Stories of Cumbrian Life

  > In this section I intend to transcribe articles illustrative of all aspects of Cumberland and Westmorland life, from a variety of sources. Offers of the loan of original material are welcome.

As well as notes at the foot of each "chapter", I have included comments in the text, where appropriate; these are always in square brackets.






  • The Beauty of Buttermere, from James Walter Brown's Round Carlisle Cross, 1921. The story of Mary Robinson, and her marriage to the rogue John Hatfield, a forger, bigamist, and con-man.


  • John Peel; The Man and the Song, from James Walter Brown's Round Carlisle Cross, third series, 1923. This was originally published in two parts, accounting for the "finally" half way through.

Calgarth Hall, Windermere

  • A short account of the Skulls of Calgarth, from Tales & Legends Of The English Lake District, by Wilson Armistead, 1891.


  • The City's Rapid Development - Beginnings of Factory Life; from Memories Of Old Carlisle by George Topping and John J. Potter (Two Carel Lads), 1922. This covers the fabric, biscuit, decorated tin box, and crane manufacturing businesses in Carlisle, and home weaving, as told by William Farish in his autobiography The Struggles of a Hand-Loom Weaver.
  • The Durran Hill Murder; the crime, detection, trial, and execution of a murderer in Carlisle, 1861-2. This was the final public hanging in Carlisle, and a very early case in which a plaster cast of a footprint from the crime-scene proved crucial in obtaining a conviction. From James Walter Brown's Round Carlisle Cross, 1921.
  • Margery Jackson, The Carlisle Miser & Misanthrope, a pamphlet by Frances Blair (nee Jollie), 1848.
  • See also Diocesan Histories: Carlisle below.
  • School Inspector's Report for Carlisle High School, ca. 1864. Transcribed by Paul Haslam.



  • Annals Of The Solway, by George Neilson, 1899, describes the history, industry, legends, and the campaigns of Edward I. A large file (over 200k) containing Neilson's comprehensive notes, plus 5 maps of the Solway.
  • By Coach from Keswick to Windermere, from Edmund Bogg's Lakeland and Ribblesdale, 1898.
  • Cumberland, Philemon Holland's translation from the Latin of William Camden's description of Cumberland in his Brittania, 1610.
  • Diocesan Histories: Carlisle, by Richard S. Ferguson, M.A., L.L.M., F.S.A., published by the S.P.C.K. in London, 1889. A fascinating history of the diocese, containing much more than just church history.
  • An account of the Helm Wind, which affects villages in the Eden Valley, in the shadow of the Pennines, from Mannix & Whellan, History, Gazetteer and Directory of Cumberland, 1847.
  • Old School Customs, from Daniel Scott's Bygone Cumberland and Westmorland, 1899.
  • Old-Time Punishments, from Daniel Scott's Bygone Cumberland and Westmorland, 1899. This covers both secular and religious punishments.
  • Sports and Festivities, from Daniel Scott's Bygone Cumberland and Westmorland, 1899.
  • The Solway Viaduct - a little history of the rail link across the Solway, with two photographs.
  • The Heraldry of the Cumberland Statesmen, by R. S. Ferguson, F.S.A.




  • Early Recollections of Grange, from Cartmel Priory And Sketches Of North Lonsdale, by A.M. Wakefield, 1909. The "recollections" must date back to about 1840.




  • Miss Blamire of Thackwood, a description of her life and works from Sidney Gilpin's Songs And Ballads of Cumberland and the Lake Country, 1874.


Souter Fell

  • A short account of the phantom army seen on Souter Fell in 1744, from Mannix & Whellan, History, Gazetteer and Directory of Cumberland, 1847.

Vale of Lyvennet

  • This is the first of what is intended to be a series of transcriptions of documents, pamphlets and books on Cumberland and Westmorland. They have been collected by Sarah Reveley, who asked me if I would host them. Many have been available elsewhere on the internet, usually on the GENUKI Cumberland List, but a permanent home was required, and I gladly agreed. This particular book was originally transcribed by Diane Coppard and Kate Burns, and their work is reproduced here with their permission.
    The Vale of Lyvennet, Its Picturesque Peeps and Legendary Lore, By John Salkeld Bland.

19 June 2015


Steve Bulman