Yorkshire Chess History



Edwin Collier, Vincent Collier











Made in Yorkshire



Sheffield Sub-Site



1862, Whitby



1912, Whitby



Non-Chess Life


Chess-players Edwin Collier and Vincent Collier were sons of William Collier (born 1832/33, Whitby) and Elizabeth C Collier (born 1837/38, Whitby).  The couple had at least he following nine children, all Whitby-born:

Elizabeth C Collier (jun.)

born 1855/56

Catherine Collier

born 1856/57

Anne Collier

born 1858/59

Raymund Collier

born 1859/60

Agnes G Collier

born 1861/62

Edwin Collier

born 1862

Winifred Collier

born 1863/64

William G Collier

born 1865/66

Vincent Collier

born 1868/69


Edwin’s birth was registered at Whitby in the fourth quarter of 1862.


The 1871 and 1881 census found the parents, the above nine children, and one servant, living at 2 Baxtergate, Whitby, where father William ran an ironmongery shop.  In 1871, William employed four men, in 1881 eight men and three boys.  In 1871 the children from Catherine down to Winifred were scholars.  By 1881, Raymund (seemingly spelt with a “u”) had become an ironmonger’s assistant, presumably in his father’s business, while Edwin had become an accountant, and only only the youngest, Vincent, was a scholar.


Kelly’s 1879 Whitby directory listed Collier & Son, ironmongers, 2 Baxtergate, Whitby.


In the third quarter of 1882, Edwin’s sister Catherine married his fellow chess-player Ramon Peguero.


In 1886 or 1887, Edwin had took a wife called Anne (aka Annie, born 1862/63, Hartlepool, Co. Durham).  The couple had eight children, including the following six, all Whitby-born:

Agnes Ermina Collier

born 1887/88

Vincent Collier

born 1888/89

Edwin Collier, jun.

born 1891/92

William Campbell Collier

born 1895/96

Dorothy Collier

born 1898/99

Anthony Collier

born 1901/02


Bulmer’s 1890 Whitby directory listed Edwin Collier, accountant, 9 Normanby Terrace.


The 1891 census found Edwin and his wife, living with the first two children and a servant, at 9 Normanby Terrace.  Boarding with them was 28-year-old Walter Edwin Grimshaw, son of Walter Grimshaw, living on his own means after moving to Whitby following his father’s death.


Details of the 1891 Whitby census are elusive, but he would appear still to have been at 9 Normanby Terrace.


Kelly’s 1893 Whitby directory listed Edwin Collier, lodging house, 9 Normanby Terrace.


The 1901 census found parents, the first five of the above children and a servant living at “Streonshalh (Avenue Road)”.  There seems to be no Avenue Road in modern Whitby street maps.  Streonshalh is the former Saxon name for Whitby, and there is a house of that name at the south end of Khyber Pass (now split into flats), but there are likely to have been others.  Edwin senior was now described as a shipowner’s clerk.


The 1911 census reflected a further move, to Crescent Avenue, Whitby.  Edwin and Annie were recorded as having been married for 24 full years, and as having had eight children of whom six were still living.  Edwin senior was still a shipowner’s clerk.  Agnes and Vincent were not listed.  Edwin junior was listed as a sailor in the merchant service.  William (with his middle name Campbell recorded by his father), Dorothy and Anthony were listed as scholars.




The death of Edwin Collier was recorded at Whitby in the third quarter of 1912.




With Walter Grimshaw, William Forth, George Longbotham Miller and Ramon (=Raymond) Peguero, Edwin Collier was one of the leading Whitby chess-players in the 1880s and 1890s.  He played on board 5 for Whitby versus Grosmont in 1886, and board 3 for Whitby versus Grosmont in 1890.  A certain V. Collier played for Whitby in the 1890 match versus Grosmont; this was presumably his younger brother Vincent.





Copyright © 2012 Stephen John Mann

Census information is copyright of The National Archive, see UK Census Information

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