Hartshorn, Vernon

Welsh PM trade unionist and socialist born at Cross Keys on 16 March 1872, the son of Theophilus Hartshorn, a PM local preacher and coal miner. Originally employed as a coal miner at Risca, he was then employed in the company's Cardiff Docks offices before being appointed a checkweighman. Joining the Independent Labour Party in 1905, he was elected miners' agent for Maesteg to the South Wales Miners' Federation. Especially playing a prominent part in the minimum wage strike of 1912, he became one of an emerging group of radicals but lost some of his credibility for supporting the First World War. He stood unsuccessfully for Mid-Glamorgan in 1910 but was elected for Ogmore in 1918, retaining the seat until his death at Maesteg on 13 March 1931. He served as Postmaster General in 1924 and Lord Privy Seal 1930-1 with special responsibility for employment and in 1927 was appointed to the India Statutory Committee.

Entry written by: DCD
Category: Person
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