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Volume 74 (2002)

Lithic Arrowheads Of The Craven Area by R.S. Richardson
Over many years surface finds of lithic material have been collected in the Craven area. Amongst these finds are various types of arrowheads. The purpose of this article is to attempt to bring together information on arrowheads found in the Craven area in recent years, which have not previously been studied or recorded in any publication. A number of active collectors of lithic material in the Craven area have been contacted, and details of classifiable arrowhead types have been recorded and mapped. The classification developed by H. Stephen Green in his book The Flint Arrowheads of the British Isles (1980) has been used in this study.

Aldborough Roman Town: Excavations By Miss D. Charlesworth, 1961-73, And By RCHME, 1959-60 by M. Snape et al
Some of the Roman remains at Aldborough, North Yorkshire, are in the guardianship of English Heritage, and the publication of the results of the excavations of 1959-73 was commissioned by English Heritage.

The Roman site, now overlain by the modern village of Aldborough, occupied the rising ground on the south bank of the River Ure, at the point where Roman Dere Street crossed the river. There has been no large-scale modern development to disturb the remains, and also comparatively little archaeological excavation, so knowledge of the important and potentially well-preserved site is limited.

Re-Excavation And Study Of The Helicon Mosaic, Aldborough Roman Town by S. Johnson & D.S. Neal
In the south-west corner of Roman Aldborough are the sites of three mosaics discovered and published in the nineteenth century. One is known as the ‘Helicon’ or ‘Muses’ pavement. Although fragmented, the mosaic is of fine workmanship and includes a Greek inscription reading ‘Helicon’ beside a standing female figure. It is assumed the inscription refers to Mount Helicon in Greece and that the complete mosaic originally depicted the nine Muses.

In 1979 Dr Stephen Johnson carried out excavation within the building housing the mosaic, prior to the conservation and display of its fragments. The mosaic has been recorded and studied by Dr David Neal, who provides a new identification of the figure. In 1974 excavation by Miss Dorothy Charlesworth revealed a burial cut through the mosaic, now known to be Roman.

English Heritage has commissioned and funded the publication of this report, by Margaret Snape It includes an account of the excavation of 1979, a study of the mosaic, its conservation and the results of radiocarbon dating of human remains from the burial discovered in 1974, together with a study of the remains and a report on fragments of Roman pottery found with the burial.

Some 'Rediscovered' Roman Finds From Aldborough And Victoria Cave, Settle by M.J. Dearne
The rise in interest in archaeological sites in Yorkshire in the middle and later nineteenth century often led to the formation of collections of artefacts from single or multiple sites by various individuals. Whilst a number of such private collections still survive, inevitably the degree to which their contents can be provenanced and provide useful evidence for interpreting sites varies greatly. However, where a reasonable amount of provenance information is extant they can represent a unique source of evidence for sites that are no longer available for investigation or have seen relatively little modern investigation. This is especially so where the contents of a collection can be linked to excavations for which some published or archive account exists.

One such site is Victoria Cave, Settle. Excavated before 1880, it was one of a group of caves utilised in the Roman period which are situated high in limestone scars at the western edge of Malham Moor.. Victoria Cave’s Romano-British archaeology has been at least partly reconstructed by the author, Mr Thomas C. Lord and others, including Prof. Keith Branigan, Prof. Paul Buckland and Dr David Shotter, using artefacts and archives surviving in public and private collections and limited contemporary accounts. The latter were published by a small number of antiquarians and, in the 1870s, by a British Association excavation committee. A monograph on this work was published, but the author has now established that the private collection of one of the most important of the antiquarian reporters, Henry Eckroyd Smith, previously presumed lost, in fact passed at least in part to Saffron Walden Museum, Essex. Examination of the collection and museum documentation has allowed the provenance of much of the material to be establishedIt also revealed that material from other sites in Britain and abroad was included in Smith’s collection. In particular a group of unpublished finds from Aldborough, the Roman site which he was one of the first to document in his book Reliquiae Isurianae published in 1852, was noted. As this material was unknown to Bishop when he compiled the definitive catalogue of the small finds from Aldborough, the purpose of this paper is to publish both these groups of material and briefly comment on what they add to the evidence for the interpretation of the two sites.

Four Coin Hoards From North Yorkshire by C. Barclay
The article describes four coin hoards found in North Yorkshire between 1997 and 1999. (1) In November 1998 Shaughn Tyreman recovered a piece of bronze on farmland at Deighton. The fragment was found to be formed from the melted and fused remains of at least four Constantinian folles. Parts of the designs of two of these coins were visible, but all fine details were obscured.

(2) In June 1997 Mr Enis Bain recovered a hoard of thirty-nine Saxon pennies near Northallerton. All the coins were found to be Saxon pennies of tenth-century date and, apart from one, of types associated with York and north-east England.

(3) In January 1999 Mr Keith Thompson recovered a parcel of three silver coins of Henry VI on grassland near Bedale.

All the coins date from the early part of Henry VI’s first reign, the Annulet issue groats having been struck 1422-27, and the Rosette-Mascle issue penny 1427-30.

(4) In October 1999 Mr R. Horseman recovered four Elizabethan silver coins in a field near Brompton on Swale.

Flaxton: A Township In Two Parishes by D. Bourne
Until designated a civil parish towards the end of the nineteenth century, Flaxton, East Riding of Yorkshire, was a township in the parishes of Bossall and Foston, with the Foston portion lying in fourteen distinct and separate blocks scattered across the township, including one substantial block occupying a central position in the village settlement.

This paper attempts to show that:

(1) The quarter or thereabouts of Flaxton township which lay in Foston parish stems from and relates to the fact that at the time of the domesday survey a quarter of the probable carucage of the township was a soke of the lordship of Foxton; (

2) The central, Foston, part of Flaxton village can be equated with the settlement pertaining to the soke;

(3) Flaxton Township was a planned settlement, probably predating Domesday.


The Fortunes Of The Tempest Family Of Bracewell And Bowling In The Sixteenth Century by R.W. Hoyle
The Tempest family of Bracewell in Craven and Bowling in Bradford was one of the most prominent gentry families of early sixteenth century Yorkshire. Sir Richard Tempest was personally known to the king and used this intimacy to become one of the dominant figures in the West Riding in the two decades before his death. His two elder sons, successive heirs to their father, never achieved his standing and the younger of the pair, Sir John, dissipated the family’s estates. In the third generation members of the family served as JPs but their pre-eminence amongst the Yorkshire gentry passed elsewhere. The history of the family illuminates a number of points of interest, including the character of political power under Henry VIII, and the strategies by which a gentry family tried to avoid financial disaster when its head was wayward and heavily indebted.

Origins Of A Yorkshire Dynasty: The Wilsons Of Eshton Hall by H. Masterson
The fortune of many gentry families in eighteenth century Yorkshire was founded, not surprisingly, on their forefather’s success in the local wool and cloth trades, and was later built up by land acquisition through careful investment and judicious marriage. There were also successful wool and cloth merchants from elsewhere who used their wealth to buy country estates and gentry status in Yorkshire, among whom were two brothers-in-law, Mathew Wilson and Thomas Hammond. Both clothiers in London, in the mid-seventeenth century they settled in Yorkshire at Eshton and at Threshfield respectively.. Mathew was the son of Robert and Alice Wilson of Brigsteer in Westmorland. Consistent with his origin in the Kendal area, where so much commerce depended on wool and the cloth industry, his probate inventory of 1656 listed nearly £500 of clothier’s stock held at Blackwell Hall by Mathew and his partner, Thomas Wilson. Thomas Hammond and his father, on the other hand, seem to have been Londoners. This note explores how Mathew’s initiative, with Thomas Hammond’s support, established Eshton as the seat of the Wilson family, which, through succeeding generations, provided its share of Yorkshire politicians, soldiers and leaders of industry.

The Jacobites Of Yorkshire by J. Oates
Jacobitism and the Jacobite rebellions tend to be studied at a national level. As Professor Black points out: ‘We know all too little about the local and regional dimension of eighteenth century politics’. Both Monod’s national survey in Jacobitism and the English People, and Gooch’s study of the Northumbrian dimension in The Desperate Faction? have demonstrated that Jacobitism in England was an important political and social phenomenon. As England’s greatest county, it is worth examining those within Yorkshire’s borders who were sympathetic towards Jacobitism. However, it is worth stressing that during both the Fifteen and, more especially, the Forty-Five, there were many who were willing to make their hostility to the rebellions known and were active in the defence of King George, and this was particularly the case in Yorkshire.

Retailing At Selby In The Late Eighteenth Century by R.A. Bellingham
Selby, at the mouth of the small beck later known as Selby Dam, had long been a convenient anchorage for ships going up the Ouse to York, and it may be that the siting of Selby Abbey, founded c1069, was due to that fact. That location, and the rise of the great abbey of Selby, supported the prosperity of Selby in the later Middle Ages. After the Dissolution it continued to prosper since it was to Selby that the textiles of the West Riding were brought for shipment. Following the improvement of the lower Aire in 1699 it is generally said that ‘for two generations Selby languished’, but the authority for that alleged decline can usually be traced to the passing comments of one Dr Pococke in 1751. In reality there must have been a steady growth in the road traffic to Selby in the eighteenth century, hence the Leeds-Selby turnpike of 1741, one of a series of turnpikes promoted around that time to improve the links from the West Riding across the Pennines and to the ports. The canal between Hattersley and Selby, which was completed in 1778, bypassing the lower Aire, was again built in response to demand, though it was not until after the end of the American War in 1783 that the rising prosperity of Selby is recorded in the traffic down the navigation and in the rising figures in the Selby Parish Register.

James Jepson Binns

This article is prompted by a set of papers contained in the records of the Parish Church of St Stephen at Steeton, near Keighley, West Yorkshire, housed in the Bradford District Archives. The church was completed in April 1881, and the papers relate to the commissioning of a new organ. Quotations were sought from several organ-builders and advice was taken from appropriate experts. The commission was awarded to James Jepson Binns of Leeds and the organ was opened in November 1882.

Binns had been in business only since January 1880, yet he won the commission in the face of competition from six other firms, including several of the leading Yorkshire organ-builders. He went on to achieve an international reputation as a designer and builder of pipe organs, and the correspondence from Binns contained in the Steeton parish records gives an insight into the artistic and technical principles on which his future success was to be based.

Purchasing a new organ then, as now, was an expensive undertaking requiring expert advice from third parties. The Steeton papers have additional interest in that they demonstrate how such help was obtained in an era pre-dating the appointment of diocesan organ advisors. In this case, a social contact arising from a shared interest in mountain climbing appears to have been instrumental in obtaining the necessary expertise.


Tom French [obituary]

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