Sunday 27 July 2014

27th July 1814: 7 frames broken at 3 locations in Nottinghamshire

In the early hours of Wednesday 27th July 1814, Luddites launched 3 raids across Nottinghamshire.

Four frames, the property of the well-known Hosier Thomas Hayne, were kept in the workshop of a framework-knitter called Hooton in Sneinton. The Luddites had arrived at 12.30 a.m., alerting Hooton and his wife to their presence when they opened the garden gate. Looking out of the bedroom window, they observed at least 12 men advancing to the house and cried out 'for god's sake, what do you mean to do?' - the response of the Luddites was a familiar one - the Hootons were ordered to go back inside or their brains would be blown out. The Hootons obeyed, but began to loudly cry out 'Murder!'. The Luddites followed this up by firing a shot and throwing a large stone at the bedroom which made the Hootons flee to another room.

In the meantime, the raiding party of Luddites had tried to gain entry to the house, but were met with great difficulty owing to shutters and iron stanchions in front of the windows. The raiders even tried to break down the wall, but eventually gained access by breaking down door. Their rage was by this time so great that they injured a pig kept in the back yard and tried to cut down Hooton's apple tree.

The Hootons were not left alone: their shouting and having locked themselves in a bedroom further enraged the Luddites, who broke the door open and threatened them to sit still and quietly on the bed. Below, every component of the 4 knitting frames were comprehensively damaged and destroyed, and four globe lamps were smashed over the frames, with the aqua fortis (nitric acid) they contained further damaging the remnants. The damage was later estimated at £100.

The Luddites also affected a robbery: £20 of lace was taken away, as well as 2 other machines worth £14, and other property.

The same group of Luddites then proceeded to New Sneinton, and the home of a Mr Cooper. There, a brand-new and unused wide-frame - the property of Messrs Holmes, Edenborough & Co - was broken. The value of this frame was estimated at £120.

Later, the Luddites paid a visit to the home of a Mr Kelsall who lived on Trumpet Street in Nottingham. Two point net frames - one the property of Messrs Cartwright, the other belonging to a Mr Harvey - were destroyed.

By 2.30 a.m., the raids were over and the frame-breaking was complete.

Three rewards of £100 each were later offered for information.

This account is based on an article in the Derby Mercury of 4th August 1814.

No comments:

Post a Comment