THE HISTORY OF EAST GRINSTEAD - Online Book

The rise and progress of the town and the history of its institutions & people.

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144                     HISTORY OF EAST GRINSTEAD.
Stone Farm and Tickeridge, in East Grinstead, were all doing a considerable trade in the casting of ordnance, as is shown by the journal kept by Robert Knight, who had a very prosperous carrier's business in East Grin-stead at that time. In the year 1761 Gravetye furnace was carried on by Messrs. Clutton & Co., and in August, 1762, the business was apparently sold to Messrs. Eade and Wilton. From April 23rd, 1761, to the end of the year 1762, from this one furnace alone, Robert Knight carried to London or Woolwich, principally to the latter place, over 225 guns, of which 27 were of unstated calibre, 20 were three-pounders, 29 four-pounders, four six-pounders, 66 nine-pounders, 35 twelve-pounders, 33 eighteen-pounders, and 18 thirty-two-pounders. From the very careful entries which Robert Knight made in his account book we are able to gather the approximate weights of some of these guns. A four-pounder weighed about half a ton, a nine-pounder 25 cwt., a twelve-pounder 36 cwt., and a thirty-two-pounder- 56 cwt.
The Warren furnace was then being carried on by Messrs. Masters & Raby, and later on by Messrs. Raby and Rogers, and was also doing a very considerable trade with the Government. Its owners supplied numerous guns of various weights and calibre to Wool­wich and also cast a large quantity of shot and shell. On three days in December, 1768, Knight carted to London 187 pieces of 10 and 13-inch shells, and brought back two tons of pig iron to the Warren and a plate of iron and a mould to Gravetye. This would seem to indicate that Messrs. Raby & Rogers had more casting orders on hand than they could produce local iron for. Occasionally the waggons came back loaded with coal or steel. Through January the work of carting shells and guns to London continued, 165 shells or 32-lbs. shot being taken in the first eight days of the year 1769. By this time the Gravetye and Warren furnaces were apparently under the same management, for Knight makes very frequent entries in his ledger of ordnance carted between the two, the Warren supplying Gravetye with iron and Gravetye sending to the Warren guns
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