Lancashire’. He is also commemorated on the war memorial at Storth, Morecambe Bay, where Effie was living at the time of her husband’s death.