Liverpool History Society Questions

A selection of Liverpool history questions submitted to the Liverpool History Society

>Silver Presentation Lifeboat


I have recently acquired a beautiful silver presentation lifeboat. Presented to Mrs Samuel Plimsoll from funds raised by the Plimsoll Life-boat Fund Committees at Liverpool and Derby (Samuel Plimsoll, of Plimsoll Line fame, was MP for Derby). The Liverpool portion of the fund was contributed through the exertions of ‘some working men in that town who wished to tender to Mr Plimsoll a token of their respect, as a small acknowledgement of his great efforts to protect the lives of our sailors……’

The residue of the fund was used to make the silver presentation piece. It was made by ‘T.H. Paris, successors to J. Mayer , silversmith Liverpool’. Hidden from view inside the base is the inscription ‘The joint work of Hy Glennon and Jos Lennie July 1876’. It has the Chester Hallmark for 1875/76.

The presentation of this silver lifeboat is well reported in the Liverpool Daily Post and I eagerly await a photocopy from the Central Library.

I have not been able to find a reference to T.H. Paris in the books on silver that I own – hence this e-mail. I would have thought this bit of Liverpool History would be of interest to the Liverpool History Society – if not already well known. I wonder if you can help. Any information regarding the Silversmith and of Glennon and Lennie would be much appreciated.
I would be happy to provide the Society with a fuller account of this event if of interest.

John Bilcliffe

18/02/2009 - Posted by | Uncategorized


  1. >Dear John,thank you for the photographs. I can explain some further facts about the item. Mayer was a well know and successful jeweler would lived Bromborough on the Wirral, across the river. He donated his home and estate to Wirral Council and his collection of jewels and ancient artifacts to Liverpool Museum, that they still hold, but unfortunately are not currently on display. The Mersey Maritime Museum at the Albert Dock has a silver tray donated to Samuel Plimsoll around the same time and a small exhibition on the great man. I have forward your enquiry to a contact in Liverpool Museum who may be able to help further.If I received any other information relating to the lifeboat I will forward them on to you.Best regardsRob AinsworthWebmaster/Programme SecretaryLiverpool History Society

    Comment by Liverpool History Society | 19/02/2009 | Reply

  2. >Dear Rob,Just the sort of background information I love – thank you. Yes, Samuel Plimsoll was a great man. The more I read about him, the more impressed I am. When I bought the model at auction no mention was made in the catalogue that the lifeboat was named Samuel Plimsoll. The actual lifeboat was not like the model, but a ‘Norfolk and Suffolk’ type, placed at Lowestoft in 1876. The exhibition at the Maritime Museum will be a ‘must’ when I next visit Liverpool. I live in Dorset but my partner (for want of a better description) is a Liverpool Lass.Best wishes,John.

    Comment by Anonymous | 19/02/2009 | Reply

  3. >Dear John,by coincidence I have just completed an article for the LHS 2009 journal on William Hutchinson, Liverpool Dock master of the 18thC. It includes a small section on Samuel. Hutchinson was the first person to document tides at the old dock, set up the worlds first lifeboat station at Formby and lighthouses in Hoylake, Biston and Leasowe ( open to the public during the summer months) also he invented the first parabolic mirrors and oil burning lamps for light houses and many other institutions and inventions. Best RegardsRob AinsworthWebmaster/Programme SecretaryLiverpool History Society

    Comment by Anonymous | 19/02/2009 | Reply

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