The Kibworth and District Chronicle has published an article by Ian R.
Varey entitled "FWK is not a Dirty Word" giving useful background on
The Wigston Framework Knitters Museum islocated in an 18 century knitter's
home and workshop and contains a number of original hand frames.
From: Jan Bamford <jan.bamford(a)dial.pipex.com>
Subject: Re: Framework Knitter
Date: Sunday, May 31, 1998 05:11
I framework knitter is literally that - a person who knitted using a large
machine known as a Stocking Frame. They were large wooden frames consisting
a lots of mechanical parts and several hundred needles. They had a seat at
the front which the FWK (framework knitter) sat at and operated the
machinery using a combination of wrist and hand movements.
Many families in Nottingham were employed in the industry. The frames
themselves were quite expensive, so sometimes a family would rent one. The
father would operate the frame and the wife and children would wind the
thread and seam and mend the garments.
The machine made knitting a lot faster than the traditional method and this
caused riots in the early 1800s by people called Luddites who thought that
it was ruining the textile industry and creating poverty and slums.
My family have lived in Nottinghamshire for centuries and most of them were
FWKs. I also have a possible connection with a Luddite who was murdered 'in
the act' !
I have much more information if you need it, and I would reccomend a vist
to the Ruddington Framework Knitters Museum in Nottinghamshire where they
have working machines.