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33, High Street.

From about 1830 until 1861, this was a boot and shoe shop and manufactory. There were two short lets prior to the demolition of the premises in 1866.

1830 – c1845 (Daniel De Pass)

Pigot’s directory for 1830 lists Daniel De Pass, a boot and shoe dealer, at No. 33. In the directories for 1846 (Kelly), 1850 (Slater), and 1854 (White) the listing is for De Pass & Munks.

Daniel De Pass was born in Lynn on 11th June, 1797, the seventh-born in a family of eight. He married Rachael Davis, who had been born in Lynn c1796, in February, 1814 and they had ten children, all born in Lynn: –

1) Aaron (b. 1815 – m. Esther da Costa – d. 1877, aged 62). 2) David Daniel (b. c1818 – m. Alice Hyam in 1849 – d. 1890, aged 73). 3) Hannah – see No. 62, High Street – (b. 1817 – m. Moses Kisch – d. 1874 in Brussels). 4) Abigail (b. c1820). 5) Michael (b. c1821 – m. Simmy Bensusan in 1850 – d. 1878, aged 58). 6) Abraham Daniel (b. 1823 – m. Judith Lazarus in 1846 – d. 1897, aged 73). 7) Rebecca (b. 13/02/1825 – m. Simon Hyam on 24/12/1849 – d.11/04/1893, aged 68). 8) Jacob / John (b. c1828 – d.1905, aged 77). 9) Elias M. (b. 1829 – m. Floretta Moses in 1859 – d. 1913, aged 84). 10) Catherine / Kate (b. 1833 – m. Montague Moses Levy Bensusan on 22/06/1859 – d. 1914, aged 81).

Daniel De Pass had a rather mixed business background before establishing one of the biggest London shoe and boot manufactories of the 19th Century. In Pigot’s directory for 1822, he is listed as a pen and quill manufacturer, with an address on High Street (no number). This may not have lasted many years and by 1826 he was struggling with his business ventures, which included drapery, slop-selling (cheap ready-made clothing), and general dealing and trading. In 1826 he was declared bankrupt. However, in the same year he is listed as a subscriber to the proposed new Lynn cattle market, contributing one Guinea to the fund. Amongst his other business interests at this time was a partnership with Isaac Simpson, as tea dealers and tobacconists, which was dissolved in December 1829.

By 1830, Daniel had established his shoe making business here at High Bridge and had opened another shop at 6, High Street, Wisbech. At the same date he is listed as a tailor at No. 62, High Street.

A report in the Cambridge Chronicle & Journal on Friday 10th December, 1830 reads:-

‘On Thursday last three boys, under 17 years of age, were fully committed to gaol for trial at the coming sessions – Chas. Hornigold, for stealing shoes etc., from the shop of Mr. De Pass, and Richard Poll and I. Moore for receiving same, knowing them to have been improperly obtained’.

This was not the only occasion on which Daniel suffered at the hands of burglars and villains. In May 1833 his Wisbech shop was vandalised and on 12th November, 1836, the following item appeared in the newspapers: –

‘J. Turner and J. Sparrow, convicted at the late Quarter Sessions of burglary in house of Mr. De Pass, escaped from Lynn gaol, by forcing a hole in the cell with a pump handle…’

Meanwhile, Daniel and his sons had developed a thriving boot and shoe-making factory in Cateaton Street (now Gresham Street), in Cheapside, London. De Pass & Sons supplied boots and shoes across much of the country. The ‘Leeds Intelligencer’ for 8th July 1837 carried an advertisement for Marsden’s Boot & Shoe Warehouse in the city, announcing that they had received supplies from the ‘Principal Boot & Shoe Dealers in the Kingdom’ – including Mr. Daniel De Pass of Cheapside, London’. An advertisement in the Stamford Mercury that same year read: –

‘Important to Boot and Shoe Dealers, Private Families and the Public in General. 33, High-bridge, High-street, LYNN. Take Notice, a Saving of full 40 per cent, may be realised by purchasing at D. De Pass’s Wholesale Boot and Shoe Depot, where the trade and public can be supplied with every article in the above line, which can be warranted. D.D.P. also begs to acquaint his friends that he is now offering, at an immense loss, the whole of his superb Winter Stock, which must be sold off previous to the 8th March next, in consequence of an extensive alteration that is about to take place. – Ladies fur-lined and cork-sole Boots and Shoes. Ladies’ and Gentlemen’s India Rubber Goloshes, etc., etc. One price fixed and no abatement. Observe the Golden Boot, 33, High-street, Lynn, and at No. 6, High-street, Wisbech. – Of the firm, 40, Cateaton-street, Cheapside, London’.

Occasionally, Daniel placed ‘wanted’ advertisements in various local newspapers when he needed to recruit more workers. The following notice appeared in the Stamford Mercury on 21st February, 1834:-

‘To JOURNEYMEN SHOEMAKERS – One Hundred Men wanted at DE PASS’s Boot and Shoe Manufactory, 33, High Street, Lynn, where there is constant employ and liberal wages. All communications (if by letter) must be post paid’.

It is possible that this recruitment drive had been prompted by a strike by his employees, as reported in the Norfolk Chronicle on 18th January, 1834:-

‘On Tuesday night, a large body of shoemakers (chiefly in the employ of Mr. De Pass) who had struck for wages, assembled near his house, on the High Bridge, and obtained a quantity of beer, which was then drunk, and afterwards proceeded through the streets, with the avowed intention of annoying any “dungs” that might fall in their way, and in Austin Street they broke the windows of a journeyman shoemaker, named Moore. The Mayor had issued a caution against such meetings, and offered a reward of £10 for the conviction of the offenders.’

Ignoring the rather inflated requirement for workers, the question remains as to how big the manufactory was at Lynn. There is certainly no indication from this advertisement that the staff are needed to work in London. One year later, on 13th March. 1835, Daniel again advertised in the Stamford Mercury, this time extolling the quality and value of his goods:-

‘DE PASS’s LONDON BOOT and SHOE DEPOT, 6, High-street, WISBECH, and 33, High-street, LYNN, established expressly for the sale of a single pair of Boots and Shoes town made at wholesale prices. D. P. begs to assure the public that all goods sold in his warehouse are supplied direct from his manufactory, whereby the expensive agency of the retail dealer will, in his establishment, be dispensed with. From the circumstance of his manufacturing upon an extensive scale, he is enabled to supply the best quality and superior workmanship at the same price as inferior goods are usually advertised; by the favour of a single trial he is assured he shall merit an increase of that patronage which the well-known character of his goods, both for cheapness and superior quality, has already procured him. An immense stock of Boots and Shoes on sale suitable for all descriptions of customers – Ladies, Gentlemen, Children, Youths, and Working People, supplied at such low prices as will astonish every purchaser – 3 pair Wellington Boots for 33s., 3 pair of Gentlemen’s Shoes or Pumps 14s., and every article in the above line equally low.

The trade supplied at the above establishment, or at the manufactory, 40, Cateaton-street, London’.                        

An advertisement in the Lynn Advertiser on 10th May, 1842 reads:-

‘NEW TARIFF. D. De Pass respectfully informs his Friends and the Public generally, that in consequence of a further reduction of Duty off Leather, he is enabled to offer to their notice, his immense Stock of BOOTS and SHOES, considerably below the usual prices, being determined to meet the depression of the times. A Quantity of FRENCH SHOES, Recently Imported. A FEW SOILED BOOTS & SHOES at Reduced Prices. 33, High Bridge, High Street, Lynn’.

The Wisbech shop was run by Moses Kisch, who married Daniel’s daughter Hannah (see also at No. 62, High Street), and he and Daniel were in partnership together for a few years prior to July, 1840, when it was formally dissolved. Rebecca De Pass worked as a servant to Moses Kisch and was staying on the premises at 6, High Street, Wisbech (known as the ‘Golden Boot’), in 1841.

All of Daniel’s sons became wealthy merchants, with large houses in London. The principal trading partnerships were those of De Pass & Sons, Finsbury Place, London, De Pass Brothers & Co., Melbourne, and John De Pass & Co., Adelaide. Daniel was a partner in all of these concerns until June, 1855. De Pass & Sons were, inter alia, agents for the companies constructing and providing locomotives, rolling stock and equipment for some of the railway lines in Australia. The inspecting engineer for the contracts that they secured for the supply of four locomotive tank engines for the Victorian Railway in 1859 was Isambard Kingdom Brunel. Another of the brothers’ companies was that of A & E De Pass of Cape Town, who were contracted to construct large new docks in Table Bay.

Daniel died at Kensington Garden Terrace, Hyde Park, on 21st January, 1857, aged 60.

Rachael died in Kensington in 1866, aged 70.

Daniel and Rachael’s great grandson, Frank Alexander de Pass (b. 26/04/1887) was the first person of the Jewish faith and the first Indian Army officer to be awarded the Victoria Cross. He was a Lieutenant in the 34th Prince Albert Victor’s Own Poona Horse, and was awarded the VC for clearing a German trench and for rescuing an injured soldier under heavy fire during action near Festubert, France on the 24th November 1914. He was killed the following day when he attempted to re-take the trench which the Germans had re-occupied.

1845 – 1854 (De Pass & Munks)

By the 1840s, Daniel De Pass was spending most of his time in London, and he formed a partnership with Richard Munks to run the Lynn business.

The partnership lasted for about nine years until it was dissolved by mutual consent on 18th July, 1854.

Details of Richard Munks and his family are given below.

1854 – 1861 (Richard Munks)

Following the dissolution of his partnership with Daniel De Pass in 1854, Richard Munks had sole charge of the business.

He was born in 1808 in Grantham, Lincolnshire, the son of Richard Munks, a boot and shoe maker, and his wife Ann. He married Jane Smith in Ancaster, Lincolnshire, on 17th September, 1832. Richard Munks jnr. set up business on his own account and in 1841 there were three independent boot and shoe makers with the name Munks in Grantham; Richard Munks, Richard Munks jnr. and William Munks (Pigot).

By 1846, Richard and Jane had moved to Lynn, where their daughter Mary Elizabeth was born in 1847. The numbering is unclear from the 1851 census, but there is no doubt that the family were living on the premises of De Pass & Munks at No. 33.

Staying with Richard and Jane in 1851 were two ten-year-old nieces, Sarah Smith and Sarah Jane Hastings. The latter may have remained in their care because she was working in the shop in 1861. Sarah was married in Lynn in 1864 to Charles Henry Capon, an auctioneer born in Catton, Norwich.

Richard Munks left No. 33 in October, 1861 and moved into No. 85, High Street:-

‘SELLING OFF!! A Large Stock of Boots and Shoes, in consequence of removal of business to other premises.

MUNKS tenders his best thanks to his friends for their liberal support during a period of 17 years, and begs to make known that he has taken the SHOP and PREMISES, 85, HIGH STREET, lately in the occupation of Mr. Household.

Previous to removal it is R.M.’s object to clear out a greater portion of his Stock, which he offers at prime cost, consisting of Men’s, Women’s, Boys’, Girls’ and Children’s BOOTS and SHOES.

33, High Street, Lynn, October 10th, 1861.’

Mary Elizabeth Munks married Walter James Minns in 1870. Walter (born 1843 in Lynn) was a seaman. He was the son of James Minns (born c1814 in Little Walsingham, Norfolk), a ship owner, and his wife Elizabeth, who lived in South Everard Street in Lynn. Mary and Walter Minns had seven children, all born in Lynn:-

1) Richard James, a marine engineer (b. 1871 – m. Ermina Hannah Lester in 1901 – d. 1926, aged 55). 2) Ethel Jane (b. 1873). 3) Walter Sydney (b. 1875). 4) Mabel Ann (b. 1876). 5) Ivy Elizabeth, a photographer (b. 1878). 6) Ida Mary (b. 1884). 7) Beatrice Nora (b. 1888).

The Minns family moved to Great Crosby in Lancashire.

Jane Munks died in 1879/80, aged 74, and Richard, who by this time had retired, had his grandchildren staying with him in 1881.

Richard Munks died in 1889, aged 81, in Great Crosby where he was staying with his daughter and son-in-law, Mary and Walter Minns. Mary Minns died in 1896, aged 48.

1862 (W. Barnett)

The following advertisement appeared in the Lynn Advertiser on 19th July, 1862:-

‘W. BARNETT, 33, High Street, Lynn, begs to inform the Inhabitants of Lynn and the Public in general, that he has just received from London a large stock of ENGRAVINGS after celebrated artists, and having obtained them on advantageous terms can offer them at very low prices; and he has also a large stock of SHEET ENGRAVINGS, and selling them at half-price.’

1865 – 1866 (Frederick Bullock)

Frederick Bullock, a grocer and provision merchant, was listed here in Kelly’s Post Office Directory of 1865. When the buildings on the High Bridge were demolished in 1866, he moved his business to No. 100, High Street, where more details for him, his family, and his business will be found.