Henry Ewart Grimshaw

Columbia University Graduate, New York High
School Teacher, and Author of History Books

“Czechoslovakia Fears the Worst” from Grimshaw and Estrin’s 1938 “Modern Problems in European History”

Note: This webpage has been prepared by combining two previously separate webpages. The lower part of this webpage was earlier and was started in 2002, with an update in 2008 (see companion webpage). The upper portion of this page was initiated in 2010. The discovery that the two Henry E Grimshaws were the same occurred in April 2012.

Henry Ewart Grimshaw was born in July 1890 to Benjamin and Annie (Marsh) Grimshaw before that couple had emigrated from the Haslingden and Oswaldtwistle area of Lancashire. Benjamin and Annie Grimshaw’s family, a subject of a companionwebpage, arrived at the Port of New York on the Majestic in 1895 when Henry was five years old. Henry married Ruth Dubocq and the couple had two children during their lives in New York City, where Henry taught high school.

Henry received an undergraduate degree from Columbia University in 1914 and went on to obtain a Master’s degree in 1915. He wrote his thesis on the plight of the handloom weavers in the early 1800s.  Click here to view a copy of Henry’s thesis, which is entitled “Hand-Loom Weavers in England during the First Half of the Nineteenth Century”.

Henry Grimshaw authored two books while teaching high school in the New York City area. Both books were published with Jack
Estrin of the History Department of Boys High School and then Christopher Columbus High School in the Bronx. The books, published in 1938 and 1940, respectively, were “Modern Problems in European History” and “The World Today”. These books were originally described on a companion webpage, which has now been added to this webpage.


Webpage Credits

Henry Grimshaw’s Family of Origin and Preliminary Ancestor and Descendant Chart

Henry Grimshaw’s Thesis, “Hand-loom Weavers in England during the First Half of the Nineteenth Century”

Henry Grimshaw Was at the Boys High School in Brooklyn, New York

Recent Pictures of Boys High School in Brooklyn

Henry Grimshaw Was Senior Author of Two History Books Published in the Years Prior to World War II

“Modern Problems in European History”, 1938

“The World Today”, 1940


Webpage Credits


Thanks go to the Columbia University Library for providing an image file of Henry Ewart Grimshaw’s thesis document. Thanks also to Susan Nass, Random Acts of Genealogical Kindmess for her excellent response to a posting about Henry Grimshaw on Ancestry.com (information shown below).

Henry Grimshaw’s Family of Origin and Preliminary Ancestor and Descendant Chart

Henry’s father, Benjamin Grimshaw was born in 1856 in Oswaldtwistle, Lancashire to Henry and Mary (Fielding) Grimshaw. Benjamin and Annie Marsh were married in Haslingden in 1882 or 1883 and had two children, Mary (born June 1884) and Henry Ewart (born July 29, 1890) Grimshaw, both in England. In 1895, the family emigrated to New York, arriving at the Port of New York on the Majestic on September 11. This family is the subject of a companionwebpage, which includes considerable detail on Henry Grimshaw’s origins.

Based on the information provided on the companion webpage on Benjamin and Annie (Marsh) Grimshaw, the following descendant chart has been constructed on a preliminary basis. Thanks go again to Susan for providing the results of her research.

unknown Fielding & Betty? (abt 1809 – ?)

|—Mary Fielding (abt 1834 – ?) & Henry Grimshaw. Married 8 Sep 1855, Oswaldtwistle.

|—|—Benjamin W Grimshaw (20 Feb 1856, Oswaldtwistle, Lancashire – ?) & Annie Marsh (Aug 1858 – ?). Married 1882 or 1883, Haslingden, Lancashire.

|—|—|—Mary Grimshaw (Jun 1884 – ?)

|—|—|—Henry Ewart Grimshaw (29 Jul 1890, Oswaldtwistle, Lancashire – 1947, Queens, NY) & Ruth Adelaide Dubocq (23 May 1892, New York, NY – 1974, Wilmington, DE)

|—|—|—|—Robert Benjamin Grimshaw (12 Dec 1921, Queens, NY – 8 Nov, Lake Forest, IL)

|—|—|—|—Ruth Grimshaw (abt 1926 – ?)

Henry Grimshaw’s Thesis, “Hand-loom Weavers in England during the First Half of the Nineteenth Century”

An image of a portion of the Title Page is shown below. Click here to view a full copy of Henry’s thesis.

Page 1.

An examination of English industrial history, during the period when social effects of the industrial revolution were beginning to be so apparent, when cries of the workers for assistance were rising so loud, and when it seemed as though whole industrious classes were doomed to a modern slavery set round by freedom, and to starvation in the midst of plenty, reveals no class of workers whose condition was quite as forlorn as that of the hand-loom weavers. It will be the purpose of this essay to show the conditions of the weavers in the period of the opening of the industrial revolution, the attempts at amelioration, and finally the condition of hand-loom weavers during the second half of the nineteenth century.

Very early in the eighteenth century it was becoming manifest that England’s trade in woven goods – as it was in textile generally – was increasing very rapidly. A contemporary writing in 1789, said of Manchester that the town was growing rapidly because of the manufacture of cotton goods, mixed and plain. The export trade was developing.* Defoe, in his works concerning his travels through England a few years later, reveals the fact that textile work, including weaving, was a common occupation. The number of weavers engaged in making woolen goods filled him with amazement.** In fact he wondered that the nation was able to supply the manufactures with wool. The active weaving industry in Westbury and Warminster in Wilts caused these remarks; the woolen trade at Sudbury was reported by him to be in a very flourishing condition. ***


Page 1 Footnotes.

*  Daily Advertiser Sept. 5, 1739 – From Baines E.
“History of Cotton Manufacture”. 108.

** Defoe D. “Tour through Great Britain”.

***Defoe op cit. 1.32

Image of a Handloom Weaver

Handloom Weaver

Source: http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/PRhandloom.htm

Henry Grimshaw Taught History at the Boys High School in Brooklyn, New York

Boys High School on Wikipedia

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Boys High School is an historic and architecturally notable public school building in the Bedford-Stuyvesant, neighborhood of Brooklyn, New York. It is regarded as “one of Brooklyn’s finest buildings.[2]







The “splendid” Romanesque Revival building is richly decorated in terracotta somewhat in the style of Louis Sullivan.[3] The building is admired for round corner tower, dormers, dormers, soaring campanile. [4]

The building was erected in 1891 on the west side of Marcy Avenue between Putnam Avenue and Madison Street. It was designed by James W. Naughton, Superintendent of Buildings for the Board of Education of the City of Brooklyn.[5] The building is regarded as Naughton’s “finest work.”[6]

When Boys High was landmarked by the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission in 1975, the commission called it “one of the finest Romanesque Revival style buildings in the city.”[7]

It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on February 25, 1982.


In 1975, the same year the building was landmarked, Boys High merged with Girls’ High School to become Boys and Girls High School.[7] Boys and Girls High School immediately moved to a new building at Fulton Street and Utica Avenue.[7] Notable Boys High alumni include Norman Mailer, Isaac Asimov, Congressman Emanuel Celler, Aaron Copland, basketball star Connie Hawkins, andWilliam Levitt, developer of Levittown.[8]

The school was a college preparatory program with high academic standards. Congressman Emanuel Celler described Boys High in his autobiography, “I
went to Boys’ High School — naturally. I say “naturally” because Boys’ High School then, as now, was the high school of scholarships. Boys of Brooklyn today will tell you, “It’s a hard school.” It was highly competitive…”[9]

Another Boys High graduated remembered that “I went to Boys High School in Brooklyn, a great school. It was out of the classic tradition. I guess eighty percent of the student body had to take Latin — we didn’t have to; we elected Latin, because we felt it was expected of us..”[10]

Notable alumni

Isaac Asimov (1920-92), author

Jules Bender (1914-82), collegiate and professional basketball player

Emanuel Celler (1888-1981), served in the United States House of Representatives for almost 50 years

Aaron Copland (1900-90), classical composer, composition teacher, writer, and conductor

Mel Davis (born 1950), professional basketball player

Tommy Davis (born 1939), Major League Baseball player

I. A. L. Diamond (1920-88), comedy writer

Martin Dobelle (1906-86), orthopedic surgeon

Hal Draper (born Harold Dubinsky, 1914-90), socialist activist and author

Ted Draper (1912-2006), historian and political writer

Leon Festinger (1919-89), social psychologist

Alfred Gottschalk (1930-2009), Rabbi who was a leader in the Reform Judaism movement

Si Green (1933-80), professional basketball player

Connie Hawkins, Basketball Hall of Famer

W. Langdon Kihn (1898-1957), portrait painter and illustrator

Norman Lloyd (born 1914), actor, director and producer

Man Ray (1890-1976), born Emmanuel Radnitzky, artist

Morris Kline (1908-92), Professor of Mathematics

Norman Mailer (1923 -2007), novelist, journalist, essayist, poet, playwright, screenwriter, and film director

Mickey Marcus (1901-48), US Army colonel who became Israel’s first general

Abraham Maslow (1908-70), professor of psychology

Will Maslow (1907-2007), lawyer and civil rights leader

Irving Mondschein, American track and field champion

Max Roach (1924-2007), jazz percussionist, drummer, and composer

Allie Sherman, NFL football player and coach

Alexander S. Wiener (1907-76), leader in the fields of forensic medicine, serology, and immunogenetics


“National Register Information System”. National Register of Historic Places.National Park Service. 2009-03-13.

“Brooklyn: a state of mind,” Michael W. Robbins, Wendy Palitz, Workman Publishing, 2001, p. 228.

http://www.nyc-architecture.com/BES/BED001-BoysHigh%20School.htm “New York Architecture Images, Brooklyn Bedford-Stuyvesant, Boys High School”].

“Boys’ High School,” NYC-AGO website.

An architectural guidebook to Brooklyn, Francis Morrone,Photographs by James Iska, Gibbs Smith, 2001, p. 37.

“Walkabout with Montrose: Master of Schools, JW Naughton,” September 8, 2009, Brownstoner.

a b c “Boys High School And Historic Dock Made Landmarks; Boys High And a Dock Are Cited, Joseph P. Fried,October 5, 1975, New York Times.

The big Onion Guide to Brooklyn, Seth kamil and Eric Walker, New York University Press, 2005, p. 64.

You never leave Brooklyn: the autobiography of Emanuel Celler, Emanuel Celler, J. Day Co., 1953, p. 31.

Jewish times: voices of the American Jewish experience, Howard Simons, Anchor Books, 1990, p. 262.

New York Times Article, March 24, 1895, p. 25…

832 Marcy Avenue, Brooklyn, NY

Recent Pictures of Boys High School in Brooklyn, New York

Source: http://www.nyc-architecture.com/BES/BED001-BoysHigh%20School.htm

Henry Grimshaw Was Senior Author of Two History Books Published in the Years Prior to World War II

Henry Grimshaw authored two books while teaching history in New York City. Both books were published with Jack Estrin of the History Department of Boys High School and then Christopher Columbus High School in the Bronx. The books, published in 1938 and 1940, respectively, were “Modern Problems in European History” and “The World Today”.

Modern Problems in European History, 1938

Grimshaw, Henry E., and Jack C. Estrin, 1938, Modern Problems in European History: New York, NY, Colonial Book Company, 277+ p.1

The World Today, 1940

Grimshaw, Henry E., and Jack C. Estrin, 1940, The World Today: New York, NY, College Entrance Book Company, 220+ p.2


1Grimshaw, Henry E., and Jack C. Estrin, 1938, Modern Problems in European History: New York, NY, Colonial Book Company, 277+ p.

2Grimshaw, Henry E., and Jack C. Estrin, 1940, The World Today: New York, NY, College Entrance Book Company, 220+ p.

Webpage History

First Webpage posted December 2002. Updated November 2008 with addition of second book, New York Times article, and modern photos of Boys High School in Brooklyn. Combined two Henry E Grimshaw pages in April 2012. Added companionwebpage on parents Benjamin and Annie (Marsh) Grimshaw in July 2012. Updated webpage July 2012 with reorganization and consolidation.

Second Webpage posted February 2010. Updated November 2010 with draft registration card and extensive information from Susan Nass. Combined two Henry E Grimshaw pages in April 2012.