Monday, 13 June 2016

Chartism Day 2016: from 'constitutional humbug' to cheap beer, a political rehabiliation and 3D models

Chartism Day 2016 took place at the University of Chester at the weekend, with around 50 delegates turning up for a busy programme of presentations on topics as diverse as Chartism’s relationship with the Irish Repeal movement, the impact of the Beer Act on radical meetings and an exciting new initiative using 3D animated modelling techniques to re-create Chartist processions.

What follows does not attempt to summarise the arguments of the speakers, which are in any event almost all drawn from work in progress towards full academic publication, but simply to give a flavour of the day’s talks.

Sunday, 12 June 2016

Visiting the grave of Helen Macfarlane, Chartist journalist

Heading up to Chester for this year's Chartism Day (more of which later) I stopped off at the tiny Cheshire village of Baddiley. 

Here, in the rather beautiful and peaceful surroundings of St Michael's church, is buried Helen Macfarlane - or, as it says on her gravestone, "Helen, wife of the Revd John W Edwards."

Thursday, 2 June 2016

Was the 1842 Chartist petition really six miles long?

The presentation of the second Chartist petition to Parliament in 1842 makes for a dramatic story. As told by Feargus O’Connor and the Northern Star (NS, 7 May 1842), the petition with its 3,315,752 names was six miles long, weighed 6cwt, requiring it to be carried by 30 strong men, and on reaching the House of Commons, the doors had to be removed for it to fit in to the Chamber.

But how true was all this?

Monday, 9 May 2016

Chartism Day 2016: time to register

The programme and registration details for Chartism Day 2016 are now confirmed. Details of the speakers and topics are set out below - and the date is set for Saturday 11 June 2016. Sign up now to reserve your place.

Download the registration form.

Friday, 29 April 2016

The private life of Thomas Slingsby Duncombe

The Chartist MP Thomas Slingsby Duncombe was a notorious libertine, a “Radical dandy” whose “saturnine good looks, easy manner and silver tongue” made him a favourite in high society – a man “with a voracious appetite for women of dubious reputation”.

An account of Thomas Slingsby Duncombe’s life can be found on Chartist Ancestors.