Wednesday, 1 February 2012

[1st] February 1812: Letter to Mr. Kirkby, Ancoats

Mr Kirkby
Cotton Master at
Candis his factory
Ancoats

Sir,

We begin with the Language of the Prophets of old, in saying, that your Destruction is at Hand, and why? because we the Cotton Spinners of this Town, have been the means of raising you from the Dunghill, to Independency; & now you with others, have employed so many of the Female Sex, that we, and our little ones, are starving for want of Bread; and if you are determined to persevere, you may expect something destructive immediately—

So we conclude with a Reform or Death

The same has also been recd by
Mr Pollard
“—Jas Kennedy
“—McConnoll & Co

This letter was forwarded to the Home Office by David Holt, a merchant and Quaker living in Manchester on 22nd February 1812, and is undated. It is indicative of the threatening letters being sent to manufacturers at the time. It can be found at HO 42/120.

The other recipients included Cotton Spinners James Kennedy who in 1825 had a business at 115 Great Ancoats Street (p.225), James McConnel of the Polygon at Ardwick in 1825 (p.236); McConnel & Kennedy appear to have had a joint businesses at both Union Steet & Great Ancoats Street in 1825 (p.236). There was also a Johnathan Pollard of 114 Great Ancoats Street in 1825 (p.249). All appear in Edward Baines' 'History, Directory and Gazeteer of the County Palatine of Manchester', Vol.2. Kirkby does not appear in the directory.

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