HORATIO BRIGHT c1828 - 1906

"a remarkable figure of his day in the second half of the last (nineteenth) century"

A contemporary bust showing Horatio Bright in his prime.

In the 1861 Census for Spring Hill, there was the following family listed as living in the same row of houses as I now live

Name Relation Age Occupation Birthplace
BRIGHT Horatio Head 33 Agent (Stone, Oil, Wine) Buxton, Derbyshire
BRIGHT Mary Alice Wife 30   Sheffield Yorkshire
BRIGHT Sam Sykes Turton Son 7   Leeds Yorkshire
PHELAN Mary Servant 38   Waterford City Ireland

At the time of the Census, Horatio and Mary had been married for nearly twelve years (GRO Reference September 1849 Lambeth Volume 4 Page 270). In March 2008 I found a notice of the marriage in the Derbyshire Mercury dated 3th October 1849

"On Thursday, the 27th ult. (September 1849) at St Mathews, Brixton by the Rev. M Vaughan, D.C.L., Horatio, the second son of Mr. Selim Bright, of Buxton Derbyshire to Mary Ann, second daughter of Mr. Thomas Burdett Turton, of West Lodge, Sheffield" 

It is also the first time that I have found a reference for Horatio and Mary Ann. The second reference was in the London Gazette dated 21st April 1861. in the section that deals with bankruptcies and insolvency - In the section marked "INSOLVENT PETITIONERS" and dated Tuesday 16th April there is an entry for a "H.Bright, Spring Hill, Sheffield - auctioneer". Both creditors and debtors can initiate an insolvency petition but the entry states quite clearly that Horatio is an "insolvent petitioner" and so I can only assume that the debt must have accrued roughly at the time Horatio moved into Spring Hill. He gives his occupation as an "agent in stone, oil and wine" in the 1861 Census which was taken on the night of Sun/Mon. 7/8th April 1861 and the petition presented 9 days later states "auctioneer." It would be interesting to ascertain the reasons for the petition but as subsequent events will show it did not appear to hinder his business career  

I checked the earlier 1851 census  and found Horatio and Mary living at 22 Broom Grove, Sheffield (HO/107 2337(6). The image was not very clear but there is no doubt that Horatio is listed as a 23 year old wine merchant. Staying at the house was a German visitor  who is also listed a a wine merchant.

By the time of the 1871 census, the Bright family had moved to 8 Townend Street, Crookes, Sheffield which is about 1/4 mile from Spring Hill. The road still exists as it bisects Springvale Road and continues uphill until it meets Slinn Street. Unfortunately the numbering of the road has changed since 1871 and so I cannot give an exact location of the Bright's house  

Name Relation Age Occupation Birthplace
BRIGHT Horatio Head 43 Steel Traveller Buxton, Derbyshire
BRIGHT Mary Alice Wife 40   Sheffield Yorkshire
BRIGHT Sam Sykes Turton Son 17 Warehouseman Leeds Yorkshire
Sarah Cocker Servant 35   Ecclesfield Yorkshire
Thomas Dudding* Servant 16 Coachman Gainsborough, Lincolnshire, England 

*His coachman became a Lance Corporal in the Royal Marines (Portsea, Hampshire 1881 Census)

HORATIO BRIGHT was found ten years later in 1881 living at Lydgate Hall, Lydgate Lane, Crookes, Sheffield (FHLM 1342119 PRO ref RG11/4634/92Page20). But three years before that i 1878 the following notice appeared in Lloyd's Weekly Newspaper (London, England), Sunday, February 17, 1878; Issue 1839


The Birmingham Daily Post (Birmingham, England), Thursday, February 14, 1878; Issue 6116 also reported the case and added for good measure that Horatio had sent Mr Mathews a postcard that contained "gross language"

Needless to say I would be fascinated to find out the causes of the dispute, and also the nature of the "gross language" Horatio used but I think that will be very difficult if not impossible to obtain. 

1881 Census

Name Relation Status Age Birthplace Occupation
Horatio BRIGHT Head M 53 Buxton, Derbyshire Steel Manufacturer
Mary A BRIGHT Wife M 50 Sheffield Yorkshire  
Sarah ROBERTS Servant U 23 Sheffield Yorkshire Servant Domestic
Mary NETTLESHIP Servant U 32 Blythe (Ntfd) Servant Domestic

Photo Brett Payne & courtesy of David Simkin

Photo reproduced with the kind permission of Brett Payne.

The above "Carte de Visite" is described by Brett Payne on his excellent website "Derbyshire Photographer Profiles" as ""Mr. H. Bright" inscribed faintly in pencil on reverse.  It is possible that this is a photo of Horatio Bright (c1827-1905) a Sheffield steel manufacturer who was staying at the Palace Hotel, Fairfield, Derbyshire in April 1881. He is listed twice in the Census, once at Lydgate Hall and once at the Palace Hotel

The 1891 Census still has the family at Lydgate Hall, Crookes. Apart from the error with regard to his place of birth, the most noticeable change in Horatio's circumstances is that he has in effect retired from business. This may be due to the fact that both his wife and his only son Sam died soon after the census was taken. It is believed that Sam had tuberculosis which may certainly have coloured Horatio's decision.   

Name Relation Status Age Birthplace Occupation
Horatio BRIGHT Head M 63 Sheffield Yorkshire (?) Living On Own Means
Mary A BRIGHT Wife M 60 Sheffield Yorkshire  
Mary M BRIGHT Grand-daughter F 12 Sheffield Yorkshire Scholar
Sabra Booth Servant F 68 Barnsley Yorkshire Cook
Mary Clinton Servant F 28 Wickersley Yorkshire Housemaid
Elizabeth Moat Servant F 24 Hadfield Yorkshire Housemaid
Ada ......... Servant F 26 Braithwaite Yorksshire Maid

Incidentally, attached to the entry for5 Lydgate Hall is one for the Lodge which is occupied by Horatio's 38 year old coachman and  groom Christopher Carlton, his wife Clara who his nine years younger than him, and his 8 year old son Percy

The final access to a Census I have for Horatio is the one taken in 1901 (RG13/4351 Folio 104Page 15),still living at Lydgate Hall except that this time he is with his "second" Family

Name Relation Status Age Birthplace Occupation
Horatio BRIGHT Head M 73 Sheffield Yorkshire (?) Living On Own Means
Clara M BRIGHT Wife M 30 Sunnderland  
Horatio H BRIGHT Son M 2 Sheffield Yorkshire  
Mary A BRIGHT Daughter F 4 Sheffield Yorkshire  
Alice BRIGHT Daughter F 20 Sheffield Yorkshire  
M Lamb Servant - widow F 66 Doncaster Yorkshire Domestic servant
Martha Croft Servant F 26 Duddington Northants Domestic servant
Emily Norwood Servant F 31 Saltfleet Lincolnshire Domestic servant
Ada Foggin Servant F 21 Sheffield Yorkshire Domestic servant
May Ambrose Servant F 19 Sheffield Yorkshire Domestic servant


Horatio's son SAM is also listed in the 1881 Census. Born in Leeds in 1853, Samuel was married in St Georges Church, Hanover Square, London on 4th April 1878 (GRO reference June 1878 St Georges Hanover Square Volume 1a Page 586) to the fourth daughter of the late PATRICK CORRI. His wife JOSEPHINE MAUDE originated from London (GRO reference September 1858 Shoreditch Vol 1c Page 174) and at 22 years of age, was five years younger than Sam. She was an actress by profession (she played Bo-peep in the Theatre Royal Pantomime) and it was said that the marriage led to strained relations between Horatio and his only son. But despite the disapproval, Samuel and Josephine soon started a family after the marriage. The 1881 Census shows two young daughters MARY (2) and ALICE (9 months). It seems as though their Christian names were derived from his mother. The family lived at 10 Newbould Lane in the Broomhill district of Sheffield. (FHLM 1342119 PRO ref RG11/4633/146Page37). Sam's occupation is given as Silver Plate Manufacturer (White metal).

I could find no trace of Samuel in the 1901 Census but that is not surprising because ten years earlier in 1891, his death appeared in The Times.

"On the 2nd inst, (September) at Lydgate Hall, SAM S T BRIGHT, the dearly-beloved and only child of Horatio and Mary Alice Bright, in his 38th year"

It must have been a tragic loss for the family. I am relatively sure that Sam died of tuberculosis. I did manage to locate the following notice in The Belfast News-Letter (Belfast, Ireland), Friday, November 6, 1891; Issue 23819

Sam's widow JOSEPHINE did marry again. There is a record in the BMD indexes that show that in the December quarter of 1895, JOSEPHINE married an ALBERT WILLIAM BUSH (GRO Reference Sheffield Volume 9c Page 526). By 1901, Albert and Josephine had two daughters - the census for that year shows the family living at 59 Cobden View Road, Crookes, Sheffield. (PRO ref RG13/44339Folio61page 13) 

Name Relation Age Birthplace Occupation
Albert W Bush Head 28 Sheffield Yorkshire Manafacturer's Clerk
Josephine Bush Wife 42 Sheffield Yorkshire  
Charles Bright Stepson 19 Sheffield Yorkshire White Silver Chaser
Violet Bright Stepdaughter 17 Sheffield Yorkshire  
Margaret Bright Stepdaughter 15 Sheffield Yorkshire  
Sam Bright Stepson 9 Sheffield Yorkshire  
Elsie Bush Daughter 4 Sheffield Yorkshire  
Audrey Bush Daughter 2 Sheffield Yorkshire  

HORATIO BRIGHT c1828 - 1906 PART 2


Albert was the younger son of William Bush, a well known Sheffield Auctioneer and Valuer. Here are the details of the Bush family in 1881

Source Information: Dwelling 27 Ashdell Road, Census Place Ecclesall Bierlow, York, England
Family History Library Film 1342119 Public Records Office Reference RG11 Piece / Folio 4634 / 37 Page Number 11

Name Relation Marital Status Gender Age Birthplace Occupation Disability
William BUSH Head M Male 54 Sheffield, York, England Auctioneer & Valuer
Eliza BUSH Wife M Female 45 Sheffield, York, England
George J. BUSH Son U Male 22 Sheffield, York, England Auctioneer & Valuer
Joseph H. BUSH Son U Male 20 Sheffield, York, England Banners Clerk
Florence M. BUSH Daur Female 18 Sheffield, York, England
Frank S. BUSH Son Male 14 Sheffield, York, England Scholar
Kate M. BUSH Daur Female 13 Sheffield, York, England
Lizzie B. BUSH Daur Female 11 Sheffield, York, England Scholar
Albert W. BUSH Son Male 9 Sheffield, York, England Scholar
Matthew E. BUSH Son Male 7 Sheffield, York, England Scholar
Alfred B. BUSH Son Male 6 Sheffield, York, England Scholar
Mary A. HICKS Serv U Female 23 Wath, York, England Cook (Dom Serv)
Evelina WELLS Serv U Female 21 Epworth, Lincoln, England Housemaid (Dom Serv)


UK Census

Lloyd's Weekly Newspaper (London, England), Sunday, February 17, 1878; Issue 1839

The Birmingham Daily Post (Birmingham, England), Thursday, February 14, 1878; Issue 6116

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This page was last updated on 02/04/18 10:02