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R & W Maltwood

R & W Maltwood

Robert and William Maltwood were trunk and case makers who started in business towards the end of the 18th century.

They are not to be confused with Thomas Maltwood, who is also listed on this website and was a trunk maker in his own right with premises at 29 Oxford Street. Thomas was, however, a close relative and likely to either be Robert or William's son. Aside from their common surname it is known that Robert was an executor of another trunk maker, Isaac Eyre's, will in 1808 and Thomas Maltwood married one of Eyre's daughter's Mary in 1816. Another daughter Ann also married a trunk maker John James.

Our first record of Robert Maltwood is dated the 12th of January 1785 as a witness at The Old Bailey in the trial of Mary Smith. He apprehended her after she stole a small hair skin (pony skin) trunk to the value of 5 shillings from James Seasons. The following year he is noted as having taken out insurance on 37 Haymarket with his occupation listed as a trunkmaker. By 1792 the Maltwood's had left Haymarket with their shop occupied by John Nickells, another trunkmaker.

R&W Maltwood moved to Strand and it is likely that their first, short lived, address was 283, as shown on the label of a small pony skin trunk we have purchased. This is the only record I can find of them at 283 Strand with their more common address of 168 listed in the trade directories and on labels by 1803 and up to 1845. It was not uncommon for trunk makers to move on the same street and perhaps 168 was a better property.

The company were known as R & W Maltwood at least until 1818 but by 1823 are shown only as W. Maltwood in the directories. William carried on in business until at least 1845 when he filed for Bankruptcy.

The Maltwoods offered all sorts of trunks for travelling carriages and exportation including Light Travelling Mails, Solid Leather Trunks, Imperials, Portmanteaus, Sea Chests, Packing Cases, Canteens and Camp Trunks for the Army. The also made Saddle Bags, Matt Cases, Wigg Blocks, Fire & Plate Buckets, Bottling Boots, Leather Straps, Chain Belts and Every Article in the Business of the Best Quality and on Reasonable Terms.

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