Stalybridge Secrets; Hidden Mayor - Hidden History BOOK LAUNCH & SIGNING

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Deli Felice Turkish cuisine

Market Street

Stalybridge

SK15 2AA

United Kingdom

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THE HOME-TOWN LAUNCH!

You are invited to the home-town launch in Stalybridge .... of two books on the UK's Victorian 'hidden' Muslim , Robert 'Reschid' Stanley. ‘His Own Man’ is the historical biography of Robert Stanley. The companion book, ‘Imagining Robert Reschid’, is a work of historical fiction. Both were written by Robert's great x 3 grandaughter Christina Longden, a local lass herself, who will be at the launch to talk about her work.

---BOOK-SIGNING AND A CHANCE TO PURCHASE THE BOOKS AT A SPECIAL 'LOCAL RATE' --------

Robert Stanley was a respectable northern working-class Victorian man who converted to Islam. But his family managed to keep his Muslim identity a secret - for nearly a century.

Robert grew up in the cradle of Britain’s Industrial Revolution and was part of Ashton under Lyne’s Christian Israelite sect. Self-educated, this Stalybridge grocer and tea-trader made it his mission to help northern working men bribed by rich factory owners during elections. He rose to become one of Britain’s first working-class magistrates and mayors, witnessing first-hand in Stalybridge some of the most violent riots, radicalism and progressive reforms of the Victorian era.

In 1898, at the age of 69, he sold his Ashton pub and after over 3 decades of studying Turkish history and the Ottoman Empire, he took the astonishing decision to convert to Islam, moving to Manchester and becoming a close friend of famous convert Abdullah Quilliam, Sheikh of Islam of the British Isles, who had set up the country’s first mosque, in Liverpool.

After his death, his conversion was ‘hidden’ for nearly a century. But by a strange twist of fate, Robert’s own great x 3 grandson from Dukinfield had converted to Islam too – nine years before Robert’s life and decisions were discovered.

Always ‘His Own Man’, Robert ‘Reschid’ Stanley’s life and times are brought into the light for the first time thanks to the painstaking family history research of his own descendants and through the words of his great x 3 granddaughter, Christina Longden.

THE SESSION: Talk and chance to buy the books. Why not stay on for some lunch!

Even the venue for this Stalybridge launch is a 'spine tingler' ...come along and find out why!

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ENDORSEMENTS:

Rooted in the past, deeply personal and shaping our present, these books are a necessary and timely read in the debate about identity and belonging’.

BARONESS SAYEEDA WARSI

Essential reading for anyone interested in challenging preconceived ideas of Muslim and working-class community life. Chris Longden must be congratulated … Robert Reschid Stanley would be deeply proud of this work. ...Compelling socio-political portraits of one of the leading Victorian Muslims, based upon extensive archival research, these books provide a much-needed contribution towards a growing field of research on early Muslim convert communities during Victorian Britain’.

DR SHAMIM MIAH, Senior Lecturer, University of Huddersfield

‘History matters.
It matters because we are who we are and what we are. Not only because of our own personal history - but also because of our familial, local, regional, national and international histories.
History matters because it teaches us that life is not about 'me' and 'I'. It is about 'we' and 'us'.
History matters because it belongs to everyone and not to one person.
Christina Longden’s books on Robert Stanley matter, because they embrace all those vital concepts of history. Important and pioneering work, these books highlight the need not for tolerance of each other’s beliefs but of acceptance: an acceptance that can only arise through the understanding the importance of our shared histories.
Herein lies the power of Christina Longden’s research, writing and passion: the celebration of that which we have in common – our humanity’.
PROFESSOR CARL CHINN, MBE, Ph.D.

Date and Time

Location

Deli Felice Turkish cuisine

Market Street

Stalybridge

SK15 2AA

United Kingdom

View Map

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