View Full Version : WOMEN BRICKFIELD LABOURERS?
20-03-2008, 8:05 PM
In the 1861 Census the wife of William Coles b. 1817 in Crayford Kent, namely Ellen and her daughter are described as Brickfield Labourers. Were women employed to do this? I know women did some tough jobs so I am not sure whether this is an error on the part of the Census Taker or not.
20-03-2008, 8:20 PM
I found the following on "An Introduction to the Brickmakers Index" compiled by David Cufley
Brickmakers and other Brickfield workers frequently travelled from one brickfield to another, as the work was seasonal. It was not only bricks that were manufactured in the brickfields but also products such as tiles, chimney and flower pots, crocks, drain-pipes, sugar moulds and terra cotta ware. So the trade descriptions of the workers can sometimes be misleading.
The brickfields around the London suburbs closed as the extent of building land caught up and overtook them.
Frequently the families of Brickmakers married members of other brickmaking families.
So your women may have been employed to undertake the lighter work - sugar moulds and terracotta ware.
Having said that, the original St Pancras Station in London was made of bricks that had been hand-made by children from the age of 6.
20-03-2008, 10:18 PM
Hi Jan - you are an |angel|. Your info was so helpful, now the whole census description makes sense.
20-03-2008, 10:23 PM
Good - oh! :D
Amazing, the stuff that gets squirrelled away - in case it's needed...
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