Hyde Name Origins.

The name "HYDE" is derived from the hide, a measure of land for taxation purposes, taken to be that area of land necessary to support a peasant family. In later times it was taken to be equivalent to 120 acres .
March 2014
BLOG still being updated, please keep commenting as it all goes to making a good read and helps to build an archive.


Thursday, 7 April 2011

Frank Johnston

A while back we posted about James Johnston  who was amongst other things a gymnast. He was famous in Hyde for once doing a hand-stand on top the flag-pole, which is itself on top of St Georges Church.   YES you read that right... on top of the church. James had four brothers, and today we can tell you about his brother Frank.

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We have been contacted by David, Franks Great Grandson... who came across the posting of James and was over joyed to see the story he had heard told so often as a child featured here. David as sent in some great old photo's and pictures. I'll let David take over from here.
It was great to see an old relative on the website and I would like to   share some information regarding his brother Frank Johnston – my great grandfather. 
Frank was born 1872 and died in 1940. He was a runner and in his youth was running professional handicap races and quite successful if the trophies above have anything to do with it. He then worked as a Fitter/Engineer for Crossley Brothers in Gorton and then later he travelled and sold miners safety lamps around the Yorkshire coalfields.

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Frank With Crossley Gas Engines
 He was a car owner through the 20’s and 30’s so must have done quite well. He lived much of his life at King George Road – next door to his son Robert and family. If anyone has any further information about Frank I would be happy to hear from them.
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This is a photo of Frank with 3 running trophies – I still have the one in the centre.

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Frank with his 4 brothers – James is the one that did a handstand from St Georges. I’m trying to trace the other brothers as far as I can.

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This photo with the safari outfit is one I have no information about but like to think Frank travelled to Africa to install one of the gas engines.

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Frank at Blackpool with his car probably in mid 1930’s



Thank you David Johnston, Great Grandson Of Frank Johnston, for this most interesting of posts... The Johnston family were surely one of Hyde's finest and must have made the Town as a whole very proud. 


UPDATE By Dave Williams

Thomas Middleton's History of Hyde says:"At the end of the nineteenth and the beginning of the twentieth century, there were some noted runners in Hyde at 100 yards and quarter-mile; these included S.Annabel, W.Bradley, A.Halton, and A.Fletcher, the best known perhaps being Frank Johnson, who during a long career as an amateur, won over £500 worth of prizes, and later became equally successful as a professional."The book was published in 1932 and an inflation calculator I found on Google says that £500 in 1932 is now worth £24,995. 

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5 comments:

Gerald (Hyde DP) said...

A great set of pics.

Dave Williams said...

Thomas Middleton's History of Hyde says:
"At the end of the nineteenth and the beginning of the twentieth century, there were some noted runners in Hyde at 100 yards and quarter-mile; these included S.Annabel, W.Bradley, A.Halton, and A.Fletcher, the best known perhaps being Frank Johnson, who during a long career as an amateur, won over £500 worth of prizes, and later became equally successful as a professional."
The book was published in 1932 and an inflation calculator I found on Google says that £500 in 1932 is now worth £24,995.

Tom said...

Thanks for that Dave... I've added the info to the posting...

Dave Johnston said...

Tom, Thanks for putting these photos up on the site they look great and thank Dave for the reference to the article in Thomas Middletons book - I'll have to search out a copy!
I suppose that may be part of the explanation how Frank could afford a car.

Tom said...

Hi Dave
Thank you for sharing such great images of such a grand Hydonian. The Book you need to look out for is as Dave states.. "The History OF Hyde" by Thomas Middleton... Printed by the "Higham Press, Hamnett Street. Hyde. 1932. Pages 552 - 553. I have seen it on Ebay once.... I can scan the pages for you if that will do.