Old Mills Keighley

In memory of Paul Henry Whitfield

17-05-1946  -  12-01-2018




For other families connected please scroll to the bottom of the page.

Of all the mills in Keighley Damems seems to be the least documented and we have struggled to find information, this is also true of the Roper family who were the founders of the mill, and from entries in history books it is clear that they were once a family of note, but sadly little is recorded, unlike other mill owning families of the area.

Damems, Dam Elms.
The mill sitting deep in the valley bottom, cottages and farms further up the hill, this hamlet was once a thriving community, and in the 1700 & 1800's would have been alive with residents. 

We have found entries for the Roper family at Damems in the Parish registry in the 1600's, and from entries that contain extra detail we have found a number from Rushy Fall, now called Rushey Hall. Other entries simply say Dam Elms, without further evidence we are not able to ascertain if these refer to the same family as the names William and John seem to be a big favourite in the Roper family, Rushy would also be classed as being in Damems.
We know from old maps that there were dwelling houses down by the mill and further up the hill at the hamlet also named Damems
John Hodgson tells us that the Roper family connected to the mill were large landowners and farmers and a family of note. At the present time we are struggling to find out exact information on the family in these early years, and where exactly they lived other than at Rushy. 

William Roper was at Flodden Field 1513, William Roper, bill.

Feet of Fines of the Tudor period [Yorks]: part 2: 1571-96 (1888), pp. 1-13

Plaintiffs Deforciants Nature and Situation of the Property
Edward Wright, John Roper, and Robert Roper Hugh Laycocke and Elizabeth his wife and Edmond Laycocke and Margaret his wife 3 messuages and 3 cottages with lands in Keighley and Branshaymoore als. Exleymoore.


Christopher Roper, Robert Roper, John Shakelton, and Michael Pollard Hugh Laycocke and Elizabeth his wife and Edmond Laycocke, his son and heir apparent, and Margaret his wife, and Elizabeth Swayne 2 messuages with lands in Laycocke and Kyghley, and a third part of a messuage with lands in Horton in Bradford Dale. 


In 1630 Elizabeth Roper married Thomas Brigg (Ancestor of the Calversyke Brigg's) Her sister Ruth Married John Sugden in 1633. Another sister married a Shackelton, we are not sure if this was John or Roger of Shackelton House, Bingley, their son Richard married Sarah Brigg, These were the daughters of Robert Roper. 

John Roper of Rushy Fall had the following children (There may have been more). Robert b 1652. William b 1661 d 1702. John b 1663. The above William 1661-1702 had children Sarah b 1693 and William b 1696.

1702 William Roper of Exley Head is recorded having six long kersey pieces and Joseph Holdroyd of Halifax owed him money for twenty three long kersies. 

John Roper born about 1700 married Susanna Smith 26 Oct 1721, there were at least three children, Mary b 1724, Robert who died in infancy and John born 03 Dec 1726. John married Bridget Horsfall Feb. 1749. They had at least four children, Mary, Ann, John and William. William's baptism in 1755 says his father is of Rushy Hall, Keighley. He married Sarah Rushworth of Haworth at Bradford St Peters on 26 Jun 1780. Sarah's death is recorded at Rushy Hall Damems on 26 Aug 1825, we suspect that she was the last of the Roper family at Rushy Hall. William outlives her and at his death in Oct 1831 he is recorded at Sun Street, Keighley. Sarah and William had four children, Mary born 1783, James born 1787 died 1794. John born 1781 and William who died 1859 Queens Street, Keighley.

John Roper was at a vestry meeting, held June 30th, 1739, it was agreed to take the old school-house, at Exleyhead, for the use of the poor, at the yearly rent of forty shillings, which agreement, or resolution, was sanctioned by the names of the following parishioners. (list not included here but  John was amongst those that attended)

We found an entry in the Kildwick parish register 1771 for the marriage between William Roper,  Shallon Maker of Damems and Esther Ogden. William born in 1740 and died 1784,  his widow married again in Kildwick in 1786 James Haggas of Oakworth Hall. The grandson of James, William Haggas would latter own Damems mill. John Roper who was the son of William and Esther was baptised at Haworth and continued to live there making his living as a Joiner. 

1756 Freehold property for sale, tenants: David Binns, Joseph Driver, Henry Wright, John Jackson & Alvery Jackson.

1757 John Roper Shalloon maker takes on apprentice Will Haigh. It is possible that John was working in a small mill on the site of the present mill.
It is not impossible that a mill of sorts was here before this first building, and this as been suggested by historians but is only speculation. 
The Ropers owned the land and John Roper is known to have been a shalloon maker in 1764 so it would not seem unreasonable to assume that he had a small mill to work in. 
1764 John Roper is selling four farms at Damems, in the procession of Joseph Hudson, Thomas Walker, Henry Wright, Widow Driver & Alvery Jackson. 1764 advertisement in the Leeds Intelligencer 10 April 

An item we found for some land for sale in 1816 we find Roper's name mentioned 
















John Roper of Damems, Shallon maker 1764 was also a trustee of the Boocock Charity, trustees of this charity were all gentlemen of the highest position, no riff raf allowed. 

A mill built by the Ropers around 1780  a cotton mill powered by water. The earliest mill building we are aware of was built straddling the River, and the 1852 map shows what looks to be a building over the river. In the second half of the nineteenth century, the mill building was demolished and replaced.    

1783 At this stage we are not sure what James Roper the Innkeeper connection with the Ropers of Damems is.


In the publication "An authentic alphabetical list of the nobility  clergy & gentry who balloted at Wakefield," 1817 we find an entry  for John Roper Keighley and Haworth.


From an entry in House Of Lords Sessional Papers  we know that William Roper and Son's were  at Damems operating the mill in 1818.

In the The Leeds Mercury Saturday, January 1, 1820 we find the following advertisement: William Roper the Elder, John Roper and William Roper the younger, Bankrupts.

Lot1, 7 cottages or dwellings and land totaling A 21-R 0- P4. Acres. Rood: 4 Roods = 1 acre.  Perch: 10 Perches = 1 Rood or 40 acres (These are approximate sizes).  
Cotton mill 10 cottages several in the occupation of William Greenwood. 
Lot 3
6 cottages in in the parish of Bingley in the occupation of John Bing, William Ambler and others. 

All the lots list names of fields and areas now long forgotten and we have been unable to find a map with the names to assist us.

Hodgson informs us that when the mill and land went under the hammer that it was all bought by the Greenwoods of Cabbage Mill, which interestingly the Ropers try their hand again at Cabbage. 

The  mill came in to the hands of the Greenwoods, John Greenwood and Sons 1820-1824.

The book "A History of Worsted Manufacture in England from the Earliest Times" tells us that William Sugden applied to worsted in 1824 with 14 horse power,  and in 1834 we find an entry in the Factories Inquiry Commission for W. Sugden at Damems Mill.

Pigot's Directory of 1829 we find William Roper of Ingrow listed under  Stuff Manufacturers, sadly we are unable to ascertain if this is William the elder or younger and where exactly in Ingrow this was. 

1833 Form the book A History of Worsted Manufacture in England from the Earliest Times By John James. William Sugden registered with a 14 Horse power water wheel. 

William Haggas  moved here in 1834 renting from Greenwood, the Haggas brothers partnership was dissolved in 1852, James having been in the south part of Damems, continued  works under the name of William Haggas and son. 
James Haggas and sons carried on at the mill till 1860.

Pigot's Directory of 1834 William Roper 13 Sun Street Woolstapler

1834 Factories Inquiry Commission: Supplementary Report. ANSWERS of William Sugden, Damems Mill, Keighley. 
A. I.—The preparing and spinning of worsted yarn. 
A. 2.—Was erected for the purpose of spinning cotton, and used in that capacity thirty-five years; the application to its present purpose was in the year 1824
A. 3.—The power produced by a river called the Worth, or South Beck. 
A. 4.—The power of the wheel, fourteen horse; the whole of which is employed by me

A. 5.—Forty-six persons;  Males Females A. 6.—The standing weekly wages are: Males Females
Under 10 years of age 5 Under 10 years of age Is 7d Is 7d
10 and under 12 years 5 4 10 and under 12 years 2s 6d 2s ld
12 and under 14 2 12 and under 14 4s 3s 3d
14 and under 16 3 2 14 and under 16 4s 6d 4s
16 and under 18 3 16 and under 18 6s 6d
18 and under 21 1 18 and under 21 12s 6s 6d
21 and upwards 3 8 21 and upwards 16s 8d 7s 6d
A. 7-—Four females, twenty-one years old and upwards, earning 8s. 7d., in a regular week of seventy-two hours. 
Q. 8.—Are any of the dangerous parts of the machinery fenced off, or, if not, why not?
A. 8.—Not any. 
A. 9.—The same as regular hours. 
A. 10.—Begin at six in the morning, and terminate at seven in the evening; except three months during winter, begin at seven in the morning and end At eight in the evening, being more convenient to the hands during winter. 
A. 11.—To the extent of two or three hours per day. Roughly seasons start up at half past five in the morning and terminate at half past eight in the evening.
A.12 The same generally buy have occasionally given up one hour sooner, and have made up the deficiency by working twelve minutes  longer over each of the other five days.
A.13 The time allowed is one hour for dinner, being usually taken at half past twelve o'clock. All hands take their meals at the same time.
A.14 The moving power only stops over the dinner. Those engaged in drawing stop their part of the machinery to get breakfast and drinking: those employed in spinning, doffing etc. do not stop their machinery, but the nature of their employment allows sufficient time to get their meals. 
A.15 The lost time is generally made up by working half an hour, or at particular times an hour, each day extra. The hands are paid for the extra time at the usual rate.
A.16 In particular cases, arising from accidents, have made allowances.
A.17 Four whole days and ten half days.
A.18 Either deducted from wages or worked up at the rate of half an hour per day, or occasionally one hour per day, and paid at the usual rate.
A. 19.—Not particular to a few minutes. Fining the hands is not practiced: incase any hands are refractory, if after repeated admonitions no reform takes place, they are dismissed. 
A. 20.—No. 
A. 21.—No. The labour not being in any manner excessive, I never saw the necessity to employ more than one set. 
A. 22.—No. 
A. 23.—It does. The hands, under twelve years, are chiefly employed in spinning, winding, and doffing.

We found an entry in the rate book for 1841 for the buildings and land, it shows John Greenwood as the owner, and shows the occupant as Jonathan Teal, with a ratable value of £57.13.4 and  occupied by Haggas with a ratable value of £70, this would mean that two people were occupying the mill. The census shows Haggas and family living there.

1842 This is the date on the bridge crossing the river. The bridge carried the water from a dam across the river to where the water wheel was once housed, the bridge still remains and appears to still be in good condition. So the first (or second) mill and it's wheel were in a different place, being close to the river. 
As we have stood on the foot path by the old mill and pondered  has the river moved on it's own accord like the river Aire did, was it moved by man possibly for the railway, for we have heard that the river bed is manmade of flags laid at 45 degree angle up to the weir. Looking at different maps we feel sure that the river course was altered. 
We know from various articles concerning the railway that the road  lines were altered so maybe it was at this time the river bed was flagged.

1843 9th December we found an entry in the Leeds Mercury advertising the water wheel for sale. William Haggas is the man to contact to view the wheel, but it is John Greenwod who is selling it. The water wheel was built by Peter Barret and Sons of Sutton.

The new wheel was significantly larger being 80 Horse power and  26ft 6in x 12ft in size

We believe that the new warehouse was built c 1844 and would coincide with the bigger water wheel and new boiler. If the smaller wheel was sold as per the above advertisement then it would mean that both mills were powered by the big wheel and the boiler.

1846 Sugden John, of Steeton, near Keighley, in the county of York, worsted-manufacturer, d. c.—Official assignee, Young.—Sols. Jones & Co. Bedford-row, and Harle & Co. Leeds. Fiat, June 17. Pet. Cr. William Roper, of Keighley, woolstapler. (An item we found in "Law Journal Reports ...: Volume 24 - Page 43)

1848 and we find an entry in a farming magazine for John Roper winning a prize Class 6.—Three breeding sow pigs of a small breed.—The prize of 10 sovs. to Mr. J. Roper, Keighley. Unfortunately for us it does not give his abode.

1851, we notice in the census that one of the cottage householders, a James Helliwell is allowing one room to be used as a school room.

1852 Weavers go on strike. To strike was a brave thing to do, not only were they likely to end up with no job, but if living in one of Haggas's houses likely to be homeless too. Power looms were now taking over, and weavers were expected to operate two looms at once, we think it unlikely that they won as it became the norm in the mills for a weaver to operate two looms.

The Morning Chronicle , Wednesday, February 21, 1855 and we find a notice saying that John Roper and William Mitchell Worsted spinners of Cabbage Mill go bankrupt. Roper and Mitchell would have known each other well, the Mitchell family came from Damems, William Mitchell being born there. 

9 April 1859 an advertisement for Clegg's Patent Lubricator for use on the valves and piston of steam engines contains a testimonial from James Haggas & Sons at Demems Mill,  from this we know the boiler is in place and being used.

1858 John Roper and William Mitchell, Keighley, Yorkshire, worsted spinners, dealers and chapmen, (trading under the style or firm of John Roper & Co.), March 9 and 30 at 11, District Court of Bankruptcy, Leeds : Off. Ass. Young; Sols. Weatherhead & Burr, Bingley & Keighley: Bond & Barwick, Leeds.—Petition dated Feb. 14.

1866 To be disposed of by private treaty, 12 Fly spinning frames, of 112, 120 and 128 spindles; also a quantity of preparing, all by Wm Smith and Sons; also one new carding engine, 3 swifts and breast with patent burr roller, made by Thornton Brothers. Wm. Haggas & Son, 24 Charles Street, Bradford.

The railways station was built in 1867 to serve the mill, it once had its own sidings.  The building of the two railways lines meant the line of the road to the mill had to be altered, it is highly probable that the line of the river was also altered for the railway. We can only wonder what effect this would have on the mill and if it created any disruption to the work.

Above Dec 1868 from Bradford Observer

In 1868 James Smith bought the mill from Greenwood. The 'Handbook' to the manufacturers & exporters of Great Britain 1870 we find an entry for K. Fletcher and Co. 1879 Fletcher and Briggs.

22 May 1869. There was a distraction from the normal day. Thomas Gott, milk seller of New Road Side was on route to get his milk and approaching the crossing at Damems he found the gates closed, the man in charge of the gates  Henry Yates the station Master and gate tender. The gates closed and signal lowered for a goods train to pass. The train was past the due time. Yates refused to open the gates to let Gott pass, Gott forced open the gates and continued on his way when Yates struck him. At court Yates the defendant lost and was fined 5s and costs 17s 6d and received a telling off for taking the law into his own hands.

1869 Whitley and Brough were brought to bankruptcy by G Hattersley Looms. 

1869 Friday 30th July. Mesrrs McVay and Smith under instruction from Messrs Whitley & Brough, Manufacturers. For sale, power looms, warps and weft, other machinery and effects including 20 three quarter looms, nearly news, 40 four quarter looms, in excellent working order, about 200 sets of reeds and heald, large peace press, weighing machine, quadrant and reel, winding engine, (40 spindles) 29 empty skips, 100 spare beams, 8 windings on frames, 2 rows of new belting, the whole of the belting in use, 12 dozen new pickers, number of change wheels and pulleys, 100 gross of winding bobbins, about 160lbs of cotton warps, 300lbs of coloured worsted weft, 160lb of cop weft, 160lbs of 18's Angola; Large office desk, piece table, vice, bench and tools, large quantity of scrap iron and other effects.
The machinery was made by Messrs Hattersley and Sons of Keighley and is in excellent condition.
An interesting footnote to the advertisement: Arrangements will be made for the train leaving Keighley for Oxenhope at 10.15 to stop at the place on the morning of the sale.

Just over a week prior to the sale we found an advertisement: 22nd July 1869 TO LET, Room and power, for 16 to 29 Spinning Frames, also for 150 looms, at Demems Mill. Apply to Smith and Sons, Machine Makers, Royld Works, Keighley: or Smith and Gotthardt, Surveyors, Bradford. 

1870 We find an entry for K Fletcher.

1870 Roper and Cooke, Worth Mill 1874 Roper and Cook, worsted spinners, of Keighley, have suspended payment. It is reported that the liabilities roughly estimated at £20000

1871 Richard R Priestly assisted by his son Richard, manufacturing Cotton and Worsted employing about 80 males and 2 females, the males would have been made up mostly by boys and not men. The census tells us that Richard R Priestly is living here with 10 in his household.

1873 R.S. Lace and Co and Harry George Partnership dissolved. 

1873 James Smith mortgages the mill to Joseph W Varley and Harold Percival Varley for £8500.

October 1874 Owner Joseph Smith Warehouse attached to the mill catches fire.
October 1874 Extensive fire. The fire was first noticed about quarter past six in the warehouse adjoining the mill. The warehouse is a large building five storeys high, and is occupied by Messrs R.R. Priestley & Co manufacturers. By the time the message had been sent to Keighley and two engines dispatched the fire was well underway, the engines arrived about 7.30 by which time it was evident that the warehouse could not be saved so efforts were put to saving the mill and the adjoining weaving sheds which were partly occupied by Messrs Fletcher & Briggs. The warehouse was burnt beyond saving the property belonging to Messrs Smith & Gotthardt. The damage was estimated at £6,000. 

The Bradford Observer December 24, 1874 we found an advertisement for contractors to submit for the erection of a warehouse to Jackson and Longley Architects of Bradford. 

1875 J.J Glover sue
R & R Priestly R&R Presley sue John Lund spinner of Cavendish Mills for £21 5s 6d

We found a small entry in the The Daily Gazette,  Wednesday, June 19, 1878: On Tuesday morning a worsted mill at Damems near Keighley burnt down. The damage is estimated at £6000. This mill went over the river and up to the railway. Not rebuilt in its former state, but as a single storey lean too against the existing building and removing a gap that existed between the buildings prior to the fire. It became the new boiler house and mechanics shop. 
The old boiler which was made redundant by the extra water supply created from the building of the Great Northern railway tunnel, now allowing enough to run the water wheel consistently. The old boiler house is now bungalows which can be seen across the lane from where the present mill stands.

1879 the owner seems to be Smith with Fletcher and Briggs as tenants.

1882 in the The London Gazette, 3rd Nov 1882 we find and entry for bankruptcy for John Wood Briggs, of  7, Rushcroft Terrace, Baildon in the parish of Otley, and William Henry Briggs, of 303, Girlington Road, Bradford, trading in co partnership together as Stuff Manufacturers, formerly at Damems Mill, near Keighley, and afterwards at North Worth Shed, in Sun-street, Keighley. 

1884 3rd of October the G.N.R purchased some land for £6800 allowing Smith to pay off his mortgage.

1885 and once more Cabbage Mill and house is up for sale, this time being sold by William Mitchell. Lot 15 is the house and gardens, the stables being sold as a separate lot, covers 1197 square yards. It is occupied by Captain Roper. We know from the 1881 census that John Roper was living at Cabbage House, is he the Captain mentioned above?

1885 we have paperwork from Wright appertaining to the new warehouse, we are somewhat puzzled by this and wonder if there is a clerical error and the year should read 1875.

1890 James Smith sells to Henry and Holmes Wright and Thomas Stratten.

We believe that Smith went bankrupt in 1891

Damems was one of four mills owned by the  Wright Brothers, James took on the tenancy in 1885 and bought it in 1892 and continued in his ownership until 1914 when he sold it to Herbert Hey, but in 1921 he sells it back to John Wright. 

1893 Cholera deaths are being reported in Keighley, one of whom was a Mrs. Beaver of Damems Lane who's case was put down to Asiatic cholera. 

1904 That the plan presented by the engineers showing the proposed straightening of the river and three new filtration beds at the Damems sewage farm be approved. 
1904 Hermit Hole Association Football Club asked if the council would let the field behind Damems mill as a football field. It was resolved that the Clerk write in reply that the council are not open to let the field at present.

20 March 1934 John Wright sold to Salts (Saltaire) Ltd. 
The Great Depression in Britain, also known as the Great Slump, was a period of national economic downturn in the 1930s, we have been told that Salts had the mill chimney removed in an effort to provide work to the unemployed of the time. Unless the chimney was unsound there seems to be little or no reason for it to be removed other than making work for those that needed it in such hard times.

April 1937 William Pye age 70 who lived alone at Wesley Place was found dead in the mill dam

July 1947 saw tragedy at the mill, twins Royce & Lewis Foster aged five, who lived on Halifax Road, almost opposite the top of Damems Lane, were playing in the area where the water was diverted from the river into the dam. The dam maintenance had declined when the water wheel was no longer in use and the mill had gone over to electricity, as a result a deep channel had formed. 
Louis slipped and fell in, his brother ran to get his mother, she alerted the mill and they sent for the police. Employees at the mill and a local constable dived in and after about 45 minutes his body was found. The body was recovered by Mr. Cecil Wood who was the mill manager at the time.
The concrete round the area was later destroyed by a contractor. Incidentally when it was blown up, a window in the mill roof was broken by a piece of debris. Information provided by Alan Thornton.

1954 Floor plan

The London Gazette July 1966 Salts (Saltaire) Ltd. Damems Mill, Ingrow, Keighley.

31 Jan 1977 Salts (Saltaire) Ltd sell to Oxenhope Engineering and Ogden's of Oakworth.

William Roper, Master Monumental Mason Employing 6 Men & 1 Boy. He came from the Haworth line of Ropers, so his connection to the Damems family would be distant. 

Bought by the present owner 17 May 1984

Photo left, taken from Halifax Road looking towards Pepper Lea and Rushy Hall.
There is no Damems station house so taken pre 1935. The train is an 8 coach meaning its a special for wakes week or similar.
You can see how the chimney comes up through the middle of the building.  In the later photograph (above) we see that the chimney is missing. 
The first mill building was built going over the river up to the railway and the chimney stood in it's own yard prior to the warehouse being built round it. 

During some maintenance work two discoveries were made from which we have made some assumptions, part of what we believe to be the yard floor was discovered some two foot lower down than the present warehouse, and the first mill being some seven foot lower than the present road. At the bottom of the yard was the building housing the waterwheel and a steam engine. 
The mill going over the river burnt down in 1878.

Other families connected to Damems

While the Ropers are the most commonly connected family with the area, there were other families living here too, some of the family names we found in the early Keighley parish registers where Damems is mentioned can be seen later in the censuses. 

Sugden Laycock Wright
1578 John  son of Robert baptised
1620 Robert son of John baptised
1622 Jane wife of Robert buried
1622 A Child of John was buried unbaptized
1635 Edward buried
1645 Wife of Robert buried
1655 Robert buried
1658 John buried
1665 Mary wife of Robert buried
1622 John buried
1624 Wife of Laycock buried
1662 Mary a widow buried
1649 Robert buried
1658 William son of William baptised
1661William son of William baptised
1664 Robert son of William baptised
1727 Robert buried
In 1725 we found an entry William son of Jonas Crossley buried. 

John Sugden who was alive for the 1841 census was married to Mary Heaton, they produced at least ten children, some married and remained in Damems. 
(1)Son Nathan married native girl Grace Houldsworth daughter of Nathan Holdsworth and Sarah Jackson, they had both been married before. 
(2) Daughter Hannah Sugden married George Houldsworth, after her death he married her sister Maria. 
(3) Daughter Betty married an outsider who moved to the hamlet, William Lightfoot.
We can place Nathan Holdsworth in Damems from 1798 form the birth of  his children, he also married local girl Sarah Jackson.

We are also able to place John Wright 1773 - 1818 form birth to death at Damems. His parents were William Wright 1742-1802 and Mary Driver, after Mary's death William married Alice Ramsden from Harewood Hill. Williams father was Robert Wright. 
We found an entry in the parish register for a burial in 1727, Robert Wright, Poor of Damems. The death date is too early for it to be Williams father and no age at death is given, we wonder what the relationship was, if any . 
John Wright 1773 - 1818 was married to Ann Ramsden of Harewood Hill. John's youngest son was also called John, and this John married Sarah Hebden, at some point he left the place he was born, Damems, and moved to Wesley Place. This couple had four children, James who married Jane Ann Manby Paget, James would go full circle regarding Damems, the mill would be one of four that he and his brothers owned, James was responsible for building The Whins, standing on Halifax Road. 
Other son John married Edith Elizabeth Berry. 
The youngest son Hebden died at 'The Whins', he was unmarried. In his will Hebden left £1200 to build six cottages to be known as the Hebden Wright Almshouses (still there in Dorothy Street). 
John Wright 1773 - 1818 had a son by the name of William, he moved to Lower Bracken Bank. Another son of this John called James who had married Mary Hill, these were the parents of William, better known as
Bill o'th' Hoylus
Grace Wright 1741- 1786 was the sister of William Wright 1742-1802, she married another Damems family, John Jackson. 

Another family we can place back to the 1700's in Damems from the records for the baptism of their children are the Jackson's. Alvery Jackson 1723 - 1795 and his wife Sarah produced at least three children, daughter Susan is recorded here at her death in 1761. Alvery's youngest son was also of the same name 1754 - 1818. First wife Betty Rhodes produced one child Betty in 1774, the child died in September 1774, Betty the mother had died the month before in August. Alvery  quickly married again in 1775 to Phebe Royd, they produced two children. Phebe died in 1779. 16 Jan 1781 and Alvery trots down the aisle again with Sarah (Sally) Crabtree. They produced at least four children. Daughter Sarah married Nathan Holdsworth. Son George Jackson married Susannah Hebden of Hermit Hole..  
Alvery Jackson 1723 - 1795 first wife Sarah died 1777, he took Mary Ramsden for his second wife 14 May 1781.
Alverey Jackson born 1657 followed the Quaker faith & was from the Steeton area before they arrived in Damems. His daughter Mary married Quaker John Wigglesworth at the house of Jonathan Widdop of Bar Croft.
John Jackson a direct descendent of Alvery, married Damems girl Grace Wright, daughter of Robert. Their eldest daughter Mary would also marry into a Damems family, William Mitchell. One of their daughters Mary Mitchell would also marry a local man, Nathan Houldsworth. Nathan's father had the same name, and he had married Sarah Jackson. William Mitchell and Mary Jackson produced William Mitchell who would go into business with Roper at Cabbage Mill. 

We were able to place Miles Broadley and his wife Mary Smith here in 1777 from the parish register of their daughter Ann in 1777, but by 1784 he is living at Park Lane.

Benjamin Mitchell, born at Damems, married 1909 & living at Rushy Fall Farm. occupation butcher & farmer. from the 1911 census we have ascertained an idea of the property size, 7 rooms, not including scullery, landing, lobby, closet, bathroom nor warehouse, office, shop. Benjamin was a distant relative of the William Mitchell who was in partnership with Roper. This William also born at Damems, through his ancestors had connections to other long standing residents of Damems. His mother was Mary Jackson, the Granddaughter of Alvery. Mary's mother Grace Wright, who's family where long standing residents of Damems since the 1700's but had previously lived at Hainworth before moving to Damems.

The Teal family were long standing residents of Damems, We found an entry in the rate book for 1841 for the buildings and land, it shows John Greenwood being the owner, and shows the occupant as Jonathan Teal, with a ratable value of £57.13.4 and occupied by Haggas with a ratable value of £70, this would mean that two people were occupying the mill. The census shows Haggas and family living there. The venture seems to have been short lived for Jonathan. At Hermit Hole on New Road Side a section of the houses are recorded in the census as Teals Houses, Thomas Teal from this place took on High Holme House Mill.

the end number donates the amount of people in the household, not the house as we believe that in some instances more than one household were in one house.

1841 Head of households
There were a 140 people living in the hamlet. Most people were working in the textile trade, many would be working at home, handloom weavers were still needed. There were eight people working in agriculture and farming, one wheelwright, a plasterer, coal minor, and two road labourers. The youngest age we found for a worker is 10.

Anne Teal, Farmer, 4 .
William Wright, Wool comber, 6 
Jonas Sugden, Wool weaver, 4 
John Wright, Wool weaver, 2 
Nathan Holdsworth, Wool comber, 2 .
John Smith, Carpenter, 2 
Alice Wright, Wool weaver, 2 
William Thompson, Wool weaver, 3 .
John Mitchell, Wool weaver, 4 .
Michael Sunderland, Wool comber, 2 .
John Sugden, Wool comber, 10 .
James Wright, Wool comber, 9 .
Mary Ann Smith, Wool weaver, 4 .
Miles Simpson, Wool comber, 7 . 
Thomas Feather, Wool weaver, 6 .
Eleanor Beckwith, 4 .
James Midgley, Wool weaver, 7 .
Ropers Mill, William Haggas, Worsted manufacturer, 3 .
Ropers Mill, Martha Riley, 8 .
Ropers Mill, Mary Berry, 2 .
Ropers Mill, Sarah Midgley, Winder, 1 .
Ropers Mill,  Gillit Smith, Road laborer, 8 .
Ropers Mill, William Coates, Agricultural laborer, 6 .
Hannah Smith, Wool weaver, 8 .
John Smith, Overlooker, 4 . 
Mary Mitchell, 4 .
Sarah Holdsworth, Farmer, 8 . 
John Holdsworth, Farmer, 3 . 
John Teal, Farmer, 4 .
1846 Nathan Sugden is charged with Bastardy. In 1857 he married his first wife Grace Houldsworth.
1851 Head of households
Pepper Hill House, William Haggas, Worsted Spinner & Manufacturer (3 in firm) Employing 188 men, 90 woman, 120 boys, 85 girls. 7 in house including Joseph Town uncle of William Haggas and Town paper makers of Turkey Mill. 
James Gill, Worsted weaver, 4 . 
Nancy Spencer, Worsted weaver, 3 . 
Elizabeth Haworth, Housekeeper, 4 . 
James Duckworth, 5 . 
Hannah Brigg, Housekeeper, 7 . 
Joseph Hartley, Farm laborer, 6 . 
James Hutley, Wool comber, 6 . 
Mary Berry, Housekeeper, 2 . 
John Sunderland, Wool comber, 9 . 
Mary Sugden, Housekeeper, 9 . 
Thomas Feather, Worsted weaver, 6 . 
James Wright, Wool comber, 5 . 
Joseph Murgatroyd, Worsted weaver, 6 . 
Jonas Sugden, Worsted warp dresser, 4 . 
Joseph Wright, Worsted warp dresser, 7 .  
John Wright, Worsted warp slayer, 1 . 
William Hey, Wool comber, 8 . 
One house uninhabited. 
James Helliwell, Worsted overlooker, 4 in house, one room used as a school. 
Nathan Holdsworth, Farming 20 acres, 4 . 
Mary Simpson, Housekeeper, 2 . 
Jackson Holdsworth, Wool comber, 6 . 
Mary Mitchell, Housekeeper, 4 . 
William Wright, Wool comber, 3 . 
John Holdsworth, Farmer, 5 . 
Michael Sunderland, Wool comber, 8 .
James Midgley, Worsted weaver, 6 .
James Wright, Wool Comber, 10 .
Joseph Greenwood, Worsted weaver, 4 .
Thomas Greenwood, Worsted weaver, 5 ,  living in part of Joseph Greenwoods house.
George Jackson, Mechanic and farmer, 3 .
Miles Simpson, Wool comber, 5 .
James Edmundson, Wool comber, 3 .
John Hey, Wool comber, 5 .
1851 The home of James Helliwell one room being used for tuition. 
1861 Head of households
Stephen Rushworth, Wool sorter, 4
Hannah Wright, 4
William Hudson, Worsted weaver, 1
James Midgley, Worsted weaver, 5
Mary Simpson, Chairwoman, 2
John Smith, 5
? Jackson, Agricultural laborer, 3
George Barker, Agricultural laborer, 4
James Edmundson, Overlooker, 5
Mary Sugden, Housekeeper, 5
William Wright, Wool comber, 7
Henry Hudson, Worsted weaver, 3
Murgatroyd, 5
Joseph Wright, Worsted weaver, 3
George Wright, Worsted weaver, 3
Mary Holdsworth, 3
Jonas Sugden, Cotton warp dresser, 5 . 
William Wright, Stone cutter, 5
Joseph Hartley, Agricultural laborer,  6
John Holdsworth, Agricultural laborer, 4
William Leach, 2
James Hartley, Overlooker, 4
Joseph Thompson, Wool comber, 3
Greenwood Packer, Worsted spinner, 4
James Gill, Laborer, 6
John Hey, factory worker, 4
Mary Berry, Chairwoman, 1

Between 1861 and 1871 the Claytons move from Bully Trees in Stanbury to Damems. Joseph at the head of the family with his wife Maria. They take on 20 Damems and farm 23 acres. After Josephs death the farm seems to be run by Maria and second eldest son William, the other children being involved in textile work, apart from Holmes who is shoeing horses. Eldest son Joseph  is married, also living in Damems working as a wool comber. William takes on number 9 and continues farming, and in 1901 is an employer. His brother Holmes is living with him. The family are still there farming in 1911. 

1871 Head of households 

1 Mary Midgley, 5
2 William Lund, Wool comber, 6
3 ? Simpson, Weaver, 1
4 William Mallinson, Gardner, 2
Mary Sugden, Grocer, 4
6 William Midgley, Farmer of 21 acres, 10
7 ? Dixon, Farmer of 19 acres, 6
8 Empty
9 Martha Wright, 5
10 Israel ? Spavin, Joiner, 3
11 Martha Murgatroyd, Worsted Drawer, 3
12 Elizabeth Baldwin, 3
13 ? Chester, 7
14 John Wood, Excavator, 3
15 G Wright, Weaver of worsted and cotton, 3
16 Alice Holdsworth, 2
17 ? Auty, Spinning overlooker, 4
18 John Bowler, Farmer of 40 acres, 7
19 James Arthur Hornby, Iron turner, 6
20 Jack Clayton, Farmer 28  acres, 11
21 John Shakleton, laborer, 4
22 William Hird, Wool sorter, 4
23 George Holdsworth, Wool sorter, 4
24 Empty
Damems House, Richard Priestly, Manufacturer, 10

1881 Head of households 

Jonas Snowden, farmer 1 acre 10 . 
Alfred Conway, Alpaca sorter, 5  
William Alperton, Minor, 5 . 
Hiram Uttley, Wool sorter, 7 . 
Jacob Lund, railway laborer, 4 . 
John Moore, Weaving over looker, 7 . 
Maria Clayton, Farmer 27 acres, 8 . 
Richard Chester, Joiner and philosopher, 5 . 
William Lightfoot, General laborer, 5 . 
William Wright, unemployed, 3 . 
Alice Wright, Worsted weaver, 2 . 
William Mitchell, Farmer, 9 . 
Samuel Feather,  Worsted Yarn Finisher Manager. 6 .
Ellen Craven, Housekeeper, 4 .
Mr Riley, Woolsorter, 3 .
James Clapham, Woolsorter, 5 .

The 1901 census the houses are numbered 4-9 (6 houses) and  19-25 (7 properties) By now most of the people living here are from away, and the only local people are the Claytons from Haworth living at number 9 and farming, and the Mitchell's at number 23 Rushy Falls, also farming.
1937 William Pye recovered from the mill dam.

1947 Twin aged 5 Lewis Foster drowned in the River Worth.







 Mills of our past keighley