LONDON-L ArchivesArchiver > LONDON > 2000-09 > 0969229593
From: Eve McLaughlin <>
Subject: Re: [Lon] hair manufacturer
Date: Sun, 17 Sep 2000 23:26:33 +0100
In message <>, writes
>My ggg father's - Watson DICKINSON- occupation is given as HAIR MANUFACTURER.
> This information is taken from his son's - Watson James DICKINSON - marriage
>certificate in 1854 (Limehouse).
>Pigot's Directory 1839 Directory for London also lists a Nelly DICKINSON as a
>HAIR & PLASTER OF PARIS MANUFACTURER. (I think Nelly was Watson snr's mother
>Can anyone tell me more about 'hair manufacturing' (& plaster of paris)?
Plastering of walls and ceilings was done with some sort of reinforced
backing to give a key. The old style was an actual lattice of laths or
withies, but coarse horse hair worked almost as well, and was more
flexible if any moulding (pargetting) was to be done. Plaster of Paris,
old style, sets very fast (never answer the phone while plastering), as,
un-reinforced- is liable to set up and fall out in a clump. A hair or
scrim reinforced panel will hold better
Probably Watson also provided cleaned and worked horsehair for
stuffing sofas, chairs and squab cushions. There was a great deal of
hair in use in upholstery in Victorian times
Author of the McLaughlin Guides for family historians
Secretary Bucks Genealogical Society