1) ‘Raff’ was foreign timber, mostly deals imported from Prussia and the Baltic: the history of these two words is closely linked..
A map of Huddersfield for 1820 has the word ‘raff’ written in the enclosure by the corn mill, on one side of the mill goit: it was a timber yard, and there have been ‘raff-merchants’ in Yorkshire from the seventeenth century at least: 1642 the Raffe-merchant may lawfully stile them good deales, Elmswell
1656 John Peckit, Rafmerchant, Hull
1756 Mr Osborne, Raff merchant, Sculcoates. The Leeds Mercury of 28 Nov. 1738 gives notice that Martin Browne keeps a Raff Yard … where is to be sold all Sorts of single and double Deals and Poles at reasonable Rates.