This is the preface to the ” Ackworth School catalogue : being a list of all the boys and girls educated at that institution, from its commencement in 1779, to the present period. “ published by Harvey and Darton, Gracechurch Street, London : 1831. If you have Quaker relatives, it is an absolute joy because it just lists all 5511 pupils who attended Ackworth School between 1779 and 1831, and the year they left.
” This small work may possibly fall into the hands of some persons little acquainted with the Institution to which it relates For the information of these is inserted the following slight sketch of its history &c extracted with slight alteration from a descriptive sheet accompanying a line Engraving of the School which was published a few years since.
Ackworth School is situate between the villages of High and Low Ackworth, three miles south of Pontefract, in the West Riding of Yorkshire. The building is of freestone, obtained from the neighbourhood; and it was erected in 1757, 1758, and 1759, as an appendage to the Foundling Hospital in London. It cost £ 13,000; which sum was defrayed partly by voluntary subscriptions, and partly by aid of parliament.The house was applied to its original purpose, for twelve years, and afterwards remained unoccupied till 1777. In this year, it was purchased with eighty four acres of land, by Dr John Fothergill and three others, for £ 7,000; and in 1779, was opened as a public school for children of the Society of Friends, to which purpose it has been ever since applied. Various additions have been made to the buildings, and the landed estate has been increased to about 242 acres; the whole property being now estimated at about £ 30,000.
The affairs of the institution are under the immediate management of the superintendent, resident at the school; but all matters of importance are referred to a committee of twenty eight friends, in the vicinity of Ackworth, and to another committee of the same number, who, with the treasurer, meet in London. The instruction of the children devolves on eighteen teachers. The boys are under the care of four school masters, with five apprentices; and five school mistresses, with four apprentices, have the charge of the girls. The regular branches of instruction are reading, spelling, writing, arithmetic, English grammar, and geography; but there are a few to whom the last two branches are not taught. Sewing, knitting, &c. of course form part of the employment of the girls. Many of the elder boys are introduced to an acquaintance with the more useful parts of the mathematics; and a class consisting of twenty of the most advanced, receive instruction in the Latin language.
Besides attending to their school duties, the boys are frequently employed in farming, or gardening and the girls in various domestic occupations. There are three examinations of the children in the course of the year, the principal of which takes place at the time of the Annual General Meeting of the friends of the institution.
Children are admitted between the ages of nine and fourteen. £ 10 per annum is to be paid for each child; but the average cost is about £ 18, [ a modern day equivalent of £ 21,390.00 ] including clothing, stationery, &c. The number of scholars is limited to 300, viz. 180 boys and 120 girls, rather more than 100 being admitted and dismissed annually. The number admitted, since the opening of the school in 1779, to the present time is 5511; and an average calculation will show, that, from among the children of Friends in this country, about one seventh receive some part of their education in this establishment. Ackworth School 7th mo. 1831. “
Ackworth School Catalogue
List Of All The Boys And Girls
Educated In That Establishment
From Its Commencement In 1779 To The Present Period
Harvey And Dart
On Gracechurch Street
2 thoughts on “Ackworth School”
My great great grandmother, Mary Ann Deane, was a student at Ackworth in the early 1850s, and then an apprentice teacher through 1862. She met my great great grandfather, Alfred Wright, who was the bookkeeper at Ackworth. They were married, and continued there through the births of their first four children, including my great grandmother, Emily Wright. Emily also was a student there and then an apprentice teacher, living there for 14 years.
I live in the US and will visit Ackworth for the first time in August. I’m very excited!