Sarah Hannah Dodd (1850-1852)

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.

Sarah Hannah Dodd was a victim of the Holmfirth Flood of 1852.


She was born on 28 August 1850, the daughter of mill engineer Joseph Dodd and his wife Hannah (née Hirst), and was baptised 6 October 1850 at Holy Trinity, Holmfirth.

By 1851, the Dodd family was residing on Water Street, Hinchliffe Mill.


On the afternoon of 4 February 1852 — the day before the flood — Charles Battye of Bottom's Mill visited Bilberry Reservoir. He returned to Holmfirth and called at the Dodds' house to warn Joseph that the water was only two feet from the top of the embankment. He left and told Joseph to look after himself and the latter reportedly replied, "Nevermind, Charles [...] Tell old Shaw to keep a good fire, and I'll be down in the morning."[1]

All four members of the Dodd family perished in the flood that swept down the Holme Valley in the early hours of 5 February.

Sarah Hannah's body was found on Saturday 7 February in the Bottom's Mill dam by Firth Barber and taken to the New Inn, Hinchliffe Mill, where John Shaw provided an identifation. The body of Charles Crosland was also found in the same mill dam.

Together with her mother and sister Elizabeth, she was buried on Sunday 8 February at Hinchliffe Mill Wesleyan Methodist Chapel.

The body of her father was eventually recovered from the river at Horbury Bridge on 28 February.

Notes and References

  1. "The Holmfirth Catastrophe" in Huddersfield Chronicle (28/Feb/1852)).