Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 148,459 pages of information and 233,880 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.

Joseph Rowntree

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Joseph Rowntree (1836–1925) of Rowntree's

In 1822 his father Joseph had travelled from Scarborough to establish his grocery business in York, and he became prominent in civic and Quaker affairs in that city

1836 May 25th. Born at Pavement, York, the son of Joseph Rowntree (1801–1859) and his wife, Sarah, née Stephenson (1807–1888).

1856 Married Julia Eliza, daughter of Benjamin Seebohm, a wool merchant and they had one daughter who did not survive infancy.

1859 When his father died Rowntree managed the family business with his elder brother, John Stephenson Rowntree

1863 November 14th. Rowntree married his first wife's cousin, (Emma) Antoinette Seebohm (1846–1924), and they had four sons, including John Wilhelm Rowntree, and two daughters.

1869 In 1862 Joseph's younger brother, Henry Isaac Rowntree, acquired the cocoa, chocolate, and chicory firm of his former employers the Tukes, which he moved to Tanner's Moat, York, two years later. Joseph left his successful grocery shop to become his partner in 1869.

1883 Henry Isaac died leaving no inheritance and his brother as sole partner

1923 Joseph Rowntree retired as chairman and his business had a turnover of over £3,000,000 and a workforce of over 7,000

1924 His wife, Antoinette, died

1925 February 24th. Died at his home, Clifton Lodge, York

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