22

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22 High Street.

No. 22 was a reasonable-sized shop with a small yard and four or five outbuildings. The next-door shop, No. 22, was much larger with an L-shaped yard that wrapped around the back of the one at No. 22, and with an access onto Sedgeford Lane..

In 1874, Nos. 21 and 22 were combined into one, when Thomas Green’s drapery business opened.

A fuller account of the businesses which occupied the two combined premises will be found at Nos. 21 & 22, High Street.

c1822 – c1841 (Robert Mayhew)

Robert Mayhew, a tailor and draper, was listed at High Street (no number) in 1822 (Pigot) and here at No. 22 in 1830 (Pigot) and in 1836 (White).

Robert Mayhew, born outside Norfolk in about 1776, was living in Sedgeford Lane in 1841 and died in 1842, aged about 66. His wife, Mary, born outside Norfolk in about 1771, died the same year, aged about 71.

c1841 (William Bullen)

At the time of the 1841 census, William Bullen, a draper born in Norfolk in about 1816, was living here with his wife Harriet and their children. William married Harriet Pratt (b. c1816 in Norfolk) at St. Giles in the Fields, London, on 20th July, 1834. They had six children:-

1) John Henry (b. c1835 – d. 1848, aged about 13). 2) Jessie (b. c1836 – m. Philip Vincent in 1856 and Richard Hunt in 1887 – d. 1920, aged 86). 3) Edward (b. 06/11/1838). 4) Louisa (b. 09/05/1841). 5) Elizabeth (b. 1843). 6) Alfred (b. 1846).

The family had moved to Snettisham by 1843, and William had a shop in Hunstanton and ran a small farm of 12 acres (1851).

Harriet Bullen died in 1848, aged about 32, and William married Elizabeth Brereton in Snettisham on 1st February, 1849. They had one son:-

Robert William – a school teacher – (b. 1850 – m. Beatrice Maud Sayle in 1875 – d. 1925, aged 75).

William Bullen died in 1886, aged 72, and Elizabeth died in 1893, aged 83.

William and Harriet’s eldest daughter Jessie went to live with Thomas Bullen and his wife Anne in Liverpool, where she was recorded as Anne’s stepdaughter in the 1851 census. The exact relationship is unknown but Thomas may have been her uncle. He was a surgeon and was living in Chapel Street, Lynn in 1841. Thomas Bullen married Anne Richards from Penryn in Cornwall on 30th May, 1843 in St. Margaret’s church. Thomas died in Liverpool in about 1850. Jessie married Philip Vincent, a surgeon, in Somerset in 1856 and they set up home in Camborne, Dorset, and had eight children. Philip died in 1868, aged 39, and Jessie became housekeeper to farmer and landowner Richard Hunt, of Stanstead Hall, Stanstead Abbots. They married in 1887. Richard died in 1896, aged 81, and Jessie moved to Bournemouth, dying in 1919/20, aged 86.

More details of the wider Bullen family may be found at No. 11, High Street.

c1846 – c1850 (Robert Creak Massingham)

Robert Massingham was the brother of the watchmaker William Massingham – see No. 102, High Street. Robert was listed here in 1846 (Kelly’s Nine Counties) as a working jeweller, but may have been here for only a few years.

Born in Holt in 1819, his parents were Holt ironmonger Mark Massingham and his wife Susan Creak. He was baptised as Robert Creak Massingham in Holt on 24th August, 1821.

In 1841 he was living in the vicinity of No. 41 High Street – probably in one of the yards – and working as a jeweller, he was lodging with Sarah Smith, a school mistress aged 60.

By 1851 he was living in Lincoln where he was working as a jeweller. The census records him at 46, Steep Hill, Lincoln with his wife Elizabeth (b. c1817 in Lynn) and his brother Edward (b. c1833 in Lynn). There are two anomalies here because no record of a brother Edward has been found, nor of any marriage. After Robert died on 16th November, 1855 in Lincoln, aged 36, he was recorded as a bachelor in the Letters of Administration published in 1858:-

‘5th June, 1858. Letters of Administration of the Personal estate and effects of Robert Creak Massingham late of the City of Lincoln Jeweller, a Bachelor deceased who died 16 November 1855 at the said City were granted at Lincoln to William Massingham of Boston in the said County, Silversmith the Brother and one of the Next of Kin of the said Deceased he having been first sworn. Effects under £50.’

More details of the Massingham family from Holt will be found under William Massingham at No. 102, High Street.

c1850 – 1874 (Francis Robert Nichols)

Francis Robert Nichols, a baker, is listed here in Slater’s Directory for 1850. He was born in about1801 in Wells, and his wife Mary Dann came from Terrington (b. c1804). They were married at St. Margaret’s church on 6th October, 1822. In White’s Directory for 1836 he was listed in Tower Street. They were living here at No. 22 in 1851 with their four children, all born in Lynn:-

1) Francis Robert II – a letter sorter and carrier – see below – (b. 1830 – m. Anne Smith on 1st June, 1863 – d. 1907, aged 77). 2) Georgiana – a draper’s assistant in 1861 – (b. 1835 – d. 1895, aged 60). 3) Henry Edward – a baker and confectioner – (b. 1838 – d. 1893, aged 54). 4) Emma Lavinia (b. 1841 – m. William Mace Rudd in 1880 – d. 1912, aged 70).

Francis Nichols is listed at No. 22 in all the directories up until 1869 (Harrod), when there is no street number given.

On 4th May, 1867, the following notice appeared in the Lynn Advertiser:-

‘IN THE AFFAIRS OF
FRANCIS ROBERT NICHOLS. 
NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that FRANCIS ROBERT NICHOLS, of King’s Lynn, in the County of Norfolk, Baker, hath by deed dated the 26th day of April, 1867, conveyed all his Estate and effects to William Briscoe Whall, of King’s Lynn aforesaid, Banker’s Clerk, absolutely, to be applied and administered for the benefit of the Creditors of the said Francis Robert Nichols, in like manner as if he had been at the date thereof duly adjudged Bankrupt. And notice is hereby further given, that all Creditors of the said Francis Robert Nichols are requested forthwith to send in the particulars of their demands to me, the undersigned, within one week from the date hereof, and that the said deed now lies at my office, in the Tuesday Market Place, in King’s Lynn aforesaid, for the execution by the Creditors. DAVID WARD, Solicitor to the Trustees. Dated this 3rd day of May, 1867.’

Also in the newspaper that day was a notice for the sale by auction of all his furniture and effects:-

‘HIGH STREET, KING’S LYNN. To Be Sold By Auction, By MILES. On Monday the 6th Day of May, 1867, (Under a deed of assignment, for the benefit of Creditors,) all the HOUSEHOLD FURNITURE, STOCK – IN – TRADE, etc., The property of Mr. Francis Nicholl, Confectioner, etc. Sale to commence at 11. O’clock. For further particulars see hand bills. Office, Wellesley Street, Lynn.’

It is not clear whether Francis Nichols was able to continue trading immediately after that date. In 1871, he was living on the premises, aged 70, still recorded as a baker, with his wife Mary and Henry Edward their son, 30, also a baker. Although it would seem that he was able to continue working as a baker for a time afterwards.

In Kelly’s Directory of 1875, both Francis Nichols and Thomas Green are listed at No. 22. From his advertisement in the Lynn Advertiser in February, 1874 (see No. 6, High Street) it would seem that Thomas Green moved in here that year.

Mary Nichols died in 1877, aged 74 and Francis died the year afterwards, aged 78.

Francis II continued to work with his father and brother Henry until 1861 or later. He married Ann Smith, a weaver, on 1st June, 1863 and they were living with their four children at East Street, Lynn, in 1871. He gave up the bakery business to join the Post Office and worked as postman and letter sorter until his retirement. Ann died in 1892, aged 53 and Francis II was living with his daughter Emma and her husband Edward Carver (a carpenter born in Norwich c1872) and their family in Melbourne Street, Lynn in 1901.

Francis Robert Nichols II died in 1907, aged 75.

Georgiana Nichols had moved to Cambridge by 1861 and was working as a draper’s assistant to John B. Pain of Sidney Street. She had moved back to Lynn by 1881, when she was staying with her brother Henry Edward, who was still working as a baker and confectioner, in Windsor Terrace, Lynn.

In 1891, Georgiana, and her siblings Henry Edward and Emma Lavinia (now widowed following the death of her husband William Mace Rudd), were staying with their aunt Ruth Hannah Raines (a shopkeeper born in Wells c1891) in Lynn Road, Gaywood.

Henry Nichols died in 1893, aged 52, Georgiana died in 1895, aged 60, and Emma Rudd died in 1912, aged 70.

1864 – 1865 (Miss Abthorpe)

On 24th September, 1864, the following notice appeared in the Lynn Advertiser:-

‘22, HIGH STREET, KING’S LYNN. MISS ABTHORPE (Late with Mr. Henry Johnson, Draper, etc.) Begs respectfully to inform the Ladies of Lynn and its vicinity that she has engaged rooms at the above address, directly opposite Mr. Pridgeon’s, for the purpose of carrying on a select business in dressmaking, millinery, mantles, etc., having had the superintendence of the above departments for several years, and trusts by strict personal attention to merit a share of that patronage so liberally bestowed upon her late employer. P.S. – An experienced hand will be engaged for the dressmaking department.’

Henry Johnson had been trading in his own right for just two years or so at No. 36, High Street, where more details of him and his family may be found. He sold all of his stock to Joseph Kerkham (see No. 82) in September, 1864 and moved to Spalding.

Miss Abthorpe was here for less than a year, moving her business to No. 1, St. James’ Road at the beginning of February, 1865.

c1879 – c1883 (Robert James Offord)

The surgical instrument maker Robert James Offord was listed at this address in 1879 (Kelly) and again in 1883 (Kelly and White).

Born in 1846/7 in Lynn, Robert James Offord followed his father John into the business of making surgical instruments.

John Offord (b. c1809) came from Stowmarket, Suffolk, and had married Mary Bloomfield, the daughter of a Lynn shoemaker in 1839. John and Mary had five children:-

1) John Frederick – see below – a surgical instrument maker – (b.1840 – m. Kezia Mutimer in 1869/70 – d. 1930, aged 90). 2) Frances Elizabeth (Fanny) – a dressmaker – (b. 1841 – m. Albert Walter Cooke in 1864). 3) Robert James – a surgical instrument maker – see below – (b. 1847 – m. Thirza Hall on 12/06/1870 – d. 28/09/1899, aged 52). 4) Agnes (b. 1849 – d. 1926, aged 76). 5) Mary Jane (b.1852 – m. Isaac Bulmer in 1919 – d. 1934, aged 82).

The family were living in Tower Street in 1851, but had moved to 31, Purfleet Street, Lynn by 1861.

John Frederick had followed in his father’s footsteps and was making surgical instruments in 1861, while Robert was working as a shop boy. The family stayed in Purfleet Street until at least 1871.

John Offord died in 1873, aged 73 and Mary died in 1891, aged 82.

John Frederick left Lynn for Norwich, where he married Kezia Mutimer, from Wayfield in Suffolk, in 1869/70. They moved to Islington. Kezia died in 1897, aged 48 and John Frederick died in 1930, aged 90.

Robert James Offord married Thirza Hall, the daughter of William and Jane Hall, in Lynn, in 1870. William Hall was a publican in 1861, at premises in Valingers Road in Lynn, and was at the Duke of Wellington, Nelson Street, from 1869 until his death in1871. His widow Jane continued the tenancy of the Duke of Wellington for about a year after his death.

Robert’s business was listed at No. 22, High Street in Kelly’s directories for 1879 and 1883. In White’s directory for the latter year, he is listed as a surgical instrument maker, truss manufacturer and cutler. In 1891, Robert and Thirza were living at 134, Norfolk Street. They had two children:-

1) William Frederick – a metal engraver- (b. 1871 – m. Kate Anna Porter – d. 1962, aged 90). 2) Robert Albert – a cutler – (b. 1873 – m. Alice Green in 1905 – d. 1950, aged 77).

The business became that of ‘Robert James Offord & Sons’. Robert James Offord died in 1899, aged 52, and Thirza died in 1916/17, aged 70. Their son, Robert Albert, continued making surgical instruments under the name of ‘Robert James Offord & Sons’ and was at 134, Norfolk Street in 1911. He moved to 11, Railway Road and was advertising as a cutler and metal engraver until 1922. He died in 1950, aged 77, and his brother William Frederick died in 1962, aged 90.

1874 – 1888 (Thomas Green)

Thomas Green moved here in early 1874, taking the next door premises at No. 21, too. A full description is given under the account for Nos. 21 & 22 high Street.