As the final preparations for the Through the Mill Exhibition fall in to place a number of people have contacted me about photographing artifacts they have gathered after the mill’s closure.

This collection of documents date from the 1920s and early 1930s and photographs don’t do justice to just how stunning they look. Paper documents are not that easy to photograph creatively so these are really archival type photographs.

The sample cards are a work of art in their own right. Clearly handmade the cards have dates of 1934 and 1928 written in pencil. The 1934 card comes in a little clear grease proof paper sleeve.

This photo shows the sleeve covering part of the sample card. The colour of the thread is still as vibrant as the day they were printed (although for obvious reasons I can’t say this with complete authority).

Finally it isn’t just the delicate detail of the sample cards that is of interest, one document outlines a family tree of the Barbour family and announces that the poet William Wordsworth actually visited the then town of Lisburn.

In 1829 he reportedly visited the factory with his friend John Barbour of Manchester who was on his way to marry Miss Atkinson of Portadown. There is so much local history focused on the Mill it would be a total shame if this sort of information was lost.

For more information about the Hilden Mill Exhibition (Through the Mill) click here.