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John Jaques

Jaques is the oldest games company and sports manufacturer in the world. Passed down from father to son for six generations Jaques have been responsible for inventing many well known games such as Croquet Ping Pong Snakes and Ladders Ludo Tiddledy Winks The Staunton Chess Set Happy Families Snap and many more Thomas Jaques was born in 1765 a son of a French farmer. His recent forebears found refuge in England sometime after 1685 when the Edict of Nantes forbade Protestantism in France. Thomass instinct and good sense obviously extended into his private life at twenty-one Thomas married Mr Ivys niece Thomas continued to work for Mr Ivy. Nine years later his employer mentor (and uncle by marriage) died. Thomas now thirty was so well-versed in his craft that he could take on the business and establish himself as Thomas Jaques (Manufacturer of Ivory Hardwoods Bone and Tunbridge Ware). Thus it is from this date 1795 that John Jaques marks its official beginning. At fifteen John was apprenticed to his father and five years later partnered him in the firm which became T. and J. Jaques Wholesale Ivory Turners It was by this time too narrow a description as their materials now included hardwoods. Lignum Vitae was the unique wood which was to become Jaques croquet mallets. Turkey boxwood was destined for mallets and balls. In fact before long Jaques would become timber-based as they are now 200 years on. Their business card of 1816 shows an enterprising expanding range of products and materials. Consider the item Dentists supplied with Sea Horse Teeth - false teeth made from hippopotamus ivory As the father and son partnership prospered so the family grew. John married and in time fathered a son John Jaques II. He too was apprenticed as a young man to the family firm which by now had expanded into additional premises in Hatton Garden. (Leather Lane was retained.) Talliss London Street Views a series of steel engravings issued in 1838 shows their new headquarters at Number 102 Hatton Garden. Today Ben Emmett and Joe Jaques run the family business. Adapted from the Jaques website.

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