Foster Crosland (1843-1852)
Foster Crosland was a victim of the Holmfirth Flood of 1852.
At the time of the 1851 Census, Foster was residing with his parents on Water Street, Hinchliffe Mill.
His mother Sarah died three weeks after giving birth to Ruth in November 1851. Without her mother to nurse her, Ruth was placed in the care of Ruth Nichols of Longwalls, and so was not in the Crosland household on the night of the flood.
Foster Crosland was killed by the flood which devastated the Holme valley in the early hours of 5 February 1852, along with his father and six of his siblings.
Having been in the water for several days, the body was "so swollen and altered a state that it appeared to be the body of a person at least sixteen years of age". Foster's grandfather travelled to the coroner's inquest to identify the corpse, after which members of the jury gathered a monetary collection.
Due to the decaying state of Foster’s body, it was decided that it should be buried as quickly as possible after the inquest, but "the burial ground was far distant, and there were none to bear it to its last resting place". When this became known at the close of the inquest, the jury members immediately "formed themselves into a funeral cortege, and, relieving each other at intervals, bore the corpse along".
Notes and References
- Born Ruth Crosland, she is believed to be a distant relative.
- "The Holmfirth Catastrophe" in Morning Post (16/Feb/1852). Several newspaper reports commented on the fact that the boy appeared to be blind in one eye.
- "The Holmfirth Calamity" in Leeds Intelligencer (14/Feb/1852).
- The church’s burial register appears to read "found drowned near Dalton Mill washed down with whole family by the flood". The location is incorrect, although Dalton Mills is near to the Black Horse Inn where the inquest was held.