SHIRLEY, Jesse (1848-1927), flint grinder and bone merchant, Hanley.
Jesse was born in Etruria on 17 November 1848. He was educated at Alfieri's Academy, Northwood, Hanley, and by 1880 was in partnership with his brother, H. B. Shirley in the firm of Jesse and H. B. Shirley, bone and flint mills, Etruria.
The mill still stands at the junction of the Trent and Mersey and Caldon canals and is a listed building.
He was elected to Hanley council in 1880, served as mayor in 1885 and became an alderman in 1892. As chairman of the parks committee he promoted the scheme for the purchase and laying out of Hanley park, 1892-7 sited on 63 acres of Stoke fields, waste ground on each side of Victoria Road.
In Etruria park there is a fountain donated in 1904 by Henry and Jessie Shirley.
Jesse Shirley was also elected to the local bench of justices of the peace. He married twice and had at least six children. He lived at Etruscan Villa (Etruria Cottage), Etruria. He died on 8 August 1927.
He attended the nearby Etruria Methodist Church and inside the church is a monument to him and his wife.
SOURCES: Census 1861; Huntbach; C. Penn, Staffordshire at the Opening of the 20th Century; VCH viii; People of the Potteries.