Emma Cartwright (1847-?)

This page is part of the Holmfirth Flood Project which aims to make content available to researchers in advance of the 175th anniversary of the 1852 Flood which will be commemorated in 2027.

Emma Cartwright was one of the eleven 1852 Flood Orphans.


She was the daughter of clothier John Cartwright and his wife Mary.[1]

In 1851, she was living with her widowed mother and siblings at Newtown, Holmfirth.

During the early hours of 5 February 1852, the failure of the Bilberry Reservoir embankment caused a torrent of water to flood down the Holme Valley. The Cartwright's home was flooded and widow Mary "had a very narrow escape from drowning" — she later died from typhoid fever, which she likely caught from from her son-in-law John Earnshaw.

The United Committee of Huddersfield and Holmfirth — "appointed for the collection and management of the funds for the relief of the sufferers by the bursting of the Bilberry Reservoir" — had appointed a subcommittee to investigate the circumstances of those orphaned by the flood. Emma was awarded 5s. per week until she reached the age of 16.

By 1861, she was living with her sister Hannah Maria at the house of her married sister Betty and her husband wool slubber Martin Hoyle.

It is uncertain what happened to Emma after 1861.

Notes and References

  1. Her birth was registered in Q3 1846.