48. J. Hanckock & Cox pocket watch, Yeovil (Middle Street),Somerset, hallmarked London 1867. Silver Albert chain, hallmarked.
Middlestreet, Yeovil, Somerset
This photograph is of Middle Street seen from the Borough and dates to about 1895.
Left is London house , at this time being run by George Wadman.
Rightside the medical hall which, at this time was occupied by wholesale and retail
chemists Gatward & Wright.
Then next door to the Medical Hall the door that had earlier been the premises of
clockmaker, silversmith and jeweller John White Hancock from the 1820s, then his
son James Hancock.
And finally Hancock, Cox & Co, Clock and Watch Makers until about 1894.
By the 1841 Census James was living over the premises in Middle Street (see photograph)
next door to the Medical hall on the corner of Middle Street and the Borough with his
father and sister Sarah. Also living above the shop was 20-year old William Cox and
a domestic servant. John, James and William Cox all gave their occupations as silversmith.
John White Hancock died in Yeovil in 1843 and his son James, who remained a bachelor, took over
the business. In the 1851 census James and his sister Sarah were listed at the Middle Street
premises with their other sister Mary Cox, her son William Cox and a domestic servant.
60-year old James listed his occupation as 'Watchmaker & Jeweller, employing 2 men',
Sarah was listed as his housekeeper, Mary was a 'Carpenter's Wife' and William Cox was
described as a 'Watchmaker's Assistant' - clearly one of the two men employed by James.
In 1850 and 1852 James Hancock & Co of Middle Street were listed in several trade
directories as, variously, Watchmakers, Clockmakers, Silversmiths and Jewellers.
In 1854 the company was listed as Hancock & Co in the Churchwardens' Accounts.
By 1855 James had clearly gone into partnership with his sister's son and long-time assistant,
William Cox. The new company of Hancock & Cox, were listed in several trade directories
from 1855 until the spring of 1862 when James Hancock died at the age of 71.
William Cox continued to run the company as Hancock & Cox until 1872, after which
the company was listed as Hancock, Cox & Co, of Middle Street, until 1894.