Hancock, Charles 1800 - 1877

(1800-1877), Painter & Inventor

Charles Hancock was the eighth son of James Hancock, a cabinetmaker from Marlborough. Little is known about his early life, though he was a talented artist. By the time he was 19, his portrait of his father hung in the Royal Academy. In about 1820 he moved to Norwich, where he studied under James Stark. He became known for his paintings of animals an horses in particular; for a number of years he was commissioned to paint Derby winners and he exhibited at the Royal Academy with a total of 25 pictures.

By 1845 he came to an agreement with Henry Bewley, Christopher Nickels and Charles Keene to create a pool account from the proceeds of working several patents that they owned separatelyrelating to resin goods in india-rubber and gutta-percha. He began a three year contract with the Gutta Percha Company. By 1850 Charles and his brother Walter established the West Ham Gutta Percha Company as a competitor to the Gutta Percha Company with which Charles had previously been engaged and established a manufactory in Stratford, which moved to more extensive premises in London the following year.

For the last 30 years of Charles' life he suffered from heart attacks. He died on 30 July 1877 at Blackheath.