CFHS code : AG426

Parish : St Andrew the Great

Inscription : IM GUSTAVE DAVID d 20 Nov 1936 aged 76 also EMMA JANE DAVID wife d 7 May 1941 aged 83

Monument : Headstone/Kerb stones

Above information from Cambridge Family History Society Survey

Lat Lon : 52.202991, 0.13665548 – click here for location

David grave set October 2017


This headstone with kerb stones, in the parish area of St Andrew the Great, is located to the east of the west path. The headstone has fallen and is partially covered by branches but the inscription is still intact. The end kerb is dislodged.


IM GUSTAVE DAVID died November 20 1936 aged 76 years

Also EMMA JANE DAVID wife of the above who died May 7 1941 aged 83 years

David headstone

Gustave David (1860 – 1936)     

Gustave was born in Paris, France to Moses and Marie David. His family came to England in the 1870s where they set up a bookshop/gemstore in Gorleston, Norfolk. 

Gustave later moved to London where he set up his own bookselling business and in 1888 married Alice Gillett. They moved to Cambridge in 1896 and Gustave continued as a bookseller. Alice died in May 1897 at 57 Eden St and is buried in the parish of St Andrew the Less. She was 36 years old. No grave marker has been found.

37 year old Gustave married Emma Jane Carter on 23 September 1897, at Cambridge register office. They had one son: Ashley Hubert (b 1900). According to the census records and street directories, Gustave  and Emma lived at 41 Green Street (1901), 34 Thompson’s Lane (1911-1913), and 18 Fulbrook Road (1919) before settling at 11 New Square.

Gustave David sitting at his bookstall in Cambridge market place c 1926.
With kind permission from the family.

Although he had a shop in St Edwards Passage, he was usually to be found selling his books from a stall in the marketplace. 

On Thursdays he travelled by train to London where he bought books at auction and if he obtained a bargain he would pass it on to his buyers by only taking a small profit. The University Library acquired many precious books from him and he was well known by people of the University and town. 

His death, of a heart attack, on 20 November 1936 occurred at his home, 11 New Square, after one of his buying trips in London.

After his death a small volume of tributes* was put together that had appeared in the press. 

This small extract is from The Spectator, H.F. Stewart wrote 

‘The annals of book-collecting are full of romance and David deserves a niche in the Temple beside Thierry and Panouche, Andrew Miller, the Dillys and the adorable Anatol France. He might well have adapted the advertisement of William Caxton “If any man wants a good book, let him come to me in the Cambridge Market Place, and he shall have it good cheap.” ‘

His son Ashley Hubert continued the business at 16 St Edward’s Passage. It is still running today in partnership with the family.

G David bookshop 2019

Emma Jane David (née Carter) (c 1861 – 1941)

Nothing is known about Emma’s early life. She may have been born in Warwickshire but her date of birth is uncertain 1860 on 1939 census but 1858 at death. She died at the family home in New Square.


David of Cambridge – Some Appreciations  published 1937

Capturing Cambridge

David Family Archive  – photograph taken by Mary Naylor from within the shop with kind permission of the partnership.

Family Search

CFHS transcripts of parish records

by Mary Naylor

Emma Jane David; Gustave David