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Title: Handbook of Birmingham - Prepared for the Members of the British Association, 1886
Author: Various
Language: English
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                           PREPARED FOR THE


                   [_Entered at Stationers’ Hall._]



  INTRODUCTION, by G. J. JOHNSON                                 ix.

                                PART I.

  OLD BIRMINGHAM, by SAM: TIMMINS                                 1

                               PART II.


      Chap. I.   Local Governing Bodies, by J. T. BUNCE          13

      Chap. II.  Education, by OSMUND AIRY, M.A.                 26

      Chap. III. Libraries: Past and Present, by J. D. MULLINS   65

      Chap. IV.  Literary, Scientific, and Artistic Societies,
                 by SAM: TIMMINS                                 75

      Chap. V.   Charitable Institutions, by C. E. MATHEWS       81

      Chap. VI.  Ecclesiastical, by G. J. JOHNSON, with
                 folded Table.                                   95

      Chap. VII. ART--

          (_a_) Architecture, by J. A. COSSINS                  118

          (_b_) Painting, by E. R. TAYLOR                       127

          (_c_) Sculpture, by WHITWORTH WALLIS                  135

          (_d_) Music, by W. BAYLEY MARSHALL                    141

      Chap. VIII. Manufacturing Industries, by C. J. WOODWARD,
                  B.Sc.                                         150
                  [See also Appendix, p. 346.]

                               PART III.


      Physiography       213

      Geology, illustrated by a Geological Map of the Birmingham
          District (in pocket at end of vol.)                   216

      Palæozoic Rocks, by Prof. C. LAPWORTH:

          (_a_) Introduction                                    216

          (_b_) Fundamental Rocks                               221

          (_c_) Cambrian Rocks                                  224

          (_d_) Silurian Rocks                                  227

          (_e_) Carboniferous Rocks                             230

          (_f_) Permian Rocks                                   235

      Triassic Rocks, by W. J. HARRISON, F.G.S.                 237

      Liassic and Rhætic, by Rev. P. B. BRODIE, M.A.            244

      Glacial and Post-Tertiary Deposits, by H. W. CROSSKEY,
          LL.D., F.G.S.                                         248

      Petrography, by S. ALLPORT, F.G.S.                        254

      Mining Statistics of the South Staffordshire Coalfield,
          by Prof. W. E. BENTON, A.R.S.M., F.G.S.               260

      Minerals of Birmingham District, by C. J. WOODWARD, B.Sc.
          (see Appendix)                                        353

                               PART IV.

  ZOOLOGY, edited by W. R. HUGHES, F.L.S.:

      Introduction, by W. R. HUGHES, F.L.S.                     266

      Chap. I.   Mammals and Reptiles by E. DE HAMEL            269

      Chap. II.  Birds, by R. W. CHASE                          275

      Chap. III. Fishes and Mollusca, by G. SHERRIFF TYE        285

      Chap. IV.  Insects, by W. G. BLATCH                       293

      Chap. V.   Microscopic Fauna, by T. BOLTON, F.R.M.S.      305

                                PART V.

  BOTANY, edited by WM. MATHEWS, M.A.:

      Introductory Remarks, by WM. MATHEWS, M.A.                311

      Chap. I.   The Flowering Plants, Ferns, &c., by J. E.
                 BAGNALL, A.L.S.                                316

      Chap. II.  The Mosses, Hepatics, and Lichens, by J. E.
                 BAGNALL, A.L.S.                                331

      Chap. III. The Algæ, by A. W. WILLS                       335

      Chap. IV.  The Fungi, by W. B. GROVE, B.A.                339


  Chains, Cables, and Anchors, by B. HINGLEY, M.P.              346

  Die Sinking, by G. SHERRIFF TYE                               348

  Saddlery Trade, by THOS. MIDDLEMORE                           348

  Botanical Gardens, by SAM: TIMMINS                            357

  Guinea Gardens, by SAM: TIMMINS                               358

  Sunday Lecture Society, by THOS. ROSE                         358

  Newspapers, by SAM: TIMMINS                                   361

  Theatres, by SAM: TIMMINS                                     362

  Coventry Industries, by W. G. FRETTON, F.S.A.                 366


(The figures show the pages of this work where the articles appear.)

  Airy, O.                           26
  Allport, S.             222, 254, 263

  Bagnall, J. E.                    316
  Baker, T. J.                      208
  Bayliss, T. R.                    174
  Benson, E. W.                     201
  Benton, W. E.                     260
  Blatch, W. G.                     293
  Bolton, T.                        305
  Bragg, John                       187
  Bragge, R. L.                     210
  Brodie, P. B.           243, 244, 264
  Brierley, L.                      178
  Bunce, J. T.                       13

  Callaway, C.  222, 223, 227, 259, 263
  Chance, Henry                     202
  Chase, R. W.                      275
  Cossins, J. A.                    118
  Crosskey, H. W.                   248

  Elkington and Co.                 203

  Fretton, W. G.                    366

  Gausby, J. B.                179, 211
  Grove, W. B.                 339, 345
  Goodman, J. D.                    194

  Hamel, E. de                      269
  Harrison, G. K.                   206
  Harrison, W. J.              237, 264
  Heaton, Ralph                     182
  Hingley, Benjamin                 346
  Hiorns, W. A. H.                  169
  Hodson, E. H.                     202
  Holland, Wm.                      210
  Hollyer, J. H.                    206
  Hopkins, A. N.                    206
  Hughes, W. R.                     266

  Johnson, G. J.                ix., 94
  Johnstone, A. S.                  201

  Kenward, J.                       191
  Kenrick, W.                       181

  Lapworth, C.            213, 214, 264
  Lea, Henry                        183
  Lean, Ch.                         212

  Marshall, W. B.                   141
  Martineau, F. E.                  187
  Martineau, R. F.                  199
  Mathews, C. E.                     81
  Mathews, Wm.                      311
  Middlemore, Thos.                 348
  Mole, F. M.                       206
  Mullins, J. D.                     65

  Osler, A. C.                      186

  Perks, W.                         202
  Pollack, Maurice                  205
  Puplett, S.                       204

  Rabone, J.                        193

  Stanton, H. H.                    193
  Sutherland, W. S.                 179

  Tangye Bros.                      187
  Taylor, E. R.                     127
  Tildesley, J. C.                  193
  Timmins, Sam:         1, 75, 357, 361
  Turner, J. P.                     181
  Tye, G. S.                   285, 348

  Wallis, W.                        135
  Westwood, H.                      177
  Wills, A. W.            208, 335, 338
  Woodward, C. J.         150, 352, 353
  Woodward, J. M.                   200
  Wright, J. T.                     204


  PAGE     LINE      FOR                  READ
  8         23       Warren               Hector
  79        14       1731                 1733
  133        8       Sinton               Linton
   ”        19       Holt                 Holl
   ”        26       Watt’s               Watts’s
  195        1       Wesley               Westley
  215       19       St. Philip’s         St. Philip
  216       31       Paleozoic            Palæozoic
  217       33           ”                     ”
   ”        34       _Triassic_           _Trias_
  219        4       Coldfield            Coalfield
  220       23       Rhœtic               Rhætic
  221        1       _Spirorks_           _Spirorbis_
   ”         6       Colebrookdale        Coalbrookdale
  222    4, 16, 28   Archean              Archæan
  226        1       Parley               Purley
   ”         5       Shales               shales
  228        8       Landovery            Llandovery
   ”        16       _Attrypa_            _Atrypa_
  231   last line    its material         the material
  235       16       in turns             in turn
  240       32       _omit_ various       lamellibranchs
   ”        37       _add_                SILURIAN
  252       11       _astarte_            _Astarte_
   ”        21       erractic             erratic



This Handbook, being prepared for the use of the members of the British
Association, at their meeting in Birmingham, in 1886, it is deemed
desirable to preface it by a very brief sketch of the progress of the
town since the first meeting here of the Association in 1839, a period
only three years short of half a century.

=The Corporation.[1]=--When the Association met in Birmingham, on the
26th of August, 1839, the Borough had recently been incorporated--the
first meeting of the Town Council having been held on the 27th of the
previous December; but when the Council attempted to exercise the
power of making a Borough Rate, the Overseers refused to levy it in
consequence of objections which had been raised to the validity of the
Charter. In addition to these pecuniary difficulties, the town was just
recovering from the effects of the Chartist riots, in the Bull Ring,
seven weeks before. The Corporation had not the control of a single
policeman or constable, and the town was in charge of a body of London

The same day on which the Association met, the Royal assent was given
to an Act (2 and 3 Vic., c. 88), hurriedly passed, to appoint a
Commissioner of Police in the Borough for two years, and to authorise
an advance of £10,000, for the purpose of organizing and paying a
police force.

The validity of the charter of incorporation was ultimately settled
by a statutory confirmation (5 and 6 Vic., c. III), which received
the royal assent on the 12th of August, 1842. As a consequence, the
control of the police was transferred to the Watch Committee of the
Corporation. At the time of the transfer the strength of the force was
300 men, and the population of the borough 183,000. The population is
now about 427,000, and the police force is 550 in number, and is both
efficient and adequate.

The great cost of conveying prisoners and lunatics to the County Gaol
and Asylum at Warwick, and the inadequacy of both to the increasing
population, rendered the building of a Borough Gaol and Lunatic Asylum
at Winson Green a necessity, and as soon as the Corporation obtained
the control of the police the gaol was proceeded with and opened in
1849. In the following year the Lunatic Asylum was opened, to which was
added, in 1882, another Asylum at Rubery Hill, near Bromsgrove.

The year 1851 is memorable in our municipal history for the vesting
in the Corporation, for the first time, of complete control over the
entire borough by the transfer to it of the conflicting powers and
jurisdictions of the other governing bodies (see pp. 18 and 19.) Up
to that date the formation and maintenance of the streets, roads, and
footways of the town, the lighting and drainage, and all the other
important work now undertaken by the Public Works Committee of the
Corporation could not be dealt with in any uniform system, because
six other governing bodies or officials had statutory powers over the
portions of the Borough which were outside the _parish_ of Birmingham.
With the year 1852 a new and uniform system commenced, and not an hour
too soon, having regard to the rapid increase of the population and
the consequent multiplication of new streets and roads. The aspect
of the town has been completely changed in the paving of the roads
and footways, the lighting of the streets, the widening of many of
the principal thoroughfares, and the carrying into operation of a
complete and uniform system of drainage and sewerage. To the Public
Works Committee belongs also the control of the numerous tramways which
lead from the centre of the town to the suburbs in every direction,
except the upper part of Edgbaston, the approach to which is rendered
difficult by the narrowness of Broad Street. The improved system of
drainage and sewerage brought to an issue the serious question of
how the sewage of the town was to be dealt with. From the year 1858
this had become a serious and increasing difficulty, involving the
Corporation in constant and costly litigation with the neighbouring
landowners, resulting in injunctions from the Court of Chancery. In
1871 a special Committee called “The Sewage Enquiry Committee” was
instituted, who recommended the course ultimately adopted, viz.:
the formation of a board representing the whole drainage area, and
the establishment of a large sewage farm at Saltley. The latter was
first undertaken and found to be a solution of the difficulty, and
in the year 1877 the other object was attained by the constitution
of the “Birmingham Tame and Rea District Drainage Board,” composed
of twenty-two representatives from the different governing bodies in
the drainage area, of whom twelve are elected by the Town Council of
Birmingham. To this body the sewage farm has been transferred, and is
now carried on with the most beneficial result.

Immediately after the passing of the Public Health Act, 1872, the
Borough was constituted an Urban Sanitary District and the Council as
the Urban Sanitary Authority, set itself vigorously to the work of
improving the public health. A Borough Hospital for the treatment of
small pox and scarlet fever was established in 1874. The Public Health
Act, 1875, indirectly removed for sanitary purposes the limit on rating
powers to which the Council were obliged to submit in their Act of
1851. By the zealous labours of the Health Committee, and the liberal
application of the pecuniary resources placed at its command by the Act
of 1875, the death rate has been reduced from 24.8 per 1,000 in 1874 to
19.1 in 1885, although the mean density of the population has increased
in the same period 20 per cent.

In 1851 the first of the four sets of public baths was opened in Kent
Street, followed by other sets in Woodcock Street (1860), Northwood
Street (1862), and Monument Road (1883). Under the management of the
same Committee of the Council are placed the ten public parks and
recreation grounds of the Borough, of which five have been given to the
Corporation and five have been acquired by purchase. The list is as

      NAME.             |  Date of   |   AREA. |     GIFT OR PURCHASE.
                        |Acquisition.| A. R. P.|
  Adderley Park         |    1856    | 10 0  22|Gift of Mr. C. B. Adderley
                        |            |         |(now Lord Norton).
                        |            |         |
  Calthorpe Park        |    1857    | 21 1  13|Lease by  Lord Calthorpe
                        |            |         |at a nominal rent.
                        |            |         |
  Aston Park and Hall   |    1864    | 43 0   0|Purchased for £26,000, of
                        |            |         |which £7,000 was raised
                        |            |         |by subscriptions.
                        |            |         |
  Aston Park and Hall   |    1873    |  6  2  8|Purchased for £4,750.
                        |            |         |
  Cannon Hill Park      |    1873    | 57  1  9|Gift by Miss Ryland.
                        |            |         |
  Highgate Park         |    1876    |  8  0 28|Land purchased for £8,000
                        |            |         |and £7,000 expended in
                        |            |         |laying out.
                        |            |         |
  Summerfield Park      |    1876    | 12  0 20|Land purchased for £8,000
                        |            |         |£3,857 expended in
                        |            |         |laying out.
                        |            |         |
  Burbury St. Recreation|            |         |
  Ground                |    1877    |  4  1  3|Gift by Mr. William
                        |            |         |Middlemore.
                        |            |         |
  Small Heath Park      |    1879    | 41  3 34|Gift by Miss Ryland.
                        |            |         |
  Park St. Gardens      |    1880    |  4  1 35|}Disused burial grounds
                        |            |         |}laid out at cost of
  St. Mary’s Gardens    |    1882    |  2  2  0|}£12,099.
                        |            +---------+
                        |            |221  3 12|

In 1860 the Free Libraries Act was adopted, and the first branch
library was opened in Constitution Hill, on the 3rd of April, 1861. The
first Central Lending Library and Art Gallery were opened on the 6th
Sept., 1865, on the occasion of the meeting of the British Association.
(See for the subsequent history of the Free Libraries p. 69 _et seq._)

In 1863 the Borough Cemetery at Witton was completed. (See p. 117.)

In 1874, a Fire Brigade was established, which now consists of thirty
well-trained men, with six engines, and all suitable apparatus.

From the year 1851 to 1873 was a period of steady progress in our
municipal affairs; but the mayoralty of the Right Hon. (then Mr.)
Joseph Chamberlain, 1873-6, was signalised by the building of the
Council House; the acquisition of the undertakings of the two Gas
Companies of the Borough, as well as that of the Waterworks Company,
and the authorisation of a great scheme of street improvement of
which the formation of Corporation Street is the principal feature.
Curiously enough, the acquisition of the gas supply of the Borough
had a consequence, apparently as far removed as Tenterden steeple
from the Goodwin Sands, viz., the provision of the present commodious
Art Gallery (p. 123.) The explanation is, that under the Free
Libraries Act, the Town Council had the power to appropriate the site
for the purpose of an Art Gallery, but no power to raise money to
erect the building otherwise than by the penny rate, which was then
hardly sufficient for the annual cost of the Free Libraries. The Gas
department of the Corporation requiring to build larger offices, the
Council, at the request of the Free Libraries Committee, granted the
land to the Gas Committee, on condition that they should build over
their offices the new Art Gallery, which they have done at an estimated
cost of £40,000. By this means a difficulty which seemed insuperable
was overcome. In addition to this benefit to the town, the Gas
Committee have earned for the Corporation a profit of more than £25,000
a year.

Thirty years of municipal activity, such as has been described,
commencing with the Act of 1851, of course involved repeated
applications to Parliament, and in 1882 the mass of legislation was
found to be enormous, and a consolidation of twenty separate Acts was
effected by the Birmingham (Corporation) Consolidation Act, 1883,
which removed the limit of the Free Library rate, and enabled the
Corporation to establish the Municipal School of Art (see p. xviii.),
and to provide adequate funds for the maintenance of the Corporation
Art Gallery.

Thus the same Corporation which, in 1839, had no revenue, nor means
of obtaining any, and required to be assisted by the Government with
a loan of £10,000 for police purposes, in the year 1885, levied rates
for municipal purposes (exclusive of poor’s rate and the School Board
rate) to the amount of £318,882, being 4s. 5d. in the pound on the
annual value of the rateable property of the borough, and now borrows
money readily at three-and-a-quarter per cent. Its revenue, and the
income received from some of the Committees, sufficed to keep the
operations of the Corporation in working order, and to pay the interest
on £7,606,269--the aggregate amount of the liabilities on capital
account on 31st December, 1885. With reference to this large amount
of indebtedness it should be noted that £2,720,061 is the capitalized
value at twenty-five years’ purchase of the annuities granted as the
purchase moneys of the Birmingham and Staffordshire Gas Company, and
the Water Works Company, and that £450,000 was paid in cash for the
purchase of The Birmingham Gas Company, and also that £1,520,567 has
been expended on the Improvement Scheme. This reduces the sum still due
for the debts of the former governing bodies and all the public works
executed by the Corporation since 1839, to £2,915,630, and there can be
no doubt that the whole of the indebtedness is more than balanced by
the value of the property belonging to the Corporation.

It remains to be noticed that the Corporation is the largest landowner
in the Borough, owning more than 2,000 acres of land (including its
share of the sewage farm) and is the largest employer of labour,
employing upwards of 4,000 persons. Also that in July, 1884, Birmingham
was made an assize town; whereupon the Town Council took into immediate
consideration the necessity of building Courts for Assizes, Quarter
Sessions and Petty Sessions, and in July, 1886, approved of plans for
the purpose. The “New Law Courts” as they are termed, will be erected
in Corporation Street.

=Population.=--In the year 1839 the population of the Borough was
estimated at 180,000. The following is the result of each subsequent
census, namely:--

   1841 |  40,000 |   182,894  |     28·57
   1851 |  48,894 |   232,841  |     27·30
   1861 |  59,200 |   296,076  |     27·11
   1871 |  74,416 |   343,787  |     16·10
   1881 |  78,301 |   408,004  |     18·67

The population in 1886 is estimated to be about 427,000.

A still more striking example of the progress of the town is afforded
by the following statement kindly prepared by Mr. S. Walliker, the
energetic and courteous Postmaster of the town.


        |  Total   |Proportion |         |           |        |
        |number of |of Letters,|         |           |        |
        | Letters, |&c., to    | No. of  |  No. of   | No. of | No. of
        |   &c.,   |population,|Telegraph|Money-Order| Boxes  |Officers
        |delivered |or number  | Offices.| Offices.  |  for   |employed.
        |  during  |of letters |         |           |Letters.|
        |   the    | to each   |         |           |        |
        |  year.   |individual.|         |           |        |
  1866  |13,023,200|  39·46    |    9    |    9      |  60    |  162
  1885-6|30,983,625|  72·05    |   33    |   78      | 233    |  868

In 1871 (the year after the Telegraphs were transferred to the Post
Office), the number of Telegraph Messages dealt with was 1,081,825, and
in 1885-6, 3,111,662. The number of Parcels dealt with in 1885-6 was

=Gifts for public purposes.=--“More than princely, _civic_ munificence”
was a happy phrase of Professor Max Müller on the occasion of the
opening of the Mason Science College, and it is certain that in
proportion as the feeling of citizenship in any community becomes
strong it will manifest itself in the establishment or assistance of
institutions for public purposes. Birmingham has never been without
examples of this kind. The earliest of the existing charities of the
town is--

=Lench’s Trust=, originated by a feoffment, 11th March, 1525, by
William Lench, of lands in and near Birmingham to trustees. With
this trust many other smaller gifts have been incorporated, and the
income of the whole is now applied to the maintenance of four sets
of almshouses for aged women, in Conybere Street, Hospital Street,
Ladywood Road, and Ravenhurst Street. The total number of inmates is
178, and each of them has a house and four shillings a week. The income
of this charity has grown with the growth of the town like that of the
Grammar School (see p. 26.) In 1839 it was £758, in 1886 it is £3,085.

The next endowment in order of time was that of the Free Grammar School
(see p. 26) to which has since been added one half of the endowment of
Milward’s Charity (A.D. 1684). Then came--

=Fentham’s Charity= (A.D. 1712), part of the revenue of which is
appropriated to the maintenance of certain boys in the Blue Coat
School, distinguished by a dark green dress.

With the exception of a number of smaller charities for apprenticing
boys, relieving poor widows, giving doles of bread, no important
public benefactions were bestowed for nearly a century. Almshouses in
imitation of Lench’s Trust, twenty in number, were built by Joseph
Dowell, in Warner Street, in 1820, and another set by Mrs. Glover, in
Steelhouse Lane, for thirty-six aged women, in 1832.

The last twenty years have been fruitful in gifts by our wealthier
citizens beginning with--

=Evans’ Cottage Homes=, Founded in 1867, by Alfred Smith Evans (of
the then well-known firm of Evans and Askin), are six cottages at
Selly Oak, of a superior kind to the ordinary almshouse, for ladies of
reduced means. Each inmate is required to possess an income of £25 a
year, and receives £20 a year from the trust. Vacancies in the trustees
are supplied by magistrates of the borough, appointed by the Town

=The Orphanage= and =Almshouses= at Erdington, completed in 1868, at
a cost of £60,000, by the late Sir Josiah (then Josiah) Mason, and
endowed with an annual income from landed property, which in 1885
produced £6,400. The Orphanage contains upwards of 300 children, in
the proportion of two girls to one boy. The Almshouses contain 30 poor
women. Seven of the fourteen trustees are appointed by the Town Council.

=Crowley’s Orphanage.=--Thomas Crowley, a timber merchant, of
Birmingham, who died 28th February, 1869, by deed dated 15th February,
1869, settled £10,000 upon trusts to educate poor orphan girls. No
orphanage has yet been built, but temporary homes have been opened in
Ladywood Road.

=The James’ Trust.=--The Misses Elizabeth and Emma James, by deed dated
1st November, 1869, conveyed a freehold estate in Paradise Street, as
an endowment for “The James’ Almhouses” they had built at Nechells for
aged women, to provide five annuities of £20 each for poor and decayed
gentlewomen, and a scholarship of £50 a year from the Free Grammar
School at Birmingham to the Universities of Oxford or Cambridge. The
net income is about £750 per annum, the surplus beyond £450 per annum
is to be accumulated, and applied in building additional almshouses.

=The Public Picture Gallery Fund= originated in a gift in the year
1871, by Mr. T. Clarkson Osler (of the well-known firm of glass
manufacturers) of a sum of £3,000 for the purchase of pictures for the
Corporation Art Gallery. This sum is augmented by other donations and
amounts subscribed, and has been the means of adorning the Art Gallery
with many valuable pictures.

=Dudley Trust.=--Mr. William Dudley, a Jeweller of Birmingham, by deed
dated 8th May, 1875, settled £100,000 in the hands of Trustees to be
used in (1) Loans to young tradesmen at low rates of interest; (2)
Annuities to aged tradesmen, and (3) Surplus to be applied in aid of
the charitable institutions of the Borough. Four of the Trustees are to
be appointed by the Town Council.

=Free Libraries.=--In order of time reference should be made to the
fund of nearly £15,000 raised in 1879 to refurnish the Reference
Library after the fire, and to the valuable gifts of books detailed at
p. 72 _et seq._

=The Art Gallery Purchase Fund= originated in an offer of Messrs.
Tangye, on 3rd July, 1880, to contribute £5,000 to a fund for the
purchase of examples of art for the New Art Gallery, since built by the
Gas Committee as previously stated (p. xiii.), and a further £5,000
on condition that an equal sum was raised by public subscription. The
sum of £7,000 additional was raised and placed at the disposal of a
Special Committee of the Town Council, called the “Art Gallery Purchase

=The Mason Science College.=--For a full account of which (see p.
45), was opened 1st October, 1880. Its cost was £60,000, and it is
endowed with landed property producing £3,600 per annum. Of the eleven
Trustees, five are appointed by the Town Council.

=The Wilkes Bequest.=--Mr. Alfred Salt Wilkes, a Manufacturer in
Birmingham, who died on the 29th July, 1881, left a sum of money
expected to realise £98,000 for division, after two life interests,
between the Birmingham and Midland Institute and the General Hospital.

=Municipal School of Art.=--On the 9th of November, 1881, the retiring
Mayor, Mr. Richard Chamberlain, announced to the Council that Miss
Ryland had offered £10,000, Messrs. Richard and George Tangye, another
£10,000 (afterwards increased to £10,937), and Mr. Cregoe Colmore a
piece of land worth £14,000 for the building of the present School of
Art. The foundation stone was laid 31st March, 1884, by Mr. Richard
Tangye, and the building (see p. 125) finished and opened on 14th
September, 1885. The former School of Art, a voluntary association
supported by public subscription (and to which Miss Ryland had been a
generous donor) being transferred to the Corporation.

=The Princess Alice Orphanage=, at Chester Road, was established, 1882,
partly by a donation of £10,000 by Mr. Solomon Jevons, of Birmingham.

=The Lloyds’ Almshouses=, in Belgrave Road, were founded by the widow
of Mr. James Lloyd, a banker, of Birmingham.

=The Jaffray Suburban Hospital=, at Erdington, for the treatment of
chronic and non-contagious cases in connection with the Birmingham
General Hospital, is the latest, but not the least of the gifts to the
town. It was built and furnished at the sole cost of Mr. John Jaffray,
and opened on the 27th November, 1885.

An enumeration of these gifts would not be complete without reference
to the five gifts of public parks particularised in the list at page

In addition to these benefactions, mention ought to be made of the
numerous gifts of pictures, sculptures and bronzes, given to the Art
Gallery by our leading citizens, which will be found detailed in the
Art Gallery Catalogue. Five of these gifts are deserving of special
mention, namely, (1) the collection of arms given 17th August, 1876,
by the Guardians of the Birmingham Proof House, and now arranged in
the south gallery; (2) the collection of pictures of David Cox given
by the late J. H. Nettlefold; (3) Müller’s well known “Prayers in the
Desert,” and others given by the Rt. Hon. Joseph Chamberlain; (4) a
collection of Wedgwood ware given by Messrs. Richard and George Tangye;
and (5) the clock in the tower of the Art Gallery given by Mr. Follett
Osler, F.R.S. Now that so admirable a gallery has been provided for
the reception of such gifts, it may be confidently hoped that others
equally valuable will be constantly added by the public spirit and
liberality of the citizens of Birmingham.

It is computed that the value of these and other smaller gifts for
public purposes for the last twenty years approaches, if it does not
exceed, one million sterling.

=Hospital Sunday and Saturday Collections.=--The suggestion of a
collection in the churches and chapels of the town on the last Sunday
in October, for the medical charities was made by the Midland Counties’
Herald Newspaper, October, 1859. It was warmly taken up by the then
Rector of Birmingham, Dr. Miller, and has been continued annually since
27th October, 1859. The total sum contributed up to and including the
collection in October, 1885, is £124,433, the average for twenty-seven
years being £4,608.

=Hospital Saturday Collection.=--The first Hospital Saturday
Collection, designed to reach a class differing from the contributors
to the Hospital Sunday Collection, took place March 15th, 1873. It has
gradually grown in amount, and now produces a larger annual sum than
the Hospital Sunday Collection. The amount raised in fourteen years is
£63,250, or an average of £4,517. The last collection produced £6,521.

=Clubs.=--Small clubs, meeting at stated times for social purposes,
were always common in Birmingham. The Bean Club, which meets annually,
has existed since 1660. The “parlours” of the better class of public
houses were places where tradesmen used to assemble in the evenings and
were social clubs in the old sense. In 1840 the present Waterloo Rooms,
now occupied by the Midland Conservative Club, were built for a club
house, but the time was not ripe and they were let to the Government
for the Old Bankruptcy Court.

THE UNION CLUB (non-political) was the first club in the modern sense,
and was established in 1856, in rooms in Bennett’s Hill, and succeeded
so well that the present club-house, at the corner of Colmore Row and
Newhall Street, was built for it, and the club removed there in May,

THE MIDLAND CLUB, in New Street, was established in the year 1869, and
is a non-political club.

THE CONSERVATIVE CLUB was established in 1872. The present club house
is in Union Street, but a larger club house in Temple Row is being

THE LIBERAL CLUB was established in the year 1877, in New Street, and
in November, 1885, was removed to the stately building at the corner of
Congreve Street and Edmund Street.

THE REFORM CLUB was established in the year 1879, under the title of
the Junior Liberal Club. It occupies rooms in New Street.

THE MIDLAND CONSERVATIVE CLUB, which now occupies the Waterloo Rooms,
in Waterloo Street, was established in the year 1882.

All the above clubs are open to members of the Association during the
meeting of 1886, on presentation of their cards of membership.

For an account of The Clef Club see page 148.

Other clubs of a political, social, or scientific character are very
numerous in Birmingham.

       *       *       *       *       *

The matters touched upon in this Introduction must be regarded as
illustrative of the progress of the town in a few particulars which did
not fall within any of the divisions of Part II. of this Handbook (see
Table of Contents). Fully to realize the development in every direction
of our municipal, educational, ecclesiastical, literary, artistic,
and industrial life, the whole of that part should be consulted. The
remainder of the book will shew how assiduously various branches of
science are cultivated amongst us.



=Origin of Name.=--Eight hundred years ago the name of Birmingham first
appeared in history, and almost exactly with the present name of the
town. In the famous Domesday Book (1083-1086), compiled for William
the Norman, the name is spelled “Bermingeha’,” but the varieties
of spelling, from the conquest, have been remarkable. Some curious
collector has summed up one hundred and forty variations, but most
of these may be resolved into two forms of pronunciation--either
Birmingham or Bromicham. It is curious that no other town or village
in England seems to have a similar name to that of Birmingham, and
hence its etymology is somewhat obscure. Hutton’s favourite origin was
Broom from the plant, Wych, a dwelling or a descent, and Ham a home,
so that Bromwycham was supposed to be the original name indicating
local details; but Hutton had forgotten to look at Domesday Book,
or to explain how Bromwycham had been turned into Birmingham. Still
more, he had neglected Dugdale’s remark that while “ham,” for home,
explained the final syllable, the other two syllables certainly denoted
some personal name. All later researches have tended to confirm this
suggestion, and modern philologists, including Prof. E. A. Freeman,
are almost unanimous in agreeing that “Berm,” or “Beorm,” or some
similar form represents the name of some Saxon tribe or people, and
that Bermingham would be a patronymic or family name, with the “ing” or
“iung” denoting some progeny or tribe, and giving the name to the “de
Berminghams,” who flourished in the place, as Dugdale fully shows.

=Early History.=--As to the ante-Norman holders, Dugdale says on
the authority of Domesday Book, that in “Edward the Confessor’s days
(Birmingham was) the freehold of one Ulvvine,” but the history begins
with the Domesday Book which gives the following details:--“Richard
holds of William (Fitz Ausculf) four hides in Bermingha’. The arable
employs six ploughs; one is in the demesne. There are five villeins
and four bordars with two ploughs. Wood half a mile long, and four
furlongs broad. It was, and is worth 20s.” These few facts compare
very favourably with the description of other places, and show that
Birmingham was then a place of some importance. No church is mentioned,
and no priest, but those omissions do not necessarily prove that the
place had neither, and probably it had both. The extent of the “hide”
is very uncertain and it seems to have varied from sixty to one hundred
acres. This entry obviously relates to Birmingham only, and Edgbaston,
Aston, and other places are similarly described. This extract is merely
given to show that some sort of town existed long before 1083-1086, and
that its name was nearly as we spell and sound it now.

After Domesday Book a long blank occurs, except as to certain
documentary evidence as to Fairs, (1166 and 1251), and the help given
to Simon de Montfort against Henry III., by William de Bermingham. But
a little light is thrown on the condition of Birmingham by further
examination of a curious and unique old map of England and Scotland
now in the Bodleian Library, but which was known to Gough and included
in his Topography, (Vol. I., p. 77,) with an engraving by Basire,
which, however, is very imperfect and inaccurate. A photo-zincograph of
this ancient map was produced by the Ordnance Office in 1875, with a
description by Mr. W. Basevi Saunders, who settles the date of the map
as _circa_ 1286-1300. In this map, which is remarkably interesting but
ludicrously wrong in many parts, especially as to Scotland, Birmingham
distinctly appears. Cathedral cities and large churches are generally
indicated, rivers are marked, and even miles on roads, while a large
number of single houses are marked to show towns, when no names are
given. In the portion marked “Ardene” one house, with “Brmynghā,”
clearly appears between Worcester and Lichfield, and is the only town
in Warwickshire which is described by name, not even Coventry or
Warwick being named. This seems to show that Birmingham was a place
of some importance even six hundred years ago, and that its name was
then spelled nearly as now, the abbreviations probably indicating

As Dugdale’s Warwickshire is generally limited to the territorial and
family history, which is difficult to condense, and rarely refers to
the existence or state of the buildings in his time, there is very
little material for the history of the town for several centuries. He
mentions, however, that Peter de Bermingham “had a Castle here which
stood nearre a Bow-shoot from the Church south-westwards” (12 Henry
II., 1166), doubtless on the site of Smithfield market, which had
buildings and moat till 1815. A market was granted by the same king,
and on Thursdays, and was probably largely frequented and helped the
progress of the town. From this de Bermingham family, Dugdale says,
“doubtless came the de Berminghams of Ireland, who settled there very
antiently: perhaps in Hen. II. days on the first conquest of that realm
by Ric. Strongbow:” but the family connection with Birmingham ended
with Edward and his tragic story in 1545.

=The Priory.=--The Hospital or Priory of St. Thomas the Apostle has
had its name and site preserved by the names “Upper and Lower Priory,”
“Minories,” &c., but the exact site of the buildings and the date of
the foundation are uncertain. The grounds occupied a large space along
Bull Street, Dale End, John Street, and Steelhouse Lane; but even in
the recent excavations for new streets scarcely a fragment has been
found. A century ago the pseudo-antiquarian William Hutton, who did his
best to write a History of Birmingham, records that in 1775 he removed
“twenty waggon loads of old stones, great numbers of which were highly
finished in the Gothic taste; parts of porticos, windows, arches,
ceilings--some fluted, some ciphered, yet complete as the day they left
the chisel,” and that after letting the builders destroy the greater
portion, he used some in making a fire-place in “an under-ground
kitchen.” There is little hope now of finding any of these relics or
of settling the site on which the Priory buildings stood. Even Dugdale
failed to find its origin, and simply records that the first mention
occurs in 13 Edwd. I. (1285), and that the Commissioners of Henry VIII.
(1545) valued it at £8. 8s. 10d., and that it was duly dissolved.

=St. Martin’s Church.=--The Mother Church, St. Martin’s, claims
great antiquity, but its exact date has not been found. During
the recent restoration some early wall-paintings were discovered,
with the still more valuable remains which formed part of a Norman
Church, very evidently on the same site, but all traces of whose
history have been lost. The existing Church has, however, some highly
interesting monuments of some of the de Berminghams of the thirteenth,
fourteenth, and fifteenth centuries, one in alabaster, representing an
ecclesiastic, being well known as an almost unique example of fifteenth
century art. The present restored church has replaced an ugly brick
casing which covered the decaying portion of an earlier church supposed
to have been of the latter part of the thirteenth century with later
alterations. The Registers begin in 1555, and have been carefully
preserved, as well as various Church Books which have been used in the
History of St. Martin’s by Mr. J. Thackray Bunce.

=St. John’s Chapel.=--Another ecclesiastical relic, in name only, is
to be found in the ugly last century brick building, St. John’s Chapel,
Deritend, which has replaced the “propper chappel,” which Leland saw
in 1538, an early English building among the trees by the river side.
This “chapel” was founded in 1375, by some of the inhabitants of
Deritend and Bordesley, who found the floods often preventing access
to their Parish Church at Aston. Thirteen of the inhabitants of the
hamlets contributed the funds, and acquired the right of “appointing
one Chaplain” for the services, and such Chaplain is appointed to this
day by the parishioners’ votes. Tradition records that John Rogers,
one of the early translators of the Bible, and the first Martyr of the
reign of Mary, was born in Deritend near this Chapel, and a marble slab
records his fame, but the tradition is doubtful, and has not been fully

=The Guild of the Holy Cross=, whose Hall was on the site of the
present King Edward’s School, was founded in 6 Rich. II. (1382), for
the maintenance of two priests to celebrate service daily in the
Church of St. Martin, but ten years later was formed into a “Guild or
Fraternitie, consisting of men and women of Birmingham,” in the names
of the “Bailiffs and Communaltie of Birmingham and other adjacent
places, for a Chantrie of priests and services in the Church, for the
souls of the Founders and all the Fraternitie,” but in 37 Hen. VIII.
(1545) the lands were valued at £31. 2s. 10d., and appropriated by the
Crown, and afterwards, 5 Edw. VI. (1550), were used for the foundation
of the “Free Grammar School of King Edward the Sixth, for the Education
and Instruction of Children in Grammar for ever,”--the basis of the
present noble foundation, not only in New Street, but in several
important Branch Schools.

=Leland’s Description, 1538.=--Nearly half of the sixteenth century
had passed before Birmingham was visited and described by any stranger,
and the visit of John Leland is a memorable landmark in the history
of the town. His few words are familiar but worth quoting again, not
merely as a record, but as a contrast with the changed conditions of
over three hundred years. In the reign of Henry VIII., he made his
famous journey through England, and in 1538 he visited Birmingham and
rode through the town, which he describes in picturesque words:--“I
came through a pretty street or ever I entred into Bermingham towne.
This street, as I remember, is called Dirtey [Deriten]. In it dwell
smithes and cutlers, and there is a brooke [Rea] that divideth this
street from Bermingham, and is an hamlett or member belonginge to the
Parish therebye. There is at the end of Dirtey a propper chappell and
mansion house of tymber, hard on the rype [bank] as the brooke runneth
downe: and as I went through the ford by the [foot] bridge, the water
ranne downe on the right hand, and a fewe miles below goeth into Tame,
_ripâ dextrâ_. * * * * The beauty of Bermigham, a good markett towne
in the extreame parts of Warwike-shire, is one street going up alonge,
almost from the left ripe of the brooke up a meane hill by the length
of a quarter of a mile. I saw but one Paroch Church in the towne. There
be many smiths in the towne that use to make knives and all mannour of
cuttinge tooles, and many loriners that make bittes, and a great many
naylors. Soe that a great part of the towne is maintained by smithes
whoe have their iron and sea-cole out of Stafford-shire.”

This description of the town is minute and careful. The “mansion house
of tymber” still remains as the Old Crown House in Deritend; and nearly
opposite other half-timbered houses of the same period survive. The
“propper chappell” has greatly changed its form, and the descriptions
of trade are no longer strictly accurate, as some of the handicrafts
are now better known at Sheffield, Walsall, and Halesowen. Some other
old houses of the sixteenth century still remain, one notably in
Digbeth, which has been carefully preserved; and one early sixteenth
century house in Bull Street, near Dale End, has just been removed
(1886). One remarkable change has occurred since Leland’s days; for the
streams which crossed the roads have disappeared beneath, and the pumps
and wells and water courses are long since gone.

=Camden’s Description, 1584.=--The visit of William Camden confirms
Leland’s account, and shows considerable progress, as the town was
“swarming with inhabitants and echoing with the noise of anvils,” and
the general prosperity evidently continued through the century, and
far into the next century too, for it is clear that the manufacture
of swords, if not of guns and pistols, had begun and was destined to
extend the fame and improve the industrial condition of the town.

=Prince Rupert.=--The busy occupants of the line of road traversed by
Leland and Camden had serious trouble a century later. Charles I. on
his way, in 1642, to Edge Hill had stopped at Aston Hall, which had
been built early in the seventeenth century, and was believed to be
from a design by Inigo Jones. Sir Thomas Holte had been true to the
King, but had become unpopular with the Birmingham people, who were on
the Parliamentary side. Aston Hall was attacked and besieged for three
days, and the traces of the cannonading still remain. In the April of
the next year, 1643, the fiery Rupert advanced to Birmingham from Camp
Hill, and was stopped in Deritend by the barricades and valour of the
people, but he forced his way, plundered and fired eighty houses, and
left the town on the other side after heavy losses of life and limb.
Clarendon has described Birmingham “as of great fame for hearty wilful
affected disloyalty to the King as any town in England,” and the town
had supplied the Parliamentary army with 15,000 swords, but “Prince
Rupert’s Burning Cruelty to Birmingham” only intensified the opposition
to the King and his cause.

=A City of Refuge.=--The latter part of the seventeenth century saw
many marked advances in the prosperity of the town. The extravagances
of the restoration period greatly increased the demand for many of the
products of Birmingham ingenuity and skill. The demand for fire-arms
also encouraged and extended one of the trades which was afterwards
to become one of the great industries of the town; not only so, but
Birmingham had become a sort of City of Refuge for reformers of all
sorts, and a sort of Free Port for many sorts of manufactures which,
owing to the customs of corporate towns, were restricted elsewhere.
The “five mile,” and other acts, drove out many useful and able people
and sent them to reside in a place where there was more elbow room and
more free air, and thus not only the population but the energy and
usefulness of the inhabitants rapidly increased. The visits of George
Fox had stimulated many people, like those of Wesley a century later,
and every influence, industrial, political, religious, social, seemed
to continue and develop and intensify the life and progress of the town.

=Early Printers and Booksellers=--The eighteenth century added but
little to the antiquities, but much to the history of Birmingham.
The industrial developments which Leland and Camden noted made far
more rapid progress towards the end of the seventeenth century, when
Birmingham became as famous for fire-arms as it had been for pikes
and swords half a century before. Even that progress was, however, to
be far exceeded before the eighteenth century ended, and the almost
infinite variety of manufactures had become established. Birmingham
was, in fact, in those times, what London has since become, the centre
towards which the foremost men of the day tended for many years. In the
early years of the century, Dr. Johnson’s father came to Birmingham
weekly with a small stock of books--the only supply the town seems
to have had--but a few years later Thomas Warren had begun to print,
newspapers were started, and books of considerable importance were
published. Dr. Johnson’s first literary work, his translation of
Lobo’s Abyssinia, was dictated to Warren, but probably not printed in
Birmingham, although as early as 1712, and possibly ten years sooner,
books were printed in the town. So early as 1652 a master of the
Grammar School had published a Latin Grammar--the earliest Birmingham
book--and in 1717 the first book printed in Birmingham appeared from
Matthew Unwin’s press.

=Early Maps and Engravings=--Thomas Warren’s first known book is
dated 1728, and many important works afterwards came from his press.
Engraving, as well as printing, soon became common, and many excellent
examples soon came forth. In 1731, William Westley published the
first map or Plan of Birmingham, followed by others of great value,
as Bradford’s, in 1751, and Hanson’s, in 1779; and Bradford also
issued a “View of Birmingham,” of a size and quality unsurpassed in
line-engraving, of which only two copies have survived. Many folio and
quarto volumes appeared in the middle of the century from Thomas Aris,
C. Earl, and others, and were remarkably fine productions for a midland
town a century and a half ago.

=John Baskerville=--All these, however, were surpassed by the far-famed
productions of John Baskerville’s press, for his experience as a
grave-stone cutter in Moor Street, and his fine taste and restless
energy enabled him to produce type and paper, and to print in so
excellent a style, that his productions soon won European fame.
At Easy Hill--the house, in ruins, still remains--he made his own
presses, type, and probably paper to some extent, and spent hundreds
of pounds before he had formed letters to please his fastidious eyes
and excellent taste. Birmingham has few greater claims to honour in the
industries and arts than those which have so universally been given to
the Baskerville Press.

=Directories=--The later half of the century was even more
distinguished in many other ways. The modern Directories were not
popular or common till late in the last century. Even the rare London
Directory of 1677 does not seem to have had many imitators, but
about 1750 the increasing number of trades stimulated the demand.
In Newcastle-on-Tyne, and in Sheffield and other towns, Directories
appeared, and Birmingham was among the first, and one of great interest
and value appeared in 1770, and probably earlier, followed by others,
ever increasing as the population increased, but very curiously
contrasting with the huge volumes of later days.

=Cotton Spinning=--One of the most remarkable, perhaps, of the
industrial schemes in Birmingham, was the establishment of a cotton
mill, which still remains as a building and shows its origin, although
now a rolling mill. It was the natural result of the genius of John
Wyatt and of Lewis Paul, for in a room in the Upper Priory--now covered
by the schools of the Society of Friends--the first cotton spinning
machine was erected and worked, and the old distaff and spindle, and
spinning machine doomed. Thomas Warren, Edward Cave, Dr. James, and
others, took up the speculation of Lewis Paul, and mills were built
at Birmingham and Northampton, but before the century closed they had
failed to pay.

=The Soho Works=--The most famous of all the classes of industrial
enterprises in Birmingham was the famous “Soho.” From the manufacture
of “toys”--steel toys, buckles, buttons, sword-hilts, &c.--in Snow
Hill, Matthew Boulton had removed to Soho in 1763. There he erected
machinery for water power, but by happy accident, James Watt visited
the place, and Boulton was so struck with his improvements in the steam
engine, which Soho only seemed able to produce, that a connection began
which has immortalised the names of Boulton and Watt, and shed undying
glory on the industrial history of Birmingham. The story has been too
often told to require repetition, but even now it has scarcely been
fully told. Soho itself has perished, scarcely a relic remains, but
James Watt’s house at Heathfield still exists with relics which will
ever be an honour to his genius, and will keep his memory green. All
admirers of the genius of Watt will hope and desire that these remains
of an industrial hero, a genius of the useful arts, may become a public
trust, to show posterity how so illustrious a man of science was valued
in his life, and is honoured by those who rejoice in the fruits of his
genius and skill.

=Famous Men: the Soho Circle=--One of the most remarkable chapters in
the history of Birmingham would be a full record of the men of the
latter half, or even the last quarter, of the last century who gave
lustre to the town, and who materially helped its constant progress.
“Soho” had not only supplied what the world had long wanted, “power,”
but it had set up a standard of excellence, and had trained a class of
workmen who were to go forth to conquer, at home and abroad, in all
industrial work. The spirit of Soho is still abroad in the land, and
Birmingham may claim to have been one of the foremost in the mechanical
progress of the past hundred years.

The galaxy of great men, as it has been called, who met in Birmingham
a century ago is certainly remarkable. Boulton was a native of the
town, but many “strangers came within the gates.” James Watt--almost
all-accomplished--was soon followed by Joseph Priestley, who lived here
for eleven years. His fame had preceded him, his great discoveries had
been made. A storm of popular and ignorant bigotry drove him from the
town, wrecked his home, ruined his laboratory, and burned his library;
but the sons have “blushed to find their fathers were his foes;” and
a statue honoured his memory and his great discovery of oxygen on
the centenary of that day. Dr. Darwin, of Lichfield and Derby, the
father of a noble line, and himself a man of genius and power, was
a constant visitor. William Murdock, one of the ablest of the Soho
group, the first maker of a locomotive, and the practical inventor
of gas-lighting, was long a resident in the town, and is buried near
Boulton and Watt. John Baskerville, the printer; Josiah Wedgwood, the
famous art-potter; James Keir, the great chemist; Richard Edgeworth and
Thomas Day, authors; Joseph Berington, the learned Roman Catholic; Dr.
Withering, the botanist; Dr. Parr, the famous Greek scholar; Samuel
Galton, the Quaker; John Proud, the Swedenborgian; John Wyatt, the
inventor; Edmund Hector, Johnson’s friend; and many others, formed
such a “happy family” of genius and worth as few towns of the period
could surpass or equal; and that “golden age” of Birmingham, the men
and names, and works and progress of the last century, must ever be
remembered and honoured, even in these days of quicker progress and
greater victories in scientific and industrial pursuits.

       *       *       *       *       *

[Many very interesting details of the History of Birmingham are
necessarily omitted in this brief summary and may be found in the
following works:--

  Aston Hall, (A. E. Everitt)                                   1846
  ”     ”     and the Holte Family (Davidson)                   1854
  ”     ”     Monograph of (Niven)                              1880
  Birmingham, History of (W. Hutton)                            1781 &c.
   ”     ”    Presbyterian Nonconformity in (J. R. Wreford)     1832
   ”     ”    and its Vicinity (W. Hawkes Smith)                1838
   ”     ”    General Hospital & Musical Festivals
                (J. T. Bunce)                                   1858
   ”     ”    Free Schools, Colleges, &c. (G. Griffith)         1861
   ”     ”    Memorials of Old,--“Old Crown House,” and “Men
                and Names” (Toulmin Smith)                      1864
   ”     ”    and Midland Hardware District (S. Timmins)        1866
   ”     ”    Buildings of, Two Series (“Este”)                 1866
   ”     ”    Life, A Century of, 1741 to 1841 (J. A. Langford) 1868
   ”     ”    Queen’s College, Annals of (W. S. Cox)            1873
   ”     ”    Modern, 1841 to 1871 (J. A. Langford)             1873 &c.
   ”     ”    Old St. Martin’s Church (J. T. Bunce)             1875
   ”     ”    Men (E. Edwards)                                  1877
   ”     ”    Corporation, History of (J. T. Bunce) 2 vols.     1878 &c.
   ”     ”    Old and New (R. K. Dent)                          1880
   ”     ”    Inventors & Inventions (R. B. Prosser)            1881
   ”     ”    Old Meeting House and Burial Ground (C. H. Beale) 1882
   ”     ”    Dictionary of (T. T. Harman)                      1884
  Boulton and Watt (S. Smiles)                                  1865
  Keir, Jas., Life of (J. K. Moilliett)                         1868
  Watt, Jas., Life of (J. P. Muirhead)                          1858
      ”       Mechanical Inventions (J. P. Muirhead)            1854
      ”       Mechanical Inventions (E. A. Cowper),
                Transactions of Mechanical Engineers, November  1883

The Reference Library contains all the works named, and many
others,--every known book or pamphlet, map or directory, relating
to the History of Birmingham; and the detailed catalogue (pp. 93)
classifies the collection under numerous headings, including all the
Acts of Parliament relating to Birmingham and its neighbourhood.]





The Local Government of Birmingham is administered by five sets of

1. Justices of the Peace.

2. Town Council.

3. Drainage Board.

4. Boards of Guardians.

5. School Board.

=Justices of the Peace.=--The first of these bodies was constituted
by Royal Grant in 1838, when the town was incorporated as a municipal
borough. A Court of Quarter Sessions was then next established, for
the trial of prisoners, and a Recorder was appointed. The Court of
Petty Sessions for the borough was instituted at the same time, under
special commission of the peace. The duties of the justices are to
maintain peace and order in the borough, to administer justice at petty
sessions, to appoint visitors to the prison, and to grant licences for
public houses, theatres, and concert halls, and licences for music and
dancing in houses kept for the sale of liquor. They are invested with
powers of control over the police on occasions of actual or threatened
disturbance of public order; and any two of them, sitting in petty
sessions, are empowered to suspend or dismiss any police constable for
sufficient cause.

=The Town Council= has charge of the general administration of the
affairs of the borough; watching; lighting; making, draining, and
repairing streets and roads; the care of the public health, by the
prevention and removal of nuisances, the enforcement of a system of
house inspection, the collection and disposal of night soil and house
refuse, and the maintenance of a Borough Hospital; the control of the
Borough Cemetery, (for which it acts as a Burial Board;) the provision
and management of Baths and Parks; of Free Libraries, Museums, and
Schools of Art; and it also has control of the manufacture and sale
of Gas, and the provision of Water. The powers of the Corporation,
originally and to a limited extent conferred by Royal Charter in
1838, were by degrees enlarged by twenty special local Acts or Orders
sanctioned by Parliament, for various purposes. The whole of these
were, in 1883, consolidated in the Birmingham Corporation Consolidation
Act, which, together with the Municipal Corporations Amendment Act of
1882, and the Public Health Act of 1875, constitute the Municipal Law
under which the affairs of the Borough are administered.

=The Drainage Board= is a body composed in part of representatives
elected by the Town Council, and in part of representatives elected
by the Local Boards of districts adjoining the Borough. There are
twenty-two members of this Board, two of them, the Mayor of Birmingham,
and the Chairman of the Aston Manor Local Board being ex-officio, and
the others being elected in the following proportions: Birmingham
Town Council eleven; one each from the Local Boards of Aston Manor,
Balsall Heath, Handsworth, Harborne, Saltley, and Smethwick; and one
each (elected by the respective Boards of Guardians) for Aston Rural
District and Sutton Coldfield, King’s Norton and Northfield, and Perry
Barr. The Board has charge of the sewage from the districts above
named, extending over an area of 45,000 acres. The whole of the sewers
are made to converge to a common outlet at Saltley, where the sewage is
received into tanks, and is then purified, first by precipitation, and
next by passing it through the land of the sewage farm, the effluent
water, thus rendered clear and harmless, being poured into the rivers
Cole and Tame. The sludge remaining in the sewage tanks is dug into
the land. For the purposes of sewage treatment the Drainage Board
has acquired about 1,200 acres of land in the Tame Valley. The Board
has borrowing powers, exercised to the extent of £400,000 for the
acquisition of land and the execution of works; and it has also rating
powers for the payment of interest and repayment of capital, and for
current expenditure. These powers are exercised by serving precepts
upon the several local authorities included in the Drainage area, in
proportion to the number of their rated tenements.

=The Boards of Guardians= have charge of the poor law administration
of the Borough. There are three parishes in the Borough, namely,
Birmingham, Edgbaston, and part of Aston. The parish of Birmingham is
separately administered by a Board of Guardians, originally constituted
under a Local Act of 23 Geo. III. (1782) modified by a local Act of 1
and 2 Wm. IV. (1831) and further modified by “orders” of the Poor Law
Board, and the Local Government Board; the last of these was issued
in 1882. The number of Guardians for the parish is 60, and the twelve
overseers (the rating authority for poor law purposes) also have seats
on the Board.

The parish of Edgbaston is wholly in the Borough, but it forms part
of the King’s Norton Union, and as to the poor law is governed by the
Guardians of that Union. The parish of Aston is only partially within
the Borough; it is administered by the Guardians of Aston Union.
Edgbaston and Aston parochial affairs are governed under the general
poor law Acts, there being no local Act for either parish.

=The School Board=, which consists of fifteen members, was first
elected in November, 1870, under the Elementary Education Act passed in
that year. It has charge of the Board Schools throughout the Borough.

The above described bodies are all of them representative, but are
elected on different franchises, and by different methods.

The Town Council is elected by the votes of all occupiers in the
sixteen wards in which the Borough is divided, women householders
being entitled to vote; three Councillors being chosen for each ward,
and one of the three retiring each year; and the votes being given by
ballot. The Drainage Board is elected by the governing authorities.
The Guardians of the Poor are chosen, in Birmingham; by ratepayers of
£12 annual value, the whole Board being elected at one time, by voting
papers delivered at the place of election; and in the other parishes
by all occupying householders, by voting papers collected from the
electors. The School Board is elected by the votes of all householders,
the whole Board retiring at the end of three years, and the votes being
taken on the cumulative plan, each elector giving the whole of his
votes to one candidate, or dividing them in any other proportion, at

Each of the bodies is invested with borrowing and rating powers,
limited by local or general acts. The Town Council levies rates on
the whole Borough--a Municipal or Borough Rate for general municipal
purposes, under the Municipal Corporations Acts, and an Improvement
Rate, for purposes specified in the Local Improvement Act. The Drainage
Board and the School Board serve precepts upon the Town Council for
the amounts they respectively require, and these amounts are included
in the Borough Rate. The Guardians of the Poor make rates for their
respective parishes for poor law purposes; and they collect, on behalf
of the Town Council, the rates levied for municipal expenditure,
including the money required by the Drainage Board and the School
Board. There is one assessment for local rates, made (under a recent
agreement with the Town Council) by the parish overseers.

The preceding statement shortly describes the existing arrangement
of local government in Birmingham; but, in order to explain the
growth of the system now in operation, it is necessary briefly to
sketch the history of local administration. Birmingham has always
been what is called a free town, that is, until after the passing of
the Municipal Corporations Act in 1835, it had no Corporation, with a
restricted burgess roll, and consequently the community was open to
all who cared to settle in the town for the purposes of residence or
trade, a circumstance which largely contributed to the rapid growth
of Birmingham in population, industry, and wealth. Down to the year
1769, the government of the place was controlled by the three sets
of authorities existing in all non-chartered communities.--1, the
justices, to keep the peace, and to punish crime. 2, the court leet
(with its elected jury, its high and low bailiffs, its ale tasters,
flesh connors, and leather sealers) meeting at irregular intervals,
under the direction of the Lord of the Manor, and invested with the
care of markets, nuisances, and other matters pertaining to, or
interfering with, the rights of the lord. 3, the Churchwardens, who
transacted the church and parish business, and held vestry meetings for
general town purposes, and for the choice of surveyors of the highways.

In 1769, an Act of Parliament was obtained, constituting a body of
Commissioners for the purposes of maintaining, improving, and lighting
the town, and invested with general powers affecting the health and
safety of the inhabitants, and the common welfare. By subsequent
Acts--five in number, the last of these being passed in 1828--the
powers of the Street Commissioners were extended, and they were
authorised by the last named Act to build a Town Hall. Their authority
was confined to what was then known as “the town of Birmingham,” the
boundaries of which were co-extensive with the parish of Birmingham.
The first Commissioners were named in the Act constituting them, and
vacancies were thereafter filled up by the Commissioners themselves,
without reference to the inhabitants. The system of local government
thus instituted continued unchanged until the year 1838. In 1832,
Birmingham was, for the first time, under the provisions of the Reform
Act, constituted a Parliamentary borough, with the right of returning
two members to the House of Commons. The boundaries of the Borough
were so arranged as to include the parish of Birmingham, the parish of
Edgbaston, and the hamlets of Deritend and Bordesley, and Duddeston
and Nechells, in the parish of Aston, the area thus formed being 8,240
acres. The Parliamentary Reform Act was followed by the passing of the
Municipal Corporations Act, in 1835. For a considerable time there
had been a strong feeling in favour of some completer form of local
government than that afforded by the Commissioners Acts, and especially
for government founded upon the representative principle. In 1837,
steps were taken to obtain a charter of incorporation for the town,
under the authority of the Municipal Corporations Act; and in October,
1838, after much opposition, both locally and in Parliament, a charter
was granted, and the Corporation of Birmingham came into existence.

The boundaries of the new Municipal Borough were fixed so as to
correspond with those of the Parliamentary Borough, above described.
The area was divided into thirteen wards (extended in 1873 to
sixteen wards), and the Council was constituted of 16 aldermen and
48 councillors. The first elections of councillors took place on the
26th of December, 1838, and on the day following the Council met, and
elected the aldermen, the governing body being then fully constituted.
Mr. William Scholefield was elected the first Mayor.

Although Birmingham had now obtained a system of representative
government, the state of affairs was by no means satisfactory. In the
parish of Birmingham the self-elected Commissioners of the Street Act
retained their full authority, and in the district of Deritend and
Bordesley local government was for certain purposes still exercised by
a body of Commissioners constituted by an Act passed in 1791, while
Duddeston and Nechells were governed by Commissioners appointed under
an Act of 1829. There were consequently four governing bodies within
the borough, and the powers of the new Corporation were consequently
seriously limited and its action impeded. Other difficulties of a
peculiarly embarrassing character speedily developed themselves. The
validity of the Charter was contested both in the Law Courts and in
Parliament; disputes arose between the Borough Magistracy and the
County Bench; hindrances were put in the way of the Court of Quarter
Sessions granted for the Borough. In addition to these causes of
disquiet the occurrence of the Chartist riots of 1839 furnished a
pretext for withdrawing from the Corporation the right of establishing
a constabulary or police force for the town, and a special Police Act
was passed by which, while paid for by the ratepayers, the police force
was placed under the absolute control of a Government Commissioner. In
1842 this perplexing condition of affairs was, however, brought to an
end, by the passing of an Act of Parliament confirming the Charters of
Birmingham and Manchester, and an Act was also passed transferring to
the Corporation of Birmingham the control of the local police force.
The powers of the Town Council, however, were still very limited, owing
to the conflicting local authorities existing in the Borough, and it
became evident in the course of time that, in the public interests, the
representative body must finally be made supreme. The minor bodies did
not yield without a contest, but in the end the pressure of opinion
overcame their resistance, and in 1851 the passing of the Birmingham
Improvement Act put an end to all the bodies of Commissioners, and
transferred their powers, with others provided by the Act, to the Town
Council, as the representative of the ratepayers of the borough, and
the Town Council became thenceforward the sole governing authority
for all municipal purposes. The Act mentioned further authorised
the borrowing of loans for purposes of town improvements and for a
system of sewerage, and empowered the Council to levy a special rate
for such purposes, in addition to the ordinary municipal rate levied
under the Municipal Corporations Act. Ten years later, in 1861, a
second Improvement Act invested the Corporation with further powers
of administration and of borrowing; and numerous other Acts were
subsequently obtained for specific purposes. Among these were the Parks
Act, 1854; an order (1873) extending to sixteen the number of Wards in
the Borough;--an Act giving the Council power to acquire closed burial
grounds and to lay them out as places of public recreation, passed
in 1878; Acts for the purchase of the Gas and Water undertakings in
1875; an Act for a Sanitary Improvement Scheme under the provisions of
the Artisans’ Dwellings Act, 1876; for the constitution of a Drainage
Board, in 1878; and for the issue of Corporation Stock in 1880. The
powers of most of these enactments, with additional powers, were
embodied in the Birmingham Corporation Consolidation Act of 1883,
which, amongst other provisions, abolished the restriction to one penny
in the pound previously imposed upon the Free Libraries Rate (under
the General Libraries Act) and authorised the Council to conduct a
Municipal School of Art.

The Consolidation Act, therefore, now constitutes the authority under
which (in addition to the powers conferred by general municipal law)
the government of the borough is now administered. The following
statement, extracted from the “History of the Corporation of
Birmingham,” explains the scope and working of the system:--

“The municipal government, under the Charter of Incorporation and the
Acts of Parliament relating to municipal corporations, is conducted by
a council, consisting of forty-eight councillors and sixteen aldermen.

“Three councillors are allotted to and elected by each of the sixteen
wards into which the borough is divided, and each councillor is elected
for three years, the elections being so arranged that one-third of the
councillors (one in each ward) retire every year, and elections for
the choice of their successors are held on the first of November. The
aldermen are chosen by the members of the Council, and are elected
for six years; they may be chosen from amongst the members of the
Council, or from fit persons not members of the Council, but who are
qualified for election to it. The Mayor is chosen by the Council, on
the ninth of November, for a term of one year. Under the Municipal
Corporations Act of 1835, it was obligatory that, at the time of being
elected, he should be a member of the Council; but by the Municipal
Corporations Act of 1882 it is provided (sec. 15) that ‘the Mayor shall
be a fit person elected by the Council from among the aldermen or
councillors, or persons qualified to be such.’ There is now no property
qualification required for any members of the Council.

“The Council, as a whole, is the rating and controlling authority
for the Borough. In all matters subjected to its authority it acts
upon communications from the Mayor, upon motions made upon its own
initiative (regulated by its standing orders for the conduct of
business) and upon reports and proposals from the Committees it
appoints, and to which it delegates specified branches of municipal
work, under such regulations and with such limitations as it may direct.

“These Committees have varied from time to time; at present they
are sixteen in number, and are named, constituted, and empowered as
follows, taking them in the order in which they are stated in the
‘Borough of Birmingham Municipal Diary,’ issued by the Town Clerk,
under the direction of the Council:--

1.--Baths and Parks Committee.--“To have charge of the public baths,
parks, gardens, and recreation grounds, and the buildings thereon
(excepting the recreation ground in St. Clement’s Road, in charge of
the Gas Committee, and the buildings in Adderley Park, in charge of the
Free Libraries Committee); to have charge of the trees planted in the
streets; to lay out disused burial grounds acquired by the Council; and
to arrange for supplies of coal and coke to the several departments of
the Corporation, excepting the Lunatic Asylum, Public Works, Gas and
Water Committees.

2.--Estates Committee.--“To take charge of all estates and buildings
belonging to the Corporation, not in charge of other Committees
(including the Council House); to make rules for granting the use of
the Town Hall; to sell, let or exchange lands or buildings not required
for public purposes, as the Council may resolve; to superintend the
arrangements of the Borough Cemetery, and perform the functions of
the Burial Board; and to arrange for the acquisition of closed burial

3.--Finance Committee.--“Generally to have charge of the accounts
and financial departments of the Borough, reporting thereon to the
Council--and thus to present estimates of income and expenditure for
the year; to recommend rates, and to see to the collection of rates;
to cause the valuations of rateable property to be maintained, and to
hear and decide appeals against assessments; to negotiate loans, and
to conduct and manage the Birmingham Corporation Stock, ‘with all the
powers conferred upon the Council by the Birmingham Corporation Stock
Orders;’ to effect fire insurances, insurances on property belonging to
the Corporation (excepting that in charge of the Water and Improvement
Committees); to print and issue the Council Minutes; and to make orders
upon the Borough Treasurer for payments of interest on loans and
annuities, and for accounts for moneys which the several Committees of
the Council are authorised to expend.

4.--General Purposes Committee.--“To attend to all business and matters
referred to it by the Council, of a general character, not entrusted to
the various other Committees, and to suggest to the Council, from time
to time, any new business, which, in its opinion, is important to the
public interest.

5.--Markets and Fairs Committee.--“To transact all matters relating to
the regulation, control, and management of the Markets and Fairs holden
in the Borough; to administer the Weights and Measures Act, the Dairies
Act (so far as it relates to cow-sheds), and the Contagious Diseases
(Animals) Act; to regulate slaughterhouses; to inspect meat, game,
fish, poultry, and other similar articles of food offered for sale.

6.--Health Committee.--“To exercise the powers conferred by
legislation for the regulation of lodging-houses, smoke nuisances,
nuisances generally, offensive trades, and infectious diseases; to
enforce the powers of the Council with reference to drains, closets,
ashpits, &c., to carry out the Acts for preventing adulteration of food
and drugs; to have charge of the Small-pox and other Borough Hospitals;
to have charge of the collection, removal, and disposal of the night
soil of the Borough; to ‘proceed with the work of the interception
of the contents of privies and ashpits, so far as the powers of
the Council will enable them;’ to enforce the Canal Boats Act, the
Factories Act (1883), and the Dairies and Milkshops Orders, so far as
relates to dairies and milkshops.

7.--Public Works Committee.--“To have charge of all works connected
with draining, paving, maintaining, cleansing, and lighting the
streets and roads within the Borough; to submit to the Council (and
under its authority to execute) all necessary street alterations and
improvements, and to act in all other matters arising out of the Acts
and Bye-laws relating to streets and buildings, to fix cab-stands; to
take charge of public monuments and statues (excepting the Chamberlain
Memorial Fountain in charge of the Water Committee); and to construct
and maintain the lines of tramways authorised to be laid within the

8.--Watch Committee.--“To execute the powers relating to the police
force given by law; to take charge of the fire brigade; to execute
bye-laws regulating cabs and omnibuses, and to license drivers of
such vehicles and of tramway cars; to administer the Steam Whistles
Act, the Explosives Act, the Petroleum Acts; to control the public
mortuaries; to license marine store dealers; to enforce the provisions
of the Consolidation Act (1883) relating to the employment of children,
and the means of ingress and egress to and from public buildings;
and to enforce the bye-laws for the suppression of shouting in the
public streets. [By general Acts of Parliament the Watch Committee is
authorised to appoint, dismiss, control, and fix the rate of payment of
the police constables.]

9.--Lunatic Asylums Committee.--“To have the management and control
of the Lunatic Asylums at Winson Green and Rubery Hill, ‘with all
the powers, and subject to all the provisions of the several Acts of
Parliament now in force with regard to such lunatic asylums.’

10.--Free Libraries Committee.--“To carry into effect the provisions
of the Free Libraries and Museums Act, as amended by the Corporation
Consolidation Act (1883); reporting to the Council from time to time
for approval.

11.--Industrial School Committee.--“To carry into effect the Industrial
Schools Act, and to have charge of the Borough Industrial School (at
Shustoke), and the land and buildings connected therewith.

12.--Gas Committee.--“To conduct and manage the Corporation Gas
Department, with all the powers conferred upon the Council; reporting
from time to time thereon.

13.--Water Committee.--“To conduct and manage the Corporation Water
Department, with all the powers conferred upon the Council, reporting
from time to time; to have charge of all public fountains; to institute
and prosecute proceedings for ‘restraining and preventing the pollution
of the river Tame, and of any of the tributaries thereof, of the
streams at Witton, Plant’s Brook, and Whitacre, and of all other rivers
and streams from which the water supply of the borough is obtained.’

14.--Improvement Committee.--“To receive representations from the
Medical Officer of Health with regard to unhealthy areas within the
borough, and to submit schemes thereon. To conduct the business arising
out of the orders granted under the Artisans’ Dwellings Act, with all
the powers thereby vested in the Council, excepting that agreements
for sales of land, and for the grant of leases for terms longer than
fourteen years, shall be provisional only, until confirmed by the
Council, and that no new street shall be laid out, or any existing
street widened, until approved by the Council.

15.--Art Gallery Purchase Committee.--“To have the expenditure of
£10,000, given by Messrs. Tangye, and of the amounts subscribed in
addition thereto, in the purchase of objects of art for the Art Gallery
of the Borough.

16.--Museum and School of Art Committee.--“To carry out the powers
of the Consolidation Act with reference to the erection of a School
of Art, and to superintend the arrangements and completion of the Art
Gallery.” This Committee has the charge of the School of Art, and is
also empowered to manage the Corporation Art Gallery and Museums.

With the exceptions undermentioned, these committees consist of eight
members each. The exceptions are--the Lunatic Asylums Committee (eleven
members), the Free Libraries Committee (ten members of the Council
and six members elected by the Council outside its own body), the Art
Gallery Purchase Committee (consisting of the Free Libraries Committee
and nine other members); the Museum and School of Art Committee, which
consists of eight members appointed for life by the Society of Arts
and School of Art; and the General Purposes Committee, which consists
of one member (usually the chairman) elected by each of the committees
of the Council. The mayor, by virtue of his office, is a member of all

The Town Council is also invested with a share of the management of
the chief educational institutions of the town, with the exception of
the School Board. It appoints eight Governors (holding office for six
years) on the Board of King Edward the Sixth’s Grammar School; five
members (holding office for life) on the Trust of Sir Josiah Mason’s
College; and four Governors (appointed annually) on the Council of
the Midland Institute, the Mayor for the time being being also a
Governor of the Institute, by virtue of his office. It also appoints
representative Governors on the governing bodies of Lench’s Trust, and
several other charities, and further appoints representative Guardians
of the Birmingham Proof House, for the proving of fire-arms.

The progress of Birmingham since the establishment of local
representative government is exhibited in the following table:--

                             1838.        1884.
  Population                170,000      421,000
  Parliamentary Elections     7,300       63,718
  Burgesses                   5,023       74,167
  Rateable Value           £407,000   £1,563,000
  Rated Tenements            39,000       98,787
  Death Rate, 1842 to 1851 yearly average, 24.96
       ”      1872 ”  1881       ”         23.25
       ”      1882 ”  1884       ”         21.6




It can fairly be said that there is probably no town in England which
possesses a more complete educational system than Birmingham. This
system has been no effect of a pre-conceived design, but has grown up,
piece by piece, in the stress of the life of a great manufacturing
centre, where people of leisure may be counted on the fingers of one
hand. All the more, probably, it has been constantly and definitely
adapting itself to the needs of the locality. The boast is at any rate
a just one, that in this busy population the road is clear, clear that
is of all artificial obstructions, clearer far than in many a more
polished and cultivated society, for a boy to rise from the gutter to
the University, or to eminence in any science or art.

=Foundation of the Grammar School.=--King Edward’s School owes its
origin to an institution more than a century and a half older than
itself. The Gild of the Holy Cross, the earliest record of which is
to be found in a writ of Richard II., July 10, 1392, was a body which
concerned itself, not of course with education, but with functions
partly religious and partly quasi-municipal. It possessed a Gild
Hall, a building of wood and plaster, standing at a distance from the
town on the south side of the highway to Hales Owen, now New Street.
In 1547 its possessions were seized by the King, and they continued
in the Crown until 1552, when Edward VI., upon the petition of the
inhabitants, gave them back to the town for the maintenance of a Free
Grammar School, for the instruction of children in grammar. The clear
yearly value of these lands was then £21,[2] and they were assigned
to William Symmons, gent., Richard Smallbrook, Bailiff, and 18 other
inhabitants, “to hold by fealty only, in free soccage” on condition of
an annual payment at Michaelmas of £1 (apparently commuted in 1810 for
£25. 15s. 6d.). These twenty assignees were to hold their position for
life, and all vacancies by death or removal were to be filled up by
co-optation. In the first instance they were to be inhabitants of the
manor of Birmingham, but the restriction was modified in 1830. They
were to nominate a Pedagogue and a Sub-pedagogue, to whose support the
revenues were to be exclusively employed; and they were permitted to
acquire further revenues to an amount not exceeding £20 per annum.

FIRST STATUTES.--More than one hundred years later, Oct. 20, 1676,
the Governors issued their first statutes. No tenant of school
property might be a Governor. The house, then occupied by the chief
schoolmaster, with a barn and croft in New Street,[3] a close called
the Lower Leasowe or Broom close, in the “foreign” of Birmingham, and
the pit on the lower side of the Leasowe, were appropriated to the use
of himself and his successors for ever; while the usher’s house, with
the garden, use of the pump, and other appurtenances, a barn and croft
in New Street, and Kimberley’s croft in Moor Street, were similarly
appropriated to the usher. The salaries of the chief master and usher
were to be £68. 15s. 0d. and £34. 6s. 8d. respectively. There were
appointed also a chief master’s assistant; an English master, to teach
in a distinct school fifty boys[4] to read English; and a scrivener,
to teach twenty boys to write and cast accounts. The first two were
to be unmarried, but the Governor reserved the power of allowing the
scrivener to marry. £30 per annum was allowed for repairs to the
school and masters’ houses, payment of dues, etc. Another statute
permitted the Governors, when their funds allowed, “to set out to Poore
Tradesmen, when they come out of their apprenticeship, or others who
want stock to manage their trade, £10 a piece, _gratis_, for 6 months,
on good security;” but no record exists of this having been acted upon.

SCHOLARSHIPS.--£70 a year was devoted to forming seven scholarships
of £10 a year each, tenable at any college in either University.[5]
Children from the manor had the preference; then those from adjacent
places, who had spent the last three years in the school; failing such,
the poorest and most capable, to be selected from the upper form by an
independent body.[6]

At the end of the reign of Charles II., the charter was surrendered to
the Crown, probably under a writ of “Quo warranto;” a new one dated
February 20, 1685, being granted by James II. Six years later, a decree
in chancery was obtained annulling the new charter, and restoring the
old one.

THE SECOND BUILDING.--In 1707, the old Gild Hall was removed, and
a new building erected, consisting of a centre and two wings, the
latter coming close up to the street, enclosing three sides of a small
quadrangle, comprising a dwelling house for the head master, one large
and two small school rooms, and a library. A separate house for the
second master stood behind. A large tower in the centre was “ornamented
with a sleepy figure of the donor, Edward VI., dressed in a royal
mantle, with the ensigns of the garter, holding a Bible and a sceptre.”
In 1756, a set of urns was placed on the parapet, to relieve the stiff
air of the building.[7]

ESTABLISHMENT OF BRANCH SCHOOLS.--In 1751, a step of far-reaching
importance to the town was taken. The Governors ordained that (having
regard to “the great numbers of children who, by reason of their
poverty or the negligence of their parents, were never taught to read
the English tongue, and the advantages from having many such children
taught to read English, more than could be taught in the School”) four
masters or mistresses[8] should be chosen to teach English to not more
than forty boys or girls apiece in various parts of the town, with a
salary of £15, or less in proportion to the numbers. In October, 1790,
we read that the Governors “have very laudably opened an evening school
in their rooms in Shutt Lane” (used as a _branch_ school previous to
1788), “for the instruction of forty boys in writing and accounts;
another school is also opened in Mr. Peele’s in Great Charles Street
for twenty boys.”[9]

CORRUPTION IN THE MANAGEMENT.--Up to 1824, however, the school was far
from doing its duty. The revenues disappeared in mysterious ways. The
Head Master, Mr. Cooke, gave leases as he thought proper, both as to
terms and duration. No money was granted for scholarships. The parents
paid the most exorbitant terms for books and stationery. “Altogether
the school was a nest of peculation, and greediness became so paramount
that the statue of the Royal Founder was allowed to decay and to tumble
from its time-honoured elevation into the quadrangle in front of the
school.” In 1824, an intrigue between the Governors, the Masters, and
the Bishop of Lichfield (whose consent was necessary to all changes),
to move the school from the town, and make it select, was frustrated by
the vigorous action of the inhabitants, and a commission was appointed
by the Court of Chancery to carry out a thorough investigation into
the conduct of the school. In 1825 the Master was ordered to draw up a
scheme for its future establishment, and to report whether it should be
rebuilt; and in 1828 it was further referred to him to enquire whether
the old site or a new one should be chosen, and how the money required
should be raised.

THE BILL OF 1830-1.--In May, 1830, after a prolonged struggle of
the Governors and Master against the people, a bill was presented
to parliament to enable the Governors to build a new school, to
raise £50,000 for the purpose, and to regulate the school according
to a scheme approved by Chancery. It was vehemently opposed by the
Dissenters, on the clause directing that “no person shall be elected
a governor who is not a member of the Established Church of England,”
and was thrown out on the third reading in the Lords, but passed in
the following year, the obnoxious clauses having been removed. In the
first place, the school was to be rebuilt on the old site, at a cost
of £30,000, and all branches of an English education, in addition to
the dead languages, were to be taught. No boy was to be admitted under
eight years of age, or retained after nineteen (no limits of age had
existed hitherto); and boys, not sons of inhabitants, were to pay
fees. In the second place, a new school was to be built distinct from
the Grammar School, for the teaching of modern languages; while four
branch schools for the free education of boys and girls of the humbler
classes were to be erected before 1840, £1,000 being spent upon each.
Ten exhibitions, each of £50 per annum, were created, Birmingham boys
taking precedence. Ratepayers, though non-resident, might be governors,
provided they were not tenants of school property, and attended once in
two years. The accounts were to be published yearly, and there was also
to be an annual examination of the school.

THE PRESENT BUILDING.--The new building was erected from the designs of
Mr. Charles Barry, the architect of the Houses of Parliament. The style
is the latest pure Gothic in England, that which prevailed immediately
before the commencement of the 16th century. “The school is entered by
a spacious porch, highly ornamented: two large apartments, with oak
pannelled walls and ceilings, are the school room for the commercial
school;[10] the classical school is 120 feet long, 45 high, 30 wide,
with a lofty angular roof, supported by a series of magnificent obtuse
angled arches of the Tudor style. At the end, where the chair of the
Head Master is placed, is a handsome lofty oak carved screen. The
Second Master’s chair is opposite to this, and the Usher’s chairs are
on the sides. There is a library and a fine bust of Edward VI. by

It was not until 1836 that the Governors were able to carry out
actively the provisions of the Act of 1831. A fresh Act in 1837 amended
the former one by repealing the power to build a separate modern
school, which it was now arranged should be carried on in the premises
of the Grammar School. The new building had cost £67,000, instead of
£30,000; and the excess was to be defrayed out of the £50,000 mentioned
in the Act of 1831. By the scheme approved in Chancery, in 1838,
masters were ordered to be appointed during that year in elementary
literature, geography, elements of composition, sacred and profane
history, mathematics, natural philosophy, writing, and arithmetic;
French and German masters in 1839 and 1840; and Spanish and Italian
when advisable. Temporary lecturers might also be employed, and a
visitation of the school was to take place once a year. A branch
school was in progress in Aston Street, in 1837, and a second was
proposed in Cottage Lane, near the Sandpits. Mr. E. Oxenbould and
Miss A. Corbett were elected master and mistress of two others in the
Parade, in August, 1838; and a fourth for boys, was opened in Meriden
Street, on April 10, 1839. These branch schools, the history of which
it is difficult to make out clearly, were for the time regulated by
the statute of 1852, which established four schools, Gem Street,
Edward Street, Meriden Street, and Bath Row, accommodating altogether
510 boys, from 8 to 14 years of age, and 490 girls from 7 to 13. The
children were nominated by the Governors, and examined for admission
by the Head Master, who had entire control of these schools, visited
them once a month, and made an annual report on their condition to the
Governors. A general English and religious education was given; the
boys learning in addition bookkeeping and the elements of geometry, and
the girls, knitting and plain needlework.

In 1861 it was ordered that the second master should have the general
supervision of the English school, under the direction of the head
master, who retained in his hands the admission and promotion of
scholars, and most other matters of importance.

DISCONTENT IN THE TOWN.--Meanwhile serious discontent had arisen
with the constitution of the body of governors. By the original
charter it was laid down that they should be “twenty of the more
discreet inhabitants.” But, by the operation of the method of
co-optation in filling up vacancies, the following state of things,
as given by Mr. T. H. Green, one of the assistant commissioners
of 1864, had arisen. “The Board has fairly represented the upper
or more select section of society in Birmingham, so far as this
section is politically conservative and attached to the established
Church. It has been necessarily antagonistic to the Town Council,
and careless or contemptuous of local politics. To belong to it has
been a certain social distinction. Social and municipal distinction
have not coincided, and hence the Board has been an object of public
animosity, irrespectively of the manner in which it has exercised its
functions.”[11] And this it still more strongly put in the report of
the Commission. “No dissenter, within the memory of man, has been a
governor; till recently no one of liberal politics has been a governor;
no mayor of the town has till the present year been a governor;
no member of the borough except one, a conservative; not one Town

Abortive attempts were made in 1831, 1842, and 1861, to introduce the
Town Council element; and in 1864, after much newspaper agitation,
signalised especially by the letters of “Historicus,”[12] a grammar
school Reform Association was formed, which, in 1865, in conjunction
with the Town Council, endeavoured in vain to induce the Governors
to surrender the principle of co-optation. Both appealed to the
Endowed Schools Commissioners, who proposed that there should be 21
governors, of whom 10 should be chosen by the Town Council, and the
rest by co-optation; and that for the future free education should be
given only to those who had passed a competitive examination. In 1868,
however, the Town Council resolved to demand that all the governors
should be elected from their body, a demand they repeated in 1872 (in
answer to a slight modification by the Commissioners of the above
scheme). They also objected to the proposed entrance and tuition fees.

THE NEW SCHEME.--Finally, in 1875, the Charity Commissioners proposed
the scheme in a great measure now in force.[13] There were to be 21
governors, of whom eight were to be nominated by the Town Council, and
four by Oxford, Cambridge, and London Universities, and the Teachers
on the foundation; the remainder by the governors themselves. Those
nominated by the Town Council were to serve for six years, those by
the Universities and Teachers for seven: all were to be eligible for
reappointment. Boys were to enter the school by competitive examination
in two classes, (1) free foundation scholars; (2) those paying entrance
and tuition fees.[14] This scheme was vehemently but unsuccessfully
contested by the Town Council. All efforts to move the Charity
Commissioners were unavailing. When at length it reached the Commons,
on March 5th, 1878, Mr. Bright, supported by the other Borough members,
Mr. Chamberlain, and Mr. Muntz, moved its rejection; but the motion
was defeated by a majority of 59, in a house of 199, and the scheme
received the royal assent on March 16th.

Immediately previous to 1878, the schools on the foundation were (1)
The Grammar School (Classical, English, and Lower) with 584 boys:
(2) the Branch Elementary Schools with 607 boys and 554 girls.[15] A
great development was now arranged for. There were now to be (1) a
High School for Boys up to the age of 19, with preparation for the
Universities; (2) a Middle School for Boys to age of 16, when Latin,
at least one modern language, natural science, and drawing, were to
be taught. (3) An Upper School for Girls. (4) The existing branch
Elementary Schools, or “Lower Middle” School for children to age of 14,
teaching all subjects included in the possible curriculum of the best
public Elementary Schools[16] though reaching a far higher standard
than is there obtained. The necessity for the head and second masters
being in Orders was done away with; the religious teaching was to
be undoctrinal, and there was to be an emphatic conscience clause:
no master might hold any benefice or cure of souls, nor might he in
future,[17] without the express permission of the Governors, take
boarders. The jurisdiction of the Master of the Middle School was
increased, though supreme authority in matters of discipline was still
reserved to the Head Master. Provision was made for the subdivision of
the Middle School and the Upper Girls’ School, when desirable, and for
the establishment of evening schools.

SCHOLARSHIPS were arranged as follows:--(1) Foundation Scholarships
in all the Schools, the holders of which received education free. The
number of these was not to exceed a third of the total number in each
school. Half of those given in the Lower Middle Schools were restricted
to scholars attending Public Elementary Schools within the Borough, for
not less than two consecutive years immediately preceding admission,
and a third of the remainder were offered for competition among the
candidates for admission; the rest being competed for by scholars
already in the School. (2) King Edward VI. Scholarships, viz.: annual
payments to deserving scholars while at the school, to an amount not
less than £200 a year; the value of each to be not more than £25 a
year _plus_ tuition fees. (3) Besides the James Charities exhibitions
of £50 a year at Oxford or Cambridge, £400 a year was to be given for
exhibitions at either of the Universities, to scholars of at least two
years standing in the High School; and £200 for exhibitions tenable at
any educational institution for boys or girls at either High or Middle
School. All these scholarships were to be gained by competition.[18]

In the competitive examination for entrance, preference was to be
given to boys and girls resident within ten miles of Birmingham.

DEVELOPMENT OF 1883.--In 1883, the final step in development was taken.
It was felt that the “Lower Middle” Schools, were now doing work which
largely overlapped that of the Middle School, and the consent of the
Charity Commissioners was obtained to the following change. These
Schools were converted into Schools of the same grade as the “Middle”
School of the 1878 scheme, (1) The Girls’ School at Meriden street
had been transferred to Camp hill, in 1881, and a Boys’ School was
now erected on the same site. (2) The Proprietary School at the Five
Ways was absorbed into the foundation, and the staff of the old Middle
School, hitherto domiciled at New Street, was transferred to improved
buildings there, the boys from the Bath Row School also being taken
in. The _pupils_ from the old Middle School were dispersed throughout
the various Boys’ Schools now opened. (3) This enabled the provision
of 1878 for a High School for Girls to be carried out[19] in the New
Street Buildings thus left vacant. (4) A new school for Boys and Girls
was erected in Albert Road, Aston, to which the scholars from Gem
Street were transferred. In 1882, the Boys Schools at Edward Street,
Meriden Street, and Bath Row were closed. Thus, at the present time,
the Schools under the foundation are--High Schools for Boys and Girls
at New Street; Grammar Schools for Boys at the Five Ways, Boys and
Girls at Aston and Camp Hill, Girls at Summer Hill and Bath Row. The
admission fee is at the High School, 10/-, and at the Grammar Schools,
2/6; the annual tuition fee at the High Schools, £9; at the Grammar
Schools, £3.

Among the numerous honours gained at the Universities since 1800
should be mentioned the following:--at _Cambridge_, 8 chancellor’s
medallists, and 10 university scholars; 6 senior classics, 28 first
class-men in the classical tripos, and 6 first class-men in the moral
science tripos; 35 wranglers: at _Oxford_, 8 university scholars, 5
first class-men _in Literis Humanioribus_, 11 in classical moderations,
and 2 _in Disciplinis Mathematicis et Physicis_. The present Archbishop
of Canterbury, one Bishop (Lightfoot), and one Regius Professor of
Divinity (Westcott), are also old Birmingham boys. During the past few
years the school has also gained high and numerous distinctions at
London University, Queen’s College (Birmingham), and the Mason Science

LIST OF THE HEAD MASTERS from the earliest date now known:--_circa_
1650, John Barton; 1654, Nathaniel Brooksby; 1685, John Hickes, M.A.;
1694, James Parkinson; 1722, John Hansted; 1726, Edward Mainwaring;
1746, John Wilkinson; 1759, Thomas Green; 1766, John Brailsford;
1775, Thomas Price; 1797, John Cooke; 1830, Francis Jeune (afterwards
Dean of Jersey, Master of Pembroke College, Oxford, and Bishop
of Peterborough); 1838, James Prince Lee (afterwards Bishop of
Manchester); 1848, Edwin Hamilton Gifford, Archdeacon of London; 1862,
Charles Evans; 1872, A. R. Vardy. It should also be mentioned that
in 1830, the second master was the Rev. Rann Kennedy, father of the
celebrated Head Master of Shrewsbury, himself a classic of the highest

=Queen’s College.=--The story of Queen’s College is an interesting
record of mingled success and failure; of success where it set about
doing much needed work, and of failure where it appeared to be placing
itself in antagonism to the prevailing spirit and influences of the

The formation of a School of Medicine and Surgery for Birmingham and
the Midland Counties was suggested in 1828 by Mr. Sands Cox, who had
made a diligent inspection of all the chief medical schools at home and
abroad; and it was immediately carried out by the help of Dr. Johnstone
and the unstinted liberality of Dr. Warneford. Lectureships in various
branches of Medicine were at once established, and in 1830 a Museum
and Library were fitted up. From 1836 to 1843 the new Institution was
known as “The Birmingham Royal School of Medicine and Surgery,” the
royal patronage having been obtained in the former year. But in 1843
a Royal Charter of Incorporation was granted to it under the title of
“The Queen’s College, at Birmingham.” By the munificent endowments of
Dr. Warneford,[20] the Governors were soon enabled to widen the scope
of the college. Departments were created for literature, science, and
art, and for instruction in the doctrines and duties of Christianity
according to the Church of England. Queen’s Hospital was founded with
a chaplaincy, also endowed with £1,000 by Dr. Warneford, who, in
addition, appears to have borne almost the whole expense of the College
Chapel. An arrangement was now made whereby the London University
admitted students of the college for the degrees of Bachelor and
Doctor of Medicine, and, upon the college Certificate, for B.A., M.A.,
B.C.L., and D.C.L. The exclusively Church of England character of the
college and all concerned with it was untiringly insisted upon by its
promoters. A chapel was established with daily services at which the
attendance was compulsory. By the supplemental charter of 1847 it was
laid down that the Lord Bishop of the Diocese was to be the visitor;
the Principal, who was to be a Nobleman, or one of the Hon. Governors,
must also belong to the Church of England. The Vice-President must
be a dignitary of the Church near Birmingham: all the classical,
mathematical, and medical tutors must also be churchmen. The feelings
which prompted these rigorous regulations are concisely expressed
in a letter of Dr. Warneford to Mr. Sands Cox in 1849, in which he
says, “to guard against the subtle designs of the Jesuits, and the
insidious intrusion of malignant dissenters, imperatively requires much
deliberation!” From a second supplemental charter of 1851, it appears
that Dr. Warneford had given £4,400, increased in 1852 by £6,500, for
a Professorship of Pastoral Theology; and £3,500, increased in 1852 by
£2,500, for a Wardenship, the holder of which must necessarily be a
clergyman. All resident students were to be members of the Church, and
attendance at Chapel service was compulsory.

There can be little doubt that the attempt to erect an exclusively
Church of England College in a town in which dissent was overwhelmingly
predominant was a leading cause of the failure which awaited the

The affairs of the college were by the original charter to be conducted
by a council of eighteen, of whom twelve were to be elected by the
first body of Governors, and two were to be Professors elected from
their own body; the Principal, Vice-Principal, Treasurer, and Dean of
the Faculty completed the number. Vacancies in the council were to be
filled up by co-optation, and vacancies in the Professorial staff by
the council from a list supplied by the Professors. By the supplemental
charter of 1847, the Principal and Council were constituted one
body politic and corporate, and were allowed to acquire property of
an annual value not exceeding £2,500, and the same amount for the
hospital. The council was also greatly widened by twelve _ex-officio_
Governors, of whom two were members of the council of the hospital,
which was represented also by the senior Physician and senior Surgeon;
the others were the Lord-Lieutenant and High Sheriff of Warwickshire,
the Dean of Worcester, Archdeacon of Coventry, the Mayor of the
borough, the High Bailiff of the Manor, and the Rectors of St. Martin’s
and St. Philip’s.

To this body of _ex-officio_ governors was entrusted the appointment
of the Warden, who later became the real ruler of the college, all
matters of general organisation and discipline, and all religious
duties, being in his hands. The council was further widened by the
admission of two members of the Institute of Mechanical Engineers,
and two each from the Birmingham Architectural and Law Societies. An
east wing was added to the college, for engineering and architecture,
containing lecture rooms and an engineering workshop. A three years’
course and the passing of two public examinations constituted the
requirements for the degree of C.E. of Queen’s College. A Department of
General Literature was formed, Dr. Warneford endowing it in 1852 with
£2,000. A full collegiate system was established for this department,
with resident, and later non-resident students, at which a three years’
course was to be passed. The subjects of study were to be Greek, Latin,
Mathematics, Logic, Modern Languages, History, Civil Engineering,
Natural, Political, and Moral Philosophy, and the doctrines of the
Church of England; the subjects selected having particular reference
to the requirements for the examination of the University of London.
A Junior Department was also established in or about 1851, for a
two years’ preparatory course with collegiate discipline. The whole
constitution of the college was, however, codified by the “Rules
and Regulations” of 1857; by which it appears that these somewhat
ambitious views, pointing to the establishment of a University, had
become modified. The design of the college, as now laid down, was “to
provide instruction for young men intending to engage in one or other
of the following professions:--(1) Medicine and Surgery; (2) Civil
Architecture and Engineering; (3) Theology (with a view to ordination);
and any other professional study which may from time to time be
added.[21] This instruction is combined with a system of collegiate
training and moral discipline according to the religious principles of
the English schools and colleges connected with the Church of England,
and with so much of the ordinary branches of a liberal education, in
a department of arts and general literature, as may be properly given
in subordination and in reference to such special studies.” For the
collegiate education the inclusive fees were to be £75 a year.

There can be little doubt that this idea of creating a resident
University in Birmingham was the result of mistaken, though religious,
zeal. For the deep and earnest feelings which prompted it we must
refer to the record of the meeting of April 20, 1843, contained in Mr.
Sands-Cox’s _Annals of Queen’s College_, published in 1873. But the
conditions of life in the town were not favourable, and the scheme
broke down through its own weight. Resident students there were,
indeed, in small numbers; but the pecuniary loss which they caused to
the college was considerable, and in 1873 that part of the scheme from
which, thirty years before, so much had been hoped, was declared not
to be “an essential part of the College,” and was allowed to lapse.
Lord Lyttelton, the President, in a letter written in December, 1873,
strongly, though reluctantly, urged this step. As strongly, too, he
urged that the theological department should be discontinued. “The more
simply and singly the college can henceforth be limited to the objects
of a place of instruction for medical students, the better and more
likely it is to attain those objects. The hopes that the college might
become a University, with the consequent attempt to engraft upon it
Faculties of Arts, Law, and others, are now, as I fear, mere dreams of
the past.”

Meanwhile the work of the college appears for some years to have been
conducted with considerable vigour, and a certain success. Gradually,
however, whether from bad management, or from the inherent faults of
the constitution, it began to decay, and then its decline was rapid.
In 1863, an appeal was put out to relieve it from a debt of nearly
£4,000; and in 1864, its condition fell under the eyes of the Charity
Commissioners. As the result of their enquiry “it appeared in effect
that the college had fallen into a state of decay, and was on the verge
of bankruptcy; that the buildings were suffering from want of funds
for repairs, and the students diminishing, and that the college could
not be made effective and answer the purpose for which it was founded,
without the interference of the Court of Chancery, and that the
present constitution of the said college was defective.” Accordingly,
in February, 1867, a scheme was ordered to be drawn up for the future
management, approved by the Master of the Rolls, May 7, 1867, and
confirmed by “The Queen’s College, Birmingham, Act.” The council was
henceforth to consist of the President, Vice-President, Warden, and
twelve others. No condition of churchmanship was attached to the last
named. All vacancies were to be filled up, no longer by co-optation,
but by the annual meetings. Officers of the college might serve on the
Council, but no one who was concerned in the profits of any work done
or materials provided for the college. The three original departments,
theology, medicine, and arts,[22] were maintained, the Warden to be
the resident head of all three. Architecture and engineering were
dropped out. Until the debt was cleared off, the offices of Warden and
Professor of Theology were to be held by the same person, afterwards
by different persons, the Professor to be appointed by the President,
Vice-President, and Visitor. There were to be also Professors of
Classics and Mathematics and a Medical Tutor. The rights of the church
were further secured by a clause referring all questions touching her
doctrine and discipline to the President and Vice-President, and in
the last resort to the Visitor, whose decision was to be final. With
the obvious exceptions, however, of the Warden and Theology Professor,
all religious tests on the members of the staff were abolished.
Methods were laid down for the payment of the existing debt. A clause,
specially declaring that the natural history and anatomy museum were
to be preserved in the college, along with the models of machinery and
philosophical apparatus, and were to be open to properly qualified
persons free of charge, was violated in 1870 by their being removed to
Aston Hall, the rooms thus set free being given up to the School of
Art. Finally, the college and hospital were entirely separated, the
latter being compelled to repay Warneford’s endowment of £1,000.

During 1873 and 1874, evening classes in connection with the Arts
Department were started “to afford to young men who have had a good
education, and who desire to maintain and improve their acquirements,
an opportunity of doing this at a small expense.” Morning Classes for
ladies in connection with the Birmingham Higher Education Association
were also attempted. The Arts Department of the College itself appears
to have died a natural death in 1872: in 1871 it contained “three or
four students preparing for admission into the Theological or Medical

The Theological Department also has led a languishing existence. In
1874 it contained but 11 students[23] and from then until 1882 the
number fluctuated between 11 and 23. Since then it has again been
declining. The report of 1885 laments this fact, but gives no figures.
An attempt has been made in this year to raise the standard of this
department by appointing the Cambridge Preliminary Examination as the
final examination of the College.

It is by the Medical School, its original _raison d’être_, that
Queen’s College has a distinct claim upon Birmingham and the Midlands.
This part of the scheme has always flourished and still is flourishing;
and it is justly regarded as one of the most important provincial
schools of medicine in the kingdom. It started with almost its full
development from the beginning. Thus in 1828 the plan of lectures
included anatomy, physiology, and pathology, materia medica and medical
botany, chemistry, and pharmacy, principles and practice of physic
and surgery, midwifery and other diseases of women and children. In
1845, we find this list increased by the division of anatomy into
“General and Surgical,” and “Descriptive and Comparative.” Chemistry
also was added. In 1874, the Chair of Pathology, which had dropped out
of the original list, was recreated, and an additional Professorship
of Physiology and Anatomy appointed. In 1880, following the Act for
the Registration of Dentists, a School of Dental Medicine and Surgery
was formed, and this was recognised in 1882 by the Royal College of
Surgeons. The lectures on anatomy and chemistry were recognised as
qualifying for the degrees of the University of Edinburgh. In 1885, the
Borough Lunatic Asylum was associated with the College, students being
now at liberty to obtain instruction in lunacy and mental diseases.
Summer dissections were also carried on for the first time in this year.

In 1882, consequent upon the organisation of the Mason Science College,
an important change was made. It was felt that if both institutions
carried on, within a stone’s throw of each other, parallel courses of
lectures, great waste of power would ensue. It was therefore arranged
that the lectures on chemistry, botany, and physiology should in
future be delivered by the Professors of Mason College, acting as
lecturers for Queen’s College, and delivering courses of lectures
suited to the requirements of medical students. In this way not only
was the overlapping avoided, but the endowments of Queen’s College
were materially relieved, while the resources of the Mason College
magnificent library were also available to the students of the former.
The Birmingham Medical School was now placed in a position of equality
with the richest and best organised Colleges in the United Kingdom.

It should be mentioned that in 1879, in addition to the already
existing Ingleby Scholarships, two new classes of entrance scholarships
were created by the Council, the Sydenham and Queen’s. The former
were to be given by the vote of the Council to the orphan sons of
legally qualified medical men; the Queen’s were to be awarded by
examination to sons of medical men; the sons of former students having
the preference in both cases. At the present time the college contains
considerably more than 100 students, that being the normal number. That
its condition, so far as medicine is concerned, is one of vigorous
vitality, may be gathered from the following extract from the last
Report. “The students have passed examinations at five Universities, in
six cases gaining distinction, one being the highest attainable. At the
Primary Examination for the Membership of the Royal College of Surgeons
of England, thirty students passed in one or both branches. At the
above mentioned examinations there were only four complete rejections
during the year. It must be borne in mind, also, that this result does
not accrue from careful weeding out of students by a test examination.
All students, having attended the required number of lectures, were
permitted to present themselves for examination.”

=Mason College.=--The scheme of a University at Queen’s College had,
as we have seen, broken down through the inherent defects of its
design. We come now to the establishment of another University, which
in its building, equipment, and aims, forms a worthy completion to the
educational system of the town.

Indirectly the result, no doubt, of that movement for University
extension which has characterized the last twenty years, the
establishment of this college was directly the work of one man, Sir
Josiah Mason, whose fortune had been made during sixty years’ residence
in Birmingham, and who was already a benefactor to the town through
the Orphanage and Almshouses he had established at Erdington. The
considerations which prompted him to this noble foundation are thus
expressed by himself:--“When I was a young man--it is so long ago that
while still living in this generation I can recall the memories of a
time long past--there were no means of scientific teaching open to
the artisan classes of our manufacturing towns; and those who, like
myself, would gladly have benefited by them were compelled to plod
their weary way, under disadvantages and through difficulties of which
our young men of this day can form no adequate idea. Schools at that
time were few and poor, there were no institutions of popular teaching,
no evening classes to which youths might go after their day’s work was
ended.” At eighty years of age, therefore, he determined to provide
“enlarged means of scientific instruction, on the scale required by the
necessities of this town and district, and upon terms which render it
easily available by persons of all classes, even the very humblest.”
Whatever was necessary for the improvement of scientific industry, and
for the cultivation of art, especially as applied to manufactures, was
to be taught; facilities were to be afforded, if desirable, for medical
instruction, and, most wisely, the door was left open for any further
development necessary to adapt the scheme to the requirements of future

The plan of the college first began to assume shape about 1868, under
the advice of Mr. G. J. Johnson, formerly Professor of Law in Queen’s
College; Mr. George Shaw, formerly Professor of Chemistry at Queen’s
College; and Mr. J. Thackray Bunce. It was not, however, until December
12, 1870, that the Foundation Deed was executed, by which Dr. Blake
and Mr. Johnson were constituted the first trustees. The Founder had
already purchased some land in Edmund Street, and an endeavour was made
to secure the ground at the corner of Edmund Street and Congreve Street
(upon which the new Liberal Club now stands); failing that the land
stretching through Edmund Street to Great Charles Street was, after
many difficulties and delays, obtained. The site contains about an acre.

In September, 1872, the six trustees required by the foundation deed
were thus nominated: Dr. Blake, Messrs. G. J. Johnson, W. C. Aitken,
J. T. Bunce, George Shaw, and Dr. Heslop; and their first meeting was
held on Feb. 23rd, 1873. The architect selected by the founder, Mr. J.
A. Cossins, had meanwhile been visiting the principal science colleges
at home and abroad; and his plans, prepared from this experience,
were approved in the autumn of 1874. On the founder’s 80th birthday,
February 25th, 1875, the first stone was laid by himself, when, in
replying to a congratulatory address, he gave an interesting sketch of
his career from the day when he cobbled shoes in Kidderminster, to the
time when he became the owner of the largest pen factory in the world.
A full description of the college buildings as completed may be found
in the _Birmingham Daily Post_ for October 2nd, 1880.[24] Since that
time an important addition has been made by the erection of a series of
rooms for the Physiological department.

The Foundation Deed lays down this general statement as to the aims of
the proposed college:--

“It being understood that the institution intended to be hereby founded
is to be called Josiah Mason’s Scientific College, or Josiah Mason’s
College for the study of Practical Science, he, the said Josiah Mason,
hereby declares that his intention in founding the same is to promote
thorough systematic education and instruction specially adapted to the
practical, mechanical, and artistic requirements of the manufactures
and industrial pursuits of the midland district, and particularly the
boroughs of Birmingham and Kidderminster, _to the exclusion of mere
literary education and instruction, and of all teaching of theology
and of subjects purely theological_, which limitations the said Josiah
Mason hereby declares to be fundamental.”

The deed then provides for two courses of instruction, namely:--

1.--_Regular systematic instruction_ (to qualify students either for
the B.Sc. and D.Sc. of the University of London, or for any profession
or pursuit in which scientific knowledge can be usefully applied.)

2.--_Popular instruction_, which it is intended shall be given by
evening lectures to artisans and others who cannot attend the classes
for regular systematic instruction.

The regular instruction was to include the following:--_Mathematics_,
abstract and applied; _Physics_, mathematical and experimental;
_Chemistry_, theoretical, practical, and applied; _The Natural
Sciences_, especially geology and mineralogy, with their application
to mines and metallurgy; _Botany_ and _Zoology_; _Physiology_, with
reference to the Laws of Health; _English_, _French_, and _German
Languages_. By a subsequent deed of February 23, 1874, Anatomy, and
Greek and Latin languages, were added to the list. And by a third
deed, February 23, 1881, it is provided that (in order to qualify the
College for admission as a constituent member of the London or Victoria
Universities) regular systematic instruction may at the discretion of
the Trustees include _all such other subjects_ as the Trustees may for
the time being judge necessary or desirable for the benefit of the
students. Similar liberty to vary the course of instruction, either
by the addition of fresh subjects, or discontinuance of any subject
previously taught, according to the discretion of the Trustees, is
given in the case of the Popular Instruction.

Moreover, once in every fifteen years the provisions of the deed may
be varied, so as better to adapt the regulations to the circumstances
of the time. It is impossible to exaggerate the importance of this
provision, which formed the subject of the peroration of a beautiful
speech by Prof. Max Müller at the opening ceremony, which ended
thus:--“Let him rest assured that such faith is never belied, and that
rising and coming generations, while applauding his munificence, will
honour and cherish his memory for nothing so much as for that one
clause in which he seems to say, like a wise father, ‘Children, I trust
you.’” (College Calendar, 1880-81.)

One class of subjects alone is emphatically excluded. It is “provided
always, that no lectures, or teaching, or examination, shall be
permitted in the institution upon theology, or any question or subject
in its nature purely theological, or upon any question which for the
time being shall be the subject of party political controversy.” And
this condition “the said Josiah Mason doth declare to be fundamental.”
Similarly it is declared to be a fundamental condition that “no
principal, vice-principal, professor, teacher, or other officer,
servant, or assistant of the institution shall be required to make any
declaration as to, or to submit to any test whatever of their religious
or theological opinions, or be presumed to be qualified or disqualified
by any such religious or theological opinions, but shall be appointed
solely for their fitness to give the scientific or artistic instruction
required from them.” The contrast with Queen’s College was complete.

Fees were to be paid by students, the admission of whom is subject to
no limitation whatever in the popular classes.[25] The only limitation
as regards the regular classes is that the Trustees are to give the
preference, all other things being equal, to candidates who have
been or are inmates of the Orphanage, to the extent of not more than
one-fifth of the whole number of regular students, and thereafter to
candidates born within the borough of Birmingham and Kidderminster,
in the proportion of two Birmingham to one Kidderminster student. The
original deed provided that no student not wholly dependent for a
livelihood upon his own skill or labour, or depending upon the support
of his parents or some other person, should be admitted to the college;
and that students should not be under fourteen nor above twenty-five
years of age. By the deed of variation, December 12, 1870, the limit of
age was done away with, and the conditions above laid down were made to
apply to the remission of fees. A preliminary examination for admission
is imposed only upon students under the age of sixteen years.

In every line the deed breathes the spirit of modern Birmingham; it
contains regulations directed to a clear aim, with absolute freedom
to vary those regulations so as best, at any given time, to secure
that aim by recognising new conditions; it excludes from its scheme
no subject of useful learning; and it maintains the idea that secular
instruction is of too high a dignity to be fettered, as regards either
pupils or instructors, by theological or political considerations. In
one provision not yet noticed it recognises with equal directness, the
principle by which Birmingham has for long been pervaded, viz., that
over all the great institutions of the town, popular control ought
to be exercised. Until the death of the founder, the governing body
was to consist of six trustees; but it was ordered that after his
death the Town Council was to nominate five others. Vacancies in the
Borough Trustees were to be filled up by the Town Council; those in the
other six by the whole body. One single qualification is laid down as
fundamental for the trusteeship. The holder must be a Protestant and a

On October 1st, 1880, the College was formally opened, when a brilliant
address was delivered in the Town Hall, by Professor Huxley, before
a meeting attended by representatives of the Universities, and many
leading scientific bodies, and presided over by the Mayor; and, in
the evening of the same day took place the formal transfer of the
building by the Founder to the Trustees. “Thus was completed a work
which stands without parallel in the annals of modern education in
England, the gift of a college, amply planned, nobly built, liberally
endowed; the generous benefaction of one man, who looked for no reward
but the consciousness that, by the foundation, others would have the
means of acquiring knowledge denied by the poverty of his early life to
himself; trusting that though unblessed with children of his own, he
might, in the students of his college, leave behind him an intelligent,
earnest, industrious, and truth loving and truth seeking progeny for
many generations to come.” During the first year of work, 53 students
attended: in 1884-85, 523, of whom 199 were in the evening classes.

During the session, 1882-3, the college began receiving a grant from
the science and art department, in aid of the instruction of a limited
number of teachers engaged in science teaching. During the same year,
by arrangement with the School Board, the Council granted six Wright
Memorial Scholarships, to enable scholars from Board Schools to go
through a science course at Mason College.[26] These scholarships are
tenable for three years, and relieve the scholars of the payment of all

The Mason College Union, formed with the sanction of the council, was
now opened.[27] The circumstances attending the admission of students
from Queen’s College to certain classes will be found detailed in the
section treating of that institution. The completion of the scheme
necessitated the creation of a new Chair of Botany. In the early part
of the session, the council constituted the Professors of the College
an Academic Board, to act generally under the superintendence of the
council in regulating and co-ordinating the various departments of the
college; the chairmanship being held by the Professors in turn. In
July, 1883, a department of Coal Mining and Colliery Management was
established, and upwards of twenty students attended, principally young
mining engineers, preparing for the government examination. During the
year courses of lectures upon education, provided by Mr. George Dixon,
were delivered by Professor Meiklejohn and Mr. H. Courthope Bowen.
During 1884, the council were enabled to fill up a gap which they had
often deplored by the creation of nine scholarships, as follows: Two
entrance scholarships of £30 each; one of £30 for students of one
year’s standing; two of £30 each for students of two years’ standing;
two of £20 each, connected with the examinations of the University of
London; and two technical scholarships of £30 each. Each of these is
tenable for one year. In the following year, Messrs. Richard and George
Tangye each created a scholarship of the annual value of £30. Free
popular lectures for artisans were given throughout the winter, the
tickets being distributed among about one hundred of the leading firms.
So much were they valued, that it was found necessary to repeat each

One of the most important and interesting features of the college is
its noble library. With this will always be connected the name of the
late Dr. Heslop, its chief benefactor, indeed, it may be said, its
maker. As early as 1882, out of its 4,869 volumes, he had contributed
3,130. On the 23rd February, 1886, the library contained 17,554 vols.
The geological museum contained at the same date 19,115 specimens.

=The Birmingham and Midland Institute= is at present educating more
than 4000 persons of both sexes and of all ranks; and this fact alone
is sufficient to show its importance. The principle upon which it
proceeds is one which at the time of its establishment was entirely
novel, though it has since been adopted in other similar institutions.
It has never professed to lay down _a priori_ a course of instruction
which it considers ought to be given; but, by supplying a want wherever
such want has been made known, it has endeavoured to adapt itself
constantly to requirements of the people which otherwise would never be
satisfied. In the words of Mr. J. H. Chamberlain, “We have never made
up our minds to teach any particular subject, unless we were convinced
that there existed outside our walls a present readiness to study it.
But, once convinced of such a desire, we have done whatever we could to
meet it.”

The Institute had its origin, strangely enough, at a time of marked
intellectual decadence in Birmingham. The existing societies, the
Philosophical Institution, the Mechanics’ Institution, and the
Polytechnic Institution, were dead or moribund. On June 10th, 1852, at
the suggestion of Mr. Arthur Ryland, a few members of the first-named
society met and appointed a committee which reported in January, 1853.
On September 6th the Town Council gave a grant of the present site,
and by an Act obtained in 1854 the Institute was incorporated. In this
Act the objects of the Institute are defined to be the “diffusion
and advancement of Science, Literature, and Art.” There were to be
two departments, (a) _General_, to provide (1) Reading and News
Rooms; (2) Libraries, Museums, a gallery of the fine arts, collection
of mining records, and other collections for scientific purposes;
(3) Lectures and meetings for discussion in the higher branches of
knowledge, (b) _Industrial_, to provide (1) classes for elementary and
progressive instruction in Mathematics and Practical Science, and such
other subjects as may seem fit to the Council of the Institute; (2)
laboratories, models, philosophical apparatus, and all other things
necessary for the objects of the Institute.[28] The Institute was to
be governed by a Council of twenty-five consisting of (1) _Official
Governors_, a President, two Vice-presidents, and a Treasurer; the head
master of King Edward’s Grammar School, the warden of Queen’s College,
the chairmen of the Committee of the Birmingham Society of Arts, and
of the government School of ornamental Art. (2) _Borough Governors_,
the Mayor and four members of the Town Council, elected annually by
that body; and (3) thirteen _Elected Governors_, viz: eleven members
of the Institute, and two students of the Industrial Department. The
President, the Vice-Presidents, and the thirteen, were to be chosen
by the members of the Institute at the annual general meeting. Casual
vacancies were to be filled up by the Council, which was to meet at
least once a month. Not less than three of the thirteen were to be
regarded as ineligible for re-election each year. Among the Presidents
will be found the men most eminent in their various branches of

A start was made in the beginning of 1854, the salary of a Science
teacher for the first year having been guaranteed by the Science
and Art department. Classes were opened in Chemistry, Physics, and
Physiology, for both sexes, and were carried on in the room of the
Philosophical Institute in Cannon Street, until 1857. On November 22nd,
1855, £10,000 having previously been subscribed to the building fund,
the first stone of the new buildings was laid by the Prince Consort.
Penny Scientific lectures were now started; and, in deference to a most
remarkable expression of opinion on the part of the artisans themselves
that they had not education sufficient to enable them to profit by
the lectures as given, Penny Lectures on elementary Mathematics and
Science were also given. In 1856 Mr. George Dawson and Mr. Sam:
Timmins volunteered to conduct an English Literature class, which they
continued for three years, and classes, also taught voluntarily, were
established in Arithmetic, Latin, French, English History, Logic,
Languages, and Thought.[29]

In 1859, a subscription of £5,000 having been raised to pay off
the debt incurred, the Institute now located in its own buildings,
founded a Chemical Society--at present the Institute Scientific
Society--members of which delivered lectures to the men in workshops,
as well as Natural History and Microscopical Societies. In the
examination by the Society of Arts in 1859, one Institute student,
C. J. Woodward, now at the head of the Chemical department of the
Institute, took the first prize in chemistry, twelve others gaining
certificates; while in 1860 both the English literature prizes were
carried off by two other students, Henry Simpson and Howard S. Pearson,
now Lecturer on English Literature at the Institute. That the right
classes were being touched is shown by the fact that 33 per cent. of
the students were artisans, 33 per cent. shopmen and clerks, and 16
per cent. women of the same ranks. In 1868 the numbers were 45, 29,
and 21 per cent. A steady increase both of students and subscribers
(the latter induced by the annual conversazione and the high quality
of the occasional lectures) took place during the following years; and
the students were stimulated by the many valuable prizes offered by
leading inhabitants and by the Central Literary Association. So crowded
had the classes now become, that it was imperative to secure further
space; and in 1873 the prospect of this was secured by a re-arrangement
of buildings and an exchange of land with the Free Libraries, £15,000
being subscribed for the alterations proposed. In the previous year
Charles Kingsley had delivered a famous presidential address, one
result of which was an anonymous gift of £2,500 to found a class in
the Laws of Health. This class was opened in October, 1873, with 400
students, and ever since that time has formed an important feature
in the Institute’s programme, branch classes in the subject being
established in 1878 in four of the Board Schools.

At the same date a new departure was made by founding branch classes
at three Board Schools in the outskirts of the borough. Of the success
of the Industrial Department up to this time we cannot do better than
quote from an article by Mr. Edwin Smith, for many years secretary to
the Institute, in the _Central Literary Magazine_ for April, 1874:--

    “It has enabled a pupil teacher from a national school to win a
    Whitworth scholarship against competitors from the universities
    and from the principal science colleges in the kingdom; a
    working rule maker to win a scholarship at one of the Royal
    Colleges of Science, and a working electro-plater to win the
    first prizes from the Society of Arts in four modern languages;
    it has sent out distinguished pupils to take part in the civil
    service of India, to conduct mining operations in America, to
    take part in the telegraphic service of Australia, to fill an
    important commercial post in Japan, to conduct the laboratory
    work in some of the largest manufactories in the country,
    to become head masters and assistant masters in our Grammar
    Schools, to help in the science teaching of the University of
    Cambridge, and to fill responsible posts on newspapers of the
    provincial press; twelve of its own teachers have been educated
    in its classes, and it has sent into the manufactories and
    workshops of the town, men who have applied to numerous useful
    purposes in their trade the knowledge which they have acquired
    within the walls of the Institute.”

During 1878 was begun the erection of the new buildings from the
designs of Mr. J. H. Chamberlain, at an estimated cost of £30,000. The
great fire of January 11th, 1879, which utterly destroyed the Free
Libraries, greatly interfered with the work, and it was not until the
summer of 1881, that the beautiful buildings fronting to Paradise
Street, were ready for occupation. The burden of the heavy debt
incurred was somewhat lightened by the prospects of a bequest, subject
to two lives, of £50,000.

Hitherto, the annual examination of the classes which did not fall
under the Science and Art Departments had been conducted by volunteers.
An endeavour was made in 1880 to induce the Senate of the London
University to undertake this work. The Senate did not see its way to
do this, but it suggested that the council should apply to the Rev.
Philip Magnus, one of the University Examiners, and later a member
of the Commission on Technical Education. Mr. Magnus undertook the
duty, and the plan has been retained since then, the standard for
the council certificate being made as nearly as possible that of the
matriculation examinations at London. In this year was founded the
Institute Union of Teachers and Students, and it was now, too, that the
Institute gave birth to a number of local institutes, environing the
town in a continuous chain, formed on the lines of the parent body,
and serving local requirements.[30] During 1882, a musical section
was begun, with 157 members, and an instrumental class with 500. A
still more noteworthy movement was the establishment of a class in
practical metallurgy. During the following year this had developed
into an excellent laboratory, furnaces, balance room, fume chambers,
and benches for twenty-three students; the class being under the
care of Mr. A. H. Hiorns. A new class was also formed in iron and
steel, in connection with the City and Guilds of London Institute.
The council co-operated, too, in organizing a course of lectures on
Health by eminent medical men in the town, similar to those delivered
in Edinburgh and elsewhere, and these have since been an annual
institution. During this fruitful year were founded the Institute
Magazine, and the Debating, Dramatic, and Literary Sections. An
Archæological Section, still in full vitality, had been organized as
early as 1870, and continues to issue quarto volumes of Transactions,
containing the Papers read, with original illustrations and records of
excursions to local and other places of archæological interests.

Fruitful, however, though this year of 1883 was, it stands out as one
peculiarly sad in the Institute history, for during it took place the
sudden death of Mr. John Henry Chamberlain, who as Hon. Secretary
since 1865, had continuously devoted himself to its interest. In the
words of the Report for 1883, “Under his guidance the Institute had
undergone development which is truly marvellous … he had genius to see
the needs of the time, and the direction in which the Institute could
be developed to meet them.… The wisdom of his counsel, the extent
and variety of his knowledge, the grace of his eloquence, and the
wonderful charm of his personal presence, made him a colleague whom it
is impossible to replace. He expired almost in the act of serving the

During 1884, a meteorological observatory was formed at the Monument,
in Monument Road, an anemometer being erected there at the cost
of Mr. Follett Osler, and the Birmingham Chess Club became a new
section of the Institute. In 1885, the School of Art was removed
from the Institute Buildings, where it had hitherto found a home, to
the beautiful building in Edmund Street erected by the town for its
reception. This gave great additional space, sorely needed, for the
industrial department, and, on the initiative of Mr. G. H. Kenrick, it
was at once utilised, at a cost of £2,000 (guaranteed by Mr. Kenrick)
for a great expansion of the metallurgical classes. An engineering
workshop was formed, and the laboratory greatly increased, so that
the Institute now possesses--and it is perhaps its most interesting
feature--the most extensive metallurgical school in Great Britain,
one indeed well-nigh worthy of the position of Birmingham in the
manufacturing world. In this year too, classes in singing and in the
practice of several musical instruments were formed, the violin class
being particularly successful. And a teachers’ board was established,
from which valuable suggestions are offered to the council for
improvements in the education given to the classes.

The following figures are worth recording. In 1854, there were _one_
member[31] and 165 students; in 1874, 1591 members, and 2179 students;
in 1886, 1927 members, and (in the central and branch classes) 4190
students, thus distributed: science, 1474; language and literature,
1046; arithmetic, 324; matriculation, 13; music, 1233; ladies 100.

=Elementary Education.=--The work performed by the School Board
may be best realized from the following figures. Previous to the
passing of the Elementary Education Act, 1870, there were within
the Borough public elementary schools with accommodation for 28,983
children, and shortly afterwards further accommodation was made for
1,476; so that in round numbers there were places for about 30,000
children. There were also the so called elementary schools on the King
Edward VI.’s foundation, noticed under that head, and a few private
adventure schools. The official enquiry of 1871 showed, however, that
accommodation was then necessary for 55,000, so that even then the town
was scarcely more than half supplied. But, further, this half supply
was but half utilized, since the average attendance in the schools was
only about 16,000.

During the fifteen years of its existence the School Board has
provided thirty-two large sets of new buildings, most of them with
extensive playgrounds, and it also occupies three sets of school
premises which are rented. The total accommodation provided in
these schools is sufficient for 35,277 children; while that in the
Denominational Schools is now about the same as in 1871, the total
being 29,141. A few certified efficient schools accommodate 794
children; so that there is at the present date a total accommodation
of 65,212, or more than double that of 1871. Still more remarkable is
the change wrought in the average attendance. In 1871 this was 50.3
per cent. of the number on the books. In other words, out of every 100
places provided 50 were vacant. The average attendance is now 85 per

Even now the accommodation provided does not reach that required. The
population being 420,000 there should be places for one-sixth of that
number, according to the government scale, that is for 70,000. Thus the
Board is still behind-hand to the amount of 5,000 places. Moreover,
according to the average of the last eight years, the population of the
Borough is increasing at the rate of 60,000 per annum, and consequently
the accommodation required at the rate of 1,000 per annum. In other
words, the Board has to provide five new schools to catch up the
present deficit, and one school every year to keep pace with the yearly

Besides the schools whose curriculum is confined to the subjects named
in the New Code, the Board has established, upon the initiative and
in a great measure at the cost of the Chairman, George Dixon, Esq.,
M.P., a Technical School for boys in the 7th standard, which provides
an education in elementary science, machine construction, &c.; and
which is furnished with a large chemical laboratory, and an admirably
fitted lecture room, a special room for teaching technical drawing,
and a workshop in which the boys are trained to the use of tools and
to working from scale. This school, which is well worth a visit, is
in Bridge Street, five minutes’ walk from the Town Hall, in premises
handed over to the Board, rent free, and partially fitted up by Mr.

Many of the Board Schools form real architectural ornaments of the
town. They are in three stages of design, the earliest being that in
which boys, girls, and infants form separate departments, the boys and
the infants being usually on the ground floor, the girls on the floor
above the boys. In the second stage a large centre hall is surrounded
by class-rooms on the ground floor; half way to the roof runs a
gallery, from which doors open into another set of class-rooms. The
infants are on the ground floor (except in Hope Street), in a separate
part of the building; the whole school being under the supervision of a
master. In the last stage everything is on the ground floor. The latest
erected buildings of this stage are models of airiness and light. The
specimens of the three styles easiest reached and most worth seeing are
respectively Bristol Street, Icknield Street, and Stratford Road or
Foundry Road.

It should be noticed that half-time scholars are now almost unknown,
although the conditions of life would seem to point to a wide extension
of the system.

A few scholarships, far fewer than could be wished, are at the disposal
of the Board. They are of three classes, Major, Elementary Science,
and Minor. Boys who hold the Wright, Piddock, and J. H. Chamberlain
Memorial Scholarships receive £15 a year, on certain conditions, during
a two years’ course at King Edward’s School, and £25 a year, with
remittance of fees, for three years more at Mason College. Several
Elementary Science Scholarships, in connection with the Science and Art
Department, have hitherto been provided out of a fund called the Higher
Education Fund, raised for the purpose of assisting poor but deserving
scholars, by which a grant of £5 is guaranteed, with an additional £5
on passing a good examination under the Science and Art Department. It
is greatly to be regretted that the funds raised for providing Minor
Scholarships are all exhausted, except the Chamberlain and Edgbaston
Day School for Girls Trust Funds.

In the early stages of the Board’s work, when a Church majority was
elected, religious education was given in the Birmingham schools. Upon
the accession of the Liberal and Non-Conformist party to power such
education was entirely done away with. The result of frequent and
somewhat bitter controversy has been that at present a small portion of
the Bible is read each day by the head teacher without note or comment.

The Voluntary Schools have, up till quite recently, had no common
organization. There has now, however, been formed an Association of
Voluntary School Managers, under whose auspices it is proposed to
undertake some amount of inspection, and which will frame and discuss
all measures directed to their common welfare. The Chairman is the Rev.
Canon Bowlby, Rector of St. Philip’s.

=Municipal School of Art.=--[By Mr. E. R. TAYLOR, Head Master.]--The
Society of Arts and School of Art were, in June, 1885, transferred to
the Corporation under the above title. This Society was established
at a meeting held in the Public Office, Moor Street, on 7th February,
1821, at which it was resolved:--(1.) “That an Institution be
now established in Birmingham for the encouragement of arts and
manufactures, and that it be called ‘The Birmingham Society of Arts.’”
(2.) “That a Museum be formed for the reception of the most approved
specimens of sculpture, and of all such other works illustrative
of the different branches of Art as the Society may have the means
of procuring.” (3.) “That suitable accommodation be provided for
students.” A subscription list was forthwith opened, and Sir Robert
Lawley, Bart., gave in addition a valuable collection of casts from the
antique. The Museum thus formed was opened for members and students
in May, 1822, and in 1827 the first annual exhibition of pictures
was held. In 1829 the Society erected the galleries in New Street,
now occupied by the Royal Society of Artists, and in this year the
first conversazione of the Society of Arts took place. Until 1842
the Society was managed by a joint committee, composed of lay and
professional members with equal powers. The lay committee, representing
the subscribers, were desirous of furthering the original intention
of providing means for art education by applying for aid from the
Government School of Design, newly formed in London. Hitherto the
teaching had been carried on by the members of the professional, or
artists’ committee, who acted as visitors to the School for Drawing
from the Antique. The school was open on two evenings in each week, but
the average nightly attendance was only fourteen.

The professional committee demurred against these proposed changes,
and, on their being adopted by the subscribers, withdrew from the
Society, and afterwards formed the present Royal Society of Artists. In
1843, Mr. Dobson, who is now an Associate of the Royal Academy, became
the first Head Master, and the title of the Society was at this time
altered to “The Society of Arts and School of Design.”

In 1845, Mr. Heavyside succeeded Mr. Dobson, but held the office for a
year only, being in turn succeeded by Mr. Thos. Clarke. The number of
students at this time was 448.

Mr. George Wallis became Head Master in 1851, and introduced many
changes in the organization and work of the school. He resigned in
1857, Mr. D. Raimbach being his successor.

By an agreement between the Society of Artists and the Council of the
newly founded Birmingham and Midland Institute, the latter undertook to
provide double the existing accommodation for the Society of Arts in
their proposed building; and the school was transferred in the summer
of 1858 to the rooms which it continued to occupy until last year.

The record of the school from the first seems to be one of continuously
increasing success; for in 1864 the number of students had more than
doubled, being 939, including elementary and advanced classes.

In its early days the school was much indebted to the Rev. James Prince
Lee, M.A., who held the post of Chairman until he was removed to the
See of Manchester, and in more recent times to the late Mr. John Henry
Chamberlain, Chairman, and Mr. Edwin Smith, Secretary.

In 1875 the whole of the elementary teaching in the evening was
transferred to branch classes held in Board Schools.

A most generous offer was made to the school in 1876. An anonymous
donor placed the sum of £10,000 at the disposal of the Committee, with
a request that it should be chiefly, if not altogether, employed in
the improvement of the teaching department, and in the foundation of
scholarships or exhibitions.

On the resignation of Mr. Raimbach, the present Head Master (Mr.
Edward R. Taylor) was appointed in May, 1877. In the year 1880 a scheme
was initiated by a donation of £5,000 from Messrs. Richard and George
Tangye, which has resulted in the present Museum and Art Gallery, with
its noble collection of pictures and objects of industrial art, the
gifts of wealthy citizens to the town. The increasing difficulties
under which the School of Art laboured in providing room for the
education by which alone these art treasures could be made of use to
the town were not lost sight of, and in 1881 the Mayor (Mr. Richard
Chamberlain, M.P.) was enabled to announce to the Corporation that
land would be given by Mr. Cregoe Colmore, in the centre of the town,
on which to build a School of Art, and that Miss Ryland would give
£10,000, and Messrs. Richard and George Tangye would also give £10,000
towards the cost of building a School on condition that the Town
Council would undertake its management. The result of this generosity
is the beautiful building in Margaret Street, the last work of the
late Mr. J. H. Chamberlain, who had for many years acted as Chairman
of the School, and had taken the deepest interest in its success. It
may fairly claim to be one of the best schools of art ever erected.
The lighting is bright and cheerful, furnishing in this a contrast to
most of such institutions; and the accommodation, especially for the
modelling classes and those for studies bearing on design, is most
ample, and a great improvement on that given in the old premises.

In the Central and Branch Schools there are this Session 733 students,
and in the seven Branch Schools 706 students, mostly artisans. The
following are some of their occupations:--

  Architects & Assistants            41
  Art Students                       57
  Art Teachers                       15
  Artists                             7
  Brassfounders & Workers            40
  Cabinet Makers                      7
  Carpenters and Joiners             28
  Clerks and Office Boys             94
  Designers                          11
  Die Sinkers                        54
  Draughtsmen                        36
  Engineers, Fitters, and Turners    88
  Engravers, Embossers, and Chasers  49
  Glass Painters                     27
  Glass Cutters                       9
  Japanners                           5
  Jewellers & Silversmiths           37
  Lithographers                      40
  Modellers                           8
  Nail Cutters                        9
  Pattern Makers                     12
  Photographers                       6
  Teachers                          103
  Turners                             6
  Tool Makers                         6
  Watchmakers                         7
  Wood Carvers                        3

Thirty-four other trades are also represented, besides the children of

The Awards of the Science and Art Department to the school in 1877 and
in 1885, will shew the more recent progress of the school.

  1877, Medals, Prizes, and Scholarships,  110
  1885    ”       ”             ”          320
  1877, Certificates                       157
  1885         ”                           658

Of these prizes and certificates, 40 prizes and 273 certificates were
last year awarded for examinations in the advanced sections, including
painting, design, drawing from the figure, modelling the figure,
history of ornament, anatomy, etc.; the total of awards obtained by all
the 198 Schools of Art in the United Kingdom being only 205 prizes, and
1,924 certificates.

By the munificence of “the anonymous donor,” the Corporation are
enabled to offer the following free admissions and scholarships tenable
in the school for two years:--

Eighty free admissions to the Branch Schools; Fifty free admissions to
the Central Schools; Ten scholarships of £5 per annum; Two scholarships
of £20 per annum; Two scholarships of £40 per annum.




=The first Public Library, 1733=, was one which still exists, and was
founded by the Rev. W. Higgs, first Rector of St. Philip’s, who left
his Library and a sum of money for a Parochial Library “free to all
Clergymen of the Church of England in the town and neighbourhood of
Birmingham, and of all other students who shall be recommended either
by the Rector of St. Philip’s, or the Rector of St. Martin’s, in
Birmingham, or the Rector of Sheldon, near Birmingham,” and which was
“designed for the encouragement and promotion of useful Literature,
more especially of theological learning.” The books were to be lent out
at the discretion of the Trustees to suitable persons, and a folio was
to be kept six weeks, a quarto one month, and an octavo or duodecimo
fourteen days. The Endowment was £200 in 3 per cents., and it was
announced that donations would be very acceptable “for the increase of
the Library,” as no payment was required for admission to the use of
it. The Library was long kept in a room adjoining St. Philip’s Rectory,
(and is duly provided for in the New Rectory) and deserves this mention
as the first Free Library in our town.

=Subscription Libraries.=--Subscription Libraries had been established
by William Hutton in Bull Street (in 1751), Joseph Crompton in Colmore
Row, and others in the latter half of the last century, but the most
important was that of John Lowe, at the Stamp Office in Cherry Street,
which was established in 1776, and the catalogue of which in 1796
included 103 pages; and more than 10,000 Standard Books, to which the
price of each was added in case of a purchase. The annual subscriptions
were 16/- or a guinea according to the privileges, and not only were
quarterly subscribers taken, but non-subscribers could have books to
read on depositing their value, at twopence per volume per week; or if
over four shillings in value at threepence per volume per week. And
the Library was to be open from eight o’clock in the morning till nine
o’clock in the evening. It is to the credit of the readers of a century
ago that a large number of French books were provided for their use.

In 1787 a Subscription Library was opened at 13 Suffolk Street, by M.
and S. Olds. The subscription was 12/- per year, 7/- the half year, and
4/- the quarter.

=The Birmingham (Old) Library= was founded about November, 1779,
(though the exact place of its origination is not known), by nineteen
subscribers, nearly all being Dissenters, in fact, only one being
a member of the Established Church. The proposal was made to the
laity generally, and to some of the Clergy, several of whom became
members when the Library had become a success. It was founded on
broad principles to supply the numerous readers with books, which few
private persons could afford to buy, and it was based on principles
so sound that it has been highly successful, and has been one of the
most prosperous and long-lived of all provincial Libraries. At first,
its progress seems to have been slow, and its history obscure; but
on the arrival of Dr. Priestley in Birmingham, in 1780, its real
prosperity commenced. His experience of a similar Library at Leeds,
and his characteristic energy and enthusiasm were given to the young
Institution. He not only wrote the various advertisements which
appeared, but he drew up a code of laws on the principle adopted at
Leeds, and the best testimony to their merit is that they have been
substantially without important changes for 100 years.

The books were to be bought by a Committee of twenty chosen annually.
The Laws could be made or repealed only at an Annual Meeting or by
special notice. Books were to be proposed by the Subscribers, and
selected by the Committee. The plan proved highly successful, and the
Subscribers rapidly increased. The entrance fee was One Guinea, and the
Subscription Six Shillings a year, raised to Eight Shillings in 1781.
The Librarian was paid £10 a year, attendance 2 to 5 p.m.

During the first two years the Library had its home at the house of Mr.
John Lee, junr., 115, Snow Hill, but was afterwards removed to Messrs.
Pearson and Rollason’s, Swan Yard, High Street. By January, 1782, a
Library Room was taken, and the books removed there, “hours 2 to 5,”
within those hours any Subscriber might see the books, read and make
extracts, etc., at his pleasure; in 1785, eleven to one was added to
the hours.

In 1790, May 5th, the Library was re-opened at the Upper Priory (late
Mr. Payton’s Repository)[32] with 4,000 volumes. About this time a plan
was started to build a Library on a Tontine System of 181 shares, “near
to a street called Cherry Street, and then lately used as a Bowling
Green, formerly called Corbett’s Bowling Green.” An extension doubling
the area of the Library Buildings was made about 1843.

At its Centenary, 1879, this Library contained 50,000 volumes. It has
now (1886) 1,591 proprietors and subscribers; an annual income of
£1,680; an expenditure of £1,531; and 984 volumes were added to the
Library in 1885. The Librarian is Mr. C. E. Scarse.

=Birmingham New Library.=--In 1794 the New Library was founded by some
who were dissatisfied with the management of the Parent Institution.
The Laws of the Old Library were adopted, with two exceptions. It
was originally started in Cannon Street. Rooms were then built on
the Tontine plan, in Temple Row West, where the Joint Stock Bank now
stands, and after a more or less successful career the New Library was
amalgamated with the Union Street or Old Birmingham Library in 1860.

=The Medical Library and Institute.=--This Library was formed in 1790
at a meeting at the Union Tavern in Cherry Street, and remained for
many years as part of the Old Birmingham Library, accessible to the
ordinary subscribers, but on the formation of the Medical Institute,
in 1878, the books were given up to the promoters of the Institute. It
is now a library of some 11,500 vols. at the new building in Edmund
Street. Mr. T. G. Johnson is the Librarian. The Institute is supported
by the chief medical men of the town and neighbourhood.

=The Birmingham Law Library= was founded in 1831, by the Barristers
and Attorneys practising in Birmingham and the neighbourhood. This is
supported by annual subscriptions. It contains nearly 6,000 volumes of
Law Works, Reports, Acts, etc. It is in Wellington Passage, Bennett’s
Hill. An admirable Catalogue of this Library has been compiled by Mr.
Thomas Horton.

=The Mason College= in Edmund Street, opened in 1880, has now a very
choice Scientific Library. It is especially rich in English and Foreign
Serials, Transactions, Journals, Magazines, Reviews, Reports, etc., of
which Mr. S. Allport the Librarian published a Catalogue in 1883. It
owes much of its high character to the late Dr. Heslop, who took great
interest in its formation and gave three-fourths of the books.

=Other Libraries.=--Among the Libraries of the past should be recorded:
(1) The Mechanics’ Institution founded in 1826, and carried on till
1842. It had a Reference and Circulating Library with a Reading Room
for the use of the members. (2) The Artisans’ Library, founded in 1831,
open three evenings a week. Of smaller Libraries, the Parochial one of
St. Martin’s, founded by the Rector (Dr. Miller) in 1850, was far above
the average character of such Institutions; it was located in Inge
Street, and was much used.

=News Rooms=, either with Libraries or alone, were not numerous in the
early part of this century. In August, 1808, the first subscription
News Room appears to have been opened at Messrs. Thomson and
Wrightson’s Stamp Office, New Street, open from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Four
London Daily Papers, Lloyd’s List, Prices Current, one Sunday, three
Provincial, and three Birmingham Papers, with Reviews and Magazines
were provided.

=A Commercial News Room= was established in 1823, by a number of
gentlemen, who took Shares of £20 each to erect a Building and carry on
the work.

=A News Room= of large size and importance was built in 1825, in
Waterloo Street, corner of Bennett’s Hill, where the old County
Court stood, and where the Inland Revenue Office now stands. As this
contained all the leading London Periodicals and Foreign Newspapers,
Shipping, Commercial and Law Intelligence, files of important Papers,
London Gazette, Times and local Journals, it may almost be included
among our Libraries.

As a contrast with this, the only News Room of that time, there are
now _Nine_, in addition to the Reference Reading Room, viz.:--_Three
Subscription_, the Old Library, the Midland Institute, and the Exchange
respectively, and six _free News Rooms_, viz., the Central News Room,
and five Branches in different parts of the town.

=The Free Libraries of Birmingham.=--These were originated, and are
sustained, by the municipality, at the cost of the ratepayers, by
the levying of a rate of a little over one penny in the pound on the
rents or rateable value of the Borough. This rate produces £9,500 a
year and maintains the principal or Central Libraries, which include
Reference Department of 80,000 volumes, Central Lending Library of
25,000 volumes, and a News Room used regularly by about 5,000 readers a
day. It also maintains three Branch Libraries of 10,000 volumes each,
with capacious and well supplied News Rooms, and two others of smaller
dimensions opened only at night. Altogether these various departments
issue more than 2,000 volumes, and accommodate in the Reading and News
Rooms more than 11,000 readers _daily_.

These Free Libraries were commenced tentatively and modestly in a
leased house and shopping in Constitution Hill (or Northern part) in
1861, some doubts apparently existing then whether such institutions
were really needed or would be appreciated here.

The Library commenced with 6,000 volumes, and an issue for the first
year of 108,000. _Now_ there are nearly 140,000 volumes available, with
an issue of 844,000 per annum, and one of the most urgent pleas on
behalf of and _by_ the population now before the Town Council is for
_more_ Free Libraries.

So strong is the desire for the privileges these Libraries afford, that
at Ward Elections the question has been asked of Councillors as a test
of political fitness: “Will you vote for a Free Library and News Room
for this Ward?”

This general willingness of the people to be taxed for the higher
benefits of knowledge and culture for themselves and their children is
sufficiently novel to be worthy of notice.

The success of the experiment at Constitution Hill induced the Free
Libraries’ Committee to prepare plans on a scale commensurate with the
demands of the Town, and it was resolved to commence the Central and
Western Libraries consisting of Reference Department and Reading Room,
Central Lending Library and News Room, and to provide Branch Libraries
and News Rooms for the Eastern District at Gosta Green, and for the
Southern District at Deritend.

This plan has since been extended to provide Libraries and News Rooms
at Nechells, Small Heath, and Spring Hill, (these three have yet to
be built). The small and incommodious Room at Constitution Hill or
Northern District, the starting point in 1861 of the Libraries, was
superseded by a large and handsome building in July 1883. The cost of
these buildings was defrayed from loans borrowed on the system of an
annual repayment of loan and interest in one hundred years.

The first Reference Library of 16,000 volumes, with the Central
Lending Department and News Room, was opened in October, 1866, and an
eloquent and original address by the late George Dawson, declared these
Libraries open and free for ever, and started them on their course of
usefulness. As regards the character of books read, it may be said that
by far the largest demand in the Reference Library is for books of
practical value in Science and Art, and that the taste for Scientific
Works in the Lending Libraries is steadily growing, and the Committee
are only too glad to meet the demand.

These Free Lending Libraries seem to reach all classes with their
elevating and gladdening influence. There are not only books for the
student and worker by which they may be helped in the business of life,
but there are books for the weary, books of standard music, books for
little children, and even books for the blind.

The History of the Libraries has been, with one exception, an unbroken
record of success, and what a world of happiness and growth twenty-five
years of successful Library work means it is very difficult to measure
or estimate.

The exception was the calamitous fire which occurred on January 11,
1879. The Building was in process of enlargement, and had been to
a considerable extent given up into the builders’ hands during its
reconstruction. A strong wall had given place for the time being--to
avoid the closing of the Reference Library and News Room during the
alterations--to temporary arrangements of wood and similar material.
The winter was severe, the gas was frozen, an energetic workman in
attempting to produce a thaw ignited a flame which blazed up beyond his
control, set fire to the temporary screen dividing the existing Library
from the extension, and, spreading to the adjoining shelves, soon
embraced the whole of the Library in one vast blaze. As this occurred
at mid-day on a Saturday, the Rooms of the Library were crowded with
Readers, but no one was injured. All sorts and conditions of men strove
to save what could be saved of the precious books, but the fire was
master, and the salvage was small. The pride the people had in _their_
Free Library, and their grief at its destruction were shewn in a most
pathetic manner, books being offered from their own collections, great
and small, toward the restoration. Nor was this feeling confined to the
town. Her Majesty sent a note through Lieutenant-General Ponsonby, in
which she offered a valuable selection of books as follows:--

                                “Buckingham Palace, March 24, 1879.


    I am commanded by the Queen to enquire if the Managers of the
    Birmingham Library will accept from Her Majesty the volumes, a
    list of which I enclose.

    Not being certain to whom I should address myself, I have
    ventured to trouble you with this letter, in the hope that you
    will communicate the Queen’s offer in the proper quarter.

    I have the honour to be, Sir,
        Your obedient servant,
            HENRY F. PONSONBY.”

    “The Mayor of Birmingham.”

The books offered were:

Lepsius, (C. R.)--Denkmaeler aus Aegypten und Aethiopien. 12 vols.,
large folio.

Bock, (F.)--Die Kleinodien des heiligen Römischen Reiches Deutscher
Nation. 1 vol., large folio. 1864.

Nash, (Joseph)--Windsor Castle. Folio. 1848.

Wyatt, (M. Digby)--The Industrial Arts of the 19th Century. 2 vols.,
folio. 1853.

[These works, the noblest of their kind, and on the subjects of which
they treat, are not only costly but exceedingly useful, more especially
the fine illustrations in the “Monuments of Egypt and Ethiopia,” and
the “Art Treasures of the Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation.”]

Expressions of sympathy and gifts of books came from Germany, Italy,
America, and, from nearly every town in England.

The chief men of Birmingham met, and subscriptions amounting to nearly
£15,000 were given to supplement the amount for which the books had
been insured--to raise again and at once what all classes proudly and
lovingly called “Our Free Library.”

The buildings in Ratcliff Place have risen again in nobler
proportions, and on extended space, the rates for their support are
ungrudgingly given, and there is no place better used.

The issue of books extends yearly with the advance of education, and
goes on to supply that for which the school creates a demand.

The student will here find placed at his service the most complete and
costly works in art, architecture, archæology, botany, natural history,
science, theology, politics, poetry, as well as county histories, and
topographical works, and sets of all the principal weekly, monthly,
quarterly and annual publications, with files of important newspapers,
etc., from very early periods to the present time.

The Library contains several _special_ collections:

The BYRON collection (275 vols.), given by Mr. Richard Tangye.

The CERVANTES collection (400 vols.), given by the late Mr. William

The MILTON collection (182 vols.), given by Mr. Frank Wright.

A collection of local literature of unequalled extent,--the acquisition
of many years by David Malins, Sam: Timmins and others--has been
generously placed at the disposal of the town. This remarkable
collection of books, pamphlets, Acts of Parliament, maps, views of the
buildings, portraits, etc., already consists of over 6,000 articles,
and is catalogued in a pamphlet of 93 pages.

=The Shakespeare Memorial Library= was founded at the Tercentenary
of Shakespeare’s Birth (in 1864) by the united exertions of Mr. Sam:
Timmins and the late George Dawson. The original collection destroyed
by the fire has been restored to more than its former proportions,
and now consists of upwards of 7,000 volumes, editions, plays, and
Shakespeariana in twenty-six languages, including the first four folio
editions of Shakespeare’s Works, and nearly every edition issued
since, as well as various translations from all parts of the world.
This collection, like the rest of the Library is open to all students
free, and is largely used, students of Shakespeare coming here from
Cambridge, Dublin, and even from Berlin.

The disastrous fire of 1879 destroyed the larger part of the Cervantes
Library, and of the splendid Staunton Collection of Warwickshire Books,
Manuscripts, Engravings, Portraits, etc., but these are being replaced
as fully as possible by gifts and purchases as opportunities occur.

=The Reference Library= (only) has been opened on Sundays, from 3 to 9,
since April, 1872, and is generally well used. The readers are supplied
with books by six Assistants, of whom five are Jews.

=Suburban Libraries.=--The influence of the Birmingham Free Libraries
has not been confined to the boundaries of the Borough. In the spirited
suburban Manor of Aston a Free Library was established in May 1877;
this was followed by Handsworth in 1880; and both these Suburbs have
handsome provision made in the public buildings, for good Libraries
and News Rooms. The Librarian of Aston Manor Free Library is Mr. R. K.
Dent, the author of “Old and New Birmingham,” and Mr. J. W. Roberts is
the Librarian of Handsworth.

Within a circle of ten or twelve miles there are substantial Free
Libraries at Darlaston, Dudley, Bilston, Brierley Hill, Smethwick, West
Bromwich, Walsall, Wednesbury and Willenhall; and within a little wider
radius will be found the Free Libraries of Burslem, Coventry, Hanley,
Kidderminster, Leamington, Lichfield, Tamworth, Tipton, Wolverhampton,
and Worcester; a larger number within such an area than will be found
in any other part of the kingdom.

    The brief account here given is compiled from the following
    works, in each of which further details of interest may be

    Hutton’s History of Birmingham. Sixth Edition, 1835.

    Langford’s Century of Birmingham Life, 1868.

    Langford’s Modern Birmingham and its Institutions, 1873-1877.

    Dawson’s Inaugural Address at opening of Reference Library,

    Dent’s Old and New Birmingham, 1880.

    Centenary of the Birmingham Library, by Sam: Timmins, 1879.

    Showell’s Dictionary of Birmingham, 1885.




The Chapter II., on “Education,” has included the more active and
valuable societies which have developed into important organizations
for the full and regular teaching of Literature, Science, and Art,
but it has been thought desirable to give a brief summary of the
local societies which for nearly a century have assisted in creating
the demand which the larger institutions have been established to
supply. Birmingham has not been so remarkable as some other towns for
its societies formed of lovers of literature and science, and it is
certainly remarkable, and almost reprehensible, that so large a centre
has never had a definite Literary Society or Literary Club, associating
all, and they are many, who are lovers of books in all departments,
and not merely of literature of a scientific, technical, and practical
kind. Such a society, or such a club, should certainly exist in a great
Midland town, as in Manchester, Liverpool, and other places.

=The Lunar Society= of the last century, which included among its
members or visitors, Priestley, Boulton, Watt, Darwin, Withering,
Keir, Galton, Sir Joseph Banks, Smeaton, Edgeworth, Day, Wedgwood,
Baskerville, was founded about 1765, and as the houses of the members
were distant from each other, and the roads dark and sometimes
dangerous at night, the meetings were held at “full moon,” hence
“The Lunatics” or “Lunar Society” derived its name. Its objects were
social and scientific rather than literary and it has left no literary
memorials of its meetings.

=Debating Societies.=--Among the earliest of the societies, common
in later days, and which were the more needful when newspapers were
few, were the Debating Societies, the first of which, the “Robin Hood
Free Debating Society,” was a tavern-society, founded in 1774, and
was followed in the same year by another, and probably a rival, or
seceded body, as a “Society for the Encouragement of Free and Candid
Disputation,” but both soon discussed themselves out of existence. In
1789 a “Society for Free Debate” was formed, and like the others it
discussed social, moral, and political questions, so that in 1792 the
magistrates interfered, on the ground that the recent riots should
discourage public discussions of dangerous subjects.

=Philosophical Institution.=--At the close of the century, about the
year 1794, a Philosophic and Artistic Society was proposed, and in
1800 the first steps were taken to found the Birmingham Philosophical
Institution, which was so successful that, in 1813, a suitable
building, with a lecture room for two hundred hearers, a news room, a
museum, and other necessary rooms, were erected, and were opened by a
lecture by Rev. J. Corrie, a friend and biographer of Priestley, in
October, 1814. This society flourished for many years, with lectures
from eminent men, a good library and museum, and was finally succeeded
by the Midland Institute on a much larger and more popular scale. One
of its notable practical uses was the erection of Mr. Follett Osler’s
first Anemometer, and excellent Clock for public convenience. For many
years papers were read and discussed by members, and published in
Transactions in which meteorological, industrial, and scientific facts
of historic importance have been preserved.

=Society of Arts and Exhibitions.=--In April, 1814, the “artists
and amateurs,” proposed to form a society, and to hold an annual
exhibition of pictures, and the promoters secured as honorary members,
Benjamin West, Sir J. Soane, J. M. W. Turner, John Flaxman, and
Richard Westmacott. The first exhibition was held in the “Academy
of Arts,”--a building still remaining in Union Passage--and proved
very attractive. In 1821, the Artistic Society proposed to expand
and to form a Society of Arts, and in 1822, the site of the present
large building (then temporary) was secured, and replaced, in 1827,
by a permanent building, chiefly from the liberality of Sir Robert
Lawley, who gave a large number of casts from antique, and in that
year the first great exhibition of pictures was held. As a proof of
the necessity of such an exhibition and of such a Society, it will be
worth while to quote the remarks of Catherine Hutton, the daughter of
the historian, herself a woman of good sense and good taste, since
she predicted that the proposed society would “die a natural death,”
that the “genius of the artists of Birmingham was more calculated to
paint tea boards than pictures,” and that the proposed rooms would soon
“serve for a Methodist Meeting House.” For more than sixty years since
that prophecy, the rooms have been used, with one interval, caused by
quarrels, for a series of exhibitions of paintings and drawings, not
only in autumn, but in spring exhibitions too, which secure some of the
best pictures by the foremost artists of the day.

=School of Medicine and Surgery.=--In 1828, the School of Medicine
and Surgery was begun in Snow Hill, by the late W. Sands Cox, and
was finally expanded into the Queen’s College, which has been
fully described, but the “Society” side of this and other similar
institutions, was originally a series of meetings of members, and not
any sort of college or school.

=Mechanics’ Institute and Artisans’ Library.=--The success of Dr.
Birkbeck’s popular institution in London led to the formation of a
Mechanics’ Institution in Birmingham, in 1825, and the establishment
of an Artisan’s Library. From various causes this society was not
successful, but it was one of the first attempts to reach the masses of
the people with literary and scientific teaching, and numerous classes
were well taught and gave valuable help to the young men of that day.
One of the most remarkable results of the Mechanics’ Institution, and
one of the causes, unfortunately, of its failure, was one of the first
of Industrial Exhibitions of manufactures and processes in 1840, and
followed by a second which was financially a failure. In 1841 another
“Institution” on a somewhat different plan was established under the
patronage of Lord John Manners and the “Young England” party as the
“Athenic Institute” for mental, moral, and physical improvement,
combined with rational amusements--athletic and others. In 1843 the
Polytechnic Institution followed and was carried on successfully till
1853 on rather broader lines than the Mechanics’ Institution, but it
attracted rather the middle than the humbler classes, and finally
failed, to be followed by the Midland Institute as previously described.

In 1850 an important society was founded in Birmingham to advocate the
establishment of “free, secular, and compulsory” education, and this
developed into the “National Public School Association,” and in 1867
into the “National Education League,” which was the most important
factor in the education of the country by the agitation which resulted
in the Elementary Education Act of 1870.

In 1852-53 another attempt was made to form a Literary and Scientific
Institution, to take up the work which the Mechanics’ Institution and
the Polytechnic Institution had failed to accomplish. The first public
help given was by one of the first public readings of the Christmas
Carol, by Charles Dickens, which produced for the three readings, £227.
19s. 9d., and continued the interest and help which Dickens had given
as President of the Polytechnic Institution some years before. From
this date the Midland Institute has most successfully provided for all
classes, by its literature and science classes, its public lectures,
and its musical and archæological sections, and has become one of the
most successful of all similar institutions.

=Magazines and Pamphlets.=--So early as 1764 a “Birmingham Register
and Entertaining Museum” had been published on the lines of the
Gentleman’s Magazine, and ten years later a “Medical Miscellany”
appeared which, however, did not live long, and no similar serial
appeared till 1817. During the whole of this period, and especially
just before or after the riots in 1791, the town was deluged with
pamphlets, chiefly on political subjects, and great feuds arose.
The pupils of the famous “Hazelwood School” issued the “Hazelwood
Magazine,” often illustrated with etchings and lithographs from 1822
to 1830, and the pupils of King Edward’s School have from time to
time had a “Magazine” of their own. This example was followed by the
“Proprietary School” on two or three occasions. “The Oscotian” in
1828 reached 3 vols., and was resumed later, and is still issued. For
several years, _circa_ 1830, several Magazines devoted to the drama
were published, and were useful in their day.

=Newspapers.=--The pamphlets of the last century were superseded by
the newspaper press; Birmingham, which had a “Journal” in 1731, and
a “Gazette” in 1741; had its first “Daily Press” in 1855, when the
taxes on knowledge were repealed, and “Daily Post” in 1857, and “Daily
Gazette” in 1862. In 1869, an attempt was made to establish a Midland
“Illustrated News,” which continued for some two years. In the same
year the first halfpenny evening paper appeared, the “Daily Mail,” and
in 1871, the “Birmingham Morning News” was established, with the late
George Dawson as its first editor.

=Magazines.=--Magazine literature has often been attempted since 1764,
but not successfully. In 1876, the “Birmingham Examiner,” a weekly
newspaper of politics and literature was tried for some months, and
about the same time the “Medical Review,” the “Midland Naturalist,”
and the “Central Literary Magazine,” were founded and flourish still.
An illustrated Magazine, “Mid-England” appeared in 1879, but failed to
secure the “Midland” readers; and the “Midland Antiquary,” devoted to
archæology, genealogy, and heraldry, since 1879.

=Debating Societies= have been numerous, and have generally held
their ground, and helped to train some of the best speakers and
debaters of our day. The Birmingham Debating Society was founded in
1846, and amalgamated with the Edgbaston Society in 1855. Parliamentary
Debating Societies--“echoes” of the House of Commons--have been
tried two or three times but without success, although flourishing
for some years. The Central Literary Association has been one of the
most long-lived and popular of debating societies, and its Magazine
has also been a marked success. In 1856 an Amateur Dramatic Club was
formed, and many very excellent performances were given. A Dramatic
Club, holding winter meetings, has been established since for the
reading of papers, and the celebration of the Shakespeare Anniversary;
and “Our Shakespeare Club” has met for more than thirty years as a
social rather than literary club, whose chief work was to found the
Shakespeare Memorial Library. A Graduates Club was founded by the late
Dr. C. Badham for social meetings of University Graduates; a Clef Club
has recently been opened for lovers of music; the Historical Society,
at Mason College, has been merged into the Philosophical Society, which
meets in the same building; the Natural History and Microscopical
Society has many and devoted members; the Law Society has its learned
discussions; the Medical Institute has its Library and Meetings; the
students of the Midland Institute and of Mason College have their
respective societies and magazines; the Archæological section of
the Institute has its meetings, excursions, and transactions; the
Natural History Society its numerous members, and its excursions and
magazine,--all being social as well as scientific, and helping to raise
the standard of taste and knowledge among all classes of the town.




=The Birmingham General Hospital.=--At the commencement of the second
half of the last century, Birmingham was a small manufacturing town
with a population but little in excess of 30,000 souls. At that time
no medical or surgical relief could be obtained by its suffering poor
except at the Infirmary attached to the Workhouse. But in November,
1765, Dr. Ash, an eminent member of the local medical profession,
called a meeting of the principal inhabitants “to consider the
advisability of establishing a general hospital for the relief of the
sick and lame.”

A public meeting was held at the Swan, November 21, 1765, which
resulted in “Benefactions” £1,555 18s. 0d. and “Annual Subscriptions”
£424 10s. 0d.

Little was done (other than the creation of a building debt) until the
year 1779, when this great charity fairly entered upon its long career
of humanity, usefulness, and honour.

Its income in those early years was scanty, its patients few and far
between, it had no endowment whatever. It was a privileged institution,
that is, except in cases of extreme urgency, its benefits were given
only to the holders of subscribers’ tickets.

During the year 1885, 3,545 in-patients and 38,501 out-patients were
treated at this Institution. Its subscription list amounted to £5,448;
the income of its endowments reached the respectable figure of £2,787,
and the total income from all sources, ordinary and extraordinary, was
nearly £15,000.

It is still in theory a privileged institution; but more than
two-thirds of the in-patients, and more than half of the out-patients
were admitted in 1885 as “accidents and urgent cases” without

In recent years enormous improvements have been made both in the laws
and in the administration of this Hospital.

The old system by which every Governor had a vote in the election of a
Medical Officer has been abolished, and vacancies for the much coveted
position of Physician or Surgeon to the charity are now filled by a
sufficiently large and representative Committee.

The legacies, which are very numerous, are funded to the extent of one
half of their amount; and the annual reports are models for clearness
and accuracy of information.

A great extension of the hospital work has recently been made. A branch
Hospital for chronic cases has been established by the munificence of
Mr. John Jaffray, and has recently been opened by the Prince of Wales.
The Endowment Fund of this department already exceeds £30,000, and
special subscriptions have been obtained amounting to nearly £500 a

The great Triennial Musical Festivals, which in late years have ceased
to be peculiar to Birmingham, were first established in connection
with the Birmingham General Hospital. A Committee of the Governors is
specially appointed to carry out these important undertakings, and
they have spared no effort in procuring the finest music from the
ablest Composers, rendered by the foremost artists of the time. The
Elijah of Mendelssohn, the Eli and Naaman of Costa, the Light of the
World of Sullivan, the St. Peter of Benedict, and the Redemption and
Mors et Vita of Gounod, are some of the great works first produced at
Birmingham under the management of the “Orchestral Committee,” whose
aim has been on the one hand to obtain the perfection of music, and on
the other to augment the income of the Hospital.

These Festivals have been held since the year 1768, and have resulted
in a net profit to the Hospital of over £120,000. Since the year 1849,
the gross receipts at any Festival have never been less than £10,000,
and in one year they exceeded £16,000. In the year 1885, when the last
Festival was held, the gross receipts were £13,715, and the net profit
accruing to the Charity was £3,500.

=The Queen’s Hospital.=--This great Hospital is the second general
Hospital in Birmingham. It was founded in the year 1840, in connection
with the Birmingham School of Medicine and Surgery; a School which in
1843 became incorporated under the name of the “Queen’s College.”

It has an unusually large acting Medical and Surgical Staff consisting
of three Physicians, four Surgeons, one Physician for Out-patients,
two casualty Surgeons, an Ophthalmic Surgeon, a Dental Surgeon, and
an Obstetric Officer. It was established as a privileged Institution,
but in the year 1875 the regulations then existing were changed, and
it became a Free Hospital. From that time no privileges of any kind
have been given to subscribers, and the suffering and deserving poor
have been received and treated without any conditions or qualifications
other than the urgency of their need of relief.

There is no doubt that since the Hospital became free, it has gained
greatly in public confidence and popularity.

The In-patients treated in 1885 were 1,944, the Out-patients were
24,063. Some years ago it had a considerable endowment, but great
enlargements and improvements of the Hospital were necessary, and
were carried out a few years since at a cost of £26,000, of which sum
£10,000 was taken from the endowment, and the remainder was raised by
an active and intelligent Committee. The present endowment is only
about £5,000. The annual income from all sources may be taken at
£8,000, and the annual expenditure is about the same, though there
is no doubt that with a larger income the Committee could provide
in the present buildings a great increase in the number of beds,
and so materially reduce the average cost per patient. The ordinary
income of a medical charity is derived from subscriptions, donations,
legacies, and the income resulting from investments. By the laws of
many charities legacies are invested, and the income only of such
investments is applied to the annual purposes of the charity.

The Queen’s Hospital has not been able to take this course; all
legacies paid in any year being applied to the general purposes of the

In the year 1885 the income of the Hospital was made up as
follows:--From Subscriptions £2,648, from Donations £256, from Legacies
£1,621, from Registration Fees £852, from Income of Investments £197;
but these figures amount in all only to £5,574, and it has been stated
that the income of the Hospital is about £8,000 a year. How then has
the balance been obtained? In England there is no compulsory rate in
aid of our charitable institutions. M. Guizot left it on record that
when he first visited this country nothing surprised him more than
the constant recurrence of the words that met him at every turn in
London--“supported by voluntary contributions.” But the income arising
from “ordinary sources” was rarely sufficient to enable Hospital
managers to cope with the responsibilities thrown upon them without
incurring constant deficits and sometimes financial disaster.

Twenty-five years ago some Birmingham men, amongst whom the late Rector
of Birmingham (Dr. J. C. Miller) deserves most honourable mention,
grappled with the difficulty. The various Clergy and Ministers of
Religion, assisted by prominent lay townsmen, determined to organise a
general Collection once a year in all the Churches and Chapels of the
town and neighbourhood, for the benefit of the local Medical Charities.
Thus originated “Hospital Sunday.” It was resolved that every third
year the whole collection should go to the General Hospital, every
third year to the Queen’s Hospital, and every third year that it should
be divided among the smaller Medical Charities in certain proportions
based upon the number of patients relieved.

“Hospital Sunday” became immensely popular, and the example set by
Birmingham was imitated by the metropolis and by the larger towns and
cities of England. Since its establishment up to last year the medical
charities of Birmingham have received from the Hospital Sunday Fund the
enormous subsidy of £124,430.

From this source the Queen’s Hospital has received, up to the year
1884, £42,188; its triennial collection amounted to £4,356 in 1881,
and to £4,181 in 1884. But the year 1873 witnessed a new departure.
It was felt that it was not enough to make collections only from the
habitual frequenters of churches and chapels, most of whom might be
assumed to be regular subscribers to the various charities or donors
to their funds. It was felt too that the great body of the artisan
population were able and willing to do something for the support of the
great institutions founded almost wholly for their benefit; and thus
“Hospital Saturday” became a friendly but formidable rival to “Hospital
Sunday.” Once a year collections are made in all the manufactories and
large workshops in the town and district, and up to, and including the
year 1885, the hospitals have been subsidised from this welcome source
to the extent of £46,800. Not only so, but these annual collections
are steadily growing in amount, to the great credit of the industrial
population and to the lasting benefit of the charities of the town.

It is interesting to note the increasing annual amount the Queen’s
Hospital has thus received. In the year 1880 it was £670; in 1881,
£711; in 1882, £852; in 1883, £931; in 1884, £1,056; in 1885, £1,135,
and the accounts for the present year shew a large increase on any
figures hitherto recorded.

=The Birmingham General Dispensary.=--This Institution is the oldest
medical charity in Birmingham except the General Hospital. It was
founded in 1794, and has deservedly enjoyed a very large share of
public confidence. It is a strictly privileged institution. Every
subscriber has so many tickets for his subscription, and has also the
power of procuring supernumerary tickets. There are of course no beds,
all patients being attended at their own homes. Accidents or urgent
cases, such as sometimes put great pressure upon the resources of a
general hospital, are here extremely rare. There is, therefore, no
debt. The services of the medical staff can be purchased at a rate
sufficient to cover the cost. Consequently the subscription list has
always been large, the finances invariably prosperous, the revenue
always in excess of the expenditure. So great has been the success of
this institution, that the managers sometimes hardly know what to do
with their money.

The income for the year 1885 from all sources was considerably in
excess of £6,000. The whole expenditure was under £5,000, and the
managers were able out of the income of the year to put by £1,500. The
income from investments alone was £608. There was a considerable sum
on deposit, and a large credit balance at the Bank. There is a central
dispensary in Union Street, and branches at Camp Hill, Aston, and
Ladywood, all with Resident Surgeons attached.

In former days it had a large midwifery and vaccination department,
but the former was abandoned in 1869 and the latter in 1870. The
dispensary, therefore, now addresses itself only to the ordinary
medical treatment of the sick poor. All the medical officers, including
the consulting officers, are paid for their services. The patients who,
in 1871, numbered 10,570, had increased in 1885 to 21,888.

=The Orthopædic and Spinal Hospital.=--This small but useful
institution has existed since the year 1817. It has three
Acting-Surgeons, and one Assistant Surgeon. The Surgeons attend daily
and give gratuitous advice to the deformed poor. Ordinary cases are
admitted without letters of recommendation, but in the numerous cases
where supports or instruments are required, subscribers’ tickets are
necessary to cover the cost. The instruments supplied in 1885 cost
upwards of £500. The new cases in that year were 1,654, the attendances
7,439. The total expenditure was about £1,400.

=The Eye Hospital.=--The Birmingham and Midland Eye Hospital is one
of the best special Hospitals in the provinces. It has not only been
of incalculable service to the poor of the town and neighbourhood,
but it has founded an important school of ophthalmic science in the
Midland district. Diseases of the eye cannot be adequately dealt
with at general hospitals. Where the delicacies and difficulties
of any disorder are such as to require minute manipulative skill
and practitioners of great experience, a special Institution is
imperatively necessary. This Hospital has had a really splendid career.
It was founded in 1824, and commenced its operations in a humble
manner in Cannon Street. It then migrated into improved premises in
Steelhouse Lane. In 1861 it found a third home in Temple Row, and in
1884 a new Hospital was erected and opened in Church Street capable of
accommodating 70 beds.

The acting Medical Officers of the Institution (exclusive of House or
Resident Surgeons) are by the laws to consist of not less than four and
not more than six Honorary Surgeons, so that ample provision is made to
secure the adequate surgical treatment of the present patients and of
any probable increase in their number.

In order to insure the maximum of surgical ability every acting Surgeon
is bound to resign his appointment on his attaining the age of 55
years, or on becoming physically unable to discharge his duties in an
efficient manner.

In the year 1885 there were 925 in-patients and 13,461 out-patients.
590 operations were performed during the year on in-patients alone.

The annual income is large, but as yet hardly adequate to meet the
requirements of the new Hospital. The income for 1884 was £3,807, and
the expenditure £3,213; but the income for 1885 was only £3,098, whilst
the expenditure was £4,187.

=The Lying-in Charity.=--This is a small but most useful and deserving
Institution. It was founded as a Lying-in Hospital in the year 1842.
Its original managers attempted to deal not only with lying-in cases
in the wards of the Hospital, but also with the ordinary diseases of
women, and with children. The Institution was never successful, chiefly
because it attempted too much. As a rule no Institution devoted to more
than one speciality succeeds. Moreover, when the statistics of Lying-in
Hospitals came to be examined, it was discovered that there was a
great difference in the mortality of patients treated in Hospitals and
of patients treated at their own homes. In the year 1874, the system
of the charity was remodelled, a large building was abandoned, and
patients were attended only at home. The change has proved eminently
successful. Four competent Midwives are regularly employed, all of
whom have large experience. The medical staff consists of a consulting
Surgeon and four acting Surgeons who are called in in cases of
difficulty or danger. The competence of the Midwives is best tested by
the fact that the services of the members of the honorary medical staff
are only required on an average once in 44 cases.

In the year 1885, 931 cases were attended at a cost of less than £500.
Few institutions in Birmingham have in recent years done better work at
a more reasonable cost than the Lying-in Charity.

=Free Hospital for Sick Children.=--This Hospital has been one of the
most successful ever founded in Birmingham. It is a general Hospital so
far as regards disease, but a special Hospital so far as regards age.

It was founded in 1861, and was opened for the reception of patients on
the 1st January, 1862, and during that year its income and expenditure
were about £700. In the year 1885, its in-patients were 713. Home
patients, 27. Out-patients, 12,692. Its income and expenditure exceeded

Few local institutions have ever enjoyed greater popularity. The
Charity from its very name appeals to a very wide circle, and the
administration has been marked by foresight and discretion. Not only
was it the first Free Hospital in the town, but it was established on
principles then considered novel, but which have since in part at least
been adopted by other local institutions.

For instance, the tenure of office of physicians and surgeons is
limited, and the medical officers, though absolute in their own
department, cannot sit upon the Board of Management.

Again, at this Hospital, first in Birmingham, was an honest effort made
to limit the relief given to the _Hospital population_ only, that is to
those who were above pauperism, but below the capability of paying for
medical advice. Here too, the system was first adopted of paying the
Junior members of the Medical Staff, and here also was the principle
first laid down of vesting the election of medical officers of the
charity in a large and representative Committee. This rule has been
almost unanimously followed by other local institutions.

The Hospital has a dispensary and out-patient department in the
centre of the town, an in-patient department with detached fever
wards in Broad Street, and a convalescent department with separate
management, many miles from the town. 151 children were received in the
convalescent home during the year 1885.

The work of the Committee of Management of this Hospital is
supplemented by the kindly aid of a large Committee of Lady Visitors,
and by a Special Committee of Ladies for the management of the
Convalescent Home.

=The Ear and Throat Hospital.=--This is a small institution, having
for its object the treatment of diseases of the ear and throat. It has
lately been reconstructed upon a new basis. It is rather a dispensary
than a hospital, having no in-patient department. Tickets can be
obtained by patients desiring the advice of the Medical officers. The
subscription list is under £100 a year, the income being made up by
contributions from the Hospital Sunday and Hospital Saturday Funds,
together with the amount realised by the sale of supplementary tickets.
The total number of cases treated during the year 1885, was 2,398.

=The Dental Hospital.=--This institution was founded in 1860, and
should rather have been termed the Dental Dispensary than the Dental
Hospital. It has five honorary dental surgeons and four honorary
administrators of anæsthetics. Thus the advantages and resources of
modern dentistry are placed within the reach of those who but for
this institution would undergo much preventable pain. Every fitting
applicant suffering pain is entitled to advice and attention, but
special operations are performed only upon patients who have a
recommendation from a Governor.

There were 9,453 patients in 1885. The expenditure was less than £300.

=The Sanatorium.=--This Institution was founded in 1866, and has proved
a most valuable supplement to the work of our local hospitals. It
enables convalescent patients to obtain rest, pure air and nutritious
diet at one of the most healthy and beautiful spots within a reasonable
distance of Birmingham.

Some years ago a fund had been raised for relief of distress in the
cotton districts, and when the distress had subsided a considerable
portion of the fund remained undisposed of. With the consent of the
donors £4,500 was devoted to forming a nucleus for the Building Fund of
the Sanatorium. The work was completed in 1873. The total cost of the
site, buildings, and furniture was £16,800.

The institution receives 40 male, and 40 female patients, and every
possible effort is made to provide for their health and their amusement.

No privileges are given to subscribers; but patients are received
either from the Medical Charities in Birmingham, or from the general
public, on the recommendation of a medical practitioner.

The income and expenditure are about £2,000 a year. The charity applies
all donations exceeding £10 to a deposit or investment fund, and ten
per cent. of the amount of the fund so created is withdrawn each year
for the current purposes of the institution.

=The Homœopathic Hospital and Dispensary.=--This hospital is supported
by the friends of the system of homœopathy. It has one honorary
physician and five honorary surgeons. It is a general hospital, and
has departments for in-patients, out-patients, and home patients. The
in-patient system is different from that of most general hospitals, a
certain number of beds being reserved for patients who can afford to
pay for the benefits they receive. Again, all in-patients are admitted
at the discretion of the medical staff, so that as regards this
department the hospital is free, no subscriber having the privilege of
ensuring a bed. Subscribers have tickets for out-patients and for home
visits. This provision for visiting patients at their own homes is of
great value in connection with this Charity. The in-patients in 1885
were 167. The home-patients 584. The out-patients 18,752.

The expenditure for 1885 was £1,640. The income £1,380, leaving a
deficit of £260.

Ladies as well as gentlemen serve on the Committee of Management.

=The Hospital for Women.=--This is a valuable and important
Institution. When the Lying-in Hospital gave up the treatment of
women’s special diseases and devoted itself exclusively to midwifery,
there was an opening for an institution for the reception and treatment
of women afflicted with diseases peculiar to their sex.

Two classes of patients are admitted. Paying patients who contribute
the whole or part of the cost of treatment, and general cases, which
are admitted without any subscriber’s ticket of recommendation. The
expenditure for the year 1884 (no report has been issued for 1885) was
£1,736. The income was £1,466, leaving a deficit of £270.

During the same year the out-patients were 3,299, and the in-patients

The acting Medical staff consists of five Surgeons, one of whom is a
lady. It will be obvious that in a Hospital of this character many
operations of cardinal importance are constantly performed. No fewer
than 217 operations were performed during the year 1884.

=The Skin and Lock Hospital.=--This Institution was opened in 1881 for
the treatment of skin and lock diseases. There was ample room for it,
no special department for cases of this kind existing in any of the
general Hospitals of the town.

During the year 1885 nearly 2,000 cases were treated. The income of
the year amounted to £1,081, and the expenditure only to £624. The
Committee of Management, however, are desirous of erecting a Hospital,
and thus be enabled to deal with serious cases as in-patients. A
site has been secured for this purpose in John Bright Street. It is
estimated that £5,000 will be required. £1,200 of which has already
been obtained.

The Hospital is conducted on the free system, but some patients are
received on payment of a sum sufficient to cover the bare cost of their

=The Deaf and Dumb Institution.=--This Charity is an educational
establishment. It was founded nearly three quarters of a century ago
for the instruction of deaf and dumb children. 70 boys and 58 girls
were on the books during the year 1885. The Charity is supported by
voluntary contributions, supplemented to a considerable extent by
payments on behalf of the inmates.

Children are admitted by election, and the election takes place at
the Annual General Meeting. Every Governor is entitled to one vote
in respect of a donation of £10, or an annual subscription of £1.
1s. Children admitted without election pay £25 per annum. Elected
children pay £10 if they come from Warwickshire, Worcestershire,
or Staffordshire; £15 if they come from other Counties, and £20
if maintained by Boards of Guardians. The system of education is
excellent. Children are taught not only by means of the manual alphabet
but by articulation and lip reading, in cases where that system can be
advantageously employed.

The Institution is placed in a healthy and beautiful situation in
Church Road, Edgbaston.

The income for the year 1885 was £2,726, made up as
follows:--Subscriptions £461, Legacies £804, Donations £63, Interest on
Investments £400, Payments for Pupils £986, Sundries £12. Total £2,726.

The expenditure was about £100 in excess of the income. There is no
rule as to funding legacies. The charity does excellent work and is
deservedly popular.

=The General Institution for the Blind.=--This Institution has been
of immense benefit to the town and neighbourhood. The buildings
are handsome and commodious, and are situated in a charming part
of Edgbaston, about two miles from the centre of Birmingham. The
Charity was founded thirty-eight years ago. The expenditure in 1885
was a little in excess of £4,200, whilst the income, including sales
of materials manufactured by the inmates, reached the large sum of
£6,270. The subscriptions and donations amounted to £778, Legacies
£2,119, the interest on investments was £734. Payments by Pupils £765,
Sales £1,874. Here too the legacies are not funded. But the large sum
received from legacies in 1885, together with the balance in hand at
the commencement of that year, enabled the managers to invest over
£2,000 out of the year’s income.

46 males and 32 females were in the Institution in 1885, and 257 adult
blind persons were visited and taught at their own homes.

Great efforts are made by the managers to find permanent employment
for pupils who have been taught at this excellent charity. Many pupils
are turned out fully competent organists, and many become professional
piano tuners, and follow the trade of basket making.




The municipal borough of Birmingham comprises the whole of the parishes
of Birmingham and Edgbaston, and part of the adjoining parish of Aston.

All these parishes were formerly in the Archdeaconry of Coventry, as
part of the diocese of Lichfield and Coventry, and are now in the
same Archdeaconry as part of the diocese of Worcester. By an Order
in Council, dated 22nd December, 1836, made in pursuance of the 6
& 7 Will. IV., c. 77, the Archdeaconry of Coventry was taken away
from the diocese of Lichfield and Coventry, and annexed to that of
Worcester, and the former diocese became the diocese of Lichfield
only. The testamentary jurisdiction of the Bishop of Lichfield over
the archdeaconry, however, continued until the jurisdiction of all the
ecclesiastical courts in such matters was abolished as from the 1st of
January, 1858, by the 20 and 21 Vic., c. 77.

The original parish of Birmingham (otherwise called the parish of St.
Martin, from the mother church of the parish dedicated to that Saint)
contains 2,660 acres only, whilst the acreage of the entire borough
is 8,420 acres. The difference is made up of the entire parish of
Edgbaston, 2,790 acres, and part of the parish of Aston, 2,970 acres.

Taking the parishes separately, we commence with the


=St. Martin’s.=--We find that the earliest mention of the mother
church of St. Martin in our national records is a licence of the 6th of
May, 1330 (4 Edward III.), to Walter de Clodeshale, of Saltley (then an
adjoining hamlet), to grant lands for the endowment of a priest to say
mass daily at the altar of the Virgin in St. Martin’s. Seventeen years
afterwards (21 Edward III.), Richard, son of Walter de Clodeshale,
obtained a licence for a further grant to endow a second priest to say
daily mass.

In 1392 (16 Richard II.), there is a record of a licence to found and
endow a guild in honour of The Holy Cross, and another chantry in St.
Martin’s for two chaplains. All these charities were suppressed at
the time of the dissolution of the monasteries. The endowments of the
Clodeshale charities were sold,[34] as was also a small part of the
endowments of the Guild of the Holy Cross. The rest were re-granted by
Edward VI. for the foundation and endowment of the Grammar School.

For three centuries after its foundation St. Martin’s Church must have
been nearly at the top of the town, which consisted, as Leland saw it
even in 1538, of one long street, namely, the present Digbeth and High
Street, and the old church sufficed for all its wants, especially as
the lower part of the town below Digbeth was served by the chapel of
St. John, noticed under Aston parish.[35]

The tower and spire, having become unsafe, were taken down and rebuilt
in 1855, and in 1872 the rebuilding of the rest of the church was
commenced, and it was finished and re-consecrated on the 20th of July,
1875. Attached to the church are mission rooms in Barwick Street and
Park Street.

The original parish has been, by the successive agencies of special
acts of parliament, the orders of the Church Building Commissioners
(1818 to 1856), and afterwards of the Ecclesiastical Commissioners, or
by the Bishop in exercise of powers given by 1 and 2, W. IV., c. 38
(now repealed), divided into five rectories and twenty-one vicarages
(all incumbents of churches entitled to perform marriages, churchings,
and baptisms, and receive the fees for their own use, being now termed
vicars under the statute 31 and 32 Vic., c. 117). The successive
divisions are detailed in chronological order.

=St. Philip’s.=--In the early part of the reign of Queen Anne,
Birmingham had extended northwards and upwards from the mother church,
and this necessitated the foundation of St. Philip’s Church and parish,
created by special Act of Parliament (7 Anne, c. 131, A.D. 1708)
entitled “An Act for building a parish church and parsonage house, and
making a new church and new parish in Birmingham, to be called the
parish of St. Philip.” The preamble recites that there was only one
church in the parish of Birmingham, and that it was expedient to build
another in the “high town quarter.” It then carves out of the parish
of St. Martin, the parish of St. Philip, and constitutes it a rectory.
The church was consecrated in 1715, and partly rebuilt and enlarged in
1884. Its situation, between Colmore Row and Temple Row, is the finest
in the town.

=St. Bartholomew.=--The next ecclesiastical structure in order of
time, was St. Bartholomew’s, built in 1749 as a chapel of ease to St.
Martin’s, to accommodate the then rapidly increasing population east
of St. Martin’s. The land was the gift of Joseph Jennens, whose name
is still commemorated in Jennens Row. In the year 1847, it was created
a district chapelry, and in 1869, a part of the district was assigned
to the consolidated chapelry of St. Gabriel. The churchyard and the
adjoining burial ground of St. Martin, containing four acres and a
half (called the Park Street Burial Ground) were, in the year 1880,
converted by the Corporation into a public garden. There is a mission
room in Fox street, attached to the church.

In the year 1772, the first Church Extension Society was formed in
Birmingham for the purpose of building “one or more churches,” which
resulted in the passing of another Act of Parliament (12 Geo. III.,
c. 64, A.D. 1772) “for building two new chapels, and providing burial
places thereto.” The first built of these two chapels was--

=St. Mary’s=, completed in 1774 on land granted by Mary Weaman, who
gave her christian name to the church and her surname to the adjoining
street. It was originally a chapel of ease to St. Martin’s, but
was created a district chapelry in 1841. The chapel was thoroughly
renovated in 1857, and in 1882 the disused burial ground was, at the
cost of the Corporation, laid out as a garden for public use.

=St. Paul’s.=--The other of the two churches built under the act
of 1772 was St. Paul’s, in what was then the northernmost part of
Birmingham. It was built in 1779, on land given by Charles Colmore out
of a large estate he had there. It was created a district in the year

=Christ Church=, at the top of New Street, which enjoys the unenviable
distinction of being the ugliest church in the town, was authorised
by a special act of parliament of the year 1803 “for erecting a new
church to be called Christ Church, in the town of Birmingham.” All the
sittings were to be free, and it therefore obtained the name of “the
Free Church.” It was consecrated in 1813, but not finished until three
years later. In 1865 it was constituted a consolidated chapelry out of
the parishes of St. Martin and St. Philip. Attached to the church are
mission rooms in Pinfold street and Fleet street.

This was the last of the churches for which a special Act of Parliament
was required, for in the year 1818, the Act 58, Geo. III. c. 45, was
passed, establishing the Church Building Commission and granting a sum
of one million (increased six years afterwards to a million and a half)
for building additional churches throughout the kingdom, and for the
division of parishes.

=St. George’s.=--The first result of this in Birmingham was St.
George’s Church near Tower Street, consecrated July 30th, 1822. At
that time the site was surrounded by green fields, and it was known
as St. George’s in the Fields. In pursuance of the provisions of the
Act of 1818, it was constituted a separate parish, taken out of St.
Martin’s, and because St. Martin’s was a rectory, St. George’s became a
rectory also. The Church itself was enlarged in 1882. There are mission
rooms in New Summer Street and Smith Street, licensed for worship.
The district chapelries of St. Stephen and St. Matthias, have been
constituted out of the original parish of St. George.

=St. Peter’s= in Dale End was consecrated August 10th, 1827, as a
chapel of ease to St. Philip’s Church, in which parish it was. It
was destroyed by fire in 1831, and rebuilt in 1837. In 1847, it was
constituted a district chapelry.

=St. Thomas’s= in Holloway Head was consecrated October 22nd, 1829,
and like St. George’s, was constituted a new parish, carved out of St.
Martin’s, and a rectory under the 58 Geo. III. c. 45. Parts of the
original parish have been assigned to the districts of Immanuel and St.

=All Saints=, built near Lodge Road at Birmingham Heath, was originally
a small Church, consecrated September 28th, 1833, and greatly enlarged
in 1881. It is a parish and rectory formed in the year 1834, out of St.
Martin’s parish, and a portion of the parish has been since assigned
to the district chapelry of St. Cuthbert. There are two mission halls,
one in Heaton Street, and the other at Nineveh Schoolroom, attached to
All Saints. This was the last of the rectories created under the Act of
1818. All the districts subsequently created have been either assigned
by the Bishop or formed under the Peel Acts, 1843 and 1844, or the New
Parishes (Marquis of Blandford’s) Act, 1856.

=Bishop Ryder’s Church=, in Gem Street, was built in 1838, on land
granted by the Governors of King Edward’s Grammar School. It is so
called after Dr. Ryder (b. 1777, d. 1836) who was successively Bishop
of Gloucester (1815-1824), and afterwards of Lichfield and Coventry
(1824-1836), and who greatly interested himself in church extension in
the poorer and more populous parts of his diocese. In the year 1840 a
separate district was assigned to it.

In the year 1838 a society was formed for building ten new churches in
Birmingham; only five were built, and these were St. Matthew’s, St.
Mark’s, St. Luke’s, St. Stephen’s, and St. Andrew’s. Three of these,
namely, St. Mark’s, St. Luke’s, and St. Stephen’s were in the parish of
Birmingham. The other two will be noticed under Aston parish.

=St. Mark’s= is in King Edward’s Road, Summer Hill, and is built on
land granted by the Governors of King Edward’s Grammar School. It was
consecrated in 1841, and in the same year constituted a district out of
St. Martin’s parish. There is a mission room in Steward Street.

=St. Luke’s=, in the Bristol Road, almost on the border of the parish
of Edgbaston. It was consecrated September 28th, 1842. In the year 1844
it was constituted a district parish out of St. Martin’s.

=St. Stephen’s=, Newtown Row, built on part of the estate of the
Governors of King Edward’s Grammar School, was consecrated July 23rd,
1844, and then constituted a district chapelry out of the parish of St.
George. A portion of it has since been assigned to the district of St.
Nicolas. There is a mission room in Theodore Street.

=St. Jude’s=, in Tonk Street, in the midst of one of the poorest
districts of the town, was consecrated 26th July, 1851, and enlarged
in 1879. In the year 1845, before the building of the church, it was
constituted a district out of the parishes of St. Martin and St. Philip.

=St. John’s= (Ladywood), Monument Road, built on land granted by the
Governors of the Free Grammar School, was consecrated March 15th, 1854.
By an order in Council, gazetted June 20th, 1854, it was constituted a
district chapelry out of St. Martin’s parish, and has since (1876) had
the district chapelry of St. Margaret’s carved out of it. The church
was greatly enlarged in 1881.

=St. Matthias’=, Wheeler Street, is the church of a new district
chapelry formed in the year 1856 out of the parish of St. George, and
part of that district has since been assigned to St. Saviour’s. The
church was consecrated June 4th, 1856, and enlarged in 1879.

=St. Barnabas’=, Ryland Street North. The parish was formed out of St.
Martin’s in the year 1861, the church having been built and consecrated
October 24th, 1860. At a very little distance is

=Immanuel Church=, in Broad Street, which occupies the site of what was
once the chapel of the Magdalen Asylum. It was consecrated May 7th,
1865, and is the church of a parish formed in that year out of St.
Thomas’s parish.

=St. David’s=, Bissell Street, is the church of a district chapelry
formed in the year 1866 out of St. Luke’s parish. The church was
consecrated in July, 1865.

In January, 1865, The Birmingham Church Extension Society was formed.
In 1867 Miss Ryland contributed a sum of £10,000 towards the same
objects and subsequently a second donation of £10,000. Out of these
donations the cost of the churches of St. Gabriel, St. Lawrence (see
Aston), and St. Nicolas was mainly defrayed.

=St. Nicolas’=, in Lower Tower Street, consecrated July 12th, 1868,
and, by order in Council, 18th June, 1869, constituted a district
chapelry out of St. Stephen’s parish.

=St. Asaph’s=, Great Colmore Street, of which the site was presented
by Mr. Cregoe Colmore, was consecrated December 8th, 1868. By order in
Council, 18th June, 1869, it was constituted a district chapelry out of
the parish of St. Thomas.

=St. Gabriel’s=, in Pickford Street, Digbeth, was consecrated January
5th, 1869, and by order in Council 7th August, 1869, was formed as
a consolidated chapelry out of the parishes of St. Martin and St.

=St. Cuthbert’s=, St. Cuthbert’s Road, Birmingham Heath, was
consecrated March 19th, 1872, and is a vicarage constituted by order in
Council 15th October, 1872, out of the parish of All Saints.

=St. Saviour’s=, Bridge Street, Hockley, was consecrated May 1st, 1874,
and in the same year constituted a district chapelry out of the new
parish of St. Matthias.

=St. Margaret’s=, Ledsam Street, Ladywood, consecrated October 2nd,
1875, and by order in council 12th February, 1876, constituted a
district chapelry out of the parish of St. John, Ladywood.

=Christ Church=, Gillott Road, Summerfield, built in memory of the
forty-nine years’ ministry of the late Rev. George Lea, M.A., at Christ
Church, Birmingham, and St. George’s, Edgbaston. It was consecrated
April 30th, 1885; the same year it was created a district chapelry out
of St. John’s, Ladywood.

Now passing into the


=St. Bartholomew.=--The parish church, dedicated to St. Bartholomew, is
at the junction of Church Road and Priory Road, and close to Edgbaston
Park and Hall. There is said to have been a church on the site in 775.
The present church now (1886) in course of enlargement was rebuilt in
1810. The vicars of Edgbaston have been remarkable for longevity. The
Rev. John Pixell, who was inducted in 1760, was succeeded by his son
the Rev. Charles Pixell in 1794, and he held the living for 54 years.
On his death, in 1848, the late Rev. Isaac Spooner became vicar, and
held it until his death in 1884.

=St. George’s.=--The rapid increase of population in this parish, the
West End of Birmingham, led to the building of St. George’s Church,
at the end of Calthorpe Road, about half a mile nearer the town than
the old church, to which it was a chapel of ease. It was consecrated
November 28th, 1838. It was greatly enlarged in 1885, and constituted a
separate district in 1852, by the Church Building Commissioners.

=St. James’s= in St. James’s Road, was another chapel of ease,
consecrated 1st June, 1852. In the same year it had a separate district
assigned to it by the Church Building Commissioners.

=St. Augustine’s=, near the top of the Hagley Road, was built in the
year 1867, as another chapel of ease to Edgbaston Old Church, to serve
the increasing population of the northern portion of the parish. It was
consecrated September 12th, 1868, and cost £9,000. A tower and spire,
added in 1876, cost £4,000 more. It has not yet (1886) any district
legally assigned to it.

=St. Ambrose=, a temporary church, in the Pershore Road, is another
chapel of ease in the southern portion of the parish. It is the gift
of Mrs. Spooner, as a memorial of her late husband, the Rev. Isaac
Spooner, vicar of the parish 1848 to 1884.


We have to deal only with the portion of this parish which is included
in the Borough, and commence with the chapel of

=St. John’s=, Deritend, which is the second most ancient church in
the town. It is situate just over the Aston side of the stream which
divides that parish from Birmingham, and was founded in 1375 by some
inhabitants of the hamlets of Deritend and Bordesley, because of
the inconvenience of resorting to the parish church of Aston, three
miles away. The then Lord of the Manor of Birmingham gave the land,
and the inhabitants built the chapel, and by an agreement, still
extant, dated 29th May, 1381, and made between the Prior and monks of
Tykeford, patrons of the parish church of Aston, the vicar of Aston,
the Lord of the Manor of Birmingham, and thirteen of the inhabitants of
Deritend and Bordesley, with the consent of the Bishop of the diocese,
then called Coventry and Lichfield, the inhabitants of Deritend and
Bordesley were empowered to appoint, “at their own charges,” a chaplain
to celebrate divine service in a certain chapel in honor of St. John
the Baptist there lately built.[36] The chaplain is still elected by
the vote of the inhabitants of Deritend and Bordesley, and down to the
year 1842 the proceedings did not differ from those of a contested
political election. The last election took place June 15th, 1870, when
the present chaplain, the Rev. W. C. Badger, M.A., was elected by a
majority of 1561 votes over his opponent. The present chapel dates from
1735. There is a mission room in Darwin Street. Part of the district
conventionally assigned to it was, by order dated 29th December, 1885,
legally created a “Peel district” without a church, by the name of =St.

This chapel of St. John remained from the fourteenth to the eighteenth
century the only chapel of ease to the parish church of Aston for the
increasing population of that part of the town which gradually extended
itself into Aston parish. In the early part of this century a genteel
suburb had formed itself at the east end of the town, on the Coleshill
road, of which the eastern portions of Great Brook Street and Ashted
Row are still evidences.

Dr. Ash, a celebrated physician of Birmingham, and founder of the
General Hospital, built what Hutton calls a “sumptuous house” there.
When he left it to live in London it was altered into a proprietary
chapel by a Mr. Brooke, an attorney, who gave his name to the street.
The chapel was opened on the 9th of October, 1791, but was sold in 1798
and afterwards became--

=St. James’s Chapel=, Ashted, consecrated August 7th, 1807. From its
close proximity to the cavalry barracks, it was called “The Barrack’s
Chapel.” A separate parish was allotted to it out of the Aston parish,
in the year 1853. There is a mission room in Vauxhall Road.

=Holy Trinity Chapel=, at the top of Bradford Street, was the result
of a meeting for church extension, held in October, 1818. It was
consecrated 23rd January, 1823, and a district carved out of Aston
parish was allotted to it in the year 1864. Parts of that district have
since been assigned to St. Alban and All Saints’, Smallheath. There is
a mission hall in Sandy Lane.

=St. Matthew’s=, Great Lister Street, was consecrated 20th October,
1840, and made the church of a district, 1842. The town has since
extended for a mile eastward, and districts out of St. Matthew’s
district have been carved out and assigned to the district chapelries
of St. Clement, St. Lawrence, and St. Anne, Duddeston, (_q.v._) There
is a mission room in Lupin Street.

=St. Andrew’s=, in St. Andrew’s Road, near the Coventry Road, was
consecrated September 30th, 1846, having been constituted a district
chapelry out of the parish of Aston. Attached is an iron church,
dedicated to =St. Oswald=, opposite Smallheath Park.

=St. Clement’s=, in Nechells Park Road, was consecrated August 30th,
1859, and a district out of St. Matthew’s, Duddeston, assigned to it in
1860. It has a mission room in High Park Street, and a mission hall in
Cuckoo Road.

=Christ Church=, near the Stratford Road, Sparkbrook, built on land
given by Mr. S. S. Lloyd, was consecrated October 1, 1867, and a
particular district assigned to it 21st November, 1867. There is a
mission hall in Dolobran Road.

=St. Lawrence’s=, in Dartmouth Street, was consecrated June 25th, 1868,
and by order in Council, 14th September, in the same year, constituted
a district chapelry out of the parish of St. Matthew.

=St. Anne’s=, in Cato Street, Nechells, built partly out of funds
provided by the Church Extension Society, was consecrated 22nd October,
1869, and by order in Council of December 7th, was constituted a
district chapelry out of the district of St. Matthew. Attached is a
mission room in Great Francis Street.

=All Saints’=, Cooksey Road, Smallheath, was built by the friends of
the late Rev. Joseph Oldknow, D.D., who was for many years vicar of
Holy Trinity, Bordesley (_q.v._) in memory of him. It was consecrated
July 28th, 1883. It had been previously made a district by order in
Council, 5th August, 1875.

=St. Catherine’s= in Scholefield Street, Nechells, consecrated
November 8th, 1878, and constituted a district chapelry out of St.
Clement’s, Nechells, by order in Council, dated 20th March, 1879. There
is a mission room in Smith Street.

=St. Alban the Martyr=, at the corner of Conybere Street and Ryland
Street, consecrated May 3rd, 1881. This is one of the finest churches
in the Borough, and the services are ritualistic. A mission chapel
dedicated to St. Alban was first opened in September, 1865, and,
in 1873, a school chapel dedicated to St. Patrick, and situated in
Highgate Street. These are now both attached to the larger church.
By order in Council dated 19th August, 1871, a district had been
previously assigned to it out of Holy Trinity parish.

The other particulars relating to the Churches in the Borough will be
found in the following alphabetical list.


A means Aston Parish, B Birmingham Parish, E Edgbaston Parish, R
Rectory, and V Vicarage.

        |             |               |            |Net Value  |     |Free
  Parish|             |               |            | £  +------+     |Sit-
  of    |             |  Incumbent    |            |    |Population  |tings
    +---+             |     and       |            |    |last census.|for
    |                 |    Degree,    |            |    |      +-----+poor.
    |    Benifice.    |     and       |  Patron.   |    |      |Total|
    |                 |   Year of     |            |    |      |Church
    |                 |  admission.   |            |    |      |accomm-
    |                 |               |            |    |      |odation.
  B |All Saints      R|P.E. Wilson,   |Trustees    | 238| 28656|  715| 300
    |                 |  M.A.     1882|            |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  A |All Saints,      |G.F.B. Cross,  |Trustees    | 150|  9123|  720| all
    | Small Heath    V|  M.A.     1875|            |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  B |Bishop Ryder    V|J. Phelps      |Trustees    | 300|  7737|  840| 200
    |                 |  Gardiner,    |            |    |      |     |
    |                 |  D.D.     1875|            |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  B |Christ Church   V|E.R. Mason,    |The Bishop  | 330|  4158| 1600|1100
    |                 |  M.A.     1881|            |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  A |Christ Church,  V|G. Tonge, M.A. |Trustees    | 400| 12730|  900| 450
    | Sparkbrook      |           1867|            |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  B |Christ Church,  V|G.S. Walker,   |The Bishop  | -- |  --  |  800| 450
    | Summerfield     |  M.A.     1885|            |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  E |Edgbaston Old   V|Cresswell      |Lord        | 542| 10024|  673| 139
    | Church          |  Strange,     | Calthorpe  |    |      |     |
    |                 |  M.A.     1885|            |    |      |     |
  A |Holy Trinity,   V|A.H. Watts     |Trustees    | 330| 12563| 1500| 900
    | Bordesley       |           1883|            |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  B |Immanuel        V|R. Bren, M.A.  |Trustees    | 297|  9011|  805| 605
    |                 |           1885|            |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  A |St. Alban the    |J.S. Pollock,  |Trustees    | 150| 12723| 1000| all
    | Martyr, Dist.   |  M.A.     1871|            |    |      |     |
  E |St. Ambrose      |               |            |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  A |St. Andrew,      |J. Williamson, |Bishop and  | 320| 10000|  800| 200
    |Bordesley       V|  M.A.     1876| Trustees   |    |      |     |
    |                 |               | alt.       |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  A |St. Anne        V|T.J. Haworth,  |The Bishop  | 300|  5302|  810| 400
    |                 |  M.A.     1873|            |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  B |St. Asaph       V|R. Fletcher,   |Trustees    | 360| 10800| 1000| 500
    |                 |  M.A.     1879|            |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  E |St. Augustine Ch.|J.C. Blissard, |The Bishop  | 500|   -- |  650|  50
    |                 |  M.A.     1868|            |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  B |St. Barnabas    V|Percy Waller   |Trustees    | 385|  7250| 1050| 650
    |                 |           1881|            |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  B |St. Bartholomew V|James Eagles,  |Rector of   | 300|  6500| 1800| 800
    |                 |  M.A.     1851| St. Martin |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  A |St. Catherine   V|T.H. Nock, M.A.|Trustees    | -- |  7149|  750| 400
    |                 |           1879|            |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  A |St. Clement     V|J.T. Butlin,   |Vicar of St.| 310|  9500|  850| 500
    |                 |  B.A.     1879| Matthew    |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  B |St. Cuthbert    V|W.H. Tarleton, |Trustees    | 250|  8002|  720| 596
    |                 |  M.A.     1872|            |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  B |St. David       V|H. Boyden, B.A.|Trustees    | 315| 10382|  985| 733
    |                 |           1866|            |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  B |St. Gabriel     V|W.H. Cariss,   |The Bishop  | 350|  5700|  650| all
    |                 |  M.A.     1884|            |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  B |St. George      R|J.G. Dixon,    |Trustees    | 400| 16065| 2150|1450
    |                 |  M.A.     1875|            |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  E |St. George      V|C.M. Owen, M.A.|Lord        | 450|  7000| 1350| 450
    |                 |           1883| Calthorpe  |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  A |St. James,      V|J. Orr, M.A.   |Trustees    | 300| 16000| 1350| 450
    | Ashted          |           1885|            |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  E |St. James       V|W.E. Ivens,    |Lord        | 250|  6231|  900| 225
    |                 |  M.A.     1885| Calthorpe  |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  A |St. John,     Ch.|W.C. Badger,   |Parishioners| 300| 10448|  890| 150
    | Deritend        |  M.A.     1870| of Deritend|    |      |     |
    |                 |               | and        |    |      |     |
    |                 |               | Bordesley  |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  B |St. John,       V|J.L. Porter,   |Rector of   | -- | 14176|  -- |1050
    | Ladywood        |  M.A.     1869| St. Martin |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  B |St. Jude        V|T.G. Watton,   |The Bishop  | 350|  7000| 1000| 600
    |                 |  M.A.     1873|            |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  A |St. Lawrence    V|J.F.M. Whish,  |The Bishop  | 320|  5778|  750| 400
    |                 |  B.A.     1879|            |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  B |St. Luke        V|W.B. Wilkinson,|Trustees    | 300| 10486|  800| 300
    |                 |  M.A.     1875|            |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  B |ST. MARTIN      R|W. Wilkinson,  |Trustees    |1048| 17405| 2200| 140
    |                 |  D.D.     1866|            |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  B |St. Margaret P.C.|H.A. Nash      |The Bishop  | 300|  6653|  800| all
    |                 |           1875|            |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  B |St. Mark        V|R.L.G. Pidcock,|The Bishop  | 350| 16000| 1000| 400
    |                 |  M.A.     1877| and        |    |      |     |
    |                 |               | Trustees   |    |      |     |
  B |St. Mary        V|H. Foster Pegg,|Trustees    | 275|  5657| 1600| 350
    |                 |  M.A.     1866|            |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  A |St. Matthew,    V|J. Byrchmore   |Trustees    | 300|  8216| 1504| 679
    | Duddeston       |           1879|            |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  B |St. Matthias    V|J.S. Davies,   |Trustees    | 300| 10000| 1000| all
    |                 |  M.A.     1886|            |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  B |St. Nicolas     V|W.H. Connor,   |The Bishop  | 300|  5220|  566| all
    |                 |  M.A.     1876|            |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  B |St. Paul        V|R.B. Burges,   |Trustees    | 300| 15100| 1200| 600
    |                 |  M.A.     1867|            |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  B |St. Peter       V|R. Dell, M.A.  |The Bishop  | 310|  2500| 1500| all
    |                 |           1870|            |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  B |St. Philip      R|H.B. Bowlby,   |The Bishop  | 949|  2885| 1750| 560
    |                 |  M.A.     1875|            |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  B |St. Saviour     V|M. Parker      |Trustees    | 380|  5000|  730| all
    |                 |           1874|            |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  B |St. Stephen     V|P. Reynolds,   |The Bishop  | 250| 12560| 1150| 700
    |                 |  LL.B.    1854|            |    |      |     |
    |                 |               |            |    |      |     |
  B |St. Thomas      R|T.D. Halsted,  |Trustees    | 650| 11000| 2100|1500
    |                 |  M.A.     1870|            |    |      |     |


The earliest Nonconformist place of worship, of which any record
remains, was “The Old Meeting,” which, with its graveyard, has so
recently as the year 1882 been removed for the enlargement of the
railway station in New Street.

As old Birmingham was not a corporate town it did not come within the
provisions of The Five-Mile Act (A.D. 1665), and was naturally the
resort of persecuted Nonconformists from the neighbouring boroughs. On
the first Declaration of Indulgence put forth by Charles the Second
in 1672, rooms were licensed for public worship, and in 1687 eleven
dissenters bought a plot of land in what was then called Philip Street,
and built a meeting house, finished in 1689, the year of the passing
of The Toleration Act. As the total cost of land and building was only
£220, it could not have accommodated many hearers, and we find that
another meeting house, called the “Lower Meeting House,” was built
in Deritend in a yard which was until lately called “Meeting House
Yard,” now taken into the continuation of Milk Street into Deritend.
This second chapel was injured in the Sacheverell Riots in 1715, and
afterwards the congregation removed, in 1732, to what was formerly the
“New Meeting,” in Moor Street, where they remained until the last day
of the year 1861.

The worshippers at both these two original meeting houses called
themselves, and were called “Presbyterians,” used as the antithesis
to “Episcopalian,” although they were really “Independent” in their
form of church government. In theology both congregations were at
first Calvinistic, but Mr. Howell, the sixth in succession of the
ministers of the Old Meeting, having become an avowed Arian, the more
orthodox minority withdrew in the year 1747, and founded the church in
Carr’s Lane--(see “Congregationalists.”) It is creditable to the good
feeling of the separatists that none of them sold their shares in the
“Old Meeting” and one of them was re-appointed a trustee thirty years
afterwards. From Arianism the congregations of both the Old and New
Meetings gradually became Unitarian and are henceforth treated under
that title.

=Unitarians.=--The Old Meeting House, built in 1689, was burned in the
riots of 1791, and afterwards rebuilt. It had attached a burial ground
which was used by both the congregations of the Old and New Meetings,
and in which were interred the remains of many of the foremost men in
the public life of Birmingham for two centuries.[38] As before stated
the meeting house and ground were sold to the London and North Western
Railway Company in 1882, and the remains of the dead were transferred
to a separate piece of ground in the Borough Cemetery at Witton, and
the Congregation have built a new

OLD MEETING CHURCH, in the Bristol Road, which was opened in 1885.

THE NEW MEETING HOUSE, of which Dr. Priestley was the minister from
1780 to 1791, was destroyed in the riots of 1791 and rebuilt on its
original site in Moor Street. The situation having become inconvenient
it was (1861) sold to the Roman Catholics and became St. Michael’s,
Moor Street (_q.v._), and the New Meeting congregation removed to

THE CHURCH OF THE MESSIAH, Broad Street, opened 1st January, 1862. The
Rev. H. W. Crosskey, LL.D., is the minister.

NEWHALL HILL CHAPEL was next in order of time to the Old and New
Meetings, and was built in 1840 by members of both congregations, who
had previously a house for worship and Sunday schools in Cambridge

HURST STREET CHAPEL was built in the year 1844 as a mission chapel and
has been since enlarged. Another mission more immediately connected
with the New Meeting is

LAWRENCE STREET CHAPEL, which was originally built as a place of
worship for the Baptists then occupied by the disciples of Zion Ward,
and afterwards used by the followers of Robert Owen, who were at one
time numerous in Birmingham.

THE BIRMINGHAM FREE CHRISTIAN SOCIETY have a chapel in Fazeley Street,
served by Lay preachers.

=Baptists.=--It is somewhat singular that two of the oldest chapels
belonging to this body, namely, Cannon Street and Freeman Street,
have now ceased to exist. Cannon Street Chapel was built in 1737 on a
part of what was then a cherry orchard (which gave its name to Cherry
Street). The original building was greatly enlarged in 1806. In those
days the well-to-do tradesmen of Birmingham lived in the town, and
the town chapels consequently drew their occupants from the immediate
neighbourhood. Gradually, however, the old members died, and their sons
and daughters went to live in the suburbs, and so Cannon Street, which
was the flourishing mother church of the Particular Baptists, dwindled
in numbers. Fortunately the site of it was required by the Corporation
of Birmingham, and it was sold for £26,500, and is now occupied by the
Central Arcade in Corporation Street. The purchase money was, under a
scheme sanctioned by the Court of Chancery, expended in aid of several
Baptist chapels in the town and suburbs.

The Chapel in Freeman Street is said to have been older than Cannon
Street to which place the worshippers at Freeman Street joined
themselves in 1752, and the edifice itself was taken down in 1856.
The next Chapel in order of date was built in Bond Street (near
Constitution Hill) was opened in the year 1786, and was for many years
a flourishing church, but gradually decayed in numbers and influence,
and is now occupied by the United Methodists (_q.v._).

The chief existing places of worship now belonging to the Baptists are

NEWHALL STREET CHAPEL, originally built in 1791 by the followers of
Emanuel Swedenborg.

GRAHAM STREET or MOUNT ZION CHAPEL, opened in 1824 by the celebrated
Edward Irving. Twenty years afterwards the pulpit was occupied for some
time by the late George Dawson, and subsequently, from 1851 to 1874, by
the Rev. Charles Vince, whose death was felt as a public calamity.

HENEAGE STREET CHAPEL, of which the foundation stone was laid 1st
of August, 1838, to commemorate the emancipation of the West Indian

CIRCUS CHAPEL, Bradford Street, opened 1848, so called because it was
formerly a circus.

WYCLIFFE CHURCH, in the Bristol Road, opened in 1861.

CHURCH OF THE REDEEMER, Hagley Road, built by a portion of the
congregation of Graham Street, aided by a contribution of the Cannon
Street trustees, and opened in 1882.

There are also chapels in Guildford Street, Hope Street, Lodge Road
(Hockley), Great King Street, Stratford Road, Spring Hill, Victoria
Street (Small Heath), Warwick Street (Deritend), and Wynn Street (Great
Colmore Street).

There is also a chapel belonging to the Particular Baptists of
Calvinistic views in Frederick Street (Newhall Hill), built in 1850
with the proceeds of an old chapel in Bartholomew Street, which was
called the “Cave of Adullam,” and removed by the extension of the
railway into New Street.

The General or Arminian Baptists had the chapel in Freeman Street (now
removed), and in September, 1786, opened the existing chapel in LOMBARD

=Congregationalists.=--CARR’S LANE.--This Church was formed, as before
stated, in 1747, by members of the first Nonconformist Meeting house,
the “Old Meeting,” who did not agree with the Arianism of the then
minister, Mr. Howell. The first building was opened in 1748, and was
then, as was the custom with meeting houses, built in a yard to screen
it from observation. It has been several times enlarged and rebuilt.
The names of the Rev. John Angell James, who was minister here from
1806 to his death, 1st October, 1859, and of his successor R. W. Dale,
LL.D., the present minister, are known throughout the christian world.

EBENEZER CHAPEL, in Steelhouse Lane, was built in 1818 by the admirers
of a minister celebrated in his day, the Rev. Jehoiada Brewer, who
laid the foundation stone in 1816, but died before the building was
finished.[39] From endowments furnished by three members of this
congregation, Mr. Mansfield and his two sisters, Miss Mansfield and
Mrs. Glover, a college for the education of ministers was established
at Spring Hill, Dudley Road, then removed to Moseley, and is now
intended to be reconstituted at Oxford as “Mansfield College.”

HIGHBURY CHAPEL, Graham Street, originally formed by the remnant of the
Livery Street congregation, was opened in 1845.

FRANCIS ROAD (Edgbaston) CHAPEL was built to commemorate the fiftieth
year of the pastorate of Carr’s Lane Chapel, by the late Rev. J. A.
James. He laid the foundation stone 11th September, 1855.

The Congregationalists have also chapels in Gooch Street, Moseley
Road, St. Andrew’s Road, Saltley, Small Heath, Parade (Tabernacle),
and Winson Green Road, and several others outside the Borough, but in
immediate proximity to it..

=Society of Friends.=--George Fox records in his journal that he held
a meeting in Birmingham in the year 1655, and there is good reason to
believe in the existence of a small society from that date, meeting in
private houses until 1703, when a plain brick meeting house fronting
Bull Street was built. There may have been an earlier meeting house in
Monmouth Street, where there was a burial ground, acquired in 1851 by
the Great Western Railway, and now the site of the Arcade. The meeting
house in Bull Street was several times enlarged, and in 1856 it was
pulled down, shops built fronting the street, and a more commodious
meeting house built in the rear. There is also another meeting place in
Bath Row. Meetings for religious worship and instruction, conducted by
members of the Society, are held on Sundays at Severn Street Schools,
and the Board Schools in Moseley Street and Bristol Street. The Early
First-Day Morning School, and the other schools and classes at Severn
Street, established by the Friends, have done, and are doing an
incalculable amount of good.

=Wesleyan Methodists.=--John Wesley preached his first sermon in
Birmingham in 1743, but it was not until 1764 that his followers
acquired an old play house in Moor Street as their first chapel which
he opened. In 1782 they had so prospered as to build a chapel in Cherry
Street, which was opened by John Wesley himself, then in his eightieth
year. This chapel, enlarged in the year 1823, is now (July, 1886) to be
pulled down, and a new chapel built in Corporation Street.

The rapid increase of numbers necessitated additional chapels in
Bradford Street (1786), BELMONT ROW (1789), MARTIN STREET, (Broad
Street) (1834), NEWTOWN ROW CHAPEL (1837), WESLEY CHAPEL, Constitution
Hill (1838), besides a chapel in Bell Barn Road for which the present
BRISTOL ROAD CHAPEL (1854) was substituted.

For the purposes of connexional organization the Birmingham district is
divided into seven circuits, which include not only the chapels already
mentioned but also thirty-three others within the Borough and its
suburbs, including Smethwick.

METHODIST NEW CONNEXION.--This section of the Methodist Community,
which separated from the Wesleyans in 1797, only on questions of the
share of the laity in church government, first built a chapel in
Oxford Street (1811) now disused, then another in the northern part of
the town, Unett Street (1838), and have since built smaller ones in
Moseley Street, Priestley Road (Stratford Road) Ladywood, Heath Street
and Crabtree Road (Brookfields) in the Borough. These and a chapel
at Smethwick are divided into two circuits supplied by three circuit

THE PRIMITIVE METHODISTS.--This body has thirteen chapels in and near
to the Borough, divided into three circuits, and served by four regular
ministers. The largest of these is in Gooch Street, and the others in
the Borough are in Sparkbrook, King Street, Lord Street, Nechells,
Garrison Lane, Whitmore Street (Hockley) and Ladywood.

THE UNITED METHODIST FREE CHURCHES have two circuits and two circuit
ministers and chapels in Rocky Lane (Nechells) Bond Street, (recently
acquired from the Baptists, _q.v._) and Muntz Street (Birmingham Heath)
besides one at Washwood Heath.

THE WESLEYAN REFORMERS.--Have one regular minister and two chapels in
Upper Trinity Street and Floodgate Street.

=The English Presbyterian Church.=--These are the orthodox
Presbyterians, as distinguished from the churches which, like the Old
Meeting congregation, became Arian or Unitarian. They first occupied
what is now the Baptist Chapel at Mount Zion, which was opened by the
celebrated Edward Irving (see Baptists), and then a chapel in Newhall
Street, afterwards the church in BROAD STREET, which is their principal
edifice. They have also churches at Camp Hill and New John Street West.

=The Christian Brethren= have a head place of worship at the Central
Hall, Great Charles Street, and other meeting places in Green Lane
(Small Heath), New John Street West, Camp Hill, and Icknield Port Road
in the Borough, and four others in the outskirts.

Several other religious bodies have only one or two places of worship,
and among these may be named--

=The Bloomsbury Institution= Mission Hall, in Bloomsbury Street.

=The Boatmen’s Hall= in Bridge Street (Broad Street).

=The Catholic Apostolic Church=, in Summer Hill Terrace, a new church
built by the congregation formerly assembling at what was called the
Irvingite Church, in Newhall Street.

=The Christadelphians=, who meet in the Temperance Hall, in Temple

=The Church of the Saviour=, in Edward Street (Parade), built in 1847
for Mr. George Dawson, M.A., on his leaving the Mount Zion (Baptists)
Chapel (_q.v._). A free church, founded on the principle that common
Christian worship and pursuit of religious truth, and not doctrinal
agreement, are the true bases of Christian union.

=The Jewish Synagogue=, in Blucher Street, top of Severn Street, was
built in 1856, to supply the place of a smaller synagogue in Severn
Street. It cost upwards of £8,000.

=The New Church=, or Swedenborgians, had for their first chapel the one
in Newhall Street (now occupied by the Baptists, _q.v._) then, in 1830,
removed to a new chapel in Summer Lane, and subsequently, in 1875, to
an elegant church, a little way over the Borough boundary, in Wretham
Road (Soho Hill).

=The Welsh Calvinistic Methodists=, who have a chapel in Granville
Street (Bath Row), and another in Hockley Hill, just over the Borough

=The Welsh Congregationalists= have a chapel in Wheeler Street.

=Roman Catholics.=--There is no record of any Roman Catholic place of
worship in Birmingham from the Reformation until the publication, by
James the Second, of the illegal Declaration of Indulgence in 1687. In
that year the foundation of a church and convent, dedicated to St. Mary
Magdalene, was laid near the street still called Masshouse Lane, and
probably on the site of the present Church of St. Bartholomew (_q.v._).
It was scarcely built when it was pulled down at the Revolution of
1688. The priests (who were of the order of St. Francis) removed to a
farm house in a lane near Harborne, the approach to which, at the top
of Richmond Hill Road, Edgbaston, was known as Masshouse Lane.

The first chapel in the town was the one dedicated to ST. PETER, in St.
Peter’s Place, a little way out of Broad Street, built in 1786, and a
burial ground and schools added and subsequently enlarged.

The next was a chapel in Shadwell Street, built in 1809, and dedicated
to St. Chad, which afterwards gave place to ST. CHAD’S CATHEDRAL, Bath
Street, built after the designs of A. Welby Pugin at a cost of £60,000,
and consecrated June 22, 1841.

ST. ANNE’S, Alcester Street, was originally a distillery, and was
acquired by the Fathers of the Oratory of St. Philip Neri, of whom John
Henry (now Cardinal) Newman was one. In 1852, the Fathers removed to
the Hagley Road (_q.v._), and St. Anne’s became a secular mission.

addition to the Church, is a residence for the Fathers of the Order
of St. Philip Neri, and a school for the education of the sons of the
Catholic gentry. It is interesting to every educated man as having been
for more than a quarter of a century the abode of John Henry (Cardinal)

ST. MICHAEL’S, Moor Street, formerly the New Meeting House of the
Unitarians (_q.v._), and purchased from that body in 1861, and opened
in 1862.

ST. JOSEPH’S, Nechells, formerly only a chapel of the cemetery there
served from St. Chad’s, became a church with two priests in the year

ST. CATHERINE OF SIENNA in the Horse Fair was consecrated September 28,
1875, and

ST. PATRICK’S in the Dudley Road was opened in 1876.

Birmingham is one of the Roman Catholic Sees created by the celebrated
Papal-Decree of 29th September, 1850. To that date from 1584, when the
last of the old Roman Catholic Prelates died, the English Romanists had
been governed in matters ecclesiastical by Vicars-Apostolic, of whom
the last and best known was Bishop (_in partibus_) afterwards Cardinal

       *       *       *       *       *

After this enumeration of the numerous churches and chapels, which the
limited number of pages at the writer’s disposal necessarily reduces to
almost a catalogue, it may be useful to summarise the general results
of the religious life of the town.

It must never be forgotten that every church and chapel is a centre
of educational and philanthropic work of many kinds. The clergy of
the established church have almost a monopoly of day schools, whilst
the various denominations of dissenters for the most part leave the
education of the poor to the Board schools. Night schools are common
to both churches and chapels--Sunday schools are universally attached
to both. Then there are the auxiliary organisations of Bible Classes,
Lending Libraries, Provident Societies, Sick Clubs, Saving Clubs,
Clothing Clubs, Improvement Societies, Mothers’ Meetings, Dorcas
Societies, Lectures on Health and Domestic Economy by ladies, and,
attached to some churches and chapels, classes for instruction in
elementary Science and Literature.

Of the three parties into which the established church is commonly
divided, viz., Low, High, and Broad, the general tone of the Birmingham
clergy for the last fifty years has been decidedly low. A glance at the
table will shew that the rights of presentation to the mother church of
St. Martin and the other three rectories of All Saints, St. George, and
St. Thomas, and also to many of the newly-created vicarages, are vested
in trustees. With the exception of two or three of the new churches,
such as those of St. Alban the Martyr, and the Oldknow Memorial Church,
these trustees have been of the type of the Simeon Trustees.

For many years Holy Trinity, Bordesley, was the sole representative of
High Church ritual and doctrine, both of which have made great progress
the last quarter of a century, and at many of the churches the services
are distinctly “higher” than formerly. The same influences have been at
work among Nonconformists. The old pattern of meetinghouse has given
place everywhere to a more ecclesiastical style, and even where the
structure cannot be altered, the walls are coloured and decorated. The
congregational plain song of half a century ago is varied and improved
by chanting and anthems, and in one Nonconformist Church may be seen a
surpliced choir.

The “Broad” Church party is scarcely represented in Birmingham, and
with the exceptions of the Head Master and some of the other Masters
of the Free Grammar School, and the Rector of St. Martin’s, who, from
his position, is naturally a representative man, the Birmingham clergy
do not concern themselves much with either the political, municipal,
scientific, or literary pursuits of their fellow townsmen. They have
the good reason that the work of their parishes makes such demands upon
them that they have neither time nor strength for any other labours.
Hence the public work of the town (with the exception of the School
Board, on which the clergy have been always strongly represented)
has for the last forty years been more influenced by the leading
Nonconformist ministers than by the clergy.

Whilst the religious activity of the Nonconformists has not abated,
they have gained immensely in influence in all the governing bodies
and public institutions. For example, for a century previous to
the year 1873, no dissenter had been elected a Governor of the
Free Grammar School; now there are nine Nonconformists out of the
twenty-one Governors. The religious activity of the Church has been
widened and deepened by the development of the parochial system,
whilst the natural “set” of nonconformist activity towards political
and social reforms has won for them the control of political and
municipal affairs. This cannot be better illustrated than by a few
particulars of the composition of the Birmingham Town Council, which
has acquired the reputation of being above the average of Town Councils
in the social standing and ability of its members. Of the sixty-four
members of which the Town Council is composed, seventeen only are
churchmen. Of the sixteen Aldermen (assumed to be elected by the
Council on account of services either exceptional in kind or duration)
only one is a churchman. The forty-seven members of the Council not
belonging to the Established Church, are composed of six Baptists,
nine Congregationalists, six members of the Society of Friends, one
Jew, one Presbyterian, two Roman Catholics, nine Unitarians, six
Undenominational, and seven members of the Wesleyan and other Methodist
bodies. The preponderance of Quakers and Unitarians in the Council,
in proportion to their numerical strength in the country, is very
remarkable. The number of members of the Society of Friends in England
and Wales, is about one to every 1,725 of the population, according to
the census of 1881. The number of their members and attendants on their
services in Birmingham, is about one to every 527 of the population of
the Borough; whilst in the Council their numbers are nearly one in ten
(accurately 9.375 per cent.) or more than fifty times their numerical
proportion. It is not possible to determine so accurately the number of
Unitarians, but it may be safely asserted that their representation in
the Council is many times in excess of _their_ numerical proportion.


Most of the Churches built in Birmingham up to the year 1834 had
churchyards added to them. The Churchyard of St. Martin being found
inadequate, nearly three acres of land in Park Street was consecrated
in the year 1813 as a burial ground, and have been since laid out as a
public garden (see St. Bartholomew). There were burial grounds attached
to the Old Meeting, to the Baptist Chapel, Cannon Street, and to the
Friends Meeting House; there was also a piece of ground in Walmer Lane,
appropriated by a Congregationalist, Joseph Scott, for the burial of
Protestant Dissenters (A.D. 1779). There were also burial grounds for
the Jewish Community in a spot called the Froggery, now part of New
Street Station, in Granville Street and Betholom Row.

In 1832, a joint stock company was formed for constructing the General
Cemetery at Key Hill--the area of which is about twelve acres.
Divided from it by Pitsford Street is the Church of England Cemetery,
consecrated in 1848. In 1850 the Catholic Cemetery of St. Joseph was

By successive orders in Council most of the intra-mural burial grounds
were closed, and in the year 1860 the Corporation purchased 105 acres
of land at Witton for a Borough Cemetery. Of this area, fifty-three
acres are consecrated for use by members of the Established Church;
thirty-five are set apart for Nonconformists, two acres and a half
have been sold for the use of the Hebrew Community, and the residue is
appropriated for the use of Roman Catholics. There are four distinct
buildings for the use of the Church of England, Roman Catholics,
Nonconformists, and Jews. To this Cemetery the coffins from Scott’s
burial ground (72), Cannon Street Chapel (142), and the Old Meeting
House (1503), have been removed.



=Architecture.=--[By J. A. COSSINS.]--Although anciently possessing a
Church, a Priory and a Castle, Birmingham now retains hardly a vestige
of the work of the builders of the middle ages. When the old Parish
Church of St. Martin was pulled down in 1872 to make way for its very
fine successor, the indications of its history, hidden for nearly two
centuries by a casing of brickwork, were revealed: traces were found of
the work of the 12th and 13th centuries, and considerable remains of
what must have been a fine building, mainly of the 14th century. The
altar tombs, with effigies of the Lords de Birmingham, were carefully
preserved and refixed in the new Church, and are well worthy of

A few houses of the framed timber and plaster construction common in
the 17th century, remain in Digbeth, and one of a very interesting kind
was this year removed from the corner of Bull Street. The earliest in
date is the Old Crown House, which is probably of the first half of
the 16th century. This was a very interesting specimen of the more
massively constructed, but simpler kind, with gables at the extremities
of the front, and a central porch of two stories; but the whole of
the ground floor was reconstructed about twenty years ago, and it has
recently been further disfigured by painting and graining. At Camp
Hill there is a very fine half-timbered house in good preservation.
This has the date 1601 cut on the porch. Most of the houses burnt by
Prince Rupert, when he sacked the town in 1643, were probably of the
half-timbered kind, since several still remain.

ST. PHILIP’S CHURCH.--From this time there is nothing to mark the
architectural progress of the town until the important event of the
making by Act of Parliament, passed in 1711, of a new parish of St.
Philip in Birmingham. This was immediately followed by the building of
the Church of St. Philip, a remarkably good example of the School of
English Renaissance founded by Wren and continued by his pupils, of
whom the architect of this Church, Thomas Archer, was one of the most
successful. The first stone of the Church was laid in 1711, and it was
consecrated in 1715. It is a large building, the area divided into nave
and aisles by square, fluted pillars, carrying semicircular arches, and
supporting galleries which extend over the aisles. With the exception
of the steeple, the whole has been restored, and within the last year
the chancel, which was but a shallow recess, has been lengthened by one
bay. The fine east window by Mr. Burne Jones, a native of Birmingham,
is considered to be one of his most successful works.

The building of the Church was soon followed by the erection of rows
of houses of an uniform character on the north and south sides of the
churchyard. These have nearly all disappeared: they were built of brick
in the good domestic style of the early part of the last century, with
picturesque doorways, with curved and broken pediments, balustraded
parapets, and heavy white sashes with broad moulded frames. The
interiors had fine oak staircases with turned and twisted balusters,
and were good examples of the cheery home-like dwellings of their
time. Other buildings, forming “The Old Square,” of a somewhat similar
character, have lately been pulled down to make way for a new street,
and very little that is even as old as the “Georges” will be left us
after a very short time.

THE TOWN HALL.--The building of the Town Hall, begun in 1832, was
the first great local architectural event of the present century. It
was designed by Messrs. Hansom & Welch, architects, of Liverpool, in
professed imitation of the Corinthian Temple of Jupiter Stator at Rome,
but it falls far below its prototype in the scale and richness of the
“order.” To properly adapt a temple of the Romans to the various wants
and requirements of a Town Hall for the people of Birmingham required
considerable inventive skill, and to obtain the required height the
temple was mounted on a lofty rusticated basement. The grand flights
of steps to the colonnades, which add so much dignity to the Greek
and Roman temples, are here accessible only by means of a ladder. It
is nevertheless a noble building, of Anglesey marble, though what we
admire in the exterior is due to the ancient architect, and not to the
adapters. The interior is well suited to its many and varied uses, but
the entrances are narrow and undignified, and the lobbies insufficient.

THE FREE GRAMMAR SCHOOL, or King Edward’s School, was founded on the
property belonging to the Gild of the Holy Cross, taken possession of
by Henry VIII., and restored to the town by Edward VI. in the shape
of an educational endowment. The old hall used by the Gild stood
on the site of the present school, and it is probable that it was
used as a school until new buildings were erected in 1707. Of that
edifice drawings are in existence, which show it to have been of two
storeys, and forming three sides of a quadrangle, with a tower over
the central and chief entrance, terminated by a cupola. The buildings
were of brick, with stone dressings; the windows square-headed, of the
heavy-sashed description used in the domestic architecture of the time.
A high balustraded parapet hid the roofs from sight.

The School was pulled down in 1832, and the present noble building
erected on its site. The style is that of the latter half of the
fifteenth century, commonly called Tudor, and although erected so
soon after the revival of Gothic architecture, it has scarcely been
excelled for boldness and propriety of design or for purity of detail.
It forms on plan a nearly equal-sided square. The chief front, facing
New Street, has slightly projecting wings, in which are fine Oriel
windows, of two stories, the intermediate length being divided by
boldly projecting buttresses, terminated by crocketed pinnacles, into
nine bays of two stories in height. The entrance is in the middle bay,
through a handsome moulded and carved doorway, to a vestibule finely
groined in stone. The upper floor of the central part of the front is
now occupied by the Girls’ School, and is lighted by grand traceried
and transomed windows of three lights. The south front, looking towards
the railway station, contains the Boys’ School, and is of a simpler,
but quite as good a design as the main elevation. The two principal
schoolrooms are very fine, with open timber roofs. The architect was
Sir Charles Barry, and a striking similarity between the details of
this building and of those of the Houses of Parliament of about this
time may be observed.

CHRIST CHURCH.--Christ Church, consecrated in 1813, stands at the
junction of New Street with Ann Street, and occupies the most prominent
and the best position in the town, but is quite unworthy of its site.
It is in the quasi-Classic style prevailing in the time of George
III., with a lofty but ill-proportioned tower and spire, and a western
portico of the Roman Doric order.

ST. PETER’S.--Several of the churches succeeding the last were built
by the well known Thomas Rickman; among these were St. Peter’s in Dale
End, a heavy, uninteresting building, with a Grecian Doric portico,
surmounted by a “Temple-of-the-Winds”-like structure as a steeple.

ST. THOMAS’S.--St. Thomas’s, at Holloway Head, another of Rickman’s, is
designed in the same spirit, but with details of the Ionic order. Some
of the earliest efforts of the revival of Gothic architecture were made
here by Rickman, the most important of which,

ST. GEORGE’S, a large perpendicular structure, is for its time fairly
good, but the details are thin and wiry.

A number of cheap churches followed in the first half of the present
century, none of them deserving of notice; but some better things were
being done.

ST. CHAD’S.--The Roman Catholic Cathedral Church of St. Chad, in Bath
Street, by the elder Pugin, though in some parts bare and mean from
want of funds, shews the genius of the architect in its plan, its
imposing interior, and its fine western front.

Of the churches of quite modern date, we have first the rebuilt Mother
Church of St. Martin before referred to. The tower was re-cased and the
spire rebuilt in 1854-5, and in 1873-5 the present building was erected
by Mr. J. A. Chatwin, architect, of Birmingham, and completed in 1875,
at a cost of £28,256. The style is Gothic, as it had become perfected
in the middle of the 14th century, and it has been used by the
architect with great skill and judgment. The interior is exceedingly
fine, and the exterior not unworthy of it. Preserved in the north and
south chapels at the east end, are the fine sepulchral monuments of
the Lords de Birmingham. It has excellent stained glass windows by Wm.
Morris, Hardman, and others.

ST. AUGUSTINE’S and the LEA MEMORIAL CHURCH, both at Edgbaston, are
also fine churches by the same architect. The noble spire of the former
is a conspicuous and beautiful object from a large extent of country.

ASTON CHURCH has lately been rebuilt by Mr. Chatwin, with the exception
of the tower and spire, at a cost of £15,000. The church contains
many monuments of the Erdingtons, Ardens, Holts, Devereux, and other
Warwickshire families. The very beautiful tower and spire are of the
15th century.

HANDSWORTH PARISH CHURCH has also been rebuilt by the same architect,
with the exception of the tower and the “Watt Chapel.” Besides the
monument by Chantry to James Watt, there are interesting monuments to
Boulton, Murdock, and other local celebrities.

THE CHURCH OF ST. ALBAN, in Conybere Street, lately erected by Mr.
Hansom, of London, in the style of the 13th century, has an extremely
fine interior, groined throughout with stone. The tower and spire are

Another good church by the same architect, is that of ST. CATHERINE (R.
C.) in the Horse Fair, also with unfinished tower and spire.

THE DISSENTING CONGREGATIONS have some noteworthy buildings. Amongst
those of the Unitarians, the Church of the Messiah, in Broad Street,
by Mr. Bateman, and the “Old Meeting Trust” Church, in the Bristol
Road, lately erected by Mr. J. A. Cossins, are the most important. The
Baptists have two handsome churches, the Church of the Redeemer, in
Hagley Road, by Cubitt, of London, and Wycliffe Church, by the late
Mr. Cranston, in Bristol Street. The Catholic Apostolic Church of the
Irvingites, in the “Sand Pits,” is a bold building of brick and terra
cotta, with a noble nave, by Mr. Chatwin.

THE MUNICIPAL BUILDINGS of the town, with the exception of the Town
Hall, are nearly all of quite recent construction. First among these
is the Council House in Colmore Row, near the top of New Street. This
noble and commodious building was opened in 1878, and comprises a
grand suite of reception rooms, a fine Council Chamber, semicircular
on plan, offices for the Mayor, Town Clerk, Surveyor, Treasurer, Chief
of Police and other officers, and a large number of committee rooms.
The approaches, staircases and corridors are all handsome and spacious.
The fronts are constructed of Derbyshire stone in the Italian style,
the principal elevation towards Colmore Row consisting of an imposing
centre, with _porte-cocher_, and wings. The tympanums of the pediments
are filled with groups of sculpture, and the large arch over the
portico contains some fine work in Mosaic by Salviati. The architect
was Mr. Yeoville Thomason.

ART GALLERY.--Adjoining the Council House, is the Art Gallery, by the
same architect, which forms with it one block of buildings surrounding
a quadrangle. This was opened last year, and is a series of galleries
probably not excelled by any in England. The principal feature of the
interior is a vast domed circular room, from which the other rooms are

THE PAROCHIAL OFFICES, in Edmund and Newhall Streets, by Mr. Ward,
form a large and handsome block, containing the offices of the Poor
Law Guardians, the Superintendent Registrar of Births, Deaths and
Marriages, &c.

room is circular, 52 feet in diameter, and there are several other
rooms, which, with the fine Corinthian Portico, were completed in 1829.
They have since been much improved and enlarged, and now form a very
excellent set of galleries.

To describe properly the Educational Buildings of the town would
require a volume; a few only of the principal ones can be noticed.
The Grammar School, the oldest of them, has already been referred
to. The Mason College, founded by the late Sir Josiah Mason, is a
fine building of brick and stone in Edmund street, the first stone of
which was laid in 1875, and the building opened in October, 1880. This
institution comprises large and complete Laboratories for Chemistry,
Physics, Physiology, Botany, and Engineering; four Lecture Theatres,
and a very great number of class and other rooms of all sizes, suited
to their varied requirements, the whole covering an area of about 2,500
square yards. The style of Architecture is that of the 13th century.
The principal front in Edmund Street, of about 150 feet in length,
is symmetrically arranged with a lofty centre and gabled side wings.
The principal entrance in the middle of the front is a very large and
deeply recessed moulded and shafted archway opening to a fine groined
vestibule, the cross passages leading from which are also groined in
stone. Over the entrance is a lofty double oriel beneath a gable,
the terminal of which is a mermaid (the crest of Sir Josiah Mason),
122 feet from the pavement. The cost was about £60,000, including
the elaborate and costly fittings of the laboratories. The whole of
the buildings and fittings were designed by Mr. Jethro A. Cossins,
Architect, of Birmingham.

united group. The Institute buildings, by Mr. Edward Barry, were opened
in 1856 by the Prince Consort. The completion of the design to receive
the Reference and Lending Libraries was carried out by Messrs. Martin
and Chamberlain; the whole has since been largely added to, the Lending
and Reference Libraries have been rebuilt, and a new wing erected in
Paradise Street, by the same architects.

THE SCHOOL OF ART, also by Martin & Chamberlain, in Edmund Street, is
in the very original modern Gothic style, almost created by the late J.
H. Chamberlain, and practised with such great success by the firm to
which he belonged. The School is perhaps the finest of their works, and
possesses a rare grace and refinement in every detail. The arrangements
for the convenience of masters and students are also excellent.

BOARD SCHOOLS.--Since the passing of the Elementary Education Act, in
1870, about thirty large Board Schools have been erected in the town,
most of them by Messrs. Martin and Chamberlain, they are nearly all of
great excellence and are ornaments to the town.

THE EXCHANGE, in Stephenson Place, was built in 1865, by Mr. Edward
Holmes, architect, of Birmingham, and has since been considerably
enlarged. It has a large exchange room on the ground floor, over a
part of which is a room for assemblies. The building also contains a
Restaurant, shops on the ground floor, and a large number of offices.
The fronts, towards Stephenson Place and New Street, in a Gothic style,
are lofty and imposing.

THE “ARCADES” are a feature of modern Birmingham. The Great Western
Arcade was built in 1876, at a cost of £70,000. Mr. W. H. Ward, of
Birmingham, was the architect. The avenue, four hundred feet long, has
eighty-four shops on two stories, the upper tier opening to a balcony.
The length is divided equally by a circular space covered by a lofty
dome. The glazed roof is carried by a series of semicircular arches,
the perspective effect of which is very striking.

In an almost straight line with the last, and only divided from it by
the width of a street, is the North Western Arcade, by Mr. W. Jenkins.
In its general features it is much like the first, but of greater
width, and the shops are larger.

It may be added that these arcades have been financially a great
success, and are much used as a convenient and pleasant thoroughfare
from the Great Western Station to Corporation Street.

There are several other arcades in the town, some of which are worthy
of a visit.

Until the passing of the Street Improvement Act of 1876, Birmingham had
but very few streets that were worthy of the size and importance of the
town. New Street is, however, a fine and picturesque thoroughfare, the
slight rise and easy curve contributing very much to the general effect.

CORPORATION STREET, leading from New Street, opposite the entrance to
the Railway Station, to the Aston Road, has been but lately formed; it
is not yet entirely finished, but is already an unusually fine street.
Many of the buildings are of great height and costliness. It promises
to be one of the noblest thoroughfares to be found in any of our great

ASTON HALL.--Sir Thomas Holte, whose family had long been resident
at Duddeston, in the parish of Aston, began to build this magnificent
house in 1618, and in 1631 he came to reside in it. In 1864 it was
purchased by the Corporation of Birmingham, together with forty-three
acres of the once extensive park, immediately surrounding it, and in
the same year it was thrown open to the public. Dugdale, who wrote
whilst the Hall was fresh from the hands of the builders, calls it “a
noble fabric, which for beauty and state much exceedeth any in these
parts,” and the same may yet be said of it. It is well situated on
high ground at a distance of about two miles from Stephenson Place,
and retains about it some of the grand old chestnut and other trees
for which the park was famous. Most of the outbuildings, including the
stables, houses of the Chief Falconer and other officers, and the chief
entrance lodge also remain, and add much to the interest and general
effect. The principal front, approached by what remains of the Chestnut
Tree Avenue, is symmetrically arranged, and consists of a central block
with wings of considerable projection, enclosing a court of which one
side is open to the East. The chief entrance door in the middle of
the front is under a square tower furnished with a lofty ogee curved
roof, each of the wings has also a door from the court, under a similar
tower. The towers, the curved gables, and the lofty bay windows which
terminate the wings, combine in producing an extremely picturesque and
imposing effect. The windows are all square headed and mullioned, the
walling is of thin bricks, with windows, doors, and other important
details of stone.

The entrance hall is fine and lofty, and the principal staircase with
massive square newels and scroll work balustrade is extremely rich in
effect. The great drawing room, the dining room, Lady Holte’s room,
and the great gallery, 136 feet long, are all grand apartments with
elaborate ceilings in intricate geometrical patterns, rich cornices,
and magnificent chimney pieces. Besides those mentioned, there are
a great number of rooms of less importance. Many of the principal
apartments contain collections of great interest.

=Painting.=--[By E. R. TAYLOR.]--For the opening of the Corporation
Art Gallery in November, 1885, the large room was filled with a loan
collection of pictures by Mr. G. F. Watts, R.A., and Mr. E. Burne
Jones, A.R.A. These works, together with others of a decorative
character, belonging to the town, have enabled the Birmingham public to
view, for the first time, the highest phases of English Art.

The history of Art proves that, when the nobler walks of Painting and
Sculpture reach a high standard of execution, decorative character, and
poetic insight, Art, as applied to manufactures, makes corresponding
progress. Decorative and poetic art in painting as seen in the works
of Leighton, Watts, Burne Jones, Rossetti, Mason, Richmond, Albert
Moore, Walter Crane, and others is, therefore, of special interest to
a manufacturing town like Birmingham. So long as these men exhibit the
possibilities of decorative art, their work must be fraught with good
to those engaged in applying similar principles to art manufactures,
and (what is of equal importance) must educate those who are to be
users of art productions.

BIRMINGHAM ARTISTS.--The names of at least two Birmingham men will ever
hold a prominent place in the annals of English Art,--David Cox and E.
Burne Jones; and as, from his residence here and his being a member of
the Royal Society of Artists in this town, George Mason may also be
fairly considered a local man, Birmingham may be said to have produced
three great Masters--each perhaps the highest in his particular
branch--in the three most characteristic phases and developments of
English Art. Of this the town may be justly proud.

DAVID COX.--David Cox was born in Birmingham in 1783. His birth-place
was near to “The Old Crown,” a noted ancient timbered house in
Deritend. He received his early art instruction from Joseph Barber, who
conducted an academy close to the site of the present Municipal School
of Art. In the mastership of that academy, Joseph Barber was succeeded
by his son, J. Vincent Barber. A few doors away, Samuel Lines carried
on a drawing school. These were the only means of art instruction in
the town until the formation of the Society of Arts, whose work is now
continued in the above-mentioned Municipal School. Cox was apprenticed
for eighteen months to a miniature painter on lockets and snuff boxes.
Owing to the bankruptcy of his master, his engagement was terminated
at the end of that period. He afterwards became scene painter at the
Birmingham Theatre, then under the management of the elder Macready.
John Varley, the famous water-colour painter, and Müller also gave
him a few lessons in water-colours and oils, respectively. Thus Cox
received what was for his day a fairly good education in art, if in
this we include his initiation first into miniature painting and then
into scene painting.

In 1813 he was elected a member of the Society of Painters in Water
Colours. During his whole career, he seems to have possessed a strong
affection for his native place; and, as soon as he was freed from
the worries and anxieties of teaching, he came to Greenfield House,
Harborne, where he spent the last eighteen years of his life, working
at his beloved art, and paying visits, from time to time, to favourite
Bettws-y-Coed. He died in 1859.

Cox was contemporary with Constable and Crowe. All three received
but slight recognition of their merits while living; but since death
their work has been highly praised and much sought after. Yet these
men--and Cox particularly--were the first to carry out that direct
study from nature which has become the characteristic of the English
school, as distinct from the studio compositions and artificialities
which flourished from the time of Claude to their own. There is every
probability that the love for English scenery--scenery so full of
colour and character; so varied and so changeful--has been greatly
stimulated amongst the people by the fact that these artists have
portrayed its beauties in their paintings, and have thus instilled a
perception of, and love for, these beauties in nature.

Of the works of Cox, the Art Gallery contains thirty-three oil
paintings (the Nettlefold Bequest), and two or three water-colours.
This is perhaps the finest collection of his oil colours extant, and
among it may be specially mentioned: “Sheep Shearing” (27) and “Driving
Cattle” (28), both full in colour, and simple and direct in execution;
while “Changing Pasture” (9) may be cited as one of his best works. In
the picture last mentioned, the sunset sky, the purplish blue distance,
and the truth of the light in the middle distance and foreground should
receive particular attention. “In the Hayfield” (26) is more in his
water-colour manner; as is also his grand “Rhyl Sands” (10), in which
the effect of the sea breeze is felt all over the picture. “Bettws
Church” (11), “Tending Sheep, Bettws-y-Coed” (12), and “Evening”
(24) are excellent examples of that quiet and unaffected, yet highly
poetic treatment by which he ennobled the simplest materials; while
“The Shrimpers” (31) is perhaps the best of his pictures of a sandy
shore. “The Missing Lamb” (2) is interesting, in that it shows his
method of commencing work. “Asking the Way” (40) is a fine example
of his water-colours. In the midst of these beautiful specimens of
Cox’s labour is placed “The Late David Cox” (17), by Sir John Watson
Gordon--one of the most successful portraits of a great artist by a
brother artist. Alike by its success and the evident sympathy between
painter and subject, the work recalls the portrait of Hook by Sir J. E.

Whilst a careful study of Cox’s life and pictures, of his earnest
and loving methods of work, and of the glorious harvest therefrom
resulting, has had a highly beneficial effect on the world of Art,
there is no doubt that from the sudden rise in value of his pictures,
and the consequent magnifying of any scrap of paper his hand had
touched, as well as from the fact that the work of his latest and
broadest style was most accessible, a certain servile imitation of his
mannerisms, supplanted the earnest and loving study of nature, which
characterised Cox to the end. These mannerisms, which by long study
he had earned the right to use, and which in his work were always
full of meaning, too often became in the productions of his imitators
meaningless and pretentious. Time, however, is curing this evil; and
the good alone will remain. As an example of the enormous increase in
the monetary value of his pictures, it may be stated that “Lancaster
sands,” for which Cox received £10, was sold at the Gillott sale for
3,000 guineas.

GEORGE MASON.--The work of George Mason, A.R.A. (born 1818; died
1872), marks a further development of English Art. He, like Frederick
Walker, opened up still deeper poetic sympathies for us. During the
varied phases of humanity, its toil and its rest, were no longer
treated as mere accessories to the landscape, but as a large and
essential part of it; not inserted to give a point, or story, or bit of
colour to the picture, but intended from the beginning to essentially
form a part of its growth as a work of art. And even when there is
no human incident poetically treated, as in his “Evening Hymn,” or
“Harvest Moon,” there is something in his schemes of colour or other
treatment of his landscape which occurs to awaken a human interest
never reached even by Cox or Turner. This school has had the strongest
and widest influence on the English Art of to-day. It is greatly to be
regretted that the Birmingham Art Gallery contains no examples of the
works of George Mason.

E. BURNE JONES.--The third phase is that represented by Mr. E. Burne
Jones and Mr. Watts. This being the most recent development, its force
cannot yet be measured; but there is little doubt that it will be the
greatest of the three. For six months after the opening of the gallery,
one end of the large room aforesaid was filled with a magnificent
collection of the works of Mr. Burne Jones; and at a recent exhibition
of the Birmingham Society of Artists, was shewn his noblest work, “The
Six Days of Creation.”

The sale of the Graham collection has dispersed most of these. Perhaps
no previous sale had evoked so much interest,--not even that of the
Gillott collection. The enthusiasm then evinced, as well as the large
prices obtained, shew that the work of the artist is already receiving
just recognition. In addition to “The Six Days of Creation,” there were
(_e.g._) exhibited at Birmingham “Le Chant d’Amour,” “Venus’s Mirror,”
“The Beguiling of Merlin,” “Love in the Ruins,” “Love Disguised as
Reason,” but as these are no longer here, it is unnecessary now to
describe them. “The Feast of Peleus” has been lent by its fortunate
possessor, Mr. Alderman Kenrick, M.P. This picture--at least from an
artist’s point of view--is one of the painter’s most beautiful works.
At the marriage of Peleus and Thetis, the Goddess of Discord throws
down a golden apple, to be claimed by the most beautiful. Juno, Venus,
and Minerva rise eagerly to claim it. In the foreground are three
fates. The composition, drawing, scheme of colour, and marvellous
realization even of the minutest details of form and colour render this
work one of exceptionally high character, and, taken as a whole, the
most enjoyable of all the artist’s productions.

Attention may also be here directed to the fact that there have been
placed in St. Martin’s and St. Philip’s Churches, Birmingham, two
lovely stained glass windows, both designed by Mr. Burne Jones. The
artist’s practice in stained glass, tempera, and mosaic has, no doubt,
greatly influenced his style of composition and colour.

MUNICIPAL GALLERY.--Pictures by the following Birmingham artists, named
alphabetically, belong to the Corporation:--

Baker, Alfred--(an artist of great promise, who died when
young)--“Harvest Time.”

Baker, S. H.--“Nant Gwylt.”

Breakspeare, W. A.--“The Daughter of the House.”

Burt, C. T.--“The Edge Hills, from Burton Dassett.”

Feeney, P. M.--“Llyn Idwal.”

Hall, W.--(David Cox’s most intimate friend and biographer)--“A Peep
out of Church, Bettws-y-Coed.” This picture is interesting as depicting
a scene in the art-home of Cox.

Henshaw, F. H.--Three fine landscapes, of which the best is “A Distant
View of Kenilworth Castle.”

Langley, Walter, R.I.--“Memories”--an excellent example of this artist,
who has already by his work done much honour to Birmingham. It shows
his deep sympathy with the humble life of English fisher folk, and is
admirable in execution, lighting, and colour.

Lines, Samuel--“Llyn Idwal.”

Munns, H. T.--Portraits.

Phillips T., R.A.--Portrait of Sir John Franklin.

Pratt, Jonathan--Portraits.

Roden, W. T.--Portraits.

Taylor, Edward R.--“The Birmingham Reference Library, Destroyed by
Fire, January, 1879.”

Walton, Elijah--“Monte Tofana in Tyrol.”

Wyatt, H.--“Juliet.”

One other name should be included in any list of Birmingham artists.
It is that of Mr. W. J. Wainwright, A.R.W.S., who has accepted a
commission for the Art Gallery.

In the circular picture gallery will be found the admirable series of
historical works by Sir James D. Sinton, P.R.I., representing scenes in
the life of a soldier in the sixteenth century.

Among the portraits of special local interest are those by Mr. W. T.
Roden, of Samuel Lines, the Birmingham artist; of Peter Hollins, the
Birmingham sculptor; of his Eminence Cardinal Newman; and of John Henry
Chamberlain, who has been justly described as the “second founder of
the Birmingham and Midland Institute,” and who, until his lamented
death, was Chairman of the School of Art. Those of John Bright, by
Frank Holt, R.A.; of George Dawson, by H. T. Munns; of William Murdock,
by John Graham; of Arthur Ryland, the founder of the Birmingham and
Midland Institute, and sometime Mayor of the town, by Sir J. W. Gordon;
and of Sir John Franklin, by T. Phillips, R.A., also deserve note in
this connexion.

WATTS AND PORTRAITS.--The large room of the Art Gallery is nearly
filled with a collection of Mr. Watt’s pictures, kindly lent by the
artist. Much interest now attaches to these works, as Mr. Watts
has just offered them, with others, to the nation. We can somewhat
measure this noble gift when we remember that the collection contains
portraits of some of our ablest and most famous men, as well as large
and important figure pictures, the work of a lifetime, and that these
are the best works of an artist of world-wide reputation. The English
School of portraiture has attained a high standard in the works of
such artists as Millais, Holl, Ouless, and Richmond; but the portraits
by Watts stand apart from even these in their nobility of treatment,
scheme of colour, and rendering of the man, his very life and soul.
The portraits of Mr. Burne Jones, the Marquis of Salisbury, and Lady
Garvagh, recall to mind the best works of Reynolds and Gainsborough.
Again, Dr. Joachim, a lamp-light study--is quite Rembrandt like.
Those of Cardinal Manning, Carlyle, Mr. Browning, Mrs. Manners, in
blue against a blue background; John Stuart Mill, Lord Lawrence, Lord
Sherbrook and Philip Calderon, R.A., also merit careful observation.
Mr. Watts’s subject pictures are painted with the noblest motives,
and the methods of execution and schemes of colour are all made
subordinate to the idea. The subject “Love and Death,” was suggested by
the struggle of near friends to resist a fatal disease in a young man
whom the artist was painting; and here the power of art, imagination,
colour, conception, drawing of drapery and figure, all unite, not for
technical display, but to realize in an intense degree the motive
of the picture. The same may be said of “Mammon;” dedicated to his
worshippers. In the previous picture the colour is blue-grey; in this
it is gold and scarlet. “The Meeting of Jacob and Esau” is a striking
instance of the successful definition of opposite characters. “Orpheus
and Eurydice” is descriptive of the moment when Orpheus looks back,
and when, by reason of this act of impatience, Eurydice sinks back to
Hades. “Fata Morgana,” turning on her followers through life, is also a
splendid work.

This room further contains the large painting by Professor W. B.
Richmond, M.A., entitled “An Audience in Athens during a Representation
of the Agamemnon.” This, too, is a most valuable decorative work of Art
in the attitudes, costumes and expressions of the audience, and in the
rendering in colour and tone of the clear sunlight of Greece. Other
decorative works in the Art Gallery are Mr. Albert Moore’s “Dreamers,”
lovely figures most delicately painted in a scheme of yellow orange,
grey and green; “Sapphires,” blue and orange; and “Canaries,” yellow
orange and grey, with a little green. On a screen will also be found a
small but very fine collection of works in water-colour by Mr. Walter
Langley, R.I., including “Amongst the Missing,” “Time moveth not,” and
many well known works by this artist.

The town possesses one of the strongest examples of Sir Frederick
Leighton, P.R.A. “A Condottiere” is quite Titianesque in its painting
of flesh, armour, and drapery. One example by Mr. Alfred W. Hunt is
also the property of the town. It is called “A Norwegian Midnight,” and
therein are displayed colour, mystery, sense of space, and moving cloud
forms. Two of the finest paintings by Mr. Henry Moore, A.R.A., are also
included--“Summer Time, off Cornwall,” and “The Newhaven Packet.” Other
works in the Gallery of more than ordinary interest are: “Intellect
and Instinct,” by H. Stacey Marks, R.A.; “Detected Correspondence,” by
John Opie, R.A.; “A Martyr of the 16th Century,” by W. Geets; “February
Fill Dyke,” by B. W. Leader, A.R.A.; “Ready for Work,” by John S. Noble;
“A North-West Gale,” by John Brett, A.R.A.; “Homeward,” by W. Napier
Henry; and “The Poacher’s Widow,” by Breton Riviere, R.A.

It is a matter of real congratulation to Birmingham that her sons
have taken a prominent place in the world of Art, and that, owing to
an enlightened policy, the town now possesses a suitable gallery,
wherein high-class works may be viewed by all. The works exhibited,
whether purchased by the Committee or on loan, are generally of such a
decorative character as to be of the greatest value to designers and
other Art workmen. It is to be hoped that, stimulated by past example,
as well as by present opportunities, the inhabitants will fully
appreciate the importance of furthering that Art, which is at once a
source of pleasure to the workers, and of illimitable enjoyment to the

=Sculpture.=--[By WHITWORTH WALLIS.]--The history of the birth and
growth of sculpture, with no word for its decadence, death, and
ultimate renaissance would alone be a subject difficult to compress
into the space of a volume, but when there is to be added to that some
account of the art in the time of the supremacy of its achievement,
before it became tainted with decay, the task is vast indeed.
Fortunately such a dissertation is not required in this place.

The art of sculpture is not restricted, as most people think, to the
carving of mere marble and stone. In its strict meaning it is the art
of _cutting_ any material whatsoever into any required shape; but the
word is now generally accepted for the art of representing anything by
form, no matter what the material may be, or what the method of its
making; so that the word “sculpture” applies to Sculpture proper, and
to castings in bronze, as well as to the carving of gems, ivories, and
to modelling in wax and clay.

EGYPTIAN SCULPTURE.--In every part of the world, in modern as in
ancient times, savage races have delighted to decorate their weapons
with carving, and to make representations of men and animals, which
they afterwards worshipped. But it was Egypt, that cradle-land of
learning and of art, which seems to be the nation where first the
rudeness of savage carving was brought under restraint and nurtured
into Sculpture. What had previously been an amusement was changed by
their priests into an art. But these very priests who first fostered
the art were ultimately the means of stunting its growth and arresting
its highest development. The reverence which long ages of worship
caused the archaic statues to receive induced the priests, who were
the representatives of learning and of wisdom, to make these old types
symbolical of divine attributes, and it was considered sacrilegious to
attempt to alter what had gradually come to be believed was the true
likeness of the god. Thus religion, which was the kind foster-mother
of the arts of sculpture and painting, came, later on, to be its most
determined enemy.

Whilst in Egypt Sculpture was being strangled by Convention, all
progress being arrested, and all originality starved out of it by the
regulations which bound it to its archaic form, a new race of artists
arose along the shores and amidst the islands of the Mediterranean.
In Greece Art found a new and happy home. Greek Sculpture, based on
Egyptian precedent, and influenced greatly in its growth by Phœnician
thought, gradually freed itself from all the trammels of the past, and
formed a school of Sculpture, the results of which have never been
equalled in all the after ages of art production.

GREEK SCULPTURE.--It was left to the beauty-loving Greeks to perceive
that Sculpture was of all others the art by which they could best
express and best immortalise the most perfect of all Nature’s physical
beauties. It was the Greeks who made Sculpture what it was, and with
their school died out the highest development of the art.

The conquests of Alexander, and all that followed in their train--the
treasures of the East unfolded, mighty monarchies founded, stately
cities built--afforded opportunities for the spread of this art.
Thus it became transplanted into strange lands, and was subjected to
new influence and aspirations. After the Macedonian and Syrian wars
the victorious Romans carried off with them the statues and other
art objects from the conquered countries. Following in the train of
their conquerors came the Greek artists themselves to Rome, but the
art never became naturalised there, it soon lost all its ideality and
became merely imitative in treatment. Under Antoninus it lost much of
its grace and elegance, but the spirit of the Greek is mighty even
in dying, and though it sank under Severus and his successors, its
influence was still apparent until close upon the time of Constantine,
when the great art of the ancients was entirely lost.

ITALIAN SCULPTURE.--Sculpture revived in Italy in the thirteenth
century under Nicolo Pisano. All the remains of art which had escaped
destruction from barbarian violence, religious fanaticism, and natural
causes, were now carefully collected, and the sentiment of reverence
and admiration for the antique gradually developed into that great
revival which we designate “The Renaissance.” The wealthiest and most
powerful Florentine families vied with each other in the encouragement
of art in all its branches, and with the artists of the fifteenth
and sixteenth centuries raised modern art to its loftiest pitch of
splendour. Despite this fact it never attained the sublimity and
tranquil grandeur of the antique. After the glorious epochs of Michael
Angelo and Raphael a rapid decline set in. True feeling quickly
disappeared, giving way to affected grace, extravagance, and excessive
ornament. During the eighteenth century, Winckelmann was the first
who influenced the revival of modern art, and opened the eyes of his
contemporaries to the glories and elevated beauty of the arts of
antiquity. Antonio Canova became the founder of the new period, his
works being specially marked by pure simplicity and classical ideality,
and by his side stands Thorwaldsen, whose artistic productions were as
admirable as they were numerous.

ENGLISH SCULPTURE.--In England John Banks, who may be regarded as
the father of English ideal sculpture, paved the way for his great
successor John Flaxman, and the latter with his deep appreciation
of severe simplicity and true form, his love and admiration for the
Greek statues, brought into this country the classical spirit, and
founded the schools of the nineteenth century. To judge by the progress
which modern sculpture has made, and by the many noble works erected
of late years, it is on a far safer road than during the end of the
sixteenth century. In England it is not likely that there will ever
be such a great school of sculpture as of the sister art of painting.
The greatest hope for ideal or poetic sculpture rests with the people
themselves, who must be able to appreciate and love the beautiful, and
this elevation of the taste of the public can only be accomplished by
artists refusing to pander to a low ideal, but fearlessly and jealously
devoting themselves to the execution of those works which will touch
the tenderest feelings and arouse the noblest thoughts.

LOCAL SCULPTURE.--Birmingham, though possessing a fair number of
sculptural monuments, can boast unfortunately but of few which show
real artistic merit. In the Entrance Hall of the Free Libraries,
Ratcliff Place, stands Mr. Foley’s admirable statue of Prince Albert,
which is considered to be one of his finest works. The Prince is
attired in the robes of the Order of the Garter. By its side is placed
the companion statue of her Majesty the Queen, which was also entrusted
to Mr. Foley. That artist unfortunately dying, the work was carried out
by Mr. Woolner, R.A., with far from a pleasing result. Both statues are
intended for the Council House. The largest, and certainly one of the
most prominent, monuments in Birmingham is the bronze statue erected by
the inhabitants to the memory of Admiral Lord Nelson. It is situated in
High Street, and was executed by Sir Richard Westmacott. It represents
Nelson in a reposeful and dignified attitude, his left arm resting upon
an anchor. The background is formed of the prow of a vessel and a sail.
The statue is mounted on a pedestal of statuary marble, embellished
with figures. The corner posts are said to be cannon formerly in use
on board the “Victory.” An auctioneer, who lived in High Street, left
sixpence per week to be paid in perpetuity, out of the rent of a house,
to be devoted to the cleaning of the statue.

The bronze statue of Sir Robert Peel, at the top of New Street, is
interesting as being the work of a talented Birmingham sculptor, Mr.
Peter Hollins, and for the fact that it was the first bronze statue
cast in one piece in Birmingham. The attitude of the Statesman is one
of firmness; the face is very expressive, and shows strong intellectual
power. Mr. Hollins likewise executed the statue erected to the memory
of Sir Rowland Hill, which stands in the Post Office, Paradise Street.
Of other works by this sculptor, I would draw attention to the busts of
William Scholefield, Mathew Davenport Hill, Q.C., and David Cox, all
of which are in the Museum and Art Gallery, and a fine bust of J. W.
Whateley, in the General Hospital.

At the Five ways, Edgbaston, stands the statue erected to the memory
of Joseph Sturge, an eminent member of the Society of Friends. The
monument is pleasing in arrangement. The centre figure represents
Joseph Sturge, his right hand resting on the Bible, his left extended
towards a figure symbolical of Peace, whilst on the other side is a
figure typical of Charity. This is reputed to be an excellent likeness
of the philanthropist, and the expression is one of benevolence and
tenderness. It is the work of the late John Thomas, a sculptor of some
eminence, who unfortunately died before he could put the finishing
touches to this memorial. Mr. Thomas was also the sculptor of the
statue of Thomas Attwood “the father of Political Unions,” situated
at the top of Stephenson Place. Thomas Attwood stands in the act of
addressing a public meeting, the right hand outstretched, whilst his
left grasps a scroll bearing the word “Reform.” In the Art Gallery is a
fine bronze group of Boadicea and her daughters, also the work of Mr.
John Thomas.

In front of the Council House stands the statue of Dr. Joseph
Priestley, the discoverer of oxygen, who was driven from the town
by a Birmingham mob, and whose property was destroyed in the riots
of 1791. The statue, a very pleasing one, is the work of Mr. F. J.
Williamson, of Esher, who is also the sculptor of the adjacent statue
of Mr. J. Skirrow Wright, and by the same hand is a striking bust of
Mr. Sam: Timmins, F.S.A., which stands in the Reference Library, and an
equally admirable bust of the late Dr. Heslop, now in the Mason Science
College. This artist also executed the latest addition to Birmingham
Sculpture, the statue of Sir Josiah Mason, and was also entrusted with
the statue of the late George Dawson, opposite the Art Gallery, which
stands under a highly ornate canopy, designed by the late John Henry
Chamberlain. This statue, which is supposed to be an excellent likeness
of Mr. Dawson, was executed on account of the dissatisfaction caused
by the first figure, the work of Mr. Woolner, R.A. The effigy by the
latter sculptor is still most unfortunately permitted to remain in the
vestibule of the Free Library.

At the back of the Town Hall, stands a Memorial Fountain, erected
to commemorate the municipal services of the Right Hon. Joseph
Chamberlain, M.P. In the south side is a medallion portrait of Mr.
Chamberlain, by Mr. Thomas Woolner, R.A. The memorial, which is
architecturally treated and richly decorated with Venetian mosaics, was
designed by the late John Henry Chamberlain.

In Ratcliff Place stands undoubtedly the finest statue in the town,
that of James Watt, by Alexander Munro. The calm dignity of the figure,
the graceful pose of the same, the grand thoughtful face, and the
very remarkable likeness of the great engineer, render it a work of
the highest excellence. The original model of the head is in the Art

The Art Gallery contains in addition to those already mentioned as
located therein, the two original plaster models of Foley’s great
statues of Burke and Goldsmith; an interesting copy of the Venus di
Medici by Raphael Monti, and some very admirable specimens of early
Italian and renaissance sculpture. In the Vestibule stands a very
dignified and impressive bronze statue of Buddha of Indian make, and
of the greatest antiquity; and also a very remarkable piece of Hindoo
sculpture in black marble.

In St. John’s, Deritend, is a memorial bust of John Rogers, who edited
the first English Bible, and was the first martyr of the reign of Queen

The Parish Church of Handsworth, some little distance from Birmingham,
contains one of Sir Francis Chantrey’s most remarkable and beautiful
works, the statue of James Watt; and by the same sculptor is a fine
monument erected to the memory of William Murdock. Here is also the
excellent bust of Matthew Boulton, by John Flaxman.

=Music.=--[By W. BAYLEY MARSHALL.]--The most casual observer cannot
fail to notice the rapid strides which Birmingham has taken in recent
years in the cultivation of Music. We have now an orchestra of nearly
one hundred performers composed of citizens of the town, numerous
choral societies both public and private, well-qualified professors in
all the branches of musical study, and an excellent musical club. These
combined agencies are rapidly removing the stigma which was formerly
so truthfully applied--that Birmingham was like a boa-constrictor,
making a huge meal of music once every three years, and doing little
but sleep between times. In no branch of music is this progress more
manifest than in the services of the church. Some sixteen years ago,
it was quite the exception to hear even the psalms chanted; now
choral services and well-rendered anthems may be heard in most of the
churches. The limits of this article will only allow a brief reference
to the principal societies and agencies engaged in the furtherance of
music in Birmingham.

TRIENNIAL FESTIVALS.--The Birmingham Triennial Festivals are now
universally acknowledged to be the most important Music meetings in
the Kingdom. The first Festival was held in 1768. In 1799 the scale
of the celebration was enlarged, and since then, with one exception,
they have been held triennially. The management is in the hands of a
small committee, appointed by the Governors of the General Hospital,
and the whole of the proceeds go to the funds of that Institution;
this has amounted to upwards of £120,000 since the foundation of the
Festivals. During the period of more than a century over which the
Festivals have now extended, they have attained European celebrity, and
have been distinguished by the production of a large number of original
works of the highest rank, among which may be mentioned: Mendelssohn’s
Lob-gesang (1840), and Elijah which was specially written for the 1846
Festival; Costa’s Eli (1855), and Naaman (1864); Bennett’s Woman of
Samaria (1867); Sullivan’s Kenilworth (1864), and Light of the World
(1873); Smart’s Bride of Dunkerron (1864); Barnett’s Ancient Mariner
(1867), and Paradise and the Peri (1870); Benedict’s St. Peter (1870);
Macfarren’s Resurrection (1876); Gade’s Zion (1876) and Psyche (1882);
Hiller’s Nala and Damayanti (1871); Randegger’s Fridolin (1873);
Cowen’s Corsair (1876) and Sleeping Beauty (1885); Gounod’s Redemption
(1882) and Mors et Vita (1885); Gaul’s Holy City (1882); Stanford’s
Three Holy Children (1885); Dvorak’s Spectre’s Bride (1885). The next
Festival will be held in 1888. Secretary, Mr. R. L. Impey, 26, Waterloo

FESTIVAL CHORAL SOCIETY.--The date of the foundation of the Birmingham
Festival Choral Society, the premier society of the town, is unknown;
in 1834, Mr. G. Hollins, the first Organist of the Town Hall was
appointed conductor; upon his death in 1841, Mr. Stimpson was appointed
to both offices, and the society was reorganised and established with
a permanent relief fund to be employed in case of sickness among its
members. In consequence of ill-health, Mr. Stimpson resigned the
conductorship in 1855, and Mr. Stockley (the present conductor),
was appointed; Mr. Stimpson continuing as organist of the town, the
duties of which office he still faithfully discharges. Since 1846, the
choruses of the Musical Festivals have been mainly composed of members
of the Festival Choral Society. The society gives annually a series of
high-class subscription concerts. The management is in the hands of a
Committee of fifteen members. Secretary, Mr. S. V. Cornish, 55, Varna
Road, Edgbaston.

AMATEUR HARMONIC ASSOCIATION.--The Birmingham Amateur Harmonic
Association was established in the year 1855, and, as its name implies,
is a purely Amateur Association, more for the study and practice of
choral music than for the public performance thereof.

The members have, however, done good service in placing before their
friends at open rehearsals and private concerts, from time to time,
a great number of works previously unknown to Birmingham, the most
important of which are--Handel’s oratorios, Jephtha (1871) and Joshua
(1872); Haydn’s First Mass (1859); Hummell’s Mass in E flat, which was
specially printed for the Association, and produced for the first time
in England on December 13, 1865; Gounod’s Messe Solennelle in G (1866),
Gallia (1873), and Messe du Sacré Cœur (1878); Schubert’s Mass in E
flat, first performance in England (1868), Song of Miriam (1869), and
Mass in F (1884); Benedict’s Cœur de Lion (1869); Gade’s Erl King’s
Daughter (1869); Sullivan’s On Shore and Sea (1872); Macfarren’s St.
John Baptist (1874); Smart’s Jacob (1875); Beethoven’s Choral Fantasia
(1875); Astorga’s Stabat Mater (1881); Bridge’s Boadicea (1881);
Hodson’s Golden Legend (1884); Lloyd’s Hero and Leander (1884); and
for the first time in England, Raff’s Die Tageszeiten (1885). Mr.
Alfred J. Sutton was appointed conductor at the commencement of the
Association’s existence, and continued in office until 1877, when, upon
his resignation, Mr. Stockley, the present conductor was appointed;
the members meet weekly for practice during the winter months. The
management is in the hands of a Committee of fifteen members. Honorary
Secretary, Mr. W. Bayley Marshall, 15, Augustus Road, Edgbaston.

AMATEUR MUSICAL UNION.--The Edgbaston Amateur Musical Union was
established in 1863, for the cultivation and encouragement of the
taste for orchestral music, and for the study and performance of
orchestral works by the great composers. This society has by hard work
and energetic management slowly but surely made its way; at the first
concert only fifteen amateur members assisted in the band, only two
of whom were among the wind department; the band now consists of 47
members, is practically complete as to wind, and even includes drums.
The library belonging to the society now contains a very fine and
complete collection of standard works besides a large number of pieces
of a lighter character.

Mr. C. J. Duchemin, who took a very active part in the formation of
the society, for nineteen years acted as honorary conductor; upon his
resignation in 1882, Mr. Alfred J. Sutton was appointed conductor.
Honorary Secretary, Mr. R. B. Bandinelli, Pinson Villa, Fulham Road,

PHILHARMONIC UNION.--The Birmingham Philharmonic Union was established
in 1870, upon a somewhat similar basis to the Festival Choral Society,
under the conductorship of Dr. C. Swinnerton Heap. The Society has
given annually since its formation a series of concerts, with somewhat
varying pecuniary success; and, like its companions, has introduced
many important novelties, among which are:--Bach’s St. Matthew Passion
and the Christmas Oratorio, and Max Bruch’s Odysseus. The Society meets
weekly for practice. The management is in the hands of a committee of
nine members. Secretary: Mr. C. H. Woodward, 71, Colmore Row.

MIDLAND MUSICAL SOCIETY.--The Midland Musical Society was established
in 1880 by the members of the advanced singing class in connection
with the Church of the Saviour. Unlike the other musical societies of
the town, the Midland Musical Society is free, the members not paying
any subscription; the free use of a rehearsal room being granted by
the Church Committee, and the conductor, Mr. H. M. Stevenson, being
an honorary officer. The Society possesses a lending library of over
1,000 volumes of music for the use of its members, and now consists of
a chorus of 240 and a well appointed amateur band. Several concerts
for charitable purposes have been given by the members, and a series
of ten concerts for the working classes, in the Town Hall, to which
the admission was twopence and sixpence for floor and galleries
respectively, at one of which Gounod’s Redemption was performed. It is
the intention of the committee to continue these concerts during the
ensuing season. Honorary Secretary: Mr. H. M. Parker, East View, Robert
Road, Handsworth.

SUNDAY SCHOOL UNION CHORAL SOCIETY.--The Birmingham Sunday School Union
Choral Society was established in 1880. As its name implies, this
society is connected with the Sunday School Union, and resulted from
the very successful annual festivals which were given by a chorus of
some 700, selected from the various schools in the union. The society
meets weekly for practice under the conductorship of Mr. Alfred R.
Gaul. Hon. Secretary: Mr. H. Parkes, 33, Brighton Road, Moseley.

MUSICAL SOCIETY.--The Birmingham Musical Society was established in
1842 upon the basis of a friendly sick and benefit society, and for
the social intercourse of music lovers and especially for the practice
of glee and madrigal singing. The members meet fortnightly, and so
successfully have the affairs of the society been managed that the
invested funds amount to upwards of £2,000. The excellent performances
of the Birmingham Glee Union, Messrs. Bickley, Woodall, Young, and
Stilliard, all of whom are members of the society, are well-known
throughout England. The onerous post of Musical director, which has
been filled by many musicians of note, is now ably occupied by Mr. W.
George Halliley.

MUSICAL ASSOCIATION.--The Birmingham Musical Association was founded
in 1879 with the object of providing a series of high-class concerts
at popular prices, establishing classes for musical instruction, vocal
and instrumental, and the provision of a large Musical Library. Upon
further consideration the establishment of classes and the formation
of a library were abandoned. The weekly cheap concerts on Saturday
nights have been continued with a few intermissions during successive
winters and have now reached a total of 159, to which the admission
is threepence and sixpence for the floor and galleries respectively.
A band and chorus have also been organised and have rendered material
assistance at the Saturday night concerts. Honorary Secretary, Mr. H.
Hendriks, 25, Cannon Street.

MESSRS. HARRISON’S CONCERTS.--This admirable series of subscription
concerts was established in 1870. Prior to this the present senior
partner, Mr. T. Harrison, gave high class miscellaneous concerts at
irregular intervals, commencing as far back as 3rd February, 1853, when
the late Mr. Weiss and Mr. Sims Reeves (who was even then spoken of
as the great English Tenor), took part in the programme. In 1870, Mr.
Harrison took his nephew Mr. Percy Harrison into partnership, and the
annual series of subscription concerts were inaugurated, the management
of which for enterprise and skill in securing all the leading artistes,
vocal and instrumental, of the musical world, has made them well-known
throughout the kingdom. Besides treating their subscribers to such
stars as Patti, Nilsson, Albani, Titjens, Sims Reeves, Lloyd, Santley,
Maas, Norman Neruda, Sophie Menter, Charles Hallé, Pachmann, Hans von
Bülow, Joachim, Wilhelmi, Piatti, Bottesini, &c.; lovers of orchestral
music have been provided for by the annual engagement of Mr. Charles
Hallé’s well-known band.

MR. STOCKLEY’S CONCERTS.--The Subscription Orchestral Concerts were
instituted in 1873 by Mr. Stockley, the conductor of the Festival
Choral Society. For the first few seasons these excellent concerts
met with but scanty support, and were carried on under serious
difficulties, and at a considerable loss; three concerts were given
each season, and the band consisted of about 50 members. Mr. Stockley,
however, steadily persevered with the good work, and met with
increasing support; in 1881, the band was augmented to its present
number of 80, of whom no less than 76 are _bona fide_ residents in the
district; in the following year the number of concerts were increased
to four each season; and the support now accorded is most encouraging,
the annual balance-sheet no longer showing a loss. The programmes
have always included a complete symphony at each concert, one or two
classical overtures and smaller orchestral pieces; two singers of
eminence have been engaged for each concert, and the vocal items as
far as possible arranged to correspond with the classical character
of the instrumental. Mr. Stockley must now be congratulated upon the
successful result of thirteen years’ hard work, under very discouraging
circumstances at first, to popularise good orchestral music.

CHAMBER CONCERTS.--Birmingham in the past has persistently refrained
from adequately supporting chamber concerts, even when the quartette
consisted of some of the greatest living instrumentalists. Dr. C.
Swinnerton Heap, with praiseworthy zeal, gives an annual series of
high class chamber concerts, for which the subscription list is much
smaller than the excellence of the concerts should command. It is to be
earnestly hoped that his labours will in the end be rewarded with the
success they so richly deserve.

THE CLEF CLUB.--The Clef Club was founded in 1881, to provide a central
resort for the study and practice of vocal and instrumental music,
combined with the general accommodation of a Club. Monthly Smoking
Concerts are held in the Club Rooms, the executants being selected from
among the members, and the programmes confined to strictly “chamber
music.” It may safely be said that since its formation the Clef Club
has done much to elevate the taste of its members, and promote the
study and appreciation of chamber music. The success which attended
the development of the Club was so great, that greatly enlarged
premises soon became necessary; and the promises of support being so
encouraging, it was determined to register the Club under the Companies
Act, and very greatly enlarge the original scheme. Sir Arthur Sullivan
kindly accepted the post of President of the Club, and showed warm
interest in the details of the new scheme. The lease of the present
club premises in Paradise Street, close to the Town Hall, having been
secured, and the extensive alterations completed, the club entered upon
its new life in July, 1885. In addition to the monthly concerts there
is an impromptu smoking concert every Friday night. Honorary Secretary,
Mr. F. E. Huxley, Clef Club, Paradise Street.

FLUTE SOCIETY.--The Birmingham Flute Society, probably the only flute
society in England, was established in 1856 to encourage and develop
the performance of classical flute music; the Society possesses a
very fine library, consisting of all the concertante duetts, trios,
and quartettes of Berbiguier, Fürstenau, Kuhlau, Kuffner, Kummer,
Gabrielsky, and Tulou. The members meet twice a month. Honorary
Secretary, Mr. Arthur H. Hughes, 40, Chapman Road, Smallheath.

MUSICAL INSTRUCTION.--There is no more important step in the
development of the study of music than a thorough system of elementary
education; the Birmingham School Board, fully recognising this, in 1876
made provision for the systematic teaching of music in all the schools
under their control. Mr. W. Dobson was appointed superintendent of
musical instruction, and has formulated a very thorough system; the
tonic sol-fa method is adopted and infants, if only seven years of age,
are taught to sing from note correctly. One hour per week is allotted
to this subject in two half-hour lessons; in addition to this two or
more classes are occasionally grouped in divisions for united rehearsal
and musical drill. In addition to instruction in singing, violin and
brass band classes were commenced last winter, also on the tonic sol-fa
method, and have been very successful. Many thousand children have thus
been taught, by their voices being trained in connection with the ear
and understanding, to sing correctly, and have been musically educated
in such a way as to enable them in after years to listen intelligently
and enjoy good music.

SCHOOL OF MUSIC.--The School of Music in its present form at the
Birmingham and Midland Institute was commenced in 1885. Classes were
established in the following branches--theory of music, elementary and
advanced part singing and solo singing, (a separate class for each
voice, soprano, contralto, tenor and bass). The pianoforte, violin
(elementary, intermediate and advanced), clarionet, flute, violoncello,
and brass instruments generally. During the first term there were
1,233 students in the school, the fees range from one penny per lesson
to half-a-guinea for a term of 12 to 15 lessons. During the current
season the following additional classes have been sanctioned by the
Council--organ, bassoon, oboe, double bass, and viola; and it is
probable that classes will be formed for ensemble orchestral playing
and part singing.




In the following pages an attempt is made to give to the reader some
idea of the extent and variety of the manufactures of our town and
neighbourhood. The method followed is to state at the outset the
classes of material which come into the town, and to follow these in
the mind’s eye through smelting furnace, forge, or workshop, until they
come out in a wonderful variety of articles, one or more of which will
ultimately be found in the possession of every nation of the earth. To
carry out the proposed method with fulness and accuracy would require
a strict blockade of the town, similar to that adopted for collecting
town dues in continental towns with agents to report the quantities
and qualities of the goods passing in and out. Failing this, we may,
through the agencies of the railway and canal companies obtain at least
some idea of the character and extent of our trade.

In preparing some statistics relating to goods brought into and
taken out of the town, I am particularly indebted to the courtesy of
Mr. Henry Wiggin, M.P., one of the directors of the Midland Railway,
and also to Mr. John Noble, general manager of that railway; Mr. J.
Grierson, general manager of the Great Western Railway; and Mr. G.
Findlay, general manager of the London and North Western Railway. Mr.
W. Pilcher, of the Birmingham Canal Navigations, and Mr. George, of the
Birmingham and Worcester Canal, have also been good enough to supply
information. In considering the traffic of our town we must remember
that Birmingham is not only a manufacturing centre but a distributor of
goods which arrive here in bulk. This, coupled with the circumstance
that, from its inland position, there is a great deal of through
traffic, renders it difficult to obtain such satisfactory figures as I
hoped to have done when I commenced this work.

Statement of principal classes of goods coming into and going out of
Birmingham by railway during the year 1885, with weight in tons of each


  Coal and Coke                 897541
  Lime                            5327
  Limestone, Bricks, &c.         14315
  Glass                           7689
  Iron and Steel                115874
  Tin Plates and Zinc            10382
  Spelter or Zinc                22564
  Hardware and Miscellaneous    134204
  Stone                          15621
  Timber                         63591
  Paper Making Materials          5550
  Drugs and Drysaltery           14867
  Grain                         126783
  Grocery and Provisions         61888
  Leather                         3599

  Bedsteads                      34976
  Brass & Copper, Ingot and Wire  4697
  Galvanised Wire and Ware       11705
  Glass                           6151
  Hardware and Lamps            110597
  Iron and Metal Tubes           13570
  Iron Wire and Sheet             2999
  Iron Castings                   9166
  Nails                          18936
  Rolled Metal                    7619
  Paper and Stationery            9490
  Machinery               }
  Hides and Leather       }      33754
  Miscellaneous           }

From one wharf alone in Birmingham there were delivered into the town
by canal last year about 40,000 tons of various goods, of which the
following will serve as examples--Timber, 3810 tons; salt, 443 tons;
metals, 3948 tons; road stone, 10,821 tons; potatoes, matches, mill
stones, glue and groceries, 1221 tons, whilst traffic over one of
the canals in the course of the year was 7,327,269 tons, including
merchandise, 972,749 tons; pig iron, 586,434 tons; coal, 3,333,865
tons; iron stone, 495,912 tons; sand, 115,791 tons; lime and limestone,
140,828 tons; road materials and manure, 525,249 tons; and bricks,
460,359 tons.

=Nature of the Manufacturing Industries of Birmingham and the
District.=--It is difficult, if not impossible to classify
satisfactorily the varied industries of Birmingham and the district.
The one adopted has as its basis, the raw materials of different kinds
as used up in the trades of the town. In order to obtain information
as to progress of the trades, or change in their character, I have
extracted from Kelly’s Directory of 1864 the number of each trade as
then given, and compared it with the number in the last Directory
published, viz., 1884:--


=I=.--=Production of Materials from Ores, including Chemicals.=


                                 No. in Directory.
                                    1864  1884

  Black Lead                                 2
  [41]Chemicals                       33    54
  Colour Grinders and Manufacturers   29    51
  Glue, Isinglass                      6     7
  [42]Mungo                            0     1
  Optical Glass                        1     1
  Paper                               31    21
  Ice                                  0     1
  Glass                               41    62


                                 No. in Directory.
                                    1864  1884

  Alloy Makers                         0     1
  Aluminium                            0     1
  Brass and Yellow Metal               0     6
  Copper                               7    10
  German Silver                       14    10
  Iron                                88   103
  Nickel & Cobalt                      2     2
  Steel                               18    21

II.--=Finished Articles.=


                               No. in Directory.
                                 1864   1884

  Barometer and Thermometer         2      4
  Leather Articles                 28     57
  Bicycle Saddle                    0      3
  Wholesale Boot and Shoe          11     42

   Pottery, Encaustic Tiles,
     Terra Cotta, Parian           43     43
   Telegraph Insulator              0      1
  Ivory, Pearl, and Bone Workers   59     54
  Chocolate                         2      6
  Floor Cloth                              2
  India Rubber Goods                5     14
    ”      ”   Stamps               0      3

  Bristle, Fibre, Hair, Feathers--
   Besom                            1      1
   Chimney Sweeping Machines        0      2
   Hearse Plume                            1
   Whip                            35     33
   Brushes                         88    106
   Cotton                           2      4
   Measuring Tape                   7      6

  Wooden Articles--
   Boxes (and Paper)               27     77
   Clock Case                      11      7
   Cork Cutters                     9     12
   Clog and Patten                 85    127
   Rules                           37     23
   Picture Frames                  40     99
   Tobacco Pipe                    29     18
   Railway Carriage                11     13
   Bellows                         10     14
   Casting Mould Pattern Makers    30     27

  Glass Articles--
   Lighthouse                       1      1
   Bottle, Plate and Window,
    Decanters, Tumblers, &c.,
    Looking Glass, French Shade     50    65
   Toys                             13     3
   Artificial Eyes                   1     6

   Lantern Leaf                      5     0
   Combs                             6     4

  Paper and Pulp--
   Paper                            31    21
   Papier Mâché                     19    15
   Black Ornament                    0    24
   Account Books                    10    20
   Bags                              4    16
   Gun Wads                          6     4


                               No. in Directory.
                                 1864   1884
   Chains                          43     50
   Brooches and Jewellery         346    472
   Pencil Case                     21     21
   Ring                             3     29
   Leaf                            20     14
   Watch Case                      10     43

   Spoons, &c., Lockets,
    Bracelets, &c. (Silversmiths)  51    103
   Reflectors (Plate)               1      6

    Pans, Kettles, &c., Sugar
      Pans (Coppersmiths) Tubes     21    20
    Plate Engraving                  2    18
    Lightning Conductors             0     4
    Percussion Cap                   5     4

    Pipes                            0     1

  Iron and Steel--
    Anchors                         12    22
    Bedsteads (Metal)               51    48
    Bird Cage & Wire Work           44    59
    Bridle Bit                     104    67
    Boarding Pike                    1     2
    Buckles                         25    25
    Nuts and Bolts                  19    81
    Chain                           45   131
    Coach Furniture, &c.            60    48
    Coffin Furniture                17    14
    Corkscrew                       17    16
    Door Spring                      4     6
    Earth Boring App.                0     1
    Forge (Portable)                 3     2
    Frying Pan                       7     9
    Fencing Foil                     0     1
    Fender                          45    55
    Fire Irons                      57    55
    Fish Hook                       68    36
    Gun (27 Branches)              553   424
    Gas Holder                       8     5
    Gas Meters                       1     1
    Hair Pin                         6     7
    Hammer                          18    12
    Handcuff                         3     4
    Hyd’lic Machinery                1     2
    Hinge (and Brass)               47    51
    Hollow Ware                     10    23
    Hook and Eye                    14    13
    Roofing                          8    15
    Tanks                           12    20
    Boats                            9     9
    Bridge                           9    12
    Girder                           7     9
    Jews Harp                        6     8
    Keys                            87   140
    Lance and Javelin                1     1
    Locks (13 Br’nch’s)            164   252
    Lasso Rings
    [43]Matchet                      4     6
    Mariner’s Compass
    Needles (7 Br’nch.)            172   126
    Nutcrackers                      3    10
    Nailmakers                     207   235
    Pens                            18    19
    Pen Holder                      16    14
    Quoit Makers
    Quicksilver Bottle Rings
     (Split, &c.)                   13    16
    Scale and Weight                25    25
    Screws                          71    42
    Sewing Machines                 10    30
    Spectacle Frames                 9    16
    Safes                           15    27
    Spring Makers                    8    14
    Spring Mattress                  0     2
    Steel Toy                       58    39
    Sword                           17     4
    Toasting Fork
    Umbrella & Parasol Furniture    12    11
    Vice                            49    32

    Ammunition cases                 1     2
    Belt clasp                       7     3
    Coach beading                    5     4
    Candlestick                     12     9
    Coach handles                    2     5
    Cocks                           29    35
    Chandelier                      40    51
    Church Furniture                 4     6
    Clock movements
    Cornice pole                     3    12
    Curtain hook                     0    10
    Curtain ring                     4    14
    Door bolts
    Door handles
    Electrical bell & apparatus      2     7
    Fog signal                       1     1
    Gas burner                       4     4
    Gauge                            6    13
    Mathematical inst.              10    10
    Military ornament               12    15
    Paper fasteners
    Roasting jack                    7     2
    Stair rod (case)                 6     7
    Theatrical jewellery             0     1
    Thimble                         13    12
    Watches (29 branches)
                                   496   790
  Tin Plate--
    Coffin Furniture                17    14
    Dish Covers                      1     7
    Grocers’ Canisters               2     2
    Cooking Utensils

  Tin Alloys, hard and soft--
    Beer Engine                     19    10
    Bells                           10    17
    Dram Flask
    Measures, Tankards
    Composition Pipe
    Stencil Plates
    Tea Pots
    Cream Jugs, &c.
    Britannia Metal Ware
     Manufacturers                  20    13

  German Silver--
    Cruet Frames
    Tea Pots
    Spoons, &c.
    Electro-plated Ware &
     Electro-platers & Gilders     110   215
    Dessert Knife & Fork

Implements and Tools used in Manufactures.

Awl Blade, Auger, Anvil, Brace and Bit, Bookbinders’ Tools, Bellows,
Bullet Mould, Brushes, Coach Wrench, File Cutter, Glaziers’ Diamond,
Gun Implements, Hammer, Hoe, Iron Ladle, Last and Boot Tree, Nails,
Rivet, Saw, Screw, Tack, Gimp Pin, &c., Vice, Press Tools, Punches.

Dependent Manufactures and Processes.


Box Makers (Wood), Box Makers (Paper), Brick (Fire), Bookbinding,
Casting Pot and Crucible, Emery and Glass Cloth Paper, Embossed Paper,
Engravers (Block), Felt, Glass Mould, Jewellery Case, Lamp Wick,
Lithography, Printing, Pitch Paper, Pearl Workers, Rouge, Rope and
Twine, Sealing Wax, Tortoise Shell Workers.

Dependent Manufactures and Processes.


Assayers, Bronze Powder, and Gold and Silver Leaf, Die Sinkers, Iron
and Steel Hoop, Letter Cutters, Music Smith, Rollers, Refiners, Sweep
Smelters, Water Tuyere Iron Manufacturers, Weavers’ Mail.

Processes carried on for the Trade.

Brass Polishers, Buckle Plater, Chasers, China Decorators, Coach
Painters, Dippers and Silverers, Diamond Cutter, Engravers and
Woodcutters, Enamellers, Electrotypers, Electro-platers, Engine
Turners, Galvanisers, Glass Quicker, Glass Painters, Glass Grinders,
Glass Benders, Glass Cutters, Harness Platers, Iron Planers, Iron
Casters, Iron Braziers, Jewellers’ Stampers, Jewellers’ Glass Cutter,
Lapidaries, Metal Spinners, Metal Perforators, Metal Fluters, Machine
Rulers, Magic Lantern Slide Painter, Stereotypers.

Dealers and Merchants.

Asbestos, Carozo Nut, Cotton Waste, Copper and Metal, Grindstone, Iron,

Variety of Materials used in the Manufactures.

It may be expected that in a variety of manufactures, such as those
just given, numerous materials would be required. In order to ascertain
as far as possible what materials are used in the town, circulars were
sent out to many firms, and from information supplied, in reply to
these circulars and from other sources, the following list has been


NOTE.--After the name of the material, which is printed in small
capitals, is given in ordinary type the trades, or a few typical ones,
in which the material is used.


ANTIMONY.--Nickel and cobalt refining.

BROWN IRON ORE.--Gas works.

COPPER PYRITES--(SPANISH ORE).--Copper extraction and refining,
sulphuric acid works.

COBALT AND NICKEL.--Nickel and Cobalt refining.

HÆMATITE.--Iron smelting, nickel and cobalt refining, malleable iron
casting, polishing works.

GALENA.--Refining lead slags and products.

IRON PYRITES.--Sulphuric acid manufacture.

MANGANESE OXIDE.--Weldon’s process for chlorine.

TIN ORE.--Nickel and cobalt refining, bedstead manufacture, tin plate


ANTIMONY.--Britannia metal works, pewter working, stereotyping,
engineers’ brassfounding.

ALUMINIUM.--Aluminium bronze, metal beating, pen and pencil case, gauge
making, sewing machine.

BISMUTH.--Engineers’ brassfoundry, solder making.

COPPER.--Alloy makers, coppersmiths, copper and brass tube works, gas
fitting, railway carriage works, brass founding, stereotyping, nail
making, gun making, roast jack, clocks, electro works, jewellers,
mathematical instrument makers.

GOLD.--Jewellery, gilt toy, thimble making, brassfounding, chains,
spectacles, watch chains and cases, electro-plate, gun making, swords,

IRON and STEEL.--All trades.

LEAD.--Chemical manufactures, alloy makers, pewter and Britannia
metal, nickel and cobalt refining, electro-plate, whip, pen,
nail, stereotyping, india rubber stamps, railway carriage, gun,
brassfounding, thimble, ship’s log.

MAGNESIUM.--Mathematical instrument.

NICKEL.--Electro-plate, pen and pencil, stereotyping, whip button,
needle, sword, photo-frames, fire-irons, tin plate, sewing machine,
coach furniture and harness, bicycle, steam gauge.

PLATINUM.--Mathematical instrument, nickel and cobalt refining,
photo-frames, electro-plate, wedding ring, thimble, brassfounding.

IRIDIUM and PALLADIUM.--Pen and pencil.

QUICKSILVER.--Optical instrument, nickel and cobalt refining,
stereotyping, thimble and whip, gauge, electro-plate, art metal, clock.

SILVER.--Silversmith, jewellery, carriage furniture, whip mounts,
sword, electro-plate, hook and eye, mathematical instrument, gun,
silver plating, button, stereotyping, spectacles, chains, bedstead,

TIN.--Cocoa, stereotyping, whip, rolled metals, toilet pin, nail,
needle, railway carriage, mathematical instrument, tool making, gas
meters, roasting jack, engineers’ brassfounding, axle boxes, clock,
bedstead, thimble, gauge, electro-plate, brassfounding, wholesale boot
and shoe.

TIN PLATE.--Various branches of the tin plate trade, ship’s log, steam
gauge, art metal, nickel and cobalt refining, button, cocoa, printing,
electro-plate, needle.

ZINC and SPELTER.--Brass and alloy makers, yellow and sheathing metal,
thimble, whip, art metal, galvanising, copper extraction, button,
stereotyping, alkali, electro-plate, nail, watch chain.

NOTE.--The applications of the compound metals or alloys, such as
given for want of space. The most important trades consuming metal in
the form of leaf and powder--GOLD LEAF, SILVER LEAF and BRONZES--are
bedstead manufacturing, picture frame making, japanning, lithography,
art metal work (planishing.)


ACETIC (VINEGAR).--Gelatine manufacture, button, lithography, whip,
sword, art metal, gas fitting, bedsteads.

BORACIC.--German silver, electro-deposition.

CARBOLIC.--Gelatine, soap, ammunition works.

CITRIC.--Lithography, art metal.

HYDROFLUORIC.--Glass, gas fitting, nickel and cobalt works, button
making, railway carriage.

HYDROCHLORIC (MURIATIC or SPIRITS of SALT).--Metal trades generally,
gas manufacture, gelatine, printing, chemical trades, railway carriage.

HYDROCYANIC.--Button, pen and penholder, electro-plate.

NITRIC (AQUA FORTIS).--Metal trades generally, especially brass,
gelatine, button, whip, sword, gun, hook and eye.

OXALIC.--Tin plate, art metal work, button, tool making, whip, pen and
penholders, wholesale boot and shoe trade.

PYROGALLIC.--Gas manufacture, art metal.

SULPHURIC (OIL OF VITRIOL).--Iron wire, nails, bedsteads, button, pen,
gelatine, chemical trades, soap, hook and eye, tin plate, brass trades,
gun, whip, sword.

TARTARIC.--Gelatine, nickel and cobalt, art metal.


AMMONIA and AMMONIUM SALTS.--Gas manufacture, brass trades generally,
galvanising, buttons, tin plate, printing and lithography, nails, paper.

ARSENIOUS ANHYDRIDE or WHITE ARSENIC.--Brass founding, chandelier,
electro-plate, buttons.

ALUM.--Gelatine, paper, rolled metal, buttons, wholesale boot and shoe.

BORAX.--Metal trades generally, jewellers, gelatine.

COPPER SULPHATE or BLUE STONE.--Iron wire, electro-plate, buttons,
fibre dressing, printing.

GLYCERINE.--Gas fittings, soap, printing.

IODINE.--Copper extraction.

IRON SULPHATE or COPPERAS.--Buttons, fibre dressing, brass founding,
emery paper, wholesale boot and shoe, rouge manufacture.

LEAD ACETATE (SUGAR OF LEAD).--Gelatine, buttons, tin plate works, oil
and colour works.

instruments, gold beating.

NICKEL SULPHATE.--Trades in which nickel plating is used, bicycles,
sewing machines, bridle bit, &c.

or TARTAR).--Brass founding, electro-plate, bedstead, jewellery,
gelatine, glass, buttons, soap, whip, tin plate.

PLATINUM CHLORIDE.--Electro-plate, buttons, optical instruments.

SULPHATE).--Brass founding, jewellery, alloys, electro-plate, fibre
dressing, tin plate, soap.

SULPHUR.--Chemical works, rolled metal works, sword, tin plate.

ZINC SALTS (CHLORIDE, SULPHATE).--Gelatine, buttons, printing.


LEAD.--(Red and white lead are used for lutes as well as for pigments,
red lead too is largely consumed in the manufacture of flint glass).
Brass founding, tin plate works, japanning, bedsteads, lithography,
brush works, coach and carriage works, buttons, ammunition works,
cycles, art metal work.


STONE, ARKANSAS.--Iron smelting, chemical works, nickel and cobalt
refining, sword, edge tool, and tool grinding generally, printing and
lithography, tin plate, brass founding, gun, button, sword, art metal,

APATITE, SOMBRERITE, and NATIVE PHOSPHATES.--Phosphorus manufacture.

FLUR SPAR.--Alloys, engineers’ brass foundry, roasting jack,
hydrofluoric acid manufacture.

MICA.--Gas fitting, stove makers, brass founding, ship’s log, optical

FELSPAR.--Pottery, art metal.

ROCK CRYSTAL.--Spectacle manufacture, art metal, electrical apparatus,
optical instrument.

AGATE, BLOODSTONE, HÆMATITE.--As burnishers in many trades.

DIAMOND BORT.--Diamond cutting, lapidary work, spectacle manufacture,
railway carriage.

DIAMOND.--Jewellery, glaziers’ diamond manufacture.

TOPAZ, &C.--Cut stones in jewellery, lapidary work, watch and clock
manufacture, art metal work, electro-plate, whip, fine wire drawing.


ARABIC.--Brass founding, printing and lithography, optical instrument,
electro-plate, pen, whip, light metal trades, wholesale boot and shoe.

BENZOIN.--Wire mattress, railway carriage.

COPAL.--Button, printing and lithography, electro-plate, needles,
optical instruments.

DAMAR.--Button, optical instruments.

DEXTRINE.--Printing and lithography, pen and penholders, optical
instrument, thimble.

GUTTA PERCHA.--Electro-plate, brass founding, railway carriage,
printing and lithography, rolled light brass metal work, needle,
thimble, wholesale boot and shoe.

INDIA RUBBER.--Vulcanised India rubber works.

MASTIC.--Buttons, printing and lithography, tin plate.

SANDARAC.--Buttons, printing.

SHELL-LAC.--Lacquer manufacture, brass founding, light metal work,
railway carriage, pen and penholder, whip, button, printing and
lithography, sword, optical instrument, roasting jack, thimble,

TRAGACANTH.--Printing and lithography, wholesale boot and shoe trade.


TRAIN).--Rolled metal, electro-plate, buttons, pen and penholder,
nails, fire irons, bedstead, wedding ring, brass founding, gas
manufacture, printing and lithography, optical instrument, alloy
making, railway carriage, engineers’ brass founding, soap, wholesale
boot and shoe.

PINE).--Gas manufacture, fibre and brass dressing, printing and
lithography, electro-plate, rolled metal, tin plate, carriage
furniture, optical instrument, soap, paper, button, alkali works, iron
wire, bedstead.

founding, gas manufacture, spectacles, lapidaries’ work, lithography
and printing, railway carriage.

NAPHTHA.--Papier mâché, japanning, lacquer, printing and lithography,
electro-plate, button, thimble, cycle, whip, soap, brassfounding,
railway carriage, bottle jack, optical instrument.

ASPHALTUM, BITUMEN, GOLD SIZE.--Printing and lithography, tin plate,
papier mâché, bedstead, picture frame, ornamental glass, brassfounding,
art metal.

PITCH, RESIN.--Soap, electro-plate, tin-plate, bedstead, carriage
furniture, printing and lithography, thimble, paper, brassfounding,
wholesale boot and shoe trade.

VARNISHES (COPAL, MASTIC, JAPAN, PONTYPOOL).--30 or 40 varieties are
known in the trade, the names often implying the purpose for which
the varnish is used as coach-body varnish, oak varnish, undercoating,
finishing, &c. Coach and carriage works, house decoration, furniture,
tin-plate, papier mâché, bedstead, coffin furniture, fog signal cases,
iron hollow-ware, enamel leather.


VELLUM.--Wholesale saddlery and leather trades generally, wholesale
boot and shoe trade, polishing in the metal trades, parts of articles
in the electro-plate, tin plate, whip, and many other trades.

works, tin plate, brassfounding, button, needle, optical instrument,
cocoa, leather trades.

FELT.--Corrugated iron, brassfounding, light brass rolled metal works,
railway carriage works, printing and lithography, electro-plate, art
metal, optical instrument, glass polishing.

PAPER.--Paper box trade, papier mâché, wrapping up in all trades.


more of them used in most trades, railway carriage, cabinet, tin plate,
brass founding, edge tools, clog, electro-plate.

BEEF WOOD.--Gun trade, ramrod.


BOXWOOD.--Used in metal trades, generally for chocks.

CEDAR.--Railway carriage, cabinet, pen and penholder, needle, art
metal, optical instrument.

COCUS WOOD.--Optical instrument.

EBONY.--Gun, gas fitting, brass founding, button, electro-plate, tool,
art metal, railway carriage.

HICKORY.--Whip, rolled metal, needle, ferrule, railway carriage.

HOLLY.--Tool, whip.


needle, pen and penholder, brass founding, optical instrument.

LIGNUM VITÆ.--Button, whip, brass founding, art metal, rolled metal,
tool, corkscrew.

MALACCA CANE.--Gold beating.

MAPLE.--Gun, railway carriage, cycle and sewing machine, brass founding.


PEAR.--Coal mining, glass, printing and lithography.

ROSEWOOD.--Gun, railway carriage, cabinet, printing and lithography,
pen and penholder, electro-plate, tool.

SYCAMORE.--Railway carriage, electro-plate, printing and lithography,
art metal.

TULIP.--Art metal.

WALNUT.--Gun, electro-plate, brass founding, railway carriage, cabinet,
pen and penholder, art metal, matchet.


ZEBRA.--Button, electro-plate, pen and penholder, optical instrument.


RED SANDERS, SHUMAC, TURMERIC.--Furniture and cabinet works, button,
railway carriage, fibre and bass dressing, art metal, whip, paper,
printing and lithography, matchet, wholesale boot and shoe trade.


ASBESTOS.--Gas fitting, paper, railway carriage, printing and
lithography, electro-plate, tin plate.

BONES AND BONE WASTE.--Glue, buttons, electro-plate, light brass rolled
metal works, carriage furniture.

BEESWAX, PARAFFIN WAX.--Brass founding, alloy, whip, bedstead,
electro-plate, printing and lithography, light brass rolled metal
works, optical instrument.

BURDOCK, KECK, ELDER PITH.--Watch Finishing.

BATH BRICK.--Gas fitting, whip, light brass rolled metal works, ships’
log, optical instrument, railway carriage.

BLACK LEAD.--Black lead works, gas fitting, railway carriage,
electro-plate, tin plate, nails, whip, buttons.

CHALK, WHITENING, FRENCH CHALK.--Gas fitting, brass founding,
electro-plate, printing and lithography, sword, railway carriage, tin
plate, fibre dressing, buttons, pen and penholder.

COAL TAR, CREOSOTE.--Tar distilling, railway carriage, soap,
electro-plate, light brass rolled metal works.

CATGUT.--Bands for lathes in nearly all trades.

CAMEL HAIR, SABLE HAIR.--Railway carriage, electro-plate, watch chain,
brass founding, art metal, optical instrument.

COTTON WASTE.--In nearly all the metal trades.

COTTON WOOL AND WADDING.--For storing and packing in jewellery and
other trades.

COTTON, THREAD, TAPE.--Nearly all trades.

CUTTLE FISH.--Printing and lithography, jewellery.

CROCUS, COLCOTHAR, ROUGE.--Brassfounding, gas fitting, bedstead,
electro-plate, tin plate, jewellery, glass grinding, and polishing.

CHARCOAL.--brassfounding, gas fitting, bedstead, electro-plate alloy,
wedding ring, nails.

CHINA CLAY.--Porcelain (Worcester), paper, engineers’ brassfounding.

COCOA (THEOBROMA CACAO).--Cocoa and chocolate manufacture.

EGGS.--Printing and lithography, photographic frame and cabinet work.

EMERY.--For grinding and polishing in all the metal trades, glass
grinding, lapidary work, wholesale boot and shoe trade.

FLOUR.--Tin plate, brassfounding, alloys, railway carriage, printing
and lithography, bedstead, nails, papier mâché, paper box, pocket book,
wholesale boot and shoe trade.

FLAX.--Whip Manufacture.

FLOCK, FEATHERS.--Upholstery and bedding manufacture, artificial fly.

FIRE CLAY.--Furnaces in all manufactures.

FULLER’S EARTH.--Pin, cycle and sewing machine.

FLINTS.--African gun trade, nickel and cobalt, chemical works.

FOUNDERS’ DUST.--For casting, metal trades generally.

GALL NUTS.--Ink, brassfounding.

[44]GYPSUM AND PLASTER OF PARIS.--Gold beating, paper, gas
manufacture, railway carriage, printing and lithography, whip,
brassfounding, nails.

GAS CARBON.--Electrical apparatus makers, ship’s log, thimble, whip,
art metal, optical instruments.

GELATINE AND GLUE.--In nearly all trades.

GANNISTER.--Alloys, rolled metals, iron and steel works, brassfounding.

GOLD BEATERS’ SKIN.--Gold beating, electro-plate.

HARES’ FEET.--Gold beating, watch chain, whip, tool, thimble, printing
and lithography.

HEMP, HURDS, TOW.--Rope and twine, alloy, electro-plate, carriage
furniture, tin plate, brassfounding, gas fitting, railway carriage,
anchor, sword, thimble.

HONEY.--Bronze powder, cocoa and chocolate.

HORSE HAIR.--Railway carriage, whip, fishing tackle, upholstery and

IVORY.--Bone and ivory and billiard ball turners, electro-plate,
optical instrument.

IRISH MOSS, TANNATE OF SODA.--Used generally to prevent scaling in
steam boilers.

JUTE, KITTOOL FIBRE.--Paper, glue, fibre, dressing, electro-plate.

LIVER OF SULPHUR.--For bronzing in various metal trades.

LIME.--Building, paper, glue, chemical works, iron wire, brassfounding,
electro-plate, printing and lithography, railway carriage.

MARINE GLUE.--Alloys, railway carriage, rolled light metal, optical


OILSTONE DUST.--Gun, clock, watch finishing.

PARAFFIN WAX.--Railway carriage works, axle box, rolled light metal

POLISHING THREAD.--Watch chain, spectacle, cycle and sewing machine.

PUMICE STONE.--Grinding and polishing in most metal trades, printing
and lithography, papier mâché.

PEARL SHELL.--Pearl workers, papier mâché, bedstead, electro-plate,
optical instrument.

PUTTY POWDER.--Lapidary, electro-plate, diesinking, needles, whip,
sword, thimble.

QUILLS.--Whip, fishing tackle.

ROTTENSTONE.--For polishing in the metal trades, papier mâché, pearl

manufacture, glass grinding, moulding in the metal trades, for sand
blast in the electro-plate trade.

SANDIFER or GLASS GALL.--Jewellery, electro-plate, watch chain.

SAWDUST.--Gas manufacture, brass founding and brass trades generally,
railway carriage, printing and lithography.

SEALING WAX.--For parcelling in nearly all trades.

SILK.--Railway carriage, button, tin plate, printing and lithography,
needles and fish hook.

SIZE.--Railway carriage, printing and lithography, tin plate, optical
instrument, house decoration, electro-gilding.

SLATE AND SLATE PENCIL.--Jewellery, railway carriage, printing and
lithography, electro-plate, tin plate.

SLAG WOOL.--Gas fittings, engineers’ brass founding.

SOAP.--Nearly all trades.

SPONGE.--Tin plate, art metal, rolled light brass trade, whip,
electro-plate, printing and lithography.

STALE BEER.--Electro-plating and gilding, wire working.

SUGAR.--Cocoa, electro-plate, tin plate, ships’ log, printing and

STRAW or HAY.--Bedding, packing in nearly all trades.

SWAN’S DOWN.--Electro-plate, bridle bit, tin plate.

TORTOISE SHELL.--Tortoise shell workers, button.

VULCANITE.--Button, ammunition, railway carriage.

WHALEBONE.--Whip manufacture.

WOOL.--Railway carriage, felt, printing and lithography, bedding,
needles, optical instrument.

In reference to some materials, Mr. Arthur Robottom, who has
introduced a variety of new products for use in Birmingham sends me the
following notes: _Cryolite_ from Greenland, is used in making glass
globes for the electric light. _Nitrate of soda_, from Chili.--Mr. W.
R. Lloyd, merchant, Newhall Street, sold the first small lot to W. C.
Alston, about 50 years ago; since then I have sold large quantities
to the manufacturers of nitric acid. _Lard oil_ was first used in
Birmingham. _Carnubia wax_ (Brazil) was first used in Birmingham for
wax tapers. _Mica._--The first import of large plates from India
was sold to Griffiths and Browett for lanterns to be used in powder
magazines. _Istle or Mexican Fibre._--The first bale was sold by me
to Mrs. Grew, of Church street, and used for brush making. _Kourie
Gum_, from New Zealand, first used in Birmingham by Barratt, Postans
and others for varnish making. _Cow Hair_ from River Plate used
for circular brushes in glass cutting. _Carozo nuts_ or _Vegetable
Ivory_.--The first arrivals from Venezuela were sold to Mr. Burgiss, of
Great Charles Street, for toys; afterwards some were obtained by Mr.
Bricknall, button maker, who first made buttons from this material.
Subsequently the late Mr. J. S. Wright, then a clerk with Smith and
Kemp, took up the material, and it soon became generally used. Now
some thousands of tons are consumed every year for this purpose.
_Piassava._--“I sold the first small lot to Richard Deen, and got
him to retail it to Irishmen living in London Prentice street and
neighbourhood, to make into bass brooms for hawking. At the present
time some 200 tons per week of this material is made up into brooms.
_Gum Animi_, largely used in Birmingham for varnish. _Button Lac_ was
first used in Birmingham by Joseph Shorthouse, Market Street, who had
the first five cases from Calcutta, for the manufacture of lacquer.
_Kiltool_, from Ceylon. The first shipment came to me, I put it aside
in some stables at my house in the Coventry Road, intending to sell
it for putting under ripe strawberries, but by accident I found out
that by putting it into hot oil it took a beautiful black colour. Upon
this Mr. Lovedee, of Bartholomew Street, at my suggestion, dressed and
prepared the material for the brush trade. It is now used in great
quantities.” _Lemon_, _Orange_, and _Citron Peel_.--Large quantities
sent to Birmingham to be candied at Mr. Pattison’s works, Spring Hill.
They are imported from Sicily.

The reader having now some idea of the materials entering our district,
let us see generally, though in mere outline, how these materials are
worked up in the metal trades.

ORES.--The only ores smelted in our district on a large scale are iron
and nickel and cobalt. Small quantities of galena and copper pyrites
are used. Spanish ore, an iron pyrites containing two or three per
cent. of copper, has the sulphur burnt off in the chemical works, and
the copper is subsequently precipitated and refined.

METALS AND ALLOYS.--Iron and steel are now extensively produced from
cast iron in our district by the modern methods as well as by the older
ones of puddling in the case of iron, and cementing in the case of
steel. The basic Bessemer process has been adopted on a large scale by
Mr. A. Hickman, of the Spring Vale Furnaces, Bilston. Three converters
are used, one lined in the ordinary manner (gannister), the other
two with a paste made of dolomite (magnesian limestone) and tar, the
process of conversion being commenced in the first named converter,
and finished in the others. At the same works are modern type blast
furnaces in which the waste gases are utilised for heating the blast
on the regenerative principle, two stoves being those of Mr. Cowper’s
system, while there are three new ones invented by Ford and Moncan.
Messrs. Hatton and Sons of Bilston, adopt a fixed Bessemer converter in
which blast of low pressure can be used. At the same works the Wilson
gas producer is used for re-heating furnaces, and an arrangement on
the Ponsard principle is adopted for raising the temperature of the
air used in the combustion of the gas. Mr. Smith-Casson has in use
at the Round Oak Works a novel gas furnace of his invention. At the
Patent Shaft and Axle Tree Works a modification of the (Siemens) open
hearth furnace (an improvement by Dick and Riley) is being used.[45] At
Messrs. Cox Brothers and Holland, Alcester Street, crucible steel is
made. The cementing process is carried on at the Brades Steel Works,

COPPER.--The crude copper known as Chili bars and precipitated copper
from chemical works, where the sulphur of the ore has been previously
utilized, are refined extensively in the neighbourhood of Birmingham.

LEAD.--Lead refuse of various kinds, together with galena, is treated
at one small works in the town.

ALLOYS.--In most cases manufacturers mix their own metals. However,
brass, German-silver, and other alloys are extensively manufactured for
the trade.

The metal or alloy having been made, is subject to various general
processes, either as preliminary to manufacture, or in the course of
manufacture, of which the following are the principal:--

CASTING.--From a drawing the pattern is made in wood--⅛ of an inch to
the foot longer in case of cast-iron, and ³⁄₁₆ do. in case of brass
to allow for shrinking. The pattern is laid in sand, often contained
in a casting frame, which, from its plasticity, non-fusibility, and
other properties lends itself admirably for mould making. The mould is
dusted over with charcoal, or with a mixture known as founders’ dust,
and the casting then made by pouring metal in. With small articles in
brass, metal patterns are used. For gold articles, such as wedding
rings, an iron frame is used, filled with the finest red sand. For
small gold work, the cuttle fish bone is used as a mould, the pattern
being pressed in the same manner as in sand.[46] A special feature in
the process of casting in our district is the production of “chilled”
castings for rolls. The mould for the barrel part of the roll is a
heavy cylindrical casting of iron truly bored out to a size sufficient
to allow of the roll being turned to the required size. The molten iron
is run into the mould sidelong, and from the bottom, so as to give the
metal a rotatory motion. This rotatory motion causes the dust and slag
to keep in the centre, leaving a pure metal in contact with the mould.
This metal chilled by contact with the massive metal mould, produces
the hard and close texture required.[47]

Keys, stirrups, hob nails, and many small articles are produced by
casting, the casting being afterwards rendered malleable by the process
of cementation, which consists in packing the articles in an iron box
with powdered hæmatite, and heating from three to seven days. Iron
castings are also annealed by packing with cinders in a box, which is
then heated for some time, as with the malleable cast iron.

ROLLING, WIRE AND TUBE DRAWING.--Iron, brass, steel, and German silver
are used up in the form of sheet, wire, and tube. With large firms
producing finished articles, these processes are done on the premises,
but there are several works devoted to the production of sheet metal,
wire, or tube only, and rolling for the trade. In the jewellers’
district, the cast ingots of the precious metals are taken to rolling
mills in the neighbourhood to be rolled down to the required degree of
fineness. For some articles, such as spoons, where a blank is required
of varying thickness, strips of metal are thinned in parts by what is
known as “cross rolling,” the rolls being exposed at one end, so that a
strip of metal may be passed through, which is thus thinned down at one

Tube drawing is effected by cutting a strip of metal which is then
passed through rolls to give it a gutter form. One end of the gutter
is now beaten up to form a tang that can be gripped by the tongs of
the draw bench, and the gutter is pulled through a conical hole which
roughly forms the tube. The open seam of the tube is now brazed, and
after cleaning, this roughly formed tube is slipped over a steel rod
or mandril. Both mandril and tube are drawn through a smooth circular
hole when a smooth uniform tube is formed. Fluted taper tubes are made
as described at (B. p. 324[48]) by means of “tins,” but a novel method
is now adopted for smooth taper tubes. A wedge-shaped piece of metal
is roughly made into a conical tube which is put on a taper mandril
revolving in a lathe. A flat steel burnisher is pressed on to the tube
as it revolves pressing the metal to take the shape of the mandril.
Twisted tubes are produced by drawing the tube through a revolving
nut (B. p. 325[48]), embossed or ornamented tubes by drawing a plain
tube through a die, composed of a series, four say, of small wheels or
pulleys on the edge of each wheel being impressed the desired pattern.
As the tube is drawn through the die, the wheels turn and impress on
the tube the pattern they carry on their surface. As stated (B. p.
326[48]), the invention is due to Mr. Fearn. It should, however, be
mentioned that the process failed in his hands, but was subsequently
taken up by Messrs. Winfield and Co., who, with the help of their
engineer, Mr. Thomas Preston, brought the process to perfection.

PRESS TOOL WORK.--The next general process in the manufacture of many
metallic articles is cutting out a blank into the requisite shape.
This is done by what is called a press tool consisting of two parts;
one a firm block of steel, in which is an aperture, circular, oval, or
whatever shape may be desired, and the other a punch of corresponding
shape, a piece of metal being placed over the aperture, the punch is
forced down by a screw of high pitch on to the metal, when a blank is
cut out at one blow, and falls into a pan placed to receive it.[49]

STAMPING.--Used for hollowing blanks in a number of trades. The blank
cut by hand or tool is placed on a mould or die, and a heavy weight,
carrying on its lower surface the counterpart of the mould, working in
guides so as to fall true, can be lifted up and allowed to fall on the
blank until the metal is forced into the shape of the mould. As the
metal hardens by successive blows, the blanks are annealed (that is
heated and allowed to cool) as often as may be found necessary.

The weight which gives the blow is supported by a strap passing over a
wheel in constant motion. So long as the strap hangs loosely over the
wheel, the friction of the moving wheel is insufficient to lift the
weight, but immediately the workman makes the strap taut, the weight
is carried up and is let fall by the workman releasing his hold on the

SHAPING.--Thin metal is shaped by pressure applied by means of a
screw press, the metal being placed between a die or mould and its

AUTOMATIC MACHINERY.--A number of articles produced from wire, such
as pins, nails, hooks and eyes, hair pins, etc., are made completely
by automatic machinery, the wire being wound off a reel at one end of
the machine and transformed into the various articles as it passes
along until it comes out at the other end of the machine, a finished or
nearly finished article.

AUTOMATIC TURNING AND SHAPING.--Gun stocks, boot lasts, tool handles
and other similar articles are automatically turned. With a gun stock
for example, the rough form cut from a plank is put in a lathe, above
is placed a steel model or dummy of the form required to be turned,
the model and the wooden blank are made to revolve at precisely the
same speed, and a rotating cutter travels slowly along from one end of
the blank to the other, the movement of the cutter inwards or outwards
being regulated by the dummy. The wooden blank having been put in the
lathes, the cutting is started, and it then goes on until finished,
when the lathe stops automatically. The shaping of gun locks and many
other parts of the gun is effected by causing a revolving cutter to be
moved over a fixed steel model or dummy, the cutter thus shapes the
blank to a fac-simile of the pattern or dummy.[50]

SPINNING.--Tea pot bodies and a variety of articles in Britannia metal
are “spun.” A piece of wood 4 or 5 inches in diameter is attached to
the lathe head, and in this a hollow corresponding to the bottom of the
tea pot is turned. A sheet of metal of a foot or so diameter is now put
against the wood and pressed into the hollow by a wooden cylindrical
mould with a round base which corresponds to the concavity. The disc is
rotated very rapidly and the workman presses the soft metal over the
mould so as to form a vessel in shape somewhat resembling a coffee cup
with upright sides, the cylindrical mould is taken out and replaced
by a disc of wood in two halves, held in place by a spindle from the
back centre of the lathe. The metal cylinder is now gradually closed
in until the opening is reduced to the required size, when the body is
complete. The spindle is withdrawn and the divided disc of wood easily
shakes out.

DRAWING THROUGH.--Umbrella ferrules, pencil cases, cartridge cases,
and a variety of articles are made by “drawing through.” The finest
example of this process is seen in the manufacture of a metallic
cartridge case, such as is used in the new Enfield-Martini rifle. I
am indebted to Mr. T. R. Bayliss, Managing Director of the Birmingham
Small Arms and Metal Company, for the following particulars. The brass
is rolled to the required thickness.[51] It is then passed into a
machine which forms it into a shallow cup. This machine consists of a
tubular punch which cuts out a disc of 1.25 inch diameter, immediately
upon which a solid plug passing through the tubular punch, presses the
disc through a steel ring, so that it falls to the ground as a shallow
brass cup. Three of these are produced by one blow of the press. The
cups are heated in a muffle to a red heat, then dipped in dilute
sulphuric acid to remove scale, washed, coated with soap and oil, and
then passed through a second machine in which a slightly narrower punch
forces the cup through a slightly narrower ring, and thus the cup,
while retaining the same thickness at the bottom, is made slightly
narrower and much deeper. Repetitions of the process (six altogether)
produce a case rather more than half-an-inch wide and three inches
long, which, when cut off to proper length, indented at the bottom for
reception of the cap, and some other finishing processes gone through,
is ready for the charge of powder. The process is applied to small
articles like pencil cases, and at the Small Arms and Metal Company to
cases as large as 5·20 inch diameter and 15 inch long.

SOLDERING.--Hard soldering or brazing consists in fusing an alloy of
high melting point between two junctions of the metal to be soldered
so as firmly to connect them. The solder in fine powder is mixed with
powdered borax, and made into a puddle with water, and then spread
about the parts to be soldered together. The article is now heated by
fire or gas, and the moment when the solder runs, is carefully watched.
Gold and silver soldering used in the jewellery trades is on a small
scale similar to brazing, the solder used is a gold or silver alloy of
slightly lower melting point than the article to be soldered: the borax
is commonly applied by previously rubbing down a crystal on a piece of
slate and the white puddle thus obtained applied by means of a camel
hair pencil to the junction on which the solder is placed. The article
is supported on a piece of pumice stone and the necessary heat produced
by the flame from a mouth blowpipe. In soft soldering an alloy of tin
and lead is used, the melted alloy being spread by means of a “bit”
or “doctor,” consisting of a piece of copper attached to an iron rod
set in a wooden handle. A flux called “monkey” or “spirit,” consisting
of muriatic acid with dissolved zinc, having previously been applied.
Formerly resin was used as a flux, but this is now to a great extent
superseded by the mixture just spoken of.

SCRATCH BRUSHING is used to produce a rich rough surface previous to
gilding. Revolving brushes of brass wire scratch the surface of the
article which is kept well moistened with stale beer or with water to
which size has been added.

Of late years the SAND BLAST has been introduced for roughing surfaces.
Sand is fed into a powerful blast of air, and a fine frosted surface
produced. If the article is protected in places by a mask of paper
or soft metal cut out in any desired pattern, an ornamental pattern
is produced requiring only a little chasing to finish it. The sand
blast is used too in the production of an imitation of engraved glass,
in embossing glass as a substitute for hydrofluoric acid, and for
re-cutting old files.

DIPPING.--In order to clean brass articles, they are dipped into a
mixture of nitric and sulphuric acids, the temperature and strength
of acid determining whether the dipping is bright or dead. The bright
articles are now finished by burnishing or polishing, and are then
ready for

LACQUERING.--The articles are laid on an iron table heated to a
temperature of about 230° F. by super-heated steam. When warm, the
lacquer, which is a solution of shell-lac in spirits of wine, is
brushed over, the spirit evaporates and leaves a protecting coating of

GOLD CUTTING or LAPPING in jewellery consists in pressing articles
against a rapidly revolving disc or “lap,” composed of lead and tin,
to the surface of which fine emery has been applied. The faces of
the article which have thus been “cut” are subsequently polished
on a “bob,” that is on a wheel covered with leather on its edge or

COLOURING in jewellery refers to a rich gold colour obtained on gold
articles. The process at first could be applied only to jewellery of
high quality, but now 15 and 18 carat gold is coloured. The articles
are heated to dull redness to destroy grease and dirt, then hung on
platinum wires and immersed in a boiling mixture of salt, saltpetre,
and muriatic acid and water. After drying out in sawdust they are

There are many extremely interesting processes in the trades of our
town besides those which apply exclusively to the metal trades, but for
these I have no space. Those who wish for full information respecting
the history, position, and general character of the Birmingham
industries, must consult “Birmingham and the Midland Hardware
District,” edited by Mr. Sam. Timmins. This volume, which was published
on the occasion of the visit of the British Association to the town
in 1865, is exhaustive, describing the trades as they then existed.
In order, however, to supplement Mr. Timmins’ book, application has
been made to various gentlemen who have been good enough to provide
the following short notices (or the substance of them) of the various
trades referred to at length in the volume. In addition there are some
notices of industries which have been introduced since the year 1865.


=Introductory Note.=--The references to “Birmingham and the Midland
Hardware District” volume are quoted as “B.,” followed by a number
indicating the page. Thus (B. 77) means, _See “Birmingham and the
Midland Hardware District”, page 77_. The trades are arranged

=Assay Office of Birmingham.=--[H. WESTWOOD].--(B. 499). The assay
marks continue to be so highly valued by the public that all goods
are now sent to be assayed and marked except those of the commonest
quality, and a few richly wrought articles that would be injured in the

The statistics of the Assay Office form an index to the condition of
the gold and silver trades of the town. The following tables are a
continuation of those given by Mr. Ryland (B. 507).


  Year ends     Gold.     Silver.
  June 24th      oz.        oz.

  1865         30,733     99,688
  1866         35,705     90,736
  1867         34,114     83,501
  1868         36,170     79,642
  1869         47,694     87,027
  1870         48,123     84,323
  1871         58,323     81,248
  1872         75,933     91,988
  1873         98,134    106,415
  1874        116,325    134,949
  1875        113,642    141,123
  1876        120,019    142,148
  1877        114,772    163,047
  1878        104,202    159,847
  1879         87,042    166,469
  1880         81,606    239,835
  1881         70,466    331,209
  1882         86,837    511,743
  1883         91,053    851,957
  1884         99,799    926,968
  1885         97,618    888,391


  Year ends
  July 24th.

  Date.             Amount.
  1865              £11,114
  1866               11,493
  1867                9,941
  1868                9,761
  1869               10,505
  1870               10,767
  1871               11,270
  1872               12,603
  1873               14,889
  1874               17,898
  1875               18,202

  Year ends
  June 24th.

  1876               18,689
  1877               19,053
  1878               18,406
  1879               15,752
  1880               13,898
  1881               15,141
  1882               18,649
  1883               19,663
  1884               20,943
  1885               20,221


  Date.              Number.
  1843                1,685
  1853                2,477
  1863                6,823
  1873               38,138
  1883              101,012

=Bedsteads, Iron and Brass.=--[L. BRIERLEY.]--(B. 624.) In 1849 there
were only about eight manufacturers of metallic bedsteads in Birmingham
and the neighbourhood, whose united production probably reached 400
finished articles per week. In 1865 the number had increased to twenty,
with a weekly output of about 5,000; the number of makers within a
radius of fifteen miles is about forty, and the weekly production not
far short of 20,000. As the number of manufacturers increased, and
competition necessarily became keener, so improvements were continually
being effected. The old imitation bamboo cane gave way to more artistic
effects of colour. The pillars and rails were decorated with flowers
and Dutch metal, or with gold--accomplished partly by hand, and partly
by the process (long known in the potteries for ornamenting china ware)
called transferring. This somewhat pronounced, if not “loud” style of
decoration, though still in demand for foreign countries, has in its
turn been replaced by plain polished surfaces, relieved at intervals
with brass, nickel, or silver plated joints, and mountings. Prices
range now (1886) from 5/- or 6/- for a plain stump bedstead to £100 for
electro-silver plated canopy or fore part constructed to suit Oriental
taste. The United States now buys and also makes metallic bedsteads.
Australia, New Zealand, the Cape, Mauritius, Canada, East and West
Indies, the States of South America, Egypt, China, and to some extent,
Japan, purchase.

About 500 persons are now employed in Birmingham and neighbourhood in
the bedstead trade; the average earnings of men are about 23/- per
week, and of women about 14/- per week.

Within the last ten years wire mattresses have been introduced. The
price was formerly £4 to £5 for a mattress, according to width. Now a
good one may be obtained at a price varying from 20/- to 40/-.

While Birmingham and the district is the principal seat of the bedstead
trade there are extensive manufactories in London, Manchester, Glasgow,
and Bristol. Metallic bedsteads are also made extensively in France,
Spain, Italy, Germany, and of late years in the United States also.
A great number are, however, still exported to Spain and America in
spite of the native competition, and protective duties amounting to
45 per cent. Our trade with Spain is very much reduced of late years
in consequence of England being denied the advantage of “the favoured
nation” clause.

=Block Paper and its Uses.=--[J. B. GAUSBY.]--(B. 574.) Since the
previous paper on this subject was written, there has been no
alteration in the process of manufacture, nor has there been any
marked development of the trade as a whole. The manufacture of panels
of various thickness has increased in consequence of their adoption
in the place of wood, where bending or exposure to varying conditions
of moisture are required. The great quantities of trays imported
from Japan for some time checked the demand for moulded paper tray
blanks, but the demand is now returning. Fashion has however dealt
less kindly with the manufacture of slabs in blocks for the purpose of
manufacturing artificial jet ornaments. This branch of the trade is
entirely destroyed.

=Boiler Plate and Gas Holders.=--[W. S. SUTHERLAND.]--(B. 93.) In
spite of heavy duties, boiler and gas apparatus are still exported.
Within the last twenty years many types of tubular boilers have
been introduced, but the one fluted or Cornish boiler, the simple
egg-end, and the Lancashire and double boiler with cross tubes are
most generally used. Mild steel has been introduced into boiler making
and plate making during the last few years, though it is still a
contested point whether it is superior to iron when all things are
taken into consideration. It requires to have all rivet holes drilled,
and it must be carefully annealed, though the writer is informed by
Mr. Edwin Danks, of Oldbury, that steel makers often prefer to have
their plates either worked cold or at a red heat, and not in the
intermediate condition. Drilling machines especially designed are now
used. Hydraulic machines of greatly improved construction have come
into use for facilitating the operations in the boiler yard. These
machines are portable, the water being supplied through a flexible
tube. Improvements in the construction of the internal boiler flues
have been made to enable them to resist increased pressure, and further
to allow the expansion and contraction of the flue without injury. Of
these improvements, the most noted are Fox’s corrugated flues, the
bowling ring, the flanged flue, and Arnold’s flue.

An improvement introduced by the writer into boiler plate working,
is the system of welding by gas, adopted in Birmingham by Messrs.
Piggott, and by Messrs. Lloyd and Lloyd, for tubular and other work
and applied by Mr. Puplett for welding plate sheets of steel only, 12
and 13 w.g. thick into ice moulds. It is found that the strength of
the weld equals that of the solid plate, and the process is a cleanly
and convenient one. Hemispherical sugar pans of 8 and 9 feet diameter
without a joint are made by Messrs. Piggott, who use this process. _Gas
Holders._--Since 1865 much larger gas holders have been made. The two
designed by Mr. Hunt, and recently erected at the Windsor Street Works,
Birmingham, have each a capacity of 6,000,000 cubic feet, and are at
the present time the largest in the world.

=Brassfoundry.=--(B. 225). No important changes have taken place in
this trade since the last report was written. At Messrs. Winfield’s and
other makers, light and elegant “electroliers,” for electric lighting,
have been added to the usual run of work. A general cheapening of brass
articles has resulted among other causes from the reduction in price of
copper. In the table (B. 259) it will be seen that in 1855 copper was
£126 a ton, the prices since 1865, when it was £92, have been--

  1866   88
  1867   78
  1868   76
  1869   75
  1870   70
  1871   75
  1872   96
  1873   92
  1874   87
  1875   88
  1876   82
  1877   75
  1878   67
  1879   63
  1880   67
  1881   66
  1882   72
  1883   67
  1884   59
  1885   48

The increased imports from America account for the fall in price, the
increase in Lake Superior copper alone being from 25,439 tons in 1882,
to 35,000 in 1885.[54]

=Button Trade.=--[J. P. TURNER.]--(B. 432.) A fashion for covered
buttons in various qualities of mohair or its imitations, in diagonal
patterns, has prevailed at home and abroad for some years. These are
largely made in Birmingham, but as many or more are imported from
Germany, where the covering is _wholly_ produced, and, further, a
better finish to the buttons is obtained. _Vegetable Ivory or Carozo
Nut Buttons._--The Germans produce more beautiful designs and superior
finish at the same prices, and the Birmingham markets are now almost
annihilated. The foreign trade Birmingham once had is extinguished.
_Pearl Buttons._--Since 1865 a new supply of pearl shell has been
obtained from various parts of the coast round Australia, and this
locality is our chief source of supply. It is worth £200 per ton for
picked parcels, and about £150 per ton when delivered here. The best of
this shell is equal or nearly so to the best Macassar shells. Panama
shells are now found in but small quantities, and instead of only
fetching £20 to £30 per ton, as quoted in 1865, they are now worth £50
to £70. _Glass Buttons._--Some fancy glass buttons made in Birmingham
are still unsurpassed in style, but the sale is a limited one. More
than ever come from Bohemia, where they are better made than formerly,
and equally low in price.

The button trade in Paris has had to yield to German competition
equally with that in England.[55]

=Cast Iron and Hollow Ware.=--[W. KENRICK, M.P.]--(B. 103.) Since
1866 the increase in the trade is remarkable, and some important
improvements have been introduced by which the public has obtained
a very superior article, at a price quite as low, if not lower than
before. Roughly speaking, the trade has doubled in twenty years.
Enamelled iron ware has become better known and more appreciated.
Ten firms are now engaged in this manufacture. Messrs. Baldwin, of
Stourport, have introduced and patented a new process, whereby they
claim the production of a better enamel at a lower price, owing to the
use of a single coat. This variety is called mottled enamel ware.

Messrs. Kenrick were the first in the trade to introduce a cover
stamped out of a single piece of metal without rivet or seam, and this
was manufactured under a patent taken out by Mr. Ryland in 1868. Since
then the adoption of a solid cover has extended generally throughout
the trade. By another patent, the firm fixed the tubular handle to the
saucepan by means of a socket in which the tube was securely locked
without a rivet.

The process of annealing has been improved by a saving of time
occupied in the process. Machinery has been introduced into the
moulding of hollow-ware, the stamping and finishing of covers, and the
dressing of hinges and sash pulleys.

The odd work which comprises most small articles of cast iron used by
builders’ furnishers, &c., has undergone a great change in appearance,
owing to the introduction of a new style of finish from America. A
coat of transparent varnish is now applied, the iron being previously
polished on those parts in relief, and the result is an appearance
somewhat resembling antique bronze. This, together with greater
lightness and elegance of design, has given an impetus to the trade,
and has led to the introduction of iron where brass was previously used.

The favourable conditions of labour described in 1866 still prevail,
though it may be added that progress in this direction has at least
kept pace with the advance in progress of manufacture, and the greater
excellence in the ware produced.

The provisions of the Factory Acts have long applied to this industry
with beneficial results. The hours of labour have been reduced, and
thanks to the Education Act of 1870, the intelligence and docility
of the younger operatives are their notable characteristics. What is
now wanted is the establishment of Science and Art classes where the
principles which underlie processes may be learnt, and the power to
add beauty of form to articles of utility may be acquired. When these
branches of technical training are added to the course of elementary
instruction in our public Schools, all that is needed to secure the
prosperity of British industry will have been done.

The best relations as a rule now exist between employers and employed;
the former are less exacting and more sympathetic, the latter take
juster views of the relation of capital and labour, and are more
ready to co-operate with their employers to a common end. The wider
introduction of machinery has been attended with the larger employment
of female labour, and this seems to be an inevitable tendency of modern
processes of manufacture. On the other hand many more skilled workmen
are required in the fitting and machine shops, which now form an
important department in large works of the class here described.

=Clocks.=--Within the last year or two a new industry has been imported
into the town by Mr. Edward Davies, formerly of the Ansonia Clock
Company, Brooklyn. A company has been formed under the name of the
British United Clock Company, of 34, Farringdon Road, London. The works
are in Great Hampton Street, Birmingham. The company make the round or
drum-like time pieces, the works of which are machine-made, the parts
being interchangeable, and are supplied retail at a few shillings each.

=Coinage.=--[RALPH HEATON].--(B. 552). Coining presses devised by
a German named Uhlhorn, but manufactured and improved by Messrs.
Heaton, have been supplied to the Royal Mint. The great advantage of
the new presses is that they require no foundation, and are silent
and automatic in action. The blanks are dropped into a tube, and the
machine carries them forward one by one to the dies, where they are
finished and fall into a box in front of the workman.

With regard to the manufacture of blanks, Birmingham has from time to
time furnished these to a number of States, and is doing so now. Nickel
coinage (an alloy of 20 per cent. nickel, and 80 per cent. copper) has
been supplied to Jamaica in pence, half pence, and farthings. In 1884,
seventy-five tons nickel alloy were coined for Servia, and an entirely
new coinage of both silver and nickel for the Republic of Ecuador. At
the present time (1886) Messrs. Heaton are supplying Columbia and Egypt
with nickel coinage. The nickel alloy is an excellent material for

In 1872 the Birmingham Mint delivered silver blanks to the Royal Mint,
for a coinage of the nominal value of £1,000,000. This was completed in
six months.

The letter H below the date will be found on many of the bronze
coins in circulation; this implies that the coins were struck at the
Birmingham Mint. At the time of their introduction in 1875, it was
supposed that an extensive gang of forgers were at work, and the mint
authorities were communicated with by an anonymous writer, who stated
that the counterfeit coins could be distinguished by the small letter H
below the date.

Messrs. Heaton have supplied coins to no less than 39 states or
authorities. In 1868, the Italian Government ordered five million lire
in pieces of 10 centimes; and in consideration of the satisfactory
manner in which this and other coinages had been carried out, his
majesty, King Victor Emmanuel, conferred the honour of knighthood on
the firm.

=Electric Lighting.=--[HENRY LEA, M.I.M.E.]--The period of fifteen
years following the last Meeting of the British Association in
Birmingham, in the year 1865, was devoid of any undertakings in
electric lighting, other than in the direction of the application of
powerful arc lights for lighthouse purposes, as practised by Messrs.
Chance Bros., of Spon Lane, near Birmingham, who, beginning in 1862
with apparatus having optical adjustments for electric arc lights of
small power, proceeded to introduce more and more powerful lights, of
which the Souter Point revolving light of the 2nd and 3rd order built
in 1870, the South Forelands fixed lights, two in number, and of the
3rd order, built in the same year; the Sydney Heads light of the 1st
order and of 11,000 candle power, built in 1880; and the flashing light
at Tino, near Spezia, a lamp of the 2nd order, finished in 1885, are
examples shewing the great progress made during the period referred to.
The Sydney Heads light is said to be the leading light of the world.
The motive power employed for it is the Otto silent gas engine. The
carbons are 23 millimetres, or upwards of ⅞″ in dia. Particulars of
these undertakings will be found in a special paper upon Lighthouse
Work in another part of this volume. The first application of arc
lighting for ordinary business purposes in this district is believed
to be that of the Birmingham Household Supply Association Limited,
which was fixed in the year 1880-1 under the superintendence of the
writer, who employed a pair of 8″ × 12″ Horizontal Tangye Engines to
drive a Brush Dynamo working sixteen arc lamps. Amongst other examples
of arc lighting subsequently put down may be named those at Messrs.
Brown Marshalls & Co.’s Carriage Works at Saltley, Messrs. John Wilkes
and Sons’ Rolling Mills in Liverpool Street, Messrs. Elkington & Co.’s
Show Rooms, in Newhall Street, the New British Iron Co.’s Works at
Corngreaves, the Lower Grounds at Aston Park, and Messrs. Cadbury
Bros.’ Cocoa Manufactory, near Birmingham, the latter being only very
recently started upon the Gulcher system.

The incandescent or glow electric lamp, first made its appearance upon
a large scale in Birmingham, in the year 1882, when the Birmingham Town
Hall was successfully illuminated for the Triennial Musical Festival,
by Messrs. R. W. Winfield and Co., who had allied themselves with
Messrs. R. E. Crompton and Co., of Chelmsford, for electric lighting
undertakings. This installation was established under the writer’s
superintendence, and consisted of 440 Swan glow lamps, suspended from
ornamental pendants placed around the walls of the Hall, a chamber
having very nearly the proportions of a double cube, and measuring
165ft. × 65ft. × 65ft. high. Various lamps in other rooms raised the
number to 500. Cables were laid underneath the streets, for a distance
of about a quarter of a mile, to the works of Messrs. Winfield and Co.,
in Cambridge street, where nine Bürgin Dynamos, separately excited by
two similar machines, were employed to generate the electricity, the
motive power being the old rolling mill engine, from the flywheel of
which a belt conveyed the motion to the electric machinery. This wheel,
being 25ft. diameter, weighing about 25 tons, and revolving 50 times
per minute, afforded a source of motion, the steadiness of which left
nothing to be desired. The marked difference of temperature in the Town
Hall during the evening performances, as compared with the previous use
of gas--70° at the ceiling instead of 110°--was fully appreciated by
the large audiences of that festival. Subsequently the number of lamps
was increased to upwards of 600, by the addition of two pendants. The
same means of illumination were used for the 1885 Triennial Festival,
as well as on many occasions of concerts, etc. The whole plant still
remains the property of Messrs. Winfield and Co. Upon somewhat similar
lines the same firm fitted up the Leeds Town Hall, for the Festival of
1883, where, however, the whole of the light was derived from pendants
suspended from the ceiling by steel wire ropes. The machinery in this
case was also situated about a quarter of a mile from the Town Hall.

In the year 1882, Messrs. Elwell, Parker, and Co., commenced
electrical business in Wolverhampton, with secondary or storage
batteries constructed upon a modification of the Planté method of
manufacture. Shortly afterwards, the same firm began to make dynamos
for charging their batteries, since which time the output has
increased, and now amounts to a total of about 500 dynamos, besides
several thousands of storage cells, the latter being now made under
the joint Patents of the Wolverhampton Firm, and the Electrical Power
Storage Co., Limited, of London. The London Stock Exchange, Lloyd’s
Shipping Offices, the Manchester Art Gallery, Lord Shrewsbury’s seat at
Ingestre Hall, the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway Co., the Blackpool
Electric Tramway, the Giants’ Causeway Electric Tramway, the Cannock
Chase Colliery, the Grosvenor Gallery and many other establishments are
lighted or worked by means of dynamos manufactured by the Wolverhampton

Amongst installations set up in Birmingham under the writer’s
superintendence may be mentioned the Theatre Royal, in New Street,
and the Prince of Wales Theatre, in Broad Street, in each of which
the plant consists of a 16-H.P. Otto silent gas engine, driving a 300
light Ferranti alternate current dynamo with a Siemen’s exciter, and
with appliances at the prompt side for lowering or turning out the
light at will. 200 lights are run very brightly with an expenditure
of about 800 cubic feet of gas per hour. A similar number of ordinary
gas burners would require from 1,000 to 1,200 cubic feet of gas per
hour. The Birmingham Liberal Club, in Congreve Street, another example,
has 160 lamps which are worked from a 10-unit compound dynamo, made
by Messrs. Crompton and Co., of Chelmsford, the motive power being a
12-H.P. compound steam engine, by Messrs. Marshall, Sons, and Co.,
Limited, of Gainsborough. This machine is an excellent specimen of a
self-regulating dynamo, the commutator not having been touched with
anything coarser than well-worn emery cloth since February last, its
surface presenting a highly-polished appearance. No storage cells are
used, the lighting being derived directly from the machine.

In the suburbs, the house of Mr. Mitchell, Hagley Road, Edgbaston, has
about 40 lights, and is worked from a 2-H.P. Otto silent gas engine,
and a 2-unit Crompton shunt-wound dynamo, charging 24 storage cells of
the E.P.S. (Electrical Power Storage Co.’s) type.

The writer’s house, 7, Clarendon Road, Edgbaston, is also electrically
lighted by 24 E.P.S. cells, charged by a 30-light Chamberlain & Hookham
dynamo, worked from a ½-H.P. Otto gas engine.

Messrs. Chamberlain & Hookham began, a few years ago, the manufacture
of dynamos having permanent steel magnets, but they subsequently
adopted the more usual type of electro-magnetic machines. Particulars
are not to hand of this firm’s work, but the residences of Messrs.
Walter Chamberlain and Herbert Chamberlain are amongst the examples of
domestic electric lighting carried out by the firm, whose attention,
however, has been directed principally to the manufacture of dynamos
for electro-depositing purposes, where very heavy currents of low
electro-motive force are required.

The public supply of electricity was in 1882-3 the subject of much
attention on the part of Messrs. Winfield & Crompton, under whose
auspices the Incandescent Electric Lighting Co. Ld. was registered. An
Act of Parliament was obtained, and plans and estimates were made by
the writer for lighting a large district in Birmingham from central
stations. Carefully collected statistics of the gas consumption in the
proposed district afforded some interesting information, such as, for
instance, that the average cost of gas per burner per annum, called
the burner earnings, varied from 2d. to 43/6 per burner per annum, and
showed a mean earning for the whole district of 10/2 per burner per
annum, the average price of gas being about 2/3 per 1,000 cubic feet.
From various causes, chief amongst them being the adverse restrictions
of the Electric Lighting Act of 1882, the operations of the Company
have remained in abeyance. The Birmingham Act is, however, still in
force, and should the efforts which are now being made for the removal
or substantial modification of the obnoxious clauses of the Act meet
with the desired success, Birmingham may yet enjoy the advantages of
a public supply of electric light, the luxury of which only those who
have lived in an electrically lighted house can fully appreciate.

=Flint Glass Manufacture of Birmingham.=--[A. C. OSLER.]--(B. 526.)
Further inventions have been made with regard to furnaces. Frisby’s
patent, the fuel inserted from below, instead of being thrown on the
top of the fire, has met with some amount of favour, having been
adopted by several Stourbridge houses. Bœtius’s patent, by which the
earlier stages of combustion take place below the floor of the furnace,
and a current of heated air is supplied to complete the combustion as
the inflammable gases pass through an opening in its floor into the
furnace itself, has now been in use at Messrs. Osler’s for many years.

The process of etching by hydrofluoric acid, has been largely developed
as a means of ornamenting glass, and has to a large extent superseded
engraving. Highly artistic designs are produced by a combination of
etching and engraving. Mechanical methods are adopted in producing many
effective borders.

Among new inventions for the ornamentation of glass, should be
mentioned the process of “threading,” that is, the surrounding and
partial covering of a body of glass of one colour with a continuous
thread of glass of another colour, by which many beautiful effects of
varying and toned colour are produced.

Recent years have also seen the revival of what is termed cameo
cutting on glass. A body of glass being formed of layers of different
colours, the outer layer or layers are partially removed by eating away
by hydrofluoric acid, and the remaining portions are then wrought into
designs with the chisel or graver. A reproduction of the Portland Vase
is one of the most remarkable specimens of this revived art, which
offers excellent opportunity for the combination of lustrous colours of
varied hue with delicate and exquisite ornamentation.

Marked progress has been made in the production of coloured glass,
formerly almost a monopoly of the Bohemian makers.

=Hinges of Wrought Iron.=--[F. E. MARTINEAU.]--(B. 610.) Material
consumed at time of British Association Meeting, in 1849, was about 700
tons; in 1865, about 2,500 tons, and this year, 1886, about 3,500 tons
per annum. In 1865, about 300 people were employed in the trade, there
are now about 380. Strip steel has to a certain extent replaced strip
iron in the manufacture.

=Hydraulic Machinery.=--[MESSRS. TANGYE.]--(B. 647.) The Cornwall
Works have rapidly extended, now occupying six times the area covered
in 1865. 2,000 men are employed. In addition to hydraulic machinery,
steam engines, machine tools, machinery for gas works, patent retort
lids, gas stoking and charging machines, gas engines of a novel and
economical type, steam boilers of all kinds, and fixed and portable
steam cranes are manufactured. These works will now turn out per month
200 steam pumping engines, 40 steam boilers, 100 steam engines used for
other purposes than pumping, 800 cranes, crabs, and lifting apparatus.
300 hydraulic presses, lifts, and jacks. 5,000 complete sets of pulley
blocks, and 1,000 gas retort mouth-pieces and lids.

=Jewellery.=--[JOHN BRAGG.] (B. 452).--EXTENT OF THE TRADE.--This
general title includes a number of so called “Trades” which appear in
the Directory under separate heads. It covers not only gold and silver
“Jewellers,” but gold and silver chain makers, gilt, plated, and black
ornament jewellers, as well as all those subsidiary branches which
exist solely for the general trade, such for instance as lapidaries,
stone dealers, gold cutters, chasers, engravers, jewellers’ die
sinkers, tool makers and stampers, enamellers, case makers, and also
jewellery factors. In several large establishments, many of these
separate departments are carried on within the walls and under one
central management. The Post Office Directory for 1885 gives 1,123
master-men thus engaged in Birmingham. To these however must be added
a large number of “garret” masters or “out workers” whose names do
not so appear, and who employ perhaps only one, two, or three persons
each. It is estimated that 14,000 to 16,000 persons are actively
employed in this trade in Birmingham, while probably 40,000 to 50,000
are locally dependent upon it. The amount of capital here engaged in
it is enormous, and, without doubt, larger than any other distinct
and separate trade of the town. The manufacture is still, as at
last report, aggregated in one locality, though it is extending its
area. The central point is near to where Warstone Lane is crossed by
Northampton Street or Vyse Street.

LABOUR AND WAGES.--The increase of female labour, particularly in
silver jewellery and in warehouse duties, is very considerable, and
has tended to keep down the wages of men. Still, these have risen to
very high points in seasons of prosperity, and even in the present
time of depressed prices, a skilled journeyman jeweller earns with his
own hands 30s. to 45s. per week of about 54 hours. A trade society
exists, but nothing approaching to a “strike” is possible, because of
the infinite variety of departments, the constant change of patterns,
and the habit of each workman agreeing personally with his employer or
foreman as to prices of piece work. Most of the manufactories are well
ventilated, the newly built ones being large and commodious in every

BULLION USED.--An estimate has been made by those most competent
to judge as to the value of gold and silver used by this trade in
Birmingham per annum. Taking the last three or four years as a basis,
it seems probable that the annual consumption of gold here is about
£750,000, and of silver (at the present low price) from £300,000 to
£350,000. One large manufacturer of silver jewellery has, within the
last three years, used upwards of 3,000 oz. of fine silver per week.
Sovereigns are still extensively used to melt instead of grain gold.

It may be asked, “Why melt sovereigns when gold, commercially pure, can
be had from the dealers without paying costs of minting?” The answer
is: the cost of minting is so small that against the other advantages
attaching to the practice, it is of no account. These advantages
are--1st, the grain gold of commerce cannot be relied upon for absolute
freedom from accidental or superfluous alloy; and 2nd, that other
qualities, such as uniform hardness, tenacity, and ductility--of the
utmost importance to some branches of the trade--are ensured by using
them. The metallurgical science and technical skill of our national
assayers and melters at the mint, are therefore freely used by our
manufacturers to enable them to alloy to the utmost nicety, and yet
with a certainty of their goods, when made, passing the “Hall.” This,
therefore, is a question of economy.

CHANGES IN THE TRADE.--The immensely increased production of silver
jewellery has tended to almost obliterate two departments which
twenty-five years ago were of large proportions--viz., the gilt and
the plated jewellery trades. The workmen in these branches have mostly
turned their hands to silver working. Notice must be taken of some new
developments, which have become practically new trades to the town.
The manufacture of costly official insignia, such as mayoral chains,
municipal badges, presentation caskets, gold and silver ceremonial
keys, &c., is new since last report. More than seventy such mayoral
chains have been made here since then. The manufacture of watch cases
in gold and silver, but particularly in silver, is also a new and
very considerable trade, employing hundreds of people. Not fewer than
60,000 to 80,000 silver watch cases per annum are now turned out from
Birmingham manufactories. Another new trade, though at present not a
large one, is diamond cutting, but there is no reason why it should not
become an important business here.

ARTISTIC PROGRESS.--How far the trade has led or has followed public
taste it is impossible to say, but that a general improvement has
taken place is undeniable. In place of the huge bracelets, brooches,
earrings, and lockets of twenty years ago, we now have small and
elegant articles of the most tasteful designs. Even such jewellery as
is produced greatly by the aid of machinery, for the sake of cheapness,
is often characterised by perfect style. Silver brooches may be bought
wholesale for one shilling each which would not disgrace any wearer of
the most refined taste. In the gold trade also, the productions for the
great middle classes are equally neat and commendable, both as to form
and detail of decoration. The greater use of gems, both in gold and
silver jewellery, is a distinct feature of present requirements. A most
remarkable evidence of the above statements is afforded by one branch
of the trade, which now exports to France, Germany, and Switzerland
goods in large and increasing quantities, winning its way by style as
well as price against the best makers of the Continent. Compared with
the like classes and prices of goods twenty years ago, there is no
doubt but that beauty of design is greatly improved; nor can there be a
doubt either but that our National Art Teaching has chiefly contributed
to the improvement.

CHEMISTRY.--Chemistry has considerably improved the various processes
in which its aid can be applied. Alloying is more skilfully and exactly
performed. The art of melting is better understood. “Coloring” (which
must not be confounded with “gilding”) is now carried to a pitch of
remarkable excellence. At date of last report, this, which is a purely
chemical process, was done without much intelligence, and nothing lower
than 15 carat gold could be with certainty so finished. But now those
who devote themselves specially to this branch of work, can produce
a beautiful “color” on 12 carat gold. It must, however, be stated,
that upon the lower quality, such bloom and rich colour is fugitive,
while upon the higher qualities it is permanent. Gilding by electric
processes is done with increased economy and skill. Parcel gilding,
oxydising, and gilding with various colored alloys in solution, are
carried to a high pitch of excellence. The chemical treatment of waste,
such as shop sweepings, and the water used for washing of hands is much
improved. In the business of refining, scarcely anything is lost.

MECHANICAL CONDITIONS.--So much depends, and will always depend upon
skilled handicraft in the Jewellery trades, that there is not much to
record in the way of mechanical progress. Still, in some tools there
are notable improvements. The ingenuity manifested in the mechanical
production of gold and silver “parts,” to be afterwards put together
into great varieties of patterns, is remarkable. “Sand blast” is a
new mechanical means used for producing the rich dead surface so much
admired on gold and silver. The lathe, draw bench, die stamp, and
press, effect much more than they did for the trade 20 years ago. Gas
engines are now commonly used, even in small shops.

PRECIOUS STONES.--The gem and precious stone business together with
that of the lapidary form a most important element of the jewellery
trade. We have some 35 local stone dealers and lapidaries. Besides
these, Birmingham is visited constantly by dealers from London, Paris,
Hamburg, and elsewhere, who do large trades here. Diamonds and other
gems in the rough are also sold here increasingly. Compared with date
of last report, the sales of diamonds and other gems to the trade in
this town is probably twenty times larger. Single firms will each buy
and mount up £20,000 or £25,000 worth of gems in a year. It is now a
recognised and distinct name of this branch of the trade, “Diamond and
Gem Mounter,” and the Directory gives about 25 of those who do not
ordinarily interfere with other jewellery. Many Birmingham factors now
carry magnificent stocks of diamond goods manufactured here, which was
not the case twenty years ago.

PRICES AND CHEAPNESS.--Any comparative notes which did not recognise
the cheapness of modern jewellery would be incomplete. This cheapness
is a real thing and not a delusion. Genuine gold and silver brooches,
rings, bracelets, &c. set with gems, are now offered throughout the
country, at prices which often cause doubts of their quality. Gold, it
is true, remains at the same standard value; but silver is one-fifth
lower in price. Several causes have acted together, resulting in this
considerable reduction in retail selling prices of both gold and
silver goods. First, workmen’s prices are much lower, although their
total weekly earnings are not materially altered. This is effected by
mechanical improvements; by the larger quantities of one pattern made
at once; and by the employment of girls and youths under men. Secondly,
the rates of profit realised by manufacturer, factor, and shopkeeper
are lower. Lastly, diamonds and some other gems extensively used are
much lower in price, especially their second and third qualities, than
at date of last report.

DISTRIBUTION.--as a rule, manufacturing jewellers neither cultivate
trade with shopkeepers nor with the private purchaser, but sell to
the factors, or middle men. A factor sees all their stocks, selecting
from each to compose his own, and so offers a better variety to the
shopkeepers throughout the kingdom than could otherwise be done.
There are in Birmingham about fifty of such factors. But the line of
demarcation is somewhat indefinite, because many of them manufacture
certain specialities for themselves. Still the system is the best under
present circumstances, and works on the whole to the mutual good of
all parties. The factors in London, and merchants generally, are also
large purchasers from Birmingham manufacturers. The Post Office is the
chief engine of distribution for small parcels, and all little orders
and repairs. Two private firms, however, do a considerable business by
collecting, through agents, in London, Coventry, and Birmingham, small
jewellery parcels, conveying them by rail, and then delivering them
very quickly and cheaply in those towns. The losses are practically
nil, although perfect shoals of such little packages are despatched and
delivered daily by these means, together with the railways.

=Lighthouse Apparatus.=--[J. KENWARD].--(B. 153). The Lighthouse Works
of Chance Brothers and Co., Spon Lane, near Birmingham, are the only
works of the kind in the kingdom. The improvements since 1865 may be
noted under: (1) the optical agents, (2) the lamps and burners with the
illuminant or fuel used in them, (3) the mechanical appliances. The
six original orders of optical apparatus distinguished by their radii
and height are no longer the only types. There is the hyper-radial
first order lens, whose focal distance is 1,330 millimetres, and
diameter about 104¾ inches, the usual first order being about 72½
inches diameter, and there are several varieties below the 6th order
whose radius is 150 mm. Of these the Ship Light introduced by Messrs.
Chance with a focal distance of 125 mm., is the most important. Various
new arrangements of condensing lights where from one flame, certain
sea sectors are strongly illuminated by means of vertical prisms,
while other sectors are less intensely lighted, have been adopted
with signal success, as have also several special designs where a
coloured and a white beam of equal intensity are concerned. The new
lenses for port and harbour lights, and those used with the electric
arc on board vessels of war for search purposes, introduced by Messrs.
Chance, may be named. The present two most powerful lights in the
world are the Macquarie at Sydney Heads (a revolving electric light of
the first order) and the Tino near Spezia, a revolving electric light
of the second order. In both a single optical agent is employed, and
carbons from 15 to 25 mm. diameter. Another improvement is the ship
light lens designed to give adequate intensity and penetrating power
in a vessel’s signal lights, especially her side lights, whereby an
increased luminous range can be secured and the risk of collision
greatly lessened. The vertical angle subtended by lenticular refracting
apparatus has been increased from 45° and 47° to 80°, and even by the
use of dense flint glass to 92°. In this way the normal power of the
central or lens portion of a light, always two-thirds of the whole
power, has been so augmented that it is found advisable to dispense
with the prisms both upper and lower, and to depend on the refractors
alone. When higher degrees of intensity are needed, a second tier of
lenses can be superposed on the first, and a third and fourth added,
a separate flame being in the focus of each tier. This has been done
by Mr. Wigham, of Dublin, with gas flames, and by Sir James Douglas
with oil flames. The two great divisions of lighthouse apparatus into
fixed sections and revolving sections have been extended. Thus the old
fixed light, the revolving light with equally recurring single flashes,
the composite fixed and flashing light, always objectionable from its
unequal power, have been supplemented by the occulting light, and the
group flashing light which last was designed by Dr. John Hopkinson,
and first constructed by Messrs. Chance. In this arrangement the beams
are sent out in groups, each beam of the group being separated from
one another by a short interval of time, and each group by a longer
interval. The lights on a coast can thus be distinguished by their
single flash, double flash, or triple flash.[56]

ILLUMINANTS AND BURNERS.--Mineral oil has been introduced, and special
burners designed in order to burn it. The largest of the old colza
oil burners (known as Fresnel burners) has an intensity of 230 candle
units, or 23·6 candle units per square inch, while a similar burner
for paraffin has been reported as affording 415 candle units, or 44·3
units. The latest developed Trimley burner of Sir James Douglas, with
nine concentric wicks, gives 49·8 units. The oil used has a flashing
point of 154° F. The average cost of mineral oil is one-fourth that of
vegetable oil. Gas is also freely employed, and in the 108-jet burner
of Mr. Wigham it has attained a power of 2,433 candles, and in the
10-ring burner of Sir James Douglas, a power of 2,619 candles. Beyond
the highest reach of oil or gas burners, say 2,500 or 2,600 candles,
is the electric arc giving an intensity of beam of ten millions of
candles. At the other end of the scale is the duplex burner, which,
with the new Chance lenses, is available in the smallest apparatus for
a horizon of from seven to ten miles.

The Spon Lane Lighthouse Works have been extended greatly since the
last visit of the Association. The unique methods of grinding and
polishing the optical glass have not been materially changed, but the
number and variety of machines have been largely increased. In the
mechanical shops there is now a complete _outillage_ for turning,
drilling, shaping, screwing, &c., applicable to all the old designs and
processes, and also the newer branches introduced since 1865. There
are about 200 workpeople employed, many with consummate skill and
intelligence, as may be assumed from the precise and highly finished
work in which they are engaged.

At this date about 260 complete sea lights and about 300 complete
harbour lights have been sent out, together with about 200 smaller port
lights and about 370 of the recently designed ship lights.

Very striking specimens of optical science have been contributed by
Messrs. Chance, as exemplified in the list of dioptric lights they have
supplied around our own coasts, of which The Longships, the Wolf Rock,
the Flamborough Head, the Hartland Point, the Start Point, the South
Stack Rock, The Casquets, Bull Point, Anvil Point, the Eddystone, and
many others are examples.

Mr. Kenward will be glad to give further information to any member of
the Association who may take an interest in the subject.

=Locks and Lock Making.=--[J. C. TILDESLEY.]--(B. 77.) The price of
cheap padlocks is still lower. Iron padlocks of the cheapest class are
now being made in this district (Willenhall) and delivered free in
Bombay and Calcutta, at _fivepence halfpenny per dozen_!

In reference to the table (B. 89), the number of employers may be set
down as 100 less (that is 350) and at least 1,000 must be deducted from
the total number of workpeople, bringing it to about 3,950.

The production of locks in the district may now be computed at 25,000
dozens per week, as against 31,500 dozens per week, as estimated in
1865. The reductions being chiefly in the pad, cabinet, chest, and till
departments, which are being driven hard by America and continental
competition. On the other hand, door locks (rim, dead, mortice, and
drawback) are being made in larger quantities than ever, and are being
sold at prices which would have been regarded as fabulous twenty years

The average earnings of locksmiths are 15 to 20 per cent. less than
the figures given at (B. 89.) American competition in castings has,
so far as the lock trade is concerned, considerably diminished since
1865. By grinding English sand to the fineness of flour, and by the
adoption of Plaster of Paris moulds and improved methods of casting,
transatlantic supremacy over England no longer prevails. While in the
matter of cheap and clear castings they have maintained for their
productions the reputation for practical qualities which has so long
distinguished them. Artistic design and ornamentation have improved.
Germany is now the most formidable rival to the English lockmaker,
owing to the low wages and long hours endured by the German locksmiths.
The remedy for this state of affairs ought, in the interests both of
commerce and humanity to be found not in a retrograde movement on the
part of England to Germany, but in the uprising of the German workman,
to secure the same _status_ as that enjoyed by his English confrere.

=Magic Lantern Slide Painting.=--[H. H. STANTON.]--The old fashioned
method of tracing from a drawing or engraving though still used, has
given way to a great extent to the introduction of photography. Special
drawings are made, photographed on to glass, and subsequently painted.
Girls and also artists are employed in the work. Photographic slides
from various parts of the world come to Birmingham to be finished.

=Measuring Rules and Tapes.=--[JOHN RABONE.] (B. 628.) It is
noteworthy that in the “garret” at Heathfield Hall, near Birmingham,
where Watt amused himself during the latter years of his life with
his copying machines--the prototypes of those afterwards known as the
American and Enfield--is still to be seen an example of Watt’s early
work in London before he entered upon his remodelling of the steam
engine in connection with Matthew Boulton.

In one of the drawers there are preserved several of the old fashioned
tools, formerly, and still used in rule making by hand, and also
carefully wrapped up in paper by Watt himself, is a “brass sector with
a French joint,” which, unlike his compasses and other mathematical
instruments, has undergone no wear, and is as faultlessly clear and
perfect as it was on the day it left the maker’s hands. The only
assumption that can be made respecting it is that it is the identical
“brass sector with a French joint,” of which young Watt so glowingly
wrote to his father, now a hundred and thirty years ago; and if that
be so, it is the only known specimen of the great engineer’s work as a
rule maker.

Prior to the last meeting of the British Association in Birmingham, in
1865, machinery had been brought into the trade to but a small extent
compared with what has since been the case in the making and marking
of all kinds of rules. Accurately engine-divided, 2-feet folding steel
rules, retailed at a shilling each, are a new feature of the trade,
which is a boon to mechanics they never before had. The employment of
automatic machinery has quite revolutionised the trade, by bringing
larger capital into it, and increasing the number of workpeople
sixfold, at the same time enabling employers to pay higher wages than
they could possibly do when all depended upon unaided hand labour. The
trade has always been in comparatively few hands, three-fourths of the
names appearing in one directory as makers, being merely dealers, or
journeymen; in one case fifteen of the men so described being merely
journeymen of one employer. The bulk of the trade is now in the hands
of as few makers as might be counted on the fingers of one hand, but
competition is not rendered thereby less severe, but is rather more
excessive. During the past twenty years a great change has taken place
in many countries by the adoption of the metre as a standard measure.
Since 1870 all the numberless measures of little German towns, many
with both decimal and duo-decimal divisions, have been abolished, and
the use of the metre alone legalised. Other nations have followed the
example of Germany. Many of the rules made for export to such countries
as Russia, which have not legalised the metre, are marked with it in
addition to the local measures, thus preparing the way for its future
adoption. Its use has been legalised in Great Britain, though not
made compulsory, and many of the measures made for export to foreign
countries where English customs prevail are marked with both English
and metrical divisions.

=Military Arms Trade.=--[J. D. GOODMAN.]--(B. 381.) At the date of the
notice of the gun trade, published in the transactions of the meeting
of the British Association held in Birmingham in 1865, the British
forces were armed with muzzle-loading guns. The arm of the service was
that known as the “Enfield Rifle.” It was adopted by a committee of
military officers, appointed by Lord Hardinge, Master General of the
Ordnance, in 1853.

In 1865 the breech-loading system was receiving much attention.
The Wesley Richards’ Breech-loader had been for some time in use
in the service on an experimental scale, and had been tested in
the field, both in China and New Zealand. So far back as 1861, a
thousand breech-loaders, on Terry’s principle, had been issued to the
troops, but did not prove successful. Trial was also made of Sharp’s
American Breech-loading Rifle. The successful use of the Needlegun
Breech-loader, by the Prussians, in the Danish war of 1864, gave great
urgency to the enquiry.

In August, 1864, the English Government invited proposals for the
conversion of the Enfield rifle into a breechloader. Fifty different
systems were sent in, of which five only were ultimately selected for
trial. Four of these were capping and one was a non-capping arm--that
is, one in which the cartridge carries its own ignition. On 14th March,
1865, the Woolwich Committee issued their Report on the various systems
which had been submitted, in which after speaking of the obvious
disadvantages which a breechloader requiring a cap presents, when
contrasted with one adapted for a cartridge carrying its own ignition,
proceeds to say:--

    “The Committee have now respectfully to submit their
    observations on the whole question.

    “The ultimate armament of the infantry with breech-loading
    weapons is determined upon. It would be done at a comparatively
    small cost by conversion, but it is now well known that the
    calibre, twist, and form of rifling of the ‘Enfield’ is not
    the most favourable for fine shooting, and it is quite certain
    that no converted arms can possess the precision which will
    be easily attained in a new breechloader of smaller gauge and
    quicker twist. Nor will the soldier be able to carry that
    increased quantity of ammunition, which is so desirable,
    without a reduction of calibre.

    “There are certain circumstances in which, notwithstanding
    all the inconveniences which will attend the co-existence
    of unaltered arms, converted arms, and new arms, with their
    different ammunitions, it may still be desirable to proceed
    with the conversion on the ground of its small cost, and of
    the less time in which the arms can be turned out; but the
    Committee do not feel in a position at present to recommend
    such a measure.”

In the end, the economical view prevailed, and it was determined to
convert the Enfield rifles to the Snider system. The effect of this
decision was to postpone to 1871, when the Martini rifle was adopted,
the advantages recognised in the Woolwich Report, which would be
obtained by a smaller bore, quicker twist, and a different form of

In July, 1866, the Birmingham Small Arms Company was instructed to
proceed with the conversion of the Enfield rifles to breech-loaders to
the full extent of their power. The London Small Arms Company was very
shortly afterwards established. They received similar instructions.
The result was that the whole of the Enfield rifles available were
converted, as follows:--

  Enfield (Government Factory)      296,352
  Birmingham Small Arms Company     156,000
  London Small Arms Company          85,200

As this number was insufficient for the requirements of the service,
and as it was indispensable that there should be but one description
of arm in use, it became necessary that new Sniders should be made.
In 1869, and subsequently, orders were issued to the trade, and the
following supplies were made:--

  Enfield                           200,523
  Birmingham Small Arms Company      92,837
  London Small Arms Company          42,525
  National Arms Company               2,000

Making a total of 875,437 Snider arms.

The adoption of the Martini-Henry rifle resulted from an invitation to
inventors, issued by the War Department first in 1866. More than 100
different arms and 49 descriptions of ammunition were sent in, but the
committee appointed to make the selection reported that none came up
to the requirements. The invitation was repeated in December, 1867,
resulting in 45 additional arms being submitted. In February, 1869, the
Committee reported recommending a combination of the Martini Breech
Action and the Henry rifling, and for the ammunition, the Boxer coiled
case. During the following year, trials of this arm were made in the
service, and finally, in 1871, it was definitely adopted. Orders were
afterwards issued to the trade, and the following statement shows the
numbers which have been manufactured at the Government Factory, and by
the trade, up to March, 1885:--

  Enfield                           583,798
  Birmingham Small Arms Company     107,219
  London Small Arms Company          74,131
  National Arms Company              12,456

It has now (July, 1886) been decided to adopt a new arm, embodying
the improvements suggested by the experience gained in the use of the
Martini, during the service it has undergone. It has been found that
the calibre of the barrel if still further reduced would much improve
the shooting, an increase being made at the same time in the twist of
the rifling. A Committee has for some time past had the matter under
consideration, and finally have recommended an arm which is to be known
as the Enfield-Martini.

In the new arm, the Martini action is retained, the outside dimensions
of the barrel are the same, but the bore is reduced from ·45 inch to
·4 inch. While the twist of the rifling is increased from 1 turn in
22 inches to 1 turn in 15 inches. The weight of the bullet is reduced
from 480 grains to 384, the powder charge being the same as in the
former rifle, 85 grains. A wooden hand guard is fixed over the breech
end of the barrel to protect the hand of the soldier when the barrel
becomes heated by rapid firing. The barrel is no longer imbedded in
the fore-end of the stock; it was found that the exterior of the
barrel was liable to rust from contact with the wood. The fore-end
is now so shaped that the barrel simply lies upon it, held in place
by the bands which surround both stock and barrel. The back sight is
provided with a wind gauge, and a locking bolt secures the trigger
when the arm is at full cock. A sword bayonet is substituted for the
former triangular-shaped bayonet. A “quick loader” will be used with
this arm. It hangs on the side of the body of the action, and holds
six cartridges. The cartridges are acted upon by a spring which forces
the head of the cartridge through an aperture in the lid, ready for
the soldier’s hand. With this “quick loader,” six rounds can be fired
in about 25 seconds, whereas, in loading from the pouch, 40 seconds
are required. This description, of the new arm may be subsequently
modified, as the recommendation of the Committee has not yet been


                                    |          |  MARTINI  | ENFIELD-
                                    |  SNIDER. |   HENRY.  | MARTINI.
           RIFLE.                   |         |            |
                                    |          |           |
  Length of Barrel                  |   39in.  | 33³⁄₁₆in. | 33³⁄₁₆in.
  Length over all                   |4ft. 7in. |4ft. 1½in. |4ft. 1½in.
  Length with Bayonet               |6ft. ½in. |5ft. 11½in.|5ft. 11½in.
  Weight with Bayonet               |9lb. 14oz.| 9lb. 14oz.|10lb. 4oz.
  Weight without Bayonet            |   9lb.   |    9lb.   | 9lb. 6oz.
  No. of Grooves in Barrel          |    3     |     7     |    7
  Calibre                           |   .577   |    .45    |   .4
  Twist of Rifling       1 turn in  |   78in.  |   22in.   |  15in.
  Velocity of Muzzle per second     |  1240ft. |   1315ft. |  1570ft.
  Trajectory at 500 yards           | 11.35ft. |  8.594ft. | 6.704ft.
  Figure of Merit at 500 yards      |  0.89ft. |   0.55ft. |  0.30ft.
                                    |          |           |
           AMMUNITION.              |          |           |
                                    |          |           |
  Weight of Loaded Cartridge, grains|    715   |    758    |   718
            Powder              ”   |     70   |     85    |    85
            Bullet              ”   |    480   |    480    |   384


       COUNTRY.     |       DESCRIPTION.       | CALIBRE.
  America, U.S.     | Springfield              |  ·450
  Austria           | Werndl                   |  ·433
  Belgium           | Albini Braendlin         |
  Denmark           | Remington                |  ·433
  Egypt             | Remington                |  ·433
  France            | Gras                     |  ·433
  France            | Kropatschek Magazine Gun |
                    |   in Navy                |  ·433
  Germany           | Mauser                   |  ·433
  Greece            | Gras                     |  ·433
  Holland           | Beaumont                 |  ·433
  Italy             | Vetterli                 |  ·408
  Norway and Sweden | Jarman                   |  ·397
  Portugal          | Martini Henry            |  ·450
  Roumania          | Peabody Martini          |  ·450
  Russia            | Berdan                   |  ·420
  Servia            | Berdan                   |  ·420
  Spain             | Remington                |  ·433
  Switzerland       | Vetterli Magazine        |  ·409
  Turkey            | Peabody Martini          |  ·450

As it is essential that all arms made for the service should be
interchangeable, the orders to the trade have been confined to the
factories where the work is done exclusively by machinery, viz., to
the Small Arms Company and National Arms Company in Birmingham, and to
the London Small Arms Company, whose works are at Bow. The National
Arms Company, which was incorporated in January, 1872, is no longer
in existence, having gone into liquidation in December, 1882. With a
paid up capital of £330,000 they erected gun works at Sparkbrook, and
ammunition works at Holdford. The gun works have now been purchased by
the Government, and the Holdford Works are on the market for sale. The
same irregularity in the Government employment, which proved fatal to
the National Arms Company, acted very prejudicially for both the other
Companies. The Birmingham Company paid no dividend during the five
years 1879-83, and a nominal one only in 1884.

To this uncertainty of Government employment may be attributed
the difficulty of obtaining swords and bayonets, to which, a short
time since, attention was called in Parliament. When military arms
were supplied by the ordinary hand-made trade, there were four
bayonet-makers in Birmingham and West Bromwich, where, now, there is
not one; and in Birmingham there is only one manufacturer of swords,
when formerly there were several. The manufacture of triangular
bayonets has been, with trifling exceptions, confined of late to
Enfield, while sword bayonets, not made at Enfield, have been procured
from Solingen. The future Enfield-Martini is to be provided with a
sword bayonet. The plainly expressed wish of the House of Commons is
that in future, all swords and sword bayonets shall be made in England,
of English material. There will not be the slightest difficulty in
carrying out this wish. Birmingham will be able to produce any number
that may be wanted, but to keep together the required staff of workmen
it is necessary that the demand should be continuous.

In the manufacture of rifles, as well as bayonets, there is every
reason to hope that the future employment of the trade will be more
regular and continuous. The past bitter experience has shown that
the trade cannot live without steady employment, and it is now fully
recognised that it is not desirable that this country should remain
dependent for its supply of arms on one Government manufactory at

AMMUNITION.--Up to the present time the English Government have adhered
to the use of the Boxer cartridge, the case of which is made up of thin
coiled brass, attached to an iron base, which carries the ignition.
For some years past all other European nations have used a solid metal
cartridge case, _i.e._, a case in one piece stamped out of a flat disc.
The English Government have now decided that the solid case shall be
used, with the new Enfield-Martini rifle. A plant for the manufacture
of these cartridges is being prepared at Woolwich. It is fully
intended also to employ the trade. Orders have already been issued
to the Birmingham Small Arms Company and Messrs. Kynoch and Company,
Birmingham, and Messrs. Eley Brothers, of London, who have all had long
experience in the manufacture of this description of cartridge.

=Nails (cut).=--[R. F. MARTINEAU.]--(B. 613). The machines for cutting
tacks and small nails up to 1½ inch are now fed automatically. One
unskilled workman can keep five or six machines going. The machines do
not work so fast as the hand fed, but there are fewer stoppages, and
the quantity turned out is greater. This improvement has reduced the
price 30 per cent. The present machines turn out the work so that it
need not be looked over and sorted as was formerly the case. The cut
nail trade has developed in the North and at the present time, there
are as many nails made at Leeds as at Birmingham. The better class
of nail is, however, supplied from Birmingham. London brewers send
coasting vessels up the east coast with cargoes of stout, and they
return from Hull with cut nails at very low freight. The quantity of
nails made in Birmingham is about the same as in 1865. The French and
Belgians have given up making cut nails, but they make tacks. No French
tacks or _tingles_ (the smallest sort of tacks used in the shoe trade)
are now imported into England, on the contrary, some are being exported
into France.

Mild steel has been introduced since 1865. Steel nails are now being
made at only a shilling per cwt. above the price of iron nails. These
steel nails will clench, and hence are replacing wrought nails.

The manufacture of wire nails has been introduced into Birmingham since
1865. On its introduction, wire was imported from Germany and Belgium,
owing to its cheapness and low freight, but now, as English wire has
fallen in price, it is used in preference to the foreign.

Wire nails are suited for hard wood, hence a large trade is done in
them in Australia. The Cape, India, and South America, are markets
for Birmingham nails. Women get about ten shillings a week. Youths
as feeders about 15 to 20 shillings, skilled mechanics from 30 to 50
shillings, and labourers 15 to 20 shillings per week.

=Needles and Fish Hooks.=--[J. M. WOODWARD.]--(B. 197). The pointing
of needles is now done exclusively by machinery. The new machines
introduced into the trade within the last 25 years, are the machines
for cutting, *pointing, *skimming, stamping, eyeing, *point handing,
*tempering, scouring, *handing, *counting, heading and tailing,
blueing, *burnishing, *finishing, assorting, and sticking. The machines
marked with * produce not only cheaper, but better quality of work.
Electro-gilding has taken the place of the old ether gilding. As
regards machinery used in the production of sewing machine needles,
the chief novelty is the “grooving” machine, which is taking the place
of the old stamping process. From special enquiries made I conclude
that in the needle district the weekly productions of all kinds of
needles and goods akin to needles, cannot be less than 50,000,000 in
number. _Pins._ In addition to pins in ordinary use, steel and glass
headed pins are made at Redditch, the weekly production of all kinds
of pins being about two tons. An attempt is being made to adapt the
machines for the production of two pins at a time instead of one. _Fish
hooks and fishing tackle_ are now made almost entirely by machinery.
Artificial fly making is altogether done by hand; feathers of various
birds are used for “sea flies.” Spinning baits are shaped much like the
bowl of a spoon, and are electro-plated so as to cause a glittering
appearance when in motion. Swivels in connection with these baits form
a branch industry, and machinery for the dressing and turning of these
has of late been introduced.

The manufacture of fishing rods is now an important branch. Among
the new aids to production are the turning machine and the machine
for splitting bamboo canes for the manufacture of “split cane” rods.
These curious and costly articles first came from America, and the
making of them by hand requires the greatest patience as well as the
highest skill in joining, every part of the rod, from the butt to the
thinnest member, having to be split lengthwise into six pieces, each
wedge-like in section, and then glued together again with the greatest
care and exactness. Reel making has been introduced of late years. One
manufactory turns out about 50 dozen rods, 7,000 floats, 13,000 flies,
4,000,000 fish-hooks, and 5,000 swivels per week. Electro-tinning is
now used for small sea-hooks. The weekly production of fish-hooks is
approximately 20,000,000.

=Nickel, Cobalt and German Silver.=--[ALFRED S. JOHNSTONE.]--(B. 673.)
Many of the original sources of nickel have become exhausted. It is now
found plentifully in Norway (in magnetic pyrites, containing about 4
or 5 per cent.) Hungary still supplies ore. The South African supply
of ore, (an arsenide of over 25 per cent cobalt) has fallen off. South
America and her desert of Atacama was a great source of nickel or
cobalt, some of its hydrated arseniates reaching as much as 25% in
the ores of nickel, and 17% in the ores of cobalt. The sole mine in
Connecticut has been worked for many years. Sweden has yielded nickel
from the Klefra and other mines. Germany supplies nickel from the
Mansfeld mines. About 1874 nickel was discovered in the Island of New
Caledonia, and large quantities of the ore were shipped to this country
and to France. There appears now to be a constant supply from this
source. The ore is a double silicate of nickel and magnesia, averaging
7 to 10% nickel. Later still nickel and cobalt have been discovered
in Nevada. Passing over the history[57] of the production of nickel,
which is already, to some extent, described in “Birmingham and Midland
Hardware District,” it should be mentioned that nickel, though brittle
under the hammer, has been successfully rendered malleable by treatment
in which manganese is employed. The process of rendering nickel
malleable is due to Messrs. Wiggin & Co., who patented the process in
1880. About the same time Dr. Fleitman, in Germany, succeeded also in
rendering nickel malleable by using magnesium instead of manganese. The
nickel thus produced may be rolled into plates and drawn into wire, or
be stamped, beaten or raised into any article of common use, and it may
be welded to itself or to iron. It is less malleable when it contains
carbon than when pure. Besides its application for the production of
German silver, nickel is largely used as anodes for nickel plating,
and for coinage in many countries. Its oxide is used in the Potteries
for giving a soft brown tint to china and earthenware, and it is
also employed for the production of nickel salts for plating. The
German Government in 1873 adopted nickel alloy for coinage, and the
exceptional demand advanced the price from 4/- to 16/- per lb. At the
present time, owing to the extensive supplies from all parts of the
world, and the keen competition in the trade, nickel is reduced to 2/-
per lb.

Cobalt has scarcely any application; it is used as an anode in
plating, and for some parts of scientific instruments. It does not
whiten copper to the same extent that nickel does. The oxides of cobalt
are of great value in the arts, not only for the production of the
beautiful blue colours given to china, earthenware, and glass, but
also as a basis of the blue pigment known as cobalt blue. The oxide
of cobalt was in 1841 40/- per lb.; to-day it is about 8/- per lb.
Latterly there is a tendency to replace brass and electro-plate by
white alloys which have nickel for their basis. Spoons, forks, fittings
for railway and ship fittings, bar fittings, and harness furniture have
been largely manufactured from these metals. These alloys are known
under various names, such as silveroid, argentoid, navoline, nickeline,
aluminium metal, &c., but they are all varieties of German silver,
containing in some cases small proportions of tin, lead, cadmium, and
other metals.

=Papier Mâché Trade.=--[E. H. HODSON].--(B. 566). Within the last
few years wood pulp imported from Sweden has been introduced as a
substitute for paper pulp, and is used for small desks, work boxes,
jewel cases, and many other articles, thus enabling Birmingham
manufacturers to compete with Chinese and Japanese lacquered goods. A
change too has taken place in the mode of ornamentation. Instead of
employing artists at a high rate of wage, transfers are used which can
be applied to the articles by boys and girls. German papier mâché is
imported into this country duty free, but on the other hand, English
papier mâché is subjected to heavy duties before it reaches the German
and Continental Markets. It should be mentioned that there still
continues a steady demand for small quantities of expensive articles
made of papier mâché, though for the supply of the Million, the old
papier mâché is replaced by the Swedish pulp above referred to.

=Pewter & Britannia Metal Trade.=--[W. PERKS.]--(B. 617). The two
trades are distinct. Pewter consists of 95 parts tin, 4 parts copper,
and 1 part antimony. The metal is cast in iron or brass moulds.
Britannia metal is not cast, but rolled, stamped, swaged, or spun.
Its composition is similar to pewter, but a little more antimony and
copper and less tin. The staple articles in pewter are still ale and
wine measures, tankard and drinking cups, the most saleable shapes
are identical with those which Hogarth painted in the early part of
the last century. There has been a revival of pewter for ink pots for
Board School use and home use. In foreign markets a tea-pot known as
the Dutch pattern is still sold of the same shape, style, and strength
as it has been for the last 70 years. Makers have tried to introduce
wrought metal pots instead of cast pewter, but the foreign traders do
not care for them. The trade in beer engines and bar fittings has much
increased within the last 20 years.

=Plate, Crown, and Sheet Glass.=--[HENRY CHANCE.]--(B. 147.) In the
1864 report it was mentioned that cast plate glass is manufactured
at Smethwick (Plate Glass Company) crown, sheet, and rolled or rough
plate glass at Smethwick (Messrs. Chance Brothers and Co.) and at
Stourbridge (Stourbridge Glass Company.) Of these three manufacturing
establishments, that of Messrs. Chance Brothers and Co. is the only
one now in operation. Antique glass for decorative purposes and glass
shades are manufactured at Oldbury by Messrs. W. E. Chance and Co.
Crown glass is now almost extinct; Messrs. Chance however still make
the very limited quantity required. The price of ordinary sheet glass
has fallen from one shilling and twopence per foot in 1884 prior to the
repeal of the duty, to three halfpence in 1886. Rolled plate glass is
now made by most of the manufacturers of sheet glass, and by several
firms who confine themselves to this branch of trade. The Siemens’
regenerative furnace has not only been successfully applied to furnaces
containing pots, but by its aid Messrs. Siemens have been able to
dispense with pots and employ large tanks made of clay, for the melting
of glass. By this means the process of melting and working becomes
continuous. The raw materials are introduced at one end of the tank
furnace and arrive, after gradual transformation, at the other end, in
the shape of melted glass.

=Plated Wares.=--[ELKINGTON AND CO.]--(B. 477.) A great impetus has
been given to the trade owing to the development of hotel life in
London and all large towns, together with the equipments required for
ocean-going steamers, in many cases special designs having reference
to the building being required. On the other hand the taste of the
public is now for simple and useful designs. The old form of stamping,
in which the stamp was lifted by one or more workmen, has been
superseded by the method described on page 172. A dish cover which
formerly required hundreds of blows now requires only six, and instead
of the old process of smoothing the surface with hammer and stake a
“wheeling” machine is used, and the swage or shape lapped over instead
of mounting with a wire, the time consumed being about one twentieth
part of that required by the old process. Improvements in metals used
enables the hollow bodies of coffee and tea services to be “spun”
(see page 174) instead of being slowly raised into form by wooden
mallets and steel hammers. Spinning oval bodies is now extensively
practised, though at one time it was considered impossible to treat
German silver in this way. This process (oval spinning) is used only
when one or two articles of a particular shape are required. When great
numbers are required stamping is the process adopted. Press work in
shaping articles has considerably improved, and has replaced, to some
considerable extent, the tedious process of chasing and embossing.
Enamelling has been introduced, but owing to Japanese competition the
trade is gradually falling off. The enamelling, known as cloisonné is
performed as follows: The decoration, birds, flowers, &c., is traced
on the surface of the object to be enamelled, very thin wire of any
metal, but generally silver or copper, is then bent by hand to the
various forms traced on the metal. This process requires the utmost
care. The wire thus bent is then soldered down to the surface of the
object, the different colours put in in the form of paste into the
different divisions formed by the bent wire, and the whole is subjected
to intense heat until the colours are completely fused. When cold the
surface is rubbed down flat, and finally polished. In the champlevé
process the spaces for the colours are cut out with a graver. The
process of damascening largely carried on by Messrs. Elkington is
described at (B. 545.) Soldering arrangements are much improved, the
introduction of the patent blowpipe saves time, and the workman is able
to solder, cleaner and produce a firmer jointing than with the old
process. The sand blast is a new feature in the finishing department.

=Refrigeration.=--[S. PUPLETT.]--Mechanical refrigeration owes its
development to the enterprise of Birmingham men. The imports of ice
into the United Kingdom were in 1884 nearly 300,000 tons. Refrigerating
machinery is supplying ice in competition with these importations. In
addition, refrigerating machinery is used in brewing for the purpose
of cooling wort quickly, in bacon curing, in working of butter and
butterine, cocoa, and candles, in oil refining and tar distilling,
and in telegraphic works for securing a low temperature when testing
cables. Freezing machines have too been used in sinking and tunnelling,
the water being prevented from running into the shaft owing to the
hardening of the earth by freezing. The cost of imported ice may be
taken as 20/- per ton, while machine ice can be made for 5/- per ton.
The first commercial machine, patented by James Harrison, of Geelong,
in 1856, was an ether machine, and made in London. Afterwards machines
of this kind were made by Mr. Philips, of the Atlas Works, in Oozells
Street, Birmingham. In 1861 Carré showed the advantages of ammonia over
ether as a refrigerant, and since then Mort and Dicholle, of Sydney,
and Stanley, of London, have patented various modifications of the
Carré system. Pictet has devoted many years to the subject, and has
identified himself with sulphurous acid as a refrigerant, and recently
claims to have discovered a fluid termed _liquide Pictet_, SCO₄;
in addition to these refrigerants, air, water, chloride of methyl,
bisulphide of carbon, carbonic acid, and nitrous oxide have been
used. The machines made in Birmingham by the Birmingham Refrigerating
Company are ammonia machines. This form of machine consists of (1)
a multitubular vessel called the refrigerator, containing liquid
(anhydrous) ammonia--in this vessel vaporization takes place; (2) a
vapour pump, by which the ammonia formed by evaporation is exhausted
from the refrigerator, compressed, liquefied, and forced into (3) the
condenser, consisting of a multitubular vessel surrounded by water;
(4) a circulating pump for supplying the condenser with water; (5) ice
tanks surrounded by a bath of a liquid of a low freezing point, such as
a solution of chloride of calcium or of common salt; (6) a circulating
pump for circulating the brine through the refrigerator and around the
ice tanks; (7) the steam engine or other motor for driving the vapour
and circulating pumps.

=Rope Making.=--[J. T. WRIGHT.]--(B. 578). Within the last few years
a machine has been introduced by Mr. Good, an American, for treating
fibres as imported, more particularly Manilla. By means of fluted
rollers, and a system of bars fitted with strong steel pins which press
upwards into the hemp, the fibres are dressed and straightened out, the
operation is aided by a patented machine known as Wright and Laider’s
Patent Sun and Planet Hacklebus. Finally, the hemp fibres are drawn off
the pins and delivered in a compact and continuous sliver into a can
placed in front to receive it. These slivers being in one length, are
now passed on to the drawing frames to be accumulated together.

=Steel Pen Trade.=--[MAURICE POLLACK.]--(B. 634.)--There has been
little improvement since 1865. Muffles heated by gas on the plan of
Dr. Siemens, have been introduced for tempering and colouring, and
ordinary gas is also used in connection with these processes, but these
improvements are only used by one or two firms, and more as a matter of
convenience than as a means of making pens of a better quality or lower

Many patents have been taken out since 1865 for new styles of pens,
the most successful have been those which deal with the points; these
have been turned up or turned down, thickened, or planished, all for
the purpose of producing smooth points to glide freely over paper
even with a rough surface. The fashion in paper and ink materially
influences the style of pens. The J pens (so called because that letter
was embossed upon one of the first and best known broad points) have
been extensively used, and have influenced hand writing, especially
that of ladies. Calligraphy as an art has fallen off in this country,
and this has influenced pen manufacture. The most delicately made pens
are manufactured for foreign use. There are, perhaps, not so many pen
works now as there were in 1865, but the productive power has vastly
increased. The present _weekly_ average of pens manufactured is about
160,000 grosses, requiring from 16 to 18 tons of steel, of which only
8 tons appears in the article, the rest being loss or waste. Pen steel
is still produced in Sheffield, the best being made from Swedish
iron. The number of girls and women employed is from 3,200 to 3,600,
whilst the number of men employed as tool makers, rollers, engineers,
stokers, &c., hardly exceeds 500. The increase in make since 1865,
of quite 60 per cent. is mainly due to the export trade. No new pen
manufactories have been established since 1865, except in the United
States, where there are now four pen works, but of these, only one is
of importance. In France, there are now only three pen manufactories,
and the production is less than it was three years ago. In Germany
there is only one, and its make though improved in quality is very
inconsiderable in comparison with the large consumption of steel pens
in Germany. An attempt has been made to establish works in Russia,
where the duty on steel pens is high, but after existing one or two
years, the manufactory was burnt down, and no attempt has been made
to re-build it. The Customs duty on steel pens with the exception of
Russia, are the United States, where it is 6d. per gross, is very
moderate, and prevents the importation of low and middle class pens.
The price obtained for steel pens depends more upon the reputation
of the maker or of the mark than upon their intrinsic value, hence
the difficulty of giving an average value of each gross of pens

=Stourbridge Fire Clay.=--[GEORGE KING HARRISON.]--(B. 133.) The
district suffers from high railway rates. The quantity of clay raised
per week now is about 3,500 tons, say 160,000 tons per annum. About 40
million bricks are made per annum.

=Salt.=--[J. H. HOLLYER.]--(B. 138.) At the Stoke Prior Works from
500 to 700 hands are employed. The salt manufactured is from 3,000
to 4,000 tons per week. The entire produce of salt in Worcestershire
is about 250,000 tons per annum. The Brine pits are about 1,000 feet
deep. “Butter salt” is largely exported from Droitwich to India and
Australia. Round pans have been introduced since 1865. The aggregate
traffic, that is, coal received and salt forwarded, of the Stoke Prior
works is about 1,000 tons per day.

=Swords and Matchets.=--[F. M. MOLE, JUN.]--(B. 649.) The conventional
ideas as to the extent of the sword trade are very erroneous. Our army
is small and only horse soldiers and officers carry swords. When once
equipped one single sword forger will produce what is required. Hence
the matchet trade is combined with sword manufacture. (The matchet is
a large knife used in sugar cultivation in the West Indies and Central
South America.) The extraordinary demand for swords at the time of the
Crimean war, and the inability of English firms to supply it, gave the
start to foreign competition. It is not generally known that the larger
proportion of the officers’ swords sold in this country are either
German swords imported complete or foreign blades mounted in London.
There have been several spurts in the trade, but these died out, and at
the present time Messrs. Robert Mole and Son, of Birmingham, are the
only manufacturers who take Government contracts. An outline of the
method of manufacture is given in (B. 649) and is similar to that of
edge tools generally--(see p. 208). In ornamenting the hilts of swords
fire or mercury gilding[59] is used. The “gripe” is of wood (walnut or
beech), and covered with dog fish skin.

=Tin Plate Ware.=--[A. N. HOPKINS.]--(B. 638.) Fifty years ago workmen
made a variety of articles with several pieces of tin plate soldered
together. The introduction of machinery in the trade is reducing the
number of skilled workmen. In 1835-6 Mr. Thomas Griffiths took out
a patent for stamping and burnishing; shortly afterwards Mr. J. H.
Hopkins commenced the manufacture of “Patent tea-pots.” Candlesticks
and other articles made in the same way quickly followed, and stamping
and burnishing opened up possibilities which till then had not been
dreamed of in the trade. In 1840 what was thought a monster stamp
was put down to stamp the top of an 18-inch imperial dish cover.
Further improvements in stamping led to the trade being speedily
one of the most important, both in this town and the neighbouring
one of Wolverhampton. A little time later, tin plate workers turned
their attention to the stamping of a few culinary articles, such as
colanders, gravy strainers, &c., and of wash-hand basins. In the
making of these sheet iron was used, and the articles when finished
were tinned by the same process as that used by tin plate makers, and
were then sold as “tinned wrought iron hollow ware,” and once more an
increasing impetus was given to the trade. Milk pans and “prospecting”
pans were made in this way, and the advance made just at this time by
the Australian Colonies on the great discoveries of gold opened out
a large field, where the goods have been bought in ever-increasing
quantities, while shortly after, the Cape and South America as well
as Canada became large customers for a similar class of goods. India
too came into the market for brass and copper articles, while Egypt,
especially about the time of the American Civil War, began to be a
most important customer for the copper utensils hitherto manufactured
only by the natives, but which the superior machinery the English
manufacturer possessed, enabled him to produce much better and cheaper.
Meanwhile the French Exhibition of 1855 had shown to our manufacturers
specimens of stamping superior to anything they could produce, and
one or two unsuccessful attempts were made by them to obtain a nearer
inspection of the French method of stamping or more properly pressing.
In one way and another it leaked out that the French makers employed a
pressure plate and a gradual forcing process, instead of the sharp blow
by which the English stamper pounded his material into the required
shape. The late Mr. Clutton Salt purchased the patent right for this
country, and in 1867 a machine was in operation at the works of the
Birmingham Enamel Co., with which Mr. Salt was at that time connected,
and Messrs. Griffiths and Browett took out a licence to use the patent.
Improvements in stamping followed, keeping well abreast of the new
process, and ultimately outstripping it, especially as regards size of
vessel produced.

The French system of pressing was taken up in the United States, and
as early as 1865 the works of Lalance and Geoschein, at Woodhaven, New
York, were in active operation on this principle. In 1866 a Birmingham
man, named W. Page, son of an old Birmingham worthy, travelled to New
York, and erected improved machines on the French system in the factory
of Messrs. Ketcham and Co. These machines economised material, and at
the same time quickened production.

In 1872 Mr. Satchell Hopkins, of Birmingham, after communication with
Mr. Page, put down a number of machines on Mr. Page’s principle,
including one which is even now the largest and most powerful of its
kind. A similar form of machine was adopted by other firms, and there
soon followed an extraordinary development of the trade hitherto known
as the “Stamped Tin Hollow-ware,” but now as the “Pressed Bright Tinned
Hollow-ware” Trade.

In another important branch of the trade, though there has not been so
much scope for improvement, advance has not been wanting. The common
and ugly japanned ware, in which stencil plates were largely used,
has been superseded by “transfers,” and by an invention of Mr. Alfred
Hopkins, the japanning of articles with backgrounds highly polished
has been superseded by a dead, morocco-like surface, in low tones of
pleasing appearance.

In iron plate working the only new mechanical appliance introduced
since 1867 is a machine or series of machines for making buckets, by
which the article is practically made in one operation. The low wages
of workmen who make buckets, coupled with the low prices to which
manufacturers have been driven by excessive competition, render the
employment of these machines of doubtful advantage. Besides Birmingham,
manufactories are established in Wolverhampton, London, Reading,
Sheffield, and other towns.

_Treatment of Waste._--The following facts are supplied by Mr. T. J.
Baker:--Sheet iron scrap and lathe turnings are worked up again into
sheet iron. Copper clippings and turnings are remelted. Copper scale is
resmelted, as also brass clippings and brass dust. Gold scrap of the
japanning department is sent to the gold refiners, and the leaf metal
scrap to the bronze powder manufacturers. Tin plate scrap, after the
larger pieces have been sold to the button makers, are “stripped”--that
is, the tin is removed by immersion in hydrochloric acid. The resulting
tin salt is used by calico printers. The iron scrap, after removal
of the tin, is used for precipitating copper by the wet process. Tin
oxide, known as “drop tin,” formed on the surface of the metal in the
tinning pot, is, after recovery of as much of the tin as possible, sent
to the tin smelter. Galvanizing dross, an alloy of zinc and iron, which
sinks to the bottom of the galvanizing bath, is removed by a perforated
ladle, and refined by distilling off the zinc. Zinc ashes, that is
cinders which have fallen on the molten metal and absorbed zinc, is
also refined by distillation. Flux skimmings, or that which is skimmed
off from the galvanizing bath, is an oxide and chloride of zinc. This
is put in a vat; stirred with hot water, the oxide falls to the bottom
of the vat, but the chloride dissolves. The clear solution is heated
with gas liquor, when zinc precipitates as carbonate, and the chloride
of ammonium, now in solution, is recovered by evaporation. The solid
residues are worked up in paint mills into zinc white.

=Tools (Heavy Edge).=--[A. WINKLER WILLS.]--(B. 656.) In addition to
edge tools proper, such as axes, adzes, hatchets, and other articles,
the trade includes pickaxes, spades, shovels, forks, hoes, augers,
trowels, shipscrapers, &c. The number of patterns regularly supplied
by the manufacturers of Birmingham and the neighbourhood is estimated
at several thousands, each nation and almost each district requiring
special patterns of its own. The character of the soil, habit of people
and other circumstances affect the form of tool though used for the
same purpose. The enormous hoe, with a blade nearly a foot wide and
of the same depth, which is in universal use in Guatemala, would be
useless in Valparaiso, because the soil is light in one country and
heavy in the other.

A Brazilian axe is made thus:--A piece of bar iron is taken and the
middle part thinned out under a light steam hammer to the thickness
required to form the edge of the tool. The blank is then doubled over
upon itself and the bottom part welded together. A bar of hard cast
steel is welded on to the bottom of the blank; the steel being then
cut off from the bar to a width corresponding to that of the blank.
The embryo axe, by means of a steam hammer, is forged under tools
of suitable shape fixed in the head of the hammer, the final shape
being given by hand tools. The tool is now ready for hardening and
tempering--the steeled end of the axe is heated to a blood red in a
slow furnace and is then plunged into cold water. It is now tempered
by slowly heating till it assumes the required tint. The tool is now
ready to be ground, polished on a succession of wooden wheels or bobs,
dressed with emery of gradually increasing fineness, and then to have
its upper part japanned black, blue, scarlet, or bronze-coloured,
according to the taste of the consumer.

The principal machinery employed consists of shears, “squeezers,” tilt
and trip hammers, striking from 200 to 400 blows per minute, steam
hammers, shearing and punching machines, stamps, rolls, and lastly,
massive machines or presses of various construction, used for shaping
the eyes of hoes, pickaxes, &c. The wood handles required for spades,
shovels, &c., form a distinct branch of the trade. Hickory handles
are almost exclusively used in the wedge axes so largely employed in
India and the colonies; these handles are necessarily imported from
the United States. Self-acting machines have during late years been
introduced for the turning of ash handles for axes, hatchets, &c. The
handles of spades, shovels, and forks are of ash sawn from planks,
subsequently turned in lathes. To bend them, they are steamed and
pressed into shape by powerful screws.

The only waste products are the scale or dross which falls from the
heated iron, and the shearings or scraps cut off the tools. Both are
sold to the ironmaster--the former for fettling his furnace, the latter
to be worked up again into bar iron.

The number of persons employed in the trade in Birmingham and the
district is probably 3,000 to 4,000.

The conditions of the manufacture have been greatly altered during
the last seven years by the extensive introduction of machinery to
replace manual labour; at the present time a much larger number of
boys and youths are employed than was formerly the case. Their wages
range from 8s. to 15s. per week according to age. Forgemen earn on an
average £2. 10s. or £3. per week; foremen smiths about £2., and their
strikers or underhands about £1. to £1. 5s, when in full work. Women
are only employed in japanning, wrapping up and similar light work.
The revolution which has taken place in the method of manufacture
during recent years was largely accelerated by the tyrannical
operations of the formerly powerful trades union of edge-tool makers,
which, during the period of large demand which prevailed from 1872
to 1874, used every available means to limit production, and to make
it impossible for the manufacturers to execute orders in reasonable
time. As a consequence, the productive power of the trade has been so
enormously increased that at present it is altogether disproportionate
to the demand, and hence, in this as in almost every other branch
of manufacture, unremunerative prices and reckless competition are
unfortunately the order of the day.

=Umbrellas and Parasols.=--[WILLIAM HOLLAND.]--(B. 666). Since the
previous article was written machinery has been extensively introduced,
an umbrella rib being now made by automatic machinery in one operation
instead of several. The square or round iron wire for the stretcher
is also similarly converted into form nearly ready for japanning. In
some cases, even the riveting or attaching the rib to the stretcher
is done by machinery, but as yet the experiment remains to be proved
good and economical. The number of hands employed has increased. Some
hundreds of men, women, girls, and boys are employed. The materials
have undergone a change, zinc and iron have displaced to a large
extent brass and copper, and great competition has caused everything
to be lightened and cheapened; but a reaction is taking place in this
respect, and better and stronger goods are coming into use. The various
parts of umbrellas and parasols are now gilt, bronzed, enamelled,
silver and nickel-plated, instead of being simply japanned as was the
case formerly. The patents which have been taken out in connection
with umbrellas and parasols are numerous, and in many cases trivial.
Over 800 patents were granted between 1867 and 1876, and since then
the inventive ball has been rolling still more rapidly. It has been
proposed to use a transparent material to enable one to see ahead when
protecting the face with the umbrella. Another arranges for spinning
the umbrella so as to drive off the rain, other proposals are to fold
the umbrella so as to go inside a stick, to convert it when necessary
into a railway carriage key, a corkscrew, or a pike, writing materials
have been inserted in the handles, and a variety of contrivances
proposed. One of the most curious of all these patents is one for
fixing the umbrella to the hat somewhat after the fashion of the
thatched Indians of whom one reads in books of travel.

=Watch Manufacture.=--[R. L. BRAGGE.]--The “watchmakers” of Birmingham
of forty or fifty years ago were rather repairers than makers, though
there was scarcely a part of the mechanism of a watch which they
were not at times obliged to make. Of these watchmakers, S. Allport,
of Bull Street, was considered to take the lead. There were also
T. Warwick, in Colmore Row; Birley, in High Street, and others. At
this time the highest class watches were made in London. Liverpool
also had a reputation for goods of high quality. Coventry, however,
enjoyed a larger industry than either of the other centres named.
The first earnest and persistent effort to include watch manufacture
as a Birmingham industry was made by Messrs. Hodgkins and Booth, who
commenced about 1843, and continued till 1850, when Messrs. Betts and
Fairfax succeeded to the business. Messrs. Charles Wood and Sons, of
Bath Street and of St. Paul’s Square, not long afterward gained a
reputation as manufacturers of high quality watches. Mr. W. Ehrhardt,
in 1873, erected a large manufactory for production of watches
according to modern ideas, and the English Watch Company (Limited) have
also erected extensive ranges of shopping in Villa Street. Exclusive
of “jobbers,” there are probably about 600 to 700 artisan watchmakers
employed in the town, about 30 per cent. of whom are females; some 500
of these are employed at the two large manufactories just mentioned.
It is probable that nearly 700 watches per week are turned out in
Birmingham. Birmingham watches have a good reputation, and there is not
a “duffer” watch turned out from one year’s end to another.

One singular feature of the trade is that the name of the maker rarely
appears on a watch--manufacturers generally put on the names of their
customers. Many large export houses have adopted fictitious names,
under which a certain pattern watch has attained a reputation that
makes the name a valuable property. A large Colonial trade is done on
these lines.

Messrs. Dennison, Wigley, and Co., manufacture watch cases, employing
about 100 hands, making the cases for American companies. These cases
as well as many Swiss ones pass through the Birmingham Assay Office,
and are afterwards sent abroad for the movements to be fitted in. Since
this practice prevailed, it is obvious that the Assay Office returns
are no index of the number of watches made in this town. Almost the
only branch of this trade which is not localised is the enamelling and
painting of the dials. Watch glass making is scarcely practised in this
country, nearly the whole supply of the watchmaking world coming from
the Continent.

=Wire Working.=--[J. B. GAUSBY.]--(B. 596.) No marked departure from
processes previously described has taken place. More attention is
now paid to decoration, and there is an endeavour to introduce more
artistic designs. The large demand for wire netting made by machinery
as described (B. 597) has led to a wide extension of locality for its
manufacture. Large wire drawing firms and galvanizers in different
parts of the country have taken up the manufacture, so that although
Birmingham still turns out a large quantity of the article, she has not
been able to retain the manufacture within her bounds.

=Wire (Steel).=--[CHARLES LEAN.]--(B. 591.) One hundred years ago
a horse was employed for drawing wire by a firm in the town. New
applications of wire within recent years have been telephones, deep
sea sounding, road and aerial tramways, and cycles. The scrap wire is
utilised for nails; it is also bought by hawkers for the purpose of
making riddles and a number of wire articles. No women or girls are
employed in the trade of the district, and perhaps about 700 men and
boys, the bulk of whom draw iron wire only.

       *       *       *       *       *

[Other articles on Manufacturing Industries will be found in





The town of Birmingham lies almost in the exact geographical centre
of England and Wales, midway between sea and sea. Its distance in a
straight line from the three nearest sea-ports on the opposite sides
of the island, Liverpool, Boston, and Bristol, is about 85 miles in
each case, while its distance from London and Southampton is only a few
miles more.

The main watershed of Southern Britain, which commences to the
northward in the Pennine Range and divides the rivers which flow
eastward into the German Ocean from those which drain westward into
the Irish Sea and the Bristol Channel, enters upon the Birmingham
District from the northward by way of Cannock Chase, crosses the “Black
Country” about six miles to the west of Birmingham, and passes out
of the district to the southward through the Lickey Hills, round the
headwaters of the Avon to the Edge Hills and the Cotswolds.

The town of Birmingham and its immediate neighbourhood, is drained by
the brooklets which unite to form the river Tame, the first of the
southern tributaries of the Trent. Thus, physiographically speaking,
Birmingham lies well within the basin of the Humber. To the west of
the watershed of Dudley and the Lickey, the rivers of the district
have a short and rapid descent to the main stream of the Severn; to
the south eastward, they glide gently across the Midland Plain to its
tributary--the soft-flowing Avon.

The physical centre of the district is the locality of Barnt Green,
a point on the Midland Railway, about eight miles to the south of the
town. From this point radiate the several low hill ranges which give to
the neighbourhood of Birmingham its distinctive character. The first of
these ranges (forming the main watershed, and constituting the natural
backbone of the area) is composed of the Lower Lickey Hills and their
northerly extensions--the rolling heights of Halesowen, the conspicuous
mound of Rowley Regis (820 feet), and the beautifully wooded heights
of Dudley Castle (730 feet), the Wren’s Nest, and Sedgley Hill. To the
west of this axial ridge, a second range bearing points of a somewhat
greater elevation, stretches from the same locality of Barnt Green
through the Upper or Bromsgrove Lickey Hills (900 feet) to Hagley,
where it is known as the Clent Hills (1,028 feet). These look out far
and wide over the beautifully fertile valley of the Severn, and are
continued to the north-westward in the heights of Stourbridge and
Abbots Castle. To the east of the main Lickey and Dudley axis, the
country is less conspicuously diversified. The hill-ranges are broader,
and rise almost imperceptibly from the surrounding plains. The most
important of these less elevated areas forms what may be termed the
Birmingham plateau. This is an irregular strip of broken ground, about
twenty miles in length by four or five miles in breadth, which takes
origin from the north-eastern slopes of the Lickeys between Northfield
and Halesowen, and sweeps northwards through Harborne, Birmingham,
Barr and Sutton Park, into the wild district of Cannock Chase. On
this irregular plateau stand the town of Birmingham and its suburban
villages of Harborne, Edgbaston, Moseley, Aston, Handsworth, and
Sutton Coldfield. The western side of the plateau overlooks the “Black
Country.” It is marked out by the terrace of Smethwick, Sandwell, and
Great Barr, and culminates in the conspicuous fir-topped hill of Barr
Beacon (800 feet). The eastward margin of the plateau is much less
pronounced, and subsides gently into the great Midland plain of Warwick
and Tamworth, along a line drawn from Northfield, through King’s Heath,
Moseley, Camp Hill, and Sutton Coldfield.

The ground forming the Birmingham plateau rises and falls into an
endless succession of heights and hollows; here sinking down into
broad tree-sheltered, stream-cut valleys, there rising into long low
mounds and hills. The subsoil throughout is mainly gravel or sandy
clay, and the underground drainage is, as a rule, excellent. The
north-western half of the plateau still retains its original forest
character, and the primeval aspect of the district is recalled by the
wild area of Sutton Park--a picturesque admixture of long, dry, pebbly
mounds, covered with thick woods of oak, ash and holly, and divided
from each other by open glades of gorse patches, with long, flat,
treeless expanses, shrouded in dark heather and picked out here and
there with deep, clear water-pools. The central half of the plateau
is now covered by the great town of Birmingham and its immediate
dependencies. The town stands upon a series of broad rounded knolls,
divided from each other by intervening open valleys. The more elevated
points are marked by the church of St. Philip’s, Newhall Hill, Soho
Hill, and the Monument; while the great maze of streets, manufactories
and commercial buildings fill up all the space between. Strictly
speaking, the town proper lies in the angle included between the river
Tame and its little tributary the Rea. The Tame runs in a broad valley
round the north-eastern side of the town to the low-lying district of
Saltley, and thence takes its course north-eastward across the Midland
plain towards the Trent at Burton. The little river Rea, which is the
Birmingham river par excellence, runs from the Lickey Hills through
the south-eastern corner of the town, across the low-lying district of
Digbeth, and joins the Tame at Saltley.

The south-western portion of the Birmingham plateau is occupied by
the fashionable district of Edgbaston and the neighbouring suburbs
of Harborne and Moseley. While the original upland character of the
plateau is still distinctly apparent, the dwellers in this southern
area have in all other respects utterly changed its former aspect. The
land has been reclaimed and enclosed. In place of the wild oak and ash,
we have masses of the Elizabethan elm, the fir and the beech; and in
place of the wild heather, cultivated lawns and grassy fields. Every
advantage has been taken of the natural resources of site and soil;
and the result is that Edgbaston and its surroundings form one broad
expanse of mansions, woods and fields, well worthy of the town and

To the westward of the Birmingham plateau lies the district of the
“_Black Country_,” of which the town of Dudley is the natural centre.
Compared with the Birmingham plateau, it is a lowland district of
wild confusion--a maze of mines, chimneys, factories, and straggling
villages and towns, shrouded in a canopy of smoke and steam. The
natural soil is generally hidden from sight by heaps of mining spoil,
and mounds of rubbish, cut through in all directions by lines of
railway and broad canals. The beautiful wooded hill of Dudley, crowned
with its grey keep, and the neighbouring oak-clad ridges of the Wren’s
Nest and Sedgley, rise like islands of verdure out of the dark sea of
mining ground around, and look strangely out of place amid their gloomy

To the east of the Birmingham plateau lies the broad plain of Tamworth
and Nuneaton, watered by the sluggish stream of the Tame. The plain is
continued far to the southward through the richly wooded district of
Warwick, Alcester, and the old Forest of Arden, and thence down the
valley of Shakespeare’s Avon, to the terrace of the Edge Hills and the
northern slopes of the Cotswolds.


Paleozoic Rocks.



The Birmingham district, or that area of which Birmingham constitutes
the natural capital and commercial centre, extends from Stafford on the
north to Tewkesbury on the south, and from Wellington on the west to
Leicester on the east, forming an area about 60 miles in length by 50
in breadth.

In no single district in Britain is the relation of the physiography of
the country seen to be more strikingly dependent upon its geological
structure than within the limits of the Birmingham district. Every
hill, ridge, plain, and valley of any importance is a mere reflex
of the underground geology. The local distribution and physical
peculiarities of its rock formations afford a natural and complete
explanation of all its special scenic peculiarities.

The dominant geological formation of this Midland area is the great
Mesozoic formation of the _Triassic_ or New Red Sandstone, which
stretches through Southern Britain in a continuous band from Hartlepool
to Exeter, and divides the broken and contorted Paleozoic rocks of
the west from the flat-lying Neozoics of the east. This great band of
New Red Sandstone attains its widest extension in the north of the
Birmingham district, between Eccleshall and Charnwood Forest, where
its transverse diameter is about 50 miles. Within the limits of the
Birmingham district, however, its diameter rapidly decreases, until in
the extreme south, in the neighbourhood of Worcester and the Malverns,
its breadth is reduced to about 10 miles.

The red rocks of this _Triassic_ formation not only form by far
the most predominant and most conspicuous geological feature of
the district at the present time, but not long since, geologically
speaking, they must have extended over the entire area in one unbroken
expanse. They now constitute a sheet of red sandstones and marls,
through which protrude, in numerous bands and patches, the older
Paleozoic rocks. Although nowhere very steeply inclined, these red
beds of the _Triassic_ have been bent into several long low arches, or
broad domes, whose longer axes range approximately north and south. The
summits of many of these arches have been denuded, and the underlying
older rocks have again been bared to-day. Four of these arches are
especially conspicuous, those of the Wrekin, Malvern, Dudley, and
Nuneaton. In each of these the underlying _Coal Measures_ are laid
bare, forming the four coalfields of Coalbrookdale, Forest of Wyre,
South Stafford, and Eastern Warwick, all of which shew round their
outer margins a narrow band of the intermediate formation of the
_Permian_. In each of these anticlinals, too, the denudation of the
core of the arch has been sufficient to wear away the _Carboniferous_
from its centre, and to expose to view yet older formations--the
_Old Red Sandstone_ in the Forest of Wyre, the _Silurian_ in South
Staffordshire, the Malverns, and Coalbrookdale, and even the _Upper
Cambrian_ and its underlying igneous rocks in the Wrekin, the Lickey,
and near Nuneaton. With the exception of the _Silurian_ of Abberley and
Dudley, and the recently discovered _Cambrian_ of Nuneaton, however,
these _pre-Carboniferous_ rocks are comparatively inconspicuous, rising
up merely in narrow bands in the cores of long wedge-shaped hills.

From the economical as well as from the structural point of view, by
far the most important of these geological arches is that of South
Staffordshire, which is the southward continuation of the Pennine
chain, and part of the true backbone of Southern Britain. The central
axis of this arch runs, as we have seen, through the Dudley Hills, and
dies away in the complex of faults to the south of the Lickeys. On
the natural consequences of the rise of this arch, all the physical,
scenic, and economic peculiarities of the central parts of the district
are essentially dependent. The hills and plains around Birmingham are
all more or less related to this grand anticlinal--the hills marking
the uplifted edges of the harder rocks, the limestones, sandstones,
and pebble beds; and the plains, the position of the gently inclined
soft shales and marls. It has brought within workable distance of
the surface the coals and ironstones of South Staffordshire, and the
valuable limestones of the Dudley Hills, and it has had its final
effect in bringing together the overflowing population of the town and

The original simplicity of the geological structure of the floor of
the Birmingham District is much complicated by fractures, faults,
and unconformities. The Wrekin and the Malverns are both affected by
profound dislocations. The South Staffordshire Coldfield is bounded
both on the eastward and the westward by faults of more than ordinary
magnitude, while a long straight fault more than 20 miles in length
runs through the south-eastern part of Birmingham itself, and flings
down the _Keuper marls_ of the Warwick plain against the older
sandstones of the Birmingham plateau.

In the Birmingham District as everywhere in Britain, the _Triassic_
formation rests unconformably upon everything below. At the same time,
its members overlap each other more or less irregularly, and shew a
rapid diminution in thickness when followed from west to east. Thus it
happens that not only do the _pre-Triassic_ rocks make their appearance
in their expected positions along the main anticlinal lines, but many
of the old ridges of Palæozoic rocks, which rose out of the Triassic
waters, have had their enveloping pall of red sandstone removed from
their flanks and summits, which have thus been bared once more to
the light of day. Such are, in part, the ridges of the Wrekin, the
Malverns, the Lickeys, and the Forest of Charnwood.

In the valley of the Severn, to the west of Birmingham, the strata
run in narrow bands. The central portion of this valley lying between
Coalbrookdale and Bridgnorth, to the west of the main anticlinal of
the Birmingham district, owes all its striking beauty and variety to
the rapid alternations of hard and soft strata which occur within its

In the great Midland plain to the east of Birmingham, the strata
are spread out in broad sheets. The plain is underlain in great part
by the comparatively homogeneous flat lying Keuper marls, with their
intercalated bands of harder sandstones. Its scenery is consequently
less varied than that of the Severn valley, but it is rich in that
sweet sylvan beauty which is almost peculiar to the English landscape,
and it forms one broad expanse of gently rolling farmland and woodland,
whose green crested waves sweep onward to the east and south, mile
beyond mile, till they break against the long shore-like scarp of the
harder Jurassics.


As will be apparent upon a study of the accompanying geological map,
the geological formations exposed within thirty miles of Birmingham,
include the entire stratigraphical succession between the _Cambrian_
and the middle portion of the _Jurassic_, with two notable exceptions.
The two formations locally wanting are the _Ordovician_ and the _Old
Red Sandstone_. The nearest known _Ordovician_ rocks occur in central
Shropshire, to the east of Church Stretton; the nearest _Old Red
Sandstone_ beds are met with to the south of the Forest of Wyre. The
natural sequence of formations, and the localities where the several
formations are most conspicuously displayed, are given in the following



          _Middle Lias_ (_Marlstone_)--Edge Hill, Fenny Compton.
          _Lower Lias Clays_--Harbury, Rugby.

          _Marls and White Lias_--Harbury, Knowle, Wooten Wawen.

          _Upper Trias or Keuper_:
          (_a_) _New Red Marl_--Moseley, King’s Norton, &c., &c.
          (_b_) _Lower Keuper or Waterstones_--Birmingham, Warwick.

          _Lower Trias or Bunter_:
          (_a_) _Upper Mottled Sandstone_--Harborne, Edgbaston, Hockley.
          (_b_) _Pebble Beds and Conglomerate_--Sutton Park, Smethwick.
          (_c_) _Lower Mottled Sandstone_--Clent Hills, Stourbridge.


          (_a_) _Permian Breccia_--Clent Hills, Northfield.
          (_b_) _Red Sandstones and Marls_--Halesowen, Enville, Rubery.

          (_a_) _Upper Coal Measures with Spirarks Limestone,
                 &c._--Sandwell, Arley.
          (_b_) _Lower Coal Measures_--Oldbury, Bilston, Hawkesbury.
          (_c_) _Millstone Grit_--Absent near Birmingham, present near
          (_d_) _Carboniferous Limestone_--Absent.

          Absent near Birmingham, present in Forest of Wyre.

          (_a_) _Ludlow Shales and Limestones_--Sedgley Hill.
          (_b_) _Wenlock Shales and Limestone_--Dudley Hill, Wren’s
                 Nest, Walsall.
          (_c_) _Woolhope Beds_--Barr and Rubery.
          (_d_) _Llandovery or Mayhill_--Rubery.


          _Upper Cambrian_:
          (_a_) _Tremadoc Beds and Lingula Flags._--Shineton, Nuneaton,
                 Lower Lickey, and Malverns.

          (_a_) _Charnwood Volcanic Rocks_--Charnwood Forest, Caldecote
                 Hill, The Wrekin.
          (_b_) _Malvern Crystalline Rocks_--North Hill, Hereford
                 Beacon, &c.


The rocks which undoubtedly occupy the lowest place in the geological
formations of the Birmingham district are those crystalline and partly
schistose masses which form the core of the Malvern Hills; and certain
well-marked volcanic rocks which occur at the Wrekin and Nuneaton, and
which appear to have their equivalents in the great igneous series of
Charnwood Forest. That all these more or less crystalline rocks are
of higher antiquity than the Upper Cambrian of Wales is demonstrated
by the fact that fossiliferous rocks containing Cambrian fossils of
this age overlie them, while the lowest recognisable zones of these
overlying fossiliferous rocks (the Hollybush sandstone of the Malverns,
the quartzite of the Wrekin, and the Hartshill quartzite of the
neighbourhood of Nuneaton) are in part composed of their fragments.
Whether, however, they belong in part to the Middle or Lower Cambrian,
or wholly appertain to the earlier formations of the Archean, must as
yet remain an open question.

(_a._) MALVERN HILLS.--The core of the Malvern Hills is composed of
a coarse syenitic, and more or less gneissose rock, pierced by veins
of quartzo-felspathic rock of igneous origin (Hereford Beacon, &c).
The main mass which is coarsely crystalline, becomes occasionally
distinctly gneissose and even schistose, and its mineral bands strike
from north-west to south-east, _i.e._, transverse to the general trend
of the Malvern Ridge. The basement beds of the Hollybush sandstones
(Cambrian) and the Llandovery rest unconformably upon this rock, which
has consequently been claimed by some geologists as distinctly of
Archean age, representing in part the Laurentian of Logan.

The best localities for studying the essential characters of the
Malvern rocks are the quarries of the North Hill and the Wych, and the
eastern slopes of the hills between Malvern Wells and Herefordshire

(_b._) THE WREKIN.--The core of the beautiful hill of the Wrekin
is formed by a magnificent series of highly acidic volcanic
rocks--rhyolitic lavas and ashes. As first pointed out by Dr. Callaway,
they rise out unconformably from below fossiliferous rocks of Upper
Cambrian age. (Hollybush Sandstone and Shineton Shales) and are
believed by him to be of Archean age. The finest exhibitions of the
volcanic ashes of the group are met with in quarries on the flanks
of the Wrekin itself, while the rhyolitic lavas occur in scattered
localities along the hill. A broad mound of the same igneous series
rises out from below the Triassic to the south of Walcot Station, and
a most beautiful and instructive section of banded and spherulitic
rhyolites is shewn in the quarry at the locality known as the Lee Rock.

The truly volcanic nature of these remarkable rocks was first pointed
out by Mr. S. Allport, F.G.S., and their original characteristics,
and the changes they have undergone since their formation, have been
described by him in a well-known series of memoirs. Their geological
position, and their relation to the associated fossiliferous strata,
and to the similar rhyolitic rocks of Caer Caradoc and Pontesbury have
been fully discussed by Dr. C. Callaway, F.G.S.

(_c._) NUNEATON (CALDECOTE HILL).--A thin group of volcanic breccias
and tuffs, with associated quartz-felsites, and diabase, rises out from
below the Upper Cambrians of Nuneaton, in the Park of Caldecote Hill.
The lowest zone of the overlying Cambrian Hartshill quartzite is in
part composed of their fragments. The ashes are shewn in old cuttings
to the north-west of Caldecote Lodge, the quartz-porphyries and diabase
in an old quarry about a quarter of a mile to the southward, while the
breccia composed of the fragments of these old rocks, in the base of
the Cambrian quartzite is best shewn on the tramway still farther to
the southward, leading down to the Coventry Canal.

(_d._) CHARNWOOD FOREST.--This district is formed of an island of
ancient igneous and stratified rocks rising out from below the Upper
Trias. The stratified rocks are almost wholly composed of materials of
volcanic origin, and shade off on the one hand into coarse volcanic
agglomerates, and on the other into fine green slates like those of the
Borrowdale series in the Lake District, to which indeed the whole of
the bedded Charnwood rocks bear a striking resemblance.

The stratified volcanic rocks are pierced by numerous igneous
intrusions. The most conspicuous are those classed by Professor Bonney,
F.R.S., as syenite. These are most conspicuous near Groby, Bradgate,
and generally in the south eastern parts of the Charnwood area. A mass
of beautiful hornblendic granite rises through the Trias immediately to
the east of Charnwood Forest at Mount Sorrel, near Barrow on Soar. A
few later dykes of altered andesite occur within the forest itself, and
diorite in the outlier of Brazil Wood.

To the south of Charnwood Forest, several remarkable points of
syenitic rock protrude through the flat-lying Trias. The most
conspicuous of these are the hills of Sapcote, Croft, and Enderby.

There is no direct evidence of the Cambrian or pre-Cambrian age of
the Charnwood rocks, but strata identical with the fossiliferous
Stockingford shales (Upper Cambrian) of Nuneaton, have been pierced
in several borings through the Trias near Leicester, Market Bosworth,
etc., and appear to rest at once upon the Charnwood rocks, as do the
Nuneaton beds upon the Caldecote volcanic group.


No fossiliferous strata unequivocally of Lower Cambrian age occur
within the limits of the Birmingham District; but strata of Upper
Cambrian age are met with in several localities. They were first
recognised by Professor Phillips in the area of the Malvern Hills,
and have been subsequently detected within the last few years at the
Wrekin, at Nuneaton, and in the Lower Lickey Hills.

MALVERN HILLS.--The Upper Cambrian beds of the Malverns rest upon
the crystalline rocks of the axis of the hills to the south of
Herefordshire Beacon, along the slopes of Midsummer Hill and Keys Hill.
The lowest zone is the _Hollybush Sandstone_, a light green micaceous
rock, containing tubes of sea worms and _Kutorgina cingulata_.

The Hollybush Sandstone is succeeded by shivery shales, somewhat sandy
below, and becoming darker and more carbonaceous above.

In their lower beds they yield:--_Obolella Salteri_, _Obolella
sagittalis_, _Lingula pygmea_, _etc._ In their middle beds they afford
_Pellura scarabeoides_, _Spheropthalmus alatus_, _Agnostis pisiformis_,
_Agnostus trisectus_, etc., well-known fossils of the Upper Lingula
Flags (Dolgelly) of North Wales.

Their highest beds contain _Dictyonema sociale_, a fossil which passes
up into the succeeding Tremadoc Slates.

The rest of the local succession of the Cambrian rocks is hidden by
the unconformable overlap of Silurian.

The Hollybush Sandstone and the overlying sandy shales contain numerous
intercalated volcanic rocks, some of which are of the age of the
surrounding strata, while others are intrusive.

NUNEATON DISTRICT.--In the neighbourhood of the town of Nuneaton in
eastern Warwickshire, a strip of Cambrian rocks, about eight miles in
length by one in breadth, has been detected within the last few years.
The rocks consist of volcanic ashes, quartzites and thin-bedded shales,
pierced by dioritic dykes. These strata were formerly mapped as altered
Millstone Grit and Carboniferous shale, and their Cambrian age has only
been recently demonstrated by the discoveries of Birmingham geologists.
The complete succession is as follows:--

(1.) CALDECOTE VOLCANIC GROUP.--Well-bedded tuffs and volcanic ashes
(see _ante_) with masses of Quartz-felsites and diabase.

(2.) HARTSHILL QUARTZITE.--Thick-bedded quartzites, with occasional
layers of sandy shale.


(_a._) _Lower Division._--(_Obolella Beds_) Purple and green shales
with _Obolella Salteri_, _Lingulella pygmea_, _Lingulella lepis_,
_Acrotreta_, _Protospongia_, &c.

(_b._) _Upper Division._--(_Agnosias Beds_) Grey and black shales
with _Agnostus pisiformis_. _Beyrichia Angelini_ and _Lingulella
Nicholsoni_, in the lower zones, and _Spheropthalmus alatus_ and
_Dictyonema_ in the upper zones.

These Cambrian rocks are overlain unconformably by the Coal measures to
the west, and by the Keuper beds to the east; the boundary of the area
is, however, locally defined by lines of fault.

The basement beds of the Hartshill Quartzite are locally composed
of fragments of the underlying volcanic rocks (Caldecote Beds).
The Quartzite itself, which forms the chief road metal of the
neighbourhood, is laid bare in a long series of quarries between
Nuneaton and Hartshill.

The overlying purple and green shales of the Stockingford Beds range
from Marston Jabet, south of Chilvers Coton to Atherstone Outwoods.
The best section is seen in Parley Park Lane near Atherstone, and the
fossils have been obtained from this section, from Atherstone Oakwoods,
Camp Hill, and Marston Jabet.

The best section of the succeeding grey and black Shales occurs in
the cutting of the Midland Railway near Stockingford, which gives its
name to the formation. Their fossils have been procured from the rocks
of this section; from the cutting at Chilvers Coton, the banks of the
Coventry Canal, from Oldbury reservoir, Mawbornes and Merevale Park.

The numerous intrusive dykes of volcanic rock form a conspicuous
feature in the geology of these Cambrian strata. They are formed of
coarse-grained diorites, much quarried for road metal, kerbs, and
setts. Good sections occur in the quarries near Tuttle Hill, in the
railway cuttings near Stockingford and Chilvers Coton, and in quarries
near Oldbury Reservoir.

A small patch of these Nuneaton Cambrians is met with on the
north-western margin of the East Warwickshire coalfield, at Dost Hill,
to the south of Tamworth. It consists of the usual annelide-bearing
Stockingford Shales, pierced by an intrusive mass of diorite.

LOWER LICKEY HILLS.--The core of the Lower Lickey Hills between Barnt
Green and Rubery, about eight miles south of Birmingham, is formed of
a mass of quartzite identical in all its main features with that of
Hartshill, near Nuneaton.

At the village of Rubery, in an exposure on the roadside, it is seen
to be unconformably overlain by fossiliferous Llandovery sandstone, the
basement beds of which contain fragments of the underlying quartzite in
abundance. At the south-western extremity of the Lower Lickey Range the
quartzites contain fragments of igneous rocks, and appear to pass down
into a series of felspathic grits, pierced by dioritic dykes similar
to those of the Nuneaton District. Good sections of the quartzites are
laid bare at Rubery Station, at the village of Rubery, and in a large
quarry near the roadside, a mile northward from Kendall End. In the
last-named locality the quartzites are seen greatly folded and faulted.

WREKIN DISTRICT.--In the Wrekin area the great volcanic series of
the hills is immediately overlain by a quartzite similar to that of
the Hartshill and the Lickey, the basement bed similarly containing
fragments of the underlying volcanic rocks. The quartzite is succeeded
by the Hollybush sandstone, with its characteristic fossil, _Kutorgina

A broad area, lying between the Hollybush sandstone and the
unconformably overlying Silurian rocks of Buildwas, is occupied by
a series of Upper Cambrian rocks, denominated by Dr. Callaway the
Shineton Shales, and characterised by the forms:--_Olenus Salteri_,
_Sphæropthalmus_, _Asaphellus Homfrayi_, _&c._, _Bryograptus Callavei_,
_&c._, allying them with the Tremadoc Beds of North Wales.


The rocks of the Silurian System are fully developed within the limits
of the Birmingham District, under their most typical aspect. The well
known localities of Dudley and Barr have been famous in the geological
world since the publication of Murchison’s great work, the Silurian
System; and the abundance and beauty of the fossils of the limestone
rocks of the district place it next to the typical area of Central
Shropshire as the representative country of the Silurian rocks.

The Silurian strata are all of the well-known Salopian type, shewing
several thick-bedded limestones, occurring on distinct horizons in a
great thickness of dark blue or grey nodular shales and mudstones.
They make their appearance in sharp anticlinal arches in the South
Staffordshire coalfield, and along its faulted margins. Four of these
exposures occur along the crest of the Lickey-Dudley anticlinal--at
Rubery, Dudley Castle Hill, the Wren’s Nest, and Sedgley. The largest
continuous exposure is that near the town of Walsall, on the eastern
margin of the coalfield.

All the Silurian formations from the Mayhill Sandstone to the Ludlow
(Aymestry) Limestone are recognisable, but the terminal Downton
sandstone is lost below the unconformably overlying Carboniferous. None
of the localities, however, shew the complete consecutive series, which
is made out by piecing together the sections occurring in the several


(_a._) _Landovery or Mayhill Rocks._--The usual red and grey
_Pentamerus_ sandstone of the Mayhill formation is exposed along the
north-west flank of the Lower Lickey Hills. It may be seen resting
unconformably upon the Cambrian quartzite in the village of Rubery, and
at Leach Heath. Casts of fossils are abundant in some of the sandstones
a few feet above the base of the formation, and include the well
known forms:--_Pentamerus oblongus_, _Pentamerus lens_, _Strophomena
expansa_, _Attrypa reticularis_, _etc._--These may be collected from
the rocks at the village of Rubery, and from the fragments of sandstone
scattered over the fields between the Asylum and Leach Heath.

(_b._) _Woolhope or Barr Limestone._--The Llandovery sandstone is
followed (in a stream section below the Asylum) by pale blue shales and
mudstones containing a bed of hard calcareous rock, affording examples
of _Illenus Barriensis_, _Atrypa reticularis_, _Encrinurus punctatus_,
_Rhynchonella Lewisii_; but the section is a poor one, and is covered
up almost immediately by the overlying Carboniferous.

(2.) WALSALL AND BARR.--This is the typical area for the well known
Barr Trilobite _Illenus Barriensis_. The quarries of the Woolhope
Limestone which afford it are now disused, but a good section of the
fossiliferous shales above is displayed in the railway cutting between
Aldridge and Walsall. The overlying Wenlock or Dudley Limestones
are mined at the town of Walsall itself, but good fossils are now
comparatively rare.

(3.) DUDLEY AND THE WREN’S NEST.--By far the most notable and
interesting of the Silurian exposures are those of the neighbourhood
of Dudley. In the three exposures of Dudley Castle, the Wren’s Nest,
and Sedgley Hill, the Silurian limestone rises up in steep dome-like
forms. This limestone, which is that of the Wenlock of Siluria, is
here composed of two calcareous bands--the higher about 28 feet in
thickness, and the lower about 42 feet--separated from each other by
an intermediate zone of about 90 feet of gray shales. The limestone
has been worked for centuries as a flux for the ironstones of the
coalfield. The hills have been mined to a great depth, and all the
best limestone rock extracted. The intervening and enveloping shales
have been allowed to remain, and the present structure of the hills is
that of a central dome surrounded by two enveloping shells, separated
from each other by two more or less empty spaces. Where the dip of the
rock is high, and these excavated parts are exposed, they form deep
moat-like hollows, bounded by walls of shale. Where the dip is low,
and the overhanging rocks are supported by the vast pillars left by
the workmen, these excavations form magnificent caverns of peculiar
weirdness and beauty. In the heart of the hill at greater depths they
form damp gloomy chasms of enormous extent, which can only be seen to
perfection when lit up by artificial light.

The Dudley limestone bands and the surrounding calcareous shales
have long been famous for the abundance and beauty of their included
fossils. Many of the type species of Murchison’s Silurian System
came from this locality; but since the superficial limestones have
been worked out, good specimens are exceedingly rare. An excellent
collection of the fossils of these beds is laid out in the Dudley
Museum, and another in the Geological Museum of the Mason College. Many
good collections are in the possession of private individuals in Dudley
and elsewhere.

The best localities for fossils at present are the shaly slopes on
the flanks of the Wren’s Nest, where the usual Wenlock Brachiopods and
Corals are abundant, but the beautiful Trilobites of the formation are
but rarely met with.

The Wenlock limestone occurs both in the Dudley Castle Hill and in
the Wren’s Nest. The Aymestry limestone is only met with in a single
locality on the flanks of Sedgley Hill, where it yields occasional
specimens of its characteristic fossil, the _Pentamerus Knightii_.


Rocks of Carboniferous age make their appearance at four distinct
localities within the limits of the Birmingham District, viz., in the
coal fields of Coalbrookdale, the Forest of Wyre, South Staffordshire,
and East Warwickshire. The strata exposed on the last three of these
coalfields are those of the upper Carboniferous or Coal measures;
neither the Carboniferous limestone nor the Millstone grit being met
with outside the limits of the coalfield of Coalbrookdale.

In the Forest of Wyre the Coal measures rest upon the Old Red
Sandstone, in the South Staffordshire Coalfield upon the various
members of the Silurian, and in the East Warwickshire upon the Upper
Cambrian rocks. In these three coalfields a two-fold division of the
Carboniferous is recognisable:--

(_a._) _The Lower Coal Measures_ proper, consisting of grey sandstones
and shales with occasional coal seams, some of which are of remarkable

(_b._) _Upper Coal Measures_, or Halesowen grey and red sandstones,
brick clays and marls, with occasional coal-seams, none, however, of
commercial value.

In the South Staffordshire and East Warwickshire coalfields, the well
known “_Spirorbis Limestone_” of the Upper Coal Measures occurs in its
normal place near the summit of the Carboniferous series.

SOUTH STAFFORDSHIRE COALFIELD.--The Carboniferous rocks of South
Staffordshire are arranged in a broad dome about 23 miles in length by
6 in breadth. Their basement beds rest unconformably upon the Silurian
around the flanks of the Dudley Hills, and in the neighbourhood of
Walsall. Their highest beds dip conformably below the Permian rocks at
the southern extremity of the coalfield south of Halesowen, and are
overlapped unconformably by the Triassic pebble beds at its northern
extremity, in the district of Cannock Chase. The eastern and western
boundaries of the coalfield are formed by lines of fault, which have
flung down against the Coal Measures the various members of the Permian
and the Triassic. The total thickness of the Carboniferous beds is
about 1,300 feet, and the normal succession in the central and highest
part of the coalfield is as follows:--

_Upper Coal Measures._--

_2a._ Halesowen Sandstone Group, 600 to 800 feet.

_2b._ Red Coal Measure Clays.

_Lower Coal Measures_, 500 to 600 feet, containing several excellent
coal seams, of which the following are the most important:--

(_a._) Brooch Coal, 4 feet.

(_b._) Thick Coal, 30 feet.

(_c._) Heathen Coal, 3 feet.

(_d._) New Mine Coal, 2 to 11 feet.

(_e._) Fire Clay Coal, 1 to 14 feet.

(_f._) Bottom Coal, five feet and above.

These measures include several zones of workable ironstone, of which
the most important are:--

(1.) The Pins and Pennyearth ironstones, below the Brooch coal.

(2.) The Whittery and Gubbin ironstones, below the Thick coal.

(3.) The Blue Flats, Silver Threads and Diamond Ironstones, below the
Bottom coal.

For its size the South Staffordshire coalfield has proved itself
the richest mineral area in Britain. Thick coal seams, rich bands of
ironstone, and great thicknesses of Silurian limestone, all occur
within a short distance of each other, and all within easy reach of
the miner. The natural result has been that the South Staffordshire
coalfield and its immediate neighbourhood has been the great coal and
iron mart of Central Britain, and the abundance and cheapness of its
material it has afforded, have rendered Birmingham and the “Black
Country” the hardware workshop of the world.

Almost all the available coal seams and ironstone beds within easy
reach have been long since practically worked out, but there is
still much excellent coal and iron to be obtained at greater depths,
especially in the northern part of the coalfield. Of late years the
Triassic rocks which surround the coalfield have been pierced in order
to reach the Coal measures beneath. An entirely new coalfield has been
developed in this manner in the district of Cannock Chase; and two most
remarkable collieries, those of Sandwell Park, and Hamstead, have been
opened in the neighbourhood of Birmingham itself.

The area immediately underlain by the Coal measures constitutes the
district of the “Black Country,” which extends from the western margin
of Birmingham to the fringe of Cannock Chase. It includes within its
limits, the large towns of Dudley, Walsall, Wolverhampton, Bilston, and
others of scarcely less note.

The most remarkable seam of the South Staffordshire coalfield is that
known as the Ten yard or Thick coal, a continuous bed of workable coal
from 25 to 30 feet in thickness. This underlies all the south central
part of the field in the area enclosed by Smethwick, Oldbury, Dudley,
Walsall and Bilston. To the southward near Halesowen it thins out
and becomes mixed with shaly material. It is in reality composed of
13 or 14 superimposed coal seams, which form an apparently unbroken
mass, but are easily distinguished individually by the practised
Thick coal miner. As we pass northward from the typical Thick coal
area towards Walsall and Cannock Chase, the component seams become
separated by intercalated sandstones and shales, so that eventually in
the district of Essington and Pelsall the Thick coal is represented
by 14 distinct coals occurring at intervals in a mass of sandy rock,
between 500 and 600 feet in total thickness. The Thick coal is known
to extend far to the eastward, beyond the present margin of the South
Staffordshire coalfield. The first attempt to reach it through the red
ground (Permian) was made under the bold and skilful guidance of the
late Mr. Henry Johnson, C.E., of Dudley, at the locality of Sandwell
Park. The coal was reached in 1873 at a depth of 1,250 feet and found
to be of its original thickness, and of excellent quality. The next
attempt which was made at Hamstead Hall, about three miles outside
the limit of the coalfield, was even bolder and more hazardous, but
it was eventually crowned with equal success; the Thick coal being
reached at a depth of 1,800 feet. As the demand for coal increases,
other collieries will doubtless be started at fresh localities outside
the limits of the coalfield, for there can be no question that the
Thick coal extends far to the eastward, under and beyond the town of
Birmingham itself.

The strata of the South Staffordshire Coalfield afford the usual
fossils of the British Coal Measures. The roofs of the coal seams,
and the layers of carbonaceous shale, locally furnish well preserved
examples of _Lepidodendron_, _Sigillaria_, _Calamites_, _Annularia_,
_Pecopteris_, _Neuropteris_, etc., often associated with abundant
specimens of the peculiar _Unio_-like shell, _Anthracosia_: while the
ironstone nodules occasionally yield fragmentary _Crustaceans_ and
_Insects_. Marine fossils are principally confined to the lower beds
of the series, below the Thick coal. Owing to the absence of true
limestone beds in the coalfield, the characteristic corals, &c., of
the Carboniferous are absent, but the following marine forms are not
uncommon in the lower ironstones:--

_Lingula elliptica_, _Discina nitida_, _Producta scrabicula_,
_Conularia quadrisulcata_, _Aviculopecten scalaris_, _Gyracanthus
farmosus_, _Megalichthys Hibberti_, _Pœcilodus angustus_.

These have been met with at several localities near Walsall, Oldbury,
Old Hill, Kingswinford, and Oldswinford, etc.

The rocks of the South Staffordshire coalfield are pierced locally
by sheets of igneous rock. The most important of these is a mass of
dolerite about two miles and a half in length, which caps the long
ridge of Rowley Regis. It is traversed by several mining shafts, which
pass through the dolerite into the workable coals below. Other igneous
masses occur near Dudley, and at Pouk Hill, near Walsall.

THE EAST WARWICKSHIRE COALFIELD.--The rocks of this coalfield form
a narrow strip about 15 miles in length, ranging from Tamworth on
the north to Bedworth on the South. The coalbearing strata rest
unconformably upon the Cambrian below, and pass up conformably into
the Permian above. The sequence of the beds is practically identical
with that of South Staffordshire--the richer coal measures being all
confined to the lower part of the Carboniferous series, and passing
up through a group of coloured clays into a final group of barren
sandstones. In the north of the coalfield five workable seams of
coal occur, separated by many feet of barren measures. As they pass
to the southward the intermediate strata thin out, and the coal-beds
practically come together at Hawkesbury to form one Main coal seam, as
do the corresponding members of the Thick coal of South Staffordshire.
It is probable that the two coalfields were formed in the same general
area of deposition, and except for the possibility of its destruction
by erosion prior to the deposition of the Triassic, it might be
suggested with safety that the Thick coal of South Staffordshire
extends in a continuous sheet under the red rocks of Northern
Warwickshire from Smethwick to Hawkesbury.

FOREST OF WYRE.--Unlike the strata of the other coalfields, the
Carboniferous rocks of the coalfield of the Forest of Wyre are
comparatively barren of good coal seams. The best, which is locally
known as the _Main_ coal, is about seven-and a-half feet in thickness,
and occurs at an average depth of 300 feet.

COALBROOKDALE.--This coalfield, which lies to the east of the Wrekin,
covers an area of about 28 square miles. It originally contained about
28 coal seams, but the majority of these are now practically worked
out. The succession includes the Carboniferous limestone, the Millstone
grit, and the Lower coal-measures in conformable sequence. The Upper
coal-measures rest in a hollow eroded out of the Lower coal-measures
beneath, forming what is locally known as the “Symon Fault.”


The Permian rocks of the Birmingham District are totally distinct
in their petrological characters from those of the typical area of
Yorkshire and Durham. No true limestones are present, and the formation
is wholly made up of red sandstones, marls and beds of angular breccia.

The lowest zones of the Permian repose conformably upon the Upper
Coal Measures of the South Staffordshire Coalfield in the slopes
of the hills to the south of Halesowen, and its strata are seen
in corresponding relation to the Carboniferous on the east of the
Coalfields of the Forest of Wyre and Coalbrookdale, and to the west of
the Coalfield of Eastern Warwickshire.

The Permian is everywhere covered up unconformably, or locally
overlapped, by the various members of the Triassic formation; all the
subdivisions of the Triassic series being found resting immediately
upon it in turns as they are followed from the valley of the Severn to
the neighbourhood of Charnwood Forest.

In the neighbourhood of Enville and the Forest of Wyre, three divisions
are recognisable in the Permian, viz.:--

(1.) _Lower Red Sandstones and Marls_, with bands of calcareous

(2.) _Coarse Breccia._

(3.) _Upper Red Sandstones and Marls._

Round the South Staffordshire Coalfield the Breccia is the highest
division exposed, and this only occurs in force to the south of the

Between Tamworth and Kenilworth, to the east of Birmingham, the Permian
strata floor a wide tract of country, and lie almost horizontal. Red
sandstones, marls and beds of breccia occur in association, but the
divisions named above are not individually recognisable.

By far the most striking local member of the Permian formation is
the so-called _Volcanic or Permian Breccia_. It is found in scattered
patches over an area of about 500 square miles, extending from the
Malverns to Enville, Stourbridge, and the Lickey Hills. It is made up
of angular fragments of volcanic rocks, tuffs, altered shales, grits,
and slabs of fossiliferous sandstone and limestones, all embedded
in paste of bright red marl or pebbly sandstone. It is usually both
underlain and overlain by red sandstones and marls, but sometimes, as
at Stagbury and Woodbury Hills, &c., in the Valley of the Severn, it
reposes at once upon pre-Permian rock.

This peculiar Breccia is well displayed in the Clent Hills, between
Hagley and Halesowen. It there reposes upon the Lower Permian
Sandstones with calcareous grit bands--(which may be seen above the
little Church of St. Kenelm)--and forms all the highest points of the
Clent Hills, passing unconformably to the southward under the pebble
beds of the New Red Sandstone. In this locality the angular fragments
composing the Breccia are mainly volcanic:--rhyolites, porphyrites,
ashes, and volcanic grits, embedded in a coarse matrix formed of
similar materials. Other sections are seen in the Bromsgrove Lickey
Hills, and in the neighbourhood of Northfield. In the last-named
locality an excellent section is exposed in a lane leading from the
Bell Inn to Bangham Pit. In this exposure the breccia, which shows
the usual preponderance of volcanic materials, contains in addition
fragments of Silurian limestone (crowded with characteristic fossils),
and pieces of Landovery grit and shale.

According to Sir Andrew Ramsay,[60] this Permian breccia is probably
of glacial origin, its materials having been brought down by ice
in Permian times from the neighbourhood of the Longmynd in central
Shropshire, where all the formations represented in its derived rock
fragments occur at present in natural juxtaposition. According to
Professor Jukes,[61] the fragments of the Northfield breccia, at any
rate, “may have been derived from adjacent rocks, now concealed under
the Permian and New Red Sandstone.”

The Triassic Rocks.


A considerable portion of the Midland Counties of England is composed
of red sandstones and marls. The town of Birmingham stands upon, and is
surrounded by rocks of this character. They form the Triassic System of
geologists, the first of the four grand members of the Mesozoic series.

Strictly speaking, the title _Trias_ is a misnomer as applied to the
English development of the rocks of this system. The central member
of the typical German succession, the _Muschelkalk_, is wanting in
Britain; and only the upper and lower divisions, the so-called Keuper
and Bunter, are represented. The _Bunter_ or lower Trias, consists in
the Midland areas of a mass of pebble beds or conglomerate, usually
underlain and overlain by variegated sandstones. The _Keuper_ is formed
of a great thickness of red marly strata, with a thick sandstone
(_Waterstones_) at the base.

The following table shews the subdivisions of the Trias which have been
recognised in England, together with (_a_) their maximum thickness, and
(_b_) their thickness in the neighbourhood of Birmingham.


                                     Thickness    Thickness near
                                    in Cheshire.    Birmingham.
                                       Feet.           Feet.
  KEUPER RED MARLS (with the Upper
      Keuper Sandstone) f. 6.         3,000             700
  LOWER KEUPER SANDSTONE, f. 5.         450             200
  _Muschelkalk_                        (wanting in England).
  UPPER MOTTLED SANDSTONE, f. 3.        500             200
  PEBBLE BEDS, _or Bunter
      Conglomerate_, f. 2.              600             400
  LOWER MOTTLED SANDSTONE, f. 1.        400        (wanting.)

The Trias enters England on the south coast, between Torbay and
Exmouth. At the little watering-place of Budleigh Salterton there is a
bed of quartzite pebbles in the Trias 100 feet thick which is worthy
of study in connection with the great numbers of similar pebbles that
occur in the same strata round Birmingham. In West Somerset and Devon,
the Triassic strata are 3,500 feet in thickness. Their subdivisions
cannot be correlated with those of the Midlands, for they appear to
have been deposited in a separate basin, of which the Mendips, &c.,
still mark the northern boundary.

Crossing into Gloucestershire, we find the vale of the Severn composed
of Triassic marls, and thence northwards the “red rocks” broaden till
they form the plains of Cheshire and South Lancashire on the west,
and extend eastward to Warwick, Leicester, and Derby. From this great
central plain of our island a long strip of Triassic sandstones and
marls runs northwards, forming the Vale of Trent and the Vale of York,
until finally it reaches the coast between Redcar and Hartlepool. Along
the main line of outcrop--from the Malvern Hills to the mouth of the
Tees--the Triassic strata incline gently, or dip, to the south-east, at
from two to five degrees.

Of the two great divisions of the Trias, the lower (Bunter) is mainly
sandy; while the upper (Keuper) is chiefly a stiff marl or clay. One
result of this is that while the outcrop of the former is usually
barren, forming much heath or waste land, as Sherwood Forest, the
Keuper marls produce a rich soil, well fitted for the plough.

Owing to the soft nature of the strata, valleys are usually hollowed
out in the Lower and Upper Mottled Sandstones, while the Keuper marls
form an undulating plain. On the other hand the harder nature of the
Bunter pebble bed, and the Lower Keuper Sandstone, causes these two
rocks to form escarpments or lines of hills, parallel to each other;
the abrupt face generally looking west or north-west, while the gentle
slope is to the east or south-east, agreeing with the average dip.

THE LOWER RED AND MOTTLED SANDSTONE.--Round Bridgenorth this division
rests unconformably on Permian strata, and is about 650 feet thick. It
is a homogeneous sandstone, of reddish-brown, yellow, and bright red
colours, entirely devoid of pebbles. As we follow this stratum to the
east it decreases in thickness, being only 200 feet near Stourbridge.
East of the South Staffordshire field, the Lower Mottled Sandstone is
entirely absent, and the Bunter pebble beds repose directly upon the
Permian rocks. Geologists desirous of examining the “Lower Mottled”
should visit Kinver Edge, west of Stourbridge, where this rock is well
seen underlying the Bunter conglomerate. Its upper portion has here
been hardened by calcareous matter, and projects beyond the pebble
beds above. Caves, or “rock-houses,” have been excavated in the Edge,
and in a detached mass of sandstone called the Holy Austen Rock. The
Lower Mottled Sandstone is again visible on Whittington Common, between
Kinver and Stourbridge. It is everywhere quite unfossiliferous. “False
bedding” is especially characteristic of this division, but it is
common in all the Midland Triassic sandstones.

THE BUNTER CONGLOMERATE OR PEBBLE-BED occupies the surface of the
Birmingham area, along a line running from south-west to north-east.
It extends from Worcester, by Bridgnorth, Stourbridge, Cannock
Chase, and Sutton Park to Lichfield. At all these places it is seen
as a remarkable mass of rounded pebbles--mostly yellow, brown, or
liver-coloured quartzites--and attains a thickness of 300 feet at
Cannock Chase. West of Stourbridge the Conglomerate forms the “Ridge,”
and caps Kinver Edge, dipping east or south-east at from five to eight
degrees. Thence it is traceable northward by Upper Penn and Bushbury to
Cannock Chase, where it forms a wide undulating heathy moorland, six
miles in breadth from Bednall on the west to Rugeley on the east, and
is exposed in many gravel pits and other excavations. The Staffordshire
Coalfield lies like a great wedge between the Trias on its western and
eastern sides. Crossing over from Stourbridge, we again find the Bunter
Conglomerate or Pebble-beds extending between Harborne and Smethwick,
and thence it runs northward in a broad band across the western suburbs
of Birmingham, by Winson Green, Handsworth, Perry Barr, and Perry, to
Sutton Park (where its outcrop is 3½ miles wide), and on to Aldridge,
Wreford, Hopwas Wood, and Lichfield Racecourse. All along this line
the Pebble-beds rest on Permian marls, and their thickness at Barr
Beacon is about 400 feet. Good sections of the pebble-beds are rare on
the south-west or west of Birmingham, but in the north-west they are
well seen in a quarry south of Great Barr Station, and in one or two
sections near the Beacon. At Sutton, exposures along the new railway
lines to Lichfield and to Walsall have been numerous and good, and the
Quarry in the Park, close to Blackroot Pool, gives a vertical section
of thirty feet. Each section shows a mass of well-rounded hard pebbles,
which have been so pressed together during the earth-movements that
have taken place since their deposition that many are cracked, while
all bear white indentations. The Bunter Conglomerate contains no
fossils of contemporaneous age, but many species of shells have been
obtained from the hard, rounded lumps of rock of which it is composed.
These fossils being of necessity of the age of the rock-fragments in
which they are included, they furnish a clue to the sources from which
the pebble-beds were derived. The following list of these derivative
fossils will give some idea of the results which have already been

    ORDOVICIAN (in quartzite pebbles).--(_Arenig Beds._) _Lingula
    Lesueurii._ (This interesting brachiopod shell has not yet been
    found in its parent rock in England, though it is not uncommon
    in the _Gres Armoricain_ of Brittany, a quartzite on the same
    horizon as the Stiper stones); various lamellibranchs such as
    _Modiolopsis_, _Palaearca_, and _Lyrodesma_ occur.

    (_Caradoc and Bala Beds._)--Seven or eight species of
    brachiopods, of which the commonest is _Orthis Budleighensis_;
    a crinoid (_Glyptocrinus basalis_), &c.

    (_May Hill Sandstone._)--Lumps of coarse sandstone, identical
    lithologically with the rock which flanks the Lickey Hills,
    occur commonly; they contain numerous casts of _Stricklandinia
    lirata_, &c.

    DEVONIAN.--Nine or ten species of brachiopods (especially
    _Spirifera Verneuilii_). Remains of trilobites, such as
    _Phacops_ and _Homalonotus_ are not unfrequent.

    MOUNTAIN LIMESTONE.--Mr. Molyneux enumerates twenty-two species
    of mountain limestone fossils--brachiopods, corals, crinoids,
    &c.--which he obtained from the Bunter pebble-beds of Trentham.
    Near Birmingham, fragments of partly decomposed chert, in which
    the stems of crinoids are beautifully shown, are common in the
    same strata.

THE UPPER RED AND MOTTLED SANDSTONE.--Stourbridge stands on the bright
red sands of this division, which extend northward through Kingswinford
to Trysall and Tettenhall. South of Birmingham we find the same strata
at Harborne Heath and Mill--there is a good exposure underneath the
drift in Flavel’s brick pit at “California”--from which point we can
trace the “Upper Mottled” across the western part of Birmingham, by
Rotton Park Reservoir and the Botanical Gardens; the beautiful soft red
sandstone forming a strip about a mile in width between Spring Hill,
Hockley Brook, Aston Villa, and Birchfields on the west, to the foot of
Snow Hill, and Aston Park on the east. In the cemetery adjoining the
Great Western Station at Hockley, there is a grand section, forty feet
in height, where the incoherent sand is largely worked for moulding and
foundry purposes. It is also exposed in and round Aston Park.

THE LOWER KEUPER SANDSTONE.--The lower member of the Keuper is the most
consolidated part of the Triassic formation, being best known as a
tolerably hard sandstone, white or pink in colour, which often yields
good building stone.

The “basement beds” of the Keuper are certain coarse sandstones and
chocolate coloured marls seen in a pit at “California,” near Harborne.
Above these come massively-bedded sandstones, of which there is a good
exposure in the now disused quarry at Weoley Castle.

Commencing at Edgbaston, we can trace the Lower Keuper Sandstone
by the Five Ways, and across the central highest part of Birmingham
to Nechells, Gravelly Hill, and Erdington. Its lower boundary line,
where it reposes on the Bunter, may be indicated by a line drawn
from the junction of Monument Road with Hagley Road to the bottom of
Snow Hill, and thence to Aston Station. From this point it extends
eastward, for from one mile (Edgbaston) to half-a-mile (Aston). The
ridge on which stands the Town Hall, St. Philip’s Church, &c., (475
feet above sea-level) is formed by the Lower Keuper Sandstone, and
deep excavations for foundations in the centre of the town, frequently
disclose the thin-bedded, dull-coloured, pinkish sandstones (known
to workmen as “skerry”) which constitute the upper portion of this
rock. Its thickness under Birmingham may be estimated at 200 feet. The
average dip is from three to five degrees south-east. Similar beds are
exposed in the cutting at Bromsgrove Railway Station, and it was from a
quarry here (now closed) that the remarkable fossil fish was obtained,
which was described by Sir Philip Egerton as _Dipteronotus cyphus_.
From quarries at Coton End, Guy’s Cliff, Cubbington and Blakedown Hill,
near Warwick, bones and teeth of four species of the _Labyrinthodon_
have been obtained, and foot-prints of the same creature have been
found in the Lower Keuper Sandstone in many localities.

THE KEUPER RED MARL is the uppermost member of the Trias. Near
Birmingham it is abruptly separated from the Lower Keuper Sandstone
by a line of _fault_, which can be traced from Selly Oak northwards
to the junction of the Rea with the Tame. East of this line of fault,
the red marls extend for ten or twelve miles forming an undulating
fertile plain, on which stand Moseley, Smallheath, and Castle
Bromwich, Coleshill and Whitacre. The thickness of the Keuper Marls is
considerable. A boring in Smallheath Park was made to a depth of 440
feet entirely in such strata; but quite lately another boring at King’s
Heath has been continued to a depth of 700 feet. Gypsum is plentiful in
the red marls, occurring in white fibrous layers, but not of sufficient
thickness to be of any value in this district. At Droitwich (eighteen
miles south-west of Birmingham) the Keuper Marls contain a thick bed of
rock salt, which yields an inexhaustible supply of _brine_.

_The Upper Keuper Sandstone_ is a thin band of sandstone, not exceeding
thirty feet in thickness, which occurs irregularly in the upper part
of the Keuper Marls. It is well exposed at the entrance to the canal
tunnel at Shrewley Common, and in a small quarry at Rowington (thirteen
miles south-east of Birmingham), and also crops out on the hill sides
at many points in South Warwickshire. From this thin stratum, the
Rev. P. B. Brodie, F.G.S., has obtained a fossil fish (_Palæoniscus
superstes_), and the crustacean (_Estheria minuta_). Specimens of these
may be seen in the Warwick Museum, which contains the finest collection
of Triassic fossils possessed by any provincial museum.

HOW THE TRIASSIC ROCKS WERE FORMED.--According to the writer’s views,
the area now occupied by central England, alternated in condition
during the Carboniferous epoch, between a low plain and a shallow
sea. In the Permian period, land conditions prevailed, except in the
North and North Midland Counties, where a brackish sea somewhat like
the Baltic, it may be--occupied a shallow depression. In Triassic
times this central sea appears to have been completely cut off from
the open ocean, and to have formed a large inland lake, comparable
to the Caspian or the Dead Sea of our own day. The southern boundary
of this inland sea was formed by a ridge of old rocks which extended
from Charnwood by Hartshill and the Lickey to the Wrekin and Malvern
Hills. In the basin north of this axial ridge, all the subdivisions
of the Bunter and the Keuper were in turn deposited; and the cliffs
and reefs of the Palæozoic rocks of which this coastline was composed,
yielded large contributions to the pebble-beds, sands and marls, which
constitute the Trias. According to a theory originally advanced by
Professor Hull, and ably supported by Professor Bonney, the pebbles of
the Bunter were mainly derived from the Paleozoic Rocks of the N.W.
and N.E., some being possibly furnished by the ancient strata of N.W.

The waters of the Triassic sea were so overcharged with salts of iron,
that every grain of sand was encrusted, before its deposition, with a
pellicle of peroxide of iron: of chloride of sodium (common salt) and
sulphate of sodium (gypsum), there was also an excess, so that much was
deposited on the sea-floor, producing beds of rock-salt and of gypsum,
of considerable thickness. The presence of these mineral substances in
the water was prejudicial to life, so that--as in the Dead Sea, and in
Lake Utah to-day--few living creatures could inhabit the Triassic sea,
and fossils are consequently of extreme rarity in strata of this age.

_The Trias as a source of Water Supply._--The Triassic strata are
so porous, that they absorb a large proportion of the rain which
falls upon them, and they consequently form an underground reservoir
which, when tapped by wells or boreholes, is capable of yielding an
almost inexhaustible supply of good, though somewhat hard water. In
this way Birmingham receives three-fourths of its water from three
deep wells--two on the north-east of the town, at Aston and at Perry
respectively, and one on the south-west, near Selly Oak. These wells
extend to depths of 400 feet, passing through the Upper Mottled
Sandstone, and piercing the pebble beds, and the average supply of
water from each is three million gallons per day. The hardness varies
from nine to fifteen degrees. There are many other deep wells in and
round the West of Birmingham, and at Stourbridge, Wolverhampton, etc.,
which derive their water from the same source.

Liassic and Rhætic.


The Lias occupies a large area in the south and east of the Birmingham
District, and consists for the most part of the middle and lower
divisions. The highest position of the Lias is seen on the south and
south-eastern division of Warwickshire, the middle Lias forms the hills
projecting in spurs to the north-west, and the lower division extending
in the same direction, at a lower level, up to the southern edge of the

UPPER LIAS.--The Upper Lias is chiefly represented by a thin bed of
clay, with some characteristic fossils. It occurs on the hills of Fenny
Compton and elsewhere, and there is evidence to show that it formerly
capped the range of the Edge Hills adjacent, occupying its natural
position above the marlstone, or Middle Lias, of which they are mainly
composed. From Fenny Compton to Harbury, a good descending section may
be obtained from the marlstone (rock bed), through the underlying clays
and marly beds, through the “Lima Beds” and White Lias, to the New Red
Marls at Harbury.

MARLSTONE OR MIDDLE LIAS.--The Marlstone (rock bed) is largely
quarried on the Avon and Burton Dassett Hills. It forms a good
building stone, more or less indurated, of a green or yellow brown
colour, sometimes ferruginous. It forms a conspicuous range of hills
of moderate height of which Edge Hill is the highest, from which it
strikes southward towards Oxfordshire. The plain below is occupied
by the underlying division of the Lower Lias. In this county the
marlstone contains very few fossils, and those chiefly brachiopodous
shells belonging to the genus _Terebratula_. In most cases elsewhere
the Marlstone proper, or highest zone, is very fossiliferous, and
abounds in marine shells, which are usually well preserved. The sandy
beds immediately below are rarely exposed, but crop out in a lane near
Bitham House, where as usual they contain many fossils. The inferior
clays and marls are not visible except in some brick pits near Fenny
Compton and along the line of railway. These are very full of fossils
in the zone of _Ammonites Jamiesoni_ and _Ibex_, here nearly one
hundred feet thick, and especially at one horizon in a coarse, hard,
stony band which contains numerous corals towards the upper part of the
cutting, near the station.

LOWER LIAS.--For the most part this formation spreads over the
portion of the country on the north-east, east, south-east, south
and south-west of Warwick. A remarkably fine section is exposed in
the railway cutting near Harbury Station. This portion of the series
is also largely quarried at Rugby, and in other places south and
south-east of Stratford. The strata consist of beds of blue clay
or shale interstratified with beds of blue rubbly and argillaceous
limestone, much quarried for hydraulic lime. One good section of the
lime-yielding beds occurs at Messrs. Greaves and Lakin’s Quarries at
Stockton and Harbury. The lowest zones of the Lias are largely quarried
at Wilmcote, and may be seen at the remarkable outlier of Brown’s Wood,
near Henley-in-Arden, and at another (Copt Heath), near Knowle. These
two last are of special interest, because they shew the lowest beds of
the Lias (in connection with and passing into the Rhætics,) resting
immediately upon the New Red Marls. The thickness of the Lower Lias in
the county is above 600 feet; but only the inferior zones of _Ammonites
angulatus_ and _A. planorbis_ are laid open to any great extent. The
best sections of the _Lima_ beds (_A. angulatus_ zone) occur in the
railway cutting at Harbury, Stockton lime quarries, and the extensive
quarries at Newbold near Rugby. Fossils are not very numerous, but
the following occur:--_Gryphea incurva_, _Rhynchonella variabilis_,
_Ammonites angulatus_, _Pecten_, various species, _Lima gigantea_,
and bones and teeth of _Plesiosaurus_ and _Ichthyosaurus_. Fish are
comparatively rare, two or three only were found at Harbury and a very
few near Rugby.

The higher ground round Wilmcote and Binton is also capped by
these Lima beds; but the district is more or less affected by small
faults, so that certain beds in one contiguous quarry are absent in
another. The lower limestones (insect beds) are largely worked in this
locality, and are of much economical value. With the exception of
remains of insects and fragments of plants, the fossils are entirely
marine, _Ammonites planorbis_ and _A. Johnstoni_, being abundant
and characteristic. Crustacea belonging to the genera _Astacus_ and
_Eryon_, the latter of great size are not unfrequently met with.
Small fishes, _Pholidophorus Stricklandi_, and the larger _Dapedium_
and _Tetragonolepis_ more rarely occur. A fine example of the latter
is preserved in the Warwick Museum. The large _Enaliosaurians_ are
well represented by some fine specimens of _Ichthyosaurus_ and
_Plesiosaurus_; the _P. megacephalus_ in the Museum at Warwick being
nearly entire, measuring 14 feet 4 inches in length. Large masses
of driftwood and a few fronds of ferns are sometimes met with. But
perhaps the most interesting and remarkable fossils are the insects.
Twenty-four families and genera were determined more than twenty years
ago, since which time many important additions have been made. The
_Coleoptera_ and _Neuroptera_ are most numerous. Small beetles are
not unfrequently found entire. Among these may be noted the families
_Buprestidæ_, _Elateridæ_, _Carabidæ_, and others.

There are also remains of _Orthoptera_, _Homoptera_, _Libellulidæ_, and
some _Diptera_. Many of the _Neuroptera_ were evidently of gigantic
proportions, but most of the insects were of small size, and like the
associated plants, are indicative of a temperate climate. They are most
nearly allied to forms which now inhabit North America. There are few
extinct or unknown genera among them.

RHÆTIC SERIES.--The highest beds referred to this series consist of
certain hard, fine grained limestones, which, from their ordinary white
colour, have been termed _White Lias_. They occupy a considerable
area south and south-east of Warwick. They constitute a purely local
deposit, and are confined for the most part to this county and
Somersetshire. They are often close-grained and hard limestones, and
make a useful building material and a good lime. Their colour is mostly
white, with a yellow tinge, and occasionally pink and grey. Some
geologists consider these beds to belong to the “Rhætic Series,” others
to the passage beds between the Lias and the latter, while others still
class them with the Lias.

The undisputed Rhætic rocks lie between the White Lias and the
Triassic Marls. In Warwickshire they are rarely exposed, and then much
reduced in bulk, compared with their development in Gloucester and
Glamorgan. They may be seen to a limited extent below the White Lias
in the railway cutting at Harbury, where a band of yellowish sandstone
contains the small bivalved crustacean, _Estheria minuta_; and also at
the small outlier of Brown’s Wood, and at Stooper’s Wood, near Wooton
Wawen, where this sandstone occurs with inferior shelly limestones and
sandy bands, containing the usual Rhætic fossils, _e.g._, _Cardium
Rhæticum_, _Avicula contorta_, _Pleurophorus elongatus_, _Pecten
valoniensis_, and _Schizodus cloacinus_. The nearest exposure of the
Rhætic to Birmingham occurs round the fringe of an outlier of Lower
Lias resting on the Upper Red Marl near the village of Knowle. This
outlier is about a mile and a half long, by half a mile broad. Its
highest beds at Copt Heath contain _Ammonites planorbis_. The beds
referred to the Rhætic include a stratum of yellow micaceous sandstone
full of _Schizodus cloacinus_, which, though usually in the form
of casts, is sharp and well defined. The bone bed, though no where
exposed, is probably present in its normal position. A fine section,
with numerous characteristic Rhætic fossils was exposed on the railway
cutting at Summer Hill, between Stratford and Alcester. Rhætic black
shales were passed through at Snitterfield, in making a tunnel in
connection with the new reservoir for Stratford.

Glacial and Post Tertiary Deposits.


Post Tertiary Deposits are scattered profusely over the district
of which Birmingham is the centre, and present many problems of
too complicated a character to be discussed in the pages of this
guide. It must suffice to indicate a few of their chief exposures
and characteristics. The term “_Boulder Clay_” is used in this note
to denote a clay shown to be connected with the Glacial epoch, by
containing a greater or less number of erratic blocks; and in the
employment of the term, no theory regarding the method of formation of
the deposit will be implied.

The Post Tertiary deposits of the district may be arranged in the
following general order:--

I.--Lower boulder clays.

II.--Middle glacial clays, sands, and gravels.

III.--Upper boulder clays.

IV.--Post glacial clay, sands, and gravels.

The most complete section that has been found is at “California,” near

Resting upon the Bunter Sandstone, about 480 feet above the sea level,
is a _Lower boulder clay_, containing erratic boulders of slate,
felsite, quartzite, intermixed with blocks and stones of local origin.
Many of the erratics are angular, and some (especially the slates) are
finely striated. The whole deposit is unstratified and compact, and the
boulders are roughly pressed together, in every variety of position,
without any orderly arrangement. This boulder clay is succeeded by the
_Middle Sands and Gravels_ which are irregularly stratified and show
false bedding. Fragments of coal occur among the pebbles. The sands
and gravels dip rapidly to the S.W., and pass under an Upper boulder
clay. _The Upper Boulder Clay_ consists of a compact mass of clay with
erratics scattered through it; but the erratics are neither so abundant
nor so confusedly pressed together as in the lower bed. Granite has
been found, although rarely, associated with the travelled felsites and
quartzites, together with a few flints; and local stones and blocks
are also mixed up with the clay--the clay itself however largely
preponderating and being available for brick making.

The series is capped by a mixture of clay, sand, and gravel in
varying proportions, which fills many hollows that have been washed
out of the upper clay; and must be regarded as Post Glacial. Taking
the general divisions indicated by the California section, attention
may be directed to the following illustrative facts and sections.
Glacial striæ upon the surface of the rock have been noticed at Weoley
Hill Quarry close to California. The removal of a mass of clay, sand,
and gravel exposed a distinctly striated surface of hardened Bunter
Sandstone. The polished surface dips towards the south west, in which
direction the principal striæ run, although there are several cross
striæ. The complete section shews (_a_) striated and polished Bunter
(altitude 520 feet above sea level); (_b_) thin bed of marl; (_c_)
sands and gravels (Middle Glacial); (_d_) clay (Upper Boulder Clay).

A very large number of well-marked and finely smoothed and polished
grooves occur upon the blocks of native rock which are strewn over
the irregularly shaped mass of basalt constituting Rowley Hill,
Worcestershire. Isolated grooved blocks rest upon the surface of
the hill, having been carried by external force into their present
position; but there is also, at Rowley Hall Quarry, a kind of platform,
capping the solid mass of basalt, which is almost entirely composed of
blocks with smoothed and grooved surfaces, stiffly imbedded in clay.

The question has been raised whether, since the basalt readily
develops joints, these grooves may not be rudimentary joints, or
whether disintegration may not have taken place along certain lines
which have gradually become grooves. I entertain no doubt, however,
of their glacial origin. No other explanation than that the grooves
were the work of moving ice can account, I think, for their excellent
polish, their frequent parallelism, their adaptation to the hollows and
protuberances of the blocks they cross, and their predominant trend
from north-east to south-west. The absence of erratics from the boulder
clay in which the grooved basaltic blocks are embedded is evidence of
local ice action at Rowley Hill. It is notable also that angular blocks
of basalt from Rowley Hill have been found in Birmingham, blocks which
must have travelled at least six miles.

It is often difficult to decide the precise age of the boulder clays
of the district; and whether any individual bed is referred to the
upper or the lower series is more dependent upon the glacial theories
that may be adopted than upon any observations that can be made in
the field. A _Boulder Clay_, of a typical kind, has been exposed at
a brickyard, at the bottom of Oak Street, Wolverhampton. This clay
contains an extraordinary number and variety of erratic blocks, without
question from the Lake District and south of Scotland, a few flints,
together with pebbles from the Bunter beds. One of the sides of a
boulder of felsite, measuring 11 × 3 × 3ft., is flat and smooth, and
covered with parallel striæ. The sands and gravels rising in small
hillocks near the Cemetery, and slightly covering the clay of the
pit, are probably Middle glacial. A boulder clay, formerly exposed
at Icknield Street, Birmingham, while presenting the same physical
characteristics as the Wolverhampton clay, differed from it widely in
the nature of the embedded erratic blocks. Instead of having travelled
from the Lake District or Scotland, a large proportion were derived
from rocks that occur _in situ_ at the Berwyn and Arenig Hills. The
condition of the New Red Sandstone ridge, against which this boulder
clay rested, was remarkable. The sandstone rock was broken up, and
large fragments of it were lifted out of their position and thrust into
the middle of the drift.

The changes of level which occurred during the glacial epoch are shown
by the deposits at Frankley Hill. In the clays and sands cut through by
the Halesowen Railway only a few erratics (felsites) were found; but on
the summit of the section they are abundant and of large size (_e.g._,
4 × 4 × 2ft.) Professor Bonney, who has examined them, feels certain
they must have come from Wales, having seen nothing like them in the
Lake District. Their height is nearly 800ft. above the sea level. Were
these erratics brought by land ice, the alteration in the physical
geography of the country must have been enormous to have enabled a
glacier to have moved downwards over this point; were they dropped from
icebergs, the land must have been depressed to the extent of at least
900ft., to form a sea in which the bergs could have floated.

Turning to the _Middle Glacial Clays, Sands, and Gravels_, these may
be seen more or less developed in almost every section cut through
undulating ground; and they are occasionally twisted and contorted. In
the immediate neighbourhood of Birmingham they are not fossiliferous.

At Ketley, near Wellington (Shropshire) however, fossiliferous sands
and gravels occur, which I am inclined (provisionally) to assign to
this period. They rest upon a bed containing erratic blocks of granite,
and other rocks of northern origin; and I collected from them 13
species of mollusca. Only one species was peculiarly northern (_astarte
borealis_) but all in the group have an arctic range of habitat. The
elevation of these beds is about 357 feet above the sea.

At Fox Hall Field, New Lodge, Lilleshall (Shropshire) in a pit worked
for sand, 463 feet above the sea, Mr. Woodward discovered 21 species
of mollusca, three--viz., _Dentalium abyssorum_, _Natica affinis_, and
_Astarte borealis_--being characteristically arctic and extinct in
British waters.

_The Upper Boulder Clay_ is worked for bricks in many localities.
It is distinguished from the Lower Boulder Clay, by having erractic
blocks sparsely scattered through it. It is often very compact and
tenacious. No fossils have as yet been found in it; unless indeed a
clay derived from a drain in a street at Wolverhampton, in which I
detected fragments of _Tellina balthica_, the spine of an _Echinus_,
_Polymorphina lactea_, and _Polystomella crispa_, may be assigned to
this division of the epoch.

The extraordinary _dispersion of erratic blocks_ over the surface
of the ground remains to be noticed, and constitutes one of the most
remarkable phenomena in local glacial geology. I distinguish the
boulders resting on the surface of the ground from those embedded in
the clay beds, although it is of course possible and probable that the
clay has been largely denuded, and the boulders have thus been left
exposed. Many of these erratic blocks may therefore belong to the Lower
Boulder Clay; while others may have fallen from the icebergs which
during the proved subsidence of the land must have floated over the
“Midland” sea, and have been deposited in the Upper boulder clay, while
it was in process of accumulation.

How far the dispersion of erratics over the Midlands may be referred to
the ice sheet of some geologists, or to the icebergs of the Archipelago
period in the history of Great Britain, must, at present, be regarded
as an open question.

The Midland erratics have undoubtedly travelled from three distinct
regions, viz., (1) from Wales, (2) the western part of the Lake
district, and (3) Kirkcudbrightshire. Boulders from the more easterly
part of the Lake district, such as the Snap granite boulders, so
abundantly spread over Yorkshire, have not been found in this

The peculiar distribution of the Midland erratics is noteworthy.
Commencing at Bushbury Hill (a little to the north of Wolverhampton,
on the table land facing towards the N.W.) the Lake rocks and the
Scotch rocks--Criffell granites and Eskdale granites--are largely
intermingled. Journeying westwards, a stream of boulders from Wales
crosses the northern streams. On and around the Clent Hills (1023 feet)
south west of Birmingham, Welsh felsites are the only boulders to be
found. Birmingham itself being in the rear of the higher part of the
table land on which it stands, is in a kind of protected district, so
far as the northern stream of boulders is concerned, and the erratics
in its immediate vicinity are chiefly Welsh felsites; a few fragments
however of granite are occasionally found.

POST GLACIAL BEDS.--The most complete section of post glacial beds
in this locality was obtained during excavations made at Shustoke,
near Birmingham; when a bed of black peat, containing the remains of
_Elephas antiquus_, _Cervus elephas_, and _Bos primigenius_, with
hazel nuts and fragments of wood, was discovered 7ft. 6in. beneath the
surface. The section was as follows:--

  Soil                          1ft.  0in.
  Sandy marl                    1ft.  8in.
  Yellow clay (stiff)           3ft.  8in.
  Blue clay (stiff)             1ft.  2in.
  Black peat                    1ft. 10in.
  “Ballast” gravel and sand     3ft.  0in.
  Sandstone and marl.

The fossils found in the peat have been placed in the Geological
Museum of the Mason College.


Notes on the Igneous and Metamorphic Rocks of the Birmingham District.


The space available for some account of the crystalline rocks being
strictly limited, it would be useless to attempt anything more than
a brief general description of the most important and interesting
varieties. Fortunately there is abundance of material, for Birmingham,
as a central point, affords unusual facilities for the study of this
branch of petrology. Although the rocks here described appear to be
scattered over a rather wide area, it will be found that every locality
mentioned may not only be easily reached from one of the railway
stations, but that a good series of specimens may be collected and the
return journey made within the same day.

THE MALVERN HILLS.--It was clearly shown by Dr. Holl, in 1865, (Quar.
Jour. Geol. Soc., Vol. xxi.) that the central portion or axis of this
chain of hills consists of a great series of true crystalline schists,
among which the prevailing types are hornblendic and micaceous gneiss,
hornblende-schist, mica-schist, and a quartzo-felspathic rock, all of
which are more or less distinctly foliated. There is, however, great
variety in the relative proportions of the constituents; in many
places either the hornblende or the mica are nearly, or even quite
absent; the felspar and quartz then form the mass of the rock. In
the quarries on the east side of the North Hill, beautiful examples
of hornblende and felspar rock are abundant; they contain more or
less quartz, with a little mica, and occasionally pass by insensible
gradations from a well-marked gneissic structure into a coarsely
crystalline mass in which foliation is no longer apparent. These
latter are, however, exceptional cases, and there can, I think, be
no doubt that we have here, in the Midlands, a considerable exposure
of the oldest type of foliated crystalline schists, or as they are
now frequently called Pre-Cambrian or Archæan rocks. The rocks of the
North Hill are probably the oldest; they have been much disturbed, and
are generally the most coarsely crystalline of the series. The more
basic portions have suffered a considerable amount of alteration; the
secondary constituents, chlorite and epidote, become abundant, and
occasionally the hornblende has been completely replaced by the latter
mineral; the rock then becomes an epidote schist of a pale-yellowish
colour. In Swinyards Hill there is a micaceous gneiss with garnets,
and in Raggedstone Hill there are interesting varieties of contorted
mica-schist containing a large proportion of quartz. Dykes of intrusive
rocks occur in nearly all the hills, but become far more numerous
towards the north; they are very uniform in appearance, and are
probably altered dolerites or diorites; very few specimens have been
examined, and they belong to the former group. In the North Hill there
are some masses of true diorite, but their relation to the hornblendic
gneisses with which they are associated has not been clearly

MOUNT SORREL GRANITE.--The granite is of two varieties, red and
grey, the difference being due to the fact, that in the red masses,
the partially decomposed felspar has been coloured by ferric oxide.
The rock is a hornblendic granite, the constituents being quartz,
felspar, biotite, hornblende and titanite, with magnetite and a little
apatite. The felspars are orthoclase and plagioclase; the former is
much decomposed, while the plagioclase frequently remains clear, and
exhibits well its twin striation. Biotite was originally abundant,
but is very frequently replaced by a clear green substance, which
is strongly dichroic, the two colours being grass-green, and clear
yellow. The hornblende has been greatly decomposed; clear crystals
are, however, not uncommon, and exhibit the usual optical characters
of the mineral. The products of alteration are chlorite and epidote.
The titanite appears in reddish-brown grains, but is not very abundant.
In 1879, the writer discovered the junction of the granite with the
sedimentary rocks, and proved that the former was intrusive (Geol.
Mag. dec. ii., Vol. vi., p. 181). The junction occurs in Brazil
Wood, where there is a small quarry, in which granite veins may be
seen to penetrate the strata in various directions; a large mass of
granite is also within a few yards. Some of the phenomena of _contact
metamorphism_ may here be readily studied, the granite having converted
the slate into a crystalline micaceous schist, quite similar in
character to those produced under like conditions round the granite in
Cornwall and elsewhere. Small garnets occur in the altered slates, and
also in the granite close to the junction.

THE CHARNWOOD SYENITES.--The Syenites and other igneous rocks of
Charnwood, have been described by Messrs. Hill and Bonney (Quar. Jour.
Geol. Soc. Vol. xxxiv., p. 199.) The original constituents are felspar,
hornblende, quartz, apatite, ilmenite, magnetite and titanite. The
felspar is of two kinds, orthoclase and plagioclase, the former is very
turbid and decomposed, while the plagioclase is clear, and retains its
usual optical characters. The curious intercrystallization of quartz
and felspar, known as _micropegmatite_, is common in the masses of
syenite near Groby; the best examples, however, have been found by the
writer in the Markfield rock, where it appears to form a ground-mass in
which the larger crystals of orthoclase and plagioclase are enclosed.
A small portion of the hornblende is still characteristic, but the
greater portion appears in various stages of decomposition; the
alteration products being chlorite and epidote. Titanite is by no means
rare, and occurs in well formed twin crystals.

DIORITES OF ATHERSTONE AND NUNEATON.--A careful examination of many
specimens collected by the writer from the various masses marked in
the map 63 S.W. of the Geological Survey shows clearly that they are
diorites, the characteristic constituents being hornblende and a
triclinic felspar; these minerals, together with magnetite and apatite
are invariably present, and in addition, a little orthoclase is seldom
absent. The best specimen examined is from a quarry near Marston Jabet;
it is a fine-grained rock, similar to a basalt in external appearance,
but contains numerous crystals of hornblende and plagioclase which
are generally quite unaltered. The clear brown crystals of hornblende
are unusually well developed, and afford excellent opportunities of
examining their crystallographic and optical characters. There are also
present many grains of magnetite, and a few needles of apatite. The
only product of alteration is a little calcite in the spaces between
the crystals. Other specimens from the same quarry will perhaps give
a better idea of the general character of the rocks of the district,
and they possess a special interest, as they afford unusually good
examples of successive stages of alteration. In one specimen the
constituents are well preserved, the plagioclase is clear and exhibits
its characteristic twin striation; the hornblende is, for the most
part, unaltered, but is much fissured, and occasionally contains so
many cavities that the crystals are little more than skeletons. A
ground-mass in which the constituents were set has been highly altered,
and now consists of a fine granular substance, partly serpentinous,
with here and there a little calcite. A second example is quite
similar in texture to the last; the felspar, still recognisable as
triclinic, has been partially converted into a grey turbid substance.
The hornblende occurs in various stages of alteration; some crystals
are but slightly attacked, while others are to a considerable extent
replaced by a pale green serpentinous substance. The alteration has
followed the cleavage-lines and fractures, while the numerous cavities
just mentioned are also filled by the same substance. In a single slice
there may be seen almost every degree of change from a slight marginal
erosion to a mere skeleton of the original. Of the latter, however,
some little is always left; and whether the alteration be little or
great, the crystalline forms are perfectly preserved. In a third
specimen the alteration has proceeded still further, the whole of the
hornblende crystals having been completely converted into pale green
pseudomorphs; they were originally large and well developed, and their
forms are still perfectly sharp and distinct. The felspar is here quite
turbid and opaque, and the interstitial ground-mass is represented by

_Purley Park, near Atherstone._--The rock here contains, in addition to
the usual brown hornblende, many crystals and grains of clear yellowish
augite, and several pseudomorphs after olivine. The augite crystals
exhibit the usual forms, some being twins. The pseudomorphs after
olivine are quite similar to others observed in certain highly altered
dolerites, they consist of calcite or calcite and viridite; they are
numerous, and are generally larger than the crystals of augite or

_Quarry close to Atherstone._--This rock also contains both augite
and hornblende; and lastly, in the railway cutting at Chilvers Coton,
several interesting varieties of diorite may be found.

large quarry in Lawrence Hill, at the north end of the Wrekin, and
at Lea Rock on the Shrewsbury Road, are to be found some of the
most beautiful varieties of ancient volcanic glassy rocks hitherto
discovered in Britain. The rocks in their present condition do not
look like glass, owing to a process of devitrification, which they
have evidently undergone. There can, however, be no room for doubt
as to their original vitreous condition, for they exhibit, under the
microscope, certain peculiar perlitic and spherulitic varieties of
structure, associated with characteristic forms of microliths, which
are found only in the pitchstone and obsidian varieties of volcanic
glass. In the quarry in Lawrence Hill, thick beds of volcanic ashes and
agglomerates are to be seen dipping towards the north at a high angle,
and an examination of this hill and the Wrekin shows that they both
consist of a series of stratified ashes alternating with several flows
of rhyolite. One of the ash beds contains numerous spheroidal blocks
of thoroughly characteristic varieties of glassy rocks; they have not
yet been described, but it may here be stated that, in addition to
many typical varieties of known rhyolites, there are also included
among them some of the rarer glassy kinds described by Zirkel in his
Petrography of the 40th Parallel. Beautiful examples of the spherulitic
and perlitic varieties may be found at Lea Rock, and have been
described by the writer in the Quar. Jour. Geol. Soc. Vol. xxxiii., p.
449. It has been shown by Dr. Callaway, that all these rhyolites are
of Pre-Cambrian age; we have here, therefore, the clearest proof that,
during very early geological periods volcanic action was of the same
kind, and produced the same results, as in more recent times.

SOUTH STAFFORDSHIRE.--The igneous rocks of the South Staffordshire
coalfield belong to the basic series, and are, without exception,
dolerites or basalts, the latter being merely a fine grained variety of
the former. They have been intruded among the coal measures and shales,
and are frequently found in an excellent state of preservation. The
original mineral constituents are crystals, or crystalline grains of
triclinic felspar, augite, olivine, magnetite, ilmenite, and apatite.
These minerals are very frequently quite unaltered, with the exception
of the olivine, which is often partly converted into serpentine; this
is the pale green substance seen along the cracks, and around the sides
of the grains; generally, however, the decomposition has been continued
until the formation of complete serpentinous pseudomorphs after olivine
has been the result. The Hailstone Hill, near Rowley Church, is the
best locality for varieties in texture and composition, as also for
contemporaneous veins. In the large quarry there is a very coarsely
crystalline variety containing large flat plates of ilmenite, and here
also may be found some light-coloured veins in which orthoclase is
the predominant felspar. The writer has also found in the same quarry
vessicular and amygdaloidal varieties of the rock. It need scarcely be
mentioned that, minute details of structure and composition can only be
studied in thin slices under the microscope. Rocks of similar character
to the above occur in the following localities:--Pouk Hill, near
Walsall; Titterston Clee Hill (sheet 55, N.W.), Knowl Hill, near Kinlet
(sheet 55, N.E.), and Swinnerton Park, eight miles N.E. of Stafford.
For fuller descriptions of these rocks, see Allport, Quart. Jour. Geol.
Soc., Vol. xxx., p. 529.

Mining Statistics of the South Staffordshire Coalfield.


MINERALS WORKED.--The principal minerals worked within the limits of
the South Staffordshire Coalfield are coal, ironstone, and fireclay
from the Carboniferous formations, and limestone from the underlying
Silurian rocks.

THE COAL is bituminous, non-caking, and much of it contains a high
percentage of water and oxygen. Some of the seams produce excellent
house-coal, others manufacturing and steam coal.

THE IRONSTONE is an argillaceous carbonate of iron, occurring as
nodules in the roofs of the coal seams, or as thin beds within them.

THE FIRECLAY, particularly in the neighbourhood of Stourbridge, has a
high refractory power.

QUANTITY OF MINERALS RAISED.--The annual produce of minerals during the
last twenty years has remained without any considerable alteration. The
Government Mineral Statistics for 1885 are not yet published, but in
1884 the quantities of minerals raised in South Staffordshire Coalfield
were:--Coal, 9,688,047 tons; ironstone, 116,951 tons; fireclay, 205,320
tons; limestone (no statistics given). The respective values of these
minerals at the mines were estimated at:--coal, £2,785,313; ironstone,
£62,974; fireclay, £42,781.

The total number of persons employed at the mines during the same
period was 23,782.

DESTINATION OF THE MINERALS.--The greater part of the coal is
consumed in the district for house purposes, for steam raising, for
the manufacture of bricks, pottery, glass, salt, &c. The remainder is
carried out of the coalfield into the south and south-western districts
of England by the London and North Western, Great Western, and Midland
Railway Companies, for house and steam purposes. The gas coals and
coke used in the Birmingham district are not the product of the South
Staffordshire Coalmeasures, but are brought principally from North
Staffordshire, Derbyshire, and Yorkshire.

The whole of the ironstone raised is smelted within the district, in
addition to large quantities of iron ore (hydrated oxide) brought from
the Northampton and North Staffordshire mines. The manufacture of pig
iron has within the last decade decreased to such an extent that less
than one-third of the existing furnaces of South Staffordshire are at
present in blast.

The quantity of pig produced in the coalfield in 1884, was 356,873
tons; in the reduction of which 810,936 tons of coal (including coal
converted into coke) were used, or about 45½ cwts. of coal to one ton
of pig iron. The whole of the pig iron is retained in the district. The
finished iron trade retains its importance, more than one-third of the
existing puddling furnaces and rolling mills in Great Britain occur
within the limits of the South Staffordshire Coalfield.

The finished iron is produced from local pig iron, and from pig iron
brought from Derbyshire, Yorkshire, and North Staffordshire. The
steel production in South Staffordshire is gradually increasing. The
processes adopted are those known as the Bessemer, Gilchrist and open

The South Staffordshire fireclay is worked principally in the
neighbourhood of Brettle Lane and Stourbridge, and is employed in the
production of firebricks, gas retorts, pottery, etc. Much also is
conveyed into other districts in a raw condition for pottery purposes.

The Silurian limestone is worked partly in open work in the
neighbourhood of Dudley, and partly by ordinary underground mining
operations at the Wren’s Nest, Sedgley, and at Walsall.

are several noteworthy features in the mining of South Staffordshire.
A stranger is especially impressed with the large number of separate
collieries in working (about 600) in proportion to the quantity
of mineral raised. This peculiarity is due essentially to the
insignificant depth at which the minerals occur below the surface
(indeed, at Foxyard, near Tipton, coal has long been quarried in an
outcrop of the 10 yard seam). This “Shallow Mining” has passed its
meridian. The future mining of the district is forecast by those
remarkable operations on the “red ground,” forming the eastern side
of the coalfield. The most recently opened seam in the red ground is
at Hampstead, three miles north of Birmingham, where coal mining is
carried on below the Permian and Triassic, at a depth of more than 600

Another feature of the mining is the unique South Staffordshire mode of
getting coal in the ten yard seam, called “Square Work.” This method
has met with much condemnation from strangers, but after trial of
other methods, it still dominates. A further and most strongly marked
peculiarity of the South Staffordshire area is the tendency of some of
the Black Country coals to spontaneous ignition. Much coal has thus in
times past been sacrificed; but a better acquaintance with the causes
of this phenomenon has led to measures which have reduced and which
must still further reduce this sacrifice of wealth.

MINES’ DRAINAGE.--In the Tipton and Old Hill districts many of the
coal mines are water-logged. In 1873 a Parliamentary Commission however
was appointed to drain this area, and was empowered to levy rates to
defray the drainage expenses. The drainage area under the direction
of this Mines’ Drainage Commission is 50 square miles. The principal
pumping stations are the Moat, the Stoneheath Station, and the Bradley
Station. The Bradley pumping engines (a quarter of a mile from Moxley
on the Great Western Railway) are of the compound type having 52-inch
and 90-inch steam cylinders. These engines, with a 10 feet stroke,
and six strokes per minute, work two 27-inch plunger pumps, and raise
from a depth of 126 yards more than 4,000,000 gallons of water per 24
hours. As a result of this gallant effort to recover these water-logged
minerals, the number of pumping stations has been gradually reduced in
the Tipton district from 77 in 1873 to 10 in 1885, and the quantity
of water from 23,000,000 to 10,000,000 of gallons daily. To meet the
inevitable expenses, a rate of 9d. per statute ton is levied on all
coals, slack, and ironstone; 3d. per statute ton on all fireclay
and limestone, and 1d. per statute ton for surface drainage on all
minerals, raised in the Tipton district. In the Old Hill district a
much lower mines’-drainage rate is collected.



_Fundamental Gneissic and Volcanic Rocks._

Phillips, Prof., “On the Geology of the Malvern and Abberley Hills.”
Memoirs of the Geological Survey, Vol. ii., 1848.

Holl, Dr. H. B., “On the Geology and Structure of the Malvern Hills.”
Quart. Journal Geol. Soc., Vol. xxi., p. 72.

Callaway, Dr. C., “On a second Pre-Cambrian Group in the Malvern
Hills.” Q. J. G. S., 1880, Nov. 1880.

Prof. T. G. Bonney, LL.D., and Rev. W. Hill, M.A. “On the
Pre-Carboniferous Rocks of Charnwood Forest.” Q. J. G. S., 1877, p.
754, &c.

Allport. S., “Ancient Devitrified Pitchstones and Perlites from Lower
Silurian District of Shropshire.” Quart. Journ. Geol. Soc., 1877, p.

Callaway, Dr. Chas., “The Pre-Cambrian Rocks of Shropshire.” Quart.
Jour. Geol. Soc. 1879, p. 643; ibid, 1882, p. 120.

_Cambrian Formations._

Prof. Phillips, “Geology of Malvern and Abberley Hills.” See above.

Holl, Dr. H., “Geology and Structure of the Malvern Hills.” See above.

Callaway, Dr. C., “On a new Area of Upper Cambrian Rocks in South
Shropshire.” Q. J. G. S., 1877. p. 652.

T. S. Houghton., M.A., F.G.S. “Note on the Age of the Quartzite of the
Lickey.” Proceedings Birmingham Philosophical Society, 1881-2, p. 206.

Prof. C. Lapworth, “On the Discovery of Cambrian Rocks in the
neighbourhood of Birmingham;” ibid, p. 234. See also Geological
Magazine, 1882, p. 563; ibid, July, 1886.

W. Jerome Harrison, F.G.S., “On the Pre-Carboniferous Floor of the
Midlands.” Midland Naturalist, 1855, p. 38.

_Silurian Rocks._

Sir R. J. Murchison, “Silurian System,” p. 408, and 480.

J. Beete Jukes, F.R.S. “The Geology of the South Staffordshire
Coalfield.” 2nd Ed., p. 145 et seq.

_Carboniferous Rocks._

Sir R. J. Murchison, “Silurian System,” p. 463.

J. Beete Jukes, F.R.S. “The Geology of the South Staffordshire
Coalfields.” 2nd Edition; see also Jukes, “On the Geological Structure
of South Staffordshire Coalfield.” Birmingham and Midland and Hardware
District, 1866, p. 1.

Howell, H., F.G.S., &c. “The Geology of the Warwickshire Coalfield.”
Mem. Geol. Survey, 1859.

_Permian and Triassic Rocks._

Hull, Prof., M.A., F.R.S. “Triassic and Permian Rocks of the Midlands.”
Memoirs Geol. Survey.

Sir And. Ramsay, F.R.S., “On the occurrence of Angular boulders in the
Permian Breccia of Shropshire and Worcestershire.” Quart. Jour. Geol.
Soc., 1855, p. 185.

Rev. P. B. Brodie, “Upper Keuper Sandstone of Warwickshire.” Journ.
Geol. Soc., Vol. xii., p. 374.

Prof. L. C. Miall, “Labyrinthodonts from the Keuper Sandstone, in the
Warwick Museum.” Journ. Geol. Soc., Vol. xxx., p. 417.

W. J. Harrison, “On the Quartzite Pebbles contained in the Triassic
Strata of England, and on their Derivation from an Ancient Land Barrier
in Central England.” Proc. Birmingham Phil. Soc., Vol. iii., p. 157.

Prof. T. G. Bonney, “On the Pebbles in the Bunter Beds.” Geol. Mag. for
1880, p. 404.

Thos. Davidson, “Brachiopoda of the Budleigh-Salterton Pebble Bed.” Q.
J. G. S., Vol. xxvi., p. 70. 1870.

_Liassic and Rhætic Rocks._

Rev. P. B. Brodie, “Lias Outliers at Knowle and Wooton Wawen.” Journ.
Geol. Soc., Vol. xxi., p. 159. 1865.

R. F. Tomes, “Corals of the Lias.” Journ. Geol. Soc., Vol. xxxiv., p.
179. 1878.

W. J. Harrison, “The Rhætic Section at Dunhampstead, near Droitwich.”
Proc. Dudley Geol. Soc., Vol. iii., p. 115.

_Glacial and Post Tertiary Formations._

“The Direction and Limits of Dispersion, etc., of the Erratic Blocks
of the West of England and East of Wales,” by D. Mackintosh, F.G.S.
Quarterly Journal Geological Society, Vol. xxxv., p. 425.

“The Correlation of the Drift Deposits of the N.W. of England, with
those of the Midland and Eastern Counties,” by D. Mackintosh, ibid,
Vol. xxxvi., p. 178.

“Post Tertiary Beds of the Midland District,” by H. W. Crosskey, LL.D.,
and C. J. Woodward. Proceedings of the Birmingham Natural History
Society, 1873, p. 43.

“On a Section of Glacial Drift, recently exposed in Icknield Street,
Birmingham.” By H. W. Crosskey. Proceedings of Philosophical Society of
Birmingham. Vol. iii. p. 209.

“The Grooved Blocks and Boulder Clays of Rowley Hill.” By H. W.
Crosskey. Ibid, Vol. iii., p. 459; and Vol. iv., p. 69.

“Reports of the Committee of the British Association on the
Distribution, etc., of Erratic Blocks; drawn up by H. W. Crosskey.”

“The Geological Section along the West Suburban Railway from Birmingham
to King’s Norton.” By F. W. Martin. Proceedings of Philosophical
Society of Birmingham, Vol. iv., p. 257.


S. Allport, F.G.S., “Diorites of E. Warwickshire Coalfield.” Q. J. G. S.

S. Allport, F.G.S., “Carboniferous Dolerites.” Q. J. G. S., xxx., p.

S. Allport, F.G.S., “Vitreous Rocks of the Wrekin,” ibid, xxxiii., 449.

See also the Papers by Professor Phillips, Dr. Holl, and Dr. C.
Callaway, Rev. Professor Bonney and Rev. T. Hill, cited above.

T. H. Waller, B.Sc., “Observations on the Structure of the Rowley Rag.”
Midland Naturalist, 1885, p. 261.

_Maps of Birmingham District._

Published by H.M. Geological Survey.

62--S.E. Birmingham.

62--N.W. Penkridge.

63--N.W. Market Bosworth.

53--N.W. Coventry.

54--N.W. Droitwich.

62--S.W. Dudley.

62--N.E. Lichfield.

63--S.W. Nuneaton.

54--N.E. Henley-in-Arden.

       *       *       *       *       *

NOTE.--The main outlines and colors of the formations &c., in the
accompanying Geological Sketch-Map correspond with those of the above
mentioned one inch Survey Maps of the District.





It is believed that this is the first attempt to give a connected
account of the Zoology of the neighbourhood of Birmingham, although the
Botany of the District has long attracted diligent and enthusiastic
workers. The subject, however, has not been neglected, and past and
present members of the Birmingham Natural History and Microscopical
Society, and other naturalists, have from time to time made public, in
the _Midland Naturalist_ and elsewhere, their observations on the more
important classes of the animal kingdom. Some of the classes in the
be regretted) have been almost entirely neglected.

The limited amount of space allotted to Zoology in the present volume
and the limited amount of time at the disposal of the contributors
have prevented the presentation of complete lists in all the divisions
selected, although the Editor believes that the various papers now
submitted furnish--so far as they go--a very fair, if not an exhaustive
account of our local fauna. It would have been desirable to have
discussed, more fully than is done by the various contributors, the
question of the Geographical distribution of animals in the district,
but this question, for the reasons above stated, must be left until
another occasion. The division of the MICROSCOPIC FAUNA has been made
somewhat arbitrarily, in order to meet local circumstances. It is hoped
that at some future time these papers may be extended, and become the
foundation for a complete record of the Zoology of the district.

Without any invidious comparison, the Editor may say that, in the
domain of local zoology, by far the most systematic study has been
that devoted during many years by Mr. Thomas Bolton, F.R.M.S., to the
microscopic fauna of the neighbourhood. The number of new species which
this able and industrious naturalist has added to science, probably
equals if not exceeds that of the discoveries recorded in any other
part of England during the time Mr. Bolton has been an observer.
Moreover, his novel and successful method of disseminating these
organisms among microscopists, has contributed largely to scientific
knowledge, not only in England, but on the Continent, and even in

Although not coming within the category of the local fauna, very fine
collections of the classes ECHINODERMATA and CRUSTACEA have been made
by Mr. G. Sherriff Tye, of Richmond Road, Handsworth, who will be happy
to show the same to members of the British Association. His excellent
collection of MOLLUSCA, many of which are noticed in this volume, will
also be on view.

The Entomological collection made by Mr. W. G. Blatch--the work of a
lifetime--many specimens of which are referred to in this volume, will
similarly be on view, on application to Mr. Blatch, at Green Lane,
Small Heath. It is right to state that this naturalist has added very
many new species to the fauna of the district. The Coleoptera occurring
in the Midlands will be exhibited by Mr. Blatch in Bingley Hall.

The collection of local fishes taken by members of the Birmingham and
Midland Piscatorial Association (established in 1879) of which Mr.
James Gregory is Honorary Secretary, contains some very handsome and
well-mounted specimens which may ordinarily be seen in the Society’s
Room, at the Grand Hotel, on application to Mr. Field, the proprietor.
The collection for the present forms part of the Exhibition in Bingley
Hall. It should be mentioned that this Association has done good work
in stocking the River Trent with about 35,000 Trout fry (_Salmo fario_)
during the last few years.

The Editor offers no apology for mentioning the exceptionally fine
Ornithological collection of Mr. R. W. Chase, President of the
Birmingham Natural History and Microscopical Society. The collection
comprises, in sequence, the eggs, and the birds in various stages
of growth towards maturity. The specimens are mounted so as to show
instructively the surroundings of the various birds as seen in their
natural habitats. Mr. Chase will be happy to show his collection to
members of the British Association, on application at his residence,
Southfield, 7, Edgbaston Road, Edgbaston.

Although Birmingham is nearly the central part of England, and thus
farthest removed from the sea, it may not be uninteresting to state
that some attention has been given to Marine Zoology, the Birmingham
Natural History and Microscopical Society having several times made
excursions to parts of the coast for the purpose of dredging specimens.
The PENNATULIDA, dredged by the Society, at Oban, in 1881, were
described by Professor A. Milnes Marshall, M.D., D.Sc., F.R.S., and
Mr. W. P. Marshall, M.I.C.E., in a Report, with illustrations by the
authors, published in the “Midland Naturalist” for 1882, which gained
the Darwin Gold Medal, awarded by the Midland Union of Natural History
Societies, at the sixth annual meeting, held at Tamworth, in 1883. The
specimens may be seen in the annexe of the Exhibition, at Bingley Hall.

The limit of radius of about twenty miles round Birmingham, including
parts of the counties of Warwick, Worcester, and Stafford, chosen
by the botanists who have contributed to the present work, has been
generally accepted by the zoologists except in the division of the
MOLLUSCA, which is mainly confined to a radius of twelve miles, as
fixed by local Conchologists several years ago. Some latitude has
however been allowed, to meet exceptional cases, necessitated by the
wider range of animals as compared with that of plants.

The thanks of the Editor are due to the various local contributors,
and especially to Mr. E. de Hamel, late President of the Tamworth
Natural History Society, for his kind co-operation in furnishing the
chapter on Mammals and Reptiles. In strict order of classification,
the division of Reptiles should have followed that of Birds, but
for convenience in the present arrangement it has not been thought
desirable to separate this chapter.


Mammals and Reptiles.



The district around Birmingham is admirably suited for our native
animals, abounding as it does with fertile and well-watered valleys,
wild moorlands, and extensive woods; on the other hand, its large
population renders the prolonged existence of individual and striking
rarities well-nigh impossible.

The value of the matter contained in this chapter has been much
enhanced by the personal observations of many of the best Midland


Adopting the late Professor Bell’s classification of British
quadrupeds and reptiles, the Bats come first under consideration; and
out of the fourteen species described by him, no fewer than nine are
to be found in this district. The Noctule or Great Bat, _Scotophilus
noctula_, is the largest of our British species, and is characterised
by its lofty flight. There is a colony of these Bats in the roof of
Cliff Hall, near Kingsbury, and another in a hollow of a lime tree in
the Moat House Avenue, Tamworth. The Hairy-armed Bat, _S. Leisleri_,
which has a zig-zag flight, occurs on the Warwickshire Avon. The
Common Bat, or Flittermouse, _S. pipistrellus_, is often seen flying
near buildings in broad daylight, and secretes itself in crevices.
The Reddish-grey Bat, _Vespertilio nattereri_, is found in roofs of
churches and similar buildings. Daubenton’s Bat, _V. Daubentonii_,
flies close to the surface of water, and has been seen flying both at
mid-day and dusk over the River Anker at Tamworth, and is abundant
at Stratford-on-Avon; it hides in trees and buildings. The Whiskered
Bat, _V. mystacinus_, frequents the sheltered side of high hedges, and
secretes itself in any convenient chink. The Long-eared Bat, _Plecotus
auritus_, possesses ears nearly as long as its head and body combined,
and is generally distributed; it collects in clusters under tiled roofs
and in church towers. The Barbastelle Bat, _Barbastellus Daubentonii_,
is not uncommon in Warwickshire; it flutters lazily round moving
objects, and hides in crevices. The last local species is the Lesser
Horse-shoe Bat, _Rhinolophus hipposideros_, which is gregarious, and
haunts roofs of houses; it is easily distinguished by its curious nasal


The Hedgehog, _Erinaceus Europæus_, common everywhere, hibernates in
a nest of leaves. The Mole, _Talpa Europæa_; abundant, pied and light
coloured varieties plentiful. The Common Shrew, _Sorex vulgaris_,
often, found dead on pathways. The Water Shrew, _S. fodiens_, is
more rare, but has been found near Tamworth, at Great Barr, and in
the Birmingham Botanical Gardens. The Lesser Shrew, _S. pygmæus_, is
omitted, as it is now generally considered to be but a variety of _S.


The Badger or Brock, _Meles taxus_, whilst rare, is very equally
distributed over the district. On April 14th, 1877, one was obtained
in the Foxhole Hill, in Bentley Big wood, near Atherstone; a female
and three young ones were taken alive in the spring of 1884, in a
wood, near Croxall; there are some more badgers in the same wood this
year, 1886. In March, 1885, a single one was captured at Bentley,
near Redditch; the keeper at Beaudesert reports that they are still
plentiful on Cannock Chase. The Otter, _Lutra vulgaris_, like the
Badger, though rare, still frequently occurs in the Midlands,
especially on the rivers Anker, Tame, and Trent, and their tributaries;
as well as the Warwickshire Avon. On the Tame, a few years since, a
female Otter and brood of young ones was seen several times swimming
near an osier bed in the Cliff meadows; another was shot when crossing
the river at the back of Broad Island, near Tamworth; two young ones
were killed in a hay field, close by Hopwas Wood; and a large Otter was
found in a brook at Wigginton, a mile from the river, and destroyed
after a desperate encounter; still another was seen trotting along the
banks of the Tame, close by the town of Tamworth; while the largest
Otter known to have been taken in the river Avon was captured on the
first of June, 1886, at its junction with the river Arrow; it weighed
28lbs. The Weasel, _Mustela vulgaris_, and the Stoat, _M. erminea_,
are both plentiful. The Polecat or Fitchet, _M. putorius_, is becoming
decidedly rare, only three having been recorded in the district during
the last few years; the first of these occurred at Alvecote Wood, the
second at Hints, in the neighbourhood of Tamworth, and the third at
Merivale, near Atherstone. The Pine Marten, _Martes abietum_, although
believed now to be absolutely extinct in the Midlands, used to be found
in Needwood Forest, and a specimen taken many years ago near Rugeley is
now in the possession of Mr. R. W. Chase. The Fox, _Vulpes vulgaris_,
being strictly preserved, is sufficiently abundant.


The Squirrel, _Sciurus vulgaris_, is thinly distributed, and may
occasionally be seen in most of the large woods, as for instance, those
in Sutton, Hagley, and Arbury Parks, where the dreys are built on the
forked branches of the trees. The Dormouse, _Myoxus avellanarius_,
is also rare, but is occasionally met with by hedgers, when dressing
fences. As it is semi-gregarious, when one is found more may be
expected. The nest is built of grass, compact, globular, about five
inches in diameter, with the entrance near the base. A nest was taken
at Cofton Reservoir, near Barnt Green, in April, 1885. The Harvest
Mouse, _Mus minutus_, is the smallest of our quadrupeds, building a
small round and firm nest among the ears of corn, or stems of reeds. It
is generally distributed, and has been taken near Stratford-on-Avon,
Merivale and Atherstone. The long-tailed Field Mouse, _M. sylvaticus_,
is plentiful, and often turned up by the spade or plough. The Common
Mouse, _M. musculus_, abundant in buildings. The Black Rat, _M.
rattus_, although rare, is still to be found in small colonies,
generally in the cellars of large towns, where it is comparatively
secure from the attacks of its greatest enemy and destroyer, the Brown
Rat. A single recent example has been taken within the last six months
at New Parks, near Leicester, and is now in the possession of Mr. F.
T. Mott. The rarity of the occurrence justifies this record, although
the locality is outside the radius agreed upon. The Brown Rat, _M.
decumanus_ is abundant in both buildings and hedgerows. The Water Vole,
_Arvicola amphibius_, better known as the Water Rat, is common on all
the streams of the Midlands. The common Field-Vole, _A. agrestis_, is
plentiful in the meadows, where their nests are frequently exposed by
the mowers. The Red Field or Bank-Vole, _A. glareolus_, is much more
rare and distinguished from the last species, by its rich chestnut fur;
several of these were taken at Belvoir Castle, in July, 1885. The Hare,
_Lepus timidus_, and the Rabbit, _L. cuniculus_, have been greatly
reduced in numbers since the passing of the Hares and Rabbits Bill in


The Red Deer, _Cervus elaphus_, as recently as 1800, roamed wild over
Cannock Chase and Needwood Forest, but is now confined to the areas of
the large parks, such as Gopsall and Beaudesert. The Fallow Deer, _C.
dama_, formerly existed in thousands on Cannock Chase, and is now the
chief ornament of the parks. The Roe Deer, _Capreolus caprea_, was also
common, but has become extinct. The Wild Cattle, _Bos taurus_, under
the fostering care of the Lords Ferrars, at Chartley, near Stafford,
still constitute the greatest curiosity among the Midland mammals.
Garner, in his history of Staffordshire, relates that these animals at
one time roamed free over Needwood Forest, and how, in the thirteenth
century, William de Ferrariis enclosed a thousand acres of high-lying
moorland, the turf of which is in the same condition now as then, and
within this enclosure the animals are maintained in their pristine
purity. At the present time this herd consists of about thirty head,
comprising three bulls, the oldest aged nine years, a magnificent
beast, with deep chest, black muzzle and ears, black-tipped,
wide-spreading horns, and forefeet also flecked with black, the
prevailing colour being a rich creamy white. So sensitive are these
cattle, as the result of their high breeding, that calves unduly
handled are forsaken by their mothers; and older beasts, if subjected
to forcible restraint, will often, as the keeper put it to the writer,
“just wag their tails and die.” When the calves are with them the cows
are dangerous to approach.


Before leaving the local mammals, the celebrated red breed of Tamworth
Pigs, _Sus scrofa_, deserves mention as one of the best, most useful,
and healthy of the many well-known kinds; but there is no reason to
suppose that it, any more than the others, can claim descent from the
reputed Wild Pigs of Needwood.



The Sand Lizard, _Lacerta agilis_, occurs in Leicestershire and
Worcestershire, and is to be met with on Cannock Chase and similar
localities. The Viviparous Lizard, _Zootoca vivipara_, is found in
Sutton Park, is smaller and more active than the Sand Lizard, and
differs from that species inasmuch as the young are born alive.


The Blindworm, _Anguis fragilis_, is not infrequent, specimens have
been obtained at Sutton Park, Merivale, Baddesley Ensor, Beaudesert,
the Forest of Wyre and Habberley Valley, near Kidderminster.


The Ringed Snake, _Natrix torquata_, is seldom seen in the
neighbourhood of Tamworth--although on one occasion the occupants of a
boat on the river Anker saw one of these snakes glide down the bank and
swim towards them--it is common in Merivale Park, occasionally found in
Sutton Park, and near Dudley. The Viper or Adder, _Pelias berus_, our
only poisonous reptile, is locally common, but generally rare; a large
number were killed in Sutton Park during the summer of 1884; it is
plentiful on Chartley Moss, Cannock Chase, and in the Forest of Wyre.
The Viper is shorter and thicker than the Common Snake, and easily
distinguished by the V shaped marking on the head.


The Common Frog, _Rana temporaria_, is very abundant, and may be
seen in hundreds in the ditches during March. The Common Toad, _Bufo
vulgaris_, is also generally distributed.


The Common Warty-Newt, _Triton cristatus_, may be found in ponds
throughout the district. The Smooth-Newt, _Lissotriton punctatus_, is a
habitant of every clear horsepond, where it can be seen either basking
on the bottom, or rising to the surface for air; this species often
leaves the water, and hides under stones.




The district surrounding Birmingham does not present any striking
or special feature to the ornithologist; but owing to its varied
character, comprising as it does hill and dale, with considerable
stretches of moorland and a plentiful supply of water, in rivers,
reservoirs and pools, it forms haunts particularly attractive to birds.

The number of local species recorded is large, consisting of about
sixty residents, forty-two migrants, and eighty occasional and rare
visitors; making a total of one hundred and eighty-two species.

The large number of marine or littoral species occurring so far inland
is an interesting fact to be noted, and from the records of such
species as the Curlew Sandpiper, Turnstone, Ring Dotterel, Common and
Arctic Terns, much valuable information might be brought to bear upon
some of the knotty problems of migration. It is principally during
autumn that such species are noticed, and invariably the examples
obtained are immature, or birds of the year.

The classification and synonymy used in this brief summary is in
accordance with the fourth edition of “Yarrell’s British Birds.”


FALCONIDÆ.--Golden Eagle, _Aquila chrysaetus_, has occurred at
Needwood. White-tailed Eagle, _Haliætus albicilla_, has occurred at
Cannock Chase. Osprey, _Pandion haliætus_, very rare; has occurred
at Witton, and near Lichfield. Peregrine Falcon, _Falco peregrinus_,
rare visitor; one shot at Olton, near Solihull, in December 1880; it
has also occurred at Packington, Water Orton, and Polesworth, near
Tamworth. Hobby, _F. subbuteo_, frequently taken by the birdcatchers
in their nets. It has bred in Warwickshire. Merlin, _F. æsalon_,
not common; more frequently observed in the autumn. Kestrel, _F.
tinnunculus_, common and generally distributed. Sparrow Hawk,
_Accipiter nisus_, common. Kite, _Milvus ictinus_, has occurred at
Polesworth, near Tamworth. Common Buzzard, _Buteo vulgaris_, an
occasional visitor; has occurred at Alcester and Sutton Coldfield.
Rough-legged Buzzard, _B. lagopus_, very rare; twice obtained in the
neighbourhood of Coleshill. Honey Buzzard, _Pernis apivorus_, very
rare; has occurred at Stoneleigh. Hen Harrier, _Circus cyaneus_, a rare
visitor; has occurred at Alcester. Marsh Harrier, _C. æruginosus_, very
rare; has been obtained at Elford, near Tamworth.

STRIGIDÆ.--Tawny Owl, _Strix aluco_, fairly common in wooded districts.
Long-eared Owl, _Asio otus_, fairly abundant and breeds here.
Short-eared Owl, _A. accipitrinus_, an autumn migrant. Barn Owl, _Aluco
flammeus_, abundant.


LANIIDÆ.--Great Grey Shrike, _Lanius excubitor_, frequently occurs
during autumn and winter; it has been taken at Wylde Green, November
14th, 1871, and at Rubery Hill, October 31st, 1881. Red-backed Shrike,
_L. collurio_, generally distributed and breeds here.

MUSCICAPIDÆ.--Spotted Flycatcher, _Muscicapa grisola_, a common summer
visitor. Pied Flycatcher, _M. atricapilla_, rare.

ORIOLIDÆ.--Golden Oriole, _Oriolus galbula_, one was obtained at
Barton, near Tamworth.--“Zoologist,” 1871, p. 2639.

CINCLIDÆ.--Dipper, _Cinclus aquaticus_, very rare in the district; one
was shot at Handsworth, January 12th, 1882.

TURDIDÆ.--Missel Thrush, _Turdus viscivorus_, common and breeds
here. Song Thrush, _T. musicus_, common. Redwing, _T. iliacus_,
winter visitor. Fieldfare, _T. pilaris_, winter visitor. Blackbird,
_T. merula_, abundant everywhere and increasing. Ring Ouzel, _T.
torquatus_, not common, has occurred at Wylde Green and Gravelly Hill.

SYLVIIDÆ.--Hedge sparrow, _Accentor modularis_, abundant. Redbreast,
_Erithacus rubecula_, common and resident. Nightingale, _Daulias
luscinia_, not very plentiful throughout the district, but to be
found fairly numerous in favoured localities, and breeds here.
Bluethroat, _Ruticilla suecica_, very rare; once occurred near
Birmingham, (“Yarrell’s British Birds,” Vol. i., p. 322). Redstart, _R.
phœnicurus_, common summer visitor. Stonechat, _Saxicola rubicola_,
and Whinchat, _S. rubetra_, are to be met with in suitable localities.
Wheatear, _S. œnanthe_, common in spring; generally arrives about the
middle of March, Reed Warbler, _Acrocephalus streperus_, a summer
visitor and breeds here. Sedge Warbler, _A. schœnobænus_, plentiful
throughout the district. Grasshopper Warbler, _A. nævius_, far from
common; has occurred at Barnt Green, Alcester, Sutton, Tamworth; breeds
here sparingly. Whitethroat, _Sylvia rufa_, abundant in summer. Lesser
Whitethroat, _S. curruca_, not so abundant as the previous species.
Garden Warbler, _S. salicaria_, common summer migrant. Blackcap,
_S. atricapilla_, locally distributed. Wood Wren, _Phylloscopus
sibilatrix_, common during summer, especially in the neighbourhood
of Selly Oak. Willow Wren, _P. trochilus_, abundant. Chiffchaff, _P.
collybita_, one of the earliest summer migrants. Golden-crested Wren,
_Regulus cristatus_, frequently breeds here.

TROGLODYTIDÆ.--Wren, _Troglodytes parvulus_, abundant.

CERTHIIDÆ.--Tree Creeper, _Certhia familiaris_, common; especially in
Sutton Park.

SITTIDÆ.--Nuthatch, _Sittia cæsia_, generally to be met with where old
trees abound. Aston, Edgbaston, and Sutton Coldfield are localities
where it has been observed.

PARIDÆ.--Titmouse, _Parus_. This genus is well represented, those
species which occur being plentiful.

AMPELIDÆ.--Waxwing, _Ampelis garrulus_, rare; has occurred at
irregular intervals; one shot in the grounds of Aston Hall, by a
gamekeeper of James Watt, Esq., about the year 1845, and another at
Rednal, Jan. 30, 1882.

MOTACILLIDÆ.--Pied Wagtail, _Motacilla lugubris_, common. Grey Wagtail,
_M. sulphurea_, has been observed several times in full summer plumage,
and probably breeds in the district. Yellow Wagtail, _M. raii_, regular
summer migrant. Tree Pipit, _Anthus trivialis_, not rare, but local.
Meadow Pipit, _A. pratensis_, common.

ALAUDIDÆ.--Sky Lark, _Alauda arvensis_, resident and common. Wood Lark,
_A. arborea_, rare.

EMBERIZIDÆ.--Snow bunting, _Plectrophanes nivalis_, rare; has occurred
at Harborne. Reed Bunting, _Emberiza schœniclus_, generally to be met
with in suitable localities. Yellow Bunting, _E. citrinella_, abundant.
Bunting, _E. miliaria_, frequent.

FRINGILLIDÆ.--Chaffinch, _Fringilla cœlebs_, common. Brambling, _F.
montifringilla_, occasionally occurs in the winter. Tree sparrow,
_Passer montanus_, very local in distribution. House Sparrow, _P.
domesticus_, abundant everywhere. Hawfinch, _Coccothraustes vulgaris_,
more plentiful than formerly; now breeds regularly in the district.
Greenfinch, _C. chloris_, common. Goldfinch, _Carduelis elegans_,
scarce. Siskin, _C. spinus_, occasionally occurs in the winter.
Lesser Redpoll, _Linota rufescens_, common and resident. Linnet,
_L. cannabina_, common and resident. Bullfinch, _Pyrrhula europæa_,
generally distributed throughout the district. Crossbill, _Loxia
curvirostra_, rare; a pair were shot in Aston Park about 1845; it has
also occurred at Solihull and Wylde Green.

STURNIDÆ.--Starling, _Sturnus vulgaris_, abundant and resident.

CORVIDÆ.--Crow, _Corvus corone_, not rare. Grey crow, _C. cornix_,
mostly noticed during winter; the nest of this species was taken in
Sutton Park, May, 1883. Rook, _C. frugilegus_, abundant and increasing.
Jackdaw, _C. monedula_, common. Magpie, _Pica rustica_, common in
localities not strictly preserved. Jay, _Garrulus glandarius_, common
in large woods.

HIRUNDINIDÆ.--Swallow, _Hirundo rustica_. Martin, _Chelidon urbica_,
and the Sand Martin, _Cotyle riparia_, are all common summer visitors.


CYPSELIDÆ.--Swift, _Cypselus apus_, summer visitor, rather local.

CAPRIMULGIDÆ.--Night-jar, _Caprimulgus europæus_, generally
distributed; frequenting woods adjoining heaths; especially plentiful
in Sutton Park.

CUCULIDÆ.--Cuckoo, _Cuculus canorus_, summer migrant.

UPUPIDÆ.--Hoopoe, _Upupa epops_, an accidental visitor; has been shot
at Witton, Quinton, Oscott, and Baddesley near Tamworth.

ALCEDINIDÆ.--Kingfisher, _Alcedo ispida_, fairly numerous; to be met
with on most of the rivers and brooks.

PICIDÆ.--Green Woodpecker, _Gecinus viridis_, not common, but breeds.
Greater spotted Woodpecker, _Dendrocopus major_, scarce. Lesser spotted
Woodpecker, _D. minor_, often obtained, but by no means common.
Wryneck, _Jynx torquilla_, summer migrant, rather local in distribution.


COLUMBIDÆ.--Ring Dove, _Columba palumbus_, common. Stock Dove,
_C. œnas_, not numerous, but often met with. Turtle Dove, _Turtur
communis_, occurs in considerable numbers and breeds here.


PTEROCLIDÆ.--Pallas’ Sand Grouse, _Syrrhaptes paradoxus_, very
rare; has occurred in Staffordshire; also at Swinfen near Tamworth.
(“Zoologist,” 1873, p. 3,801).


TETRAONIDÆ.--Black grouse, _Tetrao urogallus_, formerly common, now
nearly extinct; a brace shot in Sutton Park, October, 1871. Red grouse,
_Lagopus scoticus_, very rare.

PHASIANIDÆ.--Pheasant, _Phasianus colchicus_, common in preserves.
Partridge, _Perdix cinerea_, common. Red-legged partridge, _Caccabis
rufa_, occasionally met with; has been shot at Ladbrook, and Great
Barr. Quail, _Coturnix communis_, rare; has been obtained near Tamworth.


RALLIDÆ.--Land Rail, _Crex pratensis_, common summer migrant. Spotted
Crake, _Porzana maruetta_, occurs more frequently in autumn; the nest
has been taken in Sutton Park. Water rail, _Rallus aquaticus_, more
rare than formerly. Moor Hen, _Gallinula chloropus_, common. Common
Coot, _Fulica atra_ not rare.


OTIDIDÆ.--Little Bustard, _Otis tetrax_, once at Thickthorn, near


CHARADRIIDÆ.--Cream-coloured Courser, _Cursorius gallicus_, has been
obtained at Yoxall. Dotterel, _Eudromias morinellus_, very rare; has
occurred at Cannock Chase 1875, and at Perry Barr, 1882. Ringed Plover,
_Ægialitis hiaticula_, rare; occasionally met with in autumn. Golden
Plover, _Charadrius pluvialis_, rare. Lapwing, _Vanellus vulgaris_,
common and resident. Turnstone, _Strepsilas interpres_, very rare.
Oyster-catcher, _Hæmatopus ostralegus_, has been obtained at Yoxall.

SCOLOPACIDÆ.--Red-necked Phalarope, _Phalaropus hyperboreus_, has
occurred once at Tamworth. Woodcock, _Scolopax rusticula_, rare. Great
Snipe, _Gallinago major_, one obtained at Polesworth and another is
said to have been seen in Sutton Park(?). Common Snipe, _G. cœlestis_,
winter visitor; breeds here in small numbers. Jack Snipe, _G.
gallinula_, winter visitor; not numerous. Dunlin, _Tringa alpina_, very
rare; has occurred at Small Heath. Curlew Sandpiper, _T. subarquata_,
rare; a small flock seen in the neighbourhood of Barnt Green in
September, 1885. Ruff, _Machetes pugnax_, very rare; once occurred at
Sutton Coldfield. Bartram’s Sandpiper, _Bartramia longicauda_, once
near Warwick, on October 31st, 1851 (Zool. pp. 3,330, 3,388, 4,254).
Common Sandpiper, _Totanus hypoleucus_, summer visitor; it is probable
this species breeds in the district. Wood Sandpiper, _T. glareola_,
very rare, once occurred at the Sewage Farm. Green Sandpiper, _T.
ochropus_, has occurred at Packington, near Tamworth. Redshank, _T.
calidris_, rare; has occurred at the Sewage Farms; also at Sutton
Coldfield and near Tamworth. Greenshank, _T. canescens_, occasional
visitor in autumn; has occurred at Castle Bromwich. Curlew, _Numenius
arquata_, rare; has occurred at Great Barr and Polesworth.


LARIDÆ.--Black Tern, _Hydrochelidon nigra_, often occurs in spring
and autumn. Sandwich Tern, _Sterna cantiaca_, occasional visitor; more
frequently observed towards autumn. Common Tern, _Sterna fluviatilis_,
often observed during spring and autumn migration; chiefly birds of
the year during the latter period. Arctic Tern, _S. macrura_, the
same remarks apply to this species as to _S. fluviatilis_. Sabine’s
Gull, _Xema sabinii_, once occurred near Coleshill, in October, 1883.
Black-headed Gull, _Larus ridibundus_, not rare; frequently met with
during spring on some of the large reservoirs. Lesser Black-backed
Gull, _Larus fuscus_, rare; has been shot at Bromsgrove and Handsworth.
Great Black-backed Gull, _L. marinus_, once occurred at Shustoke,
September 20th, 1874. Large Gulls are often observed passing over,
which probably belong to this species. Common Gull, _L. canus_, rare,
has been shot near Alcester. Kittiwake Gull, _Rissa tridactyla_, rare;
occasionally seen during winter. Pomatorhine Skua, _Stercorarius
pomatorhinus_, very rare; considering the unusual number of Skuas
that appeared during the autumn of 1879, it is rather surprising that
more examples were not noticed in this district, very few being shot.
Buffon’s Skua, _S. parasiticus_; an immature bird was shot on Lichfield
Racecourse in October 1874.


PROCELLARIIDÆ.--Manx Shearwater, _Puffinus anglorum_; an immature bird
was picked up exhausted in the Chandos road in this town, September
5th, 1880. Forked-tailed Petrel, _Cymochorea leucorrhoa_, very rare.
One picked up September 4th, 1883, dead in a yard, in Guildford
street in this town, and subsequently recorded in the local papers as
_Procellaria pelagica_. Stormy Petrel, _P. pelagica_, has occurred too
many times to particularize each instance.


ALCIDÆ.--Little Auk, _Mergulus alle_, very rare; several instances
are on record of its occurrence in the district, one was obtained in
November, 1863. Puffin, _Fratercula arctica_; one picked up in Broad
street in this town, in an exhausted condition, 1884.

COLYMBIDÆ.--Great Northern Diver, _Colymbus glacialis_, very rare; one
was obtained at Tipton, January 8th, 1877.

PODICIPEDIDÆ.--Great crested Grebe, _Podiceps cristatus_, generally
distributed throughout the district, and far from rare; breeds
regularly at Sutton Coldfield, Little Aston, and Barnt Green.
Sclavonian Grebe, _P. auritus_; one shot at Sutton Coldfield, in
December, 1868. Little Grebe, _P. fluviatilis_, not rare; breeds
sparingly in suitable localities; small flocks or families are often
observed during the autumn and winter, especially on the river Tame.


PELECANIDÆ.--Common Cormorant, _Phalacrocorax carbo_, a rare occasional
visitor. Shag, _P. graculus_, very rare; has occurred twice in the
neighbourhood of King’s Norton, also near Tamworth. The Gannet, _Sula
bassana_, one taken exhausted in a field of potatoes near Tamworth.


ARDEIDÆ.--Common Heron, _Ardea cinerea_, generally to be met with.
There are several Heronries in the county of Warwick. Little Egret,
_Ardea garzetta_, said to have been obtained at Sutton Coldfield,
many years ago. Night heron, _Nycticorax griseus_, one obtained
near Alcester. Common Bittern, _Botaurus stellaris_, more rare than
formerly; a great many examples have been obtained from time to time,
especially in the neighbourhood of Sutton Coldfield.


PHŒNICOPTERIDÆ.--Flamingo, _Phœnicopterus roseus_; one stated to have
been shot in the neighbourhood of Wolverhampton, but probably an
escaped bird.


ANATIDÆ.--Brent Goose, _Bernicla brenta_, scarce; two shot at King’s
Norton, October 24th, 1882, during stormy weather; has also been
obtained near Tamworth. Flocks of geese are often observed passing
overhead, but of course it is impossible to determine to what species
they belong. Canada Goose, _B. canadensis_, has been shot several times
in the district, whether escaped specimens or not, it is difficult to
say, as this species is often kept in a semi-wild state. Mute Swan,
_Cygnus olor_, is to be found upon many large pools and ornamental
waters; breeds here plentifully. Polish Swan, _C. immutabilis_, once
occurred at Earlswood reservoir. Ruddy Sheld-Duck, _Tadorna casarca_,
has been shot at Nechells, also at Yardley Wood; probably escaped
birds. Common Sheld-Duck, _T. cornuta_, rare visitor. A magnificent
male was shot at Hawkesbury, near Coventry, in 1881. Mallard, _Anas
boscas_, plentiful on some pools; breeds throughout the district.
Gadwall, _A. strepera_, very rare; one shot near Lichfield in December,
1873. Shoveller, _Spatula clypeata_, formerly bred in Staffordshire,
but very scarce of late years; one shot at Sutton Coldfield, in 1867.
Teal, _Querquedula crecca_, sparingly met with, a few pairs breed in
the district; the nest has several times been taken in Sutton Park.
Widgeon, _Mareca penelope_, winter visitor; often seen in large
flocks upon the reservoirs and pools during severe weather. Scaup,
_Fuligula marila_, has occurred once at Wichnor near Tamworth. Pochard,
_F. ferina_, rare; has been shot near Tamworth. Tufted Duck, _F.
cristata_, very rare; a male was shot in Aston Park many years ago,
by a gamekeeper of James Watt, Esq. Golden Eye, _Clangula glaucion_,
one shot near Tamworth. Goosander, _Mergus merganser_, an accidental
visitor in winter; specimens obtained are generally either immature
birds or females. Red-breasted Merganser, _M. serrator_, very scarce;
only young birds have been obtained. Smew, _M. albellus_, very rare.
A female was shot on the canal at Selly Oak, about fifteen years ago.
Another example of this species was obtained at Elford, near Tamworth.


Fishes and Mollusca.



The waters within easy reach of Birmingham afford to those interested
in the Natural History of Fishes excellent opportunities for study, and
are much resorted to by anglers. To those who do not incline to the
study of fish or fishing, it will probably be a matter of surprise to
know the abundance and excellence of the individuals, and the variety
of species occurring within an hour’s walk of the centre of our town.
Of the river Tame, a well-known angler states: “In my opinion this is
a remarkable little river; in three and a half miles it contains in
abundance at least ten species of fish, viz., trout, pike, chub, tench,
perch, roach, rudd, dace, gudgeon, minnow, all of which, except the
pike, attain to a size equal to any in rivers or pools within a hundred
miles of Birmingham.” Large fish are not so common now as formerly, but
probably this river will recover, and attain its wonted excellence,
when the “Black Country” sewerage works are completed.

The river Cole is a fine trout stream. The river Blythe, Coleshill,
is an excellent stream, especially for eels. The river Trent with
its tributaries, the Anker, Tame, and Mease, is celebrated for many
species of fish, and is a great resort of anglers. Earlswood and the
Corporation reservoirs, the pools at Sutton Coldfield, Great Barr Park,
King’s Norton, Barnt Green, and many others are all well stocked with
fish, and will render fine examples to all who seek them.

The writer’s thanks are cordially rendered to members of the
Birmingham Piscatorial Association and to other gentlemen for valuable
information, kindly given, respecting the localities and habitats of
Fishes. The weights of the largest specimens recorded, have all been
verified by the anglers who have taken them.

The classification adopted in this paper is that of “Yarrell’s British
Fishes,” second edition, 1841.

The number of local species recorded is thirty-three.


Perch, _Perca fluviatilis_, accommodates itself to either river or
pool, the former producing the cleanest and handsomest fish. It has
been taken of fine size, 4½ lbs., Rotton Park Reservoir; 3½ lbs.,
Tardebigg; 3 lbs., Rotton Park Reservoir; 2 lbs. to 3 lbs. from Old
Soho Pool, now the site of a Railway Wharf.

Ruffe, _Acerina vulgaris_, not uncommon, river Trent, Alrewas. The
writer has taken a number from a pool near Wednesbury.

Miller’s Thumb, _Cottus gobio_, is to be met with in most of our little
rivulets, lurking under stones.

The Rough-tailed three-spined Stickleback, _Gasterosteus trachurus_;
ubiquitous. The males in the breeding season are resplendent in
scarlet and green, and fight for supremacy. It is remarkable with
what ease individuals accommodate themselves to sea water. The
Smooth-tailed Stickleback, _G. leiurus_; the Short-spined Stickleback,
_G. brachycentus_; the Four-spined Stickleback, _G. spinulosus_ and
the Ten-spined Stickleback, _G. pungitius_; although not so common as
_G. trachurus_, are all found in ditches communicating with the river
Anker, at Tamworth.


Carp, _Cyprinus carpio_. The writer has had one of large size from
Plants Brook Reservoir, 7½ lbs., and has seen a larger one in the pool.
The largest recorded was from Sandwell Pool, 12 lbs.

Crucian Carp, _C. carassius_, is not uncommon; the writer has seen
numbers of them taken from small cattle pits on a farm in Warwickshire.
It is a pretty and hardy species in an aquarium.

Gold Carp, _C. auratus_, the well known “gold-fish,” used to breed in a
pool at West Bromwich, into which warm water from an engine flowed, but
it is not found there now.

Barbel, _Barbus vulgaris_, is found in abundance in the River Trent,
but in general size not to be compared with those taken in the Thames.
River Trent, 7½ lbs. and 8 lbs.

Gudgeon, _Gobio fluviatilis_, in streams fairly common, also in canals,
but rare in pools. Earlswood Reservoir.

Tench, _Tinca vulgaris_, not uncommon; of large size at Handsworth,
Sutton Coldfield, and near Barnt Green, in pools; plentiful at the
latter place, rivers Tame, Anker, &c.; 3 lbs. Edgbaston Pool. It is one
of the easiest fishes to keep in confinement. A golden variety of this
species is bred in the private pools of gentlemen in this country, it
is said to have been introduced from Germany. Fine specimens were to be
seen at the recent Fisheries Exhibition in London.

Bream, _Abramis brama_, in the larger rivers. When this species
assembles, after an overnight’s baiting, it may often be taken in great
numbers. 5 lbs. River Trent. The writer has known a few hours’ fishing
in a Warwickshire stream to yield sufficient fine fishes of this
species to fill a hamper as much as a couple of men could carry.

Roach, _Leuciscus rutilus_, occurs very commonly and of large size; old
Soho Pool, 3 lbs. weight, a truly noble fish; Sharpley Reservoir, 2 lbs.

Dace, _Leuciscus vulgaris_, River Trent, 14 ozs.

Chub, _Leuciscus cephalus_, River Tame, 5½ lbs. 5 lbs. and many
approaching that weight.

Rudd or Red-eye, _Leuciscus erythropthalmus_. In the River Tame.

Bleak, _Leuciscus alburnus_. In streams and in Earlswood Reservoir. A
friend remarks, “I have taken this species in Earlswood Reservoir, and
Gudgeon also, the only instance I have met with where these two river
fish have occurred in a pool.” They were probably bred from escaped

Minnow, _Leuciscus phoxinus_, common in many streams.

Loach, _Cobitis barbatula_, is found in streamlets in many places. The
writer has taken it at Handsworth. It is said to be delicate food.

The Spined-Loach, _Botia tænia_, is rarer than the preceding. It has
been taken in the Rivers Anker and Tame at Tamworth.

Pike, _Esox lucius_, is found in large pools and rivers. 26 lbs.; 25
lbs. 6 oz., Earlswood Reservoir; 23 lbs., Middleton Pool; 22 lbs. 6
oz., Pebble Mill Pool; 12 and 13 lbs., Sutton Park. The writer could
relate many instances of the voracity of the Pike, and incidents of
sport,--one must suffice. A Pike was hooked near some floodgates in the
Tame, and on taking out the hook he found that it had gone through a
Water-Shrew, which the fish had just taken, and still held in its mouth.

Salmon, the king of British fishes, _Salmo salar_, comes legitimately
within our radius of twenty miles. It has been taken from the Eel traps
in the River Tame at Tamworth; in the River Trent at Yoxall; and in
the River Severn at Bewdley. At the last mentioned place a specimen
weighing 40 lbs. has been captured.

Common Trout, _S. fario_, Bourne Brook, Fazeley, 7 lbs.; River Tame, 5½
lbs., 4 lbs. several, and many below that weight; River Trent, 4 lbs. 2
ozs.; River Cole, Packington.

Lochleven Trout, _S. Levenensis_. In April, 1884, the Water Department
of the Corporation of Birmingham stocked their new reservoir (90 acres)
at Shustoke with 3,000 of this fish. The reservoir at Witton was
stocked with 2,000 fish at the same time. They were yearlings, about
3 inches long, and are now (August, 1886) from 2 lbs. to 3¼ lbs. in
weight. These reservoirs will therefore in a few years be good places
for this species of Trout.

Grayling, _Thymallus vulgaris_, River Trent, Shenstone, 2 lbs.;
Alrewas, 17 ozs.; Bourne Brook, Fazeley.


The Burbot, _Lota vulgaris_, the only British species of the family of
the Gadidæ that lives permanently in fresh water, is found in the River
Anker at Tamworth, the largest fish recorded being 5 lbs.; 3 lbs. 2 ozs.


The Sharp-nosed Eel, _Anguilla acutirostris_, and the Broad-nosed Eel,
_Anguilla latirostris_. In rivers and pools generally. Fine specimens
of _A. acutirostris_ are taken in the River Blythe, some weighing 4
lbs. each. The third species of Eel mentioned by Yarrell, the Snig,
_A. mediorostris_, occurs with the two others in the Worcestershire
Avon, and doubtless finds its way into the Arrow and other tributary
streams. It differs from the two preceding species, being much smaller,
individuals rarely exceeding half a pound each; and in its habit of
roving and feeding by day. It is of superior flavour to its congeners.
The Snig may easily be distinguished by the first five cervical
vertebræ, which are smooth and free from spinous processes, always
present in the sharp-nosed and broad-nosed Eels.


Lampern or river Lamprey, _Petromyzon fluviatilis_. In the River Trent,
and also the Tame and in streamlets, Sutton Park, &c.


The district around Birmingham is an excellent field for terrestrial
and fluviatile Mollusca. Within a circle of twelve miles radius, which
includes a portion of the Counties of Warwick, Stafford, and Worcester,
can be found fifty per cent. of the species and varieties enumerated
in Dr. J. Gwyn Jeffreys’ “British Conchology.” No special quality of
soil or geological condition is required for the existence of Molluscs;
whatever the nature of the ground may be, some species or other will
reward the searcher. The number of terrestrial species is usually
the greatest where limestone is present; indeed some species do not
seem able to maintain their existence away from it, _e.g._, _Helix
ericetorum_, _H. virgata_, _H. arbustorum_, and _Cyclostoma elegans_.
The still beautiful grounds of Dudley Castle were once “happy hunting
grounds” for the collectors of Mollusca, but the smoke of a thousand
fires has cast a baleful influence over the locality. The dead shells
of species, once abundant, are conclusive evidence that the Molluscan
fauna do not now enjoy a congenial atmosphere in that neighbourhood.
_Helix arbustorum_, may, notwithstanding, still be found there, its
nearest proximity to Birmingham.

Among the noticeable species of the district may be mentioned
_Testacella Haliotidea_, found in the garden of a florist at Redditch;
_Succinea virescens_, (Morelet) = _S. putris_ var. _vitrea_ (Jeffreys),
which the writer has taken near Plants Brook Reservoir; _Zonites
glaber_, found near Solihull; _Helix Cantiana_,[62] Henley-in-Arden;
_H. virgata_, Grafton, near Alcester; _Balia perversa_, Fenny Compton,
Northamptonshire. The three last named species are outside the twelve
miles radius.


The Midlands are rich in fluviatile forms, nearly all the known British
species occur. Those worth noting among the Sphæriidæ are--_Sphærium
corneum_, var. _Scaldiana_, Acock’s Green; _S. corneum_, var.
_flavescens_, Plants Brook; _S. rivicola_ and _S. ovale_, Acock’s
Green and Rushall Canal. _S. lacustre_ is not uncommon, and is found
abundantly in a pond at Handsworth.

The Pisidia are well represented, four out of our five species
occurring. It is curious that the large form _Pisidium amnicum_ has not
hitherto been taken in the district. The writer took _P. roseum_[63]
from several ponds at Meriden in 1885-6.

The Unionidæ are extremely plentiful, and the two species _Unio
tumidus_ and _U. pictorum_ attain to an immense size. In the
writer’s cabinet are examples of _U. pictorum_ of the following
dimensions--2¹⁄₁₆ in. × 5¹⁄₁₆, 2¹⁄₁₆ in. × 5¼, 2³⁄₁₆ in. × 5¼, some of
them weighing nearly 4 ounces avoirdupois; and of _U. tumidus_, 2⁵⁄₁₆
in. × 4¾, 2⅜ in. × 4⅞, 2¾ in. × 5, the weight of some examples reaching
nearly 6 ounces avoirdupois. These are probably the finest shells of
their kind ever taken anywhere. _Anodonta cygnea_ is common, and its
varieties _incrassata_, _Zellensis_, _pallida_, and _rostrata_ occur.
_A. anatina_, and the varieties _radiata_ and _ventricosa_ are found;
handsome shells of the latter occur at Barr Park and in the river
Blythe at Coleshill. _Dreissena polymorpha_ is commonly distributed.


In the order Pectinibranchiata, _Neritina fluviatilis_, the only
representative in England of a genus of world-wide distribution, has
occurred in the river Tame at Aston, but the writer believes is not
now to be found there. One of our two species of Paludinidæ, _Paludina
vivipara_,[64] _Bythinia tentaculata_, _B. Leachii_, and _Valvata
piscinalis_ make up the list of operculate water snails.

Among the Limnæidæ examples of the following genera occur. In the
genus Planorbis we find all the species except _Planorbis lineatus_,
excluding of course _P. dilatatus_ (Gould), which only occurs at
Manchester, having been introduced on cotton from America. The
epiphragm formed by _P. spirorbis_, in summer, when the solar heat has
dried up its habitat, is a singular item of its economy. It is supposed
that this habit enabled _P. dilatatus_ to reach our shores. _Physa
hypnorum_ and _P. fontinalis_ are both represented; they are charming
inhabitants of an aquarium, their habit of thread spinning,[65]
especially in the young state, makes them lively creatures; the lobed
mantle of _P. fontinalis_, nearly enclosing the shell, gives a peculiar
character to the animal.

Of the six species of Limnæa[66] which occur, it will not be needful
to mention more than one, which is the rarest with us, viz.: _Limnæa
glabra_. Both species of Ancylus are moderately common.

Of terrestrial Mollusca we enumerate the following Limacidæ--_Arion
ater_, _A. hortensis_, _Limax marginatus_, _L. flavus_, _L. agrestis_,
_L. arborum_, _L. maximus_, and as before said one of the Testacellidæ
viz., _T. Haliotidea_. Among the Helicidæ of course the common kinds
are all present. Of the genus Zonites we have the following species:
_Zonites cellarius_, _Z. glaber_, _Z. alliarius_, and its var.
_viridula_, _Z. nitidulus_, _Z. purus_, and its var. _margaritacea_,
_Z. radiatulus_, _Z. nitidus_, _Z. excavatus_ (one only, at Knowle),
_Z. crystallinus_. Among the smaller species of Helix, attention may
be called to the following: _H. aculeata_, a minute spiny coronet; _H.
pygmæa_, the smallest of known Helices; _Helix fusca_, taken in two
localities only, at Knowle and Selly Oak. Of the four species of Pupa
found in Britain, two only occur, _Pupa umbilicata_ and _P. marginata_.
Of the latter species a colony of the white variety has been found
inhabiting a wall at Cleeve Prior, Worcestershire. Only two out of our
eleven species of Vertigo have occurred, viz.: _Vertigo edentula_ and
its variety _columella_, and _V. pygmæa_. Two Clausiliæ are found,
_Clausilia laminata_ and _C. rugosa_. It is somewhat singular that of
the four species inhabiting this country the last named is ubiquitous,
while _C. Rolphii_ and _C. biplicata_ are local. The writer has taken
the rare albino form of _C. rugosa_, at Selly Oak. That exquisite
shell, _Cochlicopa tridens_, var. _crystallina_, has been taken in
three places; the type is largely distributed in our neighbourhood,
whereas in others it is rare, while _C. lubrica_ is widespread
in England. _Achatina acicula_, dead shells only, Dudley Castle.
_Carychium minimum_ is commonly distributed.

In giving this outline of the Molluscan Fauna of our neighbourhood,
the writer has called attention to the valuable papers on Embryology by
Professor E. Ray Lankester, as shedding great light on the affinities
of the Mollusca with other groups.




The neighbourhood of Birmingham, and in fact the Midland district
generally, has never been considered particularly rich in either the
number or variety of its insect productions, and it is a fact that
a collection of Midland species, of whatever order, shows very wide
gaps, both in genera and species, when compared with one formed in the
east or south of England. Nevertheless, the Midland Counties are not
entirely barren in this respect, and a catalogue of the insects known
to occur within a radius of twenty miles of Birmingham would be a very
respectable one. During the last few years a large number of very
interesting species have been discovered, and there can be no doubt
that with more workers and greater enthusiasm considerable additions
would continue to be made. By extending the radius somewhat our list
would embrace a good array of species which seem to be peculiar to the
Midlands, such as _Bembidium adustum_, _Eutheia clavata_, _Euplectus
nubigena_, _Teredus nitidus_, _Macronychus quadrituberculatus_,
_Hylecœtus dermestoides_, _Tropideres sepicola_, _Bagöus diglyptus_,
_Notodonta bicolor_, &c., &c. At any rate these insects have not
hitherto been detected in any other British localities. It is much to
be regretted that local entomology suffers greatly from two untoward
circumstances, viz., the lack of students and the want of a carefully
compiled list of species of the several orders. The publication of a
catalogue of local insects as far as our present knowledge extends,
would undoubtedly tend to stimulate the intelligent pursuit of this
study, and it seems surprising that such an important work has not long
ago been undertaken by the Natural History Societies of the district.

Having regard to the limited space allowed for this paper its object
will, perhaps, best be secured by giving as full a list as possible,
of the rarer and more interesting species belonging to the two most
popular orders, viz., the Coleoptera and the Lepidoptera, together with
some of the localities in which they occur. With few exceptions the
references will be to insects which inhabit the twenty miles radius, a
wider range being taken only in specially interesting cases, but even
then it will be impossible to give anything like an adequate idea of
the beetles, butterflies, and moths of the district.

To prevent the possibility of error it should be stated that the
nomenclature adopted is (for the beetles) that of the “Catalogue
of British Coleoptera, by Matthews and Fowler, 1883,” and (for the
butterflies and moths) “Synonymic List of British Lepidoptera, by
Richard South, 1884.”


This order is well represented; certain localities in the district are
favourable to their existence and economy, and many rarities occur.
Only one Cicindela (_Cicindela campestris_) inhabits our district
and that is generally distributed and plentiful, especially in sandy
places. The curious and elegant _Cychrus rostratus_ is often found
under stones and loose bark at Dudley and Bewdley, and the handsome
_Carabus nitens_ and its congener _C. arvensis_, may be taken on
Cannock Chase, both species being now very scarce. _Elaphrus riparius_
and _E. cupreus_ occur not uncommonly in wet and boggy places.
_Notiophilus substriatus_ (generally a sea-side species) may be found
occasionally on Cannock Chase, and so also may the curious _Nebria
livida_. This latter beetle was first discovered on the Chase by Mr.
J. T. Harris, and the writer has verified its occurrence there many
times. It is a remarkable fact that this is the only known instance of
this species inhabiting an inland locality--its head quarters being
at Bridlington Quay and two or three other parts of the north-east
coast--it lives in the argillaceous cliffs, and on Cannock Chase it is
met with in a similar formation.

Of the curious genus Dyschirius two species only appear to have
settled in our neighbourhood, viz., _D. æneus_ and _D. globosus_, both
occur at Bewdley and on Cannock Chase--the latter also at Coleshill and
Sutton Park.

The genus Bembidium is well represented, 33 of the 50 British
species and varieties being taken in the Birmingham district. A few
may be named: _B. rufescens_, under bark and in damp places; _B.
quinquestriatum_, on walls at Smallheath and Olton; _B. Mannerheimii_,
Knowle, Bewdley, Cannock Chase; _B. articulatum_, Knowle, Bewdley; _B.
nigricorne_, Cannock Chase; _B. monticola_, Bewdley; _B. Stephensi_,
Sutton Park; _B. prasinum_, Bewdley. In this connection the writer may
perhaps be allowed to refer to the finding by himself of _B. adustum_
in large numbers at Tewkesbury. This species was previously represented
only by a very few old specimens, and had not been found for more than
40 years, until he had the pleasure of re-establishing it.

_Patrobus assimilis_ is found sparingly on Cannock Chase; _Trechus
discus_, _T. micros_ and _T. secalis_, are plentiful in the river banks
at Bewdley; _T. micros_ occasionally turns up at Smallheath amongst
bones placed in the garden as a trap for Homalotæ; _T. obtusus_ has
occurred at Bewdley and Cannock Chase, and in the latter locality the
writer once found a few examples of the rare _T. rubens_.

The important genus Pterostichus has many representatives: _P.
versicolor_, at Solihull, Sutton Park, and Cannock Chase; _P. lepidus_,
Cannock Chase; _P. picimanus_ and _P. anthracinus_, Bewdley; _P.
minor_, Coleshill and Cannock Chase; _Platyderus ruficollis_ seems to
be generally distributed, but scarce. _Amara fulva_ may frequently be
taken under stones in sandy places at Sutton Park, Cannock Chase, and
Bewdley; _A. consularis_ at Sutton Park and Hopwas Wood; _A. spinipes_,
at Dudley and Bewdley; _A. patricia_, Cannock Chase; _A. acuminata_,
Sutton Park; _A. lunicollis_, Small Heath, Sutton, Cannock Chase, and
Bewdley; _A. continua_, _A. communis_, and _A. ovata_, at Knowle,
Coleshill, and Bewdley.

_Badister sodalis_ is to be had at Dudley and Bewdley. All the species
of Calathus occur, and _Taphria nivalis_, a closely allied beetle,
turns up now and again, singly, at Small Heath, Knowle, Bewdley, and
Trench Woods. The Anchomeni are fairly well represented, and it seems
very likely that additional species may yet be added to our local list.
The following may be selected as most worthy of notice: _Anchomenus
oblongus_, Bewdley; _A. atratus_, Coleshill, Cannock Chase, and
Bewdley. A single _Lebia chlorocephala_ was captured in hedge rubbish
near Acock’s Green. _Dromius quadrisignatus_ is a Sutton Park species,
being found rarely under bark of Oak trees. _Blechrus maurus_, which
seems decidedly out of its reckoning in a Midland locality, has been
taken at Bewdley and Leamington. All the species of Metabletus occur,
and are pretty generally distributed. _Cymindis vaporariorum_ inhabits
Cannock Chase, where it may be found lurking under the heather and
loose stones, but is not abundant. In the same locality the curious
_Miscodera arctica_ may, in some seasons, be met with in plenty. Two
species of Chlænius occur, viz.: _C. vestitus_ at Bewdley, and _C.
nigricornis_ at Cannock Chase. Of the extensive genus Harpalus, the
following species may be cited, it being understood that several of the
commoner forms exist here in great abundance. _H. puncticollis_, Dudley
and Bewdley; _H. griseus_, Cannock Chase; _H. tardus_, Sutton Park and
Bewdley. The pretty little _Acupalpus exiguus_ and v. _luridus_ may be
obtained by searching the Sphagnum on the margin of Coleshill Pool. All
the Bradycelli, except _B. placidus_ and _B. collaris_, are plentiful
in the district, and in certain spots, such as Cannock Chase, they are
extremely abundant. _Anisodactylus binotatus_ occurs on Cannock Chase,
but is not often to be found.

The water beetles are pretty numerously represented in the district
generally, the best localities for them being Coleshill, Sutton
Park, Cannock Chase, and Bewdley. It must suffice to mention a few
of the rarer or more striking kinds, _e.g._, _Brychius elevatus_,
at Yardley and Knowle; _Haliplus cinereus_, at Knowle; _Hydroporus
septentrionalis_, Bewdley; _H. marginatus_, Knowle; _H. picipes_,
Cannock Chase; _H. lepidus_, Knowle, Bewdley, Cannock Chase; _H.
duodecimpustulatus_, Bewdley; _H. assimilis_, Sutton Park, Knowle,
Cannock Chase; _H. dorsalis_, Yardley, Knowle; _H. marginatus_,
Knowle; _H. nigrita_, Knowle, Bewdley; _H. monticola_, Cannock
Chase; _H. neglectus_, Cannock Chase; _H. umbrosus_, Knowle; _H.
augustatus_, Knowle; _Ilybius ater_, Knowle, Cannock Chase; _I.
guttiger_, Coleshill; _Agabus Solieri_, Knowle; _A. affinis_, Sutton
Park; _Gyrinus caspius_, Hopwas; _Hydrobius picicrus_, Knowle;
_Laccobius sinuatus_, Knowle; _L. alutaceus_, Knowle; _L. minutus_,
Cannock Chase; _L. bipunctatus_, Cannock Chase; _Limnebius nitidus_,
Knowle, Bewdley; _L. picinus_, Knowle; _Chætarthria seminulum_,
Cannock Chase; _Helophorus æqualis_, Bewdley; _H. Mulsanti_, Bewdley;
_Hydrochus augustatus_, Knowle; _Hydræna palustris_, Bewdley; _H.
nigrita_, Knowle, Bewdley; _H. atricapilla_, Knowle; the rare
_Leptinus testaceus_ has been taken at Needwood in the nests of
wild bees. _Agathidium nigripenne_ Sutton Park; _A. lævigatum_,
Knowle, Dudley; _A. atrum_, Yardley, Sutton Park, Cannock Chase; _A.
seminulum_, Coleshill, Knowle, Cannock Chase; _A. varians_, Knowle; _A.
rotundatum_, Cannock Chase; _A. convexum_, Hopwas Wood; _Amphicyllis
globus_, Bewdley; _Leoides orbicularis_, Cannock Chase; _Anisotoma
picea_, Cannock Chase; _A. litura_, Knowle.

Several of the Burying Beetles--Necrophorus and Silpha--occur
generally in the district, as also do many of the Cholevæ. Colons
are conspicuous by their absence--only two species having put in an
appearance, viz: _Colon dentipes_, Knowle; and _C. brunneum_, Knowle.
The interesting groups of Scydmænidæ and Pselaphidæ are remarkably well
represented, but room can be found for only a few of the rarer species:
_e.g._, _Scydmænus exilis_, Sutton Park, Hopwas Wood, Cannock Chase,
Bewdley; _S. angulatus_, Cannock Chase; _S. hirticollis_, Sutton Park;
_Eutheia plicata_, Budden Wood, _E. Schaumii_, Smallheath, Knowle;
_E. Scydmænoides_, Knowle (abundantly); _E. clavata_, new to Britain,
discovered by the writer in Sherwood Forest; _Bryaxis impressa_,
Coleshill; _Euplectus punctatus_, Knowle, Bewdley, Cannock Chase; _E.
nigricans_, throughout the district; _E. nanus_, Edgbaston, Bewdley,
Cannock Chase; _E. bicolor_, Sutton Park, Hopwas Wood, Cannock Chase,
Bewdley; _E. nubigena_, a very distinct species, new to Britain,
discovered by the writer in Sherwood Forest in 1885.

The Brachelytra have not had much attention paid to them in the
Midlands, the group being a very large one, and the species mostly
difficult to determine. These insects are plentiful in the district
and many rare forms occur. A few only, comparatively, can be here
specified:--_Ischnoglossa corticina_, Olton, Sutton Park, Old Hill;
_Thiasophila angulata_, Hopwas Wood, Bewdley (Ants’ Nests); _Dinarda
Markelii_, Bewdley (in Ants’ Nests); _Atemeles emarginatus_, Bewdley
(in Ants’ Nests); _Ilyobates nigricollis_, _Callicerus obscurus_, _C.
rigidicornis_, Knowle; _Tachyusa scitula_, Bewdley; _Ocyusa maura_,
Coleshill; _O. picina_, Sutton Park, Bewdley; _Oxypoda exoleta_,
Smallheath, _O. recondita_, Budden Wood (Ants’ Nests, _Formica rufa_);
_O. sericea_, new to Britain, Smallheath, Edgbaston, Knowle.

In the genus Homalota there are 160 British species, of which the
writer has, up to the present, found 93 in the Birmingham district.
The following may be noted: _H. currax_ and _H. insecta_, Bewdley;
_H. pavens_, Smallheath; _H. eximia_, Bewdley (previously only found
on banks of Scotch rivers); _H. luteipes_, Bewdley; _H. sylvicola_,
Coleshill, Cannock Chase, Bewdley; _H. monticola_, Smallheath; _H.
curtipennis_, Sutton Park; _H. autumnalis_, Knowle, Old Hill, Bewdley,
Middleton, near Tamworth; _Gymnusa brevicollis_ and _G. variegata_
occur on Cannock Chase, the latter also at Sutton Park; _Megacronus
inclinans_ may be found at Bewdley, and _M. cingulatus_ at Sutton
Park and Cannock Chase; _Staphylinus latebricola_ (in Ants’ Nests),
at Sutton Park and Bewdley; _Philonthus fulvipes_, Sutton Park;
_Ancyrophorus homalinus_, Bewdley; _Trogophlœus halophilus_, Hopwas
Wood(!); _Deleaster dichrous_ and var. _adustus_, Bewdley; _Geodromicus
nigrita_, Bewdley; _Deliphrum tectum_, Knowle; _Acidota crenata_,
Coleshill; _A. cruentata_, Sutton Park; _Coryphium augusticolle_,
Sutton Park, Knowle, Hopwas; _Homalium Allardi_, Smallheath; _H.
punctipenne_, Edgbaston, Sutton Park, Knowle, Bewdley; _H. deplanatum_,
Knowle, Cannock Chase; _H. brevicorne_, Knowle; _H. gracilicorne_,
Sutton Park, Hopwas Wood; _H. salicis_, Sherwood Forest; _Phlœocharis
subtilissima_ and _Prognatha quadricornis_, Sutton Park, Needwood.

Many of the Trichopterygidæ are found in profusion, including a good
number of rare species. _Ptinella testacea_, _P. denticollis_, _P.
aptera_, and _P. angustula_, are all plentiful in various parts of
the district, from Smallheath and Knowle to Cannock Chase and Bewdley
Forest. _Pteryx suturalis_ is also generally distributed and fairly
abundant. Several good species of Trichopteryx occur in hot-beds
at Knowle and Edgbaston, and also on the river banks at Bewdley.
_Millidium trisulcatum_ sometimes swarms in one spot at Knowle.
_Ptenidium Gressneri_, a new British species, may be mentioned as
having been captured in 1885 at Sherwood Forest. _Triplax russica_
abounds on Cannock Chase, and _T. ænea_ may be taken sparingly at
Needwood. The very rare _Teredus nitidus_, after being lost sight of
for nearly 50 years, was again found in Sherwood Forest by the writer
in 1884 and 1885. _Myrmetes piceus_, Hopwas Wood, Bewdley; _Gnathoncus
rotundatus_, Cannock Chase; var. _punctulatus_, Knowle; _Abræus
granulum_, Salford Priors; _Plegaderus dissectus_, Cannock Chase,
Salford Priors; _Epuræa augustula_, Sutton Park; _Cryptarcha strigata_
and _C. imperialis_, Knowle; Rhizophagus: nine of the species occur in
the neighbourhood of Birmingham, and the tenth, _R. cœruleipennis_ has
been taken at Matlock; _Thymalus limbatus_, Cannock Chase; _Psammæchus
bipunctatus_, Coleshill, Sutton Park; _Antherophagus nigricornis_,
Bewdley; _A. silaceus_, Marston Green, Bewdley; _A. pallens_, Solihull,
Bewdley; _Myrmecoxenus, vaporariorum_, Edgbaston, Knowle; _Scaphidium
quadrimaculatum_ may be taken at Cannock Chase and Bewdley; _Diphyllus
lunatus_, in the same localities and also near Knowle; _Byrrhus
fasciatus_ and _B. dorsalis_, at Cannock Chase; _Georyssus pygmæus_,
Bewdley. The remarkable beetle, _Macronychus quadrituberculatus_,
should be included in this list, its only British habitat being the
river Dove, near Burton-on-Trent.

Coming now to the Lamellicornia, the following species may be noted:
_Lucanus cervus_, Bewdley; _Dorcus parallelopipedus_, Bewdley, Cannock
Chase, Salford Priors; _Aphodius tesselatus_ and _A. porcus_, Sutton
Park; _Ammœcius brevis_, Bewdley (banks of Severn); _Trox sabulosus_
and _T. scaber_, Bewdley and Cannock Chase; _Hoplia philanthus_,
Bewdley, Knowle, &c. Of the Serricornia, a few examples may be given:
_e.g._, _Agrilus augustatus_ and _A. laticornis_, Bewdley; the
brilliant _Trachys troglodytes_, quite a Southern species, which the
writer has on several occasions captured in an old pasture at Knowle;
_Elater coccinatus_, Sherwood; _E. pomorum_, Cannock Chase; _E.
balteatus_, Coleshill, Sutton Park, Bewdley, Cannock Chase; _Athöus
rhombeus_, Sherwood; _Corymbites pectinicornis_, _C. cupreus_, and var.
_æruginosus_, _C. æneus_, Knowle, Bewdley, Cannock Chase; _Sericosomus
brunneus_ and v. _fugax_, Cannock Chase; _Hydrocyphon deflexicollis_,
Bewdley; _Scirtes hemisphæricus_, Cannock Chase; _Lampyris noctiluca_
is spread over the whole district, but is most abundant in Bewdley
Forest; _Malachius æneus_ is found at Knowle, and _Haplocnemus
impressus_ at Sutton Park; _Clerus formicarius_ occurs at Salford
Priors; _Hylecœtus dermestoides_ and _Sphindus dubius_ at Cannock Chase
and Sherwood Forest; _Niptus crenatus_ and _Hedobia imperialis_ occur
at Knowle.

Of the Longicornia, it must suffice to mention the following:--_Prionus
coriarius_, Aston and Cannock Chase; _Callidium alni_, Knowle; _Clytus
mysticus_, Bewdley; _Pachyta collaris_ and _P. octomaculata_, Bewdley;
_Strangalia quadrifasciata_, Bewdley and Cannock Chase; _S. nigra_,

Many of the Donaciæ are plentiful, perhaps the most interesting local
species being _D. affinis_, which is found at Knowle.

_Clythra tridentata_ and _C. quadripunctata_ inhabit Bewdley Forest,
but _C. tridentata_ is very rarely met with. _Cryptocephalus coryli_,
_C. punctiger_, and _C. fulcratus_ may be beaten out of birches on
Cannock Chase, and at Chartley the Scotch species, _C. decempunctatus_,
has been taken.

_Salpingus ater_ is at Knowle, and _S. castaneus_ at Coleshill
and Cannock Chase. The curious _Notoxus monoceros_ is abundant at
Kidderminster and Bewdley.

Among the Rhynchophora the following may be noted: _Platyrhinus
latirostris_ and _Anthribus albinus_, Salford Priors; _Tropideres
sepicola_, Budden Wood (unique); _Choragus Sheppardi_, Salford
Priors; _Apion Hookeri_, Knowle and Trench Woods; _A. filirostre_,
Trench Woods; _Cænopsis fissirostris_ and _C. Waltoni_, Cannock
Chase, also on Hartlebury Common; _Cleonus sulcirostris_, Erdington;
_Cœliodes geranii_ and _C. exiguus_, Bewdley; _Amalus scortillum_,
Bewdley, Salford Priors; _Magdalinus barbicornis_, Bewdley;
_Rhyncolus gracilis_, Sherwood Forest is noteworthy; _Phiœophthorus
rhododactylus_, Bewdley; _Scolytus destructor_, Yardley; _S.
intricatus_ and _S. rugulosus_, Bewdley; _Xylocleptes bispinus_, Sutton
Park and Malvern.


This order has received the lion’s share of attention from local
collectors, with the result that a very fair proportion of the
British Micro-Lepidoptera has been discovered in the district.
The Micro-Lepidoptera have, however, not been looked up with any
enthusiasm, and consequently our knowledge of the extent to which these
interesting little moths occur about us is extremely limited.

The Rhopalocera include all the common species, and also a few which
are always considered desirable by every collector. At Bewdley,
_Aporia cratægi_ used to be found, and doubtless could yet be obtained
if carefully sought for. _Leucophasia sinapis_ flies more or less
abundantly at Bewdley Forest and Trench Woods; it has also been
occasionally taken in woods near Knowle. _Colias edusa_ always an
erratic species, sometimes visits the Midlands, and has been captured
at Yardley, Coleshill, Knowle, and other places. _C. hyale_ also turned
up once or twice in the district. _Gonopteryx rhamni_ is generally
distributed and plentiful. _Argynnis selene_, _A. euphrosyne_, _A.
aglaia_, _A. adippe_, and _A. paphia_ occur near Knowle, and at
Bewdley they are all found in great abundance; the variety _valesina_
has likewise been captured in the Forest. _Melitæa aurinia_ is not
rare in certain spots near Knowle and Bewdley. _Vanessa C. album_ may
occasionally be seen flying in the streets of Birmingham, especially in
the region of Sparkbrook and Moseley. _V. polychloros_ flies at Knowle.
_V. antiopa_ has several times been captured at Bewdley; and _V. io_,
_V. atalanta_, and _V. cardui_ are met with throughout the district.

The occurrence of _Limenitis sibylla_ has not been heard of nearer
than Church Stretton, but _Apatura iris_ has been taken in woods not
far from Coventry and Leamington. _Melanargia galatea_ is a common
butterfly at Salford Priors and Trench Woods. _Epinephele hyperanthes_
is abundant at Bewdley. The southern limit of _Cænonympha typhon_
appears to be Chartley Moss, where the butterfly (both light and
dark forms) is anything but rare. _Thecla betulæ_, _T. W. album_,
_T. pruni_, and _T. quercus_ fly at Trench Woods; _T. quercus_ also
near Knowle, at Bewdley, &c.; and _T. rubi_ is extremely plentiful at
Sutton Park and Cannock Chase. _Lycæna argiolus_ is found in several
localities near Birmingham, but abounds in the Holly Woods at Sutton
Park. _L. semiargus_ used to be taken many years since, close to
Birmingham, but seems to have become quite extinct.

In the division Heterocera the following list of selected
species with localities must suffice to represent the moths of
the district:--_Acherontia atropos_, Knowle, Dudley, Bewdley;
_Sphinx convolvuli_, Birmingham (frequent); _S. ligustri_, Knowle,
Sutton, Bewdley; _Deilephila galii_ and _D. livornica_, Birmingham
(occasional); _Chærocampa celerio_, Birmingham (1868); _C. nerii_,
Birmingham (1869); _C. porcellus_, Sutton Park; _C. elpenor_, Solihull,
Hockley Heath; _Smerinthus ocellatus_, _S. populi_ and _S. tiliæ_ are
found throughout the district. _Macroglossa stellatarum_ affects all
our localities; _M. fuciformis_ and _M. bombyliformis_ may be found
near Knowle.

_Ino statices_ at Olton, Marston Green, Knowle; _Zygœna filipendulæ_
var. _chrysanthemi_, Bewdley Forest; _Lithosia mesomella_, Knowle,
Bewdley, Cannock Chase; _Euchelia jacobææ_ used to be found at Saltley;
_Nemeophila russula_ and _N. plantaginis_, Sutton Park, Chartley Moss;
_Spilosoma fuliginosa_, Knowle; _S. mendica_, Smallheath; _Cossus
ligniperda_, throughout the district; _Zeuzera pyrina_, Knowle;
_Heterogenea limacodes_, Trench Woods; _Leucoma salicis_, Knowle;
_Psilura monacha_, Sutton Park; _Orgyia gnostigma_, Bewdley, Coventry,
Cannock Chase; _Saturnia pavonia_, Sutton Park, Cannock Chase;
_Drepana sicula_, Trench Woods (one larva 1885); _D. binaria_, near
Knowle; _Dicranura furcula_ and _D. bifida_, near Knowle; _Pterostoma
palpina_, Knowle; _Notodonta bicolor_, Burntwood, Staffordshire; _N.
dictæa_, _N. dictæoides_, _N. dromedarius_, _N. zizac_, _N. trimacula_,
Knowle, Bewdley; _Thyatira derasa_ and _T. batis_, Knowle, Sutton
Park; _Asphalia flavicornis_, Knowle, Hopwas Wood, Cannock Chase; _A.
ridens_, Hopwas Wood; _Acronycta tridens_, Knowle (larvæ on Elm Trees);
_A. leporina_, Knowle; _A. aceris_, Smallheath; _A. alni_, Smallheath,
Edgbaston, Sutton Park; _Nonagria arundinis_, Knowle, &c.; _Gortyna
ochracea_, Knowle, Bewdley; _Agrotis suffusa_, Knowle; _A. ripæ_,
Bewdley; _Triphæna ianthina_, _T. fimbria_, _T. interjecta_, Yardley,
Knowle, Bewdley, Trench Woods; _Amphipyra pyramidea_, Knowle; _Panolus
piniperda_, Sutton Park; _Tæniocampa gracilis_, Yardley, Knowle;
_Anchocelis lunosa_, Kidderminster; _Xanthia citrago_, _X. fulvago_,
_X. circellaris_, Knowle; _Eremobia ochroleuca_, Acock’s Green,
Yardley; _Dianthæcia cucubali_, Sparkbrook, Knowle; _Hecatera serena_,
Bewdley Road, Kidderminster; _Polia chi_, throughout the district;
_Aplecta tincta_, Knowle, Bewdley; _Hadena glauca_, Sutton Park,
Cannock Chase; _Xylocampa areola_, Knowle; _Calocampa vetusta_, _C.
exoleta_, Knowle, Sutton Park; _Xylina ornithopus_, Knowle; _Cucullia
verbasci_, Knowle, Bewdley; _C. chamomillæ_ and _C. umbratica_,
Coleshill, Knowle, Dudley; _Habrostola tripartita_ and _H. triplasia_,
Knowle; _Plusia interrogationis_, Cannock Chase; _Anarta myrtilli_,
Sutton Park, Cannock Chase, Bewdley Forest; _Heliaca tenebrata_,
Sparkbrook, Knowle, Bewdley; _Chariclea umbra_, Coleshill; _Erastria
fasciana_, Trench Woods; _Phytometra viridaria_, Knowle, Coleshill,
Sutton, Cannock Chase, &c.; _Euclidia mi_ and _E. glyphica_, Knowle,
Bewdley, Trench Woods; _Catocala nupta_, Knowle, Bewdley, Bromsgrove;
_Brephos parthenias_, Bewdley, Cannock Chase; _Epione apiciaria_,
Knowle; _Venilia macularia_, _Angerona prunaria_ and _Eurymene
dolobraria_, Bewdley Forest; _Pericallia syringaria_, Smallheath, Hall
Green, Knowle, Bewdley; _Selenia lunaria_, near Birmingham, _Nyssia
hispidaria_, Sutton Park; _Biston hirtaria_, Cannock Chase; _Amphidasys
strataria_, Knowle, Sutton Park; _Hemerophila abruptaria_, Edgbaston,
Knowle; _Boarmia roboraria_, Bewdley, Cannock Chase; _B. consortaria_,
Knowle, Bewdley, Trench Woods; _Tephrosia punctularia_, Cannock Chase,
Trench Woods; _Gnophos obscuraria_, Bewdley; _Pseudoterpna pruniate_,
Knowle; _Geometra papilionaria_, Knowle, Bewdley; _Phorodesma
pustulata_, Solihull; _Zonosoma porata_, _Z. pendularia_; Erdington,
Knowle, Bewdley, Trench Woods; _Asthena luteata_, _A. candidata_,
_A. sylvata_, Knowle; _A. blomeri_, Hoar Cross; _Acidalia fumata_,
Chartley; _A. inornata_, Chartley, Cannock Chase; _Timandra amataria_,
Knowle; _Bapta temerata_, Trench Woods; _Macaria liturata_, Hopwas
Wood, Cannock Chase; _Bupalis piniaria_, Knowle, Sutton Park, Hopwas
Wood, Cannock Chase; _Minoa murinata_, Bewdley Forest; _Aspilates
strigillaria_, Bewdley, Cannock Chase, Chartley; _Abraxas sylvata_,
Hopwas Wood; _Eupithecia venosata_, Sutton Park, Cannock Chase;
_Lobophora halterata_, Trench Woods; _L. viretata_, Sutton Park (some
seasons very abundant); _L. carpinata_, Hopwas Wood; _Thera variata_,
Sutton Park, Hopwas Wood, Cannock Chase; _Hypsipetes ruberata_, _H.
trifasciata_, Solihull, Sutton Park, Bewdley; _Melanippe hastata_,
Knowle, Bewdley; _Anticlea sinuata_, _A. rubidata_, _A. badiata_, _A.
derivata_, Knowle; _Camptogramma fluviata_, Knowle; _Cidaria miata_,
Knowle; _Carsia paludata_, var. _imbutata_, near Birmingham.


Microscopic Fauna.


The writer in drawing up the following summary of the local Microscopic
Fauna, knowing how limited a space is allowed, has in several of the
families given only the more rare and remarkable species which have
come under his own observation. The organisms included in this division
are abundant all round Birmingham; in the canals, reservoirs, and
rivers, in the swags and catchpits, amongst the spoil heaps of the
“Black Country,” and in the numerous clay-pits on the farm lands.


It is desirable to call attention to the identification of the larvæ
of the Trichopterous insects _Agraylea multipunctata_ and _Oxyethira
costalis_, by Messrs. Kenneth J. Morton and Robert McLachlan. The
perfect insects were bred from larvæ collected in this district, as
referred to in the “Entomologists’ Monthly Magazine,” May and June,
1886. So many problems in the life history of insects, having aquatic
larvæ, remain unsolved, that it is desirable that microscopists should
pay more attention to this subject.


The curious Diving-bell Spider, _Argyroneta aquatica_, is found in the
pools at Sutton Park; and a great variety of species of the Water-Mites
is generally distributed. Mr W. Saville Kent reports that several
specimens received from this district are new to science.

Tardigrada, viz., _Macrobiotus Hufelandii_, and other species, may be
found almost everywhere, if carefully looked for amongst damp moss and
decaying algæ.


In this class should be mentioned the freshwater Crayfish, _Astacus
fluviatilis_, not of course a microscopic organism; but if it were
omitted here it would not appear in any of the other reports. This
species is fairly distributed in most of the smaller brooks, in the
canals, and larger reservoirs, but is not so abundant or so large as
it is on the lime formations round Oxford. Two other large microscopic
species of this class, the freshwater Shrimp, _Gammarus pulex_, and the
water Wood-louse, _Asellus vulgaris_, are always present, the former
busy in its office of scavenger in the sandy bottoms of the brooks and
ditches, and the latter climbing about, like a monkey, amongst the
water weeds, investigating the mass of living and decaying organisms
with which the weeds are clothed.


The members of this sub-class are also to be found everywhere,
but it is desirable to call special attention to the discovery for
the first time in Great Britain of the wonderfully transparent
_Leptodora hyalina_, at a visit of the Birmingham Natural History and
Microscopical Society in 1879, to the Olton Reservoir, near Solihull.
It has since been found in many localities, and is very abundant in
the summer and autumn in the Warwick Canal and several reservoirs.
_Hyalodaphnia Kahlbergensis_ is very generally found with it. _Argulus
coregoni_ is found in the Birmingham and Warwick Canal. It had only
been discovered in Great Britain previously in the tanks of the Royal
Aquarium at Westminster, which, of course, are not used for British
fish exclusively. The Fairy-shrimp, _Chirocephalus diaphanus_, is found
in only one locality in the district, near Knowle. A few specimens
of the very rare _Lynceus acanthocercoides_ were found near Bewdley,
and amongst other local finds may be mentioned _Moina rectirostris_,
_Macrothrix roseus_, and _Ilyocryptus sordidus_.


These are generally distributed; _Alcyonella fungosa_, _Plumatella
repens_, _Fredericella sultana_, and _Paludicella Ehrenbergii_ cover
the root-fibres under the banks of the River Avon, at Evesham.
_Lophopus crystallinus_ is occasionally found in the brooks to the
south west of Birmingham. _Cristatella mucedo_ is often very abundant
in the larger reservoirs at Sutton Park, Barnt Green, Olton, &c.
Fredericella and Paludicella, have several times been seen in the town
water supplied by the Corporation.


The district appears to be very rich in these organisms, and a
good number of new species from this locality are enumerated in the
admirable Monograph on this family now being published by Dr. C.
T. Hudson and Mr. P. H. Gosse. In the five parts already published
(July 12th, 1886), they record one hundred and ninety-two species,
of which ninety-eight have been found in this district, twenty-two
being new species. Of the fifteen Flosculariæ eight species have been
found here, viz., _Flosculariæ regalis_ (new), _F. coronetta_, _F.
ornata_, _F. cornuta_, _F. campanulata_, _F. ambigua_, _F. calva_,
and _F. mutabilis_ (new). _Stephanoceros Eichhornii_ may sometimes
be seen quite clothing the water weeds in the canals and pools. The
always attractive building Wheel-animalcule, _Melicerta ringens_, is
occasionally present in abundance in the canals, rivers, and pools all
over the district. The writer has taken _Melicerta conifera_ several
times. _Melicerta tubicolaria_ was found by Dr. Hudson in Sutton
Park, and has since been found in other localities in this district.
_Limnias ceratophylli_ is very generally abundant. _Limnias annulatus_
has been found in two places. _Œcistes cystallinus_ is common, and
_Œ. intermedius_ not uncommon. Although beyond the radius, it may
be interesting to note that _Melicerta Janus_, new to England, was
taken in one of the Shropshire meres, by the writer on the 23rd of
June, 1886. It had only been found in Scotland before, by Mr. Hood,
in 1880. The new rotifer, _Œcistes umbella_, was found by Mr. A. W.
Wills, together with the rare _Œ. pilula_ in a pool at Sutton Park.
The charming clustered rotifer, _Lacinularia socialis_, only appears
in the hot summer months, but was surprisingly abundant last year in
the River Avon at Warwick, literally clothing the weeds with life.
This rotifer was in fair abundance a few years back in the Barnt Green
Reservoir, and last year in the neighbouring canal. The still more
charming free-swimming clustered rotifer, _Conochilus volvox_, is more
generally present, but is not always easy to detect, on account of its
transparency and continuous quick movements. The writer has taken this
rotifer in the pools at Sutton Park with a muslin net in such abundance
as to form quite a jelly at the bottom of the net. He also found a
new species, _Conochilus dossuarius_, in 1884. Of the Philodinidæ,
the following have been found--_Philodina roseola_, _P. citrina_, _P.
megalotrocha_, _P. aculeata_; _Rotifer vulgaris_, _R. tardus_, _R.
macroceros_, _R. macrurus_; _Actinurus Neptunius_, _Callidina elegans_,
and _Adineta vaga_. The rare and pretty little _Microdon clavus_ may
be found swimming about in Coleshill pool. Asplanchna, Synchæta,
Polyarthra, and Triarthra, may be netted in enormous numbers in the
summer months, especially in all the canals and larger pools, and they
occasionally abound in the smaller pools and even in ditches, together
with a great variety of the creeping ones, such as Philodina, Rotifer,
Notommata, Brachionus, Anuræa, &c. The wonderful variety of these
living together in a small ditch in Sutton Park is reported upon in a
short paper read by the writer before the Birmingham Natural History
and Microscopical Society in February last, and published in the
“Midland Naturalist,” July, 1886. _Hydatina senta_ and _Rhinops vitrea_
may be looked for amongst the _Euglena viridis_ often seen luxuriating
in farm yard drainage. The abnormal species, _Pedalion mira_, was found
at Knowle in 1884, in fair abundance. The spiny _Anuræa longispina_ was
found at Olton Reservoir very soon after it was first discovered in
America, and it soon afterwards abounded in the town water, and may be
found in most large reservoirs.


Some interesting examples of the Oligochæta have been found in
this locality, most of which have been identified by Professor E.
Ray Lankester or Mr. E. C. Bousfield, and of these the following
are noteworthy--_Chætogaster limnæi_, and _C. diaphanus_, _Nais
hamata_, _N. lurida_, _N. appendiculata_, and _N. barbata_; _Stylaria
parasitica_, _Dero digitata_, _D. obtusa_, _D. Perrieri_, _D. limosa_,
and _D. crassa_; _Salvina serpentina_, and _Ælosoma quaternarium_. The
Cercaria (the larva of a fluke) which infests the common Water Snail,
_Limnæa stagnatis_, is occasionally found; also _Mesostomum rostratum_,
_Derostomum vorax_, _Planaria lactea_, and _Piscicola geometrica_.


Both _Hydra vulgaris_ and _H. viridis_ are of course found everywhere.
_Cordylophora lacustris_, which is usually more abundant in brackish
water, was found last year in the canal at Hamstead, near Handsworth.
The writer has found it in the Stourbridge canal, and in the River
Stour. Some years back the writer heard of a canal boat being docked at
Dudley Port which was found to be clothed with this Hydrozoon as with


The freshwater sponges, _Spongilla fluviatilis_ and _S. lacustris_, are
abundant, but no one has taken up the subject in this district, to work
out the different species into which this genus is now divided.


When Mr. W. Saville Kent was preparing his manual on this subject,
he was supplied with a great variety of specimens from this district,
many of which proved to be new ones. The following are worthy of
mention: _Anthophysa vegetans_, _Rhipidodendron Huxleyi_, _Spongomonas
intestinalis_; various _Codosigæ_ and other Choano-flagellate
monads, including _Salpingœca Boltoni_, Kent, (new); _Euglena acus_;
_Dinobryon sertularia_; _Synura uvella_; _Uroglena volvox_ (very
general); _Distigma proteus_; _Hemidinium nasutum_; _Peridinium
tabulatum_; _Ceratium longicorne_; _Nassula ornata_; _Trachelius
ovum_; _Spirostomum teres_, and _S. ambiguum_; _Stentor polymorphus_,
_S. Barretti_, _S. cœruleus_, and _S. niger_; _Folliculina Boltoni_,
Kent (new.) The writer has found several free swimming Tintinnus,
not corresponding with any that Mr. W. Saville Kent enumerates;
_Didinium nasutum_; _Trichodina pediculus_; _Scyphidium Fromentellii_;
_Spirochona gemmipara_; _Vorticella chlorostigma_, and _V. monilata_;
_Carchesium polypinum_, and _C. epistylidis_; _Zoothamnium arbuscula_;
_Vaginicola tincta_; _Thuricola folliculata_; _Cothurnia imberbis_;
_Ophrydium versatile_, _O. Eichhornii_, and _O. sessile_; _Stichotricha
remex_; _Atineta lemnarum_, _A. grandis_, and _A. mystacina_;
_Dendrosoma radians_.


The following have been found: _Amœba proteus_, _A. verrucosa_, _A.
radiosa_, and _A. villosa_; _Ouramœba vorax_; _Lithamœba vorax_,
Lankester (new); _Difflugia pyriformis_, _D. spiralis_, and _D.
corona_; _Cyphoderia umbella_; _Arcella vulgaris_; _Actinophrys sol_;
_Raphidiophrys pallida_, and _R. elegans_; _Actinosphærium Eichhornii_;
_Acanthocystis chætophora_; _Archerina Boltoni_, Lankester (new);
_Clathrulina elegans_, and _Biomyxa vagans_.





In attempting to describe the more interesting features of the
indigenous Flora of the neighbourhood of Birmingham, it is necessary
to define the limits of the district intended to be included. A circle
of 20 miles radius, with the Town Hall as its centre, has been found
convenient as an approximate boundary. This will enclose portions of
the three counties of Warwick, Worcester, and Stafford, which meet at
a point on the south-western edge of the Borough, and a small part
of the County of Salop. The latter, with the exception shortly to be
mentioned, will be excluded from consideration. On the other hand, the
radius must be extended about two miles on the south-east to take in
the town of Stratford-on-Avon, and about the same distance on the west
to take in the woodlands west of the Severn from Shrawley Wood to Wyre
Forest near Bewdley. A part of the Forest is in Salop, and to this
extent only is the latter county admitted. The district thus defined
contains an area of about 12,500 square miles. It includes the towns of
Birmingham, Sutton Coldfield, Tamworth, Nuneaton, Coventry, Leamington,
Warwick, Stratford, and Alcester, in the County of Warwick; of
Bromsgrove, Droitwich, Stourport, Bewdley, Kidderminster, Stourbridge,
Halesowen, and Dudley, in Worcester; of Wolverhampton, Walsall,
Penkridge, Cannock, Rugeley, and Lichfield, in Stafford.

The vegetation of any district depends partly on the nature of the
soil, as determined by its geological structure, partly on altitude and
drainage areas, and partly on the character of the surface, whether
water, bog, heath, arable, pasture or woodland. The geology has been
treated of in a previous part of this volume. It will be sufficient
to say here that the red rocks of the Trias occupy by far the largest
portion of the area, and that calcareous soils are rare. An elevated
line of country, commencing north of Wolverhampton, runs in a southerly
direction, by Sedgley, Dudley, and the Rowley Hills, to Frankley
Beeches and the Upper Lickey, where it attains an altitude of about
900 feet above the sea. This is the great water parting of central
England which divides the drainage areas of the Trent and Severn. From
the Lickey, a line of lower elevation runs in a westerly direction
and divides the tributaries of the Trent from those of the Avon. The
subordinate river basins and surface characteristics will be noticed in
the special articles.

A brief outline of the history of the Botany of the Midland Counties
may be useful to students, and is therefore included in these remarks.
It commences with the honoured name of William Withering, one of the
most eminent of British Botanists. Born at Wellington, in Shropshire,
in 1741, he practised as a physician in Birmingham, where he died in
1799. The first edition of his well-known “Botanical arrangement of
British Plants,” in two volumes, was published in 1776; the second,
in three vols. in 1787; the third, in four vols. in 1796. It passed
through five further editions, in four volumes, after his death.
Numerous references to localities in the neighbourhood of Birmingham
are contained in these volumes.

Scarcely less distinguished was Thomas Purton (1768-1833), surgeon,
of Alcester, the author of “The Midland Flora.” The first two volumes
of the work appeared in 1817, the third in 1821. They contain copious
descriptions of local habitats in the counties of Warwick, Worcester,
and Stafford.

Nash’s “History of Worcestershire,” 1781, contains (Introduction
p. lxxxix.) a list of forty-three rare plants, two only of which,
_Vaccinium Oxycoccos_ and _Comarum palustre_, recorded as growing at
the Lickey, belong to the Birmingham district. The Supplement (1799)
has a further list of forty-seven plants, four of which belong to the

The late W. G. Perry, bookseller, of Warwick, published at Warwick,
in 1820, the first Flora of that county, under the title of “Plantæ
Varvicenses Selectæ.” He also contributed to the Magazine of Natural
History, Vol. iv., p. 450, 1831, a list of some of the rarer plants of
Worcestershire, chiefly from the neighbourhood of Kidderminster and

The “History of Stourbridge,” by William Scott, Stourbridge, 1832,
contains a list of plants from the neighbourhood of that town, in the
counties of Worcester and Stafford.

For a knowledge of the plants of the immediate vicinity of Birmingham,
and particularly of the once celebrated “Moseley Wake Green,” Botanists
are chiefly indebted to the late William Ick, Secretary of the old
Philosophical Society of Birmingham. Mr. Ick published two lists; the
first in “The Analyst,” for 1837, Vol. vi., p. 20; the second in the
“Midland Counties Herald,” Aug. 1838.

The present Mrs. Avery, then Miss M. A. Beilby, was a frequent visitor
to Moseley at about that date, and has obliged the writer with a list
of the rarities gathered by her at Moseley Bog and Common in 1835 and

A list of some of the rarer plants of the neighbourhood of Birmingham,
by Saml. Freeman, appeared in the first series of the Phytologist, Vol.
i., p. 261.

The Rev. W. T. Bree, Rector of Allesley, near Coventry, was a
well-known Botanist. He contributed to Purton’s Midland Flora, to
the Magazine of Natural History, and to the first series of the
Phytologist, many notices of the plants of the northern part of his

The first volume of the last named serial, 1844, pp. 508-514, contains
an account of the ferns of Stafford, Warwick, and Worcester, from the
pen of the Editor, the late Edward Newman.

The second series of the Phytologist, 1855 to 1863, was edited by the
late Alexander Irvine of Chelsea. Several plants from the neighbourhood
of Clent and Churchill are recorded by the Editor, in an article on the
“Botany of the Clent Hills,” Vol. ii., p. 385, April, 1858.

The Studies of Warwickshire Fungi, made by the late Mrs. F. Russell, of
Kenilworth, will be noticed in the article on that group of plants.

The County Botany of Worcester has been associated for upwards of half
a century, with the name of the veteran Worcester Botanist, Mr. Edwin
Lees. His first observations, made in conjunction with the late Dr.
Streeten, were published in Hastings’s “Illustrations of the Natural
History of Worcestershire,” (1834). These, together with a further
list supplied by him to the late H. C. Watson, are incorporated in
the Catalogue of Worcestershire plants in “The New Botanists’ Guide,”
(1835). The same work contains lists of the plants of Warwick and
Stafford. In 1867, Mr. Lees published his “Botany of Worcester,” the
only complete record of the flowering plants and ferns of the whole
county, which has yet appeared. His “Botany of the Malvern Hills,”
which has passed through three editions, relates to a part of the
county outside the limits of the Birmingham district.

The plants of the north-east of the county are enumerated in the “Flora
of the Clent and Lickey Hills,” by the present writer. First edition,
1868; Second Edition, 1881. He has been indebted for assistance to many
friends, too numerous to mention in this notice.

“The Natural History of Stafford,” by R. Garner, 1884, contains a list
of the rarer plants of that county. Our more recent knowledge of its
botany is due to Dr. Fraser, of Wolverhampton, whose discoveries are
published in the Reports of the Botanical Record Club, 1873-1883. These
reports contain also many district records communicated by the Editor,
Dr. F. Arnold Lees, and by Mr. J. E. Bagnall.

The modern geographical botany of Warwick is the work of members of
the Birmingham Natural History and Microscopal Society, and especially
of Mr. J. E. Bagnall, Mr. A. W. Wills, and Mr. W. B. Grove. The
volumes of “The Midland Naturalist” have been enriched by numerous
papers from these Botanists, for one of which, the monograph on the
Pilobolidæ, published in Vol. vii., 1884, the Darwin Gold Medal of the
Midland Union of Natural History Societies was awarded to Mr. Grove.
Those relating to the Botany of the county are, by Mr. Bagnall, “The
Distribution of the Roses,” (Vol. i, 1878), “The Moss Flora,” (Vols.
ii. and iii., 1879-80), “The Hepaticæ,” (Vol. iii., 1880), and “The
Flora of Warwickshire,” (Vols. iv.-ix., 1880-86); by Mr. Wills, “The
Desmidiæ of Sutton Park,” (Vol. iii., 1880); by Mr. Grove, “The Fungi
of the neighbourhood of Birmingham,” (Vols. v.-vii., 1882-84.)

The works of the late Hewett Cottrell Watson, the founder of the
Science of the Geographical Botany of Great Britain, must not be
passed over. Those containing provincial or comital records, besides
the new Botanists’ Guide already mentioned, are the Cybele Britannica,
1847-1872; Topographical Botany, 1st edit., 1873-4, 2nd edit., 1883.

It may be interesting to mention that a Students’ Garden for economic
and medicinal plants was laid out in 1882, in the Edgbaston Botanical
Gardens, from the plans of Professor Hillhouse, of Mason College, and
that a Students’ garden of British plants has been laid out, in the
present year, in Cannon Hill Park, from the plans of Mr. J. W. Oliver,
teacher of Botany at the Midland Institute. For the establishment
of the latter garden, students are indebted to Mr. Alderman White,
chairman of the Baths and Parks Committee of the Town Council.

County boundaries have been so generally adopted as the limits of local
Floras, that it has been thought desirable to adhere to them, and to
tabulate the plants separately for Warwick, Worcester, and Stafford,
whenever the materials at command have admitted of this division. The
flowering plants and ferns present no difficulty, but with respect to
the lower forms of vegetation it has not always been found possible
to determine their comital distribution. The plants indigenous to the
district are described in the following articles:--

The Flowering Plants and Ferns by Mr. J. E. Bagnall, assisted, as to
Worcester, by the editor of the section, and, as to Stafford, by Dr.
Fraser. The Mosses, Hepatics, and Lichens, by Mr. J. E. Bagnall. The
Algæ, by Mr. A. W. Wills. The Fungi, by Mr. W. B. Grove.


The Flowering Plants, Ferns, &c.


The flowering plants, ferns, and fern allies of the Birmingham District
will be described, as stated in the Introductory Remarks, under the
heads of the three counties of Warwick, Worcester, and Stafford. The
total flora of the district comprises upwards of 1,116 flowering plants
and ferns; of these 844 are native, 143 are varieties, 14 aliens, 42
colonists, and 73 are denizens. The nomenclature adopted is that of the
7th edition of the “London Catalogue of British Plants.”


The Warwickshire portion of the district comprises the greater part
of North Warwickshire, with a portion of South Warwickshire. It is
watered by the Tame, with its affluents the Rea, Cole, Blythe, Bourne,
and Anker; and the Avon with its affluents the Leam, Sow, Alne, and
Arrow. The greatest elevations occur at Hartshill, Dosthill, Corley,
Alne Hills, and Arrow, none of which exceed 550 feet above the
sea. As a whole it is well wooded, but the woods are usually small
and not productive of the rarer woodland species. Heath lands are
mostly reclaimed, and the more extensive marshes and bogs drained,
hence ericetal and bog plants are rare. It has been divided into the
following sub-districts, bounded by the water partings of the river

In presenting an account of the rarer plants as full a list from each
sub-district (as space permits) will be given, but many of the plants
cited for one or other sub-district may also be found in one or more of
the others.

The plants marked by an asterisk* before the name are probably extinct.

I. TAME.--This sub-district embraces all those portions of the Tame
valley not drained by the Blythe or Anker, and includes Sutton,
Middleton, Water Orton, Kingsbury, Shustoke, and Arley. The country is
generally flat, but is slightly elevated on both right and left banks,
near Arley, Middleton, Dosthill, and Shustoke. In this district about
750 flowering plants and ferns are recorded; among the more rare are--

    Ranunculus fluitans, R. Lenormandi, R. Lingua; Nymphæa alba;
    Viola palustris; Moenchia erecta; Ornithopus perpusillus;
    Comarum palustre; Rubus Schlechtendalii, R. rosaceus; Rosa
    sphærica; Callitriche obtusangula; Parnassia palustris; Galium
    uliginosum; Valeriana dioica; Chrysosplenium alternifolium;
    Dipsacus pilosus; Carlina vulgaris; Carduus nutans; Leontodon
    hirtus; Jasione montana; Vaccinium Vitis-Idæa, V. Oxycoccos;
    Menyanthes trifoliata; Mentha rotundifolia; Calamintha Acinos;
    Scutellaria minor; Pinguicula vulgaris; Polygonum maculatum;
    Empetrum nigrum; Salix fusca; Juncus diffusus; Scirpus
    pauciflorus; Eriophorum vaginatum; Carex dioica, C. curta, C.
    Ehrhartiana, C. lævigata, C. fulva; Agrostis nigra; Botrychium
    Lunaria; Nephrodium Thelypteris; Chara opaca.

II. BLYTHE.--The Blythe, which rises on the borders of East
Worcestershire near Earlswood, takes its course through Solihull,
Knowle, Hampton-in-Arden, Packington, and Coleshill, to its confluence
with the Tame, near Whitacre; with this is included the Cole, running
through Marston Green and Coleshill. This sub-district is mostly flat,
the soils are usually sand, marl, and clay. Heath lands occur near
Earlswood and Coleshill; bogs and marshes near Coleshill and Barston.
The recorded flora is about 820 flowering plants and ferns, the
following being the more noteworthy:--

    Thalictrum flavum; Aquilegia vulgaris; Drosera rotundifolia;
    Cerastium arvense; Sagina ciliata; *Elatine hexandra;
    Hypericum elodes; Geranium pyrenaicum; Genista tinctoria;
    Vicia tetrasperma; Rubus suberectus, R. adornatus; Rosa
    micrantha, R. surculosa, R. obtusifolia, R. Reuteri; Pyrus
    torminalis; Cotyledon Umbilicus; Œnanthe crocata; Chærophyllum
    Anthriscus; Sambucus Ebulus; Carduus pratensis; Anthemis
    arvensis; Bidens cernua, B. tripartita; Solidago virga-aurea;
    Lactuca muralis; Hieracium umbellatum; *Pyrola media; Linaria
    minor; Limosella aquatica; Veronica Buxbaumii; *Orobanche
    major; Mentha piperita; Stachys ambigua; Myosotis repens, M.
    sylvatica, M. collina, M. versicolor; Lysimachia vulgaris;
    Littorella lacustris; Populus canescens; Lemna gibba;
    Potomogeton rufescens; Orchis Morio; *Gymnadenia conopsea;
    Narthecium ossifragum; Rhynchospora alba; Scirpus multicaulis,
    S. cæspitosus; Carex elongata; Agrostis canina; Calamagrostis

III. ANKER.--The Anker rises about 3 miles S.E. of Bedworth, drains the
country about Bedworth, Nuneaton, Atherstone, Polesworth and Tamworth,
and enters the Tame at Tamworth. The country it waters is usually flat,
but on its left bank at Hartshill and Polesworth there is rising ground
about 500 feet above sea level. In this sub-district the Warwickshire
coalfields occur, and it is possibly due to the great prevalence of
smoke that its flora is meagre and the plants often depauperated. The
recorded flora is about 680 flowering plants and ferns, and among the
more rare are:

    *Myosurus minimus; Cardamine amara, C. impatiens; Viola
    Reichenbachiana; Stellaria aquatica; Tilia parvifolia;
    Rhamnus catharticus; Genista tinctoria; *Vicia sylvatica;
    Prunus insititia; Potentilla procumbens; Rubus calvatus, R.
    mucronulatus, R. Bloxamii, R. foliosus, R. Bellardi; Rosa
    andegavensis, R. bibracteata; Epilobium roseum; Œnanthe
    fluviatilis; Cornus sanguinea; Matricara Chamomilla;
    Wahlenbergia hederacea; Atropa Belladonna; Veronica polita;
    *Orobanche elatior; Rumex pratensis; Salix pentandra, S.
    rubra; Sparganium neglectum; Sagittaria sagittifolia; Butomus
    umbellatus; Potamogeton pusillus; Epipactis latifolia;
    Fritillaria Meleagris; Scirpus acicularis; Nardus stricta;
    Ceterach officinarum; Equisetum maximum; Chara Hedwigii.

IV. AVON.--This sub-district includes that portion of South Warwick
within the area not drained by the Leam, Sow, Alne, and Arrow,
including Milverton, Stoneleigh, Warwick, Stratford-on-Avon, Bidford
and Salford Priors. This valley is beautifully undulating and
well-wooded, watered by many minor streams, with very varied soils and
usually highly cultivated. Its flora is peculiar from the absence of
bog and heath plants, the records comprising about 970 flowering plants
and ferns, of which the following are the rarer:--

    Ranunculus parviflorus; Papaver strigosum, P. Lecoqii;
    Sisymbrium Sophia; Erysimum cheiranthoides; Cheiranthus
    Cheiri; Diplotaxis muralis; Viola odorata; Dianthus Armeria;
    Hypericum dubium; Medicago maculata; Astragalus glycyphyllus;
    Trifolium subterraneum, T. scabrum, T. fragiferum, T.
    filiforme; Vicia lathyroides; Potentilla argentea; Rubus
    Guntheri, R. tuberculatus; Rosa stylosa; Poterium Sanguisorba;
    Geum intermedium; Epilobium tetragonum; Petroselinum segetum;
    Senecio erucifolius; Crepis biennis; Solanum nigrum;
    Mentha cardiaca; Myriophyllum alterniflorum, M. spicatum;
    Salix Hoffmanniana, S. Helix; Potamageton flabellatus;
    *Carex Bœninghauseniana; Carex acuta, C. pendula; Agrostis
    spica-venti; Bromus commutatus.

V. SOW.--The Sow, rises near Astley, and receives tributaries, draining
Combe fields, Brinklow and Sow Waste on the east, and Allesley, Corley,
and Kenilworth on the west. The high land about Corley divides the
watersheds of the Tame and Avon. The flora of this sub-district is
about 691 flowering plants and ferns, the more noteworthy being--

    Ranunculus penicillatus, R. radians; *Arabis perfoliata;
    Geranium columbinum; Rubus humifusus, R. hirtus, R.
    Balfourianus, R. Guntheri; Rosa Doniana; Epilobium obscurum;
    Myriophyllum verticillatum; Callitriche hamulata; Saxifraga
    granulata; Pimpinella magna; Silaus pratensis; Arctium
    intermedium; Serratula tinctoria; Inula Conyza; Erigeron
    acris; *Lactuca virosa; Campanula patula; *Cuscuta Europæa;
    Verbena officinalis; *Mentha gentilis; Nepeta Cataria; Lamium
    maculatum; Cynoglossum montanum, C. officinale; Chenopodium
    rubrum; Potamogeton obtusifolius, P. mucronatus; Acorus
    Calamus; Paris quadrifolia; Calamagrostis Epigeios; Lolium
    temulentum; Aspidium angulare; Chara contraria.

VI. ALNE.--The Alne, rises near Tanworth on the west border of
Warwickshire, the high land there forming in part the watershed of
the Avon and Tame. Its course is through Henley-in-Arden, near here
it is joined by an important tributary draining the country between
Henley, Lapworth, and Rowington. This sub-district is somewhat hilly,
the Alne Hills being the highest elevations. It includes Tanworth,
Henley-in-Arden, Bearley, Alne, Wilmcote, Claverdon, Hatton, Rowington.
The Lias soils prevail in southern part of the district. The flora is
about 745 flowering plants and ferns, the following being the more

    Clematis vitalba; Ranunculus Drouetii; Helianthemum vulgare;
    Viola hirta; Geranium pratense, G. pusillum; Melilotus
    officinalis; Lotus tenuis; *Lathyrus Aphaca, L. Nissolia;
    Spiræa Filipendula; Agrimonia odorata; Rubus thyrsoideus; Rosa
    rubiginosa; Sison Amomum; Caucalis daucoides; Galium tricorne;
    Valeriana Mikani; Scabiosa columbaria; Carduus acaulis;
    Centauria Scabiosa; Anthemis nobilis; Arctium majus; Picris
    hieracioides; Helminthia echioides; Gentiana amarella; Linaria
    spuria, *L. repens; Thymus Chamædrys; Ophrys apifera; Juncus
    obtusiflorus; Avena pratensis; Bromus erectus; B. secalinus;
    Chara longibracteata.

VII. ARROW.--The Arrow enters the county near Redditch, and takes its
course through a narrow hilly valley to its confluence with the Avon at
Salford Priors, passing on its way Studley, Alcester, Arrow, Wixford,
and Broome. This sub-district is well wooded; the soils are mostly
Keuper marls and sand, with Lias soils prevailing about Wixford. The
flora has not been fully worked out, but the record is now about 706
flowering plants and ferns; among the more noteworthy are:--

    Ranunculus circinatus; Berberis vulgaris; Sinapis nigra;
    Silene noctiflora; Euonymus Europæus; Trifolium striatum; Rosa
    spinossisma; Pyrus communis; *Sedum Telephium; Ribes nigrum;
    Bupleurum rotundifolium; Torilis infesta; Adoxa Moschatellina;
    Viburnum Lantana; Carduus crispus, C. Eriophorus; Campanula
    glomerata, C. Trachelium; Specularia hybrida; Chlora
    perfoliata; *Hyoscyamus niger; Linaria Elatine; Calamintha
    menthifolia; *Marrubium vulgare; Galeopsis Ladanum, G.
    versicolor; Centunculus minimus; Chenopodium polyspermum,
    C. hybridum; Polygonum Bistorta; Daphne Laureola; Carpinus
    Betulus; Salix triandra; Orchis pyramidalis; Spiranthes
    autumnalis; *Epipactis palustris; Chephalanthera ensifolia;
    Iris fœtidissima; *Allium oleraceum; Juncus Gerardi; Carex
    divulsa, *C. distans; Kœhleria cristata; Schlerochloa rigida;
    Brachipodium pinnatum.


The Worcestershire portion of the district extends from Oldbury and
Yardley in the north, to Abbot’s Morton on the south. It is watered by
the Cole and Rea, tributaries to the Tame, by the Stour and Salwarp,
tributaries to the Severn, by the Severn itself, and by the Arrow and
minor streams tributaries to the Avon. A range of hills about eight
miles long runs across the country from north-west to south-east, and
articulates with the central water parting at Bromsgrove Lickey. It
includes Clent, Walton and Romsley Hills, Frankley Beeches, the Upper
and the Lower Lickey, and rises in Walton Hill, to a maximum height of
1036 feet above the sea. The Worcestershire portion of the district
has been divided into the following eight sub-districts, distinguished
by the Roman numerals I. to VIII. It has not been found convenient in
every case to adopt water partings as sub-divisional boundaries.


I. REA.--The north-east angle of the county, drained by the Rea and
Cole. Surface strata, red marl, occasionally covered by modern drift.

The flora of this sub-district has, unhappily, mainly an historical
interest. Moseley Wake Green and Bog, drained and enclosed in or about
1840, and now partly built upon, formerly produced the following

    Viola palustris; Drosera rotundifolia; Dianthus deltoides;
    Alsine tenuifolia; Radiola millegrana; Hypericum elodes;
    Comarum palustre; Parnassia palustris; Helosciadium inundatum;
    Hydrocotyle vulgaris; Carduus pratensis; Vaccinium Oxycoccus;
    Menyanthes trifoliata; Pedicularis palustris; Scutellaria
    minor; Anagallis tenella; Centunculus minimus; Narthecium
    ossifragum; Rhyncospora alba; Eriophorum vaginatum; Triodia
    decumbens; Molinia cærulea; Nephrodium Oreopteris; Osmunda
    regalis; Lycopodium Selago; Equisetum hyemale.

Most of the above plants are certainly, and all probably, extinct. The
same may be said of--

    Thalictrum flavum; Coronopus Ruellii; Lythrum Salicaria; Ribes
    alpinum; Œnanthe fistulosa; Veronica Anagallis; Triglochin
    palustre; Butomus umbellatus; recorded from other parts of this

The rarer plants now existing within it are:--

    Ranunculus pseudo-fluitans; Chelidonium majus; Cardamine amara;
    Nasturtium amphibium; Nasturtium palustre; Epilobium roseum;
    Sium augustifolium; Adoxa moschatellina; Galium uliginosum;
    Hieraceum umbellatum; Campanula latifolia; Limosella
    aquatica; Stachys palustris; Rumex Hydrolapathum; Narcissus
    pseudo-narcissus; Lemna trisulca; Sagittaria sagittifolia;
    Scirpus setaceus; Carex vesicaria, C. pseudo-Cyperus;
    Alopecurus fulvus; Triticum caninum.

II. CLENT AND LICKEY.--The Clent and Lickey Hills, with the head waters
of the Rea and Arrow, and upper valley of the Stour to Stourbridge.
Surface strata; Water stones, Bunter soft red sandstone and Pebble
bed, Permian breccia, Permian clays and sandstones, Coal measures,
Silurian and Cambrian rocks of the lower Lickey. This sub-district is
extensively wooded, especially in the basin of the upper Stour above

The rarer plants are--

    Ranunculus circinatus, R. auricomus, R. parviflorus, R.
    arvensis; Corydalis claviculata; Lepidium Smithii; Cardamine
    amara, C. impatiens; Barbarea stricta; Nasturtium amphibium;
    Erysimum cheiranthoides; Cheiranthus Cheiri; Reseda luteola;
    Viola palustris; Polygala depressa; Moenchia erecta;
    Spergularia rubra; Hypericum Androsæmun, H. humifusum; Geranium
    sylvaticum, G. lucidum; Rhamnus Frangula; Ulex Gallii; Genista
    tinctoria; Ononis arvensis. O. campestris; Melilotus arvensis;
    Trifolium medium, T. hybridum; Ornithopus perpusillus;
    Orobus tuberosus; Prunus Avium; Geum rivale, G. intermedium;
    Rubus macrophyllus, R. Sprengelii, R. hystrix, R. rudis, R.
    Kœhleri, R. fusco-ater, R. rotundifolius, R. tenuiarmatus, R.
    diversifolius; Rosa mollissima, R. tomentosa, R. subglobosa, R.
    Watsoni; Agrimonia Eupatoria, A. odorata; Alchemilla vulgaris;
    Sanguisorba officinalis; Poterium muricatum; Pyrus Aucuparia;
    Epilobium angustifolium, E. obscurum; Callitriche stagnalis;
    Peplis Portula; Ribes rubrum, R. nigrum; Chrysosplenium
    alternifolium; Adoxa moschatellina; Hydrocotyle vulgaris;
    Sanicula Europæa; Pimpinella magna; Silaus pratensis; Pastinaca
    sativa; Torilis infesta; Viscum album; Sambucus nigra; Viburnum
    Opulus; Asperula odorata; Valerianella dentata; Dipsacus
    pilosus; Inula Conyza, I. dysenterica; Matricaria Parthenium;
    M. Chamomilla; Doronicum Pardalianches; Senecio erucifolius;
    Carlina vulgaris; Serratula tinctoria; Centaurea Scabiosa;
    Lactuca muralis; Hieracium murorum; Campanula latifolia;
    Erica tetralix; Vaccinium Myrtillus; Erythræa Centaurium;
    Chlora perfoliata; Convolvulus sepium; Cuscuta Trifolii;
    Orobanche major; Lathræa squamaria; Linaria Cymbalaria, L.
    repens; Pedicularis sylvatica; Veronica montana, V. Buxbaumii;
    Calamintha Clinopodium; Scutellaria galericulata; Lamium
    Galeobdolon; Galeopsis versicolor; Stachys Betonica; Myosotis
    sylvatica; Cynoglossum officinale; Primula caulescens;
    Lysimachia vulgaris, L. Nummularia; Chenopodium Bonus-Henricus,
    C. olidum; Polygonum Bistorta; Euphorbia amygdaloides; Humulus
    Lupulus; Salix pentandra, S. aurita; Paris quadrifolia;
    Tamus communis; Orchis Morio; Gymnadenia conopsea; Neottia
    nidus-avis; Habenaria bifolia; Epipactis media; Narcissus
    pseudo-narcissus; Sagittaria sagittifolia; Butomus umbellatus;
    Allium ursinum; Colchicum autumnale; Juncus squarrosus; Luzula
    pilosa; Potamogeton rufescens, P. perfoliatus, P. crispus,
    P. pectinatus; Carex pulicaris, C. remota, C. pallescens. C.
    strigosa, C. pendula, C. pilulifera, C. fulva, C. lepidocarpa,
    C. sylvatica, C. pseudo-Cyperus, C. binervis; Triodia
    decumbens; Molinia cærulea; Festuca gigantea; Bromus erectus;
    Nardus stricta; Equisetum maximum, E. sylvaticum, E. hyemale;
    Nephrodium Oreopteris, N. spinulosum; Aspidium aculeatum, A.
    angulare: Asplenium Trichomanes; Blechnum boreale; Botrychium
    Lunaria; Ophioglossum vulgatum; Lycopodium clavatum.

    Diplotaxis muralis; Buplerum rotundifolium; Hyoscyamus niger;
    Linaria Elatine; Borago orientalis have occurred as casuals.

_Narthecium ossifragum_ and _Drosera rotundifolia_ formerly grew at
the Lower Lickey. The former was destroyed by drainage about 1854,
the latter has been recently extirpated by collectors. _Ceterach
officinarum_, which grew in great abundance on the garden wall at the
Leasows from 1850 to 1884, was destroyed soon after the latter date.

III. STOUR.--Country from the foot of the Clent Hills to the east bank
of the Stour, near Kidderminster. Surface strata--Waterstones, soft red
Bunter, Pebble bed. This sub-district is distinguished by the steep
scarps of the waterstones, the sandy soils of the soft red sandstone,
and the numerous pools on the brooks which flow from the Clent Hills
into the river Stour. The rarer plants are--

    Rananculus circinatus, R. fluitans, R. Lenormandi; Aquilegia
    vulgaris; Chelidonium majus; Nasturtium palustre; Cardamine
    amara; Barbarea præcox; Thlaspi arvense; Teesdalia nudicaulis;
    Viola palustris; Sagina ciliata; Arenaria leptoclados;
    Cerastium aquaticum, C. semidecandrum; Spergularia rubra;
    Malva moschata; Hypericum dubium, H. humifusum; Geranium
    columbinum; Erodium cicutarium; Trifolium arvense, T.
    filiforme; Ornithopus perpusillus; Potentilla argentea;
    Comarum palustre; Rubus suberectus, R. affinis, R. umbrosus,
    R. rhamnifolius, R. Lindleianus, R. diversifolius, R.
    ternuiarmatus; R. spinosissima, R. mollissima; Lythrum
    Salicaria; Epilobium angustifolium. E. obscurum; Myriophyllum
    spicatum; Ceratophyllum aquaticum; Bryonia dioica; Sedum
    Telephium, S. album; Ribes rubrum, R. nigrum; Saxifraga
    granulata; Chrysosplenium alternifolium; Parnassia palustris;
    Hydrocotyle vulgaris; Sium angustifolium; Conium maculatum;
    Galium uliginosum; Valerianella olitoria; Gnaphalium
    sylvaticum; Anthemis arvensis; Tanacetum vulgare; Bidens
    tripartita, B. cernua; Carduus nutans; Leontodon hirtus;
    Hieracium murorum, H. umbellatum; Jasione montana; Campanula
    patula; Menyanthes trifoliata; Echium vulgare; Myosotis
    versicolor; Solanum nigrum; Verbascum Thapsus, V. nigrum, V.
    virgatum; Veronica Anagallis, V. polita; Pedicularis palustris;
    Verbena officinalis; Salvia verbenaca; Mentha sylvestris; M.
    piperta; Calamintha menthifolia, C. Acinos; Nepeta Cataria;
    Rumex Hydrolapathum, R. pratensis; Polygonum Bistorta, P.
    pseudo-dumetorum; Anacharis Alsinastrum; Orchis mascula,
    O. latifolia, O. incarnata; Alisma Plantago; Polygonatum
    multiflorum; Luzula sylvatica, L. pilosa; Typha augustifolia;
    Acorus Calamus; Sparganium ramosum, S. simplex; Potamogeton
    zosterifolius, P. flabellatus; P. lucens; Zanichellia
    palustris; Scirpus sylvaticus; Carex axillaris, C. disticha, C.
    muricata, C. paniculata, C. Boeninghauseniana, C. pilulifera,
    C. pseudo-Cyperus, C. ampullacea, C. paludosa; Nardus stricta;
    Aira caryophyllea, A. præcox; Avena pubescens; Festuca
    sciuroides, F. Myurus; Bromus erectus; Triticum caninum;
    Equisetum maximum; Asplenium Trichomanes; Ceterach officinarum.

_Camelina sativa_, _Silene anglica_, _Anthoxanthum Puelii_, have been
found as field casuals. _Mimulus luteus_ is established in the brooks
at Churchill. _Medicago maculata_, _Xanthium spinosum_, _Polypogon
monspeliensis_ were growing in 1875 on wool waste at Hoo Mill.

_Sium latifolium_, which grew in Blakedown Pools, in Purton’s time,
has been long extinct in that locality. _Osmunda regalis_, which
grew in this sub-district in 1852-3, has disappeared. _Asplenium
Adiantum-nigrum_ and _Scolpendrium vulgare_ have been all but

_Elatine hexandra_ and _Hydropiper_, reported by the late Mr. Alexander
Irvine in a “Mill Pond near Churchill station,” in 1857, have not been
seen by any other botanist.

IV. EAST SEVERN.--Country from the west bank of the Stour to the east
bank of the Severn near Bewdley and Stourport, including Hartlebury
Common east of Severn, below the junction of the Stour at Stourport.
Surface strata: Waterstones, Bunter sandstone and Pebble bed, Permian
breccia, Coal measures, Old red sandstone; covered at Hartlebury
Common and elsewhere with modern drift. The sand and bog plants of
Hartlebury Common are the most interesting features of the flora of
this sub-district. It contains--

    Ranunculus fluitans; Teesdalia nudicaulis; Brassica
    Cheiranthus; Viola canina; Drosera rotundifolia; Cerastium
    arvense; Spergularia rubra; Radiola millegrana; Erodium
    maritimum; Geranium pratense, G. lucidum, G. pyrenaicum;
    Trifolium striatum, T. arvense; Ornithopus perpusillus; Vicia
    lathyroides; Potentilla argentea; Comarum palustre; Rubus
    suberectus, R. fusco-ater; Rosa spinosissima; Pyrus torminalis;
    Lythrum Salicaria; Sedum dasyphyllum; Cotyledon Umbilicus;
    Hydrocotyle vulgaris; Helosciadium inundatum; Œnanthe crocata;
    Chærophyllum Anthriscus; Lonicera Caprifolium, L. Xylosteum;
    Valerianella carinata; Carduus nutans; Hypochæris glabra; Inula
    Conyza; Erigeron acris; Campanula Trachelium; Erica tetralix;
    Monotropa hypopitys; Menyanthes trifoliata; Myosotis collina;
    Verbascum Lychnitis, V. virgatum; Nepeta Cataria; Veronica
    scutellata: Salvia verbenaca; Calamintha menthifolia, C.
    Acinos; Scutellaria minor; Marrubium vulgare; Rumex maritimus;
    Potamogeton polygonifolius, P. obtusifolius; Juncus squarrosus;
    Rhyncospora alba; Eriophorum augustifolium; Scirpus fluitans;
    Carex curta, C. pilulifera, C. divulsa; Agrostis canina;
    Triodia decumbens; Nardus stricta; Equisetum sylvaticum;
    Asplenium Adiantum-nigrum; Botrychium Lunaria; Lycopodium
    clavatum, L. inundatum.

_Melilotus alba_, _Carum Carui_, _Arnoseris pusilla_, _Crepis
Nicænsis_, _Linaria minor_ have been found as casuals near the Railway
Viaduct over the Stour, south of Kidderminster, and _Centaurea
solstitialis_ at Hartlebury; _Lycopodium complanatum_ was gathered on
Hartlebury Common in 1836, but has not been seen since.

V. WEST SEVERN.--Country west of the Severn, from Wyre Forest on the
north, to Shrawley Wood on the south. Surface strata: Waterstones,
soft red Bunter, Permian breccia, Coal measures, Old red sandstone.
This sub-district extends somewhat beyond the twenty miles radius. It
is chiefly remarkable for the large area of woodland known as Wyre
Forest, which produces a number of rarities not found elsewhere within
the County. Part of the forest is in Salop. The following list includes
plants from both counties:--

    Thalictrum flavum; Ranunculus fluitans; Aquilegia vulgaris;
    Cardamine impatiens; Nasturtium sylvestre; Polygala vulgaris;
    Saponaria officinalis; Hypericum montanum; Tilia parvifolia,
    T. grandifolia; Geranium sylvaticum, G. sanguineum; Rhamnus
    catharticus, R. Frangula; Vicia sylvatica; Spiræa salicifolia;
    Pyrus torminalis; Rubus saxatilis, R. villicaulis, R. hirtus,
    R. pyramidalis, R. Guntheri; Rosa mollissima, R. micrantha;
    Sedium Telephium; Galium erectum; Hieracium murorum; Campanula
    latifolia, C. Trachelium; Pyrola media, P. minor; Gentiana
    campestris; Mentha Pulegium; Pedicularis palustris; Melampyrum
    pratense; Scutellaria minor; Myosotis repens; Lithospermum
    officinale; Centunculus minimus; Juniperus communis;
    Convallaria majalis; Orchis latifolia; Gymnadenia conopsea;
    Habenaria chlorantha, H. viridis; Epipactis latifolia, E.
    palustris; Cephalanthera ensifolia; Neottia nidus-avis;
    Spiranthes autumnalis; Scirpus pauciflorus, S. setaceus;
    Eriophorum latifolium; Carex pulicaris, C. divulsa, C. fulva,
    C. montana, C. strigosa; Melica nutans; Nephrodium Oreopteris;
    Equisetum maximum, E. hyemale.

A single tree of _Pyrus domestica_, once a celebrity of Wyre Forest,
and reputed the only wild one in Britain, was destroyed by fire in
1862. _Spiranthes æstioalis_ has once been gathered in the great bog in
the Forest; _Coronilla varia_ occurs as a casual on the right bank of
the Severn, about a mile above Bewdley.

VI. ARROW.--Country between Barnt Green and Redditch, surrounding
the village of Alvechurch. With the exception of a small patch of
Waterstone, this sub-district is entirely on the Red marl. Several
large reservoirs belonging to the Worcester canal are situated within

The following are its characteristic plants--

    Ranunculus Drouetii; Lepidum ruderale; Viola palustris; Drosera
    rotundifolia; Lotus tenuis; Rosa micrantha, R. sub-cristata,
    R. Hailstonii, R. Borreri, R. bibracteata; Rubus adornatus, R.
    thyrsoideus, R. pilosus; Lathyrus Nissolia; Pyrus torminalis;
    Epilobium angustifolium; Myriophyllum spicatum; Valerianella
    dentata; Anthemis arvensis; Artemisia Absinthium; Serratula
    tinctoria; Carduus crispus; Campanula patula; Myosotis repens;
    Pedicularis palustris; Limosella aquatica; Veronica Anagallis,
    V. scutellata; Primula caulescens; Anagallis tenella; Euphorbia
    amygdaloides; Rumex Hydrolapathum; Triglochin palustre;
    Butomus umbellatus; Sagittaria sagittifolia; Acorus Calamus;
    Potamogeton polygonfolius; Ophrys apifera; Juncus squarrosus;
    Eleocharis acicularis; Scirpus setaceus; Calamagrostis
    Epigejos; Nardus stricta; Equisetum sylvaticum; Ophioglossum
    vulgatum; Chara flexilis.

VII. SALWARP.--Country from the S.W. foot of the Lickey Hills, to the
Salwarp below Droitwich. Surface strata: Red Marl, Waterstones. The
most noticeable features are the extensive tract of woodland known as
the Randans, and the Salt Works of Stoke and Droitwich. The latter have
rendered the canals and streams in the vicinity more or less saline.

The characteristic plants are--

    Geranium lucidum, G. Pyrenaicum; Rhamnus catharticus; Dipsacus
    sylvestris; Sison Amomum; Scandix Pecten-Veneris; Picris
    hieracioides; Senecio erucifolius; Carduus crispus; Inula
    Conyza; Vaccinium Myrtillus; Melampyrum pratense; Plantago
    media; Scirpus Tabernæmontani; Calamagrostis Epigejos; Aspidium
    angulare; Nephrodium spinulosum; Lycopodium clavatum.

_Polypodium Dryopteris_, and _Cystopteris fragilis_, which grew at
Catshill up to 1861, are believed to be extinct. The plants of the
saline waters of Droitwich deserve separate mention. They are--

    Lepidum ruderale, L. latifolium; Spergularia salina: Apium
    graveolens; Samolus Valerandi; Glaux maritima; Juncus Gerardi;
    Sclerochloa distans.

VIII. AVON.--The country about Feckenham on the streams tributary to
the Avon, is situated partly on the Lias, and partly on the Red Marl.
It is the only one of the eight sub-districts in which the Lias occurs.
The following plants are principally characteristic of the calcareous
soil of the Lias--

    Trifolium fragiferum; Lotus tenuis; Melilotus officinalis;
    Astragalus glycyphyllus; Lathyrus Nissolia; Poterium muricatum;
    Sison Amomum; Conium maculatum; Pastinaca sativa; Torilis
    nodosa; Picris hieracioides; Helminthia echioides; Campanula
    latifolia; Lithospermum arvense; Daphne Laureola; Ophrys

A large tract of bog land known as Feckenham Moor existed in this
sub-district in the time of Purton, and produced the following plants,
recorded in his “Midland Flora”--

    Parnassia palustris; Hydrocotyle vulgaris; Carduus pratensis;
    Pinguicula vulgaris; Triglochin palustre; Alisma ranunculoides;
    Schœnus nigricans; Cladium Mariscus.

The moor was drained many years ago, and its plants are all extinct.


The Staffordshire portion of the district extends from Upper Arley,
on the west to Penkridge and Rugeley on the north, and to Tamworth
on the east. The parish of Dudley, which, although in Worcester is
entirely surrounded by Stafford, will be treated as part of the latter
county. The principal elevations are the Silurian Hills of Dudley
Castle, 550 feet, and of the Wren’s Nest, 500 feet above the sea,
situated on the central water parting. West of these are Kinver Edge,
550 feet, and on the east Barr Beacon, 654 feet. It is watered on
the west by the Severn, on the north and east by the Trent and Tame,
and other tributary streams. It produces on the whole an interesting
flora, notwithstanding the fact that the South Staffordshire Coalfield
with the collieries and iron works, so destructive to vegetation, is
included within its limits. The sub-districts adopted are: I. SEVERN,

I. SEVERN.--This sub-district comprises Upper Arley, Kinver, Enville,
Dudley and Sedgley, with much of the country W. and N.W., of
Wolverhampton. The Coal measures extend over a considerable area, and
Silurian limestones and shales occur about Sedgley and Dudley.

The more interesting plants are:--

    Ranunculus circinatus, R. fluitans, R. parviflorus; Berberis
    vulgaris; Sinapis nigra; Cardamine amara, C. impatiens;
    Teesdalia nudicaulis; Viola palustris; Saponaria officinalis;
    Silene Anglica; Cerastium arvense; Sagina ciliata; Hypericum
    Androsæmum, H. dubium, H. humifusum; Geranium pyrenaicum,
    G. columbinum; Erodium moschatum, E. maritimum; Euonymus
    Europæus; Rhamnus catharticus; R. Frangula; Genista tinctoria;
    Ulex Gallii; Melilotus officinalis; Ornithopus perpusillus;
    Vicia sylvatica, V. lathyroides; Prunus insititia, P. Padus;
    Sanguisorba officinalis; Potentilla argentea; Comarum palustre;
    Pyrus Malus, var. mitis; Saxifraga granulata; Chrysosplenium
    alternifolium; Helosciadium inundatum; Œnanthe fistulosa,
    Œ. crocata; Torilis nodosa; Chærophyllum Anthriscus; Viscum
    album; Viburnum Opulus; Carduus nutans, C. eriophorus, C.
    pratensis; Carlina vulgaris; Gnaphalium sylvaticum; Doronicum
    Pardalianches; Inula Conyza; Solidago virga-aurea; Hypochæris
    glabra; Leontodon hirtus; Picris hieracioides; Helminthia
    echioides; Hieracium umbellatum; Campanula Rapunculus, C.
    patula; Monotropa hypopitys; Gentiana Amarella; Chlora
    perfoliata; Atropa Belladonna; Verbascum Thapsus, V. Lychnitis,
    V. Thapso-lychnitis; Linaria Elatine; Limosella aquatica;
    Mimulus luteus; Nepeta Cataria; Scutellaria minor; Galeopsis
    Ladanum; Echium vulgare; Lithospermum officinale; Myosotis
    sylvatica; Cynoglossum officinale; Parietaria officinalis;
    Ulmus montana; Chenopodium polyspermum; Salix decipiens,
    S. cærulea, S. vitellina, S. undulata, S. purpurea, S.
    Woolgariana, S. acuminata, S. laurina; Sparganium neglectum;
    Orchis mascula, O. Morio, O. latifolia; Epipactis latifotia;
    Colchicum officinale; Carex pulicaris, C. pallescens, C.
    strigosa, C. pendula; Poa nemoralis; Nephrodium Thelypteris;
    Botrychium Lunaria; Lycopodium clavatum.

II. TRENT.--Comprises much of the country lying N. and N.E. of
Wolverhampton, including Codsall, Penkridge, Cannock Chase, Rugeley,
Abbotts Bromley and Alrewas. Much of this sub-district has a sub-Alpine
character in its physical features and flora, and is beautifully
undulated throughout. The rocks are mainly Triassic, but the coal
measures prevail over a considerable area. The more rare plants are:--

    Thalictrum flavum; Ranunculus circinatus, R. trichophyllus, R.
    Drouetii, R. Baudotii v. confusus, R. Lenormandi, R. flamula
    var. pseudo-reptans, R. Lingua, R. hirsutus, R. parviflorus;
    Caltha Guerangerii; Actæa spicata; Papaver Rhæas v. strigosum;
    Chelidonium majus; Thlaspi arvense; Erysimum cheiranthoides;
    Arabis perfoliata; Nasturtium amphibium; Viola palustris, V.
    Reichenbachiana; Drosera rotundifolia; Polygala depressa; Tilia
    parvifolia; Montia fontana; Prunus Padus; Potentilla argentea;
    Rubus rhamnifolius, R. villicaulis, R. Schlechtendalii, R.
    Sprengelii, R. Bloxamii, R. rosaceus, R. infestus, R. Guntheri,
    R. Bellardii; Rosa scabriuscula, R. tomentella; Epilobium
    roseum; Hippuris vulgaris; Chrysosplenium alternifolium;
    Hydrocotyle vulgaris; Œnanthe fistulosa, Œ. Phellandrium;
    Bidens cernua, B. tripartita; Hieracium maculatum; Wahlenbergia
    hederacea; Vaccinium Oxycoccus, V. Vitis-Idæa, V. Myrtillus;
    Menyanthes trifoliata; Mentha piperita; Lamium Galeobdolon;
    Myosotis palustris; Pinguicula vulgaris, Lysimachia Nummularia;
    Anagallis tenella; Polygonum Bistorta; Rumex maritimus;
    Empetrum nigrum; Salix pentandra, S. triandra, S. Forbyana,
    S. Smithiana, S. holosericea, S. hyppophaefolia; Typha
    angustifolia; Potamogeton lucens; Fritillaria Meleagris;
    Narthecium ossifragum; Scirpus lacustris, S. sylvaticus;
    Eriophorum angustifolium, E. vaginatum; Carex dioica, C.
    curta, C. disticha, C. muricata, C. pilulifera, C. binervis,
    C. pseudo-Cyperus, C. vesicaria, C. ampullacea; Calamogrostis
    Epegeios; Milium effusum; Molinia cærulea; Avena pubescens, A.
    fatua; Triticum caninum; Nardus stricta; Osmunda regalis.

III. TAME.--This sub-district, includes Walsall, Lichfield, Shenstone,
Barr and Handsworth. The surface rocks are Trias, Permian and Coal
measures, and the limestones of Walsall, Rushall, and Hay Head. The
greatest elevation is Barr Beacon. Both the source and the mouth of the
Tame are within the limits of this sub-district. The principal plants

    Thalictrum flavum; Arabis perfoliata; Cardamine amara, C.
    impatiens; Nasturtium sylvestre; Teesdalia nudicaulis; Reseda
    Luteola; Silene noctiflora; Malva moschata, M. rotundifolia;
    Erodium cicutarium; Genista Anglica; Lathyrus Nissolia;
    Orobus tuberosus; Prunus insititia, P. Padus; Geum rivale;
    Rosa subglobosa, R. micrantha, R. collina; Rubus suberectus,
    R. rharmnifolius; Pyrus Aria; Sedum Telephium; Saxifraga
    granulata; Chrysosplenium alternifolium; Parnassia palustris;
    Helosciadium repens; Myrrhis odorata; Apium graveolens;
    Œnanthe crocata; Dipsacus pilosus; Valerianella dentata;
    Galium Witheringii; Carduus nutans, C. pratensis; Anthemis
    nobilis; Erigeron acris; Campanula Trachelium, C. latifolia,
    C. patula; Solanum nigrum; Linaria minor; Veronica Buxbaumii,
    V. montana, V. scutellata, V. Anagallis; Limosella aquatica;
    Pinguicula vulgaris; Utricularia vulgaris; Lysimachia
    vulgaris; Centunculus minimus; Parietaria officinalis;
    Ulmus montana; Salix pentandra; Acorus Calamus; Epipactis
    palustris; Convallaria majalis; Typha angustifolia; Lemna
    gibba; Narthecium ossifragum; Colchicum autumnale; Scirpus
    sylvaticus, S. cæspitosus; Carex pallescens, C. pseudo-Cyperus;
    Calamagrostis Epegejos, C. lanceolatus; Milium effusum; Avena
    pubescens; Triticum caninum; Asplenium Ruta-muraria; Aspidium
    lobatum; Osmunda regalis.


The Mosses, Hepatics, and Lichens.


In describing the rarer Mosses, Hepatics and Lichens, to be found
within the district, the materials at command are not sufficient
to admit of so minute an analysis of distribution as that given
for the flowering plants in the preceding pages. For the mosses
four sub-districts will be adopted: I. WARWICK, TAME; II. WARWICK,
AVON; III. WORCESTER; IV. STAFFORD. For the Hepatics and Lichens,
the enumeration will be restricted to Warwick only; information for
Worcester and Stafford not being within reach. The nomenclature of the
Mosses and Hepatics is that of the “London Catalogue of British Mosses
and Hepatics,” 2nd Edit., 1881. The nomenclature of the Lichens is that
of “The Lichen Flora,” of the Revd. W. A. Leighton, 1871.


The Moss Flora of the whole district under review, so far as records
are available, is about 272 species and varieties; that of Warwickshire
alone being about 261. Its comparative poverty may be attributed,
partly to the absence of great elevations, partly to the prevalence of
smoke over large portions of the district, and partly to the draining
of bogs and marshes, and reclamation of heath lands.

I. WARWICK, TAME.--This sub-district includes that portion of the
country watered by the Tame and its affluents, the Cole, Blythe,
Bourne, and Anker. The following are the more noticeable mosses.

    Sphagnum fimbriatum, S. squarrosum, S. rubellum, S. papillosum,
    S. cymbifolium, var. squarrosulum; Systegium crispum; *Dicranum
    spurium, D. fuscescens, D. majus; Campylopus flexuosus;
    Archidium phascoides; Pleuridium alternifolium; Leucobryum
    glaucum; Sphærangium muticum; Pottia minutula; Trichostomum
    tophaceum; Tortula aloides, T. marginata, T. rigidula, T.
    spadicea, T. insulana, T. tortuosa, T. subulata, T. papillosa;
    Encalypta streptocarpa; Racomitrium canescens; Zygodon
    viridissimus; Ulota intermedia; Ephemerum serratum; Funaria
    fasciculare; Bryum pallescens, B. roseum; Mnium rostratum,
    M. stellare, M. subglobosum; Polytrichum gracile; Fissidens
    adiantoides, F. exilis; Leucodon sciuroides; Amblyodon
    dealbatus; Philonotis fontana; Homalia trichomanoides;
    *Hedwigia ciliata; Brachythecium albicans; Eurhynchium
    speciosum, E. Teesdalii; Plagiothecium sylvaticum, P. elegans,
    P. latebricola; Amblestegium fluviatile; Hypnum commutatum,
    H. exannulatum; H. Cossoni, H. vernicosum, H. falcatum, H.
    giganteum, H. stramineum, H. revolvens.

II. WARWICK, AVON.--This sub-district includes that portion of Avon
within the area, and its affluents, the Sow, Alne, and Arrow. The
following are the more rare mosses:--

    Sphagnum auriculatum, S. subsecundum; Gymnostomum tenue;
    Dicranum montanum; D. scoparium; Campylopus pyriformis;
    Pottia intermedia, P. cavifolia, var. incana; Tortula rigida,
    T. ambigua, T. atro-virens, T. Brebissoni, T. lævipila, T.
    intermedia, T. papillosa; Grimmia crinita; Orthotrichum
    saxatile, O. stramineum, O. tenellum, O. leiocarpum, O. Lyelii,
    O. rivulare; Leptobryum pyriforme; Bryum pendulum, B. murale;
    Mnium undulatum; Polytrichum formosum; Fissidens Lylei, F.
    incurvus, F. pusillus, F. inconstans, F. tamarindifolius;
    Cryphæa heteromalla; Anomodon viticulosum; Thamnium alopecurum;
    Climacium dendroides; Camptothecium lutescens; Scleropodium
    cæspitosum, S. illecebrum; Brachythecium rivulare; Eurhynchium
    pumilum; Rhynchostegium tenellum; Hypnum Lindbergii, H.
    stellatum, H. chrysophyllum, H. cordifolium, H. splendens, H.
    brevirostre, H. loreum, H. palustre.

III. WORCESTER.--The moss flora of this sub-district has not been
published; but the moss herbaria of Mr. Mathews and the writer afford
records of about 127 species. Many of these have already been recorded
for Warwick, and are therefore omitted here. The following, which are
mainly from the Stour sub-district, are the more noteworthy:--

    Sphagnum auriculatum; S. cuspidatum, S. intermedium; Dicranum
    scoparium; Leucobryum glaucum; Pleuridium nitidum; Pottia
    Wilsoni, P. intermedia; Tortula cuneifolia, T. convoluta;
    Encalypta vulgaris, E. streptocarpa; Racomitrium aciculare,
    R. lanuginosum, R. fasiculare; Ptychomitrium polyphyllum;
    Ulota intermedia; Orthotrichum Lyellii; Ephemerum serratum;
    Physcomitrella patens; Amblyodon dealbatus; Philonotis
    fontana; Leptobryum pyriforme; Bryum pendulum, B. roseum;
    Mnium stellare; Aulacomnium palustre; Fissidens exilis, F.
    adiantoides; Fontinalis antipyretica; Neckera crispa; Homalia
    trichomanoides; Pterygophyllum lucens; Climacium dendroides;
    Brachythecium populeum; Rhynchostegium murale; Hypnum
    commutatum, H. palustre, H. chrysophyllum; *H. scorpioides.

IV. STAFFORD.--The record given in Garner’s Natural History of
Staffordshire, of the mosses of that county, refers to localities
which are all outside the area. Hence it is impossible to do more than
mention the rarer species collected by myself, mostly within a ten mile
radius of Birmingham, and a few additional records supplied by Dr.
Fraser. They are as follows:--

    Dicranella cerviculata, D. rufescens, D. crispa; Dicranum
    Scoparium, D. palustre, D. majus; Pleuridium nitidum; Tortula
    Hornschuchiana, T. ambigua, T. aloides; Didymodon rubellus;
    Pottia lanceolata, P. intermedia, P. minutula; Ephemerum
    serratum; Encalypta streptocarpa; Philonotis fontana; Bartramia
    pomiformis; Webera carnea, W. annotina; Bryum pendulum, B.
    atro-purpureum, B. cuspidatum; Polytrichum strictum; Fissidens
    adiantoides; Tetraphis pellucida; Entosthodon fasciculare;
    Brachythecium populeum, B. albicans; Eurhynchium murale,
    E. Teesdalii; Plagiothecium elegans, P. undulatum; Hypnum
    intermedium, H. chrysophyllum, H. vernicosum, H. giganteum.


The Hepaticæ and Lichens are poorly represented, and as no available
record of these plants occurs, only those of the Warwickshire portion
of the district will be given.

Of the Hepaticæ only about 41 species have as yet been found, the more
noteworthy being:--

    Fossombronia pusilla; Madotheca platyphylla; Radula complanata;
    Scapania nemorosa, S. irrigua; Plagiochila nemorosa; Aplozia
    crenulata, A. sphærocarpa; Gymnocolea inflata; Jungermannia
    ventricosa; Cephalozia byssacea, C. Starkii, *C. curvifolia,
    C. connivens; Trichocolea tomentella; Metzgeria furcata;
    Aneura multifida, A. sinuata, A. pinguis; Lunularia cruciata;
    Conocephalus conicus; Anthoceros punctatus, A. lævis; Riccia
    glauca; Ricciella fluitans.


So far as experience serves the Lichen flora of the district appears
to be very limited. From Worcestershire I have seen no records except
that probably exhaustive one by Mr. Edwin Lees in his “Botany and
Geology of Malvern,” where we find about 240 species recorded for
the Malvern district, but outside the area under notice here. For
Staffordshire, Garner records about 51 species, few of which are
localised, and those few are outside the area.

In Purton’s “Midland Flora,” a fair record is given of these plants
for the Midland district, several of the species there recorded are,
however, now either assigned to other orders as algæ or fungi, or
are considered to be imperfect states of other lichens. So far as it
is possible to judge from Purton’s records, and the observations of
the present writer, the Lichen flora of that part of Warwickshire
within the area here adopted comprises about 100 species, of which the
following are some of the more noticeable:--

    Collema nigrescens; Calcium trichiale, C. hyperellum, C.
    trachelinum; Trachylia tympanella; Cladonia alcicornis, C.
    furcata, C. rangifera, C. uncialis; Stereocaulon paschale;
    Usnea hirta; Alectoria jubata; Evernia furfuracca: Ramulina
    fraxinea, R. fastigiata; Cetraria aculeata; Peltigera
    rufescens, P. polydactyle; Sticta pulmonacea; Parmelia
    olivacea, P. caperata, P. lanata, P. perlata; Physcia ciliaris,
    P. pulverulenta, P. stellaris; Pannaria pezizoides, P. nigra;
    Lecanora candelaria, L. pruinosa, L. parella, L. atra, L.
    sulphurea, L. ferruginea; Urceolaria scruposa; Pertusaria
    communis; Phylictis agelæa; Lecidea æruginosa, L. quernea,
    L. parasema, L. fusco-ater; Graphis scripta, G. serpentina;
    Opegrapha atra, O. notha; Arthonia astroidea, A. Swartziana;
    Verrucaria gemmata, V. epidermidis, V. nitida.


The Algæ.


The great class of Algæ includes the sea-weeds, together with a large
number of plants, mostly of microscopic size and of simple cellular
structure, which abound wherever fresh water is found, whether in the
form of running streams or stagnant pools, or even as covering damp
surfaces of ground.

A broad subdivision of the Algæ into three groups has been generally
accepted by botanists, these being the Rhodosporeæ (red-spored),
Melanosporeæ (dark-spored), and Chlorosporeæ (green-spored). The marine
genera are distributed over all three of these groups; the freshwater
ones belong almost exclusively to the last. The classification of
the freshwater Chlorosperms is by no means satisfactory, but it is
impossible to discuss it within the limits of this article.

It is to be regretted that scarcely any of the botanists of Birmingham
have made the Algæ their special study; hence the information at our
disposal is insufficient to enable us to group the recorded species
with reference to their occurrence in the several adjacent counties.
This is, however, the less important because the distribution of
this class of plants is not dependent, to the same extent as that
of Phænogams, either on climate or soil, though it is probably not
altogether independent of either. Their abundance, therefore, is in
pretty direct proportion to that of such spaces of water as afford
favourable conditions for their growth.

Hence, as the neighbourhood of Birmingham is mostly characterised by
light and porous soils, the habitats in which Algæ are to be found are
somewhat restricted. There are, however, two conspicuous exceptions.
The tract of land about seven miles from Birmingham, known as Sutton
Park, embraces a singular variety of scenery and presents conditions
highly favourable to algoid growth in the shape of clear springs and
streams, large sheets of water, and a considerable area of peaty bogs.
Again, the mining district of South Staffordshire and Worcestershire,
popularly known as the Black Country, affords among its pit-banks a
great number of pools which are seldom dried up even in the hottest
summer, and many of which are partially fed by water from adjacent
mines or engines. Their number has been much diminished during the last
few years by the operations of the South Staffordshire Mines Drainage
Commission, but is still very large and these constitute a rich hunting
ground to the student of freshwater Algæ.

The brief notes which follow must be regarded merely as an indication
of the general character of this branch of the Midland Flora. Any
attempt systematically to enumerate the recorded species would far
exceed the necessary limits of this notice.

The great group of so-called Unicellular Algæ is universally
distributed, and the familiar forms included under the ill-defined
genera of Pleurococcus, Glœocystis, Tetraspora, Pediastrum, &c., are
found abundantly in this district wherever conditions favourable to
their growth are present. Among these low forms may be mentioned
_Apiocystis Brauniana_, parasitic on larger Algæ in stagnant pools;
the extremely rare _Mischococcus confervicola_, recorded as found near
Stafford, and _Polyedrium tetrahedricum_ found on decaying leaves in a
small pit near Sutton. _Ophiocytium cochleare_, until lately regarded
as a very scarce plant, is not uncommon in similar habitats.

The remarkable _Hydrodictyon utriculatum_, popularly known as “Water
Net,” appeared some years ago in Blackroot Pool, Sutton Park, in
enormous quantities, but shortly disappeared and has not been seen
there since. It has also been recorded by Mr. T. Bolton as found in
Bourne Pool, near Aldridge.

The large tribe of Volvocineæ is represented by the well-known
forms of Gonium, Pandorina, and Eudorina, and by the typical _Volvox
globator_, which, as is its wont, occasionally appears in some of
the pools of the district in great profusion, only to vanish as
capriciously. Mr. Bolton has recorded the rare and interesting _Volvox
globator_ ♂,--the _Sphærosira volvox_ of Ehrenberg--as occurring in the
small pool in the gravel pit near Blackroot Pool, Sutton Park.

Passing to the Zygnemaceæ, Vaucheriaceæ and other filamentous Algæ,
we find a large number of species of Zygnema, Spirogyra, Zygogonium,
Mesocarpus, Staurocarpus, Vaucheria, &c., occupying ditches, small
pools and other stagnant waters; it is scarcely possible to take a
bottleful of water from these stations in summer and autumn without
finding examples of the curious modes of reproduction characteristic of
these genera.

In running streams and in the still ponds of the district the long
fronds of Enteromorpha, the dense tresses of brilliant green Cladophoræ
and the graceful tufts of Stigeoclonium and Chætophora abound. The
exquisite _Cœtophora endiviæfolia_ reappears at intervals in Keeper’s
Pool, Sutton Park; this species has also been found by Mr. Bolton in an
old gravel pit at Hill Hook and in Earlswood reservoir.

The elegant _Bulbochœte setigera_ is met with in small fragments in
stagnant pools, and the singular _Coleochœte scutata_ is to be found
adherent to submerged water weeds.

The tepid waters of the South Staffordshire coal district are specially
favourable to the growth of Oscillatorieæ, which form on their margins
immense sheets of the deepest green velvet.

Several species of Batrachospermum (among which _B. atrum_ is locally
the rarest, having been found at Halesowen only) occur in small masses
in clear streams, but they must be regarded as somewhat scarce plants.
_Lemania fluviatilis_ should be mentioned as common in the Avon and
Severn, and the very rare _Bangia atropurpurea_ as occurring on a water
wheel in the former river at Stratford-on-Avon, although these habitats
are somewhat beyond the limits contemplated in this sketch.

The Diatomaceæ of the neighbourhood do not appear to have been the
objects of systematic study, and the only species of special interest
which we remember to have found is the wonderful _Bacillaria paradoxa_,
well known as a remarkable microscopic object from the strange manner
in which its linear frustules glide over one another, so that the whole
plant is incessantly assuming a different form. It has been found by
Mr. Bolton, along with many other species, in a disused arm of the
canal near Albion Station, and by the writer in a small stream near the
same spot. A careful search would doubtless result in the discovery of
a large number of representative species of this class.

In conclusion, we turn for a moment to the very beautiful tribe of
Desmidieæ, and, although the district by no means abounds in the peaty
bogs which are their especial haunts, a goodly list of ordinary species
has been recorded. Sutton Park is the best locality for these plants,
and in addition to the commoner forms of Micrasterias, Euastrum,
Closterium, &c., which are here found in abundance, this habitat has
yielded many rare and several new species, among which the following
are worthy of special notice, viz.:--_Micrasterias papillifera_, _M.
Cruxmelitensis_, _M. angulosa_, _M. denticulata_, var. _lichmoides_,
and _M. Americana, forma major_; _Cosmarium coronatum_, _Closterium
directum_, _Cl. angustatum_, and _Cl. Pritchardianum_; _Penium
closteriodes_, _P. Jenneri_, and _P. Nägeli_.

A more detailed list of species is inadmissible, but the foregoing
brief sketch will suffice to show that the Freshwater Algæ of the
neighbourhood are tolerably abundant, and by no means devoid of


The Fungi.


The district of which Birmingham is the centre is in some ways
peculiarly interesting to a British Mycologist. It was the scene of
the labours of two students of British Fungi who will always hold an
honourable place in the history of the development of the science in
this country--William Withering and Thomas Purton.

Withering was in his time (1741-1799) the foremost physician of this
town. He lived for many years at Edgbaston Hall, a residence still
situated among picturesque scenery just on the edge of the town, and
then no doubt a wilder and more productive spot than now. Many species
and varieties of Fungi new to Britain or new to science rewarded his
constant researches in the park surrounding the hall, and some of the
forms which he described still linger in this retreat. Packington Park,
about ten miles from the town, is another locality frequently quoted
by him; in fact by far the great majority of the species found by
Withering himself came from these two places.

Withering enjoys the distinction of being one of the earliest
authors on the British Flora, who devoted to the Fungi a space even
decently comparable with that devoted to the Flowering plants. In
his “Arrangement of British plants” (3rd edition), 1286 species of
Phanerogams are recorded, and 566 of Fungi, which thus fill more than
one-third as much space as their superiors in rank.

Thomas Purton was a surgeon of Alcester, a town about 18 miles from
Birmingham. In his “Midland Flora” (1817-1821), he gives descriptions
of over 400 species of Fungi, found chiefly in the neighbourhood of
Alcester, especially in Oversley Wood and Ragley Park. He provides
moreover excellent coloured engravings of 35 species. Since the whole
number of Flowering Plants recorded by Purton from the Midlands is only
798, it will be seen that he surpasses Withering in devoting more than
half as much space to the Fungi as to the Phanerogams.

Mrs. Russell, of Kenilworth, made, a few years since, a nearly
exhaustive study of the Hymenomycetes of Kenilworth, Stoneleigh, and
Warwick, and bequeathed to the British Museum her valuable series of
over 300 coloured illustrations. But with this exception little has
been done recently to elucidate the Fungi of the neighbourhood of this
town, until the subject was taken up, within the last few years, by Mr.
J. E. Bagnall and the writer. On reckoning up the number of species now
known to occur in this district it will be found that they considerably
exceed 900. It is probable that the district is as productive as any
other in the smaller and microscopic kinds, but the larger species of
Fungi are, with few exceptions, not to be found in any great abundance.

From want of sufficient material, it is not possible to treat this
group successfully, as has been done with the Phanerogams, according
to the counties. It will be preferable merely to string together short
notices of a few of the more remarkable or uncommon kinds, according to
the orders into which the class “Fungi” is divided. The names are those
of Stevenson’s “Hymenomycetes Britannici,” so far as it is published,
and of Cooke’s “Handbook” or “Grevillea” for the rest.

The first and most conspicuous of these orders is the Hymenomycetes,
the mushroom and toad-stool family, of which the common mushroom
may be taken as the type. These are all distinguished by having the
spore-bearing cells arranged in a more or less continuous exposed
surface, even or variously folded. In the more typical species, this
surface assumes the form of the flat laminæ which are termed gills. Of
these, _Agaricus nitidus_ has been found at Coleshill Pool; the yellow
variety of _Ag. cepæstipes_ at Sutton Coldfield; _Ag. polystictus_ and
_Ag. pessundatus_, near Kenilworth; _Ag. stans_ in Edgbaston Park;
_Ag. virgatus_, both there and at Coleshill Pool; _Ag. inornatus_ at
Kenilworth; _Ag. tuba_, at Middleton; _Ag. ditopus_, there and in
Edgbaston Park; _Ag. platyphyllus_ frequently in and near Sutton Park;
_Ag. rancidus_ at Middleton; _Ag. pullatus_, at Coleshill Pool; _Ag.
leucogalus_, at New Park, Middleton; _Ag. electicus_, on rush stems in
Sutton Park; _Ag. subpalmatus_, at Kenilworth and near Studley Castle;
_Ag. petaloides_, var. _spathulatus_, at Oversley; _Ag. volvaceus_,
_Ag. speciosus_, and _Ag. umbrosus_, at Kenilworth; _Ag. jubatus_,
near Barnt Green; _Ag. heteroclitus_, many striking and well developed
specimens at Sutton Coldfield; and _Ag. lanuginosus_, in Oversley Wood.
_Ag. horizontalis_ is said by Purton to be “not rare” near Alcester,
and he records _Ag. erinaceus_ and _Ag. pezizoides_ from the same
locality. _Ag. echinatus_, with its remarkable blood-red gills, is
found frequently at Sutton Coldfield. At this point in the systematic
order comes in the mysterious _Ag. versicolor_ of Withering, of which
he found only a few specimens in Edgbaston Park, and which has never
since been seen by any other author; yet neither Fries nor the others
venture to omit it, because Withering gives so clear and unmistakeable
a description as almost to preclude the possibility of error. _Ag.
luteonitens_ and _Ag. sarcocephalus_ have been found at Kenilworth;
_Ag. udus_ is common in Sutton Park and the neighbourhood, and is also
found among the Lickey Hills, accompanied in the latter place by the
variety _polytrichi_. _Ag. areolatus_ has been found at Warwick; _Ag.
atrorufus_ at Sutton; _Ag. retirugis_ at Kenilworth and Middleton; and
Bolton’s _Ag. cinctulus_ (“History of Funguses,” tab. 152), which is
omitted by Fries as possibly incorrectly figured, is said by Purton to
be “not rare” near Alcester.

Of the genera allied to Agaricus, the rare species found here are
rather few. The district seems to be especially ill supplied with the
larger Cortinarii. Scarcely more than thirty species of this genus
are recorded, of which the following may be mentioned:--_Cortinarius
cyanipes_, from Kenilworth; _C. callochrous_, from Edgbaston; _C.
scaurus_, from Packington; _C. violaceus_, which seems to have
been found by Purton; _C. callisteus_ and _C. ochroleucus_, from
Kenilworth; _C. sanguineus_, in Sutton Park; _C. bulbosus_, from
Oversley; _C. armillatus_, at Coleshill Pool; _C. brunneus_ (recorded
only by Withering among British authors), in Packington Park; and _C.
hemitrichus_, in Sutton Park.

The other gilled genera may be briefly dismissed. _Gomphidius viscidus_
and _G. glutinosus_ have both occurred in the district. Lactarii are
not uncommon. _L. deliciosus_ is frequent in a certain part of Sutton
Park, and is recorded by both Withering and Purton; it also occurs at
Hagley and at Bromsgrove Lickey, but is very local. _L. turpis_, of
large size, abounds in several woods in the neighbourhood of Sutton;
_L. cilicioides_, _L. uvidus_, _L. hysginus_, _L. zonarius_, _L.
pyrogalus_, _L. glyciosmus_, and _L. camphoratus_, in addition to the
more common species, have all been found; as also _Russula delica_, _R.
rosacea_, _R. citrina_, _R. lutea_, and the very rare _R. drimeia_,
_Hygrophorus chrysodon_ and _H. russo-coriaceus_ have been found
at Kenilworth; Purton found the pretty little _Marasmius Hudsoni_;
_Lentinus tigrinus_ is recorded by Withering, from Packington Park;
_L. adhœrens_ by both Withering and Purton; and _L. lepideus_ and _L.
cochleatus_ have been met with several times. _Panus conchatus_ was
found by Withering at Edgbaston, and by Purton at Studley, and the
writer has found _P. torulosus_ in Packington Park.

Among the pore-bearing Hymenomycetes, the most striking and rare
is _Boletus (Strobilomyces) strobilaceus_, found at “the Valley,”
Bromsgrove, in 1861. _Boletus badius_ is rather common, and is an
edible species. The rare _B. parasiticus_ has been found at Middleton;
_B. striæpes_ and _B. olivaceus_ are also on record. The writer has
found the true _Polyporus frondosus Fr._ once in Sutton Park, and fine
specimens of _P. giganteus_ in Edgbaston Park. Purton records _P.
heteroclitus_ from Oversley, and _P. molluscus_ is occasionally found
at Sutton and Coleshill Pool. The curious _Ptychogaster albus_, which
is now usually considered a conidial form of a Polyporus, called _P.
ptychogaster_, has occurred in Sutton Park on stumps of firs. _Trametes
gibbosa_ is found at Sutton; _Dædalea confragosa_ in the coppice near
Windley Pool; and the edible _Fistulina hepatica_ is occasionally met
with on old oaks in Sutton Park, Hagley Park, and elsewhere.

Dismissing the rest of the Hymenomycetes, in which there is little
worthy of mention to record, we come to the Gastromycetes, or Puff-ball
family, in which the spore-bearing surface is more or less concealed
within an outer coating, and most frequently breaks up into a dusty
mass. The Myxomycetes, which were formerly included in this group,
will here be placed in their proper position at the end of the Fungi.
Of the aberrant group to which the common Stinkhorn (not very common
in this district) belongs, the more brilliant _Cynophallus caninus_ is
recorded by Purton, from near Bridgnorth, and was found at Bromsgrove
Lickey, in 1856. The very rare and remarkable Earth-star, _Geaster
coliformis_, has not been found in the district to which this notice
is limited, but it has been twice found in the county of Worcester.
The localities are given as “near Hanley Castle, Worcestershire,” _Mr.
Ballard_, by Withering; and “Hanley Common, Worcestershire,” _Mr.
Rufford_, by Purton. In the same place _Geaster fornicatus_ occurred,
and this is said by Withering to have been found also “at Birches
Green, near Birmingham.” _G. limbatus_ is recorded from Edgbaston Park,
Stonebridge, Allesley, Oversley, and Rushford.

Another group of Fungi is that which grows upon living leaves, the
various forms of which are known as Cluster-cups, Rust, Smut and Brand.
These are what are usually called Leaf-Fungi. Many species are common
here; but, as most kinds grow only upon certain specified plants, it
follows that their range is determined in great measure by the presence
or absence of their hosts. _Podisoma sabinæ_ and _P. juniperi_ have
been found in the district. The only rare cluster-cup recorded is
_Œcidium depauperans_, which occurs every summer on cultivated Violas
in a few localities, and in one of these it is uniformly accompanied
and followed by the Puccinia, to which the name of _Puccinia ægra_ has
been given by the writer. Till lately this Œcidium was not known to
occur out of the United Kingdom, but Professor Trelease, of St. Louis,
in a private letter says that he has recently seen in the United States
specimens apparently identical with it. _Puccinia sonchi_ was found by
Mr. Hawkes, near Great Barr, on seedlings of Sonchus, and as yet has
not been found anywhere else in Great Britain.

The species of the next group, the Discomycetes, or Cup-fungi, are not
uncommon, though few of the showy forms are to be seen. The common
Morell occurs, sparingly in the district, and _Morchella semilibera_
is recorded from Badsey. _Helvella crispa_, _H. lacunosa_, _H.
elastica_; _Mitrula paludosa_; _Spathularia flavida_; _Leotia lubrica_;
_Geoglossum glabrum_, _G. hirsutum_, and _Rhizina undulata_ have all
been found, though rarely. Among the minuter species may be mentioned
_Peziza dematiicola_, of which the writer found a few specimens at
Sutton two years ago, this being the first and at present the only
locality cited, since the place where the original specimens of
Berkeley were discovered is unknown. _P. asperior_ has been found at
Berkswell (the only British locality); the curious _P. Curreiana_, on
rush stems in Sutton Park and elsewhere; and the rare _P. Crouani_, _P.
Dalmeniensis_, _P. stereicola_; _Ascobolus minutissimus_; _Vibrissea
leptospora_; _Propolis pyri_, and a new species which Mr. Phillips has
named _Dermatea nectrioides_, at various places in the neighbourhood.

The next group of Fungi is the Pyrenomycetes or Globe-fungi. They
occur usually on dead bark and wood, or stalks of plants, and are
mostly black, more rarely red or brown. Several common species
look like grains of gunpowder scattered over the wood. Among these
Withering mentions no species at all rare from this district, and
Purton only three--_Melogramma Bulliardi_, _M. gastrinum_, and _Sphæria
pomiformis_. To these may be added _Nectria mammoidea_ and _Hypomyces
candicans_ from near Sutton; _Eutypa velutina_ and _E. scabrosa_
from Berkswell; _Valsa cincta_ Fr., _V. aglæostoma_, and _Sphæria
ampullasca_, from Sutton; _Lophiostoma angustilabra_, from Middleton;
and the interesting _Gymnoascus ruber_, which affords a glimpse of
the mode by which the Pyrenomycetes were evolved, has appeared in
Birmingham itself.

Of the Mucorini or Pin-mould family, to which belongs the pin-shaped
mould, so common on decaying meat--two species of Pilobolus, _P.
œdipus_ and _P. Kleinii_, remarkable for their extraordinary explosive
power, have been found here and nowhere else in the kingdom. The
same is true of two species of Mortierella, _M. Candelabrum_ and _M.
polycephala_, of which even the genus is not known from any other
British locality.

Lastly we come to the Myxomycetes, a group which, though distinctly
fungal, approximates in some degree to the animal kingdom. These
are rather abundant here, nearly one third of the British Species
having been found; including the rare _Didymium pertusum_; _Badhamia
hyalina_; _Enerthenema papillatum_; _Dictydium umbilicatum_; _Cribraria
aurantiaca_; _Arcyria cinerea_, and _Prototrichia flagellifera_. Worthy
of especial notice is _Physarum leucophæum_ Fr., hitherto only known
as British by specimens published by Cooke in his “Fungi Britannici.”
The writer has found this at Sutton in abundance, and identifies it
with the heretofore unidentified _Trichia rubiformis_ of Purton, whose
description is accompanied by an exceedingly accurate and picturesque
plate (“Midland Flora,” tab. 37.)

Besides the groups of Fungi enumerated above, there are others more
obscure and consequently less interesting to many students, of which
no mention will be made here, although numerous rare or undescribed
species belonging to them have been found in the district within recent


117 & 212.

=Chains, Cables, and Anchors.=--[BENJAMIN HINGLEY, M.P.]--(B. 99). The
manufacture of chains, cables, and anchors is carried on at Tipton,
and to a much larger extent at Netherton, and in the neighbourhood
of Old Hill near Dudley. The manufacture of chain cables in their
present form, namely, with elongated links supported by a bar or stud
in the centre of each link is of comparatively modern origin; there
are Naval men still living who remember that Men-of-War and Merchant
Ships were fitted with hempen cables of large diameter, which occupied
a considerable space in the fore-hold of the ship. The British Fleet in
Nelson’s fighting days knew not chain cables, but was encumbered with
large coils of hempen rope.

It is certain that iron chains of some description were known and used
in the days of the Romans, as it is recorded that Julius Cæsar could
not cut the cables of the vessels of the Gauls, because they were made
of iron. Such chains were doubtless a succession of iron rings, or “S”
hooks of comparatively small size. It is believed that the first chain
cable was used on a British Ship, in the year 1808. It was made by a
blacksmith named Robert Flinn, at North Shields, for a vessel which
at that time was reckoned to be of a considerable size, namely, the
“Ann and Isabella.” of 221 tons. It not only saved that vessel when in
peril, but also saved a whole tier of ships that had been made fast to
her, their hempen cables having been cut by the ice, owing to a great
flood with much ice in the Tyne. This notable instance gave a great
impetus to the making of chain cables on the banks of the Tyne, where
it is still carried on to a considerable extent.

At about the same date, Samuel Brown, afterwards Sir Samuel Brown, a
Lieutenant in the Royal Navy, having, it is said, been in communication
with Flinn, and taken a great interest in Flinn’s iron cables, took out
a patent, and in the year 1810 he prevailed upon the British Admiralty
to put iron cables on several Men-of-War, with such successful results
that the days of hempen cables became numbered; Lieutenant Brown
afterwards devoted his attention to the making of chain cables, and
established a manufactory at Millwall on the Thames, he also, with the
assistance of “John Rennie, an Engineer,” constructed an efficient
testing machine as he “was of opinion that there was nothing more
essential in completing an iron cable than the most rigid attention to

The manufacture of chain cables naturally commenced on the sea coast,
and it rapidly spread from the Tyne and Wear, where it first commenced,
to London, Liverpool, Bristol, and to Aberdeen, and Irvine in Scotland.
It may be said, that up to the year 1820, although chain making was
a local industry in the district of Birmingham, it was confined to
small welded chains in the form of elongated rings, for farming and
domestic purposes; but about the year 1820 a new impetus was given to
it by the late Mr. Noah Hingley, who then carried on business as a
nail master and dealer in small chains at Cradley Heath near Dudley.
He in the course of his business made periodical visits to the Port of
Liverpool, travelling sometimes by the Stage Coach, and at other times
on horseback, and there, one of the new chain cables, with a stud in
the centre of each link, attracted his attention. He at once resolved
to develop the trade in Staffordshire, and without hesitation made a
contract to supply to a Liverpool ship owner, a chain cable made of
iron 1½ inch diameter to be used in lieu of an hempen one. It was a
bold venture, as no workman in the Midland district had ever seen a
chain of such large size, or one fitted with studs, but after a few
trials a workman with the assistance of two strikers, and two boys to
blow the bellows, succeeded in turning out a good chain cable which
was duly delivered in Liverpool, and did good service on board ship.
The making of this first chain cable was a source of wonder in the
district, and people came from far and wide to see it.

Mr. Hingley afterwards introduced the making of anchors in a similar
manner--bringing men from Liverpool with a knowledge of the trade, and
afterwards erecting the first Nasmyth’s steam hammer for that purpose
in the Staffordshire district, namely, at Netherton Ironworks, near

Mr. Hingley lived to see the chain cable and anchor trade developed
to a large extent, and by several eminent firms who engaged in the
business in and about Dudley; he also took part in the establishment
of efficient public testing machines at Netherton and at Tipton, under
the authority of an Act of Parliament, making compulsory the testing
of cables and anchors for British ships. The machines in question are
under the control of the Board of Trade, and of Lloyd’s Registry of
British and Foreign shipping, and are of the most powerful description.
One of the machines at Netherton is not only capable of testing, but
also of breaking for experimental purposes, a chain made of bar iron 4
inches in diameter.

The manufacture of anchors and cables is now almost exclusively
located in Staffordshire, having entirely left the sea coast except at
Newcastle-on-Tyne. The making of chain cables and anchors is for the
most part carried on in factories and exclusively by men and boys with
the aid of machinery, but the smaller chains for a variety of purposes,
and especially trace chains, are made to a large extent by women and
girls in shops attached to the cottages. There are many hundreds,
probably a thousand or two, of the shops in question spread around the
district of Cradley Heath and Old Hill in the county of Stafford. It
cannot be said that such work is unsuitable for women and girls within
certain limits; but there is no doubt that close inspection under the
Workshops Act is necessary, and that there should be strict limitations
of the hours of labour. The tendency is not only to work children of
tender years, but to do so until late at night, especially at the end
of the week, to make up for lost time in the earlier part of the week.
It is computed that the Staffordshire chain and anchor trade as a whole
consumes annually about 50,000 to 70,000 tons of iron, according to the
state of trade, and the annual value, when trade is fair, approaches
one million sterling. The workpeople earn from five shillings per
week--the wages of a woman or girl--to fifty shillings per week, the
wages of a large cable maker. It is a singular fact that anchor makers
are to a considerable extent either Irish or of Irish origin, the
descendants of the original stock imported from Liverpool by the late
Mr. Noah Hingley. Their work is laborious and the wages continue high,
varying from thirty to sixty shillings per week, and for the most part
they spend it freely.

=Die Sinking.=--[G. SHERRIFF TYE.]--(B. 560.) For brooches, buttons,
&c., a block of iron is moulded by the forger on to which a piece
of cast steel is welded. Medal dies are all steel, as the powerful
pressure applied would flatten them were they of iron. When a sharp
blow is given, instead of pressure, the part-steel die stands the blow
well, though it will not withstand a squeeze. While the steel is soft
the die is cut out with steel cutting tools and finished by gravers,
previous to the final polishing. The die sinkers of Birmingham make
dies for the following purposes, among others: buttons, military
ornaments, brassfoundry, plated wares, tea trays and tin work, gun work
and small iron work, medals and coins, jewellery, seals for wax and
paper embossing, brass dies for paper wrappers and bands, as used in
the wholesale linen trades; needles, papers, etc., wheels and rolls for
ornamenting metal tubes or sheets.

=Saddlery Trade.=--[THOMAS MIDDLEMORE.]--(B. 463). _Obsolete Articles
of Manufacture._--The articles supplied by the Saddlery trades being
for use rather than for ornament, it follows that fashion can have
little effect in making any of them obsolete. Old wants have still to
be satisfied.

It is yet worth noticing that whilst a very large trade was done some
30 years ago in shot belts, shot and cap pouches, and powder flasks,
this trade has now become practically obsolete, since the breechloader
has superseded the muzzleloader. Cartridges, both for military and
sporting purposes, are now carried in a bag, or a bandolier, _i.e._, a
shoulder or waist belt, to which is fastened transversely a series of
pockets, each of which holds a cartridge.

_New varieties introduced._--For welts of saddles, “hide bellies”
split very thin have for the most part taken the place of seal
skins. Crocodile skins have been used occasionally for saddles with
indifferent success, but for bags, purses and pocket books, they,
along with snake skins, have been largely and successfully employed.
Calf skins for the latter purposes have been superseded by hides split
specially thin. Kangaroo skins are now used in the whip trade for
covering whips, but still more for making the whip thong. Hog skins,
for which formerly the sole use was the saddle manufacture, are now
prepared for furniture purposes, bookbinding, and bags. They have the
advantages of being very durable, and of having a unique and handsome

_Saddles_--The old “spring bar,” to which the stirrup leather is
fastened, is gradually giving way to the “safety bar,” the object of
which is to release the rider in the event of a fall, and to remove the
danger of his being dragged, which is an universally admitted fault
of the old “spring bar.” Further, increased safety is secured to lady
riders by various “safety stirrups” which render dragging by the foot
impossible. For the comfort of the horse the following inventions are
worth notice:--“Gaussen’s corrugated rubber pannels” which break the
jar caused by the weight of the rider--“Inflated air pannels,” which
have the same effect--“ventilating pannels,” which are at the same time
movable; these last prevent the danger of sore backs, and are very
readily cleaned; they promise to become of general use.

_Harness._--The changes that have here taken place concern rather the
furniture or metal work, than the general form. For cheaper kinds
of harness, electro-plating has superseded close plating. Again,
electro-plating in its turn is being superseded by the new white
metals, which are alloys having the colour of silver, and of analogous
composition to German silver. The advantages of the new metals are,
that they are uniform in their composition, and therefore durable,
cheap, and of good appearance.

_Military._--The regulation saddle of 20 years back, called the
“Nolan,” has been superseded by an “Iron Arch Saddle,” and now
another regulation, introduced in 1884, made entirely of steel, with
the exception of the wooden side bars, is being used along with the
“Iron Arch Saddle.” The old “knapsack” has given place to the new
“Valise Equipment,” which was designed to distribute the weight of the
pack more evenly. On the introduction of the Camel Corps, a special
equipment was designed. Large quantities of this pattern were used in
the Egyptian campaign.

_Travelling Appointments._--The “Gladstone Bag,” a combination of a
bag and portmanteau, has become more popular than any kind of either
the one or the other. Tin Boxes have quite replaced the old wooden
trunks. The quality has, however, of late years, been so reduced in
order to force a sale, that unquestionably a reaction has set in
against them. When damaged they are unsightly, and cannot be repaired.
Baskets covered with canvas or leather are now, in consequence of their
cheapness, lightness, and strength, much used for ladies’ travelling
trunks. The introduction of Bicycles and Tricycles has created a new
and vast trade in saddles, satchels, and the like for wheelmen. The
trade is now only second in importance to that for ordinary English
riding saddles.

_Increase since 1865._--In the year 1864, the declared value of the
exports of saddlery and harness for the United Kingdom was £345,419.
For the year 1885, the total value was only £385,687. This increase,
of less than 12 per cent., compares unfavourably with that of the
sixteen years from 1849 to 1865, which was more than 300 per cent. The
exports for the first four months of the present year were £122,093,
which is less than the exports for the same period in 1865 by £8,569.
This declining prosperity, which has occurred during the past five
years, is due to a strangled trade in South Africa, and droughts in
Australasia. Good seasons, and a rise in the wool market, give promise
of an immediately better future for the saddlery trade.

_Effects of the spread of Civilization on Supply of Raw Material._--The
most noteworthy fact in the leather trade, with regard to the spread
of civilization upon its supply of material, is furnished by the
basils now sent in enormous quantities from the Australasian Colonies.
Before 1865, a sheep was grown simply for its fleece, and tallow. Of
late years the skin has been tanned, and converted into a basil. These
Colonial basils supply a demand which the home production has, of
late years, failed to satisfy. The Colonial basils are excellent in
colour and texture. If they were tanned in larch instead of the native
mimosa bark, they could scarcely be further improved. The increase of
competition has, during the past twenty years, led to the adulteration
of leather. The adulterants most used are glucose and barytes. Such
adulteration is now so general, that large consumers of leather are
compelled to avail themselves of the resources of chemical science, in
order to learn the true value of the leather they buy, by ascertaining
the kind, and by estimating the quantity of the adulterant employed in
the leather tested.

_New Processes introduced in Leather Dressing._--The old “Splitting”
Machines have been improved, and a new kind called the “Band Knife”
has been introduced. Further Machines for “Scouring,” “Setting,” and
“Rolling” leather have been invented, which do their work both better
and cheaper than hand labour. The currier, as a rule, welcomes these
machines, since he is thereby relieved from much hard physical toil,
whilst his special skill has an unimpaired scope, and is just that part
of his work that is best remunerated. Saddles--The sewing by Machine
has now become universal, and in point of quality is only just inferior
to hand work. Harness--The “Lock Stitch” Machine has superseded the
“Chain Stitch” Machine. The former sews with hard wax, such as is used
in handwork. Generally for all cutting, where quantities are required,
and when shaped pieces other than strips are wanted, the steam press
has superseded the hand knife.

_Machinery or Hand Labour._--During the last 20 years all branches of
the saddlery trades have benefited by the steadily increased employment
of machinery--this is most marked in the currying of leather.

_Effects of Improved modes of Manufacture on Cost of Production._--The
articles of the saddlery trade combine so many different kinds of
material and include such a variety of labour, that no estimate could
be relied upon of the reduction of cost due to improved methods of
manufacture. The values of articles generally reckoned in money are
about 10 per cent. below the values of 1865.

_Present Extent and Description of Manufacture._--In regard to the
Home trade it is only needful to say that owing to the agricultural
depression of the past 10 years, the demand for saddlery has very
greatly fallen off. To some extent this falling off in bulk is supplied
by the demands of cycle riders. In the Foreign trade the past 20
years have witnessed a vast development of the demand from the South
African Colonies. This, owing to a series of seasons of drought, to the
commercial panic of the diamond fields, and to the unsettled political
state of the Colonies, has been followed by an unparalleled state of
depression, which has made the export saddlery trade one of the most
disastrously depressed of our industries. Indeed, it has been remarked
by one thoroughly conversant with the trade, that, if the present state
of things continue, Walsall, which solely depends on the saddlery and
leather trades, will, before long, wear the same look as Bruges, with
grass growing in its streets.

_Effects of Foreign Tariffs._--The effect of the continued high duties
in the United States has been to practically kill the English trade
both in saddlery and saddlers’ ironmongery. Since the Franco-German
war, the French tariff has been increased. This seems to have had
little effect on the saddlery trade between England and France.
Unquestionably, however, France is now losing markets where formerly
her goods were preferred to those of this country.

_Where else Manufacture carried on._--Since 1865, Glasgow has ceased to
be an important centre of the saddlery trade. It is now chiefly carried
on in Birmingham and Walsall, for export saddlery. In military goods,
Bermondsey competes with Birmingham and Walsall.

_Approximate Number of Persons employed in this Town and
District._--_Men, Women, Boys, and Girls._--No satisfactory statement
can now be made, as the present time is one of exceptional depression.

_Average Earnings._--Speaking generally there has been a reduction in
money wages of about 10 per cent. This wage reckoned in commodities, of
course, represents a substantial improvement, as compared with 1865. In
good times the workman was never so well remunerated, and, on the other
hand, his employer so poorly rewarded.

_Social Condition of Workpeople._--No remark need be made in regard to
the improvement of his social condition which the saddler has shared
with those of other trades. The Factory Acts have practically ended the
employment of children. The trade hardly knows the “half-timer.” The
new Patents Act has proved a great stimulus to the invention of the

_Utilisation of Waste._--If the past 5 years have been disastrous
for the saddlery trade, misfortune has yet taught its lessons. Chief
amongst these are an economical use of material, and the utilisation
of waste. The belly and shoulder parts of hides, which used often to
be sent to market, are now mostly consumed, thus saving capital and
enabling a cheaper article to be produced. Again, the scrap leather,
which is necessarily created by even the most careful cutting, is
now utilised in making goods of extraordinary cheapness. A splitting
machine for dividing pieces of leather, however small, into any
required number of thicknesses, is of great help to this end. When
leather is reduced in size below what is required for any article of
commerce, it is then used either for hardening purposes, or to form
imitation leather when reduced to a pulp and rolled either by itself or
with rope fibre.

=Chemicals.=--In obtaining the statistical information on p. 152, I
am indebted in great measure to Dr. Bostock Hill, Secretary of the
Birmingham Section of the Society of Chemical Industry.--C. J. W.


PART III., PAGES 213 TO 265.



The crystalline minerals occurring within the limits of the Birmingham
district may be most conveniently referred to under the titles of
the several counties in which they actually occur. These counties
are: Derbyshire, Gloucestershire, Leicestershire, Northamptonshire,
Nottinghamshire, Oxfordshire, Shropshire, Staffordshire, Warwickshire,
and Worcestershire.

=Derbyshire.=--The mines in this county are worked out, and there is
but little opportunity of meeting with minerals. On the spoil-banks of
the old mines poor specimens may be found. Mr. John Tym, of Castleton,
is a local dealer, and the guide to the High Tor Grotto has minerals
for sale. The following list with localities is taken from a paper
on “Economic Geology of Derbyshire,” by Mr. A. H. Stokes, F.G.S.,
H.M. Inspector of Mines. _Barytes_, nearly all lead mines, Newhaven;
_Blende_, Old hillocks, near Ashover and Hartington; _Gypsum_,
Chellaston, also railway cutting between Trent and Loughborough;
_Brown Hæmatite_, north west of Hubberdale mine, near Taddington, also
near Elton; _Brown Lead Ore “Linnets,”_ Elton, and Newhaven, Winster;
_Calcite_, colourless at lead mines of Nether Haddon, near Bakewell.
Alpart, Ashover, and Wirksworth yield good specimens. _Elaterite_,
Windy Knoll Quarry, Main Tor, Castleton; _Fluor Spar_, Blue John
and other mines, Castleton; _Limonite_, a field, one mile north of
Castleton, and to the east of Odin Lead mine; _Petroleum_, Riddings
Colliery, near Alfreton. A sump is sunk at the bottom of the mine,
and into this the oil finds its way. Some years as much as 100 tons
of oil have been obtained at a price as high as £7. 10s. per ton.
_Phosgenite_, very scarce, Meer Brook Sough mine, near Worksworth;
_Pyrites_, large cubic crystals at Gregory mine, near Ashover; _Rock
crystal_, Buxton, in amygdaloid cavities of toad stone; also Diamond
Hill, near Miller’s Dale station; _Towanite_, Old hillocks at Ecton
mine, Cumberland mine, Matlock Bath; _Wad_, mines near Elton; _White
Lead Ore_ (_Cerussite_), near Brassington; Heyspots mine, near Elton;
Cabin mine, Newhaven. A more extensive list of the minerals of
Derbyshire, compiled by the Rev. J. M. Mello, will be found in “The
Midland Naturalist,” Vol. iv., p. 183.

=Gloucestershire.=--Mr. H.B. Woodward, of the Geological Survey, has
given the following list:--_Agate_, Berkeley, Damory Bridge; _Barytes_,
Tortworth; _Bitumen_, Clifton; _Brown Spar_, Tortworth; _Celestine_,
Tortworth, Thornbury, Wickwar, Aust; _Fluor Spar_, Clifton; _Göthite_,
Clifton; _Jasper_, Tortworth; _Prehnite_, Woodford Bridge, Berkeley;
_Rock Salt (pseudomorphs)_, Aust; _Steatite_, Tortworth; _Talc_,
Tortworth; _Vivianite_, near Clifton.

Pyle Hill, near Clifton, is a well-known locality for Celestine. At
Garden Cliff, near Westbury-on-Severn, the “bone bed” is well exposed,
and in this bed occurs plenty of iron pyrites; and in the shales, as
might be expected, crystals of selenite occur.

=Leicestershire.=--_Gold_ occurs in the quartz veins round Pedlar Tor,
Charnwood Forest. _Garnets_ occur in “gneiss” at Brazil Wood (Mr. W. J.
Harrison). _Copper pyrites_, _Molybdenum_, Mount Sorrel and Breedon.
_Galena_, _Blende_, Dimminsdale; _Dolomite_, Cloud Hill; _Gypsum_ and
_Selenite_, various places; _Iron pyrites_ in cubes, Swithland Great
Pit (Mr. James Plant).

=Northamptonshire and Oxfordshire.=--_Barytes_, _Blende_, _Calcite_,
_Galena_, _Glauconite_, _Gypsum_ (_Selenite_), _Lignite_, _Limonite_,
_Pyrites_, _Websterite_, occur in the neighbourhood of Banbury (Mr.
Thomas Beesley).

=Nottinghamshire.=--_Gypsum_ occurs in veins near Retford, and is used
for garden rock-work.

=Shropshire.=--At Lilleshall an old mine known as the Stump Leasow,
worked for limestone, yielded the following minerals:[67]--_Quartz_, a
minute crystal only. _Erubescite_, a few minute patches in the massive
form. _Copper Pyrites_, in sphenoids. _Iron Pyrites_, in radiating
masses. _Hæmatite_, in minute chocolate-coloured hemispherical masses,
also in an almost continual film containing the calc spar and other
minerals with a coppery sheen. _Barytes_, in pink, lamellar, somewhat
radiating masses. At the free surfaces of these masses are transparent
crystals. _Calcite_, in beautiful ice-like clusters of crystals taking
the form of steep three-faced pyramids. The groups are made up of
steep scalenohedrous with rhombohedral summits. The calcite is in some
cases pink due to manganese, a sample contained 1·20 per cent. of MnO.
In the lower measures the calcite occurs in pointed scalenohedrous
lining cavities in the stone. _Dolomite_, is the most interesting
mineral of the group. It occurs in nodules made up of a succession of
laminæ of varying diameters, the laminæ crystallizing at the edges in
rhombs resembling pearl spar. The composition of one sample of this
dolomite is nearly identical with what according to Boricky is one of
the possible values of Ankerite. Another approximates to the formula
3 CaCO₃ + (FeMn) CO₃ + MgCO₃ and should be described as a ferriferous

In the mining district of West Shropshire many beautiful and
interesting minerals are met with. The district is best reached
from Birmingham by taking train to Minsterley, via Shrewsbury. At
Snailbeach Mine, near Minsterley, occur beautiful rhombs of _Calcite_,
having a violet tinge, due to a small quantity of manganese. There
are also crystals of _Blende_ and _Galena_. At several of the mines
_Witherite_ and _Barytes_ are found, and, according to Mr. Morton,
other minerals met with are _Quartz_, _Chalcedony_, _Petroleum_,
_Pyrites_, _Malachite_, _Redruthite_, _Wad_, _Minium_, and _Cerussite_.
At Wotherton, two miles from Chirbury, is a fine barytes lode which
has been worked for more than 60 years, at first as an open mine, and
subsequently by means of a shaft. The barytes is remarkably pure, and
after grinding is sold in large quantities. In the lode are crevices
and cavities filled with a fine mud, and penetrating into the mud are
fine transparent crystals. These crystals have been measured by Mr.
Miers, of the British Museum, and a record of the forms present will be
found in his description.[68] (“Nature,” vol. xxix., p. 29.)

In connection with the mineralogy of Shropshire, it should be recorded
that the extremely rare instance of the fall of an iron meteorite in
the British Isles took place in this county at Rowton, near Wellington,
on April 20th, 1876. This meteorite was extracted by Mr. G. Brooks,
from the hole in which it had buried itself, and was hot when removed.
It is now in the possession of the British Museum, and Prof. Maskelyne
has given particulars of it in “Nature,” vol. xiv., p. 472. It weighs 7
lbs. 11 oz., “is a mass of metallic iron irregularly angular, although
all its edges appear to have been rounded by fusion in its transit
through the air, and, except at the point where it first struck the
ground, it is covered by a thin black pellicle of the magnetic oxide of
iron … the exposed metallic part of the surface exhibits crystalline
structure very clearly when it is etched. It is only the seventh
aërosiderite or meteoric iron of which the fall has been witnessed,
although upwards of a hundred iron masses have been discovered in
different parts of the globe, which are undoubtedly meteoric, and two
such have been found in Great Britain.”[69]

=Warwickshire.=--Many years ago a pocket of _Grey Oxide of Manganese_
was found near Atherstone, but I have been unable to find now any
traces of it. _Gypsum_ occurs in the cutting of a disused railway
near Henley-in-Arden, and at Spernall (Spernall Plaster Pits), near
Alcester. Mr. A. H. Atkins has called attention to the fact that gypsum
was met with in sinking an artesian well in Small Heath Park, near
Birmingham; he also mentions the occurrence of _Green Copper Carbonate_
at Vaughton’s Hole, near Birmingham.

=Worcestershire.=--Dr. Harvey B. Holl mentions the following
minerals as occurring at the Malvern Hills:--_Quartz_, _Orthoclase_,
_Labradorite_, _Anderine_, _Potash Mica_, _Ferruginous Mica_
(_Biolite_), _Augite_, _Hornblende_, _Epidote_, _Chlorite_, _Hæmatite_,
_Calc Spar_, _Graphite_, _Zeolites_, and _Garnet_.

       *       *       *       *       *

[The following articles refer to subjects which could not be included
in previous papers, and which are yet worth notice as part of the
history of Birmingham.--ED.]

=Botanical Gardens.=--[SAM: TIMMINS.]--The first proposal to establish
Botanical Gardens, in accordance with the science of horticulture
of the time, was made in 1829. Twelve acres were secured in the
then rural suburb of Edgbaston, and on the advice of the famous J.
C. Loudon four more acres were added, and the buildings erected by
Clarke of Birmingham, and opened to the public in 1831. The original
capital was 500 shares of £5 each, and an annual payment of three
guineas which secured certain privileges of admission beyond those
of the subscriber’s payment. The institution flourished, with some
vicissitudes, for many years, but was necessarily exclusive, and only
recently have admissions been made more easy by reduced and varying
charges on different days. On Monday--the people’s day--large numbers
attend, and the experiment has proved successful. The buildings were
recently greatly extended and rearranged from the designs of Mr. Frank
Osborne, and are now believed to be amongst the best of the kingdom.
Flower shows are held during the summer, and prizes awarded, which are
eagerly contended for by numerous horticulturists and florists of the
town and neighbourhood.

=Guinea Gardens.=--[SAM: TIMMINS.]--Near the Botanical Gardens a group
of small gardens may be seen, which are the only “survivals” of the
acres of “allotment gardens” or “guinea gardens,” which surrounded
Birmingham within a mile from the centre as late as 1830 to 1840.
Birmingham was, in fact, a town of gardens fifty years ago, not merely
as to the gardens attached to houses--front and back gardens in the
principal parts of the town,--but of the groups of gardens rented by
workmen and others, who could reach their gardens easily from their
homes by a short walk, and devote mornings and evenings to them.
The sites of the Kent Street Baths, and those opposite St. Thomas’s
Church,--at Ladywood, Spring Hill, Hockley, Handsworth, and Aston
road,--all within the Parish Boundary, formed a belt of gardens where
the workman and his family often spent the summer evenings and enjoyed
the (then) country air. All is now changed, and the distances even by
rail and tram are too great, and land too valuable, to be let out in
readily accessible gardens for the workers of the town, who cannot for
many reasons live in the suburbs which railways have opened since 1840.

=Sunday Lecture Society.=--[THOS. ROSE.]--This Society, which has now
become one of the most successful of our local institutions, had a very
humble origin. In 1877, a few members of the Birmingham Temperance
Society (foremost amongst whom was Mr. Thos. Hewins), conceived the
idea of holding Meetings on Sunday evenings “for the social, moral, and
intellectual improvement of the non-church and chapel-going portion of
the community.” They accordingly formed themselves into a Committee,
who engaged the then newly erected Board Schools in Bristol Street,
for the winter season of 1877-8, and commenced what were described
as “Sunday Evening Meetings for the People.” For a short time these
meetings were of a purely temperance character, but finding that they
were not so thoroughly appreciated as they had expected, the Committee
extended the variety of the subjects, and lectures were delivered
embracing a wide range of thought, both moral and religious, literary
and dramatic, scientific and historical, occasionally interspersed with
musical evenings illustrative of the principal oratorios. Foremost
amongst the lecturers (who numbered many of our chief local literary
and scientific men), was Mr. Sam: Timmins, who from the first took
an active part in the movement, the success of which was from this
time assured, the lectures being attended by crowded and appreciative
audiences every Sunday evening, and occasionally hundreds were unable
to obtain admission.

In 1880, the then Mayor (Alderman R. Chamberlain), generously offered
the Committee the free use of the Town Hall, and for some months the
lectures were delivered consecutively in that place to audiences
numbering from 3 to 4,000 each Sunday. This gave rise to considerable
opposition on the part of the various religious sects of the town
against what was considered to be “a monopoly of the use of the hall by
one particular sect,” and after much controversy in the public press,
and debate in the Town Council, the question of the letting of the Town
Hall on Sundays was left in the hands of the Mayor for the time being,
on the understanding that its continuous use by any one sect should
be refused. Thereupon the lectures were resumed in the Bristol Street
Board School, with occasional special lectures in the Town Hall.

In 1881, the movement assumed a more representative character. The
then Hon. Sec. (Mr. T. Rose), assisted by some of the leading members
of the Committee, took steps to organize a Sunday Lecture Society,
and a Meeting was held on July 1st, 1881, under the Presidency of
Mr. William Harris, J.P., when the present Society was publicly
inaugurated, the objects being--“To provide for the delivery on Sundays
in the Borough of Birmingham, and to encourage the delivery elsewhere
of lectures upon subjects calculated to promote the social, moral,
and intellectual well-being of the community at large, as hitherto
conducted by the Committee of the Sunday Evening Meetings for the

The constitution of the Society also provided that a minimum
subscription of One Shilling per year should constitute membership,
and that any pecuniary profit should be applied to the further
promotion of the objects of the Society. Mr. Sam: Timmins was elected
first President, and the management of its affairs was entrusted to a
Committee of 30, exclusive of Officers, to be elected annually from
amongst the body of members.

In the first year of the Society’s existence the members numbered
80, including the names of many of the most influential public men
of the town, and the subscription list amounted to £45. 14s. 6d. The
number of members is now 168, and the subscription list amounts to £70;
the income being further augmented by the collections taken at the
various lectures (which are thus largely self-supporting). Nearly all
the lectures being given voluntarily, the cost of working the Society
is comparatively small, and is fully met by the income derived from
subscriptions and collections. Five of the principal Board Schools are
engaged every Sunday evening throughout the winter season, from October
to April, and at intervals special lectures are delivered in the Town
Hall. During the season from 1885 to 1886, 71 lectures were delivered
at the Board Schools, with a total attendance of 23,150, or an average
of 326 to each lecture, and 10 lectures were delivered at the Town
Hall, with a total attendance of 33,000, or an average of 3,300 for
each lecture. Ald. R. Chamberlain, M.P., is now President of the
Society, as well as one of its most popular lecturers. In Councillor
R. F. Martineau, the Committee possesses a most able and energetic
Chairman. Mr. W. B. Smith is the Treasurer, and Mr. J. H. Forrester,
No. 1, Summer Hill Terrace, worthily fills the office of Hon. Secretary.

=Newspapers.=--[SAM: TIMMINS.]--The earliest known Birmingham Newspaper
was “The Birmingham Journal,” published by Thomas Warren, in 1733.
It was at first published on Thursdays, but afterwards on Mondays.
Only one copy has survived, that of May 21st, 1733, No. XXVIII. The
“Journal” is interesting as it shows some traces of the style of Dr.
Johnson, who very probably assisted Warren in his newspaper. “Aris’s
Birmingham Gazette” was first published in 1741, and its original title
is used on the Saturday issue from the Daily Gazette Office to this
day. It was originally published on Mondays, and some of its earlier
issues bore another heading, for special County circulation. “Swinney’s
Birmingham Chronicle” was published for several years, from 1796 to
1816, but no complete file has been preserved. Jabet’s “Commercial
Herald” was issued from 1804 to 1813. The “Birmingham Journal” was
revived in 1825, by Wm. Hodgetts, and was continued until absorbed in
“The Daily Post.” The “Birmingham Advertiser” was commenced in 1833,
and continued till 1845. In 1836, the “Midland Counties Herald” was
begun on a new plan of gratuitous circulation and is continued as a
sheet of advertisements and news relating to the land and agricultural
interests to this day. The “Birmingham Morning News” appeared in 1871,
with George Dawson as its first editor, and was continued till 1875.

“Aris’s Birmingham Gazette” was one of the first two country papers
which began a series of “Local Notes and Queries” in 1856. The example
has been very generally followed, and the series continued in the
“Weekly Post” and the “Weekly Mercury,” and many important facts of
local history have thus been discovered and preserved.

The removal of the “taxes on knowledge”--the stamp duty and
advertisement duty and the paper duty--soon produced local daily
papers, the first being the “Daily Press,” in 1855, edited for some
time by George Dawson, and followed by the “Daily Mercury.” In 1857
the “Daily Post” was started, and in 1879 the “Daily Globe” appeared.
In 1869 the “Midland Illustrated News” was begun, but it survived
only about a year and a half. Among the other newspapers were the
“Birmingham Chronicle” (1823); the “Midland Chronicle” (1811); the
“Philanthropist” (1835). Many other short-lived newspapers have been
issued from time to time--many of which are to some extent preserved by
odd copies in the Reference Library, and among them a German newspaper
of which only one number appeared. Birmingham was one of the first
towns which produced a Sunday newspaper--the “Sunday Echo,” and some
others have been issued since. The “cheap press” secured a very large
number of readers, when the first halfpenny daily evening paper, the
“Daily Mail,” was established in 1869, followed for some time by a
similar issue from the “Daily Gazette” office, and afterwards by the
“Midland Echo.”

Many monthly pamphlets--practically newspapers--were issued, such as
the “Independent” (1827), and “Inspector” (1817); the “Weekly Recorder”
and “Register” (1819), by George Edmonds; and many serials, sarcastic
or humorous, have appeared from time to time. The scurrilous “Argus” of
fifty years ago, and later the “Town Crier” (1861), “Brum,” “Graphic,”
“Dart,” “Owl,” “Free Lance,” &c., with our illustrated “Phonographic
Punch,” and one local monthly, “Edgbastonia,” in which many interesting
biographies of local celebrities have appeared. On several occasions
Sunday sermons have been published in serials such as the “Birmingham
Pulpit” (1871-73). Other attempts to establish newspapers for
discussion rather than mere news have been tried as in the “Liberal
Review” (1880).

=Theatres.=--[SAM: TIMMINS.]--Birmingham has been famous as a
theatrical town for nearly a century, and especially as the “training
ground” where many of the leading actors of the present century learned
their art and won their first laurels. The stage was, however, rather
a late creation in Birmingham, and no traces are found earlier than
about 1730, when mere booths served the purpose of a “play-house,”
and actors were only “rogues and vagabonds” according to law. “A shed
in Temple Street” and a “stable in Castle Street,” with admission
threepence each, and the small band parading the town during the day,
in the absence of newspapers, to announce the performance, formed,
according to Hutton, the “rise of the drama” in our town. As early as
1750 travelling circuses and theatres appeared in Coleshill Street;
and in 1802 the famous Astley brought his circus to the “back of
the Stork Hotel.” In 1730 a temporary building was erected in Moor
Street, in 1743 another in New Street, in 1747 another in Smallbrook
Street, and in 1776 a more important and permanent theatre was built
in King Street--a street covered by the railway station and Stephenson
Place, and the site of the theatre being now that of the front of the
Exchange. This became an important theatre, and existed till late in
the century in competition with the present Theatre Royal, which was
founded about the same date. The few play bills which have survived,
and the expenditure on the building, show that every effort was made
to do justice to the drama a century ago. At this date theatres were
merely tolerated, but in 1777 an application was made for a licence
for the New Street Theatre to play for “four months in the year,” and
this application was somewhat famous, for it was eloquently supported
by Edmund Burke, who used the phrase--since so well-known and so little
understood--that Birmingham was the “great Toy-shop of Europe.” The
phrase, however, was not new, but was used in a book by Sir Samuel
Morland a hundred years earlier to describe the shops where trinkets
and small steel and iron wares were sold, and not in connection
with children’s “toys.” The second reading of the Bill, to enable
His Majesty the King to grant a Patent was, however, lost, but the
enterprise was continued, and in 1780 the present front of the Theatre
Royal was erected with a commodious theatre, well lighted by wax
candles, and with “the passages warmed with stoves” as the performances
were to be given in the winter as well as the summer months. It was
not till 1807 that a “Patent” was secured for the Theatre which then
became the Theatre Royal, and still remains under the jurisdiction
of the Lord Chamberlain. In 1778 a “wooden building” was erected as
an “opera house,” near the Plough and Harrow, in the Moseley Road,
but this was burned down soon after. In 1792, the Theatre Royal was
destroyed by fire, and again in 1820, but the front remained unharmed
in these two great fires and the medallions of Shakespeare and Garrick
remain as placed in 1780. In both cases the fires were believed to be
incendiary and with good reason too. In 1795 the Theatre was rebuilt
and re-opened by William Macready, who remained till 1810, in which
year, on June 11, his future famous son, William Charles Macready,
appeared as Romeo,--“a young gentleman and his first appearance on any
stage.” In 1813, Macready was followed by Elliston, as lessee, and in
1819 he was succeeded by Alfred Bunn. During all this period all the
great actresses, and actors, and singers, and celebrities of the time
appeared on the Theatre Royal stage, and a very complete series of
Play Bills has fortunately been preserved. The present lessee, Mr. M.
H. Simpson, and his father have had the Theatre Royal for fifty years,
and recently additions and alterations have been made, not only in
the Theatre proper, but in the accessory rooms for actors and scenery
which have never been surpassed for extent and convenience. The Theatre
Royal was, practically, the only theatre for many years, but in 1853 a
dramatic licence was granted by the magistrates for a building on the
Bingley Hall site: in 1856 the “Music Hall” in Broad Street was built,
but in 1862 it was converted into a theatre, and opened as the Royal
Operetta House, by Mr. W. H. Swanborough. In 1866 it was bought by Mr.
James Rodgers, and in 1876 was practically rebuilt, and additions and
alterations are now in progress under Mr. Rodgers and his Son. In 1879
a license was granted to the Holte Theatre, in the Aston Lower Grounds;
and the Grand Theatre, Corporation Street, built and managed by Mr.
Andrew Melville, was opened November 14, 1883. In 1785 an Amphitheatre
existed in Livery Street and was converted into a Chapel: in King
Street the Theatre was also converted into a Chapel, and afterwards
back again to a Public Hall; and in 1827 the Circus of James Ryan,
permanently built some years later, was converted into the Circus
Chapel. In short, the great progress of Birmingham in the second half
of the last century was felt in every way: the Musical Festival was
founded, and the drama grew rapidly as the town extended and the taste
of the public improved.



An exhaustive account of the ribbon and watch manufactures of Coventry,
with technical descriptions of the various processes involved in the
treatment of the raw material, in its progress of manufacture from its
primitive condition to its finished state, having already appeared
in the comprehensive series of articles in the midland industries,
published on the occasion of the former visit of the Association in
1865, it only remains to note the changes and additions which have been
made since that period in the Industries of Coventry.

=Ribbon Trade.=--Several causes have combined to produce a very
serious decline in the manufacture of silk fabrics, the chief of them
being the French commercial treaty, to which may be added change of
fashion, and increased competition and more rapid production by the
further development of machinery. From 1860 to 1878 the ribbon trade
in Coventry and its neighbourhood, had decreased by at least one half,
and the decline has been going on since that period, with exceptional
experiences of spasmodic improvement, ever since. Efforts have been
made in various ways to direct the textile skill of the artisans into
other channels wherein their weaving abilities might be turned to
their advantage, and the area of textile manufactures increased. In
one of these departments may be specially noticed the manufacture of
_bookmarks_, and other illuminated ribbons. This trade was chiefly
introduced by Mr. Thomas Stevens, and has been most successfully
developed by himself and other manufacturers, until their extent,
beauty of design, variety of application, &c., have been marvellous.
Portraits, valentines, presents suitable to the seasons, birthdays,
views of noted buildings, poetical sentences, mottoes, labels, and
other decorative and descriptive ornaments have been produced, which,
half a century ago, it would have been deemed impossible to produce
from a loom. But this has involved the construction of complicated
and expensive machinery, and has raised the art of loom-making
considerably. Such a trade is, after all, but limited, it is the
production of a luxury, a merchandise “which none but the rich can buy.”

=Trimming Trade.=--Another department of textile industry which has
sprung up, somewhat analogous to the Ribbon manufacture, is the
Trimming trade, for which special looms have been adopted--cambric
frilling, mainly introduced by Messrs. Cash; bead work, and other
ornamental fabrics have also been introduced.

=Cotton Spinning and Weaving.=--Soon after the decline of the ribbon
trade the attention of the Coventry manufacturers was drawn to the
experiment of introducing the cotton spinning and weaving. A large
factory with suitable annexes for carrying on a large trade was erected
on the north side of the city by a company formed in 1860, the Rev. S.
H. Widdrington, then vicar of St. Michael’s, taking a great interest
in the project. Its operations have been attended by varied success;
the distance from the centres of the cotton trade forming an obstacle
to its full development, the spinning department has received most

=Elastic Web.=--In 1859 Messrs. Dalton and Barton introduced the
manufacture of elastic webs, but afterwards disposed of this department
of their business to Mr. Pridmore, by whom it is still carried on
at Foleshill. In 1862 a company was formed for carrying on the same
kind of trade, chiefly through the instrumentality of the vicar of
St. Michael’s, and known as the Coventry Elastic Weaving Company,
and for nearly twenty years it conducted a large business, having
branches at Red Lane, Foleshill, and in White Friars’ Lane, Coventry.
Owing to a brisk competition in other weaving centres, and consequent
over-production, the company dissolved a few years ago, a portion of
the plant and trade being retained by Mr. J. C. Odell, one of the
members of the company, and still successfully carried on. There are
several firms in the city conducting similar business.

=The Bradford Stuff Manufacture= was introduced into Coventry in
1864, and established in a large disused factory, originally erected
as a cotton mill, in Hill Street, afterwards occupied as a ribbon
manufactory. The firm is known as the “Leigh” Mills Company (Limited),
the present Lord-Lieutenant of the County having shown much interest in
the promotion of this and other new industries in Coventry. Excellent
woollen and worsted goods are made here, silk and cotton being also
used in some of the varieties manufactured.

=Coach Lace and Broad Stuffs= for railway and other carriages,
trimmings for furniture, &c., are largely manufactured by Messrs.
Dalton and Barton, Messrs. Perkins and Son, and others.

=Silk Dyeing= is still carried on to a considerable extent by several
firms, and the city maintains its old character for the permanence and
brilliancy exhibited in this class of work, which is one of the ancient
staples of the city.

It will be seen that while Coventry still maintains its textile
productions in the weaving industry, its works are not confined
to ribbons, and the manufacturers and artisans generally deserve
the highest commendation for the spirit and the aptitude they have
displayed in adapting themselves to the altered circumstances of the
textile industry of the city, and the opening up of new branches of the
weaving industry has emancipated the city from dependence on the ribbon
trade alone.

Many firms are still engaged in the manufacture of ribbons, sashes,
ladies’ scarfs, &c., and during the last year or two, gauzes having
been in demand have been largely made.

=Watch Manufacturing.=--Coventry is one of the principal places in
England for this branch of manufacturing industry, and at the head of
the numerous firms engaged therein, Messrs. J. Rotherham and Sons hold
the first and oldest position. A trade of such extent, and exhibiting
so many stages of progress in its production, necessarily possesses
many features of interest, and may be divided into the following,
with minor divisions springing from them:--watch manufacturers, case
makers, engravers, springers, engine-turners, and polishers; cap
makers, dial makers, escapement, balance, pallet, roller, and lever
makers; movement, motion, index, hand, and glass makers; fuzee cutters,
gilders, examiners, and finishers; jewellers, keyless motion and
movement makers, and motioners.

The trade has been subject to many changes and fluctuations, and is at
present in a depressed state, owing largely to foreign competition,
and the production of cheap watches by means of machinery. Efforts
have been made by more than one of the Coventry firms to meet the
latter source of competition by the introduction of machinery in the
construction of various parts of the watch, and in the subdivision
of labour, more especially in the class known as “going barrels”
with various measures of success; but for the better class of watch,
the old system bids fair to maintain its position. A project for
the establishment of technical schools for special instruction in
the various processes in connection with the Coventry staple trades
in general, and that of Horology in particular, is still under
consideration, and may lead to satisfactory results. There are about
150 manufacturers of watches in Coventry.

=The Cycle Manufacture= was introduced into this city about 20 years
ago in conjunction with the making of sewing machines. The latter
branch of trade has given place almost entirely to the former, and the
reputation which the various firms engaged in the trade have succeeded
in obtaining, have placed Coventry in the first rank in this new and
peculiar manufacture. The Coventry Machinists’ Company (Cheylesmore)
were the first to introduce this trade into this country, and it is
still one of the largest of the producers. Among the rest may be
mentioned the Rudge, Premier, Singer and Co., Fleet, Centaur, Meteor,
Excelsior, Wellington, Victoria, and others, all of which have some
speciality claiming some peculiar excellence.

=Artistic Work in Metal= was introduced into Coventry chiefly by the
exertions and artistic taste of Mr. Skidmore over 30 years ago, and
has been followed out by himself, and by various Companies in the same
direction ever since. Work from the different firms established in
Coventry of great excellence, may be found in many of the principal
towns in the British Islands, and on the Continent, notably in
Lichfield and Hereford Cathedrals, Prince Consort Memorial, Burlington
House, &c. Ironfounding and agricultural implement manufacturing
has also attained a high position of excellence under the firm of
Matterson, Huxley, and Watson of this city.


[1] The information in this section, up to the close of 1884, is taken
from the very accurate and interesting “History of the Corporation of
Birmingham,” by J. Thackray Bunce. Two vols., 1878 and 1885.

[2] In 1795 it had risen to £1,200; in 1818 to £3,000; in 1861 to
£11,000; in 1880 to £21,983; and it is reckoned that at the end of the
century the revenue of the School will be £50,000.

[3] This barn and croft were taken away in 1738 from both chief master
and usher, and their salaries raised in lieu to £88. 15s. 0d. and £60.

[4] In all these provisions boys from the manor had the preference.

[5] An alternative plan, apparently not adopted, was to have two
exhibitions of £5 each, at Catherine Hall, Cambridge; and two
fellowships of £30 a year each at the same college.

[6] The first exhibitioners were William Milner and Bartholomew
Baldwin, in 1677. Up to 1817, eighty-two exhibitioners had been
elected. In 1723, however, a chancery commission declared it a manifest
breach of trust on the Governors’ part that no exhibition had been
granted for twenty years; while on January 18, 1734, _the chief master,
having no scholars under his care_, William Spilsbury, jun., a scholar
in the _usher’s_ school, was elected exhibitioner at Oxford, no other
boy being qualified or likely to be qualified for some years.

[7] See the illustrations in _Hutton’s_ Birmingham.

[8] The first appointed were in 1752, as follows: William Latham, in
Dudley Street; Thomas Wilson, near the Old Cross; Mary Ankers, wife
of Noel Ankers, in Freeman Street; another Widow Austin, in London
Prentice Street.

[9] For some reason not very clear, the _branch_ school in Shutt Lane,
as also a drawing school established by the Governors, were in 1829
declared by a decree in Chancery to be unauthorised by the charter, and
were then discontinued.

[10] This was the original intention. But one of these two large
apartments was taken by the Governors, and the room designed for the
library was given to the commercial school in its place. The latter is
now the assembly room of the Girls High School.

[11] It should be added that Mr. Green’s report also declares that
“it is universally admitted that the present Board has discharged its
duties with all care and conscientiousness.”

[12] The present bailiff.

[13] See the development of 1883.

[14] The imposition of fees has ever been a sore point. The first
report of the new Town Council Governors was issued on January 7th,
1879, and stated that they had endeavoured to reduce these fees; and in
1880 they expressed their regret at their imposition.

[15] In 1800, there were 120 boys: in 1850, 250 boys; in 1860, 456 boys
in Grammar School, and 1080 children in the Elementary Schools: there
are now 343 boys and 195 girls in the High School: 849 boys and 644
girls in the Grammar Schools. Grand total, 1493.

[16] The number of Masters in the Grammar School was, in 1878, 26; in
the Elementary Schools there were 20 teachers and 21 monitors.

[17] Existing rights reserved; in 1878 the Head Master had 17, and the
second Master, 5 boarders.

[18] These amounts have been greatly exceeded. The annual expenditure
on exhibitions is, Boys’ High School, £690; Girls, £200; Boys’ Grammar
School, £270; Girls, £360. There is only one James Exhibition.

[19] Opened September, 1883.

[20] Five sums of £1,000 each for Scholarships, Prize Essays,
Chaplaincy, Divinity Lectureship, and Medical Tutorship.

[21] _e.g._, Law, which was shortly added.

[22] The arts department being henceforward regarded as preparatory to
the other two.

[23] In that year the present Warden, the Rev. W. H. Poulton, came into
office, and the number immediately increased to 22.

[24] The purchase value of the property was £110,000, yielding an
annual rent of £3,700. £60,000 was spent upon the building and
furnishing. The total amount of the benefaction will, in the end,
approach £200,000. As early as 1882, however, we find that the Council
“view with regret the narrow margin that is likely to exist unless
the present endowment is supplemented by other gifts,”--[Report, p.
11.]--and this anxiety is again forcibly expressed in 1885. It was
relieved in that year, however, by an “Additional Endowment Fund,” the
subscriptions to which reached £4,855.

[25] In 1882, it was ordered that wives and children of Professors,
Lecturers, and Secretaries, who died during their term of office, be
admitted to all classes without payment.

[26] Two exhibitions of £15 each, increased next year to four, awarded
by the Governors of King Edward’s Schools, and a Science Scholarship
of £20 a year, created by the Trustees of Piddock’s Charity, are also
tenable at the College.

[27] Various other societies have been formed within the college,
_e.g._, Physical, Chemical, Botanical, Poesy, and French Debating

[28] The Libraries and Fine Art Gallery were shortly undertaken by the
town, and have never formed part of the work of the Institute.

[29] _Paid_ Teachers were substituted in 1860.

[30] The Perry Barr and Harborne Institutes had been opened previously.

[31] M. Achille Albitès.

[32] Now covered by the Schools of the Society of Friends, and where
Wyatt and Paul’s first spinning of cotton by rollers was tried.

[33] The principal object of this part is to shew the development of
the parochial system, and readers will therefore kindly notice--

1.--All architectural details are omitted, and will be found under the
head, “Architecture,” where there is anything special to notice.

2.--Particulars as to patronage, annual value of livings, number of
sittings, are, in order to economise space and prevent repetition,
relegated to a table at the end of this section, in which table all the
churches in the Borough are arranged alphabetically, irrespective of
whether they are in the parish of Birmingham, Edgbaston, or that part
of Aston parish which is within the Borough.

[34] For the records of these sales see a valuable paper by Mr. J. R.
Holliday on St. Martin’s Church, in the Transactions for 1873 of the
Archæological Section of the Birmingham and Midland Institute.

[35] See the excellent monograph, “Old St. Martin’s,” by J. T. Bunce,

[36] A copy and translation of this interesting document will be found
in Toulmin Smith’s Memorials of Old Birmingham, 1864.

[37] The materials for the historical facts are to be found in the
“Sketch of the History of Protestant Non-Conformity in Birmingham,” by
the Rev. J. R. Wreford, formerly minister of the New Meeting House,
Birmingham, 1832, and “Protestant Non-Conformity in Birmingham,” by the
Rev. J. A. James, Birmingham, 1849.

[38] See the interesting volume, “Memorials of the Old Meeting House
and Burial Ground.” by Catherine Hutton Beale. Printed for subscribers
by White and Pike, Birmingham.

[39] In the order of time there was an intermediate meeting house in
Livery Street, originally a circus, and used by the congregations
of the Old and New Meetings, whilst those meeting houses were being
rebuilt after the riots of 1791. It was afterwards occupied by a part
of the Carr’s Lane congregation, on Mr. Brewer’s resignation of the
pastorate there in 1802, and, it becoming too small, it was resolved to
build Ebenezer Chapel. The chapel in Livery Street was pulled down in
1853, and the printing establishment of M. Billing, Sons, and Co., is
built on the site.

[40] An excellent paper on the Old Church may be found in the third
vol. of the Transactions of the Archæological Section of the Birmingham
and Midland Institute.

[41] The principal chemicals manufactured on a large scale
are:--Sulphuric, Sulphurous, Hydrochloric, Nitric, Crude Carbolic,
Hydrocyanic, and Hydrofluoric Acids; Washing Soda, Bicarbonate of Soda,
Rochelle Salt, Glauber’s Salt, Carbonate of Potash, Bicarbonate of
Potash, Chlorate of Potash, Cyanide of Potassium, Iodide of Potassium,
Oxalate of Potash, Bleaching Powder, Ammonia, Sulphate of Ammonia, Sal
Ammoniac, Carbonate of Ammonia, Precipitated Chalk, Bisulphite of Lime,
Citrate of Magnesia, Fluid Magnesia, Nitrates of Barium and Strontium,
Sulphate of Copper, Phosphorus, Milk of Sulphur, Tin Crystals, Benzol,
Toluene, Xylene, Phenol, Naphthalene, Crude Anthracene, and other Tar
Products, Fruit Essences.

[42] Mungo consists of tailors’ scraps of cloth torn up into shreds,
and rendered suitable for working up afresh. Shoddy is a similar
material, but made from old garments instead of new material.

[43] A heavy knife used for cutting down sugar cane.

[44] Among goldbeaters Gypsum goes by the name of talc

[45] I am indebted to my colleague Mr. A. H. Hiorns for these

[46] Sometimes “the process is simply performed by rubbing two pieces
of bone quite flat on a smooth stone, and then cutting in one of the
pieces the shape required, leaving a hole through to the edge by which
to pour in the metal.”--Mr. C. B. Bragg.

[47] For these particulars I am indebted to my colleague, Mr. A. H.

[48] “Birmingham and Midland Hardware District,” edited by Samuel
Timmins, London, Hardwicke, 1866.

[49] The screw hand-press so generally used in Birmingham trades was
the first great means of cheapening the making of steel pens, which had
previously been made by hand, in Sheffield and London. Mr. Mitchell,
Mr. Joseph Gillott, and Sir Josiah Mason, were the first to make steel
pens by press work.--Ed.

[50] This mechanism was first used by James Watt, for copying
medallions and busts, and his machines are still preserved at
Heathfield Hall, Handsworth.--Ed.

[51] For the Enfield-Martini of 0·4″ bore, the thickness is 0·130 inch,
and the disc cut out is 1·205 in diameter.

[52] I am indebted to Mr. J. W. Davis for these particulars.

[53] In these cases the value of the gold is trifling as compared with
the labour expended, hence there is every confidence in the value of
the metal.

[54] The statistics given have been supplied by Messrs. Crawley,
Parsons and Co.

[55] I have been surprised to note Birmingham made pearl buttons put
on cards headed _Nouveauté, Paris_. I understand that many of these
buttons are sent to the United States.--C. J. W.

[56] Sir William Thomson has proposed intervals corresponding to
the dots and dashes of the Morse alphabet in order to distinguish
lighthouses. C. J. W.

[57] It is interesting to know that Mr. Edward White Benson, father of
the present Archbishop of Canterbury, was associated with Mr. Askin in
the early experiments on extraction of nickel.

[58] Mr. Henry Bore, who has been connected with the Perryan Pen Works
for nearly thirty years, has in the press a work dealing principally
with the origin of pen making. Mr. Bore’s investigation points to Mr.
John Mitchell as the first to introduce the making of pens by means of
tools principally if not entirely his invention, but there is little
doubt that the use of steel pens by the writing public is due in the
first instance to the energy of Mr. James Perry, who was assisted in
this work by the late Sir Josiah Mason.

[59] An amalgam of gold is spread on the work to be gilt. The article
is then put in an oven and heated till the mercury escapes, leaving
the gold behind. Military buttons and ornaments are gilt in this
manner.--C. J. W.

[60] Ramsay. Quart. Journal Geol. Society, 1855, p. 191, &c.

[61] Jukes, South Staffordshire Coalfield, 2nd Edition, p. 15.

[62] For a Note by the writer on the distribution of this species in
Britain, see _Midland Naturalist_, Vol. 1, 1878, p. 323.

[63] Those who are interested in the Embryology of these lowly
creatures will find a paper upon the subject by Professor E. Ray
Lankester, in the “Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society.”
Part I. 1875.

[64] A paper by Professor E. Ray Lankester on the Invaginate planula,
or Diploblastic phase of _Paludina vivipara_, may be found in the
“Quarterly Journal of Microscopical Science.” New Series. No. 58.
April, 1875.

[65] For a paper by the writer on this habit in the Mollusca, see
“Conchological Journal,” Vol. I., p. 401, et seq. 1874-8.

[66] See the “Quarterly Journal of Microscopical Science,” New Series,
No. 56, October, 1875, for the Embryology of _L. stagnalis_, by
Professor E. Ray Lankester.

[67] For detailed description see “On a group of minerals from
Lilleshall, Salop, by C. J. Woodward.” “Quarterly Journal Geological
Society,” August, 1883, p. 466.

[68] For particulars relating to this mine, I am indebted to Mr. W.

[69] Professor Maskelyne in Report of the British Association Committee
on Luminous Meteors, 1876, p. 166, quoted in a paper by Townshend. Mr.
Hall on “Contributions towards a History of British Meteorites,” in the
“Mineralogical Magazine,” 1879.


  Almshouses, xvi., xvii., xix.

  Architecture, 118

  Art Gallery, xiii.

  Art Gallery Purchase Fund, xviii.

  Art, School of, xviii.

  Artists (Local), 132
    Cox, David, 128
    Jones, E. Burne, 131
    Mason, Geo., 130

  Aston Hall, 126

  Baskerville, John, 9

  Baths and Parks, xi.

    Algæ, 335
    Flowering Plants, Ferns, etc. of Warwickshire, 316
      Worcestershire, 320
      Staffordshire, 327
    Fungi, 339
    Hepaticæ, 333
    Ick, Wm., 313
    Introductory remarks, 311
    Lichens, 333
    Mosses of Warwickshire, 331
      Worcestershire, 332
      Staffordshire, 333
    Perry, W. G., 313
    Purton, Tho., 312
    Students’ Garden, 315
    Withering, Wm., 312

  Botanical Gardens, 357

  Boulton, M., 10

  Chamberlain, J. H., 52, 57, 125

    Blind Institution, 93
    Children’s Hospital, 88
    Deaf and Dumb, 92
    Dental Hospital, 89
    Dispensary, 85
    Ear and Throat Hospital, 89
    Eye Hospital, 86
    General Hospital, 81
    Homœopathic Hospital, 90
    Lying-in Charity, 87
    Orthopædic Hospital, 86
    Queen’s Hospital, 83
    Sanatorium, 90
    Skin and Lock Hospital, 91
    Women’s Hospital, 91

  Clubs, xx.

  Contributors, v.

  Corporation, History of, ix.

  Corporation Land, xiv.

  Cotton Spinning, 9

    Artistic Work in Metal, 370
    Bradford Stuff Manufacture, 368
    Coach Lace, etc., 368
    Cotton Spinning and Weaving, 367
    Cycle Manufacture, 369
    Elastic Web, 367
    Ribbon Trade, 366
    Silk Dyeing, 368
    Trimming Trade, 369
    Watch Manufacturing, 368

  Dawson, Geo., 112, 133

  Debating Societies, 74, 79

  Deritend Chapel, 5

  Dickens, Ch., 78

  Directories, 9

  Drainage Board, 14

  Dudley Trust, xviii.

    Aston, Parish of, 94, 102
    Baptists, 107, 116
    Birmingham, Parish of, 94
    Burial Grounds, 117
    Cemeteries, 117
    Chapels, 106
    Churches, 94
    Congregationalists, 109, 113, 116
    Dissenters--see Nonconformists, 105
    Edgbaston, Parish of, 94, 101
    Friends, Society of, 110, 116
    Jewish Synagogue, 112
    Methodists, 111, 113, 116
    Nonconformist Churches and Chapels, 105
    Parishes of the Borough, 94
    Presbyterians, 112
    Quakers (see Friends), 110, 116
    Roman Catholics, 113, 116
    Swedenborgians, 113
    Unitarians, 106, 116
    Wesleyans, 110, 116

  Elementary Education, 58
    Religious Education and Voluntary Schools, 60
    Technical School, 59

  Free Libraries, xviii.

  Gas and Water Companies, xiii.

    Abberley, 218
    Anticlinal, 217
    Archæan Rocks, 222
    Arden, Forest of, 216
    Arenig Rocks, 240
    Atherstone, 225, 256
    Aymestry Limestone, 230
    Axes of Elevation, 214, 217
    Bala Rocks, 240
    Bangham Pit, 236
    Barnt Green, 213, 226
    Barr Beacon, 214, 240
    Barr, Great, 214, 227, 240
    Barr Limestone, 228
    Bibliography of Birmingham Geology, 263, 265
    Birmingham Plateau, 215
    Black Country, 213, 216, 232
    Boulder Clay, 248, 253
    Boulder Clay, lower, 249
    Boulder Clay, upper, 249, 252
    Brazil Wood, 256
    Breccia, Volcanic, 235
    Bridgnorth, 238
    Bromsgrove, 242
    Brooch Coal, 231
    Budleigh Salterton, 237
    Bunter, 237, 250
    Caldecote, Volcanic Rocks of, 223, 225
    California, 241, 249
    Cambrian Rocks, 218, 221, 224-227
    Cannock Chase, 213, 232, 239
    Caradoc Rocks, 240
    Carboniferous Rocks, 218, 221, 230-234
    Carboniferous Limestone, 230, 234, 241
    Charnwood Forest, 217, 221
    Charnwood Forest, Rocks of, 223, 256
    Chilvers Coton, 226
    Clent Hills, 214, 236, 253
    Coalfield, Forest of Wyre, 218, 230, 234
    Coalbrookdale, 218, 230, 234
    Coalfield, South Staffordshire, 218, 227, 230
    Coal Measures, 218, 230, 234
    Coal, 260
    Coalfield, Coalbrookdale, 234
    Coalfield, Warwickshire, 234
    Copt Heath, 248
    Croft, 224
    Crystalline Rocks, 221
    Devonian Rocks, 241
    Drainage of Mines, 262
    Dost Hill, 226
    Droitwich, 243
    Dudley, 214, 216, 218, 227, 230, 234
    Dudley, Limestone of, 229, 261
    Edge Hill, 245
    Edgbaston, 215
    Enderby, 224
    Enville, 235
    Erratic Blocks, 249, 251
    Fenny Compton, 245
    Fire Clay, 260
    Fossils, Cambrian, 224, 227
      Carboniferous, 233, 241
      Devonian, 241
      Lias, 245
      Ordovician, 240
      Post Tertiary, 252
      Rhætic, 247
      Silurian, 228, 240
      Trias, 241
    Fundamental Rocks, 221, 224
    Geology, 216, 265
    Geological Formation, Table of, 220, 221
    Glacial Deposits, 248, 253
    Glacial Sands, 249
    Gypsum, 242
    Hailstone Quarry, 259
    Halesowen, Sandstone, 230, 232
    Hamstead, 232, 262
    Harborne, 215
    Harbury, 245, 248
    Hartshill, Rocks of, 225
    Hawkesbury, 234
    Heathen Coal, 230
    Hockley, 241
    Hollybush Sandstone, Fossils of, 224
    Hollybush Sandstone, 221, 224, 227
    Igneous Rocks, 221, 225, 233, 236, 250, 253, 254-260
    Insect Beds, 246
    Ironstones, 231, 260
    Jurassic Rocks, 220, 244-248
    Ketley, 252
    Keuper, 237
    Keuper Sandstone, 243
    Keuper Marls, 219, 237, 240
    King’s Heath, 242
    Kinlet, 260
    Kinver Edge, 239
    Laurentian Rocks, 222
    Lea Rock, 222, 258
    Lias, 244-247
    Lias, Lower, 246
    Lias, Upper, 245
    Lias, White, 245, 247
    Lichfield, 240
    Lickey, Quartzite of, 226
    Lickey Hills, 213, 218, 226, 228, 236
    Lilleshall, 252
    Lima Beds, 245
    Limestone, Dudley, 261
    Lingula Flags, 224
    Lingula Flags, Fossils of, 224
    Llandovery Rocks, 226, 228, 240
    Ludlow Rocks, 228
    Malvern Hills, 217, 254
    Malvern Hills, Rocks of, 221, 224, 254
    Marlstone, 245
    Marston Jabet, 257
    Mason College, Museum of, 229, 253
    Mayhill Sandstone, 227, 240
    Mesozoic Rocks, 220
    Metamorphism, 256
    Midland Plain, 213, 219
    Millstone Grit, 230, 234
    Mining Statistics, 260-263
    Moseley, 215
    Mottled Sandstone, Lower, 237
       ”        ”    , Upper, 237, 241
    New Mine Coal, 231
    Nuneaton, 216, 218, 256
    Nuneaton, Rocks of, 223, 225
    Old Red Sandstone, 218, 221
    Ordovician Rocks, 220, 240
    Palæozoic Rocks, 216, 236
    Pebble Beds, 237, 239, 244
    Pentamerus Rocks, 228
    Permian Rocks, 220, 235
    Permian Sandstone, 235
    Permian Breccia, 235
    Petrography, 254
    Physiography, 213, 216, 238
    Pig Iron, 261
    Post Glacial Deposits, 253
    Post Tertiary Deposits, 248, 253
    Park Hill, 234, 259
    Primary Rocks, 216-236
    Quartzite, Hartshill, 225
        ”      Lickey, 226, 227
    Rea, River, 215
    Rhætic Rocks, 247
    Rhyolites, 222, 258
    Rock Formations, Local, 220
    Rowley Regis, 214, 233, 250, 259
    Rowington, 243
    Rubery, 226, 228
    Sapcote, 224
    Saltley, 215
    Sandwell Park, 232
    Secondary Rocks, 220
    Sedgley, 214, 216, 227, 229
    Shinton Shales, 222, 227
       ”       ”  Fossils of, 227
    Shustoke, 253
    Silurian Rocks, 218, 227, 230
    Smallheath Park, 242
    Sorrel, Mount, 223, 255
    Spirorbis Limestone, 230
    Square Work, Mining, 262
    Steel, 261
    Stourbridge, 239
    Stockingford Shales, 225
    Sutton Park, 215, 239
    Swinnerton Park, 260
    Tame River, 213, 215
    Tamworth, 226, 234
    Thick Coal, 231-234, 262
    Titterstone Clee Hill, 259
    Tremadoc Rocks, 224
    Trentham, 241
    Trias, 217, 219, 237-244
    Triassic Rocks, how formed, 243
    Tattle Hill, 226
    Walsall, 228, 230, 234, 259
    Warwick, 242
    Waterstones, 237, 241
    Water Supply, 244
    Wellington, 217, 252, 258
    Wenlock Limestone, 229
    Weoley Castle, 249
    Wilmcote, 246
    Wolverhampton, 251
    Woolhope Limestone, 228
    Wooton Wawen, 248
    Wrekin, 218, 222, 227, 258
      ”   Rocks of, 222, 227
    Wren’s Nest, 214, 216, 227

    Bill of 1830-31, 30
    Branch Schools, 29, 31
    Corruption in Management of, 29
    First Statutes, 27
    Foundation; Revenue, 26
    Head Masters, 37
    Honours Gained by Pupils, 36
    New Scheme for, 33
    Number of Scholars, 34
    Present Building, 31
    Reform Association, 33
    Scholarships; Second Building, 28

  Gifts to the Town, xvi.

  Guinea Gardens, 358

  Hollins, Geo., 143

  Hospital Saturday, xx.

     ”     Sunday Collection, xx.

  Jaffray Suburban Hospital, xix.

  Leland’s Visit, 1538, 5

  Lench’s Trust, xvi.

    Byron, Cervantes, & Milton Collections, 73
    Early, 65
    Free, 69
     ”  Rate Unlimited, xiii.
    Shakespeare Memorial, 73
    Suburban, 74
    Sunday Opening, 74

  Lunar Society, 75

  Magazines, 78, 79

    Ammunition, 199
    Arc Lighting, 184
    Assay Office, 177
    Assayed Wares (Table), 178
    Automatic Machinery, 173
         ”    Shaping, 173
         ”    Turning, 173
    Bedsteads, 178
    Bit, or Doctor, 175
    Brassfoundry, 180
    Block Paper, 179
    Boiler Plate, 179
    Britannia Metal, 202
    Bullion Trade, 181
    Buttons (Pearl), 181
    Canal Traffic, 151
    Cast Iron Ware, 181
    Cementation, 171
    Champlevé process, 204
    Chilled Castings, 170
    Classification of, 152
    Clocks, 183
    Cloisonné, 203
    Cobalt, 201
    Coinage, 182
    Colouring, 176
    Copper, Prices of, 180
    Dealers and Merchants, 156
    Dependent Manufactures, 155
    Dipping, 176
    Doctor, or Bit, 175
    Drawing Through, 174
    Electric Lighting, 183
       ”        ”   Town Hall, 184
    Enfield-Martini Rifle, 174, 196
    Fire Clay, Stourbridge, 206
    Fish Hooks, 200
    Gas Holders, 180
    German Silver, 201
    Glass, Crown, 202
      ”    Flint, 186
      ”    Plate, 202
      ”    Sheet, 202
    Gold Cutting, 176
    Goods Traffic, 151
    Hydraulic Machinery, 187
    Hinges, 187
    Hollow Ware, 181
    Implements and Tools, 155
    Jewellery, 187
      Artistic Progress, 189
      Bullion used, 188
      Charges, 188
      Chemistry, 189
      Distribution, 190
      Labour and Wages, 188
      Mechanical Conditions, 189
      Precious Stones, 190
      Prices, 190
    Lacquering, 176
    Lapping, 176
    Lighthouse Apparatus, 191
    Locks, 193
    Magic Lantern Slide Painting, 193
    Martini-Henry Rifle, 196
    Matchets, 206
    Measuring Rules, 193
    Mercury Gilding, 206
    Military Arms, 194
    Mint, Birmingham, 183
    Monkey, or Spirit, 175
    Nails (cut), 199
    Needles, 200
    Nickel, 201
    Papier Mâché, 202
    Parasols, 210
    Pewter, 202
    Pins, 200
    Plate Duty (Table), 178
    Plated Wares, 203
    Press Tool Work, 172
    Processes, 156
    Refrigeration, 204
    Rifles, 194
    Rolling, 171
    Rolling Cross, 171
    Rope Making, 204
    Salt, 206
    Sand Blast, 176
    Scratch Brushing, 176
    Shaping, 173
    Soldering, 175
    Spinning, 174
    Spirit, or Monkey, 175
    Stamping, 172
    Steel Pen Trade, 205
    Swords, 206
    Tin Plate Ware, 206
        ”     (Waste), 208
    Tools, 208
    Tube Drawing, 171
    Tubes, Taper, 172
    Umbrellas, 210
    Watch Manufacture, 210
    Welding (Gas), 180
    Wire Drawing, 171
      ”  Mattresses, 179
      ”  (Steel), 212
      ”  Working, 211
      _Materials used_--
        Acids, 158
        Alloys, 170
        Bessemer Process, 169
        Button Lac, 168
        Carnubia Wax (Brazil), 168
        Carozo Nuts, 168
        Casting, 170
        Chemicals, 152, 159
        Chili Bars, 170
        Copper, 170
        Cow Hair, 168
        Cryolite, 167
        Dye Stuffs, 164
        Gums, 161
        Gum Animi, 168
         ”  Kourie, 168
        Istle, 168
        Kittool, 168
        Lard Oil, 168
        Lead, 170
        Leather and Fabrics, 162
        Lemon Peel, 168
        Metals, 157
        Metals and Alloys, 169
        Mica, 160, 168
        Nitrate of Soda, 167
        Oils, 161
        Ores, 156, 169
        Piassava, 168
        Pigments, 160
        Stones, 160
        Talc, 165
        Varnishes, 162
        Woods, 163

  Mason, Sir Josiah, 45

    Connection with Queen’s College Academic Board, 51
    Cost and Endowment, xviii.
    Liberty to vary Course of Instruction, 48
    Library, 52
    Non-theological and Non-political Character of, 48
    Objects, Foundation Deed, Trustees, 46
    Town Council represented on; Opening of, 50

  Magazines, 78, 79

  Mechanics Institute, 77

  Metallurgical Classes, 57

  Meteorological Observatory, 57

    Canon Kingsley’s Address: Formation of Classes in Laws of Health, 55
    Formation of Teachers’ Board, 58
    Government of, 53
    New Buildings of, 55
    Objects and Origin, 52
    Removal of School of Art; Expansion of Metallurgical Classes, 57
    Union of Teachers and Students, 56
    Voluntary Classes, 54

  Municipal School of Art, xviii., 61

  Murdock, W., 133, 141

  Music, 141

  Musical Festivals, 82, 142

  Newspapers, 79, 361

  Newman, Cardinal, 113, 133

  News Rooms, 68, 69

  Old Houses, 6, 118

  Orphanages, xvii., xix.

  Osler, A. F., 76

  Pamphlets, 78

  Painting, 127

  Parks & Recreation Grounds, xii.

  Philosophical Institutions, 76

  Picture Exhibitions, 76, 133

  Portraits, 133

  Post Office Growth, xv.

  Priestley, Dr., 66, 107, 140

  Prince Rupert’s Raid, 7

  Printers and Booksellers, 8

    Abolition of Religious Qualification, 42
    Charity Commissioners’ Scheme for, in 1867, 41
    Collegiate System, 40
    Connection with Mason College, 44
    Decay of, 41
    Foundation of, 37
    Original character of, 39
    Scholarships: Present condition of, 44
    Strict Church of England character of, 38
    Various Departments and Chairs, 42, 43

  Sanatorium, 90

  School of Art Building, xviii.
    Foundation and Progress, 61-63

  School Board Scholarships, 60

  School of Medicine, 77

  Sculpture, 135

  Society of Arts and Exhibitions, 76

  Soho Circle, 11

  Soho Works, 10

  Statues, 139

  Sunday Lectures, 358

  Technical School, 59

  Theatres, 362

  Town Council & Committees, 21

  Town Hall, 119

  Watt, James, 141

  Women’s Hospital, 92

  Wyatt, John, 9

    Birds, 275
      Accipitres, 275
      Alectorides, 280
      Anseres, 283
      Columbæ, 279
      Fulicariæ, 280
      Gallinæ, 279
      Gaviæ, 281
      Herodiones, 282
      Limicolæ, 280
      Odontoglossæ, 283
      Passeres, 276
      Picariæ, 279
      Pterocletes, 279
      Pygopodes, 282
      Steganopodes, 282
      Tubinares, 282
    Fishes, 285
      Abdominal Malacopterygii, 286
      Acanthopterygii, 286
      Apodal Malacopterygii, 288
      Chondropterygii, 289
      Subbrachial Malacopterygii, 288
    Insects, 293
    Introduction, 266
      Coleoptera, 294
      Lepidoptera, 301
    Mammals, 269
      Carnivora, 270
      Cheiroptera, 269
      Insectivora, 270
      Pachydermata, 273
      Rodentia, 271
      Ruminantia, 272
    Microscopic Fauna, 305
      Annelida, etc., 309
      Arachnida, 305
      Crustacea, 306
      Entomostraca, 306
      Hydrozoa, 309
      Infusoria, 309
      Insecta, 305
      Polyzoa, 307
      Rhizopoda, 310
      Rotifera, 307
      Spongida, 309
    Mollusca, 289
      Conchifera, 290
      Gasteropoda, 291
    Reptiles, 273
      Anoura, 274
      Ophidia, 274
      Sauria, 273
      Saurophidia, 273
      Urodela, 274

Printed by Hall and English, High Street, Birmingham




J. Bartholomew, Edinr.



*** End of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Handbook of Birmingham - Prepared for the Members of the British Association, 1886" ***

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