Birchall DNA



How to study Family History ...

Our Mum died at 103 years old, me myself, john p was 72 ... during weekly visits to the Nursing Home ancient Eda could only talk about the long long ago ... fascinating stories about Granddad Edward which were almost unknown to us and posed many burning questions ... and soon there would be no one around to answer them. To help the conversation to flow we started to Google and make some notes ... and our very own story grew and grew.  

Earlier when our own curious youngsters asked ... who was Aunty Clare? ... we had made an effort to map a 'family tree' on a roll of old faded wall paper. We told them how the tree grew as best we could but it wasn't very good.

'Stories' were a much better bet. We knew fables had always been cultural necessities for 'tuning the brains' of the youngsters ... and everyone else for that matter ... it was as if brains thought stories as stories captured imaginations and stories were remembered ... stories had staying power. Our roll of old wall paper just didn't cut the mustard.

Charles Darwin told the greatest story of all, we were impressed big time, and so were many others, even some of the Bishops agreed it was best to search for nuggets beneath our feet rather than above our head ... and re-telling yarns was positively therapeutic for us wrinklies ... a sort of cathartic outpouring, an emotional rant which emptied the mind of the stuff which was instantly available but only possibly worth remembering ... but who was to judge?

Have a look at the Birchall story ... you'll find a maze of memorabilia and you never know you may discover some useful insights ... and if you're a Birchall it will surely be fun. 

Family HistoryFind your way around - 

john p (1939-) was a saxophone player and a beer drinker.

Edward Hindley (1885-1935) - john p's maternal great grandfather left a legacy of investments in chemicals and the inspiration of 'education & compound interest'.

Edward's Story touched all the economic happenings in Cheshire which led to, and were consequences of, the industrial revolution ... discovering & accumulating business synergies ... mass production in factories -

Deep History of Folk & Cows in Rural Cheshire - cows and the Brits, Romans, English, Danes & Normans; emerging Anglo Saxon culture, markets, fairs & the Gandys and Great Budworth.

17th century - freeholders, dissenters & cheese makers

18th century - feeding the cities & husbandry, Warrington grocers & cordwainers, Antrobus life & rivers of change

19th century - Victorian manufactories

Ancient Trades & Crafts of Rural Cheshire - cheese, horses, potatoes, cordwainers, tanners, coopers and, of course, blacksmiths and the Old Hindleys of Bedford/Astley.

Billy Gibson & George Hormbrey - friends, businessmen, Methodists, Whigs, educators & wealth creators ... ordinary folk of rural Cheshire with wit & nous, who discussed and challenged everything but knew little about the economics of comparative advantage at Crewood Hall?

These guys probably didn't even know the name of Adam the Smith and would have struggled to cope with moral sentiments & synergies of specialisation & scale that he had hammered out at his forge ... but they were all survivors and coped well ...

Industrial RevolutionWeaver Refining Co Ltd -

Merchants of Liverpool - Liverpool Port, River Weaver, triangular trade and competition from Warrington and Bristol ... and the Industrial Revolution in the North West

Early Industrialists in Flintshire - lead in Gadlys, copper & cotton in the Greenfield Valley, iron in Bersham, zinc in Greenfield and new investment capital from John Freame.

Chemical Manufactories in Cheshire - nitre beds, Northwich salt, Le Blanc, Brunner Mond & ICI and Cattle Products & the tricky issue of Animal Slaughter & Regulation.

in partnership with three remarkable families the Neills & the Grimditches & the Galloways

and building on the important legacies of -

Nathaniel Milner - Georgian Gentlemen, Salt Proprietors & Brunner Mond & Co ... and Yorkshire Wool from the merchants of Leeds

Thomas Baylies - Acton Forge & Vale Royal Company ... and the Quakers of Baptist Mills & Coalbrookdale

Daniel Whittaker - Northwich Mill & Cotton Twist Company of Holywell ... and Manchester Cotton & bankruptcy

Thomas Ryder - Marston Forge & Thomas Ryder & Co ... and Steam Engines & the production of money at Soho

William Sherratt - Acton Forge & Salford Iron Works

William Swift - Acton Forge    

John Budd - Zinc Works & Vivian & Sons ... and Cornish Tin & Swansea Coal

Richard Lloyd - Richard Lloyd & Co

William Edward Maude - W E Maude & Co

Tommy Astles - Manure Works

Lowwood Gunpowder - Saltpetre Works

There were some local competitors just down the river; the Runcorn Bone Works & the Leventons ... and on the Trent & Mersey Canal; the Rookery Bridge Refining Company & the Gortons ... and the Smiths on the Irk in Manchester and the Shropshire Union Canal at Tattenhall ... 

British Glues & Chemicals - amalgamation & modernisation, adding value from manure, to glue, to edible gelatine and Tom Walton, Business Economist - and the legacies of -

Charles Massey & Son - Newcastle-under-Lyme

Meggitts - Sutton-in-Ashfield

Quibell Brothers - Newark-on-Trent 

Grove Chemical Company - Appley Bridge ... and the Haworths

Williamson & Corder - Walker-on-Tyne

Weaver Refining Company - Acton Bridge

J & T Walker - Bestwood

Croda - synergies of specialisation & scale, and global speciality chemicals.

George W Birchall (1875-1960) - john p's paternal grandfather left a legacy of social nous, he was a craftsman, publican and the sire of a couple of brothers who were soaked in Northwich salt & the chemical industry and were both mean sportsmen and beer drinkers.

Birchall Brothers - East Cheshire industrialisation & the urban trek - Silk Throwing in Stockport, Macclesfield & Congleton - Fustian Cutting in Congleton with the Knappers & in Middlewich with the Fletchers.

John Howarth (1852-1922) - Carole's maternal great grandfather left a legacy in print, 'The Voyage of The Rangitiki' and 'The Padiham Advertiser' and the inspiration of 'pioneering endeavour' ... John searched for betterment for his family in the Antipodes.  

John Howarth - publisher of 'The Voyage of The Rangitiki' and 'The Padiham Advertiser'

Rangitiki - sailing ship to New Zealand

Thomas Telford - builder extraordinaire

 and others ...

 Birch Smith - a distant cousin played Dixieland cornet with Turk Murphy and knew a thing or two about rhythms and medical physics.

 Keith Garnett - a fettler who also played banjo and trombone and knew a thing or two about team work and getting things done.

 Alf Gaskill - a ghillie who also ran the Warrington Powders Factory and knew a thing or two about leadership and getting things done.

 'Edley - a beer drinker and also a Headmaster and knew a thing or two about having fun and playing hard.

Birchall DNA - a deep story emerges ...

Family History for us decrepit Birchalls was a fun story about the memorable outcomes of natural selection ... the copy/vary/select process of Deoxyribo Nucleic Acid ... DNA ... combinations & mixes of pre-existing variants which just happened to differentially survive.

The Birchalls, like everyone else, believed in plausible deliberate rational purposeful intentional plans but we were wrong ... we discovered that happenings just cropped up ... the only thing that was certain was that the Birchalls, like everyone else, were mobile & horny.

Birchall DNAWot's DNA?   

Science explained -

1859 Darwin's natural selection (copy/vary/select) -

1866 Mendel's genes (units of inheritance - segregation/assortment/dominance)

1953 DNA (unzips and rebuilds A-T C-G bases, syntheses amino acids, builds proteins)

Eukaryotic Cells - (all life builds from cells, all cells and come from cell division, all cells specialise)

2001 Genome - Sangster & Venter 97% junk 21,000 genes work in teams to generate traits

Proton gradients Peter Mitchell/Nick Lane (the vital question)

10 generations 50% of ancestral DNA has disappeared

Everyone alive in the 10th century who left ancestors who are alive today is the ancestor of everyone alive today. Everyone is special which means no one is special. Everyone on earth is about a 30th cousin. Everyone is descended from someone 3,000 years ago.

mobile & horny behaviour

99% of genes similar 1% different

99% of species extinct

Reads -

Blueprint: How DNA Makes Us Who We Are by Robert Plomin 2018 (99% similar 1% differences for the future, test them out, don't try to mould them)

Who We Are and How We Got Here: Ancient DNA and the new science of the human past by David Reich 2018 (migration patterns, diversity, mixing, ghosts in our DNA)

Our Human Story Paperback by Louise Humphrey and Chris Stringer 2018 (hominin diversity, sapiens survival, fascinating cast of characters)

DNA Is Not Destiny: The Remarkable, Completely Misunderstood Relationship between You and Your Genes Paperback by Steven J Heine 2018 (genes create life but do not control it, you can change your DNA destiny)

A Brief History of Everyone Who Ever Lived: The Stories in Our Genes by Adam Rutherford 2017
(genomes tell the history of our mobile & horny species and now history tells us about genes, the story connects our history to our future, a portal to the past and the future) 


back to   john p birchall