Snaylam family, although not originating from Bretherton, seems
to have put its stamp on that village. We have spoken to many
people in the area during our search into the family tree, and
we have never met so many friendly, helpful people before. Our
thanks to all who have given us names and addresses, anecdotes,
facts and figures. Some of the details are taken from gravestones,
church records, census figures, newspapers etc. and some were
given by word of mouth. They may not be accurate - gravestones
were often erected many years after the death and dates were
often wrong (e.g. James died 2yrs before the date on his stone
and John 10yrs after the date on his!), and newspapers often
get names and dates wrong. No doubt many of the stories which
we have been told are exaggerated, but they are as we were told
them. The newspaper cuttings on the court case came from Rebekah's
grandaughter, Valerie. They were difficult to follow as they
had been stuck onto small pieces of card and if the card wasn't
big enough, the article was cut to fit! But they have
survived for 90yrs (Rebekah must have taken them with her when
she moved to Liverpool from Bretherton), and with a bit of searching
in the Library, we found
a copy of the original.We
have found a number of brothers of one family marrying sisters
of another, but this is sometimes difficult to show, as both
children do not have the same surname, the elder one being born
"afoor 'is faather geet 'is clugs on", meaning the
parents were not married at the time, but married later. We
have tried to build up a picture of what life was like, especially
in the mid 1800's - early 1900's when they virtually owned and
ran Bretherton. Strange to say but there is not one Snaylam
left in Bretherton today.
Snailam 1791 - 1853
Snailam was born in Leyland in 1791 and worked in the Mill
as a Shuttle Maker. In 1816 he married Mary Waddacar and had
ten children, all born in Leyland.
By 1831 he was living in Pompian Brow, Bretherton,
renting a cottage and orchard (area 1 rod 30 perch) from the
Bank Hall estates and paying 2d to Croston Church and 1s 3d
to Chorley Church as rent. In the 1851 census he was living
with three of his children and three of his grandchildren.
(His daughters Ann, Ellen, and Elizabeth each had an illegitimate
child, all christened at Bretherton Church, but Elizabeth
died soon after the birth of her child)
Snailam 1818 - 1907
the eldest son, was a Bobbin Maker by trade but by the 1851
census figures, he is said to be living in a cottage on Pompian
Brow as a farmer of 33 acres. His acreage increases on each
census return until 1881 when he is a retired hay and straw
dealer. Thomas built Welsby House on North Road, Bretherton
for himself sometime around 1870. Welsby House was a large (especially
by the days standards) family house which still stands today
although, one suspects, rather altered from the original. The
cottage on Pompian Brow where he originally lived is now derelict,
and the one on Marl Cop where he lived prior to building Welsby
House is now demolished.
married Jane Watson in 1838, and during their marriage they
had twelve children, eleven of them surviving to adulthood.
He was a far-seeing man who made sure that all of his children
were educated and all had trades. In spite of being totally
illiterate he was an astute business man, taking all his own
produce from the farm to Liverpool by horse and cart and also
selling fodder to the front in the Crimean war. By 1900 he had
amassed £17,000 (a fortune
in those days), and decided to share it out between his children,
leaving himself with only £800, which he gave to his sons Richard
and Hugh to care for him for the rest of his life. As can be
seen from the press cuttings, this was not a wise move, and
he had to resort to going 'on the Parish' (a bit like getting
Social Security but
with more stigma attached ), before moving to Bootle to live
with his daughter. He is reported to have been a youthful looking
man, often mistaken as being younger than his sons, but was
by far the oldest man in Bretherton.
is buried in Bretherton Parish Church Yard with his wife.
All of his children except Christianna are also buried
there along with their wives and infant children in spite of
the fact that most of them were living in Liverpool at the time
of their deaths.
Snaylam family is not noted for being a happy one
- there seems to have been family feuds for generations.
When Thomas had given his money away, he went from son to daughter,
causing trouble wherever he went. Perhaps this was the start
of it, but his family were very jealous of each other, especially
where money was concerned, and although they were noted for
being straight in business matters, their dealings with each
other were just the opposite. Some of the antagonism between
Thomas' children still carries on between their families today,
with some branches of the family still not acknowledging the existence of other members and others still
complaining that "they got our money!"
obviously started the trend for his family to travel to Liverpool
and to carry on business there All of the family must have spent
quite a lot of time there as Henry, his eldest son, and Christianna,
his second daughter, married a sister and brother- Alice and
Alexander McGuffog from Liverpool. The details of the McGuffog
family were taken from the family Bible now owned by Mrs Lillian
Crabb. This side of the family is believed to have originated
in Scotland, although this has not been researched.
Snailam 1840 - 1920
is known about Mary except that her husband, Hugh Harrison,
died five years after they were married leaving her with a
young son, Thomas. She is believed to have lived in Bootle
for some time, taking in her father when he was homeless.
She never remarried and was living at Midge Hall, Leyland
at the time of her death.
Snailam 1843 - 1916
Thomas' eldest son is the one which is of most interest to
our particular family. He was a farmer of some 40 acres, but
as with the rest of the family, he had dealings in Liverpool.
He and his first wife, Alice had
five children, one son and four daughters. The eldest
daughter was born in Liverpool and the other children in Bretherton.
They were all keen worshippers at the Congregational Church
in Bretherton, Henry and Alice being made members (equivalent
to confirmation) in 1870. It is safe to presume that their
children were baptised there, although all the early records
from the church are missing. Alice and two of their daughters,
Harriet Ellen and Mary Jane are buried in the Congregational
Church Yard, the only Snailams to be burried there.
died soon after Henry got his share of his father's money and
so never got the benefit from it. Henry married again three
years later to Mary Ann Duncan, a widow from West Derby who
came to live with him in Bretherton. On their marriage certificate
where it asks for fathers name and occupation
it says "Thomas deceased" but in actual fact
Thomas died two years later. We shall never know if an over
zealous clerk presumed that a man of sixty-two would not have
a living father or if Henry neither knew nor cared about his
father's existence. Henry died in 1916, Mary Ann living until
the five children, Mary Jane was the eldest
and married George Farrington, a Basket Maker from Croston.
who died when he was 34, leaving her to bring up three sons.
The two older boys, Arthur and Fredereck married and had families
of their own but the youngest, George, aged 24, was killed in
France while serving with the L.N.L. Regiment as a gunner in
the first world war. Mary Jane never remarried and in her later
life lived in the Alms Houses in Croston. She is not buried
with her husband in Croston Church but with her mother in the
Congregational Church in Bretherton.
Thomas Richard was their second child and only son. He married
Alice Sutton from Hoole and had five children, Alice, John,
Thomas, Richard and Elizabeth. We do not know if Henry was a
farmer in his own right or if he farmed his fathers land, but
census figures suggest that he worked for his father as he is
listed as a farm labourer although we know that at some time
during the early part of their marriage they had a chip shop
in Liverpool. They lived at Highfield Farm, North Rd, Bretherton, but for some reason, between 1910 and 1916, he left
the farm and went to work on Liverpool docks during the week.
Alice's family were worried that she and her children had no
home, so Mrs. Taylor (Alice's youngest sister) bought the cottage
in Howards Row in Hoole so that she would have a roof over her
head. Alice took in white washing to earn money and Alice jnr.
went to work part time at the mill at 12yrs old while the boys
did any work they could find. When Henry returned at weekends
he was often violent and knocked his wife about. His sons eventually
tired of their father's behaviour and physically threw him into
the street, followed by his belongings and never allowed him
to return. The relations in Liverpool did not like to regard
Henry as family so always introduced him as Henry Thomas giving
the impression that Thomas was his surname. When told of his
wifes death he replied "If it's good sickling (cycling)
weather I might go. Fortunatly for the family it must have been
a bad day! Henry stayed in Liverpool taking lodgings with Mrs
XXXX. In later years
he had a stroke and became more frail. Elizabeth Snaylam (Cornelius'
wife) sent for Henrys five children and they all went to meet
Mrs XXXX where it was agreed that she would carry on looking
after him and in return they would give her an equal share in
any money which he left. When he died his estate of £1,996 5s 7d
was divided into six equal parts. Alice jnr. married John Ashcroft
and had three children. Thomas married Hilda Simmonds and had
one daughter. John Henry married Nanny Ball and had four children.
Richard never married and Elizabeth married Robert Baybutt and
had two daughters.
Thomas Richard regularly went back to Bretherton to visit his
cousins, travelling sometimes by train but mostly by bicycle
and once a year he returned to the old farm and walked the fields.
It is said that in later life, he desperately wanted to come
back to live in the area, and asked various relations to take
him in as a lodger, but everyone knew of his violent reputation
and no one would have him. He was a large very smartly dressed
man who liked to be in the limelight -it is said that he rode
the leading horse in the procession when Lord Lilford came into
his title. He erected his own gravestone in Bretherton Church
Yard, writing in his name and date of birth and leaving a space
for the date of death. Whoever inscribed it after his death
did not read what was already written and has written it again.
second daughter Harriet Ellen died suddenly aged 24 after nursing
Rebekah through rheumatic fever.
the third daughter was thrown out of her father's house where
she was still living when her father remarried. She had nowhere
to go, and so went into service with a family in Liverpool.
While there, she met and married Joseph Crabb and had two children,
Harriet Alice and Robert Henry Snaylam Crabb (Bobby). Her husband
was a steward on board the Liner "Empress of Ireland"
when it foundered off Father Point, Quebec and was listed as
missing presumed drowned. She married Thomas Simpson twelve
years later, but separated from him because of his cruelty.
Her daughter Harriet married Thomas Dean Roberts and had one
daughter Valerie, whilst her son Bobby married Lillian Robinson
and had two daughters, June and Patricia. Rebekah also brought
up a young boy from down the street, Ernie Trumpbell, whose
parents were killed in the war. He later became a Major in the
R.A.F, marrying Jess and settling in Bristol.
Empress of Ireland Captain. Kendall R.N.E, left Quebec at 4.30
pm on May 29th 1914 bound for Liverpool. She carried 1,477 persons inclusive of crew and passengers. The
night was alternately fine and foggy as the fog lay about
in patches. When altering course some twenty miles below
Rimouski the lookout observed the lights of another steam
ship coming up the river which would normally pass the liner
on her starboard side. The fog then swept over the water
and enveloped both ships and Captain Kendall therefor put
his engines astern and signalled by three blasts of his
siren that he had done so.
fog was now very thick when suddenly the bows of a big ship
loomed into sight and crashed into the starboard side of
the liner. The oncoming vessel proved to be the Storstadt,
6028 tons. Captain Anderson belonging to the A/S Maritim
of Norway. The Empress of Ireland was struck between the
funnels and a huge hole torn in her side, running from the
engine room aft. The boiler rooms were flooded, and the
watertight bulkheads rendered useless. Captain Kendall
at once hailed the Storstadt and requested her to
keep her engines going so that her bow might remain in the
hole and thus serve to keep the liner afloat. This request
could not be complied with, as the bows of the Storstadt
were too crumpled by the collision, she was therefore obliged
to back away, permitting a torrent of water to rush into
the doomed ship. Within fifteen minutes of the collision
the Empress of Ireland had founded, going down in some nineteen
fathoms five miles east of Father Point.
disaster occurred at 0155 hrs and the passengers were asleep
in their berths. Only a few of them found their way to the
upper deck. Five minutes after the ship was struck her position
was hopeless. Her wireless failed after the first SOS messages
had gone out; she was listing heavily and it was almost
impossible to launch the boats, although four ultimately
got away. The First Officer Mr Steede, attended personally
to the launching of what few boats could be got away, but
while engaged in this work, he was killed by a boat which
carried away from it's tackle. Two steam ships the Eureka
and the Lady Evelyn were lying along side the wharf at Father
Point with steam up and both put out on receipt of the Empress
of Irelands SOS. Between them they picked up several hundred
survivors, while the boats of the Storstadt picked up many
number lost was 1014. 463 were saved including Captain Kendall.
It was the second occasion on which the Captain had been
in the public eye for some years previously when in command
of the Montrose he had wirelessed the news to England that
Doctor Crippen, the murderer was among his passengers. Maritime Disasters in the age of Steam
the youngest daughter, married Walter Turner, and emigrated
to Canada. She had one child before she left. We do not know
anything more about her, only that she kept in touch with Rebekah
for a while after she left.
Snailam 1845 -
we know married Alexander McGuffog and had one child christened
in Bretherton. We presume that she went back to live in Liverpool.
Snailam 1846 - 1914
all of Thomas' sons, Robert seems to have been the strongest
(business wise) and made a fortune in Liverpool. He had contracts
for cleaning out the boats in the docks which had brought the
cattle over from America (no fridges in those days so cattle
travelled 'on the hoof'). He employed gangs of men to empty
the boats and then he sold the manure to the farmers (a lot
of it came to Bretherton), moving it by rail, barge or road.
It is said that he told his wife each evening to 'owd aat thee
brat' (hold out your apron) and he tipped into it the days takings
of gold sovereigns. Robert had Bond Villa built on North Road,
Bretherton the first Accrington brick house to be built in the
Bond Villa, Bretherton
have been told that Robert had a very poor memory, as he had
difficulty remembering which bed he was supposed to be in and
often ended up with either the maid or the housekeeper! In her
later years Robert's wife Magdelene was an invalid, spending
all her time in a spinal carriage. Twice a year Robert booked
a railway carriage to take Magdalene to Liverpool to look around
the shops. When Robert died he owned many houses and farms in
the area, which were all put up for auction. If any of his family
wanted any particular property, they had to bid for it, along
with everyone else. The money raised from the sale was around
£54,000 again a large figure for the early 1900's. This money
was invested and an income paid to his children (with the exception
of two daughters) and the capital to eventually go to his grandchildren.
Robert's children all had a private education.
daughters did not work outside the home, but all had jobs to
do in the house in spite of having servants. His eldest daughter
Ellen married a wealthy Irish man (Nelson Reeves) and Robert
did not approve so he only left her £2000 in his will.
his second daughter, married his brother James' son Thomas,
much to his dismay. They eloped in true romantic style, using
a ladder from the bedroom window of the house in Westhead Road,
Croston. By the time the servants found
she was missing the couple were well away. Jane had six
children, five of whom died as infants which was at the time
said to be Divine retribution on a clandestine marriage! Jane
and Thomas adopted the three sons of Thomas' sister Elizabeth
after she died and brought them up with their own son Henry.
Robert never forgave Jane for marrying Thomas and when he died
he had cut her out of his will completely.
was daughter Margaret's job to nurse her mother during her illness.
Margaret did not marry until late in life and had no children.
She bought a house in Pool Street, Crossens which had a bathroom
but she would not allow anyone to use it, instead she used a
tin bath in the wash house. When her husband went into hospital,
Cornelius' daughter Madge went to stay with her despite Margaret
not providing a bed for her. Each Sunday she went to visit Cornelius
for dinner and tea and vowed to leave her estate to him on death.
She did leave Cornelius her money but the house was willed for
her husbands use until his death. He died only months after
Margaret but due to it not
being specified who would inherit the property after his death
it went to his nephews
next daughter Janet had been badly burned as a child and her
face and hands severly disfigured. Robert is reputed to have
paid Leonard Cowburn £13,000 to marry her. They had three sons
but she did not live long after they were born, and Leonard
married her sister Violet (with whom he already had a child).
Violet's daughter from her first marriage emigrated to Canada. [On 3rd February 2014, Carrol Hale of NSW Austraia adds: "Violet’s daughter, Muriel Joan Reading (my mother) emigrated to AUSTRALIA"]
eldest son Cornelius married Eliza Howard with whom he had one
son, also named Cornelius. After Eliza's death he married Elizabeth
Sutton from Hoole with whom he had a further four children,
Robert, Magdelene, Richard and George. Whilst the children were
small they were brought up by Elizabeth's parents who thought
the Longton country air would be better for them. As they were
old enough to work they returned to Liverpool, employed on either
the barges or the wagons with the exception of Cornelius who
stayed with his step mothers parents working on the farm until
illness forced him to return to the family in Liverpool. Cornelius
(Snr) owned the Liverpool Barge Company and also founded Snaylam's
Transport, which was later run by his sons Robert and Richard.
The transport business was founded on a loan from Robert (Snr)
who's name remained on the deeds. On Roberts death, Cornelius
had to both pay back the loan and buy back his thriving business.
The family blamed Uncle Richard, the Solicitor, for the way
the will was administered and refused to have anything further
to do with him, accusing him of "lining his own pocket".
was a solicitor and handled most of the families affairs. He
married Winnifred Heyes and had a son and a daughter. The children
were never allowed to play outside of their own garden and only
three girls from the village were ever allowed in. Both children
were privatly educated initialy then Richard went to Hutton
Grammar School and Myra to the Park School in Preston. Eventaully
they both followed Richard into the practice. Robert died of
a disease contracted whilst on active service in India.
owned a farm but was also under manager at Walmer Bridge Mill,
living at Walmer Hall. It is said that his wife did not like
him having to work - she preferred him to ride round in the
pony and trap - she was said to have ideas above her station!
owned the Blue Bird Bus company in Bolton, which he later sold
to the Ribble Bus Company. He then went into the haulage business
and at one time had a fleet of over thirty lorries although
the company now no longer exists.
youngest child was named Mildred and worked as a Red Cross nurse
during the first world war where she met her soldier husband.
After the war they settled in Kidderminster and had a son and
Snailam 1848 - 1912
Thomas married Ruth Cookson, a grocers daughter from Tarleton.
When he died he was living at Cedar Street in Bootle. See Thomas
Snaylam - Blacksheep?
Snailam 1850 - 1925
next son was James, who married three times but only had children
with his first wife. He built many houses in Bretherton including
Snaylams Row on South Rd. and a number of houses down Marl Cop.
Snailams Row, Bretherton
the end of one of these houses he put in round windows allegedly,
so that he could see across to Robert's house Bond Villa and
keep an eye on what was going on. It is said that when Robert
bought a coach (instead of the traditional pony and trap) James'
children were encouraged to throw stones at the horses to make
them 'run like blazes'! For some reason and in spite of the
antagonism between them, James sold many of his houses to Robert,
but retained Snaylams Row, where he left a house to each of
his children to provide a 'roof
over their head', and Snaylams field in Hoole , which
he left to his son, Henry, much to the dismay of his daughter,
as she had worked for her father for nothing (as had Henry)
on the understanding that she would inherit it thus causing
Snailam 1852 - 1899
gravestone reads 'William of Liverpool'.
Snailam 1854 - 1906
married Elizabeth Ann and was a farmer of eight acres. On his
gravestone his date of death is given as 1896 but the church
records show it as 1906.
Snailam 1856 - 1857
Snailam 1858 - 1924
the next son was blind, and was Thomas' favourite son up until
the court case. On the census records he is listed as a musician,
and did in fact play the organ at Bretherton Church for many
years as well as at many of the local gatherings. He is also
listed as a Well - Sinker and was reputedly very good at his
job. Perhaps he was good with a divining rod to find where the
water lay. He did not marry until late in life, but then married
at 44 years of age and again at 61, not leaving any children
(that we know of).
Snailam 1858 - 1932
Jane was a Dressmaker who had premises in Bretherton owned by
her father which he sold over her head, leaving her with no
means of support, so she went first to Preston and then to Liverpool
where she later married. She had one daughter which died days
after having its photograph taken (many old people are superstitious
about having photos taken and also about letting a child see
its reflection in a mirror), but despite this she still kept
the photo on the wall. She always wore heavily beaded or embroidered
dresses (presumably made by herself) and was also a very good
Snailam 1861 - 1924
was a wheel right by trade but was also an undertaker and had
greenhouses where he grew tomatoes and had a shop in his front
room. It was said that he put stones under the bodies in order
to give the impression of a heavier, better quality, coffin.
He had a sign on his gate reading 'Tomatoes sold here today
- Tomorrow they will be free', of course tomorrow never came.
Each Saturday he went into Preston gambling . He owned a row
of houses in Bretherton, which he gambled on the Derby and lost.
As a result he committed suicide by shooting himself. He waited
until he could see his wife returning from the shops before
pulling the trigger. She heard the bang and found him in the
house. The relatives drew their curtains as a mark of respect,
but when the will was read the following day (instead of after
the funeral) they opened them again. Only one person attended
his funeral. In his will he left £50 to Robert's son Richard
for acting as solicitor and the rest of his estate to be divided
between his wife and three illegitimate children. Unfortunately,
because he had lost most of his money, the solicitor came off
best as he had been left a set amount
while the wife and children had to share the remainder.
TO A WEALTHY FARMER'S DIVISION OF HIS ESTATE.
jury was empanelled in an action brought by Thos. Snaylam,
retired farmer and hay dealer, of Bootle, formerly residing
at Welsby House, Bretherton, to recover furniture, valued
at £21 11s.6d. from his son Richard.- Mr. Berry was for
the plaintiff, and Mr. Roberts (of Messrs. Forshaw and Parker,
solicitors, Preston) was for the defendant.- Mr. Berry explained
that plaintiff was 85 years of age, and had accumulated
property to the value of £17,000, which he divided amongst
his children, only reserving to himself the sum of £800,
and the furniture in his residence at Welsby House. He gave this £800 to the defendant, and another
brother, who had agreed to keep him, but instead these had
treated him badly, and when he was obliged to leave them
to go and live with a married daughter at Bootle, the defendant
refused to give up the furniture to him. The fact was that plaintiff had "undressed
himself before he went to bed," and the result was
the unfortunate position in which he now found himself. He had entered an action at the Assizes for the recovery of the
£800 from his sons Richard and Hugh, but this was compromised
by the two sons named undertaking to pay him £1 per week.
When the plaintiff applied for the furniture it was
at first said that plaintiff had given it to his son Richard,
and then that he had sold it to him, and that he had signed
an inventory of the goods, the items in which came to a
total of £24 16s. 0d. The
old man, however, denied having given the furniture to his
son, or that he had signed the inventory, and after the
old man, having divided the money among his children, in
which the defendant had a larger share than the others,
defendant begrudged him this bit of furniture.- Plaintiff
was called, and gave evidence in support of Mr. Berry's
statement. He said
he would be 86 years of age in a few months, and could neither
read nor write. He
had been in business as a farmer and a hay and straw dealer,
and a dealer in property. In 1901, he divided £17,000 among his children,
and kept £820 for himself, which he gave to his sons Dick
and Hugh, to put in the bank him. He gave Dick a
farm which had cost £2,600 as his portion. yes"> He arranged
with his sons Dick and Hugh that they should keep him, but
after he had given them his money they said he could go
where he liked, and he had to flit from Welsby House. They
locked up the food, and would not buy him clothes, so he
went to the relieving officer with the intention of trying
to get parish relief. His daughter Mary said it was a shame for Richard
and Hugh to let him try to get relief, and he went to live
with her at bootle. He
would not live with his sons anymore, and would not be buried
in the same yard with them. He left his furniture in Welsby House. This house he built himself 30 years ago, but
his son Robert bought the house and adjoining farm about
10 years ago. He paid his son Robert £100 for the use of
the house for four years, and his sons Richard and Hugh
afterwards paid Robert a rent of £12 a year.
While he lived with his sons at Welsby House he made
£12 a year out of the garden, and kept them besides, and
they would not give him anything. He left them in April
of last year to go and live at Bootle. He had not put his
mark to the paper selling his furniture to Richard, nor
had he given him the furniture.- For the defence, Mr. Roberts
said that early in 1901 plaintiff divided the land he owned
between some of his children in four proportions, and on
the 12th July in the same year he divided his money. The
defendant got more than the others because he was blind,
and the rest was about equally divided between the other
eight sons and daughters, while one son was left out of
the division altogether. Richard and Hugh were the favourite
sons, and they lived with the old man, and he gave the furniture
to Richard. After this he quarrelled with his children,
and kept going from the house of one to another, making
first friends with one of his children and then another,
but was always at variance with one or more members of his
family. The furniture was at first intended for Hugh, but
he got in the old man's black books, so he determined that
Dick should have it. He gave it to Dick, and as his son
Robert was threatening him with trouble for the rent he
signed the inventory to make sure that Richard should get
it. The inventory was prepared by Mr Lawrence Walmsley,
the retired village school master, at the old man's request
and the old man made his mark on the paper in the presence
of Mr Walmsley. - Richard Snaylam the defendant, who is
blind, and was wearing dark blue glasses, was then called,
and said he was by trade a well-sinker. At the division
of his father's land all had equal share except Robert (who
was left out) and Thomas (who was a bankrupt).They had to
give Thomas his share as he needed it. The others got £1,186
each, and this was made up according to a calculation made
by Mr Walmsley. After the division there was about a £100 left,
and of this his father gave to him (defendant) and Hugh
£50 each to put in the bank.
He also gave the furniture at Welsby House to him
(Richard) absolutely. That
was a week or two after the division of the property, on
July 13th 1901. They
were in the kitchen at Welsby House and Hugh was present
at the time. His
father on that occasion said to him "I will give you
the furniture for yourself for your own good". He believed his father thought that Robert was going to "come
on him" for the rent.
He had promised the furniture to Hugh at one time. His father told him that he had got Mr Walmsley
to make out a bill of the furniture, and had signed it,
and that he must go and fetch it.
Afterwards a man named Nield came to the house and
said he had been sent to repair the furniture but he (defendant)
would not allow him to do so. He had since sold the furniture to his brother Hugh for £12. In August 1902, two beds and bedding in the
house were destroyed, owing to them having been occupied
by his niece when suffering from scarlet fever.
In the division of the property, instead of getting
£1,186 like the others he got a farm worth £1,600.
- In reply to Mr Berry, defendant said he did not
know that his father had given £2,700 for the farm.
- Hugh Snaylam, brother of the defendant gave corroborative
evidence. He said
he was a wheel right, and paid the rent of Welsby House
for four years up to May last.
In the division of property Richard got more than
the others because he was blind. - Lawrence Walmsley, retired school master,
Bretherton, said that when the plaintiff divided his money
among his children he made the necessary calculations.
Each of the children was to have a fixed sum with
the exception of Richard.
He told plaintiff that he would rue giving up his
property, and plaintiff told witness that his lawyer had
said the same thing to him. Plaintiff afterwards came to
see witness, and said he had given up his furniture to his
son Dicky, and asked witness to make out a bill for the
furniture with certain amounts put to certain articles.
He said he wanted the bill as a greater security against
his son Robert. He made out the bill in accordance with
plaintiffs directions, and plaintiff signed it on August
16th 1901. He signed it by putting a cross to it in witness's
presence, and witness added his own signiture to it as a
witness. - Albert Dallas, butcher, Bretherton, spoke to
plaintiff, telling him he had given his furniture to Richard.
- Mr Roberts was himself sworn as witness, and stated that
when the action at the assizes was brought a settlement
was arived at, and at the discussion before the terms were
agreed upon defendant refused to entertain any conditions
whatever if a claim was made for the furniture. - His Honour,
in giving judgement, said that he had been acting as judge
in that court for about seventeen years, and he had never
known an instance where anyone would be more abroad in his
view of what men would be expected to do than in the present
case. They might have supposed a man, who had been in business
and amassed a fortune, would know what an idiotic thing
it was to give away all he had to his children, and leaving
himself standing in his own shoes only. Ordinarily one would
think such a thing would be impossible, and only to be found
in the works of poets and romances. But here they had plaintiff
giving away all but £800 and his furniture, to nine of his
children. He must have given at least over £10,000, and
one of them had received a farm worth £1,600, said to have
cost £2,600. This one had disputed the old man's right to
£800, and now wanted the wretched bit of furniture as well.
Apparantly the children were well placed, as they had been
taught trades, and ultimatley it was agreed that the sons,
Richard and Hugh, should pay him £52 a year between them.
Apparantly the old man must have had some claim on the £800,
or the sons would not have agreed to pay him £1 per week.
The reason given for the old man disposing of the furniture
to Richard - namely the fear of it's being distrained upon
- was not a very strong one, as Welsby House at the time
of the alledged gift was not in the occupation of the old
man as tennant. The other reason stated by Mr Walmsley,
to the effect that he did not want Robert to have anything,
was not a strong reason for the old man parting with the
furniture. It was for the jury to say which evidence they
believed. - The jury retired, and after an abscence of about
ten minutes returned into court, when the Foreman announced
that they were unanimously agreed on a verdict for the plaintiff
for £21 11s 6d the amount claimed. - His Honour accordingly
entered judgement for the ammount with costs, in plaintiff's
favour. - A second action, arrising out of the same matter,
was a claim made by Mrs Ball, daughter of the old man, of
Bootle, against her brother Richard, for £4 14s 6d, the
value of furniture left by her at Welsby House. - Plaintiff
said she was formerly in business as a dressmaker, and occupied
premises at Bretherton. Her father however, sold the premises
over her head, and she had to go to Preston to make the
best of her stock. That was about eleven years ago. She
then took to Welsby House two sets of bedroom drawers, a
sewing machine, and other articles, and they had been left
there ever since. She had been married about five years,
and she left them at Welsby House when she got married.
She left them for her father to use so long as he wanted
them. Her father was now living with her, and she preferred
to have the things back. - Mr Roberts said he did not oppose
the claim after the decision in the previous case, and his
Honour gave a verdict for the amount claimed, to be reduced
to 1s if the articles were given up to Mrs Ball. Chorley
Guardian and Leyland Hundred Advertiser, Saturday 24th January,
- The Late Mr T. Snaylam
At Bretherton Parish Church, on Tuesday afternoon, the funeral
took place of Mr Robert Snaylam, of Bretherton who died
on Saturday afternoon. The Rev. R. Gardiner, rector, officiated,
and there were over 60 persons present at the graveside
including 20 grandchildren of deceased. Bronchitis caused
his death after a short illness. He had enjoyed remarkably
good health. He was the oldest man in Bretherton by many
years, and with the exception of a short time at Leyland,
where he was born two years after the Battle of Waterloo,
all his life had been spent in Bretherton. He had been a
trader in hay and straw and he had extensive dealings with
the Government at the time of the Crimean War, supplying
large quantities of forage for the front. Chorley
Guardian and Leyland Hundred Advertiser, 30th March, 1907.
Not even up to the time of his death he looked not more
than a middle aged man, his face being un-wrinkled, his
complexion quite fresh, and his hair abundant. Indeed so
well did Mr Snaylam carry himself and so robust was his
appearance that many people remarked that he appeared younger
than any of his family. He leaves six sons and three daughters,
all of whom are married. One of them who is blind, and for
many years was the organist at Bretherton Parish Church.
With the exception of a short time spent at Leyland where
he was born two years after the Battle of Waterloo all his
life had been spent at Bretherton, and he was by far the
oldest man in the village. Before marriage Mr Snaylam was
a bobbin maker, but afterwards turned to farming. He did
an extensive trade in the buying and selling of hay and
straw, and at the time of the Crimean War he supplied large
quantities of forage for the front. Most of his produce
however went to Liverpool, and as a railway did not exist
at that time to link Preston and Liverpool together, he
carted his produce by road. Many were the adventures he
experienced on the road at night. On one occasion he was
attacked and would certainly have been killed but for the
manner in which he laid on with a spindle which he had in
the cart. He had a great dislike for having his photograph
taken, and it is thought that the only occasion was at Liverpool.
When it was produced a cucumber was seen to be protruding
from his pocket. Newspaper cutting, source unknown.