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Anderson, John (1817–1892), warehouseman and department store owner, was born in Aberfeldy, Perthshire, the son of Peter Anderson, a carrier, and his wife, Margaret. His parents died when he was young, and Anderson became an apprentice draper in Perth. After failing to recover his savings of ...

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See Ashley [née Mountney], Laura

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Bainbridge, Emerson Muschamp (1817–1892), department store owner, was born on 25 August 1817 in Eastgate, Weardale, co. Durham, the youngest child in the family of two sons and five daughters of Cuthbert Bainbridge (1772–1850), a farmer, and his wife, Mary Muschamp (1774–1850), the youngest child of ...

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Barker, Sir John (1840–1914), department store owner, was born at Loose, Kent, on 6 April 1840, the son of Joseph Barker, a carpenter and brewer, and his wife, Ann Sells. He was educated privately and in 1853 began a three-year apprenticeship to a draper in ...

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Bedford, John (1903–1980), department store manager, was born on 16 January 1903 at 26 Court 6 New John Street, west Birmingham, the only son of John Bedford and his wife, Rosalind Nicholls. His father was a journeyman brass-caster who established his own small brass foundry, money from which was to be used to enable his son to enter the legal profession. Unfortunately, the business failed and his son was required to start work. He did so in a ...

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(Elizabeth) Ruth Naomi Belville (1854–1943) by Samuel A. Walker, c. 1890 [Image of Maria Belville, Ruth Belville's mother, who was also a ‘time lady’] National Maritime Museum, London

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Belville, (Elizabeth) Ruth Naomi (1854–1943), horologist and merchant, was born on 5 March 1854 at 9 Hyde Vale Cottages, Greenwich, Kent, the only child of Belville, John Henry (1795?–1856), horologist and assistant astronomer at the Royal Observatory, Greenwich, and his third wife, ...

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Bentall family (per. 1904–1993), department store owners, came to prominence with Leonard Hugh Bentall (1875–1942), who was born on 2 September 1875 at Holly Lodge, Orchard Road, Kingston upon Thames, Surrey, the second of the two sons and third of the four children of ...

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Brown, James Duff (1862–1914), librarian and compiler of music reference books, was born on 6 November 1862 at 3 Reid Terrace, Stockbridge, Edinburgh, the second of seven children of James Brown of St Fergus, Aberdeenshire, a bookkeeper, and his wife, Margaret Douglas of ...

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Burbidge family (per. c. 1870–1966), department store managers and directors, were managing directors and chairmen of Harrods from 1893 to 1959, through three generations. The first member of the family to enter the business was Sir Richard Burbidge first baronet (1847–1917)...

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Burton, Sir Montague Maurice [formerly Meshe David Osinsky] (1885–1952), clothing manufacturer and retailer, was born on 15 August 1885 in the town of Kurkel, Kovno province, Russia (now Lithuania), the only son of Chaim Judah Osinsky (b. 1825), bookseller, and his wife, ...

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Sir Montague Maurice Burton (1885–1952) by unknown photographer © reserved; Manchester University Press; photograph National Portrait Gallery, London