A key month in town's history.Byline: By Andy Croft,Evening Gazette
January is a two-faced month. The Roman god Janus, after whom it is named, could look backwards and forwards at the same time.
It is a good month in which to celebrate the past and to contemplate the future.
January is a special month in the history of Middlesbrough.
The first ship was launched in Middlesbrough in January 1833, the wooden collier brig Middlesbro'.
The first Tees-built iron-ship, The Advance, was launched in January 1854.
The present Town Hall was opened in January 1889.
On 21 January 1938, Middlesbrough dockers
Dockers is a brand of Levi Strauss & Co.
Levi Strauss & Co. made history by refusing to load a cargo of scrap iron and steel onto the Japanese ship the Haruna Maru.
The Middlesbrough lads knew that the scrap was going to be used to make arms for the Japanese invasion of China. They also warned that Japanese arms could one day be used against Britain.
Everyone tried to persuade the dockers to load the ship - employers, shipping agents, Transport and General Workers' Union Transport and General Workers' Union (TGWU)
British labour union. The Dockers' Union (founded 1889) took the lead in the merger of 14 unions to form the TGWU in 1922. The union grew rapidly under the leadership of Ernest Bevin (1922–40). , the Council (and the Gazette!)
But the dockers stood firm and 2,000 people packed the Town Hall in support.
The ship sailed to London, where the dockers followed the lead of the Middlesbrough men, and the ship eventually sailed without her cargo.
This coming January 21 the Town Hall is showing - for one night only - a new historical pageant depicting the history of the town over the last 150 years.
The actors and dancers are from Middlesbrough College. The choirs are from Acklam Grange, St David's and King's Manor secondary schools:
With words and song and dance and rhyme
We'd like to take you back through time,
To tell the story of our town
The town that keeps on being knocked down,
But gets back to its feet again.
A tale combining brawn brawn
1. Solid and well-developed muscles, especially of the arms and legs.
2. Muscular strength and power.
3. Chiefly British The meat of a boar.
4. Headcheese. and brain,
An epic tale of fire and smoke,
Heroic deeds and common folk,
Anonymous, unsung, unknown,
Whose names are rarely carved in stone Adj. 1. carved in stone - no longer changeable; "the agreement is not yet set in stone"
set in stone
unchangeable - not changeable or subject to change; "a fixed and unchangeable part of the germ plasm"-Ashley Montagu; "the unchangeable seasons"; "one of the
And yet who built this commonweal com·mon·weal
1. The public good or welfare.
2. Archaic A commonwealth or republic.
Of men and women, iron and steel
Of chemicals and ships and oil,
Ambition, vision, pride and toil.
A tale of enterprise and sweat.
A tale that isn't over yet"
Why 21 January?
Because it was on 21 January 1853 that the town's Charter of Incorporation received Royal Assent.
Addressing 'the inhabitants and householders of the town of Middlesbrough' the young Queen Victoria declared 'that the inhabitants and their successors shall be forever one body politic and corporate in deed, fact, and name, and shall be called the Mayor, Aldermen and Burgesses of the Borough of Middlesbrough'.