Unknown

This pottery was situated behind the Royal George Public House on Thornaby Road. (This information was kindly provided by christine carter)
I’ve seen this picture before and it was captioned as being Wm. Smiths Stafford Pottery in South Stockton which is now in Thornaby. (This information was kindly provided by Julian Herbert). Can you help?
Could this be Clarence Potteries? (This information was kindly provided by Sarah)

16 thoughts on “Unknown

  1. My 3x great grandmother and her family worked at the Stafford Pottery in Thornaby in the 1860s. They were John Grafton (born in Whitehaven), his wife Jane (formerly Brown, born – I think – in Newcastle) and their 2 girls, Fanny Brown (my X3 g.g’mother) and her sister Jane Ann Brown. I know the girls were both born in Jemmapes, Belgium (Hainaut district – now linked to the town of Mons, I believe), but although I haven’t been able to trace them back to Belgium (i.e. residence, birth records etc.), I have recently had the good fortune to have been in contact with a Belgian genealogist who has done a whole project on Stockton families who took their skills from the Thornaby pottery over to Belgium around the 1850s to work in the potteries there. Apparently their skills were in great demand! If you need any help from her, her name is Marie Cappart and she can be contacted via GENIWAL. It is a Belgian website, but she does speak English very well, and she seems to be quite knowledgeable on this particular subject. If anyone reading this – especially the person who mentioned they have GRAFTON ancestors (see my McKenna O’Neill family tree on Ancestry.co.uk – if you can – and/or get in touch with me – Jackie O’Neill – via Facebook) can add anything to any of this, please get in touch!!

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  2. My Grafton ancestors worked at this Pottery from about 1835. My great great grandmother Margaret Grafton married John Snaith and by 1861 he had left his previous job as a sailor and worked in the pottery too. Does anyone know if there are any samples of the pottery they produced on display anywhere? I would love to have look next time I am in England.

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    • There are several pieces of local pottery on display at Preston Park Museum, a number or pieces and the moulds used to produce them are also stored in the museum collection and can be viewed by appointment.

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    • Hello, Barbara! Please could you get in touch? I have Graftons in my family tree, too! John Grafton and his wife Jane (nee Brown), and their 2 girls (actually Jane’s daughters, so I believe), one of whom – Fanny Brown – was my X3 great grandmother. I am happy for you to look at my family tree on Ancestry (if you have access) and a little look at yours would also be great, if you didn’t mind. Please see my comment below, too, which gives more details about this part of my family and their link to the pottery in Thornaby. If you can’t get onto ancestry, then please let me know and I will arrange for another way for you to contact me. Thank you! Jackie O’Neill.

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  3. A Jemima Hobson is in my family tree. I have inherited her commonplace book from the 1830s and 1840s, full of illustrations and texts about the local area. May not be the same one though as this one seems closely linked to Ashbourne. Father or brother could be Robert.

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  4. I am looking for information on my wifes grandmother who was born in Stockton-on-Tees April 2 1902. Her name was Dora Mildred Smith. Apparently when she was 6-9 years old there was a fire and she was left an orphan. She was sent shortly afterwards to Dr. Bernards school in Canada. Any info would be greatly appreciated.

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  5. Hi Kath, Yes I think there were a lot of people working in the pottery. My grandfather Walter George Hobson was a rivetter in 1930 and my father then went on to be a glass blower in 1930. I will try and find some more info for you. I have a jug that was my parents and its been around all my life. Could be a piece.also a glass decanter. I have them wrapped up and put away because i dont want them to get broke. I will get them out and take a photo so you can see .i have a family tree.ask the team to give you my email address and well see what we can share. If you look at people photos on this site, you will see a photo of my dad Samuel Hobson in army uniform. Joyce

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  6. HI JOYCE I have census returns for the Thornaby Hobson”s 1841 to 1901. I find the story of Wm Smith recruiting here in the potteries fascinating. I would think that a lot of families in your area have their roots in the potteries. I would be interested to know just what the conditions were like, and would it have been a better life for the potters. I believe that the pottery produced by Wm Smith was of a very high quality. I have searched for a piece of Wedgwood with an E but never found any. Perhaps we could find a way of swaping family histories. Were there any bottle ovens belching smoke all over Thornaby? Lot”s of questions. Kath Cartlidge

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  7. HI KATH yes theres a link i have the same records of the 1841 census. The family went to Scotland at some time. My grandad and grandmother were married there and my father was born there. I have them all on my tree. They were potters in Scotland too they travelled about were they could find work. There”s still lots I would like to know. Joyce

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  8. HI JOYCE Yes I think this might be a link, I have John Hobson in 1841 age 25 living in Thornaby with his wife Jemima 23 and sons Walter and Micheal. I knew about Wm Smith and the Wedgewood court case.The conection to my tree comes on my husbands side of the family, his great grandmother being Sarah Hobson, she married a Herbert Rathburn in the Thornaby area 1860 and came back to Staffordshire, leaving a son behind. There seems to be some sort of mystery about Sarah and we loose track of Herbert completly. Kath Cartlidge

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  9. hi kathleen cartlidge, my great great grandfather John Hobson lived in George Street Thornaby in 1841. Born in Staffordshire. There is some link with the Scottish potteries also. Joyce

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  10. Re Stafford Pottery South Stockton (Thornaby ) Mr William Smith, the Owner was not popular in The Potteries. First a court case when he used the word “Wedgwood” on his products, the “Wedgewood Company” winning a restraining order. Second Mr Smith set up a vigorous recruitng campaign for skilled workers, with promise of better money, housing and conditions in this he wss succesful, enough to hire a special train to bring the families to Thornaby Staion, where a band and decorated wagons took the families and what goods they had to the new homes in the Sun /Stafford Street area. Kathleen, Could this be the Thornaby link ??

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  11. What an interesting page. I think the Hobson family came from Stoke on Trent where I live, and where Wm Smith recruited potters, and bought them to Thornaby. Jemima Hobson is in my family tree.

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  12. The Hobson family worked at this pottery behind the george pub thornaby in the 1920/30s.The family worked as potters going back to the 18th century going by the censuses. My dad and grandad worked there in 1891 and my great aunts and uncles. My gggrandad worked at the stafford pottery then went to different areas for work. Around 1930 my dad then became a glassblower. My great aunt Jemima was a pottery decorater and grandad was a rivetter at the pottery.

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    • hi joyce and Kathleen, I have read extracts about the hobson family in thornaby and my great granddad was john hobson, shipowner, transporting slate and other cargo to hamburg, Liverpool, portmadog, wales. his vessel a schooner “the village maid” was registered at Caernarvon. he owned the ship from 1904 to 1910 when it was damaged and later converted into a barge in Liverpool. his last address registered to the ship was 42 mandili or mandale road, thornaby. I cant find that road on any maps but I did find john and jemima hobson’s family in 31 thornaby road, thornaby and I wondered if this part of my family. I don’t have a date of birth for him or his age. I only have him on my grandmothers birth certificate as her dad. it gives the father as john hobson, master mariner of merchant services. this is my only link so I am trying to trace him to his last address at thornaby. we think he may of gone down with the ship in 1910 as he was never seen or heard of after 1910. I was very interested to read your correspondence above with reference to the same family that I have traced as a possible link. john hobson born 1855 and Samuel hobson were brothers so I am hoping that you may have a bit more history on the john hobson family link please. thank you.

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