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Salt - the
Titus Salt 50 years old
20th September 1853 Saltaire mill is opened on Titus Salt's fiftieth birthday
The Mill represented the bleeding edge technology of its time integrating all the processes of the trade from woolcombing through spinning to dispatch under one roof. This development had been made possible by the progressive mechanisation of worsted manufacture over the previous fifty years and by the huge accumulation of capital which resulted from them and from Britain's domination of world trade. Around the mill Salt built housing for his workers incorporating utilities and sanitary services. Over the following decades he added churches, a hospital, almshouses, a school, a park and the Saltaire Institute containing a library, meeting rooms and a gymnasium
1854 The first 150 houses completed at Saltaire
1855 Joseph Wright, later Professor of Philology at Oxford born at Thackley.
1856 Titus Salt president of Bradford Chamber of Commerce
Death of Cabet
1858 Saltaire Congregational Church begun and completed in the following year.
1859 April - General Election. Salt elected liberal MP for Bradford. At the same time Edward Baines jnr is elected for Leeds and James Stansfield for Halifax. Francis Crossley, who had previously represented Halifax,was returned for the West Riding. It is at this point that the realignment of British Politics is completed with a meeting on 6th June atWillis' Rooms, St James's London, of the various minority groups in the Commons. The decision taken there to bring down Lord Derby's Conservative ministry; this marks the foundation of the Liberal Party
First block of Jean-Baptiste Godin's Familistère built at Guise. Godin, manufacturer of iron stoves,has previously helped to fund a Fourierist Phalanstery
1860 Anglo-French commercial treaty
1861 Titus Salt, finding that Parliamentary life is badly affecting his health resigns, his seat in Parliament. He is succeded by W.E.Forster
1862 Joseph Wright begins work at Salts As he is only seven years old he works half-time for 6d(2.5p) per week and attends Salts School's class for half-timers. Death of Robert Milligan - he is given a civic funeral.
Titus Salt 60 years old
1864 After laying the foundation stone of the new Wool Exchange at which ceremony he subject to a hostile demonstration Palmerston visits Saltaire.
Shortly afterwards Gladstone is met by thousands when he visits Newcastle
1865 The Governor Eyre question. Following the supression of a revolt on the island of Jamaica the issue of the alleged cruelty with which the Governor of the colony acted becomes a cause celebre. Salt serves on the committee calling for Eyre's prosecution alongside John Stuart Mill, Herbert Spencer, Edward Miall, Thomas Hughes and John Bright
Such is the importance of the Saltaire Mohair trade that when Titus Salt junior visits Constantinople as a tourist he is mistaken for his father and his arrival causes a sensation on the stock exchange.
1866Saltaire Methodist Church begun
1867 Reform act giving the vote to many working men. Carlyle's phrase sums up the feelings of many "repectable" people -"shooting Niagara".
Paris Exhibition. Prize of 100,000Fr (£4,000) offered for best welfare scheme. Salt is urged to enter. His reply, quoted by Balgarnie, is characteristic of the man:
What has been
attempted at Saltaire arose from my own private feeling and
judgement,without the most remote idea that it would become a
subject of public interest and inquiry. A sense of duty and
responsibilty has alone actuated me,and I would have avoided
publicity.................If the answers given to the questions
of theImperial Commisioners, or if any of the facts, which
experiment or experience has elicited, prove of benefit to the
public, or should lead others to adopt, and enable them to
surpass the result of my effort, I shall be thankful.
For myself,I can enter into no competitive rivalry for welldoing, and the particulars and illustrations furnished of the establishment of Saltaire, are placed at the service of His Imperial Majesty's Commissioners on the distinct understanding that they are not given in competition for any prize, nor subject to the abitrament of a jury.
Napoleon III was duly impressed and awarded
Salt the Legion d'Honneur and thus Salt
won - on his own terms.
1868 Death in Sheffield Workhouse of George White Bradford Chartist and Trades Union leader.
1869Titus Salt created baronet; he is granted the crest which he has been using for the previous nineteen years as his coat of arms.
Peter Bussey, former Bradford Chartist, dies at Horsforth near Leeds never having lived down his flight from from the planned insurrection of 1839. He is buried at Farsley under the inscription "a Citizen of the United States"
1870 Sir Titus Salt one of a group of Manufacturers led by Samuel Morley who provide financial support for the Beehive a trades Union newspaper. In return the editor, George Potter, feels able to support Liberalism
Franco-Prussian War. Joseph Wright, who is illiterate, gains a desire to learn to read through having to rely on others for news of the campaign.Teaches himself to read using the Bible and Bunyan's Pilgrim's Progress.Death of Henry Forbes. Fall of Napoleon III
1872 Salt one of a group of Manufacturers including Henry Ashworth who oppose A.J.Mundella's bill to reduce the hours worked women in factories. (Saltaire is dependent on female labour and the British textile industry is beginning to feel the effects of competition from other countries but Salt's action is consistent with Liberal prejudices against regulation.)
800 houses now completed at Saltaire
Sir Titus Salt,Bart 70 years old
1875Strike at mill. Joseph Wright takes the opportunity to leave. He goes to Germany where he studies and returns after about three months to a job as a school teacher at £40 per year. In 1882 he returns to Heidelberg to study Philology.
1876 The Sunday School is built. This is the last building completed in Saltaire.
29th December 1876 Sir Titus Salt,Bart dies at his home at Crownest,Lightcliffe.
15th January 1877 Bradford gives Salt a civic funeral. The procession is watched by 100,000 people. He is buried in the mausoleum at Saltaire Congregational Church (now United Reform)
Sir Titus Salt, Bart
1803 - 1876
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Any interpetation which may be reasonably inferred from the above facts is related to my opinion and mine alone. This history page does not represent the views of the Saltaire Village Society on the history of Saltaire or its relationship to the history of town planning(DB)
This page is incomplete it will improve over the coming period with the addition of references and more hyperlinks.
If the various historians who have contributed to this page feel ill done by there is no need - your work will be acknowledged as the page develops; some of the existing references can be deduced by reference to the Bibliography
Do you have any Saltaire Ephemera?
The Saltaire Village Society is always looking for printed material related to the village. They are particularly interested in photographs and other images of the Washhouse.If you think that you any items of interest then please contact:
Clive Woods at Falcon Books
13/13a Victoria Rd, Saltaire
BRADFORD BD18 3LQ
West Yorkshire, UK
Phone: 01274 584275 (international: +44 1274 584275)
Wednesday - Sunday 13.00 - 17.00
History 1 (to 1853)
* Getting to Saltaire* Pictures of Saltaire * Books at
Saltaire* Tourist information
*Books about Saltaire* The Marble Likeness of their Liberal Master *Links
* a walk along Albert Terrace *
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