Amram Saunders

Amram Saunders is a name that has cropped up a few times in this blog. We thought it was time to see the man. Amram was born in 1779 and died in 1849. This means there are no actual photos of the man. But the Saunders were well to do and a portrait was created – artist unknown – and we have a black and white copy of this.

Amram Saunders - 19th century Market Lavington corn miller

Amram Saunders – 19th century Market Lavington corn miller

On the face of it, Amram was a miller with a water mill, known as Russell Mill, which was then in Market Lavington. But in truth he had a wide ranging business, much of it based in Bath. His children rose to prominence in a variety of fields of endeavour and in a variety of places across the world.

This simple tree shows his children.

Amram's wife and children

Amram’s wife and children

Perhaps a major feature of the whole family was non conformity both in religion and politics. The non-conformity was very human in nature. The family were keen to see all people treated well. Sometimes they suffered themselves for beliefs truly held.

You can discover much more about this extraordinary family by visiting the museum.

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4 Responses to “Amram Saunders”

  1. Jim Spencer Says:

    Would the child Samuel Saunders be the person that started the jam production up Easterton Sands who Samuel Moore worked for?

    • marketlavingtonmuseum Says:

      According to our records…

      The excellent conditions for fruit-growing on the greensand parts of the parish led to the establishment in 1868 by Samuel Saunders, a member of the family at Russell Mill, of a small fruit preserving manufactory. Saunders died in 1908 and his business moved on to Cedric Gauntlett, son of another teetotaller, William Gauntlett. Cedric taught the trade to Samuel Moore and he founded the business which continued until near the end of the twentieth century.

  2. huw blake Says:

    The PRO has a quite interesting letters written by Amram Saunders in which he complains of the neglect of the Government in not tendering assistance towards repressing the (corn) riots. Amram writes “there is a (thrashing) machine burning 300 yards from his house perpetrated by the owner’s servants”. He suggests that twenty dragoons would have prevented this happening. He goes on to say that the government should man-up; “Let me entreat of you to lay aside your fears and act like men” ………………..”almost every man is willing to do his duty if the Government acts had performed their part – but if no protection is to be afforded to property by the Government let us be told so – and then we shall do the best we can for ourselves”………. “45 special constables have been sworn in at Market Lavington”
    This was written in 1830 and things may not have improved by 1832 because the PRO has this; “Information of Amram Edwards Saunders of Market Lavington. There has been a riotous assembly of a great number of people in Market Lavington and an assault against Robert Leach. He believes another riot will take place and the current civil force will not be able to keep the peace. He asks special constables to be sworn in. Ten special constables will be sworn”.
    This seems to me quite aggressive for a man from a very religious family but no doubt business came first with him.

    • marketlavingtonmuseum Says:

      Fantastic information, Huw. I have not come across these letters but I a\m quite sure you are right and that business was prime in Amram’s life. We do know that some of his children found him a very difficult man. They all seemed to think his wife was a saint in the way she coped with him.

      Rog

      Curator

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