The Almgill Family 1
My nanna, Millie Cooper, née Neale, had a sister called Betty. There was ten years between their births as the First World War had intervened. Betty married Derrick Wilfred Gosley on the 15th September 1945 at Holy Trinity, Heworth, York. His sister, Kathleen Mary, had married at the same church on 8th August 1936. Her husband was Ronald (Ron) Almgill. They were witnesses to Betty and Derrick’s marriage.
Ron (23.10.1910 – 1972) and his brother Eric (19.3.1904 – 10.3.1965) had been born in York, to parents Arthur and Mary Ann née Norton. In the 1950’s Ron ran a sweet shop and tobacconists at 30 Fishergate. There is a similar shop there now.
Arthur first appears on the census in 1871 when his family were at 15 Brownlow St, The Groves. His father, John, was described as a cabinet maker. By the 1891 census, John had moved to 17 Market St and Arthur had followed in his father’s footsteps. They are both in the family firm at 38 Stonegate by 1901.
1895 White’s Directory: John Almgill 26 Colliergate, 33 and 38 Stonegate antique furniture dealer cabinet maker, joiner and undertaker including a third-of-a-page advert.
Cook’s Directory 1896-7: J Almgill dealer in antique furniture and cabinet maker 38 Stonegate and Leng’s Yard, Colliergate.
1898 Cook’s Directory: joiner, cabinet maker, upholster and undertaker etc, restorer and dealer in antique furniture at 38 Stonegate and Leng’s Yard, Colliergate (late of 17 Market St). ‘Rooms paneled round in old oak at reasonable terms’. Includes half-page advert.
Kelly’s Directory 1901: J Almgill at 38 Stonegate is an antique furniture dealer.
This John is also mentioned in a paper available from York Archives: History of Stonegate by JW Knowles. He says that John Almgill was apprenticed in York to a cabinet maker and became a specialist in the carving of mahogany sideboards. In 1874 he had set up business on his own in King’s Square and later moved to a workshop in Colliergate where he began to restore old furniture. He worked until his early 80s and then moved to Little Stonegate where he died on 5.11.1915 (buried in York Cemetery). His work includes a lych gate commissioned by Sir George Wombwell from Newburgh Priory. Perhaps this is the gate at Coxwold Church erected to the memory of Stephen son of Sir George and Lady Jane Wombwell, who died in 1901 fighting in South Africa.
John Ward Knowles also had premises down Stonegate where he made stained glass, leaded lights and embroidery for church purposes and for the home.
The companies order book from 1872 to 79 is also on the York Archive’s site. The entry for 19 November 1873 says they had ordered from Mr Almgill beading round a tabernacle (I think a locked box in a church). 18 December 1873: Almgill 2 oak stools, board for Credence table (used in churches), oak chair and steps (cost 27 shillings).
7 September 1875: Almgill ordered an oak bracket from a drawing by Rev’d Morton.