Richard Hattersley the founder of the company served his apprenticeship at Kirkstall Forge. He set up his own business in 1789 at Stubbings Mill, Airworth, manufacturing nuts, bolts, screws and small parts for textile machines. Richard's son George came into the business and took over its running. In 1834 he was asked to build a power loom for weaving worsted cloth which previously had only been woven on handlooms The first loom was produced in 1834, it was never delivered as it was smashed up in transit by a group of handloom weavers of the Luddite persuasion fearful for their livelihood. The replacement was delivered. Hattersley's prospered developing an extensive catalogue, adding new products to their range which included as tobacco machines and garden furniture. Hattersley's continued to prosper with the number of employees peaking to around 1100 just prior to the First World War. They also ventured into production and the subsidiary companies have survived where the parent did not. It closed in 1983.
Hattersley produced a huge range of types of looms  over 120 years for all sectors of the market, from the narrow band looms to sheeting looms, have about 26 basic models in their catalogue at one time.
Hattersley Dobby Loom In 1867 George Hattersley and Sons created a loom with a dobby head. A dobby a mechanical heald lifting device which allowed weaving of much more intricate patterns on any looms to which it was fitted.
Hattersley Narrow Fabric Loom In 1908 Hattersley developed the world's first smallware (or narrow fabric) loom, these were suitable for weaving wicks for oil lamps, and the webbing that is used in the automotive industry. To demonstrate this loom, the firm bought the Cabbage Mills and later the Greegate Shed in Keighley where they started production of these products. The firm survives today as Hattersley Aladdin Ltd.
Hattersley Standard Loom In 1921 the Hattersley Standard Loom, designed and built by the company, was to sell in its thousands, bringing considerable financial success to the company. After the recapitalisation boom of 1919 cotton yarn production peaked in 1926, a further investment was sparse. Rayon, artificial silk, was invented in the 1930s in Silsden nearby, and the Hattersley Silk Loom was adapted to weave this new fabric.
Hattersley Domestic Loom The Hattersley Domestic Loom was part of the Hattersley Domestic System that include other machines such as pirn winder and warping mill. It was a compact machine, combing all the know how and precision engineering of the nineteenth century with the need for a treadle operated loom. This looms has tappets to control up to 8 shafts, healds or boards; most simply have 4 shafts and a set of four 2/2 Twill tappets and four plain weave tappets. 5,6,7,and 8 pick tappets were available. In order to cope with the different gearings the tappet drive cog on the bottom drive shaft could be adjusted and there are two sizes of tapped mounting drive cogs. There was also a Dobby version.
The first thirty Hattersley's were sent to the Outer Hebrides in 1919. These were 36 inches in the reed space and single shuttle. In 1924 the first six shuttle, 40 inch reed space looms arrived in Stornoway and this type of loom was the most commonly used loom in the islands' Harris Tweed Industry.