The following source list was originally available only on paper in one of the West Yorkshire Archive Service offices. It may have been compiled many years ago and could be out of date. It was designed to act as a signpost to records of interest on a particular historical subject, but may relate only to one West Yorkshire district, or be an incomplete list of sources available. Please feel free to add or update with any additional information.
Formal apprencticeships became popular in the Middle Ages, where they developed into a legally binding bond or 'indenture' between an apprentice and a tradesman. The indenture was a way of formalising the agreement between an apprentice and his master to exchange his labour in return for learning a particular craft or trade.
An apprentice was usually a young man between the ages of 10-15 years old who provided a source of cheap labour to a trademan, who in return would often provide food and lodgings as well as imparting the skills of his craft. Apprentices often came from poor families the care of which fell on the parish; therefore apprenticeships became a popular way of relieving the burden on the parish.
A stamp duty was levied on apprenticeship indentures (other than those for poor children) from 1710. These records are kept at TNA(1710-1811).
The majority of local apprenticeship records can be found in the Quarter Session rolls (ref. QS1), however other useful resources include parish records (overseers and vestry minutes) and private collections such as the ones listed below.
|Cawthorne, apprenticeship of Richard Barlow to Isaac Senior, tailor||1792||C669||WYAS: Wakefield|
|Crigglestone, Arthur Wakefield (a Lady Bolles apprentice) to Joseph Hammon Waite, carpenter and joiner||4 Dec 1895||C1046||WYAS: Wakefield|
|Elland, apprenticeship of Alice Maud Smithies as a pastry cook||1895||C17/3||WYAS: Wakefield|
|Gildersome, apprenticeship of John Walker senior and John Walker junior of Wadlands, Calverley, to John Sharpe, salter||29 Sep 1739||C281/2/11||WYAS: Wakefield|
|Gildersome, apprenticeship of Sarah Heartley to John Sharpe, salter||17 Apr 1770||C281/2/24||WYAS: Wakefield|
|Gildersome, apprenticeship of Anne Murgatroyd of Armley to Robert Watson, coloured broad clothier||15 Feb 1744/5||C281/3/6||WYAS: Wakefield|
|Gildersome, apprenticeship of James Wilcock to John Tomlinson, clothier||31 Aug 1756||C281/3/9||WYAS: Wakefield|
|Mirfield, apprenticeship of Joseph Richard Parker||1878||C894||WYAS: Wakefield|
|Morley Methodist Circuit, pupil-teacher apprenticeship papers||1858-1860||C12 add||WYAS: Wakefield|
|Peterborough, apprenticeship of Edwin Cook of Huntingdon to Charles Jacob, printer||1807||C692/8/1||WYAS: Wakefield|
|Sandal, apprenticeship of J W Moxon||1895||C920||WYAS: Wakefield|
|Sandal St Helen's Church, apprenticeship records including register of apprentices 1821-1824 and individual indentures - see Sandal St Helen's Apprenticeship Indenture for further info||1713-1848||WDP20/9/11||WYAS: Wakefield|
|Wakefield Charities, various apprenticeship papers||1818-1878||C493||WYAS: Wakefield|
|Wakefield, Lady Bolles' Charity, various apprenticeship indentures||1854-1940||C519/11-14||WYAS: Wakefield|
|Wakefield, Smyth of Heath and Dame Lady Bowles' apprenticeship indentures||1845-1912||C547/4/3/1-18||WYAS: Wakefield|
|Wakefield Museum, various apprenticeship papers||18thC-19thC||C861||WYAS: Wakefield|