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In trying to trace the history of the house built by Mary Barker at Rosthwaite in Borrowdale, Cumbria, in 1816-7, now the Scafell Hotel, I have unearthed a fair amount of incidental information on the growth of the local tourist trade during the 19th century. Here is most of it, in chronological order. Note that the Miner's Arms of the 1820s and the Rosthwaite Inn of the 1830s are almost certainly not the later Scafell Hotel, but one or both of them may be the later Royal Oak (a name probably adopted to cash in on the success of Keswick's Royal Oak):

Shelagh Sutton, "The Story of Borrowdale", 1961:
"There were several small inns in old Borrowdale- Nokka House in Rosthwaite was one and a gay spot it was by all accounts where much carding, dancing and drinking took place; later it became the Post Office and sweet shop but the carding continued and packets of tea changed hands." [Nokka is the cottage almost opposite the Royal Oak]


Carlisle Patriot, 24 Oct 1818:
"On Monday night last, a party who were benighted on a mountain at the head of Borrowdale, called the Stye-head, while floundering in the dark in the numerous swamps by which they were beset, observed a phenomenon that we do not recollect to have seen noticed in any philosophical work:- On the immersion of a stick in various parts of the different swamps, a substance exuded resembling the light of glow worms, but rather more luminous. As far as it could be examined, it appeared to be of an oily, subtle nature, without any other than an earthy smell. Some of the moss and earth in which it was contained was brought away; but the luminous particles soon evaporated. Can any of our philosophical readers communicate to us any further information on this subject?- A person well acquainted with the swamps among the mountains never saw or heard of any thing of the kind before."

Shelagh Sutton, "The Story of Borrowdale", 1961:
"... the road was improved from time to time and the tourists came bumping over the rough track from Keswick in two-horse carriages. A new section was built by-passing the Bowder Stone and the gang of workmen who were contracted for £83 were so hindered by land falls that a subscription fund was inaugurated to save their families from want."

Cumberland Pacquet, 19 Feb 1821: "The road from Keswick into Borrowdale is putting into excellent travelling condition. The rocky pass on this side the Bowder Stone has been indicted."


Westmorland Gazette, 19 May 1821:
"That a taste for the sublime and beautiful is not confined to persons of cultivated minds, but is a kind of universal principle, cannot justly be denied.- A Gentleman residing among the mountains in Cumberland was talking to a peasant of the eagles that used to infest Borrowdale, and carry off poultry, and sometimes lambs. 'It is true,' said the peasant, 'that these birds of prey did us some damage, but I am sorry they are all gone.' 'Why so ?' said the Gentleman. 'Because,' replied the peasant, 'it gives me pleasure to see an eagle- it is such a noble work of God.' "

Cumbria Archives, Carlisle, ref. Q/L/3/1, 1822-4: Alehouse licenses for Allerdale above Derwent, authorised by the justices of the peace meeting at Whitehaven, 22-23 Sep 1823 [mistake for 1822] include:
Coates Mary, victualler, Borrowdale, bond £30 (surety, Jonathan Payle, innkeeper, Buttermire, bond £20) The Miner's Arms
[The only other licensed house in Borrowdale was the Stephenson's Arms at Lodore, named after the local landowner; and this remained the case in every surviving licensing record of the period, the last available being 14 Sep 1827, at ref. Q/L/3/2 (except that in that year the name was mis-written as the "Mercer's Arms")]

Carlisle Patriot, 27 Dec 1823:
At Crosthwaite Church, Mr. William Thompson, of Borrowdale, to Miss Coates, daughter of Mrs. Coates, of the Miners Inn, of the same place."

Westmorland Gazette, 28 Aug 1824:
"The New Chapel at Borrowdale was opened on the 15th, and well attended, though the day was exceedingly wet. An excellent sermon was preached by the Rev. A. Heslop, the Curate, from I. Kings, chap. 8. ver. 27. 28."

Jonathan Otley, "A Concise Description of the English Lakes and Adjacent Mountains", 1827 edition:
p28 [describing Wasdale]: "At Nether Wasdale, about a mile and a half from the foot of the lake, there are two public houses where tavellers may have refreshment for themselves and horses: there is no other between this and Rosthwaite in Borrowdale, a distance of fourteen miles, one third of which is very difficult mountain road."
p93 [describing Watendlath]: "A track leads from thence over the hill, from which there is a fine view of the head of Borrowdale; it then descends steeply to Rosthwaite, whence the return may be made by Bowder Stone to Keswick ..."
"Keswick to Buttermere.- An excursion through Borrowdale to Buttermere may be made on horseback, taking the road as before described as far as Bowder Stone: a mile beyond which, at Rosthwaite, is a small public-house. ..."

Lancaster Gazette, 9 Feb 1828 ("From Billinge's Liverpool Advertiser")
No. XV.
Excursion to Borrowdale and Wastdale

[after visiting the Bowder Stone] The vale is a cul de sac, being blocked up at the extremity by lofty mountains of an imposing boldness of form, some of which have a considerable quantity of wood around their base. We descended the hill to the level of the river, and proceeded to Rosthwaite, a village in the middle of the valley, a mile beyond Bowder Stone. Here is the last public-house to be found on the route, and therefore we stopped to obtain the materials for a lunch, which we intended to enjoy on Stye Head ...

Pigot's Directory of Cheshire, Cumberland ..., 1828-9
KESWICK, &c. [entries include:]
Coates James, Borrowdale
Coates Matthew, Borrowdale
Miner's Arms, Mary Coates, Borrowdale

White's History, Directory ... Cumberland ..., 1829:
CROSTHWAITE PARISH ... BORROWDALE [entries include:] 2, at Rosthwaite.
2 Coates Mary, vict. Miners' Arms

Cumberland Pacquet, 15 May 1832:
"Tuesday last, the day appointed for opening the head inn, at Rossthwaite, in Borrowdale, was a sort of holiday in that secluded and romantic valley. Crowds of visitors, especially ladies from Keswick, honoured the hostess with their company on the occasion."

Westmorland Gazette, 19 May 1832:
"On the occasion of opening the Rosthwaite Inn, in Borrowdale, on Tuesday week, vehicles of various descriptions were engaged in conveying parties of ladies from Keswick to partake of a cup of tea with their new hostess. Among other things, the inhabitants of that romantic vale were presented with the novel spectacle of a coach and four, with no less than fourteen ladies as passengers."

Thomas Allom, "Eagle Crag from Rosthwaite, Borrowdale", drawn c1833:
[One of a large number of topographical images commissioned by Fisher & Co. from Allom and other artists, and engraved on steel plates in minute detail, for publication in their "Northern Tourist" series and republication in many books from the 1830s onward. Comparison with Allom's original drawing, owned by the Wordsworth Trust, reveals how much of the minute detail was faked by the engravers, who made the scene look wilder than Allom drew it, both by adding extra crags and by a roughly 20% exaggeration of the height of the mountains. The accompanying descriptive text by Thomas Rose is equally misleading:]
"Eagle Crag is a tremendous rock, at the head of Borrowdale to the east, where eagles have comonly fixed their abitation. The young eagles are occasionally caught by the adventurous inhabitants of the valley, who, when standing underneath, observe the place where the nest is seated, and afterwards, from the summit of some cliff, let down by ropes one of the most hardy of their companions, to secure the nest while the old eagles are abroad.
The present view includes an branch of the Derwent river, the hamlet of Stonethwaite, the lofty acclivity of Eagle Crag, and a distant glimpse of 'the mighty Helvellyn.' "

Eagle Crag from Rosthwaite, by Thomas Allom, c1833

This view of Stonethwaite and Eagle Crag was sketched by Thomas Allom at the south end of the small fields which stretched south from Miss Barker's house between the river and the road.

Pigot & Co. Directory of Cumberland, 1834 edition:
KESWICK [entries include:]
Low Dore, Thos. Mossop, Borrowdale
Miners' Arms, John Head, Borrowdale

Edward Baines jnr. "A Companion to the Lakes of Cumberland ...", 3rd edition 1834:
[A revised version of the articles published in Billinge's Liverpool Advertiser in 1827-8, q.v.] p157: "The vale is blocked up at the extremity by lofty mountains of an imposing boldness of form, some of which have a considerable quantity of wood around their base. Rosthwaite Cam and Glaramara rise in front, as the spectator looks up the valley from Bowder Stone; Eagle Crag (where the royal birds formerly built their aerie) towers above the valley of Stonethwaite on the left, and Scawfell Pikes, Great End, and the regular cone of Great Gavel (or Gable) over that of Seathwaite on the right. We descended the hill to the level of the river, and proceeded to Rosthwaite, a village in the middle of the valley, a mile beyond Bowder Stone. Here is the last public-house to be found on this route, and therefore we stopped to obtain the materials for a lunch, which we intended to enjoy on Sty-head, within sight of Scawfell Pikes.
The traveller might be worse provided, either with bed or board, than at the Royal Oak, Rosthwaite, which I venture to pronounce a snug, comfortable, and respectable house of entertainment."
p334: "The ride up Borrowdale to Seatoller has already been described, but, for this journey, it may be desirable to mention that at Rosthwaite is the last public-house before coming to Strands, in Nether Wasdale."


Carlisle Journal, 7 Jun 1834 (from a letter in the Whitehaven Herald):
"EARTHQUAKE IN CUMBERLAND! - 'Having been from home this week end, I am obliged to give you a rather hurried account of an earthquake by which this neighbourhood was visited about one o'clock in the morning of Wednesday last; how far it may have extended I have not been able to ascertain. Most probably you will have received communications from other places, relating the circumstance; in consequence of which it may suffice to say, that it has been more or less very sensibly felt throughout the parish of Crosthwaite, particularly at Dancing-Gate, Mill-Beck, and Applethwaite, in Under Skiddaw- at Portinscale, also at Seatoller, and Seathwaite, and various other places in Borrowdale. The accounts from all those places particularly agree as to time and effects, which leaves no reason to dispute the cause. The noise preceding the shock, is represented by some to resemble distant thunder, but compared by others to a sudden gust of wind; and at some places, whole families were aroused, fancying that their houses were entered for the purposes of plunder. But the most singular fact is, that the water of a small brook which falls from Skiddaw, passing through Applethwaite, and which was previously used by the inhabitants, has since then been rendered unfit for use, its appearance being quite loathsome, and as if mixed with oil.' "

Kendal Mercury, 7 Jun 1834:
"EARTHQUAKE.- A phenomenon of this description, which though rare in this part of the world, occurred in the neighbourhood of Keswick, between the hours of one and two o'clock, in the morning, on Wednesday week. It would seem (as no account is rendered of it from any other part) that it has been entirely confined within the limits, and range of those towering and majestic mountains, by which that far-famed vale is so romantically encircled. In a direction situate between, and particularly lying contiguous to the bases of the two stupendous mountains, Skiddaw and Scawfell, the shock seems to have been the most sensibly felt. At Mirehouse, (near to the foot of the former) the residence of John Spedding, Esq., distant about four miles north of Keswick, and at Seathwaite, in Borrowdale, (near to the foot of the latter) distant about nine miles south of Keswick; those places were both alike affected, and they appear to have been the two extreme points visited by this phenomenon; at various places in Underskiddaw, at Portinscale, a village about a mile west of Keswick, also at Keswick; and passing beyond the Derwent Lake, into Borrowdale, to Rosthwaite, the shock has been sensibly felt to a greater or lesser degree. The air at the time of the occurrence was perfectly calm and serene, and the effect and sensation produced at the different places, corroborate so entirely, as to leave no doubt as to the cause. The shock, as is usual on such occasions, was preceded by a rumbling noise like that of carriages, or the rushing of wind; and in many places whole amilies were much alarmed. But the most singular fact is, that the water of a small brook which falls from Skiddaw, passing through Applethwaite, and which was previously used by the inhabitants, is said by them, to have been since then rendered unfit for use."

Carlisle Journal, 14 Jun 1834 (from the Whitehaven Herald):
"KESWICK, June 7th.- Numerous concurring accounts have, during the last few days, been received from various places in the neighbourhood of Keswick respecting the earthquake named in the last week's Herald, which corroborate each other so entirely as to leave no doubt as to the fact. It appears to have been entirely confined within the range of those majestic mountains with which that delightful valley is encircled. The stupendous Skiddaw and Scawfell seem to have been the two extreme points visited by this phenomenon, it having extended along the base of the former in a northern direction to the distance of about four or five miles, and to the distance of about nine or ten miles in a southern direction, up to the base of the latter, affecting all places (either more or less) lying in the tract between them."

[NB: This dramatic news was very much upstaged by the reports from South America of a major earthquake, which devastated entire towns and was featured in preference by, for example, the Westmorland Gazette. The above accounts clearly come from the same correspondent, who is likely to be watchmaker, writer and geologist Jonathan Otley of Keswick.]

Westmorland Gazette, 19 Dec 1835:
The effect produced on the mind of the angling public by such papers, in Blackwood, [i.e. Blackwood's Magazine] as Christopher at the Lakes ... and many others, imbued with a similar spirit, and bearing the impress of the same master hand, is extremely questionable, so far as the general interests of society are regarded. ...
From Midsummer to Michaelmas the lakes are perfectly swarming with visitors, while trout have, in the same ratio, become scarce; and beds are scarcely to be had for love or money. It is in vain that the 'contemplative man' endeavours to enjoy his meditations alone.
Thinking to find something like solitude in the desert, he takes the lonely road to Buttermere up Borrowdale; but still he cannot escape the lakers, who cross him at every turn of the dale.
At Rosthwaite great annoyance awaits him; for there does he behold, in that heretofore quiet and secluded spot, a party of young men and maidens quadrilling it to the melancholy wailings of a pale-faced young gentleman's flute ...
The Angler's Souvenir- just published."


Cumberland Pacquet, Tuesday 4 Jun 1839:
"An unfortunate accident took place at Whyfoot side quarry [aka Quayfoot, I think], in Borrowdale, this day week, which might have been attended with loss of life. Three men named Thomas Simpson, Richardson Earl, and John Earl, the lessees of the quarry, were working, a large quantity of rock suddenly fell and buried all the three men under the broken fragments, yet in such a manner that they were able to call for assistance. The attention of a person passing the place was directed to the spot in consequence of the moans of the sufferers, and aid being promptly obtained they were all liberated with as little delay as circumstances would admit of, when it was discovered that one of Simpson's thighs was fractured.- Mr. Edmonson, surgeon, was immediately sent for, under whose professional skill, assisted by Mr. Stoddart, surgeon, the three sufferers, though much bruised, are all doing well."

Cumberland Pacquet, 25 Jun 1839:
"At Rossthwaite, in Borrowdale, near Keswick, on Monday week, Mr. Thomas Simpson, aged 55 years. The deceased was one of the unfortunate quarrymen who, a few weeks ago, met with a serious accident in that neighbourhood. The unfortunate man had his thigh broken in Whyfoot slate quarry, and was otherwise dreadfully crushed; he bore an exemplary character through life, and has descended into the grave universally lamented."

Carlisle Journal, 12 Oct 1839:
At Crosthwaite Church, Keswick, on Saturday last, Mr. Thomas SIMPSON, broker, New York, America, eldest son of Mr. John SIMPSON, of Rossthwaite, in Borrowdale, to Miss Sarah WILSON, of the same place."

Census return- Cumberland, Crosthwaite parish, Rosthwaite, 1841:
[Dwellings were not necessarily recorded in geographical order within townships in 1841, but they may have been in this case; also, ages of adults are given to the nearest 5 years:]
Onwhyn's Pocket Guide to the Lakes, 1841:
"Borrowdale commences soon after passing Bowder Stone; this lovely and most picturesque valley fully realises all that has been said and worked in praise of it, by peers, painters and poets; and it will truly bear comparison, in my poor opinion, with the choicest scene of the kind in either Scotland or Wales. The hills which encompass this vale, are rugged, steep and lofty, completely out-shutting, as it would seem, all intercourse with the country beyond it; but it is not so; for, with all its retired, secluded situation, it has been more visited, talked of, sketched and bepraised, both in verse, blank verse, and attempts at both, than any other spot in the island.
The little village of Rosthwaite is seated about midway in the valley; it contains an inn of humble appearance, but clean, called the Royal Oak. A little beyond Rosthwaite a mountain-road branches off in the direction of Langdale; my course lies more towards the head of Borrowdale, to a place called Sea Toller ..."

Carlisle Journal, 24 Dec 1842:
"At the Parsonage, Borrowdale, on Thursday, the 15th inst., Margaret, the beloved wife of the Rev. Mr. Newby, aged 44 years."

Cumbria Archives, Carlisle, ref. DRC 8/55, c1843:
Crosthwaite tithe awards
Plot 176 [site of later Scafell Hotel] house & garden owned by Lawrence Harrison and occupied by Thomas Simpson.
Harrison also owns a small meadow (1 rood 30 perches) called "Stangs", just east of the valley road and north of Rosthwaite bridge.
Based on the Borrowdale tithe award map

Cumbria Archives, Carlisle, ref. PR 174/39, 1843:
Borrowdale Chapel account book
One of the two churchwardens for 1843 is Thomas Simpson, whose address is given as Miss Barker's, Rosthwaite [directories show that he later lived at Hazel Bank, across the river, which was probably built for him in the 1850s]


Carlisle Journal, 7 Sep 1844:
"At Rossthwaite, in Borrowdale, on the 28th ult., Mr. Joseph Simpson, son of the late Mr. Thomas Simpson, formerly of the High Low Door, in Borrowdale, aged 34 years. The deceased was a pawnbroker in New York, America, and had been induced to visit his native vale for the benefit of his health."
[New York trade directories from later in the 19th century list a growing number of Simpson pawnbroking outlets, as the family there built on its success]

Carlisle Journal, 29 Mar 1845:
" At Rossthwaite, in Borrowdale, on the 15th instant., Mr. John Simpson, innkeeper, aged 67 years;"

Carlisle Journal, 21 Nov 1846:
"The annual hunt took place at the Royal Oak inn, Rosthwaite, Borrowdale, on Monday last. Mr Crozier's hounds cast off at daybreak. They had some very splendid runs, and succeeded in killing anumber of hares. In the evening the company sat down to an excellent dinner at the inn, and did ample justice to the good things which the worthy hostess, Mrs. Simpson, had set before. The evening was spent in a sportsman-like manner."

Sylvan's Pictorial Handbook to the English Lakes, 1847:
"[approaching via the Bowder Stone] The village of Rosthwaite is situated in about the centre of the valley of Borrowdale, rather more than six miles from Keswick. A more beautiful and romantic spot for a village can hardly be imagined, watered as it is by two principal streams flowing from the surrounding mountains, which unite and form the sylvan river of the Grange or Derwent, just below the village. Rosthwaite may be approached by another road, leading from Derwent Water, a short distance from Barrow House, and passing through the village of Watendlath, a road not to be exclled in obtaining beautiful views of Derwent and Bassenthwaite Lakes at the same time, as also of the broad extent of Borrowdale, backed by Scaw Fell Pikes and Sty-head. The little church of Borrowdale is seen at a short distance from the village, where the road divides, one into Langdale, through Stonethwaite, and the barren mountain amphitheatre, passing Eagle Crags and Glaramara, and over the Stake; the other into Wastdale, by way of Sty-head, a pass 1250 feet high, and to Buttermere by a branch road at Seatoller, over the ascent of Buttermere Hause, a pass very steep and rough, 1100 feet in height, and presenting extremely delightful views for the pedestrian.
The excursion into Langdale is seldom taken, except by those who prefer the quiet sublimities of nature in all their native wildness to the usual route by a carriage drive. This can only be accomplished by the pedestrian, or with a stout little pony. No traveller, however, should omit going as far as Eagle Crag, which may be seen rearing its majestic head above the hamlet of Stonethwaite, in looking into Borrowdale from Rosthwaite. ..."

Rosthwaite c1847, an over-dramatised view

Illustration of Rosthwaite, heading the Borrowdale chapter in Sylvan's Handbook. The artist (Thomas or Edward Gilks) has played multiple tricks to heighten the drama of the scene. The viewpoint seems to be Rosthwaite Bridge, several minutes' walk from the village- in effect we are looking through a telescope. It is, moreover, a magic telescope which has almost doubled the height of the fells around the village, and shifted them left, relative to the road line, to provide a more harmonious and dramatic composition.

Mannix & Whelan Directory of Cumberland, 1847:
CROSTHWAITE ... BORROWDALE TOWNSHIP [entries include:] ... 2, at Rosthwaite.
2 Simpson, Sarah, victualler, Royal Oak.

KESWICK [entries include:]
Gardeners, Nursery, & Seedsmen.
Minnikin, George Rennison

Shipping and Mercantile Gazette, 3 Sep 1847 [from the Cumberland Pacquet]:
"Keswick was never known to have been more crowded with tourists than it has been for some time past. The inns and lodging-houses were all full, and many parties had to travel as far as Rosthwaite, in Borrowdale, in search of sleeping accommodation."

Slater's Directory ... Cumberland, 1848:
KESWICK [entries include:]
Low Dore, Thomas Mossop, Borrowdale
Royal Oak, John Simpson, Borrowdale


Manchester Courier, 14 Sep 1850 [from the Westmorland Gazette:
"MOUNTAIN TOURISTS.- On Wednesday week, a remarkably fine day, thirteen different parties availed themselves of the opportunity of ascending the far-famed Skiddaw. Nearly all the guides were engaged for the occasion, and at one time there were no less than 65 persons upon the mountain, besides a great number of ponies. There has not been such a multitudinous invasion of Skiddaw in any one day during the season. The fine weather on Wednesday appears to have bee particularly attractive to tourists. The far more rugged and secluded Pike of Scawfel had a score or more visitors, including ladies. By extraordinary efforts, one party had managed to get ponies up the steep pass of Rossett Gill, and as far as within a mile or so of the summit of the rugged Pike."

Census return- Cumberland, Crosthwaite parish, Rosthwaite, 1851:
Census return- Cumberland, Keswick, 1851:
Cumberland Pacquet, 25 Nov 1851:
At Crosthwaite Church, Keswick, on Tuesday last, Mr. George Rennison Minnikin, nurseryman, to Margaret, daughter of the late Isaac Wilson, Esq., solicitor, Worksop, Nottingham."

Cumberland Pacquet, 2 Nov 1852:
"At Crosthwaite church, Keswick, on Thursday last, Mr. Joseph Wilson, Yeoman, to Dinah, daughter of Mrs. Sarah Simpson, innkeeper, all of Rossthwaite, in Borrowdale."

Westmorland Gazette, 13 Nov 1852:
"LAKE NOTES IN OCTOBER.- [serialised narrative of a tour through the Lake District] No. V.

Next morning the skies seemed bright and promising; so we took a car and started to make one of the favourite excursions from Keswick, through Borrowdale, and by the foot of Honister Crag to Buttermere, Crummock Water, and Scale Force; returning by Newlands Hawes and Vale. ...
From the Bowder (boulder) Stone- rightly named, for it has apparently no connection with the surrounding strata- another mile brought us to the little village of Rosthwaite, with its small inn, and passing through the village, we next approached the small episcopal chapel of Borrowdale. ..."

Black's Picturesque Guide to the English Lakes, 1853:
p116: "A mile above Bowder Stone is Rosthwaite, where there is a small inn, at which a guide may be procured to any of the points of interest in the neighbourhood. A short distance further a road strikes on the left through Stonethwaite to Langdale, passing under a fine rock called Eagle Crag, and then over the ridge called the Stake."
p185 [Itinerary VII: Keswick to Cockermouth via Buttermere]: "6m. Rosthwaite vill. Here is a small inn. This is the widest part of the valley. The mountain Glaramara is seen in front. Scawfell Pikes, Scawfell and Great Gavel are seen over Seathwaite.
Half a mile beyond, near Borrowdale Chapel, a road diverges to the valley and village of Stonethwaite. Eagle Crag is a fine rock near the latter. A mountain path proceeds over the Stake, a lofty pass, into Langdale."

Carlisle Journal, 11 Mar 1853:

the following Lots of WOOD ... growing at WOOD END BROW, on the West margin of Bassenthwaite Lake ... growing near the Lodore Waterfall, in Borrowdale.
Mr. G.R. MINNIKIN, Nurseryman, Keswick, will show the Wood, and further particulars may be known on application to Messrs. STUDHOLME and CLARKE, Land Agents, Carlisle.

Cumbria Archives, Carlisle, ref. D/LAW/1/170 29 Jan 1855:
Borrowdale Manor verdicts, correspondence etc., including:
Letter to the Manor steward from Joseph Wilson, Rosthwaite, 29 Jan 1855 [mostly about the estate of the late John Allison, inherited by his son Thomas Allison, but abruptly interrupted in the middle by the following:] ... "We are wishing to reduce the great brow on Rosthwaite side of Bowder stone and Mr Fisher will be one quarter of the expence and the rest must be raised by subscriptions and it is agread upon that the Rev George Newby must write to Sir Wilfred Lawson to see if he will be any thing towards the expence, as it will be of very great benefit to Borrowdale" ...

Slater's Directory ... Cumberland, 1855:
KESWICK [entries include:]
Banks Mary, Newton Place, Borrowdale
Wilson John, Grange, Borrowdale
Low Dore, Margaret Mossop, Borrowdale
Royal Oak, Wm. Simpson, Borrowdale

Harriet Martineau, "Complete Guide to the English Lakes", 1855 [+ 2nd ed. 1858]
p77 [tour to Watendlath]: "The descent upon Rosthwaite is the concluding treat. The way is easy,- a gentle slope over grass and elastic heather; and the whole surface is starred over with bright heath flowers. The head of the dale, imposing under all aspects, opens out, and seems to be spreading its green levels for the stranger's rest. The passes to Langdale by the Stake, to Wastdale by Sty Head, and to Buttermere by Honister Crag, disclose themselves round the projecting Glaramara. The other way lie Grange and the Lake; and beneath lies Rosthwaite, with the brattling stream behind, which must be crossed by stepping-stones to reach the little inn. Before turning his face lakewards, the traveller must go forward a few yards from Simpson's inn, to where he will see a narrow entrance and steps in the right-hand fence. He must go in there, and mount that little hill, called Castlehill, whence the truest and best total view of Borrowdale is obtained; for the station is nearly central."
BORROWDALE [entries include:]
Simpson, Thomas, Esq., Hazel Bank
Simpson, William, innkeeper, Rosthwaite
Wilson, Joseph, yeoman [not 1858], Rosthwaite

KESWICK [entries include:]
Minnikin, George R., nurseryman and seedsman

Ellis Yarnall, diary entry from "Walks in Wordsworth Country", 13 Aug 1855 [as published 1899]
[Yarnall first published this text in Lippincott's Magazine a few years after the events it describes, but I have transcribed it from his 1899 book "Wordsworth and the Coleridges". The particular Coleridge who accompanied him on this ambitious walk through Borrowdale and Easedale to Grasmere was his friend the Rev. Derwent Coleridge; we meet them, as usual, contemplating the descent from Watendlath]:
"Climbing another ridge, we found ourselves looking down upon Borrowdale and the little village of Rosthwaite, one of the loveliest views I ever beheld. Sunlight was upon the vale while we stood in the shadow. We were looking up Borrowdale to the Sty-head Pass. As we descended into the valley we could enjoy the view of it every step of the way. At Rosthwaite we had luncheon. It was half past three. We had still a mountain to climb; and as there was something of danger, for we might lose our way should the mist increase, we took a guide, a man well known to Mr. Coleridge- one of the dalesmen of Borrowdale."
[Thanks to the Spatial Humanities and Geospatial Innovation projects at Lancaster University for pointing me to this text]

Cumbria Archives, Whitehaven, ref. DWM/412/107, 11 Feb 1856:
Will of Sarah Simpson of Rosthwaite

Westmorland Gazette, 23 Feb 1856:
"At Rosthwaite, in Borrowdale, on the 15th inst., in the 78th year of her age, Sarah, widow of the late Mr. John Simpson, farmer and innkeeper- greatly respected."

Kendal Mercury, 13 Sep 1856:
"THE SHEEP FAIRS AT BORROWDALE, THRELKELD, AND NEWLANDS.- These fairs were held respectively at the above places on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday. At Borrowdale, wethers fetched from 17s. to 21s.; and ewes from 10s. 8d. to 11s. 6d. Wool was from 12s. to 1s. 6d. per stone. ... The sports were held on Thursday, at the Royal Oak Inn, Rosthwaite, Borrowdale. In addition to a liberal local subscription, £10 was given by Wilson Simpson, Esq., of New York, making altogether a prize of £20. The games were varied. Hound racing was followed by wrestling. Fifty-four wrestlers were entered; these were gradually reduced in the sixth round to Richard Wright, of Longtown, and John Braithaite, of Haile, when the former came off victor. A second contest took place between the twenty-four last standers, which, in the fifth round, terminated in John Crosthwaite winning a double victory over Henry Ivison and Robert Hodgson. A foot-race followed, in which R. Wright, of Longtown, was the winner. He also won the first prize in the standing high leap which succeeded. Cuthbert Harrison gained the running leap. In a second series of leaps the first winner of both the standing and the running leap was Jonathan Scott, of Keswick. The weather was extremely favourable for the rural sports, which commanded a large attendance."

Carlisle Journal, 15 May 1857:
TO be LET, and entered upon at Whitsuntide 1857, a MANSION, containing spacious Apartments and eligible for a Family Residence or Boarding House, or School, lately occupied by Mr. THOMAS SIMPSON, and at present by Mr. JOSEPH WILSON, his under-tenant, situate at ROSTHWAITE in the wild and romantic Vale of Borrowdale, Two Miles from the Head of Derwent Lake, and Six Miles from Keswick; with a Close of Land containing 1a. 2r. adjoining, through which flows a beautiful rivulet, well stocked with trout; and a small Dale of Land near thereto.
Application to be made to Mr. GEORGE WATSON, Surveyor, Keswick; or Mr. LAWRENCE HARRISON, Solicitor, Penrith."


Kendal Mercury, 3 Oct 1857 (from the Cumberland Pacquet, 29 Sep):
"PERILOUS DESCENT FROM SCAWFELL PIKES.- On Wednesday week, a party of nine individuals from the neighbourhood of Keswick set off for the purpose of making a tour to Scawfell. The day was favourable for the excursion, and all passed off agreeably, until they reached that part of the mountain where the ponies are generally left. Here they alighted and gave the ponies into the charge of a person engaged for that purpose, and now began the most difficult part of their ascent. At the same time the clouds began to lower, and patches of mist came whisking past the excursionists; but nevertheless they pressed on, determined to reach the summit, which they did after much toil and fatigue. The mist now became so thick, that they were unable to see ten yards before them, and the difficulty was how to find their way down again. By some means or other the party got separated, and, after groping about for several hours, some found themselves in Eskdale; others were contented to stay upon the mountain all night; and only two out of the nine found their way to where the ponies were left and were glad to avail themselves of their services. These brought intelligence of their friends being missing, when several individuals set off in search of them (some with only their slippers on), but nothing could be heard of them until next day, when those who had been upon the mountain all night found their way to Rossthwaite. Fears, however, were entertained for the fate of the other three, when the worthy curate of the parish (the Rev. A.R. Webster, who was one of the party) again set off in search of them. In course of time, he found that they had made their way to Eskdale, and from thence to Drigg, from which place they made the best of their way to Keswick, where they all met, rejoicing to see each other after such a miraculous escape from broken bones. The party was composed of both ladies and gentlemen, and long will they remember the excursion to Scawfell."

Post Office Directory of Cumberland, 1858:
Great Crosthwaite ... Borrowdale [entries include:]
Simpson Mr Thomas, Hazel bank
Fleming Thomas, farmer & shopkeeper, Stonethwaite
Simpson William, Royal Oak, farmer & shopkeeper, Rosthwaite
Wilson Joseph, farmer [yeoman], Rosthwaite

Keswick [entries include:]
Minnikin George Rennison, lodging house & nurseryman, Main street

Westmorland Gazette, 14 May 1859:
"KESWICK.- For the last few days the weather in the Lake District has been remarkably fine, and tourists are beginning to flock into the neighbourhood. ... There are already two distinguished families who have taken up their quarters in the neighbourhood, one at the snug little hotel at the head of the lake, and the other at Mr. Minnikin's lodgings."

Carlisle Journal, 21 Feb 1860:

Through the kindness of Mr. Crosier, his hounds have again been enlivening the dalesmen of this place. The meet was on Monday week, at Rosthwaite, and the sport was good, taking into consideration the extreme severity of the weather." [Further hunts on the next 2 days from Watendlath and Grange]

Kendal Mercury, 28 Jan 1860:
BORROWDALE TEA PARTY.- Mr Thomas Fleming, of Rosthwaite, had a tea party and ball, on Thursday, the 19th inst., to celebrate the opening of his new lodging-house for summer visitors at that place, when tea was served out to 160 in number, after which the ball commenced under the spirit-stirring strains from the fiddle of little John Birkett, and which was led off by 'Auld Sally Yewdale,' a native of Borrowdale, who has seldom overstepped the boundary of her native vale; and although she is upwards of 85 years of age, tripped about the room as lightly as some of her more youthful associates. The company did not separate till an early hour the following morning.

Census return- Cumberland, Crosthwaite parish, Rosthwaite, 1861:
Census return- Cumberland, Crosthwaite parish, Keswick, 1861:
Morris, Harrison & Co's Commercial Directory ... Cumberland, 1861:
BORROWDALE [entries include:]
Armstrong Benjamin, "Lowdore Hotel"
Banks Mrs. Mary, lodging house, Newton
Simpson William, "Royal Oak," farmer, and shopkeeper, Rosthwaite

Ordnance Survey 1:2500, surveyed 1862

Ordnance Survey 1:2500 Cumberland sheet Sheet LXX. 10, surveyed 1862. Plot acreages from Book of Reference are, 461: 1.771a; 462: 0.979a; 464: 1.091a; 465: 0.969a; 469: 0.564a; 471: 0.338a

Cumbria Archives, Whitehaven, ref. DWM/412/31, 17 Sep 1863:
Assignment of articles of clerkship of John Simpson, son of Thomas Simpson, of Hazel Bank, Borrowdale; from Edward Waugh and Thomas Simpson, assigned to George Cox Bompas of 19 Coleman Street, City of London.
[N.B. The DWM/412 collection in its entirety relates to the various branches of the Rosthwaite Simpson family, including some of the Americans]

Herman Prior, "Ascents and Passes in the Lake District of England", 1865:
Hotels and Inns are: ....
At ROSTHWAITE, in BORROWDALE: Oak Inn; Tourists' Hotel.
[p159, viewing Castle Crag from the east:] To the left of the crag is Rosthwaite village, the metropolis of Borrowdale; with Stonethwaite, a lateral valley of no great extent but of rare beauty, opening beyond it ...
[p174:] ROSTHWAITE (in Borrowdale).- This is an attractive place of sojourn in itself, and an excellent centre for mountain walks. ...

Whitehaven News, 19 Oct 1865:
[Report of the proceedings of the Michaelmas Quarter Sessions at Carlisle Crown Court, Wednesday 18 October:]
... The Court then proceeded to hear the following:-

Mr McAubrey appeared to support an appeal by Thomas Fleming, landlord of the Tourist Hotel, Rosthwaite, against the decision of the magistrates for the Derwent Division, when they refused to grant him a license at the last licensing sessions held at Cockermouth. The learned counsel called witnesses to show that the man was highly respectable, and that his house was commodious. That there was a great want of increased hotel accommodation in the district, owing to the increase of tourist traffic. Mr Fawcett opposed, on behalf of certain inhabitants of the district, on the ground that there were already sufficient hotel accommodation, and that to increase public-houses would tend to increase drunkenness.
After a consultation,
The CHAIRMAN said: The magistrates conceive, in this case, that in consequence of the great influx of visitors within the last two years, that circumstances have changed under which the magistrates at Petty Sessions refused the licence, and therefore the Bench is unanimously of opinion that, under those circumstances, the licence in this case should be granted.

Carlisle Journal, 20 Oct 1865:
[Report of the proceedings of the Michaelmas Quarter Sessions at Carlisle Crown Court, Wednesday 18 October:]

This was an appeal by Thomas Fleming, occupier of the Tourists' Hotel, Rosthwaite, situate between Lodore and Buttermere, against the decision of nine magistrates of the Derwent division, refusing to grant the wine and spirit license to his house, which now possessed the beer license.
Mr. MACOUBREY appeared for the appellant, and Mr. J.H. FAWCETT for the respondents.
Mr. MACOUBREY gave a very glowing description of the situation of the house he was applying to license, and also of the surrounding country, and pointed out the great inconvenience arising to travellers from the want of adequate hotel accommodation in the village. The only public house was the Royal Oak, and owing to the great increase of tourist traffic since the opening of the railway [in winter 1864-5, from Penrith to Cockermouth and beyond via Keswick], the two houses together were not sufficient for the accommodation required. He called Thomas Fleming, the appellant, who explained the accommodation his house afforded and said the number of tourists who now passed that way was increased ten to one.- In answer to Mr. FAWCETT, the appellant said he was aware that a large hotel was being built by a company [The Borrowdale Hotel, near the southern tip of Derwent Water, opened in 1866]. His house adjoined Mr. Simpson's, of the Royal Oak, and he knew that when wine was wanted at the Tourist's Hotel for parties there, they could not drink that sent from the Royal Oak, and he was obliged to send to Lodore for it. He knew what port and sherry were, but he never had tasted claret. He had resided in the house for eight years, and it had done very well for him.- The Rev. Mr. NEWBY showed that the present accommodation was insufficient, and that it would be better for both houses, and the public generally that this licence should be granted. With regard to the promotion of immorality his impression was that this house being licensed would have a contrary effect, because one house would have a check upon the other. One day this summer, no fewer than twenty-six carriages passed his door.- Mr. FAWCETT read a memorial to the magistrates two years ago against the licensing of this house, which he said was signed by the witness.- The witness said that circumstances had now altered the case, and asked whether the hotel now building was required two years ago.- Benjamin Armstrong, proprietor of Lodore Hotel, said he had seen Fleming's house, which was well adapted for an hotel; and with regard to the increase of tourists he himself had sometimes driven as far as forty in a day from his house. Both of the houses in Rosthwaite could not supply the wants of the tourists.- Joseph Plaskett, George Litt, and Samuel Ladyman, gave evidence of the great increase of visitors and the requirement of increased hotel accommodation. This was the case for the appellant.
Mr. FAWCETT replied on behalf of the justices. He remarked that this was the third time an application had been made for a license to this house. After pointing out that if spirits were wanted they could be had a few doors from the place, and with regard to wine the appellant could avail himself of Mr. Gladstone's Act [the 'Single Bottle Act' of 1861, which allowed shops other than wine merchants to sell wine by the quart or pint bottle, for consumption off the premises], the learned counsel concluded by remarking that most of the crime that had come before these Sessions had been the result of drink. The Bench retured, and on their return after a short consultation,
The CHAIRMAN announced the decision of the Bench was that the magistrates' decision should be reversed and the license granted.

George K. Matthews, "The English Lakes, Peaks and Passes", 1866:
[p138, descending from Watendlath:] Deep down in the vale lies the village of Rosthwaite. It is a pretty panorama spread out below, and presents fresh scenes for admiration, while every turn opens up new claimants for the silent love with which one always lingers over nature's beauties; and such is Rosthwaite and its surrounding scenery. There is an inn at Rosthwaite, where the weary traveller may find rest. Half a mile beyond Rosthwaite, stands Borrowdale's little chapel ...
[p141, travelling south from Keswick:] About a mile beyond Castle Crag we enter the village of Rosthwaite, and pull up at the Royal Hotel, to bait the horses. Next to the Royal, stands the Tourists' Hotel, with its pretty flower-gardens.

Westmorland Gazette, 14 Sep 1867 (from the Carlisle Patriot):
"During the sunny days of the past week, [?Sally] Youdale, well known as the Queen of Borrowdale, at the advanced age of ninety-seven, might have been seen busily engaged haymaking on the estate of Mr. Thomas Simpson, of Rosthwaite. The 'queen,' although able to do a pretty fair day's work, thinks 'she isn't as good as she was yance.' "

Bucks Herald, 13 Mar 1869 (from the Carlisle Journal):
"THE QUEEN OF BORROWDALE.- Borrowdale has lost a celebrity. Miss Sarah Youdale, or, as she was more familiarly called, 'Old Sally Youdale,' finished her career on earth on Tuesday, February 23. She was born on Christmas-day, 1768, and consequently was upwards of 100 years of age, and during her extended career deserved and obtained the respect of all who knew her. Few visitors to Borrowdale, but made her acquaintance, and were gratified by her wonderful powers of conversation and her prodigious memory, which she retained until within a few days of her death, and which gave her a claim to the title of the Queen of Borrowdale, most cheerfully conceded to her by all who saw her. As an instance of her extraordinary constitution, only last season she assisted in the hayfield, and there was no one who enjoyed it more or whose laugh and shout were more jocund. It may be further stated that, except on one occasion, when she visited Whitehaven, she was never out of the parish of Crosthwaite, in which Borrowdale is situate, in her long life. Although she did not claim for her ancestors their arrival in England with William the Conqueror, it is an indubitable fact that on the suppression of the monasteries in the reign of Henry VIII the name occurs repeatedly in the records of the time as holders of small properties. She was the last of her race."

Penrith Observer, 4 May 1869 [also in the Cumberland and Westmorland Advertiser, 18 May 1869]:
TO be LET, and entered upon immediately, the TOURISTS' HOTEL, ROSTHWAITE, BORROWDALE, with good Stabling and 2 ACRES of LAND.- Apply to Mr. PETER CROSTHWAITE, Monks Hall, Keswick.

Black's Guide to the English Lakes, 1870 edition [also 1873]:

A mile below Bowder Stone is Rosthwaite, where there are two inns, the Royal Oak and the Tourist's Hotel."

Carlisle Patriot, 1 Apr 1870:
"TO BE SOLD, by PROPOSAL, a quantity of OAK, LARCH, ASH, &c., &c., now Growing on the Dale Head Estate, near KESWICK.
... further particulars may be had on application to Mr G.R. MINNIKIN, Scawfell Hotel, Borrowdale, near Keswick, by whom proposals will be received up to the 10th day of April ..."

Census return- Cumberland, Borrowdale parish, Rosthwaite, 1871:
Whitehaven News, 22 June 1871:
MINNIKIN.- On the 9th inst., at the Scawfell Hotel, Borrowdale, Mr. George Rennison Minnikin, late of Keswick, aged 65 years."

Westmorland Gazette, 2 Sep 1871:
SATURDAY, AUG. 26. ...

TRANSFER OF LICENCE.- Mr. John Todhunter having succeeded the late Mr. G.R. Minnikin as tenant of the Scawfell Hotel, Borrowdale, made application for a transfer of licence, which was granted by the Bench."

Cumbria Archives, Whitehaven, ref. DWM/412/104, 1872:
Mourning card for Thomas Simpson of Hazel Bank, Borrowdale, died 1 Feb 1872 aged 63, buried at Rosthwaite 6 Feb 1872

National Probate Calendar, 1872:
"SIMPSON Thomas. Effects under £1,500. 1 July. Administration (with the Will and Codicil) of the effects of Thomas Simpson, late of Hazel Bank, Borrowdale in the County of Cumberland Gentleman who died 1 February 1872 at Borrowdale was granted at Carlisle to John Simpson of Cockemouth in the said County Gentleman and Thomas Simpson of 2 Drury-lane Water-street Liverpool in the County of Lancaster Gentleman the Sons two of the Residuary Legatees substituted."

The Globe, 7 Sep 1872:
[a walk from Langdale]
"When I left this, and reaching the fine cul-de-sac, which closes Langdale on the north-west, was mounting the Stake Pass, which leads to Borrowdale, thunder was again heard, and mists surrounded me in the darkness of the evening, which, however, cleared off as the sun went down, giving hope of a finer day on the morrow. When that morrow dawned on me at the Scawfell Inn at Rosthwaite it had a most promising appearance, and by ten o'clock I was on foot and away, with the intention of ascending the Great Gable ..."

West Cumberland Times, 18 Apr 1874:
"MR HAWKINS, Q.C., one of the prosecuting counsel in the recent great trial of the Queen v. Castro, which resulted in the incarceration of the Tichborne Claimant in a cell at Newgate, is at present staying at Mr. Todhunter's, Scafell Hotel, Rosthwaite, Borrowdale."

York Herald, 10 Aug 1874:

A couple of miles past the Bowder Stone we stop at the Scafell Hotel, romantically situate among the hills, and possessing a good view of our memorable Greenup Gill ... and Eagle Crag and its rugged, rocky scar in full prospect. By the pure waters of the rippling Derwent we resume our journey, then amid the mountains ..."

Jenkinson's Practical Guide to the English Lake District, 1875
Advertisements supplement, pp 18-19:

Refreshment Rooms. Twelve Well-Aired Beds. Horses and Conveyances for Hire.


On the Direct Route from Keswick to Buttermere, nearest the Highest Mountains of any Hotel in the Lake District, has good accommodation, and is newly fitted up. Good Trout Fishing from the Banks of the Pleasure Ground. Letters arrive and are despatched daily. A splendid Croquet Ground and Baths are added to the establishment. Conveyances, Mountain Ponies, and Guides. Families Boarded by the Week or Month. Good Stabling and Coach-House.
J. TODHUNTER, Proprietor

Lakes Chronicle and Reporter, 6 Oct 1875:
"On Thursday, through the kindness of the Rev. J. Ward, incumbent of Rosthwaite, and Messrs. Jopson and Walker, churchwardens, the children attending Rosthwaite day and Sunday schools and Grange infant school, along with their mothers, teachers, and friends, to the number of 93, were invited to tea. Shortly after one o'clock a procession was formed in front of the school adjoining the Church, the children being well supplied with flags got up expressly for the occasion, and marched off to the adjacent villages of Stonethwaite and Rosthwaite ... finally winding up their march by arriving at the School-house at about four o'clock, the hour appointed to partake of tea. The spread was excellent, and reflected the greatest credit on Mrs. Simpson, the worthy hostess of the Royal Oak Temperance Hotel, Rosthwaite. Tea over, old and young adjourned to a field, kindly lent for the occasion by Mr. Todhunter, of the Scawfell Hotel, where various amusements, such as wrestling, racing, scrambling for apples, pears, sweets, &c., were freely indulged in. ..." ...

London Daily News, 22 Aug 1876 [+ many other newspapers]:
Mr. Edward Barnard, of Angel-street, St. Martin's-le-Grand, and Highbury Grove, who with his wife and only child has been spending the last week or ten days at Keswick, drove over to the Scaw Fell Hotel, Rosthwaite, in the cool of the evening of Sunday, the 14th inst., intending the following day to proceed to Wastwater, returning thence over the Blacksail and Scarf-gap Passes to Buttermere, hoping at the latter place to catch one of the afternoon coaches to Keswick. Excepting the knowledge that has since been obtained that he lunched at Ritson's Wastdale Inn about noon on the Monday, and was by the landlord directed on his way across Blacksail, no trace of him whatever has been discovered. ..."
[Details of the search given; reward offered. The finding of his body, at the foot of Pillar Rock, was reported in the papers around 12 September. The inquest at Butermere, as reported the following day, determined that he had died of natural causes, probably heat stroke or heart disease.]

Slater's Directory ... Cumberland, 1879:
KESWICK [entries include:]
Borrowdale Hotel, Edward B. Goodfellow, Borrowdale
Lodore Hotel, John Scott, Borrowdale
Holmes Richard, Seatoller, Borrowdale
Nicholson Mary, Borrowdale
Wilson Ann, Borrowdale
Scawfell, John Todhunter, Borrowdale
Simpson William, Borrowdale

West Cumberland Times, 11 Oct 1879:

TO BE LET, with Possession on 25th March Next, the 'Royal Oak' Temperance Hotel and Boarding-House, with the Farm, consisting of 200 Acres of Arable, Meadow, and Pasture Land, and 50 Cattle Grasses at Rosthwaite, in Borrowdale, near Keswick, with 200 Heath-going Sheep.
Much of the Land has been lately Drained, and the whole is in good condition.
The House and adjoining Buildings are in thorough repair, and well adapted for carrying on a large Tourist business.
Either the whole or such portions of the Land will be Let with the house, and with or without the Sheep and Cattle Grasses as may be agreed upon.
Further Particulars and Conditions of Letting may be known on application to Mr WILLIAM COATS, of Rosthwaite, who will Show the Premises, or to Messrs HAYTON & SIMPSON, Solicitors, Cockermouth, who will receive Tenders in writing until the 6th Day of November, 1879.
Cockermouth, 8th October, 1879."

English Lakes Visitor, 10 Jan 1880:
report from magistrates' court:
"John Todhunter, landlord, was also summoned for permitting drunkenness on his licensed premises, the Scawfell Hotel, Rosthwaite.- The defendant did not appear, and it was decided to take the case in his absence.- Inspector Richardson deposed that he and P.C. Ambler went to Rosthwaite on Friday, the 26th ult., in consequence of its being the quarrymen's pay day. They visited the Scawfell Hotel at 7.15 p.m., and found a number of men there the worse for drink. He drew the attention of the waitress to the condition of the men and she reported that she had 'stopped the tap.' Witness asked for the landlord, and she said he was in the parlour. Witness and the constable went outside and shortly afterwards heard shouts of 'Don't strike a man sitting!' and also a good deal of cursing and swearing. On going inside they saw Thomas Clark staggering about, wanting to fight. Witness asked if the landlord was engaged, and the servant said 'You know how he is engaged; he is lying drunk in the parlour.'- The Chairman: We cannot take that. [meaning that it was inadmissible hearsay evidence?]- Witness said he went into the parlour and found him on the sofa. After raising him up, witness told him that Clark was drunk and wanting to fight in the kitchen. Defendant replied 'Well, he is not half so drunk as I am.' (Laughter.) When he had got defendant on his feet the witness told him he had better stay where he was and that they would try to manage. Witness then went back to the kitchen and requested Clark to leave. On visiting the house again at nine o'clock they found Birkett drunk and asleep in front of the parlour fire. Witness did not say anything to the landlord but cleared the house. There had been a great deal of disorder and drunkenness.- After some consideration the Bench inflicted a fine of £5 and costs."

H.I. Jenkinson, "Tourists' Guide to the English Lake District", 1880:
p48: "At Rosthwaite, in Borrowdale, 6m. from Keswick, are the Scawfell Hotel and Royal Oak Hotel, both clean and cosy."
p59: "In the middle of the valley, about 1m. from the Bowder Stone, is the pleasant village of Rosthwaite, containing two hotels and lodging houses. ... Immediately after leaving Rosthwaite, the fine rugged heights of Glaramara are seen in front, separating the Seathwaite Valley from the Greenup and Longstrath valleys; and it almost completely hides the latter valley, which is on the E. side; but the bold Eagle Crag, which separates the Greenup and Longstrath valleys, stands commandingly on the left. ..."

Census return- Cumberland, Borrowdale parish, Rosthwaite, 1881:
English Lakes Visitor, 18 Jun 1881:
"NOTICE.- All Persons found Trespassing on the Land in the occupation of the undersigned in Borrowdale will be prosecuted, namely, Isaac Bristo, John Rigg (Rigg's Hotel), William Wilson, Daniel Jopson (Chapel House), Fletcher Wren, and Thomas Fleming."

Bulmer's History & Directory of West Cumberland, 1883
BORROWDALE [entries include:]
(Marked ... 2 at Rosthwaite.)
2 Rigg John, vict., Royal Oak (and posting
2 Simpson Ann, vict., Scawfell Hotel (and posting)

Slater's Directory ... Cumberland, 1884:
KESWICK [entries include:]
Borrowdale Hotel, Thomas Coward, Borrowdale
Lodore Hotel, John Scott, Borrowdale
Royal Oak Hotel, John Rigg, Rosthwaite, Borrowdale
Scawfell Hotel, Ann Simpson, Rosthwaite, Borrowdale
Abbott William, Manesty, Borrowdale
Birkett John, Coombe Cottage, Borrowdale
Bowe Wilfrid, Newton Place, Borrowdale
Dixon Elizabeth, Seathwaite, Borrowdale
Fleming Thomas, Stonethwaite, Borrowdale
Holmes Jane, Seatoller, Borrowdale
Nicholson Mary, Grange, Borrowdale
Robinson Elizabeth, Borrowdale
Robinson John, Borrowdale
Slee William, Grange View, Borrowdale
Thompson Joseph, Station rd., Borrowdale [sic]
Wilson Myles, High Lodore, Borrowdale
Wilson Thomas, Castlecragg, Borrowdale

Wigton Advertiser, 5 Jul 1884:
RIGG.- At the Royal Oak Hotel, Rosthwaite, Borrowdale, near Keswick, on the 30t ult., Mr. John Rigg, hotel keeper, aged 41 years."

English Lakes Visitor, 3 Jul 1886:
"Do you know the Scawfell Inn at Rosthwaite? The pleasant, quaint parlour upstairs, when tea is ready, irresistibly reminds one of a stage scene. Nowhere could one be more comfortable or in a better centre for mountain walks. ..."

Cumbria Archives, Whitehaven, ref. DWM/412/14, 1887:
Specifications, contracts and tenders for alterations and additions to Royal Oak Hotel, Rosthwaite

Lakes Chronicle and Reporter, 13 Apr 1888:
[Report of inquest on John Rigg, a Honister quarry worker who was hit by a falling block of ice and died several days later] "... On Monday morning the body was removed to Rosthwaite, and an inquest was held at Mrs Rigg's, Royal Oak Hotel, by Mr. John Simpson, deputy coroner for the district in which the accident occurred. The Rev. J. Taylor, vicar of Borrowdale, was foreman of the jury. ... After the inquest the body was taken in a conveyance to Coniston for interment." [There is no indication that the deceased was related to Mrs Rigg's late husband]

Census return- Cumberland, Borrowdale parish, Rosthwaite, 1891:
Kelly's Directory of Cumberland, 1894:
BORROWDALE [entries include:]
Baines Thomas, Scawfell hotel
Stanley Tom C. Royal Oak Hotel, Rosthwaite

Kelly's Directory of Cumberland, 1897:
BORROWDALE [entries include:]
Baines Thomas, Scawfell hotel
Royal Oak Hotel, Rosthwaite (Tom C. Stanley, proprietor); situated in one of the most beautiful parts of the Lake district; good accommodation, moderate charges; posting & coaches to all parts of the district
Wilson Joseph, apartments, Rosthwaite"

Ordnance Survey 1:2500, 1898

Ordnance Survey 1:2500 Cumberland sheet Sheet LXX. 10, 1898.

Bulmer's History, Topography & Directory of Cumberland, 1901:
"BORROWDALE PARISH [entries include:]
Stanley J.C., vict., Royal Oak and Scawfell Hotels, Rosthwaite"

Census return- Cumberland, Borrowdale parish, Rosthwaite, 1901:
F.G. Brabant, "The English Lakes", 1902:
"If the visitor wishes to stay in Borrowdale itself, he can choose between the large Lodore and Borrowdale Hotels at the S.E. corner of the lake, the lodgings at Grange, two smaller hotels and some lodgings at Rosthwaite, and a lodging-house at Seatoller at the foot of the Honister Pass."

Manchester Courier, 12 Aug 1902:

As a char-a-banc from the Derwentwater Hotel, Portinscale, was returning from Rosthwaite yesterday afternoon the horses took fright at an approaching motor car, turned round suddenly, broke away the fore part of the carriage body, and galloped with it back to Rosthwaite. The passengers were pitched out, and the driver sustained a broken leg. Several passengers were more or less injured, one elderly gentleman somewhat severely, and he was taken to the Lodoure Hotel. The accident happened at an awkward place near Bowdering End, between Rosthwaite and the Borrowdale Hotel. The driver of the motor returned to Keswick for medical help."

"Concise Guide to the English Lakes, Furness Abbey, etc.", new edition 1903:
"As we approach Rosthwaite (six miles from Keswick), Scawfell Pike is in front on the left of the valley, and Great Gable on the right. Both have cairns on their summits. Rosthwaite is situated amid scenery of unequalled loveliness and grandeur. There are two good Hotels, and comfortable lodgings may also be obtained. Close at hand is Borrowdale Church. There is no more delightful centre for mountain rambles in the whole district than this."

Cumbria Archives, Carlisle, ref. DX/132/22, 1903:
Auction details: Thornborrow & Co., 22 Aug 1903, 2pm, Queen's Hotel, Keswick.

"LOT 1
All that Freehold, Well Accustomed and Fully LICENSED HOTEL, widely known as

Situate at ROSTHWAITE, BORROWDALE, 6 miles from Keswick, together with Yard and Out-offices, comprising Stabling for 10 Horses, Large Coach-house, Smaller Coach-house or Bait Stable, with Driver's Room over, &c. Also several
CLOSES OF PASTURE LAND, containing 4a. 3r. 22p.,
or thereabouts, also such right (if any) as is possessed by the Vendor from the 21st May to the 21st September inclusive every year upon portion of a Meadow Field No. 415 on the Ordnance Survey of the Parish of Borrowdale, as shewn on the Plan edged Blue, now in the occupation of Mr. T.C. Stanley as tenant, on a seven years' lease from Lady Day, 1900, at an annual rental of £150. [plan based on OS 1:2500 1898 edition, plots 486, 488 & pts. 490 & 485 between river & road, the latter including the hotel (buildings as on original OS map); plus 511 over river, with strip of 510 between 511 & river: footbridge connects to 486]
The Hotel, which has an extensive connection and is one of the most popular Houses in the Lake District, has a frontage of 88 feet, is approached by two entrances, with gravel sweep, and Tennis Lawn in front, and contains on the Ground Floor: Hall with Porch Entrance, Coffee Room 22ft. 4in. by 18ft., Lofty Sitting Room 19ft. 8in. by 18ft., Smoke Room, Bar, Store Room, Large Front Kitchen, Back Kitchen, Scullery, Larder, Lavatory (H & C), and W.C. Spirit and Beer Store with entrance from the Yard. On the First Floor (which is approached by a principal and secondary staircases) there are pleasant Drawing Room 26ft. 3in. by 18ft. 1in., 13 Bedrooms, Bathroom (H & C), Lavatory (H & C) and W.C.
The Hotel is of substantial construction, occupying a pleasant and attractive situation in the far famed Valley of Borrowdale, and is one of the recognised headquarters for the Mountain Climbers of the Lake District. It is also on the direct route of the renowned Buttermere Coach Drive, admitted to be one of the finest drives in the Kingdom, and is a regular house of call for coaches throughout the season.
The Out-buildings provide ample accommodation for the extensive posting business which is carried on during the summer months.
The tenant has kindly consented to shew the Premises.
The Purchaser of this lot will also be entitled for ever to use and enjoy a water supply obtained from the Field No. 505 on the Ordnance Survey on entering into a Deed reserving an annual rent of 10s., and containing such other covenants and provisions as are similar to those now stated in an Indenture dated 19th March, 1881."

LOTS 2-5 are further up the Stonethwaite arm of the valley

Manchester Courier, 20 Jul 1905 [sic]:
"Scawfell Hotel at Rosthwaite, well known to visitors to Borrowdale, has been sold by auction for £2,700 to Mr. John Simpson, solicitor, of Cockermouth."