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Two Warburton Tokens

This artefact was first described in Issue 15 of The Button Files.

Martin Warburton is a collector of tokens and he sent me the following photographs of two in his possession that have Warburton references.

The larger token is on a smoothed George II/III halfpenny and is an engraved love token. If contemporary, it is 18th century. I have no idea who Ann and William of Manchester are but if anyone has a clue please let me know. In fact my own 3x great grandparents were William and Ann, and they married at Manchester Cathedral in 1796, though I have no evidence they lived in Manchester for any time and they spent most of their lives in Bowdon and Hale in Cheshire, where they originally came from.

The smaller token is an ‘unofficial farthing’ – one of many advertising pieces produced in the mid-19th century. A search of the censuses reveals only one possible J Warburton living in Macclesfield. In 1851 a John Warburton is described as a grocer aged 25 and born in Altrincham. This may be the son of John and Susan(nah) born on March 13th 1825 and baptised at Hale Chapel. John, a grocer, son of John, married Alice Clegg in Oldham on July 11th 1850. The John in Macclesfield in 1851 is married to Alice from Oldham. Unfortunately I can find neither John nor Alice in subsequent censuses so it is possible they emigrated.

Potters’ Signatures and Seal

This artefact was first described in Issue 16 of The Button Files.

Above is a photo of three Warburton signatures and seals on a 1751 vellum agreement betwixt a consortium of iconic Staffordshire potters who were sourcing Devon ball clay. It was sent to me by Audrey Fussell. The Clay was shipped from Devon to Liverpool, and then, via the River Weaver and packhorse, to Burslem. Other signatories include famous potters such as Thomas Wheildon.

Alfred Warburton’s Medals

The following photo shows RSM Alfred Ernest Warburton and his medals. It first appeared in Issue 16 of The Button Files.

I was sent the photo by Violet Symes who married Alfred’s son John.

Alfred was the son of Ernest Warburton, born 7th March 1882, who was a well known golf professional. I was aware that Ernest, and his older brother William were golf professionals in Lincolnshire as they are a branch of my own Hale Barns clan, but I didn’t know the story of Ernest and his family.

Ernest was the youngest of 10 children (8 boys and 2 girls) born to John Warburton and Martha Fletcher in Dunham, Cheshire. In turn John’s grandfather is also my 3x great grandfather William (1775-1862).

Ernest moved to Germany before WW1 and married a German lady named Adele Luise Rossins  They had 3 children, Alfred Ernest, Gerda, and Nora. Ernest built golf courses, and was a member of Kiel Golf Club.

In 1914 on the outbreak of WW1 Ernest was interned in Rhuleben internment camp, barrack No 2, where he spent the war interned with other British nationals.

After the war Ernest and his family returned to England. Ernest died on 31st July 19355 and was buried in St Mark, Dunham Massey. His widow Adele, and their daughter Gerda, an invalid, were still living in Sinderland Green, which is part of Dunham, Cheshire, in the 1939 register.  

Alfred was 12 yrs old when the family returned to Cheshire. He joined the Grenadier Guards in 1926, serving for 30 years and becoming a Regimental Sergeant Major. He was one of the guards of the coffin of King George 5th at his Lying-in-state. He married Olive Steele in 1930 in London, and their son John was born in March 1934. Olive and John are living with Olive’s parents in Hampshire in the 1939 register but I haven’t found an entry for Alfred.

Olive died in 1967, and in 1968 Ernest and John went to live in Adelaide, Australia, Ernest met and married his second wife, Phyllis Grant a niece of Lionel Logue, famous as the man who cured George 6th of his stutter.

Violet Symes, who sent me the photo and told this story married John on 26th September 1968 in Adelaide. They returned to England in 1969, and had a son in 1972 before John left Violet in 1973 and subsequently remarried. John died in 2004 having had no more children. Violet’s son now lives in Queensland.