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Thornhill Disaster. Dewsbury, Yorkshire. 4th July 1893 - Emails Page 1

Back to Pits - 139 Died in This Tradgedy
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Ann Rusby - Thornhill Mining Disaster 1893 - Combs Colliery disaster 1893
D M Dean - Thornhill Mining Disaster 1893 - The Dewsbury Reporter had a picture of Queen Victoria with two of her close relatives
Darren Parkin - Thornhill Disaster 1893 - My Great-Grandfather - Wroe Parkin - Became A Bit Of An Unwitting Local Hero
Roy Wilcock - List of those killed in Combs disaster 1893 - WALTON not Walter Henry Oxley Wilcock
Carol Darlington - Looking For Information about Wright Summerscales and his son Senior Summerscales
Francine - I Know Of Three More Miners Who Were Killed In The Disaster
Anita Littlewood - Looking for information about money raised for a mining disaster at Thornhill pit
Catherine Webster - I am researching the names of those who died, but I have discovered a few amendments


From:
Sent
Subject
Ann Rusby
20 Sep 17
Charles Rusby (My husband’s 2nd Great Uncle) Died in the Combs Colliery Disaster 1893

Hello Fionn
Whilst researching my husband’s family tree, I came across this in Coal Mining Accidents and Deaths index, 1700-1950.  I wondered if you wanted to add another name to your research about the Combs pit disaster?

Death

1893 • Dewsbury, Yorkshire, England
Name: Charles Rusby (my husband’s 2nd Great Uncle)
Birth Year: abt 1853
Event Type: Death Event Year: 1893
Death Age: 40
Date: 4 Jul 1893

Place: Dewsbury, Yorkshire, England
Colliery: Coombs Owner: ET Ingham Notes: Explosion of gas 139 killed.

Charles, living at Crigglestone at the time, left a wife and 6 children, aged from 3 to 16.

His son Fred, aged 13, was killed in the same disaster.


From:
Sent
Subject
D M Dean
7 Jan 2015
Thornhill Mining Disaster 1893 - The Dewsbury Reporter had a picture of Queen Victoria with two of her close relatives

I am on Ancestry.  My ancestors were not in this disaster but did work in the mine at that time.  On one Ancestry site was a large article in the Dewsbury Reporter with a picture of Queen Victoria with two of her close relatives and details of her letter of sympathy to the families.  Are you aware of this and where could I see a copy please.

I have been asked for this by my contacts in Australia.

Any help would be appreciated.

D  M Dean


From:
Sent
Subject
Darren Parkin
13 Oct 2014
Thornhill Disaster 1893 - My Great-Grandfather - Wroe Parkin - Became A Bit Of An Unwitting Local Hero

Good evening Fionn,

My name is a Darren Parkin, I'm a writer who today stumbled upon your website. In particular, I happened upon the sections about the 1893 disaster at Thornhill where my great-grandfather - Wroe Parkin - became a bit of an unwitting local hero as a member of one of the first rescue parties.

I spent hours looking through the information, and much of today thinking about it.

The reason I am emailing you is that I have now thought about looking at the possibility of writing a screenplay about the disaster and events surrounding it. I'm currently tied down with writing a book which will take up much of the next twelve months, but was curious to discover if you might be able to assist with a few of the details that I would require?

Is this something that may interest you?

Regards,

Darren Parkin.

DARREN PARKIN (darrenparkin) on about.me


From:
Sent
Subject
Roy Wilcock
6 Aug 2014
List of those killed in Combs disaster 1893 - WALTON not Walter Henry Oxley Wilcock

Lists of those killed in the Combs disaster even in the Reporter newspaper published at the time, consistently name my great grandfather’s brother as Walter Henry Oxley Wilcock. He was registered and christened as WALTON not Walter

Yours Sincerely
Roy

See also Alan Beales Data Base


From:
Sent
Subject
Roy Wilcock
6 Aug 2014
Regarding The Birth Of Mercy Wilcock On the Day Of The Combs Colliery Disaster

Dear Fionn
On page 7 of the Reporter article submitted by John Swithenbank is an article regarding the birth of Mercy Wilcock on the day of the Combs colliery disaster. Her mother went into labour on the morning of the explosion prompting her husband to take the day off work thus probably saving him from being killed. A happy outcome for one family among the tragedy of that day, or so it might seem. Mercy’s mother Sarah Ann was in fact the daughter of Walton Henry Oxley Wilcock and her husband Arthur was also her cousin and Nephew of Walton. Sarah Ann had lost her father, Arthur his uncle and Mercy a grandfather she would never know. A bitter sweet day for my family.
Regards

Roy Wilcock

From:
Sent
Subject

Carol Darlington
27 February 2012
Looking For Information about Wright Summerscales and his son Senior Summerscales

Hello There.
I have just read your page on the COMBS PIT MINING DISASTER and I was wondering if you could pass on this e-mail to Catherine Webster who came up with the miners names who lost their lives.

She has the names Henry and Rufus Summerscales from Thornhill on the list. I am looking for information on Wright Summerscales who was also a coal miner and lived in Thornhill.

He had a son Senior Summerscales who was born in Thornhill in 1889. Wright seems to have died between the birth of his son in 1889 and the 1891 census or maybe he was working away or might even have died in the mining disaster. 

I was just wondering if because she lives in Thorhill, she had come across the names Wright or Senior.
Senior joined the Royal Navy during WW1 and was wounded 16 July 1918 when his ship HMS Anchusa was torpedoed and sunk by U-54 off Ireland on 16 July 1918.

 

Hope you can help.
Lew Darlington
Cheshire. 


From:
Sent
Subject
Francine
3 July 2011
I Know Of Three More Miners Who Were Killed In The Disaster

Hi Fionn
I know of three more miners who were killed in the disaster, although I don't know when or where they were buried.

They are:-

They were father and sons.

Regards
Francine


From:
Sent
Subject

Catherine Webster
21 September 2008
I am researching the names of those who died, but I have discovered a few amendments.

Attachments: Combs Pit - Current list

Hi
I live in Thornhill and am currently researching the names of those who died, especially as some of them were distant relatives of my husband. I was interested to read your list on your website, but I have discovered a few amendments. I have attached the list of what I have found out so far; as you already know, most of the casualties were buried at Thornhill Parish Church, and I have seen the Parish burial records held at Dewsbury Library.

Some of spellings you have are incorrect or possibly typos, and some of the names were aliases eg Rufus Scargill was really Rufus Summerscales; Robert Scargill was actually his stepfather. Curiously, his death is recorded on BMD under both Scargill and Summerscales!

Another odd two are Joseph and James Noble, not Nobel - the parish records show their ages as you have listed ie Joseph aged 44 and James 16, but they have recorded the ages the wrong way round. I have checked both BMD and the 1891 census; James was the father and Joseph the son: in 1893 therefore it was James who was 44 and Joseph who was 16!

Also I had already discovered in my husband's family tree that Willie Coates was really Willie Oates - I'm not sure when he and some of his family seemed to have changed their surname to Coates, but from the information I have, he was actually 14, not 12!

You will notice that I have highlighted in bold the amendments on the attached list, and I have also added a few other names which were not included on your list, such as Willie Brooke aged 14 - the son of the 45 year old Charles Brooke - his name was misspelled on the burial record as Brook, not to be confused with the otherCharles Brook aged 33.

I have also been to Whitley Parish Church graveyard and found an additional few names; sadly some of the gravestones are covered in moss/too worn/vandalised to find the extra that are possibly buried there, but a proposed trip to Huddersfield Library may yield a few more names. 

It is a sobering thought to think that although 139 men and boys died in this tragedy, I have only been able to track down 118 of them so far. I would like to know who the other 21 were.

Kind regards
Catherine Webster 


Hi
One thing I forgot on my last email is that James Sheard, buried at Thornhill Parish Church on 7 July 1893 was NOT one of the Combs Pit casualties - the burial record specifically states that he was 'not in colliery disaster'. He just happened to die in Dewsbury Infirmary and to have been buried the same day as several of the casualties. 


13 April 2011

Hi Fionn,
Since I emailed you, I have found some more names, from my visit to Huddersfield Library, where they have an excellent local & family history section, with microfiches of loads of parish records. I have attached the updated list. Unfortunately they did not have the burial records from Thornhill Baptist Chapel though, and although I went to the graveyard today, I did not find any which clearly resulted from the Combs Pit disaster. However a few graves either did not have a headstone or the headstones were extremely worn/vandalised, so maybe they were the ones I was looking for! If I ever find where the records are I will satisfy my curiosity!

Kind regards
Catherine


From: Anita Littlewood
Sent: 6 January 2011
Subject: Looking for information about money raised for a mining disaster at Thornhill pit

Does anyone have information on money raised for a mining disaster in a Thornhill pit which was then paid out to dependants of victims? I remember one dependant still claiming in the 60's, (it was a very small amount), and as I am just reading a book called Black Diamonds, I wondered which disaster it might have been?


So far as I can see the only disaster at Thornhill was in 1893 however there have been numerous miners killed there in accidents but I could not find any after 1915. E.g.

  • Henry William Walshaw, aged 36, died 1915. He was a Coal getter at Ingham No.2 Colliery owned by Thornhill Collieries Ltd. His check was in the pit at the end of shift and a search found him dead under a fall of bind. It appeared that he had knocked out a prop with a hammer.
  • Albert Barber, aged 52, died 1915. He was a miner at Ingham No.2 Colliery owned by Thornhill Collieries Ltd. and was working ironstone with a hammer when he strane his shoulder which became inflammed. Died from blood poisoning 17th Mar.
  • Edward Robert Horpe, aged 18, died 1912. He was a Haulage hand at Combs Colliery owned by Inghams Thornhill Collieries Ltd.
  • Harold Charles Littlewood, aged 20 a bye worker killed in 1913 at Ingham Colliery owned by Inghams Thornhill Collieries Ltd. Harold and a deputy bored into a miss-fired shot in a stone drift and a violent explosion occurred killing Harold instantly and injuring the deputy. No one appeared to be aware of the miss-fired shot, which most probably had occurred through the shot-firer attempting to fire two shots in parallel with a faulty cable, a weak battery, and the connections to the detonator incorrectly made. The shot-firer neglected to mark the direction of the two shots on the roof.

- Check Alan Beales Database -

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