Isaac Ludlam Executed For Treason

The Pentrich Revolution

Jeremiah Brandreth, William Turner and Isaac Ludlam were considered the revolution ring leaders and labelled the Pentrich Three.  With over 500 men they set out to march on London to petition the King to better workers’ rights.

Jeremiah Brandreth, or the `Nottingham Captain’, was to actually lead the rebellion. Despite some rather wild stories about his origins, Brandreth was an unemployed framework knitter from Sutton in Ashfield. He had, almost certainly, been involved in Luddite activities.

Sunday 8th June 1817, Brandreth spoke at a crowded meeting in the White Horse Inn in Pentrich………

The rebels assembled at 10 am at Hunt’s Barn in Garner’s Lane, South Wingfield, to march to Ripley. The march route.

There was a traitor to the rebellion, in their midst, and they were stopped at Eastwood the following day.

By early morning, the two groups had come together again and had reached Eastwood. There, two magistrates accompanied by twenty fully armed men and Officers of the 15th Light Dragoons, met them. Mundy, one of the magistrates, afterwards described the confrontation: “we came in sight of the mob who though at three quarters of a mile’s distance from us no sooner saw the troops, then they fled in all directions…throwing away their arms”. Not a single shot was fired and, within a very short space of time, 48 men were captured. Some, however, stayed at large for quite a while. Isaac Ludlam was arrested at Uttoxeter, Brandreth at Bulwell………..

…….. all of the prisoners were isolated until the time of their trial in Derby; their relatives sold everything, down to their beds, to provide funds for their defence and a committee was formed in London to campaign for their release. 46 men of Pentrich, South Wingfield, Alfreton and Heanor, were indicted at the Derby Assizes on 26th July 1817 as having committed High Treason, along with “a multitude of false traitors, …500 or more”. The overwhelming majority of those on trial were labourers and framework knitters, but there was one each of a farmer, tailor, blacksmith and sawyer.

On 7 Nov 1817 Jeremiah Brandreth, Isaac Ludlam and William Turner were executed by hanging and beheading.

These sites provide more information about Isaac Ludlam and the Pentrich Revolution.

At the bottom right hand corner of the above image are my grandparents Jim and Bette Hardy.   Charles T Hardy my great grandfather changed his name from Wigley to Hardy as did my Grandfather.  If you follow the tree upwards you will find Isaac Ludlam near the top right hand corner.  Isaac Ludlam and Obadiah Wigley married sisters.  Isaac was also a witness at Obadiah and Mary Wheatcroft’s wedding.

In researching this blog post I’ve also found out that William Wheatcroft, Mary’s brother also took part in the revolutionary march.  That’s three brothers in law who took part.  William and Obadiah suffered no direct repercussions  however, as stated above, their relatives sold everything, down to their beds, to provide funds for their defence. 

The defeat in court and the deaths of Brandreth, Turner and Ludlam must have had a huge impact on them but Isaac’s death would have had the biggest of all.  Fourteen of their fellow revolutionaries were transported to Australia, six were jailed in England, twelve were tried and freed and many more were apprehended but not charged.

Obadiah and Mary Wigley moved to Mansfield, Nottinghamshire some time between the revolution and Obadiah’s death in 1828.  This move affected their son James as you can see in this blog post.

16 thoughts on “Isaac Ludlam Executed For Treason

  • December 23, 2017 at 6:21 am
    Permalink

    Interesting but sad post Kylie. The brutality of the system in an attempt to keep the workers in line was extraordinary.
    The image of the family tree was helpful with visualising the relationships and I liked seeing the faces of people who had actually been there.
    And what great names you have to research!

    Reply
  • December 23, 2017 at 9:47 am
    Permalink

    Thanks Jen. It’s awful when you read the full story of the revolution. It’s been 200 years this year since it happened. I’ve printed out this and my previous post about James Wigley to take to my family Christmas gathering. They will be fascinated. Merry Christmas! Kylie

    Reply
  • December 23, 2017 at 5:06 pm
    Permalink

    Great post, but so sad that they got sentenced to death with others transported or imprisonment simply for standing up for their rights. One of my reli’s was sentenced to death for a similar thing, but ended up being transported instead.

    Reply
  • December 23, 2017 at 5:21 pm
    Permalink

    Yes it is, they were all scapegoats made an example of so that others wouldn’t try the same thing. It was the last armed rebellion in England, although you could barely call it ‘armed’ as they had mostly farm implements.

    Kylie

    Reply
    • January 5, 2018 at 1:55 pm
      Permalink

      Thanks Chris 🙂

      Reply
  • February 21, 2018 at 12:42 am
    Permalink

    I’ve enjoyed reading your post. Pentrich was the subject of my dissertation & I still live not far away from the village.

    Reply
    • February 21, 2018 at 8:35 am
      Permalink

      Thanks Caroline, I am a little envious that you live so close.

      Reply
  • January 26, 2019 at 8:07 am
    Permalink

    Hi, I am a relative of Issac Ludlam too, my mums maiden name is Ludlam x

    Reply
  • January 26, 2019 at 8:48 am
    Permalink

    Hi Joanne, you would be a closer relative than me then. Are you researching your family history? Kind regards, Kylie

    Reply
  • September 8, 2019 at 7:52 am
    Permalink

    Hello, my maiden name is also Ludlam, very interesting research, are you going to continue to research this subject, regards Jill

    Reply
    • September 8, 2019 at 10:58 am
      Permalink

      Hi Jill
      I’m not working on this part of my family tree at the moment but you can find out more about the rebellion at http://www.pentrichrebellion.co.uk/ You may be related to the rebellious Ludlams too.

      Reply
  • February 14, 2020 at 8:44 am
    Permalink

    I’m also related to Isaac Ludlam. My mother is descended from his brother.

    Reply
    • March 3, 2022 at 12:18 pm
      Permalink

      Hi Matt
      So we’re distant cousins! G’day! Thanks for visiting my blog and leaving a message.
      Kylie

      Reply
  • March 3, 2022 at 4:03 am
    Permalink

    Elizabeth Ludlam, Isaac’s cousin, was my great great great grandmother. She married William Beastall (who seems to have written a hymn tune called “Alfreton”) a tailor originally from Plumtree. I was particularly interested to find out that Isaac Ludlam was. Methodist preacher as I am also a Local Preacher in the Methodist Church. If anyone knows anything about him or the local Methodists at that time I should be interested to hear from them. It seems to have been surprisingly radical around the area, another group of my forebears were the Lynam family who appear in the Quaker records.

    Reply
    • March 3, 2022 at 12:29 pm
      Permalink

      Hi Philip
      That’s really interesting about Isaac being a Methodist preacher. I haven’t heard that before. The records of seen list him as a farmer and quarryman. I wonder if he was a lay preacher and continued working as a farmer and quarryman? What records have you found which indicate he was a preacher? I’m interested to find out more too. Thanks for stopping by my blog and leaving a message!
      Kind regards
      Kylie

      Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.