J. Simpson, Funeral Undertaker and Carriage Hirer, 6, London Road, Bridgeton ; and 230, Cumberland Street, S.S.—
An important and indispensable trade is that of funeral undertaking and carriage hiring, and in connection therewith one of the most extensive firms in the city is that of J. Simpson, of the above address, and at 40 to 50, Charles Street, Mile End ; and 21 to 31, Sister Street ; also at 47, Dalmarnock Road, where the coffins are made, machinery being altogether used in their construction.
A short description of the different processes which the wood undergoes before it appears as a finished coffin may be found interesting. The wood is first sawn into shapes, then goes through the planing-machine, next into the steam-chest, is then bent into shape in the benders; then, after lying and stiffening, is put together, a moulding-machine being also used for putting mouldings on lid and bottom of coffins, which are then sandpapered and brought smooth, and finally French-polished in whatever colour is required. The mountings are also cast here and plates struck, and nails turned on self-acting turning-lathes, after which they are electro-plated.
A new feature in the undertaking department, lately introduced by Mr. Simpson, is an American kind of casket in oak, mahogany, or walnut, thoroughly finished and mounted with electro-plated mountings of composition metal manufactured on the premises. These caskets, being made altogether by machinery, can be supplied at a far lower rate than those made by hand, and are a far superior article. They are certain to find favour with the general public, helping as they do to very materially reduce the cost of an interment.
This business was established sixteen years ago. As a funeral undertaker Mr. Simpson has won the respect of the Glasgow trade and public, and as a carriage hirer he is one of the most popular and extensive of the East End. In the summer season he does a large business in supplying brakes and waggonettes for excursions, marriage turnouts, &c. In the Charles Street establishment Mr. Simpson builds all his own hearses and machines of every class, and in addition all the blacksmithing is done there, so that from first to last the firm have complete control over everything appertaining to their business.
With regard to the staples in Sister Street, where there are loose boxes for about thirty horses, the sanitary arrangements and general construction of the building are about perfect. Each box is provided with drinking water conveyed by pipes from hydrant ; and there is also a gutter in tie centre connected with a pipe which carries off all the urine, a feature not to be seen in any other stable in Glasgow, These stables are one floor up, the bottom part being used for keeping the machines in, while the third, or top flat, is used for storing hay and provender, which is taken up by hoist. It is to be regretted that Mr. Simpson will have to build new premises in place of these in Sister Street, as the North British Railway have bought the property, requiring it in connection with their line. He may also be obliged to vacate the premises at Dalmarnock Road, as the Central Railway are negotiating for them. To being a good judge of horses, having a genial manner, and possessing high business qualities and a straightforward character, Mr. Simpson owes his high position in the trade.
Back to Index of Firms (1888)