. . . . . . . Hough Mill open Sundays 2-5pm . . . . . . . see diary page for Festival of Archaeology tours of Swannington Incline, Califat Coal Mine and St George's Church . . . . . . . .

Gray Family

The Coal Connected Empire of Swannington, Linby And South East England

The Gray family is a remarkable example of how by using connections and strategically placing family members within a few decades a coal empire could be established.

The Gray family spread through the middle and south east of England via the coal trade

Thomas Henry Gray 1827-1914

Thomas Henry Gray

Thomas was a coal mine manager who lived in Station Row in 1861 and 1871.

First Family

Thomas Henry Gray married Jane Taylor Whiles in Leicester in 1852.  They had nine children most of whom worked in or married someone in the coal industry.

  • Isaac Henry Gray 1852 – became a chemical apprentice in Nottinghamshire and married Lydie Le Rougetel in Jersey in 1886.
  • Eliza Gray 1855 – living with her parents age 26 in 1881.
  • Thomas Edward Gray 1855-1920Coal Merchant – coal agent Willesden, Middlesex 1881, coal merchant Stevenage, Hertfordshire 1891, coal factor Enfield, Middlesex 1901, coal agent Barnet Vale, Middlesex 1911.  Married Mary Elizabeth Nall in 1886 at St George’s, Hanover Square, London.
  • Jane Gray 1858-1878 – died in Nottinghamshire.
  • William Arthur Gray 1861-1930Coal Merchant – coal merchant Finchley, Middlesex 1881, 1891, 1901,1911.  Married Agnes Annie Pares in Leicester in 1890, son William Arthur Gray was a coal merchant until at least 1950.
  • John Wesley Gray 1863-1891Colliery Agent – commercial clerk, Linby, Nottinghamshire 1881, colliery agent, Linby, Nottinghamshire 1886.  Married Josephine Nall, Eccles, Lancashire 1886.
  • Alfred James Gray 1864Commercial Clerk and Coal Merchant – commercial clerk, Linby, Nottinghamshire 1881 and 1891, builders’ merchant, Finchley Middlesex, 1901, coal merchant, Hornsey, Middlesex 1911.
  • George Frederick Gray 1868-1938Coal Factor’s Traveler – coal factor’s traveler, Cambridge, 1891, coal factor’s manager, Ipswich, Suffolk, 1901, coal factor’s traveler, Ipswich, Suffolk, 1911,
  • Charles Wesley Gray 1870-1951 – colliery clery, Kirkby in Ashfield, Nottinghamshire, 1891, colliery commercial manager, Hucknall Torkard, Nottinghamshire, 1901, commercial manager, Linby Papplewick, Nottinghamshire, 1911.  Married Harriett Machin whose father and brother were at times directors of Linby Colliery.

Second Family

Thomas’ first wife died on the 30th July 1890.  Two years later he married Emily Ada Pearce in Conway, Caernarvonshire.  In 1891 Emily was the house keeper for his son Alfred James Gray.  They had one son.

  • Frank Gray 1895Medical Practitioner – medical practitioner, Battersea, London 1939.  Married married Mary, a nurse.

William Gray 1831-1882

William married Mary Joanna Bailey Lewis in 1870.  Her brother Richard George Bailey Lewis was the manager of Coleorton Colliery (no 1, California, No 2, Califat).

  • Railway clerk, Leicester, 1851
  • Colliery manager, Swannington, 1861 – best guess is the Swannington No 1 colliery, Calcutta.
  • Colliery agent, Kirkby, Nottinghamshire 1871.
  • Colliery agent, Annesley, Nottinghamshire 1881.


  • William Henry Gray 1871Physican & Surgeon, Mansfield, Nottingham 1901, 1911.
  • Frances Ann Gray 1872 – Married medical practitioner Edward Barrington Ffennell in Nottinghamshire in 1899.
  • Alice Gray 1874