Monday, 31 December 2012

31st December 1812: Attempted sabotage of Blenkinsop's Steam Engine on Hunslet Moor, near Leeds

A detail from 'The Collier' by Richard Havell (1814). This aquatint from George Walker's 'The Costume of Yorkshire' shows 'Blenkinsop's Machine', at Middleton Colliery near Leeds, in the background. This print is perhaps best known for it's use as the cover illustration for a past edition of E.P. Thompson's 'The Making of the English Working Class'
Some time during Thursday 31st January 1812, an attempt was made to derail John Blenkinsop's steam engine, which operated between Leeds and the Middleton colliery. Blocks of stone and loose iron rails were laid across the track near to Leeds Pottery. Although some of the machinery was broken, there were no injuries.

Four days later, Blenkinsop offered a reward of 50 Guineas for information that would lead to the conviction of the saboteurs.

The reward notice was published in the Leeds Mercury of 16th January 1813.

1 comment:

  1. Interesting, did anything else of note ever happen in South Leeds? You could write a really interesting article about it all for if there did, a lot of people interested in the history of this part of the world :o)