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Marlene C has an old picture for which she would like to identify the building in Sheffield. It is not possible to upload photos to the forum so here goes a testof a method we could use.
You can see the picture on this link:
We know the people and therefore believe it is a wedding in 1915. Also believe it is the old central library in Surrey Street. (see Picture Sheffield w00522. y03787 and So6452
Does anyone know if that building was ever used as a Registry Office please?
Also would welcome feedback on the way of showing pictures on here, and does anyone have a better way?
PS Angela or Elaine, how do I make the link live please?
It won't let me show you on here so I have sent you an email
Angela, thanks, and thank you for bringing it to life here.
Hi Dave i presume you know that the old registry office was opppsit the library on surrey street,if the photos were taken outside could they just have walked across the road because it looked better.
Just a suggestion.
M J B.
MJB, thank you. I did not know that. Another small piece in the jigsaw. My knowledge of Sheffield is entirely from family reaearch. My mother was born in Sheffield but for my sins I was born and brought up on the other side of the pennines
When you say old registry office, what do you mean in terms of date?
The old old registry office across from the Library was certainly there in 1958 when my uncle married there.
My husband and I left Sheffield in 1967 and I dont believe the one they called the Wedding Cake at the back of the Peace Gardens had been built. I worked on Charles street and walked down Norfolk Row for five years where the Wedding Cake was built.
I dont know if the Registry Office was there in 1837 when Civil Registration started.
I would like to bet there could be a plaque there now. I am sure it became a pub.
Elaine in Ottawa.
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Thanks to everyone who had a go at this photo especially Dave who's done a real sleuth job on it providing lots of information for me to explore.
The building in the background looks very much like the Mechanics Institute on Surrey Street which wasn't the actual Registry Office, this is what threw me. Why would a group of men (only two wearing buttonholes) be standing on the steps of the Mechanics Institute unless it was the Registry Office at the time of the photo.
Initially, I wanted an idea of the time on the photo, it looks very 1910/15 'ish.
I then looked at Picture Sheffield for Registry Offices and the Surrey Street one came up (as Elaine says, the "wedding cake" building came into existence in the 1960's) but, the Surrey Street Registry Office building isn't the one in the background on the photo.
That's where my research started, what was the era, who were the men (I recognised my great grandfather born 1871 among them) and why were they being photographed there in front of that building.
Many thanks go to Dave for his hard work in this enigma.
Having done a little checking that my old brain was not playing tricks, I can confirm that the Registry Office was on Surrey St in the same building as a Masonic Lodge which is now the Surrey Pub. Apparently there were masonic symbols in the old building. Regards Barry Green
I wonder if the plaque I think I remember was one for the Masonic Lodge?
Elaine in Ottawa.
Instant Messenger: Skype
I stand to be corrected - but possibly now called The Graduate pub?
Your quite right Vicki thats the place that was the Masonic Lodge and The Registry Office. I don't get down that way so often now Barry
Hi Barry & Vicki,
That building doesn't appear to be the same one as in my photo. I know the building you mean though.
There aren't any lower ground floor windows as there are on my photo.
I have relatives who married in the Registry Office on Surrey Street during the 1960's before the "wedding cake" building was completed and, that's also not the same building as in my photo.
If you bought the marriage certificate it will tell you where the marriage took place and it might give us a more accurate area to think about.
I believe there were a number of Registry Offices so it might pinpoint which one. If indeed it was a registry office.
I would say the Groom & Bestman are the two wearing the buttonhole flowers.
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It wasn't a line I was following really even though it could be my great grandfather's brother on the photo.
A relative sent this photo to me, I identified my great grandfather Frederick Arthur Norton on the right (as you look at the picture).
My curiosity was around where the building was and why this group of men were being photographed there. Apart from 2 of them wearing buttonholes there are no clues.
I wondered if anyone knew the building and, a rough date and, whether it was normal custom for just the men to be on the photo (maybe a shotgun wedding and they're there to make sure the groom goes through with it!).
Dave very kindly rose to the challenge and then put together a scenario of the group which is highly likely.
My grandfather always had a buttonhole - I think it was common for men to wear one even when not at a wedding.
Had a message from Dave with everything he has covered so I will leave it to the two of you to finish the "research". Elaine.
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first of all thanks for the help in identifying that this picture was taken across the road from the old reg office on Surrey Street.
May I apologise that the main part of identifying this photo had already happened by the time I found a way to get it on the forum. Now we have a method, the next time it will be up there straight away.
I shall be removing the picture shortly, but if anyone else has a similar problem, just let me know and I shall help them get it up there.
If anyone wants to know more details of who and how on Marlene's picture, just contact me direct. The current situation is that there are 2 possibilities for the wedding and Marlene is getting the cert.
Sorry to reopen this thread but I love looking at old photos!
Am I right in that one of the possibilities for the building could be the Mechanics Institute? I'm confused then as if it is then where are the lower level windows in the photos I have found of the Institute in the photo that has been posted?
Also can I throw another spanner in the works? Why are their hats on the floor? Surely if the photo is of something as important as a wedding they would be wearing their hats or be holding them? Also why is one the gentlemen in the photo sitting on the floor? Also what is that on the floor to his right (our left as we are looking at the photo)
My thoughts are that it is just coincidence that two of the men are wearing buttonholes. I don't think its a wedding photo at all. I wonder if its some kind of work orientated photo? Maybe they are stood outside where they work, but then that opens up the question again of where is the photo taken then?
Many thanks for your input.
My great grandfather Frederick Arthur Norton born 1871 is to the extreme right of the photo as we look at it, he was a dry stone fork grinder all his working life.
I've no idea who the other chaps are other than speculation. My mum who's 91 and very astute has seen the photo and can only recognise her granda Frederick Arthur.
I also thought it strange that the men aren't wearing their hats and, it looks odd that one chap is sitting on the ground, very informal.
I'm convinced that identifying the background building will perhaps solve the reason the men are there!
In terms of the ground level semi circular windows see Picture Sheffield pictures W00522, Y03787 and S06452.
I believe the object on the ground is a straw boater (very much in fashion at that time).
Why the man sitting on the ground? Put yourself in the photographer's shoes. Suggest he set up a symmetrical group using the steps and opening available. If that sitting man was anywhere else (sitting or standing) it would not be symmetrical. That symmetry would also be a good reason for him to request removal of hats and not hold them. Did he made a mistake allowing them to be visible on the ground? He was probably concentrating on getting all the people fully in.
Hi Dave, just decided to google central library sheffield up came a picture which shows that the lower windows are oblong not arched so its not the library. Sorry to throw another spanner in the works its just to intriguing to let go.
Regard Barry Green
Thank you for that observation Barry. I've looked at so many Picture Sheffield buildings now I'm cross-eyed!
It does look to have that kind of area to it though.
My great grandfather who is on the right hand side as we look at it lived his adult life in Heeley/Meersbrook though was born in Grenoside as was what could be his brother George (speculation) in the middle of the picture.
I wish I was better with identifying dress of the time but, these would be working class men who were probably wearing their Sunday best.
Barry and Marlene,
The 3 pictures I have indicated on Picture Sheffield have the semi circular Windows. The captions indicate that the building is on Surrey street and was the mechanics institute (demolished in 1931). It also says it was the old library. Regardless of what it was called, can we agree that it is a very good likeness to the building in question, and it was on Surrey Street?
Yes, of course. Thank you.
By jove i think i've got it.
It looks spot on to me Terry - right down to the stained glass window
Terry, fantastic. There is absolutely no doubt. Am I being stupid? I can see the image but I cannot seem to find out what building it is. Please put me out of my misery.
I can't make that link work, how can I see the photo please?
Elaine or Angela, sorry I have lost the instructions on how to make it live. will one of you please oblige
PS Marlene .,in the meantime you need to copy the URL and paste it to your browser
I have now found that the building is Old Education building, back of St Leonards Square Hotel.
Terry, what a brilliant find
CORRECTION Back of Leopold Square Hotel
This is definitely the right location, many thanks. Where did you find it.
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Thanks to Terry's great find the same building can be found on Picture Sheffield. See S24520 and C04371, 2,3 and 6