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Hannah Aldworth

Hannah Aldworth. Artist unknown. Photograph courtesy of St Nicolas Newbury PCC & Foundling Museum.

Hannah Aldworth (died 1778) was an English philanthropist and inspector in charge of supervising the care of foundling children in the Newbury area of Berkshire for the Foundling Hospital in London.

Early life

Aldworth was one of the daughters of Samuel Slocock, a prosperous brewer in the Newbury area.[1]

Career

From around 1759 to 1768 Aldworth supervised the care of children by nurses in her local area as an inspector, a voluntary yet important role to the Foundling Hospital's operation and the expansion of care for foundling children in the eighteenth century.[2] A married woman named Naomi Southby, thought to be Hannah's sister,[3] seems also to have been an inspector, a connection which reflects the shared role of women inspectors amidst familial and social networks.[4]

Kathleen Palmer asserts that the involvement of women like Aldworth "in the business of an organisation with national reach, on equal terms with their male counterparts, was unprecedented".[2]

Aldworth's will indicates that she left £800 to endow parish almshouses.[5][6] She died "greatly and deservedly respected".[7]

Legacy

Aldworth's portrait now hangs in the St Nicolas Church in Newbury.[8]

References

  1. ^ Correspondence of the Foundling Hospital inspectors in Berkshire, 1757-68. Clark, Gillian (Independent researcher), Berkshire Record Society. Reading: Berkshire Record Society. 1994. ISBN 0952494604. OCLC 32203580.CS1 maint: others (link)
  2. ^ a b Kathleen Palmer, 'The assistance of the fair sex', article in Ladies of Quality and Distinction Exhibition Catalogue, pp.16 - 17, p.16. Foundling Museum, London, 2018. https://foundlingmuseum.org.uk/events/ladies-of-quality-distinction/
  3. ^ "The Correspondence of the Foundling Hospital" (PDF). Berkshire Record Society. p. 65. Retrieved 19 November 2018.
  4. ^ A/FH/A/6/1/12/17/8. Foundling Hospital Archive, London Metropolitan Archives
  5. ^ "National Archives, Will of Hannah Aldworth, PROB 11/1042/307".
  6. ^ Parry, Francis Charles (1818). An Account of the Charitable Donations to Places Within the County of Berks. R. and A. Taylor. p. 107.
  7. ^ E. Slocock, Incidents connected with the Slocock Family of Newbury, Berks, from 1666-1800 AD, 1938; V.F.M Garlick, Newbury Charities and Gifts (1972), p. 54.
  8. ^ 'The borough of Newbury', in A History of the County of Berkshire: Volume 4, ed. William Page and P H Ditchfield (London, 1924), pp. 130-155. British History Online http://www.british-history.ac.uk/vch/berks/vol4/pp130-155 [accessed 18 November 2018]

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