BANK STREET, THE CROFTs, BROAD LANE.
Present-Messrs.Twiss, LEIGHTON, EVERARD, WRAGG, LEONARD and JOHNSON. Period-A.D. 1874. WRAGG: We might very well devote this evening's conversation to a tour in " low latitudes"-as they are now. They were not always so, as a glance at some of the houses will show. Any one can easily pick out the old residences of the old substantial manufacturers of the last century, many of them now turned into public houses. LEONARD: Suppose we begin at Bank street and work our way onwards. EVERARD: We shall, then, commence with the corner, which was the Independent office from 1846 to 1863. LEONARD: These premises were built by Mr. Luke Palfreyman, hosier, Snig hill, father of the late Mr. Palfreyman, solicitor. Opposite is the Old Bank, now Mr. Waddy's auction room. It was here that Parker, Shores & Blakelock carried on business, and here that they failed in the year 1843, to the consternation of the town. One of the Shores lived in the house attached. Subsequently the premises were used for the Union Bank, until it was removed further on the street. WRAGG: Proceeding, on the right we reach what was the leather-currier's shop of the late Mr. Elias Lowe-one which retained its old-fashioned character until the death of its long occupant, when it was turned into the offices now occupied by Mr. William Fretson. Mr. Lowe, as most of us remember him in his later days-portly, rosy-faced, and feeble, was far different from the Elias Lowe of the olden time. Then he was active and a busy public man. He was one of Sheffield's first Aldermen. JOHNSON : His memory went far enough back to remember the figtrees, from which Figtree lane takes its name. EVERARD : In confirmation of that fact, I myself well recollect, when a little boy, seeing the front of one of the houses covered with a figtree. It was either the same, or the next house to that in which " blind Jonathan," the fiddler, lived. He was a respectable man of that class in those days. WRAGG : Mr. Lowe's brother, Isaac, was the keeper of a well-conducted beerhouse in Bridge street. Twiss : Next comes the Independent office of the present day. There formerly was a large garden, which must have had a terrace wall overlooking the precipitous hill side down to Snig hill. A part of the old wall was found during the building of Mr. Leader's present printing offices. LEIGHTON: Opposite are the offices of Messrs. Smith and Hinde, the present partners being the sons of the original firm. What a profound impression the loss of Mr. Hinde, when crossing the Atlantic in the ill-fated Arctic, in 1854, made on the town! Mr. James. Sykes, late of the Victoria corn mill, was another Sheffield man on board. WRAGG: The new Union Bank, on the left, was erected on the site of the Saynors' factory. They, prior to 1810, employed more hands than any other firm in the cutlery trade. LEONARD: How completely workshops in this street have now given place to lawyers' offices. JOHNSON: Thomas Saynor, lived at 14, Bank street, and carried on business at the back of Alderman Vickers' offices, The original Saynors were Samuel and John. They were both factors and manufacturers, their chief business being done in London in all kinds of knives, swords, shoe buckles, skates, scissors, and razors. The business subsequently came into the hands of Thomas Saynor, Scargill croft, who manufactured the sportsman's knife, scissors, razors, and pen machine knife. After the steel pen came into use, trade began to be bad. In sailing from London to Hull, a drunken sailor fell out of his hammock on to Mr. Saynor, and injured him for life. He lay for a long time in Hull, and after he came home he was unable to attend to his business. The mark which he struck was " Rainbow," and his eldest son strikes the same mark. At Whithy, Yorkshire, another brother, Jeremiah Saynor, was town beadle. John kept the Old Barrack Tavern Bowling Green, and another Saynor drgve the coach to Doncaster and Thorne from Waingate. A branch of the family is still in Edward street and has been there for more than 50 years. Twiss: We should not pass that old hostelry the George and Dragon without a mention. JOHNSON : NO, it was a noted market-house in the days when it was kept by John Cooper. I have seen on a Tuesday and Saturday a line of carts reaching from Figtree lane to the bottom of Bank street, and I believe the late Ald. Hoole was the cause of prohibiting their standing in the street. Twiss: Let us take a peep up the adjoining lane at the Quakers' Meeting-house. It was re-built in 1806. EVERARD : Either at the time when the Meeting-house was re-built, or during the period of some subsequent alterations, the Friends assembled in the large upper room of Mr. Hoyland's iron warehouse, now occupied by Mrs. G. Tucker, No. 7, York street. Twiss: An important contribution to local biography would be an account of the worthy men who have been prominently connected with the Quakers' Meeting-house. WRAGG: We have met with some already, and we shall yet meet with more. LEONARD: On its site formerly were gardens, running down to and across what is now Bank street. The old Quakers' Meeting-house was, according to Gosling's plan, on the other side of Meeting-house lane, where are now the offices of the late Mr. Francis Hoole, formerly Mr. Tattershall's, and now again another Mr. Tattershall's. EVERARD : Those offices were once of the school of the Rev. Matthew Preston, when he lived in the house in Figtree lane, now the Hospital for Women; and afterwards of Stephen Eversfield. Then on the other side of Figtree lane, occupying the site of the synagogue of the Jews that they have deserted recently (in 1872) in favour of a new one behind it with a frontage to North Church street, was Mr. William Cowley's English Grammar school. JOHNSON : That room in the course of its existence has been put to very various uses, for it was the meeting place of the Chartists. Mr. Cowley's son married the daughter of John Cooper, of the George and Dragon. Bank street and Queen street fairly bristled with schoolmasters in those days. Besides those who have been mentioned, and Mr. John Eadon, of whom we shall have to speak presently, William Wright had a school in the room behind Mr. Smilter's office, before him occupied by John Addy, to say nothing of old Nanny Bashforth, who lived in the passage past Queen street chapel. WRAGG: Mr. Addy was better known as a teacher of drawing. 'After Mr. Wright succeeded him in the room just spoken of, he lived and continued his profession in the house in front, now occupied by Mr. Barker, barrister. LEONARD: It is rather a digression from Bank street, yet there may not be a better opportunity of adding that the Parish Churchyard used to be a common playground for all the boys who chose to use it. Numbers constantly availed themselves of the privilege and fraternized with the Charity School boys in all their youthful gambols. Their great amusement used to be vaulting over the tombstones. One feat in particular was to leap " o'er t'alli"-a so-called alabaster slab, but really of Derbyshire marble, forming the top of a tomb near the vestry door.* When the churchyard was closed to these pranks (1830), the late Mr. Samuel Roberts devised for the Charity boys the elevated playground high up above York street, where they may be heard romping any day. Twiss : The Boys' Charity School would be a questionable charity" in days written of by the gentleman whose name you have just mentioned, when its management was " farmed, " and when the sleeping room of the poor little creatures was let for dancing parties and assemblies. WRAGG: A past master of that school ought not to pass unmentioned-Mr. Joseph Youle, who published the " Arithmetical Preceptor," in 1813. As a tutor it has never been surpassed. EVERARD : Returning to Bank street, one may remark that Meeting house lane and its precipitous continuation on the other side of Bank street, Scargill croft (at one time called Dover hill by some), and New street, the continuation of Figtree lane (once it was all Figtree lane), must be two of the oldest thoroughfares in the town. The cottages down there are very ancient. Twiss : Scargill croft takes its name from the family of the Skargells (as it was then spelled), who were in possession of the property there some 250 years ago. I have seen the will of one of them, William, which distinctly referred to this property, distinguishing it into two parts, an upper and a lower. The will of Joshua Skargell, son of William, is dated February 12th, 1625, and he leaves in turn the property to his son William, together with " one cupboard with boxes and one iron deske which are in the chamber over the house wherein I now dwell, with all the writings in the same. And also all such goods as are in the said house and were given and bequeathed unto me by William Skargell, my late father, deceased." To his second son, Thomas, he left the Cow close and the Cow close head, two closes of land in Brightside " Bierley; " and " also. those my ffoure cottages at or near the West-barr end, which 1 purchased of John Bayes, with one croft thereto adjoyneing." He had also land at Upperthorpe, which he bequeathed to his daughter, so that Joshua Skargell, yeoman, was quite a man of property. LEONARD: There was still a representative of the family in the town towards the end of the last century, for, as we shall have to remark presently, Thomas Scargil, or Scargill, was an original member of Queen street Chapel, being one of the thirteen who left Nether Chapel to found it. Twiss : New street must have been a very different place when houses were provided in it as residences for the assistant ministers of the Parish Church. The Rev. George Bayliffe was one who lived there up to the time of his death in 1804. He had been assistant minister for 44 years, holding also the curacy of Ecclesall for 34 of them; and before that he had been curate to the Rev. W. Steer, of Ecclesfield, for 15 years. Born in 1721, he was, of course, a very old man when this century came in. Mr. Hunter has described him as low in stature, wearing a white curled wig and cocked hat, and accustomed to take early country walks before breakfast. .The Gentleman's Magazine, in a notice probably written by his colleague, the Rev. Edward Goodwin, speaks of Mr. Bayliffe in his domestic relations in the highest terms, and says that " he was economical without parsimony, of the strictest integrity and ready to do every good work. In the discharge of his office as a clergyman he was piously regular and punctual on every occasion. His discourses were judicious and instructive, and accompanied with a proper degree of animation. In his clerical visits he was unwearied and diligent, and spared no pains to maintain that happy harmony which subsisted between him and his brethren." LEIGHTON: Between New street and Scargill croft is 'now the County Court. To build it were removed the old houses where formerly was Mr. John Parker, solicitor, brother of Mr. Adamson Parker and of the Rev. Frank Parker, of Dore. Mr. Parker built the large house on the other side of New street, formerly the Highway office, now occupied as solicitors' chambers, where the celebrated Luke Palfreyman lived. JOHNSON : William Wood, spirit merchant, lived at the top of Scargill croft. There was a large skittle alley attached to the house. Mr. Wood was one of the largest spirit merchants in the town. In this croft, too, were John Owen's malt kilns; and after him Mr. Parkin succeeded to them. His son now carries on the same business in Coulson street. William Walmsley, blacking manufacturer, was here also. He had a good trade, and at night he used to spend his time playing the dulcimer. He was a great favourite with the ladies, and he was in request at parties and balls along with blind Jonathan, the fiddler and wait, who lived in Figtree lane. Then there was Mrs. Binns, who kept the Nelson Inn, New street. It was one of the most respectable houses in Sheffield fifty years ago. When the notorious Peter Foden married and commenced business on his own account, he took the shop which then had a bow window in Bank street, since converted into offices, and now occupied by Mr. Henry Vickers. Patience Davy, the quakeress, kept a noted worsted shop next to the County Court, and a fine business she did. There was no knitting by machinery then, and no worsted like Patience Davy's. She was skilled in curing wounds and bruises, and people came from all parts of the town for her help. Her charge was " Thou art welcome." She retired with an independence to the better regions of Glossop road, where she died at a green old age. On the other side of the street, in one of " Lawyer Tattershall's houses," was William Nadin, stay maker, who lived and made his fortune in Fargate, opposite the Exchange drapery establishment, and retired to Bank street. His son William was apprenticed to the father of the late Joseph Woodcock, brushmaker. This son was a great politician and Jacobin. He married Martha Wright, of whom Mr. Wragg told us a curious anecdote ill connection with the Parish Church, and Mr. Joseph Nadin, who represents St. Philip's Ward in the Town Council, is their son. John Bland, the late chief-constable of Rotherham, lived next door to Messrs. Clegg and Son's office. He was the son of William Bland, mentioned once before (p.113). Then in the house occupied by the firm of solicitors just mentioned, lived Samuel Broadhead- afterwards Broadhead and Atkin, Britannia metal and fine scissors manufacturers. The title deeds do not state how old this property is, but it was standing in 1787, when Henry Tudor bought it from John Nodder; and Mr. William Tattershall bought it from the trustee of Henry Tudor, in 1824. Then the late Ald. Francis Hoole bought it from the executors of the late William Tattershall. LEONARD : Before leaving Bank street we ought, at least, to mention the names of Robert Rodgers, solicitor, father of the present Mr. T. W. Rodgers, J.P.; and John Watson, 3, Bank street, brother of Thomas Watson, silverplater, who educated eight poor boys at the charity school. He was one of the old Sheffield worthies. There was, too, the predecessor of the late Mr. Thomas Badger, as coroner, Andrew Allan Hardy, who lived at No. 19. Strange tales have been told of him when Lord Cochrane was wanted on a charge of high treason, but he was so much respected that the Secretary of State could not find any one who would give information as to his whereabouts. WRAGG: At the corner of Figtree lane, is the beginning of Queen street, and the oldest house in the street, now occupied by Mr. Haxworth, surgeon. It was built in 1784 by one of the Hounsfields, of Pond hill. Twiss: It has usually been said that Messrs. Rayner and Turner built the house. At that time the ground was covered with trees and was called Wade's Orchard. There seems to have been some hesitation whether to call the new street Queen street or Fig street. WRAGG: It was in the same year that Queen street chapel was built by Thomas Vennor and John Read. As Mr. Twiss said of the Quakers' Meeting house so I might say of thisa biography of those who attended it would include some of the oldest and best families in the town. EVERARD : This chapel, as no doubt most of you are aware, was founded by some members of the Nether or Lower Chapel, who I 'apprehended several things to be exceptionable in the ministry and conduct" of the Rev. John Harmer, its then pastor. As early as. 1782 communications were exchanged between them and the Rev. Jehoiada Brewer, and eventually (March 26, 1783) he accepted their invitation. On the 28th of the same month, " Messrs. Vennor, Read and Smith agreed with Mr. Wheat, the attorney, for a piece of ground situate in Queen street, for the term of 99 years, at lid. per yard, for the purpose of erecting a place of worship thereon." Mr. Brewer came to Sheffield July 13, 1783, preached for a time in " the long room" in Norfolk street, and his first sermon in the new chapel (though not yet completed), December the 3rd. Meantime Mr. Harmer, declining to give the seceders their dismissal, expelled them from the communion of his church, and on the 26th November they made and signed a 11 Covenant" among themselves. There were thirteen of them and their names are of interest:SAMUEL OSTLIIFF, JONATHAN LOY, WILLIAM GRUBB, LYDIA KERR, CHARLES CLAYTON, MARY CLAYTON, SARAH BROOMHEAD, THOMAS SCARGILL, JOSEPH BRADSHAW, JOHN SMITH, MARTHA. SMITH, WILLIAM BEARDSHAW, JOHN HOLLAND.Of these, Bradshaw and Beardshaw, as will be seen, by no means acted up to the spirit of their covenant. Two persons were appointed deacons in 1783, but the Church book does not give their names. A pamphlet, " printed by order of the church" in 1796, explains that owing to Mr. Read's position, as sole surviving lessee after the death of Mr. Vennor in 1787, and his determined " maintenance of power and sway," no formal separation of them took place. That pamphlet is entitled " A defence of the Principles and Conduct of the Independent Church assembling at Queen street Chapel, Sheffield, occasioned by the calumnious misrepresentations of a pamphlet called ' A Caution to all Independent Churches' "-which was issued under the name of the above William Beardshaw, who, with Mr. John Read, the lessee, Joseph Bradshaw, and others, fomented so much discord that they were expelled. Before this the property had been formally vested in trustees, and Mr. Read's power being thus ended, Samuel Ostliff, John Smith (the bookseller of Angel street), William Room, and Robert Marsden were elected deacons. LEONARD: There is one circumstance that may be borne in mind to the credit of this chapel-the few changes that have been made in its ministry. The Rev. Peter Whyte is only the sixth pastor in ninety years. In this respect Queen street presents a marked contrast to Howard street. Chapel, for example. EVERARD: My father heard the Rev. Jehoiada Brewer preach his first sermon in the school-room in Milk street. After the chapel was opened, Mr. Brewer attracted large and overflowing congregations, for his vigorous preaching was something new in the town, and he exercised a powerful influence during the important years 1783 to 1796. There was at that time no evangelical preaching in connection with the Established Church; and amongst the Evangelical Dissenters there were no indications of vigorous spiritual life. The chief manifestation of the power of such life existed amongst the Wesleyan Methodists. Howard street, Garden street, Lee croft, and Attercliffe chapels were non -existent- not to mention those that have been erected during the present century. In fact, Nether Chapel and Coalpit lane Chapel (then recently erected, in 1780, in consequence of a secession from the former on the appointment of the Rev. John Harmer), were the only two Independent places of worship in Sheffield. Mr. Brewer was a man of no ordinary stamp. In person he was well built, possessing a bodily constitution capable of sustaining a great amount of physical labour and mental effort; as the fact that he regularly preached six times a week, besides attending to his other engagements, M' ay sufficiently attest. He had a voice of great compass, power, and flexibility; and a countenance indicative of energy and decision, deriving in part its expressiveness from a dark, piercing eye, which, as he gave utterance to the stronger emotions of the soul, was wont to flash with the fire of intense animation. As a preacher he was eminently practical and searching. He was a man of action rather than of speculation ; the popular preacher rather than the profound metaphysician or learned divine. His forte consisted in the clear comprehension and statement of scriptural truth. The interest and charm of his discourses chiefly consisted in their being pervaded by the essential element of strong common sense, rendered attractive by familiar illustrations, and enforced by a popular logic. As a pastor, he was exemplary and faithful in the discharge of the duties of his office. The theological system which he embraced and expounded was that which 1 may denominate as a scriptural Calvinism. In political sentiment Mr. Brewer entertained somewhat ultra Liberal opinions. His views and preferences in this respect he boldly and openly declared, at a time when such avowal rendered a man liable to be reproached with being associated with infidels in the assertion of the necessity of parliamentary reform ; and in the advocacy of the claims of civil and religious liberty. Decided in all his views, he was from principle and conviction a stanch Nonconformist. The distinguishing characteristic of his ministry was its earnestness. After a successful course of nearly thirteen years, some unpleasant circumstances arose in the church, which eventually issued in Mr. Brewer's removal to Birmingham in 1796. He concluded his work in this town by preaching a farewell sermon to a crowded and deeply impressed congregation. On that special occasion he took for his text the words :-" Finally, brethren, farewell I" After giving out these words he burst into tears; and although a man of great self-possession, he was so deeply affected that he had to sit down before he could sufficiently recover himself to be able to proceed. Mr. Brewer had laboured at Birmingham for about twenty years when a new and much larger chapel was begun. He was in feeble health when he laid the foundation stone of the building, and on that occasion remarked that when the chapel was opened they would have to walk over his grave I This proved to be the fact. He died on St. Bartholomew's-Day, the 24th August, 1817, aged sixty-six years; and the late Rev. John Hammond, one of his converts at Sheffield, gave the funeral address. LEONARD : Was there not some peculiar circumstance in connection with Mr. Brewer coming to Sheffield ? EVERARD: Yes. His first settlement was at Rodborough, in Gloucestershire, and the event to which you refer happened there. It may be of much interest to any of you who are attracted by the philosophy of dreams. It is reported by most credible witnesses, who had it from Mr. Brewer's own lips. One Saturday night he dreamt it was the Sabbath; and that after he had ascended the pulpit and commenced the service, he saw a stranger, whom he had never seen before, enter the chapel, and sit down in a certain pew. He thought that after the service, this person came into the vestry to speak to him, and gave him an invitation to Sheffield. That was his dream. The next day whilst engaged in the public service, lie actually saw the gentleman whose likeness had been presented to him in his dream walk into the chapel, and take his seat in the identical pew. This proved to be no other person than Mr. John Read, who, at the' conclusion of the service, went into the vestry and informed Mr. Brewer that his business was to propose to him a journey to Sheffield. It is certain that Mr. Brewer regarded this as an extraordinary circumstance, and it practically contributed to free his mind from all doubt or hesitation in accepting this " call." LEONARD: The Rev. James Boden, who followed Mr. Brewer, was minister of the chapel from 1796 to 1839, with the Rev. Joseph Augustus Miller as co-pastor from 1836. Mr. Boden contented himself with keeping a mere list of members in the Church book during his time, so that -we cannot trace the changes in the deacons more accurately than to say that Wm. Alsop, 1785-1830; Wm. Smith, 1803-1817; Luvo-.Loau ; William Eagle, 1804-1820 ; Lewis Thomas, 18051832; all filled the office somewhere between the figures appended to each name, the first being the year in which they joined the church, the second the year of their death. In 1834, the list was: Robert Marsdon, Pitsmoor hill side (the only survivor of the earliest four) ; Thomas Dunn, Cornhill ; Robert Leader, Portobello; John Greaves, Glossop road; George Merrill, Harvest lane; John Eadon, Broad lane; Richard Thomas Taylor, Sheffield Moor. Mr. Marsden died in 1834, and in 1844 (minister, the Rev. John Hope Muir), Mr. Dunn and Mr. Taylor having left the chapel, the places of these three had been supplied by Edward Hall, Edward Hebblethwaite, and Robert Waterhouse. It is not worth while to bring down the record later than this. With regard to Attercliffe Independent Chapel, which Mr. Everard has mentioned, its origin dates from 1793, when the Queen street people took an empty house at Attercliffe, and there Mr. Brewer preached every Wednesday evening. This was soon found too small, whereupon a chapel was built, and opened in October of the same year. LEIGHTON : Queen street Chapel is altered now. I well remember, " wrote a minister who visited the town in 1859, after many years absence. " when that chapel was fronted with a dead brick wall, with a wooden gate; no porch over the doors, all within as plain as the simplest white-wash, a narrow vestry at the lower end, and the Sabbath school conducted on the other side of the street, in the rooms where Mr. John Eadon had his academy." EVERARD: It was afterwards Farnsworth's, at the bottom of North Church street. Mr. Eadon lived in the corner house of that street and Queen street. But North Church street was not opened through in those days. Below Wheat's passage, leading from Paradise square, was a precipitous bank, which had not then been cut away. Below that bank and immediately above the school, were the steps descending into the wood-yard, as at this day. That yard belonged to Mr. Fox, who lived at the house at the other end, facing Paradise square. Projecting into the yard from Wheat' ' s passage was the house of Mr. Axe, round which the thoroughfare wound, emerging into Wheat's passage by another flight of steps. Below were the backs of the Queen street houses, in which lived (next to Mr. Eadon's) William Knowles, then Quaker Gurney, and at the corner, as now, was Mr. Bowman's, pawnbroker. The yard exists now just as it did then; but it has been superseded as a thoroughfare by the more direct route, since North Church street was opened through. The present Queen street school-rooms, behind the chapel, had not then been built. JOHNSON: The school-room in North Church street was built by Mr. Knowles in 1779. The following lines are cut out in stone at the entrance of the door : Where grace and virtue mutually shine, Rich is the blossom, and the fruit Divine." The school is and has been in the possession of Mr. Farnsworth for the last thirty years. William Evatt, dentist, lived where Mr. William Nodder's offices are, at the corner of North street. There was a large tooth hanging before the door, and I have seen both old and young when they have got to the door turn back again, the pain having ceased in fear of the dreadful operator. Mr. Evatt was a noted character, a member of the Society of Friends LEIGHTON: Whose house was a great gathering place for certain gossips. JOHNSON: John Alcock, manufacturer of shot belts, powder flasks, and razor strops, removing from Pea croft, carried on his business where is now Mr. Hoyland, brush maker. Charles Alcock, who was formerly a member of the Town Council and an extreme Liberal, took to the business, and removed to Pond street, where it is still carried on by some member of the family. George Gurney, who belonged to the Society of Friends, kept the grocer's shop at the corner of Queen street, now a public-house; and next door below he kept a large store for cocoa and ebony woods; but he and his brothers emigrated to America. WRAGG : Is there not some mistake here ? It was Edmund Gurney who kept the corner shop, and he had a brother Joseph who dealt in ebony and ivory next door, and went to America. I am sorry to state that the last time I saw Edmund Gurney he was clerking a money club, or else it was in Mr. Watson's shop, in Fargate, where he assisted on Saturday nights. 1 believe he died in an asylum. I cannot say anything respecting his brother Joseph, the ivory merchant. The Gurney family is a very old one, and took the name from a place in France. The family pedigree begins in 912. There was a Hugh Gurney and his son at the battle of Mortimer in 1054, and also at the battle of Hastings. Another of the family was Sir Thomas de Gurney, one of the ................... third son of one of the Gurneys became a Quaker under the preaching of George Fox, and the family has long been seated in Norfolk. The late Mrs. Fry was a Gurney. 1 am sorry I cannot show the connection of the Sheffield Gurneys with the Gurneys of Norwich, but, notwithstanding, they are of the same family. LEONARD: Cousins, I believe. WRAGG: Continuing along Queen street, we get into quite a new region, caused by the opening through of the street from Workhouse lane (Paradise street) to Westbar green, and Scotland street. On the right, near Silver street, have recently disappeared some old cottages that were below the level of the street. A few yards up Silver street is the Star inn, bearing the inscription-First house in Silver street, 1742, JSM Fifty or sixty years ago, that was a good double house. In Silver street, too, the Messrs. Dixon carried on business before they removed to Cornish place. At that time a man who lived in Workhouse lane had his letters directed to Silver street, because it sounded more respectable. At the top corner of Silver street there was a grocer's shop which did a good business, its occupier being Mr. Thompson, who unfortunately failed about 37 years ago. Since then the house has gone through a variety of experiences, inclusive, of course, of a beerhouse. It is now occupied by a renovator of old shoes. EVERARD: I have heard it said that this Mr. Thompson got his nickname of 11 Sponty Thompson," from having used the word " spontaneous" in a. speech at some meeting. But I should rather think it was given to him as descriptive, in a single word, of his marvellous powers of speech and conversation. When very young I once spent an evening in his company, and was very much struck and interested by him. His words came in one continuous flow, and his language was far more pure and refined, and exempt from provincialisms, than it is usual to hear in the course of conversation. LEONARD: Jonathan Watkinson, who was so unmercifully satirized by Mather that he is said to have died of a broken heart, was a Silver street resident. He was one of the principal manufacturers of the day, and was Master Cutler in 1787. His supposed offence was that he first exacted from workmen thirteen to the dozen; but it is doubtful whether he deserved the abuse he got, as may be seen from the notes in John Wilson's edition of Mather's Songs, pp. 63-67. WRAGG: In Silver street head, near the Square, the grandfather of Mr. John Clayton, the, auctioneer, changed his business from a leather breeches maker to a broker and auctioneer, and soon removed next door, to a much larger shop that was previously kept by a grocer, a well-known man, whose name I have forgotten. Mr. Clayton's second shop was the one lately occupied by Mr. Neal. He had not been in business more than ten years when he retired. He died in the house at the top of Convent walk, afterwards occupied by Mr. W. S. Brittain. Down at the corner was " Neddy" Maden, a shoemaker, who at his death had accumulated more than £30,000. He died on some of his property at the corner of Duke street and Porter street. In Westbar green, where is now the bottom of Scotland street (before it was opened through to Queen street, and when the only issue was through the crooked Grindle gate, opposite Silver street head), was the residence and manufactory of Mr. Ellis, file manufacturer. The house stood backward, with palisades, and occupied the breadth of the now street. He was a very respectable man, but I am sorry to say one of his apprentices was Frank Fearn, who was gibbeted on Loxley chase for the murder of Nathan Andrews. Frank Fearn was naturally of a depraved disposition, and Mr. Ellis often predicted he would die with his shoes on. A story is told, that when on the scaffold he said : " My master has often told me I should die with my shoes on, so I shall pull them off and make him a liar." LEONARD : Mather, in his song on Frank Fearn, makes him penitent on the scaffold, but possibly with more poetical licence than historical truth. Twiss: There has been a good deal of speculation as to what became of Frank Fearn's gibbet post. It is commonly believed that it was used as a foot bridge over the Rivelin or the Loxley ; and it has been stated that, having been washed down to Sheffield by a flood, it came into the possession of a builder, and was used by him, along with a quantity of other old material obtained by the removal of the Shrewsbury Hospital, in erecting a row of cottages which stand in a street that still bears the builder's name. WRAGG: In Grindle gate lived the grandfather of the late Mr. Thomas Dunn. LEIGHTON: At the corner of Westbar green and Grindle gate was the grocer's shop of Joseph Haywood, father of the late lawyer and magistrate. It is still in the same trade. EVERARD : When I went to school with Thomas Haywood, the younger son of the grocer mentioned, the family kept and lived at a shop in Scotland street, opposite Nowill and Son's warehouse. WRAGG : In Scotland street was Mr. Benjamin Parkin, a large spring knife manufacturer. He turned ' the front of the premises into a dram shop and carried on the business of a spirit merchant. The place is now Messrs. Mower and Pearson's. Near where is the pawnbroker's shop of Mr. Hides was, 60 or 70 years ago, Mr. Samuel Peace, grocer. He afterwards became a saw- manufacturer and acquired an ample competency. He was father of the late Mr. Charles Peace, one of our early aldermen. LEIGHTON: One improvement here is that the " Scotland street feast," which had degenerated into an excuse for drinking and immorality, is a thing of the past, but it died hard, and has not long since disappeared. EVERARD: At the bottom of Pea croft was (and is) a baker's shop, kept by Goodison, the father of Mr. Goodison, the attorney. LEONARD: The house is still standing in Pea croft that was built by the grandfather of Mr. Albert Smith-George Smith, who was, Master Cutler in 1749, and whose feast, as already told, cost £2. 2s. 9d. That was in the days when the apprentices lived in the house with their masters; and as Mr. Smith had besides a large family of children, he used to lead rather a long procession when he went, wearing his cocked hat, down the Croft, up Silver street head, and across Hick's stile field to the Parish Church, of which one of his sons was afterwards to be assistant- minister. There they occupied two pews. It is a family tradition that on a Sunday to be remembered, one of the apprentices ventured to complain about the pudding. Mrs. Smith got up and boxed his ears, saying: " Thou grumbles at such pudding as this! Better flour and better watter were never put together." LEIGHTON: We have changed all that by the modern system of apprentices. The alteration was beginning at the close of the last century and attracted the attention of Wilberforce, who remarked, in his diary, " An increasing evil at Sheffield is that the apprentices used to live with the masters and be of the family; now wives are grown too fine ladies to like it; they lodge out, and are much less orderly." LEONARD: But under the old system, apprentices, if not left so much to themselves, had very hard times of it. There is a wonderful difference between the duties they have to perform now and those of the old times. The last apprentice of Montgomery has said: " Mr. Montgomery's apprentices used to take down and put up the shutters of the Misses Gales' shop, which were very many, very heavy, and had to be carried a considerable distance. When work in the office closed at 6.30 or 7 p.m., the unfortunate apprentice had to return to the place at 8 or 9 to put up the shutters." And I have heard one who was an apprentice in another printing office-that of Mr. Bacon, the founder of the Independent, and who helped to pull the first copy of that journal, contrast his duties with those of printers' apprentices in these days. When his work at the office was done, he was a sort of bodyservant to his master's wife, running her errands or weeding her garden. LEIGHTON : Those were cases in which the apprentices were non-resident. Some amazing stories are told of the treatment the apprentices in the staple trades met with, in the shape of board and lodging, at the hands of their mistresses. This story was told by an old man named Dawson, who worked at Scythe wheel, Loxley bottom, and who was apprenticed to " Johnny Jackson," the keeper of a publichouse in the middle of Crookes. He was the youngest apprentice of four. He related that they never had anything to their supper but grout porridge-which was made from the refuse of brewings, and may be described as the essence of grains-and were allowed neither fire nor light. One night, when they were going home from the wheel in the Rivelin valley, the oldest apprentice, whose name was Uckler, said to his companions, "Now my lads, if it is grout porriage to-night, I tell you what I shall do. I shall throw my piggin (a wooden vessel with a handle holding about a quart) under the ass-nook, and you must all follow the same tack." This was agreed to, and when they got home, sure enough there was the inevitable grout porridge in a large " piggin," with a wooden spoon. Uckler seized his piggin and threw it away; and the three others did the same and ran up stairs. The master came, armed with a stout stick, and gave each a good " hiding;" but the result was porridge. They were never offered grout again. WRAGG : Talking of apprentices, there was a man in Allen street who had sixteen. He was a cutler of the name of Barber, and he belonged to the property opposite Radford street. Oat-cake was then the constant fare, and people with apprentices always had a batch beforehand, that the lads might eat less. It is not therefore, specially surprising, that when they had an opportunity they snatched a cake from the bakestone. One lad was known to put an oat-cake in a coal basket, with ' the coal over it, while another concealed one under his shirt, and though instantly missed it was devoured before recovery was possible. On one occasion they had brewis or brewes for dinner. One of the lads, thought to be somewhat deficient in intellect, was seen to be pulling off his jacket. When asked what he was going to do he replied, " I'm going to jump into the pancheon to fetch that big piece of cake out on the other side." Barber, with all his parsimony, died in the Workhouse. LEONARD: What is brewis ? WRAGG: Oat-cakes, mixed with dripping and hot water poured on, seasoned with salt and pepper. EVERARD: It is the traditional dish when the Cutlers' Company lunch together before the annual swearing in of the Master Cutler. It is an old Saxon dish. In " Gareth and Lynette" we read: " He had not beef and brewis enow." LEONARD: A Sheffield rhymster, named Senior, has sung the woes of the apprentices:When t' prentice lad ate green wort cake, Ta milk an' porridge blue, An' if at neet he dar'd ta rake, Theze turn'd a darker hue. E t' morn be t'larum clock struck six, If t' Rosco bell 'ad. dun, E Lord Mayor shoes an' leather dicks, E t' smithy he were fun, A wurkin fur his daily bread, That came at braikfast time Grac'd wi' a fringe, az green a tinge Az t' faantin o' this rhyme."Twiss: Another Sheffield man, in describing the former condition of apprentices, said that the bad treatment to which they were subjected originated the saying, " He's treated as bad as ony 'prentice lad." " They were," said this writer, 'I indifferently fed and worse clothed, but it must be admitted that some good old ' dames' behaved well to them. The masters, however, kept them in the smithy all the time possible from early in the morning till almost bed time. This confinement was very injurious to young lads, and from standing in awkward positions to do their work a great number of them became knock or 'knocker'-kneed. The growing'prentice in his smithy attire was a picture. Tall and thin, with looks that bespoke hard work and poor feeding, he would be encased in leather breeches that had been big enough three or four years before, but with which now he was on bad terms, they having run in and he having run out. The consequence was garments that did not cover to the knees, ludicrously tight, and shining with oil and grease. Or if they were of fustian, they were less constraining than the leather, and consequently needed a constant 'hitch' to keep them from slipping down altogether-for braces were not. On his head he would have an old hat crown, or a brown paper cap; his shirt sleeves doubled up would probably reveal a pair of old stocking legs on his arms. Sometimes, but not always, he enjoyed the luxury of stockings on their proper members, with a pair of old shoes of the ' mester's' or ' dame's,' by way of saying his own for Sundays. Add to these things a shirt unbuttoned at the neck, and a leather apron, and you have a picture of a cutler's 'prentice of former days. The regular diet of the lads was, in the morning a quarter of 'what (oat) cake,' and milk porridge, with not too much milk. To dinner there would be broth and meat from fat mutton or coarse parts of beef. A quarter of oat-cake to ' drinking' at four o'clock, and supper as breakfast. It was considered the height of extravagance to eat oat-cakes that were not a week old. Monday was baking day, and a week's batch was done at a time, so that by the time they were eaten they were quite mouldy, and before the batch was finished they were nearly a fortnight old. The lads then called them biscuit. It used to be that to let the lads eat new bread would ruin a man with a hundred a year. After supper, the 'prentices had to fetch, on their heads, water for the house supply (sometimes from a considerable distance) ; to feed the pigs ; and then, if there were no errands to run, they might play till bed time. Before a lad was bound he generally ' went a liking' to his proposed master, and if this led to satisfaction on both sides he was taken to the Cutlers' Hall, where he was bound apprentice until he had attained the full age of twenty-one, the binding fee being half a crown, which Was paid by the lad's friends or the master. His seven years' service was no pleasant thing to look forward to ' but there was the encouraging prospect of having a good trade in his fingers at the end of the time. That over he had to take out his mark and freedom before he could begin working as a- journeyman with! safety. His mark was registered by the Cutlers' Company for a fee of 2s. 6d., with 2d. annually as 'mark rent.' If he neglected paying this for seven years any other person might take the mark. Otherwise it was piracy for any person to strike a mark without the consent of the owner. Sometimes a mark was let for a sort of royalty- say 1s. per gross if it were a profitable one. There have been instances of the right of mark being sold for as much as £150, when it was in good repute." LEONARD : I do not think we ought to dismiss the subject of apprentices without a glance at the " Dames," who had so much to do with them. There used to be a saying that there have been no good doings in Sheffield since so many fine mistresses came into fashion and the good old dames wore supplanted. Dames were always looked upon as matrons, and claimed respect. The 'prentice lad regarded his dame as a mother, and she acted a motherly part to him. Dames had all the management of the affairs of the house and family, " t'mester" never interfering in them. " There were," said a writer now dead, " a great many dames when I was a boy, and they would have taken offence if any one had given them title of mistress, since that word was then used only in its bad meaning. Ladies of higher rank were 'Madams,' as Madams Shore, Fell, Bamforth, Hutton, &c. Some of these madams wore hoops of cane near the bottom of their gowns, 40 inches or more in diameter, and to enter a door they had to pull their gown bottoms aslant to obtain entrance. Nothing so ridiculous had ever been seen until crinolines came into vogue a few years ago. There was a wonderful difference in the a ppearance of these madams and the dames. The latter, on a working day, had a linseywolsey or checked bed-gown, in which to do her household work; a woollen or blue apron before her, and her plain cap fitting close to her head. The house was a model of brightness and order. Everything in its proper place, 'clean as a new pin,' the pewter and pewter-case a credit to her care. The trenchers as clean, the fire-irons, candlesticks, brasses, coppers, &C., as bright as hands could make them. In the evening you would see her daughter and the servant girl-should one be kept-at a spinning wheel. All the dame's bed and table linen had been spun thus: each had her task of spinning to accomplish by the end of the week, and the noise was such as would not now be tolerated by the male members of the family. On a Sunday, the dame was a model of cleanliness and neatness. Not a pin out of its proper place; her gown-body and sleeves as tight as her skin, the gown skirt (open in front) displaying an excellent quilted petticoat, three or four thicknesses of calamanca. Nor was she ashamed of a fine Irish linen apron, as white as the driven snow. On her head she would have her best mob-cap, neatly plaited and tied close under her chin. Her gown came up to her neck, and then appeared a white muslin kerchief. Her hair was turned up in front over a roll an inch and a half broad, and behind her head her hair was turned up close. No flowing ringlets about her face, and nothing to hide a full view of it. Her stockings were of white thread, knitted by herself in intervals of leisure; her shoe heels an inch high, her shoe fronts adorned with a pair of bright buckles. In fine' weather she would wear a short silk cloak, with lace upon the cape and bottom, two inches broad; in wet weather, an oilcase hood and tippet. A pair of good pattens were necessary to keep her out of the dirt, and she took care to hold her petticoats up to the calves of her legs, to prevent any chance of them being ' drabbled.' When umbrellas came into vogue she wondered how people could have the pride and assurance to walk under them. She wore no preposterous stays that laced behind, but a pair of good 'jumps,' with three or four buckles and straps in front-which were invariably slackened upon the hearthstone, and the stomacher taken out a little time before going to bed. Then was the time when, with garters also taken off her stockings, the good dame unbent. ' Mester' and dame would have their pipes upon the hearth, with a quiet talk over family matters. The good dame was noted throughout the neighbourhood of her house for her good and charitable disposition; she was always ready to give help to those in sickness or distress. Dame Hoult, who lived at the sign of the Parrot for many years, was, perhaps, the last person who went by the old name. That was 70 years ago." Twiss: So much for the 'prentices' natural task-mistress. Now for the shops in which they worked:-" Smithy, in Sheffield, is becoming an obsolete term; instead of speaking of ' ahr smithy,' our cutlery makers have 'my factory,' or C warehouse,' or ' workshops.' To realise the Old Sheffield smithy you must picture to yourself a stone building, of similar workmanship to common field walls, seven or eight yards long by four wide, and seven feet high to the rise of the roof. It is open to the slates or thatch. The door is in the middle of one side, with the fireplace facing it; and at either end is a hearth, with the bellows in the corner, and the ' stithy stocks' in their proper situations. The walls are plastered over with clay or 'wheel swarf,' to keep the wind out of the crevices; sometimes the luxury of a rough coat of lime may even be indulged in. The floor is of mud, the windows, about half a yard wide and a yard long, have white paper, well saturated in boiled oil, instead of glass, or in summer are open to the air. In one corner is a place partitioned off ' for t'mester' as a warehouse or store room, and on each side are the work-boards with vices for hafters, putters together, &c. Over the fireplace is a paddywack almanack, and the walls are covered with last dying speeches and confessions, 'Death and the Lady,' wilful murders, Christmas carols, lists of all the running horses, and so forth. Hens use the smithy for their roosting place, and some times other live stock have a harbour there-as rabbits, guinea pigs, or ducks, while the walls are not destitute of singing birds' cages. There are odorous out-offices close adjoining, and it is essential that the whole should be within easy call from the back door of 't' mester's' house." WRAGG: We must not pass Pea croft without a mention of that old and respectable firm, Matthias Spencer and Son. In 1787, it was simply Matthias Spencer, file smith; but later the son was added to the firm, and they became steel converters and refiners; and, instead of the simple " file smith," they were " manufacturers of files, edge tools, saws, &c." The descendants of the original firm are still there, and old Mr. John Spencer, who lives at Rotherham and has not discarded breeches for such new-fangled things as troursers, is the senior past Master of the Cutlers' Company. He held the office in 1835. LEIGHTON: Another Master Cutler of Pea croft fame was George Wood, scissors maker. His was the house with the palisades, now a 'beer-house. His year of office was 1791, and the previous year having been distinguished by a dispute between the masters and their workmen, in which Mr. Wood took a prominent part, he came in for a share of Mather's unsparing abuse. WRAGG: In Hawley croft were located the Messrs. Rodgers, now of Norfolk street. In the same street is a stone building, with quoins and string courses, and two bow windows--having evidently been shops. The date of this is 1724, with the initials M . The door above is a very large house; when it was built it would perhaps be the largest house in the town. It was a beer-house for a number of years. EVERARD: The house consists of 24 rooms, one of which is built up, and it is now used as a lodging house. Over the fire place is a sort of shield bearing the date of 1721 and the initials T 'a D S; (the S is somewhat doubtful-it may be some other letter). My father has often told me that when he was a little boy and lived in the neighbourhood, " Squire Bright," as he was then called, lived in this house. He was described as a goodlylooking personage, with powdered wig, cocked-hat, golden-headed cane, and silver shoe-buckles, who might often be seen standing at the entrance; whilst the young urchins were wont to gaze upon him with admiration and wonder, and would occasionally get a peep at his flock of beautiful pigeons, and at the green grass-plot at the back of the house, together with the gardens. These comprised the land extending to Lee croft, and, I believe, included the site on which Lee croft Chapel now stands. LEONARD: Mr. Holland has it that one of these Hawley croft houses-probably he means that of 1724, was built and occupied by Jonathan Watkinson, of whom we spoke in connection with Silver street. I do not know on what evidence. LEIGHTON: In Hawley croft, too, was Jonathan Beardshaw. He kept an inn, the very house above described, with the passage that leads into Lee croft, and he made much money there. WRAGG : Yes, it was the Ball he kept, and he did it with profit and credit to himself. He was the father of the late Alderman Beardshaw, and the grandfather of the present Messrs. Beardshaw, of Baltic Works, Attereliffe. LEIGHTON : He was by trade a silversmith, but on his only surviving son, George, coming of age, he set him up, and entered into partnership in the saw trade. WRAGG: In White croft were Mr. James Wild (of whom I spoke in connection with his residence at the top of Townhead street) and the Jervises, descended from the Dutch cutlers who were amongst the artisans that quitted the Netherlands to avoid the cruelty of the Duke of Alva, and who came to Sheffield through the instrumentality of the Earl of Shrewsbury. EVERARD: " Lawyer Jervis," the Rev. Mr. Jervis, formerly of the Collegiate School, and Mr. Jervis, late druggist in Glossop road (who had been apprenticed to Messrs. Carr, Woodhouse, and Carr), were of this family. WRAGG: In Sims croft-No. 6-the grandfather of the late Mr. Rowbotham, grocer, carried on business before, he removed into Tenter street, opposite the bottom of Sims croft, about 80 years ago. It is easy in all these streets still to spot out the houses of the old manufacturers. They are mostly now public or beer houses. At the top of Sims croft, for instance, there is one. Formerly it was occupied by a person named Bee, in the bracebit line. In his day, it was said, he was making money fast by possessing a valuable secret in gilding. There, 60 years ago, one of his sons kept a hunter, which was considered a wonderful thing at that time. In Hollis croft, on the premises now occupied by the Messrs. Elliot, were the Greaveses, before they removed into Division street (now I. P. Cutts, Sutton and Co.'s premises) prior to building Sheaf works. Higher up in the street were Messrs. Kenyon's file works, afterwards occupied by Charles Burgin; and at the top, at the corner of Red hill, was the residence of Mr. Gardner, a partner in the firm. It was near to Mr. Dunn's, and was as good a house. WRAGG: Next to the Kenyons' works, in Hollis croft, were those of the Harrison family, of whom Miss Harrison, of Weston, was the last representative. There, too, were fixed the Shepherds, razor manufacturers. The last survivor died on Crookes moor, late the residence of Mr. Edwin Hunter. Higher up resided John Knott, who claimed to be a poet. I never saw him but once. He was a poor old man, with somewhat curious features, dressed in a Hanby's Charity coat. When I saw him he had one of his productions, which he appeared to be offering for sale. The price, he s aid, was twopence; and he boasted that it was equal to any of Montgomery's. He wrote two nautical songs that possessed fire equal to Dibden's. I should like to see his effusions printed in a collected form, as Mather's have been. If I am not mistaken he married the sister of Thomas Smith, the constable, -at any rate there was some relationship. He was by trade a working hatter-now, I believe, there is not a hat made in Sheffield-but one of the eccentricities of genius he possessed was a love of drink, and he ended his days in the Kelham street Workhouse. At the top of Hollis croft was an extensive table-knife 'Manufacturer, named Brownhill, who had the premises now occupied by Mr. Stephen Bacon. He had the character of being ready to second anything at the meetings of the Masters' committee; so on one occasion it was moved that all the table-blade grinders should be hung. Mr. Brownhill, either unintentionally or for the sake of the joke, maintained his character by seconding it, and he got in consequence a cognomen of " Second-the-motion-Brownhill," to distinguish him from his brother Jonathan, at the Red hill works. That name stuck to him until his death. On the opposite side were Makin and Sanderson, fork manufacturers, the latter of whom was subsequently in business lower down in the same street. Mr. Makin, better known as " Makin in the Brick-hole" (Carr lane), died on the 10th of March in the present year, in his 91st year, having become a recipient of the pensions of the Iron and Hardware Charity, as was also his partner, Mr. Sanderson. He was one of the Makins of the Pickle, and I have heard him say that he believed he was the only one living in the town or neighbourhood who heard John Wesley preach on his last visit to Sheffield in 1788. LEONARD: I fancy he may have been mistaken, for a venerable friend to whom I have had previously to refer, Mr. William Ash, remembers to have heard Wesley-though possibly not at his last visit. It was when he preached in old Garden street Chapel, which then belonged to the Methodists. The women sat on one side, and the men on the other. The same old man once heard Dr. Coke preach in Carver street Chapel, and the celebrated Mr. Benson, the contemporary of Wesley, preach at his grandfather's house at Heeley. TWISS: And up to a few years ago-1867-there was an old lady living who not only heard Wesley preach, but had his hand laid on her head, and who received sixpence from him. It is appropriate to mention the story here (you will find its details in Gatty's Hunter's Hallamshire, p. 302), since she married in 1791, Richard Howlden, a cutler in this Hollis croft we are speaking of. He died in 1807. She remained his widow, and died not long after Dr. Gatty saw her, aged near 100. WRAGG: The mention of Mr. John Hawksley, dealer in stag horns, another Hollis croft worthy, should not be omitted. Messrs. G. and J. W. Hawksley, until lately powder flask manufacturers, Carver street, are his relatives. LEIGHTON: An old Hollis croft public-house was " The Cock.." WRAGG: Yes, it was once kept by the father of the Mr. Jonathan Beardshaw, who has been mentioned as landlord of the Ball, Hawley croft. His widow and his daughter's husband, named Henderson, also kept it. LEIGHTON: Passing down the street, a few days ago, I found myself standing opposite to the house. I was sorry to see that the cock had lost some of the gay plumage which adorned him so well 40 or 50 years ago; yet he still holds up his crest as proud as ever, and is ready to do battle as in the days of yore against all who shall presume to poach upon his domestic domain. I thought of the days that are long gone by, and of the old song :" Bright Chanticleer proclaims the dawn, And spangles deck the sky."Again,My Lord, the early village cook hath thrice Bid salutation to the morn."And again, that it was St. Thomas's Day. All hail to the founders of the Hollis Hospital, from whom the croft takes its name. They are to be found recorded within the grounds at the bottom of Snig hill, and a full history is given in Hunter's Hallamshire. The trustees in their wisdom, and no doubt with the best intentions, let the ground in Hollis croft on building leases for 900 years, the front at ls. per yard, and large pieces of ground at the back for nothing. That they were generous souls is sufficiently proved by their allowing three guineas to the tenantry to enable them to enjoy a good old English dinner. It was held at the " Cock," on St. Thomas's Day, and these are the names of some of those who took a delight in attending. There were three brothers of the name of Shepherd, two of whom I knew. They were invariably together, one of them walking about a yard in advance of the other. Other two brothers were Samuel and Benjamin Marples. I had the pleasure of knowing them well-honesty and truth were in them, and when one died the other could not live; he did not long survive his friend, his companion, his brother. Now, whatever I have said in praise of the above applies equally to those I shall mention below-Mr. Philip Law, Mr. John Spencer (Matthias Spencer and Son, Pea croft) ; and oh, what delight I feel when I meet his venerable figure, and look upon his cheerful countenance. He will long be remembered. Mr. Jonathan Beardshaw, of whom more anon; Mr. John HawksIcy, Mr. James Wild (of whom you have heard before), Messrs. ShirtelifTe, Skinner, Barraclough (Messrs. Wingfield and Rowbotham), Benjamin Leathley, Thomas Makin, Charles Sanderson, and various others. Their descendants are still amongst us, keeping up the good, names of their families. The dinner is over, the usual loyal toasts are given, the landlord is ordered; the spirits, the lemons, the sugar, &c., are brought in, and Mr. Beardshaw, in accordance with the timehonoured custom, is called to mix the punch. He consults his friends. A little more lemon, says Mr. Wild ; a little more sugar, says another; and the mirth begins. Mr. Beardshaw is called upon to sing his song of the " Flat Backs":To mak 'em we are willin, A basket full for a shillin, Red herrins and potatoes Our bellies to be fillin."But though times were bad with them, they could still be generous with the ale, and " Pray the' gie Steen (Stephen) a sup, for he is varry dry, his throat is full of smithy sleek, the wind has been so high." Other songs followed. The old warlike ones were not forgotten.Let the song go round, let the shouts resound, Let the trumpet sound on Spanish ground; Let the cymbals bang, with a merry, merry clang, To the joys of the next campaign To the joys of the next campaign."Amidst all the mirth and jollity which prevailed, one thing was never forgotten, a subscription for the poor widows of the street. It was always a liberal one, and I have no doubt carried comfort and consolation along with it. It is not always a pleasure to recall the past, but in the course of a pretty long life I have experienced a full share of bright sunshine, to which I can look back with pleasure; and some of the moments I passed on St. Thomas's Day, at the sign of the " Cock," are among these. Several of those whom I have named above could well afford to ride in their own carriages, but they were plain men, and would have felt ashamed to have been seen in them; but in these days, when wealth is accumulated by leaps and bounds,Some drive along with four in hand, While others drive at random, In wisky-buggy, gig or dog-cart, Curricle or tandem."TWISS: When speaking of fraternal affection of Samuel and Benjamin Marples you might have added that, inseparable as they were, it was the rarest thing in the world to see them without their wives. The four were always together, and formed a most harmonious quartette. WRAGG: In Bailey street we may again see what I ' have noticed before-the houses of substantial manufacturers turned into taverns. Behind they had their workshops. The top house, No. 12, until recently a beer-house, was the residence of one of the Wing family, who carried on a good file trade in the yard. In this street, about 50 years ago, resided " Jemm-- Frith," the first money-club defaulter in the town; and his relative, John Wright, " Honest John," who followed his example in 1833, was born here. LEONARD : You are certainily comparing the father with the son. It was James Frith, the son of Jemmy, who defrauded the money clubs. The original Jemmy Frith was for many years leader of singing in Carver street Chapelindeed from the opening of the chapel until his death. He gathered together a large company of vocal and instrumental performers for Christmas Day, nearly filling the whole front part of the gallery. For many years this was at five o'clockin the morning, but subsequently it was held at six o'clock, in Norfolk street Chapel; and at half-past ten, and six in the evening, in Carver street. Occasionally he secured the services of his cousins-I think they were-Sam and Tom Frith, both of whom were accustomed to discourse sweet sounds in Queen street Chapel. If I recollect aright, all three had almost unsurpassed voices and capacity of modulation. WRAGG: At any rate, the Frith I mean slipped away to America to evade the consequences of his delinquencies, but Wright was transported from Pontefract sessions (1833). He was defended by counsel, but he made a speech of so much ability in defence, that it was noticed by the first Lord Wharneliffe in passing sentence. His Lordship told him that he appeared to be a person of no ordinary abilities, and a man of some considerable education, but on that very account he was all the more dangerous. None of the learned counsel present, could, his Lordship added, have made a better speech. His clubs were held at 56, Orchard street. A few years after his transportation, a memorial was got up to the Government, which enabled his wife and family to rejoin him. They were residing at No. 32 in this street-the door below James Frith's residence. The men who were members of " Honest John's" clubs are now very few. Out of the 36 witnesses who appeared against him at Pontefract 1 believe there is only one left-a gentleman who has been Mayor and who is still an Alderman. It was on Mr. B. Hinchliffe's case that Wright was convicted. Hinchliffe paid Wright five pounds, two shillings and a penny. Wright scratched out the five and put the money in his pocket. On his trial he put forth the plea of ill health, which had placed him under the necessity of engaging other clerks, and this might be the cause of the irregularities or deficiencies. At the time it was always thought other people also had a finger in the pie. TWISS: So far as Broad lane is concerned, I don't think we can improve upon the interesting and exhaustive account of it that has appeared lately under the title of " Personal Recollections of Broad lane and its Vicinity;" and fancy I am not far wrong in imputing its authorship to our friend, Mr. Everard; so I think he cannot do better than read it to us. EVERARD : I decline to plead either guilty or not guilty to the imputation, but I have no objection to read the ".Recollections," promising only that they are by one who is a native of the place. (Reads) " About the beginning of the present century, Messrs. Ashforth, Ellis and Co., silverplate manufacturers, having found their works situated behind Angel street too small, they built and removed to the manufactory now belonging to Messrs. Horrabin Brothers, at the top of Red hill. One of the partners, Mr. Samuel Ellis, had a number of years previously built and resided in the house in Broad lane, the garden. and orchard extending to the top of Red hill, and which is now occupied as a Roman Catholic presbytery. He was somewhat remarkable in his personal appearance, being tall, with a nose and profile not unlike the Duke of Wellington's. He wore a brown wig, Quakershaped coat, white cravat, and shoes with large buckles. He was so exceedingly fond of flowers that he was scarcely ever seen abroad without having a flower or sprig in his button-hole; and was known by scores of people only as 'the old gentleman with a flower in his coat.' Mr. Ellis afterwards sold the house and land in question to Mr. Henry Longden (grandfather to the present Mr. Longden, of the Phoenix foundry), who was .one of the original Methodists; and an account of his life and labours was published many years ago by his son. The Orchard was the plot of ground on which Red hill terrace now stands, and which was built by Mr. John Vickers, who bought the property of the late Mr. Henry Longden, and for many years resided there. ---Mr. Vickers was the first, I believe, who began the Britannia metal teapot manufacture in Sheffield. His works were in Garden street, or 'Garden Walk,' as it was at that time named. This trade he had for a while to himself, and was celebrated for the excellence of his wares ; until at length others, amongst whom were Messrs. Dixon and Smith, established in Silver street up to the time of their removal to 'Cornish place,' began to rival him." LEIGHTON: Excuse the interruption, but is that statement that Mr. Vickers was the first manufacturer of Britannia metal teapots quite correct ? I have heard the honour claimed for Mr. Constantine, then carrying on business in Scotland street, who wag uncle to Mr. Edwin Smith, sculptor, Cemetery road. EVERARD: I know that the question, "Who was the first?" is a disputed point, but it is my conviction (in the absence of stronger evidence to the contrary than I have yet seen), that to Mr. John Vickers, in partnership with his father Mr. James Vickers, the honour is due. As a boy I knew him as far back as 1814, when his father was dead, and he was carrying on the business probably at the period of its greatest success. Mr. Rogers Broadhead, the successor of his father's firm, has confirmed me in my opinion, and has fully admitted the priority of the Messrs. Vickers to Messrs. Broadhead and Co. As for Mr. James Dixon, he was an apprentice, I believe, with Messrs. Broadhead and Co., and afterwards worked as a journeyman both for them and for Mr. Constantine. TWISS : I have an account of the origin of the manufacture from the per of an elderly gentleman, now deceased, which quite confirms your view; and since his father had something to do with the matter, he had good opportunity for forming an opinion. This is his story :-" I have heard it said that Mr. Nathaniel Gower was the first person who began the Britannia, or white metal trade, but I differ in opinion, because of circumstances which have been known to me from childhood, and from proof in my father's memoranda. Mr. Nathaniel Gower was an early manufacturer, and a very respectable person in the trade in its infancy [he was in partnership with Mr. Georgius Smith, and died in 1813. aged 83] ; but Mr. James Vickers, of Garden street, was the first person who began manufacturing white metal articles in Sheffield. About the year 1769, a person was taken very ill, and Mr. Vickers visited him in his sickness. This man was in possession of the recipe for making white metal. Mr. Vickers bid him 5s. for the recipe, and the offer was accepted. Having experimented and found the metal to be of very good colour, Mr. Vickers purchased some spoon moulds, and began casting spoons. Getting them well finished, he obtained a tolerable sale for them. He then got moulds made of vegetable forks, and these assisted the variety on the market. My father was visiting him in a friendly manner one night, when Vickers said, ' Well, Charles, if I had but £10, I would get up a stock of goods and go to Lunnon with them.' My father lent him the money, and a short time afterwards, in another conversation, Vickers says, 'Well, Charles, I thought if I was in possession of £10 I could have done anything, but now I find myself as fast as ever I was.' My father replied, 'Well, James, I can lend thee another £10, if thou thinks it will do thee any good.' He did so. Vickers went to London, and his journey was successful. He sold his articles, and got orders in excess of the material he could obtain to execute them with. He kept the money until after his second journey, when he repaid my father. He then began making a different kind of article, as tobacco boxes, beakers, tea and coffee pots, sugar basins, cream jugs, &c., and got on rapidly in business. Froggatt, Coldwell, and Co., Spoiles and Gurney, and Parkins, in Campo lane, were all old houses in that line." EVERARD: During this break off, permit me just to remark that Messrs. Broadhead, Gurney, Spoiles and Co., were established as manufacturers in Bank street, in 1789. I will now proceed with the reading of the paper: " At the top of Red hill, some years subsequently, lived Mr. Morton, who had formerly carried on a large silver-plated business, and was the grandfather of the late Mr. Thomas Dunn. The celebrated Independent preacher, the Reverend William Thorpe, of Bristol, had been one of his apprentices; and never came to Sheffield without visiting his old master. In the large house in Solly street, or Corn hill, fronting Redhill, lived for many years Mr. Thomas Dunn, senior: and this was the home in which our late highly esteemed and able magistrate was brought up. " The ground on which Red hill School now stands was a garden, in which, as a child, I have gathered flowers. It was then occupied, and I believe owned, by Mr. Binney, the father of Mr. Binney, the attorney. In 1811, this school was built as a Methodist Sunday School; the upper rooms being let off as a day school. The first schoolmaster was M. Guion, a person of French extraction, who was an able teacher, and carried on for many years this respectable commercial academy. At this school were educated, as my schoolfellows, the late W. F. Dixon, Esq., of Page Hall; the late Mr. Brightmore Mitchell; Mr. Henry Elliot Hoole, of Green lane Works; the late Messrs. Morgan and Henry Armitage, of the Mousehole Forge ; Mr.Henry Pickford, 'the learned grinder,' who acquired a knowledge of French, Latin, Greek, and Hebrew, by nearly his unaided efforts, and who died in early life; and Mr. William Ibbitt, who at one time represented the St. George's Ward in the Town Council, and was well known by the publication of a series of coloured prints, being 'Views of Sheffield and the neighbourhood.' " The school in question was afterwards kept for a number of years by the late Mr. John Eadon (who had previously occupied the school belonging to Queen street Chapel), the nephew and assistant of the celebrated John Eadon, the mathematician. " A few yards from Red bill, down Broad lane, there is a blank space enclosed with a high and substantial wall. Few persons of the present generation will be aware of that spot having been a Cemetery. At the commencement of this century it was the only Quakers' burial ground in the town; though they had several places in the country. I myself have seen two persons interred in this plot, both of them adult females. " The next building below was a large and respectable house, with a clock in front of it. This was the residence of Mr. Samuel Hill, who was much celebrated in his day for his proficiency in clock making and reparing. Many of his clocks may be seen in the town, but m-ore especially in the neighbouring villages, with his name on the face. He was a tall man, wearing a broad-brimmed.hat, long coat, with breeches and leggings. He kept a stout pony on which to go his rounds in the country, with his case of tools ; and at their own houses cleaned and repaired the clocks of the farmers and villagers. He was a respectable man, and very widely and generally esteemed. " Although at a period earlier than my recollection, yet the late Samuel Hadfield, Esq., told me that his parents had at one time resided in one of the three houses at the corner of Red hill and Broad lane (I forget which), when himself and his brother George-afterwards M.P. for Sheffield-were younG boys. " The Broad lane of my early days was very different in appearance to what it is now. At that time the lane proper was the highway, but sunk lower than the present causeway by four or five feet, from St. Thomas street to Newcastle street-and to some extent to Rockingham street. The omosite side was a rough bank of red earth (from whence the name) partially covered with grass, with footpaths from the lower to the higher ground. After remaining a number of years in that state, the late Mr. James Dixon, being appointed overseer of the highways, lowered the Red hill from top to bottom, and with the soil filled up the road to its present level, and sloped the bank to its actual state. " In the neighbourhood of Broad lane there lived a man, whom I well knew, named Michael, Davenport, by trade a table-knife cutler, but possessing great genius for mechanical inventions. He got a boat about three feet long, and fitted it up with a little steam-engine which he himself had made. When he thought the thing was complete, one day at noon he brought it to Mr. Harrison's brick pond, to put it. to the practical test. He had a fair number of spectators, young and old; but in consequence of something the matter with the engine, or the fixings, the boat would not move. After trying for some time to remedy this defect, certain of the young rascals present added to poor Michael's chagrin at the failure by mockingly advising him to give the boat a good push, and then it would swim over the pond right enough, at the same time well knowing that it was not for that mode of sailing he had brought it there. But notwithstanding the failure of this experiment, Michael was perfectly right in his idea and in his firm belief, that boats and ships might, and certainly would, be so constructed as to be propelled by steam power. Since that time what progress has been made in this respect, what thousands of steam vessels have been built, and what numbers are now ploughing the ocean in every part of the world! " At the commencement of the present century, in the bottom house in Red hill, now occupied by Mr. Skinner, surgeon, there lived the Rev. Benjamin Naylor, the assistant minister of the Upper Chapel, and at one time partner with Montgomery in the Sheffield Iris. The son of that gentleman was the first inoculated for the cow pox in Sheffield; and the late Offley Shore, Esq., of Meersbrook, was the first in the immediate neighbourhood. In the former of these cases the vaccine matter, enclosed in a quill, was obtained direct from Dr. Jenner, the celebrated discoverer of this preventive of that dreadful disease, the small-pox, which at that time made very fearful and extensive ravages throughout the kingdom. The operation in both instances was performed by Mr. William Staniforth, of Castle street, at that time in full medical practice. " On the opposite side of Broad lane, in the first house above St. Thomas's street, lived Mr. Ibbotson, the father of the late Mr. William Ibbotson, who married his cousin Mary. Mr. William Ibbotson was consequently brother-inlaw as well as cousin to Mr. Henry; and they took to the old gentleman's business, which I believe was the saw trade, and entered into partnership as 'Ibbotson Brothers.' As is generally known, they built the Globe Works; and were one of the first firms in Sheffield which established an extensive trade in saws and cutlery with America. " During that dreadful time of bad trade, about 1812 or 1814, when flour was six and seven shillings per stone, and even at that price much of it so unsound as to run out of the oven bottom in baking, there were some twelve hundred ablebodied men on the parish, who were sent to the 'burial ground' (now St. George's churchyard) to get clay and to level it. They all wore wooden clogs, partly as a badge of receiving parish relief ; and this, I believe, was the first introduction of the 'Wear of wooden clogs in Sheffield, the custom being imported from Lancashire. Many of these men were honest, industrious, and respectable artizans; and the sound of their daily tramp in wooden clogs up and down Broad lane was very sad and ominous; more especially in the ears of such as were themselves expecting soon to be reduced to the like deplorable condition. I believe the spirit and feeling prevalent amongst this mass of working men, at that time, was discontent with the Government, and despondency as to future prospects. They were as men almost driven by the force of circumstances to the verge of despair and revolution. Never in my memory has there been in Sheffield so bad and distressing a time. " The burial ground above referred to, at length actually became what its name indicated it had been reserved and in tended for, by the erection, in 1821, of St. George's Church, at the laying of the foundation of which I was present. It honoured the day of the coronation of George IV. On this occasion there was a triumphal arch erected from the old church gates to the opposite side, illuminated by the lately introduced light of gas. " In my school-days I have had the honour of playing at cricket, on the burial ground, with the late Mr. Thomas Dunn, being at that time boys residing in the same neighbourhood. " Let me now add a brief description of what was at the time generally known as the 'Brickholes.' This comprised the large brickfield that extended from St. John's street, nearly to Bailey lane. This was the property of the late Mr. Thomas Harrison, of Weston. The chief manager of this brickyard was old Joseph Marsden, the father of Tom Marsden, afterwards the celebrated cricket player, but who then worked with his father at making bricks. " A large space out of which the clay had been dug became, by supplies from various sources, filled with water. so as to form a pond extending from Newcastle street to a little beyond Rockingham street. In the winter seasons this was a noted place for sliding and skating. In one part the water was of such a depth that I once saw a person have a very narrow escape from drowning. It was a winter's day' the ice being of great thickness, when, just at dusk, a man who was coming from Trippet lane to Broad lane, in crossing over did not happen to see that there was a hole broken in the ice, and in he went over head! With his hands grasping the edge of the ice he cried out loudly and piteously for help, when a tall Young man, snatching a knur stick out of my hand, and another similarly provided, rushed to his aid, and rescued the poor fellow from his extreme peril. The part of Rockingham street where this occurrence took place is, of course' made ground across the 'Brickhole;' and certain portions of Newcastle street and St. Thomas's street are the same. " It may, perhaps, be a fact interesting to some to know, that the said 'Brickhole' was the spot from whence Sir Francis Chantrey got the clay with which he made his first attempts at modelling busts and figures. He lodged for some time with Mr. Outram, (father of the late. Mr. Outram of High street), who carried on the business of cabinetmaker and joiner, living in the house next to the Sovereign inn, the yard and workshops occupying the space now filled up by the said inn, and the houses in Rockingham street extending down to the narrow lane. There was a shop window fronting Trippet lane, in which he exhibited his furniture for sale. One of the first attempts, I believe, of Chantrey at crayon portraits, was the execution of a likeness of old Mr. Outram. This was framed and hung up, and I have often examined it with great interest when a boy. The fact of the great. sculptor, who acquired a reputation in that department of art second to none in the kingdom, or perhaps in the world, having dug the materials for his first efforts of plastic skill out ......is I think, quite enough to make it interesting a, at least to the winds of some old enough to remember the Place - as it then existed, and who admire the genius of Chan.trey. "It will hardly do to conclude these personal recollections of Broad lane without some brief reference to its, annual festival-an event long anticipated and much enjoyed, especially by the young folks. It was held on Holy Thursday, and was regarded as a general holiday. In preparation for it during the previous week, there was a great stir of whitewashing and cleaning, so as to put on the very best appearance. On that day the Sunday clothes were worn. The best thing about that festival, as it now appears to me, was that it partook very much of the spirit and character of a social gthering of relatives and friends-when the married daughter came to her former home with her children to see 'grand" mother, and aunts and uncles, while youthful cousins of both sexes, met in kindly association, indulged in joke and laughter, keenly enjoying ball-play and all other innocent amusements. Such, at least, was my home experience; and, from all I saw, my impression was that the experience of our neighbours was of a similar kind. " But the great attraction for us youngsters was the gingerbread stalls, the crankies, the swings, the puppet shows. and the races. The open space, not so large then as now, at the bottom of Townhead street and Broad lane was just like a fair. Amidst all this life and animation, restless activity, din, and turmoil, in perfect contrast might be seen the 'blacksmith,' with pipe in his mouth, and bare brawny arms resting on the smithy door, looking on the busy scene, with countenance calm and complacent. " But the grand expectation and sight were the races. These were run by donkeys and ponies ; the jockeys being generally milk boys out of the country, who, disencumbering their asses of saddles and milk barrels, prepared for the contest. The prizes usually were a hat, a smock-frock, or a teapot; and the courses Bailey-field, Baileylane, and Broad lane. How the riders managed to rush up and down the steepness of Bailey-field ' and the narrowness of Bailey-lane without some breaking of the necks or limbs, either of themselves or the spectators, is to me up to this day a mystery. Wearing the new hat ' adorned with flying colours, his ruddy face and bright eyes beaming with conscious triumph, the victor, after re-saddling his ass, was then accompanied a short distance homeward, amidst shrill and loud, and. hearty acclamations. Such, in 'auld lang syne,' was Broad lane Feast." LEONARD: Those town feasts, innocent and desirable as they no doubt were when originally instituted as convenient opportunities for family gatherings and so forth, degenerated into mere occasions for drinking; just as fairs, necessary once for business as feasts for social purposes, have outlived their day and are now simply nuisances to all but a few shopkeepers and showmen. TWISS . Crookes feast is still kept up and should perhaps rank as a village, as distinguished from a town feast. It came usually earlier in the year than any other held in the neighbourhood; but it is recorded that in 1818, through some peculiarity of the calendar into which I have not dived, Broad lane took precedence, being held on the 30th April, while Crookes followed on the 1st May-its usual day. Scotland street feast was held on the 29th of May. LEONARD : The explanation of the circumstance you mention is that Crookes is a feast fixed on the 1st of May, and Broad lane feast was on the moveable festival of Ascension-day or Holy Thursday. In 1818, Easter was remarkably early (March 22,) and Holy Thursday fell that year on the 29th of April. Easter had not been so early since 1761, and it will not again fall so early for many more than the 100 years mentioned-not until beyond the year 1999. TWISS: The other town feasts were the Wicker, held on the second Sunday in July; Little Sheffield, September 29. and Attereliffe, on the Sunday nearest to St. James's day. LEONARD: The old fixtures for Sheffield Fair were the Tuesday after Trinity Sunday and the 28th November. Since 1849, the summer fair has been held a week soonerthat is in Whit-week, so as to kill two holidays with one stone. You are aware that an attempt to combine the winter fair with the Christmas holiday has lately been revived. LEIGHTON: The village feasts and. wakes were very popular about half a century ago, and in many places they were kept up with remarkable spirit. They became, however, a great tax upon those who resided, in villages near towns, for on such occasions they wore sure to be visited by nearly all, if not all of their relatives, friends, and acquaintances, who seldom omitted availing themselves of a jaunt into the country. And they always took care to be at the village in time for dinner on the feast day. It was formerly a maxim that Sheffielders would go a dozen miles, at least, to see their country cousins for a bellyful of meat. There were no small numbers, however, who went solely for recreation, or to see the stirrings at the place or in the public-houses. EVERARD : Were the town feasts instituted to give an opportunity of returning the hospitality of the country people ? TWISS: I do not know. Wakes wore, in the Catholic times, a dedication of a church, which was kept by watching all night, or what was better known in those days by the appellation of 'I the vigil," Feasts were originally instituted when there was but a small population in the country, and so on an appointed day the relatives and friends by common consent met together; and at parting an invitation was given to them to return the visit on a fixed day at their respective, residences, which might then be in some new formed village. This was called the village feast-day, and caused a great influx of visitors; and being repeated *periodically, eventually obtained a degree of notoriety. The parties who thus assembled generally required something to amuse them. The fiddler was engaged for the dancing of the young people, who, with juvenile hilarity, "tripped it on the light fantastic toe," whilst the bull or bear was obtained by the landlord of the public-house (if there was one in the village) for the trial of dogs-a good dog being of considerable value. Matches at football, too, not unfrequently took place, as well as other athletic games. Family affairs were, for the most part, talked over on Sunday. On the following day the sports began. The feast dinner did not consist so much of the delicacies of the season as in the quantity of good, substantial food. The poorest person took care to brew a met of malt ready for the wakes or feast; and it was a practice the night before the feast for neighbours to go to each other's houses to taste their respective " taps" of home-brewed. WRAGG: There are one or two points not touched on in Mr. Everard':, account of Broad lane that I should like to add. The George and Dragon was the residence of the late Rev. Mark Docker's father-in-law, Mr. Brammer, and behind were his pressing shops. When Sanderson Brothers and Co. were in one of the lanes behind the National School ' Carver street, they got up more table-knives than any one else in the town, and cut their own bone hafts and scales. The nog ends of the bones were led away as rubbish, and innumerable cart loads of them were thrown into the river at Green lane, and in the brickholes-between Messrs. Riley, Carr and Co.'s works and Rockingham street. Great quantities of them have been dug up in making and enlarging the common sewer. The house mentioned as the residence of Mr. Ibbotson (first above St. Thomas' street), was afterwards occupied by Mr. Guion, the schoolmaster. The door above, now part of the Florist inn, was built by one of the sons-in-law of the late Mr. John Nicholson, of Darnall, who had, before his marriage, been coachman to Mr. Read, of Attercliffe, but who was, when in Broad lane, a scale presser. He attended Howard street Chapel, and an amusing story was told to me about him by a person who was with him on the occasion. The minister, in the course of his discourse, remarked that the time was getting on faster than his sermon. Mr. Nicholson's son-in-law called out from beneath one of the galleries, " Oh, never mind the time; go on." Mr. Boothroyd, who died a few months ago in an accidental manner, was one of his apprentices. Close on the Brickhole was Newton's band-spinning walk. He was better known as 'I Old Packthread;" and having, by rigid industry and frugality, amassed a competency for each of his children, he went to reside in the bottom house but one in Wilkinson street. With reference to Tom Marsden, the cricketer, he lived in the Jericho, and it was there, and in the Brocco, that he was to be seen, whenever he could get any one to join him at cricket. His wife, when a girl, attended the Garden street Independent Sunday School: her parents lived in the yard above the Florist inn. The father's name was James Garside, who was for many years employed at Younge's spirit vaults and from that occupation obtained the soubriquet of " Brandy Jemmy." In the yard below St. Thomas' street, Mr. George Bowden had some workshops. He got up table-knives, and, travelling on foot, he visited gentlemen's houses and small country towns, and on his return brought back bones and stag horns, being also in the horn and stag cutting line. In this humble way he acquired a competency, and lived for many years at Ranmoor, where he died not long ago. EVERARD: There is a resident of Broad lane, once somwhat prominent, who has not been noticed-I mean Joseph Barker, then a New Connexion minister stationed in Sheffield, who resided in Red hill terrace. I understand he gave out the hymns when the first stone of Mount Zion Chapel was laid. He was afterwards excluded from the New Connexion, and was the occasion of a great deal of trouble and some disruption in that body. He then went about the country as an infidel lecturer, and passed through a strange and miserable ........England and America. He was eventually -......., and publicly renouncing infidelity in all its forms, he has tried to undo, as far as possible, the mischief he had done. He published an interesting book, with the title of " Teachings of Experience," in which he gave a very striking account of the phases of doubt, scepticism and atheism, through which he had passed; together with the means and process by which he had been restored to his 11 right mind" and to the, Christian faith. WRAGG: There was also William Gray, boot and shoe maker, the great "jumper," who lived in Broad lane, the fourth door below Rockingham street. He was, perhaps, the most celebrated jumper that ever travelled with equestrians. One of his feats was to jump over a stage mail coach, with the passengers seated on the top. The way in which he became connected with the horse-riders was that his friend, John Milner, was in the fair when there were two equestrian establishments, namely, Ryan's and Adam's. One of these persons had a leaper, called the " Flying Hussar," from his having been in the army, and the proprietor challenged the production of his equal. John Milner went up to him and said that he could find a man that would surpass him. The proprietor replied that he could not be bothered with him or his application. This circumstance got to the ear of the rival proprietor, who sought out William Gray and engaged him. This, of course, made his establishment the most popular; people flocked in crowds to see a man jump who was a native of the town. Wherever the establishment with the "Flying Hussar" went, the other invariably followed. At one of the towns in Lancashire, of which the " Flying Hussar" was a native, it was arranged they should contest their jumping powers. Twelve horses were set side by side; the " Flying Hussar" had the first jump, when he alighted on the back of the sixth horse; but Gray went over them all. The Lancashire people were so exasperated at the defeat of their townsman, that they used threats of violence against Gray, and it was feared they would carry them out. He got away from the booth in some unusual manner-1 forget how. He was not only one of the best and quickest makers of boots and shoes, but, had he been disposed, he might have equally distinguished himself as a pugilist, or race runner; but he possessed more respect for himself than to enter on such a course. That he was a man of great muscular power the following simple instance may be sufficient to show. His wife having complained that she could not use a large maidening pot because it leaked, he told her to fill it with water. She having done so' he lifted the pot over his head, to see where the leakage was, with the greatest case, and then replaced it on the floor. He possessed considerable conversational powers, and was a good debater. He lived in Broad lane about fifty years. He was a native of Cottingham, near Hull, and his father, I believe, was a market gardener. LE0NARD : Your account of Gray's marvellous jumping powers, reminds one of the still more wonderful doings of Ireland, a Yorkshireman, who exhibited in Sheffield in 1802. An old gentleman of my acquaintance has seen him kick a distended bladder suspended on a pole exceeding twenty feet in height. He also saw him jump, over a coach, with four volunteers, having their guns and fixed bayonets in their arms, on the top ; but my informant has some diffidence in telling what seems so incredible. TWISS : Oh, things quite as extraordinary and difficult of belief are told. As for instance, that he leapt over three men seated on horseback; over a corn waggon; that he hopped, and kicked with the same foot, the sign-board of the Grey hound public-house, in Westbar; and that he thought nothing of clearing a turnpike gate, if it happened to come in his way, as easier than going through a turnstile. One peculiarity with him, indeed, seems to have been that he did not treasure up his powers for the circus and the spring-board, but delighted to do them on all occasions for the fun of the thing. He was a Driffield man, and his "mates" used to win many wagers from strangers by backing him to leap over their gigs or carts. In Tickhill, once, he is said to have leaped over a horse at a stand, and then to have cleared it back again without turning round. At Hull he sprang over a number of soldiers standing with fixed bayonets, and to prove his strength of arm, it is related that he has lifted up a chair with a man sitting in it, and has held them out at arm's length. His sister is said to have possessed similar powers, and often amused herself by leaping gates and hedges. EVERARD: It is probable that some of those stories may be just a shade overdrawn, "distance lending enchantment to the view." But my father witnessed most of the feats now described, performed by Ireland in the Lancasterian school. TWISS . The Brocco, in this part of the town, alone now remains to claim our attention, and we cannot do better than again trouble our friend Everard for his account of it. EVERAD (reads): " The Broceo of my early boyhood was a wide and steep declivity not very easy to describe. Whatever features of beauty the scene might possess, lay in the landscape beyond it. What those were one of the late Mr. Ibbitt's published views, entitled 'The Valley Of the Don; will convey a clearer idea than any verbal description. Standing by the house Occupied by the late Mr. H. A. Bacon (the first publisher of the Sheffield Independent), at the top of Garden street (Garden walk it was formerly called) the Brocco consisted of a steep and very rugged bankside. It reached in its steepness as far as Edward street, and then extended in a Slope and a comparative flat as far as Allen street. The ground was red earth and stones; from whence the boys used to dig 'raddle', with which they often transformed their faces into a resemblance of the war-painted Red Indians, or the mountebank harlequin. There was a thin covering of grass on the flats but only in certain parts sufficient depth of soil to form sod. The appearance, as seen from the bottom, was that of a number of little hillocks and knolls of red earth of various shapes, partially green. There was a footpath from the top 'of Garden street down the steep incline to Edward street, East; and another sloping road, now built upon, as a cross street. Allen street, at the point of it that crossed the Brocco, was only a highway without any houses, so that there was a clear space and view from the top of Garden street to the Jericho. " This view included Mr. Hoyle's house (Hoyle street), Which then stood enclosed in what, perhaps, might be described as a small park. At the back of this house was a row of high trees, serving as a rookery, where the birds built their nests, and around which they might be seen taking their aerial flights. The narrow lane, now called Burnt Tree lane, was then the road from Allen street to Portmahon, in which there was a white painted pair of gates, with the carriage way running in a straight line to the front door of the house. in the same lane stood an oak tree, which, during a severe thunderstorm, was struck and scathed by the lightning. Hence the name it acquired." WRAGG : From Radford street downwards was, sixty years ago, quite in the country., there being only the houses of Mr. Hoyle and of several cowkeepers-well-todo Men, of some property. LEIGHTON: Old lawyer Hoyle was a great man, with his cocked hat. WRAGG : There was in Radford street Mr. Dounes, the first Baptist minister in the town; also Mr. Dixon, a cutler, the father of James Dixon, the founder of Cornish place, and of the Rev. Francis Dixon, for many years the consistent minister of Lee Croft Chapel, who, besides, was said to be the 'best auditor of accounts in Sheffield. It is reported of the late Mr. Robert Rodgers, solicitor, that he often declared there would never be another " Frankey Dixon" at accounts. It is said that the late Hugh Parker was a sleeping partner in some colliery, and when the firm was dissolved, Mr. Parker was not satisfied with what he had to receive, so he suggested that Mr. Dixon should audit the accounts, to which it was agreed, the result to be final. A cart load of books was taken to him, and this is said to have been the greatest job Mr. Dixon over had, and he had many. As the result of Mr. Dixon's labours, it appeared Mr. Parker, as he had firmly anticipated, had a large sum to receive. Mr. Dixon was paid what he charged, and Mr. Parker gave him, in addition, one hundred pounds. Mr. Dixon was the maternal grandfather of Mr. Alfred Allott. At the corner of Radford street and Allen street, was Mr. Beardshaw, cutler, the grandfather of Mr. Beardshaw, the engraver. Out of his shop was an uninterrupted view of the Cotton Mill, and when that building was on fire, one of his apprentices saw the flames. Running down the yard to a scale and spring maker, who was working there, he cried that the Cotton Mill was on fire, would he go ? The man could have seen the conflagration from his window, by simply raising his head, but he quietly went on with his work without taking the trouble to look, as he answered : " No, lad, there will be now't put down for it on Saturday neet." In more modern times, in the same neighbourhood , were Messrs. Richard and William Jessop, whose parents were in Pond street. They lived next door to each other, in what is now 245 and 247, Western Bank. In their business they wore both together in one room, and for years did not speak to each other. When one wanted the other's opinion, he wrote a question on a bit of paper and passed it over to his brother, who wrote a reply underneath. They said they were of the family of Jessops, of Broomhall, and when the Rev. James Wilkinson died, advertisements appeared for claimants to his property. I have heard Mr. William say they sent in, a claim among others. LEONARD : You remind me of a story of two other brothers, named Glossop, who lived at Stumperlowe Hall. They were bachelors, and their nephew gave himself the airs of their heir-at-lawh One day as they sat smoking. their pipe[; over the fire, Tom, after much musing, spoke: " I say, John, there's ahr Fred been saying what he'll do when he gets ahr money, as hes ahr heir." " Well," asked John, after a long pause, " what's to be done ?" " Why," replied Tom, "one on us must get married." "Which shall it be ?" faltered John, conscious of impending misery. 'I Don't know," said his brother, " let's toss up." They tossed up, and matrimony fell to John's lot. Putting his finger in his eye, he whined, " Thah's bet me again, Tom. There's never anything nasty to do but thou maks me do it." However, he pocketed his chagrin, took a wife, and there was issue one daughter, who married a solicitor, named Sargeant. EVERARD (severely): The prospect from the top of Brocco, about which I was speaking when interrupted, embraced a sight of the Infirmary, then standing amidst fields and gardens; the old Barracks, rendered conspicuous by their whitewashed walls; the Club Mill, ensconced in the valley beside the stream of the Don; the house at Wardsend, on the margin of the wood ; and above all, the Old Park Wood and Cook Wood, then existing in much of their primeval beauty; their sylvan solitudes undisturbed by the shriek of the railway whistle, as the trains now, by day and night, rush and thunder through. LEONARD : I have seen a water-colour drawing in the possession of Mr. Samuel Gardner, taken from his father's house at the top of Red hill in 1802, which embraces just such a view as you describe. Anything more completely rural could not be imagined. EVERARD (continuing to read) On a dark November night, in the year 1817, I remember standing with my father on the top of the Brocco, from eleven o'clock until midnight. It was on the occasion, and at the very time, of the interment of the lamented Princess Charlotte. The hillside was partially covered with groups of spectators, who stood to watch the firing of the minute guns in the Barrack yard during the hour of the funeral procession. The flash of each discharge illuminated for an instant the entire valley, succeeded by a sense of deeper darkness, as the sound boomed up to where we stood and reverberated amongst the woods and hills. This midnight darkness and the firing, together with the solemn ' dumb peal' that fell upon the ear from the bells of the Parish Church, produced on my mind a lasting impression. In 1819, there was assembled in the Brocco one of the largest public meetings-certainly the largest I ever saw-held in Sheffield. The occasion was what was then termed the ' Manchester Massacre,' where a public meeting, met to petition Parliament, was, by order of the magistrates, attacked and dispersed by a troop of Yeomanry. Many persons were wounded, and some lives lost. This violation of English liberty roused such a feeling of indignation throughout the country that numerous town and county meetings were held to enter solemn and emphatic protests against it. The meeting in the Brocco was for the purpose of addressing the Prince Regent, and petitioning parliament to institute an inquiry into this outrage on constitutional law and order. The procession was formed in the Wicker, and included almost all the clubs and friendly societies in the town and neighbourhood, with their respective banners and bands of music. On arriving at the ground they were marshalled in their appointed order. The platform was erected on the flat part near Allen street. The late venerable Samuel Shore, Esq., was the chairman, and the late Earl Fitzwilliam. was one of the speakers. That vast assemblage, numbering many thousands, and standing rank above rank on the slopes of that natural amphitheatre, together with the display of flags and symbols, presented a magnificent and deeply impressive spectacle. The resolutions having been passed with unanimity, the great meeting dispersed peaceably and in order. More than half a century has passed away since that day; and during this period what changes in the way of improvement have taken place in our political, social, and commercial condition as a nation ! Adjacent to the Brocco, and almost forming a part of it, was a vacant space much used as a play and cricket ground, named Jericho. On that spot I once witnessed an assemblage met for the purpose of either taking an active part in, or looking on at the cruel and barbarous old English sport of ' bullbaiting.' At that time a man had lately been imported into this neighbourhood, whose proper name I have forgotten, but who went by that of Runcorn, the place from whence he came. He was a strong-built, broadchested man, with a somewhat surly countenance. He was accompanied and assisted in his vocation by his wife, who at that time was a handsome young woman, but after a very decided type of rustic beauty. With cheeks like roses, and her strong red arms, bare above the elbows, she was dressed in a gown of showy pattern, and on her head she wore a white cap, adorned with ribbons. Perched on a high wall, and full of boyish curiosity, I had a perfect view of the whole scene and proceedings. The crowd assembled included some of the choicest specimens of blackguardism to be found in the town and neighbourhood. Amidst noise and clamour, passing jibes, and cursings, together with the yelpings of impatient dogs, the ring was at length formed, and the sport began. 'Mistress Runcorn,' armed with a hedgestake, which she wielded with effect, kept the ring, and received the toll for the dogs at the rate of threepence a slip; whilst her husband attended to the bull, to see that he had fair play. The animal thus brought to the stake to torture was a fine, young, and active one; being, in the current slang of the ring, 'good game.' There he stood at bay, moving his head from side to side, and watching the point of attack. The dogs, one after another, were then slipped, and flew at him. Some of them the bull managed at the first rush to catch 'with his horns, and either gored or tossed them high into the air. Certain of, their masters, on seeing their dogs thus flung, ran to catch them in their aprons or arms; whilst others allowed them unaided to run the risk of crippled limbs, or broken backs. The hightrained dogs appeared generally-to aim at the nose or throat of the animal. One of them fastened and hung on the poor brute's nether lip, whilst he ramped about in agony and rage, as far as the tether would allow. And as the climax, at length a savage dog seized the bull's nose, causing the blood to flow, and kept his hold until the noble, ill-used creature was brought down upon his knees to the ground. The event of the bull being pinned was immediately hailed with a shout of ferocious delight and triumph, and with loud expressions of brutal merriment. So the cruel and degrading ' sport' went on to the end. 4 " This, I believe, was the last bull-bait in Sheffield. As a sad. though fitting sequel, I may add that this man, Runcorn, was eventually (May, 1824), so fearfully worried by his own bear, in a field on the Intake road, that he died in consequence, in the Sheffield Infirmary." LEIGHTON: Runcorn's real name was William Ladsley. I believe the circumstances of his death were these. He had the bear, which -was usually a very peaceable plain," near his residence in the Park. In some way, never explained, the bear becoming suddenly enraged against its master, turned upon him, knocked him down, and worried him on the spot. The poor man's body was taken up in a shockingly mutilated state, though it was with difficulty it could be liberated by slipping dogs at the bear. The murderer was shortly afterwards shot; the hind paws of the animal were fourteen inches long. LEONARD: Bears seem subject to those fits of anger. A similar case, most of you will remember as occurring within the last few months at the " Welsh Harp," Hendon. TWISS : Another local case happened at or near Ecclesfield. A bear, kept by a person there, got at liberty and worried the owner's wife. WRAGG: A noted Sheffield bear-ward was old Arnold Kirk. Like Ladsley he was accustomed to take his bear to the different wakes, for the purpose of baiting. The following is one of his adventures :-Going with his bear to the Derwent wakes, he had reached the middle of the moors, when bruin turned sulky and would proceed no further. At last, when it was quite dark he got into motion again, and Kirk, guided by a light, managed to conduct him to a cottage. The old couple who dwelt there were quite willing to give Kirk a lodging; but how about his unwieldly companion ? If they had only, said the old woman, sold their calf, which was to be fetched next morning by the butcher, a day before, bruin might have occupied the shed. Arnold was equal to the occasion, and it was arranged that the calf should be brought into the kitchen, the bear to take its place in the "crib." This was done, and sleep fell upon the mixed household. About midnight Arnold was disturbed by Dick, the bear, making a great noise and growling. Going to investigate the cause, he found that bruin had got a man under him. Arnold called out, " Hold him fast, Dick." He went and informed the old people, who came immediately; and as soon as the old woman saw the man she exclaimed, " Way, Lord bless me, if it is'nt t' butcher we seld t'coaf to 'en he wor to a fetched it and paid for it it mornin'." Arnold says, " So th'art cum'd a coaf stealing, art thou, and thou's getting a fine 'un there; squeeze him again, Dick." The bear did as he was told, and roared out " boukh," again. " Now then, rascal," said Arnold, " if thou does not agree to pay 't price of t' coaf, I will unmuzzle him, and he shall worry thee." He had to purchase liberty from his awkward antagonist ........... paying his money and receiving no calf in return. The inhabitants of the cottage thus made a good thing out of their hospitality. JOHNSON: Let me cap that with a bull-baiting story. On one occasion a bull had been procured at Bradwell wakes for the purpose of baiting, but no stake to fasten him to had been provided. Old Mr. Bagshawe, of the Hazlebadge pastures, so far entered into the spirit of the sport that he exclaimed, " Tey him to mey, tey him to mey. We'll neer loost' beit for t'wont on a steek"-supposing, no doubt, that he was sufficiently strong to hold the bull. They did so, and upon the first dog being slipped at the bull, he set off and took Mr. Bagshawe with him at the rope's end through the adjacent brook, and it was with great difficulty that he escaped with his life. LEONARD: The following " nomine" or proclamation by the bull or bear ward when the ring was formed may, perhaps, wind up our gossip on these obsolete cruelties: " 0 yes, 0 yes, 0 yes; one dog one bull, or one bitch one bull. Three rebukes and a wind. Everybody keep twenty feet from t' stake or take what comes. Now for t' first dog." LEIGHTON : Well, we have had a long but very interesting sitting. Goodnight. (Exeunt.j
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