England badge English weights and measures Last edit: 01/Dec/2014
Names on weights: Research into manufacturers etc. of British weights.

List of Named Weights post-1826.


The information on this list has been prepared mainly by Professor Biggs, with help from myself and others, some of who are listed below. All typographical etc. errors are entirely my own! If you have any information at all that does not appear on this page, or conflicts with what is said, please e-mail me. 

This list is intended as a framework for further research. In many cases we have very sketchy information about the name and its significance. In particular, it must be emphasised that the presence of a firmís name on a weight does not mean that the firm itself made the weight. Any additional information about the firms or the weights will be gratefully received. 

The names are listed in alphabetical order. Each entry is headed by an abbreviated name for the firm, and codes indicating the types of weights that have been seen bearing that firmís name. This is followed by variants of the name as seen on weights. Then there is a summary of what we currently know about the firm and the weights. 
Codes: 
 a = apothecary weight (brass)
 b = brass trade weight
 c = coin weight (sovereign and half) 
 i = cast-iron trade weight,
 s = (multiple) sovereign weight
 t = brass troy weight 

Special types of weight are described in full.

The list is split alphabetically into four parts:
   Names A to D
   Names E to J
   Names K to P
   Names Q to Z


Additional names, for which we have almost no information: 
  • Albion Foundry
  • J Ball
  • Barford
  • Beardmore
  • B&HL
  • BC Ld
  • BB & Son
  • BV&Co
  • C & Co
  • Clayford
  • G I Co.
  • Graham & Joslin
  • H & W
  • Hereford Foundry
  • Kennard & Sons
  • R Layton
  • Lomas
  • Lowe, Manchester
  • L W C
  • McKenna
  • Parker
  • Payne
  • Robbins
  • Stirling, Glasgow
  • Todner
  • Turnell
  • T A
  • W&JCL
  • J Wilder, Reading
In addition to this, there are firms who are known to have made weights, but the weights themselves have not been seen (for example Edwin Preston of Kidderminster), firms who advertised that they made weights, but seem to have left no trace (Tansley Bros., again of Kidderminster), and firms who almost certainly did have weights with their names on, but no example seems to be in any known collection (Ashworth Son & co. of Halifax).

References and Acknowledgements.
This list has been compiled by Norman Biggs and Brian Parkin. It is based on their own observations and researches, with significant help from many other people. For iron weights, useful lists of names were compiled by Diana Crawforth-Hitchins and by Ron Wilkinson in the mid-1990s. A very extensive list of names and addresses seen on smoothing irons was also helpful in identifying some of the iron-founders.

Information about individual firms and weights has been kindly supplied by (in alphabetical order): 

John Carter,Richard Herbert,Bob Myers,Barry Oliver,Albert Rangley... 

For general background, there is ample material in Equilibrium (EQM), the journal of the International Society of Antique Scale Collectors. Norman Biggs's book on Antique Weights (AW) covers the story of English weights in the 19th century. For coin weights, the standard reference is Paul and Bente Withers's British Coin-Weights.

In the list, references to EQM and AW are given in the form [EQM xxx], where xxx is the relevant page number. Coin-weights are referred to as [W yyyy], where yyyy is the Withers catalogue number.

The references to [MR xxxx:xxx] refer to The Monthly Review - published from 1892 onwards by the professional association of Inspectors of Weights & Measures, now known as the Institute of Trading Standards Administration.

The following books are referred to by the author's name only:
   M. Bache: Salter, the history of a family firm, 1960.
   R.A. Church: Kenricks in Hardware, 1969.
   E. Hiley: Brass Saga, 1957.
   Mary Holbrook: Science Preserved, Science Museum 1992
   R.B. Prosser: Birmingham Inventors and Inventions, reprinted 1970.
   Reports of the Standards Commission (Five reports, 1867-70).

Other references are given in full.


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