Genealogy Chat

Top tip - using the Genes Reunited community

Welcome to the Genes Reunited community boards!

  • The Genes Reunited community is made up of millions of people with similar interests. Discover your family history and make life long friends along the way.
  • You will find a close knit but welcoming group of keen genealogists all prepared to offer advice and help to new members.
  • And it's not all serious business. The boards are often a place to relax and be entertained by all kinds of subjects.
  • The Genes community will go out of their way to help you, so don’t be shy about asking for help.

Quick Search

Single word search

New Scottish Census

New Scottish census records

Do you have Scottish ancestors?

Perhaps you do and you just didn't know! Search our brand new Scottish census records today and discover if you have Scottish roots.

Search Scottish Census


  • New posts
  • No new posts
  • Thread closed
  • Stickied, new posts
  • Stickied, no new posts

Russian mystery

ProfilePosted byOptionsPost Date


Pauline Report 10 Apr 2013 23:58

While looking at family grave stones I came across a bit of a mystery. James Manchester who was a Cotton Carder living in a village about 10 miles from Huddersfield with his wife & young son (info on 1891 Census) died aged 45 on 17 January 1898 in Petrograd, Russia!!! does anyone have a possible theory as to what he was doing there & why? I know it was too late for the Crimean War & too early for involvement in the Russian Revolution :-S


brummiejan Report 11 Apr 2013 00:23

Pauline, I know it must seem irrelevant, but can you put the census for us to see please? Just to exclude the other Jameses!


Pauline Report 11 Apr 2013 02:10

how do i do that?


SylviaInCanada Report 11 Apr 2013 04:52


here was actually a lot of movement to and from Russia at that time.

The brother of my gt grandfather was the Manager of a cotton mill in Crompton, Lancashire in 1871 and Manager of another cotton mill in Royton, Lancashire in 1881 ..................... but he had a son born ca 1874 in Russia.

I've worked out, from the births of other children, that he must have been in Russia, with his wife and children some time between mid-1871 and mid-1877, because he had a child born in Lancashire in each of those years.

It seems that Russia may have been trying to improve (begin???) cotton spinning at that time, and recruited experienced workers form England.


SylviaInCanada Report 11 Apr 2013 05:04

Out of interest

Is this James with his family in 1891????

1891 Census

Name: James Manchester
Age: 38
Estimated Birth Year: abt 1853
Relation: Head
Spouse's Name: Hannah Manchester
Gender: Male
Where born: Meltham, Yorkshire, England

Civil parish: Meltham
Ecclesiastical parish: St James
County/Island: Yorkshire
Country: England

Registration district: Huddersfield
Sub-registration district: Honley

James Manchester 38 Cotton Carder
Hannah Manchester 37 1854, Honley, Yorkshire
Leonard Manchester 2 1889, Meltham, Yorkshire


SylviaInCanada Report 11 Apr 2013 05:08

Do you have this???

from ancestry .......

England & Wales, National Probate Calendar (Index of Wills and Administrations), 1858-1966 about James Manchester

Name: James Manchester
Probate Date: 19 Jan 1899
Death Date: 5 Jan 1898
Death Place: Petersburg
Registry: London, England

from image ..................

James Manchester of St Petersburg, Russia, cotton mill manager, died 5 January 1898. Administration [granted] London 19 January 1899 to Hannah Manchester, widow.
Effects: £853

You will have to buy the will to find out any more.


Janet Report 11 Apr 2013 17:42

There is a report about his death in the Huddersfield Chronicle 27/01/1898

says he was formerly of Meltham Mills and for some time manager of a mill in connection with Messrs Jonas Brook & Bros He died on 17th of Jan had a slight attack of influenza and went to work against doctors advice which brought on rheumatism of the heart

40 english friends at the funeral and above 100 russian workmen some of the latter carried his coffin to the cemetery A very beautiful wreath was given by the workpeople. The remark of the English chaplain who wished that 'there were many more James Manchesters in the world" express the feeling of his numerous friends

I shall send image

anyone find anything about Jonas Brook & Bros in meantime?


edit from wiki

Meltham Mills was the former site of Jonas Brook and Brothers, a silk mill complex that employed over 1,000 workers during the late 19th century.


Andysmum Report 11 Apr 2013 22:06

According to various articles found on Google, the Russian cotton industry in the 1800's was supplied with British machinery, imported raw cotton from Britain and had British managers, although the whole thing was apparently organised by an enterprising German, Ludwig Knoop.

It would therefore seem to be usual for cotton manufacturers from Lancashire to spend time in Russia.


Pauline Report 11 Apr 2013 23:20

Thank you all for your help, that is the guy I was looking for.


SylviaInCanada Report 12 Apr 2013 01:11

My guy ended up back in the UK .........

........ but interestingly, he called the son born in mid-1877 Herman

Mind you, he also had an Emil and an Oscar born before he seemingly went to Russia ....... so who knows?!!!