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UK_CorrespondSoc
Corresponding Society 1795

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Registered: August 2005
Location: Arizona USA
Posts: 2,365
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Ireland - Middlesex Half Penny of 1795. London Corresponding Society. Obverse shows a group of Society members standing over a fasces on the ground. This pertains to the Aesop Fable 'The Old Man and His Sons' or 'The Story of the Bundle of Sticks' (facses), illustrating the power of unity. Thomas Hardy was the Secretary to this Society. These are Skidmore made tokens. It is probable that these were never struck by the Society’s order, but were made for sale. Reverse: "United For A Reform Of Parliament." Edge: "payable At Dublin, Cork Or Belfast .XX.
The London Corresponding Society was a Radical organization based in London, England, with a membership consisting primarily of artisans, tradesmen, and shopkeepers. At its peak, the society boasted roughly 3,000 dues-paying members who shared the goal of reforming the British political system. Formed in 1792 by Thomas Hardy, the society's key mission was to ensure universal suffrage (voting rights for all men) for British men and annual parliaments. Due to the perceived French revolutionary influence on the society and its calls for a relatively radical reformation, promising widespread upheaval, the government of William Pitt the Younger bitterly opposed it, accusing it on two occasions of plotting to assassinate the King, and putting its key leaders on trial in 1794 for treason. However, due to the transparent falsity of the government’s claims, those leaders, including Hardy, John Thelwall, and John Horne Tooke, were all acquitted. After exerting "undue influence" on the European political climate in the last decade of the 18th century, the LCS and other organizations like it were outlawed by a 1799 Parliamentary Act, and efforts to maintain an underground organization were stymied by their outlaw status and financial troubles and mismanagement. (Wikipedia)
The London Corresponding Society was founded on 25 January 1792 by John Frost (1750–1842), an attorney, and Thomas Hardy, a shoemaker. The principle aim of the Society was parliamentary reform, especially the expansion of the representation of working class people. As the Society expanded, the government took notice and it became deeply infiltrated by spies. In May 1794 the government took more action; some of the leaders were arrested and Hardy, John Thelwall and John Horne Tooke were tried for treason in October, but were acquitted. The government responded with the so-called Two Acts – an extension of the treason laws with the Treasonable Practices Act and also the repressive Seditious Meetings Act in 1795. More arrests followed and, in 1799, the Society itself was declared illegal under the Corresponding Societies Act, effectively ending the LCS.
· Date: October 8, 2016 · Views: 3,053 · Filesize: 123.9kb · Dimensions: 880 x 441 ·
Keywords: Corresponding Society
Denomination: Half Penny
Reference #: D&H Middlesex 286b
Date/Mintmark: 1795
Condition: XF rim damage
Weight: 29.5 mm
Metal: copper
Additional Categories: Revolution!

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