19th century churchwardens and their families

As with their predecessors in the previous century, there is much of interest in the story of these local families. They served not only as wardens, but as parish officers in local government. They continued to go through the tribulations of tnsolvency and bankruptcy, and to be the victims of robbery - Old Bailey case reports provide details.

(warden 1800-01), Charles Bradshaw, WILLIAM (warden 1843), Barton, Frederick

The family were wine merchants, and members of the Worshipful Company of Vintners (which continues to support two schools in Stepney) - Charles senior was a Master, as a century or so later were his descendants Frederick (1899) and Barton (1900). Together with Samuel Foulger and Rector Farington, he was responsible for insuring the contents of the parish workhouse. His wife Elizabeth died in 1821, aged 62, at their house in St George's Place (they had other residences elsewhere), and he in 1826, aged 66; both were buried in a vault in the crypt, together with Thomas Bradshaw (died 1802, aged 75) and two other without inscription.

Charles Bradshaw Stutfield (1794-1857) was baptized at St George-in-the-East. As a young man, along with John Watson (who died of consumption in 1827), he was one of Samuel Taylor Coleridge's [right] amanuenses for his Kantian-inspired work on Logic, taking dictation from him at weekly sessions. Coleridge was godfather to his daughter Mary Coleridge Stutfield in 1831. He had married Eliza Lewis (of Crutched Friars in the City) in 1819, and in later life corresponded with Sara Coleridge on various subjects, including 'early marriage': she wrote to him in Hackney from Chester Place in 1848 (Memoir and Letters of Sara Coleridge p264):
I have been much interested by your note; it really gives the pith and marrow of the case in pithy language. I agree to it all without reserve, except a partial one on a single point. You say that a "young man much occupied will not generally think of marriage till past thirty". I know a good many exceptions to that rule, I think. It seems to me, I own, that the time to form a marriage engagement, in an ordinary case, for a man, is between twenty and thirty. It is not so naturally, easily, or well done afterward. D—, who has had some experience of youth, laments exceedingly the difficulties in the way of early marriage for men, and my Uncle Southey was of the same mind. But the difficulties are often insuperable. What I like is to see a young man made ready to work hard, and ready to be married. Energy, energy, that is the thing if it be kept in order by a religious mind.

His home was in Grove Place, Hackney, and he sat from 1832 as a justice of the peace for the county of Middlesex. In a High Court case, R. v Inhabitants of Watford (1846) 9 QB 626 he had been one of two local magistrates ordering the removal of a widow, in receipt of poor relief, from St John at Hackney to her former home; their order was confirmed. In 1854 a general meeting of the churchwardens, overseers and trustees of the poor of the parish of St. John at Hackney presented him with an address thanking him for the zealous manner in which he had discharged his duties as one of the resident magistrates of the district.

But he also served more locally - as a deputy Lieutenant of the Tower Hamlets from 1831, as Vice-President of the Tower Hamlets Dispensary from 1841, as Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Raines Foundation from 1841, and from 1849-51 as Chairman of the London Hospital; after his retirement from this post he was part of the committee which in 1853 raised funds for a marble bust of Dr Pereira.

A successful businessman, he bought up (with others) the effects of firms that had become insolvent, or where a partner had died: for example, in 1826 the cordial distilling business of Francis Pothonier of Silver Street, Cheapside. In 1836 he and his brother William sold tenements, shops and yards in Lower Chapman Street for the building of the Blackwall Railway. In 1841 he petitioned the House of Commons against the London Bridge Approaches and Royal Exchange Avenues Bill. By the time of his death in 1857 he had become the senior magistrate of the division, and his colleagues presented an address of regret at his sudden demise.

His younger brother William Stutfield (1800-87) also became a Justice of the Peace for Middlesex and the Tower Liberties, and in 1852 a deputy Lord Lieutenant of Tower Hamlets (one of 18 appointed that year), and later a freeman of the City of London. But he too did not always live locally. His wife Mary Burgoyne, whom he married in 1829, had inherited 550 acres of land in Hildersham, near Cambridge, which together with 50 acres rented from King's College Cambridge they farmed with fourteen men and two boys; in 1839 they had leased Hildersham Hall to the Rector for £52 10s. a year. (In 1851 he gave evidence, as an interested party, to the Committee on the Enfranchisement of Copyholders Bill.) In 1827 he had bought out the fire engine business in Ratcliff Highway of Margaret and John Bristow (John Bristow - presumably the father - had been churchwarden in 1784). The 1861 census records him, described as a wine merchant, aged 61, and Mary, aged 56, with their daughters Isabella 24 and Edith 19 (both born in London) as resident at The Rookery, Hildersham - together with a footman, a housemaid and a servant - but not his sons (see below) who presumably resided elsewhere.  They had had other London homes as well: 51 Tavistock Square, then Monatgu Place (in or before 1842, when he was elected as a Fellow of the Geological Society of London). Three years later William Gerrard was convicted at the Old Bailey for stealing from this address eight coats and a waistcoat, and imprisoned for nine months.

Nevertheless, he served the local community: he was churchwarden of St George-in-the-East in 1843, and successive editions of Shaw's Union Officers Manual list him as the Treasurer of St George's Union [workhouse] for over 20 years, from the office based at 139 Ratcliff Highway. It is presumably for him, or the family in general, that Stutfield Street, parallel to Christian Street, is named.

William's sons Frederick and Barton were both supporters of Bryan King and the St George's Mission; they were members of the English Church Union, and each subscribed half a guinea to St George's Defence League [not to be confused with present-day far right groups!] at the time of the Ritualism Riots. Frederick (b.1838) was King's 'principal chorister', and on one occasion in March 1860, according to his account, was pelted with orange peel, stones, and clay pipes. (The police merely acknowledged that he has been hissed at by some boys.) He applied to the Commissioner to increase the police presence. Dr Wilson, another victim, complained that the police did not do their duty, but Frederick said that Dr Wilson was in a volent passion ... and made use of language likely to excite the people that followed him. He and his Limerick-born wife Harriet Pepper Stutfield later settled in Hampstead; his year's-mind is still kept at St Mary the Virgin, Kenton on 5 May, as is that of Harriet on 4 January.

(who was baptized in 1840 at Old St Pancras church) became treasurer of the Working Men's Club, Wellclose Square. As C.F. Lowder wrote in 1877 [full chapter here], The Penny Bank has proved a safe deposit for the little savings of the poor, and encouraged provident habits. During the sixteen years of its existence, under the careful and unwearying management of Mr. Barton Stutfield, a sum of £2,439 has been deposited in it, in the pence of the poor. At present the deposits amount to £264. He married Ada, and they lived for a time in Tottenham as well as in St George's parish.

There were other Stutfields around in the 19th century, presumably somehow related, including 'William Stutfield the younger', formerly of Leinster Terrace, Hyde Park, and of Mystole near Canterbury, then of Braham Castle near Dingwall, Ross-shire and Netherdale House near Turriff in Banffshire, who died in 1878; he was involved in in a Chancery case involving his wife's estate in 1863 (Johnstone v Blake), and had two well-known barrister sons. Several Stufield solicitors were working in London in the early 20th century. There was also the organ builder Henry William Stutfield; and a retired army officer J.C. Stutfield (d.1926), who in 1892-96 added an elaborate Moorish music room to Grove House in Hampton [right - more details in English Heritage London List Yearbook 2010].

PHILIP [warden 1779-80] & CHRISTOPHER SPLIDT [warden 1804-05], and WILLIAM SHARP HANDASYDE [warden 1820]
The surname Splidt first emerges locally with Peter Splidt, a native of Denmark, living in London in 1659 as a mariner with a one-sixteenth part in a ship, who married an Englishwoman in 1660 and applied to be made a free citizen and broker, claiming he had lost all he had by the tyrant Cromwell at sea. He was still residing in London as a factor at his death in 1690. Most of the agents of the Norwegian timber merchants lived near the timber-yards in Stepney and Wapping, and the story of the building of a church for Danes and Norwegians is told here. The National Archives at Kew hold papers of 1659-60 relating to Peter Splidt, merchant, and the North Sea trade: bills and receipts, account books (some with details of cargo), bills of exchange, letters, and an insurance policy for the SS Mary and Margaret (some documents in Dutch and Danish).

Christopher, Philip and Christian were the common forenames of the men (and Christian of the women too), so distinguishing the generations can be confusing. A Philip was born in London in 1734. Was this the same Philip Splidt of London, ropemaker who in 1753 signed a release with Mascie Taylor of Chester, esquire on a messuage on Limehouse Causeway [National Archives ZGCH 33, held at Chester]? In 1754 a challenge was made over the validity of the appointment of overseers to the poor for the parish and their assessments, including Philip Splidt. Among the freeholders who voted for Col Luttrell at the parliamentary election for Middlesex on 13 April 1769 was Philip Splidt, St George's, Ratcliff Highway, ropemaker and contractor for government stores. In 1771 he was one of the seventy Commissioners appointed for paving local streets (as were others mentioned on these pages). In 1778 Philip, of New Road, and Christian, of Cannon Street [Road], described as twine spinners, were listed among those supposed qualified to serve on juries. The European Magazine recorded the death of a Christopher Splidt, of St George's Place, Radcliffe [Ratcliff], on 27 Oct 1792; and a Thomas Splidt died in 1812.

By the turn of the 19th century the family are described not only as ropemakers but as Russia merchants. They had acquired a Russian-style coat of arms - vert, in water, in base, two boatmen, each respectively punting their boats, all ppr;  Crest, water, a man rowing in a boat to the sinister, all ppr - and also property in Stratford Green. What caused the split (no pun intended) described here - was it Philip's retirement?
The Partnership which subsisted between Philip Splidt and Christian Splidt, of Cable-Street, Saint George's in the East, in the County of Middlesex, Rope-Makers, Hemp-Dealers, and Russia Merchants, under the Firm of Philip and Christian Splidt, is and stands dissolved as and from the 13th lnstant by mutual Consent. The Concern will in future be carried on by Christian Splidt only, who is exclusively to pay and discharge all the Debts and Engagements of the said late Copartnership Estate, and to have, and receive all and every of the Debts, Monies, and all other Effects belonging thereto.—Dated this 15th Day of October 1806. Philip Splidt. Christian Splidt.

In the same year (1808) at the Old Bailey Edward Churchill, aged 36, was transported for seven years for stealing  2,900lb of tallow, value £84, the property of Christian Splidt.

Philip was a collector, and on his death his library and other effects were auctioned (a total of 1332 lots and single articles):
A Catalogue of the Curious and Valuable Library of the Late P. Splidt:
Among which are a Very Rare Collection of Books on Angling ... Also, His Mahogany Bookcase, Globes, &c.,
which Will be Sold by Auction, by Leigh and Sotheby on Monday, February 14th, 1814, and Five Following Days.

A Chancery case resulted in 1816, Parsons v Splidt;  the will of Philip Splidt with probate and accounts of Christian Splidt's executors is held in the National Archives.

Christian (who was appointed Major Commandant of St George-in-the-East Volunteer Infantry) died on 27 October 1820: the Annual Register records
Suddenly, aged 55, Christian Splidt, esq., of Stratford Green, Essex, a Russia merchant, and who had been colonel of the St. George's volunteers. He was coming in the Stratford stage from his country seat at Stratford-green to his town residence in Spitalfields, when he was seized with a violent fit of sneezing and coughing while the coach was going along the Mile-end-road, which caused the rupture of a blood vessel, and he died almost immediately after he had been taken into a surgeon's shop.
(His only surviving  child, Mary, married Walter Lawrence in 1824; a daughter Christian had died at Bath in February 1813.)

[He's not to be confused with Christian Splidt Mathews, of New Square, Minories and a director of the Commercial Dock Company, whose death on 28 March 1821 at Newington Place, Kennington,  is recorded by the Gentleman's Magazine. The Commercial Dock Company was formed in Rotherhithe in 1806/7, taking over the Greenland Dock which had been used for whalers and adding the Baltic Dock; it was used for the North European trade in timber, hemp, iron, tar and corn. Its office was at 106 Fenchurch Street, where the Prussian consul was also based. In 1865 it merged with Surrey Docks to form the Surrey Commercial Docks, which henceforth owned all the Rotherhithe Docks.]

In July 1810 Elizabeth Splidt, described in the Lady's Magazine as the daughter of the late Christopher Splidt of St George's Place, married William Sharp Handasyde. If this Christopher had indeed died, an 1813 Old Bailey case where James Deighton was convicted and confined for six months in the House of Correction and whipped in jail, for stealing ten pounds of hemp, value 6s., the property of Christopher Splidt (whose clerk James Sheppard described him as a 'Russian merchant') must relate to another Christopher. Likewise the printed lists of papers referred to by the Chancery Commission in 1826, which include 'Splidt' and 'Moxsy' [John Moxsy was warden 1795-96], with In re Union Benefit Society scored through.

Mr & Mrs Splidt (forenames not given), of Stratford Green, subcribed in 1817 to John Shepherd's Critical & Practical Elucidation of the Book of Common Prayer.

Shipping cases at that time were dealt with by the Exchequer Court ('wills, wives and wrecks'). A  case of the early 1800s, concerning ship-owner bankruptcies, and  widely-quoted as precedent in subsequent cases, was Splidt v Bowles, 10 East 279 [again, which Splidt?], which determined - if you can follow it! - that
as a charter party of affreightment is a mere personal contract, without seal, for the payment of freight, and an ideal and incorporeal thing, it cannot therefore be assigned; because it is not only a mere chose in action; but there being no privity between the freighter and the intermediate vendee, no action could be maintained by one against the other, and the vendor transfers none of his personal contracts or liabilities, whereas in the case of an abandonment, he does; and the wages of the master and crew, and repairs and all expenses of earning the freight are afterwards cast upon him. It is in effect a continuance of the same ownership.

The family vault in the crypt contained the coffins of Miss Elizabeth Splidt (1808, aged 13), Christian Splidt (1813, aged 16), Hellen Splidt (1813, aged 10), Mr Christian Splidt (1820, aged 56), William Sharp Handasyde (1827, aged 40). Mrs Mary Splidt (1840, aged 70), Elizabeth Handasyde (1840, aged 54), and two others without inscription. There were other branches of the family, including that of Philip Splidt Milner (born in Caversham in 1822 and involved in another Chancery case), who settled in Natal. Splidts Street - now gone - was off Pinchin Street - see these comments from Booth's survey.

As noted above, William Sharp Handasyde (warden 1820) married Elizabeth Splidt in July 1810. He lived in Wellclose Square, and was described as a gentleman. The previous year he had received a commission from the Lord Lieutenant of Essex as a Second Lieutenant to the Loyal Leyton Volunteers. The London Gazette records the dissolution of a partnership:
Notice is hereby given, that the Partnership which subsisted between the undersigned George Lear, William Curtis, Timothy Abraham Curtis, William Sharp Handasyde, and Henry Hughes, was dissolved by mutual consent, so far as relates to the said Timothy Abraham Curtis, on the 31st day of. May 1811.
—Witness our hands. Geo. Lear. William Curtis, Timy. Abm. Curtis, W. S. Handasyde, Hy. Hughes

Together with Rector Farington, Christian Splidt and Matthew Moody, Handasyde held stock for the funding of Raine's Schools (and the Rector, Miss Handasyde - presumably his sister - B. Foulger and Matthew Moody were responsible for St George's National School). The financial difficulties Raine's School experienced at the time are detailed here. He died in December 1827, aged 40 or 41, and his wife in July 1840, aged 54, in Greenwich; as noted above, both were buried in the family vault at St George-in-the-East. Their only child Christian-Splidt Handasyde [sic!] married Thomas John Pollewell, from a naval family, at Greenwich in 1843.

THOMAS ARMITAGE (warden 1803-07)
In 1773 (at an Old Bailey prosecution of John Padgett, when he was one of three complaining of an assault) he was described as a cloathier of Kings Street, St George-in-the-East. From 1793 he insured, together with Elizabeth Ludeken (widow of an earlier churchwarden) a house in New Square, Minories - her home? Between 1803 and 1820 he insured his own home, as a gentleman, the same address being variously described as '5 next the George, New Road, Cannon Street Road'; 'near the George Tavern, Back Lane, Ratcliffe'; '5 Back Lane, Ratcliffe'; '5 Jealous Row, New Road, Back Lane', together with other premises which he owned - in Queen Street, Wapping (1803); Catherine Street, Commercial Road (1808); 105 Ratcliffe Highway (1808, when he is described as sugar refiner); Humberstone [Umberston] Street, Commercial Road (1809); '14-17, at the corner of Marmaduke Street and William Street, Cannon Street Road'  (1819);19 Kings Place, Commercial Road (1820).  In 1817 he was one of a large numer of freeholders summoned for jury service for the celebrated treason trail of Arthur Thistlewood and others, but was excused on account of illness (as was John Henry Wackerbath, a local sugar refiner).

HENRY WILLIAM HOBBS (warden 1806-08) and WILLIAM HENRY HOBBS (warden 1821-22)
Father and son were lightermen. [The Company of Watermen and Lightermen of the River Thames was established in 1555, and still regulates, under parliamentary authority, passenger (watermen) and freight (lightermen) traffic.] Henry was in partnership with John Addison; in a 1799 Old Bailey case, two men were acquitted of stealing eleven iron bars from one of their lighters. The Wapping-based Marine Police Force, which had been recently established (see here for their involvement in the Ratcliff Highway murders), conducted the investigation.

On 21 April 1796 Henry gave evidence to the Committee appointed to enquire into the best mode of providing sufficient accommodation for the increased trade and shipping of the port of London:
Mr HENRY WILLIAM HOBBS, a Lighterman, called in, and examimed.
How long have you been a Lighterman? Eighteen Years.
Are you acquainted with the Sufferance Wharfs and legal Quays, and the Nature of the Business carried on there?  Yes; but more particularly at the Sufferance Wharfs. [These were additional wharves on the south side of the river, with the same legal rights as the legal wharves but existing 'on sufferance', in an attempt to deal with overcrowding.]
What do you judge to be the chief Inconveniencies which the Trade of the Port of London labours under in respect to the landing and shipping of Goods?  I beg to remark, that the Want of a sufficient Number of Landing Waiters, and the great Number of Holidays kept at the Custom House, are the chief Inconveniencies.
Have you ever refused to lighter for Ships, the Cargoes of which were intended to be landed at the legal Quays? I have.
Have you ever lightered any of those Cargoes at the Sufferance Wharfs? I have.
How came you to refuse to lighter them at the legal Quays, and then to take them to the Sufferance Wharfs? Because I could not get them properly dispatched at the legal Quays; and I lightered them to the Sufferance Wharfs for the better Dispatch of the Merchants Property. — I have done so with several West India Ships Cargoes.
Is there ever any Want of Room or Accommodation for landing or housing Goods at the Sufferance Wharfs, except through the Want of Officers?  I have not heard of any such Want of Room or Accommodation since the Year 1793, and that only existed for a small Time, a Month or Six Weeks, during the Arrival of several Fleets at one Time.
Did any Accident ever happen to a Lighter of yours, loaded with Hemp, at Brown's Quay?  Yes — on the 28th of December 1790 I lightered Hemp to Brown's Quay; we moored her alongside the Wharf, and no other Craft was there — she remained there till the 30th at Night — on that Night she was cast adrift by some Persons unknown — this cost me £600 to repair the Damage of my Lighter, and the Merchant's Loss, which would not have happened if the Officers had been there to have discharged her in proper Time.— She should have been discharged on the 29th.— I had given due Notice to the Clerks at the Compting House of the Wharf; but whether the Clerk applied to the Revenue Officers or not I do not know.
Does it often happen that Craft wait at the Sufferance Wharfs so long, for want of Revenue Officers? Not when a single Craft.
What Regulations do you judge to be wanting in order to remedy the Inconveniencies you have stated, and to give due Dispatch in the landing and shipping Goods? 
— A  greater Number of Landing Waiters ought to be appointed to the Sufferance Wharfs; and this, with the Holidays curtailed, I think would remedy most of the inconveniences now complained of.

Together with William Thompson, he insured a waterside property in Sampsons Gardens [now Sampson Street] Wapping, and was part-owner of the brigantine Ploughman (which among other voyages took emigrants to Nova Scotia - its master in 1815 was Alexander Duncan). In 1812 one of the Hobbs' employees, John Frogley, was convicted at the Old Bailey of stealing tallow, and was confined one year in the House of Correction and whipped 100 yards near Iron Gate.

Henry died in 1816 at Sidmouth. One of William's apprentices, in 1827, was William Henry Pepall.

JAMES SIBLEY (warden 1811-12)

James was a citizen and carpenter of London by virtue of his membership of the Worshipful Company of Carpenters. There are records payment of his 'quarteridge' - dues on the four quarter days (Lady Day, St John's Day, Michaelmas and Christmas) - of between 2 and 6 shillings.  He took on apprentices, typically for a consideration of £10: for example, in 1777 William Chapman from Hertford (a bargemaker's son), in 1780 Thomas Smith, son of a local brickmaker, and in 1786 Thomas Wheeler, also local. In 1778 his servant Mary Stacey made a deposition in the salacious libel/divorce case of John and Harriet Burt, where Harriet's naked and outstretched legs were much referred to in evidence. In 1800 he was renting property in Wapping Street [Lane] from Thomas Robins and Mrs James, but by 1811, when the building of the docks had changed the local scene, owned and insured property in Fawdon Fields, off Old Gravel Lane (with another property in Pearl Street by the 1820s, as carpenter and builder).

MATTHEW MOODY (warden 1812-13)
Matthew Moody was an ironmonger, with premises in Old Gravel [now Wapping] Lane, which he insured from his time as warden and beyond. He was appointed a Captain of St George-in-the-East Volunteer Infantry. As a freeholder (with premises in Holborn) he had been included among the list of voters for the 1802 Parliamentary election for Middlesex. In that year, we find him taking over the effects of the late Jeremiah Hedley, anchorsmith of Lower Shadwell, and paying out a final dividend to his creditors. As well as serving as churchwarden, he was actively involved in the management of the Raine's Foundation Schools, and in 1819 gave extensive evidence to the Commission on the Education of the Poor.

PARKER JOHN HARRISON (warden 1814-16)

was a carpenter, son of Thomas Harrison, who served his apprenticeship with John Teppass of Tower Hill and gained his freedom in 1788 [left: unclear whether this was by 'redemption', 'patrimony' or 'the testimony of his master' - the normal routes ending an apprenticeship]. He became Master of the Worshipful Company of Carpenters in 1831, and died in 1849, aged 82, at his home in Sutton Street.

GEORGE ARMSTRONG (warden 1817-18)
was a coal merchant of Wellclose Square. It is possible that he, or his descendants, entered into partnership with Henry Brougham Hopwood  - Hopwood and Armstrong were wire workers and sieve makers of 195 Ratcliff Highway (Robson's Directory of 1842), who from '184 St George's Street, Wellclose Square' exhibited their registered brass side scuttles, with metal doors, for ships, also for light and ventilation at the 1851 Great Exhibition, and also patented a door and apparatus for closing the opening of ships' scuttles. Right is their porthole for PS Kangaroo.

DAVID BEDDINE (warden 1822-23)
He is variously described as an upholder [= upholsterer], cabinet-maker and chapman [= dealer], based at 20 Back Lane, New Road [now Cable Street]. In 1805 he went through bankruptcy proceedings - his creditors were called to meet at Mr. Bellamy's, the George Tavern in the New-Road, St. George, Middlesex, on Wednesday the 16th Day of October instant, at Eleven o'Clock in the Forenoon, to take into Consideration a Proposal made to the Assignees for the Purchase of the Bankrupt's Leashold Estate; and for liquidating and settling the Claims made thereon; he was discharged from bankruptcy, and was insuring his premises in New Road in the 1820s, and premises on the north side of Wellclose Square in the 1830s. At the same time as Christian Splidt was appointed Major Commandant of St George-in-the East Volunteer Infantry [see above], he was commissioned as an Ensign.

THE FOULGER FAMILY (Samuel junior, warden 1823, John 1834, Samuel 1852)
Several generations of the Foulger family lived and worked around the church, and were associated with it (though John's son Arthur, who later lived in Walthamstow, was baptized at the Independent chapel in Old Gravel Lane in 1815, as perhaps were other family members in earlier years). Early 19th century listings show Samuel senior living in Cannon Street Road (1819), and Samuel junior, chemist and druggist, at 62 Old Gravel Lane (1814) and 133 Ratcliff Highway (1815); John, oil and colourman, and his wife at [Seven] Star Alley, Ratcliff Highway (1815, plus insurance records from 1818); and Charles, oil and colourman, at 123 or 133 Ratcliff Highway (Kent's Directory 1823). In the Hilary term of 1838, Charles (a change of career or another Charles?) of 133 Ratcliff Highway was articled or assigned as a clerk to Richard Willey of North East Passage, Wellclose Square (who had died by 1844).

Samuel Junior, though trading as a chemist and druggist, was admitted to the Worshipful Company of Clockmakers in 1812. He was probably an amateur clockmaker, but some of the livery companies admitted a proportion of members from other trades, and the apprentices he took on through the Company were trained in the emerging profession of pharmacy. They included in 1816 William Forrester Portello - for seven years, at a premium of £157 10s. - who in 1842 became a founder member of the Pharmaceutical Society, practising in Farnham; in 1819 Alfred Theodore Essex, a doctor of music from Kensington, who later emigrated to Sarnia in Ontario and practised there; and in 1823 John Genery, a schoolmaster of Bethnal Green - both of these for seven years, at a premium of £210.

In the 1820s Samuel - like other locals - was a regular subscriber to the Royal Humane Society, founded in 1774 'for the recovery of persons apparently drowned or dead'; see here for an early handbook (with much fascinating detail about recovery methods) and here for the Society today.

In 1821, according to the Minutes of Evidence taken before the Select Committee on the Supply of Water to the Metropolis, his water rates, like those of other local tradesmen, were sharply increased, and the Committee investigated the reasons for this. Comparisons with other areas were made, and the argument turned on the volume of water he used to distil his products. (The 'worm tub' referred to below was a large wooden vat filled with cold water, through which the worm, a long coiled copper tube, ran to condense alcohol vapour back into liquid form.)
(Mr. Sharpe) The next case is Mr. Foulger, a chemist, at No.133, Ratcliffe-highway; the rise is from 28s. to 50s; a chemist of the ordinary size of those in Shoreditch, without any additional consumption.
A wholesale chemist? — He is a working chemist; he has a laboratory. I wish to make an observation here, that Mr. Hill, in Shoreditch, lives in a similar sized house and is only charged 30s.; he has also a laboratory; he is a working chemist also; Mr. Knight in Norton Falgate, who has a large business as a chemist, is only charged 30s. I have a reason for stating Mr. Knight not being raised, he is situated where a competition could take place, and therefore he is protected by that, but with respect to the other, I do not conceive that a laboratory will make a rise in one house and not in another, except for special reasons.
(Mr. Pickering) —  If Mr Hill has a laboratory in Shoreditch we know nothing of it. Mr. Hill always paid 30s.
What is the reason of Mr. Hill being raised from 21s. to 30s.? —
(Mr. Rowe)
Mr. Hill paid 30s. to the New River in 1810.
(Mr. Pickering) — That in Ratcliffe-highway ought not to be put in comparison of this, which has a use for water which we knew nothing of.
(Mr. Sharpe) —  I merely ask, if one chemist with a similar practice to the other is charged 50s. why was the other charged 30s.? 
(Mr. Steevens)  —  Foulger is a working chemist and a little distiller; for chemists in a large way have a still or two, or three, (I cannot speak to the number, but take it at two);  it is well known to every one, and particularly to Mr. Sharpe, who is a good chemist, that chemists use a great deal of water; indeed, I heard a distiller say, if you turned all you pumped up to the worm tub it would not be too much; it is the case with all chemists, where the water falls in and out of the worm tub, and in the case of distillers, where the water flows in as it does to a worm tub and out again, without having been received in any regular back, it is difficult to say the quantity they are consuming; and under those circumstances I have no hesitation in saying, that all distillers and chemists or any other person using a still are under-rated.
Was he a distiller when charged 28s.? —  I dare say he was, though we had no been told of it.
Mr. Robert Wright, Called in; and Examined.
You are collector of Ratcliffe-highway? —  Yes; previous to the rise, the houses in Ratcliffe-highway was from 28s. to 30s.
Did that include trades? —  Without trades.
(Mr. Sharpe) —  I am sorry I had not the opportunity of giving this ease to Mr. Pickering, but he will speak to it hereafter. I know that Mr. Foulger is not a distiller. Great chemists distil a little, by their own evidence; I do not think this is a fair charge; the impression upon my mind; as one of the public, was that those charges which I have now enumerated were exorbitant, and we thought it much more so, comparing it with a letter, which I beg leave to read to the Committee, it is signed T.N. Pickering, chief clerk and secretary, dated East London waterworks office, December 1st 1817, immediately preceding the rise ....

In 1828 Elizabeth Drake, of 66 Ratcliff Highway, printed Samuel's Directions for the Use of the Medicine Chest - see further Anne Mortimer Young Antique medicine chests, or, Glyster, blister & purge (Vernier Press 1994). In 1840, he was a member of a committee set up to monitor the progress of, and oppose, a Bill in Parliament, introduced by Mr Hawes, one result of which would have been to prevent chemists and druggists and apothecaries from prescribing. This was in large part to control unqualified or poorly-qualified practitioners, whom it was also believed over-prescribed, by selling as much as patients wanted rather than only what they needed. The Bill was passed in 1845, but more thoroughgoing regulation of the whole profession came with the 1858 Medical Act. Meanwhile, as noted above, professional self-regulation had begun, with the emergence of the Pharmaceutical Society which among other things set up training regimes.

As noted above, the family was involved in supporting and fundraising for St George's National School in Walburgh Street, and an archive of the papers of Samuel Burt Howlett (1794-1874), who became surveyor for the Ordnance Survey, includes letters from the Foulgers from 1829-31 sent from Ratcliff Highway and from Walthamstow, thanking the Howletts for their generosity, inviting them to the next sale and to a series of lectures in aid of the school, asking them to help organise another ball, proposing various children for Mr Howlett's evening classes, and thanking him for allowing the children to use some of his sketches (and asking his opinion on those which their own daughter had copied).

A generation later, Samuel Foulger and Son were trading as wholesale druggists. An interesting cross-over with the family's other trade emerged in the 1860s. Zinc oxide was used then, as now, in a variety of ointments and creams for skin conditions, and was manufactured for medical use by combustion or roasting, but this product was impure. A purer form, made by sublimation, was being produced in large quantities by Thomas Hubbuck and Son, established in 1765, who had patented a white zinc paint widely used on ships. Their offices were in Lime Street, in the City, as were those of John Foulger and Sons - see below - and Samuel's firm was among those who supplied this purer form of zinc oxide to the pharmaceutical trade. Hubbucks supplied it in minimum quantities of a quarter of a ton; their authorised suppliers sold it in 14lb boxes. See left for more details. In 1883 Samuel Foulger & Son was among the old-established firms taken over by Willows & Francis, which in turn merged with other pharmaceutical companies as detailed here.

As for the other family trade: John, the oil and colourman (who in the 1830s subscribed to the London Society for the Improvement & Encouragement of Female Servants - founded in 1813, offering financial rewards and bibles, and later keeping a register of trustworthy servants), together with his sons, expanded their business as paint suppliers, in due course with an office in the City and the manufactory remaining at Seven Star Alley [1878 Vestry map left]. In 1873 they were advertising their white lead and other products. Right is a company advertisement of 1903. By 1925 they had moved their office to 27 St Clement's Lane EC4, and were described as paint and varnish manufacturers, oil, tallow, pitch, tar, paint and varnish manufacturers &c; the company went public, with a nominal capital of £7,000 in £1 shares (2,000 5% cumulative preference and 5000 ordinary). The patriarch of the family at this stage was William Foulger, who died in 1925 - see here for the Rector's comments on his splendid old world courtesy, despite the difficulties of trade after the First World War (to which the above was presumably a response), and family illness. The company survived until 1964 (with offices at 51 Bishopsgate EC2), when it went into liquidation.

EDWARD TILSTON (warden 1824-25)
was a smith, of 7-9 North East Passage, Wellclose Square.

PHILIP CRELLIN (warden 1826)
Crellin is a Manx surname, and down the years there have been a good number of islanders, including clergy, who have settled in this area. Philip Crellin was established as a salesman, insuring premises at 198 Ratcliff Highway by the early years of the 19th century. Johnstone's Directory of 1817 describes him as a slop-seller [dealer in cheap ready-to-wear clothes], and Kent's Directory of 1823 as a wholesale slopseller. Three Old Bailey trials relate to thefts of his goods: in 1822 William Royston, aged 13, was convicted of stealing 'a pair of blue cloth trowsers, value 12s.' from the doorpost of his premises (all he said in his defence was I never saw them) and was transported for seven years  -- an extraordinarily harsh sentence for a juvenile compared with the one month prison sentence for Edward Wilson (aged 34) in 1844, who pleaded guilty to stealing from his master a pair of shoes, value 4s. 6d. and a handkerchief, value 2s. 6d. In 1847 another servant, Caroline Moxon (whose duties were to see that the fire was properly taken care of in the front room, and to put the room to rights) was charged with stealing five shilling coins, which Crellin had carefully 'marked' (by adding a very small scratch on the head - a common practice at that time); they were found in her possession, but she was acquitted.

Several generations were members of the Worshipful Company of Pewterers (by the late 18th century, when demand for pewter vessels had fallen with the change in drinking habits, the number of members working in the pewter trade became less.) Philip, admitted 1788, was a Warden in 1818, and Master in 1820; 'Philip Crellin junior', admitted 1814, was a Warden in 1832, 1835 and Master in 1837; 'Philip Crellin junior' [his son] was a Warden in 1857, 1862 and Master in 1863; Horatio Nelson Crellin [sic] was a Warden in 1843, 1845, and Master in 1846, and [another] Horatio Nelson Crellin was a Warden in 1887, 1889 and Master in 1890; Frederick William Crellin was a Warden in 1900 and 1901, and Master in 1902.

Because two Philips, father and son, were styled 'junior' at different stages, and probably worked together for a time in the City, it's not entirely clear to which of them some of the following activities refer. Tupling and Crellin were accountants at 96 Newgate Street, and Philip (with a home address at Thyssen Terrace, Lower Clapton in 1858) was a director of the Whittington Life Assurance Company, originally at 14 St Clements Lane (where the younger Philip had an office for a time) but then at 37 Moorgate Street. [It was taken over by the National Life Assurance Society in 1894 after three years of negotations.] In the 1850s 'Philip' was an Executive Committee member of the Society for the Liberation of Religion from State Patronage and Control (which from 1844-53 had been the British Anti-State Church Association, pressing the case for disestablishment of the church, and later was generally referred to as the 'Liberation Society'). This was perhaps an odd enthusiasm for a conventional Anglican [if indeed that is what he was] - see this speech by the Congregationalist minister Edward Miall - but its offices were at 2 Sergeants Inn, Fleet Street, where again the younger Philip had another office for a time. In 1859 'Philip' was a member of the Metropolitan Board of Works, representing St George-in-the-East district but living at 2 Clapton Square, Hackney. It was from this address that a daughter Mary was married in 1860 to J. Langdon H. Down MD of Redhill.

In 1869 the Melbourne Argus reported a death: on the 6th October, at his residence, Hackney, near London, Philip Crellin, Esq., in the 77th year of his age, father of Mr. William Crellin, of this city. Colonial friends will please accept this intimation. (There were Crellins in Melbourne at this time, including William, born 1846, who was one of 7 children of a family who emigrated there as a child; but this was from the Isle of Man, not from London, and their father (a stonemason, born 1821) was William, not Philip, so there may be no direct link with this particular family.)

However, there is more certainty about other activities of the younger Philip Crellin junior (1823-1912, born in Stepney but baptized at Finsbury). He led a kind of 'double life'. He was a public accountant: from 1859 a junior partner in Tupling & Crellin, then from 1862-92 independently at six different City locations. In 1871 he published A New Manual of Book Keeping for wholesale and retail traders (Bell & Daldy), combining the theory and practice with specimens of a set of books ... This volume will be found suitable for all classes of merchants and traders; besides giving the method of double entry, it exhibits a system which combines the results of double entry without the labour which it involves. This was followed in 1892 by Book-keeping for teachers and pupils, with key (Whittaker).
But for a time, from 1864, he was also a semi-professional photographer, and later specialised in family portraits. He had studios in Regent Street (at 162, then from 1867-70 at 87); here are four albumen cartes-de-visite of the 1860s, from the National Portrait Gallery (left to right: Edward Spencer Beesly, Samuel Davidson, Dr William Smith, Sir John Robert Seeley). He also photographed professors of London University, including Huxley, Priestley and Lubbock, and wrote articles in art and science journals about photography. By 1881 he was living at 62 Hilldrop Crescent, Islington, and died there.

Captain WILLIAM IRISH (warden 1827-8)
The whaler and transport ship Salamander, a wooden vessel of 320 tons built on the Thames in 1776, owned by Joseph (or P.?) Mellish - similar vessel pictured right in full sail - was one of the 'third fleet' taking convicts to Australia (John St Barbe, whaling investor and convict contractor, was one of the backers). She departed from Plymouth in March 1791 with 160 male convicts and 12 soldiers of the New South Wales Corps; they arrived at Port Jackson 147 days later, five convicts having died en route. After a brief layover in Sydney she sailed to Norfolk Island (aka Botany Bay) where most convicts disembarked to serve their sentences. From there she went whaling, as part of the first European whaling voyage in Australian waters (killing a 'forty barrel' whale off Port Jackson but losing it by bad weather), and returned to England via India. Returning to Australia the following year, she entered and charted Port Stephens - and Salamander Bay there is named for her. Since 2004 the Salamander Project has been tracing the subsequent lives of many of the convicts.

In 1794 Salamander made a further visit to Norfolk island, bringing stores and provisions from England. Much food was lost or went bad, and a good deal of clothing irreparably damaged. By the time it reached the South Fishery, said one commentator, very little private trade on board either and what there is we that live here (at Parramatta) have little change of... She then went whaling again, and returned via India.

In 1800 she was a victim of 'friendly fire'. Because Britain and France were at war, ships heading from the Thames to the West Indies or South Seas had to sail to the Solent and form into convoys guarded by Royal Navy vessels. The commander of one of these convoys, Captain Lewis of the Snake, decided to hold a gun drill shortly after leaving the Channel, timing the loading and running out of the 18-pounder guns. The black powder in the touch holes was lit and a massive broadside fired. One of the guns was still loaded with ball and when fired directly hit the Salamander. The shot penetrated the hull three feet below the waterline. A boat crew from the Kingston went across to assist in keeping her afloat until repairs were effected. (Robert Curling, warden in 1792, was part-owner of another vessel in this convoy.)

What is not clear is for how much of this period Captain William Irish was the master of the Salamander. Some sources name him as in charge in 1791, and again in 1794, but Lloyds List names Captain Nichol as Master until 1797, and WIlliam Irish thereafter. But he was clearly involved in much of this activity. By 1810 he had settled at 7 Princes Street, Princes Square, and by 1817 at 2 Clarke's Terrace, Cannon Street Road; he married Mary Phoebe Foster (from Ratcliff) in 1822; he could no doubt have provided some interesting yarns.

(A namesake, Captain William Irish, had led expeditions to the West Indies in the closing years of the 16th century.)

JAMES MASSINGHAM (warden 1827-29)

The family were pastrycooks, with premises (insured from or before 1807) at 171 Ratcliff Highway. James' father was a member of the Worshipful Company of Cooks (which today is one of the smaller livery companies): in 1760 he took on William Faulkner as an apprentice, his first master James Jackson having died; he was admitted to the Company in 1766. Joseph Massingham, of Newgate Street, Spitalfields, who died in 1813, was also a pastrycook. In 1842 James was listed as a confectioner. See below for comments on his activity as a Poor Law Guardian.

ABRAHAM GOLE JUNIOR (warden 1829-32)
The family may have been Huguenots from Holland - Jacob Gole (c1660-1737) was a Dutch artist and printmaker, and an Abraham Gole was living in the parish of St Martin-in-the-Fields in 1714.

Abraham senior (d. 1819) and Abraham junior (1777-1859) worked together as entrepreneurs. Their primary income came from a contract, from 1802 onwards, with the East India Company for housing and feeding lascars, at the rate of 10s. per head per week. In the decade from 1803 they were paid a total of  £117,958; in five months alone during the peak season of 1813 they received £13,804. They constructed a new barracks on Cannon Street Road - more convenient than the previous location in Shoreditch.

From 1799-1804 John Anthony (1766-1805) had a similar contract - and had married Abraham's daughter Sarah. He was the first Chinese person to become a naturalised Englishman, by private Act of Parliament [right taking the oath], just a few months before his sudden death. He claimed to have settled in Britain 'after the American War'. The lascars trusted him, and he had prospered, and as well as a house at 4 Angel Gardens, Shadwell he had a home at Hallowell Down, Leyton, where he kept a Chinese steward, Wing. At the Old Bailey in 1800, he and Abraham Gole supported a lascar employee named Awing, who was the victim of a burglary at Angel Gardens (where items of Gole's property were also stolen): William Rayner, aged 27, was sentenced to death but his accomplice Charles Moren was acquitted. Six years before his death John Anthony became a Christian, baptized at St Paul Shadwell and on his instruction buried there. There is more about him here.

The Goles had also been in partnership with Esther and Daniel Osborn, in Angel Gardens, Shadwell, but this was dissolved on Daniel's death in 1806, and business carried on by the Goles, father and son, alone. Given the nature of their business, the Goles were often in court, both civil and criminal. In 1811 Francis Fernandez, aged 20, was sentenced to death at the Old Bailey for the attempted murder by stabbing of John Clare, one of Goles' employees.

Abraham junior was churchwarden from 1829-32; in his last year offfice (and also as a Poor Law trustee) he gave the following interesting evidence to the Commission on the Poor Laws, prior to the introduction of the 1834 Poor Law Amendment Act. Although he distinguishes between the 'deserving' and 'undeserving' poor - an approach which succeeding generations were to intensify (see here, especially after the 1869 'Goshen circular' and the local reduction of out-relief) - he does at least recognise the realities of unemployment!

Mr. Abraham Gole,  Churchwarden of St. George's in the East.
I have been in office as churchwarden four years and as trustee twelve years.

We have now no assistant overseer. We have had four in our parish during seven years. They were appointed by the board, but they have each turned out badly, and we have been compelled to discharge them. Inquiries into the cases of paupers are made by our two beadles. I am of opinion that there is too much to do in the way of investigation for any unpaid officer to accomplish.

In our district and the vicinity the demand for labour has of late years been greatly reduced. The competition of the dock companies has reduced profits; they have reduced the wages of labour and the number of labourers; their engines have suspended labour. In rope making, and other branches of manufacture, improvements have had the same tendency to reduce the quantity of labour, and notwithstanding the increased amount of tonnage, there can be no doubt that the total demand for labour used in the district has to been greatly reduced,

Out-door Relief to able-bodied Papuers
In our parish we have long found it absolutely necessary to give relief to able-bodied labourers out of employment. We give, as casual relief, never more than 1s. to a single man; if he has a wife and one or two children, we may give from 1s.6d. to 2s.; if he has a large family, 3s.  As permanent relief, we give to a

s.  d.
1   6 per week
— with one child not at the breast
2   -   —
—         —              at the breast 2   6 
Married man and wife, if an old couple decayed
3   -  
Married man, with a family, the man sick, we allow the family at the rate of 1s. a head
The average of the highest pension is
7   - 
The total number of out-door poor is about 2,230.

Mode of investigation
The only visitation of the cases of pensioners or casual poor, is when the overseer suspects that there is reason for a visit; he directs the beadle to make a visit, and report to him, the overseer. Sometimes the same direction is given by the board of trustees. The impression on my mind is, that the beadle inquires into about a dozen cases in the course of the week,. by order of the overseers or the boards of trustees. In the cases of casual relief a great deal is taken on trust, but inquiry is made into every case where the party applies to be taken on the permanent list.

Character of the paupers
What proportion of these cases do you judge from your own experience to be cases of blameless want; that is, want resulting from causes which no common prudence, no prudence of the nature of that which may be found amongst the labouring classes, could avert? -
In the investigation of cases, I should say, that I have not found above 25 per cent of cases of blameless want: in saying this, I think I give a liberal average.

Effects of the Magistrates' refusal to interfere
Formerly we had numbers of bad characters imposed upon us by the interference of the magistrates; they ordered us to relieve cases of the worst description. But a change in the administration of the poor laws has taken place in this district, and the overseers and parish officers are now left to their uncontrolled discretion. Mr. Walker, the magistrate of Lambeth-street, as much as possible avoids interfering. The only effect produced at first was some discontent amongst the sturdy and dissolute paupers. These characters, who had been in the habit of receiving casual relief, got less relief when the change took place, and the influx of new claimants of this description was considerably checked. On the whole, the change was much for the better; the deserving poor were as well attended to as ever, while the sturdy impostors were totally rejected. We have 84 paupers in our workhouse, and we find, notwithstanding the space is large, that room for classification is much wanted.

Three further legal cases may be mentioned:
According to the Gentleman's Magazine, Abraham Gole died on 15 Feb 1853, aged 76, at Plymouth.

JOSEPH FRYER (warden 1833)

was a paper merchant of Cannon Street Road; he died in 1839 - his will is at the National Archives in Kew.

JOHN KNIGHT (warden 1836-7)
John Knight was born in 1792 in Hertfordshire. He married Phoebe Fitchett in 1817 at St Dunstan Stepney, the same year that he set up in business locally as a soap manufacturer. They had six sons (Abner died young) and a daughter (also Phoebe). He was listed as soap maker and oil merchant (1836) and oilman, soap manufacturer and tallow chandler (1838), of Babylon House, 9 York Place and 156 Old Gravel Lane in Wapping. By 1844 the company was producing Royal Primrose soap [left], and won a medal at the 1851 Great Exhibition; soon they were employing 150 people and producing 2-3,000 tons of soap a year. But the following year John senior dissolved the partnership with his five sons (John, William, John Burgess, Edwin, Alfred and Ambrose), retiring to 55 Chigwell Street in Chigwell and shortly before his death in 1864 - by then a very wealthy man - built Hainault House, (right, now a Grade 2 listed building, and a girls' boarding house of Chigwell School). His headstone at Chigwell parish church reads
Sacred to the memory of John Knight of Hainault House in this parish & for many years a Resident of St. Georges in the East
who was born at Barkway in the county of Hertford on Christmas day in the Year of our Lord 1792

His sons continued the business as John Knight Ltd, and moved to a riverside factory in Knights Road, West Silvertown in 1880 [left between the wars, and packers earlier in the century]. Its name - the Royal Primrose Works - was misleading: the smell from the mountains of animal carcases, and the production of glues, fertilisers and adhesives as well as soap was not exactly aromatic...  The Booth survey interviewed the company along with many others in the same trade. In 1906 it re-registered as John Knight and Sons, soap makers and perfumers and later became a subsidiary of Lever Brothers (now Unilever). In the 1920s they were advertising Soap; Household, Laundry [including Hustler washing soaps], Perfumed, Soft, Medicinal, Shaving, Flakes, Powder; Dye Soap. Toilet Preparations; Glue; Tallow; Edible Dripping; Edible Oils; Oil Cake for Cattle Feeding [compare a 1922 advertisement, right]. The factory was bombed on the first night of the Blitz, and rebuilt; by the end of the 1950s it had over 1,200 employees. Their most famous product was Knight's Castile soap, introduced in 1919 [1950 advertisement right]. Manufacture of the brand transferred to Elida Gibbs in 1997 after Unilever reorganised its portfolio, and the Gumption Company took it over in 2001.

JOHN HIND (warden 1836)
was an auctioneer and broker of household goods, who advertised his sales in the Times, and appeared to own a number of houses in Cannon Street [Road]: in 1815, he insured no.23 (plus by 1820 six other houses in the area), nos. 19 and 23 in 1825, and in 1836, jointly with Alice Garratt, a widow, nos. 21 and 22 (plus three elsewhere). He died in 1849; his will is in the National Archives at Kew.

JOHN BENTON (warden 1837)
was the uncle of T.M. Fairclough who in 1880 gave one of the apse mosaics in his memory; he died in 1841.

GEORGE COOPER (warden 1838)

was a butcher, with a shop at 9 Nassau Place (on the south side of Commercial Road, east of Cannon Street Road). He was the first regular customer of Thomas Herbert of Catherine Street round the corner, who serviced his scales and weighing machines.

JOHN CHATWOOD (warden 1839-40), PETER RAYNER (warden 1839-40)
John Chatwood was a chemist of Gravel Lane, and Peter Rayner a livery stable-keeper of George Yard, off Cannon Street Road (insuring property there from the 1810s). For a number of years - at least from 1839-50 - Rayner was the chairman, and Chatwood the vice-chairman, of the Poor Law Guardians for St George-in-the-East, following the 
1834 Poor Law Amendment Act: James Massingham was the first chairman. See here for comments on their in-relief spending policy.

(warden 1840-41)

was a gentleman of 1 Bath Terrace [which later became 203 Cable Street, on the north side, now all demolished]; he married Jane Louisa Titterton at Edmonton in 1837. He owned, with the Stutfields, a tenement yard that was bought for the construction of the London & Blackwall Railway in 1836. When he died in 1857, his will [held at the National Archives in Kew] was proved by the Prerogative Court of Canterbury, which indicates that his wealth exceeded the limit for the London diocesan court to deal with it. (Until that year, when secular courts was established for this purpose, wills were 'proved' by the ecclesiastical courts; when his widow Jane died in 1882, at the same house, it was the Probate, Divorce and Admiralty Division of the High Court which dealt with her will. William Cleaver was one of her executors.)

was an ironmonger, born in Poplar (as was his wife Jane), with premises at 90-92 Old Gravel Lane. In 1835 John King was convicted at the Old Bailey of stealing his dirty linen basket (shirts, socks, drawers and handkerchief) from a truck being drawn by his errand-man along the highway, and was confined for a year. In the 1851 census there were two children, a shopman and two servants living in their home.

THOMAS LIQUORISH (warden 1844-48)

The Liquorish family's roots were in Sudbury, Suffolk. William senior was born there in 1748, and became a freeman of Ipswich, but had Tower Hamlets connections – he was a corporal in the Tower Hamlets Militia in the 1790s. He had two sons, both born in Sudbury (moving between Suffolk and London), shoemakers by trade, engaged in military service, and musical. William junior was born in 1772, and served with the Westminster Militia from 1793, the Tower Hamlets Militia from 1797-1808 and the West Suffolk Militia (enlisting at Liverpool, aged 39) from 1811, serving in the Peninsular war (for which he was awarded the Peninsular medal), at Vittoria, the Pyrenees, the second siege of Sebastapol, Ortez, and Toulouse. Invalided out as a non-resident of the Chelsea Hospital in 1824, due to 'paralysis of lower extremities and left arm', in 1796 he composed a Quick-Step and Military March for the Tower Hamlets Militia. He lived in Hoxton until his death in 1852 at Shoreditch. His brother Thomas joined the Tower Hamlets Militia in 1799 at the age of 13; in 1807 he was admitted by patrimony as a freeman of Ipswich, but from 1814-39 lived at Chapel Street, and by 1810 was Master of the Tower Hamlets band until the Militia was disbanded in 1816; he too moved to Hoxton, and died there in 1842, having cut his own throat, in 1842.

What relation was the Thomas Liquorish who became a churchwarden, born in Leicestershire, and the landlord of the Ship Tavern in Anthony Street (numbering variously given as 11, 13 and 84)? With his wife Elizabeth [or Martha] ???? he had eleven children. (We recently heard from a family one of whose ancestors – no relation – was born in the pub during his time.) He was elected as warden by those opposed to Bryan King. He was the senior warden at the time of the 1845 Requisition meeting, chairing the public vestry on 15 March - see the text and comment here. Afterwards an absurd declaration was made that the Protestant Cause has triumphed over the Tools of Jesuitical Tyranny by the Glorious majority of 76 in favour of Messrs Liquorish and Bond, the true friends of the Church and of Civil and Religious Liberty. In 1847 he put his name to a 'presentment', published in The Times of 8 January on behalf of the wardens, stating the unhappiness of the parishioners, and alleging marriage and baptism irregularities - unconvincingly, since King was rigorous in complying with the requirements: they are discussed here. Like many other wardens of this parish at that time, he was a Liberal in politics, and a member of the committee of no less than 332 (with power to add more should they choose) formed in 1852 to secure the re-election of Sir William Clay as MP (successfully: he served from 1823-57), based on the resolution That the unvarying attention of Sir William Clay to the local interests of the Borough, his steady support of the principles of civil and religious liberty, and his early, zealous, and consistent advocacy of Free-trade, entitle him to the continued confidence and cordial support of the constituency of the Tower Hamlets. Among the 24 names from 'our Hamlet' were wardens John Chatwood (and John Chatwood jnr), Richard Carpenter, Samuel Foulger, John Sander, John James Bond, B.F Skelton, T.M. Fairclough, Thomas Barnett (warden 1848-49), Andrew Wilson, Dr E.A. Cory and Robert Nicholson.

Liquorish was also vice-chairman of St George's Union (workhouse), with J. Gill as chairman. The Times reported his death at the Ship Tavern on 2 March 1854, deeply regretted by a numerous circle of friends. His wife took on the tenancy of the Ship Tavern after his death.

JOHN JAMES BOND (warden 1844-47)
Some family background: John Lawton (c1673-1754) lived in Ratcliffe Highway (probably no.19) on the eastern corner of Essex (later Artichoke) Hill from at least 1730. A salesman, he acquired property in and around The Highway and a country estate at Loughton, Essex. Outliving all his sons, he left his property to his grandson John Rogers Lawton, and on his early death it was divided amongst his four young daughters, and hence eventually to their husbands. John Lawton' great-grand-daughter Fanny (married to a coal factor and living in Canterbury Square, Southwark) passed her share to her only daughter's children. Their father, Joseph Messenger, a retired sea captain from St Bees, Cumbria, was a pawnbroker at 177 Ratcliffe Highway between 1812/14 and his death in 1826. The properties were equally divided between Joseph's sons William (in New Zealand) and Frank (in Australia) and his daughter Jane, who had married John James Bond, cabinet maker and undertaker, who lived across the road at 24 Ratcliffe Highway. His father Benjamin Bond (c1752-1833), cabinet-maker, appraiser and furniture broker, had lived at this address since at least 1761. and attended St George-in-the-East: both his wives and all but one of his children were buried there, and he was the largest rentpayer in The Highway, so surely involved in the Vestry; he also owned a house in Dorking. John James (1805-1858) was born there, but was living at no.24 at the time of the Marr Murders, and in May 1835 served from this address as a juror at the Old Bailey.The 1851 census lists him as a widower, cabinet maker, aged 47, living with his teenage son and daughter, a housekeeper and a general servant, at 24 Ratcliff Highway (portrait left between his marriage in 1827 and his wife's death in 1839).

 With his fellow-warden Thomas Liquorish he opposed Bryan King's innovations, and (unusually at that time) served a second term; in 1848 the trustees (= Vestry) presented him with a gold propelling pen/pencil for his services, with the inscription Presented to J J Bond Esq. by the Trustees of St George’s Middx to Mark their approbation of his Services, as one of the Churchwardens for a period of Four Years ending 1848. An obituary in the East London Observer of 11 September 1858 said
It is with much regret that we have to announce the death of Mr John James Bond, Upholsterer, etc., of St George-Street, St George in the East. Mr Bond has been a resident of St George’s all his life, and for thirty years has taken an active part in the affairs of the parish.  He was Headborough at the time of the passing of the New Police Act, and the introduction of the Metropolitan Police. Some years ago, he was churchwarden in conjunction with Mr Liquorish for three years in succession, during which time he successfully combatted with the rector, against his innovation in the church service. For many years he has been a trustee of the parish, and had during a long devotion to the service of his fellows, earned the good will of all.
After an illness of only three days, he died on Thursday morning last, from an attack of Erisipelas. He was apparently a man apparently in robust health, of full habit of body, and to all appearances likely to live for many years. His comparatively sudden death has cast a general gloom over the whole of his friends which we may honestly say comprised the principle inhabitants of the parish of St George’s.


was a pawnbroker. His first premises were on Charles [now Watney] Street, Back Road [now Cable Street], where he had two yards. Unsurprisingly, pawnbrokers at that time were often involved in criminal trials. In 1835 he gave evidence at the Old Bailey trial of William Johnson, who was sentenced to death for a burglary in adjoining premises. His shopman (and son?) William Carpenter was a witness in 1835 when Ellen Young and Caroline Neil pawned a watch with them; he said he knew and had previously dealt with Neil (who was acquitted) but would not have received it from Young (who was convicted and sentenced to six months in prison). By 1858 Richard was in partnership with Samuel Readfern, at 7 Cannon Street [Road], who gave evidence that George Burchett had forged one of their tickets for 6 reams of paper, valued 12s. - it was a white one, and their tickets above 10s. were yellow; he was sentenced to 18 months in prison. In 1868 his home and shop were at 68 Cannon Street Road [the same premises, renumbered?] where Thomas Homewood, George Kelly and Goerge Timothy attempted a burglary, and were each sentenced to two years in prison. (One of the witnesses had a sad life: her husband was 'insane', and she and her son struggled to make a living selling pigeon dung to the tanning yards in Bermondsey.)
Richard (by then also known as Richard Luke Windham Carpenter) died in 1874, having moved to Leytonstone Road; his executors were Richard and William (sons?) and Charles Sells, but by 1891 - by which time William had also died - his affairs were not finally resolved.

ANDREW WILSON (warden 1842) & JOSHUA WILSON (warden 1854-55)

Joshua was a carpenter and builder, with premises at Alington Place, Back Road [part of Cable Street]. A partnership with his son Andrew was dissolved by mutual consent in March 1847. Andrew became an architect, employed for work on St George's National School, Cannon Street Road in 1856 (and living at 34 Cannon Street Road); he then got the job of designing St George's Town Hall in 1860/61. When Joshua died in 1861, his executors were
Andrew, then of Harley Cottage, Bow Road, and John Alexander Wilson, ship and insurance broker of 22 Great Tower Street. Andrew also produced the Incorporated Church Building Society plan of St George's church between 1868-78.

The Fairclough dynasty were in the haulage trade - starting originally as carmen with horses, working from 10 (and later 12) Christian Street. It is said that they got their break when the Crystal Palace [right] was taken down and shifted in 1852 from the Great Exhibition site to Penge. In due course they expanded, as T.M. Fairclough & Sons, into steam wagons, then modern lorries, becoming major regional contractors, until the postwar nationalisation of transport supplies. For example, in 1897 The Auto reported that they were now connected with the Motor-Van Syndicate (Limited), recently formed for the purpose of exploiting motor-vans, with Morrison and Arthur Fairclough as directors. And by 1933 they were providing repeat orders of 'Durable' lorries in association with Armstrong-Sauer Commercial Vehicles Ltd. (Vickers Armstrong records, held in the Tyne and Wear archives, include photos of these vehicles.) See here for details of their repossession in 1930 of Premierland, the boxing venue in Backchurch Lane, following the High Court case
T.M. Fairclough & Sons v Berliner [1931] 1 Ch 60 - quoted in a 2006 Law Commission report on the termination of tenancies for default. There is more material here on 'Tommy' Fairclough's local activities, in meat haulage and other areas, including reference to the lowering of railway wagons from the viaducts to street level around Pinchin Street. Another case involving the company and establishing legal precedents turned on rest time for drivers: Beer v T.M. Fairclough & Sons Ltd (1937) 156 LT 238.

The family may have come to London from Lancashire, via Chester. Thomas Morrison Fairclough was baptized in London in 1818, and worked with other family members on building up the business. Around the time when he was churchwarden, John Calnan, aged 16, was convicted at the Old Bailey of stealing a chest and 74 lbs of tea, value £12, from one of his wagons, and was imprisoned for six months - he was to make a number of repeat appearances at the Bailey! In July 1874 T.M. Fairclough was named among the additional Commissioners appointed for executing the Acts for granting a land tax and other rates and taxes. He held a number of directorships, and in his latter years served as Treasurer of the Raine's Foundation Schools, then in Cannon Street Road. By the time of the 1878 Vestry map the firm had five yards in the area - two on Christian Street, and three off Cable Street [indicated on map, right]. In 1880, he gave one of the apse mosaics in memory of his uncle John Benton. He died in 1891, with Morrison, Walter and Arthur among his executors. Fairclough Street is named for him - views here and here.

The men of the family were involved in the Worshipful Company of Girdlers - a livery company no longer involved in its original ancient craft of belt making (except for supplying the sword belt for the Sword of State and stole at coronations) but remaining active in charitable work. Thomas Morrison Fairclough was Master in 1872; Morrison Fairclough (his first son, 1846-1919) in 1882 - he presented enamel & gilt badges for the Wardens; and  Frank Fairclough (second son - who married at St Augustine Kilburn, a noted ritualistic church, in 1887) in 1895. In 1904 Morrison and Frank were assistants, and Walter, Arthur and Percy served as liverymen.

The family home was at Essex House, 401 Bow Road, in Mile End, until increasing prosperity enabled them to move, around 1880, to Pitarrow, Bramley Hill, a Croydon mansion with a large staff to match. Essex house [right, in 1890s] - perhaps once associated with Lady Essex - was acquired by C.R. Ashbee in 1891 and became the home of a number of significant projects: the Survey of London (now part of English Heritage); the Essex House Press (which took over William Morris' Kelmscott Press after his death, and produced much significant and beautiful work), and the Guild of Handicraft (which began at Toynbee Hall, as a silver- and metal-work studio in the Arts and Crafts tradition - poster right), both of which moved to Chipping Camden in 1902; they no longer exist, but their influence lives on.

THOMAS PADDON (warden 1857)
Thomas was born in 1803 in Pilton (near Barnstaple), the youngest of three sons of Thomas (born out of wedlock) and Frances. By 1841 he had set up a carpet warehouse in Ratcliff Highway where he lived with his wife Mary, five children and his brother Andrew Daly Paddon (born 1805) who practised as an accountant. In 1838 their servant Amelia Sullivan was acquitted at the Old Bailey of stealing seven yards of calico, value 7s.; the following year another employee Agnes M'Cullum was convicted of the theft of 3½ yards of flannel, value 4s.; 1 shift, value 5s.; and 1¼ yard of merino, value 5s., and confined for three months. In 1842 James Tillett stole 7½ yards of printed calico; he had been drinking but was 'not drunk', and was sentenced to six months in prison.

JOHN DOWSETT (warden 1860)
was a gentleman of 8 New Road. He leased various properties, including two (for 21 year terms) in Betts Street which formed part of the Drapers' Company portfolio financing Edmanson's Almshouses in Stratford (established in 1695 to provide twelve almshouses for poor men and women, and afterwards to employ the rents for the use of such poor who were either inhabitants in the precincts of St Catherine or decayed sail-makers or their widows inhabiting there or elsewhere): in 1840, a dwelling house and grounds for £35 (paying £1,050 for the contents of its sugar-houses) and in 1843 number 4a, at £10. As one of the four trustees of the Stepney, Ratcliff and St George's Benefit Building Society (No 2), he entered into mortgages on behalf of the society.

He must have prospered, since in the early 1870s he acquired Leyton House, Stratford [left] as his residence. This was a three-storeyed redbrick building with a front of seven bays, built about 1706 by David Gansel, which had an interesting history and succession of tenants, including Alderman Thomas Sidney (Lord Mayor of London 1853-54) and thereafter the mother of William Morris (who was born in Walthamstow). Its history is fully detailed here, though it does not refer to the Dowsetts' ocupancy. John Dowsett died in 1873 (at the home of T. Gardner, Esq), aged 76. In 1906 the property was leased by Samuel Henry Dowsett Esq (? John's son, born 1846) to His Majesty's Postmaster General for 21 years, at £55 per year, but it was demolished in 1913; the site was occupied by the London Electric Wire Works, and later developed for light industrial and residential accommodation. [Samuel Henry Kaonohiulaokalani Dowsett was a successful entrepreneur in Hawaii, the third generation of his family there - what relation was he?]

In the middle years of the 19th century, at 7 Clark[e]'s Terrace, Cannon Street Road, lived Edward Augustus Cory MD FSA MRCS who wrote a textbook The Physical and Medical Management of Children: adapted for general perusal which went through several editions (eg the enlarged 5th edition of 1844, J. Draper). He was well-known in the area, and a regular writer to the medical journals of the time; here are some of his letters, which show him to be enlightened in his approach - on the treatment of 'hysteria', malignant cholera, medicines for children, midwifery issues, and the delivery of twins - and also quick to defend his reputation. He died (at Banstead) on 8 July 1854. His son Frederick Charles Cory MD MRCS followed in his father's footsteps: he was admitted as a Doctor of Medicine in 1853, and became a Fellow of the Obstetrical Society of London (serving on its Council 1867-69); living at 8 Nassau Place, Commercial Road [the south side, just east of Cannon Street Road]. He susbscribed to the Scripture Readers' journal.

JOHN FREDERICK HASTED (warden 1863-64)
Hasted's family were coopers. In 1802 they had insured premises at 6 Fountains Court, Minories, and in 1803 John Frederick Hasted senior married Sarah Hunt at All Hallows by the Tower; by 1824 he was insuring premises at 15 Prince's Square. She died in 1829, aged 44, and he in 1852, aged 72; their table-top tomb and inscription remains, to the south of the church entrance. His namesake son carried on the business; the family's address was 12 Pell Street.  Like many others mentioned on this page, he was the victim of theft by an employee: in 1846 William Boynett was convicted at the Old Bailey of stealing 3s. and other monies from his master, and was imprisoned for six months. There was also a Chancery case involving a family will, Brown v Hasted in 1862.
William (his son?) was listed as a rate collector for the parish in 1866. As with other wardens, John also served for a time as vice-chairman of the parish union (workhouse), with J. Gill as chairman. He died on 26 February 1872 at 4 Belgrave Villas, Ilford Road, by then described as a gentleman;  Emma (his daughter?) continued to live there, and his son at Clifton Lodge, The Green, Stratford.

JOHN PONLER (warden 1863)
The family were orginally seafarers: Captain John Ponler sailed the Queen West Indiaman at the start of the 19th century, and wrote from the Barbadoes [sic] on 29 March 1806 to Lawrence Bruce, at the Jamaica Coffee House in London,
With respect to my patent fore-sail, I had it bent during the bad weather at our first sailing, and it certainly answers every purpose that the patentee intended it; for at different times during the bad weather, I sent the watch forward to reef the fore-sail, which could be done in three or four minutes, without starting tack or sheet.

John married Janet (Jennett, in some registers - from Scotland?) Stalker in 1797 at St Paul Shadwell, but their children were baptized at the Independent  chapel in Old Gravel Lane - John in 1799, Elizabeth in 1800, Janet in 1802, Margaret in 1804, Margaret Jane in 1806, Hugh Stalker in 1808, James in 1811 and Grace in 1814. John (father or son?) insured the second house from George Street, Commercial Road in 1821 (described as gent) and property at St George's Place, New Road, Back Lane [confusing, because Back Lane was next to St George's Place but some distance from the New Road] in 1830 (described as a timber merchant). In the 1840s John (presumably by now the son) had become something of an entrepreneur: he took over the property of various insolvent debtors, on trust for other creditors -
In 1852 the partnership between John Ponler, Janet Ponler, and Hugh Stalker Ponler, Timber Merchants, of St. George's-place, St George's in the East, was dissolved by mutual consent so far as regards Janet Ponler. The 1878 Vestry map [left] shows the firm's yard on Cable Street, to the north of the churchyard. His brother Hugh Stalker Ponler died in 1854. (In the 1841 census Hugh was living at 'Back Road' with his sister Margaret, and in 1851 at 14 St George's Place with his widowed mother, and Margaret; but he had also set up house with Mary Ann Dolder at 2 King David Lane; they did not marry, but had two children, James Hugh in 1837 and Sarah Ann in 1839, both baptized at St Paul Shadwell: Sarah died the following year. He is variously described in registers as sawyer, timber merchant and mariner.)

The business later moved to 228 Cable Street [left on Goad's 1899 insurance map]: a father and son partnership (both called John) was dissolved in 1875. Despite the family connections with St Paul Shadwell, a seamen's church, John was churchwarden at St George-in-the-East in 1863. He was a Warden of the Worshipful Company of Leathersellers [crest right] in 1866. William Street, off Cannon Street Road, was re-named Ponler Street in the mid-19th century.

(warden 1864)
lived at 9 St George Street; he was a cork cutter, master and manufacturer, and ran a shop. Other family members were involved in this trade. Cork cutting - to provide stoppers for bottles, sold by the gross - was described in 1811 (The Book of Trades or Library of Useful Arts) as one of the blackest and dirtiest of all trades, and not very profitable either for the master of journeyman; it was done by men and women, with an exceedingly sharp knife of peculiar construction, requiring but little ingenuity, as the only tool required. But the processes were mechanised, and became more profitable - see here for more detail. He may have been a newcomer to the area, as his daughter Catherine was baptized in Hoxton in 1856. In 1871 he was vice-chairman of the Union, with James Fraser as the chair.

was a linen draper of Ratcliff Highway [100 St George Street]. At the Old Bailey in 1844 Ann Stone, Lydia Johnson and Louisa Ellis (all with previous felony convictions) were found guilty of simple larceny of his property - three handkerchiefs, value 10s. 6d., and four yards of silk - and were transported for seven years.

JOHN BARNES (warden 1866)
of 59, Cannon Street Road

THOMAS HERBERT (warden 1866-67)
Thomas Herbert (1811-76) was a member of the Vestry from the time when it was constituted in 1855 under the Metropolis Management Act, and in due course chaired the Sewers / Sanitary Committee (for whom he gave a dinner a few weeks before his death). He was in turn an overseer, trustee and churchwarden of the parish - deploring the scandal of the ritualism riots and working for harmony in the years that followed. An obituary spoke of his steady adherence to any plan to which he had become attached. Slow to decide - the result of earnest thought and consideration - yet, when once resolved upon, nothing moved him from his purpose ... By no means an orator, possessed the faculty of pegging away until he made his view known, those view being generally in favour of a somewhat close economy ...To this trait ... he owed the alienation of many who would have been friendly with him but who now that he is gone can but ackowledge the ability which distinguished his actions.

Born in the parish, he was the second son of Thomas Herbert, a tidewaiter (customs officer). He married Sarah Brinkhurst in 1836; they had six children. He learned his trade as a scalemaker with Thomas Pallet in Leadenhall Street, with whom he worked for seventeen years; in 1842 he started his own business in a shed in the back garden of wife's father Benjamin in Catherine [later Anthony] Street - where his first regular customer was George Cooper, churchwarden 30 years earlier - moving the next year to a shop in Cannon Street Road, and taking on two of Pallet's men. Around 1849 he moved to premises at 47 Ratcliff Highway [later St George's Street, now The Highway], four doors from the Old Rose, adding a new shop front and workshops at the rear - right in the 1870s. In 1857 he took over George Birch's business in Chichester Place [later Grays Inn Road], and in 1867 purchased Wood's, who had traded at 6-7 West Smithfield in the City for over a century - well-timed, as Smithfield meat market opened the following year. Thomas retired in 1873.

His three sons started in the business, but for reasons unknown Thomas Benjamin, the eldest, left in 1863 to fight in the American Civil War, despite having recently married; he enlisted in the 34th Regiment, New Jersey Volunteer Infantry under the name of James Goodwin, becoming a second lieutenant by its end. He was naturalised in 1884, and died of TB at a military hospital in Dayton, Ohio, in 1887, shortly after re-establishing contact with his family.

George and William, the other sons, dissolved their partnership a few days before their father's death. George and his wife Mary Ann lived over the shop - they had four rooms, with a kitchen parlour and scullery at the back of the shop. In 1868 George had enrolled as a Special Constable, in the wake of the Fenian rising and the subsequent Clerkenwell explosion - more details here; left is his truncheon.
The firm moved out in around 1900, and the building was destroyed in the Blitz. Herbert & Sons remain in business -
here is their excellent website, giving their subsequent history; and see here for another firm of scalemakers on Commercial Road.


was a manufacturer of Seamen's Improved Waterproof Clothing and Yarmouth South-westers, based at 111, Ratcliff Highway.

JOHN SANDER (warden 1868)
Various family members were linen drapers and/or haberdasherers. In 1846 John is listed as in business at 127 St George's Street, with 'Sanders and Palmer' at 215/6 Shadwell High Street, and another John traded at 5 Little Pulteney Street, Walker's Court, Golden Square, dying as a gentleman at 144 St Paul's Road, Canonbury in 1864. 'Our' John's partnership with William Sander (his son?) was dissolved by mutual consent in 1869, William continuing the business. He was a trustee of St George-in-the-East in 1871, involved in the parish's local government activities.

ROBERT NICHOLSON (warden 1868)
was also a parish Trustee in 1871; his address was given as 4 Cannon Street Road, but this may have been an office address - see here.

(warden 1869-70)

He was a builder, living at 102 Cannon Street Road, and in 1865 he was granted retrospective planning permission by the Metropolitan Board of Works to erect a counting-house and entrance to his yard there, on condition that it was adapted to conform with his application. Two years previously he was involved in a case over a contested will, Eastman v Dennis. His wife was Martha; their daughter Emma, born here in 1852, married Nathaniel William Hicks from Hackney, and raised four children there. A son Frederick James emigrated to Australia, marrying Emma King at St Andrew's Cathedral in Sydney in 1881. She taught 'fancy dancing' - see this report of her juvenile class. In 1889 he was riding with a friend Henry Cannon whose horse bucked, causing his fatal drowning. Frederick and Emma were divorced in 1894, on the [standard] grounds of habitual drunkenness, leaving without means of support, and cruelty. Frederick sernior retired to Brigden - Cann Hall Road, Wanstead [now Leystonstone].

(warden 1869-70)
He was born 11 March 1822 on the island of St Helena, as were five of his ten siblings. His parents Nathaniel Collier and Charlotte Knipe were married there in 1817, and lived there on and off for a number of years - was his father working for the East India Company, or guarding Napoleon? His father had been bound as an apprentice to the Mercers' Company [nowadays the 'premier' livery company], but - presumably because he had left the country - had delayed claiming his freedom of the company, and of the City (a linked benefit), for which he had qualified in 1808, until some point between the birth of his two sons Nathaniel and Richard, between 1818 and 1822. Under the rules, therefore, Richard became the apprentice master (as a 'carrier') to Nathaniel's three sons. Richard himself gained Mercers' and City freedom in 1843, and married Sarah Partridge, in Hackney, the following year, and between then and 1870 they had eleven children, seven of them born in the parish. The 1878 Vestry map [right] shows his works yard on Cable Street [previously 6 Back Road], just north of the church. By 1901 he was living in Clissold Road, Stoke Newington, with his unmarried daughter Florence, and died in West Ham in 1905.

WILLIAM CLEAVER (warden 1871-72)
lived at 125 Cannon Street Road, moving to Highbury Villa, Leytonstone when these premises were rebuilt in 1875 for the boys' school of Raine's Foundation. He was an executor of Benjamin Skelton and his widow. He died at Leytonstone in 1892, leaving a widow Sarah; a son Alfred William qualifed the same year from this address as an architect (having been articled to Andrew and Thomas William Aldwinckle); he practised at London Wall in 1914, Fenchurch Street in the 1920s and 1930s, and died in Epsom in 1947.

lived at 60 Christian Street, and was a cooper by trade. His partnership with William Fairbarns, based at 15 Lower King Street, Commercial Road, had been dissolved in 1856, and he had continued the business on his own account.


The family, whose trade was basket-making, may possibly have had Huguenot roots. Their links were previously with St Paul Shadwell (where Richard Dellow, born in 1815, was baptized in 1824 - in the 1840s he lived at 15 Chapman Street, but later continued his trade in Clerkenwell, Surrey and then Gateshead).  Frederick was born in Stepney in 1837. He married Elizabeth Allsop Bate in 1859 at St James Garlickhythe, who bore him seven children, and Frances Catherine Bonken in 1875 at St George-in-the-East, who bore a further ten. (They are all named here.) They lived at 73 St George Street. In the 1861 census he is described as a basket maker; as a brush and basket maker in 1871, but by 1881 he had become a cotton waste maker in West Ham, and in 1891 at Walthamstow; a decade later he was a commercial traveller living in Prittlewell. He died in 1914.

He was a member of the London School Board from 1885-91. Named for him are Dellow Street [previously Victoria Street, and before that Blue Gate Fields, a name also given to part of Cable Street], east of St George's church. The Dellow and Bewley Buildings were constructed between 1893-96, probably on the site of the New Court opium den visited by Charles Dickens as part of his research for Edwin Drood; it formed part of the Cable Street housing scheme, and cost £23,083; the rent for two rooms was 5s. a week, and three rooms 7s. There is also the Dellow Centre for the homeless, in nearby Wentworth Street.

MOSES JOHN HICKMAN (warden 1875-6)
The Hickman family came from Sandon in Essex to the parish around 1816, and lived in Church Road. (At the Old Bailey in 1822 James Gosnell was convicted of stealing two sheets, a blanket and a quilt from Moses senior from a room in Twine Court, Shadwell which he had recently let to a tenant - he was imprisoned for two months.)  The family trade were undertakers - funeral directors: Moses junior and his three younger brothers set up various local agencies. In 1854 a partnership was dissolved between Benjamin Bourne Hickman and John Bradford, at 1 Cannon Street Road [which a few years earlier had been insured by Eliza Whybrow, oil warehouse keeper - see here for this family's pickle factory]. In Moses' case the agencies were in the name of his wife, Ann Elizabeth Hickman, at 1 Prince's Place and at 111 Cannon Street Road. A bankprutcy petition was filed against them in November 1850 [London Gazette p4740] but they were discharged with a certificate of the second class (meaning that their debts were partially unavoidable - the result of carelessness or recklessness but not dishonesty) [p3502] and they resumed their trade. Here is one of Hickman's advertisements (some of the prices are missing), and a memorial card for Sarah Waller, buried at Bow Cemetery in September 1865:

No. 1, PRINCE'S PLACE, COMMERCIAL ROAD EAST* (Corner of Morgan Street) and
No. 111, CANNON STREET ROAD, ST. GEORGE'S EAST (Corner of William Street)
Respectfully submits the following Tariff of inclusive Charges for Funerals,
and guarantees the equipage in all cases to be of the best description,
and the obsequies performed with respectability and decorum.

. I beg to inform the public that some undertakers and others have issued a fac-simile of my Prospectus, thereby deceiving them, by relying on extras to make up their bills, instead of keeping to the sum specified in their advertisements. I have no connection with any other  establishment, and am only surprised that, in the present enlightenment although a sense of duty does not restrain education might make men abashed at the thought of being guilty of so mean an action as to rely on the merits of my productions to gain public favour.

WALKING FUNERALS - Grown Persons £1/10/-
CARRIAGE FUNERALS within Ten Miles of the General Post Office:
   A Carriage Funeral complete, with Coffin and all requirements  £2
   A Carriage Funeral, with separate Hearse and Mourning Coach, 1 Coffin, and all requirements
   A Carriage Funeral, with Hearse and Pair, and Mourning Coach and Pair, Coffin, &c 
   A Carriage Funeral, with superior Coffin, Hearse & Pair, Mourning Coach and Pair, Velvets, Mutes, Pages, and all requirements
   A Carriage Funeral, with double-lid Coffin, Hearse and Four,  and Mourning Coach and Pair, Ostrich Plumes to Hearse, and Horses, Mutes, Pages, &c  £9
   Leaden Coffin, stout Elm Shell and Case covered with fine Cloth, Hearse and Four, two Mourning Coaches (pairs), Ostrich Plumes and Velvets, Lid of Feathers, Mutes, Pages, &c., £20

Estimates given for Removals to or from all parts. Letters by post receive immediate attention. No extra charge for Removals from Hospitals. Oak and Lead Coffins on the shortest notice.

AGENTS:  Scotland  - Edinburgh: James Pocock, 72, Charles-street; Greenock: Joseph Crookshanks, 41, West Blackhall-street. Ireland - Belfast : John Robson, 31, Chichester-street.

* later renumbered 152 Commercial Road
In the 1881 census Moses John, his wife, grand-daughter and a resident domestic servant are listed as living in Louisa Villa in Great Baddow, Essex.  A son George Augustus, born in Cannon Street Road in 1828, died in Ilford in 1900.

EDWIN COOMBE (warden 1878)
was a house decorator, builder and contractor of 8 Old Gravel Lane.  He was previously in partnership with James May (latterly of 31 Johnson Street), at premises in St Pancras, as house decorators, plumbers, glaziers, gas fitters and paper hangers; May was declared bankrput in 1858 and the partnership dissolved. Edwin traded with his son Ernest James Coombe as 'E Coombe and Son', and at some point they moved to Lime Villas, Foxberry Road, Brockley; Ernest continued the business after his father's death on 1883.

Back to History  |  Back to Clergy 1729-1860 | Back to 18th Century Churchwardens