James Panton (1831-1908)

Today I have been working on the son of John Panton(1804-1865), James Panton born in 1831. This has already presented some mysteries. Why for example was he in the Christ Hospital, Lincoln in the 1841 census? After some archive research, I have decided that John and Mary Panton had probably placed James in the hospital school so he could be looked after and get a decent education. In 1854 it is described as a model school, giving a good education with moral and religious training. He seems to have been taught a trade at the school as he is described as a cooper in 1851. In April 1856, James Panton married Martha Watkin in Yorkshire. As they both came from Lincolnshire, I suspect he moved there for work. Sheffield is home to many breweries. I cannot locate James in the 1861 census currently. In 1871 he is described as a wet cooper, which means he built containers for liquids. He is still a cooper in the 1881 census and the 1891(wherein he is described as a foreman cooper) censuses. The 1901 census confirms my suspicions since I first came across the term “wet cooper”. He is in fact working at a brewery.

beer barrel

In 1906 probate is given to James Panton(by now he is apparently a retired cooper) in the will of a William Henry Bennett.

James Panton born in 1833 died in 1908 in Bierlow, Yorkshire, which is where he had been living since at least 1871. It appears that James spent over forty years living and working at a brewery, making barrels.


Source:British Pathé

This was filmed at Sweeney Cooperage, False Creek, Vancouver.