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Photo of Mary Adams

Mary Adams

Munitions Worker
Birthplace Tyne and Wear Hebburn England Date of Birth: January 19, 1894


Full name of worker at H.M. Factory Gretna (and any other names they are known by) : Mary Adams

Gender: Female

Date and Place of Birth: 1894 Glasgow 

Date and Place of Death: unknown

Nationality: Scottish



Childhood: spent in Glasgow and Hebburn (44 Ann Street, Hebburn Quay)

Parents: William (born in Stonehaven, Scotland) and Mary (born in Marykirk, Scotland), married in 1884, 9 children (5 living in 1911)

Parent’s occupations: Father was an iron driller in a Shipyard

Schools / universities attended and years of attendance: 

Occupational history (previous jobs in their career): domestic servant (at home) (1911 census)

Occupation: munition worker at H M Factory, Gretna 

Head forewoman (1918), after having been rewarded for her brave action in a factory explosion

Place of residence at Gretna: – 

Job title at Gretna: munition worker, head forewoman

Marital status:  unknown

Spouse name (including male name): 

Date of marriage: 

Place/Parish of marriage:



Awards/recognitions: Order of the British Empire (medal) for courage in assisting others at great personal risk

Trivia / any other information:
“Miss Adams, who was born in Hebburn and had lived all her life in it, was engaged as a worker in a large munition establishment. While working in the upper part of the building along with a number of others, an explosion took place upon the ground floor followed by an outbreak of fire. The workers ran to places of safety, but those in the upper part of the building could not get away so quickly and Miss Adams called to them to keep calm and took them down one by one. The ground floor was filled with smoke, which they had to go through. She afterwards saw a young woman with her clothing and hair on fire, who was taken to a place of safety. Miss Adams afterwards assisted in extinguishing the fire.” (Jarrow Express, 9 August 1918) In addition to her official award in Durham from Lord Durham, her hometown Hebburn started its own collection and presented Mary with a silver tray, a silver tea and coffee service, a gold watch, and a wallet of war savings bills. The collection was so successful thanks to the participation of women workers who had made commemorative cards and sold them (ibid.).


  • Books published (Title, year of publication, publisher): 
  • Books written about the individual or mentioning the individual (Title, year of publication, publisher): 


Further links, notes, and comments:

According to “Ancestry”, Mary Adams is part of at least 6 family trees. Details however are not freely accessible.

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