Yorkshire Chess History



Thomas William Palmer











Made in Yorkshire



Sheffield Sub-Site





28/04/1800, St. George’s , Hanover Square, London


28/02/1881, Scarborough


Thomas William Palmer was born 31/03/1800, presumably in London, the place of his baptism, to Thomas Palmer and Ann Palmer.


Bulmer’s History & Directory of East Yorkshire, 1892, says that Brough House, Brough, “is a large and substantial residence in the Italian style, erected about 130 years ago by an ancestor of T. W. Palmer, Esq., JP. [junior], the present owner and occupier.  The grounds are tastefully laid out, and a fine lawn stretches in front.”  This address is described in different places as “Brough House, Brough” and as “Castle Hill, Brough”.  This suggests that although our man was born in London, the broader Palmer family nevertheless had a foothold in the Hull area, in the form of Brough House, Castle Hill, Brough.


At what stage he moved to Hull is unclear, but it was by 1830.  He had married Mary Elizabeth Featherstone (b. 29/09/1810) by 1830.  The couple had five children:


Mary Brooke Palmer

born October 1830, (apparently Cottingham)

died 21/11/1894, at New Walk, Beverley

Charlotte Nelthorpe Palmer

born 16/12/1838 (apparently Pryme Street, East Sculcoates)

died 1916 at Cottingham

Eleanor Palmer

born 1838/39, (apparently Cottingham)

died 09/01/1926 at Brough

Hugh Robert Palmer

born 14/06/1841

died 20/02/1859 at Brough House, Castle Hill, Brough

Thomas William Palmer

born January 1843, Brough

died 11/08/1900 at Langtry Lodge, Brantingham


Cottingham and Sculcoates are pretty well near enough for there to be no reason to suppose the family residence was not Pryme Street, East Sculcoates, from 1830 to about 1842.


In 1836 Thomas William Palmer was one of numerous land tax commissioners for Hull listed in A Collection of the Public General Statutes Passed in the Sixth and Seventh Year of the Reign of His Majesty King William the Fourth, 1836, wherein his address was given as Pryme Street.


He was described as a merchant by the 1841 census which found him living with his wife at Pryme Street, East Sculcoates, Hull, with the three oldest children.


The family moved to Castle Hill, Brough, around 1842.  Brough is about 10 miles west of Hull, on the north bank of the Humber estuary, and is the site of the Roman Petuaria.  So a Roman camp might be the origin of Castle Hill, which seems to have gone from the maps.


Thomas William Palmer, senior, became an alderman, and was mayor of Hull in the two years 1849-50 and 1850-51.


F. White’s General Directory of Kingston-upon-Hull, and York, 1851, listed him as “The Right Worshipful the Mayor” of Hull (as from November 1850, his second term of office), and as an alderman.  More mundanely he was listed elsewhere as a wine and spirit merchant at 69 High Street, Hull, with home at 8 Albion Street, Hull, less than half a mile from Pryme Street.  He appears to have had two residences, Albion Street in the centre of Hull, and Brough house, Castle Hill, Brough, where by now his family lived.


The 1851 census unhelpfully found him away from home, visiting John Melthorpe of Scawby, Lincs, the latter’s wife Fanny M. Melthorpe, and brother Henry Melthorpe.  He was described as Mayor of Hull, without stating any other occupation.


Hugh William Palmer, the youngest son, died at Castle Hill, Brough, on 20/02/1859.


Thomas William Palmer’s wife, Mary Elizabeth Palmer, died 28/04/1860 at Castle Hill, Brough.


Thomas William Palmer, junior, became a JP.  This son seems to have married in the third quarter of 1869.  Bulmer’s History & Directory of East Yorkshire, 1892, listed him as a member of the gentry with his home at Brough House, Brough, and on a different page at Castle Hill, Brough.  He was also listed as a partner in T. W. Palmer & Co.  Another partner in this business was Rowland Heathcote Hacker of North Ferriby, to whom Charlotte Nelthorpe Palmer got married.  Mary Brooke Palmer also got married, but Eleanor Palmer seems not to have married.  Bulmer listed Miss Eleanor Palmer at Thornleigh, Brantingham-with-Thorne Township, near Brough.




He died 28/02/1881 or 01/03/1881 at Scarborough.  Probate records, which gave the latter date of date of death, described him as “late of Castle Hill, Brough”.  His will, with two codicils, was proved by Joseph Lambert of 45 High Street, Hull, and Thomas William Palmer, junior, of Brough, a wine and spirit merchant.  The deceased’s personal effects were less than £35,000.


The London Gazette of 22nd January 1884, page 356,carried a notice from his executors:


THOMAS WILLIAM PALMER, Deceased.  Pursuant to an Act of Parliament of the 22nd and 23rd Vic., cap. 35, intituled " An Act to further amend the Law of Property, and to relieve Trustess."  NOTICE is hereby given, that all persons being creditors of or otherwise having any claims upon or against the estate of Thomas William Palmer, late of Castle Hill, Brough, in the East Riding of the county of York, Esq. (who died on or about the 1st day of March, 1881, and whose will was proved on the 28th day of March, 1881, in the District Registry attached to the Probate Division of Her Majesty's High Court of Justice at York, by Joseph Lambert, of the town or borough of Kingston-upon-Hull, Merchant, and Thomas William Palmer the younger, of Brough aforesaid, Wine and Spirit Merchant, two of the executors of the said will), are required, on or before the 1st day of March, 1884, to send to Messrs. Shackles and Son, of 7, Land of Green Ginger, in Kingston-upon-Hull aforesaid, the Solicitors for the said executors, the particulars of their claims upon or against the said estate; and that at the expiration of such time the said executors will distribute the whole of the assets of the testator among the parties entitled thereto, having regard to the claims of which the said executors shall then have notice.—Dated this 17th day of January, 1884.

SHACKLES and SON, 7, Land of Green Ginger,



Sir James Thomas Woodhouse, Knight & MP, was recorded as resident, in 1897, at Brough House, Brough, Yorkshire.





He was one of the Hull contingent present at the 1854 Caistor chess meeting.





Source not stated in text:

A history of South Cave and of other parishes in the East Riding of the county of York, by John George Hall






Copyright © 2012 Stephen John Mann

Census information is copyright of The National Archive, see UK Census Information

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