Friday, 27 January 2017

Revisiting Marshall Street and the entrance to Marsden Harcombe & Company

Now it’s been a long time since I was down on Marshall Street and so I have no idea if the entrance to the former Marsden Harcombe & Company factory still exists.

Marshall Street, 2015
I knew the building as the Greater Manchester County Records Office which is now in Central Ref and since they moved the place has been empty.

A full year ago I reflected on its future and then as you do forgot about it but Phil Portus has set me off thinking about both the building and Marsden Harcombe & Company again.*

I don’t as yet know when they set up in Marshall Street or when they closed down, but in 1911 James Harcombe, mattress & manufacturer (Marsden, Harcombe & Co) were listed at 19 Highfield Drive Monton” which is a residential property.

So their manufacturing business will have been elsewhere but there is no listing for them on Marshall Street although my eye was caught by The Cosy Workmen’s Home on the corner with Chadderton Street but that will have to wait for another time.

Soap Street, circa 1900
Eventually I tracked the firm to Soap Street which is off Thomas Street and is one of those narrow little places that would not be out of place in a novel by Charles Dickens.

And at some point after 1911 they made that move to Marshall Street but to fasten on the exact date will mean trawling through a pile of directories but I do know that much of the street was still terraced housing at the beginning of the 20th century.

So for now I will just leave you with Phil’s picture and a map of Soap Street from the 1900s . **

And after this was posted, Pauline Sprague Kielty commented that "my Dad and his cousin worked there.maybe in the 30s they made mattresses. Then when Dad was doing the family history 1999 we went there to look up family records as it turned into the records office . Dad noticed the old clocking off clock still attached to the wall."  Magic

Location; Marshall Street, Soap Street, Manchester

Pictures; Marsden Harcombe & Company, Marshall Street, 2015, from the collection of Phil Portus, and Soap Street, 1900, from Goad’s Fire Insurance maps, courtesy of Digital Archive Association, http://digitalarchives.co.uk/

*Lost Images of our Commercial Past ..... part one ........ down on Marshall Street, http://chorltonhistory.blogspot.co.uk/2015/02/lost-images-of-our-commercial-past-part.html

**Salford Project, http://www.philportus.co.uk/salford-project/


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