After following the life of Mary Maund Harrison and her daughter, I focused on Mary’s brother, John Maund. John married Elizabeth Edwards in Diddlebury on 8 May 1834. For some basic historical context, since these years seem to go by so quickly when I am just checking in on the censuses every 10 years, 1834 was three years before the beginning of Queen Victoria’s reign. Here’s an 1833 painting of then-king William IV:
And here here is the United States in 1834 (the map is 1830, but no more states were added until Arkansas in 1836–you have to look close up to see what’s a territory and what’s a state):
Back in the US, some members of my mother’s family had already been settled in Illinois for some years, others were in Ohio, and others were farther east. On my father’s side, some had made it to Ohio and Indiana, while others (of course) remained in the east. 1834 was also the year that President Andrew Jackson was censored by the Senate in connection with his defunding of the Second Bank of the United States. The Indian Removal Act had been passed in 1830, soon to result in (among other things) the Trail of Tears:
In 1841, John and Elizabeth were in Corfton, Diddlebury with children William (age 6), John (age 4), and Ann (2 months). John was a shoemaker. As John and his sons remained in the shoemaking business for much of their lives, here’s some information about that too:
The huge numbers of boots and shoes made to supply the army during the Napoleonic Wars not only saw a great growth in the shoe trade, but also encouraged the development of methods of mass-production. In 1810 M.I. Brunel patented a sole-riveting machine. It faded from view after the end of the war in 1815, but the onset of the Crimean War in 1853 saw Tomas Crick of Leicester patent a riveting method.
Meanwhile, in America, Samuel Preston patented a pegging machine in 1833, which used wooden pegs to attach the sole, rather than iron rivets. Another American invention, the sewing machine, was adapted to sew leather. The first machines were introduced to Britain by Edwin Bostock in Stafford in October 1855. Although quickly abandoned following workers’ unrest, it was soon introduced in Northampton and London, and the first recognisably modern factories followed in 1857. These early machines were only for closing the uppers, traditionally women’s work, so other processes were still carried out in the shoemaker’s home. Over the next decades a series of further inventions ensured all processes could take place in a factory system. The Blake sole stitcher was perfected around 1864, and introduced to Stafford and Stone by 1871. Pegging and riveting machines were adopted in Britain during the 1860s. Finishing was the last process to be mechanised, but by the 1890s mechanisation was complete.
Before 1855, most shoemaking processes took place in people’s homes, with outworkers carrying out work in their own houses. Women and children would sew together the leather uppers, made from pieces of thin leather, while men would carry out the tougher work of sewing the uppers onto thick soles. However, across the Atlantic, developments in sewing machine technology in the United States were to begin the move to a factory system, where all shoeworkers would carry out their work in mechanised manufactories. However, the people working in the boot and shoe industry did not accept these changes without a fight.
In October 1855, Edwin Bostock introduced three Elias Howe sewing machines into his Stafford Foregate works. These new machines could sew together leather uppers. But men and women from every business in Stafford and Stone held mass protests in their respective towns. They feared that the new machines would mean no work for the women, and reduce their families to poverty. They refused to work on machine-sewn uppers and went on strike. The machines were soon withdrawn.
Meanwhile, sewing machines were introduced into factories elsewhere in the country, notably Northampton, but also closer to home in shoe manufactories in Birmingham and Wolverhampton. Stafford lost business to these more productive centre, and Stafford and Stone’s trade began to suffer accordingly. In February 1859 the Stafford manufacturers announced that sewing machines would be re-introduced. Once again, in March 1859, the shoemakers came out on strike again, but by July hardship forced them back to work, having agreed to work on machine-sewn uppers for a wage increase of one penny per pair of shoes. Machinery was here to stay, and new factories spread accross Stafford and Stone during the 1860s and 1870s. For a while, the men’s work of sewing on soles was carried out by outworkers, but clicking by men, and closing by women now took place in factories, were owners could control production and working hours.
For Shropshire specifically, here is something on guilds, including a guild for shoemakers. That the drapers had the first guild is interesting given that William (son of Edward Jones and Sarah Maund Jones (John’s sister)) was a draper, primarily in Kent, but perhaps he started out back in Shropshire–I still need to do more research on his early life.
Moving on, in 1851, the family was in Aston, Herefordshire, and John was a cordwainer (someone who made new shoes as opposed to merely repairing them). The children consisted of John, Ann, and Richard (age 5). John (then 14) was an apprentice cordwainer. William (16) was living with Edward and Sarah Jones and family on their farm in Hatton, and was identified correctly as their nephew. By 1861 (when the Civil War was beginning in the US), the family was back in Aston and Munslow, Shropshire. John Sr. was a master boot and shoemaker, employing two men. William (26) was with the family again, and was a journeyman boot and shoemaker, as was Richard (15). The youngest son, Samuel, was 9. John (24) appears to have been living as a boarder in Wolverhampton, Staffordshire with Edward Fornes (another boot and shoemaker) and his family, and he too was identified as a boot and shoemaker. Ann is also no longer living with the family. It is certainly possible she was married or otherwise living away from home, although I have found no marriage records for her, but there is also a burial record from Munslow dated 20 Sept 1851 that fits.
In 1871, John Sr., Elizabeth, and youngest son Samuel were in Munslow, with both John and Samuel working as shoemakers. William and John Jr. had both moved away and married. Specifically, William married Harriet Elizabeth Sadler on 12 Apr 1866 in Brixton, London, so must have moved to London sometime before. Harriet was born in Surrey. In 1871 (as well as 1881 through 1901), William and Harriet lived on Medway Street, Westminster, London, and William was a bootmaker. Also in 1871, William’s younger brother Richard (25) was living near William, but with another bootmaker, Robert Campbell, and his family. William died in 1907, and Harriet also appears to have died before 1911. They had no children.
John Jr. married Susan Langworthy in Lambeth, London in 1866. In 1871, he and Susan (who was from Devon) were living in Sydenham, Lewisham, Kent, like John’s cousin William Jones, but the families were in different districts (William was on High Street in District 9, and John was on Esther Place in District 13). Like his brothers and father, John was a boot and shoemaker. In 1871, John and his wife were living with her younger siblings, including sister Mary Langworthy, a dressmaker. In 1881, John and Susan were still in Sydenham, but on Beadnell Road, and his brother Richard was living with them. Richard and John are again bootmakers. John and Susan remain there in 1891 and 1901, and like William and Harriet do not ever have any children. By 1911, John is still on Beadnell Street, but widowed, and living with his married niece and nephew Maud (age 25) and Herbert Busby (age 32). John seems to be retired, and Herbert is a fishmonger. The census confirms that John had no living children. I have not located Richard after 1881, and wonder if perhaps he emigrated.
In 1881, John Sr. and Elizabeth are still in Munslow, where John continued to work as a shoemaker. By 1891, Elizabeth was widowed (John was buried on 22 Apr 1886, with his residence listed as Aston, Muslow), and living in Aston Cottage in Munslow.
Youngest son Samuel married Elizabeth Andrews in Knighton upon Teme, Worcestershire on 5 Oct 1880, and in 1881 the two were living in Tenbury (where she was from). He (like the rest of his family) was a shoemaker. In 1891, he was back in Shropshire, specifically St. Lawrence, with Elizabeth and children (at least one of the brothers had children!): Alfred (age 7) and Harriet (age 5). Again, he was a shoemaker. By 1901, Samuel appears to have been a widower. and in 1911, Samuel (now in Ludlow) had been married (for 2 years) to a different Elizabeth (formerly Price), b. around 1866 in Bromfield, Shropshire. He is identified as a boot repairer. By 1911, Samuel’s son Alfred was married to Catherine (formerly Keen), age 28, born in Blackfriars, London. The two had two children, William (2) and Annie (7 months), both born in London (Shoreditch and Harringay, respectively), and were living in West Tottenham, Middlesex. Alfred was a corn chandler’s [grain dealer’s] branch manager, which perhaps is a similar job to that Frank Reeve Jones had around 1900 as a manager of a grain mill in Washington state, although the areas are dramatically different.
Looking at all of John Maund’s children, what is striking is that three of his four sons (William, John Jr., and Richard) moved to the London area in the 1860s. The fourth son, Samuel, ended up staying in Shropshire, after moving around some more locally, but his own son, Alfred, was in the London area by 1909. They seem to have followed in the footsteps of their cousin, William Jones, who moved to the London area in the 1840s.
The general topic of migration, especially to London and the area around it, as well as emigration, and the fact that even those in the family who did not move so far most do not seem to have remained close to their birthplaces is worth focusing on more in a later post, and I will.