Weidman, Jack (John Albert)

John ‘Jack’ Albert Weidman (Dover)
6 April 1862 – 5 April 1927

Jack Weidman was a member of the Dover Swimming Club and a boot repairer/shoemaker, living on Snargate Street. Weidman only attempted to swim the Channel once and was unsuccessful. He remains noteworthy for being the first Dovorian to attempt the swim the Channel. Jack went on to train and pilot many swimmers, including Burgess on his 2nd ever successful swim

Jack was born on Commercial Quay, Dover, son of John (Hans) Ulrich Weidman and (Johanna Charlotte) Sophia Feil. Both had emigrated to Dover in the 1840s, Sophia with her first husband Mr. Scotman. John (1822 – 1902) was born Lufingen, Switzerland, his wife Sophia Scotman (1819 – 1862) was born in Prussia. They married at Dover in 1857, at which point John was a plumber & glazier at 25 Commercial Quay. They had two daughters, Caroline and Emily, before Sophia died after giving birth to Jack. By 1867 John had become the keeper of a refreshment house in Northampton Street and by 1869 he had acquired a liquor licence and named his premises the ‘Northampton Arms’. He married twice more

In the 1870s, John Ulrich moved to 45a Snargate St. and set up as a seaman’s outfitter. In 1879, to 1883, Jack was apprenticed as seaman to Henry Crundall, coal merchant, aboard the Dover merchant vessel “William Cundall”. In the 1880s John Ulrich changed occupation to boot repairer and in the 1890s Jack gave up his career at sea to join him in the business. 45a Snargate remained a boot repair shop until Jack’s death in 1927 and was then continued by his widow

In 1923 he married the much younger Lilian Rose Perkins (1900 – 1963) at Lambeth, London. He died at the Royal Victoria Hospital in Dover in 1927 – he had gone in for an operation but died before it took place, on the eve of his 65th birthday

Had two children Nora 1923 and Leslie 1925

Swims by Weidman, Jack (John Albert)

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