The line of houses in the distance follow Main Street, Middleton.
When the lead ran out around 1850, mining the limestone provided
almost the only work in the village.
Hopton-Wood Limestone was first quarried about 1820 in Hopton Wood at
the West end of Via Gellia, 1.5 miles West of Middleton. The limestone
was very fine, almost like marble, used for over 100,000 War Graves, though
now worked out. The Western outcrop was quarried by Hopton-Wood Stone Co,
the Eastern (almost in the village of Middleton) by Killer brothers,
beginning about 1870. In 1905 the two firms merged. The number of quarry
workers from Middleton and Wirksworth rose from 61 in 1871 to 234 in 1901,
from the 8th to the most common job among males over 10.
See Hopton-Wood Stone in this website.
Source:J R Williams
Click on photo for enlargement (on CD only)
Have any more information about this photo?
Please e-mail the author on: