The Political Reformer

  • J. T. Ward


Despite his financial worries, in May 1826 Graham gladly accepted the invitation of the Carlisle Whigs to contest the borough. The ancient city’s elections were notoriously riotous and strongly fought. In 1786, 1787, 1790 and 1796 there had been petitions against the results, but in 1802, 1806, 1807 and 1812 the parties had agreed to divide the representation. The truce ended in 1816, when Sir Philip Musgrave belatedly (and unsuccessfully) contested the Whig seat at a by-election, and in 1818 and 1820 the Whigs consequently stood for both seats, though only holding one. There followed a slight change of votes; while Curwen led Lonsdale’s nominee, Sir James Graham of Kirkstall and Edmund Castle, by 25 votes in 1818, two years later Graham became senior Member, with 246 votes to Curwen’s 239 and the other Whig William James’s 149. When Curwen chose to sit for the county, James was returned at a bitter by-election, defeating Musgrave by 468 votes to 382. This contest was very expensive: James claimed that it had cost him £13,000, while Musgrave was supposed to have spent £23,000. Tories complained of Whig intimidation, and Whigs alleged that Tory magistrates had attempted to influence the electors by calling in armed troops. Five years later, on Graham’s death, Musgrave was elected to the Tory seat, and thus the balance was maintained.


Government Expenditure Finance Committee Privy Councillor Compromise Plan Moneyed Interest 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 2.
    See Arthur Aspinall, The Formation of Cannings Ministry, Camden Soc. 3rd ser., lix (1937), passimGoogle Scholar
  2. ‘The Coalition Ministries of 1827’, Eng. Hist. Rev., xlii (1927), 201–26, 533–59; ‘The Last of the Canningites’, ibid., 1 (1935), 639–67; ‘The Canningite Party’, Trans. R. Hist. Soc., 4th ser., xvii (1934), 177–226.Google Scholar
  3. 7.
    cf. Norman Gash, Mr, Secretary Peel (1961), 613–14Google Scholar
  4. J. R. M. Butler, The Passing of the Great Reform Bill (1964 ed.), 69.Google Scholar
  5. 10.
    To Huskisson’s proposal of an alliance in June, Grey had written that ‘he had no indisposition towards [him] and his friends, but that on the contrary he was quite ready to act with them when the occasion should offer’ [G. M. Trevelyan, Lord Grey of the Reform Bill (1929 ed.), 218].Google Scholar
  6. 12.
    C. C. F. Greville (ed. Henry Reeve), A Journal of the Reigns of King George IV and King William IV, ii. (1875), 48Google Scholar
  7. Brougham to Graham, 17 Sept.; Warrender to Graham, 21 Sept.; Mrs. Emily Huskisson to Graham, n.d., 1830. After some discussion with the varied Opposition groups, Grey told Princess Lieven on 2 July that ‘if the new elections did not turn out very favourably to [Wellington] … and if he could not get some more efficient assistance in the House of Commons, … it was not possible that the present Administration should continue’ [Guy Le Strange (ed.), Correspondence of Princess Lieven and Earl Grey (1890), ii. 20].Google Scholar
  8. 13.
    Butler, op. cit., 96–97, 100; A. A. W. Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel (1928), 135–6; Bishop of Carlisle to Graham, 4 Oct.; Graham to Rooke, 15 Oct.; Brougham to Graham, 1 Nov.; Graham to Brougham, 2 Nov. 1830. Grey had hoped that Russell might propose the Reform motion and resented Brougham’s claim to the honour.Google Scholar
  9. 14.
    Sir H. L. Lytton, Life of Viscount Palmerston (1871), i. 363–4Google Scholar
  10. C. S. Parker, Sir Robert Peel (1899), ii. 163–6Google Scholar
  11. E. Ashley, Life of Palmer stem (1876), i. 213.Google Scholar
  12. 15.
    H. Brougham, The Life and Times of Lord Brougham (1871), iii. 58;Google Scholar
  13. Greville, op. cit., ii. 71; S. Smith to Countess Grey, 21 Nov. 1830 (Lady Holland and Mrs. Austin, A Memoir of the Reverend Sydney Smith (1855), ii. 310–11). See also Carlos Flick, ‘The Fall of Wellington’s Government’ (Journal of Modern History, xxxvii. 1, March 1965, 65–71).Google Scholar

Copyright information

© J. T. Ward 1967

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. T. Ward

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations