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of Salford and Manchester
Peter Erman and Friedrich Engels Senior were textile merchants and manufacturers. They built Victoria Mill in Weaste (Salford) in 1837. It was located between Weaste Lane and the Liverpool and Manchester Railway, in what was then a lightly populated area.
Friedrich Engels Jr. was sent to England by his father to learn the business and to keep an eye on the other partners.
1854 Partnership change. '... the Copartnership, trade and business formerly subsisting between the undersigned, Peter Albert Ermen, Friedrich Engels, and Peter Jacob Godfrey Ermen, at Manchester, in the county of Lancaster, as Merchants, Cotton Spinners and Manufacturers, under the name or firm of Ermen and Engels, was dissolved by mutual consent, upon and from the 30th day of June last, so far as regards the said Peter Albert Ermen....'
1866 'On Tuesday morning, about half-past four o'clock, a fire broke out the Lane End Mill, Eccles, the property of Messrs. Ermen and Engels, cotton spinners, and manufacturers of knitting and sewing cottons. The fire began in the scutching room, at the top of the building, and the engine of Messrs. Holdsworth and Gibb, of Brown-street, Manchester, who have a mill at Eccles, was soon in attendance, together with a number of men fully competent for any ordinary emergency. The fire was confined to the room in which it originated, but serious damage was done by water to the large quantity of goods stored in the mill.'
1869 Partnership change. '...the Partnership lately subsisting and carried on between and by us the undersigned, Godfrey Ermen, Friedrich Engels, and Anthony Ermen, in the businesses of Doubling Cotton, Manufacturing Thread, Bleaching, and Dyeing, in the city of Manchester, in the county of Lancaster, and at Bencliffe, in Eccles, in the said county, and in the city of London, or elsewhere, under the firm of Ermen and Engels, expired by effluxion of time and was determined on the 30th day of June last. The said businesses will continue to be carried on by the said Godfrey Ermen and Anthony Ermen...'
1871 'Yesterday Messrs. Ermen and Engel’s cotton mill at Eccles, near Manchester, was totally destroyed by fire. The damage amounted to £40,000. The fire appears have originated in some doubling and finishing machinery. Several hundred hands are thrown out of employment.'
1875 'Narrow Escape from Poisoning.—Yesterday afternoon, between five and six o'clock, seven men in the employ of Messrs Ermen and Engel's, Bentcliffe Mill, Eccles, near Manchester, had a narrow escape from poisoning. The men are employed in the bleaching-room, and in consequence the heat, one of the men mixed up a chemical instead of cream of tartar to drink, which he gave the other men. After partaking of the draught the men fell ill, and appeared to be dead. A doctor was called in who speedily gave the men an emetic. Several of them were last night still considered in danger, the emetic having had no effect upon them.'
c1874 Name change. 'In 1874 Mr. Roby (Henry John Roby), who in 1861 had married Miss Ermen, daughter of Mr. Peter Ermen, removed to Manchester as a partner in the firm Ermen and Engels, which in the course of a few months, was changed to Ermen and Roby.'