Ruth Jagger was born at 3 Shrewsbury Street, Oldham, Lancashire to James Jagger, the manager of a Co-operative Society Store, and his wife Mary on 17 September 1878. Something went tragically wrong and before her daughter was three weeks old Mary Jagger had died. James Jagger needed help with his large family of five daughters and four sons ranging in age from 19 years to Ruth, the infant. It was common at this time for women to produce a large number of children, not all of which would be strong and survive, including their mothers. One son named Joseph had predeceased his mother. A year after Mary’s death James married a local woman named Hannah Ratcliffe. When the census enumerator called on the 3 April 1881everybody was at home including Ruth aged two years, delightfully described as “Light of the House”!