Friday, 23 November 2012

23rd November 1812: a shot is fired into the house of a man at Clifton

The Monday 30th November 1812 edition of the Leeds Intelligencer featured a letter to the editor which described an attack on an individual at Clifton who had been, along with others, the subject of an arms-raid 4 months previously.
MR. INTELLIGENCER,—Can you explain to the public the end the Faction have in view in telling us, with reference to the neighbourhood of Huddersfield, that “all is now perfectly tranquil in that district.” Can they be ignorant of the fact that on Monday night, the 23d instant, about ten o'clock, a shot was fired into the house of John Wilkinson, of Clifton, cardmaker, which shot passed thro’ the window-shutters, struck the back of the chair in which Mr. Wilkinson usually sits, and broke some glasses on the opposite side of the room. Mr. Wilkinson, by accident, (I say by Providence) was not at that moment sitting in his chair, or he would have received the ball in his body.—Is Clifton not in the Huddersfield district? or is a transaction which upon the face of it has all the appearance of a cool malicious determinate intention to take away the life of a quiet respectable member of Society, sitting by his own fire side, no interruption of perfect tranquility?

It is not a little remarkable that these same men, who pique themselves upon the accuracy, their penetration, and their early authentic information, took some pains to persuade us that Luddism was nearly, if not totally extinct, about the time when that systematic attack was made on the inhabitants of Clifton, by which they were deprived of their fire arms, and when Mr. Wilkinson’s gun was violently taken from him.—It is not easy to guess what is Mr W's. offence, except that he thinks, and has expressed an opinion, which every body else entertains, that the feat of arms-stealing, performed at Clifton in the summer, was not the work of “foreigners”


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