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Matt Kingsley

Matt Kingsley



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Matt Kingsley played in goal for his village side, Turton, before joining Newcastle United in 1898. He developed a good reputation as one of the best goalkeepers in the First Division and in 1901 was rewarded with his first and only international cap against Wales. Kingsley kept a clean sheet with England winning 6-0. He was the first Newcastle player to represent his country. In 1904 Kingsley was signed by Syd King to replace the Welsh international, Fred Griffiths. On 17th March, 1905, Matt Kingsley was seen to kick former Hammer, Herbert Lyon during the game against Brighton & Hove Albion. This caused a crowd invasion and a near riot took place before Kingsley was sent off and Lyon was carried from the field. The Stratford Express reported: "No sooner had the referee pointed to the centre than the West Ham keeper ran at Lyon and kicked him to the ground, and matters looked ugly for the international keeper, who was ordered off the ground by the referee, but the Brighton officials, with a posse of police, acted very promptly and escorted him from the playing arena before any violence was used." It was the last game Kingsley played for West Ham and after completing his suspension he was transferred to Queen's Park Rangers. He also played for Rochdale and Barrow before retiring from football.


Matt Kingsley: Newcastle's first England international

Last week we took a look at a former Newcastle United and West Ham star by the name of Bryan ‘Pop’ Robson, and this week we remember another man who turned out for both the Magpies and the Hammers, but more than half a century earlier. Unlike Robson, Matt Kingsley was capped by England, and in doing so, he became the first man to win a cap for the English national team whilst playing for Newcastle United.

Born in Bolton in September 1874, he began playing football as an amateur with his local side Edgworth, but soon joined his more illustrious hometown team of Turton. Having been a very decent side in the two decades following their founding in 1871, Turton suffered a fall from grace after the FA yielded and allowed for professionalism within football. They remained amateur, and as such, lost many of their best players.

They would lose one of their star turns once more in 1896, when their promising young goalkeeper Matt Kingsley headed for Darwen. The professionalism that had been so damaging to Turton had been pioneered by Darwen. The Lancashire side are believed to have had the first two professional footballers on their books in 1879, which was the cause of much controversy since they reached the quarter-finals of the FA Cup that year. They had been relegated in 1894, two years before Kingsley joined the club, but remained in the Second Division.

It was in 1898 that he left Darwen to join newly-promoted First Division outfit Newcastle United. He would spent the next six years in the north east with Newcastle, establish himself as one of the finest goalkeepers in the First Division. In that time, he amassed 180 appearances for the Magpies, as they went from First Division debutants and hopefuls, to being a real force within the English game.

The 1901-02 season was a particular highlight for both Kingsley and the club, as they recorded their highest ever league finish of 3rd in the First Division, as well as reaching the quarter-finals of the FA Cup. Kingsley conceded only 34 goals in 34 league games that season, making his goal the most impenetrable in the division. Had ‘Golden Glove’ awards existed back then, the short and heavy-set shot stopper would surely have been in contention.

22nd April 1911: A general view of the 1911 FA Cup final in progress between Bradford City and Newcastle United at Crystal Palace. The match ended in a goalless draw and was replayed at Old Trafford, where Bradford won 1-0.

It was in the season prior to that one that Kingsley had become Newcastle’s first ever England international, at the age of 26. Southampton shot stopper Jack Robinson was widely regarded as being England’s first choice between the sticks at that time, but in March 1901, the England selectors gave Kingsley the nod. The match in question was England’s second in the 1901 British Home Championship, against a Wales side that commanded respect.

The game would take place in a familiar setting for Kingsley, at Newcastle’s St. James’ Park. The Welsh travelled up to Tyneside off the back of a creditable draw against Scotland, but they found an England team in inspired form, led by their talisman Steve Bloomer. A magnificent footballer and a prolific goal scorer, Bloomer was the First Division’s top scorer, and he put on a masterclass at St. James’ Park, scoring four goals in a 6-0 win for the Three Lions.

Kingsley would never receive another cap for England, so his international career started and ended with a record of one cap, one win and one clean sheet kept in a 6-0 win. He left Newcastle to join West Ham in 1904, where he spent a single season. The Hammers didn’t become members of the Football League until after the First World War in 1919, so Kingsley’s single campaign there came in in Division One of the Southern League, where they finished 13th.

His West Ham career ended in ignominy, as he was involved in a violent incident during a match against Brighton & Hove Albion. The one-time international had got himself involved in a clash with Brighton’s Herbert Lyon, who had been a West Ham player the previous season. Kingsley ‘ran at Lyon and kicked him to the ground’, according to The Stratford Express, and he was given his marching orders by the referee. A pitch invasion followed, and Kinglsey had to be escorted from the playing field by police.

That was the last game he played for West Ham, and he was handed an FA ban shortly after. Kingsley went on to have brief spells with Queens Park Rangers, Barrow and Rochdale, as he edged closer to a move back home. Shortly after his retirement from the game, he began working as a nightwatchman for the Manchester textile firm Calico Printers’ Association. Kingsley was enlisted as a quarryman during the war, and later joined the Royal Engineers as a sapper in 1917. According to the 1939 census, his job title is listed as ‘general labourer’. Kingsley died in Leigh in 1960, aged 85.


Matt Kingsley officially takes over as Anclote football coach

Anclote didn't have to look far to find its second football coach in school history. Matt Kingsley, who has been the Sharks' defensive coordinator since the school opened in 2009, was officially named head coach Monday. He takes over for Matt Wicks, who was recently named Pasco County's athletic director.

"It's pretty exciting," Kingsley said. "I guess you could say I'm the last (original football) coach left standing. It's been a dream of mine to be a head coach."

Kingsley, 43, spent last spring as an assistant coach at Fivay but returned to Anclote soon after.

He doesn't have much time to transition from assistant to head coach. Spring practices begin next week. Anclote was 4-6 last season. Kingsley said he expects between 40 and 50 players to practice in the spring. He also said it is unlikely that he will hire a defensive coordinator in the spring, but he does expect to have one named by start of the fall season.

Kingsley admits that the timing isn't ideal, but his familiarity with the program should make for an easier transition.

"We've only really got four solid work days before it begins," said Kingsley, who played football at Ridgewood. "But it's not like we're putting in a new system. The kids are all familiar with what we're doing. We had a good showing in the weight room this offseason. There is very good chemistry. I really think we'll do well."


Matt Kingsley: Newcastle’s first England international

22nd April 1911: A general view of the 1911 FA Cup final in progress between Bradford City and Newcastle United at Crystal Palace. The match ended in a goalless draw and was replayed at Old Trafford, where Bradford won 1-0.

Last week we took a look at a former Newcastle United and West Ham star by the name of Bryan ‘Pop’ Robson, and this week we remember another man who turned out for both the Magpies and the Hammers, but more than half a century earlier. Unlike Robson, Matt Kingsley was capped by England, and in doing so, he became the first man to win a cap for the English national team whilst playing for Newcastle United.

Born in Bolton in September 1874, he began playing football as an amateur with his local side Edgworth, but soon joined his more illustrious hometown team of Turton. Having been a very decent side in the two decades following their founding in 1871, Turton suffered a fall from grace after the FA yielded and allowed for professionalism within football. They remained amateur, and as such, lost many of their best players.

They would lose one of their star turns once more in 1896, when their promising young goalkeeper Matt Kingsley headed for Darwen. The professionalism that had been so damaging to Turton had been pioneered by Darwen. The Lancashire side are believed to have had the first two professional footballers on their books in 1879, which was the cause of much controversy since they reached the quarter-finals of the FA Cup that year. They had been relegated in 1894, two years before Kingsley joined the club, but remained in the Second Division.

It was in 1898 that he left Darwen to join newly-promoted First Division outfit Newcastle United. He would spent the next six years in the north east with Newcastle, establish himself as one of the finest goalkeepers in the First Division. In that time, he amassed 180 appearances for the Magpies, as they went from First Division debutants and hopefuls, to being a real force within the English game.

The 1901-02 season was a particular highlight for both Kingsley and the club, as they recorded their highest ever league finish of 3rd in the First Division, as well as reaching the quarter-finals of the FA Cup. Kingsley conceded only 34 goals in 34 league games that season, making his goal the most impenetrable in the division. Had ‘Golden Glove’ awards existed back then, the short and heavy-set shot stopper would surely have been in contention.

22nd April 1911: A general view of the 1911 FA Cup final in progress between Bradford City and Newcastle United at Crystal Palace. The match ended in a goalless draw and was replayed at Old Trafford, where Bradford won 1-0.

It was in the season prior to that one that Kingsley had become Newcastle’s first ever England international, at the age of 26. Southampton shot stopper Jack Robinson was widely regarded as being England’s first choice between the sticks at that time, but in March 1901, the England selectors gave Kingsley the nod. The match in question was England’s second in the 1901 British Home Championship, against a Wales side that commanded respect.

The game would take place in a familiar setting for Kingsley, at Newcastle’s St. James’ Park. The Welsh travelled up to Tyneside off the back of a creditable draw against Scotland, but they found an England team in inspired form, led by their talisman Steve Bloomer. A magnificent footballer and a prolific goal scorer, Bloomer was the First Division’s top scorer, and he put on a masterclass at St. James’ Park, scoring four goals in a 6-0 win for the Three Lions.

Kingsley would never receive another cap for England, so his international career started and ended with a record of one cap, one win and one clean sheet kept in a 6-0 win. He left Newcastle to join West Ham in 1904, where he spent a single season. The Hammers didn’t become members of the Football League until after the First World War in 1919, so Kingsley’s single campaign there came in in Division One of the Southern League, where they finished 13th.

His West Ham career ended in ignominy, as he was involved in a violent incident during a match against Brighton & Hove Albion. The one-time international had got himself involved in a clash with Brighton’s Herbert Lyon, who had been a West Ham player the previous season. Kingsley ‘ran at Lyon and kicked him to the ground’, according to The Stratford Express, and he was given his marching orders by the referee. A pitch invasion followed, and Kinglsey had to be escorted from the playing field by police.

That was the last game he played for West Ham, and he was handed an FA ban shortly after. Kingsley went on to have brief spells with Queens Park Rangers, Barrow and Rochdale, as he edged closer to a move back home. Shortly after his retirement from the game, he began working as a nightwatchman for the Manchester textile firm Calico Printers’ Association. Kingsley was enlisted as a quarryman during the war, and later joined the Royal Engineers as a sapper in 1917. According to the 1939 census, his job title is listed as ‘general labourer’. Kingsley died in Leigh in 1960, aged 85.


Matt Kingsley: Newcastle United’s first English national team call-up

A footballer being called up to their national side is a tremendous achievement, and is certainly an accomplishment worth celebrating. Newcastle United and England have had a unique dynamic in recent years, notably Jamaal Lascelles and Jonjo Shelvey not making appearances for the Three Lions this season. But that was not always the case, and it all started in March of 1901.

Matt Kingsley was the first Magpie to be called into the English side, and the goalkeeper helped to make sure that the result was a memorable one. England defeated Wales 6-0 in the British Home Championship, as Kingsley earned a clean sheet in his first cap.

The interesting part of that fantastic start was that it was not only his last international clean sheet, but also his last international appearance. Despite six years of productive work on Tyneside, Kingsley would not be brought into the England team again.

Want your voice heard? Join the Newcastle Toons team!

Kingsley was the key shot-stopper for a Toon side that was beginning to establish themselves as a power in the First Division.

He would make 180 league appearances for United, and was a part of strong showings in the FA Cup as well.

However, his time with the Magpies would eventually end because of a future legend at the goalkeeper positon.

Lawrence takes over

Jimmy Lawrence became the first-choice keeper in 1904, and would go on to play a record 496 games for Newcastle.

The shame of it for Kinglsey was that it also was the time that the team earned great success, as Lawrence was the goalkeeper for three league titles and their FA Cup final triumph over Barnsley in 1910.

Despite the lofty standards that came after he left for West Ham, Kingsley will always have that special place in club history.

Jamaal Lascelles and Jonjo Shelvey may be next, but the path from Newcastle United to England was formed by the outstanding work of Matt Kingsley more than a century ago.


Company-Histories.com

Address:
30100 Telegraph Road, Suite 251
Bingham Farms, Michigan 48025
U.S.A.

Statistics:

Private Company
Incorporated: 1980 as Deli Unique
Employees: 753
Sales: $42 million (2004)
NAIC: 722110 Full-Service Restaurants 722320 Caterers 722211 Limited-Service Restaurants 311812 Commercial Bakeries


Company Perspectives:
Matt Prentice Restaurant Group (MPRG) offers fine dining, unique atmosphere and impeccable service within an array of fine dining, casual and deli restaurants located in southeastern Michigan. MPRG is also Michigan's largest privately owned caterer, with a variety of facilities accommodating events for several hundred guests.


Key Dates:
1980: Matt Prentice founds Deli Unique in Royal Oak, Michigan.
1984: Prentice opens Café Jardin in Somerset Mall with help from owner Sam Frankel.
1986: Sebastian's opens at Somerset the company forms a wholesale produce operation.
1990: Morels: A Michigan Bistro opens in Bingham Farms.
1993: Sourdough Bread Factory opens in Pontiac.
1998: New restaurant openings include Portabella, No. VI Chop House, Duet, Flying Fish Tavern.
2001: The firm begins catering auto shows for the Ford Motor Company.
2002: Kosher restaurant Milk & Honey opens.
2004: Coach Insignia, located atop Detroit's Renaissance Center, opens.
2005: The company becomes known as Matt Prentice Restaurant Group.

The Matt Prentice Restaurant Group runs more than a dozen eateries in the metropolitan area of Detroit, Michigan, and also operates one of the largest catering businesses in the state. The firm's concepts range from the low-key Deli Unique and Flying Fish Tavern to the upscale Morels: A Michigan Bistro, Shiraz, and Coach Insignia, located on the 71st floor of Detroit's landmark Renaissance Center. The company's catering business serves a number of hotels, temples, and senior citizen residences, as well as special events throughout the area.

The namesake and founder of the Matt Prentice Restaurant Group grew up in Royal Oak, a suburb of Detroit, where he set his sights on becoming a professional chef. He entered the Culinary Institute of America to learn the trade but quit one year into the two-year program because of financial difficulties and family health problems, returning home to take a job with a local restaurant.

Prentice's cooking and management skills soon impressed his boss, and he was given the job of running a grungy delicatessen in nearby Oak Park. He worked hard to improve it, spending many nights painting and repairing equipment, but after a year the owner announced it would be closed. Rather than let his hard work go to waste, the 20-year old Prentice decided to buy it, and after securing funds from investors and settling the former owner's debts, he reopened it as Deli Unique. The reasonably priced menu featured gourmet dishes like Beef Wellington and Flaming Duck, which Prentice would cook tableside with the lights lowered for effect.

The revived restaurant soon proved a success, and its business grew with the addition of carryout deli trays and a catering service. One assignment, for a lawyer in the wealthy suburb of West Bloomfield, led to Prentice's recommendation to Sam Frankel, owner of Somerset Mall, who was seeking to replace a failing restaurant in the middle of his shopping center.

In 1984, with funding from Frankel, Prentice opened Le Café Jardin and a gourmet take-out operation, La Cuisine Jardin, in the mall. It did well, and two years later he convinced the developer to let him open another restaurant, Sebastian's, in the space where a now-closed competitor had stood. Prentice's first attempt at a formal dining establishment was a relative disappointment, however, and he subsequently worked at improving his ability to manage multiple businesses at once. In 1986, the company formed a wholesale produce unit, GW Produce, and 1987 saw the opening of a second Deli Unique in West Bloomfield. In 1989, Prentice took over management of the Plaza Deli in Southfield, Michigan, which he later bought.

In 1990, Prentice took another shot at fine dining, and this time he hit a home run. Morels: A Michigan Bistro, located in the Detroit suburb of Bingham Farms, featured regional cuisine, and it garnered rave reviews from local restaurant critics. Prentice also opened a Deli Unique next door and Unique Restaurant Corporation (URC), as the firm was now known, installed its headquarters there.

The year 1991 saw Sebastian's reworked into the more casual Sebastian's Grill, and the opening of Tavern on 13 in Birmingham, which took the place of a failed restaurant in the same space. By now the firm had 500 employees.

In 1992, URC sold the original Deli Unique in Oak Park, and in 1993 the company opened an 11,000-square-foot bakery called the Sourdough Bread Factory in Pontiac and bought a 20,000-square-foot plant for its growing produce unit. That same year, the family-oriented Table Tavern debuted in Sterling Heights, but it was not a hit and closed after less than a year. Also in 1993, Bruschetta Café opened in Oakland Mall, and the upscale Italian restaurant Trattoria Bruschetta debuted in the Hotel Baronette in Novi. Like Prentice's other restaurants, they had been acquired after failing under different management, and he was able to take control with minimal investment.

In mid-1994, URC's bakery began selling its bread through retail outlets, having already begun supplying the firm's restaurants and Northwest Airlines dinner flights originating in Detroit. The company's Unique Catering unit was growing at this time as well. It serviced banquet facilities at Morel's (120 seats), Hotel Baronette (300 seats), Temple Israel in West Bloomfield (600 seats), and was preparing to add Temple Shir Shalom in West Bloomfield. For 1994, the company's restaurants and catering division took in $18.8 million, the produce unit $4.4 million, and the bakery $1 million.

In February 1995, the firm opened a new restaurant called America, which replaced a failed diner in Royal Oak. Located on Woodward Avenue, it was URC's highest-profile site to date. A few months later, Relish was opened in Farmington Hills, and in December the Sourdough Café, featuring bread and rolls from the firm's bakery, debuted in the Summit Place Mall. The company also scored a coup during the year when it hired wine expert Madeline Triffon away from rival restaurateur Jimmy Schmidt. Triffon was the first American woman certified as a Master Sommelier by the British Court of Master Sommeliers and one of fewer than 50 people so designated in the United States.

The combination of a less-than-ideal location and a too-progressive menu led to the closing of America in November 1996, and its staff members were transferred to Relish. Early the next year, URC opened Northern Lakes Seafood Co. and a new Deli Unique in the upscale Detroit suburb of Birmingham. Both were located in a renovated hotel, the Kingsley Inn. Northern Lakes seated 260 and included an oyster and vodka bar, while the delicatessen seated 80, with most of its business consisting of takeout and catering tray orders. Also during 1996, the firm spent $500,000 renovating the banquet rooms of Relish and creating an atrium and garden there. By this time, URC had a full-time horticulturalist on staff to tend this and several other plant-filled spaces in its restaurants.

The company's ongoing expansion left it chronically short of qualified staff, and to attract new employees and reduce turnover the firm provided numerous perks, including paid vacations, health insurance, and a 401(k) pension plan. In September 1997, URC added a $2 per hour day-care supplement payment for full-time employees with children. Prentice also gave ownership stakes in his restaurants to their top managers, increasing their commitment to the success of each operation.

Multiple Restaurants Opened in 1998

The year 1998 was a busy one for URC. In January, the firm paid $205,000 for a West Bloomfield restaurant called Memphis Smoke, which became the casual seafood restaurant Flying Fish Tavern several months later. Tavern on 13 was soon converted into a second Flying Fish Tavern as well. In the spring, Sebastian's Grill was moved to a new location in Somerset Mall and reopened as Portabella, serving Italian fare. The company's first location in downtown Detroit, Duet, opened in late May near historic Orchestra Hall. Its menu offered pairings ("duets") of dishes such as seafood and steak. A new Deli Unique was later opened next door.

Also in 1998, URC converted Trattoria Bruschetta at the Hotel Baronette into the No. VI Chop House and Lobster Bar. It was soon a popular destination for business executives, many of whom were in town for meetings related to the auto industry. Within a short period, the restaurant was averaging $4 million in annual sales, four times what the previous concept had done.

In December 1998, the company opened an Asian-style noodle restaurant, Fusion, to replace the unsuccessful Relish. URC also sued the owners of the Summit Place Mall over their unfulfilled promise to perform renovations. The firm's Sourdough Café, which had been losing money there since opening, had closed. For 1998, the company had $38 million in revenues, and its employee ranks stood at 1,000.

In August 1999, URC licensed the Deli Unique name to the MotorCity Casino, which would open a round-the-clock delicatessen that seated 150. Fall saw the sale of the underperforming Flying Fish Tavern in West Bloomfield and the conversion of Fusion into an all-catering operation.

In January 2000, the company ordered all 250 of its cooks and dishwashers to be vaccinated against the Hepatitis A virus, with new hires to be vaccinated in the future. Matt Prentice had had the illness as a child, and it was a recurring problem in the foodservice business, especially in the Detroit area, where one person had recently died from a food-borne infection. The move, which would cost the company $30,000, was made to protect both the workers and the firm's clientele.

In March 2000, URC took over management of four restaurants at the Star Southfield movie theater complex from Ark Restaurant Corp. of New York, which had spent $14 million on renovations before pulling out. In May, the Mexican restaurant Volcano Grill was reopened, but business was slow, and the debut of Mash, which would feature only potato-based dishes, was delayed. A brewpub that would make beer on-site and a pizza-by-the-slice restaurant were slated to round out the offerings, but in late February 2001 Prentice abandoned these projects along with Mash, which never opened.

In 2001, URC was chosen by Ford Motor Company as a branding consultant for its auto shows throughout the United States. During the year, the firm catered the North American International Auto Show in Detroit and the New York Auto Show.

The year 2001 also saw a lobbying effort spearheaded by Prentice to cause the state of Michigan to change an archaic law prohibiting staff from sampling wine on the job. He had prompted the state restaurant association to take action after learning that it was illegal for his employees to sample wine at work, which he considered essential for them to properly advise their customers. The bill was signed in July by Michigan Governor John Engler.

In addition to running his restaurants, Prentice also found time to work with several charitable organizations. In October 2000, he had formed the Variety Produce Resource Program, which distributed surplus food to the hungry, and had also worked with Share our Strength, Forgotten Harvest, the Food Bank of Oakland County, and Gleaners.

In the weeks after the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, the company's business fell off dramatically as fearful Americans stayed home. Sales had already been declining due to a recent economic downturn, which hit the firm's catering business particularly hard. Due to the rising unemployment rate, URC was able for the first time in its history to have all of its restaurants fully staffed with qualified personnel.

Dairy Restaurant Added in 2002

In February 2002, the company opened a kosher dairy restaurant, Milk & Honey, in the Jewish Community Center in West Bloomfield Township, where it had been providing catering services since 2000. The restaurant's kitchen followed strict Jewish dietary laws, and a special inspector was employed to certify compliance. Milk & Honey was pitched partly at vegetarians, and half of its business was estimated to come from outside the Jewish community. Later, the restaurant began catering meals to the Meer and Hecht apartments for senior citizens.

In July 2002, the firm closed the Deli Unique next door to Morel's. It was replaced in October by an upscale steakhouse called Shiraz, which featured wines made from the grape the restaurant was named after.

In early 2003, URC, still hurting from the economic downturn, cut its employees' health benefits. Both dental and prescription drug coverage were cancelled, and hourly workers were asked to pay a third of their healthcare premiums. The move would affect only about 200 of the company's now 800 employees, as many already had coverage from their spouse's employers, had not worked long enough to earn these benefits, or did not work full time. Despite the cuts, URC's benefits program was still more generous than the industry average.

May 2003 saw the closure of both of the firm's downtown Detroit restaurants, the Deli Unique and Duet. They had been doomed by the lack of foot traffic in the city, with business largely tied to special events in the area like concerts and ball games. A massive power outage in August also caused the firm to lose tens of thousands of dollars worth of food, though Prentice and his staff worked many extra hours to make sure all scheduled catering events went off without a hitch.

In the fall, an agreement was reached with General Motors to take over a closed restaurant at the corporation's headquarters in the 72-story Renaissance Center in downtown Detroit. After months of negotiations, GM had agreed to cover most of the renovation costs, which were more expensive due to the restaurant's elevated location, as well as basing the rent on a percentage of revenues.

Prentice's new concept was called Coach Insignia, whose name was taken from a type of wine made by Fisher Vineyards, run by the grandson of the founder of one-time GM division Fisher Body. Fisher's wines would be featured in the restaurant's $250,000 wine cellar, which was overseen by Madeline Triffon. The dinner-only menu would include steak, seafood, and chicken dishes. Coach Insignia's circular space had once rotated slowly to give diners a panoramic view of Detroit and environs, but Prentice decided to abandon this feature to allow for more tables and better food service. In addition to 220 seats on two floors, the space also offered banquet seating for 110 and private dining rooms.

In February 2004, URC closed Café Jardin, and in April of the same year the firm opened its first brewpub, Thunder Bay Brewing Co., in Great Lakes Crossing Mall in Auburn Hills. It replaced the shuttered Alcatraz Brewing Co. In the summer, Coach Insignia started operations, earning four-star reviews from both the Detroit News and the Detroit Free Press .

The year 2005 saw the firm begin operating as the Matt Prentice Restaurant Group in order to reflect its owner's high visibility in the community as well as to distinguish it from other companies with "Unique" in their names. Plans were also underway for the Portabella restaurant to close in late spring, with a new brewpub featuring soul food and live jazz music, Etouffe, set to open in the summer at the Star Southfield Entertainment Complex.

After a quarter-century, the Matt Prentice Restaurant Group had grown from a single delicatessen into one of the Detroit area's largest restaurant management and catering firms. With offerings that ranged from unpretentious deli fare to some of the city's most highly acclaimed food and wine, the firm had established itself as one of the most respected organizations of its type in the Midwest.

Principal Subsidiaries: MPRG Off Premise Catering Sourdough Bread Factory.

Principal Competitors: Cameron Mitchell Restaurants Epoch Restaurant Group Andiamo Restaurant Group Forte Belanger Catering.

  • Anglebrandt, Gary, "Thinking Like a Chef: Restaurateur Prentice Helps Soup Kitchens Get Most from Budgets," Crain's Detroit Business , November 25, 2002, p. 1.
  • Blassingame, Kelley M., "Serving a Benefits Buffet: Prentice Offers Unparalleled Benefits Smorgasbord for Restaurant Staff," Employee Benefit News , October 1, 2003.
  • Bohy, Ric, "'MMMMM' Is for Morels," Detroit Monthly , May 1, 1996, p. 73.
  • Boldt, Ethan, "Unique Restaurant Corp.," Restaurant Business , April 15, 1999, p. 24.
  • Kosdrosky, Terry, "Milk & Honey Has Unique Approach," Crain's Detroit Business , February 4, 2002, p. 19.
  • ------, "Prentice to Sell One Eatery, Convert Another," Crain's Detroit Business , October 18, 1999, p. 3.
  • "Matt Prentice Restaurant Group History," Matt Prentice Restaurant Group, 2005.
  • Norris, Kim, and Sylvia Rector, "Unique Restaurant Corp. Trims Health Benefits," Detroit Free Press , February 12, 2003.
  • Perlik, Allison, "Unique Restaurant Corp.," Restaurants & Institutions , November 1, 2002, p. 66.
  • Rector, Sylvia, Mark Stryker, and John Gallagher, "Restaurateur Says Deal Near for Detroit Renaissance Center," Detroit Free Press , May 23, 2003.
  • Snavely, Brent, "Restaurant Events Help to Fill Charities' Plates," Crain's Detroit Business , November 1, 2004, p. 24.
  • Stopa, Marsha, "'Roadkill' Restaurateur: Prentice Has Way with Leftovers," Crain's Detroit Business , February 27, 1995, p. 3.
  • Strong, Michael, "Prentice Reaches for New Heights," Crain's Detroit Business , October 6, 2003, p. 21.
  • Van Houten, Ben, "Rescue Operation," Restaurant Business , October 15, 2000, p. 29.
  • Ytuarte, Chris, "Food Chain to Require Hepatitis A Vaccinations," Supermarket News , January 31, 2000, p. 29.

Source: International Directory of Company Histories , Vol. 70. St. James Press, 2005.


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The actor Tom Cruise has an infamous interview with Matt Lauer, host of NBC’s morning talk show Today, on June 24, 2005. During the interview, Lauer challenged Cruise about critical comments the actor had made regarding the actress Brooke Shields’ use of anti-depressant medications to treat her post-partum depression.

One of Hollywood’s most bankable leading men since the late 1980s, Cruise was on Today to promote his forthcoming movie, The War of the Worlds, the director Steven Spielberg’s big-budget movie version of H.G. Wells’ classic science-fiction novel. Cruise was happy to talk about the movie, as well as his upcoming marriage to the actress Katie Holmes, whom he had proposed to atop the Eiffel Tower a short time before, following a whirlwind romance.

When Lauer asked Cruise about his criticism of Shields, however, the exchange got heated, as Cruise’s demeanor became visibly more serious and combative. As a leading member of the Church of Scientology, Cruise is against the use of anti-depressant drugs or psychiatric therapy of any kind. “I really care about Brooke Shields,” Cruise said. “…[But] there’s misinformation, and she doesn’t understand the history of psychiatry…psychiatry is a pseudoscience.” After chastising Lauer for being “glib” and not knowing enough about the topic, Cruise mentioned his research into the use of the prescription drug Ritalin, which is notably used to treat hyperactive children. When Lauer mentioned that he knew people for whom prescription drugs had worked, Cruise accused him of �vocating” Ritalin, to which Lauer got visibly frustrated and said “I am not….You’re telling me that your experiences with the people I know, which are zero, are more important than my experiences….And I’m telling you, I’ve lived with these people and they’re better.”

The Lauer interview marked the latest in what the Washington Post called at the time 𠇊 series of manic moments in public, in which the screen idol appeared to be losing his chiseled, steely reserve.” Another of these moments had occurred earlier that month on Oprah Winfrey’s talk show, where Cruise jumped up and down on a couch professing his love for Holmes. During the Today interview, Holmes sat in the wings watching �oringly” as her fiance 𠇌hernobyled” (again in the words of the Washington Post). Some blamed Cruise’s run of out-of-control public outbursts on the actor’s split with his longtime publicist, Pat Kingsley, in the spring of 2004 and his decision to entrust his sister, Lee Ann DeVette, with all his publicity. In November 2005, after the worst run of publicity in his career, Cruise replaced DeVette with another veteran publicist, Paul Bloch.


The boss who lives as a medieval knight

Putting on an exact replica of a medieval suit of armour, the 53-year-old jousts a dozen or so weekends every year.

Holding a 12ft (3.7m) long steel-tipped wooden lance in front of him, he rides a stallion full pelt towards another would-be knight coming at him in a similarly determined attempt to knock him off his horse.

"You are both moving at about 20mph (32km/h), so [if the other person's lance hits you] it is like hitting a brick wall at 40mph.

"I have never fallen off, but I have taken three people out of the saddle. Historically people have died, and it is always the lance tip going through the eye slot [of the helmet]."

Given how Jason spends his weekends, you might imagine that his day job is equally daring, that he is some sort of professional stuntman.

Instead, he is the chief executive of one of the UK's largest computer games companies - Rebellion Developments.

Jason set up the Oxford-based business with his younger brother Chris in 1992, and today it has an annual turnover of more than £25m.

Still wholly owned by the two siblings, its best-selling titles include Sniper Elite and Rogue Trooper.

For the past 17 years the company has also owned cult UK comic book series 2000 AD, and publishes a range of novels.

While Jason doesn't wear one of his £25,000 suits of armour in the office, he says that he tries to run Rebellion - and all other aspects of his life - according to a medieval knight's chivalric code of conduct.

"What the code comes down to is try to be a decent person. and there are three parts - bravery, honesty and kindness.

"In business the need to be brave is obvious the ability to charge forward and seize the opportunity, and do the best that you can with it.

"It is also about exploring new territories and seeking out new markets. It is an essential component in being a leader."

He adds: "Honesty doesn't mean telling everyone your secrets, it means dealing fairly with people.

"So in business, I don't try to get the best deal for myself, I'm trying to get the best deal for both sides.

"This is fairer and the right thing to do, and if the other side makes a profit they will come back and work with me again.

"And kindness is simply about the need to treat people well."

As a teenager Jason says that he and his brother both loved role-playing games. They would sit around a table with their friends and each take on a fantasy character, such as a wizard or knight.

Dice would then be thrown to determine how the characters interacted with each other, and how the stories developed.

Jason also wrote a number of "gamebooks", where the reader has to decide how the story develops from multiple-choice options.

Studying at Oxford University, they started to develop and programme computer games as a hobby. After they both graduated, Jason says they decided to start Rebellion "because we loved games, and we saw an opportunity in making computer games".

He adds: "It really was just naivety and enthusiasm, but I think that is a really good reason for starting a business, because it is much easier to be successful if you love what you are doing."

Working on a number of demo games, Rebellion got its first big break in 1993 when it won a contract from then-games giant Atari to produce the title Alien vs Predator.

The game was a bestseller, and Rebellion has never looked back. After making games for other companies, such as James Bond and various titles for The Simpsons, it today tries to focus more on producing and distributing its own material.

Jason says: "We knew we wanted to build up our own IP (intellectual property) and fund our own games, and that is where we are now.

"It has taken us a long time, 25 years to get there. but we now come up with the ideas, fully fund the games, and release them ourselves worldwide. And that's great, there's no-one else in the loop."

Profits from the computer games sales have also been used to expand the business into other areas, such as buying 2000 AD, home to cult comic character Judge Dredd.

While Jason won't reveal the exact cost of the deal, he says it was "many millions".

"We felt that 2000 AD was on the decline [under its then-Danish owner], and needed to be owned and cherished by someone British who knew the culture of what it was trying to do.

"I genuinely think it is an important bit of our cultural heritage."

Gaming industry expert Dan Maher says that Rebellion has been particularly praised for its custodianship of the 2000 AD comic book.

"As the name suggests, the company prides itself on going against the grain, using the money earned from an industry driven by bleeding-edge technology to make uncynical acquisitions in the traditional publishing sector," says Mr Maher.

"Such moves, driven as they are by real love and appreciation for comics and sci-fi, have earned them great respect from consumers and professionals alike."

Jason has the boss role on a day-to-day basis at Rebellion, while his brother Chris holds the chief technology officer position.

But before he goes to work, Jason spends two hours every morning looking after his 13 horses, and then two hours again in the evening.

"Yes I could afford to get staff to do it all for me but I like doing it. The horses are my friends, my family," he says.


CLAY COUNTY – Congress last week made Juneteenth a federal holiday, and it serves as a reminder of slavery that once plagued the country and of the abolitionists and leaders who fought against it.

Juneteenth is widely celebrated as the end of slavery in the United States and it technically was born on June 19, 1865, when Texas became the final state to end slavery – two years after it was ruled illegal in the country President Abraham Lincoln with the Emancipation Proclamation after the Civil War.

It’s a day of celebration for Black communities across the country, but it’s also a day of sadness and grief for people’s ancestors who spent their entire lives as slaves. Clay County was a small but growing, town in the 1860s when slavery came to an end.

“It wasn’t like what you see in ‘Gone With The Wind,’ but there were some here who did have slaves,” Clay County Archivist Vishi Garig said. “Most people here were poor white people that wouldn’t have been able to afford slaves if they wanted them. M.M. Bradley had the most around here.”

Bradley indeed had more slaves in Clay County than anyone else here. Official archive records showed Bradley’s will filed with the court that broke down everything he owned. This record included cattle, pigs, horses and sadly, slaves. Bradley had 55 slaves, each categorized by name, age, gender and the price associated with each.

Bradley’s records indicate that his slaves were worth $39,200 in 1861, which is the equivalent of roughly $2.1 million today. Another slave owner in Clay County named Thomas Wright had eight slaves that he valued at $9,200. Elsewhere, records indicate that a woman named Alcinda Dixon wrote to the court in May of 1861 requesting that she be allowed to become a slave for Alachua County’s John J. Thompson.

Garig said there’s likely more to the story since the address Dixon used was the same as Thompson’s home. Dixon was requesting that she and her young son be brought into Thompson’s control and Garig said because her address was already that of Thompson’s, there’s a chance that Thompson was the father of Dixon’s son.

Clay County had its fair share of slave owners, but it also had its very own abolitionists and one free family consisting of former slaves, whose freedom was bought by the father of the family.

Zephaniah Kingsley, was a successful slave trader, merchant and farmer in Spanish Florida. He married a slave from Havana, Cuba, and the couple had three children. Although they still were considered slaves – which was determined by the mother’s status – Zephaniah eventually freed her and her children 30 years before the start of the Civil War. However, Zephaniah still owned other slaves at his plantation on Fort George River.

Nonetheless, one of Orange Park’s main thoroughfares, Kingsley Avenue, is named after him.

A census was taken in 1860 of Clay County, according to official archive records. Among the names taken was that of the Forrester family: Clay County’s only free Black family. The patriarch of the family was Cyrus Forrester, Garig said, and he lived on the southern bank of Black Creek in a place formerly known as Magnolia. It’s now the site of the St. Johns Landing apartments in Green Cove Springs.

He owned the land he lived on after purchasing it from the government in 1853. He lived there with his wife Dorcas and six of his seven children. One of his sons, Lewis Charles Forrester, lived next door on his property. The Forresters owned 40 acres of land and had garnered roughly $2 million in property value, personal belongings, livestock and more.

Records indicate that Cyrus Forrester purchased his family’s freedom from slavery in 1840 and 20 years later, the 1860 Clay County census indicates the Forresters were thriving in the area despite all the odds against them.

The county’s history with the Civil War is relatively quiet compared to the more commonly discussed sites of those battles. It wasn’t without its own, though. Most famously, Union soldiers had made the Magnolia area their camp and had a skirmish with Confederate soldiers while en route to Middleburg. Roughly half a dozen Union soldiers were killed, and Garig said some were buried in a cemetery still standing in the St Johns Landing area today.

When the war made its way to Green Cove Springs, the Forresters kept a low profile for obvious reasons. However, one of Forrester’s sisters-in-law and her three children were kidnapped by rebels and transported to Georgia.

Garig said a white family friend or parental “guardian” secured their safe return.

“One day in October or November of 1862, the Union gunboat USS Cimarron cruised the St. Johns River,” Garig said. “She crossed paths with Byrd Miller’s small boat. Byrd was married to Therassa Forrester, Cyrus’ daughter. He told the Union sailors about the rebels and the gunboat proceeded to shell the rebel encampment.”

While all of this was happening, abolitionists like Dr. Nathan Benedict, who was a cousin to famed abolitionist Susan B. Anthony, and Dr. Seth Rogers weren’t only helping the Union win the war, but treating Black Union soldiers, too. There was a good chance one of them might have treated Isadore Forrester, who was a son of Cyrus Forrester.

Isadore Forrester served in the Union Navy and died in a Navy Hospital in 1864 in South Carolina. He died of pleurisy and is now buried at the Beaufort, South Carolina, National Cemetery. Two of his brothers also fought for the Union in the Civil War.

The two doctors would be two of the first owners of Green Cove Springs’ famous Magnolia Hotel, which has an extensive history in the area.

Benedict and his wife, Emma, owned the Magnolia Hotel up until April of 1869. They sold the three-story dilapidated hotel to Rogers and another person named Oliver Harris. Rogers devoted his work to following his time as a physician for the 33rd USCT for the Union army during the Civil War.

“He was heavily involved in the abolitionist movement, temperance and women’s suffrage,” Garig said. “Rogers and Harris expanded the hotel and built five cottages. Many early guests were abolitionists and suffragettes, causes to which Rogers was devoted.

While Clay County might not be mentioned in most textbooks about the Civil War and abolition, but it played a significant role in the turnout. All you have to do is make a trip to the Clay County historical archives to learn more.


Watch the video: Matt Kingsley (August 2022).