Mary Watanabe

1862 February 3rd – Mary Ann Rayner born in Islington, London to Edward Rayner, a baker and Mary Ann nee Hutchison.

1865 – Edward Rayner, Mary Ann’s father dies.

1867 Mary Ann’s mother marries Thomas Bell

1881 Mary Ann’s mother is a boardinghouse keeper at 66 Gower Street in Finsbury, Mary Ann is a scholar, with her sister Isabel.

1888 February – Mary Ann Rayner marries Thomas Davison, a 74 year widower and former captain of the 84th Regiment at St Mary Abbot’s Kensington

1888 June – Thomas Davison dies. Mary Ann receives £500, use of London house and income of his estate. On her remarriage, the estate to be divided amongst his children.

1891 April – census – Mary Ann is living with mother Mary Ann Bell at 28 Upper Bedford Place in Bloomsbury. Senjiro Watanabe – manager of merchant’s office (Mitsui Bussan) aged 30 and 2 other boarders and 2 servants.

1893 April – Mary Ann marries Senjiro Watanabe (rank or profession “esq”) at Christ Church Bloombsury. Mary Ann describes her father as a contractor. Senjiro Watanabe’s father is Kensai Watanabe, a physician.

1894 October – Senjiro and Mary Ann’s son Hideo is born

1896 January – Senjiro and Mary Ann’s daughter Isa is born

Mary Ann holding Isa. Isabel behind.

1896 August – attends her sister Isabel’s (youngest daughter of the late Edward Rayner Esq) wedding to William Dalrymple of Johannesburg. Mary Ann wore chine silk with a Japanese design in yellow, mauve, and green ; the bodice had a tucked yoke and a berthe of cream lace finished at the waist with yellow satin ribbon; cream chiffon hat trimmed with feathers and roses, and bouquet of mauve orchids.

1900 March – Senjiro and Mary Ann’s son Yoneo is born

1901 April – census – living at 105 Broadhurst Gardens with Senjiro (manager of a commission merchants) Hideo, Isa and Yoneo and five servants

Senjiro Watanabe and Yoneo

1911 Watanabe Senjiro and Mary Ann Watanabe living in Hampstead with the son Yoneo aged 11 and daughter Isa aged 15 and six servants.

1915 December – Mary Ann and Yoneo travel to Japan on the Yasaka Maru

1916 Watanabe Senjiro dies of a heart attack in Japan. Mary Ann and son return to England. Watanabe leaves around £5m in present day value.

1917 June – Hideo is living in New York, working for Mitsui

1919 Yoneo graduates from Woodberry Forest School, Virginia,

1919 Yoneo reads English and Economics at Cambridge University

1920 Yoneo decides to become a poultry farmer

1921 Mary Ann, Hideo, Yoneo and Isa living in Hampstead – 28 Lyndhurst Gardems

1923 Mary Ann travels to New York with Isa and Yoneo. Nationality is given as Japanese. Address is London NW3

1923 September – Mary Ann returns to Southampton with Isa and Yoneo. All have Japanese nationality. 28 Lyndhurst Road is address.

1924 Attends Emperor’s birthday party at Japanese Embassy in London – “Mrs Watanabe was beautiful and lovely. Looked like a peacock amoung beautiful small birds.” (Nichiei Shinshi)

1926 Hideo arrives in Southampton from New York

1928 Mary Ann travels to New York – address given as Hatchfield Rise, Cobham

1928 November – Mary Ann returns from New York, address given as Hatchford Rise, Cobham, Surrey.

Hideo Watanabe in 1929

1932 Hideo marries Eleanor May Himeoma Blanchard in New York

1933 June – Mary Ann returns from New York, still citizen of Japan, address is Cobham, Surrey.

1933 August – Yoneo marries Joanna Margaret Adams. His occupation is poultry breeder.

1935 March – Mary Ann returns from South Africa. Address is Hatchford Rise, Cobham, Surrey.

1939 June – Mary Ann travels to New York

1968 Yoneo receives an MBE for services to poultry breeding