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Historic Book to be Presented to Cook Birthplace Museum

By Published June 15, 2018

A SLICE of Middlesbrough history is returning to the town’s historic Stewart Park. 

A book commemorating Thomas Dormand Stewart being made a Freeman of Middlesbrough is being donated to the Captain Cook Birthplace Museum by his great grandson.

Three generations of Dormand Stewarts were involved in Middlesbrough’s development from the 1880s onwards.

Beginning with a clothing shop Stewart & Co. (Clothiers) which opened on Linthorpe Road, Thomas Dormand Stewart became heavily involved with Middlesbrough life.

He held the post of councillor for 16 years, becoming Mayor in 1920 and being granted the Freedom of Middlesbrough in 1924.

He is primarily remembered for his generous gift of a piece of land - previously landscaped by industrialist Henry Bolckow - which he purchased in 1924 to be ‘a public possession, open and accessible to all the people for all time’.

The newly named Stewart Park was opened to the public in 1928 and is now home to the Captain Cook Birthplace Museum.

Thomas’ great grandson Richard Boase contacted the museum last year as he felt the book honouring his relative’s Freedom of the town should ‘come home’ to Middlesbrough.

Councillor Mick Thompson, Middlesbrough Council’s Executive Member for Culture and Communities, said: “Middlesbrough’s history and heritage was forged in the 19th century, and the men and women who shaped that story are hugely significant.

“The Dormand Stewart name is synonymous with one of the jewels in Middlesbrough’s crown in Stewart Park, and the granting of the Freedom of the town recognised a major contribution to civic life.

“This this beautifully illuminated book is an exciting addition to the Middlesbrough Museums collection and a great gesture on the part of the family.”

 

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