Joseph Rayner Stephens
Stephens, Joseph Rayner
Born Mar. 8, 1805, in Edinburgh; died Feb. 18, 1879, in Stalybridge, Cheshire. British Methodist preacher.
Stephens became widely known for speaking in support of workers and for his attacks against the “new poor law” of 1834. For a time, he was an adherent of Chartism. In December 1838 he was arrested for agitating in support of the People’s Charter and for urging armed revolt. He was freed in 1840. In the early 1850’s he abandoned political activity.