Dictionary of London Immigrants |||

1798-1870 - St John Street (Clerkenwell)

Maker of barometers and thermometers Francesco [Francis] Amadio was born in Switzerland (details are lacking). He married his English wife Charlotte Seawards in February 1798. In 1815 his profession was described as artificial flower maker’, but an 1825 insurance claim lists him as a barometer and thermometer maker’. He was working in Clerkenwell from no. 10 St John Street from 1820 till 1828 and from no. 118 until 1844. His sons Joseph and Francis also were barometer makers. Joseph later turned to selling microscopes and other optical devices.

Francis gave up his barometer business at no. 35 Moorgate Street in the early 1860s, and was taken in by his brother. For a brief period, from about 1863 until Francis’s death in 1866, the business was known as F. & J. Amadio. In 1852 Joseph was listed as occupying no. 6 Shorter’s Court, Throgmorton Street. Joseph appears to have made acquaintance with novelist Charles Dickens and his name featured prominently in Household Words. Advertisements suggest that Amadio was the first to produce micro-photographs with Dickens’s picture. He retired in 1870 and spent his final years at no. 3 Sutton Lane, Chiswick, where he died in January 1892.

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