Jump to content

Recommended Posts

Hi.

Been to see a very interesting person today.

Had a chat on Bedlington and the Furnace.

She has given me a photo of The Last of the Nailers.

She says it is Bedlington and on the back it is dated 1858.

This has got me puzzled as of the date but it is in her families photographs and she aint sure who it is of.

She is getting on in late life now and have to take that into my thinking.

Could this be the Gibson family of Bedlington and a previous family member have written this on the back of the photo ?

I don't know, what do you think. ?

Post something else later as soon as it is scanned. From the elderly lady too.

post-1337-0-58889000-1363735824_thumb.jp

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This is from Bedlington Furnace too.

Same contact and she has many pics too.

Can't say who she is as a couple of years back a certain person went to an elderly lady at Nedderton after finding out something from me and said he was from

our history group. He was out of order and i won't say anything about this one in case he sees it on here.

Mind you, i never have seen himon here, but you never know.

These photos are all interesting and i think they need discussing.

The pic of the first nailers could be the oldest of Bedlington i know of ?

And, there are more.

Lets know what the members think ?

post-1337-0-15547700-1363739549_thumb.jp

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi.

Been to see a very interesting person today.

Had a chat on Bedlington and the Furnace.

She has given me a photo of The Last of the Nailers.

She says it is Bedlington and on the back it is dated 1858.

This has got me puzzled as of the date but it is in her families photographs and she aint sure who it is of.

She is getting on in late life now and have to take that into my thinking.

Could this be the Gibson family of Bedlington and a previous family member have written this on the back of the photo ?

I don't know, what do you think. ?

Post something else later as soon as it is scanned. From the elderly lady too.

Looked at the photo with magnifying glass and its 1888. Its in pencil , faded but you can see it is 1888.

Was it taken at the Furnace or the side of Vulcan Place ?

Edited by johndawsonjune1955
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thats what me and Colin think.

We been looking closely at the pic again today.

However, with what was written on back of photo could they have been the last nailers at the Furnace ?

But still agree with Vilcan Place and the oldest man on the left his face is very familiar, I do think i seen him before on another photo.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 7 months later...
  • 1 month later...
  • 10 years later...

The Gibson's were an interesting family well worthy of a it of research. Here's the start of a few posts that may help you get acquainted with them and their business.

August 28 1753 a wedding, which will eventually lead to a blue plaque being placed on the house currently known as 34 and 36 Front Street East, Bedlington, takes place at St Cuthbert’s Church in the town. The house is the former home of the Gibson family – the last of the Bedlington nailers. The groom is 23 year old Humphrey Gibson, and his 21 year old bride is a Bedlington girl, Ann Stephenson.

In March the following year, 1754, the couple’s are once again in St Cuthbert’s Church, this time to celebrate the baptism of their firstborn – twins William and Henry Gibson. Very little else is known of Humphrey and Ann, though it’s possible to assume that Ann dies young as Humphrey remarries in 1766 when the twins are just 12 years old. His bride on this occasion is Isabel Moss.

Of the twin William I can find no information but Henry is raised in Bedlington. He later meets his wife, Stannington-born Hannah Jameson and they also marry at St Cuthbert’s in November 1784 when both are 30 years old. Together the couple have five known children: William born 1785, Philip born 1788, Henry born 1790, Ann born 1792 and Hannah born 1794.

November 19th 1808 their oldest son William, then aged 23 years, is lost on a passage from Corunna, Spain, where he is a mate on board the Providence, an army transport returning from the Peninsular War – part of the wider Napoleonic wars. Almost home, the ship and all hands are lost in a storm at Bolt Head near Salcombe, Devon and the master, Robert Denton, is the only survivor. (Source: McDonald, K., 1992, The Bolt-Whole, 84 (Article in Serial). SDV147889). William’s body is recovered but is not returned to Bedlington for burial. Instead, he is interred at Malborough, Devon. He is, however, remembered on his father’s gravestone in St Cuthbert’s churchyard.

image.png.c4eccb99eb9b44cd47d33cc81eb7ac1b.png

It is left to Henry and Hannah’s second son, Philip, to carry the Gibson name forward and in doing so he leaves a lasting footprint on Bedlington. In 1812 at the age of about 24 years, Philip marries 20 year-old Ann Rutherford in her parish church at Stannington and just two years later, in 1814, he lays the foundations for a company that will become the last chain and nail manufacturer in Bedlington.

Fourteen years after the company’s founding Pigot and Co, in their county directory of 1828, describe Bedlington in the following manner: ”With the exception of the iron works here, which are supposed to be the largest in the north of England, this place contains nothing worthy of notice either to the inquisitive tourist or the man of business.”

This ”nothing of interest” included Philip Gibson who’s name is listed in two categories of traders: ”nail makers” and ”shopkeepers & dealers in sundries”. Philip, along with 5 further shopkeepers, 1 further nail maker, 4 blacksmiths, 5 boot & shoe-makers, 4 butchers, 3 cartwrights & joiners, 2 coal owners & merchants, 2 corn millers, 2 dressmakers, 5 grocers & drapers, 9 inn-, tavern- & public house keepers, 1 iron founder, 1 joiner, 6 stone masons, 2 tailors, 1 baker, 1 veterinary surgeon, 1 saddler and 1 ’clogger’, is part of Bedlington’s ’business sector’ at that time.

Of Pigot’s description to judge, none of them appear to have made any noteworthy impression during his inspection in 1828 yet the company founded by Philip Gibson had already survived into it's fourteenth year and would become a household name in Bedlingtonshire for well over a hundred years.

The Gibson’s appear to have been a family with a head for business and subsequent generations of Gibson’s would play an important role in developing and diversifying the business from the house on Front Street East.

Over the next few weeks I’ll try to relate what my research has discovered. Have patience though, the gardening season is in full swing here and I have to make outdoor use of any fine day that comes my way.

 

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

part 2. Sorry you've had to wait but my geraniums, fuchsias, dahlias  and vegetable patch couldn't!

Part 2 The Gibson family

When Henry and Hannah Gibson experienced the sorrow of losing a child, albeit an adult child, in 1808 they probably couldn’t begin to imagine the sorrow which their son, Philip, and his wife Ann would start to endure just seven years later. Together, Philip and Ann had at least ten children. The firstborn, Henry born 1814, was followed by son James in 1815 but James lived only one day. The next child, daughter Barbara, was born 1816 and died at just 39 days old. The following year, 1817, a third son is born. He is named William but dies before reaching the age of four. As if this wasn’t enough, Philip’s father, Henry, also dies in 1818 and a further son, John born 1824, dies at the age of ten months. The children James, Barbara, William and John are also remembered on their grandfather’s gravestone, shown in my previous post.

What a start to a marriage! Four infant deaths and Ann was probably pregnant on the occasion of each. She must have been a really tough woman – which later history in fact confirms. However, it’s not all doom and gloom for Philip and Ann. As well as the firstborn, Henry, there are five other survivors. Ann born 1820, lives to be 58 years old and Philip, born 1822, lives to be 36. At the time of his death, in Keekle near Whitehaven, Cumberland, he was unmarried and engineer to the Whitehaven Cleator and Egremont Railway. His sister Elizabeth, born 1827, dies also in Cumberland unmarried at the age of 69. Brother James, born 1829, reaches the age of 49 and the youngest, another Barbara* born 1916, attains the great age of 85 years. (*it was then common practice to re-use the names of children who had  previously died. These were family names intended to ’live on’ in the family).

Where in Bedlington the family lives is initially difficult to determine as postal addresses were almost non-existant but here is ample evidence that the family resided in Bedlington’s East End where the family business is recorded as early as 1814 and by 1841 it is evident that Philip and Ann lived in a house on Front Street in Bedlington’s East End and adjacent to the entrance to Bell’s Place – the house which now has a blue plaque.

About the time of baby Henry’s birth in 1814, Philip’s entrepreneurial side comes into evidence when he, a grocer and draper, branches out into the world of iron goods – more specifically, nail making. His location on Front Street East is perfectly situated for this enterprise, just a stone’s throw from the Bebside slit mill which could provide materials (shown below on Greenwood’s map of 1828) and the river Blyth which provided a means of transport for the finished product by keel boat to the port of Blyth for further distribution nationwide – and perhaps even world wide, as the British Empire grew.

image.png.6adb14df0905195c43f3e6b74b32581d.png

Just where Philip’s workshop was located isn’t known and initially there may not have been any workshop. Nail-making was, at least in the Midlands, predominantly a cottage industry and I can find nothing to suggest that it wasn’t so even in Bedlington. The master nailer would purchase rods of iron from the slitting/slit mill. These were then distributed to nailers who hammered a point at one end and a flat head at the other. The finished article was then collected for shipment and the nailer was paid for his work which more often than not took place in a lean-to shed at a simple two up one-down nailer’s cottage which probably housed two families. This had the benefit that even wives and children could help in the work. Well worth a read is https://bromsgrovenailmaking.wixsite.com/nail-making/untitled-c139r a graphic description of the nail trade in Bromsgrove. The type of trade described there had it’s negative aspects in regard to payment of nailers though I am not suggesting that the Gibson family were engaged in anything of that nature.

However, at some point Philip did have a workshop and it is documented that his son Henry ”after leaving school, served his apprenticeship as a chainmaker with his father” and worked at his trade for many years in ”his father’s workshop” (Morpeth Herald 12 APR 1902).

In 1941 Philip, then about 50 years old, gives his occupation only as ”grocer” and his sons Henry and Philip, appear to have become involved in the industrial side of the business which has developed to include chainmaking. The youngest son, James, is still at school but will, on leaving, join the firm. Sadly, some five years later in 1846, Philip passes away after a short illness, aged 59 years. He is also buried in St Cuthbert’s churchyard.

image.png.9fb8be221ce029de9395a57b1fbcc710.png

The business falls to his widow, Ann who continues to run it with the help of sons Henry, Philip and James. By 1855 the nail and chain manufacturing side of the business has expanded to include a blacksmith’s shop. The drapery side of the business has ceased to exist but in its wake appears an ironmonger’s business. Philip and James are named as managers of all aspects of the business. While Henry seems to concentrate on chain-making.

The family clearly has a goodhead head for business and now has a finger in several of Bedlington’s trade and industry pies.

To be continued.

Note: It’s always difficult with ages and dates unless birth and marriage certificates are obtained. It is therefore advisable to think +/- 2 years on everything.

 

 

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create a free account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now


×
×
  • Create New...