Walter Perrott was born on 9th October 1826. He married Jane Rees in Llanelli on 5th May 1850. His Mate’s Certificate of Service, issued in 1851, states that he had been employed as a boy seaman and mate in the British Merchant Service for a period of nine years, meaning he would have started in this work around the age of sixteen. When the 1851 census was taken, Jane was living in her parents’ household, with Walter apparently away at sea.
At the time of the 1861 census, Walter was at sea on board the John & Ann, of which he was master, however he is also recorded living with Jane and their daughters Mary Ann (10), Sarah Jane (7), Harriett Justina (5) and Emma (3) in Llanelli. A son – Walter George – had been born the previous year and died in infancy. Later additions to the family, then living in Minor Street, were Emily Jane (born 1861, died 1911 in Burry Port) and Robert Rees (born 1866, died 1938 in Port Elizabeth, South Africa).
Following Jane’s death in 1868, Walter remarried in 1870 to Mary Ann Harding (nee Burgess), widow of William, who had two daughters. The 1871 census has Sarah Jane, Jessie (Harriett Justina) and Emily Jane living in Swansea with their step-sister Sarah Harding, aged 18, who describes herself as a ‘captain’s daughter’.
Younger brother Robert was also living in Swansea in 1871 with his aunt and uncle, Henry and Christina Mills. Their father Walter was presumably away at sea