Birks “Tobacco Pipe”

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Birks (“Tobacco Pipe” mark)
(Updated, 2018May, December (Total revise of the article),
2019Jan)
Please first read:
Background information about the Cutlers’ Company, Freedom, marks…
(This article has information which makes certain things more clear)
Old Style (O.S.) and New Style (N.S.) are terms sometimes used with dates to indicate that the calendar
convention used at the time described is different from that in use at the time the document was being written.
… change the start of the year from Lady Day (25 March) to 1 January; In England and WalesIreland, and the
British colonies, the change to the start of the year and the changeover from the Julian calendar occurred in
1752 under the Calendar (New Style) Act 1750 (“Old Style and New Style dates”, Wikipedia).
This means for example, if someone would be born 1733, Jan (Old Style),
in the New Style this would be 1734, Jan. Or, in Old Style it was possible for a mother to have a child
for example 1733 March 1 and 1733 April 1, in New Style this would be 1733 April 1 and 1734 March 1!
In the article I’ve conversed the dates in New Style
(with the original date in Old Style – O.S. between brackets),
thank you!

 “BIRKS

One of the most famous razor marks of the “Birks” family is the “Tobacco Pipe” mark:

Birks William and John,(2) Birks William, Jr.?

The “Birks” family had different other marks as well, together with a vast history!
1682 Birks William > Rodgers? 1720, Birks Henry Birks William & son,(2) Birks William, Sr.? Birks William & son,(3) Birks William Jr.? Birks William and John,(2) Birks William, Jr.? Birks William and John,(3) Birks John?



First of all, this article wasn’t possible without the help from
“Mick” (mrfordy, Ancestry & Findmypast), especially because he
brought out a very important key point, 
being that William (Jr.)
was the son of Henry, thank you very much for all your work!


The history of the “Tobacco Pipe” mark began with a certain “Jonathan Birks

Here are some facts:

  • The “Tobacco-pipe” mark was originally assigned, 1694,
    to “Jonathan Birks” 
    (1414¹).
  • Looking on sheffieldrecordsonline.org.uk and freepages.history.rootsweb.ancestry.com (“Birks”), that would be Jonathan BIRKS” (1686, F1694)
    Master Cutler 1714
    , son of “William BIRKS”, Dawroyd, yeoman.
    Jonathan was apprenticed to “Samuel Smith”, cutler, probably born around 1673
  • Jonathan Birks F1694” used the ‘(Tobacco) PIPEmark
    (“Dr Joan Unwin” (Archivist of “The Company of Cutlers in Hallamshire”) (13))

This ‘Tobacco Pipe‘ mark mustn’t be confused with the

Tobacco-pipe, with a dart in line with the pipe at the end“,
granted in 1698 to one “Bradshaw“.

1694, Jonathan Birks,
(1414¹)


The ‘Tobacco Pipemark was further used by “John Birks” F1726
(“Dr Joan Unwin” (13))

When looking at sheffieldrecordsonline.org.uk and freepages.history.rootsweb.ancestry.com (“Birks”),
John was clearly the son of Jonathan:

  • John BIRKS (F1726), son of “Jonathan BIRKS“, cutler, to “Father”

Considering the date of Freedom John most probably would have been born
around 1705, which is confirmed by searching on www.findmypast.co.uk:

Borthwick Institute for Archives, Yorkshire, Bishop’s Transcripts Of Baptisms, John Birks, Baptism place: Sheffield;

17 May 1705, John, son of Jonathan Birks, Cutler of Sheffield
1705 May 17 John (=Johannes) son of Jonathan Birks Razor Maker 1b
(www.findmypast.co.uk)

John is also named as the latinised equivalent Johanes!

Sheffield Archives & Local Studies, Yorkshire Baptisms, Sheffield, Cathedral Church of St Peter & St Paul:

17 May 1705, John son of Jonathan Birks Razor maker:
1705 May 17 Johannes (=John) son of Jonathan Birks Razor Maker 1b
(search.findmypast.co.uk)

At the moment nothing found about marriage or children…

There is a John Birks, Sheffield, who married (1722 May 26) Mary Hawley, but he was too young to be our John,
and was a filecutter… (findmypast)

John Birks died in 1747 Mar 17 (1746 O.S.)
1746 Mar 17 Death John Birks 1b
(findmypastsearch.findmypast.co.uk)
No mention of occupation was noted but look at following Will of John Birks:

(Update ’19, Jan)

John Birks of Sheffield … Razor : Smith … last Will & Testament …

  • brother Jonathan Birks
  • sister Ruth Arnott
  • sisters Sarah and Ann Birks
  • mother Sarah Birks (sole Executrix of Will & Testament)

March 1747 (1746 O.S.)
1747-'48 will john birks 1a2
1748 (1747 O.S.) Jan 27, John Birks late of Sheffield RazorSmith Deceased1747-'48 will john birks 1a3
1748 (1747 O.S.) Feb 3 …  Sarah Birks … Widow
… Executrix of Will & Testament of John Birks late of Sheffield1747-'48 will john birks 1a4
1748 (1747 O.S.) Feb 27, John Birks late of Sheffield Deceased
… to Sarah Birks Widow
1747-'48 will john birks 1a1

This is indeed John Birks of Sheffield, Razor smith who died 1747 (1746 O.S.) March,
and had a brother Jonathan Birks, sister Ruth Arnott, sisters Sarah and Ann Birks. His mother Sarah Birks was sole Executrix of his Will & Testament.
She was widow 1748 (1747 O.S.) Feb 3, even earlier, since in 1747 (1746 O.S.) March,
there was no mentioning of the father of John, only his mother.

→ See “Further insights”


Thereafter the “Tobacco Pipe” mark ends up with a “William Birks” (F1748)
(“Dr Joan Unwin” (Archivist of “The Company of Cutlers in Hallamshire”) (13))

Considering the date of Freedom William would most probably been born around 1727

(Since, usually, Freedom could be granted at the age of 21years (or later)
Background information about the Cutlers’ Company, Freedom, marks…)

Also:

Since “William Birks (Sr.)” (Master Cutler, 1766), of the company
Birks William and Son” (with “Tobacco Pipe” mark → see further),
Norfolkstreet, died in 1783, aged 55 (7810), thereby born in 1727-’28,
he was granted his Freedom in 1748-’49, or later

Put these 2 together and we haveWilliam Birks (Sr.)” (Master Cutler, 1766)
who was granted his Freedom in 1748, using the “Tobacco Pipe” mark since then.

Initially I thought “William Birks” (F1748) would have been be a
son of “John Birks” (F1726). There is no record of a “William Birks”,
son of “John Birks”, cutler, born around 1727-’28 though…

Very interesting is following document (thank you “Mick” (mrfordy)!):

Sheffield Archives & Local Studies, Yorkshire Baptisms, Sheffield, Cathedral Church of St Peter & St Paul:

20 Sep 1727, William, son of Henry Birks, Cutler
1727 Sep 20 Wm son of Henry Birks cutler 2b
(search.findmypast.co.uk)

This is our guy! OK, so who was William’s father, “Henry Birks“?


Henry BIRKS” F1720
1720, Birks Henry

“With many thanks to “Dr Joan Unwin, Archivist,
The Company of Cutlers in Hallamshire”

“Henry Birks, listed as a cutler, in 1720” (13Birks, Henry, listed as a cutler, in 1720 kopie


“Henry Birks” married 1721/Apr/10 “Faith Kitchin” (1696–1757)

Borthwick Institute for Archives, Sheffield, Parish Marriages

“1721 Apr 10, Hen: Birks cutler & Faith Kithchin (Kitchen) spinster”
1721 Apr 10, Hen Birks marr Faith Kitchen 3b
(search.findmypast.co.uk, Sheffield)

Not surprisingly, “Henry Birks” had 2 apprentices named “Kitchen” (“Kitchin”)

Kitchen John, son of William; to Birks Henry, cutler; 8, 1737
Kitchen Edward, son of Timothy, Misterton, … to Birks Henry, cutler; 7-9, 1752

Kitchen Eward & John
(Hallamshire cutlers, Eric Youle)

Timothy and William Kitchen were the brothers of Faith Kitchen (Kitchin)

A couple of razors, made by “Henry Birks, F1720”
(all have the typical “Dip-at-toe” feature “Dip-at-toe” 18th century):

Henry Birks razors 1aHenry Birks razors 1b
(ilrasoio.com)


Henry Birks 2a1Henry Birks 2a2Henry Birks 2a3


(Private collection)DSCN1501 2.JPGDSCN1502DSCN1506
(“Birks” is very clearly visible, “Henry” is not clear though, could be “HEN:”)


(Private collection)
DSCN2192DSCN2027.JPGDSCN2194

Looking at the information on sheffieldrecordsonline.org.uk and freepages.history.rootsweb.ancestry.com (“Birks”), a few things can be seen:

  • Henry BIRKS” (8 ½, 1710, 40s. premium, F1720), son ofEdward BIRKS“,
    Wentworth, corviser/cordwainer (deceased), apprenticed to
    “James BARNES”, cutler. (Actually it was 1711 Feb 24)

    Feb 24 James Barnes of Westbar, Sheffield (Master);
    Hen/ (Henry) Son of Ed (Edward) Birkes late of Wentworth, Corvisor, deceased (Apprentice);
    8 Years 5 Months from Date (24 Feb)1711 Feb 24 IR-1-41_3 p48 Hen son of Ed Birkes 1b(www.ancestry.co.uksearch.ancestry.co.ukwww.findmypast.co.uk)

    Since usually Freedom was granted at the minimum age of
    21years, it is highly plausible that Henry was born in 1698
    and that Henry Birks (F1720) was in fact:
    “Henry BIRKES” °14 07 1698, son of Edward, Wentworth
    “July 14th Henery (Henry) Son of Edward Birks” (Wentworth)
    1698 PR Birkes Henery son of Edward bap 1b(genuki.org.uk/WentworthBaptisms1690-1699)

  • Since of the last apprentices of “Henry BIRKS” was Edward Kitchen,
    apprenticed for 7-9 years, starting from 1752, it seems a bit strange that
    the following death announcement would relate to Henry Birks (F1720):

1752 Nov 01, Burial Henry Birks, Sheffield
1752 Nov 01 Death Henry Birks 1b
(search.findmypast.co.uk)

  • This document shows the burial of Elizabeth 1753/May/08 daughter of Faith Birks.
    Since Faith Birks is without a doubt the wife of Henry Birks and Henry Birks isn’t mentioned, Henry must have died, leaving Faith as widow.
    1753 May 08 Elizabeth burial daughter of Faith Birks 1b
    (Eliz Daughter of Faith Birks, search.findmypast.co.uk)
  • So, the fact that Henry Birks (F1720) passed away in 1752, together with other
    things, as style of his razors, data of last apprentices, … leads to the age of the
    razors made by “Henry Birks F1720” being between 1720-1752!

Going further, as mentioned, William (°20 Sep 1727) was the son of Henry Birks, Cutler
1727 Sep 20 Wm son of Henry Birks cutler 2b(search.findmypast.co.uk)

William married Ann Spencer, 1746/June/18
1746 Jun 18 William Birks & Ann Spencer 1b
(www.findmypast.co.uk)

I couldn’t find any documents regarding the apprenticeship of William (°1727, F1748).

Since his apprenticeship would have started around 1740-’41, and the
Country Registers” (Not the “City (Town) Registers“) seem to miss
records of 1731-1741, this could be a reasonable explanation why
I couldn’t find anything…

Perhaps William was an apprentice of “John Birks” since he took the
“Tobacco-pipe” as his trademark…

(Update ’19, Jan)

Or maybe it went as follows:
After the death of John Birks in 1747, John’s brother Jonathan died in 1748,
possibly leaving no-one to take the “Tobacco” mark… Maybe Sarah Birks, the
mother of John and sole executrix of his Will & Testament, arranged the mark
to go to William Birks, son of Henry, when he was granted his Freedom in 1748…

The following Trade-Card, made around 1750, describes
the “Tobacco Pipe” mark, owned by “William Birks” (Sr.);

1750 (c.) Birks William, Sheffield 1750 (c.) 1a1750 (c.) Birks William, Sheffield 1750 (c.) 1a1
(britishmuseum.org)

“William Birks Razor Maker in Sheffield”
“The only Proprietor of the Tobacco Pipe (mark)”
“Acquaints all Merchants, Tradesmen & Dealers in the Manufactory of Sheffield (that by the Laws of the said Corporation, founded on an express Act of Parliament, every Freeman is to mark his Goods or Ware with the Mark assigned him by the said Corporation, & not counterfeit or copy any other Persons Mark) several Persons making Razors with the Tobacco Pipe and several other Additions, have contrived to make the Additions scarce visible and the Tobacco Pipe deep & plain, in order to counterfeit the Tobacco Pipe only; a Mark that by the Skill & Care of the Owner, has been in general Esteem for upwards of 50 Years; whereby the present Proprietor is very much injured, & the fair Trader imposed upon; to prevent which the Purchasers are desired to inspect & see that they are mark’d with the Tobacco Pipe only, which only will be warranted to be good. To prevent Persons being impos’d upon, this Mark will always be struck Black.
NB. All sorts of Shagreen Razor Cases, compleatly fitted up for Travelling Gentlemen”

 (I’m not sure, but it is possible that by “several Persons making Razors with the Tobacco Pipe and
several other Additions
“, “William Birks” is referring to “Lindley” or possibly others, 14, 14¹, 16,
Later, in 1773 a “John Hartley” was fined £6 for stamping another cutler’s mark on his knives
→ “CCA, D111, the accounts of William Birks and the accounts of George Brittain” (17))

“William Birks, Razor Maker in Sheffield”
“The only Proprietor of the Tobacco Pipe (mark)”
… a Mark that by the Skill & Care of the Owner,
has been in general Esteem for upwards of 50 Years
 “

indicates a direct connection between “William Birks (Sr.)” (F1748, MC 1766, †1783),
to the original owner, 50 years earlier, which brings us, without a doubt, directly
to “Jonathan Birks F1694“, the first owner of the “Tobacco Pipemark, which then
went to the son of “Jonathan Birks“, “John/Johanes BIRKS” (F1726).

Possibly the father of William, “Henry BIRKS” (F1720), would have been a brother
or nephew of “John BIRKS” (F1726), but that is just a guess & not sure at all!

How the “Tobacco Pipe” mark ended up from “John BIRKS” (F1726)
to William Birks (Sr.)” (F1748) is not certain

Probably the mark was surrendered after John died (abt 1746).
Possibly John left his mark (Tobacco-Pipe) in his Will to William Birks,
who used it since 1748.


Let’s take this another step further;

“Sketchley’s Directory of Sheffield”, 1774
(Birks William and Son, (razor) & Pen-knife Cutlers at Norfolk Street)
Birks William & son, Norfolkstreet


“Gales & Martin” Sheffield Directory”, 1787
“Birks William and John (Razor Makers), Norfolkstreet
Birks William and John, Norfolk-street

Also, in the same 1787 directory:
“A general alphabetical list of the principal Tradesmen and Inhabitants of Sheffield”:
“Birks William, and John, cutlers, UNION STREET
Birks William & John, Union Street 1b.jpg

Birks William (Jr.)” and “John” were razor makers at Norfolkstreet, Sheffield.
Their father was “William Birks (Sr.)“, MC (Master Cutler) 1766 (7).


Assignment of a mortgaged term“;
Elizabeth Withers, of Sheffield, widow of Benjamin Withers, late of the same,
cutler, decd., (Elizabeth née Houlton), William Birks, of the same, cutler
1 May 1771(12)

William Birks (Sr.)and later also his sonBirks William (Jr.)” were also
involved in the silversmith trade, producing for example silver knife handles;

  • 1771, “William Hancock & John Rowbotham & Co“, a silver plating company
    which included … “William Birks” …
  • 1773, whilst still partners in the above firm, “William Birks & Co.” was founded, with “William Birks“, “Benjamin Withers” & “John & Dinis (Dennis) Sykes”
  • The partnership “William Birks & Co.“, silver plated cutlers,
    continued until 25th December 17801781 Feb 17 William Birks. The London Gazette Iss 12163 p3
    (William Birks. The London Gazette 17 February 1781 Iss 12163 p3, mrfordy)
  • 1781, following the dissolution of the partnership of “William Birks & Co.“,
    William Birks Sr.” was in partnership with his son (“William Birks Jr.“)
    at Norfolk Street.
  • It is significant that in his will of 1779 Birks gave his occupation as cutler. He died
    in March 1783 when his stock in trade was left to his two sonsWilliam and John.
    (8, 1011)
  • The book “Sheffield plate, its history, manufacture and art (p.285)” shows:
    “Birks, W. and J., Norfolk St. (Earliest Mention) 1787, Plated Table Knives”:
    1787 Sheffield plate, its history, manufacture and art; with makers' names and marks, also a note on foreign Sheffield plate, with illustrations 1a1787 Sheffield plate, its history, manufacture and art; with makers' names and marks, also a note on foreign Sheffield plate, with illustrations 1b


Concluded
,
William Birks (Sr.) and Son“, Silver Plate workers, Norfolk Street, 1781,
which became “William Birks (Jr.) and John“,
are one and the same as:
William Birks (Sr.) and Son“, razor makers & Penknife Cutlers, Norfolk Street
(“Sketchley’s” 1774 with “Pipe” mark)
which became “William Birks (Jr.) and John” (“Gales & Martin” 1787, “Pipe” mark)


Searching freepages.history.rootsweb.ancestry.com
& sheffieldrecordsonline.org.uk, and comparing different possibilities,
for me it is an extra confirmation that the two sons of “William (Sr.) Birks were:

  • “William BIRKS” (F1774/F1783), son of “William BIRKS“, cutler, to “Father”
    1774 william birks apprenticeship free 1a
    1783f william, son of william
    William °1753 Jan 29, son of William, Sheffield (www.findmypast.co.uk)
    1753 Jan 29 William son of William Birks bap BT 1a
    (England, Select Births and Christenings, 1538-1975, ancestry.co.uk/family-tree)
  • “John BIRKS” (F1786), son of “William BIRKS“, cutler, to “Father”
    1786f john, son of william
    John °1760 Jun 09, son of William Birks Cutler, Sheffield
    1760 Jun 09 John son of William Birks cutler 1b
    (search.findmypast.co.uk)

In “Sketchley’s Directory of Sheffield”, 1774, it was:

Birks William (“William Birks Sr.“)
and Son (“William Birks Jr.” (F1774/F1783)),
(Razor Makers) and Penknife Cutlers, Norfolkstreet); Birks William & son, Norfolkstreet

Why?

Well, since “William’s (Sr.)” other son, John, was granted his Freedom in
1786, the latter couldn’t have taken part of the company in 1774; hence,
Birks William and Son” were “William Birks (Sr.)” MC1766 (7) and
William Birks (Jr.)F1774/F1783, MC1795 (7), and not “John Birks” F1786.

After “William Birks (Jr.)F1774/F1783 was granted his first Freedom in 1774,
he could be a “Freeman”. This means, he would have a “(trade)mark” of his
own, and could set up his own firm. He would be “Free” to make & sell his own
products. ‘LANGRES‘ would therefore be used by “William Birks (Jr.) F1774/F1783
(assigned on his first granted Freedom in 1774).

Also, as we know from “Dr Joan Unwin” (Archivist of “The Company
of Cutlers in Hallamshire”) (13)), the “Tobacco-Pipe” mark was used by
William Birks (Jr.)” F1774/F1783 only since 1783.

William Birks (Jr.)” F1774/F1783 first started working with his father
as “Birks William and Son“.


(“Assignment of lease“;
Robert Roddis of Whiston and William Porter of the same, masons,
to … , William Birks of the same, razorsmith 
28 May 1777 (9)

Wills and administrations;
Administration of William Spencer late of Lidgate in the parish of Sheffield,
to Ann Birks, his sister-in-law. 8 December, 1778. (2))

“Bailey’s Directory“, 1781
Birks William and Son, Silver handle knife and fork, razor, and penknife manufacturers
Birks William and Son, silver handle knife and fork, razor,
and penknife manufacturers

William Birks (Sr.)” (Master Cutler, 1766), died in March 1783, aged 55.
Then the control of the company passed to his sons, “William Birks
(Master Cutler, 1795) and “John Birks“. Henceforth, the Birks’ operated
alone as manufacturers of table knives and razors until about 1817
(with a pipe device and “Fabre” (Not sure?) mark). (7,8)

1783 March 6, William Birks, Burial, Sheffield1783 Mar 06 Wm Birks Burial 1b(search.findmypast.co.uk)


Counterpart of lease“;
The Trustees of Charles … and Henry Howard …
to William Birks and John Birks of Sheffield, razor smiths.
A piece of land in Norfolk Street, Sheffield 
29 May, 1783 (6)

Since cutlers could and would ask for a note to be attached to a mark record
saying it was to be reserved for their son or whoever, it would make perfectly
sense why “William Birks (Jr.) F1774/F1783” used the ‘Pipe‘ mark after the
death of “William Birks (Sr.)” in 1783, as seen in the “Gales & Martin Sheffield
Directory”, 1787William Birks (Jr.) F1774/F1783” used the ‘Pipe‘ mark further
along; the Birks William and John,(3) Birks John? mark would therefore be property of “John Birks” (F1786)

“Gales & Martin” Sheffield Directory”, 1787:
Birks William (Jr., F1774/1783) and John (his brother, F1786),
Razor smiths, Norfolkstreet

Birks William and John, Norfolk-street


Insured“: William and John Birks, Sheffield, York, cutlers; 
Other property or occupiers: Ann Birks, widow; …
24 January 1789 (5)

Assignment of mortgage 
William and John Birks of Sheffield, cutlers.
… 2 messuages in Jesus Gate.
30 December, 1789 (4)

Further mortgage
William and John Birks.
… of 2 messuages in Jesus Gate.;
22 February 1790

1792, 25 December;
The following document shows “William & John Birks”, together with
“Birks, Miss Louisa”, a sister of “Birks, William & John”…
1792, uit: 1824, The origin of the Sheffield General Infirmary, (compiled from original documents,) 1a1
1792, uit: 1824, The origin of the Sheffield General Infirmary, (compiled from original documents,) 1a2
(archive.org)

Assignment;
William Birks and John Birks, both of Sheffield, cutlers,
to Louisa Birks of Sheffield, spinster.
A messuage and land in Worrall …
30 June, 1790 (3)

“William & John Birks” are further listed in the 1790’s Directories:

Universal British directory of trade, commerce & manufacture” …
Vol. 4 (Late 1794 to early 1798)
Birks William and John, Cutlers and Razor-makers, Sheffield

Robinson’s Directory of Sheffield“, 1797
Birks William and John, cutlers, 62 Norfolk-street

Later on, “John Birks” passed away in 1804 as this Will of 1804 Dec 15 is showing;180... Birks John & William 1a.pngJohn Birks late of Sheffield razor maker to William Birks Sheffield razor maker (Brother
& one of the next of kin) (www.ancestry.co.uk, “Mick” (mrfordy), search.findmypast)


Mortgage“, Louisa Birks of Sheffield, spinster, to Joseph Royle …
Land in Scargell Knowle … , Sheffield formerly demised by
Edmund Lambert … to Henry Birks
19 September, 1806. (1)

In the “1807 County of York, The Poll for Knights of the Shire”,
there is only a “Birks William, razormaker” to be found:
1807 THE POLL FOR KNIGHTS OF THE SHIRE, kopie
(*)


Wills and administrations
;
(Copy) William Birks, 16 February, 1805; proved 1813. (2)

1822 “Baines’s Directory Yorkshire“, Vol 1 West Riding, Sheffield;
Birks Louisa, gentwmn. Norfolk st.

Wills and administrations;
Louisa Birks, 4 November, 1825; proved 1827. (2)

William Birks (Jr.) F1774/F1783” had 4 sons, of which William & John:

Birth of Son William Birks (1785 – ) 
Birth of Son John Birks (1786 – 1834)
(www.ancestry.co.uk, “Mick” (mrfordy))

The 1816-17 ‘Wardle & Pratt’ directory shows:

Birks Wm. and John, 62, Norfolk-st., Razor Makers;
1816-17 Birks Wm. and John, 62, Norfolk-st.

And, the 1817 ‘Brownell’ directory:
Birks William and John, Norfolk-lane, razor manufacturers;
1817 Birks William and John, Norfolk-lane (Brownell)

Since the residence in Norfolk – st. I can only assume that they were
2 sons of William Birks (F1783).

At the moment it is not known if they still used the ‘Tobacco-Pipe’ mark…


Here’s a simplified family tree, mainly regarding:
–  “Tobacco-pipe” mark owners (= Blue frame),
–  Others, granted their Freedom,
–  Henry Birks (= Violet frame),
–  “Master  Apprentice”

Birks fam tree 1f


So, to conclude for now, we have:

  • Jonathan BIRKSF1694, MC1714, son of “William BIRKS”, Dawroyd, yeoman
    Original owner of the “Tobacco-pipe” mark
  • John BIRKS” F1726, son of “Jonathan BIRKS”, cutler, to “Father”
  • William (Sr.) BIRKS“, son of “Henry Birks”; F1748, MC 1766,°1727-’28, †1783 Birks William & son,(2) Birks William, Sr.?
  • William BIRKS” F1774/F1783, MC1795 Birks William & son,(3) Birks William Jr.?Birks William and John,(2) Birks William, Jr.?
    &   “John BIRKSF1786  Birks William and John,(3) Birks John?
Birks German Steel
(“German Steel”, IMHO, made by John Birks between 1786-1804, probably around 1795-1800;
sharprazorpalace.com/That 1700’s Show)
Birks Box, 4 razors Pipe 1a Jun 26, 2017, Winning bid-US $1,037.00Birks Box, 4 razors Pipe 1dBirks Box, 4 razors Pipe 1g 2Birks Box, 4 razors Pipe 1g 3Birks Box, 4 razors Pipe 1e 2
Langres 1a
Langres 1b
(“LANGRES” IMHO, made around 1774-1800;
Possibly made at the end of the 18th C. maybe by William Birks (Jr.),
or someone else who possibly took the “LANGRES” mark;
sharprazorpalace.com/agres Cast Steel)

There are also other “BIRKS” razors, younger then previous ones,
with a possible connection with the previous mentioned Birks family

A “Magnum Bonum” style razor, 1810-1815, H. BIRKSBirks H:M? 1a1Birks H:M? 1b(sharprazorpalace.com)

Or this 19th century (1810-1820?) H·BIRKS razor:Birks H:M? 2b.jpg(worthpoint.com, the seller refers this razor as a
H. Birks, The only known record of it dates it from 1795“,
referring at “Henry BIRKS” F1795, see hereafter)

Looking back at the information, found on sheffieldrecordsonline.org.uk & freepages.history.rootsweb.ancestry.com (“Birks”), it seems very possibly that these razors are made by “Henry BIRKS” (7, 1786, F1795), son of “Richard BIRKS”, Owlerton, cutler (deceased), to “John“, razor maker:

  • John BIRKS” (7-3, 1814), son of Henry BIRKS, Ecclesall Bierlow, razor maker, to “James BRADSHAW”,
    Ecclesall Bierlow, knife grinder (son of HenryF1795?)
  • William BIRKS” (F1806), son of  “William BIRKS“, razor maker, to “Father”
    ( = most probably son of  “William(F1774/1783))
  • Henry BIRKS” (7, 1786, F1795), son of “Richard BIRKS“, Owlerton, cutler (deceased), to  “John“, razor maker
  • Richard BIRKS” (7, 1780, F1791), son of “Richard BIRKS“, Owlerton, cutler (deceased), to  “William Birks“, razor maker
  • William BIRKS” (F1791), son of “Richard BIRKS“, Owlerton, cutler (deceased), to (1) (9½, 1780) Enoch OAKES, scissorsmith,
    (2) (2-9, 1786) James BARLOW, (3) (F1791) E. WILSON

Henry (F1795) had 2 brothers, Richard (F1791) & William (F1791), their father Richard, Owlerton, cutler, was deceased ≤1780. It seems to be too much of coincidence that the two brothers Henry & Richard were apprenticed by William & John Birks, razor makers…
It seems to me the latter are in fact “William BIRKS” (F1774/1783) & “John” (F1786), sons of “William BIRKS” (F1748, †1783). I wouldn’t be surprised if “Richard, Owlerton, cutler”, was a brother or nephew of “William BIRKS” (F1774/1783) & “John” (F1786)…

Birks Family Tree, Henry Birks

This razor could possibly be an early example of Henry Birks (F1795),
although not likely:

Birks Henry? 3a1Birks Henry? 3a2Birks Henry? 3a3(sharprazorpalace.com)

The shape is more typical for a 1770-1790 razor; maybe it was made by
Richard Birks (F1791) or “James Birks” (F1791), who was apprenticed to
his father, “George Birks”, razor maker (“George Birks” F1754, cutler?).

Quite possibly this razor was made by “George Birks” (razor maker) himself!

James Birks” (F1791), son of “George Birks“, razor maker, to “Father”
(sheffieldrecordsonline.org.uk & freepages.history.rootsweb.ancestry.com (“Birks”))

Birks Family Tree, James Birks.png



Further insights:

William Birks, Dawroyd, Yeoman

He probably died between 1686-1690; when his son William began
his apprenticeship (1690), “William BIRKS“, Dawroyd, yeoman was noted as
deceased. When John, George & Jonathan began their appr. (1679, 1682 & 1686),
William senior was still alive.

Probable date of death of William Birks, Dawroyd, Yeoman, 1686 Sep 06, Ecclesfield:
1686 Sep 6 Birks Will sen bur Ecclesfield 1b
(search.findmypast.co.uk)

Dawroyd is believed to have been in the parish of Ecclesfield.
(https://en.wikisource.org/wiki/A_glossary_of_words_used_in_the_neighbourhood_of_Sheffield/D)

This could be a possible date of baptism of William, Dawroyd, Yeoman
“1640 Apr 26 William, son of John Birkes (Birks)”, also a baptism of a ‘Marie’
“July 11, daughter of John Birkes, Ecclesfield” (different John? see further):
1640 Apr 26 Birkes William bap Ecclesfield (1) & Marie July 11? 1b
(search.findmypast.co.uk)

Though there was also a Willm (William) bapt. 12 Dec 1641, son of  Jo(hn?), Sheffield,
Ecclesfield St Mary (www.findmypast.co.uk)
As well as a Willm (William) bapt. 04 Aug 1642, son of Willm (William), Sheffield, Ecclesfield St Mary (www.findmypast.co.uk), probably from marriage between William Birkes & Margret Dey, 25 Nov 1641, Ecclesfield, York, England (www.findmypast.co.uk)

It is very well possible to have been 2 John Birkes’s around the same period since there
are 2 separate burial dates for “John Birkes”, Ecclesfield, 11 Dec 1675 & 24 Jul 1668…

Since William Birkes, Dawroyd, Yeoman, named his eldest son John,
William’s father most probably was a “John”, since this was a common naming pattern.

William Birkes (Birks) married 04 Aug 1664, Ecclesfield to Jane Hinchlife (or Hinchliffe)
1664 Aug 04 Will Birks marr Jane Hinchlife Ecclesfield 1b
(search.findmypast.co.uk, search.findmypast.co.uk)

Children:

  1. John BIRKS” (7½, 1679, F1687)

  2. Joseph BIRKS” ( → Dawroyd, husbandman?)

  3. George Birks” (1682, 1687, F1690)

  4. “Jonathan BIRKS” (1686, F1694, MC 1714)

  5. William BIRKS” (8,1690, F1698)


  1. John BIRKS” (7½, 1679, F1687) , son of “William BIRKS“, Dawroyd, yeoman,
    to “John MARSH”, cutler
    (sheffieldrecordsonline.org.uk & freepages.history.rootsweb.ancestry.com (“Birks”))
    1687f john, son of william, dawroyd, yeo

    John Birkes was baptised 1665 Nov 26,
    “John the son of William Birkes of Dawroyd bap. 26” (Ecclesfield)
    1665 Nov 26 Birkes John son of William bap Ecclesfield 1b(search.findmypast.co.uk)


  2. Joseph BIRKS” (=”Joseph Birks, Dawroyd, husbandman”?)
    Joseph was baptised 1666 Dec 02 (search.findmypast.co.uk)
    “Jos:(eph) the son of William Birkes was bapt. 02” (Dec., Ecclesfield)
    1666 Dec 02 Birkes Joseph son of William bap Ecclesfield 1bChildren:-  “William BIRKS” Bap. 1688 Sep 02, Ecclesfield
    “Sept / Will(iam) son of Joseph Birks bap / 2”
    1688 Sep 02 Birkes William son of Joseph Ecclesfield 1b.jpg
    (search.findmypast.co.uk)
    No apprenticeship or Freedom found of him.
    Possibly he died 1745 Jul 02
    “2 / William Birks. Doroyd” (Dawroyd)
    1745 Jul 02 William Birks Doroyd Burial 1b
    (search.findmypast.co.uk)(sheffieldrecordsonline.org.uk & freepages.history.rootsweb.ancestry.com (“Birks”))

    –  “Jonathan BIRKS” °1693 (1692 O.S.) (8, 1705, F1713), son of
    Joseph BIRKS“, Dawrood, husbandman, to “Thomas SPOONER”, cutler
    1713f jonathan, son of joseph, dawrood, h.
    1692 “January / Jonathan son of Joseph Bikes bapt(ised) / 22” (Ecclesfield)
    1692 Jan 22 Birkes Jonathan son of Joseph Bap Ecclesfield 1b(fmp, fmp)

    –  “Joshua BIRKS” °1696 (8, 1708, F1716), son of
    Joseph BIRKS“, Dawroyd, husbandman, to “Jonathan BIRKS“, cutler
    1716f joshua, son of joseph, dawroyd, h
    1696 March “Josuah filia (filius, son of) Joseph Birkes bapt 25” (March, Ecclesfield)
    1696 Mar 25 Birkes Joshua son of Joseph bap Ecclesfield 1b(fmp)

    –  “Joseph BIRKS” °1690 (F1716), son of “Joseph BIRKS“, to “Jonathan BIRKS“, cutler
    1716f joseph, son of joseph
    1690 “Sept / Joseph son of Joseph Birkes bapt(ised) / 7 (September)”
    1690 Sep 07 Birkes Joseph son of Joseph bap Ecclesfield 1b
    (search.findmypast.co.uk)I’m pretty sure if this “Joseph BIRKS” is “Joseph Birks, Dawroyd, husbandman”,
    and was a son of  “William Birks, Dawroyd, yeoman”, especially because 2 of his
    sons were apprenticed to “Jonathan BIRKS“, cutler (=”Jonathan BIRKS” F1694?)

    –  “George BIRKS” °1698
    “George filius (son of) Joseph Birks bapt 28” (Oct, Ecclesfield)
    1698 Oct 28 Birkes George son of Joseph bap Ecclesfield 1b
    (search.findmypast.co.uk)


  3. George Birks” (F1690), son of “William BIRKS“, Dawroid, yeoman, to
    (1) (8, 1682) “Joseph BROADBENT”, scissorsmith,
    (2) (3, 1687, F1690) “Thomas WARD”, scissorsmith
    1690f george, son of wm, dawroid, yeo
    (sheffieldrecordsonline.org.uk & freepages.history.rootsweb.ancestry.com (“Birks”))

    George Birkes was baptised 1668 Apr 04
    “George the son of Will(iam) Birkes was bapt 04” (Apr 1668), Ecclesfield
    1668 Apr 04 Birkes George son of William bap Ecclesfield 1b
    (search.findmypast.co.uk)

    George Birkes (°1668) died 1704 or earlier, since following
    record shows that George Sr. was deceased at the beginning
    of the apprenticeship of George Jr. (1704).

    Children
    :

    –   William °1692 (1691 O.S.) Mar 3 (findmypast)

    –   George °1694 (1693 O.S.) Mar 1 (findmypast),
    probably †1764 Dec 21 (findmypast)
    “George Birks, son of George, scissorsmith, dec.;
    (apprenticed) to William, cutler (his uncle); 11-1,1704, Freedom 1716”
    1716f george, son of george, scissorsmith, dec
    1720 (1719 O.S.) Jan 27 George Birks (Jr.) cutler
    married Mary Dodworth spinster
    1719 Jan 27 George Birks cutler married Mary Dodworth spinster 1b (fmp, fmp)
    1722 (1721 O.S.) Mar 11 Burial “Mary wife of Geo:(rge) Birks cutler”
    1721 Mar 11 Burial Mary wife of Geo:(rge) Birks cutler  1b (findmypast)
    1722 June 11 “Geo:(rge) Birks cutler married Martha Wilson”
    1722 June 11 Geo:(rge) Birks cutler married Martha Wilson 1b (findmypast)
    1733 (1732 O.S.) Feb 6 Burial “Martha wife of Geo:(rge) Birks cutler”
    1732 Feb 6 Burial Martha wife of Geo:(rge) Birks cutler 1b (findmypast)

    Children:
    –  William (°1724 Dec 28 – ) Wm. son of Geo:(rge) Birks cutler (fmp)
    –  George (°1727 June 16 – ) George son of Geo:(rge) Birks cutler (findmypast)
    –  George (°1729 (1728 O.S.) Jan 1 – ) George son of Geo:(rge) Birks cutler (findmypast)
    One of these George’s (probably °1727) probably married:
    Ann Cockburn/Brusilton/Braselton, since the rest of the names are exactly
    the same, one of these surnames, Cockburn or Bruselton/Braselton, is incorrect1748 Dec 25 Geo Birks cutler married Ann Cockburn 1b (1748 Dec 25)
    1749 Dec 25 Geo Birks cutler married Ann Bruselton 1b (1749 Dec 25)
    Most probably this is “Birks George, son of George, cutler; (apprenticed)
    to Waterhouse J., cutler; 7, 1741, Freedom 1754” Since he only needed to be
    an apprentice for 7y, I believe he was 14y old when his apprenticeship began,
    being 21y old when this period came to an end, then able to be granted his
    Freedom in 1748 (7, 1741). This would fit with the °1727.
    He chose to wait for taking his Freedom until 1754.
    1754f george, son of george, cutler

    Children:
    –  Sarah (°1751 June 28 – ) Sarah daughter of Geo(rge) Birks cutler (fmp)
    –  William (°1753 May 13 – ) Willm son of Geo(rge) Birks cutler (fmp)
    Possibly married “Elizabeth Furnish” since:
    1781 Apr 23, William Birks, batchelor, married Elizabeth Furnish, spinster (Sheffield, fmp)
    1782 Dec 15, Hannah, daughter of William Birks, cutler & Eliz (fmp)
    1784 Okt 10, George, son of William Birks, cutler & Eliz (fmpfmp)
    1787 July 29, William, son of  William & Eliz. Birks, cutler (fmp)
    1789 May 17, Sarah, daughter of William & Eliz Birks, cutler (Sheffield, fmp)
    1794 May 4, George, son of 
    William & Eliz Birks, cutler (Sheffield, fmp, fmp)
    1796 Aug 14, William, son of William & Eliz. Birks, cutler (fmp)
    1800 Apr 27, Charles, son of  
    William & Eliz. Birks, cutler (fmp)
    1802 May 9, John
    , son of  William & Eliz. Birks, cutler (fmp, fmp)
    1804 °Aug 26, bapt Sept 16, Ann, daughter of William & Eliz. Birks, cutler (fmp)
    –  John (°1759 Aug 17 – ) John son of Geo(rge) Birks cutler (fmp)
    –  Martha (°1761 Nov 27 – ) Martha daughter of Geo(rge) Birks cutler (fmp)
    –  Ann (°1763 Dec 26 – ) Ann daughter of Geo(rge) Birks cutler (fmp)
    –  James (°1767 Nov 18 – ) James son of Geo.(rge) Birks cutler (fmp)
    → This could very well be:
    James Birks” (F1791), son of “George Birks“, razor maker, to “Father”
    (sheffieldrecordsonline.org.uk & freepages.history.rootsweb.ancestry.com (“Birks”))
    1791f james, son of george, razor maker
    Married with “Ann”
    Children:
    1795 Apr 16 (fmp) – 1796 Dec 14 (fmp), William, son of James & Anne Birks
    1798 Nov 24, burial George, son of James Birks, razor smith (fmp)
    1799 Dec 24, Henry, son of James & Ann Birks (fmp)
    –  Elisabeth (°1773 Dec 28 – ) Elisabeth daughter of Geo(rge) Birks cutler (fmp)
    George possibly died 1782 Feb 16
    1782 Feb 16 George Birks Burial 1b (fmp)
    His wife Ann probably died 1787 Apr 24
    1787 Apr 24 Ann Birks wif of George Birks Burial 1b
    “Ann Wife of George Birks” (fmp)

    1733 May 4 “Geo:(rge) Birks cutler married Mary Owen”
    1733 May 4 Geo Birks cutler married Mary Owen 1b (findmypast)

    Children:
    –  Francis 1734 (1733, O.S.) Jan 30 – ) Francis son of George Birks cutler (fmp)
    –  Sarah (°1737 Dec 27 – ) Sarah daughter of Geo:(rge) Birks cutler (findmypast)
    –  Thomas (°1742 Sep 29 – ) Thomas son of Geo:(rge) Birks cutler (findmypast)

  4. Jonathan BIRKS” (1686, F1694, MC 1714), first owner of the “Tobacco Pipe” mark; son of “William BIRKS“, Dawroyd, yeoman, to “Samuel SMITH”, cutler
    1694f jonathan, son of william, dawroid, yeo
    (sheffieldrecordsonline.org.uk & freepages.history.rootsweb.ancestry.com (“Birks”))

    1671 (1670 O.S.) Jan 29 baptism Jonathan
    “Jonathan the son of Will(iam) Birkes was bapt. 29” (Ecclesfield)
    1670 Jan 29 Birkes Jonathan son of William bap 1b
    (search.findmypast.co.uk)

    1697 Aug 05 Jonathan Birks (F1694) married Sarah Dawson
    “Jonat(han) Birkes & Sarah Dawson”
    1697 Aug 05 Birks Jonathan marr Sarah Dawson Ecclesfield 1b
    (search.findmypast.co.uk)

    (Sarah Dawson was probably the daughter of Willus (William) Dawson & Sara Scorer,
    married 1668 Nov 29, Sheffield, search.findmypast.co.uk;
    Sara Dawson was probably born 1676 Jan 29, search.findmypast.co.uk)

    1725 Dec 12; probable death of Jonathan Birks (F1694)
    “Jonat(han) Birks Cutler”
    1725 Dec 12 Jonathan Birks Cutler (the?) 1b(search.findmypast.co.uk)

    1758 May 22; probable burial of his wife, Sarah Birks/Dawson
    1758 may 22 birks sarah dawson bur sheffield 1b (fmp, fmp)
    1758 June; the probate register of Sarah Birks, Widow:
    1758 july sarah birks widow 1b or_pecy_0011_0021

    Children:

    –   Maria °1698 July 18 (findmypast) †1702 Dec 4 (findmypast)
    “Maria daughter of Jonathan Birks cutler, Sheffield”

    –   (Jonathan °22 Sep 1695 Jonat son of Jonat Birkes (findmypast, findmypast),
    1 record mentions Ecclesfield, the other Rotherham; so possibly not a son of Jonathan Birks F1723)

    –   Ruth °1700 Dec 19 (findmypast)
    “Ruth filia Jonathan Birks Cutler”
    –   Jonathan °1703 (1702 O.S.) Jan 13 (findmypast)
    “Jonathan filius Jonathan Birks Cutler, Hallam” = “Jonathan BIRKS” (F1723),
    son of “Jonathan BIRKS“, cutler, to Father” (sheffieldrecordsonline.org.uk
    & freepages.history.rootsweb.ancestry.com (“Birks”))
    1723f jonathan, son of jonathan
    1737 (1736 O.S.) March 5 married to Martha Taylor
    “Jonathan Birks cutler & Martha Taylor”
    1736 March 5 Jonathan Birks cutler & Martha Taylor Marriage 1b
    (findmypast)

    Children:
    –  Ruth daughter of Jonathan Birks cutler
    °1738 (1737 O.S.) Jan 6 (fmp) †1738 (1737 O.S.) 6 Jan 11 (fmp)
    –  Mary daughter of Jonathan Birks cutler °1739 (1738 O.S.) March 15 (findmypast)
    –  Jonathan °1740 Oct 15 (findmypast) †1741 July 10?
    (John, son of Jonathan Birks cutler = Probably Jonathan, findmypast)

    †1748 Aug 16 Jonathan Birks (F1723) (findmypast), because a bit later >
    †1748 Sep 14 Hannah daughter of Martha Birks (Martha became widow)
    (findmypast), 1754 Mar 31 Martha Birks widow married Joshua Booth cutler
    1754 Mar 31 Martha Birks widow Joshua Booth cutler marr 1a kopie
    (findmypast)

    –  John/Johanes °1705 May 17
    = “John BIRKS” (F1726), son of “Jonathan BIRKS“, cutler, to “Father”
    1726f john, son of jonathan, cutler,
    second owner of the “Tobacco Pipe” mark
    (sheffieldrecordsonline.org.uk & freepages.history.rootsweb.ancestry.com (“Birks”))
    °1705 May 17 Baptism John (findmypast)
    “John son of Jonathan Birks cutler of Sheffield”

    (Update ’19, Jan)
    From the will of John Birks of Sheffield, Razor smith we know he died
    1747 (1746 O.S.) March, and had a brother Jonathan Birks, a sister Ruth Arnott,
    sisters Sarah and Ann Birks. His mother Sarah Birks was sole Executrix of his
    Will & Testament. She was widow 1748 (1747 O.S.) Feb 3, even earlier, since in 1747
    (1746 O.S.) March, there was no mentioning of the father of John, only his mother.
    John Birks of Sheffield … Razor : Smith … last Will & Testament …
    • brother Jonathan Birks
    • sister Ruth Arnott
    • sisters Sarah and Ann Birks
    • mother Sarah Birks (sole Executrix of Will & Testament)
    March 1747 (1746 O.S.)
    1747-'48 will john birks 1a2
    1748 (1747 O.S.) Jan 27, John Birks late of Sheffield RazorSmith Deceased1747-'48 will john birks 1a3
    1748 (1747 O.S.) Feb 3 …  Sarah Birks … Widow
    … Executrix of Will & Testament of John Birks late of Sheffield1747-'48 will john birks 1a4
    1748 (1747 O.S.) Feb 27, John Birks late of Sheffield Deceased
    … to Sarah Birks Widow
    1747-'48 will john birks 1a1

    –   Sara °1710  May 31
    Sara daughter of Jonat(han) Birks (fmp)

    –  Elisabeth °1713 (1712 O.S.) March 13 (findmypast)
    (daughter of Jonathan Birks F1694?)

    –   Anne °1715 June 10
    Anne daughter of Jonat(han) Birks (fmp)


  5. William BIRKS” (8,1690, F1698), son of “William BIRKS“, Dawroyd, yeoman (deceased), to “John”, cutler
    1698f william, son of william, dawroyd, yeo., dec.
    (sheffieldrecordsonline.org.uk & freepages.history.rootsweb.ancestry.com (“Birks”))
    ( = brother & apprentice of “John BIRKS” F1687).
    Probably bapt. 1674 Nov 26, Will(iam) the son of Will(iam) Birks (Ecclesfield):
    1674 Nov 26 Will son of Will Ecclesfield bap 1b(search.findmypast.co.uk)

    He most probably married Rebecca Brownill, 07 Aug 17011701 Aug 7 Birks William marr Rebecca Brownill 1b(England Marriages 1538-1973, Sheffield, Will’Us Birks, Cutler & Rebecca Brownill; www.findmypast.co.uk)

    Children:

    –  William °1703 (F1724?)
    Baptism 1703 Apr 29 Willus (William) Birks,
    son of Willi (William) Birks Cutler, Sheffield:1703 Apr 29 Birks William son of William Cutler Sheffield bap 1b(search.findmypast.co.uk)

    Quite possible this William, son of William is:
    William BIRKS” (F1724), son of “William BIRKS“, to “Joseph SHEPHEARD”, cutler
    1724f william, son of william
    (sheffieldrecordsonline.org.uk & freepages.history.rootsweb.ancestry.com (“Birks”))

    –  Joseph °1704 F1725
    Baptism 1704 Sep 21 Joseph son of Wilm (William) Cutler of Sheffield1704 Sep 21 Birks Joseph son of William Cutler of Sheffield bap 1b(search.findmypast.co.uk)
    Pretty sure this Joseph, son of William is:
    Joseph BIRKS” (F1725), son of “William BIRKS“, cutler, to Father”
    1725f jospeh, son of william; to father, cutler(sheffieldrecordsonline.org.uk & freepages.history.rootsweb.ancestry.com (“Birks”))

    –  Anna °1706 Okt 16
    Anna fil: Willi(am) Birks Cutler Sheffield (fmp)


Edward BIRKS

Died 1710 or earlier since he is listed as “deceased” when his son
Henry started his apprenticeship.

Children

–  “Henry Birks”
1698 july 14 henery birkes 1b

°1698 Jul 14 (fmp), son of Edward, Wentworth, corviser, dec(eased, genuki.org.uk),
8½, 1710, F1720, apprenticed to “James BARNES”, cutler, Westbar, Sheffield
(www.ancestry.co.uk)
1720f henry birks, son of edward, wentworth, corv, dec
1721 Apr 10, “Henry Birks” married “Faith Kitchin” (search.findmypast.co.uk, Sheffield)
1752 Nov 01, Burial Henry Birks, Sheffield
1752 Nov 01 Death Henry Birks 1b
(search.findmypast.co.uk)

Children:

More information about relatives:
→ https://www.ancestry.co.uk/family-tree/tree/84011743/family?fpid=312056698548

–  “Richard Birks”

1731f richard, son of edward
Most probably did his apprenticeship with his brother, 1720 or later.

Probably married 1733 May 13, in Ecclesfield, Wiston,
Anna Jenkinson of Sheffield (findmypast)
Richard Birks possibly died 1761 Jan 10 (findmypast), or around 1769
since he was deceased when his sons George & Thomas were apprenticed
to Ragg John, cutler in 1769.

Children:
  • James “James son of Rich:(ard) Birks cutler” (Sheffield)
    °1734 Aug 9 (findmypast) – †1736 (1735 O.S.) March 22 (fmp, fmp)
  • Jonathan “Jonath:(an) son of Rich:(ard) Birks cutler” (Sheffield)
    °1735 Sep 18 (findmypast) –
  • Hannah “Hannah daughter of Rich:(ard) Birks cutler” (Sheffield)
    °1738 Sep 26 (findmypast) –
  • Robert “Robert son of Rich:(ard) Birks cutler” (Sheffield)
    °1743 (1742 O.S.) Mar 2 (findmypast) –
  • Richard “Richard son of Richard Birks cutler” (Sheffield)
    °1746 Apr 1 (findmypast) – †1747 Jan 16 (findmypast)
  • Edward “Edward son of Richard Birks cutler” (Sheffield)
    °1749 Oct 13 (findmypast) –
  • George “George son of Richard Birks cutler” (Sheffield)
    °1751 Mar 22 (findmypast) –
    (Here you can see New Year’s day changing from 25 March to 1 Jan
    → Jan, Feb, March 1750 became corrected to 1751)
    = “George BIRKS” (2½, 1769, F1791), son of “Richard BIRKS”,
    cutler (deceased), to “John RAGG”, cutler
    (He only needed to be an apprentice for 2½y until his
    possible Freedom age of 21y, which would fit with his birth date,
    he waited till 1791 to take his Freedom)
    1791f george, son of richard, cutler, dec
    Possible wife Ann & children:
    1780 Sep 29, Jonathan, son of George Birks, cutler & Ann (fmp)
    1783 Okt 19, George, son of George Birks, cutler & Ann (fmp)
  • Joseph “Joseph son of Rich(ard) Birks cutler” (Sheffield)
    °1753 Sep 7 (findmypast) –
  • Thomas “Tho(mas) son of Rich(ard) Birks cutler” (Sheffield)
    °1755 Nov 26 (findmypast) –
    = “Thomas, son of Richard Birks cutler, dec;
    to Ragg John, cutler; 7, 1769, Freedom 1780.”
    1780f thomas, son of richard, cutler, dec

William Birks (F1748)  (“Mick”, mrfordy, ancestry.co.uk)
°1727 Sep 20, “Wm Son of Henry Birks, Cutler” (findmypast)
1746 June 18, married Ann Spencer °1729, Sheffield (findmypast)
Ann most probably died 1803 July 9 (fmp)
1803 july 9 ann wife of william birks razorsmith 1a kopie
1783 March 6, William Birks, Burial, Sheffield (findmypast)

Children:

  • William Birks 1753–1807 (www.ancestry.co.uk)
    “William BIRKS” (F1774/F1783), son of “William BIRKS“, cutler, to “Father”
    1774 william birks apprenticeship free 1a
    1783f william, son of william
    °1753 Jan 29, son of William Birks cutler, Sheffield
    (England, Select Births and Christenings, 1538-1975)
    1782 Nov 29 Married Barbara Wreaks (widow) (fmp)
    (Barbara Wreaks, born Clark, °
    1747,
    Watermillock, Cumberland; †1793, Sheffield)
    1782 nov 29 william birks married barbara wreaks widow 1b
    1807 May 01, Death William Birks
    1807 May 1 William Birks death announcement 1a
    1807 May 04, Burial William Birks cutler
    1807 May 4 Burial Wm Birks cutler 1b
    (findmypast)

    Children:
    • (fmp)
      1785 1786 1787 william john henry son of william 1b
    • Ann °1783 July 09 (fmp) – 1803 July 09 (Ann, daughter of Wm Birks, razor smith fmp, fmp)
      (coincidentally the same day as her grandmother)
      1803 july 9 ann d of william birks razor maker 1a kopie
    • William °1785 July 15 (fmp) or June 9 (fmp)
      1806 Freedom William Birks, son of William; to Father, razor maker;
      1806f william, son of william
      †>1861 – Shrewsbury Hospital, Sheffield
      March 1861 • Sheffield, Yorkshire
      Chosen to fill one of the vacancies as an in-pensioner.
      Stated to have been a surgical instrument maker and both his father and grandfather
      had been Master cutlers,”
      1861 william birks a
      married Rebecca Acton (1799 (Surrey) –1839 (Sheffield))
      24 Jun 1826 • The Hague, S-Gravenhage, Zuid-Holland,
      children:
      William Birks 1826 (Antwerp, Belgium) –1832 (Antwerp)
      Rebecca Birks 1828 (Antwerp) –1872 (Manchester)
      Edmund Birks 1831 (Antwerp) –
      Blanche Birks 1833 (Antwerp) –1836 (Sheffield)
      Louisa Birks 1833 (Antwerp) –1836 (Sheffield)
      William Alfred Birks 1837 (Antwerp) –1899 (Sheffield)
    • John °1786 Nov 17, John, son of William & Barbara Birks, Razorsmith (fmp, fmp)
      1786 nov 17 john son of wm & barbara birks razorsmith 1a
      20 Oct 1834 • Antwerp, Belgium Registration of Death (fmp)
      John Birks (without profession) 45y old, from Sheffield, unmarried, son of the late William Birks
      and the late Barbara Clark. Witnesses William Birks, 46y Shopkeeper (merchant) brother,
      and Corneille Verboek (ships carpenter), neighbour.
      (Seeing the age of the 2 brothers it should be 1831 instead of 1834…)
    • Henry °1787 – †1788
    • Charles °1789 Sept 11 (fmp) – †1803 July 18 (Charles, son of Wm Birks, razor smith fmp, fmp)
      1803 july 9 ann d of william birks razor maker 1a kopie
  • Henry 1754–1755
  • John Birks (F1786)
    “John BIRKS” (F1786), son of “William BIRKS“, cutler, to “Father”
    1786f john, son of william

    °1760 June 9, John, son of William Birks Cutler, Sheffield
    (search.findmypast.co.uk)
    1804 Dec 15 Will John Birks late of Sheffield razor maker to
    William Birks Sheffield razor maker (Brother & one of the next of kin)180... Birks John & William 1a.pngwww.ancestry.co.uk, “Mick” (mrfordy), search.findmypast)
  • Elizabeth 1761–
  • Sarah 1764–
  • Louisa 1769–1826

Richard, Owlerton, Cutler †1780 or earlier
= ? °1734 Nov 20 Richard – “Richard son of Hen: Birks cutler” (findmypast) ?
1762 May 11; “Richard Birks, batchelor” married “Ruth Brownill/Brownwell, spinster”
(fmp, fmp). Whether this is one and the same Richard Birks is uncertain… 

The fact that 2 of his sons, Richard & Henry, were apprentices
of John & Birks (razor smiths & sons of Henry Birks, razor smith)
seems to confirm that Richard of Owlerton is indeed
Richard, son of Henry (razor smith).

Children:

  • Richard BIRKS” (7, 1780, F1791), son of “Richard BIRKS“, Owlerton, cutler (deceased),
    to  “William Birks“, razor maker (his nephew);
    1791f richard, son of richard, owlerton, cutler, dec.
    °1766 Feb 5; “Rich(ar)d son of Rich(ar)d Birks, cutler” (fmp)
  • William BIRKS” (F1791), son of “Richard BIRKS“, Owlerton, cutler (deceased),
    to (1) (9½, 1780) Enoch OAKES, scissorsmith, (2) (2-9, 1786) James BARLOW, (3) (F1791) E. WILSON
    1791f william, son of rich., owlerton, c, dec.°1768 Sep 14; “William son of Rich(ar)d Birks, cutler” (fmp)
    Possible marriage:
    1788 Nov 23; William Birks, batchelor married Ann Hibberd, spinster, Sheffield (fmp)
    Possible child:
    1791 May 29; Mary, daughter of William and Ann Birks, labourer (fmp)
  • Henry BIRKS” (7, 1786, F1795), son of “Richard BIRKS“, Owlerton, cutler (deceased),
    to  “John“, razor maker (his nephew)
    1795f henry birks, son of richard, owlerton, cutler, dec
    Residence Ecclesall bierlow, see further
    °1771 March 1; “Henry son Rich(ar)d Birks Cutler” (fmp, fmp)
    He married “Ann Bird”:
    1793 March 26; Henry Birks, batchelor married Ann Bird, spinster, Sheffield (fmp, fmp)
    Children:
    1793 Okt 6 (fmp) – 1794 Dec 9 (fmp) Harriot, daughter of Henry & Ann Birks, razor smith
    1793 okt 6 harriot dau. of henry & ann birks razorsmith 1c
    1796 Jan 17 (fmp, fmp) – Apr 22 (fmp) Henry, son of Henry & Ann Birks, razor smith
    1796 jan 17 henry son of henry & ann birks raozr smith 1b
    1797 June 4 Ann, daughter of Henry & Ann Birks, razor smith (fmp)
    1798 Oct 28 Elizabeth, daughter of Henry & Ann Birks, razor maker (fmp)
    1800 Apr 30 John, son of Henry & Ann Birks, cutler (fmp)

    This is “Birks John, son of Henry, Ecclesall bierlow, razor maker, to Bradshaw Jas., Ecclesall b., kgr.; 7-3, 1814
    1814 john, son of henry, razor maker
    He needed to be an apprenticeship for 7 years, starting 1814, ending 1821, where he would be 21y,
    the age when he could be granted his Freedom. Birth year 1800 fits perfectly!
    The residence of Henry Birks, razor maker was Ecclesall bierlow.

    .
    1803 Oct 2 Andrew, son of Henry & Ann Birks, razor smith (fmp)
    1806 July 16 (Burial); “Ann wife of Henry Birks Razorsmith” (fmpfmp)


William BirksF1682

1682 Birks William > Rodgers?

Star Cross 1682.png


“125 The two most famous such marks in this period were the Rodgers mark which comprised a Star and Maltese cross(originally granted to William Birks in 1682)
and the I* X L mark used by George Wolstenholm & Sons, originally granted to
William Smith in 1787: D. Higgins and G. Tweedale ‘Asset or Liability? Trade Marks
in the Sheffield Cutlery and Tool Trades’ (1995) 37 Business History 1, 6.” (1515¹)

” … six-pointed star and Maltese cross. The mark was originally granted to
one William Birks in 1682 but was then let to John Rodgers in 1724, and was
finally confirmed by the Cutlers’ Company of Sheffield in 1764.” (1515¹)

Sadly almost nothing is to be found at this moment about
“William Birks” and a mark, granted in 1682…

At this moment, I haven’t found a connection between
“William BIRKS” F1682 & “Jonathan BIRKS” (1686, F1694, MC 1714),
John Birks (F1726), “William Birks” (F1748), or “William Birks” F1774/F1783.

The only thing I could find is a “John BIRKS”, F1700,
son of “John BIRKS”, apprenticed to William BIRKS, scissorsmith.
1700f john, son of john, to birks william, scissorsmithNow, the apprenticeship of “John BIRKS” F1700 normally
would start 7y. earlier (or more), setting the start date of apprenticeship at ≤1693.
Therefore, his Master couldn’t have been “William BIRKS” F1698, cutler (brother of
Jonathan BIRKSF1694) with the “pipe above the letter ‘B’” (13) mark.

It makes me wonder if the Master of this “John BIRKS” F1700 (scissorsmith) could
maybe be in fact “William Birks” F1682 (six-pointed star and Maltese cross mark),
who maybe was a scissorsmith … (not sure!)





References:
(A)
– “Name” (period of apprenticeship & year of Freedom (F),
– son of “” ,
– to “” (= apprenticed to ““)
(◊ = a symbol I’ve used with names of which I think they are relatives of each other)
  • John BIRKS” (7-3, 1814), son of Henry BIRKS, Ecclesall Bierlow, razor maker, to “James BRADSHAW”,
    Ecclesall Bierlow, knife grinder (son of HenryF1795?)
  • William BIRKS (F1806), son of ◊”William BIRKS“, razor maker, to “Father”
    ( = most probably son of ◊”William“(F1774/1783)
  • Henry BIRKS” (7, 1786, F1795), son of “Richard BIRKS“, Owlerton, cutler (deceased), to ◊ “John“, razor maker (¹*)
  • Richard BIRKS” (7, 1780, F1791), son of “Richard BIRKS“, Owlerton, cutler (deceased), to ◊ “William Birks“, razor maker (¹*)
  • William BIRKS” (F1791), son of “Richard BIRKS“, Owlerton, cutler (deceased), to (1) (9½, 1780) Enoch OAKES, scissorsmith,
    (2) (2-9, 1786) James BARLOW, (3) (F1791) E. WILSON
  • James Birks” (F1791), son of “George Birks“, razor maker, to “Father” (=son of “George BirksF1754, cutler?)
  • George BIRKS” (2½, 1769, F1791), son of “Richard BIRKS“, cutler (deceased), to “John RAGG”, cutler
  • Thomas BIRKS” (7, 1769, F1780), son of “Richard BIRKS“, cutler (deceased), to “John RAGG”, cutler
  • ◊”John BIRKS” (F1786), son of ◊”William BIRKS“, cutler, to “Father”  (²*)
  • ◊”William BIRKS” (F1774/F1783), son of ◊”William BIRKS“, cutler, to “Father”  (²*)
  • (“Richard BIRKS“, cutler, he isn’t found in these records … )
  • (◊”William BIRKS” (F1748, °1727-’28, MC 1766, †1783,
    most probably son of ◊”John” F1726;
    = father of “William (F1774/1783) & “John” (F1786),
    there isn’t found anything in these records about this “William Birks, F1748…)
  • George Birks” (7, 1741, F1754), son of “George Birks“, cutler, to “J. WATERHOUSE”, cutler
  • ◊”John BIRKS” (F1726), son of ◊”Jonathan BIRKS“, cutler, to “Father” (= most probably son of ◊”Jonathan” F1694)
  • ◊”Jonathan BIRKS” (F1723), son of ◊”Jonathan BIRKS“, cutler, to Father” (= most probably son of ◊”Jonathan” F1694)
  • ◊”Joseph BIRKS” (F1725), son of ◊”William BIRKS“, cutler, to Father” ( = son of ◊”William” F1698?)
  • ◊”William BIRKS” (F1724), son of ◊”William BIRKS“, to “Joseph SHEPHEARD”, cutler ( = son of ◊”William” F1698?)
  • Richard BIRKS” (F1731), son of “Edward BIRKS“, to “Henry BIRKS“, cutler
    (= brother & apprentice of Henry (F1720)?)
  • Henry BIRKS” (8 ½, 1710, 40s. premium, F1720), son of “Edward BIRKS“, Wentworth, corviser (deceased), to “James BARNES”,
    cutler ( = possibly Henry BIRKES °14 07 1698, son of Edward, Wentworth genuki.org.uk/WentworthBaptisms1690-1699 )
  • ◊”George Birks” (11-1, 1704, F1716), son of ◊”George Birks“, scissorsmith (deceased), to William, cutler
    (= ◊”William” F1698?; ◊”George Birks” F1716 = son of ◊”George” F1690?)
  • ◊”Joseph BIRKS” (F1716), son of ◊”Joseph BIRKS“, to ◊”Jonathan BIRKS“, cutler
    (= ◊”Jonathan BIRKS” F1694?, uncle of ◊”Joseph”?)
  • ◊”Joshua BIRKS” (8, 1708, F1716), son of ◊”Joseph BIRKS“, Dawroyd, husbandman, to ◊”Jonathan BIRKS“, cutler
    (= ◊”Jonathan BIRKS” F1694?, uncle of ◊”Joshua”?; ◊”Joshua” = probably brother of ◊”Joseph” F1716)
  • ◊”Jonathan BIRKS” (8, 1705, F1713), son of ◊”Joseph BIRKS“, Dawrood, husbandman, to “Thomas SPOONER”, cutler
    ( = probably brother of ◊”Joshua” F1716 & ◊”Joseph” F1716)
  • (“John Birks” (F1700), son of “John“, to “William BIRKS“, scissorsmith
    ( = different “John” ↔ ◊”John” F1687); = different “William” ↔ ◊”William BIRKS”, Dawroyd, yeoman))
  • ◊”William BIRKS” (8,1690, F1698), son of ◊”William BIRKS“, Dawroyd, yeoman (deceased), to ◊”John“, cutler
    (= brother & apprentice of ◊”John BIRKS” F1687?)
    (“William BIRKS”, Dawroyd, yeoman, probably died between 1694-1698)
  • ◊”Jonathan BIRKS” (1686, F1694), son of ◊”William BIRKS“, Dawroyd, yeoman, to “Samuel SMITH”, cutler 
  • ◊”George Birks” (F1690), son of ◊”William BIRKS“, Dawroid, yeoman, to (1) (8, 1682) “Joseph BROADBENT”, scissorsmith,
    (2) (3, 1687, F1690) “Thomas WARD”, scissorsmith
  • ◊”John BIRKS” (7½, 1679, F1687) , son of ◊”William BIRKS“, Dawroyd, yeoman, to “John MARSH”, cutler
    (There is a difference between freepages.history.rootsweb.ancestry.com & sheffieldrecordsonline.org.uk
    The first states John BIRKS (F1726), son & apprentice of  Jonathan BIRKS, cutler
    The second: John BIRKS (F1786), son & apprentice of  Jonathan BIRKS, cutler, I believe the first to be true)
(¹*) “William Birks” & “John” (Birks?) are most probably the 2 brothers who were
razor makers with a “Tobacco Pipe” trademark…
(²*) “William Birks” F1774 & “William Birks” F1783 are one and the same “William Birks“,
son of  “William Birks“. The lather “William Birks” (Master Cutler, 1766), died in 1783,
aged 55. Then the control of the company passed to his sons, “William Birks” (Master
Cutler, 1795
) and “John Birks“. (7)
In 1782 (7y, F1791), a “Thomas HOBSON” started his apprenticeship with
William junr. BIRKS“, cutler; “William sr. BIRKS” was therefore still alive in 1782.

(*)
1807 County of York, The Poll for Knights of the Shire
1807 THE POLL FOR KNIGHTS OF THE SHIRE, kopie
1807 THE POLL FOR KNIGHTS OF THE SHIRE,
(1)
Reference; YWD 1039/4-5; Mortgage;
Louisa Birks of Sheffield, spinster, to Joseph Royle of the same, silverplater.
Land in Scargell Knowle near West Bar, Sheffield formerly demised by
Edmund Lambert of Manchester, linendraper, to Henry Birks; for £250.
19 September, 1806discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk or archive.is
(2discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk or archive.is
Reference; YWD 1039/6; Wills and administrations;
  • Louisa Birks, 4 November, 1825; proved 1827.
  • (Copy) William Birks, 16 February, 1805; proved 1813.
  • Administration of John Birks, to his brother William, 15 December, 1804.
  • Administration of William Spencer late of Lidgate in the parish of Sheffield, to Ann Birks his sister-in-law. 8 December, 1778.
(3)
Reference; YWD 1039/3;
Assignment;
William Birks and John Birks, both of Sheffield, cutlers, to Louisa Birks of Sheffield, spinster. A messuage and land in Worrall, Yorkshire near Oughtibridge, Sheffield for the term of recited mortgages from a family of Milns;
30 June, 1790 discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk or archive.is
(4)
Reference; 213/C/30/6
Mortgage by demise for 1000 years;
1) James Turton.
2) John Bayldon of Applehaigh, p.Royston, farmer.
– for £110.
– of 2 messuages in Jesus Gate (occupied by 1 and by Mr. Bingley, surgeon).
18 March 1789
Reference; 213/C/30/7;
Assignment of mortgage
1) John Bayldon (mortgagee).
2) James Turton.
3) William and John Birks of Sheffield, cutlers.
– reciting 213/C/30/6.
– in consideration of £110 paid to 1 and £10 paid to 2, by 3.
= of 2 messuages in Jesus Gate.
– with asignment of a fire insurance policy (Sun Fire Office) as further security.
30 December, 1789
Reference; 213/C/30/8;
Further mortgage;
1) James Turton of Sheffield, joiner.
2) William and John Birks.
– for an additional £50.
– of 2 messuages in Jesus Gate.;
22 February 1790
discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk or archive.is
(5)
Reference; MS 11936/359/553469;
Insured: William and John Birks, Sheffield, York, cutlers; 
Other property or occupiers: Ann Birks, widow; Sarh. Brown, widow;
Jno. Ballie and Josh. Hancock; Saml. Kay and Wm. Adams; Josh. Bell;
Benjn. Revil; Robt. Roebuck, victualler; widow Deakin;
24 January 1789 discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk or archive.is
(6)
Reference; YWD 1039/2;
Counterpart of lease;
The Trustees of Charles Howard, Earl of Surrey, and Henry Howard
formerly of Sheffield but now of Glossop, to William Birks and John Birks
of Sheffield, razor smiths. 
A piece of land in Norfolk Street, Sheffield
(part of the “Coach and Six” land) and buildings on it, for 99 years at £4 a year;
29 May, 1783 
discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk or archive.is
(7sharprazorpalace.com/members/manah/43-william-john-birks
“I believe the razor was made by William and John Birks.
It was a very old Sheffield company. The founder was William Birks, who became Master Cutler in 1766. At the beginning it was Birks, Withers & Sykes. It was one of the first enterprises to register a silver mark in 1773. It has a complicated genealogy, because it involved three notable families, several Master Cutlers, and partnerships that became intertwined. The original partners were William Birks (Master Cutler , 1766); Benjamin Withers (Master Cutler, 1756); John Sykes and Dennis Sykes. The address was variously given as Pincin Lane or Pinston Croft Lane – thoroughfares that now correspond to Pinstone Street.
Birks, Withers & Sykes was dissolved in 1780. William Birks & Son then registered a silver mark in 1781 in Norfolk Street. When William Birks (°1727-’28) died in 1783, aged 55, control passed to his sons – William Birks (Master Cutler, 1795) and John Birks. Henceforth, the Birks’ operated alone as manufacturers of table knives and razors until about 1817 (with a pipe device and “Fabre” mark)”.
NOTE from me, “Historyrazors”: IMHO I doubt the “FABRE” mark is used by “Birks”…
Birks archive.org/birks
Knowing the 2 trademarks of “Birks William & John“, and seeing the picture above, I only can conclude an easy made misinterpretation happened and that “FABRE” in fact is a mark used by “Dewsnap John”, Queen Street…
(8homepage.eircom.net/~lawed/SILVERSMITHSPART1
“SHEFFIELD SILVERSMITHS, Part 1.”
… in 1771 William (Hancock) went into partnership with John Rowbotham, William Birks, Benjamin and Joseph Withers, John Wreaks and Roger Wilson, … (a silver plating company), this firm registered these silver marks
on 20th September 1773:
1771 William Birks,... Silver 1a
… It is interesting that William Birks and Benjamin Withers in September 1773, whilst still partners in the above firm, registered a mark
William Birks, Benjamin Withers & John and Dinis (Dennis) Sykes
along with John & Dinis (Dennis) Sykes. That partnership which continued to 25th December 1780 was described as silver plated cutlers and the only items submitted for assay were silver handles. It was clearly this distinction of products which allowed Birks and Withers to be in the two partnerships concurrently. Following the dissolution of the partnership of William Birks & Co., William Birks was in partnership with his son and on 5th February 1781 entered the mark
William Birks & son 5th February 1781 (Norfolk Street. (10)) It is significant that in his will of 1779. Birks gave his occupation as cutler. He died in March 1783 when his stock in trade was left to his two sons, William and John ...
(9)
Reference; BHD/213;
Assignment of lease;
Robert Roddis of Whiston and William Porter of the same, masons,
to Joseph Bower of Sheffield, cutler, William Birks of the same, razorsmith,
John Turner of the same, cutler, and John Barlow of the same, cutler. A delph quarry
in Wickersley in Pinchwell Field and another delph quarry lying westward.
For the residue of a term of 21 years. For £150;
28 May 1777 discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk
(10archive.org 1781, Feb. 5; William Birks & Son. Plate Workers, Norfolk Street.
or: silvermakersmarks.co.uk/Makers/Sheffield

1781 Feb 5, William Birks & Son., Norfolk Street.png

(11archive.org 1773, Sept. 29; William Birks, Benjamin Withers, John & Dinis Sykes. Plate Workers, Pincin Lane.
or: silvermakersmarks.co.uk/Makers/Sheffield
1773 Sept. 28, William Birks & Co., Pincin Lane.png
(12)
Reference CB/1240;
Assignment of a mortgaged term;
Elizabeth Withers, of Sheffield, widow of Benjamin Withers, late of the same, cutler, decd., (Elizabeth née Houlton), William Birks, of the same, cutler and John Sutcliffe, of the same, grocer, two of the executors of Wither’s will, to Robert Woofendale, a devisee and executor under Wither’s will, of Sheffield, druggist. Residue of a term of 19 years in a dwelling house in Fargate, Sheffield, which was granted by the Burgesses to Edward Clarke, of Sheffield, mason and his wife, Susannah, by a deed of 19 Nov 1755; mortgaged by Clarke to Elizabeth Withers to secure a principal of £330 plus 4% per annum interest. For £100.;
1 May 1771 discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk
(13http://www.cutlers-hallamshire.org.uk/
“With many thanks to “Dr Joan Unwin, Archivist, The Company of Cutlers in Hallamshire,
The Cutlers’ Hall, Church Street, Sheffield S1 1HG. Tel: 0114 272 8456
Website: http://www.cutlers-hallamshire.org.uk
First, I was given the following information:
“This is the mark of Henry Birks, listed as a cutler, in 1720.”
Birks, Henry, listed as a cutler, in 1720 kopie
Secondly, I was very lucky to get even more valuable information!
“I looked for other use of the ‘T’ above an arrow mark of Henry Birk‎s, but there is none. The use of the ‘pipe’ symbol is more common with the Birks cutlers – John. F1726; Jonathan, F1694; William, F1748; William, F 1783; and William, F1698 who has the mark of a pipe above the letter ‘B’.”
Also, a bit more information from “Dr Joan Unwin, Archivist, The Company of Cutlers in Hallamshire”
considering razor makers:
“The Cutlers’ Company administered the industry of cutlery-making in the Sheffield area from 1624.  It could enforce specific rules relating to the training and work practices of men.  There was strict demarcation between
the makers of knives, scissors, shears, scythes and sickles.  However, the makers of knives, generally termed cutlers, were able to make a wide variety of styles, from table knives, trade knives, hunting knives, folding pocket knives and spring knives.  The cutlers would register apprentices with the Company and would register their marks which they struck on their products.  However, they would still be listed as cutlers, hardly ever before the 1780s did they specify a particular branch of knife making.  This does not imply razors were not made, just that people didn’t specify that trade.
The records of razormakers which the Company has, are the lists of apprenticeships.  There were about 500 boys apprenticed specifically as razormakers from the late 1770s.  Of those who chose to become a Freeman and so register their mark, almost all are after 1790, when the rules changed about entitlement to become a Freeman.
The marks which were registered after 1791, are almost all sequential numbers, because so many people applied.
We have records of the marks from 1614 to 1814, when the rules changed and the Company could no longer enforce registration here at the Hall.  As the 19th century progressed, the registration of trademarks was primarily from firms, rather than individual cutlers.  These mark records have not been digitised. (2017, June)”
(14strazors.com/The_Law_Times_Reports
or (14¹anwealde.com/razors/Pages from The Law Times Reports
On the 14th April 1887 George Wolstenholme and Sons Limited, and William Nixon, of Sheffield, wrote to the Cutlers’ Company, objecting to any regrant of the mark of the pipe and dart, on the ground that there was no legal owner of it, and that it was so similar to a mark of their own as to be calculated to deceive. The mark belonging to the applicants was a tobacco-pipe, which was originally assigned, in 1694, to Jonathan Birks, and, previously to the year 1875, had become vested in George Wolstenholme, a razor manufacturer (being actually entered in the name of Wm. Hutchinson, who held it as trustee).
Wostenholme 1a.jpg

More text of this article:

SUPREME COURT OF JUDICATURE
COURT OF APPEAL.
Dec. 17, 1888, and March 23, 1889.
(Before COTTON, Linley, and Bowen, L.JJ.)
Re LAMBERT’s TRADE MARK. (a)
APPEAL FROM THE CHANCERY DIVISION.
Oct. 5, 1889
An old corporate mark of a tobacco-pipe, with a dart in line with the pipe at the end where the bowl was
stamped
, was in 1698 granted by the Cutlers’ Company of Hallamshire to one Bradshaw. In 1839, this this
mark was surrendered, and on the 7th Oct. 1839 it was to one Thomas Linley, a razor manufacturer … 
Shortly before the issuing of the advertisement mentioned below, Arthur Lambert, trading at Sheffield as a razor
manufacturer
in the name of George Johnson and Co., applied verbally to the Cutlers’ Company to have the pipe
and dart registered in his name.
Lambert asserted that the mark was sold by Linley to George Johnson on the 17th Jan. 1842, for the sum of 35l.,
for which a receipt was produced; that George Johnson died in 1867; that the mark passed under his will to his
children; and that on the 7th March 1887 a son of George Johnson assigned it to Lambert in connection with
the goodwill of the business of George Johnson & Co. The mark had been actually used (but on razors only)
by Lambert and his predecessors
in title op to the time of the application.
In consequence of Lambert’s application, newspaper advertisements were, on the 26th March 1887,
issued by the Cutlers’ Company asking for claimants to the mark.
On the 14th April 1887 George Wolstenholme and Sons Limited, and William Nixon, of Sheffield, wrote to the Cutlers’ Company, objecting to any regrant of the mark of the pipe and dart, on the ground that there was no
legal owner
of it, and that it was so similar to a mark of their own as to be calculated to deceive. The mark belonging to the applicants was a tobacco-pipe, which was originally assigned, in 1694, to Jonathan Birks, and,
previously to the year 1875, had
 become vested in George Wolstenholme, a razor manufacturer (being actually entered in the name of Wm. Hutchinson, who held it as trustee). In Dec. 1875 G. Wolstenholme assigned his
business and marks to the applicants, and the pipe mark was, on the 3rd Nov. 1876, reassigned by the Cutlers’ Company to Nixon, as a trustee for George Wolstenholme and Sons, the Cutlers’ Company not being able to
assign a mark to a limited company. The pipe mark was also registered by the applicants in London, under
the Trade Marks Registration Act 1875 in class 12, and later, in the new Sheffield registry, under the Patents,
Designs, and Trade Marks Act 1883, in class 12, in respect of knives, razors, and cutlery.

As against that there is this: that these marks have been existing side by side for 180 or 190 years, or something
like it. They were granted very nearly at the same time, and they were granted as two distinct things. The one was
a
pipe; the other was a pipe with an arrow. The requirement of the Act existing at the time being that separate and
distinct marks should be granted, these two marks were issued as separate and distinct marks. Further than that,
there is an interval of a very long period, coming down to the present time, during which it is not shown that anyone has been deceived; and though I do not hold for a moment that proof of actual deception is essential, yet
the absence of it when it might have been proved is a matter deserving consideration.
Then I have this further:
that it is said by a person who professes to know it of his own knowledge, in an affidavit that is not contradicted,
that a predecessor of the applicants did this – I will read the words of the affidavitDuring my father’s lifetime, George Wolstenholme marked in addition to his mark of a pipe upon certain razors the fig. 1, which was struck lengthwise in the direction of the stem of the pipe, and was marked as a dart, with one of the barbs cut off, and
my father took proceedings in the magistrates’ court against the said George Wolstenholme, who, in consequence, desisted from using this mark
.” 


The evidence that the mark now registered for Lambert is not the same as Linley’s, and more nearly resembles
the appellants’ mark, and so closely as to be calculated to deceive. was not disputed.
The applicants are in the
same class, and can put their mark on all goods in the class, and if Lambert is registered, he can do the same;
whereas now he can only use his mark on razors.

Respondent’s fresh evidence: Lambert and Joseph Johnson deposed that the pipe and dart mark had the dart lengthwise at the end of the bowl; that the mark bad been used continuously on razors since 1842, was always struck with one punch, and always with the bowl away from the handle, and never with the dart to the handle
end
so as  to be covered 
(15fcthighcourtelibrary.com/Trademarks and brands
“The two most famous such marks in this period were the Rodgers mark which comprised a Star and Maltese cross (originally granted to William Birks in 1682) and the I*XL mark used by George Wolstenholm & Sons, originally granted to William Smith in 1787: D. Higgins and G. Tweedale ‘Asset or Liability? Trade Marks in the Sheffield Cutlery and Tool Trades’ (1995) 37 Business History 1,”

(15¹web.prm.ox.ac.uk
There had been cutlers and silversmiths by the name of Rodgers in Sheffield from at least the 17th century. The firm’s famous trademark (embossed here in gold on the dark leather case) was a six-pointed star and Maltese cross. The mark was originally granted to one William Birks in 1682 but was then let to John Rodgers in 1724, and was finally confirmed by the Cutlers’ Company of Sheffield in 1764.

(16Help to identify my razor (I think swedish)
With following further elaboration from myself about more “pipe” marks;
In the “Sketchley’s Directory of Sheffield”, 1774, besides the “Tobacco Pipe” mark of “Birks”,
some other ‘Pipe’ marks are found;
Birks William & son,(1) Birks William & son, Norfolkstreet
Birks William & son,(2) Birks William, Sr.? (razor makers and Penknife cutlers), 
there are a few razor makers with a similar trademark:
Linley William, Samuel, John, Snighill
Linley William, Samuel, John, Snighill 1b Linley William, Samuel, John, Snighill 1c (“Linley William” & “
Linley John”, Snighill)
There are also other similar marking, though they are scissar -, and not razor makers…
Scissar makers: Twigg William, Wicker
Scissar makers: Twigg William, Wicker 1b 
(“Twigg William”, Wicker, scissors)
Scissar makers: Smith George, Holycroft
Scissar makers: Smith George, Holycroft 1b (“Smith George”, Holycroft, scissors)
Also in the “Gales & Martin” Sheffield Directory”, 1787besides the “Tobacco Pipe” mark of “Birks”,
other ‘Pipe’ marks are found;
Birks William and John,(1) Birks William and John, Norfolk-street
Birks William and John,(2) Birks William, Jr.?
(Also “table knives, silver and plated”)
There are similar marks to be found:
Lindley John, Spring-Street 1a
Lindley John, Spring-Street 1b,
as well as other similar marking, though not razor makers… :
Common Pocket and Penknives:
“Alsop Luke”, Coalpit-lane
, Sheffield
Alsop Luke, Coalpit-lane, Common Pocket and Penknives
Penknives:
“Newton John”, Sharrowmoor
Newton John, Sharrowmoor, Penknives.jpg
Scissors, common:
“Colley Widow”, Campo-lane, Sheffield
Coley Widow, Campo-lane, Scissors 1a
Coley Widow, Campo-lane, Scissors 1b or Colley - F & A Colley, also 'Widow' Colley.jpg
Scissors, common:
“Twigg William”, Wicker
Twigg William, Wicker, Scissors 1a
Twigg William, Wicker, Scissors 1b
Sickles:
“Mullins William”, Ford
Mullins William, Ford, Sickles 1a
Mullins William, Ford, Sickles 1b
Spotted Knives:
“Webster William”, Whiteley Wood
Webster William, Spotted Knives
In the article of  “Henry T. Lummus” (Henry Tilton Lummus (1876-1960), Associate Justice,
Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court 1923-1955), “More old razors”, there is also a “Pipe” marked razor visible:More old razors 1a kopie.jpeg.png(ilrasoio.com) The razor (unknown maker) is dated 1770, although I wouldn’t be surprised if it is even older…
Other ‘Pipe’ razors (some yet to be identified):
2a4a

“Berger” (French):
Berger (French) 1c
Nils Grönstrand, ‘Pipe’ – ‘Crown E’
Nils Grönstrand 1c
Made by Nils Grönstrand who was a knifesmith, grinder and Master in Eskilstuna Fristad, Sweden.
In 1801 he was elected councilor in Eskilstuna. Note the Fristad stamp, “crown E”.
(Nils Grönstrand, sharprazorpalace.com/razor-clubs/Stub-Tailed shavers, eskilstunaknivar.se/bilder-2/)
(Nils Grönstrand (  – 1828), pimhusse.se/knivstamplar)
1827-12-04
1827-12-04 Nils Grönstrand 1b
(https://fi.geneanet.org/fonds/bibliotheque/?go=1&lang=fi&name=gronstrand)
Nils Grönstrand ?
Nils Grönstrand ? (*M?) 2c
This is believed to be a Nils Grönstrand, but the markings next to the ‘Pipe’ could also be a ‘Star M’
(sharprazorpalace.com/razor-clubs/Stub-Tailed shavers, eskilstunaknivar.se/bilder-2/)
(Updated 2018, May)
Unknown… (Tobacco Pipe & Asterix, 18th Century English type razor)
Unknown 1a1 kopie

(17etheses.whiterose.ac.uk.pdf
“In 1766, for example, seven men were fined for breaching the laws relating to apprentices and in 1773 John Hartley was fined £6 for stamping another cutler’s mark on his knives (50)
(50) CCA, D111, the accounts of William Birks and the accounts of George Brittain.
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This entry was posted in HISTORY & IDENTIFICATION, Razor makers. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Birks “Tobacco Pipe”

  1. Pingback: Important update regarding article Birks | Fikira

  2. Pingback: “Dip-at-toe” 18th century | Fikira

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