A Highland canvass in a ‘pocket county’: Ronald Gower (1845-1916) and the 1867 Sutherland by-election

Continuing our series on Scotland, Dr Martin Spychal, research fellow for the House of Commons 1832-1868 project, uses Ronald Gower’s diaries to provide some rare insights into mid-Victorian electioneering in the ‘pocket county’ of Sutherland. If there was a History of Parliament award for ‘constituency most under the thumb of an aristocratic patron’, the Highland county of Sutherland would be a top contender. Following the … Continue reading A Highland canvass in a ‘pocket county’: Ronald Gower (1845-1916) and the 1867 Sutherland by-election

Oxfordshire Local History: Abingdon in the nineteenth century

This month’s local history focus has been Oxfordshire. In today’s blog Dr Philip Salmon, editor of the House of Commons 1832-1945 project, looks at the constituency of Abingdon, since 1974 within Oxfordshire, but historically part of the adjacent county of Berkshire. Abingdon was widely regarded as an easily managed ‘pocket’ or ‘nomination’ borough during the 19th century. For a while at least it certainly had … Continue reading Oxfordshire Local History: Abingdon in the nineteenth century

Representing Glamorgan, 1832-85: Mr. Talbot and his colleagues

Continuing our Local History focus on Glamorgan, Dr. Kathryn Rix, Assistant Editor of our House of Commons, 1832-68 project looks at the constituency’s elections after the 1832 Reform Act, when the long-serving MP, Christopher Rice Mansel Talbot, exerted a strong influence over the county. Described in 1841 as ‘the Lancashire of Wales’, Glamorgan was Wales’s wealthiest and most industrialised county. Coal mining employed almost one … Continue reading Representing Glamorgan, 1832-85: Mr. Talbot and his colleagues

From duelling to sharing the representation: Northumberland’s electoral politics in the nineteenth century

Continuing this month’s focus on Northumberland, Dr. Kathryn Rix, Assistant Editor of our House of Commons, 1832-68 project, explores the county’s elections in the nineteenth century. In 1826 Northumberland experienced its first contested election since 1774, with four candidates vying for the county’s two seats. For the previous fifty years, electors had not had the opportunity to cast their votes, as the representation had been … Continue reading From duelling to sharing the representation: Northumberland’s electoral politics in the nineteenth century

The queen and the chemist’s son: Matthew Wood MP and the radical defence of Queen Caroline

A hop merchant and former Lord Mayor, Wood brought Caroline out of exile in June 1820 and housed her at his Mayfair residence at the beginning of the national crisis. As the affair gathered steam Wood became a prime target for loyalist vitriol, a prime example being Theodore Hooke’s malicious pamphlet Solomon Logwood: A Radical Tale. Continue reading The queen and the chemist’s son: Matthew Wood MP and the radical defence of Queen Caroline