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Akroyd, Edward (1810–1887), industrialist and philanthropist, was born on 28 November 1810 at Brockholes, near Brookhouse, Ovenden, Halifax, the eldest of the ten children of Jonathan Akroyd (1782–1847) and his wife, Sarah, daughter of David Wright of Ovenden. Educated locally by an Anglican clergyman and at the ...

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Joseph Ashby (1859–1919) by unknown photographer © reserved

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Ashby, Joseph (1859–1919), farmer and social reformer, was born in Tysoe in Warwickshire on 13 June 1859, the son of an unmarried servant, Elizabeth Ashby. His father was the husband of Elizabeth's mistress, yet, common as such births were, Ashby's was in some ways different. His father provided for him but his mother, a fiercely independent woman, refused to use the money. More importantly his mother's branch of the ...

Article

Bray, Charles (1811–1884), freethinker and social reformer, was born in Coventry on 31 January 1811, the son of a wealthy ribbon manufacturer. Ill as a child, Bray was sent out of the city at an early age and attended a boarding-school from the age of nine to fourteen, after which he went to a school at ...

Article

Budgett, Samuel (1794–1851), merchant and philanthropist, was born on 27 July 1794 at Wrington, Somerset, the seventh of the twelve children of James Budgett (1747–1823), shopkeeper, and his second wife and cousin, Elizabeth Budgett (d. 1831). In 1801, after residing in Backwell...

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Sir Percy William Bunting (1836–1911) by unknown photographer, pubd 1910 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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J. E. G. de Montmorency

revised by Tim Macquiban

Bunting, Sir Percy William (1836–1911), social reformer and journal editor, born on 1 February 1836 at Ratcliffe, near Manchester, was only son of Thomas Percival Bunting and his wife, Eliza Bealey. Bunting's father, third son of Jabez Bunting, was a solicitor in Manchester...

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Busia, Kofi Abrefa (1913–1978), sociologist and politician, was born on 14 April or 11 July 1913 (he stated 11 July) at Wenchi, in the Asante region of the Gold Coast. He was the son of Yaw Bosea, a prominent member of the royal ...

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Carter, Henry (1874–1951), temperance campaigner and pacifist, was born on 3 November 1874 at 17 Cornwall Street, Plymouth, the son of George Henry Richards Carter, a basket-maker, and his wife, Lavinia Johns Kingdon. His father died when Henry Carter was young, so he was brought up by his mother, a devout Methodist and committed teetotaller. At the age of fourteen ...

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Sir Edwin Chadwick (1800–1890) by unknown engraver, pubd 1889 (after Mayall & Co.) © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Chadwick, Sir Edwin (1800–1890), social reformer and civil servant, was born at Longsight, near Manchester, on 24 January 1800. Surprisingly little is known of his early life, and of his mother nothing, except that she died in the infancy of her only son. His father, ...

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Chesson, Frederick William (1833–1888), campaigner for the rights of indigenous peoples, was born in Rochester, Kent, on 22 November 1833, and was baptized at Manor Street Methodist church, Old Brompton, Gillingham, Kent, on 30 March 1834, the only son and eldest child (there were four daughters) of ...

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Chunchie, Kamal Athon (1886–1953), Methodist minister and race relations worker, was born on 4 June 1886 in Kandy, Ceylon, the eldest of nine children (five sons and four daughters) of Muslim parents of Malay origin. His father, Athon Chunchie (1849/50–1928), of the Inche Che...

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Moncure Daniel Conway (1832–1907) by Debenham & Gabell © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Conway, Moncure Daniel (1832–1907), social reformer and ethical preacher, was born on 17 March 1832 at Middleton plantation, Stafford county, Virginia, the second of the six children of Walker Peyton Conway (1805–1884), a slave-owning planter, attorney, and judge, and his wife, Margaret (1807–1891)...

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Cory, John (1828–1910), coal broker and philanthropist, was born on 28 March 1828 at Bideford, the eldest of five sons of Richard Cory (1799–1882), merchant, and Sarah, both of Bideford. The father was the owner and master of a small vessel in the coastal trade, and his decision in the 1830s to open a store as ship's chandler and provision merchant in ...

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Craft, William (c. 1825–1900), slavery abolitionist, was born into slavery in Georgia, and apprenticed as a carpenter in Macon. His family was broken up when his parents, brother, and sister were sold separately to pay off their master's debts. At the age of sixteen ...

Article

D. L. Thomas

revised by Mari A. Williams

Davies, Robert (1816–1905), benefactor, born at Llangefni, Anglesey, on 1 April 1816, was the second son of Richard Davies (1778–1849), a general storekeeper at Llangefni, and his wife, Anne, daughter of Owen Jones of Coed Hywel, near Llangefni. He was educated at the ...

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Edwards, Sir Ifan ab Owen (1895–1970), educationist and founder of Urdd Gobaith Cymru, was born on 25 July 1895 at Tremaran, Llanuwchllyn, Merioneth, the second of the three children (the eldest died in infancy) of Sir Owen Morgan Edwards (1858–1920) and his wife, ...

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John Passmore Edwards (1823–1911) by George Frederic Watts, 1894 © National Portrait Gallery, London