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22 Hooper Street

Fancy drapery, toys and hardware

22 Hooper Street is a former shop at the corner of Ainsworth Street, at the end of Leeds Terrace. It was completed by 1881.


Edward Baker, 41, truck lifter on railway, b. Chrishall, Essex
Susan Baker, 39, b. Haydon, Essex
Charles E. Baker, 15, printing machine hand, b. Cambridge
William H. Baker, 13, scholar, b. Cambridge
Samuel Baker, 12, scholar, b. Cambridge
Edward G. Baker, 10, scholar, b. Cambridge
Kate Baker, 9, scholar, b. Cambridge
Charlotte Baker, 7, scholar, b. Cambridge
Florie Baker, 5, scholar, b. Cambridge
Ellen A. Baker, 3, b. Cambridge
Ada Baker, 8 months, b. Cambridge

The first residents were Edward and Susan Baker and their nine children. In total they had twelve children; the two eldest had left home by 1881 and one more daughter was born in 1883. Like all the houses in Leeds Terrace, number 22 had just three bedrooms and two living rooms.


Elisha Johnson, 38, railway guard, b. Ely, Cambridgeshire
Hannah Johnson, 32, b. Ely, Cambridgeshire
William Johnson, 11, scholar, b. Ely, Cambridgeshire
Herbert Johnson, 10, scholar, b. Cambridge
George Johnson, 6, scholar, b. Cambridge
Lilly Johnson, 4, scholar, b. Cambridge
Ada Johnson, 1, scholar, b. Cambridge

The Johnson family later moved to March, where Elisha worked as a level crossing keeper – a job that provided a cottage, ideal for a growing family.


Sarah Scarr, 44, seamstress shop, b. Cambridge
Eleanor Mary Love, boarder, 33, dressmaker, b. Cambridge


Sarah Scarr, 54, shop keeper, fancy drapery toys and hardware, b. Cambridge

Sarah was born in 1856, the youngest child and only daughter of Samuel, a barber, and his wife Hannah. Her eldest brother Samuel, a joiner, lost his wife to smallpox, and Sarah took on the role of surrogate mother to her young nieces Eleanor and Charlotte. She lived with Samuel’s family for many years and never married.

By 1901 she was running a drapery and dressmaking shop at 22 Hooper Street, with Eleanor as her co-worker. She is listed as ‘Miss Sarah Scarr, draper’ in trade directories. The large window facing Ainsworth Street may have been installed for her shop.

Sarah died in 1926 and was buried in Mill Road Cemetery.


In 1939 the residents were Florence Wright (widow, retired) and Elsie Wright (married, housewife), along with a child. With currently available records, it is not clear how they were related (mother/daughter-in-law?), or whether there is a connection to John Wright who lived at the coal wharf opposite.


UK census records (1841 to 1911), General Register Office birth, marriage and death indexes (1837 onwards), the 1939 England and Wales Register, Kelly’s Directory of Cambridgeshire (1916), and Friends of Mill Road Cemetery.


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