Output of ironstone peaked in this year, but was followed by a depression in the iron industry and the lack of demand caused stock
piling of the ore at the pit head. Skelton Shaft mine and some others were closed altogether, while the rest went on to short time working.
Apart from the economic situation, iron had now to compete with steel and at first it was found that the local ore had a high phoshorus content which made it unsuitable for the steel making process.
Bolckow and Vaughan introduced a new process at their Cleveland Works by which the phosphorus was converted . The closure of N Skelton mine was considered and the future was in doubt for the next two to three years. 50 extra houses were nevertheless built in N Skelton.
9th January - UNLAWFUL WALL.
10th January - POACHING AFFRAY NEAR SKELTON CASTLE.
|Having had instructions to stop poaching on this land as well they proceeded towards the gang
none of whom were more than 17 or 18.
When they were asked their business one of them aimed a blow at Pennington with a stick and ran away. He was pursued and caught and
then gave a name that proved to be fictitious.
Barker in the meantime had caught another and whilst taking a rabbit from his pocket, the prisoner shot a stone from a catapult at his head which whizzed past him with tremendous force. He also ran away but was chased and caught again.
He also gave a false name and was traced only with considerable difficulty. As he had been convicted 4 times previously, he was fined £1 for trespass and sent to prison for 1 month for the assault.
10th January - TELEGRAPH POLES ERECTED.
13th Jan. - DOG LICENCE. Jesse Barker of N Skelton fined £2 for keeping a dog without a licence.7th February - SCHOOL BOARD ELECTION.
The polling booths at the new schools were occupied all day with the election for the new School Board. At 4 p.m. 200 disappointed householders had to be shut out without voting. The results were:-
Thomas Taylor, Grocer and Draper..850
W H Rayson..600
David Thomas Petch, farmer of Barns Farm..548
James Chisholm, Chief Engineer at North Skelton Pit..529
Charlotte Wharton of Skelton Castle..453
George Hobbs, Engine wright of Skelton..447
John Thomas Wharton of Skelton Castle..359
John Dixon, Merchant of Skelton..339
John Allerton, a miner of Skelton..251
Charles Broughton, a miner of Skelton..61
William Carter Longstaff, grocer, beer, Skelton..21
10th Feb. - NEW INSTITUTE FOR SKELTON GREEN.
The institute had been formed by a few working men and was under the management of Mr G Latimer of Skelton.
It was well supplied with newspapers and books.
14th February. - PROPERTY NEGLECT.
27th February - TRESPASS.
3rd Mar. - PINCHING BOOTS.
6th March - TROUSERS PINCHED.
13th March - BEER LICENCES At Guisborough Petty Sessions the licence for the Duke William was transferred from Robert Hall to James
New applicatons by Christopher Lawson and William Carter Longstaffe to sell beer to be consumed off the premises were granted.
14th March - AGRICULTURAL SHOW STARTED.
22nd March - SUICIDE.
William Green and Frederick Rudd were charged with trespassing in pursuit of game in the gill, between Skelton and Brotton on Good Friday. Fined 5 shillings each and costs.
14th April - BOARD OF HEALTH ELECTION.
14th April - POACHERS.
William Green and Frederick Rudd were charged with trespassing in pursuit of game on land occupied by Thomas Hall and owned by J T Wharton. PC Calvert said they had 4 dogs and were ranging the land beating the bushes. Fined 5 shillings and costs.
18th April. - NORTH SKELTON NEARLY BLOWN UP.
The gunpowder van is fully ten feet tall and on the upper part of the van striking the pipes it went through the whole of them
with scarcely a perceptible check, snapping them as though they had only been tobacco pipe stems.
All the boilers, save one, were in use at the time as there was considerable steam up a slight explosion occurred, several pipes connected with the boilers being damages.
The roof of the small house containing the donkey-engine, the engine which supplies the boilers with water, was entirely blown off.
Singular to say, the gunpowder van did not sustain the slightest damage in any way.
The man in charge of the boilers with great presence of mind, at once shut off the steam and Mr Robinson and Mr Wright the engine-wright were sent for.
The connection between the boilers and the engine being severed, all communication with mines and the miners was stopped.
At that time there were 80 men underground and they had to be brought to bank by what is known as the back shaft.
Only a "kibble" [large metal bucket on a chain] could be used here and a considerable time elapsed before the whole of the men could be brought to the pit's mouth.
The damage is estimated at £400.
19th April. - SKELTON CHORAL SOCIETY.
21st April - TRESPASS AFTER GAME.
21st April - SKELTON CHORAL SOCIETY.
24th April. - CRUELTY TO A HORSE.
7th May - CRUSHED TO DEATH.
12th May - MINERS DEMONSTRATION.
8th May - FIRE AT MINE.
On Saturday a dangerous fire broke out in the workshops at Longacres Mine, Skelton. It burned with great fury causing great fear that it could come into contact with a powder magazine near at hand.
It was however brought under control before it could damgage the shaft gearing. It is only 2 or 3 years since another fire at the same mine destroyed a great quantity of the tubbing and shaft and caused damage to the extent of £3,000.
12th May. MINERS BADLY INJURED.
17th May. - SUICIDE - POISON
21st May - LEMONADE CART - DRUNK DRIVER.
21st May - POACHER'S GREYHOUND IMPOUNDED.
24th May - BEER.
12 Pence in 1 Shilling. 20 Shillings in 1 Pound.
One shilling in 1877 would buy 8 pints of beer.
It is difficult to give a modern value.
Using the Retail Price Index it is about £3 in 2010.
Using Average Earnings it is about £15.
7th June. - BUILDER BANKRUPT.
In the Matter of Proceedings for Liquidation by Arrangement or Composition with Creditors, instituted by William McLean, of Skelton-in-Cleveland, in the county of York, Builder. Notice is hereby given, that a First General Meeting of the creditors of the above-named person has been summoned to be held at my offices, 36, Gosford-street, Middlesborougb aforesaid, on the 30th day of June, 1877, at one o'clock in the afternoon precisely......
9th June. - DRUNKS ON PUB PREMISES.
14th June. - MINES DEATH.
Longacres Mine. Charles Roberts of Fogga, a miner aged 35,was killed. "A shot had been fired which did not bring the stone down he was preparing for another shot without first having set a prop or stay under the overhanging piece, when it suddenly fell."
19th June - MINERS STRIKE.
23rd June - YOUNG WOMAN ASSAULT.
23rd June - POACHING - Matthew Porritt, a young man, was charged by John Pennington, gamekeeper to J T Wharton, Esq with trespassing in pursuit of game between Lingdale and North Skelton on the 6th June. Fined 10 shillings and costs.
27th June - BRASS BAND CONTEST.
30th June - INDECENT ASSAULT,
14th July - PINCHING LETTUCE, BOOK AND ASSAULT.
At Guisborough Petty Sessions James King, a miner, was charged with stealing lettuce from the garden of Alfred Brighton of 17 Vaughan St, N Skelton. Fined 5 shillings with £1 3s costs.
Sarah Jane Taylor of N Skelton was charged with stealing a child's picture book from Redcar Railway Station. Apprehended and kept in the lock-up. Discharged by the Bench.
An Irishman named Peter Gowland was fined £1 2s 6d for assaulting Peter Reddington, a fellow labourer at Skelton on Sunday afternoon.
18th July - WILL NOT PAY FOR MOTHER IN WORKHOUSE.
25th July - DRUNK DRIVER.
28th July - DROWNED IN GUNPOWDER TUB.
One of the top ten wettest years on record.
2nd August - AGRICULTURAL SHOW.
The First Annual Show of the Skelton Agricultural Society took place in the picturesque grounds adjoining Skelton Castle. 9th August - TEACHERS APARTMENTS.
At the Skelton School Board it was resolved not to provide furnished apartments for the school teachers, but that the house at Stanghow Lane be let to some person.
14th August. Mary Purvers was buried at Skelton, age 71. "A stranger who had come on a visit to Park Pit."
18th August - BOY ASSAULTED.
21st August - STRANGE ASSAULT AT NORTH SKELTON.
22nd August. - BEER HOUSE KEEPER BANKRUPT. In the Matter of Proceedings for Liquidation by Arrangement or Composition with Creditors, instituted by James Moore, of Skelton, in the county of York, Beerhouse Keeper. Notice is hereby given, that a First General Meeting of the creditors of the above-named person has been summoned to be held at my offices, No. 1, Zetland-road, Middlesborough aforesaid, on the 10th day of September, 1877, at eleven o'clock in the forenoon precisely.....
30th August - SKELTON BRASS BAND CONTEST.
31st August. - SCALDED TO DEATH.
2nd September. - CHILD DROWNED.
4th Sep. BANKRUPTS.
[Photograph kindly donated by Peter Appleton of Skelton.]
28th September - NEW WESLEYAN CHAPEL AT SKELTON.
On Thursday a new Wesleyan Chapel opened at Skelton in Cleveland.
This building, the foundation stone of which was laid by Mr David Dale in August 1876 is a welcome addition to the architecture of Skelton.
Its position is very commanding and its appearance very pleasing.
It is of the classic style of architecture, the internal size being 70 feet long, 42 feet wide and 37 feet high with accomodatioon for 720.
Behind the chapel is a school room to accomodate about 200, chapel keeper's house, stabling etc.
The cost of the building is about £3,000. Messrs Clark and M'Glasson of Saltburn were the builders. The plans were prepared by and the building carried out under the direction of Mr Neil Macara, architect, Darlington.
At the opening ceremony there was a good attendance. The sermon was preached by the Rev Dickinson of Leeds.
2nd October - ALLEGED INDECENT ASSAULT.
Benjamin Cole, a middle aged man, was charged with indecent assault at Skelton upon a young girl of 14 or 15 named Mary Eliza Greenhouse.
The girl stated she went to pay her mother's club money at Hutchinson's public house, the New Inn, Skelton Green. Then she went to buy some candles.
It was a moonlit night and on the way back home a man, who was standing by some railings, seized her, threw her down, committed the alleged offence and ran away.
The girl's mother confirmed that when she got home she was wet, her arm was grazed and the candles broken.
The defence said the prisoner was the father of 6 children and it was impossible for him to be at the place at the time. A witness said Benny Cole was in the tap room of the New Inn all night and the Landlord said the same. Case dismissed.
3rd October - FIGHTING DRUNKS.
12th Oct. BANKRUPTS.
13th October - THE PENGE CONVICTS.
An enquiry into the Penge case took place at the Home Office yesterday and Mr Cross went thoroughly into the real merits of the case. He had a long conference with Mr Justice Hawkins, and also with some eminent medical witnesses.
The convicts yesterday received no visitors and no reprieve has yet arrived. The health of the convicts continues good as usual. They are calm and apparently resigned, though the women still hope for a reprieve.
In reply to a petition signed by the principal inhabitants and tradesmen of Skelton in Cleveland, praying for a commutation of the sentence in the case of Alice Rhodes and the Stauntons, Mr Shemeld Taylor has received the following communication from the Secretary of State.
Whitehall, 11th October 1877.
SIR - I am directed by the Secretary of State for the Home Department to acknowledge the receipt of your application in behalf of Louis Staunton, Patrick Staunton, Elizabeth Staunton and Alice Rhodes and I am to acquaint you that the same will be fully considered.
I am, Sir, your obedient servant,
S F O LIDDELL.
Mr S Taylor, West End, Skelton in Cleveland.
[The convicts had been sentenced to death for the murder of Louis' wife, Harriet Staunton. She was a wealthy woman, but mentally backward. It appears that he had married her purely for her money, which at that time became the property of the husband.
The case which aroused world interest brought about a change in the law with the Married Woman's Property Act.
Despite this evidence of popular sympathy for the convicts, all the evidence pointed to the fact that Louis in company with his brother, sister-in-law and mistress slowly starved Harriet and her infant son to death. The death sentences were commuted to life imprisonment and Alice Rhodes was pardoned.]
19th October - SEWING MACHINE EMBEZZLER.
24th October - FIGHTING DRUNK IN THE STREET.
30th October - IN THE LURCH.
Joseph Dixon was charged with trespass in pursuit of game on land belonging to Mr J T Wharton of Skelton Castle and refusing to give his name to the gamekeeper.
Mr Pennington said he saw the defendant with 3 other men and his lurch dog leave Skelton village. He followed them and saw the dog being sent into a field in the occupation of Mr Petch. When he charged Dixon with poaching he was struck to the ground, but kept hold of the offender.
Defendant said if he would let go he would give his name, but then ran away. While Dixon was cross examined he gave the names of his mates and summonses were applied for. Fined £1 and costs.
17th November - GREENGROCER SUES.
28th November - 12 STROKES OF THE BIRCH ROD.
The following morning he found that a window had been broken and the lamp was gone.
PC Lamb said he apprehended the prisoner in the Boosbeck Mines and charged him with stealing a lamp. He had the item in his possession at the time and at first said it was his own, but afterwards said a lad named Burgess told him to take it.
The lad had nothing to say and his mother wishing the case to be disposed of by the Bench, he was ordered to receive 12 strokes with the birch rod.
8th December - WHEN IS GAS COMING.
18th December - DID NOT PAY FOR SUPERIOR CARRIAGE.
18th December - SAVAGE ASSAULT ON PC.