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Oliver Cromwell


A CDV of Oliver Cromwell (1599-1658). The photographer is Gustav Schauer of 188 Grosse Friedrichs Strasse in Berlin Germany c1870

October 17, 2022 Posted by | Social History, Uncategorized | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Cromwell – 1656

8 August 1656, Oliver Cromwell wrote to his officers advising vigilance against external interference in upcoming elections for the

Second Protectorate Parliament and any attempt to destabilise the government. Engraving from our collection


The Cromwell Museum, Huntingdon









August 8, 2022 Posted by | Social History, Uncategorized | , , , , , | 2 Comments

Happy Birthday Oliver Cromwell


Oliver Cromwell was born on 25th April 1599 in Huntingdon, and resided in St Ives between 1631 and 1636.

April 25, 2022 Posted by | Social History, Uncategorized | , , , , | 2 Comments

Oliver Cromwell – Yes or No Series

November 7, 2021 Posted by | Deltiology, Social History, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Happy Birthday Oliver Cromwell


Oliver Cromwell was born on 25th April 1599 in Huntingdon, and resided in St Ives between 1631 and 1636.

24th April 1645 Oliver Cromwell advanced through Oxfordshire, defeating Royalist cavalry at Islip & accepting the surrender of Bletchington House;

its Royalist commander Francis Windebank was shot on his return to Oxford for dereliction of duty

April 25, 2021 Posted by | Social History, Uncategorized | , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Oliver Cromwell


Oliver Cromwell born on 25th April 1599 in Huntingdon, and resided in St Ives between 1631 and 1636.

April 25, 2020 Posted by | Social History, Uncategorized | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Lord Protector

Alan Bennett

February 7, 2020 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Oliver Cromwell – The Sketch – Wednesday 26th April 1899




Three hundred years ago (April 25, 1599), Oliver Cromwell was born in the good town of Huntingdon, and to- day the thoughts of the English-speaking world are turned towards him. His father, Robert, was the second son of Sir Henry Cromwell, of Hinchinbrook, and grandson of one Richard Williams, who had risen to fortune under the protection of Thomas Cromwell, Earl of Essex. Cromwell went to the Grammar School at Huntingdon, a very interesting institution, where the first seeds of Puritanism were sown in his mind, and his old schoolmaster, if he did not send Cromwell to Parliament, certainly influenced the future Lord Protector’s Parliamentary career.

The school stands in the High Street, opposite All Saints’ Church, where the register with the entry of Cromwell’s birth may be seen. Cromwell was born in a house in Ermine Street. This house has been rebuilt several times, so that, unfortunately, nothing of the original structure remains.

A good many legends have grown up about the boyhood of Oliver Cromwell; but one thing is pretty clear, from evidence which looks reliable, namely, that he was but an indifferent pupil. It may be that Dr. Beard, who was one of the greatest scholars and divines of the time, was rather exacting. Cromwell left school when he was seventeen, to continue his education at Sidney-Sussex College, Cambridge. He remained, however, under the religious influence of Dr. Beard, who was a zealous Puritan and closely associated with the Cromwell family. When Charles I. granted Huntingdon a new charter, Dr. Beard and Oliver were made the first two magistrates. The only speech which Cromwell made in the first Parliament in which he sat contained a reference to his old schoolmaster. Later on, master and pupil joined in maintaining the freedom of the pulpit against the pretensions of the bishops.

What remains of the school is a small part of a larger building, which dates from 1187. Its full name was the “Hospital of St. John the Baptist,” and it was an institution founded by David, the first Earl of Huntingdon the Sir Kenneth of Scott’s “Talisman” for the purpose of providing relief and maintenance for poor people, giving hospitality to the pilgrim and the wayfarer, and, at the same time, carrying on certain educational work. In mediaeval times it was, no doubt, the only educational institution, hospital, and charity in the town. All that is left now is a small building which looks as if it had originally been a chapel attached to a larger edifice. For some reason or other, the building was encased in an outer shell of Elizabethan design, and it was only in 1874, when this outer shell was removed, that the original Norman structure was discovered. Almost the whole school was then taken down and carefully rebuilt, as nearly as possible after the original style. The late Mr. Dion Boucicault undertook to defray the expenses of restoration, in memory of his son, who was killed in a railway accident near Huntingdon. As a matter of fact, Mr. Boucicault never paid the whole amount, nearly £900, so that it had to be made up by local subscriptions.

The gable of the school fronts on the High Street, and contains a fine Norman doorway, now bricked up. Above this doorway there is an arcade with two window piercings, and in the gable of this end appears a symbolic device of the vesica piscis. The front is terminated by the addition of a bell-gable. There is a bricked-up arch in the other gable, and the outer walls consist of two great bays, also bricked up, except for the modern windows they contain. Each of these bays and arches is in a somewhat different style, dating from the Norman period. Indeed, the whole building as restored still retains its Norman expression. The interior of the building is only twenty-four feet long and twenty feet wide the smallest Grammar School in the country. The institution has a representative body of Governors, of which the Earl of Sandwich, who is also Mayor of Huntingdon, is Chairman. The Governors are just now appealing for funds to obtain additional buildings, increase the endowment, and establish scholarships.

Huntingdon is more divided about the merits of Oliver Cromwell to-day than it was when he represented it in Parliament. To one party he is the murderer of Charles I., a traitor, a hypocrite to another, the saviour of his country, the Christian soldier, the national hero.

When, a few weeks ago, it was proposed to get up some memorial of Cromwell, a member of the Town Council said he could take no part in commemorating a regicide. It has been decided at a town’s meeting, however, to erect a statue. The Governors of the Grammar School have a scheme of their own, and the Free Church men are satisfied by participating in the former proposal.

Various memorials of Cromwell are to be found, notably the one in the Houses of Parliament, but London might easily raise a great statue of the Protector. It is curious to find the references to him in Sardou’s “Robespierre,” at the Lyceum. There he figures as a sort of splendid demigod. In this country, of course, his reputation has been made for moderns by Carlyle, while Dr. Gardiner has also done a great deal.


The Sketch – Wednesday 26th April 1899

April 25, 2019 Posted by | Social History, Uncategorized | , , , , | 3 Comments