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Pare, William

Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GB 0096 MS 578
Held at: Senate House Library, University of London
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Full title: Pare, William
Date(s): 1819-1855
Level of description: Collection (fonds)
Extent: 1 volume
Name of creator(s): Pare | William | 1805-1873 | co-operator
Detailed catalogue: Click here to view repository detailed catalogue


Administrative/Biographical history:

William Pare (1804-1873) was a Birmingham tobacconist, who was one of the founders of the first Birmingham Cooperative Society. He left Birmingham in 1842 to become acting governor of Robert Owen's community at Queenswood, Hampshire, from 1842-1844, and published numerous works on cooperation.
Robert Owen was born in Newtown, Wales in 1771. He was apprenticed to a draper in Stamford, Northamptonshire at the age of 10, and continued his working education in London from the ages of 13 to 16. In 1787 Owen moved to Manchester, where he set up a small cotton-spinning establishment, and also produced spinning mules for the textile industry. Following this success, he became a manager for several large mills and factories in Manchester. In 1794 he formed the Chorlton Twist Company with several partners, and in the course of business met the Scots businessman David Dale. In 1799, Owen and his partners purchased Dale's mills in New Lanark, and Owen married Dale's daughter. At New Lanark, Owen began to act out his belief that individuals were formed by the effects of their environment by drastically improving the working conditions of the mill employees. This included preventing the employment of children and building schools and educational establishments. Owen set out his ideas for model communities in speeches and pamphlets, and attempted to spread his message by converting prominent members of British society. His detailed proposals were considered by Parliament in the framing of the Factories Act of 1819. Disillusioned with Britain, Owen purchased a settlement in Indiana in 1825, naming it New Harmony and attempting to create a society based upon his socialist ideas. Though several members of his family remained in America, the community had failed by 1828. Owen returned to England, and spent the remainder of his life and fortune helping various reform groups, most notably those attempting to form trade unions. He played a role in the establishment of the Grand National Consolidated Trade Union, 1834, and the Association of All Classes and All Nations, 1835. Owen died in 1858.


Scope and content/abstract:

Scrapbook of material, printed and manuscript, by and relating to Robert Owen, collected and in part copied by William Pare, and annotated by him throughout, 1819-1855. The manuscript items include:
Copy by Pare of a receipt, 4 Aug 1819, for 500 from Robert Owen to Edward Augustus, Duke of Kent, annotated by Pare in 1872.
Copy of a letter from Pare to Owen, 1829.
Copy of letter from Owen to Sir Robert John Wilmot-Horton, 3rd Bt, 1831, with a covering letter from H. Belstead to Pare of 1839.
Notes made from the Leeds Mercury, [1833-1834], written in ink over pencilled jottings (in Pare's hand?) on single leaf of an account book.
Account by Pare of a visit by Owen on 21 Mar 1834 to female convicts at Newgate prison about to be transported, written on a manuscript copy of Owen's address to them.
Holograph draft of Owen's address 'to the government and population of the United States of North America', 6 June 1837.
Two architectural plans of Harmony Hall, East Tytherley, Hampshire, 1839.
Letter from Dr. John Borthwick Gilchrist to Owen, 21 Mar 1839.
Holograph draft by Owen of the address of the Congress of the Association of All Classes of All Nations, and of the National Community Friendly Society to the General Convention of the Industrious Classes 'now sitting at Birmingham', 16 May 1839.
Holograph draft by Owen beginning 'The influence which may be obtained by society over the young mind', 1839.
Holograph draft by Owen of his address 'to intending emigrants and those who are dissatisfied with the present condition of society', 1839.
Single sheet headed 'Social Congress' and endorsed 'Journal', being an account of proceedings of the Congress of the Association of All Classes, 1839.
Incomplete holograph draft of address made by Owen on 'home colonization', at the Birmingham Congress [of the Association of All Classes], 25 May 1839.
Draft of Pare's address to Owen on his 68th birthday, 1839, with Owen's holograph reply.
Extract from The Chronicle, 18 Nov 1841.
Draft inscriptions, partly in Owen's hand, for the towers at Harmony Hall, 1841.
Memorial to Owen from the unemployed tradesmen of Glasgow, 15 Dec 1842.
Copy by Pare of a description of Owen in the Aberdeen Banner, 31 Dec 1842.
'Twelve question to be answered, according to promise, by Mr Owen in Mr Robertson's Hall this present evening', 30 Dec 1842.
Incomplete holograph draft by Owen on 'Causes remote and proximate of the present evils of society', [1843].
Letter of John Finch to Owen, 9 Mar 1843.
'Address [to Queen Victoria] of the members of branch 63 of the Rational Society and the inhabitants of Tower Hamlets in a public meeting assembled at their institution, Whitechapel, 10 Apr 1843, with covering letter by the Secretary, Thomas Marshall, to Owen, 15 Apr 1843.
Copy of the petition to Queen Victoria by the inhabitants of Halifax, 1843.
Bill made out to Owen for his stay at the Royal Hotel, Dundee, from 3-9 Jan, with his own annotations.
'Address to her most gracious Majesty, from a meeting called by public advertisement, in Sydney's Building, Bradford, 16 Feb 1843, signed by Owen who acted as chairman.
Address to Queen Victoria by the Congress of the Rational Society, 25 May 1843, signed by Owen as President of the Society.
Address of the participants of the first Concordium, held at Allcott House, Ham Common, Surrey, 28 Apr 1843, with 17 signatures.
Copy of two letters to The Times from Samuel Wilderspin, concerning infant schools, 6 Aug 1846.
Copies of letters by Owen to George William Frederick Howard, Viscount Morpeth (later 7th Earl of Carlisle), on progress in the United States, and to Henry George Grey, 3rd Earl Grey, on 'education and employment of the industrious classes', 1846.
Holograph draft of an address by Owen on 'The requisites for the permanent happiness of mankind', [1848].
Copy of a letter from Owen to [William] Cox, written from Paris and describing the revolution, June 1848.
Letter from William Offord to Owen, concerning members of Offord's family living with William Evans, 8 May 1855.
Incomplete holograph draft by Owen beginning 'The distress of the country has increased, is increasing, and ought to be diminished', [1848].
Draft [by Owen] entitled 'The convictions of Robert Owen, founder of the Rational System of Society, on the past, present and future state of the population of the world'.
Anecdote about the reaction of Thomas Say, Professor of Natural History, on reading Owen's works while in North America, [1851].
Silhouette sketch of Owen signed by Augustin Amant Constant Fidele Edouart, 1838.
Miscellaneous printed items include: sketches of Owen, prints of New Lanark, memorial card and order of Owen's funeral procession, printed programme of the 100th anniversary of his birth, 16 May 1871, and newspaper cuttings.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:

System of arrangement:

Conditions governing access:

Access to this collection is unrestricted for the purpose of private study and personal research within the supervised environment and restrictions of the Library's Palaeography Room. Please contact the University Archivist for details. 24 hours notice is required for research visits.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Copies may be made, subject to the condition of the original. Copying must be undertaken by the Palaeography Room staff, who will need a minimum of 24 hours to process requests.

Finding aids:

Collection level description.

Archival Information

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

Deposited on permanent loan by the Family Welfare Association in 1963.

Allied Materials

Related material:

Further material relating to Robert Owen held in the University of London Library is at MS 692 and ALS 146 and 266.

Material concerning Robert Owen may be found at the Co-operative Union Archive, Manchester; the National Library of Wales, Aberystwyth; Glasgow University Archives and Business Record Centre; New Harmony Workingmens' Institute, Indiana, USA; the International Institute of Social History, Amsterdam; the Robert Owen Memorial Museum, Newtown, Wales; Nuffield College Library, Oxford University; the University of Illinois Library, Chicago, USA; the British Library, London; University College London; and the Burgerbibliotek, Bern, Switzerland.There are also papers concerning William Pare at the Co-operative Union Archive.

National Register of Archives: Click here to view NRA record

Publication note:

Description Notes

Archivist's note:
Compiled by Sarah Aitchison as part of the RSLP AIM25 Project.

Rules or conventions:
Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions:
Oct 2001

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