The apprenticeship scheme formed a large part of the work of the Belfast Charitable Society from the early days. They found employers for the children, undertook welfare visits twice annually, and allowed the children to come back to the Poor House at holiday times and if they suffered from illness.

The apprenticeship scheme compliment the education the children received in the Poor House, and equipped them to become self-sufficient adults.

Clifton House’s vast archive dates back to 1752, when the Belfast Charitable Society was founded. Within this unique repository we have the records of the children, employers and the trades they undertook

One example is that of James Cahoon was apprenticed to learn the art of weaving two hundred years ago, on March 14th 1818.

OTD 14 March 1818