Page:Dictionary of National Biography volume 40.djvu/146

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.

member of the Oxford University branch of that organisation. He wrote an article, ‘Thoughts on Social Problems and their Solution,’ for the ‘Economic Review’ (October 1892), which was passing through the press at the time of his death; and a few months before that event he read a paper before the ‘F.D.M.,’ a private society, named after Frederick Denison Maurice's initials, on ‘Robert Owen,’ which showed no diminution of his intellectual powers. He had been for some time suffering from a painful malady, aggravated by earlier neglect of his own health. He died on 16 Sept. 1892, and was buried in Bisham churchyard. A ‘Vansittart Neale’ scholarship for the sons of co-operators was founded at Oriel College (February 1890), with the subscriptions of co-operators in various parts of the country.

With rare generosity Neale devoted his wealth and energies to co-operation when it was a new and struggling movement. In his judgment, the two systems of co-operation—viz. collective control of production by combinations of consumers, and production by self-governing workshops—were not mutually exclusive, but complementary. The experiments of the Christian socialists, in which he took so prominent a part, showed that the workshops could not stand alone. On the other hand, although Neale was fully alive to the advantages which the working classes obtain by becoming their own shopkeepers, and although he himself had initiated the first wholesale society—the Central Co-operative Agency, such a system of combination among consumers with a view to their controlling production afforded in his own view no security that employés would receive better treatment from co-operative societies than they would under a competitive régime. It was his object to raise the condition of the working classes in their character of producers. When, therefore, the wholesale society undertook the manufacture of commodities, he urged that it was the duty of co-operators to grant a share of the profits to the operatives in their factories, and so take an important step in the direction of what he regarded as complete co-operation. He failed, however, to convince the wholesale society of the desirability of this course.

Neale married on 14 June 1837, at St. George's, Hanover Square, Frances Sarah, eldest daughter of James William Farrer, master in chancery, of Ingleborough, Yorkshire, and widow of the Hon. John Scott, eldest son of John, first lord Eldon, by whom he had issue Edward Ernest Vansittart (b. 23 Jan. 1840); Sir Henry James Vansittart, K.C.B. (b. 30 Nov. 1842), married, 16 April 1887, Florence, daughter of His Honour Judge Shelley Ellis, and had issue George Kenneth, who died a boy at Eton, and two daughters; Henrietta Vansittart, married, 5 Oct. 1864, Henry Dickinson, and died 1879, leaving issue; Constance and Edith.

Neale published, in addition to the works already mentioned, nineteen pamphlets issued by the Co-operative Union, model rules for societies intending to register, the congress reports, with prefaces and statistical tables, and articles contributed to the ‘Co-operator,’ the ‘Co-operative News,’ &c. 1. ‘Feasts and Fasts: an Essay on the Rise, Progress, and present State of the Laws relating to Sundays, and other Holidays and Days of Fasting,’ London, 1845, 8vo. 2. ‘The Real Property Acts of 1845 … with introductory Observations and Notes,’ London, 1845, 8vo. 3. ‘Thoughts on the Registration of the Title of Land; its Advantages and the Means of effecting it,’ &c., London, 1849, 8vo. 4. ‘The Characteristic Features of some of the principal Systems of Socialism,’ London, 1851, 8vo. 5. ‘Genesis critically analysed and continuously arranged; with Introductory Remarks,’ Ramsgate, 1869, 8vo. 6. ‘Does Morality depend on Longevity?’ London, 1871, 8vo. 7. ‘The new Bible Commentary and the Ten Commandments,’ London [1872], 8vo. 8. ‘The Mythical Element in Christianity,’ London [1873], 8vo. 9. ‘Reason, Religion, and Revelation,’ London, 1875, 8vo. 10. ‘A Manual for Co-operators. Prepared at the Request of the Co-operative Congress held at Gloucester, April 1879,’ London, 1881, 8vo, in collaboration with Judge Hughes, who wrote the preface.

[Berry's Buckinghamshire Genealogies, p. 53; Foster's Alumni Oxon. 1715–1886, p. 1009; Honours Register of the University of Oxford; Gentleman's Magazine, 1837, ii. 82; Life of F. D. Maurice, ii. 75, 157, 220, 232; Furnivall's Early History of the Working Men's College (reprinted from the Working Men's College Magazine), 1860; Holyoake's History of Co-operation, i. 189, ii. 55, 58, 59, 393, 435, his Co-operative Movement to-day, pp. 25, 29, 47, 51, 95, 103, 127, and his Sixty Years of an Agitator's Life, 3rd edit. ii. 6; Beatrice Potter's (Mrs. Sidney Webb) British Co-operative Movement, ch. v.; Brentano's Christlich-soziale Bewegung in England; Laveleye's Socialism of To-day (translated by G. H. Ophen), p. 302; Sidney and Beatrice Webb's Hist. of Trade Unionism, pp. 198, 326; Burke's Landed Gentry, 1894, ii. 2087; Report from the Select Committee on the Savings of the Middle and Working Classes, 1850, pp. 14, 24, 39, 40; The Christian Socialist, 1850–1; The Social Economist; Co-operator; Almanach de la Co-opération Française, 1892, p. 19; Daily Chronicle,