John Kirkpatrick; 1687-1728; linen merchant, antiquary; Norwich and Haveringland, Norfolk

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John Kirkpatrick; 1687-1728; linen merchant, antiquary; Norwich and Haveringland, Norfolk

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Born in Haveringland to his Scottish father Thomas and Ann Kirkpatrick, John Kirkpatrick later moved with his parents to St Stephen's parish in Norwich, where his father continued a career in linen drapery. John, after an education that included a familiarity with, at least, Latin, became apprenticed to long-standing, Norwich linen merchant, Thomas Andrewes of St Clements. His elderly master, after a long career importing and selling linen from the Low Countries, died late in October 1709 (Andrewes' PCC will bequeathed £5 each to, 'his servants', John Kirkpatrick and John Thompson) the year before Kirkpatrick was admitted freeman and linen draper.
Kirkpatrick entered into a partnership with Alderman John Custance Esq. and their linen merchandizing business and Kirkpatrick's own home were situated in St Andrew's Broad Street. Contrary to Walter Rye's assertion that Kirkpatrick soon sold out his share of the business to Custance, Kirkpatrick's will, dated only the year before his early death, both anticipated the dangers of journeying by sea and described Custance as his, '… most esteemed friend and partner in merchandizing'. Custance cannot, moreover, have been fully occupied by the merchant trade, for he was elected mayor in 1726/7, having been sheriff in 1723/4. Custance wasn't, however, too busy to be appointed supervisor of the will. Kirkpatrick died, according to his monument in St Helen's Church where he was buried, on 20 August 1728, aged 42, having taken on the post of treasurer of the Great Hospital in c 1724.
Following his father into the linen drapery business, he found himself part of a close business and social community bound together by shared membership of the Presbyterian Church. His parents, siblings, old master and local business associates were all members of the Presbyterian Congregation in Colegate Street, Norwich (a congregation which was later to reform itself into the Unitarian Church at the Octagon Chapel). It appears that, at that time, there was a powerful association between membership of such churches and advancement in trade, and also, a generation after the Act of Toleration, with official and even aldermanic influence in the city.
He lived in St Andrews, Norwich. He was appointed treasurer of the Great Hospital.
Died 20 August 1728 and is buried by the altar steps in the church of St Helen, Norwich.


Norwich, Norfolk; Haveringland, Norfolk

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Linen merchant; antiquary

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Created on: 16/11/2004 by Droip




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