100 Items About the Museum and Huddersfield

On behalf of ‘Friends of Tolson & Ravensknowle’ a list of a 100 items from the collections in the Tolson Memorial Museum have been put together. ‘Friends ‘ and members of the public have been asked to select items they would like to include in this list.
But first a brief summary of the history of the house we now call Tolson Memorial Museum.

Ravensknowle House including the Park was built about 1860 for John Beaumont, a woollen manufacturer and designer. The architect was Richard Tress £20,000. When John Beaumont died in 1889 the estate passed to his daughter Mrs Sarah Martha Grove Grady. She never lived there but, keeping it in the family, sold it to her cousin Legh Tolson for £6,000.

Mr Tolson was cotton manufacturer and local historian. He made several changes to the house including converting part of the property into a separate dwelling houses which he named Ravenshill. The two properties were rented until Mr Tolson moved in during the First World.

Robert Huntress Tolson and James Martin Tolson, two nephews of Legh Tolson, were both killed fighting in the First World War. Legh Tolson had no children and was devastated by the death of his nephews. On 31st Dcember191 he donated

‘the mansion house called Ravensknowle and the dwelling house called Ravenshill … free from encumbrances, to Huddersfield Corporation. The whole of the said hereditaments and premises shall for ever be used for the purposes of a museum park recreation ground or other purposes of a like nature.’

At the time there was a burgeoning museum in the Technical College but woefully restricted by space. Mr Tolson made the donation on condition that the museum should reflect the history and environment of Huddersfield as suggested by Dr Woodhead, Head of Biology at Huddersfield Technical College. It should be open to the public and demonstrate

‘the influence of all life of the town and district. It should be an educational institution and should provide practical illustrations of the main factors in the environment of the community.’

As it does to this day.

100 Items

Take a look at 100 features of the museum and the collections.

  1. Key to the door.
  2. Fire Balls, a very local product? Or is it?
  3. Castle Hill.
  4. Programme from a concert given by the Huddersfield Choral Society 1838.
  5. Model of a Carthorse, possibly called Charlie, by Jack Moon.
  6. Fancy Hand Woven Fabric.
  7. The Pig.
  8. David Brown Valveless Car.
  9. Balcony Tolson Museum.
  10. Ceiling.
  11. Foundation Stone from a prison.
  12. Sir John Ramsden.
  13. Spring Wood hoard.
  14. Tender Posts. Cloth stretch on a frame.
  15. Woodsome Panels.
  16. Carding, another step in the history of textiles.
  17. Weaver’s Cottage.
  18. Saddle Stones.
  19. Pack Horse Trail.
  20. Cloth Hall Tower.
  21. Spinning Wheel.
  22. The Tree Trunk.
  23. The Loom.
  24. Cropping.
  25. Sir John Ramsden Canal.
  26. Enock’s Hammer.
  27. Sir Robert Peel.
  28. Bobbin Winder.
  29. Tool Booth.
  30. Waterloo.
  31. Trowel and Mallet.
  32. Victorian School Room.
  33. Teasel Trough.
  34. Pack Horse Saddle.
  35. Fancy waistcoat.
  36. Huddersfield Narrow Canal.
  37. Decorative stonework.
  38. Skelmanthorpe Banner.
  39. John Beaumont.
  40. Railway Viaduct.
  41. Mrs Sunderlands Desk.
  42. Huddersfield Town Nameplate.
  43. Jaquard Loom.
  44. Intricate fabric design of Spaniel Dogs.
  45. Class Clicker.
  46. Duties of the Lamplighter.
  47. Shawl with pine cones.
  48. Picture of Huddersfield 1849 by William Cowen.
  49. Seth Mosley.
  50. Incorporation 1868. Charles Henry Jones, first Mayor of Huddersfield.
  51. A stone from Castle Hill.
  52. Pay Containers.
  53. Huddersfield Market Charter 1671.
  54. Knurr, Spell & Pommel Game.
  55. Waggonette.
  56. Pack Horse Bridge.
  57. An Ordinary.
  58. Station Omnibus.
  59. Fancy Cloth.
  60. Great Exhibition Medal 1861.
  61. Fire Engine.
  62. Turnbridge.
  63. Stuffed Deer.
  64. Piece of curtain from the house in London where John Wesley died.
  65. King James School.
  66. Robert Tolson.
  67. The Voltmeter.
  68. A survey of Almondbury in 1584 for Queen Elizabeth 1.
  69. Singer Sociable.
  70. Medal presented to Sam Moorhouse.
  71. Bow-Front Hanson Cab.
  72. Boundery Stone.
  73. Berry Brow Station.
  74. Roman Coins, an amazing find.
  75. A model of the Venetia. 1904 – 1968 A boat with a fascinating career!
  76. Purse with Huddersfield Coat of Arms.
  77. 1914-15 Star Medal.1914-15 Star Medal.
  78. A photograph of excavations at Castle Hill.
  79. Shuttle.
  80. Anglo Saxon Pillar.
  81. Pattern Book.
  82. A wax wing which was found in Almondbury in 1970.
  83. Beaker from Ravensknowle Children’s Gala.
  84. Travelling Iron.
  85. Brian Robinson’s Bike.
  86. James Tolson 1898 – 1918.
  87. Edesfus Newton.
  88. Fossil Wood Faced Clock.
  89. Moquette from Camira.
  90. Death Pennies.
  91. Safe Driving Medals.
  92. Turbo.
  93. Butterflies.
  94. The Lindley Omnibus.
  95. Denby Dale Pie.
  96. Certificate awarded to Lizzie Marsden, New year 1915.
  97. Read Holliday 1809 – 1889.
  98. Violin.
  99. A wonderful piece of fabric produced on a Jaquard Loom.
  100. Heritage Memorial Garden.