Committees For Repeal of the Test and Corporation Acts Minutes 1786-90 and 1827-8. Originally published by London Record Society, London, 1978.
This free content was digitised by double rekeying and sponsored by London Record Society. All rights reserved.
All members of the two repeal committees are listed below. The biographical notes derive from various sources, including London directories, Gentleman's Magazine, Monthly Repository, Christian Reformer, Baptist Quarterly, Musgrave's Obituary, Frederic Boase Modern English Biography, J. Brooke and L. Namier House of Commons 1754-1790, and biographical aids in Dr Williams's Library. DNB indicates the appearance of a member in the Dictionary of National Biography.
(A) 1786-90 REPEAL COMMITTEE
(i) London Members
Adair, James (1743?-1798): educated Peterhouse, Cambridge, B.A. 1764, M.A. 1767, called to the bar, Lincoln's Inn; serjeant-at-law 1774, king's serjeant 1782, Chief Justice of Chester 1796; recorder, City of London 1779-89; M.P., Cockermouth 1775-80, Higham Ferrers 1793-8; Wilkite associations, defended printer of Junius letters; opposed Lord North, supported American colonies, active in Portland-Fox connection; associated with prosecution of Thomas Hardy and John Horne Tooke, defence of William Stone; member, Whig Club. DNB.
Beaufoy, Henry (1750-95): s. of Quaker wine merchant; educated Hoxton, Warrington academies; a founder of Hackney College; M.P., Minehead 1783-4, Great Yarmouth 1784-95; member, Revolution Society; secretary, Board of Control 1791-3; moved repeal motions in the Commons 1787,1789; seconded Fox 1790. DNB.
Dodson, Michael (1732-99): educated Marlborough grammar school, Middle Temple, barrister; Unitarian sympathies, friend of Joseph Priestley and Rational Dissenters; member, Revolution Society; chairman, standing repeal committee 1790-6. DNB.
Grigby, Joshua (1759-1829): M.P., Suffolk 1784-90; deputy lieutenant, magistrate, sheriff of Suffolk; member, Revolution Society, Friends of the People; president, Society for Constitutional Information 1788; parliamentary reformer.
Heywood, John Pemberton (b. 1756): called to the bar, Lincoln's Inn 1780; country delegate from Yorkshire to Dodson's standing committee 1790; invited as honoured steward at banquet celebrating repeal 1828.
Heywood, Samuel (1753-1828): educated Warrington Academy and Trinity College, Cambridge, Inner Temple 1772; serjeant-at-law, chief justice Carmarthen circuit; friend of C. J. Fox, early supporter of T. Lindsey's Essex St chapel; rendered legal advice to Dissenting Deputies and repeal committee; author, The Right of Protestant Dissenters to a Compleat Toleration Asserted. DNB.
Hollis, Thomas Brand (1719-1804): heir of Thomas Hollis (1720-74); reform activist, friend of John Jebb, John Cartwright, Thomas Paine; a founder, Society for Constitutional Information; member, Westminster Committee, Revolution Society, Friends of the People; supported T. Lindsey's Essex St chapel and Hackney College; M.P., Hindon 1774-5.
Lee, John (1733-93): educated Gray's Inn, Lincoln's Inn; M.P., Clitheroe 178290, Higham Ferrers 1790-3; Rockingham Whig, Solicitor General 1782-3, Attorney General 1783; Unitarian in later life, friend of Lindsey, Price, Priestley; member, Whig Club. DNB.
Lowdell, Stephen (d. 1810): physician, St Saviour's parish, Southwark; prominent Baptist layman and philanthropist; member, Worship St congregation, Finsbury Square; treas., General Baptist Fund, supporter of charity schools; Dissenting Deputy; funeral sermon by John Evans.
Martin, James (1738-1810): family banking firm in Lombard St; M.P., Tewkesbury 1776-1807; member, Revolution Society, Friends of the People, Whig Club; treas., Society for Constitutional Information 1788; divided against repeal 1790, citing wishes of constituents.
Newnham, Nathaniel (1742-1809): citizen and mercer; alderman, Vintry ward 1774-1809, sheriff of London 1775-6, lord mayor 1782-3; president, St Thomas's Hospital 1782-1809; M.P., London 1780-90, Ludgershall 1793-6; joint founder, banking firm of Newnham, Everett, Drummond, Tibbits and Tanner, Lombard St 1785, later known as Everett and Co.; member, Revolution Society, Whig Club.
Rogers, Thomas (d. 1793): banker; father of poet Samuel Rogers; Dr Williams's trustee; member, Society for Constitutional Information, Friends of the People; director, Union Fire Office; Dissenting Deputy.
Smith, Samuel (1755-93): banker and Turkey merchant; director, East India Co.; treas., Levant Co.; M.P., Ilchester 1780-4, Worcester 1784-90, Ludgershall 1791-3; vice president, Society for Constitutional Information 1788.
Smith, William (1756-1835): chairman, repeal committee 1827-8, Dissenting Deputies 1805-32; M.P., Sudbury 1784-90, 1796-1802, Camelford 1791-6, Norwich 1802-30; member, Yorkshire Assn., Society for Constitutional Information, Revolution Society, Friends of the People, Whig Club; supported slave trade abolition; see above, p. xix. DNB.
(ii) Country Members
Bayley, Thomas Butterworth (1744-1802): educated Univ. of Edinburgh; agriculturalist, prison reformer, philanthropist; J.P. for county palatine of Lancaster; a founder, Literary and Philosophical Society of Manchester. DNB.
Shore, Samuel (1738-1828): iron manufacturer; Sheffield Dissenter, reformer; active in Wyvill's Yorkshire Assn., delegate to London from York 1780, 1782; benefactor of Dissenting charities, Unitarian institutions; friend of T. Lindsey and Essex St chapel trustee; member, Friends of the People; vice-president, Society for Constitutional Information 1788.
(iii) Country Delegates
Kippis, Andrew (1725-95): educated Northampton Academy under Philip Doddridge; leader, General Body of Protestant Dissenting Ministers; prominent Presbyterian with Arian sympathies; pastor, Princess St congregation, Westminster 1753-95; biographer; elected to Royal Society 1779; Hackney College tutor; Dr Williams's trustee. DNB.