Aireborough Historical Society

1850 Prize Fight & Typhus Yeadon

Prize Fight & Typhus
Date February 1850
Location Yeadon
Photo ID


       One of those disgraceful exhibitions, a prize fight, took place on Yeadon Moor  on Monday last.

The combatants were two men from the neighbourhood of Leeds, one a native of the Emerald Isle, the other an Englishman.

After giving and receiving some very severe punishment for upwards of 45 minutes, the Englishman was declared to have won, the stakes (£20) were handed over to him; a spectator remarking at the time and very justly that "fools and their money are soon parted".

      Typhus fever has made its appearance here in it's most virulent form.

There are now several new cases under medical treatment.

One death only has occurred, we indulge the hope that the sanitary measures recommended by the Town Commissioners will be carried out to prevent its spread". 

Image courtesy of the British Newspaper Archives, research by Edwy Harling


Further information by Christine Lovedale

Typhus is caused by the Rickettsia bacteria transmitted to humans by parasitic carriers such as fleas, lice and ticks.

This and other diseases were common in the town in the mid 19th century.

In 1831 a Local Board of Health was set up to deal with the problems and health issues which afflicted the local population.

The Poor Law Commissioners in 1842 found conditions in Yeadon which aggravated disease, decomposing animal and vegetable remains, damp, filth, close and overcrowded homes.

The Local Board were challenged to provide clean water and adequate sewerage, a task which would take them into the early 1900s.


Post a Comment


: (optional)

: (optional)