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THE SIX POINTS
1. A vote for every man over 21
2. Secret ballots
3. No property qualification
4. Payment of MPs
5. Constituencies of equal size
6. Annual Parliaments

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Chartist Ancestors: welcome to the site
What did your family do in the revolution?
Millions signed the three great Chartist petitions of 1839 to 1848. Thousands were active in those years in the campaign to win the vote, secret ballots, and other democratic rights that we now take for granted.

Chartist Ancestors lists many of those who risked their freedom, and sometimes their lives, because of their participation in the Chartist cause. The names included on the site are drawn from newspapers, court records and books of the time, from later histories and other sources.

I would like to thank the many historians, researchers and the descendents of those associated with Chartism who have helped with this site since it was launched in 2003.

Mark Crail
NB: Scroll down to see a full index of all pages.

What's essential
The Six Points of the Charter
Chartist petitions: all the details
Chartist Timeline
Chartism: Frequently Asked Questions
Further research


What's new

National Charter Association membership card

Chartist conferences and conventions
Who was there, what did they decide?

The first convention: 1839
From hopes of success to the Bull Ring riots.

Great meeting of Scottish delegates, 1839
Glasgow conference establishes central organisation.

Manchester conference, 1840
The launch of the National Charter Association.

Chartism's forgotten petition, 1841
1.3 million seek a pardon for the Newport Chartists.

Scottish convention, 1842
Delegates refuse to endorse text of second petition.

London convention, 1842
Delegates prepare to present the petition to MPs.

The "Unity" conference, 1842
A final split with the middle-class reformers.

London convention and assembly, 1848
The final great confrontation with the state.

London convention, 1851
The adoption of a socialist programme.

Labour Parliament, 1854
Last hope of revival based on workers' organisation.


Chartist insurrection
Confrontation: we name those involved

Newport rebellion, 1839
A march on Newport ends in bloodshed and defeat.

Chartist riots at Newport, 1839
Full text of the 1889 commemorative book

Frost defence fund, 1839-40
Contributors to the Newport leader's legal aid fund

General strike, 1842
Half a million demand a fair wage and the Charter.

Trafalgar Square riots, 1848
Confrontation on the streets of London.

The events of 10 April 1848
The revolution postponed.

The Orange Tree conspiracy, 1848
Police thwart a bold attempt to seize the capital city.

Ashton under Lyne rising, 1848
Chartist National Guards shoot dead a policeman.


Chartist crime and punishment
Lots of Chartist names

Policing the Chartists
London police officers sent to Birmingham in 1839

Chartist prisoners, 1839-40
Names drawn from a Home Office report.

Chartist prisoners, 1841
Interviews with 73 Chartists in their prison cells.

Lancaster trial, 1843
Feargus O'Connor and 58 others go on trial.

Chartists arrested in 1848
We name those arrested and tried.

William Dowling on trial, 1848
The case of a young artist caught up in revolution.

Chartists transported to Australia
We name the Chartists who were sent into exile.


Chartist land plan
A major new addition to the site with 5,000+ names
Chartist land company
Find the names of Lancashire radicals who put their money towards the Chartist land colonies.

Ashton-under-Lyne - 1,120 names
Bacup - 500 names
Bolton - 781 names
Bury - 639 names
Colne - 254 names
Oldham - 219 names
Preston - 215 names
Rochdale - 285 names
Salford - 350 names
Stalybridge - 643 names
Wigan - 69 names

Spreadsheet of all 5,075 names (Excel format)

Chartist land plan
Read about the land plan and see the names of those allocated land.

Land Company officials, 1849
Local activists named


Women Chartists
More names to help research your family history
Women Chartists in Scotland
Chartist women's names and a map of Female Chartist Associations in Scotland

Mary Ann Walker and Susanna Inge
Leading lights in the City of London Female Chartist Association


Interviews with Chartist historians
Paul Pickering on Feargus O'Connor
Chartism in the localities
Grassroots Chartism: Includes lists of Chartists

Ashton under Lyne
Black Country

Cornwall
Leeds
Manchester
Middlesbrough
Scotland
Sheffield
Tordmorden

Chartist collectables
Rare survivals from the 1840s
Chartist memorabilia and ephemera
See Chartist membership cards, commemorative medals and more

Chartism's international dimension
Exiles through choice or judicial process
Chartists in America

Transported to Australia

Chartists in Australia

History research toolkit
Local and family history groups: full UK list
Local records offices in England and Wales
Local records offices in Scotland

How to...
Make the most of your visit to an archive or records office
Research your trade union ancestors
Find Chartist records in the National Archives

Further research: the best Chartist websites


Chartism FAQs
Top twenty questions about Chartism

Click the links to find answers to our Chartist FAQs.

1. What is Chartism?

2. Who were the Chartists?

3. What were the six points?

4. Were the Chartists the first to demand these things?

5. Where was the Charter launched?

6. Why did Chartism become a mass campaign?

7. Why didn't the Chartists demand votes for women?

8. Did women support the Chartist movement?

9. Why is Chartism important?

10. How did the Chartists hope to achieve their goals?

11. Were there any Chartist MPs?

12. How many people could vote at this time?

13. How did the authorities respond to Chartism?

14. What happened on 10 April 1848?

15 …and in the days that followed?

16. Did Chartism disappear after 1848?

17. Why did Chartism decline?

18. Where did all the Chartists go?

19. Did Chartism fail?

20. Who was the last Chartist?


Chartism on the map
Click on a symbol to find out more


View Larger Map


Chartist organisations and newspapers
What did they stand for, who supported them?

London Working Men's Association and the East London Democratic Association - Chartism's radical London roots in 1836-37.

The Northern Star in numbers - statistics on the issues and people reported in the Chartist press.

How to read the Northern Star - making sense of the most important Chartist newspaper.

The Charter - the voice of London Chartism, 1839-40.

Red Republican - the 1850 move towards socialism.

Friend of the People - after the Red Republican.

People's Charter Union and the Cause of the People - Moral force Chartism revived in 1848.


Chartist names: some really useful lists
Chartist executives, 1840-58 - members of the National Charter Association's national executives.

Chase's index - names from Chartism: A New History.

Gammage's index - from the first history of Chartism.

Red Republican subscribers - supporters of the paper.

Friend of the People supporters - supporters of the paper.

Chartist children - 1,643 children named after Chartist leaders. Index of names.

General Strike 1842 - delegates and activists.

Trafalgar Square rioters, 1848 - all those arrested.

The Ingraham Testimonial Fund - 450 subscribers to a post-Chartist cause backed by prominent Chartists.


Chartist life stories
More names

Brief lives - mini-biographies of ordinary Chartists.

Where are they now - Chartist graves.

Obits and pieces - from the Chartist newspapers.

John Arnott - NCA general secretary.

Peter Bussey - Bradford Chartist who fled to America.

Matthew Fletcher - Bury's delegate to the First Chartist Convention.

John Frost - Newport Chartism's rebel leader.

Henry Hetherington - radical publisher, campaigner against newspaper taxes and London Chartist

Robert Knox, County Durham's delegate to the First Chartist Convention.

William Lovett, author of the People's Charter.

Robert Lowery - trade union activist, and Newcastle's delegate to the First Chartist Convention

Benjamin Lucraft - a Victorian radical.

Gerald Massey - Centenary booklet, made available free here, with thanks to Ian Petticrew and David Shaw of Victorian Minor Poets.

Peter Murray McDouall - leading Chartist activist, exiled and twice imprisoned.

Thomas Clutton Salt of the Birmingham Political Union.

William Villiers Sankey - Edinburgh's aristocratic delegate to the First Chartist Convention.

John Skevington - prominent Leicestershire Chartist

Thomas Rayner Smart - "Veteran Patriot" and delegate to the First Chartist Convention.

Mary Ann Walker and Susanna Inge - leading lights in the City of London Female Chartist Association.


Variations on Chartism
Alternative routes to democracy

Chartist land plan - Who was allocated land?

Chartist land company - Who invested in the scheme?

Land Company officials, 1849 - local activists named.

Knowledge Chartists - William Lovett's New Move.

Teetotal Chartists - Sober politics.

Christian Chartists - with God on their side.

Chartists and trade unions - the Labour Parliament.

Chartists and the Anti-Corn Law League - a rival cause in search of political support.



MORE HISTORY

Trade union history: union family trees,
A to z listing of 5,000 UK unions and more


Dockworkers' union banner


Everything about Chartism and the Chartists

Feargus O'Connor, Chartist leader


History guides and eyewitness accounts from mytimemachine



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