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Early, Charles (1824–1912), blanket manufacturer, was born on 29 December 1824 at West End, Witney, Oxfordshire, the eighth child and youngest son in the family of four sons and five daughters of John Early (1783–1862), blanket maker, and his wife, Elizabeth (Betsy), née...

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Cyril Lord (1911–1984) by Ida Kar, 1950s © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Lord, Cyril (1911–1984), carpet manufacturer, was born on 12 July 1911 at 129 Moorside Street, Droylsden, Manchester, the son of Richard Lund Lord and his wife, Kate, née Hackney. His family had impeccable textile connections linking Macclesfield and Saddleworth hand-loom weavers, and his was a Wesleyan Methodist upbringing within a close mill community. In later life he rebelled against many of his early associations, was educated at the central school in ...

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Mather, Joseph (1737–1804), file cutter and songwriter, was born either at Chelmorton, Derbyshire, or in Cack Alley, Sheffield. Nothing is known of his parentage or early life but after serving an eight-year apprenticeship (1751–9) Mather became a journeyman file cutter (otherwise known as file hewer) in the ...