Jonathan Crosland (1812-1852)

Jonathan Crosland was a hand loom weaver who perished in the Holmfirth Flood of 1852.


He was born on 9 June 1812, the son of Daniel Crosland of New Laith and his Mary (née Wagstaff), and was baptised on 5 July 1812.

He married Sally Earnshaw, daughter of Joshua Earnshaw and his wife Hannah, on 6 February 1831 at All Hallows, Almondbury. They had 9 known children:

  • Joshua Crosland (1831-1852)[1]
  • Mary Crosland (1833-1852)[2]
  • Hannah Crosland (c.1835-1852)[3]
  • Martha Crosland (1837-1852)[4]
  • Charles Crosland (1839-1852)[5]
  • Mark Crosland (1841-1842)[6]
  • Foster Crosland (1843-1852)[7]
  • Ralph Crosland (1849-1852)[8]
  • Ruth Crosland (1851-?)[9]

Sally Crosland died giving birth to Ruth in November 1851.[10] Without her mother to nurse her, Ruth was placed in the care of the wife of William Nichols of Longwalls, and was not in the Crosland household on the night of the flood.


Jonathan Crosland, and all of his surviving children with the exception of Ruth, were killed by the flood which devastated the Holme valley in the early hours of 5 February 1852.

His body was found by John Kenyon taken to the George Inn, Holmfirth, where it was identified by his father, Daniel. Along with the other members of the family, he was buried on Monday 9 February at St. David's Church, Holmbridge. The bodies had been taken there the previous day, but the graveyard was still too waterlogged from the flood for them to be buried.

He was a member of the Ancient Order of Shepherds, who gave £8 towards the burial costs and support of Ruth.

In May 1852, the subcommittee appointed to look into the circumstances of all the people orphaned by the flood reported that the Nichols were a poor family and would not be able to raise Ruth Crosland. Jonathan's father Daniel instead told them that he expressly wished for Jonathan's brother James Crosland of Brownhill to adopt Ruth, as they were unwilling to have her sent to an orphan asylum. It was also reported that Mrs. Nichols "cannot bear the thought of parting with the child, and seems almost to regard it as her own."[11]

By 1861, it appears Ruth was boarding with David and Margaret Gothorp in Thornes, near Wakefield. By 1871, aged 19, she was working as a servant at the residence of solicitor William R. Wilson in Wakefield. It seems likely she married prior to the 1881 Census.

Notes and References

  1. Born 5 July 1831 and baptised 4 September 1831 at Holy Trinity, Holmfirth.
  2. Born 2 June 1833 and baptised 30 June 1833 at Holy Trinity, Holmfirth.
  3. Born circa 1835 and baptised 19 April 1835 in Holmfirth.
  4. Born 18 May 1837 and baptised 4 June 1837 at Holy Trinity, Holmfirth.
  5. Born 31 May 1839 and baptised 31 May 1840 at St. David, Holmbridge.
  6. Born 2 October 1841 and baptised 26 December 1841 at St. David, Holmbridge. Died aged 10 months old and buried on 31 July 1842 at St. David, Holmbridge.
  7. Born 15th? December 1843 and baptised 17 March 1844 at St. David, Holmbridge.
  8. Born 25 January 1849 and baptised 25 March 1849 at Holy Trinity, Holmfirth.
  9. Born 14 November 1851 and baptised 10 December 1851 at St. David, Holmbridge.
  10. According to Huddersfield Chronicle (22/May/1852).
  11. Huddersfield Chronicle (22/May/1852).

Jonathan Crosland (1812-1852)


Drowned | People | Victims of the Holmfirth Flood of 1852
This page was last modified on 28 May 2016 and has been edited by Dave Pattern.

Search Huddersfield Exposed