Born John Lee Gwilliam on 14th March 1889 at Little Cowarne, Herefordshire, to agricultural labourer Joseph Gwilliam and his wife Mary Elizabeth (nee Blizard). Mary died when her children were young, and they were raised by their elder sister Lizzie.
Joseph was the illegitimate son of Eliza Gwilliam and a currently unknown father. Eliza later married one Thomas Price, and by 1911 (possibly as early as 1905 when Mary died) most of Joseph’s family had taken this surname.
By the mid 1900’s John had left Herefordshire and the family home at Rose Cottage, Preston Wynne to work as a domestic servant under the employ of Councillor William Merrett and his wife Sarah, at Ellenborough House private hotel (near promenade, spa, baths & electric trams), Oriel Road, Cheltenham. He was to work at Ellenborough House for some 12 years before answering the call to arms when war broke out in 1914, and joining 2nd Battalion Gloucestershire Regiment.
Read more, on the blog by John Lee Price’s nephew.