Prominent Grimshaw Individuals and Families
in England and Around the World
(Note: Webpage in preparation)
A number of Grimshaws have made significant contributions to their fields of interest, including of science, engineering, technology, art, medicine, history, and a number of other areas. Selected Grimshaw descendants are described on this webpage, generally in chronological order.
One of the most noted and successful of the Grimshaws in their native Lancashire was Nicholas, a member of the Pendle Forest line who served as mayor of Preston seven times. His noteworthy political career spanned more than 40 years, from 1790 to 1832, and included two Guild mayoralties.
Click here for the webpage on Nicholas Grimshaw, Mayor of Preston
During his tenure as mayor, Nicholas provided assistance to Richard Arkright, inventor of the mechanical spinning machine, while he was in Preston for a brief time.
Click here for the webpage on Nicholas Grimshaw’s assistance to Richard Arkright, mechanical spinning machine inventor
During the same timeframe that members of the Grimshaw family were actively participating in the beginnings of the Industrial Revolution in England, Nicholas Grimshaw played a pivotal role in bringing the textile industry to Ireland. Nicholas was from Blackburn and apparently emigrated to Ireland in about 1776. He initiated the textile industry when he opened the first cotton mill in 1784 at a location near Belfast. Nicholas Grimshaw was a descendant in the Pendle Forest line of Grimshaws and was the progenitor of the “Irish” line of Grimshaws.
Click here for the webpage on Nicholas Grimshaw, Who Introduced the Industrial Revolution to Ireland
Robert Grimshaw was born in 1757, the son of Robert and Jane (Hobson) Grimshaw. He secured an agreement with Edmund Cartwright to build a mill at Knott Mill, near Manchester, that would contain 500 power looms of Cartwright’s design. Robert and his brother John (born 1761) apparently jointly had the business concern that built the mill in 1790 at Knott’s Mill. The mill was destroyed in 1792 by fire, apparently the result of arson, during the beginnings of the social unrest that led to the loom riots of 1826. Only 30 of the 500 power looms had been installed. There were technical problems related to “dressing the warp” that Robert was trying to solve in the mill before it was destroyed. A number of sources on Cartwright’s role in the development of the Industrial Revolution make reference to Robert Grimshaw’s contributions. Robert Grimshaw was a member of the Audenshaw Grimshaw family line.
Click here for the webpage on Robert Grimshaw, Builder of a Loom Mill Near Manchester
William was born in Ireland in 1782, the eighth child of Nicholas and Mary (Wrigley) Grimshaw. In 1815 he and his family emigrated to Philadelphia, and he became a noted author of many history textbooks and other works. William and his first wife, Harriet, had 11 children, many of whom led their lives with distinction in their chosen areas of endeavor. After Harriet’s death, William married Maria DeLaCroix, and the couple had two more children, including Robert Grimshaw, a distinguished engineer. William Grimshawwas a descendant of the “Irish” Grimshaw line.
Click here for the webpage on William Grimshaw, Noted Author of Historical Works
John Atkinson Grimshaw was a noted painter in the mid to late 1800s whose subject matter was primarily fairy figures, landscapes, and dockland areas, particularly at sunset and by moonlight. He was born in Leeds in 1836 and began painting full-time about 1861; he dropped his first name by about 1867. He is descended from the Edward and Dorothy (Raner) Grimshaw line of Yorkshire.
Click here for the webpage on Atkinson Grimshaw, Victorian Painter
Robert Grimshaw, Prolific Mechanical Engineer Who Participated in Founding the American Society of Mechanical Engineers
Robert E. Grimshaw developed a distinguished professional career as a mechanical engineer in the late 1800s and early 1900s. He published numerous technical books and was on the faculty of New York University, City College of New York and Rutgers University. He was also a participant in the founding of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME.)
Click here for the webpage on Robert Grimshaw, Noted Mechanical Engineer
Beatrice Ethel Grimshaw achieved considerable prominence in the first half of the 1900s for her travels in the South Pacific, her non-fictional travel books on that area, and her novels set in exotic tropical locations. She traveled extensively in the Pacific region, including a stay of over 30 years in New Guinea. Her many nonfictional works and novels were widely published during her lifetime and remain the object of analysis by modern scholars. She was born in Ireland to a member of the “Irish” line of Grimshaws died in New South Wales Australia in 1953 at the age of 82.
Click here for the webpage on Beatrice Grimshaw, Noted South Pacific Author of Fictional and Nonfictional Works
Webpage posted April 2011. Content initiated May 2011.
Updated February 2013 with addition of contents and links.