“All cities are places, but only a few are personalities.”
The Times (about Newcastle) | 2009 (x)
History of Newcastle upon Tyne
Established over 2,000 years ago, Newcastle is bursting with heritage. Originally known as Pons Aelius by the Romans, the name “Newcastle” came about after the Norman conquest of England when William the Conqueror sent his eldest son, Robert Curthose to the North to defend against the Scots. Curthose began to build a ‘New Castle’, of motte-and-bailey construction, overlooking the River Tyne.
Most of the architecture that can be seen in Newcastle today is owed to the architectural genius of Richard Grainger and John Dobson in the Victorian Era. Other innovators of the period include George Stephenson, reknowned as the “Father of the Railways”, and his son Robert who were hugely influential figures in the development of the early railways. Robert was also the designer of Newcastle’s High Level Bridge. Joseph Swan demonstrated a working electric light bulb about a year before Thomas Edison did the same in the US. Charles Algernon Parsons invented the steam turbine, for marine use and power generation. And William Amstrong invented a hydraulic crane which was installed in dockyards up and down the country.
Newcastle was granted city status in 1882.
The Davison Family Tree
The Davison’s in Newcastle
Davison’s have lived in Newcastle for over 150 years since moving from Ware, Hertfordshire. Hints of their lives can be found in every street and every corner of the city. The first Davison born in Newcastle was Robert Davison who became a master butcher and owned his own stall in the Grainger Market from 1896-1917 with his son, John. John took over the stall from 1918-1939 and it is presumed that John’s wife took over the stall during the time in which he fought in the war before he returned home. In 1947, John handed over the stall to his son, also named John, who owned it from 1947-1958 before the stall is then passed over to his wife. Davison’s butchers closed in 1962 after 66 years. The stall, number 166, still remains today in the market.
Robert’s brothers, James and John, both had shops of their own too. James owned a bakery in Jarrow and John owned a hardware shop by St. James’ Park. Another brother of Robert, Thomas worked at Robert Stephenson’s Locomotive Works.
Brothers, George, Norman, and Thomas, all worked at Vickers-Armstrongs building tanks.
Newcastle was their home, just as it is mine.
Existing Photos of the Davison’s
Francis Ann Rutherford – Great Great Great Grandmother
George Davison – Great Grandfather