James Alsop, silk manufacturer, Leek

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Date:1860 - 1865 (c.)

Description:James Alsop was born 29 March 1806 in Newton Abbott, in Devon. By the 1841 census he was living in Leek with his occupation listed as ‘Silk Manufacturer’. He went into partnership with James Gaunt Robins, Joseph Flower and Joseph Large running a mill in Leek. He became a prominent figure in the town, among other things becoming a magistrate and sitting on the Leek Improvement Commission. Alsop Street in Leek, west of Compton, was laid out in the earlier 1850s over land belonging to him. He was a promoter of the Leek Benefit Building Society which built the houses there.

In April 1862 he married Adelina Elizabeth Towle (born 1830), daughter of a cotton manufacturer from Borrowash in Derbyshire. He died on 14 December 1868. The Leek Memorial Cottage Hospital at the east end of Stockwell Street was opened in 1870 and was built by Adelina in memory of her husband James on land given by his nephews John and Robert Alsop.

James Gaunt Robins was James Alsop's first cousin, twice removed (mother's great grand nephew) but only 21 years younger.

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Donor ref:P84.007.0092 (37/29603)

Source: Staffordshire Museum Service

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