Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

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James Walton (1803-1883)

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of Sowerby Bridge, Yorkshire; of Curtis, Parr and Walton

1839 Sowerby Exhibition. 'In the machine room the latest addition is a self-acting engine for cutting the teeth of gearwheels, furnished by Mr. J. Walton; and its value may be best appreciated by comparing it with those generally employed in the metropolis in the present day. The common cogwheels are formed by three operations, each of which requires manual labour, but in the instrument before us they are all effected at once, and that too without the aid of a human power.'[1]

1840 'On Wednesday, Mr. James Walton, of Sowerby Bridge, gave his mechanics, to the number of 80, a most substantial Yorkshire dinner of roast beef and plum pudding, to commemorate the finishing of the largest machine, for planing iron, in the kingdom. The dinner was served up on the machine, which was kept in motion the whole time, so that the party were moving backwards and forwards all the evening. The machine was named the "Nonpareil," by Mrs. James Walton, amidst the loud plaudits, and over flowing glasses of the men. The party remained upon the machine until a late hour, highly delighted with the generous entertainment of their master. The length of the bed of the machine is 32 feet, and the breadth 8 feet 6 inches; the weight of the bed is 22 1/2 tons; length of carriage 24 feet, and breadth 8 feet 10 inches; weight of carriage 12 tons; breadth of machine, between the standards, 14 feet; height 22 feet; weight of the whole machine 65 tons. It will plane 24 feet in length, 14 in breadth, and 14 in depth.' [2]

1841 Trial for an infringement of one of Mr. Walton's (of Sowerby Bridge, near Halifax) Patents. The subject matter in the specification was "a certain improvement in cards for carding the wool, cotton, silk, and other fibrous substances, and for raising the pile on cloth..."[3]

1844 Sale of premises 'Also all that MILL or Factory adjoining the River Calder, being four Stories high, besides the Attic, situate near to the said Messuage or Dwellinghouse, formerly in the possession of the said George Greenup, but now of the the said Jas. Walton, and which is used by him as a Carding and Fulling Mill, with the three Water Wheels of 12-Horse power each...'[4]

1845 'STEAM ENGINES AND WOOLLEN MACHINERY. TO BE SOLD BY AUCTION, by Mr. DAVIS, .... at the Mill and Premises occupied by Mr. James Walton, SOWERBY BRIDGE, near Halifax, who is declining the Woollen Business : The whole of the Valuable MACHINERY for Carding, Spinning, Fulling, and Finishing Woollen Cloths; comprising .....'[5]

1847 'xxx residing at Sowerby Bridge....and working as Journeyman for Mr. James Walton, Millwright and Machinemaker there from January 28th, 1846, to March 12th, 1847...'[6]

See Also

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Sources of Information

  1. Leeds Mercury - Saturday 2 November 1839
  2. Halifax Express, 13 June 1840
  3. Leeds Mercury - Saturday 20 February 1841
  4. Halifax Guardian - Saturday 19 October 1844
  5. Bradford Observer, 1 May 1845
  6. The London Gazette Publication date:5 April 1850 Issue:21084 Page:1013