Thursday, 1 November 2012

Village stocks


A stroll in the sunshine in Saltaire's Roberts Park might mean that you come across this historical relic, tucked away at the back of the park.  Stocks were used through much of our history to punish and humiliate offenders, pinning their legs so they couldn't escape and leaving them subject not only to the vagaries of the weather but also to being jeered, spat on or pelted with rotting vegetables - or worse!  I can find no record of when or where these particular stocks were used, nor when the practice ceased.  Safe to say that, whatever you do, you are unlikely to be placed here nowadays - though maybe the threat might deter the vandals who regularly daub graffiti or otherwise trash the local area.

8 comments:

  1. Eerie to see these. I know in Salem, Massachusetts they ran wild with them hunting the witches. Thank you for sharing this relic. I think I would love your town!

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  2. We've yet to revive the stocks, but some judges are starting to hand out sentences that involve putting offenders into situations where they experience the ridicule and scorn of passersby. I'm not sure it's a bad idea, for non-violent, petty crimes.

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  3. What a pretty park Jenny, and interesting to find momentous of the past.

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  4. That's fascinating. My first thought in looking at those is "what about bathroom breaks?"

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  5. Your first photo is lovely. At first glance, I didn't notice the stocks. There is an exhibition of stocks at Hartford's Old State House. I would vote in favor of using shaming techniques on some of the jerks who don't respond to other punishments.

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  6. I agree with you: glad that those things are no more used today!

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