Local historian, Colin Coates
WW1 - The Saltaire Story
Colin Coates writes: After relocating to Saltaire in 2011 I soon became interested in the fascinating history of the village and its people. Following a meeting of the Saltaire History Club, I was inspired and motivated to research the story of Saltaire during World War One.
Using information from local Rolls of Honour, online resources such as Ancestry and CWGC, and newspaper cuttings from the Shipley Times, I am building up a substantial database to help us understand what it was like to live in Saltaire during the Great War.You can keep up to date by following the WW1 Saltaire twitter feed and the WW1 Saltaire Diary, which is updated weekly.
In August 2013, I visited the Cloth & Memory exhibition in Salts Mill, where I saw an interesting exhibit by a British artist named Caren Garfen. She had researched the 1891 census for women born and living in Saltaire who worked in the mill. Caren had recorded the details of these women on tiny plaques on the end of cotton reels, representing the bobbins at the mill. Each reel had a ribbon extending from it, detailing their addresses. The piece was very thought provoking. I began to research the lives of these women.
There is now a permanant exhibition in Salts Mill called “People and Process” featuring Caren’s exhibit. I have now researched the biographies of 108 of the Reel Lives women. That information is available in Salts Mill, and here on the Saltaire Village Website.
Questions, comments and information
Should you have any queries, comments or information to offer please do not hesitate to contact me by email.
Colin Coates: firstname.lastname@example.org