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British Industrial History

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John Thomas Whitehead Mitchell

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John Thomas Whitehead Mitchell (1828-1895), President of the Wholesale Cooperative Society

1828 Born in Rochdale

1853 Mitchell joined the Rochdale Society of Equitable Pioneers

1871 Manufacturer and merchant, living in Rochdale[1]

1874 J. T. W. Mitchell represented the Rochdale Pioneers at the Cooperative Congress in Halifax[2]

Mitchell promoted the strategic direction for co-operative production, as exemplified in the CWS, with all production carried out in large-scale factories governed by the CWS general committee, with the CWS itself being owned and controlled as a federation of local retail co-operative societies. The benefits of co-operation would be realized by the worker as a member. This contrasted with the alternative direction proposed by Christian socialists, who advocated self-governing workshops (with bonuses to labour, profit sharing, and other such measures to distribute the benefits of co-operation)[3].

1895 Died in Rochdale, chairman of the Co-operative Wholesale Society (CWS)[4]


1895 Obituary [5]



See Also

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Sources of Information

  1. 1871 census
  2. The Times, Apr 09, 1874
  3. Biography of John Thomas Mitchell, ODNB
  4. National Probate Calendar
  5. Engineering 1895 Jan-Jun: Index: General Index