Middle Hulme, Leekfrith, Staffordshire
The Descendants of John Burgh of
Middle Hulme, Leekfrith, Staffordshire:
1450 to Present
by Catharine Ann Brough Hind, June 2004 (updated March 2012), including her material from: The Ancestors and Descendants of the Broughs of Staffordshire, England (RBFO, 1988)
List of John Burgh's Descendants
Richard de Burgh (b.1450) of Brewood, & Alice
Thomas Burgh (b.1480) of Brewood, & Maude, moved to Middle Hulme, Leek, in early 1500's
John Burgh (b.1508) & Johanna of Middle Hulme, Leek
Thomas Burgh (b.1538) & Anne Cooke/Cockeld
Lionel Brough (b.1582) & Anne Wilkinson
Thomas Brough (b.1627) & Margaret Adams
Thomas Brough (chr.1668) & Edith Brindley
John Brough (chr.1702) & Mary
William Brough (chr.1724/5) & Mary Barber...had three sons...
William Brough (chr.1758) & Hannah Robinson
William Brough (b.1801) & Catharine Oulsnam
Edmund Brough (b.1843) & Rachel Cantrell
Edgar Brough (chr.1898) & Rose Edith Turner
Catharine Ann Brough (b.1932) & Stanley Maurice Hind
John Brough (chr.1760) & Mary Hulme
Joshua Brough (chr.1802) & Harriett Littlehales
William Spooner Brough (b.1840)
James Brough (chr.1770) & Ellen Land
James Henry Brough (chr.1816) & Mary Abbott
Charles Brough (chr.1844) & Eliza Mellor
Harry Edwin Brough (chr.1869) & Ellen Marriott
John Burgh and His Descendants
In the annals of Staffordshire, apropos of a violent episode on July 28,1538, that took place at Tittesworth, reference is made to a John Broughe "late of Mydelholme", barely a mile north. The 1547 Will of Robert Brough of Chappelhowse names the executors of John Brough of Middull Hulme as his debtors, so how many of them were there? A John was taxed on Middlehulme in 1543; so were there two Johns, or a third? A Thomas of Mydelholme was equipped with head and leg armour and a shefe of arrows in the muster of 1539. We are on firmer ground when we come to...JOHN BURGH (BROUGH) and JOHANNA (Saunderson) and their descendants.
John made his will on August 20,1557, leaving a moiety (half) of everything to Richard "my elder son" and "my wife and her children, not yet of the age of 14, a moiety." I wonder, was Johanna a second wife? On May 20,1572, Thomas Broughe of the Middlehulme, and "Joanne his wydowed mother" began a dowry indenture with John Cooke, (Cockeld) of Coltesmoore, for a marriage with John's daughter Anne. Obligation was on Thomas and Jane to release to Richard Broughe and to John Gorstelowe (a brother-in-law?) a messuage (farm) and lands, "lying or beinge in Middlehulme". Before matters are concluded in 1574 the situation changes, for elder brother Richard has died and Thomas, executor, is to "pay his brothers and sister (un-named), certain legacies" from Richard's share of the estate.
Interestingly, on April 24, 1574, John Cooke vel Cokely made a Bargain of Sale to Thomas, son of John Jolley, mercer, of land in Leeke-ffelde, for £7. An installment for the £40 that was his side of the Dowry "to be paid in the porch on the South side of the Olde Church in Leke."
In 1611 Thomas made an indenture with Sir Christopher Hatton and Francis Needham, Esq for property on New Grange land in, perhaps, a marriage agreement for his elder son, another Richard. In 1618, Thomas made a Dowry with William Wilkinson of Northrode, Cheshire, for the marriage of son Lionel and William's daughter Anne. Built in to this was provision for his own sister Ellen Brough and his elder son Richard and their heirs. "Richard Brough of New Grange " died in 1637. It is probable that from his heirs in Kingsley the Broughs of Utah sprang.
Lionel and Ann had three sons, Lionel, Thomas and Martin. Lionel Brough (Senior) died by 1643 and Lionel his son in 1649; and his only son, a small child, in 1655. Both widows were entitled to moiety at Middlehulme and Grace, widow of Lionel (Junior) had her brother Thomas Wood as a tenant there, probably as buffer between her and her fearsome mother-in- law Anne. Thomas, Anne's middle son and his bride Margaret ,daughter of Thomas Adams of Bircheshead of the great potting family, felt the full force of her wrath, and we note that their first child was baptised to them "of Netherhulme" a house just south of Middlehulme and perhaps the moiety intended for Richard Brough, their uncle, who died in 1574.
The Broughs of Windygates took it upon themselves to challenge Thomas Brough for Middlehulme, and unbelievably, Anne sided with them. After a deal of acrimony and in an "open court in an ale-house", in which Thomas Brough of Windygates, his kin and their friends made an Award of Middlehulme to themselves, saying that when the last witnesses to the Grants of Thomas, father of Lionel (Senior) were dead, then the Windygates family would "take" the property. In 1668, left with no option, Thomas Brough of Middlehulme, Gentleman, took his case before the great Sir Orlando Bridgeman. Many of Staffordshire's and Cheshire's illustrious names attach to the case as referees overseers and witnesses. Inevitably the expenses impoverished both sides and a procession of tenancy agreements and bonds sold and borrowed against, bear witness to that. Two years later, in 1670, his mother Anne, nee Wilkinson, had left a valuable will and lavish praise on her sons-in-law; but to her son Thomas, one shilling and words of rebuke.
Sadly, Thomas Brough, gentleman, son of Lionel, yeoman ,and the late Anne and grandson of old Thomas Brough, gentleman, died in 1675 and left an estate of goods to the value of only £4.15s. 6d. Small comfort that all of his overseers and executors were "Gentlemen".
Martin, the youngest of Lionel and Anne's sons, a child of nine when his father died, was himself only 25 years old when he died in 1665. His estate was valued at £35 and his goods consisted of three sets of riding clothes and saddles and boots, but no horse; a harybar, weapon and insignia of a sergeant. Had he been disabled in skirmishes of the unsettled period following Civil War and the return of monarchy (1660) for, of an educated household, he alone signed himself with a X? His Will, dated not fifth, but Ye Seventeenth, year of Ye Reign of our sovereign Lord King Charles Ye Second...suggestive of a Royalist in those largely Puritan, Roundhead Moorlands. Generous gifts to his mother and sisters; second and third-best riding gear to brothers-in-law; but Thomas, scorned by his mother, is his favorite brother to have his best riding clothes, the harybar and words of warm affection.
Thomas, born in 1668 to Thomas and Margaret, was a child of twelve when his father died and it is notable that those same gentry who had stood by his father's disappointments were party to all of his climb into adulthood and solvency; and party to indentures for a marriage in 1702 of Thomas to Edith, daughter of John Brindley of Eaves, Kingsley, and Phoebe, his wife, nee Hollins of Mossley Hall. These are two of Staffordshire's oldest families of gentry and yeomen.
Middlehulme was in parlous trouble and may well have suffered the slings and arrows of Civil War; theft of horses and fodder and obliged to lodge troops. Restoration on the house in 2002 shews signs that it has undergone trauma at some stage of its almost five hundred-year-life. In attempts to restore its resources after the war and legal battles, its assets were sub-let, as was often the case by estate-owners in need of income. Fortunately, Thomas was resourceful and made the most of any doors opened to him by his Brindley and Adams kin. He built a new wing on to Middlehulme in 1718. Later in life he paid tax on lands in Alton, Calton Moor, Middlehulme and Trentham where his youngest son Benjamin farmed at Burston-in-Stone. Thomas died in 1748 aged 80 years at Alveton, having settled his own and his father's loans and built his portfolio of properties, justifying the faith reposed in him by all his friends and in-laws and those of his parents.
Thomas and Edith had six children, the oldest, John, born in 1702. John's first two children were John and Richard, baptised in Trentham in 1722 and 1723 to Ann. To Mary he had William, baptised in Leek, 1724, the year in which John came of age (21 years) and in which his father Thomas made over to him a moiety (half) of Middlehulme. In 1736 John died, leaving a quiverful of young children. William was aged twelve, the same age at which his grandfather Thomas had been left fatherless. We would have expected that John, at fourteen the eldest and their father's namesake would be the heir to his property but no, it was twelve-year-old William; and this was initially a puzzle.
When the Mormon Church issued burial as well as marriage and baptism registers, there was nothing more sure than that this would alter the face of many a pedigree, many a pre-held belief. It was so in Trentham's case. "Richard born to John and Ann a servant, died 1723". John too had been born to Ann in 1772, so of course it was William son of Mary, the wife, who was legal heir to Middlehulme. The will of grandfather Thomas,1748, gave a small bequest to "John, son of my son John". However minimal, it recognized John who, uniquely, was a signatory (so he had been schooled!) of family papers in the 1760s. A very uncommon acceptance of a son born out of wedlock.
William Brough, b.1724, had Middlehulme, Calton Moor Farm and the Red Lion Coaching Inn there. He married Mary Barber, daughter of Isaac Barber, watchmaker, blacksmith and innkeeper of Meerbrook, in 1756. With three sons, William 1758, John 1760, and James (bapt. at Bloor) 1770. Mary, wife of Mr. Brough of Middlehulme and Calton Moor was interred, 1773 in Meerbrook. Her widower had nine motherless children, aged three to fifteen years. Vague memory of an 80 year old grandson, writing of what he heard as a child, led to Sleigh's pedigree attributing William's wife Mary as a Plant. Elder half-brother John married Mary Plant in 1745 at Trentham. Unless William remarried is it likely that this aunt cared for them? and that it was her father William Plant of Stoneycliffe who made William Brough and his uncle Benjamin Brough of Stone executors of his will in 1775. "Mr William Brough of Middlehulme, Yeoman," died in 1795. His stone in Meerbrook, although now fallen flat, is still legible and was photographed by RFBO members in August, 2002. With him, his eldest son William, ( d.1811) and wife Hannah, nee Robinson, left widowed, her six children under ten years old. Hannah rented a moiety of Middlehulme to her brother until her children were of an age for her to leave them. She then bought a house in London Road, Leek, and lived as "an annuitant" on family money as described in census records. Living with her, her middle daughter, Benedicta.
The eldest son of William Brough and Hannah Robinson was William Robinson, born 1800. In early 1843 at Sutton in Cheshire, he married his second cousin Catharine Ann Oulsnam of Stoneycliffe whose grandmother Mrs. Ann Ratcliffe nee Brough was sister to William's grandfather William of Middlehulme and Calton Moor Crossroads. Twins Edmund and Ann were born to William and Catharine later in 1843 and another daughter, Hannah two years later. Ann would marry her first-cousin Joseph Oulsnam of Stoneycliffe and Hannah married James Clulowe of The Alderlea. Ann and Joseph`s son John William Oulsnam married a Clulowe niece, Alice; and James and Hannah`s Clulowe`s elder daughter Hannah married her own first-cousin John William Brough, elder son of Edmund of Middlehulme. All in true Leekfryth fashion. Oh what a tangled genealogical web they all wove...except for Edmund who had broken the circle of generations of intermarriage.
The twin son of William and Catharine, and born in 1843, Edmund's marriage to Rachel Cantrell, daughter of a family of Bradnop farmers and blacksmiths had the Brough clan up-in-arms. Not only was she not even distantly related so far as they could discern, but worse! she was a Methodist! Worse yet, her brothers were hell-fire-preachers making a public display of themselves...and their in-laws! Edmund insisted Rachel join him at church; and now the Cantrells were up-in-arms and came regularly to Middlehulme to oblige mother and children to fall on their knees on the stone floor for a long harangue about their wicked ways...well they did if the children didn`t spot their horse and gig coming and race up into hay lofts and trees.
Edmund farmed Middlehulme but with his Silk cousins shared an interest in music, art and the history of their county and family . He was responsible for making a wealth of family papers of the 16thc-on, available for study. Indentures, dowry agreements, etcetera; and gave many into the Brough Archive in Stafford County Record Office. He kept those papers important and personal to his lands and properties at Middlehulme. A wise move then, but ultimately a mistake. With the compulsory-purchase of Middlehulme mid-20thc for flooding and making Tittesworth Reservoir, the papers went to the Waterboard. In 1980, I enquired whether I could see them, only to be told that those prior to 1849 had been destroyed. "It was pointless to keep them when we are short of office space."
Edmund`s twelve children went to Leek Grammar School and some on to the Universities of Durham or Leicester. They learned to play the piano and to sing, although Rachel was unsure of the sense of parting with the money. When Edmund died in 1907 the niceties stopped and it was the elder children who gave the three younger piano lessons. Edmund`s friend and cousin William Spooner Brough (n 1840, d 1917), silkman, naturalist, historian, artist and gallery-owner extended the hand of friendship to widow Rachel and her family, but she had not forgotten how opposed William Spooner Brough had been to Edmund`s marriage to "only a blacksmith`s daughter" urging him as head of the family to take a bride from a county family. She rebuffed him brusquely. When he sent his coachman with gifts for a birthday or Christmas gift, or written invitation to one of his Godchildren to take lunch or tea in his home she sent him homeward with a sharp word. In adulthood those of them who were his Godchildren called at his home in Buxton Road and he taught them about literature and art .To the youngest, Edgar (this writers father) he gave paintings by what were the then avante garde artists.
Once her children were fledged, Rachel Brough moved to The Villa, Buxton Road, the 18thc house belonging to the family as a Town House for attending to their businesses on weekdays; and where their children lodged in term-time attending the Grammar School from their remote homes and farms...until the motor car made it unnecessary to do so.
Middlehulme didn't pass to John William the eldest son as he and his cousin-wife had several properties by inheritance, including Calton Manor House; and Far House at Upperhulme theirs by purchase from another Silk cousin, Edwin Brough. The Old Seat went to Edmund and Rachel`s middle son George Henry Brough, another Silkman,and his wife Elizabeth nee Broster, and then eventually out of the family by compulsory purchase for creation of the Tittesworth Reservoir.
Edmund's children spread their wings around the county and beyond, only John (1877-1946) and Hannah farmed Far House,Windygates, which they bought from cousin Edwin Brough of the Silk Broughs. Here is some information on their children and posterity:
Catharine Ann Brough (1876-1937) m. Charles Moss of the Oxheye, Meerbrook. One daughter, Jessie Lillian.
John William Brough (1877-1946) married Hannah Clewlow; son of John (1907-1977) o.s.p., daughter: Gladys Catharine (1909-1974).
Thomas Brough (1878-1955) married Hilda Foster of Derby. Farmed Fryth Bottom and then went into business in Longton. Had three daughters.
Lucy Brough (1880-1934) married Arthur Eardley of Fynney Lane Farm, nr. Cheddleton. Three daughters and a son who died in childhood.
Edmund Brough [chr. 1882] died in infancy, 1884.
Hannah Brough (1883-1932) died unmarried at The Villa, Buxton Road.
Archibald Brough (1885-1967) married Cicely Fynney. Three daughters. Proprietor, Silk Dyeworks, Leek.
Joshua Brough (1887-1938) married Jessica Heywood. Proprietor, Silk Manufactory, Leek. Two daughters.
George Henry Brough (1888-1979) married Elizabeth Tyson Broster. Silk Manufactory, Leek. Son Lionel ( 1926-1986), unmarried, o.s.p. ; and two daughters.
Edwin Brough (1890-1968) married Sarah Burnett of Bottom House, Ipstones. Farmed Ladymeadows, Bradnop. Son died in infancy. Two daughters.
Wilfrid Brough (1892-1973) married Mary Downey of Cramp Castle, County Fethard, Tipperary. Son Lawson, (1921-1989), o.s.p. One daughter. Proprietor, Silk Mnfctr., Leicester & Engineering Works, Brentford, Middlesex.
Norman Brough (1894-1964) married Gwendoline Billings of Leek, Proprietor, Silk Dyeworks, Leek, Nottingham, & London. Two daughters.
Edgar Brough (1898-1958) married Rose Edith Turner. Proprietor, Woollen Manufacturer, Ealing. One daughter, Catharine Ann (b.1932).
Edgar Brough born 1898, was the last child of Edmund Brough and Rachel nee Cantrell and the last baby born to Middlehulme in a 500 year union of the House and the family. Edgar enlisted in the Royal Flying Corps in 1920 where, after graduating from Leicester in Textile Machinery Engineering, he worked in development of aero engines; deafness excluding him from flying. In 1929 he founded a woollen manufactory and engineering company in tandem, maintaining and building textile machinery; in Ealing, West London. His wife Rose was the designer of their classic knitwear and haute couture suits; supplying top London Fashion Houses like Hardy Amies, The White House in New Bond Street and Marshall and Snelgrove and in this way often dressed Royal and Society ladies.
Edgar and Rose Brough`s only child was born in 1932 and named Catharine Ann, after Edgar`s oldest sister, and great-grandmother (nee Oulsnam), but called Ann. At the age of eighteen Ann met Stanley Maurice Hind., her future husband, in the church where they would marry three years later. Stanley was at King`s College, London University, graduating with an A.K.C. degree combining Arts with Theological studies. A fourth and final year of purely Theological study prepared him for Ordination firstly to the Diaconate and then to the Priesthood in the Church of England.
After their marriage in August 1954, Ann joined Stanley at Haydock, Lancashire where he served his first curacy; his second at All Saints, Elland, in the Wakefield Diocese, Yorkshire, where they stayed ever afterwards, near to where Stanley was born. In 1960 he was inducted vicar of his own parishes, first of all St Paul`s, Mirfield; 1968 to St Michael`s, Carleton with St Stephen`s, East Hardwick, Pontefract. These were his first held in plurality, followed by St Peter`s and All Saints, Morley in 1978. In 1986 as incumbent of St Martin`s, Womersley of Martin`s, Womersley and St Peter`s, Kirk Smeaton, he was given a Canonry of Wakefield Cathedral. Retiring in1994 Stanley and Ann moved only four miles, back to Carleton which they had left eighteen years before and he was made Canon Emeritus.
Following his retirement Stanley Hind devoted himself to locum tenens in churches where there were interregna or illness. Ann has researched her Brough family and the County of Staffordshire for half of her life alongside duties to home, family and parish and is considered by the Brough Family Organization as the most knowledgeable Brough historian and genealogist in the world. Stanley was the lynchpin of Ann's research work and put her lifetime work of many hours spent finding and transcribing documents in Record Offices in diverse counties online via the Internet. Stanley Maurice Hind died on 23 January 2007, and was buried on 31 July 2007 in St. Martin's churchyard, Womersley, Pontefract, West Yorkshire. In 2010, Ann Hind moved to Tilehurst, West Berkshire.
For further information about Stanley M. Hind and Catharine Ann Brough, see the following websites:
One might have supposed that from ten sons, Edmund Brough who married Rachel Cantrell on November 8, 1875, might have populated the world with Broughs, but no. Of those surviving from an initial thirty-four children, only three were boys and of those but one married, and was childless. It was from Edmund`s Uncle Thomas Brough, born 1803, of Hazlewood that there are a further four or five generations of the name of "Middlehulme."
This Thomas Brough of Hazzlewood House Farm, second son of William Brough and Hannah Robinson, was turned fifty years when he married Sarah Robinson, who was quite likely a relative. He died in 1869 and his widow bought Little Bent Head on the Middlehulme estate, for her three sons and daughter, all under ten years. The eldest of the two sons who grew to adulthood was William who married Elizabeth Grindy and farmed Hallows Grange at Wetton.From this line of Broughs of Middlehulme and now at Cronkstone Grange and Rakeway Farm, Moneyash, Derbyshire are:
1. William Spooner Brough = Doris … sons Neil and Teddy.
2. Alec Adolphous Brough=Mary Gould,one son,Tony.
3. John Robert Brough = Mary Thompson,one son William.
4. Raymond of Rakeway Farm = Ann Woolley Their sons are (I). Eric, has a son, Kirk. (ii) Phil, has no children (iii) Roy, with Andrew,Leslie, Derek and William, and (iv) Derek = Julie; sons,Samuel and Benjamin.
5. James Reginald of Rybrook, Grindon = Caroline Mycock sons Adrian and Winston and two daughters Audrey and Fiona
6. Frank=Vera Boulton, daughter Margaret .
7. Joshua = Emily …
8. Grace n.1917
11. Irene n.1920 = William Cole.
The youngest son of Thomas Brough and Sarah nee Robinson was Edwin, n.1869, the year his father died. He married Clara Brunt in 1909, In adult life he tried a number of careers and this shews in the varied places where his five children were born.
1.Edwin, born 1910 at Bottom House, Leek,died 1973.
2. William Spooner Brough, born 1913 at Stockport,Lancashire. His sons,William Spooner Brough n.1934 and Christopher,n 1956, both in Leek.
3. Basil Brough, n. 1916 at Manchester, no children.
4. Bertram Brough (born 1919 at Rudyard, Leek, died 1998) was very well known as a Postmaster, champion Chrysanthemum breeder some seventeen years running and a respected member of Leek Congregational Church where the Silk Broughs were worshippers and benefactors. Bertram married Betty Jones, and their one son, Maurice Ian Brough (b.1948 ) = Shirley Kent. They live in Cheddleton with daughters Tymozin,born 1978 and Nichola,born 1981.
5. Freda, Mrs. Altman.
The third son of William Brough and Hannah nee Robinson, of Middlehulme was John, born in 1808. In 1845, John married Martha Critchlow at Longton. Sons Joshua and John were born in 1849 and 1852; daughters Elizabeth in 1847 and Ella in 1861; their home was New Cottage on the Middlehulme estate. The two Johns, father and son were shoemakers, a trade pursued in Leek and Meerbrook. After the death of John the elder in 1871 and the marriage of John junior, widow Martha and her daughters moved and bought a house in Wood Street, Leek, leaving New Cottage clear for son John and his wife Eve. They had only daughters. Eve Elizabeth born in 1880 (died 1956) and Ella who died in May 1961, both in the house in Wood Street. Two charming, knowledgeable ladies of religious conviction and strong character, whom I remember for always just putting something into, or just taking something out of, their oven. It was a welcoming house of abundant hospitality and from Cousin Eva and Cousin Ella (for they were grandfather's cousins not mine, nor even fathers, so even he and his brothers addressed them by the formal title) I first got my interest in our family and its history. When I was in Leek as an evacuee after our home in London was twice-bombed [during World War II], they took me around Leek and shewed me where Broughs had been, and told me what they had done, not only for themselves but for their district and their neighbours.
We have followed the descendants of two of the three sons of 18th c William Brough [who married Mary Barber in 1756] of MiddleHulme, Calton Moor Crossroads and the Red Lion there. William the oldest at MiddleHulme; James, founder of the Brown Paper and Box Company in Leek, the youngest, and now John, n 1760, the middle son.
The following paragraphs are from the work of Mr. George Lovenbury , Leek Historian:
John Brough (chr.1760) married Mary Hulme of Lower Tittesworth, Leek on December 22, 1801. Although John Brough farmed both Lower Tittesworth and Frithbottom, Leek, he apparently did not intend for his sons to remain farmers all their lives. In 1815, John Brough established himself as a silkman in the Mill at the lower end of Union Street in Leek (in what later became part of William Milner and Company), and encouraged his three sons to enter the silk business after their graduation from school.
It is interesting to note that John Brough and his three sons were free-churchmen, in fact Congregationalists, and are buried in the Non-Conformist graveyard at Mount Pleasant Wesleyan Chapel on Clerks Bank. It is also worth mentioning that the New Chapel of Leek, later called the Temperance Hall on Union Street, was built in 1833 at a cost of 1,300 pounds, and that the Ashton and Brough families were generous contributors. However, the Congregationalists desired a larger chapel and built the one today on Derby Street. On July 7, 1862, the third and youngest son of John Brough, John Brough Jr. (chr. 1809), laid the cornerstone for the Derby Street chapel, and there is no doubt that the Brough family were generous contributors to the cost of this building as well.
[Footnote to Mr. Lovenbury's paragraph above: Ann Brough Hind states that "Nonconformity, especially Congregationalism, went hand-in-hand with cloth mill-owning and usually Liberal politics-especially in Yorkshire and Lancashire." She continues:]
Of John Brough's three sons, James Brough (chr. 1804) died in 1854 only three years after his marriage to Margaret Jane, daughter of Richard Muccleston of Shrewsbury. His first son was James Rowland Brough,n. 1852. He married Fanny Gertrude, daughter of James Tidmarsh of Highbury, county Middlesex in 1881.Their first son,Wilfrid James, born in 1882 was followed by Cecil Hubert, Maurice and Harold Gordon, and five daughters.
James Rowland Brough had an illustrious career and on a far wider stage than that of his Leek cousins,even that of Joshua, Leek's Grand Seigneur! He was educated privately and at Tettenhall College. His initiation into business life was in the family silk firm in Leek and London until he transferred his interests to a partnership into a wholesale stationers and paper merchants under the style of A.J.Brown Brough & Co.,London, Leicester and Melbourne, with London offices in Warwick Lane and warehouses in Clerkenwell.
Like many successful businessmen James Brough entered keenly into the corporate,municipal, educational and philanthropic life of the City and Metropolitan Boroughs. In 1898 he was elected into membership of the City Council and chosen as Chairman of Library and Art Gallery and Central Markets.On the visit of the German emperor to the Guildhall on Nov. 13th,1907, Mr. Brough received from the Imperial guest, the distinguished honour of the Order of the Crown of Prussia, Second Class. In December, 1912, he was appointed Alderman and the distinction of a Lieutenancy of the city of London and President of the United Wards Club of the City of London. From 1900 he was Alderman and Mayor of Stoke Newington Borough and for twenty-five years Chairman of the County Council Education Authority and in many philanthropic works for the unemployed, as Chairman of the finance committee.
A member of the Council of L'entente Cordiale Society and the Anglo-German Club of Cologne , he traveled widely in Europe ,the United States, Canada ,the Holy Land ,India, Egypt , the Middle East and Canary Isles. His hobbies were shooting and golf, books and pictures. He was a member of the British Astronomical and Quekett Microscopical Societies.
John Brough Jr. (chr. 1809) was a Justice of the Peace and married Sarah Gill in 1843. John and Sarah had a son named Edwin Brough (born in 1844) who was in the silk manufacturing business for several years, but eventually left Leek. He married Helen,daughter of John Graham, deputy Master of the Royal Mint.Her health began to deteriorate and she and Edwin built their great house,named Windygates, near Scarborough on the North Yorkshire coast. Edwin was internationally known as a famous breeder of Bloodhound dogs. Experts came from America in the 1880's, but as they wanted to cross them with the Cuban Hound, bred not just to track a man and hold him, but to bring him down, he [Edwin Brough] refused them and they returned empty -handed. At the turn of the Century (19th/20th), the London Commissioner of Police invited Edwin to take hounds up to London in an attempt to track down the notorious Jack the Ripper. This had no success, but as Family correspondence shews, Edwin always thought it impossible for his hounds to find a scent of one man (especially the right one!) weeks too late and where thousands had walked since. He was, however, pleased to note that no further murders occurred during the period when his hounds were known to be in London. Both Helen and Edwin died in the 1920s in Folkestone on the South Coast.
John Brough's oldest son, Joshua Brough (chr. 1802), was perhaps the best known of John's three sons.Joshua Brough (chr. 1802) was a very kind, public spirited man. In 1837, Joshua Brough married Harriett Littlehales of Erdington and they had a daughter named Mary (born in 1839 and who married John Beavis Brindley, first Recorder of Hanley) and a son named William Spooner Brough (born in 1840) who became a well-known English artist and scholar. Like most Non-Conformists, Joshua Brough was a liberal and Free-trader, and was active on the committee set up in his community to press for the repeal of the Corn Laws. Joshua was the secretary of this particular committee from 1840 to 1846, when it was disbanded. The following description of Joshua Brough has been given by Mr. G.A. Lovenbury, a Leek historian:
"Joshua Brough, a J.P., was the most important of the three sons [of John Brough]. In 1850, at the Mechanics Institute there was a Penny Bank set up to encourage thrift-and here again Joshua Brough was the secretary. He was a commissioner under the Leek Improvement Act; he erected the Buxton Spout and gave it to the town 'pro bono publico' as the legend on it states. In 1853, Joshua and [his brother] John Brough [Jr.], as representatives of the female line of the Davenport-Hulmes, bought Hall Haye Hall, which Dr. Davenport-Julme had built about 1790, to keep it in the family. Joshua Brough lived at Buxton Villa and retired in 1868 at the same time as his brother John. If the engraving of Joshua in Sleigh's history [book] is anything to go by he must have been among the kindest of men. It was Joshua Brough, it will be remembered, who engaged Joshua Nicholson in 1837 to be a representative of J. & J. Brough and Company, and these two Joshuas played a big part in the rise and prosperity of Leek as a silk town. J.& J. Brough and Company became Brough, Nicholson & Company, and later Brough, Nicholson & Hall, Ltd."
William Spooner Brough (1840-1917) has been described as follows by Leek historian Mr. G. A. Lovenbury:
"And now we come that great character William Spooner Brough, only son of Joshua [Brough] who was born in 1840 and educated at Leek Grammar School and Mill Hill School, London N.W.7, the Non-Conformist public school. He left Mill Hill at sixteen and joined the family [silk] business as a bound apprentice in 1856. In the year 1868, when his father [Joshua Brough] retired, he was made a partner [in the family silk business] at the same time as his cousin Edwin Brough and John Hall.
"In 1880 [William] retired (at the age of 40) to devote himself to his first love, which was art. That same year he built the house Littlehales on the Buxton Road and soon afterwards went to London where 'he was engaged in decorative art and in the study of black and white.' Also in London he and his friend Thomas Wardle (later Sir Thomas Wardle) of Leekbrook had an art shop in Bond Street.... He amassed a fantastic collection of oils, water-colours, prints, etchings and engravings. He also had a collection of fine books. He was not only a collector and bibliophile, he was also an artist. In 1908 he loaned 256 pictures for exhibition at Trentham Hall, including a dozen examples of his own work in water-colour-and that did not include his larger pictures, his etching, prints or engravings....
"[However,] it must not be assumed that art was all [William] thought about, for he was a man of many parts. For a period of twelve years he was secretary of the Mechanics Institute; he was a County Councillor from its formation and was a County Alderman at the time of his death. He was a Justice of the Peace. He had been Chairman of the County Lunacy Committee and was greatly involved in the erection of Cheddleton Mental Hospital. For years he had been Hon. Secretary of the North and South Staffordshire Discharged Prisoners Aid Society. In 1883 he was appointed a County Justice and was a Visiting Justice at Stafford Goal [jail]. On his death it was said of him: 'Of his public work he would prefer to be remembered chiefly for his care of discharged prisoners.' Many owed their reclamation to him, [although] some of his efforts ended in failure. He laughingly, but not without a note of sadness, told the story of a discharged prisoner to whom he gave a new start in London. At Euston one day he met his protégé who 'kindly offered to carry his bag.' [William] never again saw his protégé or the bag!
"For some years [William] was Captain of the Leek Fire Brigade [and gave the town its Fire Engine.] In 1879 he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society. He was a botanist and a member of the North Staffordshire Field Club, being President in 1878. In 1898 he laid out and planted The Waste, which he gave to the town [of Leek]. He opened his garden, on land adjoining Littlehales, to the public for their pleasure; he planted the avenue of trees which made the Buxton Road the finest approach to the town [of Leek]. In January 1913, [William] gave the land of Ball Haye for a park, but owing to the war it was not ready to be opened for another decade-in 1924 in fact, seven years after his death in 1917. In his Will he left three houses in Ball Haye Road to be sold, and for the proceeds to form a Charity. The property realized 1,000 pounds and the money was handed to Trustees to invest and administer. This was quite a sum in 1918!
"William Spooner Brough] died on 5th November 1917 shortly before his 77th birthday. That morning he was wheeled in his Bath-chair for the last time when taken to Leek Cemetery to place flowers on the grave of a servant who had died a year before. That performed he returned to his home and died of a seizure later in the day. He had never married and his heir was his sister's son Harold-Hulme Brindley...."
The following section by the late Mr John A.R.Brown,whose kin these are: James Brough (chr.1770), the youngest son of William Brough and Mary Barber of Middlehume was a carpenter-joiner in Doveridge when he married Ellen Land in 1811. Her father was a wheelwright and it may well be that James learned his craft from him and married his daughter. Of their four sons, little is known of Thomas, William and John, born between 1814 and 1830. But it was the second son Henry, born 1816, who made a mark upon Leek.
As a young boy, Henry Brough (chr.1816) became a silkworker for his Uncle John, but in his early twenties he took premises in Russell Street, Leek, and set himself up as a buttonmaker. He manufactured silk buttons for the trade and contracted much of it out to Moorland famers' wives, who each Wednesday would take bone buttons and silk home with them and return with them next Market Day.
By 1841, Henry Brough had married Mary Abbott, daughter of the head of an old Leek family, and they made their home in Buxton Road. He also expanded his enterprise by opening a paper-box works so that now he was trading both the buttons and the means of packing the fabrics made by his uncle and cousins. Obviously, he had seen a need and fulfilled it.
Henry Brough and Mary Abbott had four sons and a daughter, born between 1842 and 1857. Henry became a teetotaler and a pillar of the Congregational Church. He was by then long devoted to working for the Mechanics Institute, with its library, educational facilities and savings schemes to encourage workers thrift. He became the Secretary of the Institute in 1846, and whilst diligent he was also strong-willed and known to be amiable so long as he was getting his own way.
Edward, the eldest son of Henry Brough and Mary Abbott, became a clerk to an attorney. In his thirties, Edward died of the effects of drink upon his liver.
James (Jimmy) Brough, the youngest son of Henry Brough and Mary Abbott, joined his father's box business in his teens. In 1876, the business expanded into purpose-built factory premises in Stockwell Street, trading as H. Brough and Son. His mother called him "such a pretty child" and the favoritism continued until now.
Charles Brough (chr.1844), the second son of Henry Brough and Mary Abbott, saw that "Pretty Jimmy" was being groomed to take over the family firm. So when Jimmy inherited everything after his father's death, the family split for the whole of their lives.
Charles Brough was like his grandfather James Brough (chr.1770)-a skilled joiner and cabinet-maker in Leek. Charles had hoped that his son Harry would join him to carry on the business in Leek. But Harry Brough (chr.1869), refused to accept any commission that he thought beneath his skills. "We are cabinetmakers not carpenters" he would say with a sniff. He would take offense at the slightest provocation. Anyone who spoke in a break in conversation would get a withering look and be silenced with, "I am still speaking." Harry even refused to be seen in the streets carrying a bag of tools, and people were afraid to ask him as they knew he would be insulted. Consequently, once Harry's father, Charles, could work no more, the business failed.
After the business failed, Charles' wife, Eliza Mellor, and his daughter Gerty, rolled up their sleeves and, taking premises opposite Leek Cattle-Market, made a living serving meals to farmers on Market Days and pies to silk-workers during the week. When Charles' brother, James, died in 1930, the local paper reported on his business and the Majestic cinema that he originally built up as a hobby, adding a reminder that "Mr Charles Brough is his brother."
Charles Brough had three other daughters whom he urged in dialect "It's time some o' you wenches was wed."--which they all did in the 1890's. Only one son-in-law suited Charles, and that was James Lilley, husband of Lucy. He founded a firm that was destined to become international, and that was Pretty Polly Hosiery, in which he was eventually joined by their son Norman.
In Memorandum: Catharine Ann Brough Hind remembers John Allan Russell Brown
In conclusion, I wish to finish this portion of the Brough history with acknowledgement of a lineage that has become known within the Brough family as the Brown-Broughs. It began in 1879, when a Prudential Insurance Agent named Harry Brown met Mary Ellen Brough, daughter of Henry Brough (chr.1816), founder of the Button and Box Co., and sister to Charles the cabinet-maker and to James of the box works and cinema.
Harry Brown and Mary Ellen Brough lived in prosperous Handsworth, a suburb of Birmingham, and had six children, one of whom was Herbert. They spent their holidays in Leek and cycled to visit their grandfather, Henry, who was then in quiet retirement in a small house in Leek and who delighted in seeing them.
In 1900, Mary Ellen died, and Harry Brown had six motherless children to care for. He sent for his sisters to come and help take care of his children. Harry was only forty-seven when Mary died, and he decided to stop work and spend his life wandering England photographing the tombstones of hymnwriters…taking with him his son Herbert as his assistant.
Following the death of the eccentric Harry, young Herbert Brown was at last free to pursue his own life. He went to Leek and met his cousin Minnie Rushton, a grand-daughter of his uncle Charles Brough. They married, stayed in Leek and set up a photographers shop. In 1923, Herbert and Minnie had a son, John Allan Russell Brown.
In 1981, I wrote an open letter to the Leek Post newspaper asking the whereabouts of a Brown-Brough or a member of the Brown paper and box clan. There was no result. The following year a historian wrote to me with a query, then again to thank me, and…"by the way, are you aware of a Mr. John Brown who is very knowledgeable on the Broughs of Leek?" I wrote straightway and asked him, "Are you a Brown-Brough?" The next day I had a delighted telephone response. We corresponded and researched together for ten years. He was a legal mind and had done one type of research, while I, who must know why things happened and what people did, took another route. Between us we had a massive personal archive which we shared and continued to amass. It was John Brown who told us of the 1668 Windygates attempt to take Middlehulme from its heir, and within the written evidence he also provided names of four generations of sons of Middlehulme found nowhere else, as well as the probable answer to the early RBFO search for a "missing" Richard Brough.
Mr. John Brown insisted that I must never use his name, embarrassed to be thanked. However, I was ever conscious that substantial evidence was found by him and we would still be searching blind alleys without his diligence and acumen. One of his daughters, Mrs. Barbara Mutch, contacted me in 1993, with the sad news that he had suddenly died. Yet, since his death and up to the present time, I--and members of the RBFO--have frequently consulted his early records and analysis of situations in an effort to keep our facts straight and solve our mutual genealogical and historical problems. Hence, I feel it necessary to acknowledge the tremendous contributions that John Brown has made to documenting and understanding Brough genealogy and history; for without him we would know much less than what we do today.