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This book chronicles the lives of members of four neighbouring families from Galloway in South West Scotland, who left towards the end of the 18th century ‘to better themselves’. They could never have guessed that during their lifetime they would rise to dominate the fine cotton spinning industry in Manchester. They became friends with the industrial giants Crompton, Boulton, Watt, Stephenson, Fairbairn, Murdoch, Rennie and others, and played no small part in the early development of the great conurbation that is Manchester today.
A brief history of the Glenkens area of Galloway, the Lancashire cotton trade and the development of Manchester is followed by their business careers through the generations. The families, broadened by marriage and wealth became linked to many interesting events of the Victorian era.
William D. Kennedy was brought up on a farm in Shropshire but has lived and farmed in Galloway for over 50 years.
This book grew out of his interest in family and local history. His research led him to find a bigger story than merely rags to riches and he is pleased that Manchester is now recognising their contribution in many ways.
“To Grasp an Opportunity” by William D. Kennedy
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