genealogy of the Bird and Musgrove families
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The Sandemans of Perth

A port wine known the world over was begun by one of my 7 x great grandfathers grandsons.

I was actually looking for a newspaper article about another Sandeman when I came across this article in the Dundee Courier dated February 1926.  

It seems an ancestor of the founder of Sandemans Port was giving a lecture in Perth about the history of the factory and spelt out everything a genealogist of the 21st century might have wanted to know.  

I already knew that my Sandeman branch went way back and was aware of John Sandeman marrying Margaret Smith in Alyth in 1628 and the line to my 6 x great grandfather, William Sandeman of Luncarty (1722 - 1790) who was a very well known bleachfield owner in Perth. 

What I didn't know was that William had a brother whose grandson founded the Sandemans Port business.

Quoting from this newspaper article it says : 

According to the Sandeman genealogical tree, a John Sandeman, of Alyth, Perthshire, married Margaret Smith there on 23rd November 1628, followed by David Sandeman of Piteriard, near Alyth, succeeded by David Sandeman, born in 1681, and who settled in Perth in 1708.  A son was William Sandeman, of Luncarty, a famous bleachfield owner of his day, and son of younger brother, George, was George Sandeman (born 1755, died 1841), founder of the famous house of Sandeman, wine merchants, of Watergate, Perth, London, and Oporto. 

The Sandemans website gives a potted history of the business.  It says : 

"In 1790 George Sandeman, an ambitious young Scotsman from Perth, founded a wine business in London. With a £300 loan he bought his first wine cellar and started trading in Porto and Sherry from Tom’s Coffee House.

By 1795, he had established an agency in Cadiz, Spain and in 1811 he purchased an ageing cellar in V.N. Gaia in Portugal. In the early 1800s Sandeman wines were shipped to countries within Europe, North and South America, Africa, Asia and even as far as New Zealand.

Sandeman was the first company to brand a cask. In 1805, Sandeman started fire branding their trademark GSC (George Sandeman & Co.) in a crow’s foot design on all pipes they sold, thus giving the wine a name that assured quality. At the end of the nineteenth century “brand” names were largely unheard of but Sandeman wanted to give their customers a guarantee of quality so in 1880 they became the first Porto House to export bottled and labelled wines. The Sandeman brand was registered as a trademark in 1877 (First Trademark Registrations Act) making it one of the oldest in the world."


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