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Wear and Waterproof Leather Co.

1933 Letterhead when R P Cave was the proprietor

The Wearproof Leather Co. was started in the 1880s by Amos Cave, son of John Cave, in what had been the family's coachhouse. The stables were the workshop, the hayloft the leather store and the saddle room was the office.

Rushden Echo and Argus, 18th February 1898, transcribed by Kay Collins

COUNTY COURT CASEThe action brought by the Wear and Waterproof Leather Co. (Messrs. Cave), Rushden, against C. Bailey, Finedon, for leather supplied, came on once more at the County Court at Wellingborough on Monday before Judge Snagge. Mr. F. J. Simpson (Simpson and Mason), who represented plaintiffs, said the case had been adjourned from time to time for the appearance of Mrs. Bailey. He had that morning received a letter from Mrs. Bailey, but he feared she was trifling with the Court.—His Honour, having read the letter, said he would either grant another adjournment or would order a non-suit.—At Mr. Simpson's request a non-suit was entered.—Mr. Simpson: What about our costs?—His Honour said he could not allow plaintiffs' costs but would see they did not have to pay defendant's costs.

1910 advert in Phillipson's Directory

The company made washers for engineering, gas trades and water board, and straps for machinery and decoration.
plastic tag samples

Gaskets, seals, washers, straps, slitting, leather, cups, contract cutting & samples found in 2005

In 1912 the company was in financial trouble.

It survived and was sold - from Amos Cave's obituary in 1923 we know:-

.... the Wearproof Leather Company in Alfred-street (now in the hands of Mr. R. P. Cave).

Rushden Echo, 20th December 1912

Sale—On Monday and Tuesday Messrs. Hamilton, Palmer, and Co. offered by auction the stock-in-trade, plant, and machinery of Mr. Amos Cave. The boots made extraordinary prices. The cut stuff and leather sold very well, and the machinery fetched a fair price. Among other items were a treeing machine £10/10/0; Standard Rotary welt sewer £85 and a stitcher £75. Two Cox’s slugging machines realised £17 each; a small press £8; Julian rounder £9/15/0; Gimson’s jumper press £45; Giant hell compressor £21; Gimson’s screwer £75; Perfecta tacker £7/10/; Blake sewer £14/10/0; Bed laster £17. The Rushden Wear and Waterproof Leather Co. was sold as a going concern at £55.

Rushden Echo, 12th October 1917, transcribed by Gill Hollis

A Nasty accident occurred yesterday at the factory of the Wearproof Leather Co., to a little lad named Chettle, son of Mr. Chettle, of Duck-street.  The boy was putting welts through a splitting machine when, it is thought, for some reason or other he must have lifted the guard, with the result that he got his left hand in the rollers, the hand being badly crushed.  Mr. Amos Cave, the principal of the firm, at once went to the lad’s assistance, and extricated his hand from the machinery.  He was then taken to Dr. Owen’s surgery and from thence by motor-car to Northampton Infirmary, where he is making satisfactory progress. [see index of shoe factory accidents]

For a photo album of the factory click here Ebooks and scroll down for 23 York Road and click run

click here for a Survey of a factory later occupied by Wearproof Ltd.

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