That Pram…

Those who read earlier posts know that I mentioned a pram. Here is a little more about it!

On 30 May 1898 Albany George Finch married his second wife, Georgina Ching of Higher Coombehead Farm, Tongue End. I imagine both families approved as the other was ‘of good Methodist stock’.

She was one year his junior. They were married in Sticklepath Wesleyan Methodist Church by the Rev. Thomas Tretheway. Georgina’s brother Loius and sister Eliza were their witnesses.

They lived in Cleave House and Georgina took lodgers and paying guests. There was no inside toilet or bathroom but 3 reception rooms plus the kitchen, and 4 very good sized double bedrooms (‘apartments’) plus a single bedroom.

Georgina and Albany had two daughters, Phyllis Irene (1902 born in Higher Coombehead Farm and Muriel Ching (1904 born in Cleave House). I suspect it was a real treat when Albany arrived home with a rather special pram. Quite a status symbol in those days. Perhaps it was bought earlier by a family member and passed on to them? I am sure it would have ‘turned heads’.

Unfortunately Georgina moved during the long exposure needed for this photograph with baby Finch. It is likely to date from 1903-1905.

Mail cart prams of this sort were popular from the 1880s through to the end of the Edwardian era, though they weren’t particularly safe for babies. There are contemporary reports of babies falling out, however the appearance was a primary consideration and some of the most beautifully decorated prams were made in this period. This one has chip carved side panels.

Convertible mail carts could be adapted with the end at the child’s feet being dropped into a foot well – allowing a larger child to sit up in the pram. It was not unusual for prams not to have a maker’s mark.

(Many thanks to Heather Robertson, Curator of Transport and Technology, Riverside Museum, Glasgow who emailed this information about 2018).

The Finch family always shared such items, re-used and re-cycled (it was generally called ‘make do and mend’ back then!) I wonder who had it next?

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