Politics

Besides his unrelenting drive for perfection in ceramics, Josiah Wedgwood held liberal political views closely associated with his dissenting religious beliefs. Throughout his life Josiah expressed an ardent concern over the social and political upheavals which characterised the age in which he lived. Such concern was not limited to his immediate responsibilities, the welfare and working conditions of his employees for example, but extended to the American War of Independence and the French Revolution, amongst other causes.

It is interesting to note that after Josiah’s death - when Josiah II led the company – Etruria village provided 110 infantry to fight in the war against Napoleon, the factory was fortified by cannon, and the Wedgwood family provided arms, uniforms and service pay.

 

Images

Letter from Josiah expressing concern over the fate of troops in America, © Wedgwood Museum

Letter from Josiah expressing concern over the fate of troops in America
© Wedgwood Museum