Sunday, 12 October 2008

CONDRON brush-makers of North London

Today I feature a CONDRON family in 19th century North London. These CONDRONs were brush-makers for at least two generations. One of them (probably Richard CONDRON, see below) was interviewed on 12 September 1893 about conditions in the brush-making trade: the interview (of which I have a copy) can be found in the collection of social reformer Charles Booth (pictured left) in the library of the London School of Economics. The patriarch of this family was Thomas CONDRON, brush-maker, who was born in Blackfriars, Surrey (UK) in c.1809 and died in the St Pancras district of North London in 1858. He married Charlotte BARRETT and they had three children of whom I am aware: Thomas William (b. c.1834), Richard (b. c.1835) and Charlotte (b. 1843). Charlotte married a Charles DUTTON in Islington in 1861. The brothers were both brush-makers. Thomas married Mary Ann BRAY in Islington in 1861, and died in Islington in 1908: the family are to be found in Wedmore Street in the 1891 census and not far away in Hargrave Park ten years later. Richard and his wife Sarah are found in Offord Road in 1891 and in Thornhill Crescent in the 1901 census. Both are close to the Caledonian Road in North London, which is apparently where the Mr Condron interviewed by Charles Booth had his premises. Mr Condron made "fancy work": hair brushes, clothes brushes and hat brushes. It is evident that by the 1890s times were not so easy for the English brush-making trade: the good times were the 1870s in the aftermath of the Franco-German war when those two nations were struggling to recover from the dislocation of their trade.
I have more extensive information about this family into the twentieth century if any members of the family wish to contact me off-line.

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