Carr's Biscuit Factory 

Carlisle’s Victorian industries boomed as railway development opened global export markets.  The collection reflects many of the key manufacturers of Carlisle’s industrial peak including Carr’s, Stead McAlpin, Hudson Scott, and Cowans Sheldon.  Victorian recreational exploits and law & order are also well represented in the collection.



Cowans Sheldon and Co Cranemakers

illustration showing double powered crab winch

Founded in 1846 at Woodbank Upperby, this Carlisle based engineering firm established a world leading reputation in the construction of rail and dock cranes. The firm was simply known in the city as “the cranemakers.” Cowans cranes were exported across the globe to countries including Japan,...

Netherby Hall Robbery

.38 bulldog revolver used by John Martin in Netherby Hall robbery

1885 perhaps witnessed the most notorious robbery in Cumbria’s history.  A notorious ladder gang met and plotted to burgle Netherby Hall, the Cumberland seat of Sir Frederick Graham. The gang members comprised of Anthony Benjamin Rudge, John Martin, James Baker and accomplice William Baker. This...

Carlisle's coats of arms

Silver freedom casket with Carlisle's illegal coat of arms, 1906

At both the main entrances to Tullie House are mosaics showing a coat of arms for the city of Carlisle made up of two shields. Inside, many of the railings around the building have shields with different designs on. On the outside of the rotunda, is yet another design. So, why does Carlisle have so...

Objects in this collection