Yorkshire Chess History
Benjamin Broughton was born to Daniel Broughton and Ann Broughton in 1815 at Sleaford, Lincolnshire, and was baptised on 13/07/1815 at New Sleaford, Lincolnshire. Quite how and when he arrived in Bradford is none too clear, but Benjamin himself, at least, would appear to have reached West Yorkshire by the mid-1830s.
On 23/03/1837, at St. Peter’s, Leeds, Benjamin Broughton of Leeds, bookkeeper, was married to Emily Hilton of Leeds (born 1818/19, Bradford), by Edward Brown. The couple had at least the following fourteen children:
The place of birth of the first seven children shows the family was living originally in Leeds.
The Broughtons are elusive in the 1841 census, but they were evidently living in Leeds.
At some time apparently from 1848 to 1851 the family moved to Bradford.
The 1851 census found Benjamin and Emily at Richmond Terrace, in the Horton district of Bradford, with the seven oldest children and two servants. Benjamin was described as a worsted stuff merchant. The oldest five children were listed as scholars
White’s Directory of Leeds, Bradford &c, 1854, seems not to include Benjamin Broughton.
Lunds' Bradford Directory, 1856, listed Benjamin Broughton as a merchant, part of Thornton, Firth & Co. on Leeds Road, Bradford, with branches also at Manchester, Leeds and Huddersfield. His home was listed as 5 Belle Vue, Bradford.
The 1861 census found 45-year-old Sleaford-born Benjamin Broughton as a worsted stuff merchant living at 33 Manor View, Bradford, with his wife, all the children except eldest son Henry, and three servants. Walter was described as employed in a stuff merchant’s warehouse, while Charles was an apprentice wool stapler. The next five oldest children where scholars.
White’s Directory of Leeds, Bradford, Huddersfield &c, 1866, listed Benjamin Broughton, merchant, at Walmer Villas, Bradford.
White's Directory of Leeds & the West Riding, 1870, listed Benjamin Broughton, merchant, of Firth Booth & Co., with his home at 13 Walmer Villas, Manningham.
The 1871 census found the family at 13 Walmer Villas, Bradford. The family included all fourteen children except Elizabeth, Henry and Frank, and included three servants. Also listed as a visitor was niece 16-year-old, Bury-born Agnes A. Broughton. Benjamin was listed still as a worsted stuff merchant. Walter was a “commercial clerk (worsted)”, perhaps working in his father’s firm. Charles was a woolstapler. Fred was a “student (literary)”. Emily, Helen, Horace, James and Caroline were all scholars.
Byles’s Post Office Bradford Directory, 1879-80, listed Benjamin Broughton, of Firth, Booth & Co., Rose Mount Villa, Manningham. He remained at this address through to his death in 1899. (Rose Mount villa was number 9 Clifton Villas, two doors along from today’s Bradford Latvian Club which is the present-day venue of Bradford Chess Club. There was also Rose Mount House, which was number 11 Clifton Villas, and there was a cottage adjacent to Rose Mount House).
Kelly's Directory of West Riding of Yorkshire, 1881, listed Benjamin Broughton, Rose Mount Villa, Manningham, Bradford.
The 1881 census found the family at Rose Mount Villa, Bradford. Not listed with their parents were Henry, Charles, Mary, Frank, Frederick, and Lucy. There were three servants. Benjamin was described as a stuff merchant, Walter as a “clerk commercial worsted”, Horace as a solicitor’s articled clerk, and James as an Oxford undergraduate.
Byles’s Post Office Bradford Directory, 1883, listed E. S. Lassen, stuff merchant, and Benjamin Broughton, gentleman, at Clifton Villas. (Edward Samuel Lassen was the grandfather of chess-player Edward Albert Lassen.)
White's Directory of Bradford, Halifax ..., 1887, listed Edward Samuel “Leeson” (Lassen), merchant, and Benjamin Broughton at 9 Clifton Villas, Bradford, two doors away from the current venue of Bradford Chess Club.
Byles’s Post Office Bradford Directory, 1891, listed Benjamin Broughton, gentleman, at Rose Mount Villa, Clifton Villas, Bradford.
The 1891 census listed Benjamin and Emily still at Rose Mount Villa, with Emily, Walter (a merchant’s clerk), Catherine, Emily, Caroline, Helen, and James (a law student). Also living with them was 8-year-old grandson Harold E Broughton, scholar. (Who Harold’s parents were isn’t immediately clear.)
The Post Office Bradford Directory, 1898, listed Benjamin Broughton, gentleman, at Rose Mount Villa, 9 Clifton Villas, Bradford.
Benjamin Broughton, gentleman of Rose Mount Villa, Manningham, Bradford, died aged 83, on 28/01/1899, at Bradford. Probate was granted to Elizabeth Ann Broughton, spinster, Henry Todd Broughton, surgeon, and James Arthur Broughton, solicitor. His effects amounted to £79,572 0s. 5d.
He was a founder member in 1853 of Bradford Chess Club, and served as its president at some time.
He attended meetings of the West Yorkshire Chess Association in 1859 to 1862 WY, 1866 & 1867, and 1869 to 1872.
When an international chess event was organised to take place in Dublin in September and October 1865, “B. Broughton, Esq., Bradford” was listed as one of the 33 members of the “Co-operative committee”.
The “F. W. Broughton” of Bradford who attended the WYCA meeting of 1871 was presumably his son Frederick.
Copyright © 2012 Stephen John Mann
Census information is copyright of The National Archive, see UK Census Information