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British Industrial History

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W. and J. Cardwell

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William Cardwell and James Cardwell of Dewsbury, Yorkshire

Engineers, millwrights, ironfounders and colliery owners. Makers of textile machinery and stationary steam engines.

1847 'Alarming fire' at Cardwell's foundry [1]

c.1856 Possibly supplied beam pumping engine to Plumstead Pumping Station. G Watkins ascribes the engine either to Cardwell or J Penn.[2]

1862 'Destructive Fire at Dewsbury. — Early on Wednesday morning, a fire accurred at Dewsbury, causing the destruction of an extensive machine establishment, jointly occupied by Messrs. W. and J. Cardwell and Mr. Thomas Haley. In about an hour after the discovery of the fire very little of the roof was left, every floor had given way, and the interior presented a complete wreck. Several valuable machines employed in the manufacture of mill furniture were either totally destroyed or very seriously damaged. The fire is supposed to have broken out in the uppermost storey, but its origin is not known. A woman was rather seriously injured by a falling fragment of slates. Messrs. Cardwell estimate their loss at £2,500, and they are only insured for £800. Mr. Haley computes his loss to be above £500, and he is not insured.'[3]

1869 Advertising their hydro-extractors [4]

1872 Advert: 'One Eight-horse High-pressure STEAM ENGINE, nearly new ; made by W. and J. Cardwell ; may be seen working by applying to John Prime, Spring Mill, Dewsbury.'[5]

1874 'SHOCKING OCCURRENCE AT MESSRS. CARDWELL'S FOUNDRY. - Yesterday morning, about half put nine o'clock, a terrible accident occurred at the works of Messrs. Cardwell, engineers and millwrights, Northgate, Dewsbury. The previous day a new glazing wheel had been set running, and it was under the care of a young man, eighteen years of age, named Samuel Fox Ellis. Glazing wheels are driven at high velocity, and this, though so driven, was not put beyond the usual speed. It seemed to be perfect in all its parts, but about the time above named, it broke, end the centrifugal force scattering the pieces outwards, one of them struck the youth on the head, shattering his skull in a frightful manner, and carrying away part of his face. Of course, instant death was the result. Other pieces were thrown about the workshop, which is usually large and lofty, and two passed through the roof, one supposed to be the piece that struck the deceased, carrying his cap with it.
Mr. James Cardwell was almost at the deceased's elbow when the wheel broke, but he escaped without injury, as also did the rest of the workmen.
The machinery was at once stopped, and the remains of the deceased, in a short time, weir conveyed to his late home, near Wakefield Road. It is only about eighteen months since his father was killed by a machinery accident in Turkey.
-Last night, an inquest was held on the body, at the Albion Hotel, before Thomas Taylor, Esq. The first witness called was John Crabtree of Eastboro', mason, deceased's uncle, who told what his age was, and that he was apprenticed with Messrs. Cardwell, as a turner. He was an active and competent youth.
James Marshall of Whitley Street, iron turner at Messrs. Cardwells, said deceased and he were employed in the same room, which was a spacious, lofty, and healthy workshop. It was fitted with very good machinery. About half-past nine o'clock witness heard a crash, and looking round be saw Mr. James Cardwell and one or two others making from the place where deceased was attending a glazing machine that had been newly put down. It was set running for the first time on Thursday. He saw that a glazing wheel had gone, and noticing that deceased was lying on the floor, he ran, as others ran, to stop the engine. Part of the wheel went through the roof. On going to the deceased he saw that his head and face was smashed up. He mediated to take him home, and on examining the body it was found that there was a lacerated wound on the left thigh.
-James Cardwell, one of the deceased's employees, said he was a very sharp, active youth. He said deceased had just tightened one of the straps of the machinery, and was greasing it when the accident occurred. The machine was a perfect one, for anything witness knew. It was driven at the usual speed.
A verdict of "Accidentally killed" was returned by the Jury.'[6]

1876 Contract to supply ironwork (excluding main pipes) for service reservoir at Gawsthorpe.[7]

1878 Death of William Cardwell[8]

1883 Engine for Providence Mill, Earlsheaton, Dewsbury. [9]

See Also

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Sources of Information

  1. Halifax Guardian, 12 June 1847
  2. Plate 90, ‘Stationary Steam Engines of Great Britain, Volume 8: Greater London & South East‘, by George Watkins, Landmark Publishing Ltd
  3. Huddersfield Chronicle - Saturday 22 February 1862
  4. Yorkshire Post and Leeds Intelligencer, 12 June 1869
  5. Batley Reporter and Guardian, 6 July 1872
  6. Huddersfield Daily Examiner - Saturday 6 June 1874
  7. Ossett Observer, 27 May 1876
  8. Batley Reporter and Guardian - Saturday 19 October 1878
  9. Plate 161, ‘The End of a Revolution: The Last Days of Stationary Steam’ by Colin Bowden, Landmark Publishing Ltd., 2008