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Attack On Rawfolds Mill 18-04-1812

18th April 1812

The following account of the affair at Mr. Cartwrights mill, at Rawfolds, between Cleckheaton and Littletown, may be depended upon as correct.
About 20 or 30 minutes after 12 o'clock, on Saturday night, this gig-mill was attacked by the Luddites or Snappers : and the windows and door of the mill were assailed by a furious mob, who commenced their attack by the firing of arms and the beating of hammers and hatchets. The guard in the mill instantly repelled the assault by a steady, firm, and well-directed discharge of musketry from within. A regular engagement succeeded, which continued from 15 to 20 minutes, during which time, not fewer than 140 shot were discharged from within. The assailants were foiled in their attempt to force the windows or doors, and did no other damage than break the glass windows of the mill. The deluded mob did not escape unhurt. Two of the unhappy men were left wounded upon the spot, and there is great reason to believe that several more received the contents of the defenders' muskets, as traces of blood have been observed. The two wounded men were put under the care of surgeons as soon as could be done; one of them, John Booth, a tinner's apprentice, at Huddersfield, died after having had his leg amputated. Samuel Hartley, a cropper, of Huddersfield, who worked with one Web or Webster, at the same place, (and formerly with Mr. Cartwright, at Halifax) was shot through the breast, died on Sunday afternoon.
From the direction of the shot, it is conjectured that he received his wound in the act of firing into the mill, or in an attitude similar to that of firing a musket. Several hammers, masks, and a picklock key, were left upon the premises. Both the men died without making any confession off their accomplices; but several must have been so wounded as to lead to the knowledge of them.

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