Street View: 15
Address: 102 Fleet Street

Charles Baddeley was the son of another Charles and to distinguish himself from his father he usually added ‘junior’ to his name as, for instance, in his signature on his indenture document. He was apprenticed in 1814 to Cordwainer William Howse for the regular seven years at a consideration of five shillings. If all went according to plan, he should have obtained his freedom in 1821 and was then ready to set up his own business, but there is no evidence that he actually did so. He may have worked in his father’s shop for a while, or as a journeyman somewhere else. In 1834, however, he appears in the Land Tax record for 102 Fleet Street.

In 1833, the property was still listed for the widow Read, that is Sarah Elizabeth Read, who had continued the coffee rooms of her husband Thomas Read who had died in 1813.(1) Read’s Coffee House was also – and perhaps foremost – known for serving saloop, a coffee substitute. Charles Lamb referred to Read’s ‘Salopian House’ in his essay “The Praise of Chimney-Sweepers”, in which he wrote that he understood the beverage was made from “the sweet wood ‘yclept sassafras”, boiled down and served like tea with milk and sugar.(2) More on the making and selling of saloop, or salop, can be found in a blog post on Jane Austen’s World (here). J.C. Hotton in his History of Signboards (1867) says that a signboard that used to hang outside the coffee house when it had opened in 1719 as ‘Mount Pleasant’ by Lockyer contained a poem beginning with the lines: Come all degrees now passing by, / My charming liquor taste and try; / To Lockyer come and drink your fill, / Mount Pleasant has no kind of ill. In later years the sign could be found in the coffee room until the establishment closed in 1833 and Baddeley took over.

In 1836, Baddeley married Ann Mart, the daughter of Samuel Mart senior and the sister of Samuel Mart junior, fruiterers at 130 Oxford Street. It is very likely that Charles had met Ann in Oxford Street as his uncle John had a shoe shop at number 48 and was a friend of Samuel Mart senior. Whether the couple wanted to be closer to their family in Oxford Street, or whether it was for economic reasons, in 1842 or early 1843 they moved the business from Fleet Street to 119 Oxford Street. The Fleet Street shop was taken over by Simpson, a hatter; we will come across Simpson again in a later blog post as he was listed in the Tallis Supplement booklet 14. The Tallis Supplements do not list Oxford Street, so Baddeley does not have a later entry in Tallis, but he was certainly at 119 Oxford Street in September 1843 when one Thomas Collins attempted to steal a boot. Shopman Thomas Hinde testified that he saw the accused unhook a boot from inside the doorway and make off with it. Why Collins stole just one boot and not a pair is not made clear, but he was caught and sentenced to three months in prison.(3)

To make life easy (ahum) for us historians, there were two properties on either side of Princes Street with the number 119, so it needed a bit of work to determine which one Baddeley moved into. The Index to Tallis’s booket 36 lists Ann Blanchard, depot for mourning bonnets, at number 118, which is at the corner of Regent Circus; then Charles Evans, a linen draper, at number 119; then the indication for Princes Street; then George Hobbs, a boot and shoe maker, also at number 119; then an empty space, also at number 119; and then one Skrymsher, a watch and clock maker, at number 120. Most likely, Baddeley took over from Hobbs as they were in the same line of business, and additional confirmation can be found in the 1841 census where Charles Evans and his partner Richard Sherriff can be found next to Ann Blanchard. Across the road, at the other number 119, we find two female servants and one 26-year old male. Unfortunately, the census entry is so vague that I cannot decipher the names, but it is not George Hobbs. The 1851 census makes it even more difficult by putting number 118 between the two 119s. The Post Office Directories of 1851 and 1856, however, help us out as they not only list the entries alphabetically, but also per street. Although some of the names have changed, we can clearly see that Baddeley occupied the property on the western corner of Princes Street and that he shared it with someone else; in 1851 with Owen Bailey, publisher, and in 1856 with William Gardner, jeweller, who used to be at number 121.

So, Baddeley was certainly still trading from 119 Oxford Street in 1856, but no longer so when the next census enumerator came round in 1861 as he is then found at 290 Regent Street as “gentleman”. By 1871 he has moved to 311A Regent Street and shortly before his death he must have moved once again as his probate entry lists him as “formerly of 311 but late of 286 Regent Street”. His widow Ann is one of the executors and Caleb Porter, the nephew of Ann and Samuel Mart is another.(4) Ann was still living at 286 Regent Street when she died in March 1879.(5) Her executors are two nephews, one of them John Teede, the son of her sister Mary and grocer John Pearson Teede.

119 Oxford Street remained the property of William Gardner and he could be found there in the 1861 census. At some point he joined forces with Lawrence van Praagh as jewellers, watch makers, and picture dealers until 1868 when they go bankrupt. The Van Praaghs remained at number 119 and in the 1871 census another(?) Lawrence, who described himself as “son” could be found there as a diamond merchant. Number 119 was to be renumbered to 242 in the early 1880s.

(1) PROB 11/1542/242.
(2) Charles Lamb, <The Essays of Elia. Edition used: Paris, Baudry’s European Library, 1835.
(3) Old Bailey case t18430918-2692.
(4) England & Wales, National Probate Calendar (Index of Wills and Administrations), 1878. His effects are valued at under £6,000.
(5) England & Wales, National Probate Calendar (Index of Wills and Administrations), 1878. Her effects are valued at under £1,500.


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