John Haggas Moorhouse was first son of Thomas Moorhouse (1809-1845) and Martha and was born on 14th May 1835, when the family were renting Hesliker Farm from The Tempest Estate.  The middle name of Haggas was after his Uncle James who married Ann Moorhouse in 1825.

Helsliker Farm is now called Heslaker on modern maps.  To see locations of farms in the Skipton Area go to Places/Skipton Area Map.

After John's father Thomas died in 1845, the family moved to The Bull Inn at Broughton (which they rented from The Tempest Estate). Please see Places/Tempest Estate and Businesses/Bull Inn for further details.


John attended Sedgley Park School in Wolverhampton as a border.  The Catholic school was founded in 1763 for the education of boys whose parents were in "more confined circumstances".  His brother James also attended this school.
By 1851 John was living in Bradford with Ambrose Scully and working as an Iron Monger apprentice for him.  John continues to work for Mr Scully until 1856 when he got a job in Birmingham for Mr McKinzie at a Hardware Store. He worked there until February 1958 when he was sent by Mr McKinzie to Leeds to take the management of a business of General & Furnishings Ironmongers run by Heaps & Co.

By August 1858 John appears to have had a falling out with Mr. Heaps who accuses him of stealing a lamp and also that some money has gone missing.   John vigorously denies stealing the lamp and says he has paid for it and that no money is missing.

He appears to have got himself in such a state that he decides to leave Leeds, leaving behind his belongs which are returned to his Mother Martha at The Bull at Broughton. 

In a letter he states he is just going away for a few days. He goes to Birmingham and stays at two different addresses and in letters send to Martha the landladies comment on what a distressed state he is in and that he may go abroad.

The family never heard about or from John again.

There are several letters from his friends to Martha saying that John would not have done anything wrong intentionally and that they did not have a good impression of his employer Mr Heaps.
Note: I have quite a few letters from this time period, which are very difficult to read.  The letters were passed on from James (John's brothers) to his nephew Joseph and then to his brother Ted (my Grandfather).   Ted has transcribed some of the letters and I intend to do more in due course.






Biographies/John Haggas Moorhouse >