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Mill Workers who lived in Saltaire
Researched by Colin Coates

Surnames beginning with:

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O'Donnell, Gordon

O'Donnell, Gordon - Mill Worker / WW1 Roll of Honour


O'Donnell, Harold

O'Donnell, Harold - Mill Worker / WW1 Roll of Honour


O’Donnell, James
c1878 –????

 James O’Donnell was the son of Michael O’Donnell. Michael was born 1853 in Bradford. He married Hannah Maria Eggleton in 1873.

James, one of nine children, was born c1878 in Shipley. James brother, Herbert, served in the Second Boer War (11 October 1899 to 31 May 1902) and was killed in action in South Africa. James's brother, John, also serving in South Africa and died of malarial fever in India, and two other brothers, Harold and Gordon, served in and survived World War One.

In 1881 the family were living at 2 Albert Terrace in Saltaire with Michael working as a grease extractor at Saltaire Mills. By 1891 they had moved to 32 George Street in Saltaire with James working as a warp slayer at Saltaire Mills. By 1901 they were living at 45 George Street, with James working as a tailor.

It is unclear what happened to James after this.


O’Donnell, Michael
c1853 – 1931

Michael O’Donnell was born c1853 in Bradford to James O’Donnell & Jane Kelly.

In 1871 they were living in Horton, with Michael working as a weft carrier and his father a wool washer. Michael married Hannah Maria Eggleton, 28 June 1873, at the Old St. Mary’s Roman Catholic Church, Bradford. Hannah was born c1856 in Norfolk. They had nine children, with three dying in infancy.

The six surviving children were: -

John Thomas, born 1876; James, c1878; Herbert, 1880; Harold, 1884; Ethel, 1886; and Gordon, 1894.

In 1881 they were living at 2 Albert Terrace in Saltaire with Michael working as a grease extractor working at Saltaire Mills. By 1891 they had moved to 32 George Street in Saltaire. By 1901 they were living at 45 George Street, where they remained until 1920. From 1921 they lived at 56 Victoria Road, Saltaire. In 1921 Michael was a lavatory attendant working at F Wigglesworth Engineering & Clutch Works, Hirst Wood, Shipley.

Report in the Shipley Times 29 June 1923: -

The golden wedding of Mr. and Mrs. Michael O’Donnell. 56 Victoria Road, Saltaire, was celebrated on Thursday. Mr. and Mrs. O’Donnell were married the Old St. Mary’s Roman Catholic Church, Bradford, on 28 June 1873.

For 30 years, Mr. O’Donnell was employed at Saltaire Mills but retired about 19 years ago in consequence of ill-health. He has been a Druid for 48 years, and is a P.P.G.M. of the Bradford District, while at present he is a member of the Shipley branch of the Ancient Order of Druids.

For several years Mr. O’Donnell was identified with the Shipley and District Trades and Friendly Society’s Hospital Gala.

Mrs. O’Donnell has been member of the congregation of St. Peter’s Church, Shipley, for about 30 years. During the Great War she made no fewer than 500 shirts for the soldiers.

Their eldest son was killed in the South African war, and another son, who also served in the South African campaign, died later from malarial fever whilst in India.

Mr. and Mrs. O’Donnell have had nine children, five of whom survive (four sons and one daughter; the latter is living in America). They have ten grandchildren, three of whom are in America. Mr. O’Donnell, who is a native of Bradford, is 70 years of age. His wife, who is 69, is a native of Wymondham, near Norwich. It is her proud boast that all her children commenced work at Saltaire Mills. Mrs. O’Donnell has lived in Saltaire for 52 years.

Michael died in 1931. Hannah died in 1932.


Ogden, Edward
10 May 1903 –????

Edward Ogden was the son of William Henry Ogden. William was born 1866 in Heaton, Bradford. He married Catherine Davis, 12 July 1903, at St Paul’s Shipley. William was working as a mill hand and living at 4 Amelia Street, Saltaire.

Edward, who had a younger brother, was born in Saltaire, 10 May 1903. The family continued to live at 4 Amelia Street.

In 1921 Edward was a warp sider at Saltaire Mills. In the 1939 Register, unmarried Edward was a warping overlooker living at 4 Amelia Street, with his brother Henry and his wife.

It is unclear what happened to Edward after this.


Ogden, Eva (nee Gilson)
16 November 1900 – 1991

Eva Gilson was born 16 November 1900 in Castleford. Her parents were Ellen Hopkins & Benjamin Gilson.

In 1911 Eva was living in Tanshelf, Pontefract, with her uncle and aunt, William James & Dinah Burge. William died in 1915. In 1921 Eva was living with her aunt, Dinah Burge, at 15 Caroline Street, Saltaire. She was a spinner working at Saltaire Mills.

Eva married Harold Ogden in 1922. Harold was born, 1 June 1901, in Saltaire. They had a daughter, Irene, born 12 October 1924. From 1922 to 1927 they lived at 7 Caroline Street, Saltaire with Eva’s aunt, Dinah Burge.

In the 1939 Register they were at 28 Constance Street, Saltaire. Harold was a lift attendant at a textile works, Eva was a weaver, and Irene was a boot & shoe shop assistant.

Harold served in WW2. In 1945 his family were living at 37 Dove Street, Saltaire. From around 1949 to after 1960 they were at 24 Oakfield Drive, Baildon. Harold died in 1981. Eva died in 1991.


Ogden, Harold

Ogden, Harold - Mill Worker / WW2 Roll of Honour


Ogden, Henry
16 December 1905 – 19 October 1990

Henry Ogden was the son of William Henry Ogden. William was born 1866 in Heaton, Bradford. He married Catherine Davis 12 July 1903 at St Paul’s Shipley. William was working as a mill hand and living at 4 Amelia Street, Saltaire when he married Catherine Davis.

Henry, who had an older brother, was born in Saltaire, 16 December 1905. The family continued to live at 4 Amelia Street. Henry attended the Saltaire Congregational School, winning a prize in January 1916.

Report from the Shipley Times 26 September 1919: -

“Asked for a Thrashing” – Caught in a Magistrates Orchard

At the Bradford West Riding Children’s Court (yesterday) John Beck Simpson (13), 34 George Street; Robert Haggerty (13), 2 Ada Street; and Henry Ogden, 4 Amelia Street, were summoned by Mr J A Burton of Glenholme, Shipley, for having damaged his fruit trees and attempted to steal 12 apples valued at 1s. Haggerty and Ogden pleaded guilty, but Simpson did not appear, his father having sent him to work.

Mr Burton said that on the night of the 15th about 10 o’clock, he found the boys running about in his orchard. He caught Simpson and Haggerty, but Ogden got away. He took the two boys into his house, where they implored him to give them a good thrashing and send them away. He told them that he should deal with them otherwise. They gave him their names and volunteered the name of the boy who got away. Simpson told him he was earning 27s 6d a week and Haggerty said his wages were 28s 7d.

Next morning witness found a considerable number of apples on the ground. The branches of one of the best trees in his garden had been damaged. He had not given the boys a chance because he wanted the Bench to deal with them and make an example of them to other boys slackly dealt with at home.

Each of the defendants were fined.

In 1921 Henry was a twisting doffer at Saltaire Mills.

Report from the Shipley Times 2 March 1923: -


At the Bradford West Riding Police Court on Monday (26 February) Louis Sheldon (16), painter's apprentice, and Henry Ogden (17) millhand, both of Shipley, were charged with stealing four boxes of sweets, valued 19s. 2d.

It was stated that Messrs. J. W. A. Seaton have a portable sweet shop which they use in the Shipley Market Place on Saturday nights During the week it is placed in a yard in Stead street. On Sunday night, when two police officers were doing their rounds, they found that the door had been smashed open with a big iron bar, and on entering discovered Sheldon and Ogden with box of chocolate Easter eggs, a box of “all-sorts,” a box of crystalised gum and a box of Christmas fathers ready for removal.

Sheldon had been previously convicted for shop-breaking, and there was a minor conviction against Ogden.

Supt. Oliver said both boys were good workers and had good homes. They appeared have got into the company of boys who were leading them wrong.

They were each fined 40s., the Chairman (Mr. J. G. Mowat) instructing the parents to deduct it from their pocket-money.

In May 1923, Henry was one of eight youths fined 5s for playing football on the highway in Prod Lane, Baildon.

Report in the Shipley Times 25 May 1923 referring to the Otley Police Court: -


Eight Saltaire youths were summoned for playing football on the highway in Prod Lane, Baildon, 29 April. The defendants were: - Arthur Lavelle (17), John Harrison (16), Leonard Hudson (18), millhands; Leavens Park (17), George Bacon (18), labourers; John Hudson (14), doffer ; Henry Ogden (17), jobber; and Harry Hainsworth (16), clerk. All pleaded guilty.
Police Constable Feanside said that when he told defendants they would be reported, they replied: “Well, give us the ball back.”
The Chairman: Did you give them it back: —No, sir.
Superintendent Oldroyd said that the offence was a very common practice with these youths from Shipley every Sunday afternoon. Another batch had been reported. There were complaints of people being struck with the ball and having their clothes damaged. There was plenty of room Baildon Green if the youths wanted to play football.
Defendants were each fined 5s.

Report in the Shipley Times 25 January 1924: -


At Bradford West Riding Police Court on Thursday (17 January), Leavens Park (labourer), Louis Sheldon (labourer), John Casey (woolcomber), Henry Ogden (jobber) and George Herbert Hirst (dyer), all of Shipley, were summoned for obstructing the footpath in Caroline Street, Saltaire, on the evening of 4 January.

Park, Casey and Ogden, who appeared, were each fined 5s., the other two being fined 10s. each.

Henry married Evelyn Smith in 1930. They had no children. In the 1939 Register they were living at 4 Amelia Street, with Henry working as a wool warehouseman and he was a volunteer A.R.P. warden. They had living with them Henry’s brother, Edward.

Henry and Evelyn divorced. Following their divorce, Evelyn married Arthur Seed in 1946. Henry continued to live at 4 Amelia Street until 1948. From 1951 to 1958 he lived at 73 Albert Road, Saltaire. Henry died 19 October 1990 in Leeds.


Ogden, William Henry
1866 – 1927

William Henry Ogden was born in 1866 in Heaton, Bradford to Jasper Ogden & Rachael Watkins.

In 1881 they were living in Manningham, with William working as a box minder and his father as a quarryman. Jasper died 1 st qtr. 1891.

In the 1891 census William was a plush finisher living with his mother and siblings in Manningham. By 1901 they had moved to 4 Amelia Street in Saltaire. The family would live here until 1948.

In 1901 William was a yarn skep weigher. He married Catherine Davis, 12 July 1903, at St Paul’s Shipley. She was born in 1873 in Manningham. They had two sons – Edward, born 10 November 1903 and Henry, born 12 August 1905. Catherine died in 1913.

In 1921 William and his two sons were working at Saltaire Mills. William was a yarn stockkeeper, Edward a warp sider and Henry a twisting doffer. William’s mother, Rachael, was living with them.

William died in 1927.


Olsen, Thomas William
8 September 1892 –????

Thomas William Olsen was born 8 September 1892 in Norway, to parents unknown. He lived with his grandparents, William & Susannah Shackleton. In 1901 they were living at 7 Whitlam St, Saltaire; by 1911 they had moved to 18 Dover St in Shipley.

Thomas worked as a cloth finisher in Saltaire Mills. Thomas emigrated to America. He lived in Massachusetts after arriving arrived in New York 4 November 1912 aboard the “Cymric,” having sailed from Liverpool.


Owen, Thomas
1843 –????

Thomas Owen was the son of Robert Owen. Robert was born c1810 in Bolton, Lancashire. He married Mary Blackburn, 6 May 1832, at St Peter’s, Bolton-Le-Moors.

Thomas was born in 1843 in Bolton. In 1851 the family were living in Bolton with Robert working as an iron turner. In 1861 Robert was a shopkeeper & beer seller, whilst Thomas was an engineer in a foundry.

Widower Thomas married Mary Ann Jenkins, 5 January 1891, at Holy Trinity, Bolton-Le-Moors. They had two daughters – Mary Elizabeth, born 13 April 1894 in Bolton, and Emily, born 1 December 1898 in Saltaire. By 1897 they were living at 27 (renumbered 53) Albert Road in Saltaire.

In February 1901, Thomas, as head engineer at Saltaire Mills, gave evidence at an inquiry into an explosion at the Mill that killed a man.

By 1902 Thomas and his family had left Saltaire; it is unclear what happened to them.


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