William Robinson Martindale & Port Carlisle

William Robinson Martindale isn’t buried at St Cuthbert’s, Carlisle, but he is ‘name-checked’ on a gravestone. Which is how I came to take a photo of the latter and write a blog piece on the former!

The gravestone (see main image) names Joseph Studholme (born about 1744), his daughter Elizabeth Studholme (born about 1788), and his daughter Ann Studholme (born about 1790), who married William Robinson Martindale.

Odd there’s no mention of their mother. She was possibly Mary Moore, with the marriage (if correct) taking place in 1786, at St Giles’, Great Orton.

Joseph Studholme

Joseph Studholme may or may not have been involved in various enclosures in the early 1800s. And may have had an apple tree that cropped twice in 1808 – a feat that reached the Oxford University and City Herald! But there were other Joseph Studholmes, so it’s impossible to be sure which was the ‘surveyor and land agent, St Nicholas, near Carlisle’. ‘Studholme’ is basically a Cumbrian surname, from location. His probate entry says ‘yeoman’. You can read the details of his will in this post.

(You can read more about Cumbrian surnames here

‘A useful, worthy and respected citizen’

William Robinson Martindale died on April 23, 1858. Probate shows he was a druggist and his executors were son Joseph Studholme Martindale (of Greenfoot, Castle Sowerby), daughter Sarah Martindale, of Greenfoot, AND Isaac Cartmell, the Carlisle City Treasurer. His effects were worth £3,000 – about £380,000 in today’s values.

He had married Ann Studholme on 18 Feb 1817 at Saint Cuthbert’s Church, where he was to return for her burial just six years later.

1817, December 19. CHEMIST & DRUGGIST, Dealer in Oils, Colours, Dyes, Spices, Perfumes, &c. W. R. MARTINDALE begs to acquaint his Friends and the Public, that he has Removed to the Third Door above his late Shop, in the MARKET PLACE. Market Place, Carlisle 

William Robinson Martindale councillor

The reason William Robinson Martindale was able to name the City Treasurer as an executive was two-fold. For one, Isaac Cartmell was his son-in-law, having married his eldest daughter, Mary Martindale at St Cuthbert’s in September 1841. And William was himself an alderman/councillor for St Cuthbert’s Ward, from its inception in 1835 until his death.

He was a member of the city’s Watch Committee, the watch being an early form of police force.  

He had also served as a commisioner of Land Tax, in 1838. He was a subscriber to the House of Recovery (hospital) and was on the management committee of the gas works from 1846, when it was bought by the council. He was also involved in Carlisle Burial Board and was, unsurprisingly, a subscriber to the Carlisle Dispensary. And donated to the Distressed Weavers’ Relief Fund (1857).

And he was one of those calling for help for the impoverished hand loom weavers of Carlisle at Christmas 1854

‘Quiet, but honest’

His obituary, in the Carlisle Journal, records that he was born at Greenfoot, served his apprenticeship in Preston, worked in London, then returned to Cumbria to set up the business he ran for 47 years.

‘His character was not remarkable for brilliant parts, nor was he distinguished for conspicuous services, but he was prominent for qualities, fortunately less rare, but equally valuable—steady industry and unimpeachable honesty and integrity. 

‘Mr. Martindale was an active supporter of everything that tended to improve the town, or develop its trade. He was a liberal in politics, and though a somewhat silent one was yet a warm adherent of the good old blue cause. In private life he was highly esteemed—a firm friend and a good neighbour.’

His funeral took place at Raughton Head and was attended by the Mayor and Corporation and most the tradesmen of Carlisle. As a mark respect, all the shops in the market place and near his home were closed from half-past ten till noon.

1841 shows him in Peascod Lane, Carlisle, with Richard Martindale, 20, and Sarah, 15 (and apprentices and a servant). Son Joseph, 27, was with him in English Street in 1851.

The canal connection!

Amid all the advertisements for cures for indigestion, sheep salve, Farmer’s Friend remedy for smut in wheat, attendance at council meetings, and his being an agent for fire insurance, I found:

1848 BRIG “JANE,” OF CARLISLE FOR SALE. TO be SOLD, by AUCTION, at the House of Mr. RoY, Joiners’ Arms Inn, Caldewgate, CARLISLE, on Friday, the 15th Sept., at Seven o’Clock in the Evening, that well-known BRIG, “JANE ” of Carlisle, Register Eighty Tons, N. M., and ‘will carry about 136 Tons, dead weight ; built at Carlisle in 1829, of superior Materials, under particular inspection, for Owner’s use. She is well found in every respect, in good order, and ready for Sea with a trifling outlay. She is admirably adapted for the West of Ireland, Baltic, and Mediterranean.Trades, and now lying in the Canal Basin, Carlisle. For Inventories or other Particulars apply to W. R. MARTINDALE, Carlisle; or WM. BELL, Ship Builder, Canal Cottages. 

The Jane gets a mention in my book, Port Carlisle, a history built on hope

And the Victoria Baths, at Port Carlisle get an entire chapter – relevant here, because William Robinson Martindale was on the management committee in 1850. He was also an auditor and shareholder of the Carlisle Canal Company. And subsequently one of the proprietors of the Port Carlisle Dock and Railway Company, and spoke out (in favour) in a meeting on the Silloth Bay Railway and Docks. And, unrelated to my book (!), he was a shareholder of Carlisle Water Works.