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Election Jug

1868

Small, white, commemorative stoneware jug, transfer-printed in black with a border of ivy around the rim, outside and in, and on the handle, with named portrait medallions of the two candidates.

It relates to the election of 1868 when Robert Needham Philips, of Bury, stood against Lord Chelsea and won.

Robert Needham Philips came from a long line of successful industrialists. He went to Stand School, Bristol Unitarian Academy and then Rugby School before entering the family business.

He lived at The Park (now demolished), in Prestwich, and had two daughters, Caroline and Margaret, by his first wife, Anna Maria Yates, who died in childbirth in 1850.

As a young widower, Robert kept The Park socially alive. The novelist and prolific letter writer Mrs Gaskell was one of 300 people present at a dance at The Park in 1852.

In 1856, Robert married Mary Ellen Yates, his late wife’s cousin. Their only child Anna Maria was born in 1857, the year he was elected MP for Bury as a ‘moderate liberal’, a seat he held until 1885, apart from a gap between 1859 and 1865.

Robert Needham Philips died in 1890.