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Thomas Leishman Devlin

Founder of the business of T L Devlin, Trawler Owners

1854-1919

Early Years

Thomas Leishman Devlin was born at 5 Annfield, Newhaven, in 1854, son of Thomas Devlin and Christina Devlin.

Thomas' middle name, 'Leishman', first appeared on his marriage certificate, when he married Grace Darney on February 22, 1882. In earlier documents, his name was given as 'Thomas Devlin'.  [John D Stevenson]

In 1871 he was working as a 'Fish Merchant' with his father.  Seven years later, he was working as 'Fish Merchant and Salesman' on his own account.

Marriage and Family

In 1882, Thomas married Grace Cochrane Darney in Edinburgh.  They had three children, all born at Newhaven:

-  Elizabeth   b.1884-  Thomas Leishman   b.1887

-  Robert   b.1889

In 1890, Grace's mother, Elizabeth Mossman, died in April 1890, leaving over 40,000 to be shared amongst her 4 sons and 3 daughters,  in the ratio of 1 part per son to 1.5 parts per daughter. 

Grace's 7,000 share of this inheritance may have enabled Thomas to begin his major investments, first in property and later in trawlers.

Trawlers

Thomas acquired the trawler GRACE from his father in 1887.  He sold it two years later, but went on to buy many more trawlers from the 1890s onwards, beginning with COMMODORE in 1890. 

This was the start of the T L Devlin, trawler owning business, the largest private fleet of steam trawlers in Britain.

For further details, see Recollections and Trawlers.

Business

In addition to his trawling business, Thomas had an interest in many other businesses.  He was a director of many companies, including:

-  Dundee Steam Trawling Co

Madelvic Car Factory, Granton

-  North British Cold Store, Leith

-  Scotts Shipyard, Kinghorn

He became a very successful businessman, and amassed an estate of 429,522: 3s 6d by the time of his death in 1919.  He left the ownership of his trawling business to his wife, Grace.

Grace retained control of the Devlin business until her own death, in 1941, at  the age of 91.

 

Homes

Thomas lived in rented accommodation, until the late 1880s, but then appears to have started investing in property.  His investments began with:

-  1887:  A self-contained house was being built at Blantyre Terrace, Merchiston.
He took out a 1,000 mortgage for this house, and redeemed it in 1888.

-  1888:  The house in which he was living on 2nd floor at 60, Hawthornvale.
A shop at 14 Parsons Green Terrace and house above the shop.
Land on which three houses were to be built in road to be called Stirling Road, Trinity.  For these he took out a 1,600 mortgage, and redeemed it in 1889.

He bought houses in 1891, paying 950 to Robert Robertson, builder, Jessfield, for property at 5 + 7, Strowan Terrace.

Strowan Terrace was the name given to houses on the N side of the road at the W end of East Trinity Road.

In 1888, Thomas was living at 60 Hawthornvale.  He later owned and lived in houses at 203 Newhaven Road then 25 Stanley Road.

Other Interests

Thomas worked to support the Liberal Party in Leith.

He presented an ornamental fountain in Starbank Park and a drinking fountain at Annfield to the people of Leith in 1910.

The details above have been supplied by John D Stevenson (Trinity, Edinburgh:  January 2007)

 

 

T L Devlin (Trawler Owners)

Index

Family Car

Trawlers

Company

Recollections

 

More Pages

Granton
Pictures

Granton
Recollections
Edinburgh
Recollections

Recollections
Contributors

 

__________________

 

Links to Other Pages

EdinPhoto - Home Page  Please send me an e-mail ...  with your questions, comments, suggestions or news.   At any time, you can search for a word  -  perhaps a photographer's name or a photographic topic.  The search will produce a list of pages on the EdinPhoto web site where this word appears.     At any time, you can search for a word  -  perhaps a photographer's name or a photographic topic.  The search will produce a list of pages on the EdinPhoto web site where this word appears.  

Photographs and Other Images  -  These include portraits of photographers  -  photographic outings -  Princes Street views  -  Newhaven Fishwives  -  etc.  Early Photography in Edinburgh  -  Talbot, Brewster, Hill & Adamson, Early Professional Photographers in Princes Street, etc.  Professional Photographers in Edinburgh  -  1840 to 1940  -  Their names, dates of business and studio addresses.  The Photographic Society of Scotland  -  1856 to 1873  -  Lectures, Exhibitions, Outings, etc.  The History of Edinburgh Photographic Society  -  1861 to date  -  Lectures, Exhibitions, Outings, Poems, etc.  EPS Publications - EPS Handwritten Records  -  Photographic Journals  -  Trade Directories  -  Books  -  etc.  Thanks to all who have encouraged and supported me in creating the EdinPhoto web site  -  including descendants of photographers  -  researchers  -  providers of photographs and other material  Background notes on the research thal led up to the creation of this site  -   together with lists of new material added to the site since its launch.  Brief comments on how this site might be used  -  Just browsing?  -  Seeking specific information?  Please add your questions, suggestions or other comments to the Guest Book.  Links to other web sites  -  Photographic Societies  -  Photographic History  -  Family History  -  etc.  Click here to find the link to the Edinburgh Photogrpahic Society web site.

 

A selection of my photographs, many from Edinburgh throughout the year.   Also photos from Scotland, London, Iceland, Italy, Hong Kong and elsewhere    Many old maps of Edinburgh (Old Town, New Town, while City), Leith and Newhaven.  Includes several old transport maps and a comparison of old maps with recent aerial photos.   Old engravings, mailly of Edinburgh scenes.  Some from the 1820s, some from the 1890s,  some others - includes many hand-coloured examples from the 1820s.   News from Edinburgh today  -  Events, Collections, Buildings and Gardens, Transport   This site includes     1. Post card portraits taken in studios in Edinburgh:    2. Post card views either takeen/published by Ediburgh photographers or views of Edinburgh, or both.y Edinburgh    Views of Edinburgh, grouped into three sections:     1. Street views:    2. Buildings:    3. Around Edinburgh   Views of transport around Edinburgh  -  Horse drawn trams and buses, cable cars, electric trams, buses and a few railway photos.  Also several maps of Edinburgh's bus and tram routes.   Links to pages with Photos of Groups   Frequently Asked Questions

  Summary of the updates added to this site each month since the site was launched   Links to Dumbiedykes pages  Link to Granton pages  Link to Leith pages   Link to Newhaven pages   Links to Portobello pages   Link to My Recent Talks