Midgley of Lancashire
William Waller Midgley first curator of the Chadwick Museum, Bolton.
William is described in the 1881 census as a commercial traveller in tea. However, two years later he was better known as the first curator of Chadwick Museum, Bolton, a position he accepted at a reduced income.
Photo from the Boltom Museum and Library Collection
William was born at Normanton, Yorkshire from where he relocated to Bolton, Lancashire with his wife Martha Calverley of Elland, Yorkshire where they raised five children:
Mary [b. 1869], Sarah Anne [b. 1870], Martha [b. 1872], Thomas [b. 1875] and Walter [b. 1880]. Interestingly, in 1898, Thomas married his first cousin, Sophia Midgley, daughter of Benjamin Waller Midgley, a publican of the Ship Inn, 13, Bridge Street, Castleford. Today this is still called by that name but appears to be closed. The inn stands beside a part of the Aire and Calder Navigation canal, just downstream from the confluence of the rivers Aire and Calder.
The Ship Inn, Castleford, Yorkshire Photo by David Pickersgill
William's Waller's parents were William Walter Midgley [b.1808] and Sarah Peace, his grandparents being Joseph Midgley a farmer of Normanton [b. 1771] and Susannah Cheesbrough. All these branches of the Midgley family were descended from William Midgley, farmer of Brayton, Yorkshire and Elizabeth Fielder of Hemingborough [b. 1698]. See Midgley of the Selby District
In 1876 Samuel Chadwick, a local doctor and philanthropist, left a substantial sum to Bolton Corporation in order to construct, furnish and maintain a museum which was to be situated in what is now called Queen’s Park. As the first curator of the museum in 1883, some of William's duties were to arrange displays for the museum and also act as curator of art at Mere Hall. William also helped found the Bolton Botanical Society and after 1885 became a Fellow of the Royal Meteorological Society following a gift of meteorological apparatus to the museum. He seems to have also become involved in the study of fabrics or textiles found on Ancient Egyptian artifacts. To further this study, William utilised microscopy and probably related the weave of the fabrics to those of the local cotton textile industry.
Some photographs taken 1906 by William W. Midgley in Wensleydale [Powerpoint file .pptx]
Contact: Tim Midgley
Lancaster Castle about 1953 Source: Somerville, History of the Duchy of Lancaster vol. i.
Albert Riley Bramwell Midgley, born 1863 [1877 birth certificate obtained from Blackburn, Lancashire]. It states his father as John Midgley, a grocer residing at 51 Queen St. Great Harwood, Lancashire, England. John's wife's name was Mary Smith. Albert migrated to Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada sometime after 1877. It is not known if he had any siblings. Albert then migrated to Central Falls, Rhode Island, USA about 1908.
Albert had 6 children; Frederick, Mary, Myrtle, Marmaduke, Victor and Eric. Frederick had 3 children.
Albert MIDGLEY (M)....................
C: 3 Apr 1864
A search for John + Grace produced;
John MIDGLEY (M)...................... C: 24 Jan 1830 Ba: C010682 Father: John MIDGLEY Keighley, Yorkshire, England So: 919144 Mother:Grace Pr: 6901264
John MIDGLEY (M)...................... C: 13 Apr 1830 Ba: C007482 Father: William MIDGLEY Heptonstall, Yorkshire, England So: 990611 Mother:Grace
John MIDGLEY (M)......................
C: 26 Jul 1840
Ba: C007482 Father: James MIDGLEY Heptonstall, Yorkshire,
England So: 990611 Mother:Grace
The 1881 census for Blackburn indicates that one member of Albert's family remained in England:
Dwelling: 4 Minnie Tce
Also the 1881 census shows Albert B.R. Midgeley born Gt. Harwood and the mother and father's name:
If this is Albert then he did not migrate until after 1881
Searching Midgley for Harwood and came up with the same family - Great Harwood lies between Blackburn and Burnley in Lancashire.
It appears that John Midgley was born abt. 1822 at Burnley so back to the IGI to look for any John Midgley's of Burnley:
John MIDGLEY (M)................C: 1 Jun 1628 Father: John MIDGLEY
Burnley, Lancashire, England
Contact: Frederick Midgley III
John Midgley married Alice Butterworth, their son William b~ 1835, d. 13 April 1892 married at Manchester on 31 May 1860, Martha Mary Bracewell [b. 1842]. Martha was the daughter of John Bracewell and Ann.
Midgley of 'Blackburnshire'
Midgley of Rochdale
Midgley of Winewall
© Copyright Tim Midgley 2002 revised 17th March 2014.