Looking at the photo above [c.1909] it would seem that MARPLES employed 10 skilled craftsmen to produce by hand the Wooden planes that they sold.
What you see here may be the remnant workers of John Moseley and Son, which was taken over by MARPLES from London in 1892 and the workers etc. removed to Sheffield.
I note the worker in the second booth [left] seems to only produce 24"? large planes, and the chap, [second up from the right], seems engaged in
the production of some larger Rabbet Planes? But just look at the tools that they each needed to employ to produce their wares! These guys are to beadmired and revered for their beautiful work, but what a shame that they never were. They died into obscurity and will never be known.
William Marples started to produce wooden planes [the only sort then available] after 1846, since this Brochure shows no mention of 'Planes'.
The 1861/2 catalogue does indeed list this sort of plane, but it is doubtful that MARPLES produced these articles. It is not known at what date MARPLES formed a relationship with the firm of John MOSELEY & Son, but it seems likely that this was the only firm with which MARPLES cemented a deal to produce Wooden Planes for him and under his name. For William Marples Jnr. to have ventured so far afield as to London before 1860 shows his remarkable skills at sourcing out reliable manufacturers for his business.
The planemaking firm of John MOSELEY & Son was formed in 1730 and the 1883 MARPLES Catalogue states that MARPLES is the 'sole wholesale agent for John Moseley & Son'. But it was only until January 1st 1888 that 'Moseley & Son' was registered as a Trade Mark of Wm. Marples & Sons.
After this time it is stated that the Wooden Planes could be had with either the 'John Moseley & Son' mark of the 'Wm. Marples & Sons' mark, at your discretion. There was obviously more than this to meet the eye and this we will never know.