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National Chartist Hymn Book

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National Chartist Hymn Book

Collection of 16 Chartist hymns

Author: Unknown
Date: 1845
Location: North Britain
Format: Pamphlet
Document ID: 102253
Library ID:

The National Chartist Hymn Book containing 16 hymns was printed in Rochdale for the National Chartist Association. It follows 2 earlier equivalents, Cooper's 'Shakespearean Chartist Hymn Book' and Hobson's 'Hymns for Worship'. Heavily influenced by dissenting Christians, the hymns are about social justice and blessing Chartist enterprises.

Although the publication does not name those who authored the hymns it contains, it is known that hymns 1 and 14 were penned by John Henry Bramwich, a member of the Leicester Chartists. John was born in London in July 1803 to Thomas and Elizabeth Bramwich. He worked as a stockinger, weaving stockings and mittens. Therefore, he would have gained a fair insight into the harsh conditions that are detailed in his writing. In addition to his contributions in the National Chartist Hymn Book, John is also known to have written poetry for "The Northern Star," a national Chartist newspaper.

Sadly, John's dreams of universal suffrage were not fulfilled until many years after his death. John passed away on 12th March 1846, aged just 43.

For more information about John and the Chartist movement please see

Chartism was a workers' movement named after the People's Charter of 1838, which set out six political demands: universal suffrage, equal electoral districts, vote by secret ballot, annually elected parliaments, payment for MPs and abolition of property qualifications for MPs.

The Calderdale area saw immense popular support for radical workers' movements from the end of the 18th century through to the early 20th century and the district was one of the primary foci of Chartist activity in Britain in the 1830s and 1840s.

For a much fuller account of Chartism in the area, navigate to the Historical Theme Introductions via the Sources and Themes tab of this website.

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