100 Items About the Museum and Huddersfield – 41 to 50

41. Mrs Sunderlands Desk.


Tolson Museum

Mrs Sunderland was a soloist in the Huddersfield Choral Society. She sang for royalty and Queen Victoria is alleged to have said to her “I am Queen of England but you are Queen of Song”.

On her golden wedding a special concert was given and the proceeds were used to set up the Mrs Sunderland Musical Competition. This competition is held in Huddersfield every year and hundreds of artists take part. At the end of the a week of competitions a concert of winners takes place in Huddersfield Town Hall.

As a young pianist, like hundreds of other young local people, I plucked up courage to take part several times, unfortunately not being skilled enough to be a winner.

42. Huddersfield Town Nameplate.


Transport Gallery

Celebrating the success of Huddersfield Town Football Club in the 20th Century. Will being in Premier Division 2018-2019 be celebrated?

This Huddersfield Town nameplate was on a railway engine of the London & North Eastern Railway Company. The locomotive was of the Sandringham class 4-6-0 61653 and was built in Darlington in April 1936. You would have been unlikely to have seen this locally as these locomotives were used to pull trains in the East Anglia Region.

This is part of a collection of railway items from the Huddersfield Railway Circle.

43. Jaquard Loom.


Transport Gallery

It was invented by a Frenchman in 1804. A loom was brought to the George Hotel in Huddersfield and demonstrations were held showing what the Jaquard Loom could create. Local mill owners were invited to see this marvel which used a ‘punchcard’ system and was able to produce cloth with very complex patterns. Several mill owners were impressed bought into this and it was introduced into their mills.

Examples of locally produced fabrics with complex patterns, and this loom, are in the Transport Gallery, Tolson Memorial Museum.

44. Intricate fabric design of Spaniel Dogs.


Textile Machinery Room

This amazing fabric was designed by William Etchells and made between 1846 and 1856. It was manufactured by George Senior & Son, Lower Mill Hill, Dalton. This is one example of the many samples of cloth with very intricate designs on view in the Textile Machinery Room, Tolson Museum.

45. Class Clicker.


Victorian Classroom

Hearing this sound probably woke you up? The ‘class clicker’ could be found in Victorian school classroom. It was used by a teacher to attract the attention of pupils. It was also used to let a child know it was their turn to answer a question in class. In the Victorian Classroom in Tolson Memorial Museum.

46. Duties of the Lamplighter.

In the days before electric street lighting, street lighting was intermittent and the Gas Department of the Council employed lamplighters to light lamps at dusk and to turn them off at dawn.

The lamplighter was a familiar person in your neighbourhood and they were still around until the 1950’s. Not only did the lamplighter light lamps but they also had to clean the lamps and report to the superintendent if there was a defective lamp. The lamplighter could also be employed as a ‘knocker up’.

Details of the lamplighter duties can be found in a document in Tolson Memorial Museum.

47. Shawl with pine cones.


Textile Gallery

A corner of a shawl designed between 1860-70, woven by Joseph Farrard, a fancy waistcoatings manufacturer in Almondbury.

It became possible to create fancy cloth with designs of great complexity with the use of the Jacquard loom and improved cloth dyes, made locally. The fancy cloths were produced in the Almondbury, Dalton and Skelmanthorpe areas.

48. Picture of Huddersfield 1849 by William Cowen.

A stunning picture of Huddersfield from Ashes Lane, below Castle Hill, painted in 1849. It shows many mills and the woods and hills that surround Huddersfield. As you can see Town was much smaller with far fewer houses. Standing there today you can see how it has developed.

49. Seth Mosley.


Bird Gallery

In his own words, Seth Mosley was ‘born in a museum’ and had been connected with museums all his life. He was known for his flora and fauna collection which contained over 5,000 items. He was a famous naturalist with an amazing collection of stuffed animals. He was the first curator at Tolson Museum.

50. Incorporation 1868. Charles Henry Jones, first Mayor of Huddersfield.

The first Huddersfield Town Council met in 1868. It comprised of 14 Aldermen and 44 Councillors. In its first thirty years of being in existence the Town Council created a tram service, provided electricity and saw the creation of several parks. A Town Hall with a Concert Hall was also built as were several public libraries and schools. The Council also took over the provision of water and over the next fifty years there was never a time when a reservoir was not being built. Tolson Museum