Kleiser; family

Identity area

Type of entity


Authorized form of name

Kleiser; family

Parallel form(s) of name

    Standardized form(s) of name according to other rules

    • Kleiser; family

    Other form(s) of name

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      Description area

      Dates of existence



      Joseph Benedikt Kleiser was born in Freiburg in Baden, Germany, in 1823. He was baptised there on 19 March 1823. His parents were Jacob Kleiser and Fransizka Geschwander. He had an older brother, Andreas (later Andrew), born in 1819.
      On 12 March 1840, Joseph arrived in London via Calais and Belfast. Andrew (under the name Andreas) had arrived two years previously, on 2 Nov 1839.

      By the time of the 1841 census, both brothers were working as clockmakers. Joseph lived and worked in Chelmsford, Essex, while Andrew had settled in York, where he lived on Stonegate along with his business partner, Philip Schwerer.

      In 1854, Joseph married Mary Potter in York. They had three sons:
      Cuthbert Joseph Kleiser (born 1855)
      John Henry Kleiser (born 1857)
      Louis Augustine Kleiser (born 1860).

      Andrew Kleiser had also married into the Potter family. He married Hannah Potter in September 1847 at the Catholic chapel on Little Blake Street. They had one daughter, Jane Frances. She was born in 1849 but died in 1853, aged about four.

      Andrew was naturalised in September 1852, and Joseph was naturalised in April 1854.
      Andrew died in January 1885, and Joseph later that year in December. As Andrew had no surviving children, the Kleiser business passed to Joseph's three sons, Cuthbert, John, and Louis..

      Cuthbert Joseph Kleiser married Hannah Lilian Cundall, the daughter of Luke and Hannah Cundall, in 1888. They had one son, Louis Cyril Kleiser, born 1893. Cuthbert died in 1929.

      John Henry Kleiser never married, and died in 1920, a patient at the York Asylum.

      Louis Augustine Kleiser also never married, and died in 1943.

      Cuthbert's son, Louis Cyril Kleiser, was also known as 'Cyril'. He was born in 1893 and died in 1977.


      Legal status

      Functions, occupations and activities

      In 1841, Andrew Kleiser was working as a clockmaker in York. He was in business alongside fellow Germans, Philip and Martin Schwerer, who had established their clock/watchmaking business on High Petergate in 1825. . By 1846, the business had relocated to Stonegate, where it was first located at No. 12 and later at Nos. 38-39 Stonegate. The Schwerer brothers returned to Germany, and Andrew and his brother Joseph took over the business. From at least 1851, Andrew lived with his brother and his family at Nos. 38-39 Stonegate.

      In 1872, Joseph Kleiser purchased the lease of 38 & 39 Stonegate. In 1876, the premises was targeted in a robbery. In June 1878, Andrew Kleiser formally purchased a property at the corner of Parliament Street and St Sampson’s Square (No. 22).. In 1879, this premises was partially destroyed by fire. It was reconstructed and rebuilt and re-opened in April 1881. By August 1889, the Kleiser business operated solely from the Parliament Street premises, where it remained until its eventual closure in December 1920.

      Andrew and Joseph Kleiser ran the business as partners until 1885, when both brothers died.. Andrew had no children, so the business was taken over by Joseph's sons – Cuthbert Joseph, John Henry, and Louis Augustine Kleiser. The three brothers entered into official partnership in 1886.

      Cuthbert (or ‘Joe’ as he was sometimes known) was an ardent supporter of the theatre in York and further afield. He attended theatre, opera, and ballet performances in York, Yorkshire, cities across the country including London, and Paris. He also kept records of such performances, subscribed to a fund to purchase a portrait of local theatre owner Tate Wilkinson for York Art Gallery, and donated books and periodicals relating to the theatre (and other topics) to the Public Library. He was President of the York City Watchmakers and Jeweler’s Association, and a member of the York Institute of Popular Science and Literature from 1874-1875.
      He married Hannah Lilian Cundall, daughter of Luke Cundall, in 1888, and their son Louis Cyril Kleiser was born in 1893. From at least 1891, Cuthbert and his family lived at 22 Parliament Street.

      John Henry Kleiser never married, and died in August 1920, at York Asylum. He lived at 30 Portland Street from at least 1901, along with his brother Louis Augustine Kleiser. John Henry was a Freemason of the Eboracum Lodge. Louis Augustine also never married, and died in 1943.

      Cuthbert’s son, Louis Cyril Kleiser (apparently known as ‘Cyril’) was working as a railway clerk in 1911, aged 18. He served with the the Northumberland Fusiliers as a private, from c1915 to 1919. In 1939, he was again working as a railway clerk. He was living in York with his uncle, Louis Augustine Kleiser, at 30 Portland Street.

      Mandates/sources of authority

      Internal structures/genealogy

      General context

      Relationships area

      Related entity

      Cundall; family (1783-1933)

      Identifier of related entity


      Category of relationship


      Type of relationship

      Cundall; family is the spouse of Kleiser; family

      Dates of relationship

      1888 - 1929

      Description of relationship

      Cuthbert Joseph Kleiser married Hannah Lilian Cundall, the daughter of Luke and Hannah Cundall, in 1888.

      Access points area

      Place access points

      Control area

      Authority record identifier

      Institution identifier


      Rules and/or conventions used

      International Standard for Archival Description (General) - ISAD(G)

      International Standard Archival Authority Record for Corporate Bodies, Persons and Families - ISAAR(CPF) - Ottawa



      Level of detail

      Dates of creation, revision and deletion

      Draft created 08/09/21 lleclgm2
      Draft amended 13/09/21 lleclgm2


      • English



        'History of the Kleiser business' KLE/6/2 - handwritten document, author unknown, documenting history of Kleiser business.

        Maintenance notes