Weaste Cemetery

Biographies of people buried between 1857 & 1869

Martha Brotherton (1783 - 1861)

 Martha Brotherton was the wife of Joseph Brotherton (Mill Owner, Minister of the Bible Christian Church and Salford's first Member of Parliament). She was a staunch member of Salford's BCC and the compiler of the first Vegetarian Cookery Book.


She was born Martha Harvey, in 1783 at Whittington, near Chesterfield, Derbyshire. She was the daughter of Joseph Harvey (born 1743) and Martha Brotherton. Her siblings were Alderman (born 1785), William (born 1787), Edward (born ?), Hannah (born 1789), Joseph (born 1813) and James (born 1818).  Her brother William Harvey, played a prominent part in Salford's Bible Christian Church, the Vegetarian Society, temperance, anti-alcohol, anti-tobacco, peace and anti-corn law movements, parliamentary reform and Salford Council, becoming Mayor in 1857 and 1858.


On 12th March 1805, Martha married Joseph Brotherton (1783 – 1857) at Whittington Anglican Church, Derbyshire. Joseph was the son of John Brotherton (1740 - 1810) of Whittington, who was a School Master and Tax Collector, before moving to Manchester to become a Cotton Mill Proprietor, and Mary (1743 - 1822). Martha and Joseph lived in Manchester, then Salford, where Joseph inherited his father's cotton mill, then became Minister of the Bible Christian Church and then Salford's first MP.


In 1841, the family home was at Bank Side, Salford. In 1841 they lived at Grecian Street, Camp Street, Broughton, Salford, where Martha was aged 68 and Helen was aged 38, and in 1857, when Joseph died, their address was Rose Hill, Pendleton.


It is believed that Martha played a prominent role in the Bible Christian Church as wife of the Minister and indeed writing the first Vegetarian Cookery book, produced in 1812. Their children were Helen (born 1812 and died 19th May 1898 aged 86), John (born and died in 1813 aged 6 weeks), James (born 1814, married in 1852 to Mary Hannah Roberts and died 1871 aged 56) and Mary.


Helen was born on 15th April 1812 and was baptised at the BCC on 14th May 1812.  She never married, but played a prominent part in the BCC as well as the Vegetarian Society where she was Vice President. In July 1868, she, along with William Harvey, officially opened the BCC new church on the corner of Cross Lane and Woodbine St. Pendleton. On 9th February 1887 she unveiled a bust of her father in the Manchester Vegetarian Restaurant's lecture theatre. Helen died on 19th May 1898 aged 86.


James was born on 19th April 1815 and was baptised at the BCC on 16th June 1815. On 17th August 1852 he married Mary Hannah Roberts (1825 – 1894). She was the daughter of Lieutenant John Roberts RN. Their children were Joseph B (b.1854 in Sydenham, Kent), James Henry Bradley (b.1855 in Surbiton), Isabella Mary (b.1856 in Surbiton), Helen Martha (b.1858 in East Molesey), John Roberts (b.1860 in East Molesey), Bradley Harvey (b.1862 in East Molesey) and Basil James (b.1866 at Pancras). In 1871 they lived at Edmonton and on 23 May 1871 James died aged 56.


Martha died on 13th January 1861 aged 78 and was reunited with Joseph in the most prominent memorial at Weaste Cemetery.