Monday 30 April 2012

30th April 1812: Colonel Ralph Fletcher writes with details of prisoners held at Bolton

Bolton le moors April 30—1812

My dear Sir/

With this you will receive the depositions of the witnesses against those concerned in or present at the administering of an illegal oath to Serjeant Holland Bowden of the Bolton Local under my Command— I have not time to dictate upon the Subject any further than to observe that we have certain Evidence against many others (and these the Chiefs) – but we are shy of bringing these witnesses forwards—being desirous to cover over all our Intelligence even with a Shadow rather than exhibit the Sources to open day.

I have been strongly requested to suggest to Government the propriety of a Special Commission to try the Culprits—I have no Observations to make on the Subject any further than to mention the Circumstance—the propriety must be left to the Wisdom of his majestys ministers

Various Correspondences have taken place – betwixt myself & the magistrates of other parts of this County and particularly this day I received a Note from the Revd Robt Hay requesting a Communication of the Intelligence I might possess on the Subject of the intentions of the disaffected

Any thing referring to that Subject immediately necessary to the Peace of the Country I have communicated by return of the Messenger—the Substance of my answer—which may serve as an Epitome of my opinion at this juncture is—“That the disaffected will not dare to attempt any open attack during the first Week in May although they had confidently anticipated that period”—I think they will be so checked by the late apprehendings of the Jacobins in this Neighbourhood as to defer the that time at least if not forever — all attempts at open Violence—Secret & Clandestine Firings both of Factories & private Houses & Outhouses—I shall not be surprised to hear of—nor even of private murder or assassination!—The principles so long (since 1792) promulgated, with more or less Industry according to Circumstances, has so operated on the public mind—by pamphlets and other Broadsides of the Press—that I do not expect that any State of permanent Tranquillity can reasonably be expected untill the present Generation shall have passed into Oblivion.—

The Post is ready to set off & I beg leave to remain dr Sir

Your most Obt Servant
Ra: Fletcher

To John Beckett Esq
und - Secretary of State
Pray Turn over

The Names of the persons committed on 29 April [on] are under

Christopher Metcalfe
James Brierley
Henry Thwait
Joseph Clement
John Hayes
Thos Pickup
Willm Gifford

Those remanded are

Samuel Radcliffe
John Hurst
Robt Waddington
Peter Topping
Richard Charlton
John Dewhurst
James Lion

30th April 1812: Thomas Allsop of the United Committee of Framework-knitters writes to Thomas Large

Leicester 30th April 1812

Dear Sir

Yours of the 20th I had an am happy to hear that matters are in a fair hair for succeeding I admire you plan and we fully acquiesce in it, You mention my petition being Blotched and really you do it so funny that I cannot help laughing at that and some other little matters which have come within my Knowledge very lately, but to the business you say I must look out for somebody to come to Town if called for now here I am lost we could sooner find a man than the money I was 5 Days in the Country last week and we have scarcely paid expenses we rather hope to get some in our Circular letter, if not we are stalled, Mr Toplas has sent us some large Bills which had been posted up against Colting and I again request you to get this insertion in the Bill in order that the act of the 5th of Elizb may be certainly extended to us. I have been informed that Mr Trantham Hosier of Nottm was shot on Monday night at his own door, report says that on Saturday last he docked his hands two-pence for pair and told them to tell Ned Ludd how true this may be I know not certain it is that this is not a proper time to irritate the public mind by gross Insults I don't know that the Hosiers of this Town mean to oppose our measures but many of them have discharged their hands from having anything to do with it, You shall hear from me again soon

I am

Yours respectfully
Thomas Allsop

[To Thomas Large at Nottingham]

30th April 1812: James Haigh is committed to York Castle, charged with attacking Rawfolds Mill

By Thursday 30th April, the Huddersfield magistrate Joseph Radcliffe had had enough of the cropper James Haigh. Radcliffe had examined Haigh several times over the last 6 days. Haigh refused to admit to anything that Radcliffe had put to him - he was adamant that was not a Luddite, had not been at Rawfolds Mill and that he had hurt his shoulder by falling on a stone, and had not been shot.

Radcliffe did not believe him. He had put to Haigh that he tried to go into hiding, and that was why he had fled south. Radcliffe was puzzled by the solidarity that seemed to exist between Haigh's employer, Joseph Ardron, and this lowly cropper. With Major Gordon's assessment of the bullet-hole in Haigh's shirt, he was happy that he had enough evidence to charge Haigh with being concerned in the attack on Rawfolds Mill.

Haigh was taken later that evening to York Castle via Leeds in a coach, escorted all the way by twelve Dragoons.

30th April 1812: Major Gordon informs Lieutenant-General Grey that Luddites are conducting arms raids

Huddersfield 30th of April 1812


I have the honour to report to you for Lt Genl the Honble HG Grey's information, the arrival of a division of the West Kent under the command of Major Best consisting of [1 Major; 2 Captains; 2 Lieutenants; 2 Ensigns; 1 (Assistant) Serjeant; 6 Serjeants; 2 Drummers; 211 Rank & File] which I do not consider a sufficient force for this place & neighbourhood. The Rioters are collecting arms by force — last night in the neighbourhood of Lockwood, (2 miles from hence) about twenty of them entered a house and demanded the arms (a Gun & pistol) which they knew the person had - he at first refused to deliver them — they then threatened to destroy his house & put him & his family to death if he resisted—Several other attacks of the same description have been made within these few days. I think it might be of service to cause a search for powder in the houses of those who have permission to sell it – and to obtain an order if possible to purchase the whole of it and prevent a further supply until this county such as many others are are in a more quiet state—

I feel under the necessity of reporting that I conceive it absolutely necessary a much larger force should be in this neighbourhood and that a temporary Barrack should be found in the towns for the accommodation of the Troops, Cavalry in particular, for our arms are not safe which the men are with their arms, in addition to which, they may with ease be prevented turning out, in case of a sudden attack and which we are always liable to in this place — I can assure you Sir this requires immediate attention

The Depot of the Local Militia is also in this town, which I conceive extremely dangerous, there are seven barrel of Ball Cartridge, and about 40 Stand of arms complete, which alone require a strong guard to protect it, independent of the danger arising from the powder lying in the middle of the town, at all times liable to be destroyed by fire, and which they will endeavour to do if they are prevented taking possession of it—

I could wish the Depot of Arms &c to be where there is a stronger Garrison, it will otherwise on the return of the Regiment be in the extreme dangerous to have such a quantity of arms unprotected—

Mr Horsfall died this morning in consequence of his wounds.—

I have just left Mr Radcliffe who tells me, he thinks was the prisoners who is strongly suspected of being at the attack of Mr. Cartwrights Mill, will be forwarded this morning to York. I send a Serjt and twelve men with him from hence to Leeds – and have written to Col Campbell by this consequence, saying he may expect him at Leeds in the course of an hour after he remains thus.—And that I have communicated with you for the purpose of having a relay at Tadcaster from York

I have [etc]
William Gordon
Major Capt 2nd [Dragoon Guards]

30th April 1812: Joseph Radcliffe informs the Home Office of nocturnal arms raids & requests more troops


Messrs T. Atkinson, & Allinson who left Hudfd last night will have been with you before this with the inclosed comes to hand, in which I send 2 examinations taken this day relative to the nightly breaking into houses to rob them of arms, many have been so broken into, & could a power, as I in a former letter observed, for a general search for arms be obtained, most undoubtedly it wd at least lead to discovery and detection of the thieves &c.—I also take the liberty of inclosing a letter I this day got from Majr Gordon of the 2d D. Gds now quartered at Hudfd, and most active & attentive officer, by which you will observe his opinions of the urgent necessity we are under for further military support, & which I trust by your applications to the war office will be granted without delay, or we must resign every thing to the power of the disaffected, for depend upon it, the present complaints are only a prelude to further encroachments on the internal peace of the country.

I inclose an acct of Mr. Horsfall's death, shot on Tuesday evening, & also a letter from Mr Stables, one of the committee to obtain a pardon for an accomplice, & a reward of 2000£, & I am Sir

Your most Obt
Hbl Servt
Joseph Radcliffe

Apl 30. 1812

30th April 1812: Troop movements

On Thursday 30th April 1812, a squadron of the 15th Hussars marched into Leeds, whilst one troop each of the same regiment were also placed in Barnsley and Wakefield.

30th April 1812: Large military forces arrive in Manchester

Having left Mansfield the day before, on Thursday 30th April 1812, the Buckinghamshire Militia under Colonel Young arrived in Manchester. They consisted of 800 men, and brought 3 field guns with them.

30th April 1812: Threatening letter to Nathaniel Milne, Salford Coroner


This would be an error that our very blood could not expiate, if these lines were stuff’d with nothing but mere malice and injustice; for conscious we are you must at first think so: but if you will take a little advice from a few friends, you will then immediately become an apostate to your principles—The Fable of, “The Plague amongst the Beasts” - is well worth a coroner’s reading—Had some poor man murder’d two or three rich ones in cool blood, Nat. Milnes would then have buss’d in the ears a “Packed Jury" loaded with contagion, these Words, “Willfull murder”—instead of “Justifiable homicide”: but know thou cursed insinuator, if Burton’s infamous action was “justifiable”, the laws of Tyrants are reasons’ dictates—Beware, Beware! - a month’s bathing in the Stygian Lake would not wash this sanguinary deed from our minds; it but augments the heritable cause, that stirs us up to indignation—

Milnes if you really are not a Friend to the great Oppressors, forgive us this-but if you are-“the rest remains behind”—

Ludd finis est.

30th April 1812: Threatening letter from 'Eliza Ludd', Manchester


Doubtless you are well acquainted with the Political History of America, if so you must confess that, it was ministerial tyranny that gave rise to that glorious spirit in which the British Colonies obtain’d their independance by force of arms, at a period, when we was ten times as strong as now!—if bands of husbandmen could do this, in spite of all the force our government was then able to employ - cannot such an action be accomplish’d here, now the military strength of the country is so reduced—Consider Sir, what a few troops there is at present in England,—remember that none can be call’d home; because that would relinquishing the little we have gain’d to the fury of the enemy—little indeed to have coss’d so much money and such torrents of blood, yes British blood!———let me persuad you to quit your present post, lay by your sword, and become a friend to the oppress’d—for curs’d his the man that even lifts a straw against the sacred cause of Liberty.

Eliza Ludd—


30th April 1812: The death of William Horsfall

After being shot 38 hours earlier, William Horsfall finally died at the Warren House Inn on Crosland Moor at around 8.30 a.m. on the morning of Thursday 30th April 1812.

Mason Stanhope Kenny, the assistant surgeon of the Queen's Bays who had been brought to help him at 8 p.m. on the day he was shot, later gave a deposition to Joseph Radcliffe which stated that Horsfall had suffered three wounds: one on the lower left side of his abdomen, another on the upper part of his left thigh which entered his intestine, and a third on the right thigh. He reported that two of the musket balls causing these wounds were later extracted.

Another surgeon, a Mr. Houghton, had arrived later. He observed 2 wounds on Horsfall's left thigh, and another on the left of his abdomen, and 2 more wounds on his right thigh, a total of 5.

The report in the Leeds Mercury on 2nd May reported 4 wounds, with the most damaging being the one entering Horsfall's abdomen from the left and travelling downwards leaving the bullet lodged at the back of the right thigh. The bullet from this wound was extracted by Houghton.

The Mercury suggested all the entry wounds were on Horsfall's left side, despite the fact that Stanhope Kenny's deposition only mentions 3 wounds, with one being on the right side, and Houghton's evidence, which mentions 2 wounds on the right side.

It doesn't appear to have been remarked upon by any authors before now that in suffering wounds on different sides of his body, Horsfall had either been shot from both sides of the road, or that he had turned to face his assassins either before or as shots were fired, or even that some of the shots were fired after he had fallen. All of this runs contrary to the evidence given by witnesses.

Whatever happened, Horsfall never recovered. by 5.00 a.m. on the morning of the 30th, he had started to bleed profusely, with one of his thighs swelling enormously. When he finally died three and a half hours later, in the persence of his brother, the Reverend Abraham Horsfall, he was supposedly lucid. At some point before he died, Horsfall said to Houghton "these are awful times, Doctor."

By these words, it's not clear if his impending doom had made Horsfall realise the wretched fate he was condemning many families to in the West Riding by his use of shearing frames and imposition of the factory system, but it seems unlikely. What we can be clear about is that the 38 hours he spent in agony were as nothing compared to the grinding misery he had condemned the West Riding croppers and their families to by his actions.

According to Frank Peel (1968, p.145), the Horsfall family subsequently discontinued the use of shearing frames at Ottiwells Mill, meaning that, in a specific local context, and like with Burton's Mill at Middleton and the Westhoughton Factory, Luddism worked.

A coroner's inquest was held later the same day, and returned a verdict of Wilful Murder by a person or persons unknown. To the Luddites, it was a political assassination.

30th April 1812: "General Ludds" men conduct a raid for arms at Dungeon, near Huddersfield

On Thursday 30th April, Clement Dyson was up late. It was 1.00 a.m., and suddenly his blood froze as he heard a knock on his door. He had been on edge ever since the recent disturbances in the Huddersfield area had reminded him of the time in mid-March when his premises had been raided by Luddites. Even though he was away at the time, his wife's Hannah's stories about that night sent a chill down his spine.

He grabbed a gun he kept near the door, stood behind it and spoke:

"What do you want at this hour?"

A voice replied "General Ludd has sent us for your Gun and Pistol and we must have them immediately!"

His heart sank - Luddites again! - but he also felt defiance and said, "I have the gun in my hand and if any man enters my house he shall have the contents of it."

A reply came back "if you shoot at anyone, yourself and family shall be corpses in ten minutes."

By now Hannah stood at his side with his pistol, but as he turned to face her, she wrenched the weapon from his hand and before he could do anything, she opened a nearby window and dropped the guns through it. She had faced the Luddites the previous month and never wanted to face them again.

Dyson could hear many footsteps briskly moving away and he decided to get a better view. He ran upstairs and found the nearest window. Peering out into the night, the moonlight helped him to estimate that between 20 and 30 men were retreating from his property.

Sunday 29 April 2012

29th April 1812: William Hay informs the Home Office about strangers in Manchester

Police Office Manchester Ap. 29. 1812


We have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of Mr Beckets Letter of the 27th instant, & on the part of the public to express our best thanks to the prompt attention given to our suggestion. No part of the force alluded to as yet arrived (12 noon) – but as this letter will be kept open, any further particulates that may occur, may be added up to the time of the posts going out. It is more than probable that in the course of the day some part of it will arrive, if not, tomorrow morning. In the mean time the public is benefited by the ready assistance of the Cheshire Legion, & other provincial corps, which enable Col. Clay to make his arrangements with greater ease, & in greater extent we feel considerable confidence that on the arrival of the force mentioned in Mr Beckets letter sufficient will be prepared to protect this part of the Country, & to restore that firmness which one could not but expect would in some degree give way under the unprecedented & barbarous outrages and menaces of the Insurgents. General Dirom is expected here this evening – It has been thought necessary to increase the proportion of Col. Silvesters Regiment of L. Mila & we have the honor to implore you a formal multiplication of the same.

Mr. Beckets letter very satisfactorily removes our doubts respecting the receipt of our letter.

We should feel obliged, as the Loc. Militia is partially resorted to, if we could have a copy of such act as may have lately passed—we are told that there is such a one, that it contains m[a]ny material alterations; but in the course of Office, no such as yet reached as.

In respect of the state of this place, we could not but observe that in the course of Sunday & Monday some thousands seemingly strangers resorted to this town. They were all of such awkward description - yesterday these people who very many of them had bundles & newly cut sticks totally disappeared. Whether are no they were drawn off by order of their directors we cannot tell - It much bore such appearance. However, be that as it may, we understand that the weavers for the most part are returned to their work for the present; and we are given to understand that there has always been work for such as would go to it. We enclose you a paper marked A which contains a copy of 2 resolutions passed last night at a meeting of the journeymen printers. It is confidently stated that the weavers had, in case the printers would cooperate with them, promised to join with them with 15,000 weavers & destroy the machinery for printing throughout England. This was declined by the printers who said that they wished to settle their own business - If that is true, which we believe it is, a copy of the Resolution is an important & satisfactory document.

The exertions of the well affected are unremitted, & confidence seems returning so far that the parties begin to inform – 4 were committed to Lancaster yesterday for trial, which together with 7 before committed were sent off under escort this morning. We understand that from Bolton 8 have been committed to Lancaster & that 9 are remanded to further examination. We have written to the Keeper of Lancaster Castle for returns of those committed from other parts of the County - The arrival of the Military will we hope embolden many to lay informations who from dread have hitherto been deterred.

We are given to understand that the mode of the Committees meeting is contrived in some such way as the following - The meetings are held sometimes in public, sometimes in private houses – but never 2 days together in the same. A committee having yesterday met at A., one of them today returns to A, & there waits till a 2d member arrived, he tells him where he is going, & leaving him he takes himself to the place appointed for the day – the 2d waits till a third arrives, & then goes as the first had done; & so on till all the Committee has notice – this is the practice from day to day - It appears that the day or mode of assembling for the main attack is not to be communicated to the main body till the morning preceding. We cannot help hoping that the appearance of such an increased force as will be provided by the time, & which must exceed any calculation the disaffected can have made, may deter them from carrying their main purpose into effect, at least for the present.

We have the honor to be, Sir,
with great respect,
Your faithful & obed humble servants

W R Hay
J. Silvester
R. Wright

The Right Honble Richard Ryder
One of H. Ms principal Sect of State &c &c

PS. 10 night. Gen Dirom is arrived – No troops are yet come in; but from circumstances we have reason to expect them – I am sorry to say that in the course of this afternoon, many very awkward people have again made their appearance - they seem very active, & intelligence for some purpose or other is quickly communicating. WR H.

[Enclosure] A

Resolved. 1st that this meeting fully disapproves of all measures that have been designed by any individual or individuals to be taken of a coercive or riotous nature to do away with machinery, are determined as a body at all times to discourage any measures of an illegal kind to accomplish a check on the same, and are determined not to take or encourag to be taken any steps thereunto but those that are consistent with our legal privileges as Englishmen.

2d. that the same committee appointed to the purpose of carrying into effect the Petition to Parlt for the purpose of withholding the bounty given by Government to Machinery all prints+ exported from this country, & continue to act as was first proposed - that an address to our masters be circulated as soon as possible, & the same committee be directed to execute the same as soon as it can be done.

+ I understand this to mean when the goods are printed by machinery

29th April 1812: Gravenor Henson writes from London to Nottingham about the framework-knitters petitions

1812. April 29

London . . .


To Day is a Blank Day, Mr Coke kept the altered Copy of the Petition so late that Mr Toplis could not get them engrossed to deliver in time to the Members, the London Committee attended but were obliged to postpone the intended visits till tomorrow, the Irish and Scotch petitions have not come yet, we have wrote but have recd no Answer

We hope to Petition the House to morrow Night, if not Friday at farthest What an unfortunate thing the Petitions do not come

The Numbers signed are thus

Town of Nottingham 2629
County Do. 2078
Borough of Leicester 1100
County of Leicester 2057
Borough of Derby 239
County of Do. 1809
Tewkesbury 281
Godalming 114
London 92

Total 10459 [sic]

Yours in haste
G. Henson

PS, We have some sheets that we know not where they come from, there is not a name in them that we know or that have written to us—

Yours has come to Hand it needs no comment.

29th April 1812: Huddersfield bourgeoisie petition the government for help

To the Right Honorable the Secretary of State for the Home Department

The Memorial of the secret committee for the preventing unlawful depredations on machinery and Shearing frames in the Town and neighbourhood of Huddersfield in the west Riding of the County of York.


That the Town and neighbourhood of Huddersfield have been greatly disturbed by the nocturnal depredations of Shearman and other lawless Characters, associated under the pretence of destroying certain shearing frames worked by machinery – but which your memorialists believe to be only a cover the much deeper designs.

That such depredations, having succeeded in destroying nearly all the Shearing frames which are not connected with establishments on a large Scale, proceeded on the 12th inst. to commence a regular attack upon a large mill at Rawfolds in this neighbourhood, occupied by Mr William Cartwright & used entirely free shearing with the obnoxious frames; but, after having kept up a brisk and well directed fire for a considerable time, & attempted to force the doors & windows by large sledge hammers, without effect, they were repulsed; and left two of their party desperately wounded upon the spot, who are since dead.

That the depredators finding themselves unable to destroy the large establishment by force, have changed their plans, and now avow their intention to accomplish their purpose by means of assassination; and that your memorialists have obtained credible information that parties associated for these diabolical purposes, bind themselves by the following Oath,

“I. AB. do swear in the presence of Almighty God that I will be faithful to the Object to which this Oath is taken – moreover that in Case of failure in point of fidelity by any person, I will pursue him to death, and the Verge of nature”. So help me God”

That in pursuance of their new System, the above named Mr. Cartwright strongly suspects he was fired at within a quarter of a Mile of Huddersfield in broad Day, on his way home from the market, but happily without effect - And, but yesterday Mr. William Horsfall of Marsden near Huddersfield, who was one of the principal proprietors and a strenuous supporter of the shearing frames, on his return from the Market early in the Afternoon was waylaid by four persons within a mile and a half from this Town, who fired at him on the Turnpike Road, and lodged four slugs in his Thighs and the lower part of his Body, and he is now lying alive indeed, but without any hope of recovery—

That the respectable and loyal Inhabitants of the Town & neighbourhood are generally deterred from coming forward in support of the outraged Laws of the Country, by threats of assassination, which are held out to all who are acting, or are suppose likely to act in opposition to the designs of these lawless men. And already Joseph Armitage Esqr. the Son of the neighbouring Magistrate, and an active Special Constable has had his Lodging Room twice fired into. And one Mr George Whitehead another active Special Constable has been shot at when going to bed with a candle in his hand, and two slugs and a large piece of Bone lodged in his Apartment. And one Allen Edwards another special Constable in Huddersfield had his low house & Hay Loft set on fire last Monday Evening; and during the fire various reports of the assembling of mobs in different parts, were propagated, and the firing of musquets, sometimes singly, and at other times as if in Vollies, were heard in various directions & appeared to have been intended to divert the attention of the military and call them out of Town, that the Town and prison might be left unprotected in order to afford an opportunity of rescuing several prisoners confined therein, on suspicion of being concerned in the attack on Mr Cartwright’s mill - And some of the military Officers also, have been knocked down in the Streets, and the most violent threats been held out against the whole of them—

That one Betty Armstrong who was suspected of having given information against one of the wounded Men in Custody was assaulted by a mob in a most inhuman way last friday night in the Town of Huddersfield, at the door of an Inn where a piquet of Horse is regularly station, & was rescued from destruction by dragoon at the Hazard of his life – And on the following morning as she was on her way to a magistrate she was again assaulted by a mob at midday, who stand her in such a manner that she now lies languishing at an Inn & her life is despaired of

That while these alarming occurrences have been taken Place the neighbourhood Villages have held meetings (which have been attended by nearly the whole Population) to petition the magistrates not to enforce the Watch & Ward Act, and even the people of Huddersfield have themselves petitioned against it: and, tho’ it may not have been openly declared to the Magistrates, it is well known and openly avowed to be General determination among the lower and middling Classes is to oppose its being acted upon; and hitherto it is not enforced—

That in all the depredations committed by these designing men they have taken away all the fire arms they could collect, and within the last week several Houses have been forcibly entered by armed men and arms taken away, which they have tauntingly said “they would bring back when the wars were over”. And they now boast that they shall soon be able to meet their Enemies in the open day, and in various anonymous Letters they boast their numbers to be nearly 30,000, and possess a connexion with the Roman Catholics of Ireland.

That is such a state of things, the ordinary means of maintaining peace are all together insufficient – the extraordinary ones are not submitted to, and the intended Actors in them scarcely trustworthy — information of the plans of these diabolical men is not to be procured – no rewards a large enough to tempt them – and even unwilling witnesses are in danger of their Lives – the courage of the bold is useless – the timid are terrified – and every loyal man feels himself in jeopardy –

Having disclosed these facts, Your Memorialists leave it to the Wisdom of Government to adopt such measures as it shall think prudent under the existing Circumstances; but your Memorialists cannot conclude without suggesting that any measures short of a general search for Arms, or subjecting the Town neighbourhood to a lenient exercise of military Law, will not have much Avail —

29th April 1812

Thomas Holroyd
Thomas Allen
W W Stables
Jno. Battye
John Whitacre
Jas. Crossland
Jo: Haigh
Jno. Allison
Francis Vickerman
Thos. Atkinson

29th April 1812: Troop movements

On Wednesday 29th April 1812, the West Kent Militia began to replace the Denbighshire Militia in the West Riding of Yorkshire. In total, 800 troops of this regiment would move into the County over the following 3 days.

It was also reported that the Craven Legion of Yeomanry Cavalry were standing ready to march at any moment.

29th April 1812: Colonel Ralph Fletcher reports the arrest of suspected Luddites

Bolton le Moors - 29 April 8 O’Clock AM

dr Sir/

I inclose you for the Information of the Right Honorable Secretary of State Copies of the Depositions of Witnesses before myself & other magistrates relating to the Persons examined & committed to Lancaster Castle - for being concerned in setting Fire to the Westhoughton Factory.—Several other Depositions not sent herewith have been taken & several persons examined—but as in these Cases either the Proofs were insufficient or none at all—these persons have been either admitted to Bail—or discharged.

In Pursuance of your letter of the 26th instant I have ordered the arrest of upwards of 20 persons concerned in, or present at, the administering of the illegal Oath to Serjeant Bowden of the Local under my Command.

These were seized in their Beds this morning at 3 oClock by a detachment of the Local under the immediate Command of Adjutant James Warr—and with the aid of the two other Magistrates of this Division I hope to go through their Examinations in the Course of this day but not [time] enough to send you the result by this Evenings Mail—

I much doubt our ability to identify the Chiefs or General in this nefarious Plot—without more or less making use of the Testimony of our main Informant—It may happen that some of the men charged will declare the whole of their Knowledge on the subject and if so, I intend to admit their Testimony in order to avoid calling upon our Informant—but should not any of the Guilty suspect the others we shall be reduced to the disagreeable Alternative.

In Haste I remain
dear Sir
your most Obt Servant
Ra. Fletcher

To John Beckett. Esq

Saturday 28 April 2012

28th April 1812: Cloth damaged at Drighlington

Between 11.00 p.m. and 12.00 a.m. on Tuesday 28th April 1812, a piece of cloth which belonged to a Samuel Boys of Drighlington and had been left to dry on tenters was cut to shreds.

28th April 1812: Fire at William Greenwood's Mill at Sowerby

In the evening of Tuesday 28th April 1812, a fire broke at a Mill at Sowerby, West Yorkshire, belonging to William Greenwood. This Mill was powered by a steam engine, and the fire broke out in the engine house. The fire was eventually put out, but not without doing 'considerable damage'. Greenwood was insured.

From the article in the Leeds Mercury, it's not clear what the cause of the fire was, but the possibility of arson is not mentioned.

28th April 1812: The assassination of William Horsfall

The most famous representation of the shooting, an etching by renowned Victorian artist 'Phiz'
By Tuesday 28th April 1812, there already had been 3 attempted assassinations in the West Riding on those directly involved in, or with strong links to, the manufacturer's war against the working class in the Huddersfield area.

On that day, one of the major manufacturers to make use of shearing frames, William Horsfall, undertook his regular journey to the Huddersfield cloth market, on horseback across the coach road from his mill at Marsden. That day, the mill was in the process of finishing its first ever order for black cloth.

He headed back in the late afternoon, in the company of Edmund Eastwood, another manufacturer from Slaithwaite, and a friend of Horsfall. At 17.45 p.m. they stopped at the Warren House, an Inn on Crosland Moor for a drink with 2 ex-employees. Horsfall only stopped for 15 minutes, whilst Eastwood stayed and watered his horse. The Leeds Mercury described what took place next:
"when he had come within about 300 yards of the Warren Inn, a distance of about a mile and a half from Huddersfield, on the Manchester Road, four men, each armed with a horse pistol, who had just before stepped out of the small plantation, placed the barrels of their pistols in appertures in the wall, apparently prepared for that purpose; the muzzel of two of these pieces Mr. Horsfall distinctly saw, but before he had time to extricate himself from his perilous situation, they all four fired, and inflicted four wounds in the left side of their victim, who instantly fell from his horse, and the blood flowed from the wounds in torrents. A number of passengers both horse and foot rushed almost instantly to the spot, and, after disentangling his foot from the Stirrup, he was some difficulty got to the Inn."
Another representation of the shooting from 'York Castle in the Nineteenth Century'

Of the assassins, the Mercury had the following:
"after they had perpetrated the sanguinary deed, walked to the distance of some yards, and soon after briskening their speed, they ran towards Dungeon Wood, and entirely escaped undiscovered, no pursuit or search having been made after them, till the arrival of a troop of the Queen’s Bays, about three quarters of an hour afterwards. One of the Assassins is described to us as about six feet high, another as a low portly man, and the two others as about five feet six or seven inches high, rather slender; they all wore dark coarse woollen coats, and appeared to be working men."

Edmund Eastwood had by then re-mounted his horse to catch up with Horsfall, but the horse threw him at the time the assassination took place. Though he himself was injured by the fall, the Mercury later reported that he ran back to Huddersfield to get medical help.

Horsfall lay in the road, badly injured & bleeding profusely. But according to a letter written 2 days later by Colonel Campbell, the reaction of most people nearby was far from helpful:
"as soon as he fell after being wounded the inhuman populace surrounding him reproached him with having been the oppressor of the poor — they did not offer assistance — nor did any one attempt to pursue or secure the assassins who were seen to retire to an adjoining wood."

Another manufacturer who was nearby helped Horsfall back to the Warren House. Some time later, a surgeon belonging to the Queen's Bays, Mason Stanhope Kenny, arrived to do what he could for Horsfall. Eastwood, who had returned with the help, offered to run another errand for medical supplies. He mounted his horse and rode back to Huddersfield, but his mount again threw him at the corner of the churchyard in Huddersfield, and he suffered yet more injuries.

By night-time, Horsfall was still lying in the Warren House, clinging on to life.

28th April 1812: Prisoners held at Chester Castle

On Tuesday 28th April 1812, the Chester Courant provided a list of the prisoners arrested after the recent disturbances in the County of Cheshire and now held at Chester Castle.

For rioting at Macclesfield:

John Jackson
Thomas Livesley
William Stubbs

For rioting at Etchells and neighbourhood, and unlawfully obtaining seven shillings from John Parker, Esq:

James Bennett
Collin Lindon
Foster Roach
William Thompson
James Tomlinson
James Wilson
Richard Wood

For rioting at Styall, and obtaining money from several individuals:

John Henshall
Richard Lowndes
James Torkington

For rioting and setting fire to Mr. Goodier's house, at Edgeley:

Charles Hulme
John Nield

For rioting at Baguley, and unlawfully obtaining divers sums of money from different individuals:

Thomas Chadwick
James Chapman
John Graham
John Hamlet
William Hancock
Peter Leigh
William Woodhall

For rioting at Bredbury, and feloniously entering the mill of Joseph Clay, and taking away, and throwing abroad, a quantity of flour:

Thomas Brent, alias Etchells
Thomas Burgess
Samuel Lees

For administering, at Etchells, an unlawful oath or engagement to divers of His Majesty's subjects:

Thomas Whittaker

For having taken an unlawful oath, at Etchells:

William Bennett
John Bradshaw
John Garner

For having taken, and been privy to others taking unlawful oaths:

John Parnell

For rioting, and having stolen and destroyed flour, at Bredbury:

James Radcliffe

For rioting, and seizing flour and other articles, at Gee Cross, and being particularly active in making seizures:

William Walker

The Courant remarked that Walker, who was a collier from Werneth, was considered to be an active leader. He was said to have 'marched before the deluded mob in a large cocked hat; and was distinguished by the apellation General Lud.' The also scoffed at the idea that poverty could have compelled him to join in as, when he was received at the Castle on 26th April he had six guineas in his pockets.

28th April 1812: Reward notice for George Whitehead assassination attempt

Whitehall, April 28, 1812.

Whereas it hath been humbly represented unto His Royal Highness the Prince Regent, that about twelve o'clock in the evening of Wednesday the 15th instant, as George Whitehead, one of the Deputy Constables at Huddersfield, in the West Riding of the County of York, was going up stairs to bed, having a candle in his hand, a gun, or some other kind of fire arms, was fired off at him, the contents with which the same was loaded entered in at a window which lights the staircase, and passed near his body, and broke three squares of glass in the window; and the next morning was picked up in the said staircase, to lead pistol-balls, a piece of lead or solder, and a piece of bone, supposed to be the contents of such fire-arms.

His Royal Highness, for the better apprehending and bringing to justice the persons concerned in the said felony, is hereby pleased, in the name and on the behalf of His Majesty, to promise His Majesty's most gracious pardon to any one of them (except the person who naturally fired off the said fire-arms) who shall discover his or their accomplice or accomplices therein, so that he, she, or they may be apprehended and convicted thereof.


And, as a further encouragement, a reward of ONE HUNDRED GUINEAS is hereby offered by the Committee at Huddersfield, to any person making such discovery as aforesaid (except as is before excepted), to be paid on the conviction of any one or more of the offenders, by Mr John Pearce, Treasurer.

Friday 27 April 2012

27th April 1812: Raid for arms at Crosland Hill, near Huddersfield

On Monday 27th April a local farmer, Thomas Pearson, was almost ready for bed at his home on Crosland Hill. Just before 11.00 p.m. he heard a knock at his door. He cautiously approached it and asked who was there.

A voice said "I am Tom Atkinson. I am a Special Constable with a warrant to search your house - if you don't open the door, I'll break it open!".

Pearson was confused and frightened - what would a constable want with him at this hour, and why the threat to use force? He opened the door to find 3 men who barged in. They left not long later with 2 guns owned by him.

27th April 1812: Attempted assassination of a Nottingham Hosier, William Trentham

William Trentham was Hosier in the town of Nottingham, a partner in the firm of Trentham, Tierney & Morton. He was already a notorious and hated character among the framework-knitters of that town.

At the height of Luddism in Nottinghamshire in January 1812, his windows had been smashed on two occasions.

In February, his warehouse was broken into and a quantity of silk and cotton stockings were removed.

Only a few days ago, he had received a threatening letter about his subcontracting to another Hosier who was paying extremely low wages to some of her workers. The letter was clear about the consequences of continuing in the practises he had thus far.

According to Thomas Allsop, a member of the United Committee of Framework-knitters, on Saturday 25th April, Trentham had docked his workers' wages and told them to 'tell Ned Ludd' if they were unhappy.

At 10.15 p.m. on a Monday evening, the 27th April 1812, Trentham was returning home, when he thought that 2 men were following him. He couldn't be sure, but with the letter he had received suddenly springing to mind, he decided to hurry home. He reached the door of his house at Kaye's Walk near St Mary's Church Yard in Nottingham, and knocked on it. While he waited for an answer, the 2 men that had been following approached him, one of them presenting a large horse-pistol to his chest. Without a word, the man shot him.

Trentham was lucky: he was found shortly afterwards, and help was obtained to remove the bullet which was lodged just under his left shoulder. Despite being 63 years of age, he survived and later recovered.

27th April 1812: Arson at the stables of a Special Constable in Huddersfield

On Monday 27th April 1812, stables belonging to Allen Edwards, a Special Constable in Huddersfield were found to be on fire, and it was later suspected that he had been the subject of an arson attack because of his status as a Constable.

27th April 1812: Manchester magistrates inform the Home Office about the 'Northern National Army'

Police Office Manchester 27 April 1812


We have the honor to enclose a notice under the Local Militia Acts by which it will appear that we have directed a certain portion of the L.M. to be called out – they are to be picked men – the measure has been recommended by General Dirom, thro Col. Clay, to us.

We are informed that Head Quarters of those direct the revolutionary proceedings are at Manchester – The Confederacy is called The Northern National Army – there is no connection beyond Carlisle – meetings are held by under delegates in every town in the Neighbourhood — The Pikes made have a hook to them – they are called Hook Spears; are like our Serjeants Halberds & a Pike with a Crook sharp as a knife which is to cut the horses bridles

A notice was yesterday stuck up on paper on the Hearse House in Prestwich Church Yard – In words – it was directed “To Whitefield Luddites”— and in figures 1.2.3 &c “you are hereby required to be ready on the shortest notice to join our army: fail not at your peril. Amen.” By some Key which a respectable man was in possession of, the figures were decyphered into the above - of this we may hear more – Whitefield is a little hamlet part of Pilkington.

I have issued 5 warrants for felony today – 4 for robbing the mill at Worsley on Monday last – the evidence is clear if the parties are taken, and an escort is granted for the purpose – the 5th is for coming for money with about 150 people, which money (2 pounds) the complainant has sworn he gave thro apprehension of his life & damage to his property. Not knowing what the commitment to Lancaster hitherto may have been or hereafter may be, I think it right to mention that many of the principal Inhabitants of this neighbourhood are strongly disposed to apply for a Special Commission to try the rioters. Should that be the case, there is reason to think that many parties will be apprehended, as informers are afraid to appear from the danger they will be under in the long interval between the present time & the next assizes—One of our Informants the same respectable Person as before has today furnished us with the enclosed marked A. We have sent to Oldham to know if any place can be identified with the above – If it is so – means will be taken to search for the arms.

We have the honor to be, Sir, with sincere respect –
Your faithful & obt humble servants

WR Hay
J. Silvester
R. Wright

To The Rt Honble Richard Ryder
One of H. Mjs principal Secretaries of State &c &c



April 27, 1812


In addition to the information before given, the following was received the last Evening.—

Token, or warning — To be done by a Man in each district or Hamblett – at 12 O Clock on the Evening of 1st May say on friday next (and not on Thursday as before stated which was my error) The man is to wear a brass Medal, with two wheat Sheaves (to denote purity) and a Hand uniting the Sheaves together (to denote unanimity) on one side—Its supposed on the other side of the Medal is the form of the oath that is taken but that was not seen.—

Ammunition – At a Stone House at Oldham.

Arms — Spikes, Knives, Cut lasses, Bows and arrows. Spike Balls to lame the Horses feet in the Streets — its also intended to have Ropes across the Streets and Lanes to trip up the Horses.

Mode of Attack — Each Sett to Murder the Affluent in their own Neighbourhoods; also such poor as will not join them in taking their property and uniting with them in the work:—Its supposed this will be done in this space of three Hours.

Bounty — to each on swearing in two pounds two shillings.

If this infamous plot be discovered, it will be put off to a future day but will not be relinquished—.

27th April 1812: Letter from "A. B." sent to Joseph Radcliffe threatens Thomas Atkinson, William Horsfall and a 'Civil War'

April 27th 1812


I thought it my duty as a Friend, to address you with a few lines upon the Perrilous situation of this Country; as you are the principle Magistrate for this District, they look to you, and only you, for some Redress; If this Machinery is suffer’d to go on it will probable terminate with a Civil War, which I could wish to be avoided, there fore as you are not intrested by Machinery and the Spirit of the People appears so resolute in the Cause, that if some measures be not adopted and immediately, it will be attended with great Distruction, and particular those who are our greatest Persecutors. With respect to this Watch and Ward Act, you are not aware of the additional, Oppression you are bringing upon your Tenants, and other Occupiers of Lands, and all for the sake of two Individuals in this District, which I am not afraid to subscribe their names, Mr Ths Atkinson, & Mr Wm Horsfall, who will soon be number’d with the dead, and summoned before the awfull Tribunal, and that God who will Judge every Man according to the Deeds done in the Body. And Jesus knew their thoughts and said unto them, every Kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation; and every city or house divided against itself, shall not stand.

A. B.

Thursday 26 April 2012

26th April 1812: Manchester magistrates warn the Home Office of a Rising on May 1st

Police Office, Manchester 26 April 1812


We have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of Mr Beckets letter dated the 24th instant. We feel it to be our duty to transmit to Government the accompanying notice which has just fallen into our hands. The Petition is evidently a cover for a meeting for other purposes; but the circumstance of the meeting being to be continued until the first of May strikes us as coinciding with the Information received of the intention to rise as for that day. It may be that the Watchwords, signals, or plans will be withheld till the preceding evening. We have the honour to be,

with Sincere respect
Your faithful & obedient humble servants

W.R. Hay
J. Silvester

The Rt Honble Richard Ryder
One of H. Mj principal Secs of State &c &c

Manchester. Sunday Night 11 oclock. We have informations that it is intended to stop the mail in this neighbourhood on Thursday Night. That will be communicated to the Post Office here—but it is further stated, that the finding by the disaffected that the Mails are stopped is to be a signal in London, by which it is to be notified that the proceedings here are commenced. This we deem it important to communicate.

W.R. Hay

26th April 1812: Colonel Ralph Fletcher updates the Home Office about affairs in Bolton

Bolton 26 April 1812

Dear Sir/

Being absent on the 23rd & until the Evening of the 24th instant—and on the 25 being engaged in the Business of the unfortunate disturbances that have agitated & do still agitate this Neighbourhood – I have had no opportunity to investigate properly the important subject contained in the Letter addressed to the Right Hon’ble Secretary of State – from Charles Gregory & James Nisbet— the President & Secretary of a Committee said to be formed in this place to represent the Weavers of this Neighbourhood.

That the Wages of the Weavers are much lower than formerly, cannot be doubted – and I, for one, very much lament that they are so—but at the same time the [pattern] drawn with said Letter appears to me to be overcharged—my Observations on the subject I beg Leave to postpone until a further Opportunity – when I will endeavour to transmit such Information as shall appear to me the best founded both in relation to Wages & Price of Provisions at the time (11 April) when the said Letter was dated —

My letter of the 22d (but sent off 23d) you will have received. That brought down the Account of disturbances to that date— Two advertised meetings of an Inclosure obliged me to attend on the 23d & 24 on private business — on the latter of which days a mob assembled at Chowbent about 5 miles from here & threatened Westhoughton Factory – before alluded to — the manager of that work being apprized of the Intention – sent to Bolton for military Aid—the Greys under Captain Bullen set off & on their arrival found no assembly there of any Consequence to be regarded—the Captain conceiving the Intelligence to be a Hoax left the place – declaring that he would not move again but on the order of Mr Hulton – a magistrate of the Neighbourhood. The Seditious had their Spies who on seeing the militia march off – (as it since appears) – returned to the mob (concealed at about a mile distance behind Hedges &c) & in about Two Hours afterwards—the multitude assembled round the Factory – & from breaking the Windows at last set fire to and consumed the Premises to the damage of 6000£—The manager had previously set off himself — (not without great personal danger) to apprize the Officer of the Greys of the Mob being reassembled—but it was too late to save the Property — the whole Mischief being done before the second Arrival of the Greys.

The above is a short account of the Transactions during my absence.—On returning Home – & on the Return of the Greys – it was thought that Chowbent being the place from which most of the Incendiaries were supposed to come from—I dispatched 80 of the Local (under my Command) under the direction of Adjutant James Warr — to Chowbent with a View to arrest such of the Rioters—as from secret & open information he could procure any account of—

[From] this place Bolton the detachment set off at nine P.M. — and returned before Six AM on the 25th – with 22 Prisoners – arrested at different places within an Extent of Country of 3 miles square—on the arrival of such a Number both Mr Hampson & Mr Hulton were requested to meet me—and at noon we [entered] on the Examination—By yesterdays post—we apprized you of those we had committed—and from Intelligence this day received I think several of the others who were remanded—will be fully committed to Lancaster to take their Trials.—but of this you shall be informed on the Event.—

Very dangerous is the State of the mind of the lower orders from the High Price of Provisions & the incessant Endeavours of the disaffected—as you will see from Mr Chippendale's letter (adjutant of the Oldham Local) and also from B’s communication.—I need not draw your attention to the Arms of which B says the disaffected about Stockport are possessed of—After the Exhibition at Middleton we can scarcely doubt the Information—Will it not be proper to authorise the Peace Officers (or even military) to search for & seize arms that are in possession of suspected persons?

You will [perceive] that the 4 May is a period fixed on. I entertain no doubt of some early attempt being made throughout the manufacturing parts & even the Capital of the United Kingdom – but it may be deferred from time to time until those who lead shall give the Signal.

It certainly is not for me to form a complete Judgement on so important a Subject—but I venture to mention that it appears to me in the present Conjunction of affairs – not improper for his Majesty's Government—to move for a Suspension of the Habeas Corpus Act. You will excuse the Liberty I take in such suggestion—and I have the Honor to be

Dr Sir
Your most Obt Servant
Ra. Fletcher

The Watch & Ward act I trust will be immediately put in execution we have 400 Constables in the Town to be sworn in tomorrow—I fear not any open force but secret attempts in this particular Neighbourhood

Would not a Special Commission to try these & other Rioters within this County be a proper measure?

To John Beckett Esq

26th April 1812: Letter from "Falstaff" to Fire Office Agents, Wigan


I am ordered by General Ludds Command in Chief of the Army of Bread Seekers &c &c &c

That shou'd you have any of the Persons Insured in your office not to Insure them anymore (for the sake of your Employers) who keeps winding machines or any other such like things in their Employment (For as it has pleased providence to bless the British Isle with abundance of Fire it ill behoves Genm of Proy to make use of it to take away the Work of the Poor and therefore their Bread, and if such work continue to be done in Wigan and in the same way the same providence has given the said General and his followers an Heart to make use of the same means to find Work as such Vile Persons has taken to take the Work from them (i.e. Fire) as it is thought better a few die than all Perish—The Gl has perfect information of all in Wigan and viewed the premises this day in Person before his men set to work, Mesrs Pe - s - n Da - -l Me - - lg Pin - - -g- - n B - a - -y &c &c will be looked to in a short time if continue in said way of Robbing the Poor of their Bread.

Given at Head Quarters at Westhoughton
This 26th Day of April 1812
Signed Falstaff Secy


To Fire Office Agents

Wednesday 25 April 2012

25th April 1812: Bolton Magistrates give list of those arrested for Westhoughton Riot to Home Office

Bolton 25th. April 1812.


We have this day Committed to his Majestys Gaol the Castle of Lancaster Thomas Kerfoot James Smith. John Charlson – Mary Molyneux and Lydia Molyneux charged with wilfully and maliciously & unlawfully setting Fire to and burning the Weaving Mill, Warehouses and Loop Shop of Messrs Rowe and Duncough at Westhoughton with intent to injure the said Messrs Rowe & Duncough in the Riot of yesterday. The offence with which they are charged comes under the statute of 43d. Geo: 3d. Cap: 58—

We have the honor to be, Sir,

Your mt. Obt hble Servts

Ra: Fletcher
Wm. Hulton
Wm. Hampson

25th April 1812: A suspected informer is attacked in Huddersfield

On Friday 24th April 1812, Betty Armstrong was at the door of an Inn in Huddersfield when she was set by a group of people. Nearby were a group of cavalry soldiers, and one of them managed to get her away from the crowd before she was too seriously hurt. She was suspected of having given information about people held on suspicion of being Luddites by the authorities.

At midday on Saturday 25th, she was on her to way to see Joseph Radcliffe when she again set upon and badly beaten by a group of people. In the fracas, she had suffered a fractured skull.

25th April 1812: One man committed for Manchester Exchange riot

The Lancaster Gazette of 25th April 1812 reported that at the recent Salford Quarter Sessions held at the New Bayley prison, a Charles Duffy was before the Judge for "riotously breaking furniture and lamps belonging to the Manchester Exchange" at the riots on 8th April. His case was traversed to the next Quarter Sessions, but being unable to post bail, he was committed to prison until them.

25th April 1812: Sheffield rioters committed to York Castle over the last week

The 25th April edition of both the Leeds Mercury and the Lancaster Gazette reported that several people had been committed to York Castle over the last week for their alleged involvement in the rioting in Sheffield on 14th April.

Joseph Wolstenholme, William Rodgers, Mary Gibbons and Thomas Wilson were committed on Tuesday 21st, with a William Bowen and William Denton committed on Wednesday 22nd. On Thursday 23rd, William Groom was committed, and on Friday 24th William Shirtcliffe (alias Shirtley). The Mercury alone had John Rowans and Charles Parker, but did not specify a date. They were all charged with rioting. The Mercury commented that "The major part of the above persons committed appear to be quite young lads, who, bent upon mischief, have thus brought distress on themselves and relatives."

Tuesday 24 April 2012

24th April 1812: Westhoughton aftermath - the Bolton Local Militia run amok in the town

When Colonel Fletcher, the commanding officer of the Bolton Local Militia, wrote to the Home Office 2 days after the attack on Westhoughton mill, he gave an account of how his force proceeded to Chowbent at 9 p.m. to make arrests afterwards. What he did not give an account of was what the same Militia did in Westhoughton itself after the attack.

James Hall was planting potatoes in his garden when he was confronted by 10 members of the Bolton Local Militia. They demanded to know who was in his house - Hall explained that his wife was away and no one else was present, when one of the militiamen struck him across the arm with his sword and called him a "damned liar", the other soldiers hurling insults: one of them said "he's a damned liar, run him through". Another grabbed his spade and smashed a window in the house, along with the frame. The soldiers gained entry and ransacked his home. Hall was terrified for his life throughout. Afterwards, he was unable to work for a month, and his wound had still healed 2 months later.

William Gregory had just attended a funeral when he was confronted with a Bolton Militia member who made a lunge at his head with a sword, which almost split his hat in two. Gregory only just managed to avoid another swipe of the militiaman's sword.

Ten Militiamen caught up with Margaret Hodgkinson at a row of 12 cottages a mile and quarter distant from the mill at Westhoughton that she and her husband owned. They proceeded to break windows and earthenware along the row. Hodgkinson asked them to stop, and told them she would let them in if they wanted to go inside. The militiamen threatened to stab her and proceeded to break and enter the houses and ransack them.

Henry Platt had been to Wigan to on an errand, and between 5 and 6 p.m., he had returned and was drinking in the Red Lion Inn. One of the Bolton Militia came alongside a window and struck it with his sword. Despite this, Platt left to head home and was then confronted by another member of the militia on horseback, who said to him "God damn your blood, where are you going?" - Platt explained he was heading home and then the soldier struck him with his sword, ordering him to move on. Platt continued on, but the militiaman returned, repeatedly hitting him with the sword. Platt eventually fell under the horse but managed to get up and make it home. His back was covered with minor wounds.

24th April 1812: Westhoughton Mill attacked and destroyed by fire

The Mill at Westhoughton in Lancashire was huge concern locally. It held nearly 200 Looms, powered by a steam engine, and had been operating in this fashion for about 4 years, after being leased to Thomas Rowe & James Duncough.

The Mill had been guarded by the military since the riots in nearby Bolton on 20th April, but the unit stationed there left on the 22nd April. Although the military had left 12 muskets behind for the workforce to use to guard the Mill, on Friday 24th April, they themselves had become so alarmed that something might happen that they left the Mill early. The superintendent stopped the steam engine and sent for help to Bolton.

Responding to this alarm, a party of Scots Greys under Captain Bullen stationed at Bolton arrived at the mill at noon. But all being quiet in the vicinity, Bullen decided it was a hoax. He made it clear, that he would not return without the instructions of the magistrate and Lord Lieutenant, William Hulton, and the party of cavalry returned to Bolton.

Between 3 and 4 p.m., a group of up to 50 people were seen passing through nearby Chowbent (now called Atherton). They were carrying all kinds of basic weapons: pitchforks, bill-hooks, scythes and even sticks.

By 4 p.m., the Mill manager had himself grown so alarmed by the prospect of something happening that he decided to head to Bolton to retrieve the military to guard the Mill. Having locked the doors and mounted his horse, he saw a large crowd of people converging on the Mill. With angry shouts and cries directed at him, he decided to ride away as fast as he could. The crowd lingered until at 5 p.m., when the group from Chowbent joined them.

The destruction at Westhoughton then began in earnest. Stones and bricks were thrown by the crowd, breaking many of the windows. Two very young women were particularly active, breaking the remaining windows with picks and other implements they had brought. A young boy was armed with a scythe and used it to break some of the windows. Many were calling for the mill to be set on fire.

The doors to the mill were eventually broken open, and a light obtained from a nearby house - straw from a barn nearby was brought to use as kindling to start a fire properly, to which was added cloth from the looms. Before long, the fire had taken hold and was out of control.

The Scotch Greys eventually arrived back at the Mill, but not until 45 minutes after the destruction was complete and the roof had collapsed in. The value of the damage varied, but in a letter written just 2 days after the attack, Colonel Ralph Fletcher put it at £6000.

Afterwards, the owners quit the town for good and Power Looms didn't return to Westhoughton for 30 years.

24th April 1812: Thomas Large of the United Committee of Framework-knitters writes from Londons Large, Nottingham

[To] Thos Roper
Newtons Head

April 24, 1812


While we was writing to you the other day Mr Toplas was walking up Fleet street, near Temple bar, and was knocked down by the pole of a coach, as he was crossing the road, the horses trode upon his Breast and Leg—but we hope he will be able to attend to Business this afternoon, tho Henson has been to see how he is, and found him very very poorly, he cannot keep anything on his stomach, at present. In the mean time Henson (while I am writing this to you and to derby and Leicester and Godalming) has gone with two of the London Committee to the Hatten garden Magistrates Latham is gone to John Smith, and we are to have an interview with Mr Benson this afternoon. Mr Toplas thinks he can travel by water, we wish if you think it prudent, for you to have a general meeting of the Trade next Monday—and we will send you all the information we can by that time (Monday night) We have engaged the same Room, where the carpinter committee sat, when they brought on the late Trial on the sistem of colting. We have had an opportunity of speaking to them on the subject, they thought we possesed a fund on a permanent principle to answer any demand, at any time, and if that had been the case, would have Lent us two or three thousand pounds, (for there is £20,000 in the fund belonging that Trade) but When they understood our Trade kept no regular fund to support itself, Instead of Lending us money, Their noses underwent a Mechanical turn upwards, and each saluted the other with a significant stare, Ejaculating Lord bless us!!! what fools!!! they Richly deserve all they put! and ten times more !!! We always thought stockeners a sett of poor creatures! Fellows as wanting of spirit, as their pockets are of money, What would out Trade be, if we did not combine to gether? perhaps as poor as you are, at this day, Look at other Trades! they all combine, (the Spitalfeild weavers exepted, and what a Miserable condition are they in) see the Tailers, shoemakers, Bookbinders, Gold bearers, printers, Bricklayers, Coatmakers, Hatters Curriers, Masons, whitesmiths, none of these trades Receive Less than 30s/- a week, and from that to five guineas this is all done by combination, without it their Trades would be as bad as yours, even govt. cannot precent bad articles, if your hands are such fools to make them, these are the yours arguments made use of by persons who know nothing of our Trade - how far they are right I believe you can Judge

heris is a shopman, Romanis cheapside, has got such tales about Ned Ludd, stuck in is window, and two stocking frames at work close to the shop door a large drawer full of guineas, half guineas, and seven shilling pieces in the window, all to attract notice, and he sells the damed’ist Rubbish of Framework, goods we ever saw in our Lives, he’s got Long armed Cotton gloves, selvages, marked to sell at sixpence per pair, single press, cut up, &c, shot down at his door, And shoveled in, the same as you shovel in coals at Nottm., his window is also full of songs about the amazing cheapness of his goods considering the price of Labour &c—

His mash, he sells for silk, and single press
For What it should be made, or rather Less,
And tells the Town, that he alone has gotton
Brown stockings, made of real india cotton
But when we Eyed them, soon we did disern
His india cotton, nought but single yarn
And others silks, this Roman doth declare
Are not his weight, by half an ounce a pair
Tho—what we saw, we viewed the window round
Would take full twenty pair to weight a pound
His pantaloons, what he calls double milled
A pound a pair, with twits, and burs and filld
And cotton Gloves, Long arms and Seemly fair
Hang in his window, marked sixpence a pair
Thus is this Villain, trading in the Trash
That was the cause of many a dreadful Smash
We hear he’s Likely, soon to be in the fleet
Pray god almighty send, that we may see it
Before we Leave this Town, for well we know
Goods Like his, has filld our Trade with Woe.

you will have the goodness to smiths anser to the circular Letter, and all the things that have been wrote for before, we shall write again to morrow


Thos Large.

Mr. Fryers Tailer No 10 Leigh Street
red Lyon Square London
Give my Wife 12 shillings

24th April 1812: James Haigh is brought before the magistrate, Joseph Radcliffe

James Haigh had been apprehended by the Huddersfield Constable Thomas Atkinson that day before at Methley. On Friday 24th April 1812, he stood before the magistrate Joseph Radcliffe and a Major Gordon in Milnsbridge House, Radcliffe's residence.

Atkinson had told Radcliffe the story of the previous day. How he had found out Haigh had been to a Doctor about his arm, and the story the Doctor had told him about the man and how he come by his wounded shoulder - that it was an accident.

Radcliffe told Haigh to remove his shirt, so that he could assess his wound. Haigh was clearly in pain and had had his wound dressed, though it was beginning to look a bit grubby. He noticed that Haigh's shirt was damaged. He ordered a servant to fetch Haigh a fresh shirt and handed the damaged shirt to Gordon, asking him his opinion of it. Gordon said he thought the hole in the front of the shirt was made by a musket ball.

Radcliffe spent some time questioning Haigh. He accused Haigh of being shot at Rawfolds, and being involved with the Luddites. Haigh looked dejected and exhausted, but would not admit to anything Radcliffe put to him, and insisted he had fallen badly on a stone, which was the cause of his wound.

But Radcliffe was convinced he was lying.

Monday 23 April 2012

23rd April 1812: Mass expropriation of goods at Sandsfield, near Carlisle

At 10.00 p.m. at night on Thursday 23rd April, up to 700 people assembled on a common a mile from Carlisle, They were armed with various types of weapons, and eventually proceeded to Sandsfield (now known as Port Carlilse), where they boarded a ship in the harbour. The ship was laden with all kinds of provisions, and the group helped themselves to as much flour, cheese and bacon as they could carry to their homes

23rd April 1812: Attempted assassination of an employee of Joseph Radcliffe, Isaac Rayner

Isaac Rayner was a husbandman employed by the Huddersfield magistrate Joseph Radcliffe. At 9 p.m. on Thursday 23rd April 1812, he was returning home after a long day working at Milnsbridge. He decided to cut through a plantation at Ryecroft Edge. Soon he became conscious of at least three figures near the road, which seemed to him to be odd, and he made his way towards them. At this point he saw one the figures there present a gun, and next heard the shot being fired and the flash from the muzzle, and in an instant, something passed very close to his head.

He turned and ran through the plantation, and did not stop until he reached home. Lighting a candle, he took his hat off and placed it on his table. In the soft light of the candle he noticed a hole in his hat that wasn't there this morning: the shot from the gun had missed his head by inches.

Three days later, Rayner formally related the incident to Radcliffe, who sent his deposition to the Home Office, offering to post a reward of £100 if a Royal pardon could be given to any accomplice that would come forward.

23rd April 1812: The Manchester spy John Bent reports on riots, a new role and a delegate from Birmingham

On Thursday 23d April 1812, the spy 'B' aka John Bent filed another report for Colonel Ralph Fletcher.

On the 18th, he had received a letter from someone called Mann in Leeds, who related to him the 'mischief' done in that area by the Luddites, who could not be stopped by the military or civil authorities. On the same day, Bent met with people he knew from Royton, Oldham, Saddleworth & Stockport who reported their 'high glee' about the food riot in Manchester that day, and noting that since the riot at the Manchester Exchange buildings ten days ago, a different cast of political characters were now active.

On Sunday 19th, Bent had attended a meeting with many of the heads of District Committees and discussed organisational matters such as leadership and the payment and collection of subscriptions

On Monday 20th, Bent had been at the Manchester Executive Committee meeting in Ardwick, and had been elected treasurer of that body, promising to let Fletcher know 'all the particulars'. Bent had heard reports that there were 4 men from London who were purporting to be from a committee, but people were wary because they were answering any of the agreed signs that identified committee members to each other.

Bent also said that he had heard that someone who had been arrested at Stockport recently who may have revealed to the authorities who he was in contact with. Bent pointed out to Fletcher that there were many others active in the Stockport area, and the loss of one activist would not spell the end of the Committee there.

On the 23rd April, Bent had met a delegate from Birmingham who was making a short stop in Manchester, ultimately heading to Glasgow via Preston and Carlisle. The delegate said that 3000 were twisted-in in Birmingham, and that they could lay their hands on within 1 or 2 days if summoned. Bent did not know his name but said that his number was 457, and described him as 'stout' with a dark complexion and hessian boots.

Bent ended his report on a note of concern about the 'dangerous' situation he was in, and trusted Fletcher to make arrangements for him so that he would be secure.

23rd April 1812: Constable Thomas Atkinson arrests James Haigh at Methley

On Thursday 23rd April 1812, Thomas Atkinson had been given a warrant for the arrest of a man called James Haigh, a cropper from Dalton, near Huddersfield. It was suspected that Haigh was involved in the affair at Rawfolds a few days ago.

He proceeded to Haigh's home at Dalton. When he knocked at the door, he noticed it was open. He went and called out to see if anyone was home. No-one answered. He tried again, no answer. Atkinson looked around the home - there was no sign of Haigh or his wife, and it looked like the house had been abandoned: it looked like the couple had been brewing beer, but that the demijohns hadn't been looked after after being filled.

Talking to Haigh's neighbours, Atkinson found out he had been seen with Joseph Ardron, his master, and also that he had been unwell and had been to see a Doctor over at Lepton. Proceeding there, he found the Doctor, a Richard Tatterson, he told him he had twice helped an anonymous man from Dalton dress a wound to his shoulder, but he did not know who he was or where he had gone.

Atkinson had information about Ardron, and understood he had family over Penistone way. He decided to ride over on his horse, despite the fair distance.

After talking to Mary and Joseph Culpin, the relations of Joseph Ardron, he now had a lead, and knew the man who had stayed with them was anonymous to them, and clearly had a problem with his shoulder.  He also knew he had gone to Mary Culpin's mother's house at Willey Bridge, and proceeded there. Mrs Ardron soon told him that the man had headed for Wragby the last she knew.

At Wragby, asking around, Atkinson's description of Haigh was soon resonant with someone who told him he the man had gone to Methley.

Later that day, after a long time in the saddle, Atkinson found James Haigh at his sister's house at Methley. He placed him under arrest and made arrangements to get him back to Huddersfield that night, into the custody of Joseph Radcliffe.

23rd April 1812: Birmingham Magistrates provide their last report to the Home Office on the disturbances

Public Office, Birmingham, Thursday, April 23rd. 1812.


Resuming our Narrative from 2 o’Clock yesterday, when we dispatched our last Letter. About half an Hour after that time the Crowd increasing considerably and the People not going off to their Workshops, as we expected, but some halloeing & throwing DeadCats & a few Stones by which means some Windows were broken & complaints made to us from the Inhabitants of the danger to which they were thereby exposed; two of us, accompanied by a few Scots Greys, some special & other Constables, & about 20 Infantry with Arms, went into the midst of them, but many fled away at our approach, we judged it right however then to have the Proclamation in the Riot Act read, which, after a short address to the People, was done, at half past Two exactly, & we then ordered the Cavalry to clear the Streets, staying ourselves with them till 3 o'Clock, &, having secured a few of the most troublesome, we thought it best to retire, leaving the Military & the Constables to Keep the Streets clear & to take up any Persons who might appear to deserve it.—We then issued the Hand Bill with the words “Riot Act” at top, having before dispersed a considerable number of the large one commanding all Persons to keep the Peace, and between 4 & 5 o'Clock, finding all quiet, called in both the Military & the Constables. At Five we sent Patroles of Military to all the different Avenues of the Town to prevent the evil disposed from getting into the Country as they had done the night before, and those Patroles were Kept up till 11 o'Clock.—At 7, finding that the assemblage was again encreasing in the Marketplace, we ordered the Military & the Constables to go out, and Two of us went with them, by which means the Persons coming from their work were prevented from stopping, and no damage was done: by 11 o'Clock all was again quiet, the Military sent to Quarters & Barracks & no mischief done either in Town or Country.

This (Thursday) being Market Day, it was thought right to send the Patroles again, at 6 o'Clock in the Morning, to the Outskirts of the Town, lest Persons coming to Market should be insulted.—The special as well as other Constables, were also sent into the Market, at 9 o'Clock, to protect the Farmers selling Potatoes, & one of the Constables, who had called on most of the Farmers in the Neighbourhood to persuade them to bring Potatoes, engaged a considerable Quantity which were brought in & sold at a fair & moderate, but not at a reduced, price, which would only tend to encrease the consumption & of course the scarcity.—

(½ past 2.)

The Dinner Hour of the Workmen having now completely past over, the Populace in the Market place decreasing, and no appearance of Disturbance shewing itself, we close our Letter with a confident Hope that the Disposition to riot is gradually dying away.—

We have the Honour to be
Your mo. Obed. hble Servt.

Wm Villers
Wm Hicks
Wm Hamper
W Withering

The Right Hon: the Secretary of State.

Sunday 22 April 2012

22nd April 1812: Colonel Ralph Fletcher updates the Home Office on the situation in Bolton

Bolton le moors April 22. 1812


On monday night 20th instant I just gave you an hasty minute of the proceedings of the Seditious (the mail not allowing time for any detailed account.)

On Saturday 18th instant I received Information of intended assembly to take place at 10 o’Clock PM in a Field near my own House, at which were expected to attend from 200 to 300 Persons, who were to march from thence in 3 divisions, one of which was to assail my House, the second to burn Mr. Thos Ainsworths house and Warehouse and the 3d to do the same by Mr Hewitts; and the disaffected from Chowbent, with the aid of a Delegate from hence, were at the same Time to burn down a Weaving Factory in Westhoughton about 5 miles from this Place on the Wigan Road. I apprized the several Persons thus intended to be injured and furnished Guards of our Local, under the direction of our Adjutant James Warr, introduced into the several Places are secretly as possible. I requested Captain Bullen of the Greys & he promptly consented to attend us every assistance.

It was necessary that these Horse, in order to be at Westhoughton, should muster & leave Bolton soon after 10 to enable them to reach at the expected Hour (11). This matter of the Cavalry alarmed the seditious Leaders and deterred them from attempting the Execution of the whole of their plans.—Some 30 or 40 mustered in the said field who were soon however ordered to repair to Dean Moor (another Situation 2 Miles distant) where the General caused them to pass in Review (about 11 o'Clock) by their several Companies of tens (altogether short of 100) he holding a Pistol in one Hand and a Pike in the other, and asking the several persons as they passed, if they had any [such], to shew them (meaning the Pistol). Some had Pistols and shewed them – others who had not said they had none. The General ordered the Captain to muster their several men after the Business should be over to see their Punctuality. They then were moved off the Parade Ground towards Chowbent a Village 5 Miles from hence on the Warrington Road—and as they went – they met with a Serjeant of the Local under my Command, of the Name of Bowden whom they compelled to be twisted or sworn before they would let him go. (This circumstance, notwithstanding the Disguise will probably enable us to bring Conviction home to many of them, as we had several Confidents present, some of whom will I doubt now be able to identify, both the Person who administered the oath & also many of those who were present and aiding therein.)—Only two persons joined before they arrived at Chowbent—though the General had expected 300 who when joined together were to have undertaken the destruction of the Westhoughton Factory aforesaid; but finding themselves disappointed it was proposed by someone of the Company to break the Church Windows – which however was declined – and after giving 3 Cheers and firing off 3 Pistols they were ordered to disperse. Several of them had their Faces blacked.

A Part in returning passed the House of the Revd James Hampson (a magistrate) alarming him & his family by firing off 3 pistols near his door at about 2 oClock A:M of Monday—making use of threatening Words at the same time—but doing no other mischief. In the Interval I had taken a party of 36 Local towards Westhoughton – to intercept any Stragglers – but they having passed along Byeways eluded us.

Cavalry & Infantry returned to Town about 5 AM, or 8 AM. Crowds assembled & intimidated several Farmers to sell their articles at reduced Prices, but this continued but a short time as the military were ordered out & assembled to protect the market—and it being necessary that the Greys should have some respite from duty – it was deemed proper to request the Yeomanry Cavalry under Major Pilkington to assemble, which they immediately did.

About 7 oClock PM – considerable Crowds collected on the sides of the Streets, and it being apprehended that some Violence would be attempted were they suffered to remain—I read the Riot Act, and ordered the Military to disperse the People, and the Civil Officers to clear the Public Houses – both which was done in about 20 Minutes – and the Town appeared to be quiet until Ten PM—when an alarm of Fire was given and the Greys were again mustered.—Some Incendiaries, or persons unknown, and set Fire to an Hay Rick, the property of Mr Joseph Ridgway, Half of which was saved by the Exertions of the military & others.

Yesterday the 21st instant a few Hundred assembled about 8 AM—who disturbed the Town by their Shouts but did not however venture on any further mischief at this time—at midnight another Alarm of Fire was given and the civil officers (a Part of whom have constantly been on duty for several days past) proceeded to the Spot, which proved to be a Shed on Rope Walk.—Our Confidential Men have assured me that it was set on Fire by the Seditious—and that their settled Plan is – by Firing in Secret to distract the Peace of the Country.

A person of the Name of Clarke was seen to carry Implements of the Rope Manufactory & throw them into the Fire and as his account of himself before the Magistrates is so inconsistent & contradictory—and we entertaining no doubt of his being concerned in the Firing of said Shed – we have committed him to Lancaster & bound over the Witnesses to appear against him.

From all these threatening appearances in this [diversion] and the actual Bloodshed in Middleton near Manchester (of which you will doubtless have received an account from other magistrates)—and from the plundering in various places within 6 or 8 miles, it has been deemed proper by the 3 magistrates here assembled this day to strengthen the military Force, (without calling upon Government for more regulars) by ordering out 132 men of the Local Regiment under my Command (which 132 are now actually assembled on duty) being 10 Private & one Corporal per Company), which added to the permanent Staff of said Regiment about 20, and to 50 men of the different recruiting parties in this Town who have been furnished with spare Local arms – will make our Infantry Force about 200, & which together with Captain Bullens Greys (60) & Major Pilkingtons Yeomanry (40) – will, I trust, under providence be sufficient to resist any attempt of the Revolutionists in respect to open Force.

The Local having assembled on several occasions previously to the legal order of this day, I presume, if their Services cannot be charged, in the regular pay of the Regiment, yet then I may be permitted to remunerate them from some other Source.

Our Quarter wishes me to request to know how he must draw for the subsistence of the men ordered out for the by the magistrates as aforesaid.

The Execution of the Watch & Ward Act, (as you will have been informed), has been determined upon within the Hundred of Salford, containing nearly one Half of the Population of this County. It meets the general approbation of all loyal persons of Property, and although the Tumults that have occasioned its Enactment have much to be lamented, yet by exciting the Indolent to Exertion, Good may eventually result to the Country from it.

B: is got into a Confidential Situation. He acquaints me that Intimidation is the principal Trust of the Revolutionisis anonymous threatening Letters &c &c and he is induced to think that there are some so desperate as to undertake private assassination &c

You will excuse this long Epistle—I have missed the Mail – & this will be a day later than its date imports. I have the Honor to be

Your most Obed Servant

Ra: Fletcher

[To] John Beckett Esq

22nd April 1812: Birmingham Magistrates update the Home Office on the disturbances

Public Office, Birmingham, April 22nd. 1812.—


After the time of dispatching our Letter of Yesterday, which was written necessarily in great haste, the Town was tolerably quiet until the Dusk of the Evening, when the Workmen coming out of their Shops, the Numbers in the Streets encreased, & some of the noisy, idle, profligate & disaffected became clamorous & threw stones at the Peace: Officers, who were on the watch in different parts, insomuch that it became necessary to send for a Party of the Warwickshire Yeomanry from the Barracks where by our desire they had come from an inspection in the morning.—No mischief however of any consequence was done, before the Yeomanry arrived at this Office the greater Number of the Populace had left the Town & were gone towards Harborne & Edgbaston in this Neighbourhood threatening mischief. The Yeomanry therefore accompanied by Magistrate pursued them, & found that they had chained & nailed up the Turnpike Gates at the end of the Town with a view of preventing the Military from following them: the Gates were however forced and they were so closely pursued that they dispersed in all directions without having done any damage. Patroles were kept in different parts of the Town until Midnight when everything appeared quiet & a Guard both of Horse & Foot left ready any emergency, the Scots Greys under Major Hankin, who have been on duty all the Day & to whose prompt mentions we have reason to attribute the security of the Town, and the Yeomanry were sent to Barracks & Quarters.—A Party at the Handsworth Cavalry arrived in the Night, and we have desired the first Troop of Warwickshire Yeomanry to come from their Field today to relieve the 2nd which with the Scots Greys will then be ready to protect the Farmers tomorrow.—We issued a Hand Bill yesterday, one of which will be enclosed, and sent some of them all round the Town several miles.—We wish it to be plainly understood, as our decided opinion, that this disturbance although under the pretence of the Orders in Council, the high price of Provisions & the badness of Trade, is neither entirely occasioned by the one or the other, it doubtless arises principally from seditious Persons, who catching the flame from inflammatory speeches which they have read or heard & from Papers of that description dropped in the Streets & Roads, and such evil disposed Persons stirring up other idle, unprincipled, profligate & abandoned Characters to act under them.—Indeed we have great reason to believe that some Persons from Nottingham & from Sheffield have been all over this part of the Country with those views, & the Paper which we had the Honour to send you last week we believe will be found to be of Yorkshire Fabric, & the language that of Yorkshire.—The Inhabitants of this Town are chiefly loyal, quiet & industrious Persons, but none of them would appear in the Streets nor would any tumult arise, was not the Poison spread amongst the minds of others.—Every care will be taken to prevent mischief & to put a stop to these proceedings; and we flatter ourselves that the promptness with which measures were adopted has had its due effect.—We received yesterday an Answer from Lichfield stating that Major General Dyott not being there, & no Dragoons, we could have no assistance from thence.—Enclosed you have a Paper which was found last night on the spot where the principal Crowd was collected, & from the latter part of it may plainly be seen the spirit which actuates the Rioters.—We could wish to have all the Papers we send to you returned, as we may have persons come to us who can give us some information concerning them.—

(2 o'Clock) the Town remains quiet, but we expect, and (as we trust) are fully prepared for, a renewal of Disturbances at night.—

We have the Honour to remain
Sir Your most obed. hble Servants

Wm Villers
W. Hicks
Wm Hamper
W Withering

The Rt. Honble. the Secretary of State