Tuesday, 17 April 2012

17th April 1812: Threshing machine & barn set on fire at Carlton, near Barnsley

On the evening of Friday 17th April 1812, a barn full of grain and a threshing machine were set alight at a farm at Carlton, near Barnsley. The whole was the property of James Stuart-Wortley, a local magistrate and MP, who reported in a letter to the Home Office that he heard reports "of bodies of men having been that night coming down from the Westwood".

The Leeds Mercury saw the matter, predictably & myopically, not as an attack on Stuart-Wortley but an attack on the supply of food: "To burn corn and destroy thrashing machines, is the sure way to convert scarcity into famine."

As reported in the Leeds Mercury of 25th April 1812. The letter from Stuart-Wortley was written on the 20th April and can be found at HO 42/122.

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