Monday, February 20, 2012

Joseph Buck was a Luddite



A member of any of the bands of English workers who destroyed machinery, esp. in cotton and woolen mills, that they believed was threatening their jobs. 

I had no idea what a luddite was until one day in November Google led me to the blog Luddite Bicentenary - 1811-1813 while I was searching for my 4th great-grandfather Joseph Buck.
One of the aims of this blog is to document the daily events and uprisings on the 200th anniversary of the day they occurred.  If you had ancestors in the Nottingham area who were framework knitters in 1811-1813, I strongly suggest that you subscribe to their blog, follow them on Twitter, and like them on Facebook. Who knows, your ancestor may pop up there as well.

While on the hunt for information about grandpa Joe, I never even imagined that I would find him in this position. He was so afraid of losing his job and the means to support his wife and three small children that he felt it necessary to take up a hammer and smash the new machines.

To learn more about the history of Luddites and framework knitters check out the following links:

  1. The Nottinghamshire Heritage Gateway
  2. The Luddite Link 
  3. Power, Politics, & Protest
  4. The Luddites and the Combination Acts

The author of the blog mentioned above was gracious enough to send me copies of two depositions mentioning Joseph Buck.  I would like to share a few snippets.
.....his master knew of his going, and was asked by Joseph Buck and
Joseph Kettledon to go with them and Buck told his master that if he did not go with them or give them money he would break his frame and he saw his master give Buck some money but can't say how much....
Taken from the deposition of George Jeffrey 14 November 1811.
 ....That about an hour before he left home Joseph Buck came into his Master's shop and asked him for some money for Ned Lud's family who were dry, and that his master gave Buck something.  Buck also said two men were come from Arnold to inform them "They were upon Papplewick Forest" waiting for some ____ going.
Taken from the deposition of Robert Hodges 14 November 1811.

 Joseph Buck was connected to two other Luddites who ended up doing some time in Australia. One was his brother-in-law George Spray and the other was George Green.  More on them in the next post.

I have not seen anything more on Joseph Buck so I don't know if he was ever tried or not.


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