Frederick Knowles

Place of Birth

  • Born
  • Baptism : at Manchester Cathedral, 18 November 1858. Father - John Knowles. Mother Elizabeth Brown.
  • Bankruptcy : 1889

Frederick John Knowles was born in 1858 at Manchester  the son of John Knowles and his first wife, Elizabeth Brown (Gill). It is probable that he trained in the offices of Clegg and Knowles, remaining as assistant.  Following the death of John Knowles in 1879, Charles Clegg continued on his own account for some three years before admitting his son, Charles Theodore Clegg into partnership. In the same year (Knowles) or in 1884 (Clegg) Frederick J Knowles was also made partner. By 1884 the practice had been re-named Clegg Son and Knowles. The partnership ended on 28 June 1885 when Frederick J Knowles resigned

F J Knowles set up again, this time in partnership with Birkett. The 1887 Directory lists Knowles & Birkett, architects, at Mansfield Chambers, St Ann's Square although this information is probably outdated, Frederick Knowles having retired from the practice on 1 January of that year, aged 28.

On 20 July 1889 he was declared bankrupt, having done nothing since his retirement from business with the exception of holding a wine agency for a few months in 1888.

Under the terms of dissolution with Charles Clegg the sum of about £6,000, due to him as beneficiary under the will of John Knowles should be paid at the rate of £300 per year by Charles Clegg, who assigned certain equities as security, and until the £6,000 was paid off, a further annuity of £300 a year was to be paid to him in consideration of his giving up his interest in the business. He assigned as the cause of his own insolvency the earlier failure of Charles Clegg.

1881      Frederick J. Knowles architect (Clegg & Knowles). 1 Princess Street Manchester. (Slaters Directory). *
1886      Frederick J Knowles, architect, Clegg Son & Knowles. (Slater’s Directory)
1887      Frederick J Knowles, architect, Knowles & Birkett. (Slater’s Directory)
1889      Devonshire House, Peel Causeway, Altrincham.

* As today, this was an office building, sub-divided into various tenancies. Frederick Knowles is not listed at this address in the street index section, although two of the offices were occupied by solicitors. It is therefore possible that the address was being used simply as a poste-restante.

Reference           Manchester Courier 22 August 1885 page 2 -dissolution of partnership with Charles Clegg
Reference           Manchester Weekly News, Saturday 17 August 1889 page 7 - bankruptcy


Name Designation Formed Dissolved Location
Clegg Son and Knowles Architectural practice 1885 1886 Manchester