John Figorski (Jan Figorzki) was a cabinet case manufacturer. He was born in 1828 in Bogorya, a small town in Russian Poland. In 1848, he was inspired to join the Hungarian rising and made his way across the Vistula into Austrian territory. There he joined a Polish Legion and took part in the Siege of Arad and fought for the Hungarians and their Polish allies in a successful battle against the Austrians at Scholnck. After being defeated by Austrian and Russian forces in a subsequent battle at Temesvar, he and his forces retreated to Turkey when Firgorski fell ill from typhus fever. After recovering, Firgorski fled Russian persecution and came to England. After spells in Liverpool and Todmorden, Figorski came to Sheffield. There he married Miss Bell, daughter of the principal of the firm of Bell and Sons, Watson Walk, case-makers, and he joined the firm. Figorski was a member of Upper Chapel for over 50 years and he taught writing on Sunday afternoons in the old Pepper Alley schools. He became a naturalised Englishman and was one of the first members of the Wentworth Lodge of Freemasons. He died on 13 Feb 1912 and was buried at the General Cemetery, Sheffield.
Information taken from obituary printed in the Daily Telegraph, 14 Feb 1912 (original at Sheffield City Archives: UCR/299/18).
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