Each contingent was drilled and rehearsed in the fields of the townships around Manchester adding to the concerns of the authorities. The cavalry, waving their sabres over their heads; and then, slackening rein, and striking spur into their seeds, they dashed forward and began cutting the people. Many protesters were killed and hundreds more injured, sparking a nationwide outcry but also further government suppression. The panic was interpreted as the crowd attacking the yeomanry, and the Hussars Led by Lieutenant Colonel Guy L'Estrange were ordered in. Oh, that you in London were prepared for it.
The meeting had been peaceful but in the attempt to arrest a leader of the meeting, the armed government militias panicked and charged upon the crowd. By the beginning of 1819, the pressure generated by poor economic conditions, coupled with the relative lack of suffrage in Northern England, had enhanced the appeal of political radicalism. Voting was restricted to the adult male owners of freehold land with an annual rental value of 40 shillings £2 or more — the equivalent of about £80 in 2008 — and votes could only be cast at the county town of Lancaster, by a public spoken declaration at the hustings. On horseback, armed with sabres and clubs, many were familiar with, and had old scores to settle with, the leading protesters. At about the same time the Cheshire Yeomanry charged from the southern edge of the field. They therefore planned to arrest Henry Hunt and the other speakers at the meeting, and decided to send in armed forces — the only way they felt they could safely get through the large crowd.
Baxter's house in Mosley-street, I saw the main body proceeding towards St. He issued an arrest warrant for Henry Hunt, Joseph Johnson, John Knight, and James Moorhouse. Local eyewitnesses claimed that most of the sixty men who Birley led into were drunk. It was not without difficulty, and after several were wounded, they were driven out. When they arrived at the hustings, the standards were torn, or cut from the hands of those who held them. Other sizeable contingents marched from Middleton and Rochdale 6,000 strong and Stockport 1,500—5,000 strong.
The magistrates therefore decided to arrange for a large number of soldiers to be in Manchester on the day of the meeting. A number of our people were driven to some timber which lay at the foot of the wall of the Quakers' meeting house. The Times newspaper printed a shocking account of the day, causing widespread outrage which briefly united advocates of a more limited reform with the radical supporters of universal suffrage. The route towards the hustings between the special constables was narrow, and as the inexperienced horses were thrust further and further into the crowd they reared and plunged as people tried to get out of their way. The fine weather almost certainly increased the size of the crowd significantly; marching from the outer townships in the cold and rain would have been a much less attractive prospect.
Several mounds of human flesh still remained where they had fallen, crushed down and smothered. Major Trafford chose , his second-in-command, to carry out the order. When discovered that of , had been arrested and imprisoned, he feared that this was an attempt by the government to suppress news of the event. Fewer than 2% of the population had the vote, and hunger was rife with the disastrous corn laws making bread unaffordable. Too long perhaps because of the vast cast of characters with speaking parts; director Mike Leigh might have better served his viewers if he had combined characters to ease the unfolding of the narrative.
On 16 August 1819, a crowd of some 60,000 people from Manchester and surrounding towns gathered in to demand Parliamentary reform and an extension of voting rights. Peterloo is commemorated by a plaque close to the site, a replacement for an earlier one that was criticised as being inadequate as it did not reflect the scale of the massacre. The unarmed multitude, men, women, and children, had been attacked with murderous results by the military. Reaction and aftermath of the Peterloo Massacre The Peterloo Massacre has been called one of the defining moments of its age. One of those hanged was a 12-year-old boy.
The end of the war had depressed the economy. Four months later she gave birth to a premature baby, Henry. Several lives are lost and a number wounded. The ringleaders were arrested and subsequently released when serious charges against them were not forthcoming. . And it is arguable that the event - in showing how crowds could be effectively controlled by small numbers of troops - delayed the establishment of democracy by over 50 years. From 1812 onwards, similar societies — Hampden Clubs — began meeting all over the country.
A hundred of our handsomest girls, sweethearts to the lads who were with us, danced to the music. Reports of the size of the crowd at the meeting vary substantially. But a few moments had elapsed, when some orders were given to the troops, and they instantly dashed at full gallop amongst the people, actually hacking their way up to the hustings. The magistrates haven't finished though, they plan attacks on the new meeting and the Yeomanry prepare their weapons, the regular Army is also readied. The numbers of killed and wounded were disputed; probably about 500 people were injured and 11 killed. On his arrival at the stand, Nadin arrested Hunt, Johnson and a number of others including John Tyas, the reporter from The Times.