Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Buraimi Oman, on the border with the UAE
Salaams urbanspaceman ~ No never been near the place. Not certain I agree with your statement on the area since most of Industrial North East England was demolished ...whereas at Shotley Bridge... which actually never had a coal mine did have the few industrial plants like the papermaking factory and the sword makers wiped off the record... largely the rest of it including the grand Victorian houses around the Spa and the quaint shop fronts and general structure of the little village centre has remained intact...and being restored I see...It looks like the river may have done for the rear end of the Mill near the bridge and the stone wheel may have been relocated by the raging waters in a great flood about 10 years ago..
A number of factors appear on the subject of that grinding wheel said to have been near the mill and a few feet from the waters edge at Shotley bridge. My recent post also mentions this and we know the concept of converting flour mills to sword mills already viz;..."The Making of Birmingham" Robert K. Dent (1894) p. 147, notes there were 'slitting and rolling' mills in several locations, including Digbeth, which was where Robert Porter had his mill. It states he converted his corn mill into a 'blade mill'. Was this also done at Shotley Bridge...?
I think what we need to place are examples of so called Shotley Bridge Swords with a possible time line to see where these weapons fit into a chronological sequence...The blade I placed with SHOTLEY clearly placed on the blade seems to be real HOWEVER THE WRITE UP SAYS CIRCA 1740 WHICH MEANS IT ISNT DATED ON THE BLADE BUT ESTIMATED ONLY..
I do not write off intrigue and skulduggery in the matter of the Jacobite situation. It may be remembered that this region was Border Reiver territory and the route to Scotland was over that bridge...It is quite possible that swords destined for the Jacobite cause could have gone through Reiver hands to Scottish beneficiaries along this route.
To date I have never seen a three edged sword stamped or said to be from Shotley Bridge.