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3 1924 052 531 773 

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De Quincey's Eulogy — A Beautiful View — The Beginnings of the City — In the Days of the Romans — 
Roman Roads and Remains — The Saxon Town — Castle, Church, Corn-mill, and Oven — Kshing in 
the Irk — Pillory, Stocks, Gallows, and Tumbrel — The Obelisk — The Daubholes or Ducking Station 
— Baronial History — Salford Bridge — Early Manufactures — Besieged — The Town in the Eighteenth 
Century — St. Ann's Church and Square — Commencement of Prosperity — The First Exchange — 
Prince Charlie's Quarters — Zealous Jacobites — Blackfriars Bridge — The Dark Entry — Visit of John 
Howard — The old House of Correction — The Sanctuary — The New Fleet — The New Bayley — Town 
Improvements at the end of the Eighteenth Century — Rurality — Greenheys — The young De Quinceys 
and the Factory Lads — The Fringe of Country — Construction of new Roads — Birth of the Town 
of To-day — The Hand-loom Weavers — Rash Rooks — Demolition of the Old Town — Municipal 
Boundaries — Population — The Smith's Account-book — Southey's Short Stay — Arthur Young's Visit 
—Fly-boats on the Canals— The Intellectual Lead— The "Seven Stars "—The "Sun" Inn— Poets' 
Corner ... 



The Cathedral — The Nave and Choir — The Chapels — Rich Carving — Strange Aids to Devotion — External 
Appearance — History of the Building — Thomas de la Warre and his College of the Blessed Virgin 
— Sir John Huntingdon — The Elizabethan Charter — Christ's College — The Wardens— Vaux — The 
Astrologer Dee — Heyrick — Stratford — The Peploes — Calvert — Herbert — Old Jotty Brookes — The 
Agitation about the Church Revenues and the Bishopric — Bishops Lee, Eraser, Moorhouse — Ex- 
Chancellor Christie, Maecenas of a later Age — Tbe Present Cathedral Clergy — Dean Maclure — 
Archdeacons Anson and Wilson — Canon Kelly — The Parish — Misplaced Idyllic : Not a Nocturne 
in Stone — The Chetham College — Description and History — A Distinguished Visitor — A Respectable 
Giant — The Library and Reading-room — The College Owners — James, Earl of Derby, and his high- 
born Wife — Scott Free at Last — Hail to Chetham ! — Old Crossley — A Model Librarian — The 
Grammar School — -The Old and the New — Bishop Oldham — Some Fine Regulations — Alumni 
Exempliores — A Peculiar Trait in Business Men — Scholastic Regeneration v. Fossilisiu — F. W. 
Walker — Oliver Heywood the Beloved 






The old Manorial Government — The Watch Commissioners — The Struggle for the Charter — Good Old 
Manchester Tories — The Old Town Hall — William Neild, the Incorporator — Thomas Potter, the 
first Mayor — Sir John Potter and the Eoyal Visit of 1851 — The Manchester Mayors : James 
Kershaw, Sir Elkanah A.rmitage — Abel Heywood and the New Town Hall — The Assize Courts — 
Ivie Mackie — Aldermen Curtis, Goadsby, and Bennett — The City Police Court — Robert Neill — 
The Infirmary and its Benefactors, Alderman Barnes and Sir James Watts — The late Mayors : 
Aldermen Grave, Booth, and Watkins, Charles Sydney Grundy, Patteson, Goldschmidt, Battey, 
Mark, Leech, Marshall — An Exemplary Modern Municipality — The Council and its Committees — 
Waterworks — The Stone-Pipe Jobbery — Longdendale and Thirlmere — Sir John James Harwood — 
The Gasworks — The Free Library — A Historic Gathering — Sir Thomas Potter — A Model Librarian 
- — The Manorial Rights — A Corporation is a Body without a Conscience — The old Fairs and the 
Market Dues — The Parks and Cemeteries — Some Corporation Celebrities ... ... ... ... 81 


The following pages give the life-story of Manchester, the leading modern mercantile municipality, one 
that has led the way in, and epitomised in her history, the commercial revolution of the modern world, 
a revolution which has cleft the history of our planet atwain with so deep a chasm of separation, that 
even now we cannot measure or bridge it. Three, four generations have passed, and now we are anxiously 
claiming of this new mercantile order its self-justification. This is the content of my book to him who 
reads and does not run. 

Nobody could have been more kindly helped than I have been in putting .together these pages. Local 
feeling in the south-east of the county is very strong, and has given birth to an embarrassing wealth of 
literature. Almost every side of Manchester life and history has been treated in the contribution columns 
of her papers — notably the City News, a model of a local paper. To its many writers, named and 
unnamed, Mr. Grindon, Mr. Mortimer, and many more, I am inestimably indebted. As also to 
correspondents of every profession who have freely replied to my requests for information. To Mr. Sutton 
of the Free Library I am obliged for advice and kindness at every turn, and for help without which I 
positively could not have written. Together with my friend, Mr. Ernest Axon, to whom I owe more 
than I can say, he has revised the proofs throughout. 

On behalf of Mr. Tidmarsh I hasten to acknowledge the readiness with which prints and 
photographs have been furnished him by Mr. Franz Baum, Messrs. Guttenberg, and many others and the 
unfailing courtesy with which he has been everywhere I'eeeived. 

W. A. Shaw. 
Ashton-under-Lyne, 1894. 

The Arms of Manchester Title-page 

Printing Office of Harrop's " Mercury," 1752 viii 

Reduced Facsimile of the S.W. View of Manchester, 

Published by Casson and Berry in 1746 ... ... ... 4 

The Ducking-stool ... ... ... ... ... ... 5 

The Obelisk (Nathan Crompton's Folly), Market Place, 

Manchester ... ... ... ... ... ... ... 6 

Plan of Manchester and Salford, 1650 8 

The Old Church and (Salford) Bridge, from Blackf riars ... 9 

Victoria and Blackfriars Bridges 9 

Stanley, Lord Strange, Seventh Earl of Derby 12 

Thos. Syddall (Executed 1746) 12 

John Byrom in his Undergraduate Days ... ... ... 12 

Dr. Thomas Deacon 12 

Old St. Ann's Square '13 

Dickenson's House 13 

Dr. Deacon's House ... ... ... ... ... ... 13 

The Quay 13 

Old Blackfriars Bridge 16 

Old House of Correction on Hunt's Bank 16 

Plan of Central Manchester 17 

Old CofEee Houses and Entry to St. Ann's Square, pulled 

down to make way for the Exchange 20 

■ Old Buildings, Long Millgate 21 

Dr. Byrom's House, Hanging Ditch 21 

Old Buildings near Strangeways Bridge 21 

Mr. Hyde's Shop, Market Street 21 

Old House and Dye House fronting Long Millgate ... 21 
Plan of Market Street, showing the division of property 

and lines of an intended alteration (1S22) 21 

Corporation Street ... ... ... ... ... ... 24 

Smithy Door 25 

Old " Woolpack Inn," Deansgate, site of present Victoria 

Buildings 28 

Old " Seven Stars," Withy Grove 28 

Poets' Corner (the " Sun " Inn) 28 

The " Rover's Return," Shudehill 29 

The Old Market-place 32 

St. Ann's Square .. . ... ... ... ... ... ... 33 

Miserere in the Choir 35 

Monument to Humphrey Chetham, in the Cathedral, look- 
ing towards the Derby Chapel 36 

Nave of the Cathedral 37 

Bishop Fraser's Monument 39 

Dr. John Dee 40 

Nicholas Stratford, D.D 40 

Richard Wroe, D.D 40 

Samuel Peploe, D.D. (the elder) 40 

Samuel Peploe, LL.D 40 

Thomas Calvert, D.D 

Caricature of Joshua Brookes 

Bishop Prince Lee 
Bishop Eraser 

Bishop Moorhouse 

Under the Cathedral Walls 

The Cathedral from Deansgate 
Dean Maolure 
Archdeacon Wilson 
Archdeacon Anson 
Ex-Chanoellor Christie ... 

Ground Plan of Chetham College 

The Courtyard, Chetham College 

Carved Boss on the Ceiling of the Warden's Room, Chetham 


Warden's or Audit Room, Chetham College,.. 
Reading-room, Chetham College 

Great Hall, Chetham College : Founder's Day 

Chetham College, from the Irk 

Humphrey Chetham 

Turton Tower, near Bolton : One of the Residences of 

Humphrey Chetham... 

James Crossley 

Bookstalls in Shudehill Market 

Library, Chetham College 

Grammar School Gymnasium .. . 

Chemical Laboratory of the Grammar School 

The Grammar School and College Gateway, Long Millgate 

Hugh Oldham 

The Old Grammar School and College Gateway 

Charles Lawson ... 

The Drawing Hall, Grammar School ... 

J. E. King, M.A., the High -master 

Oliver Heywood ... 

F. W. Walker, a former High-master... 

High-master's House, Long Millgate... 

The Old Seal 

Dr. White's House, King Street 

Hall and Staircase, Free Reference Library, King Street ... 

Sir John Potter ... 

Sir Thomas Potter 

Alderman William Neild 

Sir Elkanah Armitage ... 

Alderman Abel Heywood 

Corporation Road-making, Princess Street and Town Hall 

The Great Hallin the Town Hall 

J. Kendrick Pj'ne, the City Organist 

The Grand Staircase in the Town Hall 

The Council Chamber, Town Hall, from the Public Gallery 








South-west Gates to Peel Park (removed from Strange- 
ways Hall) 

Alderman I vie Maokle ... 

Alderman Curtis 

Alderman Robert Neill ... 

Dr. Charles White 

The Police Courts, Minshull Street .. 

Under the Memorial, Albert Square .. 

The Lunatic Asylum, Infirmary, and Public Baths, 1789 

Piccadilly and the Infirmary at the Time of the Queen' 
Visit, 1851 

The Alice Ward in the Infirmary 

Cheadle Asylum (Men's Wing), from the Bowling Green 

Mr. Robert Barnes 

Sir James Watts 

Whitsuntide Processions : The Italian Section 

Free Drinks in Piccadilly 

A Corporation Cart : Cleansing Department. . . 

The Waterworks, Torside Reservoir 


Sir John J. Harwood 

The Rochdale Road Gasworks from the Lancashire and 
Yorkshire Railway 





Sale of Coke at the Gasworks 125 

Stretford Road, with Hulme Old Town Hall and the Free 

Library 128 

The Whitworth Buildings, Openshaw 129 

Municipal Buildings at Newton Heath 129 

Interior of Reference Library, King Street 131 

Deansgate Branch Library and Market 132 

Sir Thomas Baker 133 

Mr. Chas. W. Sutton, Chief Librarian 133 

Smithfield Wholesale Market 136 

Carapfield Market and St. Matthew's Church, Deansgate ... 137 

Ford Madox Brown ... 139 

The Building of the Roman Fort at Manounium 140 

Humphrey Chetham's Life Dream 141 

The Opening of the Bridgewater Canal, 1761 142 

Peel Park, the Irwell, and Pendleton, from the Crescent ... 144 
Philips Park Cemetery, and Bradford Gasworks, from 

Philips Park 145 

The Terrace Walk, Alexandra Park 148 

Interior of Leaf Street Baths 149 

Sir Joseph Heron ... 151 

Mr. C. Malcolm Wood, Chief Constable 151 

Part of a Brass in the Cathedral, 1607 152 


Looking Up Market Steeet 

Makket Place feom Makket Street 

The Cathedral from Hunt's Bank 

The Choir op the Cathedral 

Chetham College and Grammar School from the Cathedral Yard 

Manchester from the Grammar School 

King Street, showing the Free Reference Library (formerly the Town Hall) and County Bank 

The Town Hall 

The Assize Courts, Strangewats 

Piccadilly and the Rotal Infirmary 

Gasworks : Drawing Coke, Rochdale Road 

Smithfield Market, from Oak Street 



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• Hearty and sincere its inhabitants are noted to be in their affections and expressions, but very stiff and 
resolute against their enemies, and very zealous in whatsoever they engage." — Dr. Smith's MSS. 

De Quinoey's Eulogy — A Beautiful View — The Beginnings of the City — In the Days of the Romans — Roman Roads and 
Remains — The Saxon Town — Castle, Church, Corn-mill, and Oven — Fishing in the Irk — Pillory, Stocks, Gallows, and 
Tumbrel — The Obelisk — The Daubholes or Ducking Station — Baronial History — Salford Bridge — Early Manufactures — 
Besieged — The Town in the Eighteenth Century — St. Ann's Church and Square — Commencement of Prosperity — The 
First Exchange^Prince Charlie's Quarters — Zealous Jacobites — Blackfriars Bridge — The Dark Entry — ^Visit of John 
Howard — The old House of Correction — The Sanctuary — The New Fleet — The New Bayley — Town Improvements at the 
end of the Eighteenth Century^Rurality — Greenheys — The young De Quinceys and the Factory Lads — The Fringe of 
Country — ^Construction of new Roads — Birth of the Town of To-day — The Hand-loom Weavers — Hash Rooks — Demolition 
of the Old Town — Municipal Boundaries — Population — The Smith's Account-book — Southey's Short Stay — Arthur Young's 
Visit — Fly-boats on the Canals — The Intellectual Lead — The "Seven Stars" — Tlie "Sun" Inn — Poets' Corner. 

■•^ANCASHIEE towns are proverbial for failing to charm at first 
sight. The quality of ugliness in the County Palatine is not 
strained, seeing, as is said, its rivers run ink and its skies 
drop not fatness hut soot. Anyway, the quality is common 
to all its busy towns, and as Manchester is chief among 
them in other respects, she would probably feel a little in- 
dignant if denied her due share in this respect also. Por 
the material fabric is the concrete expression of the life 
of the city, and there is a strong self-consciousness in its 

people. Let us avoid this stumbling-block, therefore, and be affable. 


And, indeed, something like an effort is needed on the part of the stranger 
who wishes to get into touch and sympathy with the place. But let him persevere, 
and he will be magnificently rewarded. For there is a life in this northern city 
and a heart in its indwellers such as few great towns can boast of. Shall we forget 
the proud comparison that fell from the pen of the first of her literary sons ? 
" Manchester," says De Quincey, speaking of the effect produced upon him by 
reading the " Agamemnon," " Manchester was not Mycenae. No, but by many 
degrees nobler. In some of the features most favourable to tragic effects it was 
so ; and wanted only those idealising advantages for withdrawing mean details which 
are in the gift of distance and hazy antiquity. Even at that day (1793) Manchester 
was far larger, teeming with more and with stronger hearts, and it contained a 
population the most energetic even in the modern world." 

But energy is not its sole possession. If we only knew it, distance and 
antiquity have a gift to bestow how little soever we reck of it. In its day 
Manchester has not lacked either the picturesque or the venerable. Little more 
than a hundred years since it was described as " properly speaking, only a village, 
but very beautiful and populous." 

The view of the city from the south-west (p. 4) will to some extent justify 
this praise. As seen from the Salford side of the river the town appeared on a 
slight eminence, a cluster of houses rising in admirable disorder, tier above tier, 
from the river's bank to the Cathedral, and falling away as it extended along 
Deansgate to where St. Ann's Church forms a second centre, breaking the sky-line 
agreeably with its odd but picturesque spire. There is a lack of background and 
an absence of anything striking in the picture, but these are amply made up to 
us by the pervading charm of simplicity and of some degree of that softness which 
is characteristic of Cheshire rather than Lancashire scenery. 

But up to the last century Manchester possessed yet other and, to some minds, 
more interesting features. It still preserved not only many characteristics of its 
quiet, sixteenth-century village life, but also traces of a hoary antiquity. If the 
beginnings of the town were not Celtic, and there is nothing to prove the yea or 
the nay, they were substantially Roman. From the second century of our era 
Mancunium or Mamucium was a station of central importance in the Roman province 
of Maxima Csesariensis. Not less than five, and in aU probability seven or eight, 


great roads radiated from the station, serving to join it witli the other stations in the 
province, Warrington, Wigan, Eihchester, as well as with the south and west. Con- 
sidering the importance of the Eoman system of roads, one is not a little disappointed 
when turning to look for the actual traces of this bygone greatness to find them 
shrunk to so very little a measure. The castrum itself was located at the end of the 
later Deansgate, in the little angle of land formed by the junction of the Medlock 
and the Irwell, later known as Castle Field, and nowadays intersected by the 
Cheshire Lines and the Bridgewater Canal wharves. Camden examined the site, and 
portions of it were visible sixty years since. To-day the only remains consist of a 
piece of the masonry of the wall, which is now secured and built over at the foot of 
one of the arches of the Cheshire lines to Altrincham. So passeth the fashion of 
this world, and they were stout builders, too, those old Eomans. Here is some- 
thing for us moderns to moralise over, but that, alas ! we dare not — in Lancashire, 
nor have we time. 

But, indeed, it is s^irprising how completely this, her first greatness, has passed 
from the consciousness of later Manchester. A thousand years afterwards the locality 
was known as Aide-pare, and it has been thought that the Eoman or Brito-Eoman 
village survived there, and only gradually gave way to the more modern town whose 
centre was by the Irk. 

There is nothing to show this, for until the extension of the town in that direc- 
tion the place was park-land and open field. The foundations of Manchester were 
laid over again by our Saxon forefathers ; and of Eome, in the absence of grey walls, 
vsdth their stern watching through the centuries, no influence has survived save 
the association of her name. What that has been worth to the modern city could 
probably be very quickly and shortly told, but at least, let anyone beware of 
reproaching it with a theoretical lack of antiquity. 

But to resume. The centre of that Saxon Mame-Cestre, whose foundation in 
923 is attributed to Edward the Elder, was quite removed from and unconnected 
with that of the earlier Eoman town. About a mile to the north of Castle Field 
the land along the left bank of the Irwell, at the point where it is joined by the 
Irk, rises to a height sufficient to command the right bank and the parts adjacent. 
The place would become the stronghold of the Saxon settlement, and when, 
after the Norman Conquest, the baronial system was developed, the baron's castle 


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occupied the spot. And there its memory 
still exists for us in the Chetham College. 
Following the castle came the church; the 
corn-mill, " running by the water of Irke," 
and of the yearly value of ^610 to the lord 
of the manor through the contributions of 
the tenants, who were one and all con- 
strained to grind there ; the common oven of 
the lord in the Milngate — ^where Bakehouse 
Court still lives — at which, too, every tenant 
ought to bake of custom bread intended for 
sale ; and the fulling-mill, worth 8s. 4d. by 
the year, also running by the stream of 
Irk, and making fat its eels by its refuse. 
In our days one is hardly likely to go 
fishing in the Irk, but there was a time, 
and comparatively speaking not so far re- 
moved, when the Irk had a reputation for 
what Lamb would have called the " unctuous 
oleaginous " richness of its eels. What 
might not have been the pride and fame 
of Irk, now no longer proud and famous — if 
at all — for something very different, if an 
epicurean friend had only presented Lamb 
with a basket of her eels and got him to 
write a letter on them instead of on a 
wretched " certain fish called a John Dory." 
The three mills along the Irk were sub- 
sequently appropriated by Bishop Oldham to 
the support of the Free Grammar School. 
In 1783 their locality is thus indicated 
in a description of the town. " To the 
grinding of malt the middle-most mill is 


appropriated, the highest [up the Irk] is let for a corn-mill, the lowest for a frieze- 
and fulling-mill to which is annexed a snuff manufactory." The Market Place was 
near what was later called Smithy Door, and close to it the manorial court-house, 
which fitly brings up the list of primitive institutions with its attendants the gallows 
pit, pillory, and tumbrel. 

The pillory and the stocks beneath it stood in the Market Place till 1816, when 
they were removed along with the Market Cross and the ObeHsk— a later institution 

{From a Sketch by Barriti.) 

which had earned the name of Nathan Crompton's Folly. It consisted of a four- 
sided column bearing four lights and had been erected on the site of the Old 
Exchange, possibly as a reminder to the not over-sentimental 'Change men (p. 6). 

They who of old, ere weft was sold in cop, 
Stood in the front of Matthew Travis' shop. 
Or blocked the way to Loxham's tavern-door, 
Cheaply to buy, or buyers to allure — 

so sings the Quadruple Obelisk itself in a " heroic " epistle to the New Exchange. 

As for the gallows, its exact locality cannot be indicated, and for that he 

who reads ought to be reasonably glad. But the tumbrel is a more interesting 



item. The town-scold and tlie transgressors of the assize of ale — and in those 
days most brewers, and therefore most transgressors, were of the (so-called) weaker 
sex — were carted round the town in the tumbrel, to be afterwards ducked in the 
pool in Plungeon's Field, where now stands the Cross Street Chapel. The 
ducking station was afterwards removed to the horse-pool at the upper end of 
Market Sted Lane, which later got the uneuphonious name of the Daubholes, and 

there, in front of the Infirmary, it survived as an 
institution far into the eighteenth century. The brewer 
of bad ale could escape the ducking by paying a fine 
of four shillings. The lady in the picture on the 
previous page, however, seems very contentedly to have 
made up her mind and scorned compromise. 

As the purpose of this chapter is to illustrate 
the growth of Manchester as a town, we shall not 
need to speak at length of its baronial history. So 
much, however, must be said. The Barony of Man- 
chester was formed some time after the Norman Con- 
quest by sub-infeudation from the capital barony held 
of the Crown by Eoger of Poictou. Its first possessor 
was Albert Greslet, who died probably about 1100 
and was succeeded by seven others of his line. 

At the death of the last Greslet (Thomas, about 
1313) the manor passed by the female line to the 
La Warres, remaining in their possession until in 1426 
it was conveyed, again by marriage, to the Wests. In 1679 the last of the Wests 
connected with Manchester sold the manor to John Lacy, a London trader, who 
seventeen years later sold it to Nicholas Mosley, Esq., for d£8,000. The manor 
remained in the Mosley family till the present century, when (May, 1846) with all 
the baronial rights it was transferred to the Corporation for the sum of £200,000. 

Keturning to our subject — the structural growth of Manchester — there is very 
little that is ascertainable until we reach a rather late date. The first of the barons 
to reside in Manchester was the fifth of the Greslets (Eobert, 1175-1230) ; but the 
baronial hall must have been anterior to the church, of which we have previous mention. 


(From a Water-Colovr Drmtrinff in Chetham 


A century later, 1301, in the charter granted to the town by the last of the Greslets 
— an important document which gave the citizens the right to elect their own reeve 
and fixed the government of the town for centuries — mention is made of the shops 
rented in the Market Place, and of the stranger merchants' sheds. We hear, too, of 
the gate towards the waters of Irk and Irwell, and of the rectory of Manchester 
" on this side the Brend orchard." Apparently the parsonage, of which portions 
were supposed by Whittaker to be existing in his own day, immediately joining the 
house of the Warden, would be outside the town, as the Market Place formed the 
boundary in this direction. At this end of the town, too, were placed the " Booths," 
the manorial court-house, near the site of the present Cotton-waste Dealers' Exchange, 
where the Court Leet, Court Baron, and the later quarter sessions were held — a timbered 
building, since occupied as an auction-room, and standing on the west side of the 
Market Place. The remaining features in the picture would be the various bridges 
which Leland saw in Manchester in 1638, built, as he says, of stone taken from the 
Roman castrum; and, fairest of them all, Salford Bridge (pp. 4, 9), "on which tliere 
is a pratty little chappell." 

Salford Bridge was a three-arched structure, with a roadway scarcely more than 
twelve feet wide. In the style of the old bridges, such as could still be seen at 
Bradford-on-Avon, a chapel had been erected on it, in which prayers might be made 
for the repose of the soul of the reputed founder, Thomas del Booth, a rich yeoman 
living at Barlow, in the parish of Manchester, who in 1368 left £30 towards the 
erecting of the bridge. In later years this chapel fell to viler uses, being made 
into a prison, with gratings looking on to the pathway. On occasions this prison 
has been known to be flooded by the rise of the river ; when otherwise, the occupants 
entertained themselves by thrusting their hands through the bars to beg alms of 
the passers-by. 

And yet, so the story goes, it was here that the hymn " Jerusalem, my happy 
home " was composed. If true, the statement is not a little interesting from the 
vivid contrast implied. This chapel — so called — was demolished in 1776, sixty 
years before the old bridge itself was taken down to make way for Victoria 

Such would be the general look of Manchester at the close of the Middle Ages, at 
the time, let us say, when Henry VII. in one of his royal progresses (August 6th, 1496) 



passed through the place. It was simply the small market town of an agricultural 
district, and contained not more than from one to two hundred burgesses, all of them 
renting from the manor, and owing suit and service at its court. 

The beginnings of its great industry were already noticeable. In 1620 " Byrom, 
of Manchester," is noted as a clothier, employing many servants in spinning, 
carding, fulling, etc. Camden describes the tovra as surpassing its neighbours in 
elegance and populousness ; and, speaking of the age immediately preceding his own, 
says the town had been still more famous for its manufacture of stuffs called 
Manchester cottons, though, as we shall see, they were not cotton goods at aU. But 
all through the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries the growth of her industry was 

slow and uneventful, like that 
of the town itself. Newton 
Lane, now Oldham Eoad — 
the place where the ubiqui- 
tously active Martin Mar- 
prelate press was seized in 
the reign of Elizabeth — is 
noted as being "near" Man- 
chester; and in the same 
epoch the unpretentious cha- 
racter of the place is well 


illustrated by the story of a panic which seized upon the inhabitants at the time of 
the threatened invasion of the Armada. The report spread of the camping of a hostile 
force on Swinton Moor, and in the midst of the panic which ensued we are told 
that the shambles, which constituted the Market Place, were removed to Salford 
Bridge, and preparations made for a defence. 

Even in the seventeenth century, at a time when the town won for herself such 
renown for her spirit in the defence against the Eoyalist Lord Strange (p. 12) — the 
nobleman by whom, and at Manchester, the first blood of the Civil War was shed, 
and who was afterwards executed at Bolton in retaliation for the cruel massacre he 
had inflicted on the town — Manchester was open, unwalled, and almost defenceless. 
On the advance of the Eoyalists, in September, 1642, the only protection consisted of 
hastily improvised barricades at the Deansgate end (Deansgate then extending only to 



what is now Back King Street) and of chains drawn across Salford Bridge. After- 
wards Kosworm, the skilful and long-suffering German, and the hero of the siege, 
erected mud walls at exposed points — street ends probably — but their locality is not 
^^^^ indicated. It is probably these fortifica- 


{Jameses Views, No. 2.) 

tions of which Hollinworth speaks in 
almost the last entry in his little book : 
" 1662. The towne dismantled, the walls 
thrown down, the gates sould or carried 
away." This was on the triumph of the 
Independents, and, doubtless, Hollinworth's 
heart, which was stoutly Presbyterian, was 
heavy within him as he penned the words. 
The map on the opposite page gives a 
very interesting plan of the " zealous and 

godly" town, and a good idea as to its extent in those stirring times — a period, be 

it remembered, in which it had been selected by Cromwell as worthy to return a 

member to Parliament on his reformed scheme. 

Salford, it wUl be seen, possessed only two streets, its limits in one direction 

being marked by Trinity Char 

hundred years later aml~ihW^tTW~Dani 

of the river was open country, and the 

scene of many a hunt such as may be 

seen in the " south- 
west view" (p. 4). 

At this time, when 

considered among 

the chief towns of 

Lancashire for size, 

as well as for beauty, 

the population of 

Manchester could 


not, in all probability, have exceeded 6,000 or 6,000 — that of the whole parish 
probably in outside figures, Jbeiug given as only 20,000. With our knowledge of the 



modern city, it seems not a little amusing to be so repeatedly assured that the 
little place was "a fayre and spacious town," as Dr. Kuerden calls it, at the close 
of the seventeenth century. "Pleasantly situated," he says, "far excelling all the 
towns about it, and the fairest and most populous in all the county." And in 1724 
Dr. Stukeley goes so far as to call it " the largest, most rich, populous, and busy 
village in England." And yet it was only in Kuer den's days that brick buildings 
became common. Previously the houses had been built of wood and plaster, and in 
1650 the existence of a brick house in Market Sted Lane was thought so much of 
a novelty as to find mention in the Court Leet records. We catch another glimpse 
of a primitive state in a notice belonging to an even later date. The part of the 
town about Tib Lane, we are told, was taken up by fustian dyers' crofts for the 
convenience of water issuing from the springs which served the conduit, and from 
that rising ground on the left hand to Deansgate was called the Mount. Pits were 
made to each dye-house for the reception of this water, which being generally much 
below the surface of the land, was drawn up in pttmp trees by the Persian wheel. 
On the failing of these springs the dyers removed to the banks of the river. 

Two generations later the number of inhabitants of this "fayre and spacious" 
place is given as 8,000, presumably for Manchester and Salford combined, and this, 
too, was at a period subsequent to the Act for the erection of St. Ann's Church, 
and the laying out of the Square, which was thought a great addition to the town 
(p. 13). Before the erection of St. Ann's Church, says Ogden, writing in 1783, the 
buildings did not extend on that side beyond the entrance to St. Ann's Square, next 
the Exchange, being bounded by a ditch and a large field, called " The Acres," which 
the Lord of the Manor had a right to enter and occupy as a beast fair on the Feast 
of St. Matthew. "But upon the erection of the church the town was increased 
from the entrance of St. Ann's Square, towards the Market Place all that square, 
with its environs, taking in the whole Acres Field, King Street, Eidgfield, etc. 
Brazen-nose and Hulme's Street, with some buUdings thereabout, are new erections, 
and St. James's Square is not of long standing." 

At the time of this addition there were not, we are told, above three or four 
carriages kept in the place. 

The next forty years, however, witnessed a marked growth. The commencement 
of the commercial expansion of Manchester should be dated from 1720-21, when 


the Mersey and Irwell were made navigable down to Liverpool for vessels of fifty 
tons. The quay of this, her first but not her greatest ship canal, as represented in 
the view on p. 13, has not a very busy look, and would not appear to promise 
much for the town. But, as a matter of fact, its effect was quickly felt. Eight 
years later the first Exchange was built by Sir Oswald Mosley, and the activity of 
the town's trade was so marked as to excite the notice of the Londoners. In 1736 
the south side of St. Ann's Square and King Street began to be built on, and 
twenty years later the population numbered, as near as possible, 20,000 for the town 
and 50,000, or over, for the parish. 

It is curious to think that this was only a few years after the last occasion 
on which Manchester played a part in the purely political history of our country. 
The godly and zealous Puritan town of the seventeenth century had become the 
hotbed of Tory and Jacobite sentiment in the eighteenth ; but shall we say that her 
conduct in '45 shows liker the heroic or the grotesque ? " Manchester was taken," 
says our authority, " by a sergeant, a drum, and a woman, about two o'clock in the 
afternoon." The adventurous three, a day in advance of the Pretender's forces, rode 
up to the "Bull's Head" in the Market Place, with hempen halters tied to their 
saddles, had dinner, and in the afternoon called for recruits, enhsting thirty the first 
day. On the following day Prince Charles marched into Manchester, in a light 
plaid, belted with a blue sash. He took up his quarters in Market Sted Lane, at 
the residence of Mr. Dickenson (p. 13), which, in consequence, earned for itself the 
title of "the Palace." In our own century it became the Palace Inn, and has 
now been rebuilt as a warehouse, bearing the name of Palace Buildings. 

In less than a month the Manchester regiment surrendered, at the taking of 
Carlisle by the Duke of Cumberland, and in the summer of the following year the 
heads of Captain Thomas Deacon (p. 12) and Ensign Syddall (p. 12) were sent down to 
Manchester to be fixed on the spikes in front of the Exchange. That Quixotic mental 
aberration which has been debased in history by being called Jacobitism would seem to 
have been an inherited quality. Thomas Syddall, the Manchester peruke-maker, and 
the father of the unfortunate Ensign Syddall, had himself been executed for his share 
in the Eebellion of 1715, while the father of Captain Deacon, Dr. Deacon (p. 13), 
was a great man among the Nonjurors — a bishop among them, forsooth, and the 
head, of what was self-styled the " True British Catholic Church," being devoutly 




{From a Picture at Knowslcy.) 

CUTED 1746.) 

(.Presented to Peel Park Museum 

by Mr. Benjamin Froggait, 


attaclied to the doctrino of the Divine Eiglit of kings. It is related of the sturdy 
old man, who had three sons engaged in the Eebellion, a second of whom was 
destined to perish almost as miserably as his better-known brother, that he was 
accustomed to raise his hat whenever he passed the Exchange where his son's head 
had been exposed, and to bless God for the gift of such a son. In those days party 
spirit ran high. The charity and geniality of Byrom (pp. 12, 21), the best known of 

her Jacobites, and the wittiest of Manchester's 
sons, were peculiar to him. The prevailing 
temperament was different. " The heads of 
Syddall and Deacon," says a ferocious diarist 
of the time, " are fixed upon the Exchange 
by the Government for a public example. 
We rejoyced, yea, and will rejoyce and 
be thankful for what they suffered ; for 
the liberty which they — the rebels from 
Scotland, and Jacobites in general, that 
wicked, that hellish, that unaccountable crew 
— threatened to deprive us of. Lord, may 
we not only rejoyce and be thankful, but 
may we be careful to prize and improve our 
Protestant privileges better for the future." 

Another Manchester man, John Holker, 
who was " out in '45 " made a most adven- 
turous escape. He was taken prisoner with 
' the Manchester regiment at Carlisle, sent to 

London, and imprisoned in Newgate. Along 
with a companion called March, he effected his escape by making a breach in the 
wall. March got out first, and was about to lower himself when he found that 
Holker was not following him, the hole being too small to allow him to pass. 
Although pressed by Holker to leave him to his fate, March nobly climbed back 
and assisted his friend to enlarge the breach. 

Holker afterwards got over to France, entered the army of Louis XV., and 
later settled at Eouen, where he introduced improvements, surreptitiously obtained 


( From a Miniature, Frontispiece 

to Vol. 32, Chetham Society 



{From an Oil Painting in 

Chetham College 





from Manchester, in the various 
processes of cotton manufacture 
— carding, spinning, dyeing, etc 
He is said to have enticed 
twenty-five Manchester artisans 
over to France with a view to 
setting up the 
manufacture of cot- 
ton velvet. How- 
ever unpatriotic in 
this particular, 
Holker remained 
true to his Man- 
c;hester breeding in 
the main thing, as 
it would there be 
called. Was it not a Manchester 
man who perverted a certain 
text — "My son get — money; and 
with all thy getting get — 
money " ! Holker got money, 
and plenty of it, and founded 
a family, whose 
representative to- 
day holds high 
post in the French 

So ends the 
last episode in Man- 
chester's purely 
political history. 
Her future great- 
ness was to be 

OLD ST. Ann's square. ^^ 

based, not on her 
political, but on her 
commercial and social 
enterprise and en- 

I T 


r m 




f »» ."?»> 

; ^- c -Jill/' 


{From Prints oj 1740, piibliahod by Casson tt Berry,) 

DE. deacon's HOUSE. ^| 

deavour. What ac- 
count she has given 
of herself in these 
matters is suffi- 
ciently known. ^m 

From 1758 on- 
wards, from the time 
of the beginning of 


the Bridgewater Canal schemes, with the consequent lowering "by one half" of 
the price of coal, the industries of the town advanced by leaps and bounds. The 
result was seen, not only in the growth of the place, but in numerous Improve- 
ment Acts affecting the older and more crowded parts. 

In 1761 the first Blackfriars Bridge — a wooden one — was built by a company 
of comedians who had taken the Salford Eiding-school for their performances, and 
who wished to attract the Manchester public by affording them a readier access than 
by way of the old bridge (p. 16). In 1783 the New Bailey Bridge, a little lower 
down the river, was built by subscription. " The bridge," writes a native of the 
town in that same year, "when finished, may be deemed one of the best in 
England of two arches, and will greatly shorten the road from Warrington, Bolton, 
etc., to those parts of the town with which it communicates by Dolefield with 
the upper end of Deansgate, a little above the ' Coach and Horses ' Inn, which has 
lately been rebuilt with good rooms and additional stabling for the accommodation 
of company or carriages passing that way." 

A few years previously, in 1776, the old Salford Bridge itself had been widened 
by taking down the Dungeon Chapel and adding to the piers and arches. Previous 
to this improvement it had been a difficult and even dangerous task to cross the 
bridge on market days when there was anything like a crowd of vehicles. The 
streets near the bridge were similarly unserviceable ; so narrow indeed, that the 
passage of a carriage was dangerous to those on foot. 

Some little relief was afforded in 1788 by the pulling down of the east side of 
Long Millgate, during the progress of which Barritt, the town's most respected 
antiquary, found what he took to be remains of the oldest Catholic chapel in 

In the centre of the town, also, great improvements had been effected eleven 
years previously. St. Mary's Gate and the passage between the Exchange and St. 
Ann's Square, as also Cateaton Street, were widened at a cost of over £10,000. 
The most serviceable result of the scheme was the creation of Exchange Street 
by the destruction of the old pile of buildings known as the Dark Entry. 

Up to this time the entry to St. Ann's Square had been under the Old Coffee- 
house or by means of a passage situated near and leading to the great stairs of 
this old building. After the passage came a small court where stood a pump — 


all, we are assured, intolerably dirty at certain seasons — and from the court ran 
the Dark Entry. "At its exit towards the square an old buildiug made a sharp 
angle with it as incommodious as the pump at the other end. The townspeople, 
from a knowledge of the dark entry, made a pause at either end if they heard 
anyone had entered it at the other, for there was no seeing them and when the 
passage was open they pushed on in their turn. When the corner was cleared and 
some traverses made past irregular buildings, this communication entered St. Ann's 
Square opposite the flags on the west side by a passage where there was formerly 
a turn-stile, which greatly incommoded people at a fair or in a throng." 

In these matters Manchester has been long-suffering and full of compromise. 
It was not till 1791 that an Act was passed providing commissioners for lighting, 
watching, and cleansing the town. These gentlemen were known as Commissioners 
of the Police. But though they lasted up to and beyond the charter of incorpora- 
tion, we must be at liberty to doubt their efficacy. Speaking of police, however, 
there is one half-pleasing record to make. In 1774 the philanthropist Howard 
came to Manchester. Previous to his visit the old House of Correction on Hunt's 
Bank had been pulled down (p. 16), but the structure that met his eyes and 
in which he found twenty-one prisoners must have seemed an odd and unchristian 
place. " The upper part of brick interlaid with oak spars and hence very secure. 
The lower consists of cells cut in the rock and aired by funnels communicating 
with the atmosphere. To these there is an iron gate of a singular contrivance to 
secure prisoners upon locking up from any attempts upon the Governor or his 
assistants. On the back way to the prison, next the college, a dungeon has been 
made, upon the demolition of that heretofore upon the bridge when it was widened 
on that side, having been widened on the other some time before. The constables, 
who are head magistrates in this town, being then without a prison to confine 
offenders till they were examined, have here lower cells, very strong vpith an upper 
prison. A guard-house over all for soldiers adds to the security of both these 
prisons and the House of Correction, and does honour to the contrivers, as strength 
and usefulness are united and nothing expended upon ostentation." 

The reasonableness of this last naive remark will be readily granted. The 
history of this old place is very interesting. In olden times Manchester had for a 
year enjoyed the privilege of sanctuary. By statute (3rd Henry YIII.) it was created 



a place of "privilege and tuicion for term of lyfe" to aU offenders and malefactors. 
The town had appreciated the privilege so highly as to petition incontinently for 
its removal. How many of these sanctuary houses there existed in the town, or 
where they stood, is not exactly known. One was discovered early in the present 
century during the widening of Smithy Door, " at the north-west corner of the 
'Black Swan' Tavern." An old tradition fixes another in the vicinity of Hyde's Cross, 

and a third 

■-fe>. ■ Jt. 


there was "per- 
haps " in Old 
Millgate. Any 
way, the ques- 
tion is not 
very material, 
since on the 

(From a Drawinf/ by Orme.) 

clamorous petition of the 
town the sanctuary was 
removed, within a twelve- 
month, to Chester. And 
from that time there was 

iFrom a Sketch by Bamtt.) 

for long nothing in the 

shape of either sanctuary or gaol in Manchester. In the days of Elizabeth, however, 
it was found that there was a strong and obstinate Catholic element in the 
town, strange though it may sound considering that it had been the birthplace of 
the martyr Bradford and the scene of his preaching, and three generations later 
was to become the stronghold of fighting Puritanism. Accordingly it was thought 
expedient in the mistaken and lamentable policy of the time to erect a prison for 
the recusant Catholics, and, about 1580, one was built on the banks of the Irk and 



significantly christened the New Fleet. After being rebuUt, about 1774, the 
place was puUed down and the New Fleet gave way to the New Bayley, which 
was opened in 1790. The latter continued almost to our own days by the help 
of additions made to it in 1826, but in 1872 it was sold to the Lancashire and 

{From a poiiion of Green's Survey, 1794.) 

Yorkshire Eailway Company, its use having been superseded in consequence of the 
erection of Strangeways Gaol. 

The real extent of the town at this time (1780-90), when its population was 
reckoned at about 54,000, is well marked in Green's plan (p. 17). The chief increase 
and the main line of extension would appear to have been along the upper end of 
Deansgate, and about Tib Lane, if we may judge from the words of the petition for 
the erection of St. John's, Deansgate. "From the bottom of Tib Lane," says Ogden 
in 1783, "in a line with the top of King Street to the Dissenters' Chapel, the 
buildings have increased in about fifty years to the west boundary of the Tib, taking 


in the whole area of land to Market Street Lane, except Brown's Hall and a house 
with dye-houses, and a corner of Pool Fold, where the new market has lately 
been made. . . . From the head of Tib Lane to Market Street Lane there are 
some cottages on the waste now demolishing, and the land planning into streets 
where the new erections towards the Infirmary will, no doubt, add to the beauty and 
elegance of this airy part of the town." 

The easterly parts of the present city were happily and innocently rural. 
Ardwick was a distinct village a mile away from the suburbs, and with no houses 
between it and the present Infirmary. The district now occupied by Shudehill 
Market was laid out in garden plots, the town having extended little in that 
direction. Part of Piccadilly and the district southwards from Piccadilly, to the 
Medlock by Garrett Hall, consisted of open fields, as also did the parts around 
St. Peter's Church. The characteristics of the neighbourhood are strikingly preserved 
in De Quincey's Autobiography. " I passed the whole of my childhood," he 
tells us, " except for a few earliest weeks, in a rural seclusion, shut up for ever 
in a silent garden." At that time Greenhay, his father's residence, which has 
since given its name to the district of Greenheys, was a solitary country house, 
a clear mile from the outskirts of the town, and forming a limit beyond which 
was nothing but a cluster of cottages, comprising the little hamlet of Greenhill, 
so that any sound of wheels coming from the winding lane that connected the 
house with Rusholme Eoad could be easily heard — as they were on that memorable 
night when the family was gathered in front of the house to listen for the sound 
of the carriage that was bringing the elder De Quincey home to die. " It would 
be difiicult," he continues, " for anyone nowadays to understand how my brother 
and myself could have a solitary road to traverse between Greenhay and Princess 
Street, then the terminus on that side of Manchester ; but so it was. Oxford 
Street, like its namesake in London, was then called Oxford Eoad, and during 
the currency of our acquaintance with it arose the first three houses in its 
neighbourhood. One sole cotton-mill had then risen along the line of Oxford Street, 
and this was close to a bridge, which also was a new creation, for previously all 
passengers to Manchester went round by Garratt." He tells a delightful story in 
connection with this mill and bridge. The latter became the arena of a long-standing 
war between the young De Quinceys and the lads of the factory ; the ultimate 


causes of war lying, he says, " in our aristocratic dress. As children of an opulent 
family we were uniformly well dressed, and, in particular, we wore trousers (at that 
time unheard of except among sailors), and we also wore Hessian boots, a crime that 
could not be forgiven in the Lancashire of that day, because it expressed the double 
offence of being aristocratic and being outlandish. The first time they crossed 
the bridge these aristocratic items attracted attention, and were summarily greeted 
with cries of ' Holloa, Bucks ! ' and ' Boots ! Boots ! ' My brother made a dead 
stop, surveyed the offender with intense disdain, and bade him draw near that he 
might give his flesh to the fowls of the air. The result was a standing feud. We 
fought every day, and, generally speaking, twice every day, and the result was pretty 
uniform, namely, that my brother and I terminated the battle by insisting upon 
our undoubted right to run aw^ay. When this happened, it necessitated going round, 
and crossing the Medlock at Garratt." The conclusion is characteristic : " The 
workpeople were so independent of their employers, and so careless of their dis- 
pleasure, that finally the only settlement wearing any promise of permanence was 
that we should alter our hours so as not to come into collision with the boys." 
Whoever wishes for half an hour's purest enjoyment will find it in the reading of 
this drama of De Quincey's "Bridge of Sighs." 

For us the interest of the story lies in its indication of locality. Fifty years 
later (1848) the same district is thus referred to in the opening of Mrs. Gaskell's 
"Mary Barton" : — " There are some fields near Manchester, well known to the inhabi- 
tants as Green Heys Fields, through which runs a public footpath to a little village 
about two miles distant. Here and there an old black-and-white farmhouse, with its 
rambling outbuildings, speaks of other times and other occupations than those which 
now absorb the population of the neighbourhood. Here the artisan, deafened with 
the noise of tongues and engines, may come to listen awhile to the delicious sounds 
of rural life, the lowing of cattle, the milkmaid's call," etc. etc. These words, 
written so late as 1848, wUl serve to indicate to anyone acquainted with the present 
character of the locality the all-obliterating advances of the modern city iji this 
direction. It would be interesting in the name of curiosity to make a record of the 
present character of the town limits on this side ; for it has still a fringe of quiet but 
charming country, and then stand by to see how long a time would be required to 
make the record a matter of ancient history. 



By the end of the century the town was spreading fast. Piccadilly up to the 
end of it was all built on, and houses had risen as far as Bank Top, and even up to 
Ardwick Green. The Infirmary had been erected, Oldham Street was spreading, and 
Mosley Street had become the residence of the wealthiest inhabitants. The growth 
in other directions is marked by the Acts relating to the construction or mainten- 
ance of the various roads through the suburbs, and from them to the surrounding 
towns. The Acts are very plentiful during the later years of George III. and under 
George IV., and their enumeration would be a weariness to the flesh; but a few 


(From a Print by JwmcSf 1820.) 

of them are too significant to be omitted. In 1816 an Act was passed for building 
a bridge across the Irwell from the township of Salford to Strangeways, in the 
township of Cheetham, and for making proper approaches thereto. Two years later 
a similar measure provided for the improvement of the road from Ardwick Green 
to the bridge at the corn mills near Wilmslow, and another for repairing the road from 
Manchester to Salter's Brook, and one in 1819 for mending the road from Crossford 
Bridge to the township of Manchester. Again in 1825 a road was constructed from 
Great Ancoats Street, so as to join a diversion of the Manchester and Salter's Brook 
road at Audenshaw, while on the south side the same year also saw great improve- 
ments by the amending of several new roads leading to and from Salford through 
Pendleton, and from Hulme, across the Irwell, to Bccles. Finally, in 1832, the 
year which witnessed the re-endowment of Manchester with the Parliamentary 
franchise, an Act was passed for improving and widening London Eoad. 

In the centre of the city still greater changes were in making. The decade 
1820-30 is in reality the birth-time of Manchester as we know it to-day. Up to 



I OLi Bu-ilt)|-neS. Long MiLUOATE. From a 

-pnTil kj Jam as 


Chester has been the centre of a manufacturing district rather than exclusively 
a manufacturing town. The earliest Directory, dated 1772, a curious and amusing 
little book, not one whit dry to read, like its modern descendants, gives a list of the 
"country tradesmen," meaning manufacturers who had "warehouses" in Manchester; 
and the places named cover the whole of the surrounding hamlets and towns in 
various directions as far as Bolton, Bury, Oldham, Ashton, etc. One of the earliest 
results of that astonishing series of inventions and development of machinery, that 
have gone to make Lancashire the seat of the world's greatest mechanical industry, 
was the destruction of the old-fashioned spinning. From the nature of the machinery 
it became necessary to adopt the factory system, and the old household spinning 
has completely vanished. The same was not true in the case of weaving, at least 
for a long time, this fact being probably due to the slight advance that has been 
made, or that seems likely to be made, in the mechanism of the loom. In 
the country districts round Manchester, hand-loom weaving long survived — indeed, 
there are places to-day within four miles of the city where the sound of it can be heard 
in the cottage — and Manchester manufacturers were accustomed to give out their work 
to these country operatives, and have it " padded " or brought in again. It is probably 
this conservatism and association with the village life around it that account for the 
astonishingly late survival of old Manchester. To-day the city is entirely and satis- 
factorily modern, and has correspondingly become the despair of the antiquary. Yet 
there may possibly be those alive who could recall the time when the Market Place 
was the centre of the business life of the town, and still surrounded by antique gabled 
seventeenth-century houses (p. 21), and when Market Street was a narrow, tortuous 
lane, lined with these same wood-fronted, irregularly built shops, with their old-fashioned 
signs, and with gardens where assuredly in these latter days neither citrons nor 
oranges blow. It would be unbecoming to form any expression of opinion on the 
change — philosophy and commerce are equally above such weakness ; but we cannot 
refrain from noting, by way of corroboration, and with a desperate sigh in passing, 
that even so late as the great change whereby Manchester was born again, though 
not of the spirit, a colony of rooks " established themselves in a small garden at 
the top of King Street." 

The improvement in Market Street was begun in June, 1822, the same year 
that witnessed the erection of the Town Hall in King Street, and the result, as 











will readily be believed by comparing the frontispiece and Plate 2 with the view of 
Old Market Street on p. 21, was equivalent to an internal revolution. The bottom 
of King Street, Hunter's Lane, and certain other avenues were widened to sixteen 
yards, and Market Street to twenty-one yards (p. 21), the cost of the whole being 
abont £200,000. The previous improvement effected in this part in 1783 was — to use 
a wrong metaphor, for which, however, we have the authority of a well-known 
member of the House of Commons during the debates on the last Pranchise Bill — 
by comparison a mere flea-bite. The chief feature about the alteration was the 
opening up of the present entrance to Cross Street, which had formerly been, as in 
the case of the old St. Ann's Square, merely an entry, shown to the right of the 
illustration on page 20. 

The widening of Market Street was followed in 1832 by that of Toad Lane and 
Long Millgate (p. 21), and a year later by the great improvement in Hunt's Bank. The 
changes thus accomplished down by the Irk were quite as remarkable as those in Market 
Street. From the river to the churchyard the houses were piled tier above tier, faintly 
divided by innumerable and unrememberable alleys and narrow streets. Passengers 
from Broughton desiring to reach the Exchange had to mount a flight of steps to 
the north of the churchyard, cross the yard by a pathway flagged with grave- 
stones, and then proceed by Hanging Ditch and Smithy Door, or by Short 
Millgate and the Market Place. Some idea of the locality can be got from the 
view of the " Old Chm'ch and Bridge " on p. 9. The houses literally descended, as 
will be seen, to the edge of the river, and we are told that in. one year (1814) 
several of them, along with a soapworks, fell into the river, their foundations 
having been undermined by the water. To the ordinary eye this aspect of the old 
town has so completely passed away as to have become almost unrealisable. 

In comparison with these changes which amount to the nearly total destruction 
of the old order — for to-day there are very few traces of the old town's life surviving 
— the more recent changes must be looked upon rather in the light of embellishments 
than of essential sweeping improvements. They owe their origin, too, to a different 
authority, although that fact constitutes no breach in the continuity of the city's 
growth. In 1838, six years after the first Reform Act, by which Manchester had 
been empowered to return two members to Parliament, the town, on a large 
petition signed by over 15,000 hands, had received a Eoyal Charter of Incorporation 



as a borough. Nine years later it became the seat of a bishopric, in 1853 was 
created a city by royal statute, and in 1867 an assize city. In our own days it 
has become the centre of a university, the youngest, but bidding fair to be the 


strongest and certainly the first to combine the last enchantments of the Middle 
Ages, which breathe in the very name and idea of a university, with the modem 
spirit and the modern needs. 

By the last Parliamenta,ry Eeform the municipal bounds of modern Manchester 
have been considerably extended. As delimited by the first Act of 1832, it included 
the townships of Manchester, Chorlton Row (Chorlton-upon-Medlock), Ardwick, 
Beswick, Hulme, Cheetham, Bradford, Newton, and Harpurhey — Bradford having 
been admitted by petition. The total population within these hmits was 270,715. 
In 1884-5, on the reconstitution of the municipal bounds, the townships of 
Rusholme and Moss Side were added to the above, together with a detached portion 



of Gorton parish which adjoins the local government district of Kusholme and 
the hamlet of Kirkmanshulme. The whole was divided into six parliamentary- 
constituencies, returning one member each. By the census of 1891 
the population of this district was 605,343, an mcrease of 43,000 in the 
decade of 1881 — 1891. This is of course speaking only of Manchester, 
and not including Salford. 

The improvements or embellish- 
ments which this reconstituted and 
justly proud city has erected for herself 
will fall to be noticed later in treating 
of the various institutions. But such 
of them as affect the structure or 
plan of the town must be briefly re- 
ferred to in this connection. The 
most noteworthy are the construction 
of Corporation Street leading from 
Market Street to Withy Grove, which 
was begun in 1845 ; the widening in 
1850. of St. Ann's Street leading into 
St. Ann's Square (p. 33), with the con- 
sequent destruction, in the opinion of 
many, of the picturesqueness of the 
old square ; and the great improve- 
ments in 1853 and 1854, and later, in the streets leading to Salford Bridge and the 
Cathedral, especially Smithy Bank and Smithy Door, in earlier times the market- 
place and crowded with butchers' stalls and perpetual throngs. The draggle-tail but 
picturesque survivor of this old market strikes one to-day as somewhat of a blemish on 
this part of the town (p. 32). For there is now next to no interest attaching to it. 
"There is a tradition," says the chatty James Ogden, a native of the place, writing 
in 1783, "that the Smithy Door acquired that name on the following laughable occa- 
sion. A smith had some money owing him by one of those shirking debtors that 
would rather expend money in law than pay the debt. The smith kept good accounts 
in his own way, with chalk behind the smithy door. After frequent duns and much 

{From a PHnt by Javies, 1S21.) 


wrangling, the account was cast np on the smithy door, which the debtor still 
evaded paying ■ till he was sued at the Hundred Court of Salford, depending upon 
a trick in law of which the smith had no apprehension, and on the trial urged 
him to produce his book in court. He urged in answer that he had a good book 
at home which he could swear to, and only asked leave of the court to fetch it, 
which being granted, away he runs home, takes the door off the hinges and brings 
it on his back, well attended by his neighbours, into the court amidst the loud 
applauses of all present. In short the smithy door was allowed to be a good book 
in law, which cast his antagonist and gave name to this street where the smith 
then lived." This smith, a Manchester man was he, and he deserved to give his 
name to a street, if, indeed, the story be not callously rejected as manufactured to 
explain the name. 

But the locality has changed. Smithy Bank has gone, and with it has 
vanished a whole cluster of narrow streets and old-fashioned buildings in the same 
neighbourhood and around the old Bridge Street. Their place has been taken by the 
magnificently-planned Victoria Street, and the space adorned by the unique CromweU 
statue. Where that monument now stands was formerly a group of those old black- 
and-white painted shops, which are so charming to look at, whatever they must have 
been to live in, among the number being one dear to the literary mind, " Ford's 
familiar store," the birthplace of the Bibliopole (p. 29). 

The improvements lower down Deansgate are not so striking, partly because 
they were effected earlier, and partly also because it was not the busiest quarter of 
the town, and does not furnish either the opportunity or the need. It can, however, 
show a few buildings of interest, such as we illustrate on p. 28, though the interest 
is not so great as is felt in the reminiscences of Market Street and Smithy Door. 

It produces something like an effect of grotesqueness and incongruity when 
we think of these odd buildings with their old-time associations surviving with the 
modern city, in the midst of the cotton mills and busy warehouse life that are 
becoming its chief characteristics. And we can easily understand the effect that such 
a hybrid sort of place would produce on the stranger who should chance to visit it 
before the improvements detailed above had harmonised the city with the city's life. 
"Of all the towns I ever was in," writes the author of the "Letters from Scotland," 
" Manchester has the least pretension to beauty. The principal street is scarcely 


broad enough to allow one carriage safely to pass another, and the new streets 
generally have in their vicinities large cotton factories. In Manchester elegance is 
the exception to the rule." In 1808 Southey visited the place, and put up at the 
old Bridgewater Arms, which then stood in High Street. He stayed long enough to 
mark the roughness of the street stones when driven over them, and the pragmatic 
character of the Manchester men when they talked to him, and seems to have been 
relieved when he got away. 

This by no means exhausts the list of distinguished folk who were attracted to 
Manchester. The Bridgewater Navigation schemes created much attention, and 
drew, amongst many other notabilities, that inestimable observer, Arthur Young. 
As usual, he has left us a valuable precis of the manufactures of the place and 
the rates of wages prevailing at the time. He found that the town was 
badly off in one respect. He had to send to Worsley for a boat in order 
"to do the tour of the Bridgewater Canal," and remarks, "by the by, it is a 
strange affair that the town of Manchester does not possess a boat for the 
accommodation of its own inhabitants. For want of one you may probably wait a 
day or two." The reproach was destined to be wiped away in a signal manner, 
for the first steaming on canals took place on the Mersey and Irwell Navigation, 
when, in July, 1838, one of Messrs. Eobins, Mills & Co.'s " fly-boats," propelled 
by stern paddles, arrived in the Duke's Basin, Knott Mill. In the same month 
the Jach SJiarj) was started as a steamer on the river for passenger traffic, with 
accommodation for one hundred and fifty people. 

For a time the idea was very popular; but any great development of river 
passenger traffic was prevented by the construction of the Manchester and Liverpool 
Eailway, opened in 1830. This last achievement is matter for no small pride. As 
in the eighteenth century, and again in our own day, Manchester has led the way 
in inland canal navigation, so, too, must be ascribed to her the responsibility and 
credit of properly inaugurating that railway system which, more than anythino- 
else, has changed the face of the modern world and the spirit of modern civili- 
sation. So deep a mark has this town made on the scroll. Has it not become 
a proverb that the Manchester and Lancashire of to-day is the England of the 
future ? Nor is it any answer to speak of the spiritual shortcoming of Man- 
chesterdom, as our German coiisins call it. Transcendentalism apart, Manchester 



has her finger on tlie pulse 
of the tunes. She has shown 
it, and theie wants only one 
quality to tiansfoim her in- 
tellectual lead into a highei, 
and to make hei capable of 
leading the nation in spiritual 
matteis as in commeice and 
enteipxise. It is a bold 


(From a Painthiirf in the Peel Paik Museum ) 

saying, but let the coming 
age witness. 

The aim of this 
chapter has been simply 

to illustiate the in- 
ternal giowth of the 
town, which thus nobly 
deseives a chionicler. 
What the modem town 
has become, and to- 
day IS, will be our task 
to show, but we can- 
not leave the subject 

i^P*™— Mm— AfeKMn. 

poets' COENEE (the " SUN " INK). 



without a parting glance at the few relics of hygone Manchester which can still be 
seen in its midst. They are few, and, from their present associations, not very 
pleasant to seek and to find. But such as they are, they speak of times that are 
gone and that had a peculiar charm of their own. 

The most interesting mansions occur ia Withy Grove and Long Millgate, and 
they have generally one feature in common — after a varied history they reach the 
same apparently inevitable end, they are made into public-houses. Among the most 
noted of these are " Yei_Qld__ 
Seven Stars" (540 years old), 
and the "Sun" Inn; the former 
(p. 28) incorrectly said to be 
the oldest licensed house in 
England. It is further said to 

have been the 
resting - place 
of one of Eng- 
land's kings, 
while others 
tell us of cer- 
tain Royalist 
troops who 
had occasion 


to secrete their king's plate in the wall. But to Manchester men the chief interest 
attaches to the " Sun " Inn — Poets' Corner (p. 28). It belongs to the seventeenth 
century, may indeed be the oldest house in Manchester, and is stiU alive, though often 
doomed to die. It was here that, in the second quarter of this century, a literary circle 
gathered round John Critchley Prince, Eogerson, Eowlinson, and the younger aspirants 
to the bays, whose contributions have found a home in the "Festive Wreath." Charles 
Swain never attended these meetings, though he was one of them in spirit. Their 
memory is fading fast ; but while the old house remains there will still abide with us an 
evidence and an influence of a provincial — let us say it — a Manchester poetry, very true, 
if not very abundant in power, and provincial, it may be, only by name and accident. 




• . . . The spirit of antiquity enshrined 
In buildings speaking with heroic tongue 
And with devout solemnities entwined." — Wordsworth. 

The Cathedral — The Nave and Choir — The Chapels— Eich Carving— Strange Aids to Devotion— External Appearance— History 
of the Building — Thomas de la Warre and his College of the Blessed Virgin— Sir John Huntingdon — The Elizabethan 
Charter — Christ's College — The Wardens— Vaux — The Astrologer Dee— Heyriok — Stratford— The Peploes —Calvert — 
Herbert — Old Jotty Brookes — The Agitation about the Church Eevenues and the Bishopric — Bishops Lee, Eraser, Moorhouse 
— Ex-Chancellor Christie, Mjecenas of a later age — The Present Cathedral Clergy — Dean Maclure — Archdeacons Anson and 
Wilson— Canon Kelly— The Parish— Misplaced Idyllic- Not a Nocturne in Stone— The Chetham College — Description 
and History — A Distinguished Visitor — A Eespectable Giant — The Library and Eeading-room — The College Owners — 
James, Earl of Derby, and his high-bom Wife— Scott Free at Last— Hail to Chetham !— Old Crossley— A Model Librarian 
— The Grammar School — The Old and the New — Bishop Oldham — Some Fine Eegulations — Alumni Exempliores — A 
Peculiar Trait in Business Men — Scholastic Eegeueratlou v. Fossilism — F. W. Walker — Oliver Heywood the Beloved. 

^, TT was only, so to say, yesterday that Manchester became the seat of a 
^^^^ bishopric and its church a cathedral. In reality, however, the structure 
^Ba^t liardly lends itself with propriety to the name. It is not of the type 
^ wB ^^ ^^^ cathedral at all. Architecturally and historically it is essentially 

a parish church, and no more — a large and beautiful example of 
Perpendicular Gothic. By the fifteenth century, the birth-time of the Manchester 
church, the era of cathedral-building proper in England was over, and that of 
Parish Church architecture was succeeding. But though thus on a lower 
plane, the art of this epoch as typified in this church is very beautiful and of 
absorbing interest. One more fault let us find and then discreetly forbear, for there 
is a strong local affection for the Cathedral (Plates 3, 4). The architectural effect of 
the building externally and the unity of its plan have been destroyed by the addition 
of numerous side chapels. The historic interest attaching to these is strong, but 
architecturally the church has lost by it in the destruction of proportion internally, 
and externally in the production of an appearance of bulkiness, unwieldiness, almost 
of aimlessness, in the design. 

The addition of these side chapels necessitated gathering the outer walls into 
pUlars, and on entering the nave one is much struck by their clustering multiplicity. 
The effect now that the screens between the aisles have been removed is as if the 
nave was throughout quadruple-aisled. 













The central nave arcades, which divide it from the aisles, are each composed of 
six finely pointed arches, springing from five pillars of exquisite proportion, and two 
demi-pillars attached to the tower and the chancel arch. The spandrels of the 
arches are filled with qnatrefoil tracery, enclosing shields, all the features of the 
tracery heing reproduced with minute exactness in clerestory or upper storey. The 
wall-space of the clerestory is divided hy five slender columns, which rise from 
the capitals of the nave pillars, into six compartments of exactly the same width 
as the arches below. The uniformity is emphasised even to a displeasing extent 
by a slender column which springs from the front attached shaft of the nave pillar, 
pierces the cornice, and enters the clerestory columns, thus forming, as it were, a 
straight line from floor to ceiling. This is a very characteristic feature of the fully 
developed fifteenth-century Gothic. The whole of the breadth of these six com- 
partments in the upper storey is taken up by the clerestory windows, which are 
thus of quite unusual breadth. Each window is divided into five lights, and the 
head is filled with ornamental fifteenth-century tracery. This latter item is a 
substitution made dxn-ing the repairs carried out in 1884-5 under the direction of 
Mr. J. P. Holden. Previous to that date the old mullions and tracery had been 
severely plain. 

Resting on the clerestory columns are seven moulded oak principals, which support 
an extremely rich and imposing roof. The longitudinal and cross beams that divide 
it into compartments are of great width, and the bosses large and richly sculptured. 
Since the restoration of 1884 the roof has been left uncoloured, and it is matter for 
congratulation, for it would be difficult to imagine anything of finer and loftier effect. 

Of old four chapels were attached to the nave : two on the south — Brown's 
Chapel, or St. George's Chantry, founded in 1501, and purchased by the church- 
wardens in 1815 for ^200 ; and the Trafford Chapel, or St. Nicholas' Chantry, 
founded before 1465 ; and similarly, too, on the north, the Chantry of the Holy 
Trinity, and one dedicated to St. James, known as the Strangeways Chapel, from 
its having been used by the Ducie family as a burying-place for quite two centuries. 

All these chapels have now lost their original character. They have become 
the property of the parish, the screens dividing them from the church have been 
removed, and the spaces filled with free seats, and it is diflficult for an ordinary 
beholder to realise that they are not an integral part of the original structure. 



In general design the chancel (Plate 4) is almost exactly similar to the nave. 
It is of the same height and dimensions, and its central arcade of six arches 
corresponds entirely with that of the nave. But all the architectural details, the 
tracery of the windows and in the roof panels, ai'e richer, or, at least, were richer, 
before the late restoration harmonised the two parts of the church. The chief 

feature, however, in the chancel is the wood- 
work, some of which affords probably the finest 
sample of carving to be found in England. 



This is true to some extent of the oak screens, one of which separates the south 
aisle from the library; another, dating from 1506, fills each of the six bays of the 
north aisle, thus serving to divide the chancel from the Derby Chapel. But the finest 
of all the woodwork is contained in the stalls of the choir. The choir proper occupies 
the first two bays and a half . of the central arches of the chancel. In this space 
thirty seats are arranged, twenty-four north and south, and six on the west, disposed on 
each side of the entrance. Each stall consists of a seat partitioned off from its neigh- 
bour, the partition running up by means of two slender columns, and formed overhead 




into a canopy of the richest conceivahle design. The seats are, as usual, made to 
turn up, so as to admit of kneehng during prayer, and on the under-side display ex- 
tremely fine and interesting samples of the inexplicably grotesque seat-carvings — 
misereres — in which the Gothic fancy so strangely revelled. The subjects of these 
misereres are intensely amusing — a fox running off with a goose on its back and 
pursued by an old woman; a pilgrim whose provision- chest is being pilfered by 
monkeys (p. 35) ; a boar standing on his hind legs and playing on the bagpipes 
while four young ones dance ; a greyhound carrying a fox on his back ; and the last, 


excessively droll, which might be styled the apotheosis of the hunter. He, poor man, 
lies bound to a stake, while his faithful dogs are in still worse a plight. Four pots 
are standing on a fire, in one of which can be seen the head of a dog, while close 
by stands Yengeance, in the shape of a rabbit, with the lid in his hand. 

When a worshipper knelt to pray, "Miserere nos," etc., this carving projected 


sufficiently to form some support for the head; but we may doubt the effect on his 
mind if lie said prayers with his eyes open. 

At the east termination of the south stalls is placed the bishop's throne, which 
is, of course, a modern piece of work. Almost directly behind it is the octagonal 
chapter-house, originally, doubtless, of Huntingdon's designing, and now entered by 
steps recessed out of the south aisle. 

Like the nave, the chancel is surrounded by chapels, which, unlike those 
of the nave, still retain something of their individuality. The whole north side 
is taken up by the somewhat gloomy Derby Chapel, called otherwise the Ghantry 
of St. John the Baptist, the east end of which is held to contain the most beaiitiful 
window in the Cathedral. This chapel remained in the possession of the Earl of 
Derby till 1840, when it was transferred to the parish. On the east side is the Lady 
Chapel, which contained a fine statue of Humphrey Chetham (p. 36), but this has 
been removed, and stands at present at the north-east corner. On the south side 
the first bay from the east is occupied by the Fraser Chapel and its beautiful 
monument (p. 39). The remaining chantry (Byrom's Chantry), adjoining the chapter- 
house, has now been made into the library and vestry. 

Leaving the interior, after noticing the absence of the old ponderous galleries 
(the last survivor, the south gallery, was cut off in 1884), one is struck by the 
difference in the aspect of the exterior. 

As compared with the imposing and lofty effect of the former, it is almost mean. 
The tower, which was rebuilt in 1867, and differs in many details from its predecessor, 
is the only part of the fabric that arrests the eye, and that without any very imposing 
suddenness (Plate 3). The body of the church seems low and squat in consequence 
of the additions to its breadth — the similar addition at the south entrance, 
however, is very rich in design — and gives very little idea of the really fine and 
imposing appearance produced by the interior. 

In its present state the church represents, as faithfully as one may expect after 
a long series of restorations, the original fifteenth-century structure. What preceded 
it is not easy to say. HoUinworth asserts that the previous church was of wood, 
and that remains of the timber existed in his own day ; but certainly portions of this 
earlier church were of stone, the tower, for example, and possibly part of the east 
end, for the arch of the Lady Chapel displays fourteenth- and not fifteenth-century 



work. At any rate, there can be no reasonable doubt that this was the church 
early known as St. Mary's. In Domesday Book there is mention made of two 
churches in Manchester parish; and Dryasdust, as usual, makes a big fuss about 
estabhshing their locality and identity. One of them, St. Michael's, was, says he, in 
Aldport; the other, St. Mary's, was near St. Mary's Gate. But, by your leave, 
Dryasdust is wrong. The St. Michael's of Domesday can only be the parish church 
of Ashton-under-Lyne, and there is no proof of St. Mary's having ever existed on 
any site other than that now occupied by the Cathedral. 

Leaving this debatable ground, however, the authentic history of the Cathedral 
begins in 1421, when the parish church of Manchester was coUegiated by Thomas 
de la Warre, twelfth lord of the manor. De la Warre was not ouly baron, but 
parish priest of Manchester, 
and a good deal more^ — - 
Prebendary of Grindal, 
Prebendary of Southwark, 
and so on ad lib. Having 
been so decided a pluralist 
himself, and not at all, as 
Fuller scandalously hiuts, 
with a view to getting the 
Pope's sanction for his 


marriage, he piously determined that his successors should not be led into such 
temptation ; and, acting with the warm support of no less a personage than Langley, 
Bishop of Durham and Chancellor of England, he delivered over the care of the 
parish and its church to a collegiate body, consisting of a warden, eight fellows, four 
clerks, and six choristers. Having founded the body, he amply endowed it with 
lands, and gave up his own baronial hall as a residence for the members. 

The first warden. Sir John Huntingdon — in those days every ecclesiastic, indeed 
every graduate, was or could be styled "Dominus" or "Sir"; not to multiply 
instances, is not the unknightly " Master Priest " called Sir Hugh Evans in The 
Merry Wives of Windsor ? — began the erection of the new church, and built what 
is now the chancel and the chapter-house. His successor, Langley, pulled down 
the body of the old wooden church, leaving the tower standing, and joined 



Huntingdon's chancel up to it by tlie nave, of which he laid the foundations. The 
work of completing the church on these lines was accomplished by the third and 
fourth wardens, the Stanleys, the latter of whom, though commonly reported to be 
a sinner, was graced by the friendship of Erasmus. 

But for restorations, and with the exception of the chantries already noticed, 
the church remains to-day as it left the hands of the Stanleys and of the seventh 
w^arden, Sir George West ; for any further pious activity of the wardens in the 

building way was effectually stopped 

by the Eeformation. In the first year 
of Edward YI. the college was dissolved, 
the plate and vestments were confis- 
cated, and the church was made into a 
vicarage. The lands passed into the 
possession of lay impropriators, and 
became for a short time the inheritance 
of the Stanleys. But after the marriage 
of Mary with Philip of Spain the college 
was re-established, and most of the lands 
were resumed from the Earl of Derby. 
This settlement was not abrogated by 
Elizabeth ; but later in her reign she 
granted a new charter of foundation, 
by which it was provided that the 
collegiate body should consist of a 
warden, four fellows, two chaplains, four laymen, and four children skilled in music. 
The old dedication was also changed and, from being the College of the Blessed 
Virgin, it was now and henceforth to be known as Christ's College. Two generations 
later a fresh charter, drawn up by none other than Archbishop Laud himself, was 
issued by Charles I. (1635), by which, however, no change was made in the 
composition of the body. 

The first warden appointed after the granting of this charter was the well- 
known Hej'rick. It was during his time that the fury of the Civil War broke over 
the church. The college was a second time dissolved, the parish chest broken open, 




and the richly-painted windows — for the church was once full of heautiful old stained 
glass, of which only a fragment has heen preserved — were destroyed. 

The later history of the bxiilding consists of the record of the various restorations, 
most of which, though not all, have been judiciously conservative. 



Enough has been said, at any rate, to show that the place has a history of its 
own. An idea seems to prevail that everything about Manchester is new. Writing 
to the lady to whom he was about to be married, Bishop Fraser repeats this 
impression in so many words: "Everything about the see of Manchester is modern. 
I am the second bishop, while other sees have a roll of more than ninety prelates ; 
so you must not expect a mediaeval palace as at Norwich, or Ely, or SaKsbury." 


This is really a little lax. Is the long list of the wardens to count for nothing ? 
And must we date the ecclesiastical history of the city from 1847 or even 1840 ? Surely 
not. There has been many a "personage" among the clergy of the collegiate church, 
and three hundred years since, when it had an intimate connection with the bishopric 
of Chester, hopes were entertained that it would shortly become the seat of episcopal 
authority. The celebrated William Chaderton, the Puritan Bishop of Chester in the 
days of Elizabeth, and the favourer of the liberty of " prophesying," for a time 
moved his seat from Chester to Manchester, and only moved it back again because 
of the too frequent "jarrings" between his servants and the townspeople. And, more 
than a century later, this intimate connection was renewed, under Wardens Stratford 
and the elder Peploe, wardens and bishops at the same time. 

Even when devoid of this particular claim to interest, many of the wardens are 
most noteworthy figures. The last Catholic warden, Laurence Vaux, in the days of 
Elizabeth, was such — a man who steadfastly refused to change with changing queens, 
who rose to be a professor at Louvain, and in the end died a miserable death from 
starvation in the Gatehouse. And so, too, was the notorious Dr. Dee — astrologer, 
divine, mathematician, and many things more (p. 40). His astrological studies were 
neither a pretence nor a joke, as will be painfully granted by anyone who tries to 
fathom one of his astrological charts. Under Mary he had been imprisoned on a 
charge of plotting against the Queen's life by enchantments; but under Elizabeth 
he found favour for a time. She once, it is said, desired to see his library and 
his concave glass or magical mirror, and was " wonderfully satisfied with the sight, 
and sometimes sent him one hundred marks or two hundred angels to keep his 
Christmas with." He was commonly looked upon by the inhabitants of Manchester 
as possessing infernal powers ; and when Margaret Byrom of Salford and six others 
were supposed to be possessed with evil spirits, the warden was applied to to cast 
them out ; " but he absolutely refused by any unlawful means to cast them out, and 
advised them to apply for some godly ministers out of Northampton." 

Dee's successor, Murray, was an impecunious and unworthy waster of his church's 
wealth. His nationality we dare not indicate, but it is some satisfaction to know 
that his only claim to notice in history is the story of the reprimand he received 
from the pedant King of Scots. He preached, it is said, twice in Manchester — 
his own church — once upon the first verse in Genesis, and then on the last verse 



in Eevelation. The only other sermon of his recorded was delivered before King 

James I. on the words "I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ." "Perhaps," 

says Ogden, "he was not pedantic enough, or the King was disposed to joke, for 

when the preacher kissed 

hands, according to the 

custom, he remarked, 'Man, 

thou art not ashamed of the 

Gospel, but, by my sawl, the 

Gospel may be ashamed of 

thee ! ' " 

By no means unknown 
to fame either are many of 
the succeeding wardens. 
Heyrick, who lived through the storms of the Civil War, more than once smelled 
the inside of a prison, though he was not at all a bad hand at changing his 
opinions and siding with authority. He has another claim on our remembrance 
from his relationship (he was first cousin) to Herrick, the very freshest and most 
delightful of our seventeenth-century lyrical poets. 

There was Nicholas Stratford, too, typical of his fellow-townsmen in his straight 
speaking (p. 40). " I have a request to make of you," he writes on one occasion to 
Squire Weston, after cheerfully granting him a favour, "which I heartily pray you 
may as readily grant, and that is that for the fature you will abandon and abhor 
the sottish vice of drunkenness which (if common fame be not a great liar) you 
are greatly addicted to." Amongst others were Kiehard Wroe (p. 40), the "silver- 
tongued;" and the two Peploes, father and son, who ruled the refractory fellows 
with a rod of iron; and almost in our own days Thomas Calvert (p. 40), a protege 
of Lord Liverpool ; and the Honourable William Herbert, a son of the first Earl of 
Carnarvon, a distinguished classic and botanist and one of the first to foreshadow 
the theory of evolution, whose son after him became known to fame in the New 
World as a writer on sporting subjects and natural history, and as a novelist. 

Another well-known figure, though of more local note, was the chaplain, Joshua 
or " Jotty" Brookes. He died in 1821, having been chaplain, of the chiirch for thirty 
years, and having, it is said, in that time baptised, married, and buried more persons 



tliaii any other clergy- 
man in England. 
Numberless stories are 
told of the testy, 
eccentric, but good- 
bearted old man. One 
narrator as an eye- 
witness vouches for the 




{From a Painting in the {From Ilibbert-Ware's "Foundations (From Palatine Note-book.) 
Ashmolaan Museum.) of Maiichester.") 


following : — "A great 
number of couples had 
been arranged before the 
altar for to be married; when Jotty came to join their hands there was found to be one 
woman too many. No matter for that ; he was determined to make one of the men 
do double duty, and for the nonce at least have two wives. When one of the women 
objected to so arbitrary and summary a method of proceeding, he replied, ' I can't 
stand talking to thee. Prayers [i.e., the daily morning service] will be on directly. 
Thou must go and find him after.' The missing husband who had thus been married 
by proxy was found drunk at the ' Eing o' Bells.' " An especially characteristic, if 
fanciful, illustration of his method of christening is given in Mrs. Banks's novel "The 
Manchester Man." He would assist the vergers to marshal the women with their 
babies, begin the service, break off in the middle of a sentence to snap out some hasty, 
rough words to some of the ladies; resume it again, again to interrupt himself; and so 
on, and so on. If the 
whole were put to- 
gether it would sound 
a trifle queer: "You 
come here; you kneel 
there ; yon woman's 
not paid — ■' Forasmuch 
as it hath pleased'— 
What are you standing 


' ^ (After WinstariUy.) (After Thos. Gainsbomiffh, R.A.) 

find a place? Make 


(From Hibbert-Ware.) 




room here; thrutda up there — 'Let us pray' — Take that squaUing baby out," etc. etc. 
One end of old Jotty's house looked into the grounds of the grammar school, and the 
boys used to hammer at the walls with iron pokers, until the enraged Joshua would 
issue forth in high, unclerical wrath ; but his tormentors could easily escape him. 
The story told in the accompanying caricature, a reduction from a contemporary 
drawing, is still current and re-told with evident relish among some old Mancestrians. 

Before the death of 
change which was soon to 
ready inaugurated, but in all 


the last warden the great 
come about had been al- 
probability the agitation 

{After the Portrait by Geo. Richmond, R.A 
published by Grundy and Smith ) 

that preceded the establish 
Manchester has faded from 
1835 commissioners had been 
the general distribution of 


[From a Photograph by Franz Baum.) 

ment of the bishopric of 
most men's minds. In 
appointed to inquire into 
the revenues of the 

[I'rom a rnotograpti by Jf'ranz Baum.) 

church. After a year's in- vestigation they recom- 

mended (1836) the creation of two new sees in the archbishopric of York— Eipon and 
Manchester. Eipon was established soon afterwards, but Manchester not for another 
eleven years. In 1840, however, an Act was passed which changed the title of 
wardens and fellows into Deans and Canons, the latter being required to reside only 
three months in every year. The Act at the same time authorised the erection of a 


separate see, to be called the See of Manchester. The parishioners appear to have 
been ignorant of the effect of the Act until six years later, when Canon Parkinson 
accepted the Principalship of St. Bees College, Cumberland, which he continued to 
hold along with his canonry. The result was a strong agitation, conducted by an 
association under the presidency of Mr. Kichard Birley, Mr. Henry Houldsworth, and 
others, with a view to compel residence on the part of the canons. In the midst of 
the disturbance Dr. Herbert died, and a few months later the Act for establishing 
the bishopric of Manchester was introduced into the House of Lords. 

The agitation about the revenues of the church, which had thus incidentally 
had the effect of precipitating the question of the establishment of the bishopric, was 
not itself so immediately settled. The contention of the Association, that the church 
was and is a parish church and its revenues were to be appropriated to parochial 
needs, has since been amply recognised by law, but the recognition was not won with- 
out a fight. The endowment of the church of Manchester, in lands, had not been 
niggardly. Its glebe land, the result of several donations, is of enormous extent. 
The old endowment of the rectory of Manchester consisted of a carve of land in 
Kirkman's Hulme granted to the church before the Norman Conquest ; four oxgangs 
of glebe land in Deansgate, given to the church by Albert Greslet (Senex), the 
third Baron of Manchester, and the tithes of the whole parish, including the 
numerous townships. And when, in the fifteenth century, Thomas, Lord de la Warre, 
coUegiated the church he further gave it five messuages and ten acres of land 
in Mamcestre, Aldport, Gorton, and Heaton. 

In 1871, during the second agitation as to the apportioning of the Cathedral 
revenues, it was asserted that the lands, if let and managed in a business-like 
way, would fetch £50,000, £60,000, or even £80,000 a year. It is not surprising, there- 
fore, that public spirit in the town should have been exercised as to the adminis- 
tration of such a property. The result of the first agitation had been the passing 
of the Act 13 and 14 Vict., cap. 41 (1850), authorising the division of the parish 
of Manchester into several parishes, and providing for the appropriation of the 
revenues of the collegiate and parish church in the following manner : — The Dean 
to have £1,500 per annum ; four canons to have £600 each ; two minor canons to 
have £250 each ; and the surplus revenue then to be applied towards making up 
the income of all the incumbents within the ancient parish to a minimum of £250 


per annum. Twenty years later the clergy of the parish — or some of them — came 
to the conclusion that they had acted somewhat short- sightedly in pressing for a 
special Act, applicable to Manchester only, by which they had excluded themselves 
from the benefits of the general scheme drawn up by the Ecclesiastical Commissioners 
for providing incumbents a minimum income of £300 ; and in June, 1871, a second 
discussion arose in the town on the proposition made by several of the clergy to 
have some of the clauses in the above Act repealed. But the point to note is 
the recognition of the character of the church as stUl primarily a parish church. 
Those canonries not bearing a real residentiary character were changed on the death 
of the then possessors; for instance, by the fifteenth clause of the Act of 1850, the 
canonry held by Canon Bently was to become attached to the benefice of St. 
Matthew, Campfield, an arrangement which did not take place tUl the death of 
the canon, some thirty-four years later. And to-day all the four residentiary canonries 
are attached to incumbencies in the immediate vicinity of the city, and the canons 
are in residence at the Cathedral monthly in rotation. 

So much for the revenues. Let us return a moment to the church, which 
had thus by a double course of events become the seat of a bishopric. The first 
bishop of the diocese under the Act of 1847 was James Prince Lee (p. 41). 

It was well for Manchester, as has been aptly said, that her first bishop proved 
a builder, her second a prophet. Although in his later years Bishop Lee withdrew 
much from his clergy and people, the partial estrangement need not blind folk 
to the essential merits of his administration. As a young man, he had been an 
assistant master at Eugby, under Arnold, who gave him warmest praise for his organ- 
ising powers, and these he evinced again in his head-mastership of King Edward VI. 's 
School at Birmingham. Among his pupils there were three of the greatest church- 
men of recent times — Benson, Lightfoot, and Westcott. And during his episcopate, 
it is recorded that no less than one hundred and sixty-three new parishes were formed 
and churches built, a work the necessity of which is not so apparent now, but which 
was pressmgly urgent in that day. By common consent, the credit of this advance 
is attributed to the bishop's persuasive powers, which were no less a feature of his 
character than his learning— for he is said to have been one of the finest Hebrew 
and Greek scholars of his time. 

Bishop Lee died in 1870, and was succeeded by James Eraser, then rector of 



a quiet country living — Ufton Nervet, in Berkshire — not the most suitahle place, one 
might think, to seek a bishop for a manufacturing county people ; but that people 
alone know what Bishop Fraser became to Manchester and Lancashire. It would be 
difl&cult to convey to anyone unacquainted with the Lancashire nature even an 

imperfect idea of the strong love and veneration he won from all, and that is still 
paid to his memory (p. 41). 

What distinguishes the people of the County Palatine is their heartiness, their 
respect for strength, fearless openness, and good-natured manliness. Conciliate the 
hostility of a Lancashire man — show him, with no tittle of assumption or arrogance 
on your part, that you are his brother, and withal a man — and from that moment 
you may rely upon a friendship, roiigh it may be, but warm and hearty in its 
motives and expressions, and almost unreasoning in its unchangeableness. It seems 
almost strange at first sight that the rector of a retired country parsonage should 
have read the nature of a people so different from his own, so rough, apparently, 
so uncompromising and uncouth. But so it is. And the impression that he in 
his turn made upon them is the best comment upon his own nature, his impulsive 
generosity, frankness, cheeriness, downright manliness. When Bishop Fraser died it 
was found that he had given away in charity, during his fifteen years' episcopate more 
than i^30,000— an average of more than £2,000 a year. " Don't you think So-and-so 



looks down?" lie would say. "His wife looks ill," etc., etc.; "See if the poor 
fellow would like this (a £10 or £20 note) ? " But the keynote to his character was 
his perfect simplicity and freedom from arrogance, whether of place or of person. 
During the memorable Manchester and Salford Church Mission the bishop personally 
addressed bodies of medical students, railway employees, cabmen, slaughtermen, 
theatre hands, and what not. He found the slaughtermen " really delightful — so 
hearty, earnest, ready to be reached if only one spoke kindly and straight to them. 
When I talked to them of man's proper conduct to woman there really seemed to 
be kindled a spark of chivalry in their souls." 

"I fancy," he said to the three hundred employees of the Prince's Theatre, "I 
must be the first bishop of 
the Church of England, if I 
am not the first bishop of the 
Church of Christ, who has 
ever addressed a congregation 
in a theatre ; " but few of 
his audiences were ever more 
respectful than the one he 
had on that occasion, and 
many a touching memento 
has survived to tell of its 

His command over an 
audience of working men was 
supreme. Probably few scenes, 
says Diggle, in his "Lancashire 
Life" of the Bishop, in the 
history of Church Congresses 
have equalled that at the 
Working Men's Mission in the 

Circus, Percy Street, Newcastle, in October, 1881. "Every part of the vast building was 
packed to its utmost capacity. Thrilling addresses had been delivered by the Bishops 
of Durham and Carlisle, when the Bishop of Manchester, amid vociferous acclamations, 



was summoned to address the meeting. The appeal with which he closed his words 
on the influence of Christianity in preserving the sanctity of family was electric 
in its effect. ' Will you working men of Newcastle pledge yourself to resist this 
infidelity, so destructive of domestic purity and domestic peace ? ' The vast audience 
rose to a man, with the response, ' We will ! ' ' We will ! ' and the Bishop fairly 
broke down under the majestic emotion of the scene." 

It was such downright plainness and earnestness and goodness as this which 
established so complete an accord between Bishop Fraser and the people of Lan- 
cashire. They understood him — a child could understand him — and from the first 
he understood them, and learned to appreciate their qualities at their true worth. 
He was very fond of telling one story, which is typical of both sides, and shows how 
strongly the Lancashire character reacted on his own. On one occasion he had to 
consecrate a fine church that had been erected at a cost of .£20,000. " I got out," 

he says, " at station, and, after a sharp walk of twenty minutes, came in sight 

of the church, at a distance of about a mile. ' Can you tell me where Mr. W 

lives,' I inquired of a pedestrian, 'the gentleman who has built this noble church?' 
' Oh, ay ; it's yon cottage against yon bank ! ' Thinking there was some mistake, I 
went on, and presently overtook a girl in Sunday attire. ' Can you tell me where 

Mr. W lives, who built this noble church ? ' ' That's it ! ' she said, pointing 

to the same unpretentious cottage. ' I'm going to th' consecration ! ' Still I 
considered there was an error somewhere, but made my way to the door. An old 
woman, simply but respectably dressed, answered my knock. I dared not ask if 

Mr. W was in. I repeated my question, ' Can you tell me where Mr. W 

lives, who built this noble church ? ' ' Oh, you're the bishop, are you ? Come in ! 
He's been expectin' you. Come forra'd ; you'll find him in th' kitchen.' Ushered 
into the kitchen, I found an old but fine-looking man, sitting by the fire, smoking 
a churchwarden pipe. ' So you've come, have you ? ' said the smoker. ' Nowt 
like bein' in good time — there'll be a snack of something when you've done.' ' You 

have done nobly by the district, Mr. W ,' I said, seizing his hand, and giving 

it a hearty grasp. He gave me an equally hearty squeeze, but seemed surprised. 
' Naw, naw ! ' he said, ' I made th' population wi' my miUs, so I mun do my 
duty by 'em.' " 

Wlien the Bishop told the story, it was with a feeling of surprise. " In the 



south," he said, " such a benefaction would have been the talk of the district, and 
the benefactor would have received elaborate formalities and thanks." 

Bishop Fraser's successor was Dr. James Moorhouse (p. 41), appointed in January, 
1886. Bishop Moorhouse had previously, as everybody knows, been Bishop of 
Melbourne. That fact alone argued good, for a colonial bishop has to have no 
nonsense about him ; but when the nomination was made curiosity was great to know 
what manner of man he was, and how he would show as successor to the " Bishop 
of all Denominations." By this time one dare say that curiosity has been satisfied 
and all parties have been pleased. He is a strong man and independent, 
without the least jot or tittle of pretence or "sacerdotal nonsense." His work has 
been well begun and well sustained, and gives good 
promise. Indeed, one could hardly expect anything 
else from the record of his life. Dr. Moorhouse is 
the son of a Sheffield merchant, and was born in 
1826. He entered his father's concern and saw 
something of what business men conceitedly call 
real life, as if there were only one manifestation of 
real life. He felt, however, a call to the higher 
work of the Church, but when the wish was laid 
before his father he got very little in the way of 
encouragement. The merchant had no idea of the 
Church. " You'll never be anything but a poor 
country curate," said he; but he was mistaken. 
Seeing him averse from the idea, Dr. Moorhouse offered to stay in the business until 
his father's death, but this sacrifice the latter would not demand. Consent was given, 
and off he went to college at an age when most men are leaving it. He was 
educated at St. John's, Cambridge, and took his M.A. in 1860, receiving the degree 
of D.D., sixteen years later, jiLre dignitatis. Almost immediately after taking his 
degree he was ordained deacon, and, after the twelvemonth, priest, and commenced 
his work as a poor curate. He served in that capacity at St. Neots, in 1853-5, 
then for four years in his native town, black Sheffield, and afterwards, from 
1859 to 1861, at Hornsey. In the last-named year he was appointed to the vicarage 
of St. John's, Fitzroy Square, removing from there in 1867 to the vicarage of 

{From a Photograph by Fraiiz Eaum.) 



Paddington. His congregation at the former 
place had numbered among its worshippers Lord 
Salisbury and many another personage, and 
the impression of his arduous, manly work was 
not forgotten by the Master of Hatfield. His 
advancement from this point was rapid. He 
became Kural Dean, Hulsean Lecturer, Warbur- 
tonian Lectiu'er, Chaplain in Ordinary to the Queen, 
and obtained one of the prebendal stalls of St. 
Paul's Cath- 
edral. Before 
being appointed 

(From a Photograph by Brown, Barnes, and Bell.) 

to the see of 
Melbourne he 
had been approached on the occasion of the vacancy 
of the metropolitan see of Calcutta. This, however, 
he declined, but when in 1876 he was offered the 
see of Melbourne he conceived the time had come 
for him no longer to shrink from the largest 
responsibilities. As he told a Melbourne gathering 

when he left them 

(FroTn a Photograph by Franz Baum.) 


* c c.U''-^^^ 


to come to Man- 
chester, he had 
made it one prin- 
ciple of his life never to seek preferment, and 
when preferment had offered itself he had met it 
frankly, considering it from the point of view of 
responsibility more, than of honour. The parish 
in London which he left to "go out " was 
wealthy and promised him greater money re- 
muneration than the offered bishopric ; neverthe- 
less, out he went, and when again a greater 
sphere of usefulness than Melbourne presented 



itself in Manchester he embraced it as his duty and returned home— and luckily 
for Manchester, as we have said, for a colonial bishopric is good trainmg for a 
strong man, and in Lancashire men need be very strong. "You must expect 
every man to consider himself as good as you," was the hint given to Dr. Moor- 
house by one of the Australian Governors when he first went out. But that was 
just the thing. " If that be so," he replied, " I shall meet with many men of the 
same opinion as myself." The reply convinced his interlocutor that the Bishop 
would get on, and he did. He came to be regarded as the most promment force 


and the most popular divine in Australia, and all by dint of energy, earnestness, 
straightforwardness, and hard work. 

And very hard work, too. It is no joke being an Australian bishop. The sees 
spread wide — Melbourne diocese is of enormous extent, and there does not happen 
to be a railway station convenient at every turn. It means plenty hard riding and 
plenty roughing in the out-stations and an unceremonious closeness of contact 
between man and man that strips away imaginary graces, like that merciless logic 
which Bishop Coplestone complained of as leaving no man anything. 

The Winnemara Plains cover 25,000 square miles in extent, and the Gippsland 
Uplands another 14,000 ; but year after year the Bishop visited his scattered flock, 
staying out for weeks at a time. And it is characteristic with what a practical eye 
he viewed the needs of frontier life. When he was requested to issue a special 
form of prayer for rain during the prevalence of a drought, he declined, insisting on 



it that the proper antidote to these droughts was neither prayer nor fasting, but 
the construction of irrigation works. 

A striking story is told of him, too, how on one occasion he pumped water for 
cattle on a Sunday. On his return to England he was interviewed as to this shocking 
and unheard-of proceeding in a bishop, and his account of it was this: "It occurred 
at Kerang. For three months of the year there is an excessive drought in the 
country, and, in order to secure an adequate supply of water for the town cattle, 
the Shire Council, which is equivalent to' an English corporation, made a rather 
peculiar arrangement in connection with the water-supply, by which half the water 
raised by the pumps flows into the town trough, and the other half iills. the 
vessels from which the cattle drink. By this method no man on week-days can 
use the pumps for his own advantage without adding to the store of the pure 
element in the town cattle-trough. On Sunday no one used the pumps, the 
inhabitants preferring to provide a double supply on Saturday for their own houses. 
On the occasion mentioned I happened to be present when the Kerang cattle 
were lowing in a plaintive and helpless way around the water-troughs, which, 
owing to the excessive heat, were empty. Erom the hotel window I could see a 
number of idle fellows standing about who took no heed to the calls of the 
poor beasts deprived of their ordinary draught, and the sight aroused my indigna- 
tion. Turning out of the hotel, I made my way on to the platform, threw off my 
coat, and pumped away vigorously to assuage the thirst of the suffering animals by 
filling the town-trough. Then some half-dozen of the lazy fellows were desirous 
of helping me, but I could not accept their assistance. It did them good and 
thoroughly shamed them." As might easily be expected, such an explanation made 
a way for him in his new diocese, and added distinctly to the heartiness of his 

Side by side with the Bishop must be ranked the great layman of the diocese, 
ex- Chancellor Christie (p. 48). To what shall we liken him ? If this were the 
Augustan age of the Empire of Manchester, Mr. Christie would be its Mscenas, 
and the far-off student of English classics would read of him in the pages of 
some Manchester Horace — clidce decus Mancuniense. But this is a dream — reminding 
us only too acutely of the gap between a coronal-wreathed empire to whose 
greatness and goodness melodious poets might sing madrigals, and at whose feet 


artists and musicians meet in homage and gentle rivalry, and the smoke-grimed 
citadel of materialism, purse-proud and slum-cursed. As it is, the choicest spirit of 
Manchester's latest age — and how choice not many know, how delicate in literary 
instinct, how exquisite in urhanity — is driven to express itself, the fineness of its 
essence, in common deeds such as men do nowadays. Mr. Christie is a Whitworth 
Trustee and president of the Whitworth Institute — it was only recently he opened 
the beautiful Whitworth Park — and head of innumerable organisations and movements, 
among them being — strange as it may sound for a pure stylist, a devoted Eenaissance 
student — the various conspiracies or so-called societies, the Chetham Society, the 
Record Society, etc., which darkly meet in dim-lit conclave to concert the doing of 
such literary deeds and the printing of such literary dry bones — son of man, can 
they ever live ? — as shall never be known for VergiHan or Horatian either. In 
December, 1893, Mr. Christie resigned the Chancellorship, in consequence of failing 
health, and was succeeded by Mr. Philip Vernon Smith, M.A. 

The list of the Deans too of the Cathedral Church yields a few interesting 
figures. Dean Bowers, though of homely exterior, was a man of strong common- 
sense, and a most genial and pleasant companion. He was a protege of Lord John 
Russell, who once ofi"ered to recommend him for the bishopric of Sodor and Man ; 
but as Dean Bowers was accustomed to say, more Hibernico, "he was not disposed 
to go and live in a dissolute island." 

Dean Cowle, his successor, was a man of a different school. A Senior Wrangler 
and Gresham Lecturer, his modern High Church views were hardly in accordance 
with the old-fashioned " Church and Queen" traditions of the chapter of Manchester. 
He introduced many innovations into the service, and through some want of tact 
gave offence in several quarters. On one occasion, having been rather unfairly 
attacked at a vestry meeting, he commented in a sermon, with some asperity, on 
what he was pleased to call "pot-house Protestantism." On another occasion 
some remarks he made reflecting on Humphrey Chetham's character, though jokingly 
intended, were taken seriously, and much offended some of the old-fashioned clergy 
and laity, who looked upon it almost as blasphemy to say anything derogatory to the 
memory of Manchester's great benefactor. In 1884 he was appointed Dean of 
Exeter, on the nommation of Mr. Gladstone, and was succeeded at Manchester by 
John Oakley, then Dean of CarHsle. who died six years afterwards. 



Oakley's sympatliies were extreme and diverse — with the ultra-Eadicals on one 
side and with the ultra-High Churchmen on the other — and it was only the genuine 
goodness of his heart, which was recognised hy all, that enabled him to escape 
the dilemmas and dangers of his opinions. 

On the death of Dean Oakley there was for some time a talk of the possibility of 
his being succeeded by no less a person than xlrchdeacon Farrar, but if the offer was 

^^Ai/^e ^ ':^/e^4 


ever made it was not entertained. His actual successor was Edward Craig Maclure, 
Vicar of Eochdale, who was appointed in 1890, though his induction was delayed for 
a few months by a legal question — the charter of the church, as granted by Charles I., 
requiring the warden, now represented by the dean, to be a Bachelor of Divinity 
or Laws. Dean Maclure (p. 47) is the son of Mr. John Maclure, merchant, of Man- 
chester, and brother of J. W. Maclure, who is M.P. for the Stretford division of Lan- 
cashire. He earned by his character and work the esteem of both the late and the 
present bishop. In 1877 Eraser had appointed him Vicar of Eochdale, in succession 
to Dr. Molesworth, the father of William Nassau Molesworth, the author of the 
"History of England from 1830," who, though beneficed at Spotland, near Eochdale, 






was united to Manchester by many a tie, being an honorary canon, and a personal 

friend of Cobden and Bright, besides having married a Manchester wife. In 1878 

Machire was made honorary canon of the Cathedral, and in 
the following year rural dean. Just before his appointment as 
dean, Bishop Moorhouse had nominated him for the dignity of 
Archdeacon of Manchester. He is a man of no pretence as a 
pulpit orator, but a fine organiser, a strong, active worker, and 
of an energetic, zealous, independent nature. 

On his appointment as dean, the archdeaconry which had 
been intended for him was conferred on the Eev. J. M. Wilson, 

ex-Master of Clifton College. The vacancy thus filled had been caused by the 

resignation of the venerable Archdeacon George Henry Greville Anson, Eector of 

St. James's, Birch-in-Eusholme (p. 48). 

Archdeacon Anson's face is probably one of the best known and venerated in 

Manchester, and his retirement from the archdeaconry was a matter of general 

regret. He is the third 

son of the late General 

Sir William Anson, Bart., 

G.C.B., and was born 

July 19th, 1820. At the 

age of twenty-six he was 

presented to the living 

of Birch-in-Eusholme by 

the patron, his brother. 

Sir John Anson, Bart., 

a living which he has 

served for nearly two 

ordinary generations of 

men. In 1870 he was 

made Archdeacon in 

succession to Dr. Durn- 

ford, who was in that 

year appomted Bishop wabdbn's on audit nooii, chbtham college. 


of Chichester, and who is still living, a hale old man of ninety-two, able, it is 
said, to attend to all his duties in the House of Lords, and to do a ten-mile walk 
on the top of them with many a younger man. 

There are probably few men in the city to-day who experience general unalloyed 
goodwill and love to the extent to which Archdeacon Anson enjoys it, thanks to 
a winning temperament and a bright life. 

His successor, James Maurice Wilson (p. 48), the present archdeacon, is a re- 
markable man. Educated at St. John's College, Cambridge, he was Senior Wrangler, 
in 1859 became Natural Science master at Kughy, and in 1879 Head-master 
of Clifton — a school which has pushed its way to the very front rank of the great 
English public schools. During this later period of his life he became known 
and highly esteemed as a preacher and as a disputant on subjects bearing on the 
relations of Science and the Bible, work for which his scientific knowledge (his 
chief astronomical work is his " Handbook of Double Stars ") eminently fitted him. 
In the carrying out of his ideas he has discovered a fine power of dealing with 
working-men audiences — that, too, not by reason of any pre-engaged sympathy, but 
rather by dint of courtesy, chaste .eloquence, and width of view and mental horizon. 
This work he began at Nottingham in a Sunday afternoon lecture on " Miracles," 
delivered in Advent, 1883. The lecture was attended mostly by Secularists and was 
followed by a public discussion in the Mechanics' Hall of that town. In the same 
and three following years he set on foot in Bristol a series of lectures intended to 
promote "higher Biblical teaching and instruction on the fundamental questions of 
religion and Christianity." The series was intended to be delivered by Church and 
Nonconformist ministers alike, and he commenced it with two lectures on " The 
Theory of Inspiration; or, Why Men do not believe the Bible." They were attended 
mostly by artisans, and it is characteristic that the president at the first was the 
Bishop and at the second lecture the Chairman of the Trades Council. One of 
the Bristol workmen who took part in the discussion on this occasion published a 
pamphlet on the same subject stating the case for the Secularists, a pamphlet 
which drew from Archdeacon Wilson a reply addressed to him privately, but 
afterwards printed in a volume of Mr. Wilson's addresses. 

It is a matter for congratulation that Manchester should have secured an Arch- 
deacon kindly-minded to all denominations and powerful with working-men in a 


district where dissent is strong, and where working-men consider themselves neither 
babes nor sucklings. 

And there is something more than this, or some who watch the times will 
grieve. In Lancashire they are in danger of deifying their own good qualities — 
warmth of heart and strength of head. Good, very good ! send the world more of 
them. But there is another quality that must still be a factor in progress — fineness 
of pure intellect. Add this to Lancashire virtues, and to them all, imagination, and 
the intellectual lead of Lancashire, acknowledged by all, so gracefully acknowledged 
in memorable words by Lord Salisbury, would translate itself into the spiritual lead 
of a great people. Without it we go halting and not without reproach. Such 
fineness of intellect characterises Archdeacon Wilson. Will he be able to teach 
Manchester folk the difference between intellect which few have and intelligence 
which we all have ? It is a business necessity, forsooth ! Manchester has her 
university, of course ; but that speaks to scholars. But where is he who shall teach 
this to the publicans and sinners, clerks and merchants and working-men? 

The Archdeacon's sister, Miss Edith C. Wilson, is well known in the academic 
life of Manchester, as principal of the Women's department of Owens College. 

Besides the Bishop the list of the diocesan clergy includes the Assistant Bishop, the 
Eight Eev. F. A. E. Cramer-Eoberts, D.D., Vicar of Blackburn, and the Archdeacon 
of Lancaster, the Venerable W. Hornby, late Eector of St. Michael's-on-Wyre, and 
the Archdeacon of Blackburn, the Venerable E. A. Eawstorne, of Balderstone Grange, 
near Blackburn. 

As opposed to these, the Dean and Canons must be regarded rather in the light 
of successors to the old Warden and Fellows of the Collegiate Church. 

The Eesidentiary Canons are four in number, namely, Eev. William Crane, Eector 
of St. George's, Hulme ; Eev. Charles Wright Woodhouse, Eector of St. Andrew's, 
Ancoats ; Eev. James Davenport Kelly, Eector of St. Matthew's, Campfield ; and the 
Eev. Edward Lee Hicks, Eector of St. Philip's, Salford. 

Canon Kelly, who succeeded to the canonry which became attached to St. 
Matthew's on the death of Canon Bently, is remarkable in many ways for width of 
view and extent of experience in educational as well as church matters, having been 
Chairman of the Ashton and later (in 1890) of the Manchester School Board. He 
is a Wadham man with a brilliant record, Lawson jnedallist, Kennicott Hebrew 



scholar, and, before removing to Manchester, was for eighteen years the most 

popular clergyman in Ashton-nnder-Lyne, where he held the rectory of Christ Chm-ch 

and the post of rural dean. 

The actual service of the parish church, in so far as the Cathedral is a parish 

church, devolves upon these Residentiary Canons, the two Minor Canons, the Rev. 

John M. Elvy, 
M.A., and Rev. 
J. A. Winstanley, 
M.A. ; a clerk in 
orders and a 
resident parish 

For the church 
is still a parish 
church, and its 
cure one involving 
cure of souls, 
although it has 


become a cathedral 
and although the 

days have long gone by when the gentry and traders of Manchester lived in town, 
in fine houses down Deansgate and Long Millgate, and within sight of the old 
structure and within sound of its bell. Things have changed since then, and they 
may change still further for anything we know, but one memento and sUent 
witness at least we still have in the old chiu'ch, though its grey tower no 
longer sleeps under a quiet sky nor often hears the gathering swallows twitter. 

" Sweet Irk flow softly till I end my song." 

Within a stone's throw of the Cathedral is the Chetham Hospital and Library. 
Memorable and charming as it is from its associations, the Chetham College (to call 
it by its wrong name) is probably little known to the ordinary business man of the 
day. " 'Tis true, 'tis pity, and pity 'tis, 'tis true," for the place is an education in 
itself, and a delightful retreat. 



Por one thing, it is almost hidden from view, and could easily be passed 
without any suspicion of its existence and natm-e. To anyone arriving at Exchange 
Station it comes as the natural unchangeahle order of things to cross the bridge, 


never look at the river — Humph ! no wonder, unless the sun happens to be setting 
in crimson in that western space above those black blocks lining the inky stream, 
and that canopy of congregated exhalations, the smoke and steam and cry of 
countless life ; once — twice have we seen it, and its lurid, thought-compelling memory 
will not easily fade. But this is the exception. In the ordinary way of things you 


do not look at the river, for various reasons, but get at once into Victoria Street, 
admire the fine architectural lines, turn into Market Street, reach the Exchange, and 
— think you are seeing Manchester. My reader — not a bit of it. You are leaving 
Manchester behind you. You must come back and display a little originality. 
Instead of following the beaten track, turn to the left as you leave Victoria Bridge 
down by the terrace in front of the Cathedral, and opposite its north-west corner 
look for a gateway terminating a long, useless-looking wall (Plate 5). 

All may enter, for it is free to the town for ever. The door opens into the 
College or Hospital yard — the playground of the Bluecoat boys. Probably as one 
enters there is a game of football going on, but that concerns us not, nor the school- 
house — a recent erection, designed by Alfred Waterhouse, in harmony with the rest 
of the building, and opened in 1878. We pass this on the left for the moment, in 
order to reach the main building, which is entered by the porch near the kitchen 
(p. 49). In the rear stretches a narrow rectangular wing, one himdred and fifty 
feet long, containing the kitchen (which is open to the roof), the domestic offices, 
and the hospitium. Over these are the dormitories for the boys. In some parts 
of this wing the timbers of the roof are held to suggest an earlier building of wood. 

Leaving this, however, we turn to the main portion of the buildings. These form 
an irregular square round a miniature quadrangle or courtyard, which now, by 
the addition of the cloisters, probably shows smaller than the original plan intended. 

On the right of the passage were the private rooms or cells of the fellows, 
the clergy of the old collegiate church. These rooms occupy the north and west 
sides, and are now made into butteries and book-rooms. The passage by which one 
enters terminates in the old cloisters running round three sides of the quadrangle, 
and once trodden by the fellows in that semi-monkish existence of theirs. The 
cloisters have the look from the courtyard of being an addition to the structure, 
as the base mouldings do not correspond with those of the adjoining parts, but if 
so, they cannot be much later in date, for they are still the most characteristic 
parts of the building, and venerable with grey age. The ordinary visitor, however, 
rarely sees them in their entirety (p. 52). 

The length of the remaining east side of the quadrangle is occupied by the 
Great Hall, which has probably served for dining-room for the feudal baron, and 
later for the Warden and his clergy, as it does to-day for the Bluecoat boys. In 

















pre-Elizabethan buildings, where the master and all his household ate in common, 
the dining-hall was necessarily the chief feature in the establishment. It was open 
to the rafters, so as to be equal in height to two storeys of the adjacent rooms, the 
idea being to aUow the smoke plenty of space to ascend from the enormous wood 
fire. For the same reason the roof was usually high-pitched. 

On the ordinary plan the kitchen, which bears exactly the same features, was 
placed at one end of the great hall, a large screen just inside the open doorway being 
the only attempt at division. These screens were of wood, and in some cases afford 
magnificent samples of carving. In the case of the Chetham College, the screen, 
rather a plain one, is in its place ; but the kitchen is not, as vsdll be seen from the 
plan (p. 49). It is held by some that this old kitchen represents the original 
dining-hall of the Greslets ; but could not the dislocation be accounted for by the 
necessity of putting the fellows' cells continuously, and relegating the domestic offices 
to the wiug ? The Great Hall measures forty-three by twenty-four feet, and is now 
open to the roof (p. 67). Up to 1843 it had been counterceiled, as had been the case 
also with the reading-room. But in 1878 this blemish was removed at the expense of 
Mr. Oliver Heywood, and the timbering can now be seen, and lends a rich effect by 
its colour. At the upper end of the room is another trace of pre-Tudor usage. The 
floor is raised a few inches to form a dais, so that the high table should in some 
sort command the long side-benches assigned to the domestics and chance guests. 

Behind the dining-hall is the Warden's room (p. 53), where Sir Walter Ealeigh 
is said to have dined with the astrologer warden, Dr. Dee. Ealeigh's autograph 
is still preserved in the reading-room, and it is interesting to find that the College 
was once graced by the presence of a man who had more genius than King 
James and all his Privy CouncU put together. This room is now preserved for the 
feofi'ees of the Chetham Charity, and is very interesting from its high panellincr and 
its ceiling, a fine specimen of a class of work in which medieval England excelled. 
The carving of the bosses at the intersection of the beams is, in some instances 
very curious and noteworthy. One of them (p. 63) represents the head of the child- 
devouring giant, Tarquin, who was believed to have kept his castle near the ford 
of the Medlock at the end of Deansgate, and who there held in thrall threescore 
and four of the doughty knights of King Arthur, until the peerless Sir Launcelot 
came and challenged him, beating for a sign on the basin hung at his castle gate 



and slew him. In spite of old Drayton, and in spite, too, of Euskia's indignant 
rebuke "That sea is your ^gean — but where is its Temple to Apollo?" we are not 
in the habit of associating nymphs and such paraphernalia with Lancashire streams. 
Lancastrians have neither an Olympus nor a Temple to the Muses ; but Medlock, 
at anjT- rate, must have been something out of the ordinary to have preserved the 
tradition of so respectable a giant. 

The ascent to the second floor of the college is made by a fine Jacobean staircase, 
just to the left of the entrance to the cloisters. By an arrangement that is almost 

unique, the cloister 
system of the ground 
floor is repeated in the 
storey above. Their 
north and south sides 
are made into pass- 
ages for the use of the 
library (p. 68) ; the west 
is closed, except to the 
privileged, as it con- 
tains store of books. 
Bound the cloisters 
ran the dormitories of 

{From an Old PHnt.) 

the fellows, which now form charming little recesses for the books of the library 
— a library which is, in its way, also unique. Passing round these corridors, with 
their unevenly boarded floors, their fine, high-pitched, raftered roof, and their piles 
of venerable books — seldom smelled at, much less read — we reach at the south-east 
angle the old warden's bedroom, now the reading-room (p. 56). Its charm is 
indescribable, what with the ancient furniture, its grave and stately arrangement, 
the rich colour and warmth of the old leather-work, and the older oak of the roof, 
the pictures, the half light from the low Tudor-arched windows. Sitting here, the 
visitor — and he will probably be solitary, for the charming spot is little frequented 
• — can feel breathed upon him the whispered enchantments of those bygone ages, 
restored again, and purged of their grossness by time and distance and imagina- 
tion. There are only two such buildings in Manchester, but in their way, for 



the glamour of historic association and poetic 
enchantment, they stand untouched, though 
Manchester be not Oxford any more than it is 
Mycenae. The only fear is that this little leaven 
does not serve to leaven the whole lump. If so, 
so much the worse for the lump, though he be 
held a heretic who should say it. Not very far 
from Manchester there is a fine old hall, 
mediteval and historic to its heart's core, unique 
in some of its architectural features, and the 
Oh: ' ■: K'^-jSB^^^^^ seat withal of a noble family, possessed of annals 
L—: '. -- - ■::-t!:.-:'!^"j of its own. That hall has been recently sold 

nUMPHEET CHETHAM. , . p , i t , , . c -i 

to make way lor the goods station oi a railway 

(From the Painting in the College.) 

company. That is how the leaven worketh. 
The history of the " College " — for so it is still called, although it has ceased to 
be such for three hundred years and more — is very interesting. The present building 
doubtless stands on the site of the old baronial hall of the Greslets, but whether 
exactly or not, or whether it contains any portion of the old building or not, except 
some of the timber, 
is not at all certain. 
In its present form it 
owes its origin to 
Thomas, the last of 
the La Warres, whose 
piety in the collegia- 
tion of the church 
has already been 
noted. In order to 
accommodate the 
clerical body which 
he had created, he 
gave up to them his 
manorial hall, and 



apparently before his death, in 1426, rebuilt it at a cost of £3,000, for in its 
architectural style it corresponds with the earliest portions of the church. It still 
preserved many features of the old castle, in the colossal strength of the walls, 
and in the commanding position it occupies, forty feet above the Irk, now covered 
over, but once forming a natural moat on one side, as will be seen from the view 
from the river (p. 60). 

Henceforth, however, it was to be the abode not of war, but of piety and 
hospitality ; and so it continued till the days of the Keformation when, under 
Edward VI., the collegiate body was dissolved, and its lands, like those of the 
monasteries under his father, were granted to laymen. Lands and buildings together 
passed into the possession of the Derby family. Under Mary, as has been already 
stated, a forced restitution was made of the lands, but not of the building itself. 
This remained in the possession of the house of Derby till the Commonwealth, and 
during their ownership several of the members of the family used it as a temporary 
residence, and mementoes of them still remain in the rough reproductions of their 
armorial bearings, the leg and claws of the eagle and the portcullis, visible in the 
coved part of the moulding of the reading-room. 

But during the Civil War a sweeping reverse of fortune overtook the noble house 
of Derby. It was James, Lord Strange, afterwards seventh Earl of Derby, who had 
attempted to array the forces of the county for Charles, had shed the first blood 
of the Civil War, had besieged Manchester, and had been impeached by the 
House of Commons. Of all the loyal hearts devoted to the unworthy cause of the 
Stuarts, probably none was more unselfishly noble, certainly none ever felt the smart 
of a more bitter fate. His estates were sequestered — -a modified sort of confiscation — 
and amongst them the College at Manchester. As a consequence, the buildings were 
allowed to fall into a dilapidated state, and were put to all manner of imaginable 
uses — magazine, Presbyterian and Independent meeting-houses, common brew-house, 
workhouse, and what not. In the same period the church itself came to be used as 
a stable, and after the flight of the Scots there was much work in the cleansing of it. 

It was while the College was in this state that Humphrey Chetham (6, 1680 ; 
d. 1653) conceived the purpose of purchasing it for a charity school. He was at that 
time a retired fustian-merchant, residing mostly at Clayton Hall : " a diligent reader of 
the Scriptures and of the works of sacred divines (p. 61)." He was of a shrewd but 


apparently not very venturesome nature, for as sheriff of the county he had been con- 
cerned in the levy of ship-money. The chief feature of his character was benevolence. 
During his later years he had privately maintained twenty-two boys, drawn from 
Manchester, Salford, and Droylesden; and he applied to the Committee of Seques- 
trations for the county, with the idea of purchasing the College for their quarters. 
In consequence, however, of the " saucie " attitude of one of the Committee, he drew 
off and would not complete the purchase. After his death his executors again applied 
for the College, and in 1654 it was made over to them for £500, and the boys — 
who had been increased to forty by Chetham's will, in which he left ^£7,000 for the 
purchase of a fee-simple estate to support the charity- — ^were transferred to their 
quarters there in 1656. Previous to their occupancy, £400 was spent on alterations 
in the library, and it was during these, probably, that the present entrance and 
staircase were constructed on the south-west side of the quadrangle, the old entrance 
to which was thereby blocked up. At the same time, and in consequence, the 
north-west staircase was discontinued. 

As a matter of course, at the Eestoration the College reverted to the Derby 
family, being part of the marriage settlement of Charlotte, the widow of James, 
seventh Earl. She, however, made a fresh deed, confirming the College to the feoffees, 
in 1667. A letter of hers, which has survived in this connection, shows her in a 
very favourable hght, certainly with no suspicion of that vindictiveness which is 
commonly ascribed to her character; although, as she informed the feoffees, "my 
losses and sufferings have been such, that I had need to make what I can of that 
small remnant of estate which it hath pleased God to leave me." 

In thus refraining to press for a restoration of her rightful property, Charlotte de 
la Tremouille, Countess of Derby, has proved a greater benefactor to Manchester than 
she herself ever thought, or than many an unkind critic would allow. Fate has 
proved very churlish to the martyr earl and his high-born wife. There are plenty 
of instances of want of historic truth in Sir Walter Scott's novels equally 
flagrant, but probably not a single instance in so many of such causeless 
wrong to one of the gentler sex, as Scott has inflicted in "Peveril of the Peak" 
on the Countess of Derby. It is not merely that he describes her as a Roman 
Catholic, whereas she was a fervent Protestant. How could a grand-daughter of 
William I. of Orange, the founder of the Dutch Eepublic, and the noblest figure 



in the annals of Protestant Europe, how could she be otherwise than a staunch 
Protestant ? Scott confesses that in this particular he drew on his own imagination, 
and spoke " after the trick." But it was evidently want of knowledge, and not 
dramatic necessity, that lay at the bottom of his misconception of this lady's 
character. High-born and high-spirited she certainly was. When the Parliamentary 
troops were besieging her and her children in Lathom House, the pragmatic Colonel 
j^igljy — he who once proposed to cut the Gordian knot of the Church question by 
selling the bishops into slavery— sent to demand her surrender. "Tell that insolent 
rebel," she sent back word, "that he shall neither have person, goods, nor house. 
When our strength and provisions are spent we shall find a more merciful fire than 

Eigby's, and then, if the providence of God prevent 
them not, my goods and house shall burn in his sight. 
Myself, children, and soldiers, rather than fall into his 
hands, will seal our religion and loyalty in the same 
flame." But, inflexible and courageous as she was in 
adversity, she was not vindictive nor revengeful. When 
young Eigby, the son of the "insolent rebel," fell into 
her hands a prisoner, she treated him with all gentle- 
ness ; and when William Christian — Scott's fair-haired 
William, he who had betrayed and imprisoned his 
liege queen (for in the Isle of Man the Derbys were 
kings and queens) — was tried and executed at the Eestoration, the Countess had no 
hand in it. In this, Scott is distinctly incorrect. In whatever circumstances we find 
her, we see the same magnanimity with which she treated these Manchester men 
who were feoffees of the Chetham Hospital — a magnanimity quite at variance with 
such a personality as we have drawn for us in " Peveril of the Peak." 

In a different way, too, fate has dealt as unkindly with the memory of her 
husband. His action at the commencement of the Civil War ; the riot in Manchester, 
in which his men drew the first blood of the Civil War, and at a moment when he 
was being publicly entertained by the town ; his end, the place of his execution, 
Bolton, whose bloody sack is laid at his door — on that day when he and Prince 
Eupert stormed the place twelve hundred are said to have been massacred — all 
these have served to fix the popular attention on incidents of which, with Ms 

{From a Photograph by Franz Baum.) 



djdng breath, he declared his innocence. James, Earl of Derby, was not a man of 
blood, and many of his opponents who fought for the better cause could ill compare 
with him in piety and personal virtue. His book of private devotions, and his letters 
to his wife and children, reveal a nature deeply rehgious and of infinite fatherly 
tenderness. "I draw near the bottom of the paper," he writes to his wife just 
before his execution, " and I am drawing unto the grave, for presently I must away 
to the fatal stroke. I have no more to say to you than my prayers for the Almighty's 


blessing to you, my dear Moll, and Ned, and BUly. Amen. Sweet Jesu." This, 
surely, is not the man who should go down to history charged with the guilt 
of a massacre. 

But to return to the College. The provisions of Humphrey Chetham's wUl with 
regard to the endowment were carried out in 1676, when an estate was purchased 
at Sutton-on-the-Hill for d65,650. At the time of the Charity Commissioners' inqxiiry 
in 1825 this estate was producing £1,696, the total revenues of the charity being 
£2,608. The number of boys maintained at that time was eighty, but in 1845 it 
was increased to one hundred, derived in the following proportion: from Manchester 


thirty-five boys; from Salford, fifteen; from Droylesden, eight; from Crumpsall, five; 
from Bolton, twenty-five ; from Turton, twelve. 

As it is conducted at present, the hospital is under a body of twenty-four 
feoffees, chosen from the most responsible personages of the neighbourhood. The 
boys are clothed and educated until they are of age to be bound out apprentice, the 
fees for this being likewise paid by the charity. 

Intimately connected with the hospital is the Chetham Library. It is located 
in the same building, and owes its origin to Humphrey Chetham, though the two 
benefactions are kept distinct. By his will he left £1,000 for books, JEIOO for building, 
and the residue of his estate for the augmentation of the library. In 1821 the 
revenues of the library were found to be £540, out of which £60 per annum and 
board were allowed to the librarian. The last librarian proper was Mr. Thomas 
Jones, B.A., a learned but singularly shy person. He was succeeded as honorary 
librarian by " Manchester's Dr. Johnson," alias " Manchester's Grand Old Man," 
alias, etc. etc., James Crossley (p. 64), the friend of Dickens, Ainsworth, the greater 
and the lesser Ajax, and other heroes. He formed during his lifetime one of 
the most extraordinary of private libraries — a collection containing over 60,000 
volumes. The sale of it, but yesterday, proved a huge triumph for the Philistines. 
For months after his books littered the second-hand stalls, Shudehill even partaking 
of the plunder — " Old Crossley's books, a penny each ! " 

His acquaintance with English literature was probably unrivalled ; but the 
fame of it is tending to become a mere tradition, as his genius was more receptive 
than productive. But one story is told, among many, that will justify his reputation 
— at least, for knowledge. He had made a most loving study of the writings of Sir 
Thomas Browne, and acquired such a mastery of his style as to be able to pass off a 
forgery. The " Fragment on Mummies " was certainly not written by Sir Thomas 
Browne, but by Mr. Crossley, and he must have rejoiced with a wicked joy when 
Bulwer quoted a passage from it as one of the finest things Sir Thomas Browne 
ever wrote. 

It is matter for regret that this experiment of an honorary librarianship 
was again resorted to after Mr. Crossley's death, and it is very much to be desired 
that some gentleman or scholar shoiild offer to sacrifice himself pro bono 
Ghethamensi et Mancuniensi. What is reqiiired is a person of high academic 


position, possessed of a wide knowledge of English and Continental literature generally, 
of Churcli history, theology, with an intimate acquaintance with the Fathers, and a 
sound classical, Hebrew, Sanskrit, and Arabic scholar, who will be content with 
£50 a year and rooms, and give a guarantee never to marry. We wait his advent, 
and meanwhile sincerely trust that this important and valuable collection will have 
all the jealous and loving guardianship and care that it certainly deserves ; for it is 
in reahty a public treasure. It is peculiarly gratifying to note that an arduous 
effort is being made by the zealous House Governor, Mr. W. T. Browne, to 
rearrange and re-catalogue the entire library. It is an immense task, but will prove 
of lasting benefit and should lead to a greater resort of students. 

Adjoining the Chetham College, quite close to its eastern gatehouse, which is 
still the tradesmen's entrance to the hospital, stands the Manchester Grammar 
School, Domus semper reverenda alumnis semper amanda. To the uninitiated visitor 
the present group of buildings would hardly convey a fair impression of the 
historic pretensions of the place. In its origin the school dates back almost four 
centuries. It is younger only by some eighty years than the College and Cathedral, 
and can show a roll of alumni fitly comparable with that of any of the great 

From their newness the buildings would hardly seem to promise so much. As 
they stand in this year of grace, they consist of two distinct blocks, separated by the 
east gateway of the College, and occupying the subtending sides of an obtuse angle 
which Millgate here makes between Fennel Street and Todd Street. 

Both blocks are quite modern in date and style. The older portion near the 
Cathedral occupies the site of the oldest high-master's house, and was erected in 1870. 
The newer part, which stands almost at right angles to it, was built so recently 
as 1881. The two blocks are connected by a subway, and overhead, and their internal 
detail is similar, and to some extent uninteresting so far as concerns the form rooms. 
Several of the features, however, notably the gymnasium, which occupies the central 
or hall part of the new building, the dining-room, 122 feet long, and the chemical 
laboratory (p. 72) are well worthy of a visit. Both are fitted on the most recent 
principle, as our American cousins would say ; indeed, the gymnasium — 112 feet by 
103 feet, and 25 feet high — is said to be the finest in England, and when practice is 
going on presents an extremely hvely, if necessarily not a holiday, appearance (p. 69). 



In the left wing, as we may call tlie slightly older portion, the main item of 
anything like adequate interest is the drawing-hall, which also forms the assembly- 
room where the scholars meet in the morning before commencing work. In the 
physical laboratory, likewise in the old part, and now comparatively little used, hangs 
the only relic of the old school now known to be extant. This consists of the 
well-known medallion taken from the end wall of the old school, bearing the figure 
of an owl in high relief. The owl is taken from the shield of the founder Oldham 
(0?*Zdham it may be, and is still pronounced by many a Lancashire mouth), and it 
has given its name to the Grammar School magazine — TJlula — a magazine that 
compares very much more than favourably with the similar emanations not alone of 

schools, but also of certain superior 
institutions not one hundred miles 
away which are wont to admire 
themselves more steadfastly, and, 
it may safely be said, more 
unreasonably, at least, in this 

The medallion is preserved 
from the veritable first building 
erected in the beginning of the 
sixteenth century by the founder 
of the school, Hugh Oldham, Bishop 
of Exeter, a man of more piety 
than learning, says that irrepress- 
ible gossip Fuller, " coiirteous in 
his deeds, but very harsh and rugged 
in his speeches " — not a bad epitome 
of the townsmen among whom he 
was born, whether he hail from 
Oldham or Manchester. 

Some time before his death 
(1519) he had erected a free 
school on some part of the 




present site, and for its endowment had purchased the lease of the three mills 
along the Irk, which are of such frequent mention in the town's records. On 
account of their retention of the feudal privileges which compelled the townsfolk to 
bring thither all their corn 


and malt to griad, these 
mills have been the subject 
of more litigation to the in- 
habitants of Manchester than 
anything else in the whole 
of their history. By an Act 
of 1758, however, the custom 
was abolished as far as related 
to corn, and the payment for 
the grinding of malt was 
fixed at one shilling per load. 
It is said to be this tax which has driven the brewers to settle outside the limits 
of the township. 

In the charitable endowment of his foundation Bishop Oldham was materially 
assisted by his sister Joan, the wife of Eobert Bexwyke ; and the conveyance of 1625 
by which this lady, along with two others — Hugh Bexwyke and Ealph Hulme — 
transferred the whole properties to trustees is generally regarded as the foundation 
deed of the school. 

To this conveyance is appended a schedule, which was intended to lay down 
rules for the governance of the school. Some of the regulations are highly amusing. 
" ScoUers " are prohibited from wearing daggers, hangers, or other weapons invasive, 
and from bringing into the school any staff save the meat-knives, from using the 
unlawful game of cock fights, from assaulting the master, and so on. They had, 
moreover, to be at school by six a.m. in summer, and seven in winter, and those who 
were learned in grammar were at all times to speak and use the Latin tongue. 

It will not, perhaps, appear a superfluous regulation to forbid the boys assaulting 
the master when we are told that on one occasion, during the high-mastership of 
William Barrow, in 1690, a great quarrel broke out between the scholars and the 
masters. The boys locked themselves in the school, and stood a regular siege for 


a fortnight, being supplied by the townspeople with victuals and beds, which were 
put in at the windows. They even, it is said, got fire-arms, and did not scruple to 
shoot at the legs of those who attempted to get in. 

The old school which witnessed these decidedly high jinks remained standing 
till the latter half of the eighteenth century, when it gave way to a plain brick 
structure, put up in 1766. Of this latter we have only an imperfect representation, 
and for an idea of it must fall back on to the reminiscences of its old boys. 

The upper room— a large one, 96 feet by 30 — was known as the Classical School, 
and was entered from the corner next the College. At the end, which came to 
somewhere about the present grand entrance, occurred the only ornament about the 
building, the medallion bearing the owl aheady noticed ; a flight of steps in the 
flagged space adjoining the wall of the Chetham Hospital led to the upper door, and 
at their foot was the door into the lower school, built entirely of stone, and only 
half the size of the large upper room. This lower school, which was of stone, 
and believed, probably enough, to have preserved portions of the actual structure 
erected by Bishop Oldham, was devoted, we are told, to vulgar fractions and mental 
arithmetic until chemistry began to be taught, when it was given up to acids and 
gases, the fumes of which ascended through the boards of the ceiling, to the 
great discomfort of the French master above. There was no gymnasium either in 
those days, and for sport the boys had to resort to the flagged space spoken of, on 
the lower gravelled yard. 

Some yards to the right of the later grand entrance stood some substantial brick 
houses, with stone facings, in one of which, next the school, lived old Jotty Brookes. 
Higher up, in Long Millgate, stood the residence of one of the best-known of the 
high-masters, Charles Lawson, " Millgate 's Flogging Turk" (pp. 75, 80). 

Lawson held the high-mastership for forty-three years, and at one time it is said 
that three of the heads of colleges in Oxford had been his pupils in Manchester. 
During his day he was regarded with mixed feelings by his pupils, among them 
De Quincey himself, who has left tbe record of his impressions in his Autobiography 
and in his "Confessions of an Opium-eater." In his later years he came to think more 
kindly of the old man. How far personal and actual experience of the rod goes to 
help in the formation of these impressions and opinions may be left to conjecture ; 
but it was, doubtless, something of that sort which led Edward Chesshyre, the 


writer of the song invariably associated -witli the anniversary meetings of the old 
scholars, to pen the sentient — i.e., feeling — verses — 

" ' Come, a stick to that boy ! ' was the call 
From Lawson did often resound. 
Timor occupat arius of all," etc. etc. 

But the majority of the scholars regarded him with warm feelings of respect, 
and one of them speaks of him as a " nice old gentleman, remarkably quiet, with 
a large bushy white wig and a clerical hat." His house was removed in 1835, its 
site being now covered by the late new school, which was erected, together with the 
high-master's house, in 1837, at a cost of ^67,500. This latter high-master's house 
was afterwards converted into the Cathedral Hotel. 

It would be impossible to give any adequate account of the alumni, the foster- 
children of this institution, who have attained to fame. The list is long — ^from the 
martyr Bradford to the opium-eater De Qiiincey, and Scott's close friend, J. S. 
Morritt, whose Yorkshire estate gave its title to "Eokeby." Scott has preserved an 
extremely interesting record of a dinner at which Morritt, who was a fine classic, 
and Southey were pitted against Coleridge, on the question of the unity of the 
Iliad, which Coleridge was impugning. Morritt's impatience, he says, must have 
cost him an extra sixpennyworth of snuflf. 

And selection in such a case might prove as invidious as it would certainly be 
partial and unsatisfactory. There is one incident, however, that is very striking in 
this connection. In 1749 Purnell became head-master of the school. He was shortly 
afterwards engaged in a controversy with Dr. John Byrom about the propriety of stage 
plays for the boys. Byrom, the Jacobite, was a most devoted son of the Muse — 
Manchester men hardly need to be told that it was he who composed the most 
popular hymn of modern times, " Christians, Awake." Many of his poetic witticisms, 
too, are still remembered. But Byrom had a truly English mistrust of the influence 
of stage plays, and he lost no time in giving the high-master the benefit of his 
opinion. A gentle controversy ensued, which we recall simply on account of the 
signal answer which time gave to the question if not to the disputants. In 1759 
the boys of the school acted " Cato." Of those engaged in the performance, one 
(Arden) afterwards became Lord Alvanley, Lord Chief Justice of the Common Pleas ; 
another (Heap) lived to be Vice-Principal of Brasenose College, Oxford; a third 



(Travis) became Archdeacon of Eichmond ; another was Senior Wrangler in his year ; 
and a fifth became Eecorder of Chester. Joseph Yates, too — whom Junius honoiirs 
with the, for him, singular tribute as " that great lawyer, that honest man," in his 
memorable letter to Lord Mansfield — was made a judge of the King's Bench. This 
is indeed a brilliant and, as the old boys would say over their cups — rare old boys 
too : on one anniversary occasion thirty-five of them drank thirty-five toasts by way 


of felicitation and mutual encouragement in the noble daring of dining— a peculiarly 
'' gratifying " list. 

There have been times, though, when the song, which always on these anniversaiy 
occasions follows the toast " F lor eat Schola Mancuniensis;' must have sounded, like 
Wyatt's lute, " somewhat strange " : — 

"You have heard of great Manchester town, 
Once famous for small wares and check, 
For fustians and cotton renowned, 

Some few studied Latin and Greek. 
There stood an old building of stone, 

As big as a country church, 
Grammar School it was called by the town. 
And famed for Greek, Latin, and Birch. 
« Fol do rol. . . ." 



The intimate connection here asserted between fustians and Greek is a matter 
of fact. Most of the great merchants have passed through the school. But it is odd 
to notice how Httle pride commerce shows ia her own antecedents. Those of the 
Grammar School hoys who have become 
founders of the great trading families 
the place will fall to be noticed 
different connection. But in very 
instances the names of Man- 
chester's successful men 
might have been, as Keats 
futilely decreed his own to 
be, written in water. They 
have left nothing to record 
of them, or next to nothing. 
It is strange, for it is her 
business sense and spirit, and 
not Greek or Law, that have 
made Manchester what she 
is — the pioneer city of the 
Old World. If the professions 
have made their thousands, 
commerce has made her tens 
of thousands ; but the records 
of her trade and industry as 
we glance over the promi- 
nent names in the registers of the Grammar School, are poor in comparison 
with theirs. 

Some of the notices of the old customs of the school are very interesting from 
the traces of barbarism which they display. It was the annual custom on Shrove 
Tuesday for the boys to shoot with bows and arrows for prizes ; and a writer in 1850 
(to be sure, he was a nonagenarian) could still remember the time when the targets 
at these matches were live cocks. They were placed in holes in the ground, 
covered with turf so that the head and part of the neck only were visible. The boys 




shot in succession, at the distance of about thirty yards, and he who first drew blood 
had the cock for his prize. After the contest the school marched in procession to the 
market-place to have its annual dinner at the "Bull's Head." The Junior boys were 
treated with "fermenty," while, very invidiously, the masters and elder scholars 
partook of roast beef and plum pudding. 

Within the last generation the character of the G-rammar School has entirely 

It is no longer a free school in even a loose sense. The story of the change, 
and the way it was brought about, forms a very interesting chapter of local 

The change is to be attributed immediately as much to the fluctuating nature of 
the school revenue — of that part of it especially which was derived from the mills — 
as to the spread of broader ideas on matters of education. In 1825 the Charity Com- 
missioners had found the income of the place to be over ^4,000 and a yearly surplus 
accruing. By 1833 the said surplus had amounted to ^620,000. In that year, therefore, 
the trustees had presented a petition to the Court of Chancery, under Sir Samuel 
Eomilly's Act, praying for a new scheme to be settled for the employment of the surplus 
revenue and the management of the school. This was conceded by the Court and a 
scheme granted by which gratuitous instruction in modern languages and other subjects 
besides "grammar" was to be provided out of the surplus income. The plan also 
sanctioned the expenditure of ^10,000 in rebuilding the school house and the high- 
master's house, and permitted the high-master, the usher, and assistant masters to 
take boarders. This last item, offering as it did a liability to favouritism, gave rise 
to great ill-feeling in the town, and two years later an information was filed on 
behalf of some of the inhabitants with the object of getting the settlement of 1833 
altered, on the ground that the proceedings on the petition of the trustees had 
been conducted in the absence of the Attorney- General. After protracted litigation 
a new scheme for the management of the school was in 1849 approved by Vice- 
Chancellor Shadwell ; the masters were prohibited taking boarders, and the curriculum 
was extended so as to provide free instruction in mathematics, modern languages, 
and other subjects. 

All this time, as will be noticed, the character of the school as a free school 
had been carefully maintained. In the course of a few years, however, it was found 



impossible to carry out tlie provisions of the sclieme of 1849 owing to want of 
means. The income from the mills and the malt monopoly was destined to prove 

_a^^^unstable quantity, besides 
causing intense irritation be- 
tween the town and the school. 
In 1833 the revenue from this 
source had been £2,500 a year. 

In 1849 this had fallen to £749, 

while In 1864 it was no more 

than £i92 and at that time still 



school, and, with the sanction of 

the Charity Commissioners, the matter was brought before the Court of Chancery 

by means of a summons in the Chambers of Vice- Chancellor Wood. 

Unable, from want of means, to carry out the scheme of 1849, the trustees 




proposed to limit tlie number of free scholars to 260, the then number, and to 
admit others on a capitation fee of twelve guineas a year, there being at that time 
room for about 100 more scholars. After paying the expenses connected with these non- 
foundation boys, it was proposed to apply the remainder to the general purposes of 
the school. 

The idea of altering the character of the school was bitterly opposed, but the 


principal alterations desired by the trustees were approved by Vice-Chancellor Wood, 
and in December, 1865, a scheme was settled in accordance. 

By this scheme admission to the foundation was to be determined by com- 
petitive examination, and a general examination to be had of both foundation and 
non-foundation boys for premiums and exhibitions, those of the foundation boys 
being provided out of the general funds of the school, and those of the non- 
foundation out of the surplus of the fees they paid — if any surplus remained. 

Yiolent was the outcry of the sentimentalists against this perversion of Hugh 
Oldham's Charity, and hot were the disputes both in the Town Council and the 
city, and common-sense had much ado to prevail — as usual. 

Legal opposition was offered, and the case was taken to the Court of Appeal and 
argued before the Lords Justices Cairns and Turner in 1867. They gave a decision 













entirely in favour of the trustees. By direction of tlie Court of Chancery, however, 
the scheme sanctioned by Yice-Chancellor Wood V7as replaced by one empowering 
the trustees to increase the number of boys and enlarge 
the course of instruction, and providing for the selection 
of the foundationers or free scholars by the trustees on 
the report of the head-master. 

Of these powers the trustees promptly availed them- 
selves. The block of buildings which forms the left 

portion of the present struc- 
ture was built — the trustees 
contributing £15,000 to- 
wards the work out of 
their private means — and 
the staff was increased by 

the addition of special masters of physical science and 

Nine years after the settlement of this scheme, 
however, a fresh one 

J. f). KING, M.A., THE HIGH- 

{From a Photograph by Franz Baum.) 

[From a Photograph by J. Mudd & Son.) 

was prepared by the 

Endowed Schools Com- 
missioners, which became law in 1877, when the 
properties were transferred to the Official Trustee 
of Charity Lands. The governing body was to be 
twenty-one in number, and the nomination of the 
head-master was vested in them, having been 
previously in the gift of the President of Corpus 
Christi College, Oxford, a system under which the 
high-master had been almost irresponsible sovereign 
of all. The final change made by the scheme of 
1877 was that the free scholars, who at present 
number about 160, were to be chosen on the results of competitive examination. 
This is the scheme under which the school is at present worked, and it will be 
noticed how widely it has departed from its old character of a free Grammar School. 


{From a Bust in the School, by II, JR. Pinker.) 


As to the necessity of the change, however, there can be no two opinions. The 
old basis of the free school was no more adequate to meet the wants of the city than 
the old buildings themselves or the old curriculum. It is curious to note, too, the 
extension of this curriculum. Up to the second quarter of this century the place 
had been a grammar school in the strictest sense, a place devoted to English and 
the dead languages. The decree of 1849 extended the studies so as to include 
modern languages, literature, and science. Still, so late as 1855, it was remarked 
that French was the only modern language taught, and nothing of either art or 
science. At that time there were only six masters to about three hundred scholars. 
At present there are thirty-three assistant masters and a high-master, and the 
scholars number over eight hundred. By the latest scheme, that of 1877, the 
curriculum was extended so as to include writing, arithmetic, geography, history, 
English grammar, composition, literature, Greek, Latin, political economy, modern 
languages, natural sciences, drawing, and vocal music. Under this arrangement the 
school is divided into classical and modern sides, which are combined for the purpose 
of instruction in mathematics, drawing, and writing. On the classical side boys are 
prepared for the university ; on the modern, for mercantile pursuits, being taught 
English, French, German, and elementary physical science. 

Without doubt the credit of the great advance which the school has thus 
made within our own generation is due to Mr. E. W. Walker (p. 77), high-master for 
a period of seventeen years — 1869-76. It is to his genius that the school owes its 
entire reorganisation, and the subsequent extensions made during the high-master- 
ship of Mr. Dill, under whom the new buildings of 1880 were erected, and Mr. 
M. G. Glazebrook, M.A., who did so much to encourage an esprit de corps in the 
place, were the natural result of the process he inaugurated. The credit is all the 
greater considering the opposition of the Manchester Tories. Mancastrians do all 
things well, but if it is desired to know what can be done in the way of opposition 
one must read at length the story of the reorganisation of this school. 

Walker was described by Jowett, the late Master of Balliol, as the best school- 
master in England, and the praise will not be thought extravagant when one 
considers the distinctions gained by the Manchester Grammar School boys during 
his mastership and since. 

On leaving Manchester he was appointed to the high-mastership of St. Paul's 


School in London, and under Ms auspices it has been removed from St. Paul's 
Churchyard and rebuilt on a magnificent scale at Hammersmith. 

The present high-master of the Manchester School is John Edward King, M.A., 
under whom the place promises to maintain its standard of excellence (p. 77). Cer- 
tainly in his efforts he will have the assistance of a better state of feeling and more 
sympathy on the part of the town and Corporation than has existed at any previous 
time, and, if possible, of higher prestige in the body of Governors. 

After an education of seven years at Clifton College, under Dr. Percival, Mr. King 
was elected Scholar of Lincoln College ; and at the conclusion of his college course, 
returned to Clifton as an assistant master, under Mr. Wilson, the present Archdeacon 
of Manchester. He subsequently became a Fellow of Lincoln, and an assistant 
master of St. Paul's School, under Mr. Walker, the regenerator of the Grammar 
School, then Classical Tutor and Lecturer of Lincoln College, and in 1889 was 
Classical Moderator for the University in the first public examination for honours. 
Mr. King, who has been head-master since January, 1891, is a young man to bear 
so brilliant a record and fiU so high a post. 

The chairman of the governors for many years, and up to the time of his 
lamented death, was Oliver Heywood, probably the most lovable and beloved of 
Manchester's sons (p. 77). 

Oliver Heywood was the first upon whom the distinction of the honorary 
freedom of the city was conferred. He was the second son of Sir Benjamin Heywood, 
and, after his father, conducted the affairs of Heywood's or the Manchester Bank 
until in 1876 it became the Manchester and Salford Bank. 

As has been truly said, his life was an open volume to the public, though none 
had ever shown himself more unassuming. Sir J. J. Harwood, who presided at 
the ceremony of presenting Mr. Heywood with the freedom of the city, set forth in 
an illuminated scroll and contained in a silver casket, had been Mayor in the year 
which saw the Jubilee Exhibition ; but he counted it, he said on the occasion, 
the most pleasing of all the duties of his year to be the mouthpiece of his 
townsmen in tendering their homage to so fine a sample of civic virtue. In 
acknowledging the compliment Mr. Heywood told a speaking little story of how he 
had been arrested by a working-man as he was returning home after his first 
public speech in the old Town Hall. The man had heard him speak, and. 



recognising him on the road, laid his hand on the horse's bridle, with the words, 
" Young man, tha'st on th' reet road." Surely, and so is every man 

" Who does his soul no harm 
And keeps at eve the faith of morn." 

Mr. Heywood died on Thursday, March 17th, 1892, at his residence, Claremont 
House, Pendleton, at the age of sixty-seven. 

" By his death," says a contemporary, " Manchester loses one of the best of 
her representative sons — a gentleman by birth and instinct who devoted the years 

of a long life to deeds of 
charity and benevolence, 
and whose place it wUl be 
impossible to fill." 

Much of the credit 
of the new birth of the 
Grammar School over 
which he presided so 
long must rest with him, 
and well for it if the 
tradition of his culture 
and forethought continue, 
for more than ever before 
has this place a high 
function to fulfil. 

The modern institution is widely removed from its predecessor, but there is, let 
us hope, no break in its spirit or traditions. There will always be a commercial 
element undesirous of strict university training, for them the Grammar School has to 
fill the place of a university in the imparting of culture. On the other hand, there 
will always be another element which will instinctively prefer the older universities 
before the modern, simply for their spirit and prestige. So be it. But it will be 
well for such if, before their Oxford life, they can have got from association in 
such an institution as the Grammar School something of the grit of a Northerner and 
a touch of the modern spirit. It is of her self-made men that this institution is 
proud, and it is characteristic. 

{FroTn a Print by James.) 






























" I do not seek this as a party measure, but as one -whicli shall carry out the great democratic 
principle that men shall govern themselves ; and, let me add, the mayors and aldermen of Manchester, if chosen 
by the people, will rank as high as any baronet, ay, or lord." — Eichaed Cobden : Speech in favour of 
Incorporation, February, 1838. 

The old Manorial Government — The Watch Commissioners — The Struggle for the Charter — Good Old Manchester Tories — The 
Old Town Hall — William Neild, the Incorporator — Thomas Potter, the iirst Mayor — Sir John Potter and the Eoyal Visit 
of 1851 — The Manchester Mayors : James Kershaw, Sir Elkanah Armitage — Abel Heywood and the New Town Hall — 
The Assize Courts — Ivie Mackie — Aldermen Curtis, Goadsby, and Bennett — The City Police Court — Robert Neill — The 
Infirmary and its Benefactors, Alderman Barnes and Sir James Watts — The late Mayors : Aldermen Grave, Booth, and 
Watklus, Charles Sydney Grundy, Patteson, Goldschmidt, Battey, Mark, Leech, Marshall — An Exemplary Modem 
Municipality — The Council and its Committees — Waterworks— The Stone-Pipe Jobbery — Longdendale and Thirlmere — ■ 
Sir John James Harwood — The Gasworks — The Free Library — A Historic Gathering — Sir Thomas Potter — A Model Librarian 
— The Manorial Rights — A Corporation is a Body without a Conscience — The old Fairs and the Market Dues — The Parks 
and Cemeteries — Some Corporation Celebrities. 

[ANCHESTEE received her charter of incorporation in 1838, three 

years after the passing of the Municipal Corporations Act. So 

much every schoolboy knows, as Macaulay would say ; but 

what the state of things was before the incorporation is not 

so commonly realised. The charter of 1838 was not the first 

charter the town had received. In the city chest there is 

still preserved a yellow piece of parchment, measuring fourteen 

inches by about ten, nearly six hundred years old, and bearing the " secret " seal 

of Thomas G-reslet. This is the charter that was granted to the burgesses by 

the eighth and last of the Greslets, lords of the manor. It is the last document 

of the kind that was granted to any town in Lancashire, and differs very much 

from those granted to several neighbouring places, such as Clitheroe and Liverpool. 

If a town received its charter from the Crown it became a free or royal borough, 

and was privileged to send burgesses to Parliament. Such, for example, was the case 

with Liverpool, which received a charter from King John (1207), as also did Wigan 

from Henry IV. (1399), and Newton from Elizabeth (1658). Under Cromwell 

Manchester had been endowed with the Parliamentary franchise by his Parliamentary 

Eeform Act, but this liberty lasted only a few years. It closed at the Eestoration, 

and while it lasted it had made no change in the municipal government of the 

place. Her municipal government for more than five hundred years depended an 



that yellow piece of parcliineiit and — common sense; so it is quite wortli a moment's 

The lord of the manor had right over the bm'gesses. They owed him service for 
their lands, and in case of transgression of the assize of bread or ale they became 
subject to a fine to him. Strangers entering the town to sell goods retail had to 
pay him a toll, and so had all, whether burgesses or strangers, who entered the lord's 
annual fair to sell. It was from this, as we shall see, that the hotly contested market 
rights of the Corporation descended. All these things were regulated in the court 
baron and court leet of the manor. For quarrels, actions of debt, etc., amongst 
themselves the burgesses of the town had their own Lagh mote and Portman mote. 
And it was the object of this her first charter, granted in 1301, to regulate all these 
relationships, and to guarantee to the town the right to elect the chief manorial 
officers. If the town had been acknowledged, either by prescription " from time 
beyond the memory of man," or by enactment of this charter, as a borough, its 
burgesses would have been exempt from the jurisdiction of the hundred of Salford, and 
from the sheriff's tourn (circuit). But in 1359, fifty odd years after the grant of the 
charter, it was decided by the oath of twelve jurors at Preston, before two justices 
of the Duke of Lancaster, who was the feudal superior of the lords of the manor 
of Manchester, that the town had never been a boroiigh, and that the Greslets had 
never held it as such, but only as a market-town ; so, however strange it may sound, 
a market-town it remained in law, or let us say in theory, until the nineteenth 
century, although then probably the second place for size and activity in the kingdom. 
This is a curious state of things, and wiU, perhaps, enable us to measure the progress 
since recorded. 

The internal government, too, of this market-town will probably seem as curious 
as the definition of her legal status. The chief officer of the town was the borough 
reeve, elected yearly by the inhabitants in the court leet. After him was the 
catchpole, or bailiff of the manorial court, and the constables — two in number — who 
swore on taking office to endeavour that " the peace of the sovereign " should be well 
and truly kept — let us hope they were better hands at it than Dogberry and Verges — 
"'You are to bid any man stand, in the prince's name.' 'How if a' wiU not stand?' 
'Why, then, take no note of him, but let him go; and presently call the rest of the 
watch together, and thank God you are rid of the knave ! ' " 



Lower down in the list come "market lookers for corn, for fysshe, and flesshe, 
ale-tasters, dealers of leather ; bylawmen," who had to account for the order of par- 
ticular parts of the town, to see, e.g., that pigs did not stray into the street, and that 
strangers did not lodge overnight without giving an account of themselves ; officers for 


1,1 f 

la Is 



DR. white's house, KING STREET. 
(From a Print by Ralston.) 

making clean the market-place ; scavengers for various parts of the town, and so on 
in ridiculous abundance. 

About the middle of last century an attempt had been made to provide a different 
sort of municipal government, and one more adequate to the needs of the town. The 
idea was to get Manchester to be made into a borough by royal charter, the Corpora- 
tion to consist of an equal number of High Church, Low Church, and Dissenting 

It is evidence of the strong Tory feeling in the town that the High Church party 
were able to prevent the scheme by theii- counter-petition. On the occasion they 
organised a grand cavalcade to Chorlton to celebrate their victory, and kept it up for 
several years, an observance which gave to the proposal the name of the Chorlton 



Rant. With this exception, no change was made or proposed for hundreds of years. 
From 1301 to 1791, nearly to the opening of onr own century, the ordering of the 
town was committed to the curious paraphernaha we have attempted to describe. 

In the latter year, however, an Act of ParHament was passed which appointed 
Commissioners for lighting, watching, and cleansing the towns of Manchester and 


Salford. This body, which consisted of two hundred and forty men, elected from 
fourteen different districts, continued to exercise their powers until, and, indeed, for 
some time after, the grant of the charter of 1838. Although the two towns were 
nominally under one body of commissioners, in actual practice two separate bodies had 
been appointed, and distinct rates and assessments made for each town. This practice 
was recognised by an Act of 1830, certain changes being, at the same time, also 
made in the constitution of the Manchester Commissioners of Police. 

Dwelling securely as we do under our own vine and fig-tree, we should find it 
hard to realise the chaotic state of things existing under these commissioners. In 
the township of Manchester the day police were under constables appointed by the 
lord of the manor's court. The night police were imder a body of commissioners 



elected by persons assessed at £16 a year, equal to a 
rental of £20. In Ardwick the day police were under 
the manorial constahles ; the night police were under 
commissioners, not elected by anyone, but qualified 
to act by virtue of renting to the value of £25. In 

the five townships of 
Manchester, Hulme, 
Cheetham, Ardwick, 
and Chorlton - upon - 
Medlock there were 
ten different bodies 


{From a Bust by Patrie Pari:, U.S.A., in t]te 
Town Hall, ISoS.) 


{From the Paintin'j by William Bradley, in the 
Tuwn Uall, 1S42.) 

controlling the police, 

and each with its own jurisdiction. A Manchester 
policeman, for example, could not cross into 
Chorlton-upon-Medlock, nor vice versa, and so on. 

The surprising 
thing is that the 
agitation against 
such preposterous 

abuse and mis- 
government did not make itself felt earlier. For 
fifteen years before the passing of the Municipal 
Corporations Act the question had been simmering, 
but nothing decisive was done, nor, indeed, for 
two years after the passing of that Act. But in 
1837 the matter was brought to a head by the 
refusal of William Neild to undergo the office of 
borough reeve, not considering, as he said, " that 
government any longer fit for a town of such 
importance as Manchester." The leet jury accordingly fined him £250 to the lord 
of the manor. A conference was afterwards held in Mr. Neild's office, and it 
was decided to start a petition for a charter. A meeting of the ratepayers was 
called by request in February, 1838, and the resolution, " That it is due to the 


{Fro^n the Paintinrj by R. B. Faulkner, in the 
Town Bail, 1S40.) 


character of this important borough that its chief municipal oflBcers should be a 
body popularly chosen," was moved by no less a person than Eichard Cobden. The 
resolution was carried with enthusiasm ; and in March a monster petition, signed by 
over 11,000 hands, was forwarded to Parliament. It was followed in April by a counter- 
petition from such old Tories as thought no change desirable. " Most singular to 
relate, the petition against incorporation had signatures of more than treble the number 
of ratepayers then existing. There were three to four hundred Sam Wellers on it, 
and as to Pickwicks they literally swarmed," In order to see what this meant, two 
commissioners were sent down to examine into the facts on the spot. On their 
favourable report the charter was passed, and issued on October 23rd, 1838, and in 
the following December the first elections took place. But the end of the dispute 
had by no means come. The newly-elected Council proceeded to appoint a watch 
committee, and the watch committee, in its turn, named a body of police, four 
hundred strong. But Manchester township refused to give up the old police — ^the old 
commissioners would have none of the new watch committee and their constables. 
The overseers, too, refused to pay the borough rates. The validity of the charter was 
impugned at law, and for nearly four years this bitter opposition was carried on, to the 
huge joy of the lawyers. It was not till the Act of 1843 transferred to the Corpora- 
tion the powers of the commissioners for cleansing, lighting, watching, and regulating 
the town that the place became fully self-governing in accordance with its charter. 

It was for these old commissioners of police, and some sixteen years before the 
charter was obtained, that the first Town Hall proper — the Old Town Hall it is 
now called — had been erected. Previous to that the town's business had from time 
immemorial been transacted in the booths in the old market-place, in which were held, 
as has been previously said, the Portman mote or borough reeve's court, the court 
leet, and court baron, and at a late period the petty and quarter sessions. As may 
be supposed, such a building was ridiculously inadequate to the needs of the place, 
and in 1822 the erection of the much-needed new hall was begun. 

The old Town Hall stands on the site of Dr. White's house (p. 83). Dr. White 
was an aged friend of De Quincey, and a physician of great ability, in the latter part 
of last century. As a recognition of his ability, one lady patient left him £20,000, 
so it is said, on condition that the doctor should embalm her body, and once a year 
open the case and look at it. He accordingly kept the mummy in an old clock- 


case, and once a year viewed it by simply opening tlie clock-face ; and De Quincey 
has left us a vivid account of the curiosity of himself and a high-born lady friend 
of his on one occasion to see it. 

The foundation-stone of the new building was laid on August 19th, 1822, 
and it was complete in 1825, the total cost being over £40,000. The architect 
was Mr. Francis Goodwin and the design is Ionic. The front is 134 feet long, 
and is relieved by a short colonnade of four columns forming the entrance. But it is 
by no means so imposing in its classicism as the Royal Institution, which is in the 
same style (Plate 8). 

The whole building is now devoted to the Free Library; the rooms on the 
ground floor to the left of the entrance being occupied by the newspaper and 
patent specification room, while the large room above has been made into the reading- 
room and forms one of the largest and finest in the provinces. 

The present entrance-hall and staircase (p. 84) were constructed in 1838, and 
afterwards some alterations were made in the great hall itself. At first it had 
extended the whole length of the building. By the alteration one room was 
separated off at each end to form the coimcil-chamber and the Mayor's Parlour, 
leaving only the space between the two colonnades available as a hall for public 
meetings. This, therefore, was the hall in which for two generations the town 
listened to its own officers as well as to many distinguished strangers. Since the 
building was given over to the Free Library this feature has been again altered. 
The partitions of the colonnades have been removed and the large room again extends 
the whole length of the building. 

-The Old Town Hall continued to be used for all the civic bxxsiness until the 
completion of the magnificent New Town Hall. It was vacated in February, 1877, 
and shortly afterwards the books from the reference library at Camp Field were 
moved thither. 

But this is to anticipate. Let us return for a moment to the Corporation. 

WiUiam Neild, to whom the town is in so great a measure indebted for her 
charter and who afterwards became Mayor for two successive years, is a fine sample 
of that large class of self-made men in which Manchester has been so prolific 
(p. 85). Again and again the annals of the mayoral office reproduce this feature. 
Again and again the elected mayors are found to have been men risen from humble 



[From the rainting in the Town Hall, 1S4S.) 

to high station by nothing but sheer energy and pluck and business-like habit. 
Alderman Neild was born at Millington, in the parish of Eostherne, Cheshire, in 
January, 1789. Coming as a youth to Manchester ' to seek employment, he entered 

the service of Mr. Thomas Hoyle, calico-printer. He 
afterwards became a partner in the firm, married 
the daughter of Mr. Hoyle, and at the time of his 
death (he died quite suddenly in one of the com- 
mittee-rooms at the Town Hall, in April, 1864) had 
been for thirty years senior partner in a concern 
comprising the great Mayfield Print-works, London 
Road, employing at that time five hundred hands, 
and the works at Sandy Vale, Dukinfield. During 
those thirty years it is said that he was on the 
premises by six in the morning, and throughout life, 
even during his term of office as Mayor, was so 
methodical in habit as to map out the day's work beforehand, following it out to 
the letter and minute without allowing anything to interfere. It had become quite 
common, says a contemporary, for any of those who were 
in the habit of meeting him for business purposes to 
expect to see him standing, watch in hand, prepared to 
commence business punctually to the- moment, and 
invested by his own punctuality with something like 
authority to reprove those who were late. As a rule he 
was always five minutes before the appointed time for 
the commencement of business. During those five 
minutes he would cheerfully engage in general conver- 
sation. At the appointed time, however, he would 
abruptly terminate the conversation, take the chair, and 
proceed with the business. In politics he displayed 
great independence, and was regarded, though most unwarrantably, by the Manchester 
Eadicals somewhat as a renegade or Conservative, amongst other things, on account 
of the part he took in opposition to John Bright and Milner Gibson which resulted 
in their rejection for Manchester in 1857. On that occasion Alderman Neild proposed 


{From a Photograph by M. Guttenh&rg, 
Limited, Manchester.) 



Sir John Potter, who was returned along with Mr. Aspinall Turner. In his earher 
years he had been, like his employer Thomas Hoyle, a member of the Society of 

_ Friends. But in 1836 there was a dispute among them and 
a large secession took place, and, along with several others, 
Mr. Neild left the original body to form a congregation in 
Grrosvenor Street, which later became a Baptist Chapel under 
the pastorate of Mr. Arthur Mursell. Later Mr. Neild became 
a member of the Baptist Church in Oxford Eoad, under 

the Eev. Alexander McLaren, 
of the firm, 


"ii ■■■II iiiiw— iai— 


Thomas Hoyle and Sons, has never changed. Alderman Neild was succeeded in the 
works by his son Alfred, treasurer of the Victoria University, as also untU recently 
of Owens College, of the council of which he is still a member. It is character- 
istic of the respect that was paid to his father, the "Father of the Corporation," 
that on his death a memorial was signed by members of the Council to the effect 
that his son Alfred should, if agreeable to himself, be elected an alderman of the 
Council in the room of his father. 

There was a precedent for the compliment in the case of Sir John Potter, who 



had been elected alderman in the place of his father, Sir Thomas Potter, as a 
recognition of the services performed by him in the struggle for the charter. 
Throughout the contest Thomas Potter had stood shoulder to shoulder with WilHam 
Neild and his fellows, and it is said that but for his efforts the struggle would not 
have been maintained; and the Council marked its appreciation of his efforts by 
appointing him the first mayor. 

The Potters, Thomas (p. 85) and his brother Eichard, who rose to be M.P. for 
Wigan on the first Eeform Act, came of a farming family settled at Tadcaster, in 
Yorkshire. Thomas began to assist in the management of the farm when he was 
sixteen, and with such energy and success that in a few years it was turned over to 
him entirely, and is said to have become one of the most highly cultivated in the 
whole county, prizes being awarded more than once to its produce at agricultural 
meetings. Farming was very congenial to his taste, and the elder Potter never 
altogether relinquished it, but he had sagacity to see that Manchester offered better 
scope for his capital and enterprise than a Yorkshire farm, and he accordingly migrated. 
Coming to Manchester in the same year that saw the settlement there of the first 
Eothschild, the founder of the greatest financial house in the world, he started with 
his brother in a warehouse in Cannon Street, No. 45, which they occupied for many 
years under the style of William Thomas and Eichard Potter; under his son. Sir 
John, the title of the firm was changed to Potter and Norris. 

So great had been the efforts of the first mayor on behalf of the complete 
establishment of the municipal government that he was re-elected mayor a second 
year, and during the course of it (1st July, 1840) he received a further recognition 
in the honour of knighthood. At the time of his death his action in another 
direction called forth warm acknowledgment. Twenty-four years previously he had, 
entirely at his own expense, established a day-school at Irlam's o' the Height — Lady 
Potter's School, it came to be called — and its beneficial effect on the working 
population there, especially the female part of it, has been most marked. 

The deserved compliment which the Council paid to the son of their first mayor 
on the death of his father has been already alluded to. It was emphasised when 
the Queen conferred upon him the honour of knighthood. It is not often we read 
of father and son acting successively as mayor of a great town and each earning 
the dignity of knighthood from the same sovereign. Sir John Potter (p. 85) served 


as mayor for three years successively, 1849-51, and it is said to have been due to 
his high social qualities that the old party spirit and bitterness, born of the strife 
about the incorporation, died a dubious death. In the best of circumstances a 
Lancashire man is inclined to be " straight " — in his words. Some people who are 
not so robust give it another name. That is of course a matter of taste. But used 
as we are to straight speaking, we of to-day should find it hard to believe the 
fierceness and outspokenness of our ancestors when they were thus divided against 
themselves. To call the chairman of a meeting " a Tomfool " to his face was a 
comparatively mild and gentlemanly way of expressing one's-self. It is even said 
that Crossley — the bookworm — went so far as to send a challenge to J. E. Taylor, 
the first proprietor of the Guardian. 

There is another curious thing to tell in this connection. Up to this time the 
Mayor and Corporation had been too Eadical to have robes. But on the occasion of 
the Eoyal visit, in 1861, when he was knighted by Her Majesty, the Queen notes 
with what composure "the mayor, Mr. Potter" went through the proceedings, and 
how heautifully dressed he was. 

It was during this visit that the Queen saw what she described as "a 
totally unprecedented sight, the gathering of 80,000 school-children in Peel Park 
— Episcopalians, Presbyterians, Catholics (these children having a small crucifix 
suspended round their necks). Baptists, and Jews (whose faces told their descent), 
with their teachers. In the middle of the park was erected a paviUon, under which 
we drove but did not get out, and where the address was read. All the children 
sang ' God Save the Queen,' extremely well together, the director being placed on 
a very high stand from which he could command the whole park. We passed 
out at the same gate we went in by, and through the principal street of Salford 
on to Manchester, at the entrance to which there was a magnificent arch. The 
mayor, Mr. Potter, received us there and presented me with a beautiful bouquet. 
We drove through the principal streets, in which there are no very fine buildings — 
the principal large houses being warehouses — and stopped at the Exchange, 
where we got out and received the address again on a throne, to which I read an 
answer. The streets were immensely fuU, and the cheering and enthusiasm most 
gratifying. The order and good behaviour of the people, who were not placed behind 
any barriers, were the most complete we have seen in our many progresses through 



capitals and cities — London, Glasgow, Dublin, Edinburgh, etc, for there never was a 
running crowd. Nobody moved, and therefore everybody saw well, and there was no 
squeezing. We returned as we came, the sun shining brightly, and were at Worsley 
by two." 

Mr. Slugg, an eye-witness, gives a slightly different version : "I was present 


amone;st the children as a teacher, and » ., ,„^. - - -^ 

noticed that when the Queen's carriage 

drew up in front of the platform on which we stood the children became so excited, 
being seized with such a desire to have a good look at Her Majesty, with her gay 
surroundings of ladies and gentlemen, liveried servants, horses and carriages, that 
they forgot all about the object for which they were assembled, and ceased to sing. 
Poor Banks, the conductor, continued to beat the air with his baton in his elevated 



stand with all the violent energy of which he was capable, but it was no use, and 
the affair ended with a loud shout of delight on the part of the singers and a good 
laugh on the part of the Queen." 

In her diary Her Majesty afterwards added, "The mayor, now Sir John Potter 
—he having been knighted after presentmg the Manchester address— told me last 
night that he thinks we saw a million of people between Manchester and Salford. 
There are 400,000 inhabitants in Manchester, and everyone says that in no other town 
could one depend so entirely upon the quiet and 
orderly behaviour of the people as in Manchester. 
You had only to tell them what ought to be done, 
and it was sure to be carried out." 

In 1857 Sir John Potter was elected M.P. for 
his native town. The occasion was one of great 
interest, as it resulted, after a hot and furious strife, 
in the complete rout of John Bright and Milner 
Gibson, the representatives of the " Manchester 
School." Sir John Potter stood at the top of the 
poll, John Bright at the bottom, and next to him 
Milner Gibson, the most brilliant and accomplished 
representative the town ever had, until the advent of the latest of the Cecils. Mr. 
Gibson never afterwards contested Manchester. He was elected member for Ashton- 
under-Lyne m. the same year, and, eleven years later, on losing his seat there, 
withdrew altogether from political life. 

The third mayor, successor to William Neild, was James Kershaw, who died 
at his residence, Manor House, Streatham, London, in April, 1864. He was the 
head of the firm of Kershaw, Sidebottom, and Berry, merchants and manufactm-ers of 
Portland Street, a firm which had originally been carried on under the style of 
Leese, Kershaw, and Callender, but which changed again at a later period to 
Kershaw, Leese, and Sidebottom. His extensive connection and influence in 
Stockport, where the firm worked several mills, secured his return to ParHament 
for that town. He was elected M.P. for Stockport in 1847, and continued to 
represent the tovm tiU his death. 

(From a Photograph by M. Gutte7iberg, Limited.) 

His successor in. the mayoralty of Manchester was Alexander Kay, a sohcitor in 


extensive practice in the town. He is remarkable as having been the last borough 
reeve to be elected by the court leet. Although their functions had been transferred 
to the Corporation Mayor in 1838, the borough reeves continued to be elected until 
so late as 1847. 

Much more remarkable a man in every way was Sir Elkanah Armitage (p. 88). 
He held the oflSce of mayor in 1846, in succession to W. B. Watkins, the fifth 
mayor, an Ardwick gentleman, who became afterwards a trustee of Owens College 
and a feoffee of the Grammar School. 

Sir Elkanah Armitage was probably one of the finest instances of a self-made 
man that even Manchester could produce. He was born at Newton Heath, in 
September, 1794, and as a youth entered the employ of George Naden and Nephews, 
manufacturers, of Duke Street. His first business venture was a draper's shop, 
which he opened in Blackfriars Street, at the foot of the old wooden bridge. He 
subsequently started as a manufacturer of bed-ticks, at No. 2, Macdonald's 
Lane, and in Bank Buildings, Cannon Street. Finding his business growing, he 
gave up his draper's shop, took a factory at Swinton, and there for years experimented 
to find out some method of weaving fast colours. Being successful in this, he moved 
to the site of the present extensive premises in Pendleton, and there built up what 
are probably the finest and largest factories of their kind in the world. Before being 
municipally connected with Manchester he had served in Salford. He was borough 
reeve there in the year (1838) which saw the erection of new Victoria Bridge. But 
in the same year, the very first of her municipal life, he became a councillor for 
Exchange Ward in Manchester. Six years later he was elected mayor, and his period 
of office was marked by the projection of a long series of public works^ — the Water- 
works Bill, the Markets Amendments Bill, the borough gaol in Hyde Eoad, the 
making of City Eoad, the extension of Todd Street to Cheetham Hill Eoad, the 
freeing of Blackfriars Bridge from toll, etc. 

It was not to this list of public works, however, that the mayor owed the honour 
of knighthood. That reward was conferred on him for his conduct during the 
riots of March, 1848. The fall of Louis Philippe in the month before would not 
of itself have had much effect in England but for the state of things at the moment. 
It was a time of deep distress and poverty, and the apprehensions of Government 
were great. During the prevalence of the riots, the mayor remained at the Town Hall, 


never leaving it from Thursday until the following Tuesday; and it vv^as as a recog- 
nition of his energetic and successful conduct during the crisis that Sir George 
Grey announced to him later in the year Her Majesty's determination to knight 
him. In connection with the conduct of Sir Elkanah Armitage, one rather unexpected 
and interesting fact has become known from a sketch of the life of Alderman Heywood. 
It appears that the decisive suggestion at the crucial moment originated not from 
the mayor, but from Alderman Heywood, and was promptly adopted by Sir Elkanah 
Armitage. In a moment of so much anxiety for authority it needed a bold man to 
utter the advice which Heywood uttered on that occasion, " Trust the people ! " but 
the event proved his justification. 

The life of Alderman Abel Heywood (p. 88) is altogether extraordinary. His 
father, a "putter-out" to weavers, had died early, leaving his widow to struggle with 
a famUy against circumstances. The first employment which Abel found when he 
sought to assist his mother was in High Street, Manchester, his wages being Is. 6d. 
a week. At the age of twenty he was thrown out of work. He thereupon showed his 
enterprise by opening a penny reading-room, and nine months later started a shop in 
Oldham Street for the sale of the Poor Man's Guardian. Those were the days when 
there was a fourpenny stamp on newspapers, and as the Poor Man's Guardian was 
sold without a stamp a prosecution was got up against him, and the plucky vendor 
went to prison for four months " for conscience' sake." It wUl hardly be believed 
that while he was in prison — in England, in the nineteenth century — the prisoners 
were so ill fed as to have deliberately cast lots with the object of killing and eating 
one of their number. The prosecution under the Stamp Act was twice renewed in 
1834 and 1836, and it was, doubtless, such determined conduct as this that led to the 
lowering of the stamp in 1837 from fourpence to one penny, and later to its repeal. 

Along with his brother John, the founder of the publishing firm in Deansgate 
which has since grown to such colossal proportions, he started in 1847 a wall-paper 
and paper-staining concern, which grew so enormously as to pay in a single year 
£20,000 duty on paper. Alderman Heywood was twice Mayor of Manchester ; on 
the first occasion in 1863, during the acute Lancashire distress caused by the cotton 
famine, and more recently under happier auspices, during 1876-7, the year which saw 
the opening of the new Town Hall. He was admitted an honorary freeman of the 
city on the 27th of November, 1891, and died on the 19th of August, 1893. 



The inadequacy of the old Town Hall for the corporate business had been long 
manifest, and, after much disputing as to the site, the scheme of erecting a new hall 
was sternly taken in hand. The first stone of the new building was laid on the 

26th of October, 1868, during the mayoralty 
of Eobert Neill, and the top-stone in Decem- 
bei, 1875, under that of Matthew Curtis, but 
the completion and formal 
opening did not take place 
till 1877, with festivities 
and huge trade processions, 
which are doubtless still 

The Town Hall is far 
and away the finest building 
Manchester boasts, and end- 
less is the self-gratulation 
of the town over it. Nor 
is it unjustifiable. The hall 
is worthy of the city which 
has been the birthplace of 
Free Trade and nineteenth- 


century commerce — and that is no light thing to say. If ever the candlestick be 
removed from her midst, and the commercial glory of Manchester extinguished, let us 
hope that the City Hall will remain a memento as redolent of high association as 
those grand old City HaUs of the Low Countries which still live to speak of a 
commercial greatness memorable, not for itself alone, but from its intimate con- 
nection with loftiest national endeavour. 

The principal part of the Town Hall faces Albert Square (Plate 7). The grand 
entrance occupies the centre of the front, and is contained in a projecting gable, 
behind and above which rises the great tower. On both sides of the central gable 
extend the lofty and enriched windows of the reception-rooms on the principal floor, 
each end of the front being flanked by projecting pavilions. The tower is one of 
the finest features of the building— square and boldly defined. The ringing-chamber 




is on a level with tlie third floor of the main building, and over it is the belfry, 
with three belfry windows on each face. Above the clock compartment rises the 
octagonal laD tern-stage, which terminates in a rather low spire. When seen at a 
distance, say from Mosley Street, the tower presents a remarkably fine appearance. 
After the Albert Square front the most pleasing fa9ade is that in Cooper Street 




I ifffe, 


— the back of the building, if we may so call it. From the nature of the ground 
plot it is much smaller in extent, measuring only 94 feet as against the 328 feet of 
the main front, and its tower is necessarily smaller, to harmonise ; but, for its 
symmetry, it is by some preferred before all the other fronts (p. 89). 

The plan of the building, which is that of a truncated triangle, is admirable in 
its light-giving effect. A second triangle inscribed in the first contains the court- 
yard — what would in a square building be the quadrangle. The space between the 
two triangles is filled with lines of offices, which on the outside look towards 
Princess Street, the Square, and Lloyd Street, while on the inside they give upon 
the corridors which run round the courtyard. Part of the latter is taken up by a 
distinct block of offices, over which is reared the large hall, very notable for its 
decoration, especially the mural paintings by Ford Madox Brown, which have been the 



subject of sucli dispute, but which will some day be among the chief sources of vivid 
interest for the prototype of Macaulay's New Zealander when he shall come to see, and 
be surprised, and moralise (p. 92). The room also contains the fine city organ built 
by Cavaille Coll. The light effects producible on this organ, especially when handled, 
as it not unfrequently is, by the prince of French organists, Guilmant, are wonderful 
in delicacy of shade. But we confess to a preference for the fuller, richer, more 
solemn " diapasony " tone in this king of instruments, and in these qualities English 
makers are yet to be beaten. It is well for the deeper training of the most music- 
loving county in England that the Town Hall organ is in the possession of a true 
virtuoso. Mr. James Kcndrick Pyne (p. 93), who was in 1876 appointed cathedral 
organist by the unanimous vote of the Chapter, in succession to Dr. Bridge on his 
promotion to Westminster Abbey, was in the following year elected Town Hall organist 
after an exacting competition. As an executant he is probably unequalled, above all 
in the highest of all organ technique, phrasing, which is to the organ what touch and 
accent are to the piano. Mr. Pyno, who comes of a family long distinguished in 
the records of music, was a pupil of Samuel Sebastian Wesley, our greatest ecclesi- 
astical musician. Wesley used to say that Bach's Forty-eight Preludes and Fugues 
were the only perfect music ever written. And we hope, in an age when there is 
so much that is meretricious in music and frivolous in taste, that the traditions of 
so high and true a conception of this may be continued through our Town Hall 
organist to a school. 

The approach to the grand hall which contains these prominent features of 
attraction is made by two staircases, the principal rising from the vestibule opposite 
the grand entrance under the tower, and the second leading from the Princess Street 
entrance (p. 96). The staircase view is extremely fine, especially on the landing 
where they are separated from the vestibule by traceried stone screens. On the 
same floor with the great hall, which is entered from this vestibule, are the fine 
state rooms, the banqueting-room, reception-room, and the mayor's parlour, while 
the council-chamber occupies the south-west angle (p. 97). 

The architect of this, as of many other of Manchester's finest buildings, was Mr. 
Alfred Waterhouse, who may fairly be claimed as a Manchester man though he was 
born near Liverpool. He received his architectural training in the office of Mr, 
Eichard Lane, of Manchester, and began his professional career here. Besides the 


Town Hall, we owe to him the Assize Courts, the Owens College, and the Man- 
chester Museums. His other works in different parts of the country are very- 
numerous; and abroad his worth has been recognised by the Grrand Prix, awarded 
at the Paris International Exhibition, as also at home by the Boyal Academy. 

The Assize Courts which have just been mentioned are held to be in their way 
the most commodious and most perfect in the kingdom. Manchester was made an 
assize town in 1858, and in the same year an Act was passed for providing " lodgings 
for the judges, offices, lock-ups, and all other necessary accessories for holding civil 
and criminal assizes for the Hundred of Salford." For this purpose the Strangeways 
Estate was bought and the present building erected on what had been a beautiful 
rural outskirt. The year in which the building commenced was marked by the 
election to the office of mayor of Ivie Mackie, one of the most extraordinary among 
so many instances of self-made men (p. 101). Ivie Mackie was a Scotsman who rose 
from a journeyman builder, a mason, to be three times mayor of Manchester and 
head of quite an astonishing series of commercial enterprises — the Dublin Brewery 
of Findlater and Company, the Carlisle banking firm of Mackie, Davidson, and Glad- 
stone, the Manchester Omnibus Company, and others. When on one occasion he 
was sent with a deputation from Manchester to wait on the Postmaster-General, he 
pointed out to Sir John Potter some of his own workmanship on the pillars at 
St. Martin's-le-Grand, and told him how he had been at work on them at the 
moment when the Lord Mayor's procession passed along, and how he looked down 
on it from the scaffold little thinking that he was destined himself to hold a like 
honourable post in the fourth town in the kingdom. 

He was mayor from 1867-60, and, being a man of fine stature, made quite an 
impression on the members of the Siamese Embassy who visited Manchester during 
his mayoralty — so much so that when they accidentally met again during a visit 
to the Great Eastern he was at once recognised by this feature. " Manchester, 
Manchester!" cried the excitable envoys, running up to him; "big man, big ship!" 

At the conclusion of Mackie's mayoralty there occurred a remarkable contest 
for the office. Thirty votes were given for Alderman Curtis and thirty for Alderman 
Goadsby. The casting vote was given by Mackie himself in favour of Alderman 
Cm-tis (p. 101). 

When Mr. Curtis died, in 1887, he was the head of a firm that was known 



over Europe. As a yonrig man he had been apprenticed to J. C. Dyer, the inventor 
of wire-filleting for cards, a line of business in which he afterwards started, nnder 
the style of Parr, Curtis, and Madeley, and Parr, Curtis and Walton. The 
wire-filleting works were subsequently made over to Walton, the well-known Sowerby 
Bridge inventor, and Mr. Curtis turned his attention to improvements in Eoberts' 
mule, and built up a cotton machinist concern, under the title of Curtis, Son 
and Company, which in size and reputation is second only to that of Messrs. Platts. 


During his second year's mayoralty he presented the Corporation, on behalf of 
the subscribers, with the city plate, worth 1,000 guineas. This elaborate service 
comprises a plateau 16 feet long, two 13-light candelabra, ten 9-light candelabra, 
three centre-pieces, ten fruit-stands, twenty-four compotiers, twenty-four ice dishes, 
and two majestic loving-cups. His third year of ofiBce, which saw the Jubilee and 
the visit of the British Association to Manchester, promised to be one of much 
ceremony and importance, but his untimely death prevented the fulfilment of such 
expectations for him. He was a man of great integrity, and a very characteristic 
token of his courtesy was witnessed on the occasion of the above-mentioned contest 
between himself and Alderman Goadsby. When it had been decided, and the new 
mayor was introduced to the council-chamber, he appeared arm in arm with his 
defeated opponent, a generosity of conduct in both that was highly appreciated by 
the members of the Council, and that was fitly recognised by Mr. Goadsby's election 
as mayor in the year following. 

Alderman Goadsby was for many years chairman of the Markets Committee, 
and it was during his tenure that Smithfield Market was covered and the Market 



{From the Painting by R. Eoolce, in the Town IlaU.) 

Hall erected. He afterwards provided out of his own purse, and at a cost of 

£1,200, the marble statue of Prince Albert which now adorns the Albert Memorial 

^flin front of the Town Hall (p. 108). The movement 
for the erecting of this monument had started in a 
public meeting in the Town Hall, in 1862, but at his 
death, in 1866, the statue was not finished, and it 
was left to his widow formally to present it, in 1867, 
to the citizens of Manchester. The memorial was 
designed by Mr. Thomas Worthington. It consists 
of an open-arched and four-sided canopy, containing 
the statue of the Prince, by Noble. The spire rises 
to a height of seventy-five feet, and terminates in a 
metal crown. The memorial, which cost ^66,250, was 
inaugurated and presented to the Corporation by Sir 

WiUiam Fairbairn on the 23rd of January, 1867. Mrs. Goadsby was one of the 

survivors from the fatal capsize of the Emvia, in 1828, a local catastrophe which 

cast much gloom over the district ; and she owed her preservation, romantically 

enough, to her future husband, who was then a youth in the employ of the new 

Quay Company. 

Alderman Goadsby was an ardent supporter of 

the agitation for the repeal of the Corn Laws. He is 

said to have owed much of his advancement to the 

aid of Ivie Mackie, whose career we have just glanced 

at. Nor, indeed, was he the onlj'- man by many whom 

Mackie helped to make. Yet there is no solid 

memento of this extraordinary man, with the excep- 
tion of the illuminated clock in St. Peter's Church. 

Much as he deshed to leave behind him some 

memorial of his mayoralty, his years of office expired 

without the completion of any great work. All 

through that time the Law Courts had been in 

progress, but it was not until the mayoral term of Alderman Bennett that they 

were completed and formally opened. 



Alderman Bennett — " Eeady-Money John," as he was called in Liverpool, on 
account of his prompt dealing — was head of the well-known timber firm in Ardwick, 
a trade in which, according to the family tradition, the Bennetts have " always " 
been engaged. He was a man of extensive wealth, and is remembered by the chnrch 
of St. Benedict, Hyde Eoad, which he built at a cost of £30,000. 

The ceremony in which Alderman Bennett took so prominent a part on the 
opening of the Law Courts was very imposing. The building was complete in 1864, and 
the first assizes were held there on the 26th of July of that year by Sir Alexander 
Cockburn, the Lord Chief Justice of England, accompanied by the then High 
Sheriff, Sir J. P. Kay- Shuttle worth. In 1868 the Salford Hundred Quarter Sessions, 
formerly held at the New Bayley, were transferred to the Assize Courts. In 
architectural style the Law Courts, like the Town Hall, display a very free treatment 
of Early English and Decorated Gothic, The principal front in Great Ducie Street 
shows a central block slightly advanced from the main body of the building 
(Plate 9). This contains the beautiful entrance porch, which leads to the two 
principal courts. The Criminal Court is placed on the Southall Street side, the 
Nisi Prius corresponding to it on the north. The grand jury room, retiring-room, 
etc., occupy the upper floor of the central part. The great hall bears a close 
resemblance to Westminster Hall, and may claim, says Mr. Croston, to rank as 
one of the finest Gothic apartments in England. 

Quite distinct, of course, from this biiilding is the City Police Court, the successor 
to the Borough Police Court in Brown Street, which was opened in 1839, on the site 
of the old Manor Courthouse. The present City and Sessions Court is in Minshull 
Street (p. 107j, and its erection was begun in 1868, under the mayoralty of Eobert 
Neill. The building, a very fine one, was designed by Mr. T. Worthington, a well- 
known Manchester architect ; but, like most Manchester buildings, it gains nothing 
from its locality and surroundings. It is very much down a back street. The 
principal entrance is in Minshull Street, and gives access by means of a flight 
/ of steps, the floor-level of the building being several feet above the pathway, to the 
' barristers' dining-room and the public hall of the Sessions side, while the Bloom 
Street entrance leads to the public hall connected with the police courts — a large 
room, 84 feet by 40. On the court floor there are four courts — two appropriated to 
the Sessions business, and two to that of the police. The two latter are open daily. 






the stipendiary magistrate, Mr. F. J. Headlam, presiding in the one, while the city 
justices take the other. 

Quite recently the City Coroner's Court, which was formerly held in a small and 
badly Ycntilated building in St. John Street, has been removed to the MinshuU 
Street building. 

The three years of Mr. Eobert Neill's mayoralty (1806-8) were rendered further 
remarkable by the vigorous prosecution of the new Town Hall scheme. In 1807 
the plans for it were adopted, and in the following year he performed the same office 
for this noble pUe that he had done for the City Police Comts (p. 104). 

Probably the only exception to that common feature in Manchester buildings 
just referred to- — insufficiency of ground space — is the Infirmary (Plate 10). That 
you can see without having to bend back in order to look up at a wall, and the 
sense of relief at getting an easy, fair, roomy, comprehensive, horizontal view is 
something exquisite. In its beginnings the Manchester Infirmary was a very 
modest affair. It originated with that celebrated physician. Dr. Charles White, 
the friend of De Quincey, and the possessor, among other things, of a modern 
mummy (p. 104). At his promptings, in the year 1762, a meeting of a few 
prominent citizens was held, and the scheme resolved on. Subscriptions were 
privately raised, and a house was taken in Garden Street, Shudehill. On the 24th 
of June in the same year the house was opened. The volunteer house surgeon 
was this same Dr. White, whose portrait hangs in the Infirmary library, the shelves 
of which contain many of his contributions to medical literature. In the first year 
75 in-patients and 249 out-patients received attention. Having thus shown good 
reason for the existence of such an institution, the promoters (among them Mr. Joseph 
Bancroft and Mr. James Massey, who had paid all the first year's expenses — £405 
— out of his own pocket) ventured to bring their project before the public. As a 
result of their action, it was determined to erect a building large enough to provide 
for eighty patients. The present site, then known as Daub Hole Fields, behind the 
Ducking Pool, was given by Sir Oswald Mosley, lord of the manor, at a merely 
nominal rent, for a term of 990 years. 

The rent was at first £6, but in 1781 an additional 12,000 square yards was 
added to the site, and in that year the rent, together with the amount paid to the 
church for pews, came to about ^676. At the same time it had been determined to 



(From a Photograph in ths Town Hall, aoout 1868.) 

extend the benefits of the institution thus launched 
to tlie surrounding district — Eccles, Blackburn, 
Bolton, Bury, Eochdale, Prestwich, Ashton, and 
Stockport — and a scheme was drawn up, under which 
subscribers of twenty guineas, and annual subscribers 
of two guineas, should be trustees for life. An 
unpretentious building was erected, and Mr. Massey 
became president of the institution, a position which 
he held for forty-five years. The original structure 
was finished in 1755, at a cost of something like 
£4,000. Twenty-five years later public baths were 

added on the land adjacent to Mosley Street. These were known as Howard's Baths, 

and extended from the present entrance-lodge on that side to Parker Street (p. 109). 

They were removed in 1857. Another addition, at the corner of Aytoun Street, was 

made in 1797, in the shape of the Town Hospital or House of Eecovery. 

The original building was a comparatively modest affair. It consisted simply 

of a central block, nine windows long, and flanked by two small wings. None 

the less it was thought much of, and held to be replete with every convenience, 

not omitting the " still-house and laundry." To 

this originally plain square budding was added, 

in 1780, a clock, with turret and vane, and 

in 1832, when William IV. became a patron, 

and the title was changed to that of the "Eoyal 

Infirmary," the central portion was re-fronted with 

stone at the expense of Mrs. Francis Hall, the 

dome and clock being afterwards added in 1853. 

Before this final change the Infirmary had, in 1841, 

been incorporated by Act of Parliament ; and the 

lands (for in 1807 arrangements had been made for 

the purchase of the chief rents from Sir Oswald 

Mosley) were vested in a body consisting of a president and treasurer and the 

benefactors and subscribers for the time being. 

Fifteen years later the fever hospital, which had hitherto been a distinct charity. 

(From a Mezzotint in Chetham College.) 







was amalgamated witli the Infirmary by a general Act of Incorporation, and a 
portion of tlie new south wing was isolated as a fever hospital. Subsequently, 
however, a wiser arrangement was made, and a fever hospital erected at Newton 
Heath, on the Monsall Estate. The entire cost of this was defrayed by Mr. 
Eobert Barnes, to whom the place also owed the first temporary convalescent hospital, 
erected at Cheadle in 1866, and the permanent hospital erected shortly afterwards in 
the neighbourhood, for the building of which he left funds. 

By this arrangement the new south wing had been made again available for 
the Infirmary requirements. The foundation-stone of this portion was laid in 1847 
by Thomas Markland, who for thirty years had been treasurer to the institution. 
The corresponding north wing was subsequently added, and the wards re-arranged, 
impetus beiug given to the work by the generosity of Jenny Lind, who devoted to 
it the proceeds of her concerts. 

Despite these successive additions, the building continually proved inadequate 
to what was required, and for some time the question was seriously discussed of 
selling the site and removing the Infirmary altogether to some place outside the 
city. In the end, however, this drastic measure was not adopted. In place of it, 
during the years 1877-82, great alterations and additions were made to the existing 
structure. The accommodation was increased from 210 to 300 beds ; a new out- 
patients' dispensary and a nurses' house (to hold eighty nurses) were built, new 
drains were constructed, and the main building put in a thoroughly sanitary condition. 
At the same time the out-patients' department was removed from one of the wings 
to a separate structure. The cost of this series of operations was ^£34,000. A further 
scheme for the extension of the main building, so as to provide 120 more beds, is 
under consideration. This work, for which plans have been already sent in, will 
include an additional operating-theatre, and a lecture-room for 200 students, besides 
fresh rooms for officers and nurses. 

The full record of the services to humanity performed by this institution it 
would be impossible to give. Some imperfect notion may be got from the 
fact that in 1845 it was computed that since the foundation 776,932 sick and 
indigent persons had been relieved, of whom 90,000 had been accommodated within 
the walls, the cost per head on the gross number amounting to only nine shillings. 
What the present figures would come to, with an accommodation increased manyfold 



since then, would be no easy thing to state ; but, at least, such figures are not a 
necessity. Independently of them, the Infirmary, the most deserving and best- 
supported of Manchester institutions, is duly appreciated for its magnificent work 
(p. 112). One interesting feature about its history may be repeated in the words of 
Dr. Eenaud, consulting physician to the institution. In 1791 a scheme for a general 
inoculation for the prevention of small-pox was brought forward by the physicians 
and surgeons of the Infirmary, and another for the better treatment of cancer. 
The comparatively early date at which this scheme for a more general inoculation 
was taken up shows that Manchester, if it did not lead the van, did not lag far 
behind in an endeavour to make a dangerous remedy available towards averting a still 
more dangerous and fatal disease. 

Intimately associated for almost a century with the Infirmary was the lunatic 
asylum. This was added on the same plot of land in 1765, a date that is rather 
remarkable, for we are told that at the time the resolution was taken to provide this 
institution there were only two such public buildings in London — Bedlam and St. 
Luke's — and one in the provinces, at Newcastle-on-Tyne. Private madhouses there 
were, indeed, in plenty, but such as make the flesh creep to think of. The credit of 
the governors in thus providing a structure where the afiiicted could be tended 
without fear of "the imposition of those who kept private madhouses" is deservedly 
great. For the purpose of the asylum two wings were attached to the Infirmary, 
each containing two cells, the cost of the whole, with rooms for the governor, 
being about ^£1,500. 

This portion of the united institute differed from its fellow, the Infirmary, in 
being self-supporting, and its success was immediate. Extensions were afterwards 
made on several occasions, in 1772 and 1780, and in 1830 it was re-fronted with a 
Doric portico. Nine years later the governors were empowered by Act of Parliament 
to remove the lunatic asylum to a more suitable site, and it was accordingly rebuilt at 
Cheadle as the Manchester Eoyal Lunatic Asylum (p. 113), the foundation-stone being 
laid in November, 1847, by Mr. Thomas Townend, treasurer of the institution. 

Although the Infirmary, whose career we have thus rapidly sketched, is not a 
Corporation institution, in the sense of owing its origin to or being worked by civic 
authority, it is in essence probably the most representative civic institution the 
town possesses, and certainly deserves to the full the ungrudging civic support 



which it receives. Mr. Barnes, too, one of its most famous benefactors, deserves notice 
in his civic capacity (p. 115). He vras for two years, 1851-3, Mayor of Manchester, 
and though large-handed generosity is a characteristic of the possessors of that office^ 
it has seldom been graced by a more signal instance of unobtrusive yet extensive 
benevolence. Besides the Convalescent Home at Cheadle, which he erected at a cost 
of ^40,000, he gave the Industrial Schools at Heaton Mersey— " Barnes's House" it 
is called — a building which cost at least J620,OOO.i 
He is said to have been in the habit of employing 
the venerable prison philanthropist Thomas Wright 
as his almoner, and on one occasion when Wright 
was wanting to build a reformatory for boys, 
to replace the inadequate one in Mayes Street, 
Mr. Barnes offered to give him the whole 
j66,000 needed for the work. AjQother char- 
acteristic thing he did : Happening to hear 
that Charles Welby, the Liverpool temperance 
advocate, was intending to set up a series of 
drinking-fountains in Manchester, in imitation 
of those he had established in his own town, 
Mr. Barnes resolved that it would be a 
disgrace to Manchester if she were to owe 
such a gift to an Amalekite, and promptly jj|ilif| 
erected thirty such fountains in different parts y 'j,lil| 
of the town at his own expense (p. 117). 
The chronicler adds drily that they would 
have lost nothing by being a little more 
ornamental. But that was not the notion. 

Mr. Barnes, who was a strong Wesleyan, 
died at Fallowfield in 1871, leaving a daughter likewise distinguished for charitable 

His successor in the Mayoral office was Benjamin NichoUs, who filled the chief 
civic post from 1853-5. Coming to Manchester in 1833, Mr. NichoUs entered the 
cotton business and built up the large mills in Cotton Street which are now the 




property of Messrs. Bazley Brothers. Mucli respected by all parties in the town, 
he died in 1877 at the ripe age of eighty-six. His year of office was distinguished 
by the Act for the extension of the waterworks, but his name is better commemor- 
ated by the " NiohoUs Hospital," which he founded by his will. His only son, John 

.Ashton Micholls, F.E.A.S., was one of 
the founders of the Ancoats institution, 
and will long be remembered for his 
gifts and philanthropic efforts in the 
town. He died quite young, and his 
death was felt as a keen blow to the 
community jl 

The same institution to which 
Alderman Barnes had proved so munifi- 
cent a friend found an- 
other benefactor among 
the Manchester mayors. 
By his support of the 
movement for the Night- 
ingale fund for training 
hospital nurses, Sir James 
Watts (p. 115) earned one 
title to remembrance in 
this connection. The life 
of Alderman Watts is 
parallel with that of the 
firm whose warehouse forms one of the great sights of the city. His years of 
office, 1855-7, were marked by the opening of the new Free Trade Hall, but 
more especially by the celebrated Art Treasures Exhibition at Old Trafford. The 
Exhibition was opened by Prince Albert on the 6th of May, 1867. The Eoyal 
party, consisting of the Queen, the Prince of Wales and Prince Alfred, the 
Princess Eoyal, Princess Alice and Prince Frederick William of Prussia, were 
entertained at Worsley Hall by the Earl of EUesmere. During the 142 days 
it remained open many notables visited the exhibition, among them Prince 




Napoleon. Nathaniel Hawthorne was there too one day, and saw Tennyson 
strolling through ; but this was not the occasion on which Tennyson opened his 
wide arms with the leonine words, "Oh, great Scarlet Letter ! " Hawthorne didn't 
speak because, like the sensitive Samaritan who would not help the drowning man, 
"he hadn't been introduced." On the 30th of June the Queen visited the Exhibition 
a second time, when "an interesting ceremony took place." After listening to an 
address from the city, she turned to General Sir Harry Smith, who stood near, and 

—til riinAnili .«>^>.«i^-- ■■ ■ . 

{From an Old Print.) 

"at the same time Sir George Grey led forward the Mayor, Mr. Watts, and placed 
him kneeling on the upper step of the dais and before her Majesty. The Queen, 
having received Sir Harry's sword, gently touched the Mayor on each shoulder, and 
as he rose Sir James Watts, loud and long-continued cheers burst forth from every 
part of the building." 

The mention of the Art Treasures Exhibition of 1867 irresistibly brings before 
the mind's eye its successor the Jubilee Exhibition, of which the memory is still 
warm. It is not a very far cry from the one to the other, but the thirty years of 
interval cover a good deal of civic growth and solid advance. The three years of 
the " prime ministership " of John Grave, who was Mayor 1868-71, saw the ex- 
tension of the waterworks scheme, the widening of Deansgate, as well as the visit 
of the Prince and Princess of Wales to the Eoyal Agricultural Society at Old 
Traflford. But the most important feature of growth during those years was the 
introduction of the School Board system. What influence that system has had on 
the education of the lower classes will be seen later. 

Alderman Grave's successor, William Booth, was Mayor for two years— from 


1871-3. He will be long remembered for the warmth of his interest in Sunday- 
School work, and especially the great Whitsuntide processions, a feature peculiar 
probably to Manchester, but immensely popular there for the last sixty years (p. 116). 
During his time one authority declares that the processions reached a total of 53,000 
scholars and 4,000 teachers. 

During Mr. Booth's Mayoralty his native town received visits from various foreign 
potentates. One morning the Shah himself came, and another time an embassy 
from Burmah and Japan, one of the said embassy rejoicing in the name or formula 
of Mengyee Maha Saythoo Kenoon Mengyee. On a second occasion the Shah wrote 
an account of his tour, and recorded his impressions of Manchester in a style in 
which there is a strange mixture of the naive and the artificial. When the Eoyal 
journalist, however, spoke of the rate at which soot falls in the dirt-bhghted capital 
of Cottondom he must have had in his mind the kindly conceits of the writer in 
Fraser's Magazine. Or perhaps the ubiquitous Gr. A. Sala was at the Eoyal elbow, 
and prompting, " speak thus and thus and thus." 

In the following year, 1873-4, Mr. Alfred Watkin was Mayor, in succession 
to Mr. Booth. Although the brother of no less a person than Sir E. W. Watkin, 
he was himself a man of most extreme and sensitive modesty, so much so, indeed, 
that he declined a banquet in his honour at the close of his year of office, as he 
thought that nothing worthy of such recognition had happened during his Mayoralty. 
Probably in most right-feeling minds the disclaimer will constitute a better title to 
notice than the banquet would have done had it taken place. His successor, 
Alderman King, Mayor during the municipal year 1874-5, is still styled John 
King, Junior, although he has seen service on the Council. It must be by 
reason of that theory of our constitution that declares that the king can never 
die. The same constitutional theory lays it down that the king can do no wrong, 
and in this particular case this maxim also would seem to apply. Mr. King's career 
has been one of great probity as well as activity, and to-day he is chairman of the 
Finance Committee, as well as senior partner of Messrs. Watkin and King, besides 
being chairman of the Manchester Carriage and Tramways Company. His year of 
office as Mayor witnessed the Deansgate improvement, and the erection of the new 
branch library at Cheetham, as well as a notable visit to the city of the Baroness 
Burdett Coutts, of which Alderman King preserved a memento in the shape of a sword. 



The following years, 1877-9, which witnessed the Mayoralty of Mr. Charles 
Sydney Grundy, were marked by the commencement of numerous important works, 
among them the Art School, and, more important still, the great Thirlmere water 
scheme, which we shall have to notice by-and-by. Alderman Grundy was not 
destined to see the conclusion of this magnificent undertaking. He died in 1888, at 
his residence in Broughton. Like so many of his predecessors, he was a self- 


1 '1 I V.E ?M! 


{From a Contemporary Lithograph.) 

made man. In early life he had been employed in the warehouse of Messrs. 
Carlton, Walker and Company. He rose to be head of his department there, and 
afterwards started in business for himself, under the style of Grundy, Midwood and 
Company, the bulk of the capital being found by Alderman Mackie. Although he 
retired in middle age, he always remained in touch with the business life he had 
quitted. He was one of the earliest and most zealous promoters of the Manchester 
Warehousemen and Clerks' Provident Association, and became its first president. 
Another title he has to remembrance which the present generation of workers can 
hardly appreciate — he was the most active agitator for the establishment of the 
Saturday half-holiday. What the change means only those know who had to work 
under the old system. Up to 1843, the time when the half-holiday was established, 
Saturday had been the busiest day of the week. All the work of making up and 
getting off was left till then, and it was often nine o'clock, ten, eleven, or even 



midniglit, before the exhausting accumulation of work had been cleared off. Indeed, 
so prostrating did the toil of Saturday prove that merchants were accustomed to take 
Friday for a holiday, in order to prepare for the next day's strain, and for a time 
there was some question of establishing Friday as a holiday, instead of Saturday. 
Fortunately for our favoured generation, that absurd waste of nerve-force is now 

done away with, and the 

woikeis can comfortably 

conclude then work at 12.30 pj 

on Sdtuiday. 

One other gieat improvement of 
later Manchester has to be attributed 
to Alderman Grundy in its origin. He was the first to bring forward the proposal to 
amalgamate with the township of Manchester the townships of Cheetham, Ardwick, 
Chorlton, Hulme, Newton, and Beswick. The scheme was sanctioned by the Council 
in 1875, and an Act obtained in the following year. The result must have been 
considerably gratifying to most of these townships when they found a large and 
sudden drop in their rates. For the city itself the change meant a slight tickling of 
her vanity, which was already quite pronounced enough, and a rise in the rates 
of a penny. 

The last development of the growth of Greater Manchester which was thus 
inaugiirated has gone on since, but with rather unequal motion. Five years later, 
daring the Mayoralty of Alderman Henry Patteson, a petition was received for 



the incorporation of Newton Heath and Harpiirhey. The latter was admitted wdthin 
the city bounds, but the negotiations with Newton Heath were not successful, and it 
was left to be concluded by other hands. 

One novel but very pleasing departure in Mayoral routine was made by Mr. 
Patteson in the juvenile ball which he gave at the Town Hall in his year of office. 
Over 2,000 children were iuvited, and the scene is described as beautiful. 

Baker and Sir J. J. Harwood, who will 

occur in another connection, we reach 
the Mayors of our own days, whose personalities and doings are probably as well 
known to the reader as to ourselves. Alderman Hopkinson was a partner in the 
well-known firm of Wren and Hopkinson, largely engaged as mechanicians and 
engineers. Later, withdrawing from the firm, he practised as a consulting engineer, 
and became deputy-chairman of the Carnforth Ironworks. He himself is a member 
of the Court of Governors of Owens College, where his son, Alfred Hopkinson, Q.C., 
until recently held the Chair of Law. His Mayoral year was happily marked by 
the extinction of that gross and rank abuse, the market tolls, a queer institution 
which had in some unexplained way strayed down out of the Middle Ages, and 
which would have been an object of bitterest declamation on the part of the 
Corporation if it had been held in any hands other than their own, and if they had 
not found they could make £20,000 a year and more out of it. Now, a fig for your 
corporate conscience ! 



Mr. Hopkinson's successor, Alderman Philip Goldschmidt, was a man of singularly 
high nature, and the esteem he won in the town of his adoption was all the greater 
for being paid, as it was, so irrespective of nationality. Alderman Goldschmidt was a 
native of Oldenburg in Germany, but he emigrated early in 1843. Settling in 
Manchester, he built up by enterprise a large business. Besides being Consul for the 
Eoumanian kingdom, he was a director of the Manchester Chamber of Commerce, 
and earned, in addition, by his white-flower blameless life, a respect on the part 
of his townsmen such as has seldom been surpassed. His first year of ofiS.ce saw 
the completion of the new Post Office, one of the most imposing buildings in the 
city, but almost lost for want of a situation and prospect. 

The late Mr. Alderman Batty, who was Mayor in 1888-9, had risen from an 
apprentice in the watchmaking trade to be head of a large jewellery business, with 
branches in Manchester and Southport, and to be Mayor of his adopted town. 
He was born, not in Manchester, but in the West Eiding of York, the son of a 
hard-working Independent minister, settled at Dent. Eising to be a journeyman in 
his trade, he moved to Manchester, and took a room in Deansgate, where he followed 
his occupation as a chamber-worker, or worker for the trade, and for many years 
after he had (in 1856) opened a shop on his own account, he continued to work at 
the bench. In 1862 he removed from his premises at Albert Bridge, near to Salford, 
to the premises his firm occupies at No. 9, Market Street. During his year of ofiice 
one unpremeditated act of rare good-nature brought down a torrent of criticism. Mr. 
W. O'Brien had been arrested in Manchester, while fleeing the vengeance of Mr. 
Balfour. He should by right, some thought, have remained in the room provided 
for his short stay by the Chief Constable. Others would have sent him higher up, 
and others lower down. Of course, opinions differ considerably on these nice points ; 
but in all probability Mr. Batty's action in inviting the much-persecuted constable- 
dodger to make his stay in the Mayor's sumptuous apartments was dictated by 
simple generosity, and not at all by any particular opinion. Anyway, there was some 
little commotion, but the Mayor emerged unscathed from the storm. It seems a 
pity that politics should so far impair the reputation for magnanimity. 

Mr. Batty's successor. Mayor during 1889-91, was Alderman John Mark, also a 
self-made man, but one who has added to his record of commercial success the 
finer flavour of literary achievement. Alderman Mark is a native of Cumberland, but 




(i'Voin the Portrait by Sir F. Grant, P.R.A., in 
the Royal Infirmary.) 

early settled in Manchester. Being obliged by force of circumstances to relinquish 
schooling just as he was making a way, he was apprenticed to the grocery trade, and 
on removing to Manchester entered the employ of Messrs. Richardson and Roebuck, 

of the Market-place. Here he rose to be a partner, 
but the arrangement was terminated by the illness of 
the senior partner, Mr. Roebuck, and Mr. Mark 
afterwards started business in St. Anne's Square on 
his own account, where his business premises are still 
located, though changed to handsome proportions by 
a long process of growth. 

Mr. Mark entered the Council in 1877, after an 
imsuccessful contest in 1874, in St. Anne's Ward, 
and has served on various committees — Art Galleries, 
Waterworks, and Watch Committees, etc. Of the last- 
named he is chairman. On the death of Alderman 
Bennett he was elected to the vacant aldermanship, although at the moment absent 
on a tour in the United States, of which he has written an account in " A Diary of 
my trip to America and Havana." 

He was succeeded in the Mayoralty by Alderman 
Bosdin T. Leech, a leading merchant of the city 
and a descendant of a very old Manchester family, 
about whose possessions a curious legacy story is 
told. After serving on the Stretford Local Board 
for several years he was returned unopposed as 
councillor for the Oxford Board in 1880, from which 
time he has laboured on three of the most im- 
portant Committees of the Council — the Water, 
Finance, and Free Libraries Committees. From 
the other side of the Chamber, Alderman Joseph 
Thompson, one of the oldest and most widely respected of the civic representatives, 
whose name will occur again in connection with the greatest institution in 
Manchester, the University, had been invited to allow his name to be put before 
the Council in nomination for the Mayoralty. As he felt unable to complv, the 


(From the Portrait in the Possession of 

Mr. James Waits.) 



Council unanimously passed a resolution of regret and well-wishing, and accordingly 
Alderman Leech was nominated for the chair. Mr. Leech was knighted in 1894, 
when Her Majesty opened the Ship Canal. 

Alderman Leech was succeeded in the Mayoral chair by Alderman Anthony 
Marshall, J.P., elected Mayor in 1892 and again in 1893. Educated at Christ's 


Hospital in London, Mr. Marshall came to Manchester in 1851, and found 
employment with Messrs. John Muir and Co. He afterwards started in business 
under the style of Marshall, Brear and Aston, changed later to that of Marshall 
and Aston. Mr. Marshall's Mayoral term became unique in historic importance by 
the opening of the Ship Canal, in connection with which event he received the 
honour of knighthood, as well as by the dignity of bearing the title of Lord Mayor, 
conferred on the town in Sir Anthony's first year of office. 

The governing body of Manchester is its City Council, consisting of 104 
members, sitting and voting and acting as a single chamber, though composed of 
two different elements, namely, aldermen and councillors. For the purpose of their 
election the city is divided into twenty-five wards, a number which has been 
increased from fifteen, as fixed by the charter of 1838, in consequence of the 



addition of outlying townships, which have given up their local hoards and 
become wards of the city — Eusholme Ward, Openshaw Ward, Newton Heath Ward, 
and so on. 

Each ward is represented by an alderman, who is elected by the Council, and 
sits for six years, and three councillors, elected by the burgesses. The councillors 
sit for three years, and come out by rotation, so that there is a vacancy for one 
councillor in each year. New Cross Ward forms an exception by sending six 
councillors. The body thus formed is presided over by the Mayor, who is elected 

For the transaction of the general business of the city this Council holds a 
meeting on the first Wednesday of each month, and often an additional adjourned 
meeting on some other Wednesday, to dispose of arrears of business, if any. 
For the expedition of business, however, this general body is divided into various 
committees, each with a distinct function, the members of them being chosen by 
vote in the Council. In their entirety, and when their separate action has been 
endorsed by the vote of the Council, these committees em- 
brace and control every department of the corporate life of 
the place, and a glance at them 
brings in review the whole or- 
ganisation of a perfectly-governed 
nineteenth-century British muni- 
cipality — ^through the Finance 
Committee over the whole course 
of corporate finance, through 
the Improvement and Buildings 
Committee over the town survey 
and all structures, and so on 
for the Sanitary Committee, 
the Eivers Committee, and the 
Watch Committee. In all, there are sixteen ordinary and four special committees. 

In the ordinary way of things the work of these committees is so much a matter 
of routine that they escape notice. They are tiresome and uninteresting to the 
busy citizen because of their detail and routine character. But in reahty aU the 



work of the city — that is, the administrative part of it — is transacted in them. 
As an instance, the Sanitary Committee deals with questions of smoke abatement, 
milk adulteration, the cleansing of lodging-houses, and the condition of canal-boats, 
the condition of hospitals, and so forth. Take the single item of milk adulteration. 
In Manchester alone over £569,000 is paid every year for milk. It is said that 
the addition to this milk of only one per cent, of water would entail a loss to 
the community of £3,100 a year, not to speak of the question of hygiene and the 
danger of concoctions not so harmless as "mirth and innocence, milk and water." It 
is here that the Sanitary Committee, with its officer, the City Analyst, steps in; 
and so on for all the other bodies, of which an enumeration is unnecessary. 

Some of these committees however, yield us a vivid interest — the Waterworks 
and the Gas Committees, for instance — the former in a prominent degree. 

At present through this committee the Council or Corporation exercises 
complete control or monopoly of the supply of water to the town. This has not 
always been the case. In olden days the only source of water-supply had been 
the spring which issued in what is now Fountain Street, the water from which 
was conveyed thence by the conduit to the Market-place, and there are numerous 
amusing notices in the old Leet records of disputes at the conduit as to the right of 
drawing first, and of the regulations made for the ordering of this primitive 

Here are some of them : — " The jury doth order that all the orders heretofore 
made concerning the conduit shall stand and be in effect, and we order and make 
James Bradshall and John Sympson officers to see the same put in execution, for 
washing of clothes or dressing of calves' heads, or secure of any vessells or any 
meates of beastes. The jury doth order that John Wilton shall keep the keyes of the 
conduit, and to unlocke the same at six o'clock in the mornynge, and to locke yt 
upp at nyne in the evening betwene St. Michaell and Annunciation, of Marye, and 
from the Annunciation till the Feast of St. Michael to unlocke the same at six in 
the morning, and yt so to contynewe open till nyne the same forenoone, and then to 
locke yt upp till three in the afternoon, and at three to be opened and so to con- 
tynewe till six, and then to locke yt upp till six in the morninge according to an 
auncyente order made in anno dni. 1636." 

Besides this the town had no other supply but the pits near the Dyers' Crofts— 



pump-water " raised by Persian wheels " — and rain- and river-water. But the pump- 
water was bad. It contained an excess of selenite and alum, and was condemned 
by the well-known Dr. Percival as the cause of the chronic glandular obstructions 
and scrofula which aflBicted the inhabitants. Further than this, the pits began 
to fall dry during the course of the eighteenth century. Accordingly, at its close 
we find the lord of the manor. Sir Oswald Mosley, putting down a pumping-engine 
for raising water from the Medlock at Holt Town, a short distance above Manchester. 
The water was raised to the high parts of the town, and conveyed to Shudehill pits 
and Infirmary pond, both of which institutions are now done away with, and dis- 
tributed thence through the town in pipes. As this supply in its turn fell short of 
the growing wants of 
the inhabitants, two 
schemes were, a few 
years later, brought for- 
ward for providing water 
from the Medlock, and 
Bills for them were 
privately promoted in 
Parliament. On the 
moving of these schemes 
a town's meeting had 
been held, and it was 

determined to oppose them, and to offer an alternative one, by which it was 
proposed to draw water from the Ashton Canal and the river Tame at Dukinfield. 
What a strange look these words have to-day to everyone that knows either the 

Tame or the canal! 

Notwithstanding this proposal, however, and the town's opposition, one of the 
companies succeeded in carrying its plan through Parliament, and became established 
as the Manchester and Salford Waterworks Company. Under this scheme the 
water required was raised from the Medlock, and pumped into a large reservoir 
about sixty-seven feet above the level of Piccadilly, and from thence again by means 
of a forty-five horse power engine into a couple of small reservoirs, or settling-ponds, 
at Beswick. The company that had the working of this primitive and, to our eyes, 




ludicrously inadequate apparatus, was an unfortunate affair. Its history might be 
succinctly summed up in the words applied by an ex- Attorney- General to a more 
recent instance. It was begotten in a job, and brought forth in a job, and came 
near expiring in an ignominious job. The company had been promoted, and during 
its infancy was ridden or milked by the Stone Pipe Company, a concern which was 


working a patent granted to Sir George Wright, Bart., of Essex, for the cutting of 
stone pipes out of a soft quarry-stone. The Pipe Company supplied the pipes and 
the Waterworks Company paid for them, put them down, turned the water on, and 
burst them. Then for three years it was bankrupt — naturally enough. 

For over twenty years the Manchester and Salford Waterworks Company struggled 
on without paying a farthing of a dividend. It is, indeed, no small honour to them 
that in such circumstances they did keep on. In 1823 they got powers to construct 
additional works on an entirely fresh source of supply. The Gorton reservoir, formed 
by the drainage of 1,500 acres, was completed in 1826. 

As may be easily supposed, the growth of the town's needs rapidly outstripped 
even this feeble addition to the water supply, but beyond sinking a pump in the 
New Ked Sandstone at Gorton, and promoting and then abandoning a BiU for a reservoir 



at Swineshaw, the old Company did nothing to meet the question of the provision 
of a larger supply, and until the Corporation stepped in the question was not met. 
At last, in 1845, the Turton and Entwistle reservoir people promoted a Bill for 
powers to supply Manchester, Salford, and Bolton with water, under the title of 
the Lancashire Waterworks Company. The Corporation opposed the scheme in 
Parliament, and gave an undertaking to produce at once an alternative proposal. 

{From a Model in the Town Uall.) 

Accordingly, under the guidance of their eminent engineer, J. F. Latrohe Bateman, 
who for over forty years continued to be consulting waterworks' engineer to the 
Corporation, the scheme of the Woodhead reservoirs was adopted. 

The Bill sanctioning the proposal passed in July, 1847, the various Acts providing 
at the same time for the purchase by the Corporation of the old Waterworks Company 
which was accordingly done, the aggregate purchase-money amounting to £538,760. 
The first work undertaken under the Act was the reservoir at Woodhead, which 
was commenced in 1848, and this was followed by those at Hollingworth, Arnfield, 
Ehodes Wood, and Torside (p. 120), a series of works the execution of which 
spread over a period of twenty-eight years, being only completed in 1877, and 
having by that time cost about £2,500,000. They are the most extensive artificial 
reservoirs of the kind in existence, and supply a much greater population than any 
other similar construction either in Great Britain or out of it. 

The river Etherow, which has been absorbed by the works for part of its 



course, rises in the hill-side near the Woodhead tunnel, and flows down its natural 
bed till it meets the first reservoir. The actual construction of this was begun in 
September, 1848 ; but, owing to the character of the ground, the Corporation was 
not able to impound water up to the top-level until the completion of a fresh 
embankment. This latter, the foundation of which is 160 feet below top-bank level, 
took eight years to construct, and it was not until 1877 that the reservoir could be 
completely filled. 

The Ehodes Wood reservoir, about two and a-half miles from Woodhead, was 
finished almost at the same time, after having had its existence threatened by a 
serious landslip, which amounted to nothing short of the gradual sliding down of a 
whole neighbouring hill. The works had accordingly to be supplemented by a heavy 
stone arching intended to stop the hill's truant disposition. The extent of ground 
which moved in the landslip in 1851 was about thirty acres, measuring about one- 
third of a mile along the valley. 

With the exception of these delayed portions the works in the Longdendale 
Valley were practically complete in 1865, eight years after the passing of the 
Waterworks Act, and from that time Manchester has received its water from the 
Pennine Chain. At the time of the transfer to the Corporation of the old 
Manchester and Salford Waterworks Company the daily supply of water did not 
exceed three million gallons. In 1856, when the Longdendale works became partially 
available, it was more than eight millions, and in 1875 this amount had more than 

These reservoirs are only eighteen miles from Manchester, but as one passes them 
on the Manchester, Sheffield, and Lincolnshire main line to London one is struck 
by the contrast between the bare, rugged moorland character of the Pennine Chain, 
with these artificial tarns asleep high up in their bleak, scarred, windy hollows, and 
the lowland softness of the Cheshire plains, on the fringe of whose skirts Lie the 
town they nourish. 

Three of the reservoirs — Woodhead, Ehodes Wood, and Torside — lie in the main 
valley of the Etherow, and for a time, until you plunge with a scream into the long 
tunnel, you run alongside them in the train. The remaining two — the HoUingworth 
and Armfield reservoirs — are situated on the Etherow's two tributaries. 

Besides these works, reservoirs were afterwards constructed at Denton and, in 



1876, at Audenshaw. Tlie total area of these various reservoirs is over eight hundred 
acres, and the drainage-ground represents a surface of thirty square miles. 

Magnificent as this series of works is, however, their estimation is now likely to 
be impaired by the greater Thirlmere scheme. In 1874, when the water demand of 
Lancashire gave signs of again pressing on the supply, Mr. Bateman was consulted 
by the Liverpool Corporation as to the various watersheds available. He proposed a 
joint scheme for Liverpool and Manchester, namely, the acquisition of UUswater 
and Haweswater. This far-seeing project was not 
adopted. Liverpool decHned to join with Man- 
chester, and finally adopted the Vrywy Lake idea, 
and, in place of UUswater, Thirlmere was suggested 
by Mr. Grave, the chairman of the Waterworks 
Committee. The suggestion was heartily accepted, 
both by the engineer, Mr. Bateman, and by the 
Council, and in 1878 the BUI for it was promoted 
in Parliament. It passed in May of the following 
year, and by 1884 the aqueduct from the lake as 
far as Bolton had been set out (p. 121). 

Of course and of course there has been an 
outcry against such an utilitarian, sacrUegious in- 
vasion of the Lake District, and more especially as 
the scheme ultimately adopted provided for the rais- 
ing of the level of the lake an additional fifty feet 
and more by the construction of an embankment, the area of the lake being thereby 
increased from 320 to nearly 800 acres. This meant, as a natural, or rather artificial, 
result, an entire alteration of the lake, but it was contended that in its more extended 
form it would be better in harmony with the surrounding scenery than the consecrated 
narrow river-like mere. Nay, more, it was argued that as the ground at the upper end 
consists of gravel and detritus from the hills, a fresh strand would be created which 
might rival in beauty the silver strand of Loch Katrine ! 

The cost of the entire scheme wUl be about £4,400,000. Although the 
embankment has been constructed to the full height of fifty feet, the lake itself 
will only be raised twenty feet for the present. 

/^i^Uc^lxi' /^^t^ L-^-^^c-^ 


(From a Photograph by M, Guitenberg, Limited.) 



The Waterworks Committee, which has the control of this vast series of 
municipal works, is composed of eight aldermen and seventeen councillors, under the 
chairmanship of Alderman Sir John J. Harwood. 

The committee works by several sub-committees, three of which take the reservoirs, 
while others deal with the sale and supply of the water, street-mains, and audit of 
accounts. The engineer is Mr. G. H. Hill, successor to Mr. Bateman. 

Sir J. J. Harwood, the chairman, has been thrice Mayor of Manchester — in 1885, 


during part of 1887, in consequence of the death of Alderman Curtis, and again in 
1888. He was born at Oswaldtwistle, near Accringfcon, in 1832, came to Manchester 
as a journeyman painter and plasterer in the employ of Mr. Ward, became foreman, 
partner, sole master, and to-day stands at the head of the largest concern of its kind 
in the city. And the qualities which brought success in business have made him a 
power in the Council. He is regarded as unsurpassed for his knowledge of municipal 
matters and for his capacity for work, qualities that are not more pronounced than 
his uncompromising directness and openness — not a bad epitome of all the mysterious 
meaning wrapped up in the forceful words, "a Manchester man" (p. 123). 

Alderman Harwood was Mayor at the time of the opening of the Jubilee 
Exhibition, and shortly afterwards received the honour of knighthood in recognition of 
his services to the city, services no less real in character than in extent, for in a 



mixed assembly the presence of so open and strong a man is a most bracing 
medicinal influence. 

As in the case of the water supply, the Corporation has a monopoly of the gas 
provision for the city : in this case, however, not by purchase, but by inheritance, 
if we may so describe it, its powers having descended to it from the old 
Commissioners for Lighting and Watching the town. The composition of the 
committee which controls this important function of the Corporation is similar to 
that of the Waterworks Committee. It consists of sixteen councillors and ten 
aldermen, under the chairmanship of Councillor Joseph Brooks, who since 1882 has 
been returned unopposed as Town Councillor for Collegiate Ward. 

Though born in Stockport, Mr. Brooks is a Manchester man in fact and in 
spirit, as his career has shown. In 1842 he was apprenticed to Mr. Buckley, 
then, we are told, one of the foremost chemists in Manchester. Nine years later he 
commenced business on his own account at 42, Shudehill, and there, after many 
enlargements, his business is still carried on. 


It is interesting to note that no small share of the honour of introducing coal- 
gas for illuminating purposes belongs to Lancashire. It was in this county — just 
near Wigan— that Shirley first observed, in 1659, the escape of carburetted hydrogen, 
"making the water boyle like a pott;" and although coal-gas was made in the 
eighteenth century, and had been introduced by Murdoch into his own house, and 


into tlie famous Soho factory of Boulton and Watt in Birmingham, the first real 
attempt at the complete illumination of large premises occurred in Salford. In 
1804 Murdoch succeeded in lighting up the works of Messrs. Phillips and Lee 
by gas. Several improvements, too, the technical value of which will be better 
apparent to experts, owe their origin to local talent. The introduction of the 
hydraulic main at Mr. Greenway's works at Manchester is attributed to Clegg a 
Manchester man. 

In 1818 a gasworks — the "Manchester Gas-Works" — had been erected in 
Water Street, and six years later the project was undertaken of supplying the town 
with gas for public purposes, and an Act obtained (5 George IV., cap. 133, 1824) with 
that intent. The merit of originating this scheme is due, we are told, to Mr. George 
William Wood, M.P., and Mr. Thomas Fleming, the latter of whom is very memorable 
in the town's annals. He began the erection of the stone bridge at Blackfriars in 
1819, which replaced the old wooden one, and also originated the great Market Street 
improvement. In 1852 a marble statue was erected to his memory in the Cathedral. 
His colleague, Mr. Wood, was also a notable. He was the second president of 
the Manchester Chamber of Commerce, and on one occasion was presented by the 
association with a silver tureen as a mark of respect. Nor is this by any means 
his only title to kindly mention. 

The preamble of the Act just referred to, after dwelling on the growth of Man- 
chester, states how desirable it would be to provide the public lamps, dwellings, 
and warehouses with gas, and accordingly empowered the Commissioners of the 
Police to elect thirty out of their number, who should be directors, for the purpose 
of establishing and maintaining public gasworks for the town of Manchester. Ten 
of the directors were to go out of office annually, and no commissioner who 
was a shareholder in any private gas company was to be eligible as director. By 
the Act of 9 George IV., cap. 117, the separate commissioners for Salford were 
enabled to do for Salford separately all that the joint commissioners had been able 
to do under the previous Act for the two towns combined. 

The work was promptly taken in hand. The Holt Town Works were erected 
in 1832, and by 1837 the total amount of capital raised under the Act by 
the Commissioners was £108,750, and the total length of pipes laid down was 
over seventy-five miles. In the last-mentioned year they were further empowered 










to purchase a certain private gasworks in Hulme belonging to Sir James 

The Eochdale Eoad works, opposite the goods yard of the Lancashire and 
Yorkshire Kailway (Plate 11, pp. 124, 125), cover, with their appendix at Newtown 
Yard, nine acres of ground, and contain cellar storage for 25,000 tons of coal, 
G,000 tons of coke, and 300,000 gallons of tar and ammonia-water. The retorts, 550 in 
number, are capable of producing 6,000,000 cubic feet of gas per day. In 1825 there 
was a single retort-house, with seven single settings of retorts, two small purifiers, and 
one gasholder, capable of holding 56,000 cubic feet of gas. The Gaythorn works, 
though not so large, covering only eight acres, are the oldest of the present corporated 
works. In 1877 they were valued in the Corporation books at j£164,713. The yard 
is bounded by the Manchester South Junction and Altrincham Eailway, and possesses 
enormous storage capacity. 

The Droylsden works were taken over from a public company in 1869. They 
are comparatively a small affair, occupying only an acre of ground, and valued in 
the Corporation books at £12,351 in 1877. 

Up to the year 1877 the above structures had proved sufficient for the town's 
needs, but after long disputing as to the site, fresh works were resolved on, and 
their erection commenced on a plot of land at Bradford, almost opposite the entrance 
to the City Cemetery and Philips' Park. The works, which were in the aggregate 
to cost £800,000, were designed to be built in four sections, each complete in 
itself and capable of producing 5,000,000 cubic feet of gas a day. 

In these various works there are some 1,200 men in the employ of the Gas 
Committee. The daily producing power is 17,000,000 cubic feet, and the storage 
capacity 15,500,000. After making allowance for the supply of gas to over 12,000 
public lamps in the city and 2,300 outside, the yearly revenue of the Gas Committee 
is £488,425, representing an annual net income or profit of £79,000. 

The superintendent of this huge congeries of works is Mr. Charles Nickson, who 
has risen from an office clerk to his present high position. As a youth he received 
an appointment on the Highway Board at MinshuU Street, but later, on the transfer 
of the powers of the Board to the City Council, he became a servant of the Council, 
and was given a place in the Gas Department, from which he has climbed to the 
chief post. During the great strike in 1890 he displayed a most conciliatoiy attitude 



towards the men, combined with great firmness and energy, and the Committee 
subsequently made him a present to record their appreciation of his efforts. 

Pass we now from the gaseous to the intellectual side of the life of this Cor- 
poration whose constitution we are dissecting. This latter is provided for in various 


committees — the Art Gallery Committee, that for the public free libraries, and the 
special one lately appointed for the Technical Instruction Act. 

Foremost among them is the Free Libraries Committee. Although Manchester 
was the first town to avail itself of the Free Libraries Act, it was not in 
matter of libraries so badly off as many other places. The Chetham Library is 
said to have been the first purely free library established in Europe, though it 
had itself been preceded by the Church libraries established by Prestwich. This 
worthy ecclesiastic left money for the purchase of books, to be deposited and 
chained with iron chains in the vestries of certain churches which he named. 
In a lingering instance or two the books still survive, with their chains. In 
the case of Manchester the Church library was deposited in the Jesus Chapel 
at what is now the Cathedral, and it died of asphyxia. The chains were not 



mucli good, or readers dared not face them, and some time in the eigMeenth 
century the despised and rejected remnant was carted away to the Chetham Library. 
There they are still, in all probabiKty, left ponderously slumbering by a disregardful 

Besides these, Manchester had several private or semi-public libraries : — the 
Medical and Subscription libraries, the Portico, etc., which still exist and claim 
attention. But subscription libraries nearly always tend — testimony to this effect 
is almost universal — to become confined to a small and pretty-well-to-do i 



class. Most certainly, any amount of them would be inadequate to the wants of a 
large working class, and, in a way, democratic, population such as Manchester 
contains ; and the establishment of the free libraries for that population is by no 
means the least among the many meritorious services which his town owes to Sir 
John Potter. 

Sir John began the second year of his Mayoralty by taking out of his pocket 
a subscription-book for a Free Library. He opened the battle on the Exchange 
and continued it in a place where, we are told, "he was even more at his ease than 
on that Exchange where his name was so much respected— we mean, at his own 
table." Before any appeal was made to the public J64,300 had been privately 
subscribed. Then they brought the project before the public, and this sum was soon 
raised to £13,000. A building was selected, a librarian — Mr. Edwards — chosen, 
and he was empowered, along with " Old Crossley " — he was young then, though 
^to purchase books. By the day of opening 18,028 books had been bought, at 



a cost of £4.,1d6. In addition, presentations had been made to the extent of 
3,292 volumes, including a handsome gift from the Prince Consort and a valuable 
collection on economics, for which the King Street Library is especially famous. 
The place chosen for the Library was the Hall of Science, in Campfield, a place 
that had for some time been in bad repute as the headquarters of Owenistic 

On the 2nd of September, 1852, the new library was opened, and the occasion 
was celebrated by a meeting which deserves to live in the annals of the city. "The 
meeting for inauguration," says Mr. Edwards, " was honoured by the presence of the 
Earls of Shaftesbury and of Wilton. But its crowning honour was the presence of 
the three masters in literature, Dickens, Thackeray, and Lord Lytton. Each of these 
eminent masters expressed himself very characteristically. Thackeray — who could utter 
such brilliant and incisive sayings across the social table— was never at his ease in 
speechifying at a public meeting. And on this occasion the sight of 20,000 volumes 
seemed to affect him more than the sight of the few hundreds of auditors. The 
surrounding books appeared to excite such a crowd of thoughts in his mind that 
their very number and hurry impeded the author. Enough was heard to make one 
feel that what he had to say was excellent, yet he could not say it. He sat down 
in great emotion and with an unfinished sentence on his lips. His nearest rival in 
the realm of fiction was, on the other hand, perfectly at his ease. He caused a 
roar of laughter by a pathetic account of the toils he had encountered in striving 
during several years to understand the meaning of the current phrase ' the 
Manchester School.' He had run up and down imploring explanation. Some 
people answered him it was ' all cant,' others were equally confident that it was 
' all cotton.' But in that room all his doubts were suddenly dispelled. The 
' Manchester School ' he now saw was a library of books as open to the 
poorest as to the richest. 'May the time soon come,' said Mr. Dickens, 'when 
all our towns and cities shall possess as good a seminary.' But no speech 
uttered at that meeting contained words better worth remembering than those of 
Lord Lytton. He told his audience what had been said to him a few days before 
by the American Ambassador when questioned about the amount and incidence of 
taxation in the States. ' Our largest rate of all,' said Mr. Everett to Sir Edward 
Bulwer-Lytton, 'is our Education rate. We never grumble at its amount because it 



is in education that we find the principle of our national safety.' ' But,' added 
Lord Lytton, with the keenness of thought and the true eloquence which charac- 
terise his best speeches as well as his best books, 'a library is not only a school, 
it is an arsenal and an armourj'. 
Books are weapons either for war or 
for self-defence, and the principles of 
chivalry are as applicable to the 
student now as they ever were to 
the knight of old. To defend the 
weak, to resist the oppressor, to add 
to courage humility, to give to man 
the service and to God the glory, is 
the student's duty now as it was 
once the duty of the knights.' " 

The movement thus brilliantly 
inaugurated has given a reason for 
the faith that was in it. The pro- 
moters considered themselves justified 
in bringing forward the question of 
the adoption of the institution by 
the Corporation and of the levying of the rate. In 
accordance with the procedure prescribed by the Act, 
they requisitioned the Mayor for a public meeting 
of the burghers. The meeting was held, the question, 
"rate or no rate," was put, a poll followed, and 
rate had it by 3,962 to 40. 

This had happened a fortnight before the opening ceremony just described. In 
the Council there were many irreconcilables who liked not these new ideas ; 
but "like" was in that case not their master, and to-day the free libraries of Man- 
chester are not the least notable of the corporate institutions nor least th,ought of 
by that self-same Council. 

The first extensions were made under the librarianship of Mr. Edwards, who 
had been brought from the British Museum by Sir John Potter and his fellow- 




promoters. He was a man of some note — author, amongst many other works, of a 
Life of Sir W. Ealegh and a profusely learned handbook of the free libraries of 
Europe and America. He died in the Isle of "Wight in 1886. The work of extension 
was begun by him in 1857, when he drew up a report advocating new libraries in 



Thev were accord- 

ingly opened on a small scale in shops. 
The Hulme branch was opened in November, 1857, at No. 221, Stretford Eoad, which 
was subsequently (in 1860) changed for No. 292 in the same street. In 1866 the 
separate building was erected on a plot adjoining the Hulme Town Hall. It is built 
of brick with a front elevation of stone and is in the "Italian style" (p. 128). The 
number of issues of books in the first year of opening was about 50,000, in 1891 
it was considerably over a quarter of a million. Since 1860 a boys' reading-room 
has been added, a forward step in which it had been preceded by the brother 
institution at Ancoats. 

This latter had a similarly unpretentious beginning. The library was at first 
located in a shop at No. 190, Great Ancoats Street, but in 1867 it was removed to 
the building in Every Street which had been designed by Mr. Alfred Waterhouse. 



Following out the lines of the extension, it was resolved in July, 1858, to 
spend ^1,000 on a building in Livesey Street, Eochdale Eoad, and the present 

library was accordingly erected and opened on the 4th 
of June, 1860. It was afterwards twice enlarged, in 
1870 and 1885. 

Eight years later a fifth branch for Chorlton and 
Ardwick was inaugurated. In this instance no separate 
structure was raised, but a school was purchased for the 
purpose and altered after designs again by Mr. Water- 

Up till quite recently the last branch estabHsh- 
ment had been the Cheetham Library, which was 
opened in 1873 in premises that had been formerly 
used as a school, but which have now been superseded 
by the fine structure in York Eoad erected in 1876, at 

[From a Photograph by M. Gitttcnberij, Limited.) 

a cost of £10,000, after designs by Messrs. Barker and 

Ellis. But in 1891 a seventh branch was opened in 

Newton Heath. In this instance the scheme has 

been united with other objects. The proposal 

started in Newton Heath before the incorporation! 

of the township with Manchester, and, as drafte 

by the then existing Local Board, was intended' 

to comprise in a single group of township baildings,| 

public baths, a public assembly hall, a free library 

and a school of science and art (p. 129). The open 

ing of the Newton Heath branch is noteworthy 

because it was the first of a series of libraries to 

be provided in the districts added to the city by 

the last Incorporation Act of 1890. The Eusholme 

Branch Library was opened by Sir Henry Eoscoe 

on April 30th, 1892. The Longsight Branch was opened in July, 1892, and the 

Gorton and Openshaw (p. 129) branches in 1894. 

These later additions therefore mark the beginning of a great development of 

{from a Photograph by M. Guttenberg, Limited.) 


the Manchester Free Library system. It is not a Httle characteristic that when the 
Mayor, Mr. Mark, performed the opening ceremony he proceeded to the hbrary, 
filled np one of the usual borrowers' forms, and was supplied with — Smiles's " Self 
Help." One can imagine the shade of Arnold looking on in trouble and perplexity, 
deeply pleased yet more deeply doubting. In a mild way the name of that book 
was to him what a red rag is commonly supposed to be to a bull. 

In addition to these nine branches which form the fine circulating libraries of 
Manchester there are three reading-rooms which, together with one in Chester Eoad, 
meet the wants of Bradford, Harpurhey, and Hyde Eoad. The first-named, opened 
in February', 1887, is located in the Bradford Town Hall, which had become 
purposeless and tenantless when the Local Board committed suicide and Bradford 
was added to its great spouse. The building for the Harpurhey reading-room is a 
new structure erected in Queen's Park from designs by the City Surveyor. 

The central institution of this extensive organisation is of course the Eeference 
Library in King Street. As has been already said, it is the lineal descendant of 
the first library in the old Campfield Hall of Science. In 1877 the condition of 
that building caused apprehension that it would give way under the weight of books. 
They were accordingly removed to the old Town Hall, and subsequently the Council, 
having vacated the building, sanctioned its occupation as the central Eeference 
Library, "pending the selection of some more suitable site." By a resolution some six 
years later the Council transferred the building and the vacant land to the Libraries 
Committee, and there the chief library of Manchester is to-day (Plate 8, p. 131). 

The old building in Campfield shortly afterwards vanished. It was sold to the 
Markets Committee under an arrangement by which the two committees jointly 
agreed to erect on a site fronting Deansgate a suitable structure to serve as library 
and for an improvement to the entrance to the Market. The present building — 
the Deansgate Branch Library, as it is called — was accordingly erected and opened 
in 1882. The ground floor is occupied by shops, and the centre of the Deansgate 
fagade forms the wide entrance to the Market. The approach to the library is on 
the right, by a broad staircase leading from the hall to the first floor (p. 132). The 
total cost of this structure has been over £12,000. It was opened by Sir Thomas 
Baker, to whose interest in the work of the Libraries Committee, over which he 
presided, so much of the great development of these institutions is due. 


Sir Thomas Baker (p. 133) was one of the many eminent men later Man- 
chester has known. He was born in Birmingham in 1810, and came of a family 
of much distinction. His sister was the mother of Edward White Benson, who in 
1882 became Archbishop of Canterbury, while his brother Charles was the celebrated 
instructor of the deaf and dumb, whose library on the treatment of these afflicted 
subjects was secured for America, and now forms part of the National Deaf Mute 
College, in Washington. Oddly enough, Su- Thomas Baker started life as a divinity 
student at Manchester New College, one of his lay fellow students being E. N. 
Philips. He afterwards read for law, and settled in Manchester as a solicitor. There 
he interested himself in the free library work, became chairman of the committee and 
the leader in that growth of the organisation which we have just rapidly sketched. At 
the beginning of his chairmanship there were only three branches, two worked in shops, 
and one in Livesey Street. He introduced the employing of young women in the 
libraries, favoured the idea of the boys' news-rooms, and was a warm supporter of the 
proposition to throw libraries open on Sundays. During two years, 1880-2, he was 
Mayor of Manchester, one memorable event of his term of office being the magnifi- 
cent entertainment given by the Corporation to Harrison Ainsworth, who dedicated his 
last volume to the ex-mayor in remembrance of the honour paid him. Probably Mr. 
Baker's greatest services, and those not merely to Manchester but to the country, 
were rendered in connection with the scheme of Law Reform. It was under his 
leadership that the movement for establishing Winter Assizes in Manchester was 
successfully conducted. In connection with this he, with others, waited on Lord Derby 
at Knowsley, to represent the wishes of Manchester and Liverpool with regard to 
law reform, and when in 1867 the Eoyal Commission was appointed, the Lord 
Chancellor, speaking in advocacy of it in the House of Lords, quoted freely from the 
statements made by Mr. Baker to Lord Derby. It was in recognition of these wide 
as well as of his more local services that the Prime Minister, in 1883, the year 
following his Mayoralty, communicated to him the determination of Her Majesty to 
knight him* Three years later Sir Thomas Baker died at his residence, Skerton 
House, Old Tr afford. 

The chairman of the Libraries Committee in 1894 was Councillor J. W. Southern, 
J.P. Mr. Southern's education has been a very representative one. He began in 
the ordinary elementary schools, then attended the Manchester Working Men's 



College, and when its classes merged into the night classes of Owens College 
he attended there, and on one occasion ran neck-to-neck with the late lamented 
J. E. Bailey for the prize in English literature. Afterwards, though a husiness man 
and the head of an extensive timber husiness, he voluntarily conducted a night 
school at the Zion Congregational Schools in Stretford Eoad. His later activity — in 
the formation of the Withington Local Board — in connection with the National 




Reform Union — as editor, along with Mr. A. Q. Symonds, of The Critic — as a con- 
tributor to the Manchester Guardian in verse and prose — and as one of the most 
active of the Corporation directors of the Ship Canal — forms a most interesting 
instance of many-sidedness. He regards the Manchester library system as the first 
in the world, and looks forward to a still greater development of it. 

At present the issues of the various branches amount to more than a million 
volumes a year, there being besides only two libraries in the world — Boston, U.S.A., 
and Chicago — of which the same can be said. 

The first librarian, Mr. Edwards, had been succeeded in 1861 by Eobert W. 
Smiles, brother of the author of the book just referred to. In 1864 Mr. Smiles 
was succeeded by Dr. Crestodor, whose death in 1879 led to the election of Mr. 



Charles W. Sutton (p. 133). Mr. Sutton has been styled a gem of a librarian, and 
those who have had experience of librarian ways will warmly endorse the verdict, 
as we do. Apart from the administrative talent needed for the origination and 
guidance of so great an institution, the later developments of which have taken 
place under him, Mr. Sutton displays in oflB.ce a singular geniality, courtesy, and 
ready warmth in welcoming and stimulating literary effort in every direction. Starting 
as an assistant in the old town building m Campfield, Mr. Sutton was appointed 
sub-hbrarian in 1874, on the resignation of Mr. W. E. A. Axon, and five years 
later took the chief post. He is known as the compiler of an account of 
Imncashire authors, and as ^ ^^^^^^^^^^^P contributor to the great "Dictionary 
of National Biography," besides ^^^^^^P other productions, and is the 
s,ecretary — i.e., the offending 
lead and front — of several of 



those literary conspiracies which grow so rankly in South-East Lancashire — the 
Spenser Society, the Chetham Society — and editorial secretary of the Lancashire 
and Cheshire Antiquarian Society. 

Another educational branch of the City Council is the special Committee for 
Technical Instruction — quite a recent creation, originating in the Technical Instruction 
Act. It consists of nine aldermen and sixteen councillors, and in 1894 was presided 
over by Alderman Hoy, who, like Mr. Southern, owes his education partly to the 
Working Men's College and partly to his own inherent ability and determination. 



The Act of 1889 permitted the levying of a rate of a penny in the pound for 
the purposes of technical education. On the rateable value of Manchester this 
produces ^11,500. In addition to this the Council has placed at the disposal of the 
committee the proceeds of the Customs and Excise Act, which amount to as much 
more. Up to 1893 the distribution of this money was by way of scholarships 
awarded to various institutions — the Board Schools, the Technical School, the 
School of Art, and Owens College. But, owing to negotiations with the Whitworth 
Institute, a larger function has devolved upon the committee. Soon after the 
foundation of that Institute it took over the Technical School, with a view of 
making it a branch of the Institute ; but afterwards, as will be seen in another 
connection, the School was handed over to the Corporation, together with the gifts 
of the residuary legatees of Sir Joseph Whitworth specially devoted to that pm'pose, 
and its maintenance, and with it the care of technical education, now rests entirely 
with the city. It is to be hoped that the action of this committee for technical 
instruction may result in the building up of an institution as comprehensive and 
great as was intended by the Whitworth Legatees, and such as would be a fitting 
memento both of Whitworth's life-work and of the part which Manchester has 
played, not merely in the technical education movement of the "nineties," but in 
the whole technical advance of the centuries. 

Finally, the Art Gallery Committee demands a moment's attention, although 
the institution over which it presides must, on account of its history, be noticed in 
another connection, and although the idea of the chief artistic feature of the town 
— the town hall frescoes — was resolved upon before the Corporation had actually 
taken over the Eoyal Institution. In March, 1882, the Corporation promoted a 
Bill seeking for various powers, among them that of acquiring and maintaining an 
Art Gallery. It was in view of this intention of the Corporation that the trustees 
of the Eoyal Institution had previously offered to them that edifice — in a spirit, be 
it said, which merited prompter acceptance than it at first received, seeing that the 
proposition of the Trustees was equivalent to the transfer of an institution valued 
at £80,000, and on conditions dictated by only one idea, a desire to maintain it 
in unimpaired vigour. By the terms of the transfer as finally arranged the 
Corporation hold the place in trust for the use of the public, and are bound to an 
expenditure on works of art of £2,000 annually for twenty years. 



The Managing Committee consists of two-thirds members of the Corporation 
and one-third representatives of the Eoyal Institution. The chairman of the 
Corporation Committee in 1894 was Alderman Hopkinson, already referred to in 
connection with the annals of the mayoralty. It is this Committee in whose 
hands the artistic future of Manchester rests, 
until such time as the superintendence of a com- 
petent professional art director shall be secured. 
But, as has been said, it was at a date anterior 
to the appointment of a special art committee that 
the Corporation instituted the magnificent series 
of wall decoration which now distinguishes the 
large room of the Town Hall. In 1878 the 
Council resolved that twelve pictures, illustrative 
of Manchester or local history, should be painted, 
and it was at first resolved that the work should 
be divided between Mr. Ford Madox Brown and 
Mr. F. J. Shields ; after the first six frescoes 
had been completed by Mr. Brown, the com- 
mission for the remaining six was also transferred to him with the consent of 
Mr. Shields. By a beneficent fate Mr. Brown was enabled to complete this 
fine series before his death, and we can now judge of the whole as one system 
of decoration, simple and harmonious in conception, and complete in effect. It 
is as a whole that they are to be judged. The total result has been described 
as magnificent, having regard to the " pervading richness and harmony of 
the scheme of colour, and the perfect adaptation of the tone of the different 
panels, some sombre, some extremely bright, according to the particular lighting 
of their position." As an experiment in decoration, it is more fitly comparable 
with the work of Paul Veronese in Yenice or that of Puvis de Chavannes in 
the Pantheon in Paris, save that in the latter case the scheme of decoration had 
not the unity which springs from the single imagination and single execution. 

The titles of the pictures are : — " The Building of the Eoman Fort at Man- 
cunium " (p. 140); "The Baptism of Edward King of Northumbria and Deira at York, 
A.D. G27"; "The Expulsion of the Danes from Manchester about the year 910"; 

(From a Photograph by W. Pae, Newcastle-on-Tyne.) 



"The Establishment of Flemish Weavers in Manchester, 1363"; "The Trial of 
Wycliffe, 1378"; "The Proclamation regarding Weights and Measures, 1566"; "The 
Observation of the Transit of Venus, by WiUiam Crabtree at Broughton, 1639"; 

{From the Fresco in the Town Rail by Ford Madox Eroum^) 

"Humphrey Chetham's Life Dream" (p. 141); "John Kay, inventor of the Fly- 
shuttle, 1753"; "The Opening of the Bridgewater Canal, 1761" (p. 142); "John 
Dalton collecting Marsh Fu-e Gas"; and "The Battle of the Bridge." 

It has been said on more than one occasion that Ford Madox Brown (p. 139) 
would be remembered less for his individual work than for his infliience as the 
founder of a movement. In view of this unequalled system of pictures, however, 
the verdict may be more than questioned; and it is at least likely that his name 
will go down more indissolubly linked with that of the city which once in its life — 
J in spite of quacks and cranks and crocks innumerable — thus foresightedly honoured 
itself. Mr. Brown was not a Manchester man. He was born of English parents at 
Calais in 1821, and educated under a drawing master there, and in the Low 
Countries — Bruges, Ghent, Antwerp — in the last-named place remaining for two years 
in the studio of Baron Wappers. His first exhibition at the Eoyal Academy was in 
1841, and his subsequent life is part of the art history of his time and nation. 
During the painting of the earlier frescoes his connection with Manchester was 
intimate, but the later pictures were painted in London after he had given up his 
Manchester house, and were merely affixed to the walls of the Great Hall. It was 



during his residence that he was commissioned to carry out the decoration of 
the interior of the dome of the Jubilee Exhibition. At the same time he displayed 
a generous interest in the agitation of the unemployed, presiding on one occasion, 
as is well known, at their demonstration at Pomona Place. Mr. Brown died in 
October, 1893, and was buried on the 11th, in the unconsecrated portion of the 
Highgate Cemetery, London. 

Before leaving this many-sided City Council we must give a glance at those 
departments of it which concern themselves with the municipal hygiene and culinary 
affairs. One of these, the Markets Committee, has proved itself a sad black sheep 
in the family of this Radical Corporation by its attempts to galvanise an old, dry, 
fustian, fossil, middle-age usage that ought by the nineteenth century to have been 
as dead and decently interred as Julius Csesar. Seven hundred years since, in the 
days of Henry III., the lords of the manor of Manchester had received from the 
Crown a grant of an Annual Fair, to be held for three days of the year, beginning 
on the eve of St. Matthew. The grant included the right of tolling cattle and 
things inanimate brought to the fair for sale. For centuries this fair was held in 

{From the Sketch fm' the Fresco in the Tovm Hall, by Ford Madox Brown.) 

Aca's or Acre's Field, where now St. Ann's Church stands, but in 1821 it was removed 
to the new market, then in course of erection at Shudehill. A few years later it 
was removed to Campfield, near Liverpool Eoad, and there it continued until its 



{From the Fresco in the Town Uall by Ford Madox Brown.) 

extinction in 1876. At first, when it had passed into the hands of the Corporation, 
tliis fair was held in much the same ridiculous way as under the Mosleys, lords of 
the manor. In olden times it was opened by proclamation and a procession in 
which all solemnly walked — the baron, clergy, and gentry, escorted by the burgesses 
under arms. This was called "Acre's Fair Walking;" perhaps the proclamation 
would be "Acre's Fair Talking." The list of the official payments for the ceremony 
inclades such items as forty-two shillings for ten bell-ringers, five pounds for the music, 

and forty -two shillings for 
javelin men. The first fair 
held under the auspices of 
the Corporation was if any- 
thing more ludicrous still in 
its tin -pot ceremony. The 
procession of the authorities 
was headed by the band of 
the 69th Eegiment. The 
proclamation of the fair was made in front of the Town Hall, a second time in 
the Market Place, and a third time at Campfield — or rather, it should have been, 
for a drizzling rain damped their scenic ardour and they cut out one proclamation. 
" Oyez, Oyez, Oyez ! " ran the old proclamation; "the Mayor, on behalf of the 
Corporation of Manchester, strictly charges and commands all manner of persons 
not to wear any swords, staves, falchions, or any other weapon during the time in which 
this fair hath its continuance." In addition to the right of toll claimed by the lord 
of the manor at the fair, as by Charter, he also exercised a right of toll in the 
old Township or Manorial Market, which was kept along Smithy Door. Though 
apparently resting only on prescription, this right was always recognised at law so 
long as the manor remained in private hands. For example, in 1781 a new market 
had been built as a private venture by two gentlemen of the name of Chadwick 
and Ackers, somewhere between Pool Fold (now Cross Street) and Pall Mall. The 
lord of the manor, Sir J. Parker Mosley, obtained an injunction against them as 
trenching on his rights, although he afterwards made an arrangement with them 
and the market stood for nearly forty years. 

When, therefore, the Corporation purchased the manor they purchased along 


with it these same dangerous rights so-called, and in the year in which the 
transaction was completed' they promoted an Act of Parliament with the object of 
confirming and defining their rights. The Act of 1846 is said to have put the 
old manorial markets on an enlarged and more satisfactory footing. But, very 
strangely, this fact was not seen until some years since. To all appearances the 
Act confirmed to the Corporation all tolls and stallages previously payable to the 
manorial lord in respect of markets and fairs. Accordingly the Council proceeded 
to their exploitation. Besides the rent that was charged for stalls hired in the 
market, a toll was levied on every article exposed for sale within the market bounds 
— on every cow, for example, a toll of two shillings and sixpence a day, on every 
hamper of fruit up to a certain size one halfpenny per day for each day it remained, 
and above that particular size one penny per day, and so on. What the Corpora- 
tion got by this mediseval system of business was not at all bad. They had bought 
the manorial estate for ^200,000, calculating it on a rental of something over 
£4,000. A few years after the piuxhase the rental had risen to £8,628, and the 
market tolls brought in £5,907 a year. In 1870 the tolls alone amounted to 
£22,376 per annum, four or five times the amount that was being annually paid 
to the ex-manorial proprietor as the equivalent value of the purchase. The Cor- 
poration might well congratulate themselves on a good bargain. It was, indeed, 
too good. But though they were approached on the subject of these same prohibi- 
tive dues they could not see that the same rights which had been intolerably 
offensive in private hands were necessarily equally so in their own. Acting on — 

"The good old rule, the ancient plan, 
That they should take who have the power, 
And they should keep who can,'"' 

they obtained an injunction in 1877 in the Chancery of Lancaster, restraining a 
potato dealer from dealing wholesale in a cellar in Shudehill, near to their market. 
Other similar decisions were got, both before and since. But in 1887 the point 
was thoroughly threshed out on its own merits in the case of Manchester v. Lyons. 
In the end Vice-Chancellor Bristowe, and after him the Master of the Rolls and 
Lords Justices Cotton and Bowen, decided that the Act of 1846 had created a 
new market in place of the old manorial market, and that the clauses of the Act 
were to be read in the light of equity and of this its true purpose and character. 



In the following year another judicial decision restrained the Corporation from 
charging market tenants with tolls on goods in addition to rent for ground occupied; 
and so vanished at last the. market tolls and the fossil manorial rights. 

These various decisions caused a complete revolution in the mode of managing 
the markets. They are now simply corporate spaces and buildings let for the 


purposes of private trade, and managed under the Markets Committee. The chief, 
Smithfield Market, in Shudehill, was opened in 1820, though not covered over 
as now. It extends between Shudehill and Swan Street, and in all occupies, 
with its once feudal dependencies the surrounding streets, nearly 12,000 square 
yards. The wholesale department is in Oswald Street (Plate 12 and p. 136). 

The Acres Fair, which was temporarily removed from St. Ann's Square to 
Shudehill, was finally located in Campfield, off Deansgate, on a spot which is rich 
in fair and unfair associations. It was to this place that the old Knott Mill 
Fair, which had existed since 1761, was removed in 1806, and here the Whit- 
Monday and Dirt Fairs — once Salford Fair, but inexorably banished thence as an 
intolerable nuisance — were indulgently entertained on a rental. They all lingered on 
in this historic spot till 1877, when they were quashed by order of the Home 
Secretary, and the place has now become hopelessly civilised. In that same year 
the foundation-stones of a new structure were laid, and a double market, divided by 
St. Matthew's Church, has since risen on the ground (p. 137). 

The smaller market did not at first front Deansgate, but, by arrangement 










between the Markets and Free Library Committees, this has now been accom- 
plished. Both markets are between Liverpool Koad and Inman Street, and were 
erected from designs by Messrs. Mangnell and Littlewood at a cost of a620,000. 

The superintendent of the Markets department for many years has been Mr. 
John Page, a vice-president of the Manchester Literary Club, and a friend of Edwin 
Waugh. Mr. Page is a Southerner, who migrated to Manchester in 1834. On the 


purchase of the manorial rights, in 1846, he found employment under the Cor- 
poration Markets Committee, and in 1867 rose to be head of the department. 
He is well known as the "Felix Folio" of local literature, in which he figures by 
his sketches and stories — " The Devil's Elbow," " Kicked Out," etc. — as well as 
his papers on "Natural History and its Writers." 

A more attractive feature of the Council departments is the Parks Committee. 
The parks over which it presides form a not too - abundant breathing - ground 
for the city, yet small as they proportionately are, they have not been secured 
without a big effort on the part of the townsmen themselves. In June, 1844, a 
requisition was got up and signed by over one hundred and ten firms and private 
individuals, demanding of the then Mayor, Alexander Kay, the calling of a meeting 
"to consider the propriety of taking steps for the formation of a public park, walk, 
or playground." The meeting was held, and it was decided to raise subscriptions. 
Over £7,000 was raised in the room before the meeting dispersed, and, very noticeably, 
the project was taken up enthusiastically by the working classes. They formed 
workmen's committees, and canvassed vigorously, collecting over £20,000 among 



themselves. As a result, a total subscription of £35,000 was reached, £15,000 of it 
coming from fifteen individuals, including Sir Eobert Peel, Sir Benjamin Heyvpood, 
and Mark Philips, M.P. Sir Eobert Peel, who was then Prime Minister, further 
interested himself to get for the cause a parliamentary grant of £3,000. In 1845 the 
"Committee for the Formation of Public Parks in Manchester" purchased the 
Lark Hill Estate — now Peel Park, Salford — from Mr. William Garnett for £5,000 
■ — -£500 of the purchase money being returned as Mr. Grarnett's own subscription to the 
cause. To the Lark Hill Estate was added the land called Walness Flat lying to 
the rear, and the whole, comprising over thirty-eight acres, was laid out and opened 
within two years of the time of the commencement of the movement. The situation 
is a favourite one, and the park has always been the most popular of these resorts. 

In May of the same year (1845) the Committee further purchased Hendham 
Hall Estate — now Queen's Park, Harpurhey — a plot of thirty acres, formerly the 
property of Mr. Jonathan Andrew, and for which they paid £7,260, and the 
Bradford Estate — now Philips Park. This latter was purchased from Lady 
Houghton for £6,200, and extends over thirty-six acres. To these have since 
been added Ardwick Green, Birch Fields, Cheetham Park, Alexandra Park, and 
Whitworth Park. Alexandra Park, the largest and handsomest, was opened 
in 1870. It has proved something of a source of vanity as well as mirth, for 
Moss Side to have a nice park provided at its doors without having to con- 
tribute to its maintenance. In just the same measure has it been vexatious to 
Manchester to see the saucy coquette resist the city's glamour and blandishment 
with so truly feminine and base an ingratitude. One fine feature of it is the 
raised terrace-walk extending between the north and south entrances, which does 
much to relieve the rather flat character of the land (p. 148). Youngest of all, the 
Whitworth Park is not the least of the many wise benefactions conferred on the 
city under the will of Sir Joseph Whitworth. On this park alone the trustees of 
the noble benefactor have expended £60,000, and it is intended to make it further 
memorable by locating there the science and art museums of the Whitworth 
Institute. The Whitworth Trustees retain the control of this park, which has not 
yet been conveyed to the Corporation. 

Alderman Crosfield, of the Parks Committee, is a Manchester man in every 
respect — born in Ardwick in 1833, and all his hie an intensely zealous worker in 


connection with Sunday School and temperance work in the town. His first intro- 
duction to the Council was in 1884, when he was elected for Ardwick Ward. At 
present he represents Openshaw, since its amalgamation with the city. In 1886 he 
stoutly contested East Manchester with the Eight Hon. Mr. A. J. Balfour. Mr. 
Crosfield's quondam comrade on the committee, Mr. Smallman, is not by origin a 
Manchester man, if, indeed, he could be described as of any time or clime. Born in 
a little Somerset village, he removed to Manchester in 1867, but before becoming 
naturalised and a personage here, he tried his luck in Wisconsin, Omaha, San 
Francisco, and other wild parts, and he returned to take a place in the Manchester, 
Sheffield and Lincolnshire EaUway at London Eoad, revelling in a salary of twenty 
shillings a week. He subsequently, in 1875, started a small vegetarian restaurant 
in Burlington Street, and has grown successful, with a success that has built up 
a business and name, and disproved a proverb. Mr. Smallman represented St. 
John's Ward from 1889. 

The same committee which administers the breathing-spaces of the city 
administers its burying-places. The course of modern legislation has discouraged 
interments in the proximity of city churches, and one by one these burial-grounds 
have been closed. Their place has been taken by public cemeteries of which there 
are now two, Philips Park (p. 145) and the Southern Cemetery, which, together with 
eight acres of land reserved for the same purpose at Oak Wood, Crumpsall, make a 
total of 135 acres devoted to the future funereal needs of the city. 

In addition to these there are several not belonging to the Corporation : the 
Manchester General, at Harpurhey, opened in 1837; the Ardwick Cemetery, Hyde 
Eoad, opened in the following year ; and the Eusholme Eoad, the earliest of the three, 
opened in 1822. The separate Jewish, Catholic, and Wesleyan places of interment 
are not of note in this sketch of purely Corporation institutions. The greatest of 
them all, the Southern Cemetery, was opened in 1879, after several years of 
preparation. The site, which covers ninety-seven acres, was purchased for £31,500 
from Colonel Fielding, the total cost by the time of opening being about 

The most recent of all the noticeable Committees of the City Council — one 
whose work will be watched with most doubting if not hostile interest — is that 
appointed for the regulation of technical instruction. The Technical Instruction Act 



of 1889 — which Great Britain owes in the main to the inspiring ferocity, to give it 
no better name, of a Salford and a Manchester Member of ParHament — allows the 
levying of a rate for the purpose of providing technical instruction. A penny per £, — 
which is what the Act allows — produces on a Manchester rating over £11,500 per 
annum, and in addition to this the Council has placed at the disposal of the 


Committee the proceeds of the customs and excise, which yield an equal sum. Out 
of this total the Technical Instruction Committee has made grants to the various 
institutions of the city which answer the requirements of the Act — the School Board, 
the Art School, the Technical School, and Owens College ; and the general result 
is a science teachers' paradise. 

The Chairman of the Committee in 1894 was Alderman James Hoy, J. P., a native 
in every sense. Mr. Hoy was born in Manchester in 1837, and received his education 
entirely in the town — an elementary education, supplemented by work at the evening 
classes of the Mechanics' Institute and of the old " Working Men's College," the 
predecessor of the popular science lectures at Owens College. In 1861 Alderman Hoy 
commenced business on his own account, and after one unsuccessful contest in 1872, 
was elected in 1882 Councillor for St. Luke's Ward, which he represented continually 
and unopposed until June, 1893, when he became an alderman. 

Finally, as to hygiene the necessary provision is made by the Sewers Committee 
and by the Baths and Washhouses Committee. The old bathhouse erected in connec- 
tion with the Infirmary was in its character rather more of a private venture, as 
has been seen. The "Corporation Baths and Washhouses" movement was instituted 



in 1845, when a fancy dress ball was given at the Free Trade Hall in aid of tlie 
funds. Since that date many well-patronised bathhouses have been established in 
different parts of the city. 

We must not take leave of the Manchester Corporation without a glance at its 
chief executive officers, the Chief Constable, and its distinguished Clerks and Treasurer. 
Mr. C. Malcolm Wood, the Chief Constable, is the son of Captain John Wood, so well 
known in connection with the exploration of the Oxus, who years since received the 
gold medal of the Eoyal Geographical Society as a discoverer. After passing his exami- 
nation at Chelsea and obtaining a commission in the army, Mr. C. M. Wood received 
in 1867 the appointment of Assistant District- Superintendent of the Scinde Police at 
Kurrachee, and after rising to be magistrate in charge of a large division of the 


province of Scinde, was elected Deputy Chief Constable of Manchester by the Watch 
Committee, in February, 1879, and in 1881 Chief Constable. The estimation in which 
he was held may be judged from the fact that in 1886 he was high up in the 
running for the Chief Commissionership of the Metropolitan Pohce in succession to 
Colonel Henderson. 


Worthily subordinated to Mr. Malcolm Wood stands the present commander of 
the Fire Brigade, Mr. John Lacey Savage. The earliest records of the Brigade 
carry ns back to the beginning of the century, when a Mr. Perrins was in command. 
But it was not until the days of the last superintendent, Mr. Tozer, that the 
establishing of a permanent force, in place of the occasional brigade previously 
employed, was begim. When so established, it was the first in the country 
permanently employed. Mr. Alfred Tozer's name will long be connected with the 
brigade. He was the son of a fireman employed in the Hand-to-Hand Insurance Com- 
pany's Brigade, and was born in London. After serving in the London Fire Brigade 
he went out to the Crimea, remaining stationed in command of the fire engines 
at the Scutari hospitals tUl the close of the war. Eeturning to London, he became 
Engineer at the Watling Street station, and was the first London fireman who 
received a silver medal for the preservation of life. In 1862 he was appointed 
Superintendent of the Manchester Fire Brigade, and soon after his appointment the 
occasional brigade was disbanded, and a permanent force of sixty-nine men 
established, with their headquarters in Jackson's Eow. In July, 1892, Mr. Tozer 
resigned in consequence of ill health, and was succeeded by Mr. Savage. The present 
superintendent, who is of Preston birth, became connected with the Manchester Fire 
Brigade in 1873, when he was appointed assistant to Mr. Tozer, having previously 
served in a similar capacity at Barrow-in-Furness. It is of interest to find that 
both the late and present superintendent were not merely organisers and commanders, 
but mechanical contrivers, and at the same time of literary attainments, both having 
written on subjects relating to their calling, whUe Superintendent Tozer is also a 
naturahst of no mean order. 

Sir Joseph Heron, the first Town Clerk of Manchester, has been described as 
the " Father of the Town Clerks of England," for before his death he had earned 
the reputation of being the finest parliamentary counsel and authority on municipal 
law in the country, and it is said that he never lost a case in Parliament for his 
Corporation. He has often been likened to Lord Beaconsfield, and the comparison 
would certainly seem to be well borne out in many a feature. Handsome and gay as 
he appeared before the plain, practical, square-set Council of 1838, they feared he 
would never suit them. One councillor was overheard to say it would never do to 
appoint "such a swell." But twenty years later the same Council made him a 



(From a Bust in the Town Hall.) 

present of a silver casket and £5,000 for his long and able services. Nineteen 

years later he was knighted by the Queen, and the Council marked their appreciation 

of the honour by increasing his salary from £1,500 

to £2,000, and then again to £2,600 per year. When, 

after forty years' service, his strength began to fail, he 

was retained as formal and consultative clerk, and 

later retired in receipt of his full salary. 

As an instance of faithful service, together with 

generous recognition of it, this is perhaps unique. A 

society paper speaking of him in 1874 tells us a story 

that furnishes some idea of the estimation in which 

he was held as a lawyer, though never admitted. " The 

late Lord Westbury," it stated, " who was often retained 

for Manchester, used to say that Joseph Heron knew his 

business better than he did, and Bethell seldom used such modest terms in speaking 

of anybody, for he had a calm belief in himself which it required a good deal to shake. 

Sir Joseph Heron troubled it; no one else is ever known to have done so." 

Some time before his death he had been succeeded in all the active duties 

of his office by the present Town Clerk, William Henry 
Talbot, who is a native of Leeds and connected with the 
Talbot Baines family of that city. He was educated at 
University College, London, and completed his articles in 
the office of Mr. E. W. Field, of Bedford Eow, London. 
Eemoving to Manchester, he entered the employ of Messrs. 
Darbishire and Lewis, and in 1865 was appointed assistant 
to the Town Clerk. His services since that time in the 
scheme of municipal extension and the codification of the 
Manchester municipal laws, as well as in connection with 
the Ship Canal, have been warmly recognised, and have 
shown him worthy to follow his " ideal " predecessor. 

The City Treasurer in 1894 was Mr. WilHam Martin, 
the doijen of Corporation officials. Commencing as a lad 


( From a Photograph hy the Pai-is Photographic 
Company, Manchester.) 

in the office of Harvey, Tysoe and Company, cotton spinners, of New Cannon Street, 



he afterwards became connected with the Incorporation Committee in 1838, and 
when the charter was granted he obtained a place in the office, of the Town Clerk. 
In 1842 he became Committee Clerk, and seventeen years later City Treasm-er. He 
has thus been in the employ of the Corporation for more than fifty years. In 1888 
a complimentary dinner was given to him in the Town Hall, and an illuminated 
address presented as some testimony of the appreciation in which he was held for 
his long and faithful services. 

To have an idea of the trust and responsibility the City Treasurer bears one 
would have to know the magnitude of the city's financial transactions. There is 
corporate property to the value of over ten million pounds and an expenditure of two 
and a quarter millions to administer and be responsible for — strain enough, one would 
think, for a robust man in his prime — and all this Mr. Martin is (1894) stUl meeting 
and discharging fully and well at near 80. His name not unfitly closes the roll of 
a Corporation which has been graced by so many an instance of self-made greatness, 
generosity, and straightness, and whose records are probably unique for probity and 
purity of administration.