This was the final farewell to a village lad who went from a humble weaver’s cottage to Downing Street. Philip Snowden, from Middleton, Cowling, near Keighley, became Chancellor of the Exchequer when Ramsay MacDonald formed Britain’s first Labour government in 1924. His first Buget was a popular one; he cut taxes on household commodities, abolished protective duties and lowered the tax on popular entertainments, arguing they were a valuable alternative to pubs.
Sadly the depression was looming and MacDonald’s decision in 1931 to lead a National Government split the Labour movement. Snowden backed his Prime Minister, but did not stand for election again.
Snowden was created Viscount Snowden of Ickornshaw – and it was on Ickornshaw Moor, after his death in 1937, that Snowden’sashes were scattered.
Ashes are being scattered by Tom Snowden (not related). Philip Snowden and Tom Snowden were life long friends of Arthur Stephenson of Lane Ends, Cowling.
Mr. Stephenson was dedicated to the Labour movement as well as being a very succesful businessman in the local poultry business. He died on 23rd Jan 1935 at the age of 59.
Credits to: Hugh S Broughton, Cowling.
LORD SNOWDEN CREMATED.
PLAIN OAK COFFIN AND ONE WREATH.
The remains of Viscount Snowden were cremated at, St. John’s Crematorium, Woking, on Tuesday. , The service, a private one, was conducted by the Rev. H. J. Taylor, of Woking, a friend of the family. In a tribute, Mr. Taylor said Lord Snowden
AT the scattering of Lord. Snowden’s ashes at Padcote, on Ickornshaw Moors, to-day, three old friends will pay tribute to the dead statesman. Sir Ben Turner, Mr. Ben Riley (Labour M.P. for Dewsbury), and Mr. Tom Snowden (Bingley) will all speak at the service to be conducted by the Rev. Alfred Booth, Methodist minister at Cowling. On Sunday morning, at 10.45, a service will be conducted at Ickornshaw Methodist Church by the Rev. W. H. Lawson (Crosshills), superintendent minister of the circuit.
had done a brave day’s work. All the people of 11ns and of other lands would be permanently advantaged because of his life and the service he rendered.
A plain oak coffin bore the simple inscription, “Philip Snowden.” On it rested one wreath from Lady Snowden. There had been a request for no flowers. In addition to Lady Snowden those present included Mr. H. K. Clegg (Leeds’), brother-in-law, Mrs. R. A. Wanmer and Mrs, R Rose (Bradford), nieces, Mr. Keighley Snowden, cousin, and Sir Walter and Lady Napier.
SERVICE IN LONDON.
There is to be a memorial service for Lord Snowden at St.. Margaret’s Church, Westminster, at 12.30 next Wednesday.
Some Characteristics of the Map.
Lord Snowden was nearly as much of an. adept as Abraham Lincoln at punctuating his speeches with apt story and anecdotal illustrations. Many are the stories which he told, and many, too, are the stories told about him.” Here are a few of the latter :—
One evening young Philip Snowden and his sister wanted the kitchen table, one for writing and the other for ironing. His sister offered to pay a quarter’s fee as admission to the Liberal club if Philip would let her have the table. The boy closed with the offer, and straight away went out to the club.
After a night of billiards he returned home and remarked to the assembled family, ” Well, billiards is a good game no doubt, and very scientific, but 1 wasn’t meant to spend my time in places like that. It isn’t in my line to spend my time at clubs.”
He told this story shortly after .his first appointment as Chancellor of the Exchequer.
“People keep asking me what I am going to do with the millions,” he said. ” It reminds me of. the story of the working man who got married, and went back home some time later and told his people that his wife was a puzzle, to him. ‘ Every time I come home she’s asking me for money,1 said the young husband. ‘ What does she do with it?’ asked his parents. ‘ Well,’ replied the husband, ‘ she does nowt wi’ it ,because I haven’t gin her ony yet.’ It’s the same way with my millions,” concluded Philip.
Someone said that Philip Snowden had the bitterest tongue and the sweetest smile in the House cf Commons. Once, when an opponent said something about his smiling, Snowden interjected, “I don’t smile, I sneer at you.”
AN AMERICAN INTERVIEWER.
An example of Snowden’s combative-ness is recorded by a biographer who tells how during a tour of America at the outbreak of war Snowden was misrepresented by a Middle West reporter, who declared that “Briton M.P. Advises British Soldiers to Shoot Their Officers.”
At great personal inconvenience Snowden returned from New York and at, last induced the offender to accompany him to the British Consulate and sign a declaration on oath that his account of the interview was untrue. The Consul remarked with astonishment; that this was the first time he had known anyone obtain satisfaction from a sensation American newspaper.
Snowden and the lady who became his. wife met at the 1905 conference of the Independent Labour Party. When, they married, Snowden wrote to his cousin, John Whittaker, of Bradford (who had intended to wear a top-hat): ‘For heaven’s sake, John, don’t come in a swine-grease hat.”
A ROCK LIKENESS.
A writer in the “Yorkshire Post” states : ” Just above the Cow and Calf Rocks at Ilkley there is a single rock which wind and weather have shaped into a. head of the great statesman is quite a fair likeness when viewed from the right angle — certainly very much more than a caricature—and now that Lord Snowden has gone it makes a not inappropriate memorial. He, too, faced blasts as bitter as anything that blows across the moors of Ilkley.”
SOME OF HIS SAYINGS.
Reported sayings of Snowden are the following:— ;
So long as I have the sympathy of the working classes, and so long as my attitude meets with their approval, 1am indifferent, to the opinions of my opponents. I am not anxious to have a good name with all men.
Not for 10,000 voters will I apologise for anything I have done, or modify my attitude, or sacrifice my principles in the slightest degree.
You never lose in the long run by sticking to your convictions.
It would be desirable if every Government when it comes into power should have its old speeches burned.
Socialism is not a political creed. A man can be a Tory, or a Liberal, or an I.L.P.-er, and still hold Socialism as an economic theory During his. youth Lord Snowden had a passion for drama and used to give very accomplished recitations. His father, John Snowden, who recognised greatness in his son, thought that one day he would become a famous London actor,
Sometimes, it is true, the younger Snowden seems to have escaped whit might fairly have been ” coming to him. As, for instance, when he pinned up the tails of the coat of his father, who was superintendent, in Sunday school and his father rose to address the school thus curiously attired.
I was, of course, discovered, and this was a matter too serious to be overlooked, A special teachers’ meeting was called to consider what should be done with me. They considered my ease and finally came to the conclusion that I was hopeless, that I was a ” limb of the devil,” and that it was no use trying to exorcise the evil spirit which possessed me. . . And I escaped with no greater punishment than the verdict of the teachers as to my spiritual depravity. He was to be ” given up ” more than once in his long career.
MR. PHILIP SNOWDEN AND THE COWLING
APPRECIATIVE LETTER TO PARISH
Mr. Everett Binns, chairman of the Cowling Parish Council, has received the following letter from the Right Hon. Philip Snowden, M.P.
53, Carlisle Mansions, S.W.I.,
24th May, 1924.
My Dear Friend,
I must write to you on my wife’s behalf and my own to express the very great joy we derived from the experience we had last Saturday. It was a great occasion and we both derived intense pleasure from the happiness which everybody showed in it. The event will, I am sure, live in the memory of all who had the gratification of joining in it.
Everything went off splendidly, and while the organisation was so perfect there was a spontaneousness about it which robbed it of all appearance or feeling of artificiality.
It was deeply touching to meet all my old I friends and companions of my boyhood in such Happy circumstances, and to see how all party and other differences were forgotten in a genuine satisfaction at the success of one of themselves. I shall treasure the joy of it as long as I live.
The presents have been greatly admired by all my friends who have seen them. They are indeed very beautiful.
I should like you to convey to the Parish’ Council, as’ representing the whole village, our joint appreciation and thanks for the honour and pleasure they have given us. With all good wishes from us both, Believe me,
Yours very sincerely,
Lady Snowden dies aged 69
Viscountess Snowden, widow of Viscount Snowden, former Chancellor of the Exchequer, has died in a Wimbledon nursing home, aged 69. She bad been in the nursing home since 1947 when she had a stroke. She had a second stroke on February 6.
Throughout her long and happy marriage Lady Snowden’s life was an outstanding example or the way in which a wife can help and sustain her husband without sacrificing her own interests.
Politically, of course, her own interests were identical with those of the late Lord Snowden, and in this field she could co-operate with him whole heartedly. But she had interests of her own outside politics—a keen and abiding interest in music and art, for instance—which her husband had no time, even if he had the inclination, to cultivate. She was the first woman to become a Governor of the B.B.C.
Lady Snowden was born at Harrogate. She was a daughter of Alderman Richard Annakin builder and contractor, and sometime Mayor of the borough.
From earliest girlhood she was musical. She sang in the choir of Belle Vue Methodist Church, Leeds, and once said at a P.E.N. Club dinner that she cherished as one of her most boastful memories the fact that at the age of 16 she could accompany her church choir in a performance of ” Messiah ” without music.
School teacher in Leeds
Before her marriage, which took place at Otley in 1905, she was a school teacher at Adel. Leeds.
It was said during the Hague Conference after the first World War that many of the Chancellor of the Exchequer’s most brilliant remarks were based on the analyses prepared for him by his wife; he himself confessed on his return that without her help he could not have succeeded: and it stands as a fact that she made the first critical speech on the Versailles Treaty the very day after It was published, having sat up all night to master its terms
After her husband’s death, Lady Snowden did much to perpetuate his memory, particularly In their native county. She presented a bust of him to Leeds University, of which the late Lord Snowden had been made an honorary LL.D.. and she presented a portrait of him in oils to Cowling Council School, which Lord Snowden attended as a boy, and at which he was later a pupil teacher.
PHILIP SNOWDEN AMONG HIS OWN FOLK.
AN INTIMATE IMPRESSION OF THE CHANCELLOR,
Much has been written and said of late about the Right Hon. Philip Snowden, M.P.. Chancellor of the Exchequer, “but outside his own circle there are very few who are acquainted with Philip Snowden, the man, writes “F.R.S.,” in the “Yorkshire Evening News.”
A “Yorkshire Evening News” representative, who had the privilege of taking tea with Mr. Snowden on the occasion of the latter’s visit to his native Cowling on Saturday, had an excellent opportunity of observing 6everal of his characteristics.
Contrary to the impression one might receive from many of his published photo-graphs. Mr. Snowden’s face, when in re-pose wears an expression of quiet serenity. The lofty brow and deep-set eyes are the outward signs of his great intellectual capacity.
In conversation, Mr. Snowden’s voice is clear and pleasant. No matter how “trivial may be the matter under discussion, he invests it with a dignity of diction, and an admirably selected phraseology, which, in themselves, are sufficient to command the attention of bis hearers. One is conscious that while he is speaking ho is carefully weighing and considering each work and phrase. His memory, in keeping with his other faculties, is remarkably good, and when many of his old friends, with whom lie spent his boyhood, crowded round him. he greeted each by his Christian name and exchanged reminiscences of those far-off days when they were young “‘Cowinheeaders” together. To them, he was the unchanged Philip of half a century ago.
Mr. Snowden cherishes a genuine regard for his native dialect. founded primarily on his affection for all remembrances of his boyhood, and partly be- ]
cause of an academic and extensive knowledge of its origin. Occasionally,
when recounting events long past, he would please his friends by dropping into the dialect, which came so naturally andracily to his tongue.
He has to the full the Yorkshireman’s love of a good fire, and when he pulled up his chair a little to the side of the cheery blaze, and lighted a cigarette, he seemed thoroughly at peace. To obtain a light for his cigarettes, of which he smoked many, he had recourse to an ex-pedient, common to Yorkshiremen and North Country people generally, and which gives some indication of the in-nate sense of thrift implanted in the sturdy folk of those parts.
Politely refusing a proffered match-box, he leaned forward and tore a strip from a newspaper lying on the range, and folding it until it was stiff, applied] the improvised taper to the fire, and so lighted his cigarette.
Through the window of the cottage home of Mr. Snowden’s sister slanted the last rays of the westering sun. shin-ing upon a scene of happy and felicitous home life in which the identity of the Chancellor of the Exchequer was lost in Philip Snowden, a son of the people. and native of Cowling.
LOOKING BACK ON THE PAST.
VISCOUNT SNOWDEN’S KEIGHLEY DAYS.
The manner in which the new viscount entered public life has often been told. His is a typical instance of a boy from a village school rising to one of the highest positions in the land. He became a public teacher in the Cowling School, but necessity compelled him to become a clerk in an insurance office in Burnley. At 22 he won a place in the Excise by open competition, and for the next seven years he had a varied experience in various parts of England and Scotland.
While stationed at Plymouth he had. the misfortune to sprain his back through a cycle accident. His disablement, becoming permanent, caused his retirement from the Civil Service, and it was during that period of enforced physical inactivity that he was led to take an interest in Labour questions.
He was asked by the management of the Cowling Liberal Club to write an essay on ” The Fallacies of Socialism,” and it was while reading up for this essay that he became converted to Socialism. While living in Cowling his health became sufficiently recovered to allow him to take part in the local affairs of the village.
For four years he was a member of the Parish Council and also acted as honorary clerk of that body. He also served for three years on the Cowling School Board.
ENTRY INTO PUBLIC LIFE.
His first public step outside his native village was made when he wrote a letter to the ” Keighley News ” in January, 1895, dealing with the economic aspect of the temperance movement. He was then quite unknown to the members of the I.L.P. in Keighley, but shortly afterwards he was invited to speak at one of the Sunday evening meetings in Keighley.
Commenting on Mr. Snowden’s advent into the local Socialist movement, “The Keighley News” said: ” He has come forth from his retirement to display powers which would do no disgrace to veterans of many
Snowden took a front place in the Labour movement.
He removed to Keighley, and in July, 1895, he was adopted as Parliamentary candidate for the Keighley Division, but, owing to the shortness of time and the unpreparedness of the local party, he did not proceed with his candidature
A KEIGHLEY COUNCILLOR.
Mr Snowden sat for three years on the Keighley Town Council as a representative of the East Ward. In the election in 1899 he was returned by the narrow majority of seven votes, polling 441 votes to 434 polled by his opponent, Mr. William Thomson, who stood as a Liberal.
During his connection with the Town Council Mr. Snowden took an active part in support of the negotiations for taking over from a private company the Keighley tramways. While in Keighley he edited the ” Keighley Labour Journal.”
It was in 1896 that Mr. Snowden was elected a member of the National Executive of the I.L.P., and he held the position of chairman of the party. In 1900 he was unsuccessful in an election at Blackburn, and he successfully fought a Parliamentary by-election at Wakefield in 1903, but was later successful at Blackburn, and subsequently, up to the end of the last Parliament, represented the Colne Valley.
FREEDOM OF KEIGHLEY.
He was the first .Labour Chancellor of the Exchequer, and holds the office of Lord Privy Seal in the second National Government. He is 07 years of age, and in 1905 he married Miss Annakin, of Harrogate. He has been three times Chancellor of the Exchequer-in the Labour Government of 1924, in the last Labour Government, and also in the first National Government.
Mr. Snowden’s associations with Keighley were honoured in November, 1925. when he was made a freeman of the borough. He also opened the last extension made at the Keighley electricity works. Formerly it was his practice to visit Keighley just before the November municipal elections and to speak at a mass meeting in support of the Labour candidates.
THE COWLING DIALECT.
Mr. Philip Snowden, in his speech at Cowling on Saturday afternoon, said that he regretted the disappearance of the old Cowling dialect on account of its racy expressiveness and its wealth of synonmyms. Many of use will agree with the Chancellor of the Exchequer that it is not to the good that this should be i allowed to die out. The late Professor Moorman, of the Leeds University, who was a great authority on Yorkshire dialects, estimated that there were some 32 separate and district varieties still (spoken. When engaged in collecting in formation and making records of their peculiarities he was introduced to Mr. Snowden’s mother, who was about the last tongue in all its purity. The Professor obtained from he.” much valuable information.
It is said that the Cowling dialect was unique and that it possessed many words now entirely obsolete. It is stated that it differed very considerably even from that spoken in the Kildwick and Crosshills area, only four or five miles away. The explanation is that in the days of the handloom weavers Cowling was a very remote self-contained and self-supporting township, cut off from its neighbours by high hills and bleak moor-lands on all sides. In such places old manners and old customs live long, and the people cling to them tenaciously. Again old Cowling looked rather towards Lancashire than Yorkshire in its infrequent intercourse with the outside world. The handloom weavers carried their pieces “across the Moss” to Colne, which also supplied them with such goods as they required. But the needs of the “Cowinheaders” in those days were few and simple; they produced all their own wearing apparel and by far the greater part of their food. Those conditions developed that strong point of sturdy independence and self-reliance which is so much in evidence to-day, although the social conditions have changed enormously in the past two generations. It gives a sense of security to feel and know that you can produce the essentials of life, food and clothing, in your home and plot of land and with none to say you may.
We have advanced far since those days, and the wealth of the nation has increased enormously under the wage system, and the factories have killed all the home industries, but we have paid the price. The old system bred men and women of splendid calibre, because it stood for self-reliance and independence, and these be great things. As Mr. Everett Binns said at Saturday’s meeting, every disadvantage has its advantages, and these are not all on the side of the factory system as against home production.
It is said that the Cowling dialect preserves many purely Saxon words. But we are convinced that it is much older than the Saxon invasion. These ruthless invaders when they overran Britain, generally seized and settled in the fat. pasture lands of the Midlands and the south and drove the occupying British race into the mountainous districts of the Pennines. Our ancient British forefathers continued to speak their Celtic tongue in these remote parts of the country and it seems certain that it is the root language of all the West Riding dialects.
When the schoolmaster came with the Education Act of 1870, he made a direct onslaught on the dialects, and they have steadily disappeared before him. They seem soon doomed to extinction, unless some enthusiasts rescue them, and preserve them in books for scholars on account of their philological interest.
Chancellor’s Birth Place.
By ELEANOR HANSON.
Much interest is centred on Cowling
in these days as the village where Mr. Philip Snowden, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, was horn. Cowling is built on the highway (once the old coach road) between Airedale and the neighbouring county of Lancashire.
It is pleasantly situated, but I think the best view is obtained as one enters it from the high moors known as Earl’s Crag, upon which the two noted pinnacles are built. Wainman’s Pinnacle stands 1,150ft. and the Jubilee Tower 1,100ft., and they can be seen for many miles around. The Crag itself is an escarpment of millstone grit, and is supposed to take its name from a famous Earl of Cumberland who was Lord of the Manor of Cowling nearly four centuries ago.
In very early days Cowling was divided into three hamlets – Cowling Hill, Stott Hill, and Ickornshaw. Ickornshaw has gained much notoriety, for it was here that the villagers once tried to rake the moon out of the mill dam. The dam was the first in that district to run machinery with water-power, and the mill itself was built in 1791 by the Rev. John Dehane, a Vicar of Kildwick, for his son, for the purpose of candle-wick making.
I walked from here to the hamlet of Middleton, where Mr. Philip Snowden was born. Built on the hillside, just below the church, is the little school where, I was informed, Mr. Snowden received his early education, which in those days would be a humble training in a very elementary way.
One villager from whom I made
inquiries invited me into the Liberal
Club to see a photograph of the first
Parish Council of 35 years ago. He
told me that it was in that room that
Mr. Snowden gave some of his first
There were nine members of the Council, as follows :-
Mr. Philip Snowden.
Mr. Alfred Fletcher, who was postmaster, and who now lives at Ilkley. Mr. W. Bannister, cabinet maker.
Mr. John Hartley, manufacturer, of Acre Shed, who died in 1914.
Mr. Thomas Watson, who was a manufacturer at Ickornshaw Mill.
Mr. Everett Binns, who died in 1928. He was a manufacturer and president of the Skipton Division Liberal Association up to the time of his death.
Mr. Jonas Laycock, still living in Cowling.
Mr. Samuel Gott, a native of Cowling, who was in business as a wholesale grocer in Bradford.
Mr, John Whittaker, a farmer at Carr Head.
Other photographs displayed were those of a much-respected Vicar of Cowling, who was there for a largo number of years, and one of the late Sir Isaac Holden.
Cowling has given to the world more than one man of note. The Rev. John Gawthrop was born at Greensyke Farm. He was first employed as a weaver at Royd Mills, Cowling, but entered the Wesleyan ministry in 1886. He often proudly stated that he and Peter Mackenzie were the only two to be admitted to the ministry at an age which exceeded the fixed limit for admission. He remained a fre-quent visitor to his native place and occupied many pulpits in Keighley, Skipton, Colne, and the surrounding villages. He, like Mr. Snowden, was of uncommon personality and was an eloquent preacher.
Beyond the brown crags and quiet fields the moors at this season of the year are purple with heather.
AMONG HIS OWN PEOPLE
MR. AND MRS. SNOWDEN WITH SOME MEMBERS OF THE PRESENTATION COMMITTEE. “Pioneer” photo (by J.H.Rycroft, Colne).
HAH MARY 0′ JOAN’S SHOOK HANDS WI’ PHILIP.
Mary o’ Joan’s donu’d hersel’ up, i’t finest clooas sho hed,
For t’ Chancellor wer’ coming—a native born and bred ;
An’ it fairly pleeas’d t’owd lady, puttin’ streeamers across t’ street :
Shoo weshed an’ sca’ared her doorstep, an’ made all cleean an’ neeat,
” Aw weel remember t’ time,” shoo said, ” when Philip wor a lad ;
We ollus thow’t he’d mak’ weel aght; and na’ah we’re all sooa glad !
Ah’ve been ta look at t’ presents; an’—my word !—but they are smart,___
An’ they’re gi’en bi owd friends, an’ wi’ a willing heart.”
Shoo mixed wi’t’ cra’ad, an’ cheered him, tho’ her corns were sometimes pierced,
For nivver sich a cra’ad were known, net even at wer feeast;
Aye, an’ Middleton they honoured wi’ a visit in their car;
I’ th’ topmost ha’ase hi first saw leet;—we’re pra’ad o’ this ; we are !
He stopped just opposite a’ar door, an’ shook mi hand. an’ said Ha’ah pleeas’d he wor
ta see ma, an’ enquired aba’at a’hr Ned ; Ta think ‘at England’s Chancellor, ud
stop an’ speyk ta me ! An’ his wife !—sich a nice lady, yet sooa kind she was, and
When things gat settled da’an a bit, aw couldn’t help but cry ;
Ta think ha’ve been sooa honoured, —sich a cra’ad !—an’ not passed by !
It hes cheer’d mi looanly life, ta reflect o’ this bright day,
When our Hero com’ ta Cowling, on this Seventeenth of May.
Mi prayer is—” God bless tha lad ! ” Tha comes fra Cowinheead ;
It’ll be all reight wi’ England, if Yorkshire fowk tak’s t’ leead.
Ah knaw tha’ll do thi duty, an’ nooab’dy can do mooar;
An’ t’ greatest men i’ t’ land are them at toils for t’ poor.
MR. SNOWDEN AT HOME.
Cowling’s Welcome to the Chancellor.
“I WILL WORK FOR THE POOR.”
By a “Mercury” Special Correspondent
The moorland village of Cowling was, as I expected, en fete for the great occasion on Saturday.
Banners suspended across the main streets, with such devices as ” Welcome,” “Well done, Philip,” and “Cowling welcomes her illustrious son” were evidences of a disposition on the part of the villagers to make the day ,one to live in memory. The Rt. Hon. Philip Snowden, accompanied by Mrs. Snowden, motored from the station. They were met at the entrance to the village by the Cowling Temperance Brass Band, and borne in triumph to the United Methodist Schoolroom.
PACKED WITH ENTHUSIASTS
With a capacity of at least a thousand the hall was packed but there were thousands more outside unable to gain admittance.
The resolution was moved by Mr. Everitt Binns, chairman of the Parish Council. It was supported by Mr. P. A. Fisher, Mr. Francis Redman, Mr. Wright Snowden, Mr. Tom Snowden, of Bingley, and Mr. Isaac Emmott.
All spoke freelingly of their own personal attachment to the present Chancellor, and recounted many little incidents of days gone by.
Past and Present Residents.
The wording of the resolution was as follows :—That this meeting, representing the past and present residents of the Parish of Cowling, in which the Bight Hon. Philip Snowden was born, whose early education was received at the village school, and whose public career commenced as a member of the first Parish Council of Cowling, hereby conveys to him sincere and hearty congi-atulatiotns on his appointment to the high and important position of Chancellor of the Exchequer of his Majesty’s Government. It was enthusiastically carried.
Embarrassing and Difficult. Mr. Snowden, who was obviously sincerely moved, moistening his lips twice before speaking, replied : ” Mr.Chairman, and friends—old j friends, I have been in many embarrassing and difficult situations in I my time, but I never felt it more difficult to speak than I do under the circumstances of this afternoon. I am deeply touched by the spontaneous, generous, and kindly expression of your pride in what has come to me.
“Your chairman was quite right when he said that I have never Bought office. Any position which has come to me has come as a reward, or rather has been conferred on me by friends who trusted me to do the work, ‘From your chairman we have had reminiscences of old days. I was not aware that the chairman was so old. I don’t feel half the age he puts himself at, and I believe I am four or five years older than he. But we are as old as we feel, and if that be the test, I have not grown older since the days I lived among you.
” I am as young, vigorous, and active as when I started my public career thirty years ago.
The Greatest Joy in Life.
” If the position I now hold gives any joy and satisfaction to you I am glad pleasure to others. Mine is a great and responsible position. I am Supposed to be responsible my friends for hundreds of millions of money collected and dispensed every year.”
Mr. Snowden then recounted several stories illustrative of the Yorkshire-man’s tight hold of his money, and thus deduced his fitness for his present position. He also referred to the fact that since he was born, five men from Cowling have either been Members of Parliament or candidates at elections. He went on:—
When I was first elected as Member for Blackburn an old woman came up to me and, with tears in her eyes, said : ‘ Oh, Mr. Snowden, you will fight for the poor, won’t you. A Fight for the Poor. These words have remained in my mind ever since. I have tried to fight for the poor. In framing my Budget I thought first of the poor. I had resources, and I used them to the best of my ability to this end—to relieve some of the burdens of the poor.
I don’t know how much longer my health and strength will be left to me, but when the day comes for me to finish this life, I want no greater satisfaction than to have established a claim to have placed on my tombstone the words of that poor woman: ‘He worked for the poor,’
In acknowledging the present of a handsome rose bowl and two vases pictures of which appeared in ” The Leeds Mercury ” last Wednesday—Mr, Snowden referred to the attempted burglary at his house some time ago and to his possession now of a ferocious wolfhound guaranteed to eat any burglar in twenty-five seconds.
The meeting broke up at 6.10 p.m., after just two hours of speeches. Mr. Snowden then went to his old birth, place, and afterwards had tea with Mrs. Shaw—his sister.
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