Marsh, John Fitchett (DNB00)

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MARSH, JOHN FITCHETT (1818–1880), antiquary, son of a solicitor at Wigan, Lancashire, where he was born on 24 Oct. 1818, was educated at the Warrington grammar school under the Rev. T. Vere Bayne, and on the death of his father came under the care of his uncle, John Fitchett [q. v.], whom he afterwards succeeded in his business as a solicitor. On the incorporation of Warrington in 1847 he was appointed town-clerk, and held the office until 1858. He was instrumental in establishing the Warrington School of Art and the Public Museum and Library. He contributed to the Chetham Society in 1851 'Papers connected with John Milton and his Family,' based on documents in his own possession. To the Historic Society of Lancashire and Cheshire he contributed several articles: 1. 'On some Correspondence of Dr. Priestley,' 1855. 2. 'Notice of the Inventory of the Effects of Mrs. Milton, Widow of the Poet,' 1855. 3. 'History of Boteler's Free Grammar School at Warrington,' 1856. 4. 'On the engraved Portraits and pretended Portraits of Milton,' 1860. 5. 'On Virgil's Plough,' 1803. In 1855 he delivered a series of interesting lectures on the 'Literary History of Warrington during the Eighteenth Century,' which were published in a volume of 'Warrington Mechanics' Institution Lectures.' In the same year he published a lecture on the 'Parthenon and the Elgin Marbles,'

He removed in 1873 to Hardwick House, Chepstow, Monmouthshire. There he employed a part of his leisure in collecting materials for a history of the castles of Monmouthshire. He had scarcely completed that of the first (Chepstow), when he died, unmarried, on 24 June 1880. His 'Annals of Chepstow Castle' were edited by Sir John Maclean, and printed at Exeter in 1883, 4to. His large library, which included that of his uncle, Mr. Fitchett, was sold at Sotheby's in May 1882.

[Warrington Guardian, 26 June 1880; Palatine Notebook, ii. 168; Manchester Guardian, 30 June 1880.]

C. W. S.