Curtis W. Cloutman was born in 1850 at Peckham, Surrey. It is believed that he was one of ten children born to William Curtis Cloutman and Elizabeth Brett who originally came from Camberwell. This branch of the Cloutman family is said to derive from five brothers of Hartland in North Devon. A Samuel Cloutman (d.1763) is buried in Stoke-by-Nayland where records of the family reputedly go back to the 1600s. John Cloutman of Hartland moved to London in 1820. Having developed cancer, he is believed to have committed suicide. His son, William C. Cloutman, was an architect/surveyor who eventually settled in Bristol and thus founded the Bristol branch of the family.
Curtis W. Cloutman went by the family nick-name of "Cow-cow" and was said to have been something of a whirlwind with an abundance of persuasive charm. He was a commercial traveller, selling stationery, mainly fine writing paper and accessories such as address embossing machines for the desk top of every discerning family or business. He was successful in his work and made wise investments. The family was comfortable, living at 'The Laurells' in Wells Road, Bristol.
His nephew, (Sir) Brett Cloutman (Royal Engineers) - son of his brother, Alfred B. Cloutman - was awarded the Victoria Cross - the last given in World War I - when he prevented the enemy from blowing up Quartres Bridge on 6th November 1918. By way of a post-script, Sir Brett had two daughters, the younger of whom was Jill Cloutman (living 2002). She married her cousin, John Drew-Smythe (his second marriage) who was the younger son of Curtis W. Cloutman's daughter, Enid Audrey.
Curtis W. Cloutman was still living, in his nineties, when his eldest child, Ivy Cloutman was killed by enemy action over Bristol in 1941. She was by then aged 63 and a widow. His wife, Emily Jane (Jullion) Cloutman, lived to be 102.