Events in the 1800s
This Foldout presents
some events which took occurred in the 1800s
Further legislation for the Rochdale Canal
In the 1800s, the railway – in the Great Northern Railway and the
Lancashire & Yorkshire Railway – came to Halifax.
There were several stations: Shaw Syke, later Halifax, North
Bridge, and St Paul's Station
Following a drought, Blackstone Edge reservoir was empty and the
Rochdale Canal was out of action between July and October 1800
Wednesday, 20th January 1802
A violent wind tore the roofs off several houses, and threw down many
stacks of chimneys in and around Leeds.
The Mail coach was blown over near Halifax
Wednesday, 3rd March 1802
Bob Mill, Lower Colden burned down
Blackshawhead corn and cotton mill was destroyed by fire
The Rochdale to Lane Side section of the Rochdale Canal opened
The Napoleonic wars between France and various European forces began
Saturday, 10th September 1803
Thomas Lambert of Elland lost his life
by carriages passing over him
Further legislation for the Rochdale Canal
Tuesday, 31st January 1804
The Longbottom cotton mill burned down
Friday, 21st December 1804
With the completion of the Hopwood to Piccadilly section, the
Rochdale Canal – the first trans-Pennine canal route – opened
through to Manchester.
The first boat, the 50-ton Mayflower – a sea-going
vessel – was taken across the Pennines from Hull to Liverpool.
This was 7 years before the rival Huddersfield Narrow Canal was
Thursday, 31st January 1805
At 1:30 am, fire broke out at the woollen mill of Samuel
Milne & Company at Longbottom.
The fire raged with such violence that the whole was consumed in
about 3 hours
Further legislation for the Rochdale Canal
New Hey Road, Rastrick was built as a part of the turnpike
linking Huddersfield and the town of New Hey near Rochdale
Wharf Mill, Sowerby Bridge was damaged by fire
The Peninsular War [1807-1814] began
Joseph Richardson, a manufacturer of worsted goods at
Brighouse, assigned all his personal estate and effects to William
Coultas, a maltster at Elland
Further legislation for the Rochdale Canal
Monday, 1st June 1807
On 4 consecutive nights, there were riots in Halifax.
On the first night [Monday 1st June 1807], a group assembled outside
the White Swan Inn & Posting House, Halifax where 2 committees
for Messrs Wilberforce & Lascelles were sitting. but
there were no arrests.
On Tuesday, there were larger numbers who paraded through the streets
with an effigy, and broke the windows
of several respectable gentlemen
On Wednesday, over 60 special constables were sworn in, and military
aid was fetched from Leeds.
On Thursday, notices were distributed warning people not to be out
after 9:00 pm
Freeman's Cut was built on the Calder & Hebble Canal
Prince William Frederick, Duke of Gloucester, nephew
of George III, visited the district
There were bad harvests in 1810-1811.
These – and the straits of the Napoleonic Wars – meant that, in
1812, corn was prohibitively priced
Dam Head Mill, Shibden burned down
Saturday, 10th March 1810
At York Assizes, Joseph Priestley, a labourer of Halifax, was
charged with killing Joseph Harrison, a weaver of Stainland
The Huddersfield Narrow Canal connected the Colne and Upper Calder
The Armytages auctioned off some of their land at Clifton.
Those who bought land included
Rev Benjamin Firth
Mary Greenwood, a weaver of Southowram, was accused of
embezzling goods from her employers.
Mrs Grasham, a pawnbroker at Halifax, and Mrs Salkeld,
a shopkeeper at Halifax, were charged with taking in on pledge and
purchasing the goods, and fined £20 each.
Friday, 21st February 1812
About 11:00 pm, M Le Tellier, a French Teacher, was stopped near
Square Independent Chapel, Halifax by a tall man – about
5 ft 10 in – in a grey dress, who gave him a violent blow on the
breast, and then robbed him of a silver watch, with which the villain
got clear off.
Stoodley Bridge Mill, Eastwood was damaged by fire and rebuilt
Thursday, 1st July 1813
Joshua Milner, a beadle of Halifax also known as Joshua
John Sykes, an eminent engine builder of Bolton-le-Moors,
David Brothorton, the driver of the vehicle,
were killed and several others injured when the Jubilee Mail
Coach overturned after the reins broke and the coachman lost
control of the horses coming down Haley Hill.
The coach had only gone into service the day before
Thursday, 22nd July 1813
Lightning killed a boy on Greetland edge
Lees & Hebden Bridge turnpike opened
The last occasion on which the Thames froze over.
The temperature in southern England was 0°C or below for 30 days
The weather in Britain was colder than January 1740
Friday, 21st January 1814
Death of Mr Abraham Webster, master of the Blue Coat School
Hospital in Halifax
Saturday, 22nd January 1814
Death of Mr James Butler, worsted manufacturer at Ovenden
James Clayton was convicted before H. W. Coulthurst DD and
Michael Stocks, in the penalty of £20 for having in his
possession purloined and embezzled materials belonging to the worsted
and woollen manufactures
Sunday, 23rd January 1814
Mr Abraham Douglas, ropemaker of Halifax, to Mrs Boys,
widow of the late Mr John Boys of Southowram
Tuesday, 1st March 1814
A number of buildings – two wool warehouses, and a large school
room – in the Talbot Inn Yard, Halifax, were burned to the ground.
The neighbouring assembly room also suffered damage
Saturday, 13th August 1814
Death of Miss Nancy Holt, aged 59, a maiden lady of the New
The Elland & Obelisk Turnpike Road from Elland to Brighouse
Mytholmroyd / Blackstone Edge turnpike
Monday, 10th April 1815
The volcano Mount Tambora in eastern Indonesia erupted,
affecting the climate around the world.
Dust from the eruption blocked out sunlight and reduced global
temperatures by 3°C.
There were colourful sunsets and temperatures fell, causing crop
failures, bad harvests and famine around the world.
This led to much civil unrest around the world
Sunday, 18th June 1815
The Battle of Waterloo which ended the Napoleonic Wars and ended
the French blockades on European ports badly affected British exports
Monday, 26th June 1815
A great fire destroyed several thousand pounds worth of cloth and
goods in the warehouse of William Moore at Brockwell,
This was the year without a summer across Europe because of
the eruption of Mount Tambora in 1815
Saturday, 14th February 1818
17 girls – aged between 9 and 18 – died in a fire at Atkinson's
Mill, Colne Bridge
In the 1820s, there began a second phase of turnpike construction
The Grand Jury at the General Quarter Sessions for the Peace at
returned a true bill for misdemeanour against Joseph Mitchell,
against whom an indictment had been preferred for directing abusive
and seditious language against the Prince Regent and the two Houses
of Parliament, at a radical reform meeting held on 4th October 1819,
at Skircoat Moor near Halifax, and for then and there using
expressions tending to excite people to partition the estates of the
great nobility; and among others, of Earl Fitzwilliam
Wednesday, 18th October 1820
Samuel Mallinson of Southowram married Grace Mallinson
The Bradford-Huddersfield Turnpike from Wibsey Bank Foot, Bradford
to Huddersfield, via Odsal Top, Bailiff Bridge, and Brighouse was
built between 1823 and 1830
In early February 1823, a robbery took place following a break-in at
the counting house at Thorpe Mill.
The lock of which had been picked and cash and banknotes were stolen
from a safe.
John and Walker Priestley issued flyers offering
100 guineas as a reward for information leading to the apprehension
of the offenders
Friday, 12th September 1823
On Friday night [12th] or Saturday morning [13th], the warehouse
belonging to George Holdsworth of Shibden Mill was
broken into and [several] pieces stolen therefrom.
Mr Holdsworth offered a reward of £10 for information
leading to conviction
Wednesday, 3rd December 1823
Leeds and the country for many miles round was visited by a dreadful
storm of wind which blew down many chimneys and several unfinished
Locally, a 5-storey factory at Ovenden suffered damage
Friday, 19th December 1823
Fire at Paper Mill, Halifax
An Act of Parliament established the Salterhebble, Stainland and
Sowerby Bridge Turnpike Trust, who constructed a network of roads
connecting Halifax and Huddersfield via Elland and taking in
districts such as Greetland and Stainland.
North Dean Toll Gate
Godley Cutting was constructed 1824-1830
Huddersfield / Low Moor turnpike
Wednesday, 28th July 1824
Mr Priestley of Ovenden married Ann, the only daughter
of the late Mr Ambler, a woolstapler of York
In August 1824, there was a serious fire in the warehouse at Thorpe
Afterwards, John Priestley and his brother,
Walker, issued handbills, thanking their friends and
neighbours for their help in extinguishing the conflagration
Godley / Northowram turnpike
There was panic in the banking industry following speculative
investments in the imaginary country of Poyais.
In England, 6 London banks closed and 60 elsewhere in the country.
No banks in the Halifax district were affected
Leeds / Whitehall turnpike
The turnpike from Brighouse to Denholm Gate was
This is now the A644
Thursday, 16th March 1826
Joseph Green, a manufacturer at Southowram, he married Mary
Sledding of Southowram
Monday, 15th May 1826
At Todmorden, John Henderson, the Irish pedestrian,
undertook to walk 20 miles in 3 hours and 10 minutes, a feat which he
performed ½ a minute within the time
Several days of rain ended a drought in the north of England
Thursday, 18th October 1827
Bell's Life in London reported
The late heavy rains have so much swollen the river Calder as to
produce an inundation, which has done considerable mischief to mill
properties in the valleys above Halifax; and where the banks were
low, the adjoining fields have been completely overflown.
At Halifax, a dye-house, in the course of erection, on the rivulet
Helig, was thrown down and carried away by the flood, together
with the scaffolding.
On the same rivulet, at Dean Clough, the mill of Mr Crossley, carpet
manufacturer, was discovered to be on fire, on the ground floor, but
whilst the man who lives in the adjoining cottage had gone to alarm
Mr Crossley, the torrent burst into the room and effectually
extinguished the flames.
The flood had reached its highest point of elevation at 6:00 on
Thursday morning, at Elland Bridge, at which time the King's
Mills were inundated by the Calder.
The banks of which river, from thence down to Brighouse, were
The Calder & Hebble Canal reached the centre of Halifax when the
Halifax to Salterhebble branch opened
Thursday, 17th July 1828
John Nicholl of Southowram married Hannah Chambers of
Monday, 1st December 1828
Fire destroyed Foster Mill, Hebden Bridge when it was occupied by a
Manchester cotton manufacturer, Mr Ramsbottom.
The fire was caused by a small boy who snuffed a candle and threw the
snuff on the floor of the scutching room where quantities of loose
cotton were lying.
The fire spread rapidly.
600 people were thrown out of work and the loss was estimated at
between £15,000 and £20,000
Wednesday, 17th December 1828
The Duke of York coach from Huddersfield to Halifax, fell
against the wall at the bottom of The Ainleys.
One passenger was thrown out but clung to the clothing of another
passenger and escaped serious injury
The Rochdale Canal was a financial success
The first regular bus service in Britain was introduced by George
Shillibeer in London
Stoodley Bridge Mill, Eastwood was burned down
Saturday, 10th January 1829
At James Akroyd's Brookhouse Mill, Ogden, the warehouse,
2,000 pieces of worsted cloth and quantities of wool were destroyed
Monday, 9th February 1829
The house of Thomas Charnock of Ovenden was broken open and
robbed of 16 sovereigns and a half in gold, 6 halfcrowns and other
Edmund Wrigley  was tenant of Gauxholme Cotton Mill
when it partly burnt down
A clergyman called on a man at Elland and asked him to sign the No
Popery Petition, warning that, if the Catholics won their claims,
the Inquisition would be established within 6 months.
The man refused, saying
If that be the case, then I will not sign, for I have suffered to
much distress on this side, that I now wish to try the other
Sunday, 10th May 1829
Jacob Taylor of Hipperholme, woolstapler married Miss Mary
Jowett of Northcliffe, Southowram
Saturday, 11th July 1829
visited by one of the most tremendous storms ... which has not had
its parallel in the memory of man [with rain which] it would be
utterly impossible to convey any idea of by words
Tuesday, 10th November 1829
An inquest was held into the death of a boy named Benjamin
Coates whose clothes caught fire at a bonfire, by which he was
burned to death
During a severe storm in the early part of this year, upwards of 60
deer perished in Kirklees Park
Wednesday, 6th January 1830
Greenwood's Mill, Wheatley was destroyed by fire
Monday, 23rd August 1830
Mr I. Priestley [1769-1830] of Halifax, had gone upon a visit
to Norland; after dinner, he took a ride with another gentleman over
the Moor, and upon his return about five o'clock, he was seized by an
apoplectic fit, and expired at seven the same evening
Saturday, 13th November 1830
A 16-year-old miner was killed in a fire-damp explosion at Shibden
Tuesday, 16th November 1830
A great flood at Todmorden
Saturday, 18th December 1830
A 32-year-old miner was killed when he fell down the shaft at
Highfield Coal Pit, Southowram
Friday, 4th February 1831
22-year-old Benjamin Foster of Denholme was carrying cloth
over Cock Hill to Crimsworth.
He took a wrong turning and went into a bog.
He walked into the night, trying to find help.
His horse and dog were found alive, but he died from exposure
Cholera is believed to have originated in India  before
spreading across Europe.
It was reported in Sunderland [October 1831], having arrived from
It spread on to
185 people died in York, including the parents of Joseph
The disease spread from there, reaching the Black Country and Devon
and Cornwall by autumn 1832.
About 53,000 people died
Saturday, 7th January 1832
Jonas Wilson was killed when he fell down the shaft at Brow
Saturday, 14th July 1832
Miner George Pitchforth drowned whilst cleaning the water-gate
at Swan Bank Colliery
Sunday, 19th August 1832
George Howarth, a cordwainer of Brighouse, he
married Betty Ward of Southowram
Saturday, 29th September 1832
During a turn-out at quarries in Southowram, The Leeds Mercury
60 of the turn-out stone delvers have obtained work at advanced wages
Wednesday, 28th November 1832
There was a fire during the night shift at the Luddendenfoot mill of
Saul & William Smith.
A child worker had lit his lamp and thrown away the light before it
had gone out.
Saul Smith discovered the fire and smothered it before too
much damage had been done
Saturday, 1st December 1832
Death of Samuel Walker  of Holywell Green
Death of John, only son of John Wrigglesworth of
Halifax, linen draper
Monday, 3rd December 1832
Grove Mill, Ovenden was blown down
Thursday, 6th December 1832
George Hartley of Soyland married Mary Gartside of
William Burton of Warley married Elizabeth Brearley of
Saturday, 15th December 1832
There was a fire at Mellor's Mill, Stainland
A steam tug sailed along the Calder & Hebble Canal to assess their
suitability for regular use
A 16-year-old girl working for Abraham Stansfield at Hole
Bottom Mill was badly injured.
Her dress was caught by an upright shaft and her back was cut and
torn, her elbow, ankles and thighs were damaged, and every article of
clothing was torn from her body
Saturday, 23rd February 1833
Mr Samuel Empsall, of Halifax, butcher, married Miss
Greenwood of Hipperholme
Tuesday, 5th March 1833
Joshua Hoyle of Ovenden married Miss Wilson of Halifax
An inquest was held at the George Hotel, Brighouse on Samuel
Hirst who died 2 weeks after dislocating his arm and hand at
Thornhills Pit, Brighouse
Friday, 19th April 1833
Thieves stole a quantity of silver plate from the premises
of Christopher Ward, a maltster at Range Bank, Halifax
Saturday, 11th May 1833
Joseph Firth, a child, was found drowned in a well of water at
Bank Top, Southowram
Thursday, 30th May 1833
A fire-damp explosion killed 5 miners at the Ainley Top Mine:
Edward Booth of Lindley,
Thomas Crossley of Elland,
John Tiffany of Lindley,
the owner, James Waterhouse
Tuesday, 27th August 1833
2 Todmorden men named Schofield and Hargreaves were
charged with having stolen the shawls of their sweethearts at the
wakes on the previous day, and pawned them for 2/6d each.
They were ordered to pay the value of the shawls plus £1
penalty each, or 1 month's imprisonment
The Leeds-Whitehall Road turnpike opened.
The name is derived from the White Hall, Hipperholme, where it began
Sunday, 22nd June 1834
In June 1834, Several mill owners and manufacturers in Elland,
Greetland, Stainland, Sowerby Bridge and Halifax closed their works,
determined not to employ workers who were members of the Trades Union.
They subsequently reopened when the men generally signed a
declaration and returned to work.
On 22nd June, the Unionists met on Norland Moor and agreed that
their struggle was hopeless.
Immediately afterwards, there was a race to the mills to gain
Sunday, 3rd August 1834
Thunder and lightning killed a man near Dulesgate, and a mother and
daughter at Stoneyhead, Calderbrook
Saturday, 29th November 1834
It was reported that
A great flood did considerable damage in Todmorden and neighbourhood
Wednesday, 24th December 1834
William Horsfall of Underbank married Miss Listerman of
Todmorden at Cross Stone Church
Monday, 29th December 1834
Jones [Jonas?] Yates, of Southowram, married Martha
Durrans of Southowram
Monday, 6th April 1835
Henry Cockroft, a butcher at Southowram, married Mary Ann
Wilkinson of Ovenden
Saturday, 27th June 1835
At Halifax Magistrates' Office
Thursday, 20th August 1835
An earthquake was reported in the Rochdale/Todmorden area
Saturday, 29th August 1835
Miners Abraham Crabtree and John Priestley died after
falling down the shaft at Swan Bank Colliery
Wednesday, 25th November 1835
James Lister was charged at Halifax Magistrates' Offices with
having stolen 70 gross of hanks of yarn from Messrs Lowden of
An Act of Parliament authorised the Manchester-Leeds railway
Wednesday, 22nd June 1836
A great flood was reported in the Hebden Bridge district
Friday, 29th July 1836
A great flood did considerable damage in the Todmorden district
Flooding at Bailiff Bridge spoiled ale at the Punch Bowl
The inundation was blamed on the state of the culverts in the road
and damages of £15 13/- were claimed for the loss of 96 gallons
of ale and a further 36 gallons which were being brewed at the time
Sunday, 7th May 1837
A man aged over 60, who was in a state of intoxication, fell into the
foundations which were being dug for a new building at Cragg Vale,
Saturday, 1st July 1837
Civil registration of births, marriages & deaths was introduced in
England and Wales
Sunday, 2nd July 1837
Bell's London Life reported
William Cockerham was fined 20/- plus costs for travelling for
a waggon of Sunday
Thomas Crabtree of Ovenden was fined 20/- for having in his
possession a quantity of young moor game
Joshua Hirst of Elland, innkeeper, was fined £5 for
allowing gaming in his house
David Bottomley of Norland was fined £5 for cutting
Jno Barker of Warley, innkeeper, was fined £2 for
keeping open his house during divine service on Sunday
Samuel Bolton of Northowram was fined 30/- for molesting
Andrew Daily was committed to the House of Correction for 2
months for having in his possession embezzled wool
Joseph Witham, Solomon Fawcett and Benjamin Peel
were fined £5 for unlawfully taking and destroying the eggs of
game at Hartshead
Daniel Gledhill of Southowram was committed to the House of
Correction for trial on a charging of stealing a quantity of worsted
yarn, the property of John Wadsworth of Sowerby
Edward Holt, on a charge of stealing a quantity of stockings,
belonging to Joseph Brear of Halifax
Two brothers, John and William Mallinson, sawyers
working on the construction of a mill in Sowerby Bridge, were killed
by falling from a crane, as a result of a practical joke by workmates.
Their workmates had left them up in the air until the brothers agreed
to buy them a beer.
They refused and the others went away for lunch leaving them stranded.
The brothers appealed to other workers to get them down, and they
attempted, but, not understanding the crane mechanism, tragedy ensued
Work began on the Manchester & Leeds Railway
Wednesday, 20th December 1837
flooding in much of Yorkshire and Lancashire.
A record flood-level was recorded at Hebden Bridge.
such was the impetuosity of the flood that the canal aqueduct which
crosses the Hebble near its junction with the Calder was forced open,
and the traffic on the canal was impeded
The Calder overflowed its banks in many places.
The Perseverance coach from Manchester to Todmorden and
Halifax passed through much deep water.
Between Todmorden and Halifax, the horses had to swim on several
Friday, 22nd December 1837
Water levels reached 9 feet at Hebden Bridge.
The water level was so high that Black Pit Aqueduct could not allow
the waters through and they eventually flowed into the canal.
The Dusty Miller, Mytholmroyd was beneath 4 ft of water
Monday, 18th June 1838
During a thunder-storm, the electric fluid entered the roof of Mr
Moore's house at Savile Green, and came out on the opposite side,
doing considerable damage; it then took a direction outside the
house, down the water-pipe, entered a drain at the bottom, and
splintered a flag into fragments
Tuesday, 10th July 1838
2 brothers, John and Abraham Crossley, were killed in a
mining accident at a pit in Northowram
Saturday, 28th July 1838
Robert Wilkinson chaired a radical meeting held in a field
near Church Lane, Halifax.
Also present were
Tuesday, 14th August 1838
The body of 4½-years-old Cyril, son of James
Schofield of Todmorden, was found in the Calder below Copley Mill.
The boy was last seen a week earlier, playing on some balks by the
river side in North Street, Todmorden, when he slipped and fell into
The strength of the current carried him away
Friday, 31st August 1838
Hurrier Francis Taylor  was killed in a fire-damp
explosion at Swan Bank Colliery
Tuesday, 23rd October 1838
Death of Mr Isaac Thwaite Jnr  of Hipperholme
The Manchester & Salford Junction Canal opened in the centre
of Manchester, allowing the Rochdale Canal traffic to reach
the River Irwell and on to the Mersey without using
the Bridgewater Canal
The Rebecca Riots against turnpikes and other matters took
place in Wales
Monday, 7th January 1839
Todmorden and district was struck by a hurricane which was described
one of the most awful and destructive ever to have known to have
occurred ... every description of building was injured by the
Reported events included
Saturday, 12th January 1839
At Halifax Magistrates' Office
The wind blew down a mill chimney on the Albion Mill of
Firth & Howarth on Roomfield Lane – the chimney fell on the works
of Lord Brothers
Windows were broken, trees were uprooted and many buildings were
3 people were killed at Green Hill
Saline deposits on windows at Leeds, Huddersfield and Hebden Bridge
suggested that sea spray had been carried inland
Monday, 14th January 1839
The practice of slaughtering and stealing the carcases of sheep has
again been revived in the neighbourhood of Halifax.
A sheep was slaughtered in a field near King Cross, and part of the
carcase and skin was conveyed away
Thursday, 7th February 1839
An inquest before George Dyson at the New Dolphin,
Northowram on the body of 11-year-old Hannah Bairstow whose
clothes caught fire by a hot cinder flying from the fire, and she was
burned to death returned a verdict of accidentally burned
Saturday, 9th February 1839
At Halifax Magistrates' Office
Furness Dyson and Edward Ingham of Northowram were each
fined 3/4d plus 7/- costs for shooting with a gun at Northowram on
the Sunday previous
Thomas Lightowler was fined 5/- plus 10/- costs for being
drunk and disorderly at Shelf on the same Sunday
John Barker and 5 others of Clifton were charged with assault
and allowed to arrange with the complainant, on payment of 5/- to the
John Booth of Adwalton, a salesman at Mr Hinscliffe's
colliery at Hipperholme, was charged with embezzling various sums of
money from his employer.
He was committed for trial at the next Pontefract session
Jonas Stott of Rastrick was fined 4/- plus costs for an
assault upon Harriet Chadwick of Rastrick
Thomas Lister, a Halifax butcher, was fined 5/- plus 9/- costs
for being drunk and disorderly when he appeared at the Magistrates'
Office on the previous Saturday to answer charges of neglecting to
pay his gas rates
Benjamin Johnson and Edward McLean were each fined
5/- plus 4/6d costs for being drunk and disorderly in the streets on
Robert Roberts and John Hemingway, beer sellers of
Hartshead were each found £2 plus 15/- costs for having their
houses open after the prescribed hours
William Firth of Sowerby was fined £2 plus 10/- costs
for refusing to admit a constable into his house
John Shoesmith of Hipperholme was charged with assault and
allowed to arrange with the complainant on paying 5/- to the Infirmary
Joseph Varley of Ovenden was fined 10/- plus 10/- costs for
removing night soil through the streets of Halifax during prohibited
Men entered the house of Mr Jackson of Mile Thorn through the
rear cellar window, and stole 3 dresses, 12 yards of cloth for
shirting, 1 pair of spectacles costing 23/-, 7 shawls, a number of
silk handkerchiefs, 1 cloak to the value of £3, 5 silver
spoons, 1 table spoon, sugar tongs and a number of other articles.
The thieves escaped before Mrs Jackson could catch them
Monday, 11th February 1839
At Halifax Magistrates' Office
James Robinson of Leeds who used certain premises in Halifax
for religious worship by a denomination commonly called
the Jumping Ranters was fined £5 plus
£1 10/- costs for not having the premises duly licensed
Squire Kershaw, keeper of a beer shop at Sowerby, was fined £2
plus 13/- costs for refusing to admit a constable into his house on
the night of 2nd instant
Ann Asquith of Hipperholme was fined 10/- plus costs for
suffering to leave her cart to remain in the streets of Halifax so as
to cause an obstruction
An inquest before George Dyson at the Rose & Crown,
Stansfield on the body of William Crowther, a cart driver
aged 50, who, whilst driving his cart, was knocked down by the horse
and the cart passed over him and killed him
Friday, 1st March 1839
Hurrier Joseph Gray  was killed in a roof-fall at Swan
Monday, 1st April 1839
A group of about 70 men armed with bludgeons, came to Sowerby Bridge
protesting about the Irish labourers who were working on the Leeds
& Manchester Railway.
The Irish men were working for lower wages, and defended themselves
with shovels and mattocks, saying that the gang had no right to
The police were called and the mob eventually left the Irish to carry
on with their work.
There was a similar attempt to coerce Irish workers at Brighouse
which also failed
Saturday, 6th April 1839
At Halifax Magistrates' Office:
Thomas Sutcliffe of Ovenden was charged with assault and was
allowed to arrange with the complainant of payment of 5/- to the
Michael Shaw of Barkisland was fined £2 10/- plus
14/- costs for damaging his work
Thomas Greenwood of Ovenden was find £1 a required to
find sureties for his future good behaviour for an assault upon a
John Radcliffe, a beer seller of Midgley, was charged with
suffering his house to remain open for the sale of beer during divine
service on Sunday; but the evidence was not sufficient and the case
was dismissed on payment of costs
Elijah Lutey of Elland was charged with assault and was
allowed to arrange with the complainant of payment of 5/- to the
George Jessop and Charles Womersley of Hipperholme were
charged with an assault and ordered to find sureties to keep the
peace and to pay 8/6d costs each
Joseph Calverley of Barkisland was fined 5/6d plus 14/6d costs
for an assault
Ellen Whitworth of Northowram and William Fleming of
Halifax were charged with assaults and discharged of payment of costs
John Sharp of Shelf was fund £1 11/10d for playing at
unlawful games on Sunday.
He was then charged with assaulting to constable while taking him
into custody and find 10/- plus 10/- costs.
He refused to pay and was committed for 1 month
Jonathan Fourness was ordered to pay 11/6d for an assault
William Potts was charged with stealing a quantity of brass
castings and tools from his employers, Messrs Sutcliffe of Skircoat.
He was committed for trial
[On Monday] James Fielden of Greetland was ordered to pay
£1 for an assault
George Senior, who declared himself to be a Chartist, was
fined £1 plus 11/- costs for a breach of the peace and using
threatening language to the constables of Halifax
Walker Bairstow, an apprentice in the employ of Messrs
Piercy, coach builders of Halifax, was charged in suspicion of
stealing a quantity of tools, and otherwise misbehaving himself as an
He was committed for 3 months to hard labour.
Another charge of robbing the shop of Mr Daniel Ramsden was
dropped when it appeared that this had been compromised, for
which Mr Ramsden was censured.
Bairstow was also suspected of robbing the shop of Mr
Roper, ironmonger, but the evidence was not sufficient and the
charge fell to the ground
Saturday, 25th May 1839
As the Brighouse market car was near Hipperholme, the axle broke and
the vehicle was thrown violently to the ground.
The car was full and all the passengers were more or less injured.
One casualty was seriously bruised and was taken up by Mr Day
of Brighouse, but the gig had not gone far before it overturned,
injuring the man a second time.
A man took one of the horses to ride to Brighouse for a chaise, and
when the horse reached the stable it dropped down dead
[apart from that, how was the journey?]
Monday, 27th May 1839
During the night of the 27th/28th, some persons broke into the mill
of Mr Noble of Brighouse and carried away 3 packs of tops
Saturday, 1st June 1839
Inquest before George Dyson on the body of William
Cocker  a driver of the Manchester & Leeds Railway who was
killed the previous day when a waggon ran over him
At Halifax Magistrates' Office
James Balme of Halifax was fined £1 9/- for trespass and
Abraham Scott of Ovenden, a beer seller, was fined £5
plus 12/6d costs for a second offence against the Beer Act
William Hodgson of Ovenden, a beer seller, was fined £3
plus 10/- costs for a similar, but first, offence
Jacob Ellis of Hipperholme was fined 15/- for an assault
Thomas Midgley of Ovenden and William Pollard of
Hipperholme were each fined 10/- plus 9/- costs for obstructions with
their carts in the streets of Halifax
[On Monday] Richard Baldwin of Halifax was charged with an
assault and was bound over to keep the peace
Tuesday, 4th June 1839
Inquest before George Dyson on the body of Thomas
Harris  a weaver who was found dead on the previous Sunday in
He had been unwell for some time and was supposed to have died in a
Tuesday, 11th June 1839
An earthquake was reported in the Rochdale/Todmorden area
Tuesday, 18th June 1839
Inquest at the Royal Oak, Barkisland, before George Dyson,
on the body of a baby boy, about 1 year old, found in a quarry at
Barkisland on Sunday, 16th June 1839.
In the absence of evidence on the identity of the child or cause of
death, a verdict of Found dead was recorded
Saturday, 3rd August 1839
At Halifax Magistrates' Court:
Timothy Kelly was fined £10 [or 1 month in the House of
Correction] for hawking without a licence at Stainland
J. Crowther and J. Barker of Sowerby were fined
15/- each for riding in their carts without reins
Mary Wormald of Ovenden was fined 18/- for leading night soil
through the streets of Halifax
John Wormald was fined 5/- plus 10/- costs for being drunk
Joseph Woods of Liversedge and T. Becks of Halifax paid
5/- each to the Infirmary box for assaults
Monday, 5th August 1839
At Halifax Magistrates' Court:
Benjamin Jackson of Halifax was fined £2 plus 17/- costs
for an assault upon a female
Joseph Oates of Rastrick was fined £1 for an assault
Henry Pearson of Halifax was fined £1 10/- for an
assault upon a special constable
James Hilton, a weaver of Halifax, was sentenced to 2 months
in the House of Correction for neglecting the work of his
employers, Messrs Ward & Smith
James McCallon was fined £1 for riding his horse
furiously through the streets of Halifax
J. Barrett was committed for trial for stealing a pair of
boots and for stealing a great coat
Tuesday, 6th August 1839
At Halifax Magistrates' Court:
Thursday, 19th September 1839
There was a fire at Clay House Mill, Greetland
Saturday, 21st September 1839
At Halifax Magistrates' Court:
George Whitaker was committed for trial for stealing a great
coat belonging to one of Mr Smith's waggoners
Timothy Nicholl of Sowerby was fined £30 for having in
his possession a quantity of embezzled worsted materials, being his
He was committed for 2 months for nonpayment of the penalty
Isaac Hartley of Midgley, a beer seller, was fined £2
plus 10/- costs for an offence against his license
J. Crowther of Hipperholme was fined £1 plus 13/- costs
for trespassing after game
Philip Pickles, E. Mellor and Eli Berry of
Sowerby were deemed to pay £5 for an assault
Joseph Shaw of Northowram was fined 5/- plus 3/6d costs for
William Marvell of Northowram was fined £1 for an assault
John Longbottom and 5 others of Skircoat were fined
£3 15/- for an assault upon a female
E. Mellor of Sowerby was fined £2 or committed for 2
months to the House of Correction for an assault
[On Monday] John Johnson was fined £10 for hawking
without a license, in default of payment he was committed for 1 month
to the House of Correction
[On Tuesday] William Pitchforth of Elland was fined £5
for violently assaulting his wife, and ordered to find sureties to
keep the peace of 12 months; in default of which he was committed to
the House of Correction
Saturday, 28th September 1839
At Halifax Magistrates' Court:
Timothy Nicholl of Sowerby was fined £30 for possessing
a quantity of embezzled worsted materials – his second offence
At the West Riding Sessions:
Friday, 4th October 1839
The Manchester to Littleborough railway line opened
Tuesday, 10th December 1839
A train making an experimental run through the Summit Tunnel
crashed at a speed of 30 m.p.h at Rochdale.
There were no injuries
The coming of the railway marked the start of the decline in use of
Tuesday, 21st January 1840
Amelia Richardson  was found not guilty of stealing a
silver spoon, the property of John Avison of Halifax
Tuesday, 24th March 1840
A fire broke out in the rooms of the Radical Association in
Jail Lane, Halifax.
The building was owned by Rev John Barling was completely destroyed.
Tenants of the building included a workshop occupied by Mr
Scowby and a shop owned by Mr Rogerson.
Newspaper accounts told that
Miss Elizabeth Baxendale of Halifax married Mr Samuel
Smith of Manchester, at Halifax Parish Church
Miss Hannah Butterworth of Hipperholme married Mr Edward
Boyes, a Pudsey grocer, at Halifax Parish Church
Mrs Ellen Hopkinson of Halifax married Mr J. Booth of
Clayton, innkeeper, at Bradford
there are reports in which blame is attached to the Radicals
Monday, 18th May 1840
Hurrier Charles Cheatham  was killed in a fire-damp
explosion at Highfield Colliery
Wednesday, 20th May 1840
William Smith , a driver, fell and was run over by a wagon
on the Manchester-Leeds Railway at Elland.
He died 2 days later
Friday, 22nd May 1840
Joseph Holt , a driver, fell and was run over by a wagon
on the Manchester-Leeds Railway at Elland
Thursday, 11th June 1840
William Sheard  was killed and 5 others were badly burned
in a fire-damp explosion at Swan Bank Colliery when a miner used a
candle instead of the safety lamp.
Joseph Sheard  died 4 days later
Saturday, 1st August 1840
An experiment trip was made prior to the opening of the Manchester &
A team of 10 carriages drawn by 8 horses started at Hebden Bridge and
passed through Sowerby Bridge, Elland and on to Bradley Wood.
At every village
it was greeted with the warmest acclamation of immense multitudes
assembled to witness the spectacle
Friday, 25th September 1840
Joseph Roberts  and James Morrison  were killed
by a fall of earth in the railway tunnel at Rodwell End
The Hebden Bridge to Normanton section of the Manchester-Leeds
Saturday, 3rd October 1840
At Halifax Magistrates' Office:
William Eastwood of Halifax, beerseller, was fined 5/- plus
10/- costs for selling beer, not being duly licensed to do so
Joseph Robinson was committed for 2 months under the Vagrant
Act for lodging in the open air
John Cadman was committed for trial at Wakefield for
robbing Abraham Fleming on the night of 22nd August last
[On Monday] David Kershaw of Hipperholme was fined for an
Ann Smith was committed for 1 month as a lewd and disorderly
[On Tuesday] Thomas Aked and Matthew Horsfall were
committed for 3 months under the Pawnbrokers' Act for offering for
sale goods which they had obtained from various shopkeepers in
Halifax, under false pretences
[On Wednesday] John Kilburn was committed for trial at Leeds
for stealing a shawl and a handkerchief from the King Arms Inn,
Monday, 5th October 1840
The first train arrived at Hebden Bridge Station
The first train passed through Brighouse for Bradford Station
The Manchester & Leeds Railway line opened – see North Dean
Wednesday, 9th December 1840
There was a fire at Barstow's Mill, Bridge Street, Halifax
When the Manchester & Leeds Railway opened, the Rochdale Canal
company had to reduce tolls to retain business
Manchester-Leeds Railway line completed.
The first trans-Pennine railway followed the route of the Rochdale
Canal and bypassing Halifax
The Summit Tunnel and the first trans-Pennine railway – the
Manchester-Leeds Railway – was opened
Saturday, 6th February 1841
At Halifax Magistrates' Court:
John Lister and Edward Armitage of Hipperholme
and Abraham Denham of Northowram were each fined 5/- plus
costs for being drunk in the streets on the previous Sunday
James Sturzaker of Halifax was fined £1 plus 9/- costs
for following his worldly calling as a greengrocer on Sunday
Lewis Whiteley of Ovenden was fined 5/- plus costs and John
Whiteley of Halifax was fined 10/- plus costs for offences under
the Halifax local act
Japheth Turner of Northowram was fined 15/- plus expenses for
John Noble was fined /1 for an assault
Patrick Ryan of Halifax paid 5/- to the Infirmary to be arranged with
the complainant for an assault
3 lads were charged with sliding upon the pavements and were
discharged on payment of 8/- costs and promising not to offend again
[On Monday] Joseph Booth, beer seller of Northowram, was
charged with suffering gaming in his house.
This was the second offence within the present year and he was fined
£5 plus 11/- costs
Mary Corken, a lewd and disorderly person, was committed for 1
month for behaving herself in an indecent manner
Tuesday, 9th February 1841
An inquest at the George Inn, Brighouse on the body of Thomas
Denison  who was found dead in bed returned the verdict that
he died by the visitation of God
An inquest at the Hare & Hounds, Stansfield on the body of Jane
Spencer  who burned to death when her night dress caught fire
returned the verdict accidentally burned
Friday, 26th February 1841
Jonathan Sutcliffe  was killed in a fire-damp
explosion at Swan Bank Colliery
Monday, 1st March 1841
The Manchester-Leeds Railway line via Brighouse opened.
The line bypassed Halifax
Friday, 2nd April 1841
2 young men working at Robert Eastburn's Green Mount Works,
Pellon Lane were killed when a steam engine boiler exploded and
brick work was thrown down.
They were scalded in the explosion and died a few hours later
Sunday, 4th April 1841
Joseph Pilling , Samuel Laycock  and David
Laycock  threw stones at the house of George Carver,
keeper of the [which?] Brighouse toll-bar, waking him.
They tried to force their way in, and only left when Carver
gave them 9d.
At their trial, the jury found Pilling
guilty, and the other 2 men not guilty
Saturday, 4th December 1841
A most alarming fire broke out at Illingworth Church.
Around 8:30 pm, a message arrived in Halifax for engines.
One belonging to the Leeds & Yorkshire Insurance Company was
immediately despatched to the spot.
There was some delay in sending other engines belonging to the town
on account of non-payment for their services at several recent fires
which resulted in orders being given that the firemen reserve their
service to the town alone.
As a result of instructions from the constables, the engines were
obliged to depart.
The fire raged for some hours but was subdued by the exertions of the
firemen and the inhabitants.
The fire was caused by an overheated flue on the stove which was
warming the church for services on the following day.
The stove was positioned immediately beneath the west gallery.
The organ was badly damaged, the west gallery and many pews were
The whole of the damage to the organ, pews, books &c was
estimated at £200.
Much of the interior was redesigned afterwards.
A new organ was inaugurated on 7th November 1843
One child was burned to death, and a man and his two children were
badly burned at Ainley Top Mine
The Plug Riots – aka The General Strike of 1842 – caused
considerable unrest throughout Britain, and put many people out of
Wednesday, 17th August 1842
There was considerable unrest in Halifax with rumours of the military
having been overpowered by rioters.
The rumours were untrue, although there had been confrontations with
some loss of life amongst the rioters.
Reports quote deaths of between 3 and 12 people
Wednesday, 14th September 1842
Master Robertshaw  was killed in a roof-fall at Shibden
Because of drought, traffic on the Rochdale Canal was stopped
between Manchester and Sowerby Bridge
Because of a drought and the consequent shortage of water, the
Rochdale Canal was closed between Sowerby Bridge and Manchester
Monday, 21st November 1842
Robert Atkinson  stabbed and wounded George
Woodcock at Hipperholme-cum-Brighouse with intent to main and
At the Yorkshire Spring Assizes in March 1843, he was found guilty
Saturday, 24th December 1842
On Christmas Eve, Sarah Ellen Garside unnaccountably left her
parents' home at Cote Hill, never to be seen again.
Her body was found in the Calder at Salterhebble on 19th February
A Sarah Ellen, daughter of Mary and Joseph
Garside was baptised on 5th August 1821 at Halifax
Kershaw Mill, Heptonstall was destroyed by fire
Marshaw Bridge Mill, Cragg Vale burned down
About 3:00_am on 5th or 12th of January, Spa Well Mill, Elland,
belonging to Charles Pitchforth, was discovered to be on
Before the engine arrived, the interior was completely destroyed and
only the bare walls were left standing.
The engine house, the press shop belonging to John Garside and
some adjoining cottages were saved.
The mill was insured by the Leeds & York Insurance Company.
It is not known how the fire started
Tuesday, 3rd January 1843
Joshua Turner, a mechanic with J. & J. Baldwin & Partners
Limited at Bailey Hall, had been repairing a boiler through the
He accidentally fell through a trap door and landed on his head.
He was taken to the Infirmary where he died about 9 o'clock.
A verdict of accidental death was returned at the Inquest
Wednesday, 22nd February 1843
The damaged engine of a luggage train was disconnected and was being
taken from Elland to Brighouse when the rest of the train crashed
into and destroyed the tender.
There were no casualties
A train collided with a stationary engine on the line between
Brighouse Station and Elland Station.
There were no injuries
Friday, 10th March 1843
An earthquake was reported in the Rochdale/Todmorden area
Friday, 1st September 1843
An accident at James Clay's Hollins Mill, Sowerby Bridge
when Harriet Bates  went to the mill to tell a local widow
that her tea was ready.
The child was caught in a machine known as the dule.
The woman – who had only been working 2 days at the mill – tried to
rescue her but both were dragged into the teeth of the machine and
It was said that the dule was not sufficiently guarded or boxed in
Friday, 24th November 1843
John Smith, a Halifax grocer, married Helen, 3rd
daughter of Zechariah Noble, a Cleckheaton woolsorter, at
Halifax Parish Church
Death of Sabina , wife of John Highley of Harrison
Saturday, 25th November 1843
John Howarth married Miss Hannah Keighley, both of
Halifax at Harrison Road Chapel
There was a typhus epidemic in Heptonstall Slack – see Dr Robert
Tuesday, 19th December 1843
T. W. Mackrill, upholsterer of Halifax, married Martha
Spencer of Skircoat
Wednesday, 20th December 1843
Henry Hebblethwaite, grocer, married Jane, daughter
of Isaac Turner, farmer, all of Northowram
Death of Martha , daughter of Charles Molineux of
Thursday, 21st December 1843
Rochdale Society of Equitable Pioneers established
John Hardman Heyworth of West Lodge, Todmorden
married Sarah, youngest daughter of the late John
Greenwood of Harehill, Todmorden at Christ Church, Todmorden
Joseph Whitworth of Skircoat married Alice Breakes of
The Divi was introduced in the Co-operative Movement
Tuesday, 2nd July 1844
A link line of the Manchester-Leeds Railway opened from North
Dean to Shaw Syke, Halifax
Monday, 15th July 1844
Jacob Haley, Abraham Haley and John Smith were
sentenced for 18 months with hard labour for robbery at Hipperholme
Monday, 28th October 1844
Miss Elizabeth Butterworth of Hipperholme married Mr
William Sugden, a maltster of Cleckheaton, at Halifax Parish
Thursday, 30th January 1845
John Godson , a guard on the Manchester and Leeds Railway,
was killed on the line at Todmorden.
At the inquest, Robert Abraham, the stoker, and William
Barry, the engine driver, said that they left the Rochdale
station with a luggage train towards Leeds.
When they were a short distance from the Bott Lee
tunnel, Godson unhooked some of the waggons; and, when within
about 20 yards of the tunnel, he was seen to fall off the waggon onto
He died almost immediately.
An inquest was held at the White Hart, Todmorden
Cold March with 27 degrees of frost recorded in parts of the district
Saturday, 22nd March 1845
Men employed by Mr Thompson, the contractor for the Halifax
branch of the Manchester & Leeds Railway, were carrying out the
customary repairs to the line.
They were pulling a truck-load of rails with the aid of 2 horses,
when an unscheduled train – carrying only a man and 4 boys – from
Halifax to Elland emerged from Salterhebble Tunnel.
The workmen managed to pull the horses out of the way and no-one was
Monday, 30th June 1845
Between 1845-1849, services were introduced from Todmorden to Colne
Wednesday, 11th March 1846
An explosion at the iron foundry of Bethel Hanson
killed Hanson and Dan Taylor, his bookkeeper.
The boiler was torn from its seating and was blown through the house
of Mr Pollard, which stood next to the foundry, across Grove
Street and against the houses which stood opposite.
Several children were injured and taken to Halifax Infirmary.
The inquest decided that Hanson had been responsible for the
boiler which exploded because of the insufficient flow of water
00/12/1846: One of the worst winters in living memory
Monday, 21st December 1846
The fireman jumped off a train, which had been stopped by a boulder
on the line at Luddendenfoot, and broke one of his legs
A great storm damaged the Church of St Thomas à Becket,
Saturday, 2nd January 1847
Shortly after midnight, Joseph Park was killed when he
slipped and fell whilst walking across the rails.
A pilot engine, the Harrogate, ran over him
Saturday, 27th March 1847
David Hartley, son of King David Hartley, was killed at
John Richmond [1785-1847] was injured by a sudden fall of
stone and shale as he was working at the town's delph.
He died from a compound fracture of the right leg and other injuries
Saturday, 22nd May 1847
At Halifax Magistrates' Office:
Tuesday, 25th May 1847
At Halifax Magistrates' Office:
Susannah Midgley, an abandoned woman from Leeds, was ordered
to pay £1 2/- penalty and costs for an assault upon Harriet
Pickles, of Halifax, a similar character
Thomas Buckley was fined £3 for neglecting to shut the
lower gates of a lock on the Rochdale Canal before he drew the upper
George Nutton was summoned by Joseph Dean of Greetland,
for £1 2/6d arrears in wages.
Ordered to pay with 7/6d expenses
Wednesday, 26th May 1847
There was an inquest at the Dusty Miller, Mytholmroyd on the body
of John Clayton who was found drowned on the previous day in
the goit adjoining Mr Fielding's mill there
Thomas Nicholl was committed for 1 month to the House of
Correction for being found in a house at Siddal, in December last,
with intent to steal a pair of shoes.
He had been four months in the workhouse before Rawson, the
police officer, discovered his retreat
Job Halliday, a sub-contractor at Hipperholme, was ordered to
pay 13/- to a stone-getter named Taylor, whom he had employed
and not paid.
Benjamin Berry, waterman of Elland, was committed for 2 months
to Wakefield House of Correction for neglecting to support his
illegitimate child agreeably to the Justices' order
At Halifax Magistrates' Office:
Thursday, 1st July 1847
Akroyd's Bowling Dyke mills burned down
Thursday, 8th July 1847
John Ashworth was killed by lightning at Mount Skip.
James Greenwood was also struck but he recovered
Thursday, 16th September 1847
The express mail train from Manchester to Leeds was derailed by a
broken rail as it approached Sowerby Bridge station, throwing the
last carriage off the line.
2 passengers – Louis Gillard, of the Electric Telegraph
Company of Wakefield and William Roper Weston, the
surveyor-general for the Board of Customs – were killed.
Several others, including Mr T. Moon, Mr Weston's secretary,
John Sugden, a collier, was charged with absenting himself in
1845 from the service of Joshua Stocks Esq before his contract
Committed for 2 months to hard labour
William Newton, shoemaker of Halifax, was fined 16/- for being
drunk and fighting in the streets about 2 o'clock in the morning.
In default of payment, he was committed to prison for 14 days
Michael O'Leary, stock maker, was committed to trial at the
next sessions, on a charge of stealing horse hair, bristles, and
other materials belonging to Messrs Ramsden of Gibbet Street,
in whose service the prisoner had been for 13 years
One of the passengers who escaped injury was Captain Ellis
or Ellice, a government inspector of railways.
He was in the same carriage as Mr Moon.
At the inquest held at The Royal, Sowerby Bridge, the jury returned
a verdict of accidental death, adding that they recommended a luggage
or break van at the end of an express train as a security for the
In December 1848, Mrs Gillard, the widow, sued the Lancashire
& Yorkshire Railway Company for compensation for loss of her husband.
The jury found for Mrs Gillard and awarded £750 damages
Saturday, 4th December 1847
After heavy rain, the Calder flooded at Todmorden.
Houses were under 3 to 4 feet of water and cellar dwellings were
Sunday, 5th December 1847
A Lancashire & Yorkshire Railway train arrived at Littleborough
Station without breaksman or signal lamp which had been left at
The driver, William Bates, was lying drunk and incapable on
the footplate, and the engine was being driven by James
Heaton, fireman of the Hebden Bridge pilot engine, who was also
in a state of intoxication.
The fireman, Oliver, also much in liquor, had fallen off or
been pushed off near Summit Tunnel.
Bates was committed for 2 months, Heaton was discharged
as he was not on duty at the time, and Oliver ran off
Monday, 24th January 1848
The California Gold Rush was sparked by the discovery of gold at
Saturday, 22nd April 1848
At Halifax Magistrates' Office:
Cholera was reported in Hull, having arrived from Hamburg.
It spread on to
William Shackleton and his wife, Mary, both pot
hawkers, were fined 40/- for being drunk and creating a disturbance
in the streets.
Mary had been fined 40/- for a similar offence on the previous
This time, the couple were fined the same amount
David Armytage of Little Horton, was fined £1 2/- for
refusing to pay 1/- toll for overweight at the Bonegate weighing
Thomas Shaw, a Halifax butcher, was charged with an aggravated
assault upon a respectable married woman, the wife of Charles
Robinson of Hipperholme, near the Travellers' Rest, Hipperholme.
Shaw was fined £5.
The details were unfit for publication
Elizabeth Bolton, a lewd and disorderly woman, was brought up
by one of the watchmen for stealing 5/- from Joseph Nichols of
She was committed to the House of Correction for 2 months as a rogue
[On Tuesday] William Holdsworth, a young man, was charged with
stealing 2 iron rails for the shaft of the West Riding Union Railway
on Beacon Hill.
He was fined£20,
Being unable to pay, he was imprisoned for 1 month
Thomas Helliwell, a Halifax auctioneer, was charged with
crossing a grass field, in Northowram, on a Sunday.
He was ordered to pay 9/6d costs
The heaviest toll was in the industrial and mining areas of
Staffordshire, Lancashire, Durham, Yorkshire and Northumberland.
53,293 people died in England
Saturday, 9th December 1848
At Halifax Magistrates' Office:
George Simpson of Brighouse was fined £2 plus
£1 0/6d expenses for shooting a hare on the property of Sir
George Armytage at Kirklees
Miller, Wattrel & Company, railway contractors of Hipperholme,
were summoned by a number of Irish labourers who had been discharged
from the works of the West Riding Union Railway, for arrears of
The company was ordered to pay each man 20/-
Widdop Lord, a respectably-dressed young man, was accused of
leaving his wife and children chargeable to the Union.
£6 17/- had been expended on their maintenance during Lord's
He was ordered to pay this sum plus costs
At Halifax Police Court:
Friday, 15th December 1848
Inquest before George Dyson at the Golden Lion, Langfield,
Todmorden on the body of Edward Bramley  who was found
drowned in the Calder near Royal Bridge.
There was no evidence of how he had drowned
Saturday, 23rd December 1848
William Crawthra  was killed falling down the shaft at
Swan Bank Colliery
Outbreaks of scarlatina were recorded in Halifax, Hebden Bridge,
Todmorden, Ripponden and Sowerby
Francis Butterworth was brought up by Sergeant Brier
for being drunk near Clark Bridge early in the morning.
He was fined 5/- plus 7/- costs.
John Hodgson of Ovenden was charged by Sergeant Shipley
for a similar offence.
Hodgson said that he was a discharged soldier and this was his
He was ordered to pay 4/- costs.
A branch line of the Lancashire & Yorkshire Railway was opened from
Todmorden to Burnley via Cliviger and Copy Pit.
This was a single-track line.
A second track was installed in 1860
Sunday, 21st January 1849
Horse-drawn cabs were introduced to Halifax
Wednesday, 21st March 1849
At St Bartholomew's Church, Manchester, S. D. Fryer, oldest
son of the late S. Fryer of Rastrick, married Lucy,
youngest daughter of J. Hall of Manchester
Wednesday, 4th April 1849
W. J. Sleath of Bacup married Eliza, only daughter
of John Shaw of Holywell Green at Providence Chapel, Stainland
Saturday, 26th May 1849
9 young men – including
- were brought up before Halifax Magistrates charged with Sabbath
breaking when they were gaming, paying pitch and toss on Sunday.
They were all convicted and fined 12/4d each.
Monday, 16th July 1849
Benjamin Stott and John Wilson were charged with
assaulting and robbing Joseph Tatham at Halifax.
Stott was transported for 7 year, Wilson was acquitted
Thursday, 9th August 1849
A thunderstorm did great damage at Todmorden, Altrincham and Holmfirth
A severe epidemic of cholera across Britain in August and September.
There were 2 cases of Asiatic Cholera in Halifax: Joseph
Norminton of Halifax, and an un-named man who was a manager at
Atkinson's Silk Mill, Boothtown.
Both men had returned from a cheap trip to Liverpool and the Isle of
There were 2 other deaths in Shelf
Sunday, 4th November 1849
Martin Mill, Wadsworth was destroyed when the mill dam burst
Halifax connected to Sowerby Bridge and Low Moor
Saturday, 16th February 1850
John Shaw & Sons gave a dinner and tea to all their 500 workers to
celebrate the opening of a new power-loom shed – measuring 150 ft by
75 feet – at their mill at Stainland.
A band of music and a party of glee singers were hired for the
Any ideas which Stainland Mill this would be?
Thursday, 21st February 1850
High winds caused considerable damage in Halifax.
Windows were broken at Wesley's Chapel and at other premises in the
The chimney at Hall & Clarkson's Savile Mill was blown down.
Part of the roof of a new mill in Old Lane was blown off.
The passenger shed at Sowerby Bridge was blown down
A boy was injured as he was swinging on a gate at Akroyd's Copley
The wind caught the gate, threw it against a wall, cutting off one of
the boy's ears and bruising his head
so fearfully, that in a moment or two, it was swollen to twice its
The boy's family lived in Copley model village
Saturday, 4th May 1850
A hen belonging to an innkeeper at Hipperholme, which had been
missing for 17 days, was found alive and trapped in a large brewing
She had laid 3 eggs but could have received no sustenance during her
Wednesday, 7th August 1850
The railway line through Hipperholme opened
Wednesday, 21st August 1850
At the Halifax Brewster sessions, a number of local
Adam Battinson of the Duke William, Halifax,
James Farrar of the Mitre, Halifax,
Mary Foster of the Lamb, Halifax,
Samuel Speight of the Lamb's Head, Halifax
had subjected themselves to the lash of the law for knowingly
permitting prostitutes and those of notorious character to be
drinking in their houses, contrary to the spirit of their licences
and were each fined £2 plus costs.
Mrs Margaret Hobson of the Fountain, Halifax was fined
£1 plus costs
Tuesday, 24th September 1850
Inquest before George Dyson at the New Dolphin, Northowram
on the body of Elizabeth Rawson [18 months] who died from
injuries to the head and the brain after being run over by the wheel
of a waggon, belonging to Thomas Wood, as she was playing in
Wednesday, 25th September 1850
The 4-year-old daughter of John Wade, a druggist and chemist
at Todmorden, drowned when she was playing by the side of the canal
and fell in.
She was immediately rescued but efforts to resuscitate her failed
Thursday, 28th November 1850
Several workers – mostly young girls – were killed and 17 others
injured when a boiler exploded at Firth's Lilly Lane
Mill, Halifax – see Explosion at Lilly Lane Mill
There were many incidences of forged Bank of England notes in the
Rochdale, Todmorden, Bacup and Littleborough districts.
Lancashire police apprehended
2 of the utterers who are moving in a respectable sphere of
life, being flannel manufacturers at Rochdale
Of those charged, John Whittles was found in possession of
more than 35 £5 notes and 4 £10 notes, and Joshua
Butterworth had used 4 £5 notes and 1 £10 note
Friday, 11th April 1851
An unnamed man drowned in the canal below the Punch Bowl at Todmorden.
His hat was found on the side of the canal, together with a letter
with his name and address on, and a penny, which was assumed to be
for the cost of posting the letter
Friday, 23rd May 1851
At the West Riding Spring Intermediate Sessions at Bradford:
A heavy thunderstorm and hailstorm caused much damage in Lancashire,
Sunday, 29th June 1851
2 brothers from Clifton by the name of Killburn, one aged 19 and the
other 21, were drowned at Cooper Bridge.
About 4:00_pm, they were walking near the railway arches at Cooper
Bridge when the elder took his clothes off to bathe.
He wasn't a swimmer and got out of his depth.
His younger brother jumped in to help him and got hold of his before
they both sank.
Their bodies were taken to the Black Bull, Clifton
Thursday, 21st August 1851
Fire completely gutted Wilson's Bobbin Mill, Cornholme.
Fielden's Niagara engine was one of those that attended the fire.
Newspapers reported that a dwelling house and some buildings
connected with the mill were saved, and that this was the third time
that the premises had been burned
Beacon Hill tunnel was constructed [1846-1849] for the Lancashire
& Yorkshire Railway Company and opened in 1852
There was a national dispute between engineers and masters, and many
- such as
Lord Brothers Limited
closed their workshops and discharged workers
Wednesday, 4th February 1852
After several days of heavy rain, the Bilberry Dam reservoir
at Holmfirth burst causing catastrophic damage.
Around 100 people were killed, and 4 mills, numerous factories,
houses, bridges, churches were destroyed.
An estimated 4,986 adults were thrown out of work, and 2142.
With an estimated contribution of over £1,700, Halifax was one
of many towns who collected money for the relief of the survivors
Thursday, 3rd June 1852
John Crossley Jnr of Hebden Bridge married Susanna,
eldest daughter of Richard Sutcliffe of Lumb Bank at
Sunday, 22nd August 1852
The son of Mr Marshall, one of Fielden's grooms at Dobroyd, was
injured as he fell whilst riding a horse at Langfield, and was
dragged a short distance.
He was bruised and unconscious but alive
Friday, 19th November 1852
2 mills burned down in Elland
Thursday, 16th December 1852
The Redmires Reservoir at Todmorden began to leak and many families
living below the dam moved out of the area until it was found to be
The families' concern was coloured by the bursting of the Bilberry
Dam reservoir at Holmfirth on
4th February 1852
The Crimean War began
Saturday, 22nd January 1853
40-year-old John Jagger was killed by the fall of shale and
rubbish whilst undermining at Westercroft Quarry
Robert Sutcliffe was killed by a fall of clay at the
Saturday, 9th April 1853
On Monday 11th April 1853, an Inquest was held at Halifax Infirmary,
on the body of Edward Douglas, aged 27 years, who died from
injuries received at Sowerby Bridge Railway station.
He was a porter and pointsman, and as he was walking on the line of
railway on Saturday last, he was thrown to the ground by a train of
carriages which were shunting, and was mortally wounded.
He was removed to Huddersfield Infirmary and died the following day
Thursday, 21st April 1853
An accident at Binns Coal Pits, Ashgrove belonging to Holt &
Company, Southowram resulted in the death of Thomas Holgate
Holgate and another man were busily engaged in sinking a shaft
from the hard bed to the soft bed.
Shortly before, they had let off a blast and Holgate had
descended to see the result.
Shortly after, he signalled the man at the top to draw him up but
when near the top he fell backward off the rope to the bottom of the
The man tried to catch him but did not succeed.
James Utley  of Halifax was imprisoned for 1 year for
stealing a silver snuff box &c from John Thwaite, and 10
printed cotton pieces from Edward Moore
James Machin alias Mann  was imprisoned for 2
months for stealing a cotton purse &c from Joseph Whiteley
William Machin alias Makin  of Halifax was
imprisoned for 1 month for stealing 3 hens and a cock from Josiah
Dawson at Hipperholme-cum-Brighouse
The body was taken to the Ashgrove Inn.
Inquest verdict: Accidental death
Friday, 22nd April 1853
Croft Mills, Halifax was completely destroyed by fire.
The Manchester Times of 27th April 1853 reported
Destruction of a factory by fire:
The large 5-storey Croft Mill in Gaol Lane was completely destroyed
Owned by Leyland & Highley cardmakers and partially occupied
Part was let to Mr Illingworth and Mr Joseph
Wood, worsted spinners
Saturday, 2nd July 1853
At Halifax Magistrates' Office:
A cholera epidemic began in the Newcastle area, having arrived from
the Baltic ports, and spread southwards.
Between 1853-1856, there were 20,079 deaths in England and Wales, of
which 10,738 occurred in London
Sunday, 25th September 1853
William Balmforth was returning home by train when he
crossed the line at Brighouse Railway Station and was caught by the
engine and killed on the spot
Tuesday, 4th October 1853
The Lee Bridge mills of Whitworth & Company were badly damaged by
It was described as
John Hanson of Hipperholme was charged by Constable
Nicholson with selling ginger beer on the Sabbath.
He pleaded guilty but said that he was ignorant of it illegality.
He was fined a small penalty plus costs
John Jackson and Edward Holt were charged with
drunkenness and abusive language in a first-class carriage between
Halifax and Sowerby Bridge.
They were each fined 20/- plus 21/- expenses
Joseph Saville of Pellon was fined 20/- for travelling from
Wakefield to Halifax with a pass ticket which he had bought of a
butcher for 1/6d
one of the most terrific and destructive fires that ever occurred in
The property consisted of a large 6-storey mill, extensive
5-storey-high warehousing, and a large weaving shed.
All of which were destroyed.
The loss was estimated at from £60,000 to £70,000.
The fire broke out on the 5th storey of the mill, and was believed to
have been caused by the spontaneous combustion of a quantity of waste
Wednesday, 14th December 1853
Fire destroyed Foster Mill, Hebden Bridge
Many troops in the Crimean War died of cholera
Wednesday, 4th January 1854
A snowstorm in the Upper Calder Valley brought the railways to a
The shortage of coal closed many mills and factories
Friday, 10th February 1854
William Shepherd's Booth Wood Mill, Rishworth partially
burnt down after fire broke out at 1 o'clock with paper which had
been placed in the drying kiln.
Shepherd's son was sent to Halifax to raise the alarm, and fire
engines were sent from Leeds, Halifax, Bradford and Keighley, and
arrived at 3 o'clock.
The fire was extinguished soon afterwards.
The property was not insured, though damage was thought not to exceed
a few hundred pounds
Friday, 24th February 1854
As it was in the course of construction, Mount Zion United Free
Methodist Church, Cornholme was almost blown down in a gale.
Damages were estimated at £60
Wednesday, 29th March 1854
3 men were killed at a stone quarry near Hipperholme Railway Station.
The men were working under a ledge of stone and earth, weighing
around 25 tons, when it collapsed, killing them all in a matter of
Friday, 31st March 1854
The railway line from Halifax to Bradford and Leeds via Brighouse
Thursday, 1st June 1854
John Barker about 17 years old, was a leader of coals, and
kept a mule for that purpose.
On Thursday the mule got into a field on the side where the land at
Brookfoot, alongside the road leading from Southowram to Brighouse,
is much higher than the road, and the deceased went in to fetch it
After having secured the animal, and got it out of the pasture, on
climbing over the wall, the lad's foot slipped and he fell into the
road where he was run over on the head by a passing cart.
An official enquiry at the Malt Shovel Inn recorded a verdict
of Accidental Death
Monday, 31st July 1854
Halifax to Low Moor railway – which began in August 1852 – opened
An old woman, aged 95, was lately carried to her long home from the
village of Bailiffe Bridge, and followed by 9 of her own children,
whose united ages amounted to 533 years; her oldest child being 70,
and her youngest 46 years old
Monday, 11th December 1854
Patrick Burke was killed after falling down the shaft at
The canal company resisted take-over bids from railway companies but
leased the Rochdale Canal for a period of 45 years to a consortium
of railway companies of which the Lancashire & Yorkshire Railway
was the biggest shareholder
Monday, 1st January 1855
A destructive wind at Halifax
Friday, 19th January 1855
John Sharpe was killed by a roof-fall at Bradshaw Lane
The weather in Britain was colder than February 1740
Saturday, 21st April 1855
Thomas Holgate was suffocated by powder smoke at Binns Bottom
Tuesday, 15th May 1855
Hurrier Kershaw Barker  was killed in a roof-fall at Dam
Monday, 23rd July 1855
At the Yorkshire Assizes, George Harrison  was charged with
having on the 25th March 1855 burglariously entered the premises
of Thomas Hanson at Hipperholme
He was liberated on this offence, but was then charged with
having on the 22nd April 1855 sacrilegiously entered the church at
Shelf and stolen the clergyman's surplice and other items
After a hot, sultry period, a severe storm flooded many parts of
Two people were drowned in the swollen rivers.
In Halifax, part of North Bridge collapsed under the water rushing
down into the Hebble
There was flooding in Todmorden following
a severe and lengthy thunderstorm ... vivid flashes of lightning were
quickly succeeded by loud claps of thunder ... the rain poured down
in torrents filling the different brooks which wind their way through
A wall of water 15 ft high inundated Todmorden National School and
other property in the district
Sunday, 19th August 1855
A train with 50 or more carriages, travelling from Blackpool towards
Todmorden, stopped in the Summit Tunnel for the engine to take on
A goods train ran into it, smashing 2 carriages and damaging others.
A man from Heptonstall had his thigh fractured, some passengers were
thrown across the line, and several others much bruised
Saturday, 6th October 1855
William Lord , a collier of Portsmouth, Todmorden, died
from injuries received at the Bankwell Colliery.
He was working with a lighted candle in his hand when the gas caught
fire and an explosion took place
Friday, 26th October 1855
visited by one of the largest floods within the recollection of the
Isaac Midgley of Southowram was badly injured whilst picking
wool off a carding machine at J. & J. Baldwin's.
He became entangled in the machinery and suffered lacerations to his
knees, ankles and elbows
Charles Stead [aged 66] died from injuries caused by his
falling from the top of Godley Cutting.
At the Inquest at Shelf, the jury recommended that a quick-set hedge
be planted at the top of the cutting
Thursday, 21st February 1856
Hurrier George Harwood  was killed when he fell down the
shaft at Limed House Colliery
Tuesday, 18th March 1856
strayed off the line between Halifax and Copley
Several men worked for 6 hours to replace the engine on the rails
Wednesday, 19th March 1856
During the night of the 19th/20th, tools were stolen from a house
being built by Joseph Mann at New Bank, Halifax.
The door had been broken open and several tools and implements had
Monday, 21st April 1856
An 11-year-old girl, employed washing silk at Airey & Greenwood's
mill in Brighouse, got herself entangled in the machinery and lost
all the fingers off her right hand
Tuesday, 22nd April 1856
Joseph Sutcliffe was killed in a roof-fall at Bradshaw Lane
Tuesday, 24th June 1856
Sarah Jane, daughter of William Aspinall, was badly
injured at Clayton & Lockwood's mill when she was throwing a
machine out of gear when her arm became entangled and severed from
Dr Farrar was called and sent her to Huddersfield Infirmary
Sunday, 24th August 1856
John Howarth set fire to hay and a barn at the Howcans
Wednesday, 3rd September 1856
Sidney Haigh, son of a farmer at Chapel Lane, Southowram, was
carrying a scythe as he rode home on horseback.
The scythe was caught by a clothes-line across Chapel Lane and the
blade was pressed against the horse's neck.
The horse screamed and Haigh led it home where it was put to
Friday, 5th September 1856
Higgin Mill, Luddendenfoot burned down
Monday, 20th October 1856
The 7:00 pm Halifax & Huddersfield Omnibus coach overturned as
it descended Shaw Hill, Halifax.
There were 7 passengers outside and 4 inside, some of whom were
slightly injured, though several escaped unhurt.
John Oates  – travelling with his
mother Martha – was trapped beneath the vehicle and died from
his injuries on the following day.
Monday, 3rd November 1856
Death of John Mason Holroyde  of Stainland
Death of J. M. Holroyde Esq of Stainland aged 32
Saturday, 8th November 1856
There were a number of daring and brutal attacks in the Ovenden area.
Two cases were heard by the West Riding Magistrates on Saturday, 8th
Mrs Charlotte Hooson and her husband were walking home from
Halifax to Ovenden around 11:00 pm when a group of 4 or 5 men
2 of the men, Mitchell and Hoyle, were charged with
In another incident which took place during the day, Timothy
Gibson, Charles Cockroft and Greenwood Ogden were
charged with highway robbery at Ovenden after they had
attacked James Kershaw, a potato dealer of Halifax.
The men made off with 6d.
The Chairman of the Bench, Colonel Pollard, said that he knew
that several gentlemen who lived in the neighbourhood carried
revolvers and were prepared to shoot any highway robbers
Thursday, 13th November 1856
The neighbourhood of Halifax has become infested with a gang of
A potato dealer was knocked down, robbed and ill-treated by 3
miscreants in broad daylight
James Heap was waylaid, robbed of 15/- and cruelly beaten as
he travelled from Halifax to Ovenden
The spirit vaults of Mr Ogden in Halifax were broken into.
The shutters had been forced open by a crowbar, but the burglars were
Great numbers of the inhabitants are providing themselves with
weapons of various descriptions for self-defence
Following several incidents of highway robberies accompanied by
violence, 4 men –
Young White, Charles Cockroft, Thomas Maude,
and Timothy Gibson
- were charged with housebreaking in Halifax and Ovenden.
Maude and Cockroft were seen near the house of John
Greenwood, a dyer from Shibden Dale, from which a shawl and other
apparel were stolen.
White later gave the shawl to the wife of John Jagger,
a Halifax innkeeper.
By removing slates from the roof, White and Jagger
broke into the parsonage at Copley whilst Rev James Hope and his
family were away.
White broke into the counting house of Stocks Brewery and
stole a pistol.
He was assisted by Jagger who made keys for the locks
Tuesday, 2nd December 1856
4 local men – Young White, Thomas Maude, Timothy
Gibson and Charles Cockroft – were charged with a series
of daring burglaries and highway robberies in and around Halifax
Wednesday, 3rd December 1856
Thomas Wilson was killed in a roof-fall at Hollins Hey Mine
Sunday, 7th December 1856
Following a storm 2 days earlier, a thaw of snow, and heavy rainfall,
a massive landslide occurred at Stump Cross.
Several thousand tons of earth rolled down the hillside.
No one was injured
Fire at Thomas Blackburn's Phoenix Mill, Brighouse
Low Moor to Leeds
In the early morning, the brake van and wagons of a goods train ran
away from Halifax goods yard, passed through Copley station at high
speed, and crashed into a stationary goods train
Tuesday, 3rd February 1857
4 men were killed at Whitwood Colliery near Bailiffe Bridge.
Between 4:00 and 5:00 pm, blasting was going on to extend the pit,
and the men were watching a fuse burn down the shaft when it exploded
prematurely, decapitating 3 men and fatally wounding the 4th
Thursday, 19th February 1857
187 men were killed in a colliery explosion at Lund Hill
Eliza Riley, a clean-looking woman from Range Bank, Halifax,
was charge with stealing a pound of butter and a piece of bacon from
the shop of Joseph Clark, grocer in Orange Street.
Clark had suspected Riley for some time.
She would go into the shop early in the morning when only the shop
boy was present, and then ask him for something and ask him for
something which necessitated his going into the top room.
Clark had marked a pound of butter (by sticking a pen into it)
and cut a special piece of bacon which Riley subsequently
Riley pleaded guilty, saying it was
poverty and temptation which induced her to steal
She was imprisoned for a month
Tuesday, 7th April 1857
2 men, furnished with more money than wit, had gone to the Lamb Inn,
Halifax and bought drinks for a number of girls there and for
The men went into the back of the inn and returned later, one minus
£70 which he had hidden in his hat for safety, and the other
The thieves have not been discovered
Sunday, 10th May 1857
The Indian Mutiny began
Saturday, 30th May 1857
Property in Ann Street, Halifax, owned by Henry Blackburn, a
For some weeks, workers had been demolishing some of the old
building, and constructing new buildings in their place.
It was proposed to join the old and new sections.
At lunchtime, a great section of the old, including warehouse
contents, fell into the cellars of the newer section.
No-one was injured
Wednesday, 24th June 1857
Benjamin Micklethwaite (aged 59) was killed in a roof fall
at Clifton Colliery
Saturday, 25th July 1857
At West Riding Magistrates' Court:
Booth Wood Mill, Rishworth was badly damaged by floods in the
The machine room was a foot deep in water.
The drying room was built on 2 massive pillars and fell into the
Thursday, 6th August 1857
A child drowned when Hebden water rose
Thursday, 13th August 1857
The Calder flooded and caused great damage in Todmorden and Hebden
A wild-looking young man, George Boothroyd, a joiner at
Lindley, wearing only shirt, trousers and shoes, was fined 11/- for
being illegally on the Lancashire & Yorkshire Railway Company at
Elland on 22nd July.
Henry Hemingway, a porter, said that he found Boothroyd
on the line near Elland station and directed him towards Halifax, but
he later tried to catch a passing train.
The station watchdog seized him, otherwise he would have been killed.
He was later seen again on the line, without a coat and bleeding
John Ingham, a damask manufacturer at Halifax, was fined
1/- plus 22/6d costs for knowingly and wilfully riding in a certain
carriage of the Lancashire & Yorkshire Railway Company without
having previously paid his fare
John Lumb, a farmer at Norland, was charged with having a
quantity of comber's oil in his possession, embezzled.
A witness, Pat O'Connell, was called but demanded a day's
wages before he would give evidence.
The magistrates said that they would neither give him his wages nor
listen to his evidence.
Ingham was deemed not guilty
The loss of property by the flood at Ripponden, was estimated at not
less than £10,000.
Water collected to such a depth on the railway at Walsden that the
fire of the engine of a train was put out and the train stranded for
over 5 hours
Saturday, 15th August 1857
Floods at Walsden were so deep that they put out the fire of a
Lancashire & Yorkshire Railway train, stopping the train for
upwards of 5 hours
Tuesday, 22nd September 1857
The following letter was received by a Halifax resident and published
in the Halifax Courier
Novemder 31st 1857
Dear dorter hi have taken this opertunity to rite those fu lions to
you hoping to fing you in good helth as it leves hus at present i Wos
very sorry to hear that you Wos hill that if you had stoped at – we
coud of comed over to sea you for i ham in constent Wark in a
dickyard at presand – so Wor at pusent from you efexoned ferther and
Ripponden Mill burned down
Tuesday, 12th January 1858
Sarah Jackson, who lived in a house at the bottom of Gibbet
Street, Halifax, suffocated in her bedroom after her dwelling had
been filled with gas escaping from the mains in the street.
Mr Bedford and his son, who also occupied the house, were
found almost lifeless, but were revived.
While a crowd was gathering in front of the house, a
3-year-old-child James or Samuel Tasker, was run over
by a cart and killed
Wednesday, 27th January 1858
Charles Smith, a lad of Southowram, was injured at Shaw &
Moores mill, Walterclough, after his hand was accidentally drawn
into a fanning machine.
It was feared that his hand would have to be amputated to the wrist
Saturday, 3rd April 1858
A terrific storm of thunder, lightning and hail, accompanied by a
very strong wind passed over Todmorden about 11:00 am
Hansom cabs were introduced to Halifax
Wednesday, 9th June 1858
There was a fire at Thornhill Briggs Mill, Brighouse occupied by
Michael Waller & Sons.
The Brighouse engine and the Huddersfield engine were unable to save
the building and the roof and all the floors fell in.
Damage was estimated at £5,000
Wednesday, 23rd June 1858
The Stainland mill of Joseph and Henry
Nicholls was completely destroyed by fire.
The mill was on short-time and had stopped at 4:00 pm.
Smoke was spotted at 5:15 pm and the fire spread quickly.
The engine and some of the stock were saved.
Damage was estimated at not much less than £10,000
The Great Stink when the river Thames in London – flowing with
industrial waste and human sewage – produced a pervasive & repulsive
Monday, 2nd August 1858
A gas-holder at Whitworth's mill at Luddendenfoot fell as
it was being lined.
One worker, Meadowcroft, was cut and bruised,
another, Midgley hung on the scaffolding until rescued
Saturday, 14th August 1858
Isaac Hitchen, a joiner at Skircoat Green, married Martha
Ann Rushworth, of Hipperholme, at Trinity Road Baptist Church,
Joseph Longbottom, a gardener of Skircoat Green,
married Esther Jowett, of Hipperholme, at Trinity Road
Baptist Church, Halifax
Saturday, 28th August 1858
Joseph Jackson of Lower Fold, Bull Green, and William
Smith of Grove Street, Halifax, were brought up in the Fraudulent
Smith had been sent to Ovenden to fetch a pig for Haigh
Hill of Mount Pleasant, Halifax.
He did not return and was found to have sold the carcase and used the
money to buy drinks which Smith and Jackson were found
to be drinking at a beershop in Halifax
Sunday, 19th September 1858
The barn of Henry Hargreaves at Winterburn Hill, Warley burned
to the ground with the loss of large quantities of hay and grain and
4 fine cows.
It was thought to be the work of an incendiary.
Losses were £65 for the cows, £160 for the hay and wheat,
and £150 to £200 for the building
Friday, 24th September 1858
William Robertshaw  of Freedom Street, Mount Pleasant,
Halifax, an overlooker at Crossley's Carpets, died after he was
caught in machinery and his body was broken to pieces
At West Riding Magistrates' Court, Halifax, a number of local
Titus Gaukroger & Son,
Benjamin Platt & Sons,
Robert Whitworth & Company
- were charged with working their employees too late in the evening.
After judgements were passed and the fines were imposed, reports say
that the working people did not appear satisfied with the manner in
which the cases had been settled
Wednesday, 10th November 1858
A fire at Crossley's Dean Clough Mills destroyed much stock and
caused around £750 damage
Wednesday, 17th November 1858
Bottomley's Mill, Ripponden burned down
Wednesday, 5th January 1859
Robert Nicholson, a stone mason, died from injuries received
when a block of stone weighing 1 ton fell on his leg as he was
involved in constructing a grotto in the grounds of Tom Holdsworth,
Spring Hall, Halifax
Monday, 24th January 1859
3 people were seriously injured in when a boiler exploded at the
White Swan Hotel, Halifax.
The Hotel was newly-built and the boilers which heated the building
had been altered, after it was found that they did not work
Halifax stone-masons went on strike over disagreements with the
At the beginning of winter, when unable to work a full day, the men
agreed to a reduction of 3/- per week, on the understanding that this
should continue until the days became longer.
Now the men are able to work the regular number of hours, the masters
refused to return to the former rates of pay.
The masters also refused to sign an agreement for the regulation of
trade prepared by the masons
James Akroyd was fined £5 with £1 2/6d costs for
employing a boy named William Clay at his North Dean mill
without suitable documentation
Samuel Walker, worsted-spinner of Stainland, was fined a total
of £24 with £8 2/- costs for 24 counts of having worked
boys and girls before the hour of 6 am
Joshua Greenwood & Sons was fined £6 with £2 5/- costs
for 6 counts of employing young persons at 4 minutes to 6 am
Friday, 4th February 1859
Shibden Mill – owned by Evan Charles Sutherland-Walker and
worked by Job Oldfield at the time – burned down.
About 100 hands were put out of work.
Oldfield estimated his losses at £4,000
Thursday, 19th May 1859
Whilst in a state of intoxication, Joseph Kershaw lay down on
the railway line at Hipperholme.
He was run over by a train, his body was cut in two, and the limbs
and entrails were scattered about
Monday, 23rd May 1859
Nicholson's joiner's shop in Myrtle Street, Todmorden burned down
Saturday, 28th May 1859
Garrick Gayon, a young man living at Northgate, Halifax and
working for John Holdsworth's was badly injured after being caught
in machinery at Shaw Lodge Mills
Benjamin Benn, a boy working for John Crossley's, was badly
injured after his right thigh was caught between cog wheels whilst
attending a wool-combing machine
Tuesday, 5th July 1859
James Wetherill  and Abraham Crossley  were
killed as they were demolishing a fireplace in the joiner's shop at
Holden & Company of Todmorden.
As they removed a large stone of the fireplace, the end of the
building collapsed, bringing part of 2 floors with it,
They were heard to cry out for help, but they were dead when the
debris was removed half-an-hour later
Saturday, 16th July 1859
Lars Peter Nicholie Ernst was charged with burglary at Manor
Heath, Halifax – the home of John Crossley – and Thomas
Walton was charged with receiving property stolen from the house.
Ernst was sentenced to 10 years' penal servitude and Walton to
2 months' imprisonment
Tuesday, 26th July 1859
3 people – William Sutcliffe, Reuben Breaks of Odsal,
and a boy from Bailiff Bridge – were seriously burned in a fire-damp
explosion at the Seventeens Pit, Hartshead
Sunday, 7th August 1859
There was continuous rain on Saturday and Sunday.
The Calder flooded – rising by 1 ft in 10 minutes – and caused
great damage in Todmorden and Hebden Bridge.
Newspaper reports describe 2 crevasses – one in the Calder and
one in the canal – which contributed to the damage in Todmorden.
Saturday, 10th September 1859
At the West Riding Court House:
There was heavy flooding in many parts of Yorkshire.
Many local mills were damaged.
A wooden bridge at Luddendenfoot was washed away.
Matilda Clegg  was blown into a mill-dam at Shibden and drowned
In the 1860s, Parliament decided that all future roads should be paid
for out of council rates, initiating the system we have today.
Turnpike trusts began to wind up and they had almost all gone by
Most roads around Halifax were toll-free by the 1870s
Friday, 27th April 1860
Temple Mill, Rishworth burned down
Saturday, 12th May 1860
James Holden of Grove was killed in the Summit Tunnel as he
was running out of the way of one train and ran into the path of
Thursday, 7th June 1860
Albert Mills, Elland were burned to the ground.
The damage was estimated at £10,000.
Joseph Smithies & Son Limited rebuilt the mill
Saturday, 28th July 1860
A passenger train of 7 carriages en route from Manchester to
Scarborough ran into a goods train standing at Hebden Bridge station.
All the passengers were shaken and 20 to 30 injured.
A Miss Milne of Rochdale had to stay overnight in Hebden Bridge to
Tuesday, 7th August 1860
Halifax masons went on strike for a 9-hour working day
Monday, 20th August 1860
James Kershaw [aged about 55], a butter and yeast dealer at
Mytholmroyd, was boarding a train for Brighouse as it was arriving.
His left leg was caught between the footboard and the platform and
cut open from ankle to knee.
He was taken to Halifax Infirmary where he was considered to be in
a dying state
Tuesday, 6th November 1860
There was notable flooding in Todmorden when the rivers
swelled to a great height
For 13 weeks in the winter of 1860/1861, the Calder & Hebble
Navigation froze between Sowerby Bridge & Brighouse.
The ice between Brooke's Mill and Ganny Lock was 9 ins thick,
between Ganny Lock and Brookfoot Lock it was 12 ins thick, and
above there it was 12 ins to 13 ins thick.
John Milnes cleared the route with an ice-breaking barge
Saturday, 1st December 1860
Fire broke out at the premises of Messrs Firth, joiners and
builders, Gibbet Street, Halifax.
The premises were in a great measure gutted.
The buildings damage – which was insured – was estimated to be about
£100, other damage was stated to be about £70
Monday, 10th December 1860
Fire – caused by overheating of a shaft in the shafting box – broke
out at the Stainland mill of J. Firth & Brothers.
Damage was estimated at £1,000, most of the damage being done
by the water used to put out the fire
Wednesday, 3rd April 1861
Around 10:30 am, the engine of a luggage train from Sowerby Bridge to
Leeds left the line and dragged the tender, transit van and 3 trucks
loaded with iron.
All then overturned.
The driver, stoker and guard were slightly injured and the line was
blocked for several hours
Friday, 12th April 1861
The American Civil War [1861-1865] began
Thursday, 25th April 1861
Roger Brandwood was killed in a roof-fall at Shaw Lane
Tuesday, 30th April 1861
At the AGM of the Art Union of London,
T. Lord of Todmorden was entitled to select a work of art to
the value of £20,
G. Howarth of Todmorden was entitled to select a work of art
to the value of £10
Saturday, 18th May 1861
Tom Bean, a currier at Hipperholme, married Susey Ann
Waddington of Brighouse, at Square Congregational Church,
Monday, 20th May 1861
John Lucas, a cabinet maker of Northowram, married Mary
Settle of Halifax, at Trinity Road Chapel, Halifax
Saturday, 1st June 1861
A boy called Sutcliffe of Ovenden, was taking his father's
breakfast to Heginbottom's mill when he met 2 other boys, brothers
also called Sutcliffe but no relation.
One was aged 14 and the other 10.
They resumed an earlier quarrel and began to fight.
The first boy was kicked and fell insensible and died a few hours
Friday, 12th July 1861
There was a great flood.
Hipperholme Station was blocked with mud
A cholera epidemic in Brighouse
Tuesday, 20th August 1861
James Barraclough [aged 14] was crushed to death when he fell
5 storeys down the sack-tackle at John Holdsworth & Company Limited
Sunday, 8th September 1861
The whole of the Upper Calder Valley suffered
Ely Taylor, a beerseller at Soyland, was fined 20/- for
selling at 4:30 on Sunday afternoon
Thomas Whitehead, a beerseller at Hollins, Warley, was fined
40/- for selling at 10:30 on Sunday morning
one of the greatest floods ever experienced
and at Todmorden, the water rose 18 inches higher than any previous
Tuesday, 1st October 1861
At 10:00 pm, a luggage train from Manchester arrived at Hebden Bridge
with some of the waggons detached and following 100 yards behind.
When the train stopped and the waggons collided, 16 of these were
derailed, scattering cotton onto the lines.
The line was blocked throughout the night as workmen cleared the
Saturday, 7th December 1861
Mr Baldwin, the guard of a coal train, was crushed to death
after he fell between the buffers of the train at Hebden Bridge
The cotton famine which resulted from the American Civil War
caused much distress and hardship in the district
Friday, 21st March 1862
In the evening, a man and woman in mourning clothes sought lodgings
in Salford, Todmorden.
They were unsuccessful, and next morning the woman, aged about 45,
was found drowned in the Rochdale Canal near Neddy Bridge.
The man, Joseph Leach, a brush-maker of Ashton-under-Lyne, was
charged with her murder.
He said that he had met the woman, who said she had come from Halifax
and was travelling to Burnley where her children were living
Thursday, 24th July 1862
The cotton mill of Navey's Mill, Soyland was entirely destroyed by
Saturday, 26th July 1862
About 7:00 am, the body of Thomas Chambers, a boot and shoe
maker of Common Wood Head, Hipperholme, was found in the lake at
He had been depressed for some time, and there had been family
disagreements on the previous day
There was a smallpox epidemic in Brighouse
Wednesday, 13th August 1862
Around noon, a group of lads, employed by James Akroyd at
Copley, were bathing in the Calder near the factory.
Frederick Ogden  was carried away by the river and his
body was found 3 hours later
Tuesday, 18th November 1862
Wood Mill, Todmorden, occupied by Thompson & Sons, was destroyed
Only a small section which was used to store grain was undamaged.
Damage was estimated at £20,000
A gentleman well known in Halifax vouches for the accuracy of the
A Halifax lady is the owner of some cottage property in Lancashire,
which, if ordinary times, yields her £400 per annum.
In May last, she collected her rents and received £197 out of
the total amount.
Last month (November), she again visited Lancashire for the purpose
of collecting her rents, and received £1 0/6d! which she
more than spent upon her starving tenants
The newspapers carried reports of contributions in aid
of Lancashire Distress, a central relief fund
for alleged refusal to work
A Hebden Bridge relief committee was reported as donating, with
President James Hoyle of Boston Hill
and Secretary James Sutcliffe
Friday, 2nd January 1863
William Hoyle fell into the beck at West Vale and was carried
away by the current.
His body had not been found by the 9th January
Tuesday, 27th January 1863
The worsted mill of John Ingham at Stump Cross was
completely destroyed by fire.
The damage – amounting to £6,000 or £7,000 – was covered
Saturday, 21st February 1863
A notice in the Halifax Guardian announced
Public Notice: FOUND, a REVOLVER, in Ovenden.
The Owner may have it by giving a fine description and paying
If not claimed within seven days it will be sold: Apply: The Guardian
Tuesday, 19th May 1863
There was a fire in the drying room of Gosport Mills, Stainland
owned by Edward Sykes & Sons Limited
The fire was put out by the workers.
Damage was estimated at £120
Monday, 1st June 1863
On 1st, 2nd, and 3rd June, in a cricket match between the All-England
Eleven v. 22 of Halifax and district, the local team won by 54.
The scores were
Halifax: first innings 188, second innings 95.
All-England: first innings 152, second innings 77
Saturday, 13th June 1863
John Scarisbrick , a drayman with Messrs Carver,
carriers, was killed when he fell beneath the wheels of his dray in
Broad Street, Halifax
Tuesday, 16th June 1863
Fire causing £10,000 damage destroyed Gates End Mill, Cragg
Monday, 3rd August 1863
The Prince of Wales – later Edward VII – opened Halifax
This was the first Royal visit to the district.
This is discussed in the Foldout on the visit of Edward VII
Wednesday, 5th August 1863
The West End cotton mills, Sowerby Bridge, occupied by John
Radcliffe & Sons, were destroyed by fire.
The damage being about £20,000
Monday, 10th August 1863
A boiler exploded at the dye works of Thomas Crossley & Sons at
Halifax, killing the fireman, Peter Kaye.
There were 4 boilers at the works, one of which was 21 years old and
had been patched on several occasions.
It was only safe to be worked a 20 lb psi, but the engine tenter,
John Murgatroyd, had set the valve to 41 lb psi.
At the subsequent trial, Murgatroyd was acquitted
Tuesday, 3rd November 1863
A boiler exploded at the Woodhouse Mill, Todmorden of Richard
Ingham & Sons, killing Sarah Greenwood , a dyer and frame
tenter, and injuring 6 others.
The mill had been idle for almost a week when the boilers were
The inquest recorded a verdict of manslaughter against the owners,
Richard Ingham & Sons and John Arthur Ingham
Wednesday, 18th November 1863
Brookfoot Mill, Brighouse – occupied by Brook, Hadfield &
Company – burned down causing an estimated £15,000 damage.
The fire was discovered by a policeman between 3:00 and 4:00 in the
morning, and, in about an hour, the entire mill was gutted by the fire
Thursday, 3rd December 1863
A mill in the course of construction at Bridge End, Elland, was blown
down during a very high wind, which did considerable damage in the
A 14 year-old boy was killed at Walsden Station.
At the Winter Assizes in Liverpool on 14th December 1864, the court
heard that the boy was carrying a sack of flour on a road which
crosses the line.
The station-master told him to wait as they were shunting a train.
When this had been done, the station-master said
Now, my boy, if you're going to cross, cross quick
As he did, an express train came out of the tunnel and killed him.
The boy's father was awarded £40
There was an epidemic of scarlatina in Brighouse
Friday, 8th January 1864
Fire at Holme Mill, Stainland, then occupied by Messrs
Whittel and others, caused damage estimated at £700
Sunday, 10th January 1864
About 15 minutes before some 60 children were due to arrive, Mrs
Ann Smith, wife of the chapel keeper of the Wesleyan Reform
Preaching Room, Skircoat Green, was badly burned and the room
damaged when a hot-water boiler exploded.
The windows of the school room were blown out, the boiler was
dislodged, and a stove was blown through the door into the yard.
It was thought that water freezing in the supply pipe caused the
Thursday, 28th January 1864
The Rev Amos Blackburn was killed by a locomotive engine at
Mutterhole crossing, Eastwood
Sunday, 13th March 1864
The body of Adam Bray was taken out of the canal at Brighouse.
He was last seen leaving the Bridge Tavern, Brighouse on 27th
Friday, 25th March 1864
Fire broke out at the Mechanics' Hall, Halifax after an escape of
gas took fire.
Drapery & woodwork caught fire.
A painting of the Crucifixion by
Henry Courtney Selous
- valued at £7,000 – was saved when the blaze was tackled
Saturday, 26th March 1864
Maria Horsfall  was found dead in bed at Southowram.
The inquest at the Cock & Bottle found that she died from
Wednesday, 6th April 1864
Fire caused an estimated damage of £1500 to the warehouse of
Brian Booth Cowgill in Sowerby Bridge
Saturday, 23rd April 1864
John Heaton, manufacturing chemist of Cleckheaton, was killed
near the Halifax station by falling off a locomotive engine
Monday, 9th May 1864
A cart driven by William Hannett and belonging to
F. B. Crossley & Company was delivering carboys of sulphuric acid
to Binns wire works at Bowling Dyke, Halifax.
As the cart was descending the hill, the strappings on the harness
broke, the axle broke and a wheel came off, scattering and smashing
the carboys, as the cart got to the Blue Ball.
Two children playing nearby were covered in acid and taken to the
Thursday, 26th May 1864
Ellistones Mill, West Vale – aka Outram's Mill – was burned
The fire broke out around 7:00 am in the dule room on the bottom
floor occupied by Benjamin Outram.
The fire spread very quickly and 3 or 4 workers were in danger of
losing their lives.
Damage was estimated at about £8000
Thursday, 16th June 1864
Slade Lane Mill, Rastrick, owned by William Gooder & Company and
let to W. Garside & Company burned down.
Damage was estimated at between £5,000 & £6,000
The Albert Mills, Rastrick Whitely, Garsed & Company burned down.
The damage was estimated at between £5,000 and £6,000
An inquest was held at Cragg Vale Inn on the bodies of
brothers – Alfred Sutcliffe [22 years] and Barker
Sutcliffe  – who were found drowned in Turvin Clough where
they had been bathing
Monday, 4th July 1864
A three days' cricket match opened at Halifax between the All England
Australian Eleven and 22 of Halifax and district.
At the first innings the All England scored 58, and the Halifax and
The second innings: All England 127, Halifax and district 92, and
came out victorious with 7 wickets to fall
Sunday, 24th July 1864
A wager was laid at Skircoat when a certain gardener bet that another
gardener could not, as was affirmed, collect in his garden and
deliver the same day, 1000 quarts of strawberries.
£2 was the amount of the wager, which was won.
Upwards of 50 people were engaged in collecting the fruit
Saturday, 3rd September 1864
There was a collision at the Halifax Station when a Great Northern
train ran into a Lancashire & Yorkshire train.
3 carriages were broken, one nearly to pieces.
No-one was seriously injured
Wednesday, 14th September 1864
A serious railway accident occurred on the Leeds, Bradford & Halifax
Junction Railway at Laisterdyke, Bradford.
The injured included
Monday, 26th September 1864
A rather severe earthquake was felt in the North of England around
- Mr F. Hirst
- Mr James Holroyd
- Mr J. Laycock
- Mr W. Marshland of Wakefield
- Mr Jacob Newbolt
- Mr Harrison Nicholson
At Halifax, the earthquake was felt, especially along the range of
hills along which Southowram Bank, Charlestown, Haley Hill, and
Boothtown are situated.
Numbers of persons affirmed that they felt the shock, and even heard
a low subdued rumbling noise.
Pliny Barrett states that he was reading at the time, that the
chair rocked beneath him, that the chairs arranged on the side of the
house rattled against the wall, and he heard distinctly a noise as of
thunder at a distance.
Another person living in Range Bank, who was going upstairs to bed,
returned into the room below, took up a coal-rake, searched the
house, supposing that thieves had entered, and even went out of door
in his shirt in continuation of the search.
The same apprehensions appear to have been entertained by other
people in different parts of the town.
The night porters at the railway station felt the earthquake, and
several private watchers assert that they were cognisant of it.
The police were very definite in their account of the earthquake.
One of them, who was standing against a wall in Southowram Bank, and
looking upon the town, says he felt the wall rock, and heard a
Clocks were stopped by the tremor
Saturday, 15th October 1864
Lower Lumb Mill of Heale, Booth & Company burned down.
The fire was discovered just after 2:00 am by a resident, John
Mitchell, who immediately gave the alarm.
The flames spread so rapidly that nothing could be saved from the
The machinery, stock, and walls were destroyed.
The estimated damage to the machinery and stock was between
£6,000 and £7,000, and to the building £3,000.
The cause was unknown
Thursday, 20th October 1864
Sarah Dawson  was killed by an express train at the
level-crossing at Walsden Railway Station
Wednesday, 26th October 1864
Around 11:00 pm, a fire broke out in the stove room at Townsend's
Mill, Hebden Bridge.
Much of the main building of the mill was gutted.
The outbuildings, where the dyeing and sizing were carried on, were
Damage was estimated at £3,000
Thursday, 27th October 1864
Hebble End Dye Works, Erringden burned down
Saturday, 19th November 1864
A fire broke out in the dule room of James Clay & Sons works at
Hollins Mills, Sowerby Bridge.
The mill in which the fire started was destroyed.
The damage was stated to be about £2000
Monday, 21st November 1864
Between 11:00 pm and midnight, a fire was discovered in the carding
room at Dog Lane Mill, Stainland which was occupied by William
Booth and others.
The fire spread quickly and the entire building was destroyed within
The cause was not known.
The damage was estimated at £6,400
Hanging Lee Mill, Ripponden burned down
Saturday, 11th February 1865
The Halifax Omnibus Company was formed.
A tram service from King Cross to Boothtown started later that year
Monday, 3rd April 1865
Operative joiners of Halifax went on strike because of a reduction of
the weekly hours of labour from 57½ to 52½
Wednesday, 10th May 1865
Halifax Omnibus & Cab Company Limited began a horse-drawn omnibus
service from King Cross to Boothtown
James Sedgwick, a corn miller employed by Mr Thompson
at Luddendenfoot was caught and carried round a shaft.
His legs and an arm were much lacerated and broken.
He died 2 weeks later
Wednesday, 24th May 1865
Corn miller, James Sedgwick, a miller with Mr Thompson
at Luddendenfoot, died from injuries received 2 weeks' earlier after
he was caught and carried round a shaft at the mill
Sunday, 3rd September 1865
Pitchforth's Mill, Elland was destroyed by fire with an estimated
loss of £9000 due to the destruction of cotton and machinery
Monday, 9th October 1865
Fire broke out in the cotton warehouse of John Stott, cotton
spinner at Brighouse, causing considerable damage
Wednesday, 15th November 1865
11 people were injured in an accident at North Dean
Sparks from the steam trains on the Leeds & Manchester Railway
caused fires in the North Dean Woods, causing an estimated
£240 worth of damage
Victoria Mills, West Vale burned down
A cholera epidemic began at Hull and Grimsby, having been brought
by immigrants from Europe who passed through on their way to America.
This spread to Liverpool and Southampton, whence people embarked for
the Atlantic crossing.
14,378 died in England and Wales
The Great Flood in Hebden Bridge and Brighouse
There were strong winds in the region, and, by a great fall of rain
at Halifax, a number of houses on the Southowram side of Clark
Bridge, were flooded.
The rise of the water was sudden, and in some instances the occupants
had to escape by the chamber window.
The ale cellars at the Red Lion Inn were filled with
water, and the rooms on the first floor to the height of 2 or 3 feet
Thursday, 15th March 1866
About 4:00 am, part of the wall which supported Corporation Street,
Halifax collapsed, and hundreds of tons of rubbish fell on the
foundations of a new warehouse which John Crossley & Sons were
building near the wall.
A day or two earlier, large cracks had been seen in the road, and the
base of the wall was observed to project more than usual
Saturday, 17th March 1866
At the West Riding Court House, William Smith, a youth, was
imprisoned for 1 month for stealing a pair of boots, the property
of Mrs Wainhouse of Hipperholme, and then taking the boots to
a pawnbroker in Bradford
Friday, 11th May 1866
In the early morning, a fire broke out in the attic of Thorpe Mill,
The building was 6 storeys in height, including basement and attic.
The 4th storey and attic were occupied by Mr Sutcliffe.
The entire mill was destroyed, and Sutcliffe, who had valuable
machinery and more than £600 worth of wool in the mill, was
Rawson had insured the building and his machinery and stock
with the Scottish Union Fire Office.
The total loss was several thousands of pounds
Saturday, 19th May 1866
Death at Hipperholme of Nelson Hudson , youngest son
of M. D. Hudson of Hornsea
Sunday, 20th May 1866
At 3:00 pm on Sunday afternoon, Police Constable Sykes discovered 4
Clifton men –
John Lister, a sawyer,
John Perry, a labourer,
William Clayton, a beerseller,
Thomas Day, a shoemaker
- gambling in a wood at Clifton.
PC Sykes, observed the men through a prospect glass,
before arresting them.
Fairless Barber, the lawyer for the defendants, argued that they
were not playing cards, but merely looking at stereoscopic views.
The men were found guilty and ordered to pay 20s 4d each
Saturday, 11th August 1866
William Varley  of Swineshead, a carter for Buckley &
Ashworth, Gauxholme, was run over by his cart near the Mason's Arms
He had just returned with a small pleasure party from Hollingworth
He died on the following Monday night
Friday, 17th August 1866
Margaret Ann Fitzpatrick [aged 12] was setting bobbins at
Jonathan Stott's cotton mill when her clothes were caught by the
mule and she was crushed to death
Monday, 20th August 1866
The Victoria Mill, West Vale – owned by the Victoria Mills
Company – was destroyed by fire.
The 6-storey mill was occupied by several firms at the time:
The fire, which broke out while the work-people were in the mill,
caused an estimated £15,000 damage.
It was believed to have been caused by friction of a strap.
Newspaper reports said that there was a scarcity of water at the
time, and, had there been only 2 pails of water on hand when the fire
was discovered, there would have been no difficulty in checking the
The introduction of machinery for the scouring of stone at Halifax,
led to a strike.
The mason's committee – the Union – withdrew the men at the
establishment where the machine was used, and refused to refer the
dispute to arbitration
Friday, 31st August 1866
2 boys – Henry Sharp  of Foundry Street, Halifax
and North Smith  of Boothtown – were arrested for stealing
a horse from Joseph Hargreaves, a grocer at Haley Hill, on 24th
The boys had stolen a horse from a field in Southowram on the same
day, and sold it for 5/- at Wyke
Monday, 3rd September 1866
A fossil trilobite was found at Shibden in the coal
shale of the Halifax coal bed, which overlies the millstone grit.
This was the first instance of a trilobite being found in this
measure, or, indeed, higher than the mountain limestone
Monday, 1st October 1866
Lamplighters in Halifax had their wages raised from 18/- to 19/- per
Friday, 16th November 1866
There was one of the most disastrous floods that had visited the
district within living memory.
In the three great valleys of the West Riding – those of the Aire,
the Calder, and the Wharfe – the loss of property was enormous.
There was particularly severe flooding at Todmorden with half the
town being entirely inundated.
The 3 highways into the town were impassable.
At Ripponden, 4 people –
Mrs Elizabeth Bottomley, Charlotte Anne Kershaw [aged
16], Mary Jane Kershaw [aged 15] and Alfred Kershaw
[aged 11], the children of James Kershaw, – were on their
way to work when they were washed away and drowned whilst crossing
a ricketty temporary bridge
at Treadmill between Soyland and Barkisland.
Their bodies were found later.
Whitworth's mill and sheds at Longbottom,
Luddendenfoot were under water and much damage caused to the
The wooden bridge over the Calder at Luddendenfoot – the only river
crossing between Sowerby Bridge and Cooper House
Mills – was swept away.
Slitheroe Bridge, Rishworth was washed away.
A house in Saddleworth Road, West Vale has a crudely-carved stone
Great Flood Nov: 16 1866
Thursday, 22nd November 1866
There was a small fire at Brookfoot Mill, Brighouse, caused by
friction in the machinery.
It was quickly extinguished by the workers, resulting in £120
Saturday, 8th December 1866
The Rose Fire Brigade and the Elland Unity Fire
Brigade tackled a fire on the 4th storey of the Elland mill of
Sanders & Bottomley.
The fire is believed to have started from the heating of a shaft.
Damage was estimated at £1,500
The steeple of a church at Ripponden was struck by lightning
which melted part of the works of the clock and set the chimes
This attracted the attention of people who found that the electric
fluid had ignited gas at the meter
Sunday, 13th January 1867
Burglars broke into the house of Mrs Robinson, a grocer at
Hipperholme, and took the keys from the pocket of a dress in the
bedroom, then stole silver cutlery, a quantity of bacon, and some
Saturday, 19th January 1867
Joseph Shaw, a carter with Sugden & Son at
Brighouse, was charged with embezzling 24 empty flour sacks, the
property of his employer
Monday, 28th January 1867
A strong gale of wind blew in many parts of the West Riding.
At Halifax, the new inland bonding warehouse, in course of
construction by Halifax Corporation, was blown down
Cattle plague was reported on the farm of Mr Sutcliffe at
His farm suffered a severe outbreak in 1866
Friday, 15th February 1867
About 2:00 am, a fire broke out in the 3rd storey of Sutcliffe's
Mill, Shay Lane.
The mill was completely destroyed.
The damage was estimated at £4,000 or £5,000
Sunday, 10th March 1867
The vestry and orchestra at Mount Zion Methodist Church, Cornholme
were destroyed by fire.
A mechanic from Lawrence Wilson & Sons tackled the fire with a
patent extinguisher from the bobbin works, but without success.
The fire engine from Wilson's came, but the hose broke.
Damage was estimated at £200
Tuesday, 19th March 1867
James Saville [1827-1867], a stone barer at Aspinall's
Quarries, Hove Edge, received serious head injuries by a fall of
He was taken to Halifax Infirmary where he died 20 minutes later
Thursday, 18th April 1867
Part of Brookfoot Mill, Brighouse – owned by Samuel
Leppington and occupied by Woodhouse Brothers – was destroyed by
Tuesday, 30th April 1867
Fire destroyed the Cote Hill bobbin mill occupied by A. Munday.
The damage was estimated at about £3000
Friday, 17th May 1867
Greenup's Mill at Sowerby Bridge was gutted by fire.
At the time, the mill was owned by
Mr T. Nicholl
and run by
William Bates & Son, machine makers and millwrights,
& by Charles Scholefield, woollen manufacturer
The mill stopped work at 6:00 pm and fire broke out at 7:30 pm in the
second floor timber-drying room.
By 8:30 pm, the mill was completely gutted and most of the roof had
The damage was estimated at £7000 to £8000.
William Bates & Son suffered losses of £3000 to £4000,
Charles Scholefield was not insured at all
Monday, 20th May 1867
Vale Bobbin Works burned down
Thursday, 13th June 1867
There was a rock collapse at Long Wall Quarry, Elland here when the
face of the rock collapsed and 7,000 to 8,000 tons of rock fell to
the bottom of the quarry.
The noise and shock were felt across of wide area.
No-one was injured
Monday, 29th July 1867
There were disturbances between the English and the Irish at
John Charles was fined 13/6d for breaking the windows
of Sarah Cruckwell, and William Greenwood was fined the
same sum for a like offence, but a charge was dismissed for an
assault upon Mary Haley.
Saturday, 10th August 1867
An inquest was held at the Cross Keys Inn, Siddal on Frank
Jones, a journeyman painter from Blackburn, whose body had been
found in Mary Lane, Southowram on the previous day.
He had been looking for work and was lodging with Sarah Gill
at Southowram Bank.
There were no marks on the body and the post mortem revealed heart
disease and the early stages of consumption.
Verdict: Found Dead
Tuesday, 20th August 1867
was held at the Pack Horse, Southowram, into the death of John
Wood, a cart driver employed by Barber's, card makers
He was going to the Southowram Hard Bed coal pit to fetch coals for
his employer, and, whilst riding on the cart in Law Lane, and being
the worse for liquor, he lost his balance and fell into the road and
was run over by the cart wheel.
Shortly afterwards, he was found helpless but sensible by pit
foreman, Joseph Hebblethwaite, but died half and hour later.
Verdict: Accidental Death
Tuesday, 10th September 1867
In the evening, a 60 ft length of iron railings enclosing a raised
area outside the Old King Cross Inn, Halifax collapsed under
the weight of spectators watching a donkey race after the
About 10 or 12 people were injured.
One boy suffered a fractured leg and died a few days afterwards
Friday, 13th September 1867
A gentleman, a member of the Cliviger Colliery Company, was
travelling by train with around £400 in banknotes in his
He placed the pocket-book on the seat whilst he read his papers.
When he got off the train at Luddendenfoot, he realised that he had
left his money on the train.
He telegraphed the railway stations at Sowerby Bridge, Halifax,
Bradford, Huddersfield and Wakefield.
Later, Mr Johnson, a surgeon at Harrison Road, Halifax,
was travelling on the train to Leeds when he saw
a sailor-looking man with the pocket-book at his side
The man got off the train without the book and Mr Johnson asked him
about the book, but the man eventually left without it.
The pocket-book was subsequently returned to Halifax and its owner
Thursday, 31st October 1867
Uriah Fletcher of Great Horton was injured by a fall of earth
whilst working at the Hipperholme quarry of Bentley & Shepherd.
He died at home that evening, leaving a wife and child
Thursday, 14th November 1867
Fire caused an estimated £1,000 damage at Mitchell's Mill,
Friday, 6th December 1867
More than 30 skulls were found during excavations in Sowerby Street,
Wednesday, 11th December 1867
Because of a depression in trade, quarry-masters in the district
reduced their men's wages by 4d per day [about 7½], and paid
the men by the hour instead of by the day.
A meeting of quarry owners was held at the Brown Cow Inn, Bradford,
and it was decided to retain the amended rates
There was a fire at Kebroyd Mills, Triangle.
The mill was rebuilt
Smoking compartments were introduced on trains
There were many floods locally
Fire at Jonathan Stott's cotton mill, Brighouse caused damage estimated at £25,000
Friday, 3rd January 1868
Edward Worsnop died after being crushed when a large
quantity of stones and earth fell on him at Naylor & Goodyear's
quarry in Southowram
Saturday, 11th January 1868
During a case of equity, which came before Halifax County Court, it
was revealed that the father of the applicant from Fixby had three
wives and thirty children
Sunday, 9th February 1868
The 71-feet-high chimney of Robinson's Brick Works, Elland was
blown down, and the roof of a grocer's shop was carried away
Saturday, 15th February 1868
During construction of the new 7-storey Lee Bank Mill, Halifax
being built for W. H. Rawson & Company, the 120 ft mill chimney
began to oscillate and collapsed, causing considerable damage to 2
George Foster, a mason, was severely injured and died shortly
Mr Walker, a manager W. H. Rawson & Company was slightly
A slip in the foundations was believed to have led to the incident
Tuesday, 25th February 1868
Winters Mill, Stansfield was struck by lightning, and much damage
Thursday, 26th March 1868
Just after 6 am, a fire was discovered in the bottom room of Dene
Mill at Kebroyd Mills, Triangle.
The Mill was 5 storeys high and about 40 yards long, and
was owned by George Hadwen and occupied by Mr Lees a
cotton manufacturer of Oldham.
A message was sent to Mr Isaac Swaine of Halifax, agent for
the Liverpool & London and the Globe fire office, for
the engine under his care, which was despatched with all speed to the
scene of the fire, but, with the engine having 5 miles to travel, the
fire had got complete mastery over the building by the time it
Shortly afterwards, the West Vale (Greetland) engine came up
but were too late
The damage was estimated at between £8,000 and £10,000.
The Mill was rebuilt
Saturday, 25th April 1868
Richard Blackburn  of Wakefield, a goods guard at
Todmorden Railway Station, was killed
Thursday, 30th April 1868
A fire at a mill in Bailey Hall Road, Halifax – occupied by Thomas
Crossley & Sons – destroyed property valued at £1,000.
The fire was detected about 1:00 am by Pollard a watchman
employed by Crossley's.
Thomas Walshaw went to the scene and was walking along the roof of
a shed, when he fell through a sky-light into a dyer's vat, and was
Saturday, 20th June 1868
A boiler explosion at Kitson's Fire Clay Works killed one
man – John Hanson – and seriously injured several others
Thursday, 9th July 1868
A steam-boiler burst at Worrall's dye-works, Midgehole.
Several workers were severely injured.
The boiler and engine houses were destroyed, and the fragments were
scattered a great distance
Wednesday, 22nd July 1868
There was a death from Asiatic cholera in Brighouse
Monday, 3rd August 1868
Tolls were abolished on the Leeds-Elland Turnpike
Thursday, 20th August 1868
Garden Street Mill, Halifax
A fire gutted the New Bank Mills / Garden Street Mill, Halifax of
John Crossley & Sons.
The building was used principally in the cotton, flax and woollen
The damage was estimated at £5,000
Monday, 19th October 1868
George Priestley, a miner at Howcans, was robbed of
£18 at the Market Tavern, Halifax
Thursday, 12th November 1868
Jonathan Stott's Mill Royd Mill, Brighouse was damaged by fire
which rapidly consumed a great portion of the building.
The fire engines available were unable to control the flames.
Damage was estimated at around £20,000
Wednesday, 25th November 1868
J. Worthington of Hanley, Staffordshire, married Mary,
daughter of the late E. Ramsden of Halifax at Halifax Parish
Cases of hydrophobia were recorded in many parts of the West
Several men in Halifax who had been bitten by dogs some months
before, were reported to have died from the disease
Halifax single-track railway line increased to two tracks
Friday, 12th February 1869
Joseph Baron was injured at Scout Quarry and died on 2nd March 1869
Monday, 15th March 1869
Earth tremors were felt at Rochdale, Todmorden, Sowerby Bridge, and
other places in the Upper Calder Valley and west Lancashire
Tuesday, 13th April 1869
Abraham Webster, a weaver at the works of Ashworth Brothers,
was fitting a new window, when his clothing was caught by a shaft.
He was spun round, all his clothes were torn from his body, and he
fell to the ground dead
Wednesday, 14th April 1869
3 houses at Cross Stone were struck by lightning during a violent
Mrs Barker, who lived in one of the houses, had the soles
nearly torn from her shoes, one stocking and one foot being badly
She was also struck deaf and paralysed and was unable to walk.
Most of the windows in house were blown out, and some of the slates
were thrown a distance of 20 yards by the force of the strike.
The occupant of another house was struck blind, but recovered shortly
Saturday, 1st May 1869
Fire broke out at Burrwood Mill, Stainland, causing £300
Arson was suspected as a number of healds were found tied together
between the looms
Thursday, 13th May 1869
David Greenwood, a warp dresser of Roper Green, Ovenden was
arrested on suspicion of having set fire to the boiler house at
Jumples Mills, Wheatley.
As Mr Hanson, who occupied a part of the mill, was returning
home, he saw the boiler-house illuminated.
He went to investigate and discovered the place was on fire
and Greenwood was coming out.
When arrested by PC Hustler, Greenwood was found to
have a bunch of keys which opened almost every door in the mill
Saturday, 15th May 1869
Miss Selina Porter, sister-in-law of the Rev C. J. Bushell, was
killed as she was crossing the line at North Dean Station
Tuesday, 18th May 1869
A thunderstorm of great violence visited Halifax around 2:00 pm.
A chimney under construction at Samuel Whitley's mill
near to the Halifax Union Workhouse, Gibbet Street, was shattered
after being struck by lightning.
Only 44 yards of the proposed 63 yards had been completed.
the 6-year-old son of Benjamin Hargreaves, a coal miner from
Norwood Green, was killed when the outhouse in which he and a brother
and sister were sheltering collapsed after being struck by lightning
2 pigs owned by Thomas Mitchell of Hebden Bridge were bitten
by a mad dog.
The dog was shot.
The pig which was most severely bitten subsequently showed signs of
hydrophobia and was shot and buried by Mitchell.
In August, the second pig showed symptoms and behaved like a
ferocious tiger and barked like a dog.
It jumped wildly and knocked one of its eyes out.
It was eventually shot
Monday, 28th June 1869
A party of 5 from Todmorden –
Ellen Brooks ,
and a youth – drove to Hollingworth Lake.
Mary Ann Holt, of Todmorden, joined them as they went for a
drive around the lake.
As the vehicle stopped to pay the toll, the horses went backwards and
threw the drag and the party into the lake.
Miss Holt and Miss Brooks, and one of the horses,
Saturday, 24th July 1869
A fire was discovered in the 3rd storey of Brigg Royd Mill, West
Alarm was raised by a man called John Howe.
The fire was caused by spontaneous combustion of a heap of shoddy
and was soon brought under control by the West Vale Fire
Damage was very slight, amounting to about £1
Saturday, 28th August 1869
Record temperatures of 90° Fahrenheit [32° Celsius] recorded
The following day, the temperature was recorded as 48° Fahrenheit
Thursday, 23rd September 1869
2 goods trains collided at White Platts Junction, Todmorden.
A driver and a guard were injured
Sunday, 28th November 1869
Fire destroyed several of the farm buildings of James
Hebblethwaite at Bankfield Farm, Bank Top, Southowram.
Large quantities of hay, straw and corn were destroyed.
Two cows suffocated and a third, running into the fire, burned to
The damage amounted to several hundred pounds.
The Halifax Guardian of 4th December 1869, reported
Destructive Fire at Farm.
On Sunday evening last.
Fire at Bankfield Farm, Bank Top, Southowram, property of James
Lister, Esq., of Shibden Hall.
Laithe was on fire, four horses and four cows were got out.
In another mistal were four more cows, three got out but the fourth,
a very valuable animal, rushed through a small doorway into the
laithe full of hay and was burned to death.
A messenger was sent to Halifax for engines and that of
the Liverpool, London & Globe was soon on the spot.
The cause was unknown but it was suspected that a vivid flash of
lightning, which took place at half past five that evening, could
have been the cause of the fire
Saturday, 11th December 1869
There was flooding in the Calder and its tributaries.
A boy, Samuel Thomas Townsend, fell into the river at Hebden
On 15th January 1870, his was one of 2 bodies taken out of the Calder
at Cooper Bridge.
Both boys were buried at Bradley Churchyard
Saturday, 18th December 1869
There was flooding in the Calder and its tributaries.
A 9-year-old boy, Samuel Pearson, fell into the Hebble near to
Shaw Lodge Mills, Halifax.
On 15th January 1870, his was one of 2 bodies taken out of the Calder
at Cooper Bridge.
Both boys were buried at Bradley Churchyard
The Great Depression lasted from 1870 to 1914.
During this period, many workers left England for a more promising
life in the US and the British Colonies
Tuesday, 15th March 1870
In the early morning, a fire, was discovered at Bankfield House
by 2 children who were sleeping there.
The fire started in the roof of the servants' wing, progressed with
alarming rapidity, and destroyed much of the new servants' wing.
Several of the rooms were gutted, and considerable damage was done to
the furniture by water.
The lowest estimated damage was £100.
The cause of the fire was unknown
Monday, 18th April 1870
On Easter Monday, Stott's Mill, Luddendenfoot was burned down in a
fire which was discovered in the spinning room after the workpeople
had gone to lunch.
The damage was estimated at £3,000.
Nearby Denholme Cottages were not affected
Thursday, 5th May 1870
William Rawson died from rabies.
This was one of a number of cases reported in the Halifax district
over a period of 2 years
Thursday, 12th May 1870
There was an accident at Four Lane End Colliery owned by John
2 of Cawthra's sons, Thomas  and Alfred , both
employed as hurriers, were being lowered down the shaft when
the rope broke.
The cage and its occupants fell about 150 ft to the bottom and were
A third brother, who was working in the pit, had the task of
assisting in bringing the bodies to the surface.
Mrs Cawthra, the boys' mother had a dream which foretold the
accident and asked them not to go to the pit that morning, but the
sons ignored the warning
Monday, 30th May 1870
An accident at a Hipperholme quarry of Bentley & Shepherd.
4 workers had gone down the quarry to start their shift when there
was a fall of earth and rock.
William Hainsworth and Rufus Woodhead were killed.
William Cockett and James Holmes were injured
Saturday, 2nd July 1870
Great excitement was caused in Halifax by the report that an accident
had occurred to an excursion train which had left Halifax for Lincoln
at noon with.
The rumour was founded on a telegram which had been received in
Halifax from Lincoln, asking for a doctor, wine and bandages to be
This had been a hoax as all 100 persons returned home safe a few
minutes after the appointed hour.
The railway authorities are trying to discover the author of this
cruel hoax, who richly deserves punishment
Saturday, 9th July 1870
poured down without abatement
resulting in floods in Todmorden, the Burnley Valley and Bacup
which caused an estimated £35,000 damage and claimed 3 lives at
4-year-old Betsy Goodall and her 2-year-old
sister Sarah were victims of the flood.
Parts of Todmorden were under 6 ft of water.
The Todmorden Flood Relief Fund was established on 11th July.
The flood was said to have been more disastrous to the district than
any since that caused by the bursting of the Holmfirth
4th February 1852
Sunday, 31st July 1870
A fire was discovered in the duling room at Victoria Mills, West
Vale, owned by the West Vale Stoving Company.
Spontaneous combustion of a quantity of cotton and woollen blend was
The fire was extinguished in about an hour.
The damage was about £200
Monday, 22nd August 1870
A fire broke out during the morning at Dam Head Mill, Shibden, and
completely destroyed the building and its contents
Friday, 21st October 1870
The down main line train from Manchester collided with the
Bradford-Huddersfield train near the Brighouse Station.
The gasometer in one of the compartments burst, and the gas exploded,
illuminating the whole district for a short time.
A passenger, Oates Mitchell [1848-1870] from Burnley and
working as a tape sizer at Brighouse, was killed, and several
others were injured, including
Mrs F. Corder of Upper Astley – bruised legs and face – and
her 6-year-old child – injured back and cut legs
W. E. French of Huddersfield
Mark Hartley of Huddersfield – serious internal injuries
G. Jarmain, professor of chemistry at Huddersfield – face cut
and front teeth knocked out
H. Parker of Dewsbury
Mr M. B. W. Richardson of Huddersfield – severely bruised face
Mr Stansfield of Paddock
G. Turner of Longridge Bridge
A. Turner of Longridge Bridge
George Wardman of Huddersfield
Rev J. Wilkinson of Huddersfield
Mrs Wilson of Bird's Royd, Rastrick – concussion of the brain.
In August 1871, her husband sued the Lancashire & Yorkshire Railway
Company, for compensation – see Wilson & Another vs the Lancashire
& Yorkshire Railway Company
John Wright of Horbury – internal injuries
A number of people were injured by falls as they rushed to see the
cause of the blaze in Lillands Lane
Wednesday, 14th December 1870
Samuel Garside was crushed to death when a piece of timber was
blown down by the wind as he was erecting a gantry for the railway
line from North Dean to Stainland
In the 1st quarter of 1871, there were 11,511 deaths in the West
39 smallpox, 671 scarlet fever, 443 fever, 173 whooping cough, 171
diarrhoea, 110 measles, and 72 diphtheria
West, Horsfall & West were tenants of Gauxholme Cotton Mill when
it partly burnt down
A serious epidemic of smallpox and typhus broke out in Halifax in
Friday, 13th January 1871
A fire was discovered at the cotton mill at
Barkisland which was run by Bottomley Brothers.
Damage was estimated at £5,700
Saturday, 25th February 1871
James Corney [aged 24] was drinking in a beerhouse at Highroad
He remarked that he knew as much about Ireland as any of 3 Irishmen
with whom he was drinking.
This led to a quarrel and one of the Irishmen drew a knife and
stabbed Corney in the chest.
The Irishmen got away.
Corney survived, thanks to his thick clothing
4 earth tremors were recorded over a period of 3 days
Friday, 21st April 1871
Part of the Kensington Wool Preparing Works of David Smith
& Company Limited was destroyed by fire which broke out in the
drying room about 8:00 pm.
The fire spread to the remainder of the building before it was
extinguished around 11:00 pm.
Damage was estimated at about £900 and was not insured
Monday, 19th June 1871
Salterhebble Mill – owned by Samuel Shepherd – burned down with
an estimated damage of £20,000.
About 100 workers were thrown out of employment
Monday, 26th June 1871
About 4:00 pm, 7 day-trippers to Saltburn went out to sea in a small
The sea was rough and
one of the group – a young man called Kershaw from
Halifax – was brought ashore dead,
2 young men were missing,
and the remaining 4 were rescued in an almost dying state
John Kershaw  of Ovenden,
John Dean  a cabinet-maker of Foundry Street,
W. Allen  a cabinet-maker of Cross Hills
were drowned. in a boating accident at Saltburn-by-the-Sea.
The Coroner's inquest returned a verdict that they accidentally
drowned, and that the accident was due to the mistaken judgement of
the men in charge of the boat
Saturday, 23rd December 1871
A Public Notice in the local press announced
WE, the MECHANICS, employed by Messrs JOHN HOLDSWORTH & Co, beg to
tender our sincere thanks to our employers for the liberal manner in
which they have met us with regard to the agitation in the Iron
trade, and hope, by strict attention to business, to merit in future
their favour as theretofore.
Signed; THE MECHANICS
Saturday, 6th January 1872
Samuel Crabtree, of Robinwood Terrace, a night-watchman at the
Todmorden Railway Station, was killed by a goods train
Saturday, 3rd February 1872
The Shay Lane Mill of the Ovenden Worsted Spinning Company
Limited was completely destroyed by fire.
The fire was discovered around 23:30 on the Friday night.
It looked like the fire would be speedily extinguished but a pipe
connected with the fire-engine burst and it was some time before the
fire-fighting could be resumed.
Then it was discovered that there was insufficient pressure to reach
At 1:00 am an engine from Queensbury arrived, and messages were sent
to Halifax, and the Liverpool, London & Globe Company engine
was despatched, arriving at 2:15 am.
The building was entirely gutted.
The loss was estimated at £15,000
Sunday, 25th February 1872
Fire broke out at the West Vale mill of Speak & Normanton.
Local fire brigades were soon at the scene and damage was not very
Thursday, 9th May 1872
Hurrier George Woodhead  was killed when he was run over
by corves at Swan Bank Colliery
Tuesday, 18th June 1872
There was thunderstorm over most of northern England
Saturday, 13th July 1872
Serious local floods hit Brighouse and district
Saturday, 20th July 1872
A torrent of rain fell last Saturday morning and the resulting
flood was something approaching that of 1866.
Many buildings were flooded to a depth of 3 feet.
Considerable damage was done to Richard Kershaw's Victoria
Mills, Brighouse where several operatives were trapped in the upper
rooms, escaping by means of horse-drawn wagons.
Water was up to the horses' bellies
The engineers, machinists and mechanics of Halifax were on strike for
an increase of 2/- a week on their wages.
The employers were advertising to fill the vacancies
Tuesday, 6th August 1872
Two corporation labourers – Richard Halliday and Michael
Coleman – were killed and another very seriously injured at the
Inland Bonding Warehouse, Halifax.
Work was in progress to strengthen the supports of the upper floor,
and a wall was being built in the cellar.
During the work, one of the pillars gave way, completely bringing
down iron girders and burying the 3 men
William Rawnsley and Francis Pinder, both under 12
years of age, were charged with breaking into a house at
Barkisland – knowing that the key was left under a stone – and
stealing 2 silver watches worth a total of £8.
Both pleaded guilty and were ordered to receive 12 lashes each with a
Thursday, 7th November 1872
Between 4:00 and 5:00 pm, fire broke out in the top room at John
Firth's Regulator Mill, Sowerby Bridge.
The workers escaped without having time to stop the jennies.
The Sowerby Bridge fire brigade poured a copious supply of water into
the burning room, and the flames were extinguished in little over
half an hour.
The damage inflicted by the fire and the water was great
Monday, 11th November 1872
10 people were killed and several others injured at the Marsden
Brothers' Lilly Lane Mill, Halifax when one of the mill's 2 dams
burst after work to extend the mill had weakened the embankment.
There was a 15 ft to 18 ft breach in the bank and large quantities of
stones and earth were carried down the incline.
Considerable water damage was done to silk stored in railway arches,
and to other property.
Many nearby houses were flooded
Saturday, 16th November 1872
The flooring of a passage leading into the Oddfellows' Hall,
Halifax, gave way under a sudden rush, and about 100 boys fell into
a vault beneath.
11 boys were seriously injured
Pecket Well Shed was damaged by fire
Calder Bridge Mill, Brighouse damaged by fire
Tuesday, 7th January 1873
Part of a train was derailed at Todmorden Station when a cow which
was being unshipped at the station got on to the line.
The cow was killed, but no-one was injured
Tuesday, 14th January 1873
A fire-damp explosion occurred at the Flatt's Pit
of the Low Moor Iron Company at
Tuesday, 4th February 1873
Fire broke out at the West Vale mill which Horsfall & Halliday
occupied as tenants of John Maude.
A worker was lighting the gas when a spark ignited some waste cotton.
The automatic system released a jet of steam into the room and, with
the help of the West Vale Fire Brigade, the fire was soon
Damage was estimated at about £1,000
John Kilderry [aged 47], a stone mason working on the
construction of the Rawroyd Viaduct, Holywell Green, was killed
when he fell into the beck below.
He left a wife and several children
Friday, 21st February 1873
About 8:00 am, fire broke out in the 2nd floor scutching room at
Atlas Mill, Brighouse.
The cause was one of the machines striking fire.
2 men – James Nicholson and Thomas Bottomley, employees at Ormerod &
Hirst's mill – tackled the fire with fire extincteurs and
stopped the large quantity of cotton being affected.
The Royal Insurance Volunteer Fire Brigade's manual engine
the Brighouse Subscription Fire Escape
turned out, as did the hose apparatus from Sugden's spinners and
from Sugden's millers
Tuesday, 11th March 1873
Fire broke out in the spinning room at Gosport Mills, Stainland
owned by Edward Sykes & Sons Limited.
It was thought that cotton had been ignited by an overheated shaft.
A messenger had to be sent to West Vale for the fire engine.
The entire premises were damage, estimated at £10,000
Wednesday, 26th March 1873
A deputation representing between 4,000 and 5,000 of the inhabitants
of Halifax, had an interview with His Royal Highness the Duke of
Cambridge, Commander-in-Chief of Her Majesty's forces, and Mr
Cardwell, and submitted objections to the establishment of a
military centre in Halifax or adjacent to it.
1st April 1873,
the town learned that a military centre was to be established
Tuesday, 1st April 1873
26th March 1873,
a large deputation submitted objections to the establishment of a
military centre in Halifax.
1st April 1873,
a telegram was received in Halifax from Colonel Akroyd stating that
the War Office had decided to form a military centre in the town
Friday, 9th May 1873
A fire at cotton spinners Edwards & Ramsden's Prospect Mills,
Sowerby Bridge, injured many workers;
some fell and others suffered friction burns whilst attempting to
slide down a chain to escape from the burning building
The building was destroyed.
The loss was estimated at £55,000
Tuesday, 3rd June 1873
On Thursday 5th June 1873, newspapers reported thunderstorms in the
During the great thunderstorm on Tuesday at Warley, Halifax,
lightning struck a mistal belonging to Joshua Hoyle, and two
young men – one of them was Mr Hoyle's son James – were
struck down by the electric fluid.
Hoyle was burned from head to foot.
In the same neighbourhood a young man named James Balmforth,
was standing with his sweetheart in the porch of her house when he
was struck by lightning and remains unconscious
A thunderstorm in the evening caused a number of serious accidents
from lightning at Warley.
At Mr Hoyle's farm, about 9:25 pm, James Hoyle and a second
man were in the cow shed milking the cows, when a flash of lightning
struck and knocked both of them down.
James was burned all over his body, leaving his skin red and
charred, and his clothing and boots were torn to pieces.
A cow standing near the door was killed instantaneously.
A nearby cottage was struck and the floors, roof, chimney, and part
of the wall were knocked down, and the windows and furniture
A man and 2 women in the house at the time received no injury.
About 60 yards from Mr Hoyle's was the house of William Binns,
During the storm, Binns, James Bamforth, and a young
woman were standing in the porch, when the lightning knocked them
Bamforth was not burnt, but the doctor who was called to see
him was of opinion that
he would be a lunatic for life as the shock had quite turned his brain
Friday, 4th July 1873
In the early hours, residents of houses in the vicinity of the Robin
Hood, Brighouse were awakened by an explosion caused by the
burst of a 14 inch water main which had recently been installed near
The houses were damaged by the water and several yards of the road
were blown up to a depth of 3 ft
Wednesday, 13th August 1873
A fire at the works of John Wilcock & Sons caused estimated damage
of about £10,000
Monday, 18th August 1873
An outbreak of fever at Brighouse assumed serious proportions, with 3
deaths and 31 other cases, of whom 29 had been supplied by a farmer
Cases in Church Street, Brighouse appeared to be most numerous.
The farmer and his family were unaffected, and his cows were healthy,
but the sanitary state of the farm was described as very
Saturday, 6th September 1873
Samuel Appleyard died after being caught in the shaft of a
charcoal-grinding machine at the works of Pickering & Yardley
Tuesday, 16th September 1873
As the foundation stone was being laid for St Matthew's Church,
Lightcliffe, a timber guy and the cast-iron supports of the crane
broke as the stone was being lowered, causing the stone to fall down
on to a platform packed with spectators – see St Matthew's
Lightcliffe: Stone-laying accident 
Friday, 10th October 1873
Slitheroe Bridge, Rishworth was destroyed by floods
Wednesday, 29th October 1873
The Company's Mill on Stainland Road, West Vale – occupied by Mr
Lumb, Mr Hirst and others was burned down when a fire
broke out as workmen were examining the gearing in the top room.
Very little of the mill was saved
Thursday, 4th December 1873
About 10:00 am, a gas explosion set off a fierce fire which
completely destroyed Cunliffe-Lister's Wellington Mills Lower
Wade Street, Halifax.
This is described in the Foldout entitled The Fire at
Wellington Mills : 1873
Monday, 15th December 1873
A boiler exploded at the Spa Well Works of A. Crowther,
a rag puller and rag grinder at Elland, severely injuring about 8
3 of the injured were being carried home when the cotton wadding in
which they were wrapped caught fire.
Brothers, Richard Barrett  and Joseph Barrett ,
died a few hours afterwards of their burns.
William Wilkinson  was severely scalded and died.
Others injured by the explosion were Mrs Crowther, John
Barrett, Joseph Hemingway, Edward Moss,
and William Crowther.
The boiler was old and had been used for agricultural purposes, and
it was found to be corroded.
Before Crowther had bought it from Mr Atkinson of Lincolnshire, for
£40, it had been sold as scrap iron on 3 previous occasions for
£5, then £8, and then £18
Tuesday, 16th December 1873
A strong gale blew down the new 120-ft tall brick chimney of
Bedworth & Sons,
killing James Fidler 
seriously injuring John Fielding, Charles Wrigley
and Abraham Darley
Tuesday, 17th February 1874
In the course of an hour, fire entirely gutted Jonathan Stott's
Mill Royd Mill, Brighouse.
The walls fell and blocked up the turnpike road and a considerable
length of canal.
The damage was estimated at between £50,000 and £70,000
Wednesday, 29th April 1874
A fire occurred in the mill of Cyrus Brook & Company in Victoria
Street East, Halifax.
The damage was estimated at £3,000
Monday, 15th June 1874
The 9:45 express passenger train from Bradford to Manchester collided
with a coal train in Beacon Hill Tunnel.
The driver of the express neglected the signal which was against him
and saw the coal train as he emerged from the tunnel.
He blew his whistle but it was too late.
7 people – including the guard – were injured
Monday, 17th August 1874
The first section of the railway connecting Halifax and Ovenden was
opened as far as North Bridge.
It was part of a proposed line from Halifax to Bradford.
The line began 10 years ago as a private venture, but this fell
through and the Great Northern Railway Company and the Lancashire
& Yorkshire Railway Company subsequently took up the scheme
Friday, 28th August 1874
Mary, daughter of Frank Rayner of Gooder Lane,
Rastrick, was knocked down and trampled by the horses drawing a wagon
belonging to Brook & Booth.
A verdict of accidental death was returned and exonerated the
32 people died in a smallpox epidemic in Todmorden.
Thursday, 5th November 1874
A number of young men were celebrating Bonfire Night near to Swan
They acquired an old cannon and loaded it with a heavy charge of
gunpowder and brimstone, and rammed this down very hard.
Whilst they were doing this, the cannon suddenly went off, injuring
John Lewis Foster,
John William Kershaw,
Wednesday, 11th November 1874
Isabella Bowker [aged 12] of West Vale, a worker at John
Maude's mill, was struck on the head and face, thumped in
her side, and kicked on the knee by her overlooker, Robert
Akroyd, after she did something which displeased him.
She was in a precarious condition because of her injuries.
Akroyd was taken into custody
Tuesday, 8th December 1874
Buildings in Cobden were flooded to a depth of 4 or 5 ft
Monday, 14th December 1874
John Bottomley, a waste dealer of Halifax, was charged
for that [he] on [14th December 1874] at West Vale, unlawfully did
profanely curse one profane curse, in these words, to wit "G- D-"
(five times repeatedly), you being under the degree of a gentleman,
to wit, a waste dealer
Sir Henry Edwards cautioned Bottomley against a repetition
of so degrading an offence, and fined him 5/- plus costs
Wellington Mills, Elland burned down
Thursday, 21st January 1875
3 boilers exploded at Lord Brothers' Mill, Todmorden just as 500
mill hands were returning from their dinner break.
Fragments of the boilers, red-hot cinders, and other debris were
scattered around the district.
One of the boiler's safety valves, weighing several hundredweight,
was thrown across town and fell through a mill roof.
6 people were killed and a further 6 died later.
It is still regarded as one of the town's worst industrial disasters.
At the inquest, it was revealed that 17 months earlier, the results
of an inspection advised that the boilers should be replaced, but the
manager, Edmund Woodhead, had them repaired instead
Saturday, 30th January 1875
A small boiler exploded at Hartley & Sugden Limited, Atlas Boiler
Workmen Henry Riley and Enoch Booth were badly injured
Friday, 30th April 1875
A fire at Bankfoot Mill, Hebden Bridge, rented by Messrs
Robinson, caused damaged estimated at around £350
Many streets and houses were flooded at Todmorden.
The Calder embankment gave way at Crossbrook [?] and several
streets were inundated
Saturday, 3rd July 1875
Miss Ann Nield of Cornholme married Mr William
Stansfield of Blackpool at the United Methodist Free Church,
Tuesday, 13th July 1875
A steamboat, laden with grain, travelled from Liverpool to Sowerby
Bridge on the Rochdale Canal.
This was its maiden voyage and it was the first time that a steamer
had been used on the canal
Saturday, 31st July 1875
The body of Henry Maud [aged 28], a worsted spinner of West
Vale, was found on the roof of the last train from Huddersfield to
In his pockets, were found a ticket for the journey from Huddersfield
to Elland, 17/6d in cash, and a gold watch guard.
His forehead was severely fractured and his face was lacerated.
He was last seen by his brother at Huddersfield, shortly before the
train departed, and it is supposed that he travelled on the outside
of the carriage.
His hat was found at Bradley and it is thought that he had come into
contact with the bridge there
Monday, 9th August 1875
The Birmingham Daily Post [11th August 1975] reported
At St Anne's, Lancashire, a 15 year old boy made a half mile swim to
three people in distress.
Mr Bernard Gallagher of Bramall and his son were in the sea up
to their necks in water.
Near them, was Raymond Lang of Salford who had been swept out
by the tide on an inflatable mattress.
St Anne's Coastguard, Bob Turner, spotted them and appealed to
sunbathers for a volunteer to swim out to tell them help was arriving.
Into the sea went Michael John Taylor (age 15) of Cross
Platts, Southowram, Halifax.
Lytham-St Anne's lifeboat secretary said
They owe their lives to this Halifax youngster, they could easily
Saturday, 16th October 1875
Monkman White was killed at Booth Wood Paper Mill, Rishworth
Sunday, 26th December 1875
Around 8:5 pm, Mr and Mrs William Mills of Portland Street,
Range Bank were travelling on the train between Leeds and Halifax,
when their son Joshua  jumped up to see the lights near the
crossing after the train had left Hipperholme.
As he leaned against the door, it flew open and the child fell out of
They could not stop the train until it reached Halifax, where the
station-master, Mr Garside, and a detective, Mr
Linkinson, went back on the engine to the scene.
The boy was unhurt and ran to meet the rescue party when he saw their
Ripponden Mill burned down.
Sparks from the fire set fire to the belfry at St Bartholomew's
Thursday, 27th January 1876
The mill of J. & J. Farrar at South Lane, Elland was
destroyed by fire within a couple of hours when the water pressure
prevented the Elland Fire Brigade and Greetland & West Vale Fire
Brigade from reaching the seat of the fire.
Damage was estimated at £10,000
John Kimberley, a labourer of Drayton, brought an action
against Savile Brinton Crossley for violent assault.
Crossley had been out riding and had jumped over a hurdle
belonging to a farmer, Mr Bishop, for whom Kimberley
Kimberley had been instructed to take the names of anyone
jumping over the hurdles, and when he asked Crossley, he was
hit by Crossley's whip.
Crossley then unloosed one of his stirrups and
struck Kimberley on the arm and head with the strap, causing
blood to flow.
Crossley was fined damages of £25.
Fire destroyed Rooley Lane Wesleyan Chapel, Sowerby
Saturday, 11th March 1876
Sowerby Old Wesleyan Chapel [built in 1787] and Sowerby
Sunday School [of 1807] burned down.
The loss was estimated at between £3,000 and £4,000
Sunday, 19th March 1876
The woollen mill of John Smithies at Elland, was completely
destroyed by fire.
The estimated damage was £10,000
Wednesday, 22nd March 1876
One man was crushed to death and 4 others were badly injured as they
tried to escape from the luggage van of a train which derailed as it
was entering Halifax Station
Monday, 1st May 1876
A passenger train from Brighouse crashed into the rear of a
stationary goods train – carrying ballast – which was taking in water
at Halifax station.
21 passengers were injured, some seriously so [or none
It was alleged that the 2 trains should have been running on separate
Monday, 26th June 1876
William Pearson , a tailor of Mechanic Street, Todmorden,
was drowned in the Shade pool of the Rochdale canal.
His young daughter was also taken out almost lifeless, but was
Monday, 10th July 1876
Several excursion trains passed from Yorkshire through the Burnley
From one of there trains, some person wantonly fired a pistol at
houses near the line at Cornholme.
The charge of the pistol, a piece of iron about the size of a
quarter-ounce weight, passed through a window by a woman's head and
into an inner room, where it came into contact with a wall, removing
a piece of the plaster.
From the same train, a pistol was discharged at a bobbin mill at
Tuesday, 5th September 1876
Runaway goods train travelling from Beacon Hill Tunnel crashed into
the rear of a stationary, empty, passenger train at Halifax station.
The signalman was able to divert the train off the main line.
Both trains – and a part of the station – were damaged.
There were no casualties
Thursday, 12th October 1876
Fire broke out at Elland Corn Mill just after midnight.
PC Gracey discovered the fire.
3 of the top rooms were ablaze.
The fire brigade were quickly on the scene but the mill was
completely destroyed and their efforts were concentrated on a
neighbouring cotton mill.
Damage to the mill was estimated at £4,500 and to the stock at
Friday, 3rd November 1876
About 5:40 pm, a fire caused about £3,000 damage at Shepherd
& Sutcliffe's mill, Stansfield Road, Todmorden.
On 8th December, one person was almost killed when a wall damaged by
the fire collapsed
Whitwell Mill, Elland burned down
Monday, 19th February 1877
Patrick Kelly was killed at Camm Brothers' Grange Hall
Wednesday, 11th April 1877
Whitworth's Boy Mill at Luddendenfoot was damaged by a fire
which broke out at 1:00 am
Thursday, 14th June 1877
George Haigh was an engine tenter at Gomersall & Bentley's
quarry at Lightcliffe.
Three workers – Hoyle, Gomersall
and Sykes – were loading a wagon at the quarry.
As Haigh was walking past them, a quantity of stones fell,
knocking the 3 men forward, against the deceased, crushing him and
injuring him severely.
Brandy was given to him, and he was transferred to the
Infirmary where he died on Monday morning [19th June 1877].
A verdict of accidental death was returned
Saturday, 30th June 1877
Jen Holroyd, a cart driver from West Vale, left his horse and
spring cart in Cross Church Street about 2:15 pm without anyone
having control over it.
At 2:30 pm, Holroyd was brought into the police station in a
state of intoxication.
PC J. Horsfall charged him with the offence.
Holroyd was fined 10/- plus 10/- costs
Sunday, 15th July 1877
Dangerously high floods in Todmorden
Parts of Cobden were under water for 9 days
Friday, 16th November 1877
Edward Tristam [aged 10] of Lindwell, a piecer at Horsfall &
Halliday in West Vale, was cleaning under a mule when he was
caught by the head.
He died within a few minutes
Part of Mill Royd Mill, Brighouse burned down
Thursday, 14th February 1878
Fire broke out in the premises of John & William Henry Briggs at
Bank Bottom Mill, Elland.
The fire was caused by a carding engine striking fire and igniting
the loose material in the air.
Messrs Briggs sustained a loss of around £400 and
Joseph Smithies, who owned the mill, lost a similar amount in
worsted machinery and stock
Monday, 18th February 1878
Fire at Bridge Royd Dye Works, Todmorden caused damage estimated at £2,500
Saturday, 30th March 1878
Stansfield Mitchell, a labourer known as Stan o'
Cock's, was found near the boiler at Vale Mills with his
clothes on fire.
He died on the Wednesday following at Blackshawhead Poorhouse
Thursday, 25th April 1878
Richard Wilson [aged 39] of Bradford Road, Brighouse, a goods
porter at Brighouse Station, was caught between the buffers of a
waggon he was loading.
He died the following morning
There were strikes and lock-outs in the textile industry.
At Todmorden, manufacturers warned of a 10% reduction in wages.
The weavers of Maden & Hoyle at Derdale Mill, Todmorden were on
strike and about 400 picketed the gates to stop anyone going to work
at the mill.
Employees of Shepherd & Sutcliffe and of Helliwell &
Sons were also mentioned in newspaper reports as being on strike.
cotton manufacturers and iron founders also had their wages reduced
Monday, 15th July 1878
The Rishworth branch line opened for goods trains
Monday, 5th August 1878
The Rishworth branch line opened for passenger trains
After the record temperatures of 1740, the only other known instance
in Britain of two successive months with mean temperatures below
0° C were in December 1878 and January 1879
Friday, 20th December 1878
John Bastow  was killed in a fire damp explosion at
Quarry House Colliery
Thursday, 30th January 1879
Fire at the Bridge Royd Dye Works, Todmorden of Dan Crabtree &
Sons caused damage estimated at £400
There was a depression in the leather trade which led to many
failures, such as Marshall Charlesworth
Thursday, 6th February 1879
A serious fire destroyed the gallery, the organ and the roof at
Pellon Lane Particular Baptist Church
Thursday, 27th February 1879
Albert Mill, Hebden Bridge was destroyed by fire
Following the wages reductions of
cotton manufacturers and iron founders also announced reductions in
Saturday, 22nd March 1879
About 11:00 pm, fire broke out on the top storey of the Spa
Well premises of the Elland Bottling Company, where
hay and straw were kept.
The fire spread rapidly and the building was gutted.
The Elland and West Vale Fire Brigades prevented
the fire spreading to cottages adjacent to the building.
Much bottled ale – which was stored in the basement – was believed to
have been lost.
Damage was estimated at £5,000
Friday, 28th March 1879
Death of Mr J. Turner aged 73 at Lydgate, Northowram
Tuesday, 22nd April 1879
Job Atkinson  was killed in a roof-fall at Dam Head
Saturday, 17th May 1879
Flooding in Todmorden after a heavy thunderstorm
Thursday, 9th October 1879
6 people –
John Pritchard [partner],
Alfred Thornton [finishing manager, married with 4 children],
David Pickles [fireman, married with 1 child],
Fred Simms [cart driver, single],
Christopher Willocks [married with no children]
- were killed and others –
- were injured in an explosion which occurred at 9:30 am at the West
Croft Works of Balme & Pritchard.
The boiler – one of 4 – was thrown 34 yards by the explosion.
The bodies of the dead were recovered several hours later.
2 horses were scalded and had to be put down
Thursday, 6th November 1879
Fire at Jonathan Barker & Sons Millwood works: Phoenix
Fielden's fire engine attended
Monday, 1st December 1879
A passenger service opened between Halifax and Bradford.
This 7¾ mile line offered an alternative route between the 2
towns, and served several districts previously without a rail service
By 1880, the railways had reached most parts of the district
Saturday, 3rd January 1880
A fire destroyed the Lock Hill, Sowerby Bridge works of Wood
Brothers and John Woods & Son.
Newspaper reports of the fire said that
it is feared that a girl named Mary Broadbent has lost her life
It was estimated that Wood Brothers losses were around
£15,500 and those of John Woods & Son were around
Sunday, 4th January 1880
Grove Mills, Brighouse burned down
Friday, 27th February 1880
The old cotton mill at Ripponden, the property of Ripponden
Commercial Company Limited, was destroyed by fire which broke out on
the fourth storey.
The mill was 32 yards long and 15½ yards wide.
All the workpeople got out, but all hopes of saving the building were
abandoned and the building was a complete wreck in about 40 minutes.
The damage is estimated at about £10,000.
About 80 persons will be out of work
Friday, 2nd July 1880
Abraham Firth  was killed when he fell down the shaft at
New Hall Mine
Saturday, 24th July 1880
Mrs Martha Ann Rothera was killed as she crossed the line at
Holmfield Railway Station.
She was hit by the 5:28 pm express train from Bradford to Halifax.
Seeing that she was in danger, a porter, Charles Clark, ran to help
her but he too was struck and killed.
Reports said that Mrs Rothera was carried forward by the
engine and cut to pieces
Thursday, 23rd December 1880
There was serious flooding in the Upper Calder Valley.
Luddendenfoot Bridge / Currer Bridge was washed away in a
In 1882, it was rebuilt.
There was much damage at Longbottom Mill, Luddendenfoot after water
flooded the weaving sheds and force a wall out of one mill.
At 4:45 pm, 2 mill workers, William Crabtree and Howard
Sykes, spotted a crack in the stonework of Boy Bridge
over the Calder at Luddendenfoot.
They went to investigate and felt the structure shake.
They ran off just before the bridge fell down and the road to the
railway station was destroyed.
The Hole in the Wall, Hebden Bridge was 4 ft under water, and the
Dusty Miller, Mytholmroyd was almost 4 ft under water.
A wall at Wadsworth Mill, Todmorden was broken down by the water
The Sudan Campaign [1881-1899]
The Ryburn Valley branch railway line passed through the Scar Head
Saturday, 1st January 1881
Heavy rains caused a landslide above the railway line between
Todmorden and Dobroyd
Thursday, 13th January 1881
8 men were injured, 2 of whom died, at the Lane Head
Quarry of O. & S. Cliffe.
The men fell 60 ft as they were being raised to the surface and the
Those involved were
James Heap ,
Oliver Ingham ,
William Irving ,
Samuel Mitchell ,
Edward Pye ,
Thomas Ripley ,
William Smith ,
Dan Sugden .
Heap and another man died.
It was found that a link in the chain had not been welded properly.
The following month, Cliffe's were fined £5 for using
a single-link chain – which was prohibited by law
Wyke Viaduct was opened
Friday, 18th March 1881
Levi Harwood's Brearley Mill, Midgley was entirely gutted by
It was supposed that some hard substance got into one of the engines
and ignited the fly.
The flames spread with great rapidity and the roof quickly fell in.
The damage was estimated at £12,000
Sunday, 15th May 1881
William Gibson, a foreman plate-layer of Blind Lane,
Todmorden, was killed
on the railway line
opposite Copperas House mill
by a Manchester express train
Wednesday, 18th May 1881
About 100 workers came out of strike after Firth & Company
announced proposals to reduce the wages of a number of their
About 70 of these workers came to an agreement with the management,
but the remainder were discharged from the service of the firm
Tuesday, 5th July 1881
From about 8:00 pm, a thunderstorm
of almost unprecedented severity and duration
passed over the Upper Calder Valley.
There was great destruction of property.
3 lives were lost in Bacup.
At Burnley, 1,800 distinct flashes of lightning were counted in 1 hour
Sunday, 10th July 1881
Fire broke out at Albion Mill, Elland, belonging to Robert Kaye &
It was believed that an object had got into the teasing equipment and
started a fire.
The fire was quickly extinguished and caused damage estimated at
Thursday, 4th August 1881
Ely Hanson [aged 55], a railway shunter of West Vale, was
killed at North Dean Station.
He was passing between two waggons to couple them and one of the
waggons was shunted against the other.
Thomas Mann was stationmaster at West Vale Station and a
witness to the accident.
Hanson died on the way to the Halifax Infirmary
Wednesday, 7th September 1881
James Lees, a greengrocer at West Vale was loading potatoes on
to his dray at West Vale Station when the horse took fright.
A boy named Priestley ran to stop the horse, but he was
knocked down and the dray ran over him, killing him instantly.
Lees was also injured
Friday, 30th September 1881
At Halifax Borough Court...
Benjamin Brearley, a labourer, was fined £1 plus 14/6d,
or 14 days in prison, for loitering at Halifax Station on 22nd
William Burrows, an earthenware dealer of Darley Street, was
fined £5 8/6d, or 2 months in prison, for furious driving in
Commercial Road on 16th September.
A child was knocked down and its thigh broken, and the Court ordered
that £5 of the fine was to go to the child's parents
John William Midgley, a milk hawker of Southowram, was fined
5 8/6d for furious driving in Charles Street on 27th September.
A child was knocked down by the horse, but was little hurt
Tuesday, 11th October 1881
Grove Mills, Ovenden, occupied by J. N. Priestley & Company and
Carter & Company, were entirely destroyed by fire.
The cause of the fire was unknown.
The damage of about £11,000 was mainly to Messrs
Both firms were insured
Saturday, 26th November 1881
John Kenworthy, Sarah Ann his wife and Jane
his daughter, drowned in Booth Dean Beck after calling at the
Derby Bar, Rishworth.
John had called to deliver a parcel to the daughter of Mrs
Harrison, the landlady of the Inn.
Mrs Harrison suggested that the party stay the night, on
account of the bad weather, but Kenworthy left.
Their cart turned over while passing over the Beck at the Temple
Crossing, near Temple Mill, on their way home.
On Sunday morning Jane's body was found below the
crossing, John's body was found in the dam of the paper mill,
and Sarah Ann's body was found at Rishworth Mill,
opposite Mr Wheelwright's premises.
The horse survived and was found standing in the water.
It was a stormy night, and witnesses who passed earlier said that the
water was about 3 ft deep.
The Inquest returned a verdict of Accidental death and
recommended that a bridge for horses & vehicles be placed over the
Beck near Temple Mill
Wednesday, 15th March 1882
T. Conway was killed in a fire-damp explosion at Sunny Bank
Monday, 3rd April 1882
John Whiteley's cotton spinners at Stones Mill,
Ripponden burned down.
It was thought that the fire was caused by overheating of machinery
soon after the engine started.
Damage was estimated at between £15,000 and £20,000, and
was covered by insurance
Tuesday, 9th May 1882
The Irish Riots broke out in Brighouse, sparked by the
assassination Frederick Cavendish
Thursday, 15th June 1882
There was an explosion at Sunny Bank Mine, Southowram in which 17
year-old Thomas Conway was killed
Friday, 23rd June 1882
A band of Salvation Army members marching from Queensbury to
Brighouse was attacked by what appeared to be an organised group of
about 3,000 roughs drawn from the mining and quarrying villages.
The Army was driven out of Brighouse, but they were protected by the
police until they boarded a train at Lightcliffe
About 400 spinners, employed by William & Alfred Camm, went on
strike rather than have a 10% reduction in their wages
Thursday, 23rd November 1882
Onecliffe Mill, West Vale – owned by David Fox – was completely
gutted by fire.
The damage was reported to be £24,000
Friday, 1st December 1882
Fire at Crabtree Brothers' Finishing Works, Crow Nest, Hebden Bridge caused damage estimated at £200
Tuesday, 5th December 1882
Gertrude Fielden , daughter of William Fielden of
Todmorden, was killed at Todmorden Station.
She was a pupil-teacher at Eastwood Board School and was boarding
the train whilst it was moving.
She slipped between the platform and the carriages.
Her right arm was cut off, her head injured, and she died within a
Wednesday, 6th December 1882
About 10:00 pm, fire broke out in several places at the 6-storey
2 workers had to jump out of the window of the top floor on to the
roof of a 3-storey section.
Robert Jagger was killed when a wall fell on him as he was
trying to stop the spread of the flames.
Snow prevented the steam engine of the West Vale Fire Brigade from
getting the fire.
Damage was estimated at £25,000
Saturday, 16th December 1882
During a storm, workers at Steanor Bottom Chemical Works, Walsden
were having problems with the stills there.
At about 11.30 am, one of the stills suddenly exploded,
killing Thomas Stansfield , the foreman and analyst,
and Thomas Ogden .
Another workman, Thomas Taylor, was badly burned and was taken
to Rochdale Infirmary.
A fourth man was burned and was treated at home.
Damage to the works was about £200
Thursday, 28th December 1882
The 255 ft tall chimney at Sir Henry William Ripley's mill at West
Bowling, Bradford, blew down in a storm, and the 4,000 tons of
brickwork killed 46 women and children.
The chimney was built in 1862, and was said to be leaning and in need
of repairs at the time of the accident
Huddersfield tramway system – the first municipal tramway undertaking
in Britain – opened.
It was electrified around 1900.
The tramway system closed in 1940
Bad weather across Britain.
Many cotton mills were damaged by flooding in Todmorden, and
hundreds of workers had to be laid off
Dyers at Pickle Bridge went on strike over a wages disputes of 25%
Sunday, 26th August 1883
The eruption of the volcano Krakatoa – which lies between
Sumatra and Java – caused several weeks' of red sunsets in Britain
Friday, 7th September 1883
Fire at Pendleton Mills, Elland
Sunday, 11th November 1883
There was a disastrous storm during which Bailiff Bridge Station
was blown down
Saturday, 8th December 1883
The Branxholme Mill, Bailiff Bridge of Ellis Stott & Sons was
badly damaged by fire.
The engine house was destroyed, though the scutch room, dwelling
house and a newly-built mill were saved.
The gasometer was exhausted to avoid explosion.
Damage was estimated at £5000.
About 100 workers were thrown out of employment.
The cause of the fire was unknown
Tuesday, 11th December 1883
Gales and storms swept across Britain.
Much of Clifton Road Station, Brighouse was blown away
Friday, 28th December 1883
68-year-old Robert Jefferson was working at Flatt's Pit,
Around 6:00 am, he had to pass over a gantry which was unprotected.
His sight had become defective and he was found seriously injured on
the waggon road below.
He died without having spoken on the evening of the following day
Fire at Lord Brothers' Canal Street Works, Todmorden
John Aspinall & Sons were sued by H. Thompson, a
manufacturer of Norton Towers, for injuries sustained by his daughter
who was thrown from a phæton when one of Aspinall's carts ran
into the vehicle.
A Miss Hellewell who was also in the phæton subsequently
The Jury returned a verdict for £400
Tuesday, 1st April 1884
A new branch of the Great Northern Railway line from Bradford and
Halifax to Keighley via Thornton was opened for traffic
Thursday, 8th May 1884
An express train from Manchester to Normanton was thrown off the
rails at Milner Royd Junction when a bale of goods fell from a wagon.
A dozen trucks were much damaged and the line was blocked for several
Saturday, 14th June 1884
Jack Bridge Mill, Heptonstall was destroyed by fire.
The cause was friction in one of the mills.
The damage was estimated at £20,000
Wednesday, 2nd July 1884
The works of B. G. Smith & Sons burned down in one of the largest
fires in the district.
The wall of a workshop fell down, destroying 8 cottages and their
contents, though the occupants escaped injury.
Stannary Congregational Church, Halifax and a pawnshop caught fire.
The damage amounted to £6,000.
At this time, there was no permanent fire brigade in Halifax, but
the seriousness of this fire led to steps being taken to form one.
George B. Collins was in charge of the task a became superintendent
of the fire brigade
Monday, 26th January 1885
The Hare Street Mill occupied by Kirkman & Crowther was
destroyed by fire.
Damage was estimated at £12,000
Cotton spinners in West Vale and Greetland were working only 4 days a
The short time movement was general in the Halifax district
Saturday, 14th March 1885
Abraham Blagborough [aged 47] was killed at North Dean
He was repairing a coal wagon when some other trucks were being
shunted and bumped into the coal wagon.
Blagborough was knocked off and run over.
He died almost immediately
Cases of smallpox were reported in Rastrick.
Some of these were initially reported as chicken pox.
4 patients were admitted to Halifax Smallpox Hospital.
One patient developed into malignant or black pox.
2 patients from Brighouse were also admitted
There were many reported cases of cholera in Europe.
In England, a case of Asiatic Cholera, imported from
Marseilles by the victim, a sailor, was reported in Bristol
Sunday, 20th December 1885
Fire broke out in the dule room at Albion Mill, Elland, belonging
to Robert Kaye & Sons.
It was believed that an object had got into the teasing equipment and
started a fire.
The fire was quickly extinguished and caused damage estimated at
John Marsh & Company established a horse-omnibus service in Halifax
and Sowerby Bridge
A destructive fire caused heavy damage at Leopold Wire Works,
Monday, 25th January 1886
Severe snow storms caused drifts 7ft / 8ft deep in parts of the
Saturday, 27th February 1886
Around 2:45 pm, a fire – caused by sparks from a furnace in the next
room – was discovered in the pattern shop at Lord Brothers' Canal
Street Works, Todmorden.
It caused damage costing several thousands of pounds, and destroyed a
great many patterns for the firm's machinery
Sunday, 28th February 1886
A fire caused around £200 damage at the Crispin Inn,
Monday, 5th April 1886
A cab carrying 3 people on their way to a funeral stopped on the line
at Bradley Wood level crossing whilst the driver opened the second
The Huddersfield to Halifax express smashed the vehicle to pieces and
killed Mrs Mary Ann Preston , a widow,
seriously injured her sister, Mrs Elizabeth Whittle ,
and severely injured the third male passenger.
The horse and drivers escaped unharmed
David Gaunt, a tailor , pleaded guilty at Leeds to several
crimes, including burglary at the house of John Scarborough at
Halifax on 24th June, and stealing therefrom a quantity of
electro-plated and other goods.
He was sentenced to 7 years' penal servitude
Monday, 30th August 1886
Fire broke out at the new Salterhebble Cotton Company Mill owned by
the Salterhebble Cotton Spinning Company destroying the top floor
and the roof.
The fire was caused by friction in one of the headstock on the second
room from the bottom.
Workers fled the scene.
Fire brigades had the fire under control by 8:00 pm.
Damage was estimated at £5,000
Tuesday, 5th October 1886
At Halifax, Herbert Booth and 3 other members of the Salvation
Army were ordered to pay £3 8/- plus costs for cruelly
ill-treating a horse – which was described as lame, aged and not fit
for work – during a visit of the Salvation lifeguards on 21st
The charges were brought by the RSPCA
Tuesday, 16th November 1886
A disastrous flood was reported in the Hebden Bridge district.
The road at Midgehole collapsed.
Victoria Bridge was badly damaged
There was a great drought
James Auty was killed by a roof fall at a coal mine in
The annual death rate in Halifax from scarlet fever was
published as 2.5, and from whooping-cough as 1.3
Wednesday, 7th December 1887
An alarming fire broke out at the Hangingroyd Dyeing & Finishing
Works of J. Thomas & Company in Hebden Bridge.
The damage was estimated to be about £400.
The outbreak was more serious because of the other firms adjoining
Tuesday, 20th December 1887
3 gas explosions at the Halifax Corporation Gas Works were caused by
A cottage was set on fire and all the windows blown out, and 2 women
occupants were found insensible.
Part of the town was left in darkness when the gas was turned off
Monday, 9th January 1888
At about 12:40 pm, during a dense fog, a collision occurred on the
main up-line at Dobroyd, when 3 waggons broke from their couplings
near Portsmouth Station and ran towards Todmorden and into the rear
of a goods train
smashing the guard's van and 3 of the waggons.
Their contents – chiefly eggs, butter and bacon – flew in all
Wednesday, 11th January 1888
An outbreak of smallpox in the Eastwood district.
In Sheffield, around 3,000 people were attacked by the disease
Monday, 20th February 1888
A great snowstorm in which railway trains were blocked and other
traffic much interfered with
Friday, 16th March 1888
A fire at the shop of Edmunds & Hookway in Halifax caused damage
estimated at almost £20,000
Tuesday, 27th March 1888
A little after 11:00 pm, Wilson's Bobbin Mill, Cornholme burned
down with an estimated damage of £20,000 and throwing 400
workers out of employment.
The fire lasted over 6 hours
Tuesday, 24th April 1888
An empty passenger ran into the back of a luggage train which was
standing on the up-line.
The guard's van was tilted, and the passenger engine disabled.
No-one was injured
Thursday, 17th May 1888
Dyson Mallinson's Foster Mill, Hebden Bridge was gutted by
Damage was estimated at £15,000.
The mill was rebuilt by Redman Brothers
Friday, 2nd November 1888
There were 9 cases of typhoid fever in Sourhall Hospital,
Henry Wilkinson  of Lydgate, and Benjamin Swire
 of Shade, died
Sunday, 25th November 1888
Fire broke out in the 2-storey drying shed belonging to Edmund
Outram at Ellistones Mill, West Vale.
Outram's daughter spotted the blaze and raised the alarm.
Large crowd gathered to watch the blaze.
The West Vale Fire Brigade were called but they failed to prevent
the place from being burned out.
The loss of machinery, stock and buildings was estimated at nearly
200 men were thrown out of work.
The loss was partly covered by insurance
Thursday, 6th December 1888
Around 10:45 pm, fire broke out in a yarn warehouse of Michael
Waller & Sons at Thornhill Briggs Mill, Brighouse.
The Victoria Mills Fire Brigade and the Rosemary Mills Fire
Brigade attended the fire.
Damage to the building and stock was estimated at £1,800
Sunday, 16th December 1888
The body of Harry Nettleton [aged 13] son of widow Sarah
Nettleton of Lightcliffe Road, Brighouse, was taken from the
Calder at Brookfoot.
The Inquest returned a verdict of
found drowned, having probably accidentally fallen from or over the
wall in the yard at Brookfoot Mill on the 12th December
Bales of goods fell from a train in Beacon Hill Tunnel and some of
the trucks were derailed.
They damaged the rails and caused great damage to the platform at
Traffic was diverted via Cleckheaton and Mirfield
Sunday, 7th April 1889
Fire broke out in the drying room at of John Smith, Sons &
Mortimer's Badger Hill Mills, Rastrick.
The blaze was brought under control by a fire engine kept on the
Damage was estimated at £1,500
There was a strike in the small-wire drawing trade in Halifax,
Brighouse and Cleckheaton.
The men were told that, if they returned to work, they would receive
the same wages as paid by Frederick Smith & Company, and Patchett
They protested that these rates were lower than those paid by other
Sunday, 2nd June 1889
A hailstorm at 4:40 pm caused damage in the Calder Valley, the
unusually large hailstones broke many windows in the district
Saturday, 20th July 1889
HRH Prince Albert Victor, Duke of Clarence,
came to Halifax to present the colours to 3rd and 4th Battalions
(Militia) of the Duke of Wellington West Riding Regiment.
The ceremony took place at camp which had been pitched on Halifax
Wednesday, 24th July 1889
Ziba Hemingway – who was deaf & dumb – was working at Great
Acre Quarry, Southowram.
He was fastening a chain round a stone, weighing about 3 tons, and he
was reaching under the stone for the chain when the huge block of
stone gave way catching him on the head.
He died minutes later
Thursday, 24th October 1889
R. Holroyd  was killed by a roof-fall at Calder Clay
The High Level Railway was inaugurated
Iron workers were on strike in Halifax
Saturday, 7th June 1890
John O'Toole [aged 21], a dyer's labourer of New Bank died
after falling into a vat of boiling water at Ward's Dye Works,
Monday, 25th August 1890
There were cholera outbreaks in Britain, France, Spain and South
Cases were reported at Greetland.
Edward Haigh was taken ill after visiting West Vale on
Saturday, 23rd August 1890 and died a few days later.
Thomas Butterworth, a neighbour of Haigh, died on
25th September 1890
Thursday, 11th September 1890
There was a serious explosion at the works of C. Worsnop
& Sons in a yard off Cheapside, Halifax.
Of the 6 workers in the building,
John Edgar Worsnop
Sarah Elizabeth Berry
were killed in the explosion.
Michael McCabe, a labourer who was working in the yard, was
injured by falling debris and taken to Halifax Infirmary where he
died 3 hours later.
The building was badly damaged.
There were no explosives on the premises, and the explosion was said
to have been caused by a gas leak.
A gas pipe or joint may have been damaged by
the recent fall of an adjacent building
Wednesday, 19th November 1890
Serious local floods in the Upper Calder Valley.
The graveyard at Eastwood Congregational Church was flooded and
several graves were washed away
Stephen Lambert was killed by a rock fall at Slead Syke Quarry,
A train backed into a passenger train which was standing on the
down-line at Todmorden Station.
No-one was injured, but 3 or 4 passengers received shocks, several
carriages were damaged, and the line was blocked for some time.
The accident was due to a mistake in working the points
Monday, 12th January 1891
Samuel Varley of Woodend, Hebden Bridge was crushed between
railway trucks at Hebden Bridge Station.
He died the following day
Thursday, 22nd January 1891
A policeman at Eastwood was fined 1/- plus 2/6d costs for allowing a
dog in his charge to have its muzzle hanging round its neck – see
Friday, 23rd January 1891
Outbreak in the district of an epidemic of pink-eye, a disease
horses, disrupted bus traffic
Tuesday, 10th February 1891
Dr Charles William Thorp presented a report on an outbreak
of Russian influenza in Todmorden during January and
Many were afflicted, but only one death was reported
A particularly severe influenza epidemic – in many parts of Britain.
Locally, it affected Elland and other parts of the district.
It was aggravated by bad weather, and many people died.
It has been said that those who survived this epidemic became immune
and went on to survive the pandemic of 1918
Tuesday, 5th May 1891
Around 5:00 am, fire broke out at Todmorden Station and cotton in 2
waggons was destroyed
Saturday, 16th May 1891
John Bewley [aged 55], a porter at Elland Railway Station for 20
years, was found lying on the tracks with both legs cut off, having
evidently been run over by a train.
He died the following day Halifax Infirmary
Thursday, 4th June 1891
There was a disastrous explosion and fire at Wilson's Bobbin Works,
Cornholme as men were leaving at the end of the day.
The explosion occurred in the enamelling ovens and ignited the
Edward Outram  of Millwood, Stansfield was badly burned
and taken to Burnley Hospital where he died the following morning.
John Greenall was struck on the head by a falling brick.
Several others were injured
A number of coins – English, French, Canadian and Demerara – were
found hidden in a wall at Nutclough, Hebden Bridge.
One coin dated back to 1689
Saturday, 13th June 1891
James Mills  of Toad Carr, was crushed between a wagon and
the wall at Todmorden Railway Station.
He died 2 days later
Monday, 20th July 1891
22 men were charged at Todmorden Police Court was playing
pitch-and-toss on the public highway.
3 were sentenced to 21 days in prison, and the remainder were fined
40/- plus costs, or, in default, 21 days.
Wednesday, 2nd September 1891
Damage estimated at £3,000 was done by a fire at Dog Lane
Mill, Stainland which was owned and occupied by Benjamin Taylor &
The fire broke out in the drill room when something struck
4 out of the 5 storeys were damaged
Friday, 20th November 1891
A rabid dog caused much concern when it attacked several people in
It was seen prowling about Firth House Paper Mills.
Eli Collins [aged 14], a worker at the mill, was bitten on the
calf and subsequently taken to Paris to undergo the Pasteur treatment.
Thomas Whiteley, a firer-up at the mill, was bitten less
John Fox, a mechanic, was bitten on the knee but the skin was
Fox killed the animal
Friday, 18th December 1891
Greenwood Ashworth of Stubbin Holme, Hebden Bridge lost 3
prize birds in floods at Hebden Bridge
Friday, 4th March 1892
There was a dispute in the corn-milling trade and 50 men employed by
Thomas Sugden & Son Limited came out on strike at Brighouse.
The firm employed new workmen and there were crowds of people who
threw stones and followed the new workers as they left Perseverance
There was a similar dispute at Woodside Flour Mills, Elland between
the management and workers of J. F. Milner
Tuesday, 8th March 1892
There was a strike of silk pressers at the mills of Ormerod Brothers
Rev A. J. Sherwell arranged a meeting between the workers and
senior partner Charles Jones Ormerod, and his son Charles Ormerod.
The meeting ended without any settlement being achieved
26 people died in a smallpox epidemic in Brighouse & Clifton.
children of Patrick Leonard Burke,
When Panic Seized the Town
Monday, 23rd May 1892
Britain abandoned the broad-gauge railway tracks
Wednesday, 22nd June 1892
G. Sharpe  was killed by a roof-fall at Shibden Hall
Saturday, 23rd July 1892
Halifax experienced a heat wave of extraordinary intensity.
Two ladies were proceeding along Elland Wood Bottom when their
umbrella suddenly ignited and every vestige of the cover was burnt
Tuesday, 13th September 1892
Grange Mill, Mytholmroyd was destroyed by fire which started when a
tin roller overheated.
There were no injuries
Friday, 16th September 1892
A weaving shed owned by James Clay at Luddendenfoot was
destroyed by fire caused by overheating of the machinery.
The damage was estimated at £5,000
Saturday, 17th September 1892
There was a strike at dyers James Davis & Sons Limited in West Vale.
5 dyers –
- were charged with intimidation of 2 men when they
jeered, sodded and cursed
who were working at the mill on the 10th September.
The 5 men were each fined £1 plus 19/6d costs, or 1 month's
Thursday, 3rd November 1892
A fire at Clough Mill, Walsden
Monday, 7th November 1892
Emily Alice Clark [aged 14] was killed at the West Vale mill
of J. Speak & Company.
She and another girl were cleaning a 3rd floor landing when Emily
looked down the lift-shaft.
The lift was descending and struck her on the back of the head,
fracturing her skull
A fire completely destroyed Boy Mill, Luddendenfoot which was
occupied by James Clay & Sons Limited
The Liverpool Overhead Railway was the first to run only on
Severe winter of January 1893 affected outdoors workers and quarrymen.
Breakfasts were served to needy children by the Nonconformists in
Monday, 16th January 1893
Outbreak of smallpox at Hipperholme.
There were over 100 cases at Manchester, and others in Leeds
8 cases of smallpox were reported in Sowerby Bridge.
The victims had travelled to London by train to attend the Crystal
One lady fell ill during the journey and on their return, the other 7
were diagnosed as having smallpox
Monday, 1st May 1893
Shortly after 10:30 am, fire broke out at Slater's Mill,
Elland, then owned by Robert Wilson.
The fire was brought under control within the house.
Damage to stock and machinery was estimated at nearly £300
Thursday, 20th July 1893
A weavers' strike at Luddenden
Wednesday, 2nd August 1893
Smallpox outbreak at Mytholmroyd, Rishworth & Luddendenfoot
Friday, 4th August 1893
Mile Thorn Mills, Halifax, the property of Walter Walker &
Company, burnt down.
Damage was estimated at £40,000
Saturday, 30th September 1893
A. Collins  was killed by a roof-fall at Sunny Bank Mine
Monday, 9th October 1893
Around 4:00 am fire broke out in a warehouse at West Vale.
The 4-storey warehouse was owned by Isaac
The tenants were wool manufacturers and merchants Samuel Hey
and W. Dyson & Company.
Considerable damage was done to the building.
Samuel Hey assessed his loss at around £500
and W. Dyson & Company at £700
Thursday, 21st December 1893
Victoria Mills, West Vale burned down.
The fire was caused by friction in the cotton machinery.
James Sutcliffe & Sons Limited, Crabtree Brothers, and T. &
Workers at nearby mills were put on alert.
The house occupied by the engineman adjoined the mills and was partly
The roof of Stainland Road Methodist Chapel caught fire but was
James Harrison [aged 42] a local master plumber and member of
the Greetland Fire Brigade was killed when his ladder broke.
Damage was estimated at between £20,000 and £30,000
The was an epidemic of whooping cough in Stainland
A major outbreak of influenza in Yunnan Province of western China.
10,000 people died in Hong Kong.
This spread to India and the west
Another severe winter in January 1894 affected outdoors workers and
Breakfasts were served to needy children by the Nonconformists in
Sunday, 4th February 1894
Christ Church, Sowerby Bridge was badly damaged by fire.
The fire broke out about 5:00 pm, after one of Rev Ivens's Men's
Services had been held over the organ in the chancel.
The organ, chancel and the roof of the nave were gutted.
Thousands of people gathered in the churchyard to watch the incident.
The fire brigades from Halifax and Sowerby Bridge attended.
A fireman, Jonathan Coulston, was killed when he fell through a
trap-door in the belfry during the fire
Saturday, 16th June 1894
Mrs Mary Jackson  was killed by a train as she crossed the
line at Walsden Station.
Her body was dreadfully mutilated
Tuesday, 24th July 1894
Fire broke out in the dule room at Nathaniel Brearley's James
Street Mill, Elland.
Damage was estimated at £50
Friday, 16th November 1894
There was a dispute in the dyeing trade.
About 150 workers of Hawkesley, Wild & Company at Greetland Dye
Works were on strike.
New workers were recruited to fill the places of the strikers, and
had to be escorted to and from work amidst much shouting and hooting.
Several strikers were charged with assault
Saturday, 22nd December 1894
During the night of Friday 21st / Saturday 22nd, a mighty storm
wrecked Upper Edge Baptist Church, Elland tearing off the roof and
The roof and the side walls collapsed, and the furniture was crushed.
A new mission church at Brookfoot was demolished.
At the same time, Hannah Martha Meadowcroft was killed by a falling
The roof of Lands House, Rastrick was damaged.
The roof of St James's Church, Brighouse was damaged.
Church schools under construction at Mytholmroyd sustained serious
damage and the gables were levelled.
The front and a side wall of King Cross Wesleyan Sunday School gave
way and the building became unsafe.
The Methodist Free Church at Akroydon was partially unroofed
The weather in Britain was colder than February 1740.
At Braemar, Aberdeenshire, the temperature reached a
This happened again in 1982
Another severe winter in February 1895 affected outdoors workers and
Meals were served to needy children and the unemployed by the many
charitable organisations in Brighouse
Thursday, 23rd May 1895
A boiler explosion at the Holme Mill of John Shaw &
Sons caused great damage and killed 5 female workers – see The
Stainland Boiler Explosion
Wednesday, 26th June 1895
The district was hit by
a cyclonic thunderstorm, phenomenal in its severity and duration, and
unparalleled in the memory of man, the terrific and appalling
discharge of electricity and rain continuing from 5 pm to 7 pm
Preparations for the Yorkshire show were affected when stands were
The Yorkshire Show was held at Savile Park, Halifax.
Bad weather disrupted the preparations
Wednesday, 14th August 1895
The water-driven Brighouse corn mills of Thomas Sugden & Son were
destroyed by fire, when Neptune was unable to provide the
necessary water pressure.
Damage was estimated at £20,000.
This was the worst mill fire yet seen in Brighouse
Tuesday, 5th November 1895
The Brighouse News Saturday 9th November 1895 reported
An accident of a rather serious character happened at Hartley &
Kaye's quarry on Tuesday morning
Mr J. W. Whiteley, the foreman, was trying to light the cabin
fire and found that the chimney was somewhat choked with soot.
To clear it, he poured some powder upon it out of a can he used for
This proved effectual in removing the obstruction but unfortunately a
spark settled on the mouth of the can causing an explosion.
He was badly burnt about the chest. arms and face.
He was said to be progressing favourably
Tuesday, 31st December 1895
F. Mitchell  was killed by a roof-fall at Sunny Bank Mine
Friday, 17th January 1896
The Frostholme Mill, Cornholme of Joshua Smith Limited was badly
damaged by fire.
The fire originated near the economisers.
4 fire brigades were called to the fire.
Damage was estimated at £30,000.
Estimated figures indicate that between 500 and 1000 men were thrown
out of work
Thursday, 30th January 1896
Shortly before daybreak, Hinchliffe Hinchliffe's Vale Mill, Cragg
Vale was completely destroyed by fire.
The hands began work at 6:00 am, and the fire was noticed about
Damage was estimated at around £9,500, of which not above half
was covered by insurance
Wednesday, 11th March 1896
Part of Wood Bottom Dye Works, Luddendenfoot was destroyed by fire
Wednesday, 25th March 1896
William Speak of Watson Terrace, Sowerby Bridge, and engineer
at Mitchell Brothers, Old House Mill, was severely
scalded on the chest, arms and face when a steam pipe exploded as he
was starting the engine for the day's work
Tuesday, 21st April 1896
At 6:30 am, dense smoke was seen issuing from the workrooms of
William Greenwood & Sons at Victoria Mills, Brighouse.
Damage was estimated at £200
Friday, 5th June 1896
Jonas Brook Sunderland was killed when an overhead,
travelling crane fell on him at the works of Woodhouse & Mitchell
Saturday, 25th July 1896
The Duke and Duchess of York – later George V – visited Halifax to
open the Borough Markets and the Royal Halifax Infirmary.
They paid a visit to Belle Vue
Sunday, 16th August 1896
The Klondike Gold Rush was sparked by the discovery of gold in the
Klondike region of the Yukon in north-west Canada
Saturday, 29th August 1896
There was a disastrous fire at Woodhouse Brass & Iron Works of
Joseph Blakeborough & Sons Limited which caused £7,000 damage
Saturday, 3rd October 1896
A platelayer named Fox from Sowerby Bridge, was run over by an
express train at Walsden Station.
Another platelayer named Hitchen suffered a fractured arm, and
foreman platelayer, Thomas Law, suffered injuries to his feet.
The men were working on the down line and saw an up train approaching
but did not notice the down train which struck them
Thursday, 17th December 1896
Most of Britain felt an earthquake with tremors and shocks which
lasted for 30 minutes at 1:26 am.
This was said to be the biggest earthquake recorded in Britain.
Slight shocks were recorded in Todmorden at 5:30 am, and at Sowerby
A national lock-out in the engineering industry ended with engineers
having to accept the introduction of new machines and new wages terms.
This resulted in many engineers leaving their employ and setting up
business on their own.
Smith, Barker & Willson Limited
The Hinchliffe family's Rudclough Mill, Erringden burned down
Saturday, 20th February 1897
Charles Robinson Jennings, aged 26, of Union Street, Beech, a
porter at Sowerby Bridge Station, was killed by a passing train as he
was about to cross the line
Saturday, 1st May 1897
A boiler explosion at the quarry of Joseph Thompson & Son of
Southowram caused serious injuries to Thompson's son
George who had only been working there for about a
George was hurled 14 yards but Dr Farrar said
no bones had been broken.
The cause of the accident was said to be insufficient water in the
Wednesday, 16th June 1897
A severe gale sprang up and played sad havoc with gardens in the
Thursday, 5th August 1897
There was very hot weather over England, with thunderstorms and heavy
rain in many places.
Several people were killed by lightning
Sunday, 12th September 1897
A fire caused £3,000 damage at the Wilkin Royd Mill,
belonging to Wood, Robinson & Company.
Fire broke out in the dule room at Albion Mill, Elland, belonging
to Robert Kaye & Sons.
It was believed that an object had got into the teasing equipment and
started a fire.
The fire was quickly extinguished and caused damage estimated at
Outbreak of typhoid at Glenfield Place, Sowerby Bridge.
Mrs Chapman and her baby were taken to the cottage hospital,
and Mrs Chapmen died [20th January 1898]
Tuesday, 4th January 1898
Scaffolding used in the construction of the Roman Catholic Church at
Denholme, Luddendenfoot, collapsed.
6 men were working on the 30 ft high platform.
One man clung on to the structure, and the others were thrown down
and debris fell on them.
E. Brear of Luddenden and Dominick Madden of Sowerby
Bridge were the most seriously injured
Sunday, 9th January 1898
James Pickles , a worker at Stansfield Mill, Todmorden,
was found dead, having
received fatal injuries to his head by being probably accidentally
struck by an engine or train whilst he was crossing the line at
Sunday, 20th March 1898
Richard Redman was found dead on the railway between Milner
Royd Junction and Copley Station
Thursday, 9th June 1898
After the Halifax Corporation Tramways Act , Halifax
Corporation trams were officially opened on Wednesday, 9th June
1898 – see the Page on Halifax Tramways
Wednesday, 29th June 1898
Trams ran from Halifax to Highroad Well
Wednesday, 21st December 1898
Atlas Mill, Brighouse was destroyed by fire. around 7:00 am.
The fire is believed to have started in a spinning room on the 2nd
There were 150 people working in the mill at the time.
James Arthur Nuttall died from injuries suffered whilst trying to
rescue people from the fire.
Huge crowds gathered to watch the fire.
Damage was estimated at between £25,000 and £40,000
Storms caused serious local floods
Tuesday, 17th January 1899
Mr Sunderland, a traveller for Ramsden's Brewery, was
driving in a trap between Hebden Bridge and Mytholmroyd when it
collided with a carrier's lorry.
He was thrown violently on to the road, receiving injuries to his
head, and narrowly avoided being run over by the lorry
Friday, 20th January 1899
Route Number 1 tram service began from Halifax to Salterhebble
Saturday, 4th March 1899
A Liberal meeting was held at West Vale in connection with the Elland
Division of Yorkshire.
As T. P. Whittaker MP was speaking, a local
Liberal, Jonathan Riley [aged 63], who was sitting on the
platform, collapsed and died
Tuesday, 14th March 1899
Route Number 10 tram service began from Halifax to Godfrey Road and
Wednesday, 29th March 1899
Route Number 8 tram service began from Halifax to North
Bridge, Claremount Road and Boothtown
Tuesday, 6th June 1899
Route Number 6 began from Halifax Post Office to King Cross, via
Free School Lane and Skircoat Moor
Saturday, 5th August 1899
Route Number 2 began from Cow Green to Pellon via Pellon Lane
Route Number 10 tram service began to Illingworth.
The terminus was at Illingworth Post Office
Friday, 11th August 1899
Jumble Hole Dye Works destroyed by fire
Thursday, 7th September 1899
Mr Bruce Jones of Bodlinog married Maude Mary, daughter
of John Greenwood of Oakleigh, Cornholme
Ernest Tidd, a porter at Brighouse Railway Station, was
badly burned about the face and head when he tried to revive the
furnace which heated the Station.
He intended to use petrol, but the can slipped and fell into the
Tuesday, 21st November 1899
Joseph Hutchinson, a workman at Clay Pits Quarry owned and
worked by Hartley & Kaye, was knocked down & buried by a fall of
earth at the quarry, and later found dead
Sunday, 10th December 1899
About 4:30 am, there was
an alarming outbreak of fire
at the Victoria Iron Foundry of Astin & Barker.
The fireman responded with such promptitude that the damage did not
amount to £450
Tuesday, 12th December 1899
Thomas Dennett  of Stansfield Road, Todmorden, a foreman
with carting agent John Chaffer, was crushed against a wall
when the waggon which he was unloading skidded.
He was taken to Halifax Infirmary where he died on the 21st December
Friday, 15th December 1899
The Gauxholme Mill, Walsden of John Dugdale & Company was
destroyed by fire.
The mill was not insured and was never rebuilt
Revised 17:45 /2nd June 2020 / c813-1800 / 323400