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A Cheshire memorial brass of 1657:Adam Martindale and Ephraim Elcock
Author: Phillips, C. B.,
Volume: 160 (2011-0) Pages: 1-26,
Springing from a surviving multi-lingual church wall plaque which commemorates him and which is itself examined in detail and subject to close textual analysis here, this article assesses the life, career and family of a mid-seventeenth-century Cheshire cleric and vicar of Great Budworth during the 1650s, Ephraim Elcock. Drawing on a range of sources, including contemporary diaries and memoirs – especially that of Elock’s clerical colleague and the man almost certainly responsible for the wall plaque, Adam Martindale – plus wills and parish registers, committee records and the records of the Chester corporation, Elcock and his family are rescued from historical neglect and obscurity. The article offers a number of new insights into Cheshire during the 1650s, but more particularly it shows how, from quite modest socio-economic foundations, over several generations during the seventeenth century the Elcock family achieved significant social, professional and public standing in Chester and beyond, demonstrated not least by Ephraim’s own quite brief but significant church career.
John Brockbank of Lancaster:Shipbuilder and Entrepreneur
Author: Skidmore, Peter
Volume: 160 (2011-0) Pages: 55-65,
This shorter article examines the career and business interests of a Lancaster-based shipbuilder of the latter half of the eighteenth century and opening decades of the nineteenth, John Brockbank. His surviving daybooks, plus a volume of his contracts and related business documents, provide a clear and detailed insight into his career, activities and business interests from the late 1780s to the 1800s and they are drawn upon very heavily here. While much of his time was given over to shipbuilding, with evidence about the types of ships he built, the length of time they took to construct and the nature and terms of the contracts by which they were sold, it is shown that he had a multiplicity of other business concerns, as owner or part-owner of trading vessels, as a buyer or trader of maritime-related items, especially timber, and with interests in both canal-building and the development of the port of Lancaster. It is argued that Brockbank was part of a thriving mercantile, maritime and commercial sector in Lancaster and that the joint and overlapping business interests of its members encouraged the development of a thriving business community there.
Neston and Parkgate: Their Links to the Slave Trade in the mid to late Eighteenth Century
Author: Annakin-Smith, Anthony,
Volume: 160 (2011-0) Pages: 27-54,
This article explores how far and in what ways the Dee estuary ports and maritime centres of Neston and Parkgate on the Wirral had links during the mid and later eighteenth century with the transatlantic slave trade centred on Liverpool. Drawing heavily upon the Liverpool Plantation Registers, but also employing an array of newspapers, wills and parish registers, admiralty records and modern historical databases, the article explores shipbuilding in the area and the role of local ships, as well as the extent to which locally-based merchants, businessmen and ship owners invested in the main Liverpool slave trade or in turn used money gained from that trade to invest in their local businesses. Despite their proximity to Liverpool, it is shown that Neston and Parkgate had few and in the main only indirect links with the slave trade at this time, though a handful of locally-built boats were at some stage during their lifetime employed in the slave trade, just as a handful of local men did invest in and benefit from that trade. An addendum sheds new light on a surviving Parkgate mural and explores its possible indirect links to the slave trade.
Settlement and Removal in West Cheshire, 1834-71
Author: Handley, Mike,
Volume: 160 (2011-0) Pages: 89-115,
Building on the author’s earlier published work on the ‘old’ and ‘new’ poor law in nineteenth-century Cheshire and beyond, this article focuses on the right of poor migrants and other poor relief claimants to be deemed settled and thus entitled to benefit in a particular area or poor law union and also on the grounds upon which authorities in those areas and unions could refuse such claims and physically remove the claimants. Springing from the (changing) legislative framework, the article uses the surviving papers and correspondence of the poor law unions, together with reports on census returns and by various parliamentary committees who examined the issue found amongst the published Parliamentary Papers, to chart the changing and often differing lines taken by the poor law districts and unions in Chester, west Cheshire, parts of north-east Wales and the Wirral during the middle decades of the nineteenth century. It highlights tensions and divergent lines and practices within as well as between the unions of this region, especially between urban and manufacturing areas – many of them subject to large-scale Irish migration – on the one hand and rural and agricultural areas on the other.
The Liverpool Masonic Rebellion and the Grand Lodge of Wigan
Author: Harrison, David
Volume: 160 (2011-0) Pages: 67-88,
This article explores divisions within the world of freemasonry played out in south Lancashire (and parts of Yorkshire) in the first half of the nineteenth century and beyond. Drawing upon masonic records, including those of individual local lodges, the private papers and unpublished memoirs of the protagonists and other contemporary freemasons, newspaper reports and census returns, it explores how a group of northern freemasons rebelled against a modernised version of masonic practice which had become the official and national form of freemasonry, in favour of reviving older and more traditional forms. It traces the origins and early stages of the rebellion in Liverpool in the mid 1820s – perhaps, it is suggested, in part a result of the resentment felt by Liverpool’s mercantile and commercial membership against a more aristocratic London-based leadership – but then shows how, through a range of personal, socio-economic, commercial and transport factors, the focus soon moved to Wigan, which remained the more durable centre of a rebellion that never attracted huge support but that did not finally come to an end until the eve of the First World War.
The Press, the Cornermen and Liverpool’s ‘Tithebarn-street outrage’ of 1874
Author: Archer, John E.,
Volume: 160 (2011-0) Pages: 117-142,
John E. Archer\r\n\r\nThis article provides a detailed study of the circumstances and consequences of a particularly notorious murder, the result of street violence amongst the working and lower classes, which occurred in Liverpool in the mid 1870s. It rests upon and draws heavily from reports of the murder and the immediate reaction of the gathering crowd, witness and expert testimony and the subsequent trial and executions which were carried in local and national newspapers, as well as the various editorial comments found in the press, in order to assess the broader public and press reaction to the Tithebarn Street murder and to an ostensibly similar killing not far away and involving some related protagonists three years later. It is suggested that not only the events which occurred in Liverpool themselves, but also the wider reporting and interpretation of them disseminated through the local and national press, throw important light on nineteenth-century public attitudes towards ruffians and street violence, as well as on the often notorious reputation of Liverpool itself.