The Chartist Movement

From Wikisource
Jump to: navigation, search
The Chartist Movement  (1918)  by Mark Hovell
edited by T. F. Tout

THE


CHARTIST MOVEMENT



BY THE LATE

MARK HOVELL, M.A.

2nd Lieutenant, The Sherwood Foresters,
and Lecturer in Military History in the University


edited and completed, with a memoir, by

Professor T. F. TOUT




MANCHESTER
AT THE UNIVERSITY PRESS

12 LIME GROVE, OXFORD ROAD

LONGMANS, GREEN & CO.

London, New York, Bombay, etc.
1918



PUBLICATIONS OF THE UNIVERSITY OF MANCHESTER

No. CXVI




All rights reserved



PREFACE

In saying good-bye to Hovell in July 1916 I learned from him that he had almost finished the first draft of the book on which he had been working for several years, and I promised that, should the fortune of war go against him, I would do my best to get it ready for publication. Within a few weeks I was unhappily called upon to redeem my word. Mrs. Hovell put into my hands all the material that her husband left behind. I was delighted to find that it contained a fairly complete draft history of the Chartist Movement up to the summer of 1842, written out so neatly in his beautiful hand that it would have made good printer's "copy" as it stood. I read it with interest, and concluded that with a certain amount of trouble it could be made eminently worthy of publication. But the Chartists were far too remote from my general line of work to give me confidence in my own judgment, especially as it was biassed by friendship and sympathy. Accordingly I showed the draft to my colleague. Professor Muir, and to Professor Graham Wallas, both of whom confirmed my favourable impression. Publication accordingly was resolved upon.

It remained to prepare the book for the press. As a first step I was advised by Mr. Wallas to submit the manuscript to Mr. Julius West, the author of a recently completed History of Chartism, whose publication is only delayed by war conditions. Mr. West has been kind enough to go through the whole manuscript and also to read the proofs. His help has been of great service, not only in correcting errors, resolving doubts, and removing occasional repetitions, but also in advising as to the form which the publication was to take. He also drew up the basis of the bibliography. Mr. West informs me that his study and Hovell's have some points of almost complete agreement, notably where both differ from recent German writings. It is hardly needful to say that Mr. West had come to his conclusions before this book had been put in his hands.

The final preparation for publication I undertook myself. I had discussed the progress of the book so often with Hovell that I pretty well knew the lines on which he was working. He was one of the most scholarly and systematic note-makers that I have ever known, and the numerous note-books and his great store of carefully prepared and neatly tabulated slips afforded copious material for carrying to the end the task of revision. With their aid I have revised the whole book with some care. There was little to do with the earlier part save to add a few notes from the manuscript material, and carry still further the process which Mr. West had begun. My difficulties were greater with the concluding chapters, which were put together, I suspect, under the adverse conditions of active preparation for military service, and therefore became increasingly incomplete until their abrupt conclusion in May 1842. Here more revision, amplification, and correction were necessary, but even here I felt it my duty to treat with the utmost respect all that Hovell had written. If I have erred, it is in the direction of leaving things as I found them. I must, however, emphasise the fact that what Hovell left behind him was a rough draft, not a book ready for the press. He had not completed even the digestion of his material. Much less had he given it the literary form which would have satisfied his critical spirit. Accordingly, what is here published is not what the author meant to see the light. Had he lived, it would have been much more definitive in its scholarship and much more polished in its style. I hope, however, that it will be recognised that the work was too good to put aside, and that it may be received by readers not only as a memorial of a brilliant career prematurely ended, but as a serious contribution to the literature of a great subject.

I must now speak of the parts of the book for which I am solely responsible. These are the Introduction, in which I have tried to sketch Hovell's character and achievement, and the long concluding chapter, which carries the history of Chartism from the failure of the Petition of 1842 down to its slow extinction in the course of the 'fifties. Dealing with the latter firsts I may say that it was the result of my increasing unwillingness, as I warmed to the work of revision, to publish the book with its end—so to say—in the air. Though it is a bad thing to attempt to finish another man's book, it is a worse thing to publish a posthumous volume so incomplete that it has little chance of filling its proper niche in literature. I knew, too, that Hovell regarded the period which he had not covered in his draft as strictly the epilogue of the Chartist Movement, since the Chartists had done their best work by 1842 . Accordingly when he gave a course of six popular lectures on the Chartists he devoted only one of the series to the period after 1842. Fortunately his note-books and "fiches" contain copious material for carrying the narrative to its final conclusion, and suggested the general lines on which he had wished that it should be worked out. I have also made much use of three treatises by Messrs. Rosenblatt, Slosson, and Faulkner, published in 1916 in the Columbia University Studies in History, and also of M. Dolléans' elaborate book on Le Chartisme, all of which have been published too recently to be available for Hovell. How far I have succeeded it is not for me to say, but it gave me real pleasure in making the attempt; and I have spared no pains in carrying it through. In these days of universal warfare the Chartists seem a long way removed from us, but they are at least a good deal nearer actuality than the problems of fourteenth-century administration which under ordinary circumstances would have had a first claim upon my time. A veteran can hardly find a more acceptable war task than doing what in him lies to fill up a void in scholarship which the sacrifice of battle has occasioned.

It was in this spirit that I have attempted a short appreciation of Hovell himself. This is based partly upon material provided by friends, for whose help I am very grateful, but mainly on personal knowledge and a large number of letters which Hovell wrote to the lady who is now his widow, and to myself. It would have been interesting to have published more of these letters, but we thought that brevity was the sounder policy. It would have been easy, too, for me to have let myself go more freely than I have ventured to do, but here again reticence seemed the best. As I pen these concluding lines I think not only of Hovell himself, but of the many ardent and gallant souls of which he was the type, and in particular of the many contemporaries, comrades, and pupils of his own, and the sadly increasing band of those younger members of the Manchester history school, who have gone on the same path and met the same fate. The next generation will be the poorer for their loss.

In conclusion, I must thank other willing helpers, notably Mr. J. L. Paton, High Master of Manchester Grammar School, Mr. William Elliott, History Lecturer in the Manchester Municipal Training College, Mr. Mercer, Head Master of the Moston Lane Municipal School, the Rev. T. E. McCormick, Vicar of St. Mary's, Ashton-on-Mersey, and Hovell's sister, Mrs. Gresty, for biographical information. Professor Unwin, my colleague, has been good enough to go carefully through the proofs, and has made many useful suggestions and corrections. Finally I must express my special thanks to Mrs. Mark Hovell for the help she has given me at every stage of our sad task. I should add also that the manuscript material left behind by Hovell, his note-books and "fiches," have been deposited by Mrs. Hovell in the Manchester University Library, where they will be available for future workers on the same field. The bibliography, originally drafted by Mr. West, has been amplified by myself in the light of Hovell's notes and of a rough bibliography found among his papers, and with special reference to what has been added to the work since it left Mr. West's hands. The index has been compiled by Mrs. Hovell. The photograph of the author is reproduced by kind permission of Mr. J. Lafayette, Deansgate, Manchester.

T. F. TOUT.

Manchester, December 1917.



CONTENTS
Portrait of Mark Hovell To face title
Preface v-viii
Introduction: Mark Hovell, 1888–1916 xxi-xxxvii

CHAPTER I
The Charter and its Origin 1-7
The National Charter—Its preamble—Six Points and minor provisions—Its programme of Parliamentary Reform—Origins of the movement for Parliamentary Reform—The Army debates in 1647 and the Instrument of Government, 1653—The Radical programme in the eighteenth century—Its revival after Waterloo—Dissatisfaction of Radical reformers with the Reform Act of 1832.

CHAPTER II
The Industrial Revolution and its Consequences 8-27
1815-1840 the critical years of the Industrial Revolution—Large scale production and machinery triumph over small production and domestic organisation—Social and economic difficulties resulting from the change—The transition easier in some industries than others—The worst difficulties were in those trades where the old and new systems long coexisted side by side—Contrast between the spinning and weaving trades—The latter long a transitional industry, remaining partly domestic, but under capitalist control—The long agony of the handloom weavers—Instances of various types—The silk-weavers of Coventry—The cotton-weavers of Lancashire and the woollen-weavers of Yorkshire—The stockingers and the hosiery trade in the Midlands—Bagmen and frame-rents—Quarrying and mining—The butty and the gang system—The employment of women and children—Want of organisation and care for the welfare of the new industrial population—The social and economic background of Chartism.

CHAPTER III
The Rise of Anti-Capitalist Economics and Social Revolutionary Theory 28-51
Effects of the French Revolution and of the Industrial Revolution on English political and social ideas—Social dislocation resulting from Industrial Revolution—Movement and enterprise replace security as basis of economic life—Practical grievances of the wage-earners—Beginnings of socialistic literature—Three schools of early socialism—The agrarians and their revolt against enclosures—Doctrine of natural right to the land—Thomas Spence—William Ogilvie—Thomas Paine—The anti-capitalistic critics of the classical economists—Charles Hall as the link between the first and second schools—Influence of David Ricardo—His doctrine that Labour is the source of value—Its development by Thomas Hodgskin to claim for Labour the whole produce of Industry—The theoretical Communists—Robert Owen—William Thompson and J. P. Bray—The new Trades Unionism and Robert Owen—The Grand National Consolidated Trades Union—Its failure—The London group of Labour leaders—Special position of the London artisans—Their reaction from orthodox Owenism and its results—The disillusion of the Reform Bill.

CHAPTER IV
The London Working Men's Association and the People's Charter (1836-1839) 52-77
Failure of the earlier working men's societies in London The agitation in favour of unstamped newspapers—Its partial triumph in 1836—The leaders in the agitation—Francis Place—William Lovett—Henry Hetherington—James Watson—John Cleave—The same men found the London Working Men's Association—Two accounts of its origin—Part played by Lovett in it—Its objects, membership, and proceedings— Its publications, especially The Rotten House of Commons—Its discussions at Place's house—Notable new members—Threatened disruption—J. B. Bernard and the Cambridgeshire Farmers' Association—Rival short-lived associations—The London Democratic Association—Extension of Chartist associations over the country—Lovett's missionary zeal—Addresses to the Queen and to Reformers—Public meeting at Crown and Anchor—Petition to Commons drawn up—Parliamentary supporters of the Association—Beginnings of more public propaganda—The prosecution of the Glasgow Cotton Spinners—Support from the Birmingham Political Union—Committee to draft a Bill empowered, but does nothing—Place and Lovett draw up the People's Charter—Failure of the Parliamentary Radicals to give effective help—Proposal for a National Convention—The elections for it—Decline in importance of the Working Men's Association.

CHAPTER V
The Agitation against the New Poor Law (1834-1838) 78-98
Importance of Poor Law Amendment Act of 1834—The first piece of radical legislation and the first-fruits of Benthamism—Action of Edwin Chadwick and the Poor Law Commissioners—Growth of resistance to the Act—Real suffering caused by it—Plight of handloom weavers and stockingers—William Cobbett's arguments against it—Outdoor relief as the share of the poor in the spoils of the Church at the Reformation—The opposition of local interests to centralisation and bureaucracy—The cry of vested interests—The resistance to the Act in Lancashire and Yorkshire, 1836—John Fielden of Todmorden—Richard Oastler—Joseph Rayner Stephens—The Methodist spirit and the opposition to the Act—The coming to the North of Augustus Harding Beaumont and Feargus O'Connor—The Northern Liberator and the Northern Star—Effectiveness of O'Connor as an agitator in the factory districts—Death of Beaumont—Absorption of the Anti-Poor Law movement in Chartism.

CHAPTER VI
The Revival of the Birmingham Political Union (1837-1838) 98-115
Part played by the Birmingham Political Union in the struggle for the Reform Bill—Its dissolution in 1834—Beginnings of bad trade, and setting up in 1836 of a Reform Association—Thomas Attwood and the middle-class Birmingham leaders—Attwood's Currency Schemes—Revival of the Political Union—Parliamentary Reform to be combined with Currency Reform—The middle-class leaders and the working-men followers—Futile attempts to interest the Government in currency reform—Alliance effected with the Working Men's Association and the Anti-Poor Law agitators—Douglas draws up the National Petition—Great meeting at Glasgow adopts the policy—General propaganda work—Birmingham meeting at Newhall Hill, August 6, 1838—Election of delegates to the National Convention—Friction between the London Association and the Birmingham Union—Difficulties caused by the Currency Scheme—Rupture between the Union and the Northern extremists—Violence of Stephens and O'Connor—O'Connor patches up some sort of peace—Note on Attwood's Currency Theories.

CHAPTER VII
The People's Parliament (1838-1839) 116-135
Combination of the northern, midland, and southern movements for the attainment of the Charter—The National Petition—The National Convention—Election of delegates at public meetings—Position of Manchester in the movement—Violence in the North—First meeting of the National Convention, February 4, 1839—Its membership and characteristics—Debates as to the scope of the Convention—J. P. Cobbett's resolution limiting its work to superintending the Petition—Its defeat, followed by his withdrawal—House of Commons invited to meet Convention—War declared against the Anti-Corn Law League—Discussions on procedure—Rules and Regulations of the Convention drawn up—Clamour for violent measures outside the Convention—Harney and the London Democratic Association attack the mild policy of the Convention—Long delays and hesitations—Decreasing confidence within the Convention—It Is increased by the unfavourable reports from the "missionaries" sent into the country—Reports from Birmingham and the south-west—Riots at Devizes—John Richards' reports from the Potteries—Numerous resignations in the Convention, including those of the Birmingham delegates—Debate on the right to possess arms—Debate on ulterior measure—Divided counsels and indecision—The problem referred to mass meetings—The Petition handed to Attwood—Removal of the Convention to Birmingham—Its lack of leadership the chief cause of its failure.

CHAPTER VIII
The Government prepares for Action (1839) 136-142
General prevalence of poverty and discontent, especially in the manufacturing and mining districts—Local effects of the "missionaries'" work—Illustrations from Newport (Mon.), Halifax, and Manchester—Government preparations to resist threatened rising—Prudence of Lord John Russell—Lack of police and consequent inevitableness of military action—The appointment of Sir Charles Napier to command the northern district—His wise policy—The disposition of his troops—Colonel Wemyss at Manchester—Government proclamation against unlawful assemblies—Authorisation of the formation of a civic force.

CHAPTER IX
The Convention at Birmingham (1839) 143-159
Ministerial crisis of May 1839—Its effects on Chartist calculations—Inevitable postponement of the Petition—Isolation of the Convention in London—Its complaints of lack of support—Comparative attractions of Birmingham—Changed position there—Collapse of the Attwoodites and transference of the Chartist leadership to working men—Collins and Fussell—Fussell's account of the meetings in the Bull Ring—Their prohibition—Last debates of Convention in London—O'Connor's motion for transference to Birmingham carried—"Address to the People" moved—O'Brien's violent address carried in preference to Lowery's moderate one—May 13 the Convention reaches Birmingham—Its first work to issue "The Manifesto of the General Convention"—Its terms—Ulterior measures to be adopted on failure of the Petition—Their weakness as compared with language of Manifesto—Timid action and adjournment until July 1—Action of civil and military authorities throughout the country—Threatened Whitsuntide disturbances—Wemyss's vigorous action against Ashton-under-Lyne—Riots at Llanidloes, Monmouth, and Stone—Incendiary hand-bill circulated in Manchester—Napier's view as to the prospects—Precautions at Manchester—Kersal Moor demonstration—More resignations from the Convention—Its resumed sessions after July 1—July 4, Bull Ring riot—Provoked by lack of judgment of magistrates—Convention condemns them in resolutions signed by Lovett—Arrest of Lovett and Collins—Threatened troubles at Ashton and Manchester—Removal of Convention to London—It issues denunciation of Birmingham magistrates and of paper money.

CHAPTER X
The Petition in the Commons: End of the Convention (1839) 160-173
July 12, 1839, Debate on Attwood's motion that the Commons go into Committee to consider the National Petition—Speeches of Attwood and Fielden—Lord John Russell's speech against the motion—Disraeli's speech disapproving of Charter, but sympathising with Chartists—The division—Motion defeated by 235 to 46—July 15-17, Debates in Convention—A "National Holiday" to begin on August 12—July 15, Renewed Riots in Bull Ring, Birmingham—Cold reception of strike proposal—July 22, It is rescinded by Convention on O'Brien's motion—Committee appointed to take sense of people on the strike—Most places unfavourable—Views of Northern Political Union and of Robert Knox—The Trades Unions outside the Chartist ranks—Convention adjourns Bill, August—Dying out of strike movement—Arrests and trials—Trials of Stephens at Chester and of Lovett and Collins at Warwick—Attitude of Lovett—Reassembly and dissolution of the Convention—Its final weakness.

CHAPTER XI
Sedition, Privy Conspiracy, and Rebellion (1839-1840) 174-190
Attitude of physical force Chartists outside Convention—The Newport Rising of November 4—Difficulty in ascertaining the truth as to its origin and course—The story of David Urquhart—Beniowski and Russian intrigues—Other versions of the story—General rising projected for which an outbreak in South Wales was to be the signal—Committees at various centres—Activity of Vincent and, after his arrest, of Prost in Newport and the Monmouthshire valleys—The rendezvous at Risca—The night march to Newport—The fighting round the Westgate Hotel—The suppression of the Rising and the arrest of the leaders—Preparations for their defence—Ambiguous attitude of O'Connor—Preparations for a second rising throughout the country—Reports by magistrates and police—Bradford—Manchester—Birmingham—The hosiery districts—London—Halifax—Nothing serious to happen—Depression of Manchester and Birmingham Chartists—Trial and condemnation of Frost, Jones, and Williams—Some small outbreaks, mainly in Yorkshire, easily suppressed—1840, Further trials and imprisonments—End of the first phase of Chartism—Its want of homogeneity its chief weakness—Diversity of aim made co-operation in revolutionary action impossible.

CHAPTER XII
The Chartist Revival (1840-1841) 191-212
Weakness of Chartism during spring of 1840—Proposals to organise the movement more thoroughly—The beginnings in Scotland—August 15, 1839, Delegates meeting at the Universalist Church, Glasgow—Its resolutions—The Chartist Circular—Harney's proposals—Schemes of "Republican"—O'Connor's plans for a Chartist newspaper syndicate—Revival of local bodies—Hetherington and the Metropolitan Charter Union—The Newcastle Northern Political Union—July 20, 1840, Meeting at the Griffin, Great Ancoats Street, Manchester—Plans for the National Charter Association drawn up and adopted—Its objects and methods—Its revision to make it legal—Difficulties imposed by the law on political associations—The provisional and the elected executives—Plans of the moral force sections—Christian Chartism—The Chartist Churches—Arthur O'Neill at Birmingham—Report of his sermons—Henry Vincent at Bath—David Brewster at Paisley—Lovett's proposals—His correspondence with Place—His Chartism—His plans for a National Association for Promoting the Improvement of the People—Its educational and individualist policy—Place's criticisms—July 25, Lovett's release and establishment in London—Thomas Cooper's plans—His early career and character—How he became a Chartist at Leicester—His Shaksperean Association of Leicester Chartists—The revival resulting from all these efforts.

CHAPTER XIII
Chartism versus Free Trade (1842-1844) 213-219
Parallel growth of Chartism and the Anti-Corn Law League—Grounds for the antagonism between Chartists and Free Traders—A phase of the class war—Policy of meeting-smashing—Divergencies of aim of the Chartists—Illustrated from Williams at Sunderland and Leach at Manchester—Attitude of the Northern Star—Futility of Chartist attitude.

CHAPTER XIV
O'Connorism (1841-1842) 220-229
August 30, 1841, release of O'Connor from York Gaol—His

influence on the agitation during his imprisonment—His direction of the National Charter Association—Petitions for the release of the Newport leaders—Ways in which the Northern Star promoted O'Connor's ends—Its journalistic success—Its commercial influence—Chartist leaders become O'Connor's servants and dependents—Continued faith of the mass of Chartists in him—Illustration of this from Thomas Cooper—Demonstrations on O'Connor's release—Demonstration and procession at Huddersfield and elsewhere—Activity of O'Connor—Plans for the Association—A Convention and a new Petition.


CHAPTER XV
False Doctrine, Heresy, and Schism (1841-1842) 230-250
(1) O'Connor's Breach with Lovett (1841) 230-236
O'Connor's campaign against his rivals—The essential incompatibility between him and Lovett—The National Association and the National Charter Association—Lovett's bad tactics give colour to the charge that the former was set up in rivalry to the latter—Unmeasured attacks on Lovett—March 1841, Lovett's Address of the National Association excites a new outcry—His democratic idealism—Violent opposition of the Star—Its journalistic methods—Members of the Chartist Association forced to dissociate themselves from Lovett's Association—Lovett fails to get general Chartist support, and is virtually ejected from the Chartist ranks.
(2) The Elimination of O'Brien (1841-1842) 236-240
O'Brien as the Chartist Schoolmaster—His services to Chartist doctrine and propaganda—His financial dependence on O'Connor—His resentment of O'Connor's attitude—Beginnings of the breach—The General Election of 1841—O'Brien denounced O'Connor's policy of voting with the Conservatives—The result was that the Chartists voted on no single principle—O'Brien's candidature at Newcastle-on-Time—His address minimises the Chartist standpoint—Legal problems arising from his refusal to go to the poll—October 1841, his release—The British Statesman started as his organ.
(3) The Complete Suffrage Movement (1842) 240-250
The reshifting of Chartist interest to Birmingham—Contrast of Birmingham Chartism in 1839 and 1842—Partly a reflection of the general change of the Chartist attitude, but largely due to the continued middle-class element in Birmingham Chartism—The Complete Suffrage Movement and Joseph Sturge—Sturge's "Reconciliation between the Middle and Working Classes"—The "Sturge Declaration" drawn up at an Anti-Corn Law Convention in Manchester—Its principles illustrated—They are embodied in the Birmingham Complete Suffrage Union—Its leaders—Edward Miall and the Nonconformist—Herbert Spencer and his uncle—Friendly attitude of Free Traders—The Union an attempt to organise a single Radical party—Its Chartist supporters—Fierce opposition of O'Connor—Attitude of the Northern Star—Complete Suffrage is "Complete Humbug"—April 5, 1842, Complete Suffrage Conference meets at Birmingham—Its indecisive discussions—Its hesitation to adopt the Charter and its points—The conflict put off till a future date—Stress laid upon the Chartist name—The Complete Suffrage Petition drawn up—State of affairs in Chartist world in spring of 1842—The triangular duel of O'Connor, Lovett, and Sturge.

CHAPTER XVI
The National Petition of 1842 251-258
Progress of the Charter Association in organising the National Petition—Bad trade adds to the Chartist difficulties—The Petition ready—April 12, 1842, the Chartist Convention meets in London—Arrangements for the presentation of the Petition—Address of the Convention—Analysis of the Petition—May 2, The Petition presented to Parliament by Buncombe—May 3, Duncombe's motion that the petitioners be heard—Macaulay's declaration that universal suffrage was fatal to property—Roebuck's ambiguous speech denouncing O'Connor but supporting the motion—Lord John Russell's and Peel's speeches—Defeat of the resolution.

CHAPTER XVII
The Decline of Chartism (1842-1853) 259-312
(1) The Plug Plot and its Consequences (1842-1843) 259-267
Meetings denouncing the rejection of the Petition—The general strike—The Plug Plot—Chartist Conference in Manchester—MacDouall's inflammatory manifesto—O'Connor's attack on MacDouall—Failure of the strike—The Government re-establishes order—Prosecutions and punishments—MacDouall driven into exile—Revival of the Complete Suffrage Movement—Second Birmingham Conference of December 1842—Harney's defence of the Chartist name—Lovett's resolution carried and break-up of the Conference—O'Connor's fresh triumph—Sentences on the rioters.
(2) O'Connor's Land Scheme and the Chartist Revival (1843-1847) 267-284
Sluggishness of Chartism in 1843—The Birmingham Convention (1843)—New organisation of the National Charter Association—The Executive to meet in London—Transference of the Northern Star from Leeds to London (1844—O'Connor's Land Scheme proposed—Its origin—O'Connor's Letters to Irish Landlords—Reception of the Scheme at Birmingham (1843) and Manchester (1844)—Further progress at the London Convention (1845)—Details of the Scheme—Revival of prosperity weakens Chartism—Opposition to the Land Scheme within the Chartist fold—Opposition of O'Brien and Cooper—The National Land Company—Difficulties of the undertaking—O'Connor's qualities and defects—O'Connorville opened—Ernest Jones becomes O'Connor's chief lieutenant—Chartists and the General Election of 1847—O'Connor returned for Nottingham—His work in Parliament.
(3) Chartism and the Revolution op 1848 284-294
The Revolution of 1848 in Western Europe—The Chartist affinities with the Continental rebels—Arthur O'Connor and his nephew Feargus—O'Connor in Belgium—His relations with the German democrats exiled in Brussels—Friedrich Engels and Karl Marx—London as a revolutionary centre—The Chartist revival stimulated by the fall of Louis Philippe—Chartist disturbances—March 6, The Trafalgar Square meeting—April 3, The Convention in London—Preparations for the presentation of the National Petition—O'Connor's Constitution-making—Counter-preparations of the Government—April 10. The meeting_on Kennington Common—Its peaceful and uneuthusiastic character—threatened disturbances in Manchester—The analysis of the Petition by a Commons Committee—Collapse of the Land Scheme after a Commons Committee's Report—Trials and imprisonments—Failure of the movement.
(4) The Last Stages of Chaetism (1849-1858) 294-300
Slow stages of the final collapse of Chartism—Illness and death of O'Connor—Ernest Jones as leader—His qualities and their defects—His journalistic efforts—His proposals for the reform of the organisation—His failures and retirement—Other abortive schemes for the reorganisation of Chartism—Lovett's People's League—O'Brien's National Reform League—Clark's National Charter League—Extinction of the Movement—Later history of the Chartist leaders—Ernest Jones's life in Manchester—The Chartist patriarchs.
(5) The Place of Chartism in History. 300-312
How far was Chartism a failure?—The gradual realisation of its political programme, but not through the Chartists—Had Chartism a social and economic programme?—Negative character of the politics of the period—The concentration of effort on the removal of disabilities—Divergencies in the Chartist ranks as to the social ideal—The schools of Chartism—The agrarian and the industrial schools—Inability of the Chartists to unite except in negations—Chartism as an effort towards democracy and social equality—Its contrast with Young Englandism—Chartism and the Churches—Difficult position of the Chartist leaders—Their necessary want of experience—Their indirect influence in the next generation—Their protest against Cobdenism and Utilitarianism bore fruit in the next generation—Value of its pioneer work—Its preparation of the workers to take a real share in political and social movements—Its influence on Continential socialism—The beginnings of

popular democracy.


Bibliography
313-317

Index
319-327


This work is in the public domain in the United States because it was published before January 1, 1923.

The author died in 1918, so this work is also in the public domain in countries and areas where the copyright term is the author's life plus 80 years or less. This work may also be in the public domain in countries and areas with longer native copyright terms that apply the rule of the shorter term to foreign works.