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Copyright 2020 © Ged Dodd

 aka PeaceHavens Project
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Russian Flax/Hemp Bale Seals from

Penny Bridge Site, Cumbria

Discovered by Ray Livermore in 2014 and currently being worked on a daily

basis under his supervision with assistance from Julie ..  for the Estate Owner.

 (35 seals found to date with 0 seals awaiting upload as of 21st October 2020)

 

 

Website design, maps and photos by Ged Dodd - Director of The PeaceHavens Project.

   About PeaceHavens - This database is an ongoing project involving the daily finding and identification of Russian Lead Flax Bale Seals from the old disused 18th/19th century Flax Mills of the Industrial Revolution in the UK.   For many decades in the 18th & 19th centuries, Russia was by far the world's greatest exporter of these flax stems via Archangel, St Petersburg, Kronstadt, Narva, Riga, Libau, Memel, Konigsberg, Pilau, Pernau, Revel, and Tilsit and Great Britain was Russia's major customer. Every bale of flax stems was fastened together with a lead seal by a quality control inspector. The discarded stems of the flax with seals still attached were prized as fertilizer by local farmers and were spread onto the land mixed with night soil manure.

 

 

Russian Lead Flax Bale Seals from the Cumbria Site

 

 

Baltic States Cross Shields

 

Weather Forecast

 

 

The Baltic States Crosses

on Shield Flax Seals c.1800

 

 

A Galliot wooden trading ship

 

-----------------------------

 

Inspectors and Posts

for Cumbria Mill

 

 

  Demidov.I    1813  86

  Filatov.I    1810  89

  Galkin.A     1810  15

  Kavelev.D    1805  66

  Kostin.F     1805  32

  Larionov.T   1817  22

  Mikhalev.S   1805  59

  Molchanov.A  1805  34

  Pogankin.L   1805  31

  Samrov.F     1805  73

  Savostin.A   1787  25

  Shilov.Ya    1807  51
  Simonov.M    18??  82

  Suravstov.P  ----   1

  Trekin       1774 307

  Tomilin.T    1805  29

  Varzov.S     1805  14

  Verevkin.M   1814   9

  Verevknn.S   1805   3

  Vinakurov.I  1813  61

  Vinnikov.I   1805  20

  Zaitsov.S    1805  19

 

- - - - - - - - - - - - - -

 

Posts / Inspectors / #

for Cumbria Mill

 

   1 P.Suravstov   IDS2189

   3 S.Verevknn    1805#07

   9 M.Verevkin    1814#01

  14 S.Varzov      1805#08

  15 A.Galkin      1810#02

  19 S.Zaitsov     1805#04

  20 I.Vinnikov    1805#03

  22 T.Larionov    1817#01

  25 A.Savostin    1787#01

  29 T.Tomilin     1805#02

  31 L.Pogankin    1805#11

  32 F.Kostin      1805#09

  34 A.Molchanov   1805#13

  51 Ya.Shilov     1807#01

  59 S.Mikhalev    1805#10

  61 I.Vinakurov   1813#01

  66 D.Kavelev     1805#01

  73 F.Samrov      1805#06
  82 M.Simonov     18??#01

  86 I.Demidov     1813#02

  89 I.Filatov     1810#01

 307   Trekin      1774#01

 

- - - - - - - - - - - - - -

 

How the seals got

into the fields

 

The discarded stalks of the flax with

a bale seal still attached were highly

prized as fertilizer by local farmers

and they were spread on to the land

mixed in human & animal excrement.

 

 

.

 

#

OBVERSE  click thumbnail

REVERSE click thumbnail

Cum

+++

01

Cross quartered

+ shield with

-/-/-/- pellets

12K

GH

Baltic States
(Krown flax)

Cum

+++

02

Cross quartered

+ shield with

5/5/5/5 pellets

CR

12K

Baltic States
(Krown flax)

Cum

+++

03

Cross quartered

+ shield with

4/4/-/- annulets

illegible

- -

Baltic States
(Krown flax)

Cum
+++
04

Cross quartered
+ shield with
?/?/?/? pellets

WLT

12K

Baltic States
(Krown flax)

Cum
+++
05

Cross quartered
+ shield with
?/?/?/? pellets

- - -

Baltic States
(Krown flax)

Cum
+++
06

Cross quartered
+ shield with
4/4/-/- annulets

CR
12K

Baltic States
(Krown flax)

Cum
+++
07

Cross quartered
+ shield with
4/4/-/-
annulets

CR
12K

Baltic States
(Krown flax)

Cum
+++
0
8

Cross quartered
+ shield with
4/4/-/-
annulets

CR
12K

Baltic States
(Krown flax)

Cum
+++
09

Cross quartered
+ shield with
5/3/-/-
pellets

MJ
12K

Baltic States
(Krown flax)

Cum
+++
10

quartered

+ shield with

5/5/-/-/ pellets

MJ
12

Baltic States
(flax)

           
 
IDS
2189
ПП = PP

П.СУРАВЦОВЪ
(P.SURAVTSOV)
H1

blank
should be ППC
Senior Hemp Inspector

1
post
(hemp)
           

 

Lead Flax Bale Seals 1774

#

OBVERSE  click thumbnail

REVERSE click thumbnail

Cum

1774

01

ДЛ = DL
TPEKIHЬ
TREKIN
H307

NP
IH12K
1773

307
post
(flax)

 
Lead Flax Bale Seals 1787

#

OBVERSE  click thumbnail

REVERSE click thumbnail

Cum

1787

01

ЛД = LD

А.САВОСТИ.

(A.SAVOSTIN)

H25

NP
IGH9K
1787
(crescent)

25

post
(flax)

 
 
Lead Flax Bale Seals 1805

#

OBVERSE  click thumbnail

REVERSE click thumbnail

Cum

1805

01

ЛД = LD

Д.KABEЛEBЬ

(D.KAVELEV)

H66

NP

??12H

1805

66

post
(flax)

Cum

1805

02

ЛД = LD

T.TOMИЛИHЬ

(T.TOMILIN)
H29

NP

CH12H

1805

29

post
(flax)

Cum

1805

03

ЛД = LD

И.BИHHИKO

(I.VINNIKOV)

H20

NP

?K12H

1805

20

post
(flax)

Cum

1805

04

ЛД = LD

C.ЗAИЦOBЬ

(S.ZAITSOV)

H19

NP

CH12K

1805

19

post
(flax)

Cum

1805

05

ЛД = LD

C.ЗAИЦOBЬ

(S.ZAITSOV)

H19

NP

IH12H

1805

19

post
(flax)

Cum

1805

06

ЛД = LD

Ф.CAMPOBЬ

(F.SAMROV)

H73

NP

IB12H

1805

73

post
(flax)

Cum

1805

07

ЛД = LD

C.BEPEBKHH

(S.VEREVKNN)

H3

NP

?K12H

1805

3

post
(flax)

Cum

1805

08

ЛД = LD

C.BAPЗOBЬ

S.VARZOV)

H14

NP

IH12H

1805

14

post
(flax)

Cum

1805

09

ЛД = LD

Ф.KOCTИHЬ

(F.KOSTIN)

H32

NP

AШ12H

1805

32

post
(flax)

Cum

1805

10

ЛД = LD

C.MИХAЛEB

(S.MIKHALEV)

H59

NP

AШ12H

1805

59

post
(flax)

Cum

1805

11

ЛД = LD

Л.ПOГAHKИHЬ

(L.POGANKIN)

H31

NP

??12?

1805

31

post
(flax)

Cum

1805

12

ЛД = LD

C.BAPЗOBЬ

S.VARZOV)

H14

NP

EC12H

1805

14

post
(flax)

Cum

1805

13

ЛД = LD
А.МОЛЧАНОВ

(A.MOLCHANOV)
H34

NP
ИФ12H
1805

34

post
(flax)

           
Lead Flax Bale Seals 1807

#

OBVERSE  click thumbnail

REVERSE click thumbnail

Cum

1807

01

ЛД = LD
Я.ШИЛОВЬ
(Ya.SHILOV)
H51

NP

IS12H

1807

51

post
(flax)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lead Flax Bale Seals 1810

#

OBVERSE  click thumbnail

REVERSE click thumbnail

Cum

1810

01

ЛД = LD
И.ФИЛATOBЬ
(I.FILATOV)
H89

NP

HP12K

1810

89

post
(flax)

Cum

1810

02

ЛД = LD
А.ГАЛКИНЪ
(A.GALKIN)
H15

NP

BK12H

1810

15

post
(flax)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lead Flax Bale Seals 1813

#

OBVERSE  click thumbnail

REVERSE click thumbnail

Cum
1813
01

ЛД = LD
И.BИHAKУPOBЬ
(I.VINAKUROV)
H61

NP
И Б12H
1813

61
post
(flax)

Cum
1813
02

ЛД = LD
И.ДЕМИДОВЪ
(I.DEMIDOV)
H86

NP
AV12H
1813

86
post
(flax)

           
Lead Flax Bale Seals 1814

#

OBVERSE  click thumbnail

REVERSE click thumbnail

Cum
1814
01

ЛД = LD
M.BEPEBKИHЬ
(M.VEREVKIN)
H9

NP
AГ12H
1814

9
post
(flax)

Cum
1814
02

ЛД = LD
M.BEPEBKИHЬ
(M.VEREVKIN)
H9

NP
12H
1814

9
post
(flax)

           
 
 
 
Lead Flax Bale Seals 1817

#

OBVERSE  click thumbnail

REVERSE click thumbnail

Cum

1817

01

ЛД = LD

TAPИOHOB

(T.LARIONOV)

H22

NP

CБ12K

1817

22

post
(flax)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lead Flax Bale Seals 18??

#

OBVERSE  click thumbnail

REVERSE click thumbnail

Cum

18??

01

ЛД = LD

M.CИMAHOBЬ
(M.SIMANOV)
H82

NP

??12?

18??

82

post
(flax)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Photos of Penny Bridge Mill taken in 1967 by Mike Davies-Shiel

 

A Short History of the Flax Mill

The small Galliot ships were able to sail up the shallow narrow river as far as the bridge with their bales of flax and then to unload them at a slate stone jetty the remnants of which can still be seen to the right of the photograph. A flax mill and iron foundry were built higher up the river to take advantage of the mill race that powered the waterwheel.  The iron and flax were transported along the narrow Mill Lane to a  jetty at the bridge. Blast furnaces at Penny Bridge (built 1748 & demolished in 1791 were replaced by flax mill in 1805).  Another bridge built downstream in 1820 denied access to the jetty but rumour has it that the mill was destroyed in an explosion in the early 1800's which probably accounts for why only 13 seals were found at the site, 12 dated 1805 and an undated Baltic States Shield seal with a Cross .. circa 1800.   For reasons best known to themselves the Mill Owners deposited the seals high up in a field on the other side of the river ..   Two recently discovered seals dated 1810 & 1817 give hope of a new flax seal site.   The mill has been completely demolished and all that remains are a few low walls and the entrance to tunnels running under the site where the water was channelled to turn a water wheel which powered the mill.

     Project member Patricia Rowland has some more information about Penny bridge Mill as she is researching flax on the Cartmel Peninsula. In 1805 the owner of the mill was Thomas Pearson, a Quaker who had been in Partnership with his cousin Isaac Hall at Hill Mill, Cartmel. Thomas was bankrupt in 1808 and the mill etc were sold. Regarding Kay's ownership I have found a dispute about the patent of the machine he invented and a witness says Kay began operating at Penny Bridge about June 1825. 

 

In the18th century the estuary was full of wooden sailing ships landing at small jetties all along the coast

 Email from Richard Horrocks 

 Dear Ged, I have been reading with interest your work in identifying lead bale seals at the Penny Bridge Flax mill site. You indicate that you have little knowledge of the owners during its heyday. I am researching the flax spinning history of James Kay (who bought Turton Tower in 1835) and who is claimed by some to have revolutionised the spinning of flax following his 1824/5 invention of wet spinning. He owned three flax mills, Marsh Lane Mill, Preston, the one you are prospecting in Penny Bridge and one at Pendleton, Salford He became quite wealthy from his endeavours, and his refurbishment of Turton Tower to its current state during the 1835-1890 period is his family’s legacy.    I have little knowledge of the Penny Bridge mill but the dates on the lead seals you are finding are providing me with an interesting insight into the origins of the flax he was using. James Kay’s invention is cited in Irish linen histories as being responsible for the reinvigoration of the Irish linen industry during the mid-18th century period.  My guess is that Kay purchased and worked the Penny Bridge Mill during the 1800-1820 period, which fits well with the seal dates that you report, although the 1787-dated one suggests that the mill was spinning flax before Kay purchased it. Your information regarding the building of a new bridge downstream in 1820 is interesting in that this probably coincided with the demise of the mill (assisted by the reported explosion). This could also be a reason why Baines does not report the existence of a mill at Penny Bridge in his 1825 Lancashire history , although he reports the existence of 3 cotton and/or flax spinners in Ulverston. Kay’s Pendleton Mill appears to have been his main focus during the post 1820-30 period since it was located by the canal and subsequent railway, thus offering improved communications as well as it being closer to his subsequent purchase of Turton Tower.     I am giving a lecture on James Kay’s textile background at Turton Tower on Thursday 6th April at 1.30pm if you are interested – please contact Margaret Bragg (maggbragg@gmail.com) for more details if interested.
Regards Richard Horrocks

 

Website design and photos by Ged Dodd   Director of The PeaceHavens Project.

 

Copyright 2020 © Ged Dodd

 aka PeaceHavens Project
Click here for the terms
of free copy & share &
supporting your Project