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Churcher, Richard (1659–1723), educational benefactor, was born on 10 July 1659 at Funtington, near Chichester, Sussex, the eldest son of Richard Churcher (d. 1676) and his wife, Elinor (d. 1710). His father was a yeoman farmer in comfortable circumstances who decided, however, that none of his children should follow him in agriculture. ...

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James Lewis Smithson (1764–1829) by Henri-Joseph Johns, 1816 National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution

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Smithson [formerly Macie], James Lewis (1764–1829), mineralogist and benefactor, was born Jacques Louis Macie in Paris in early 1764, the illegitimate son of a long-term liaison between Hugh Percy (formerly Smithson), second earl and later first duke of Northumberland (bap. 1712, d. 1786)...

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Sir Henry Solomon Wellcome (1853–1936) by Hugh Goldwin Riviere, 1906 Wellcome Library, London

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Wellcome, Sir Henry Solomon (1853–1936), pharmacist and benefactor, was born on 21 August 1853 in his grandfather's log cabin at Almond in northern Wisconsin, USA. He was the younger son of Solomon Cummings Wellcome (d. 1876), an unsuccessful farmer and subsequently an itinerant Adventist minister, and his wife, ...