Woolcomber -

Discussion in 'Textile Workers' started by The Artful Dodger, May 19, 2014.

  1. The Artful Dodger

    The Artful Dodger R.I.P.

    Offline
    Messages:
    4,143
    Likes Received:
    3,490
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    My ancestor was such a tradesman. Found a lot of information about the trade from the Book of English Trades and Useful Arts [1818].

    These folks served an Apprenticeship for 7 years and my man was aged about 21 when he married in 1783.

    Was this trade practised in Cornwall or would he likely have trained in another County? I have hopeful in that my attempts will secure details of his Apprenticeship.
     
  2. Daft Bat

    Daft Bat Administrator. Chief cook & bottle washer! Staff Member

    Offline
    Messages:
    6,769
    Likes Received:
    26,593
    Location:
    Northamptonshire, England.
    Good heavens! That brings back memories! I still have some carders that I used when I was studying textiles at college. Not quite in the same league as Woolcombers, but along the same lines, so I have moved this thread over to Textile Occupations.

    Meanwhile....

    To answer your question, the craft of Woolcombing was used in the manufacture of worsted yarns. Now, in Cornwall, there is something known as the Worsted Frock, which was the Cornish name for a Guernsey. So I expect that as a) there was this garment around and b) sheep were - and still are - a goodly part of the farming community, there is a high chance of the apprenticeship having been undertaken in Cornwall.
     
  3. The Artful Dodger

    The Artful Dodger R.I.P.

    Offline
    Messages:
    4,143
    Likes Received:
    3,490
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    Thank you Jan - now to find which site in Cornwall would hold Apprenticeship Records.

    I have his baptism in Mevagissey 20 July 1760. From my understanding, the boys were [usually] aged about 12 or 13, so am thinking likely years are 1772-1773. Presumably he finished [7 years later] c. 1779-1780 and became a Journeyman Woolcomber. I think by 1783 he was reasonably proficient in the trade and married 3 June 1783.

    My other thread has their 1st child Sophia born Mevagissey 1784. If the family stayed in Cornwall, what are the chances he worked in St.Erme for a few years and then Bodmin before finally returning to Mevagissey?

    Given what Jan has mentioned about the Worsted Frock I wonder if it was manufactured in one or both of the communities?
     
  4. Archie's Mum

    Archie's Mum Always digging up clues

    Offline
    Messages:
    9,651
    Likes Received:
    33,774
    Location:
    Orange, NSW Australia. The Colour City.
    On line book.....Cornish Guernseys and Knit Frocks by Mary Wright.
    A great history of the making of the garments by the women and children of fishing communities.
     
  5. The Artful Dodger

    The Artful Dodger R.I.P.

    Offline
    Messages:
    4,143
    Likes Received:
    3,490
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    Must have a 'butchers' for the book. Mevagissey was a community of fisher-folk back then.
     
  6. Archie's Mum

    Archie's Mum Always digging up clues

    Offline
    Messages:
    9,651
    Likes Received:
    33,774
    Location:
    Orange, NSW Australia. The Colour City.
    Must be a quiet day for Archie's Mum today.....
    St Blaise, born Armenia, Cornish patron Saint of Woolcombers and sore throats o_O
    died c316 by having his flesh torn by iron wool-combs and then beheaded.
    Thought you would like to know that:rolleyes:
     
  7. The Artful Dodger

    The Artful Dodger R.I.P.

    Offline
    Messages:
    4,143
    Likes Received:
    3,490
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    Found the book from several retailers - not sure that it is 'my cup of tea' though.
     
  8. The Artful Dodger

    The Artful Dodger R.I.P.

    Offline
    Messages:
    4,143
    Likes Received:
    3,490
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    OUCH!!! Not the nicest of ways to meet ones' maker. At least, though, I can understand why he became the patron Saint of Sore Throats.
     
    Archie's Mum and mugwortismy cat like this.
  9. Londoner

    Londoner Will always roll up her sleeves and dig around

    Offline
    Messages:
    805
    Likes Received:
    3,393
    Location:
    Cornwall
    I have a copy somewhere.
    Did you know that each of the fishing villages had its own pattern knitted into the jersey so that in the unfortunate event of a fisherman being lost at sea and a body retrieved they would be be able to identify where he came from. The women used to knit anywhere and everywhere and has a special device which rested on their hip to hold the weight of the garment which was knitted "in the round" and they remembered the patterns by counting - nothing written down back in the day.
    It was a hard life!
     
  10. The Artful Dodger

    The Artful Dodger R.I.P.

    Offline
    Messages:
    4,143
    Likes Received:
    3,490
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    No I didn't know that. I don't believe Bodmin was a fishing village, but what about St. Erme?

    I am trying to determine/verify the baptisms found in my other thread that Archie's Mum found.
     
  11. Londoner

    Londoner Will always roll up her sleeves and dig around

    Offline
    Messages:
    805
    Likes Received:
    3,393
    Location:
    Cornwall
    From the opc:
    St Erme is now called St Erme with Trispen, the result of the amalgamation of two hamlets. They were joined together by the construction of a large estate in the 1970s. The village is about 4 miles north of Truro and is bounded by St Allen, St Clement, Ladock and Probus. The village is fortunate in that it has a shop (including post office), church and pub. Once it was a largely agricultural parish, but now most inhabitants work in Truro, making it a dormitory village.
     
  12. Londoner

    Londoner Will always roll up her sleeves and dig around

    Offline
    Messages:
    805
    Likes Received:
    3,393
    Location:
    Cornwall
    I had a look at the image of the 1802 baptism, the surname is difficult to read because the zoom tool sits over it but it is definitely Elizabeth Dunn daughter of James and elizabeth. The 1799 one for Mary Rickard is clearer but is spelled Crags, if it were this end of the county I would have read Craze!
     
  13. Daft Bat

    Daft Bat Administrator. Chief cook & bottle washer! Staff Member

    Offline
    Messages:
    6,769
    Likes Received:
    26,593
    Location:
    Northamptonshire, England.
    Have a read of our Article about Apprenticeships and then perhaps contact the Cornwall RO in the first instance to see what records they hold. :)
     
    The Artful Dodger likes this.
  14. The Artful Dodger

    The Artful Dodger R.I.P.

    Offline
    Messages:
    4,143
    Likes Received:
    3,490
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    Thank you.

    Mary Rickard Craggs is my ancestor. I am going back to my thread on James & Elizabeth and will update my findings of the various baptisms and also some other thinks about their offspring.
     

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice