A selection of snippets from 19th century news papers.
The Black Bull Inn. Clayton. To Let, with immediate possession, with or without land.
Apply Mr John Hirst, Clayton House.
9th SEPTEMBER 1858
A married woman, Mary Rushworth of Clayton, died suddenly while at work as a power loom weaver at Beck Mill at about half past six o'clock on Saturday morning. She leaves five children.
21st JANUARY 1860
A violent gale during the night of Saturday and Sunday, caused great damage to the National School's spire, which blew down. The beautiful structure sadly damaged the roof.
The master and mistress fled in terror to the house of a neighbour.
15th AUGUST 1861
On Sunday, a great number of persons visited the village, but ignoring the "Teetotal Lectures" which were given at Town Bottom, the public houses were well attended.
Mr Pablo Fanque, always welcome on such occasions, was present and a damsel in his company, who emulated Blondin's feats, drew a large crowd.
19th SEPTEMBER 1861
A little boy, son of Mr George Storey of Clayton, five years old and playing in the vicinity of Beck Mill last Thursday, inadvertantly fell into a tank full of gas tar.
He was completely submerged and presented a sorry sight, when rescued by his brother who was nearby.
6th APRIL 1863
The Ancient Druid's celebrated their anniversary today by dining at the Black Bull Inn, after which the evening was agreeably spent.
4th MAY 1865
John Swaine , Simeon Barker, Leonard Jagger, Charles Ackroyd, James Metcalfe and David Taylor, were all charged at the West Riding Court, with Sunday gambling on the Highway, e,g, playing pitch and toss. All were grown up people, some married and each was fined twenty shillings, with nine and sixpence costs or one months imprisonment.
5th APRIL 1866
On Monday last Mr Abraham Kershaw celebrated his 91st birthday, when some of his descendants were entertained to tea at his house.
He has eight living children, seventy four grandchildren,
sixty two great grandchildren, and twelve great great grandchildren, making a total of 156.
He has lived his whole life in Clayton and attended church at both Clayton and Queensbury, but was recently converted to Mormonism.
After smoking for sixty years he discarded the pipe for good.
It is reported he still works at the hand loom.
12th APRIL 1866
On Tuesday morning, one Benjamin Pollard, was found lying unconscious at the bottom of Balmforths Quarry, into which he had fallen the previous night, when intoxicated and returning from a public house.
He had long been an inveterate drinker. Faint hopes are entertained for his recovery.
9th AUGUST 1866
On Thursday last, in the West Riding Court, a boy named Joseph Foster, aged 14, from Queensbury, was charged with stealing a duck, the property of Alfred Hey, a farmer living at Sun Wood, Clayton.
The lad had sold the duck to Thomas Ingham and this coming to the ears of Constable Barrett, apprehended Foster while at work at Broadbent's Mill, Gt Horton.
The young pilferer having being well whipped in the area of the Court House, was discharged.
11th OCTOBER 1866
On Saturday night, a young man, aged 27, a weaver living at Fall Top Clayton, left a beer shop at Queensbury, where he had been drinking.
On Sunday he was found dead at the bottom of a quarry. He leaves a wife and a small family of children.
6th AUGUST 1868
On Monday at The West Riding Court, James Armitage, an elderly man, was charged with stealing a quantity of beans from the garden of Mr Edwin Ridings, Clayton House, who stated he had previously missed cabbage's and cauliflower's.
The prisoner was committed to one months hard labour.
3rd SEPTEMBER 1869
Yesterday at the Court of the West Riding, Jesse Woodhead, a quarryman living at Clayton, was summoned at the instance of his wife Margaret Woodhead, upon a charge of assault and using threatening language.
The complainant stated, that the defendant had used her shamefully, having struck her and kicked her and threatened to take her life.
The defendant's wages was only 24 shillings a week, and she herself had to support the house by her own efforts.
Her husband had frequently ill used her, when both drunk and sober, and she had frequently had to send for Constable Barrett to protect her from his violence.
The defendent who did not appear, was ordered to be brought up by warrant.
18th JULY 1871
A serious accident took place on Saturday, to a man called Daniel Whaley, in the woolcombing room at Joseph Benn & Co.
The machines in the room had been stopped at a quarter to one as was custom, to clean the machines prior to leaving work.
The shafting was still running, when for an unaccountable reason the machine restarted, and in doing so, tore off the poor mans left arm by the elbow and also removed some fingers from his right hand.
It was assumed that he had not completely thrown off the driving belt, but his prostration was so great after the occurence as to render him unable to account for it.
He was conveyed to Bradford Royal Infirmary, where on enquiring yesterday, we found him doing nicely, and likely to survive.
Some days later it was announced that Daniel Whaley had died in the hospital, from the result of his injuries.
14th JUNE 1876
A serious accident occurred on Saturday, little after noon, to a young man named Thomas Mann, employed at Hole Bottom.
It appeared he was recklessly playing with a dynamite cartridge, when it exploded and blew away the fore finger of his left hand and the thumb of his right hand from the first joint, there was also injuries to other fingers and one of his eyes.
He was immediately removed to Mr Fawthrop's surgery, where his wounds were dressed.
4th MAY 1877
The Local Board received a letter from Mr Booth Sharp complaining of a nuisance caused by Messrs W & E Seed, depositing manure near one of his (Mr Sharp`s) houses, thereby causing tennants to leave.
It was resolved that the Nuisance Inspector serve a proper notice upon Messrs Seed, requiring them to abate the above mentioned nuisance within 7 days.
6th NOVEMBER 1878
The Local Board Clerk reported that he had assertained from Mr Thomas of Thornton, that the price for painting the names of streets on zinc plates was three farthings a letter.
The centre of Clayton to be lit by gas for the first time
7th JULY 1900
The largest ever fossil tree ever found.
This interesting relic of antiquity, which has been discovered at Fall Top Quarry,Clayton, owned by Mr Robert Foulds, is now on view prior to removal.
A small charge is made for admission, of which a large proportion will be donated to the Lord Mayors Fund.
28 JULY 1903
The Anti-Vaccination League consider the 7/6d charged by the West Riding Magistrates for a Vaccination Exemption Certificate is exhorbitant, and within the last two months, twenty people have refused to get such a certificate, or have their children vaccinated.
Four who refused to pay the costs incurred were arrested yesterday and taken to Wakefield Gaol for a week.
Their names are Kershaw Craven, Reva Syke Rd, Sam Craven, Tenter Hill, Alf Walker, Town End and Sam Murray, Brow Top.
During their absence their wages will be paid by the league and after their release on Saturday next, there will be a public demonstration and the Clayton Silver Prize Band hope to be in attendance.