As a result of a September 27, 2012 post about the William Cashmore double barrel shotgun I purchased in 1972, I received a very helpful email about William Cashmore, the gun maker. I’ve decided to copy it here so as not to change any of the information provided by William Cashmore’s great, great granddaughter. This is a testament to the power of the internet.
I was browsing on the web using the words “Cashmore guns” because I am researching our family tree and William Cashmore was my great great grandfather. I read your blog and it was so good to see the pictures.
I have assembled quite a bit of information about this company, and have recently purchased a reproduced document called a Trade Label from a company in England called Peter Dyson, as a birthday present for my Aunt, who is William’s great granddaughter – I thought you might be interested in this – they sell them quite cheaply, although I guess postage to the USA would add to the price. https://www.peterdyson.co.uk -& search for Cashmore
William, the gunmaker, (the son of William, a maltster and master brewer!) was born in 1819 in Birmingham, Warwickshire, and married Sarah Bland, daughter of Edwin Bland, gun finisher. Sarah’s brother Thomas Bland was also a gunmaker, and the two families/companies collaborated on several developments. There were also engravers in both the Cashmore and Bland families.
In the 1851 census William and Sarah were recorded living in Newton Street, with 2 daughters, Julia & Elizabeth. In the 1861 census they lived in Steelhouse Lane, and had added 4 sons, William (b.1853), Thomas James (b.1857), Albert (b.1859) and Frank (b.1860). William described himself as a gun and pistol maker. The 1871 census records William living at Holte House, Aston Village, (now under the Aston Villa football ground) with Sarah, Julia, William, Thomas, Albert and Frank. On 9 December 1887 F (Frank ?) Cashmore and T Bland patented a rotating block striker mechanism for four barrelled guns (No. 16969).
William died in 1877. The 1891 census records Sarah living as a widow at 261 Hoagley Road, Edgbaston, with Albert (a gun maker, my great grandfather) and Frank (aged 27 living on own means) and a grandson, Frank Edwards (b.1881).
On 11 October 1894 S Mills patented a locking mechanism which used downward hinging external arms to operate internal locking lumps on either side of the action (No. 19300). This patent was used by William Cashmore who on 12 September 1895 patented an improvement to it (No. 17040). On 20 December 1895 William Cashmore patented a single selective trigger mechanism in which the trigger was in either a left or right position (No. 24426). On 7 March 1896 F Cashmore, C O Ellis and E W Wilkinson patented an extractor and ejection mechanism for revolvers (No. 5151). On 18 November 1896 W Cashmore and G Brazier patented a safety catch(No. 25944). On 9 December 1887 F (Frank ?) Cashmore and T Bland patented a rotating block striker mechanism for four barrelled guns (No. 16969).
The company made some guns for Annie Oakley, one of which is I believe in the Cody Firearms Museum in Wyoming.
Albert, my great grandfather, visited Australia on behalf of the company and the newspaper article about this can be seen on Trove (the Australian newspaper archive website) :-
Sorry if this is too much information!
I live in England, in West Devon. Don’t worry, I won’t bombard you with any more of this stuff, but if you have any questions, please get in touch.
Before posting her email, I checked in with Mary and she asked me to note that some of the information she provided is best guess and not verified. She also gleaned the information from sources like birth and marriage certificates, Ancestry.com and census documents.