May 13, 2022 2 min read

Who was Robert Owen?

Robert Owen was born on 14th May 1771 in Newtown, Montgomeryshire in Wales. He was the sixth of seven children born to Robert Owen (Senior) who was an ironmonger, saddler and postmaster. At the age of 19 he had started his own business. He borrowed £100 and began his life as an entrepreneur and social reformer.

He became known as the ‘Father of British Socialism’ and Owen was, in many ways, centuries ahead of his time with his ideas of a workers’ utopia, socialist reform and universal charity. He had been an avid reader from a young age with a questioning intellect and a thirst for industry and improvement.

Robert Owen - 10 Facts

  1. Robert was born on 14 May 1771.
  2. He left school aged ten to train as a draper or cloth merchant. A draper's shop would sell cloth for people to buy and make their own clothing.
  3. At 21 he was managing a cotton mill in Manchester.
  4. Owen saw working people had a very hard life and thought they would work more productively if they had better welfare and were happier.
  5. At New Lanark mill in Scotland he gave workers shorter days, free healthcare and education from childhood to adulthood, a creche for working mothers and free medical care.
  6. He became one of the most influential early 19th-century advocates of socialism
  7. His belief in improving the lives of workers helped improve conditions in workplaces all over the world.
  8. He later moved to America to start up new working communities and established the New Harmony community in Indiana.
  9. After 1834 Owen devoted himself to preaching his ideas on education, morality, rationalism, and marriage reform. At the age of 82 he became a spiritualist.
  10. Robert Owen died in Wales on 17 November 1858 aged 87. 
Robert Owen Statue in Newtown, Monthgomeryshire

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Our company, FelinFach Natural Textiles is located in the heart of the Preseli area of Pembrokeshire near to Boncath. We design Welsh blankets and the iconic Welsh Tapestry blankets which are traditionally woven at Welsh mills. We also design and make natural hand dyed yarn, cotton, silk and wool scarves and other handmade products, all available in our yarn store and shop. We also offer Welsh tartansSheepskin Rugs, Gift Cards and tools and books for crafters and knitters - Cocoknits, Laine, Amirisu and Making to name a few! Lastly, craft courses on hand dyeing with 100% natural dyes in the purpose designed FelinFach Dye Studio. We are a proud supporter of the Campaign for Wool, All Things Wales and Global Welsh.

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Last update 13th May 2022