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  • Originally posted by Tina Tomkins View Post
    Hi Gary, Yes, that is correct. Tina
    Thanks, Tina. Do you know where in England they came from?

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    • Originally posted by Edward Stow View Post
      Unlike Gen'l Nathan Bedford Forrest I didn't git thar fustest with the mostest, and I only just noticed Gary's Hart reference showing their continued criminality.
      Doing a Jubal Early, I see.

      The Harts were indeed very dodgy meat salesman.

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      • Originally posted by Gary Barnett View Post
        Thanks, Tina. Do you know where in England they came from?
        My husband told me that the family came from Bristol. My father in law's first cousin, surname Tomkins had a Knackers Yard in Northampton. Two other first cousins, Will and Tom, surname, Beresford, had Knackers Yards in Bridgend and Cardiff. Their mother was a Tomkins.

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        • Originally posted by Tina Tomkins View Post
          My husband told me that the family came from Bristol. My father in law's first cousin, surname Tomkins had a Knackers Yard in Northampton. Two other first cousins, Will and Tom, surname, Beresford, had Knackers Yards in Bridgend and Cardiff. Their mother was a Tomkins.
          Ah, that’s interesting.

          The family of Henry Tomkins the witness originally came from Buckinghamshire, I believe. His father was born in Islington and got into the horse slaughtering game there after marrying Henry’s mother Sarah Carvell. It may be that if you trace the family back there may be a connection between them and the family from Bristol. There was also a knacker named John Tomkins who operated in Rugby in the 1920s/30s.

          Do you have any more info about the Beresfords in Northampton? In the 1920s my grandfather worked at a knacker’s yard in Huntingdonshire. My father was born in Keyston, Hunts, which was then in the registration district of Thrapston and Raunds, Northamptonshire.

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          • Originally posted by Gary Barnett View Post
            Ah, that’s interesting.

            The family of Henry Tomkins the witness originally came from Buckinghamshire, I believe. His father was born in Islington and got into the horse slaughtering game there after marrying Henry’s mother Sarah Carvell. It may be that if you trace the family back there may be a connection between them and the family from Bristol. There was also a knacker named John Tomkins who operated in Rugby in the 1920s/30s.

            Do you have any more info about the Beresfords in Northampton? In the 1920s my grandfather worked at a knacker’s yard in Huntingdonshire. My father was born in Keyston, Hunts, which was then in the registration district of Thrapston and Raunds, Northamptonshire.
            I see there’s also a Beresford connection to Wolverhampton. The dapper looking chap in my avatar photo (my 3xgreat grandfather, another knacker) was born in Bilston. There was a family of Wolverhampton knackers named Leech/Leach who opened a yard in Newton Heath, Manchester. One of their employees was a man named Nicholas Shipp(e)y. He came originally from Whitechapel where his father worked as a horse slaughterer. He spent some time in Bilston and Wolverhampton, but in 1881 he was living with Henry Tomkins in Newton Heath.

            It was a very small world. We have the Tomkins’s going from Islington to Manchester and then Whitechapel. Shipp(e)y from Whitechapel to Bilston, Wolverhampton and Manchester. And my family from Whitechapel to Bilston, Wolverhampton and then Islington.

            A lot of provincial horse flesh was sent to London. I know that both John Harrison (Islington) and William Barber (Whitechapel) had links to knackers outside London. And it seems the workforce also moved around a bit. In my family’s case, the knacker trail was:

            Whitechapel/Bilston/Wolverhampton/Bilston/Islington/ Bedfordshire/Dublin/Huntingdonshire/County Kildare.

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            • Originally posted by Gary Barnett View Post
              Ah, that’s interesting.

              The family of Henry Tomkins the witness originally came from Buckinghamshire, I believe. His father was born in Islington and got into the horse slaughtering game there after marrying Henry’s mother Sarah Carvell. It may be that if you trace the family back there may be a connection between them and the family from Bristol. There was also a knacker named John Tomkins who operated in Rugby in the 1920s/30s.

              Do you have any more info about the Beresfords in Northampton? In the 1920s my grandfather worked at a knacker’s yard in Huntingdonshire. My father was born in Keyston, Hunts, which was then in the registration district of Thrapston and Raunds, Northamptonshire.
              William Tomkins(my husband's grandfather, Llansamlet knacker's yard ) had a brother and a sister. His brother, John Tomkins was a knacker in Northampton. John's son William Tomkins was also a knacker in Northampton. The sister married Beresford who worked in the Llansamlet knacker's yard. Beresford went on to set up a knacker's yard in Bridgend and Cardiff.
              John's son, William Tomkins operated from a yard in Northampton itself but it's quite possible that John during his working life had premises elsewhere in the Northamptonshire area.

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              • Thanks to Howard for this tall tale involving fictional knackers called Melmoth Brothers:

                https://www.jtrforums.com/showthread.php?t=33941

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                • In Dublins Foul City...

                  I think this must have been the firm my grandfather and great grandfather worked for in Dublin:

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                  Its an real mystery to me why they moved from rural Bedfordshire to Dublin in 1911/12. What a time for a family of English knackers to relocate to Ireland.

                  The first address I can find for them in Dublin (1913 ER) is 1, Sweeneys Lane, Mill Street, well within sniffing distance of OKeefes. The pong was legendary, and many native Dubs claimed it helped them fight off infections.

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                  • Dublin

                    O’Keefe’s premises covered 5 acres between Newmarket Square and Mill Street in Dublin South, not far from the Guinness brewery. The smells from the two businesses used to intermingle.

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                    • Dublin

                      These old houses once stood in Sweeney’s Lane. They were built in a style that earned them the nickname ‘Dutch Billys’. There were apparently quite a few of them in Dublin at one time. Presumably the ‘Billy’ in question was William of Orange, the victor of the Battle of the Boyne.

                      Someone online has identified the house on the far right as no. 5, Sweeney’s Lane, which could mean the one on the left was no. 1. (Wishful thinking?)

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                      • From a gentleman named Terry Kavanagh....he located it behind an old sofa.

                        Terry had this to add, too....


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                        • Nice find!

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                          • Originally posted by Gary Barnett View Post
                            Nice find!
                            Looks like someone sawed one end off. Sacrilege!

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                            • Click image for larger version

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                              • Originally posted by Gary Barnett View Post

                                I read a press article recently where a couple of journalists visited Pinchin Street a day or so after the torso discovery. They first went to Leman Street police station and then via Cable Street and Backchurch Lane to Pinchin Street. They bumped into a local on the corner of Cable Street and Backchurch Lane 'where the cat's meat shop was'. If it was on the very corner, it must have been on the E corner as there was a pub on the W.

                                So it seems there may have been a cats meat shop just behind the arch where the torso was dumped (although I haven't confirmed that through censuses or directories yet - work in progress).
                                I think I may have found it.

                                I need to consult the Goad map for the SE corner of Backchurch Lane - the section between Cable Street and Pinchin Street.

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