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Bader, Ernest (1890–1982), chemical manufacturer and industrial reformer, was born in Regensdorf, Switzerland, on 24 November 1890, the youngest of thirteen children of a protestant farmer, Gottlieb Bader, and his wife, Barbara Meier. He was expelled from school at the age of twelve and went to work as a menial in a ...

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Balme, Matthew (1813–1884), factory reformer, was born in Tong, Yorkshire, on 8 July 1813, the third son of Francis Balme (1742–1819), a yeoman farmer, and his wife, Elizabeth West (d. 1846), of Redhill Farm, Dudley Hill, Bradford. He was baptized at St James's Church, Tong...

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Clark, Frederick Le Gros (1892–1977), social and industrial reformer, was born on 3 September 1892 in Chislet, Kent, the eldest in the family of three sons and one daughter of the Revd (Edward) Travers Clark, of Washfield, Tiverton, Devon, and his wife, Ethel May...

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Harrison, Agatha Mary (1885–1954), industrial welfare reformer and unofficial diplomat, was born on 23 January 1885 at Sandhurst in Berkshire, the youngest daughter of Charles Harrison, a Methodist minister, and his wife, Elizabeth, née Tilt. She was educated at Jersey Ladies' College and at ...

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Hindley, Charles (1796–1857), politician and factory reformer, was born on 25 June 1796 at the Fairfield Moravian Settlement, Droylsden, near Manchester. He was the third son of Ignatius Hindley (1756–1803), a muslin manufacturer in Dukinfield, Cheshire, and his wife, Mary, née Ambler (1762–1801)...

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Hyde, Sir Robert Robertson (1878–1967), industrial welfare promoter, was born on 7 September 1878 in London, the second son among the five children of Robert Mettam Hyde, of Paisley, and his wife, Marjorie Stoddart Robertson, of Inveraray. His father was a constructional civil engineer who had been responsible for laying the first submarine cables in ...

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Lewis, John Spedan (1885–1963), department store owner and industrial reformer, was born in Marylebone, London, on 22 September 1885, the elder son of John Lewis (1836–1928), a Somerset draper who from 1864 built up a successful retail business in Oxford Street, and his wife, ...

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Richard Oastler (1789–1861) by James Posselwhite (after B. Garside) © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Oastler, Richard (1789–1861), factory reformer, was born on 20 December 1789 in St Peter's Square, Leeds, the eighth and last child of Robert Oastler (1748–1820), a local linen merchant, and his wife, Sarah Scurr (d. 1828). Of his mother's family little is known save that they were devout and respected middle-class folk who had been established in ...

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Williams, (Owen) Alfred (1877–1930), poet and writer on rural and industrial life, was born in South Marston, near Swindon, Wiltshire, the fifth of eight surviving children and the youngest of four sons of Elias Lloyd Williams (1849–1899), a decorative woodworker from Conwy, Wales...