Rare Peterloo 1819 family heirloom to go on display
A 'very rare' Peterloo artefact is now on display in public for the first time, at the People's History Museum in Manchester.
The Peterloo Cane is one of the few items to have witnessed what took place in Manchester on 16 August 1819, when a protest by 60,000 working people for rights and representation turned into an event that saw loss of lives and the injury of hundreds.
The cane has been donated by the family of Charles Worsley, who at the time of Peterloo lived in the Withington area of south Manchester worked in the highly skilled trade of joinery, employing up to six people.
It is believed that Charles Worsley was at Peterloo as a protestor and dressed, like so many others, in his Sunday best with the walking cane a part of his attire, as was the fashion of the time.
The significance of the Peterloo Cane
Where to see the Peterloo Cane
The Peterloo cane has been passed through the generations of the Worsley family, with the donation being made to People’s History Museum by Charles Worsley’s four times great grandson. It will be displayed as part of the exhibition Disrupt? Peterloo and Protest (until 23 February 2020) which is supported by The National Lottery Heritage Fund.
For more on Peterloo, read Adele Emm's article on the events surrounding the massacre in August 2019 Family Tree magazine.