Appendix 2.  Coxes Forge at 95 The Green

This is the site of No. 95 The Green (photo taken 2010), a white house in front of which was Coxes Forge. As young children both Dennis and I, when sent out on errands, would stop here on the way back home fascinated to watch the blacksmith at work.

On the 1911 census, living here was William Cox, aged 43, a Shoeing Blacksmith, born in Gloucestershire. With him were his wife, Sarah, aged 44, with their two daughters, Ethel May (18) and Elsie Eva (16), and their four sons, Horace William (14), Percy Wilfred (12), Oliver Cromwell (9) and Victor John (6). Horace was declared as a helper in the forge.

Previously, on the 1891 census, William, a Shoeing Smith, and Sarah were living at No. 22 Alma Street, but by 1900 they were living at 95 The Green. On the previous two censuses William had been living at Tipton.

Entries in Kelly's Directories up to the 1940s, advertise the Coxes at the forge in The Green. On the 1939 register, William, now 71, a Shoeing Smith, was reported at 95 The Green with his wife Sarah, sons Oliver Cromwell (37) and Victor John (34), and daughter Annie Mary (30). Oliver was an inside finisher of steel railway coaches, whilst Victor was a diesinker foreman. Prior to the Coxes arrival, the forge in The Green had already been in operation for many years.

On the 1871 census the incumbent at No 95 The Green was Nathaniel Thomas, aged 44, Master Blacksmith, from Clent in Worcestershire, employing 1 man and a boy, with his wife Mary Jane aged 42 from Arley. With them were son Alfred (13), daughter Mary Alice (7), Edward Boughton (21) a Blacksmith Journeyman from Worcestershire, and John Plumb (17) an apprentice Blacksmith from Handsworth.

On the 1881 census we still have Nathaniel Thomas, aged 55, a Master Blacksmith , with his wife, Mary Ann, and their two daughters, Alice (17) and Ellen (9).

Again on the 1891 census we have Nathaniel Thomas, aged 66, a Farrier Smith, with his wife Mary Ann, (61) and daughters Alice (27) and Helen (19), a drapers assistant.

Prior to this in 1861 Nathanial Thomas (34), a blacksmith and his wife, Mary Ann, (31) were living in Bell Street with their two sons Alfred (3) and Percival (3 mnths) with Henry M. Houghton, (16) an apprentice blacksmith.

Further back on the 1841 census for Clent we find Nathaniel Thomas aged 15 serving as an Apprentice to his father Richard Thomas, (55), a Blacksmith. And similarly on the 1851 census for Clent at age 24 he was described as a Blacksmith.

Finally, on the 1901 census, Nathaniel (74), a retired farrier, was living in Wolverhampton with his wife, Mary Ann, and daughter Alice.

On the 1911 census we saw Horace William Cox, aged 14, at 95 The Green described as a Blacksmith’s Helper assisting his father William with the forge operation. In July 1919, Horace, aged 23, married Annie Worrall (23). At that time or at some point later they moved into No.18 Beard Street, Prospect Place, which I assume Annie inherited. On the 1939 register we find Horace, a farrier, with his wife, Annie, living at No.18 Beard Street, Prospect House, with their daughter Ethel Irene, a shop assistant, and three other children. It is in the 1940s that Dennis and I used to visit the forge at No. 95, so it would be Horace that we used to watch at the anvil.

Some years later the forging business was moved from No 95 The Green to Prospect House.

Return to
Appendix 1
  Return to
the beginning
  Proceed to
Appendix 3