Dring & Fage

Instrument makers

Dring and Fage were manufacturers of hydrometers and mathematical instruments established in London c.1790 through the partnership of John Dring of Walworth, brassworker and hydrometer maker, and William Fage. The partnership was forged after Dring took over an earlier business founded by John Clarke whose son, Richard, married Dring’s sister. Dring and Fage continued to manufacture the hydrometer and saccharometer developed by John Clarke in the 1740s, in addition to other instruments used to measure the strength of alcohol. These instruments were primarily used for excise purposes. They traded at various addresses in London including 4 Albion Place (1790), 21 Gracechurch St. (1790-2), 6 Tooley St. (1792-6), 248 Tooley St. (1796-1804), 8 Crooked Lane (1801), 20 Tooley St. (1804-44), 109 Upper East Smithfield (1804), 10 Duke St., Tooley St. (1843-4), 19&20 Tooley St. (1845-82), 145 Strand (1883-1902) & 56 Stamford St. (1903-38).

By 1850 the company, still operating under the same name, was owned by Edward Hall and Edward Jenkin who were appointed Hydrometer and Saccharometer Makers to the Board of Inland Revenue. According to the company history found in the collection, the business then passed to Hall’s daughter Julia and her husband Alfred Jones and from them to Edward Jones. In 1940 the company became Dring & Fage Ltd, it continued to trade into the 1960s.