John Spooner IV was, obviously, the fourth of that name, a descendant of Sheffield Spooners going back as far as 1560 to my knowledge and probably further.
Early records tend not to mention occupations, but by the time John IV was born, the family were established cutlers. (A cutler was a maker of knives, forks and, naturally, spoons!) Sheffield was famous for cutlery right back to the days when Robert the Cutler was assessed for tax in 1297. John was the third generation of John Spooners to have his occupation recorded as “cutler”.
At the time when John IV was working, the cutlery business would still probably have been carried on at home with a workshop attached to the house. Changes were coming with the development of the steel industry and the introduction of plating technology. The silver Assay Office was founded in Sheffield during John’s working life. He may have worked with these new silver-plating processes. Silver-plated cutlery is still available today, made in Sheffield for the luxury market.
His son, our ancestor Thomas, branched out into a different area of cutlery making, but that’s another story ….
Baptised John Spooner on 21 October 1731 at Sheffield, Yorkshire
Married Hannah Bramhall on 11 May 1753
Buried 8 May 1791