Life story retold by Kim Reynolds

Kate Herman was one of the four daughters of James Herman and Sarah Watts Herman. Her other siblings were Elizabeth, Sarah and Ellen, and she also had a brother, William. She was recorded as Assistant Coffee House Keeper in 1891.

She married William Dawson Longhurst at Trinity Congregational Church on 1 May 1899 (Reading Mercury, 6 May 1899); he was a master butcher in 1911, and they had at least 8 children, of whom seven (5 daughters, 2 sons) were still living in that year. They lived at 117 London Street in 1911.

Kate died 10 December 1917 at 117 London Street, Reading, leaving effects worth £1502 12s 3d (see also Reading Mercury, 15 Dec 1917). William is described as ‘purveyor’ on the probate record.

She is buried in Reading Old with her infant daughter Ethel Louisa (died on 16 June 1901) and her husband who William who died on 8 July 1930.


  • England and Wales Censuses, 1841-1911
  • 1939 England and Wales Register
  • Birth, Marriage and Death Civil Registration Indexes
  • Baptism, Marriage and Burial Records
  • Newspapers: Reading Mercury, Meat Trades’ Journal and Cattle Salesman’s Gazetteer, Reading Observer, Reading Standard, Reading Evening Post, Westminster Gazette, Pall Mall Gazette

Buried in Section 27, Row A, Number 11