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Ismay Writings 8

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Hopton Hamlet.
Liley, Windy Bank, this house stands upon ye highest ground in Hopton, except the great pinnacle, Cuckoo Hill, New Hall, Row Houses, Brier Knowles, Hagg, Hunger Hill, terra sterilis. Threaproyd i.e. terra lilis, Boat House, Sheep Tug, Tithe Laithe, Han Bank, Hollin Hall, Hopton Hall. Calverts Clough. This hamlet consists of a great number of odd houses interspersed among the woods, hills and valleys, some of which retain their old names as above mentioned. The roads consist mostly of lanes, thro' different parts of ye hamlet.

Here is a Presbyterian Meeting House commonly called a Chapel, two blacksmiths, three grocers, one butcher, and one alehouse. There are 40 pairs of looms for weaving of white broad cloth in the hamlet only. There are a great many springs and woods, viz. :- Oliver Car, Jordan Roid, Liley Wood, Gregory Spring. Whitley Wood, Hagg Wood, Balance Wood, Briery Bank, Chadwick Wood, Crow Wood, Little Hagg, Liley Range. Hepworth Wood, &c. These woods produce such a number of medicinal plants, that one of them has got the denomination of the Garden of Eden. Here is employment for the Botanist in summer, and game
for the Sportsman in the winter season. The nature of the soil is various, here is sand, clay, stone, gravel, &c. The lands consist of woods, arable pasture, meadow, &c., some of which are firm and some fenny or moorish. As to the appearance of this Hamlet, it is mostly hilly, rocky, or mountainous, except the land near the river. There are some excellent springs, plenty of coal, stone, and oakwood.

The clay in Mirfield is generally of a yellowish colour, but there is some at the bottom of Mr. Turner's quarry in Hopton, of a blueish colour and exceedingly fine grain. It is remarkable that  the Vicar, Churchwardens, Master and Scholars of the Free School, &c., in Mirfield, walk thro' the middle of a garden, yard, and barn, belonging to a farm house in Kirkheaton  Parish, in their perambulations in Rogation Week, when it is customary to go round the bounds and limits of the parish to beg a blessing on the fruits of the earth, and preserve
the rights and properties of their parish.

The men and the boys in Hopton employ themselves in the Christmas holidays in hunting the squirrel, which gives them violent exercise in the woods, and affords them excellent diversion.
The dwellings at and about Hopton Hall are increased in less than 40 years, from three to eleven; inhabitants, from 17 to 80, as appears by an exact calculation of a person who formerly lived there, and is now (1755) in the 82nd year of his age. Some boggy wet ground in Hopton, consisting of black earth upwards of 12 ft. deep. The following inscription is painted in red character over the north door at Hopton Hall, with the order of letters and the words inverted, and, as in Hebrew, read from right to left : JEHOVAH Nisi, i.e. The Lord my banner, 1695, Ex. 17, 15.
Ruddle or red chalk found in a quarry near New Hall, in Hopton. About 2 years ago only 3 families lived on ye N. side of Lee Green (between Gibhole and Little London,) but now the
number of families amount to 23, and more new buildings are about to be erected.
Crawfish in a small brook by Briery Bank in Hopton. Jackroid, this affords an extensive prospect as well as ye great pinnacle and Windy Bank before mentioned

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