James Cameron (left) was born in Pellew Street, Liverpool, in January 1849. His father, Alexander, was born in Dunkeld, Perthshire, in 1813. As the youngest son of the family of carpenters and house-builders, he took the road south to ply the family trade in booming Liverpool, marrying Margaret Hayes and raising five children in Wavertree.

James spent his working life as a blacksmith in Pye Street, Wavertree, and the picture shows him in his working gear. He married Betsy Howard of Woolton in 1872 and they lived at 9 Bowers Buildings - then at 16 Wells Street where ten children were born between 1878 and 1891. In later life they moved to Stevenson Street and then to 26 Rathbone Road. James died in 1923 and Betsy in 1928.

Their grandson Eddie Cameron (who spoke to us in January) remembers a favourite story. Way back in 1899, Eddie's dad - a schoolboy at Cow Lane College (Holy Trinity School) - was caned, and immediately ran to the nearby forge. His blacksmith father - as you see him in the picture, complete with leather apron and hammer - decided to 'have a word' with the teacher who had ill-treated his son. Needless to say, never again did a teacher raise a hand to a Cameron!

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Page created 6 March 2000 by MRC.