James Hill (1750 - 1809)
He was a baker and specifically a gingerbread baker !
James was born in 1750 although in what county, even which country, isn't yet known. It is believed he married Margaret sometime before 1793. This is because I found he had put an article in the local newspaper warning traders of his wife's indiscretions.
James' great great great granddaughter has a Horn Snuff Box which, on a silver ring around the top of the horn, has “James Hill Baker N.Shields 1793” engraved on it. This could be a birthday present or, perhaps more likely, an award on completing an apprenticeship. I have not discovered the significance of the badge on the top. The general consensus is that it is trade related and that the top most bit in between the two circles (that looks like a tower) is actually a windmill.
A windmill between two ears of corn suggest it might be baking related. However it has a crown as well ? I wondered whether there were any guilds which were bakery related and have sent an email to the Honorary Archivist at The Worshipful Company of Bakers to see if they know, but never received a response.
He must have reconciled his differences with his wife as their son, possibly only son, William Hill, was born in 1804 in North Shields, although I haven't found him on the Bishops Transcripts for Tynemouth ...... so can't confirm his mother was Margaret !
I have recently discovered that James died in North Shields, aged 59, on 28th February 1809 and was buried two days later. I am waiting to receive a copy of his Will which he drew up less than two weeks before his death. Hopefully this will provide further details about his life and relations.
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