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Wilkinson Watt & Co.

Details about Wilkinson Watt & Co.

George Noble Wilkinson and Hezekiah Orvis, trading under Wilkinson & Orvis, Shipbrokers. had shares in sailing vessels from 1856 all registered in Hartlepool.  The company went into liquidation in 1860. Other shareholders with George N. Wilkinson were: Thomas Bell; Henry Tonks (Easington Lane); John McDougal; Robert Henry Gill; Michael Watson; Benjamin Andrew (All of Hartlepool). Harrison Groves (Middlesbrough); Arthur James Thorman (London).

George Wilkinson went into partnership with James Watt in about 1864. A number of their vessels were registered at West Hartlepool and others at London where their offices were situated. During a commercial collapse the company went into liquidation in 1875. This probably came as no surprise as six of their sixteen or so ships were lost or wrecked within less than two years under their ownership.

George declared himself bankrupt again in 1879. He was in business as a Ship Owner, Ship and Insurance Broker and Commission Agent.

The ships listed under 'a general history' are those that were registered but not built at Hartlepool.

Family History:

George Noble Wilkinson was born on 30th December 1828 at Stockton-on-Tees to parents Robert and Mary Ann (nee Short) Wilkinson. Robert had died by 1841 and George was living at Hartlepool with his mother and siblings. He married Frances (Fanny) Bowes at Hartlepool in 1861. By 1871 the couple were living at Norton with their two daughters and two sons and by 1881 were living at Leytonstone, Essex with their five sons and four daughters.

In 1873 George was one of the directors of the Llangennech Collieries Company.

George died aged 54 on 18th December 1882 at Royal Lodge, Leytonstone, Essex leaving effects of £1,100 to his widow who was, by the time of probate, living at Roslyn Villa, Snaresbrook, Essex.

James Byres Watt was born at Fraserburgh, Scotland in c1838 to parents George and Mary. His father died in 1850. James married Elizabeth Shotton Perry in 1867 at Hartlepool. In 1871 the couple were living at Stranton, West Hartlepool and by 1881 they had moved to Surrey with their four sons and two daughters. One of their sons, George Laing Watt, followed in his father’s footsteps by becoming a steam ship broker.

James died at Reigate, Surrey aged 83 on 8th December 1920 leaving effects of £29,008.


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