In July 1840 a convention of twenty-three delegates met at the Griffin Inn, Great Ancoats Street, Manchester. Elected by Chartist bodies from across Britain, their purpose was to put together a plan for reorganising the movement following a year of repression, in which much of their leadership had been imprisoned, transported, or forced into exile. On July 20 the delegates agreed a plan for a permanent organisation of all the Chartist groups across the country within ‘one Society to be Called “The National Charter Association of Great Britain”’. With this they made history: the formation of the first working-class, mass-member political party in the world.
This is the first in a series of pieces about Radical Friendship. The feature is intended as an exploration of different configurations of friendship, both intimate and symbolic, and the radical potential of these relationships.
In our “Apocalypse Then and Now” feature, Kat Hill explores the sixteenth century world of German Anabaptism and asks what it means to believe that you are living through the End of the World.
Open for booking: Activist Histories of Ireland conference
Revolutionary harridans? Ruth Mather argues that historians need to take a closer look at the radical women of Peterloo.
Marybeth Hamilton on Valerie Solanas’ the SCUM Manifesto for the Society for Cutting up Men.
How do we determine whether an object is radical? Ruth Mather on the Farmer’s Arms jug at the People’s History Museum.