Moses Carter - Histon Gentle Giant

Today the name of Moses Carter lives in Histon folklore and is pictured on our village sigh holding a bolder aloof. Born in 1801, here our great local historian, Ken Oates, takes up his story:

"Moses Carter was nearly 7 feet in height and weighed 23 stones. He was not a fat man but was well proportioned and very strong as he carried a combe of wheat under each arm. Unmarried, he lived in a hut built of clay hods. Every week he made a hugh beef steak pudding and boiled this with dumplings in a copper. He washed himself and his clothes in Dodd's Pond, Cottenham Road in Histon and sometimes in Cambridge he could be seen pushing a hugh cart full of vegetables. These he sold, and when he shouted out his wares he could be heard from far and wide. The vegetables were grown on Histon Moor and he pulled the harrows himself, and was heard to say on many occasions "I don't want no hoss."

Little children loved him and he would carry two or three under each arm. He would tease the little girls and let them kick his legs, and would roar with laughter and tell them to kick harder as he could not feel it. Naughty children were told "Be good or Mo Carter will cut off your head and put on a cabbage".

In the boxing booth at Stourbridge Fair he defeated all the boxers, and threw out the proprieter when he refused to pay him his promised reward.

For a bet, he carried a hugh boulder which he cut out of the ballast hole and put it at the corner of the Boot.

He was a kindly man and popular in the village. There was great excitement in Histon on one occasion when he disappeared, only to return a few days later from Ely Fair - he had walked there and back with his barrow."

Ken Oates

Moses Carter, who was the son of James and Susan Carter, died at the age of 59 on July 8th, 1860 and was buried in Histon Churchyard. Sadly the gravestone today is unreadable.