Saturday, 24 November 2007

R.P. Daglish, pawnbrokers of Liverpool

This painting of R.P. Daglish Ltd., pawnbrokers, on the corner of Ellison Street and Great Homer Street in Liverpool, is by Billy Schwartz and appears on his page on the Scottie Press site, which covers the local area.

Billy's first job was working in the shop at the age of ten and he posts his memories of the shop as it was in the early 1960s:

The shop was split into two. The front shop sold jewellery, watches, bedding, linen, rugs, pumps (shoes) and all kinds of household goods. The back shop was dark and dingy - and very Dickensian. This was the pawnshop, and every Monday morning ... all manner of items were pawned by the less fortunate ... - and then when Friday afternoon or Saturday morning came around they would be redeemed for the weekend.

The place was like and Aladdin's cave with rooms upstairs crammed to the ceiling with all kinds of stuff. There was a rope and pulley, and trap doors in the floors from the top of the building to the bottom, and this was how all pawned items were transported to the storerooms.

The business had been founded in the nineteenth century by two brothers, Robert Pemberton Daglish and John Henry Daglish, the sons of John Daglish of Wigan (engineer, coal owner and farmer). It is Robert's name that appeared over the shops, and in historical directories he is described as a clothier and outfitter and pawnbroker.

By 1895 the chain of shops had extended as far as St. Helens, and the high point was reached in the early years of the twentieth century when there were two dozen branches around northern and eastern areas of inner Liverpool, with more throughout the wider area.

Robert died in 1904 and on 25 April the Liverpool Echo reported:

Mr Robert Pemberton Daglish, who during many years carried on an extensive business in Liverpool and St Helens as a pawnbroker, died yesterday morning, at his residence, 19 Falkland Road, Liscard. Mr Daglish was sixty-five years of age. His health for some months past had been the cause of grave anxiety. Early yesterday morning he suddenly became worse, and death supervened about four o'clock. The deceased, who was unmarried, was a Conservative, but although approached on several occasions to become a candidate for municipal honours declined to enter public life.

After his death the business continued in his name run by a syndicate of other pawnbrokers. By 1971 the chain had shrunk to one shop in Goodison Road, Everton, and two in West Derby Road, and the business was finally wound up soon after.

Robert is buried at Anfield cemetery in Liverpool with an ornate memorial markerd "RPD" at each corner. This picture was taken in 1991.

In his Will, Robert left money to several local charitable organisations and also for two memorial windows to be erected in Christ Church, Everton - one for his sister Ann Abigail who had married Thomas Abbay and died in 1897 and the other in his own memory. Christ Church was destroyed by bombs in May 1941, leaving no trace of the windows.

This is abbreviated from an article prepared by Richard Daglish, a second cousin three times removed of the brothers John Henry and Robert Pemberton Daglish. If you are interested in more details, or have any memories of the shops, please let me know and I will be happy to put you into contact with Richard.

Steve from the Friends of Anfield Cemetery has kindly sent me an updated photo of the memorial as it is today. Steve writes: "Shame it is starting to fall apart and taken over by the tree. The inscription is hardly readable."

June 2009:

Since the above picture was taken, work has taken place to clear the monument (see below). Thanks to Martin Doherty, the cemeteries manager, and the Glendale the ground staff and also to Steve for the further update.

Thursday, 22 November 2007

New Australian and US online records

I am a relative newcomer to family history, having started in 2005. Even during the short time from then to now, an amazing amount of new data has become available online, including the entire UK census details from 1841 to 1901. Before this, researchers often had to travel to local libraries and archives and spend hours looking at microfiche or other copies. I realise how fortunate I am - and how dedicated those who have been researching their family trees for years and "doing it properly" have been!

With the main sources now available, the companies which provide this online data are challenged with what new material they can provide to keep people subscribing to their services.

This week Ancestry made available two new sets of data - one from Australia and the other from the US.

Australia Electoral Rolls 1901 to 1936 are useful because under Australia's privacy laws no census records are available to researchers. Nearly 42 million names appear on the rolls, although coverage for some states is currently patchy. Details shows include names, addresses and occupations.
There are many Daglish families listed - below is a sample from 1936 in Yarra, Richmond County, Victoria:

The rolls can be found on Unfortunately you must be a subscriber of or of's "World Deluxe Membership" to access the Australian Electoral Rolls.

It is interesting to note that women have had the right to vote in Australia since the beginning of the 20th century. Compulsory voting was introduced in 1924 after the voter turnout of those registered to vote in Australia was as low as 47%. Since voting was made compulsory by the Federal Government, voter turnout has remained around 94-96%.

The other new set of records is US Passport Applications from 1795 (when the US began issuing passports) to 1925. These details had previously been available through the Family History Library in Salt Lake City.

Unfortunately there are only three Daglish applications in this collection - these are for William John Daglish (1883-1945), his wife Mabel and his widowed mother Agnes.

The applications show that John worked for the US Shipping Board and spent much time overseas. The family lived in the Panama Canal Zone from 1916 to 1921, where his daughters Elizabeth and Marion were born. In 1921 William is applying for a passport for a 2 year stay in Europe, including England, France, Spain and Belgium and during 1922 his wife and mother are applying to join him in Copenhagen, Denmark.

The Passport Applications can be found on Again you must be a subscriber of or of's "World Deluxe Membership" to access these details.

Monday, 19 November 2007

Tynemouth Coronation Medal, 1902

Here is a lovely medal from the coronation of King Edward VII and his wife, Queen Alexandra in June 1902. At this time, Jacob Daglish was the Mayor of Tynemouth.

Jacob is also remembered on a statue of Queen Victoria in Tynemouth which reads:

"Erected by public subscription to the memory of our late beloved Queen Victoria by the inhabitants of the Borough of Tynemouth during the Mayoralty of Alderman Daglish J.P. 1901-02 and unveiled by the Mayoress October 25th 1902".

Jacob was a brewer and had founded Duncan & Daglish, the Newcastle brewers and wine and spirit merchants. There is more information about Jacob Daglish and the company below - see article posted on 3 March 2007.

Friday, 9 November 2007

Westminster Field Of Remembrance

On Thursday, the Field of Remembrance at Westminster Abbey in London was opened. This year a record number of 29,000 crosses are laid out in memory of the dead from two World Wars and other conflicts, including Iraq.

Amongst them are these three crosses remembering some Daglishes who fell in the First World War whilst serving in the Northumberland Fusiliers:

Robert Daglish, died 20 November 1915, aged 20 - the son of James Daglish (1857-1924) and Honor Godwin of Forest Hill, London

Alexander Daglish, died 5 February 1916, aged 20 - the son of Alexander Daglish (1861-1943) and Mary Ann Postle of Browney, Co. Durham

Arthur Ernest Daglish, died 26 October 1917, aged 27 - the son of Charles Pearson Daglish (1854-1934) and Margaret Henzell Yellowley of Newcastle upon Tyne.

The Westminster Field of Remembrance is open until next Thursday, November 15th.

X Factor

In recent weeks, some of the the local papers in County Durham have been keenly following the fortunes of local “budding pop star” Charlie Mole, who is appearing in the TV show “X Factor” with her group called Hope.

This week comes news that Charlie and her boyfriend Lee Daglish are planning to get married.

The Shields Gazette reports that Lee proposed to Charlie on her 23rd birthday - also the day she found out she had got through to the live final stage of The X Factor.

Good luck to Lee and Charlie ... maybe if Hope win the contest, we shall have a Daglish pop star!

Story and photo from The Shields Gazette - full story here
Also from the Sunderland Echo here

Update: December 1 - Having reached the final five, Hope were eliminated from the competition, but announced that they intend to continue as a group. Good luck!

Sunday, 4 November 2007

The Guardian and Observer Digital Archive

The Guardian and The Observer UK newspapers have just launched their own digital archive.

For the launch, a 24-hour free trial is being offered until the end of November - details are on the site under Introductory Offer. After this, there will be a charge - although access may be available from some libraries in the same way as The Times Digital Archive.

The site gives the following details:
This archive will eventually contain the digital reproduction of every page, article and advert published in the Guardian (since 1821) and the Observer (since 1791 – the oldest Sunday paper in the world). For this launch the archive covers the period of 1821-1975 for the Guardian and 1900-1975 for the Observer as we are still working on digitising the remaining material. From early 2008 onwards the entire archive up to 2003 will be available – more than 1.2m pages covering all major historic events over 212 years as reported at the time.

The Guardian was originally The Manchester Guardian and the coverage of North West England is particularly good.

A search on "Daglish" produces 204 results - a mixture of news articles, announcements and adverts. One news article covers the inquest into the unfortunate death of Adelaide Daglish in 1905.