Alfred Webb

Alfred Webb

Alfred John Webb (1834–1908) was a William Wedderburn) to preside over the Indian National Congress.[1]

Early life

Alfred Webb was the first child and only son of the three children of Fanny and Anna Parnell in 1880 that advocated on behalf of poor tenant farmers.[2]


Alfred Webb was interested in literature and history and began to write a Compendium of Irish Biography. In 1865, he began to take a more active interest in Irish politics. He was inspired by the Fenians, although he believed in non-violence and the Fenians of that time believed that Ireland could only gain independence through an armed revolution.[3] He was first elected to the House of Commons of the United Kingdom on 24 February 1890, when he won a by-election for the West Waterford constituency. He was again returned for West Waterford in the 1892 general election, this time as an anti-Parnellite MP.

His family had taken an interest in the welfare of British colonies and had been outspoken opponents of the opium traffic into China. Webb was a close friend of Dadabhai Naoroji, a key member of the Indian National Congress, who was also a friend of other Irish nationalists including Michael Davitt and Frank Hugh O’Donnell. While they attempted to involve Naoroji in Irish politics, Webb was invited by Naoroji to preside over the Indian National Congress in 1894.[3]

Webb was a supporter of Anti-Caste, Britain's first anti-racism journal which fellow Quaker activist Catherine Impey founded in 1888. Webb was able to rally subscribers and activists for the journal around the world.[4] For example, although he was not a regular subscriber, Webb and Dadabhai Naoroji co-signed a letter with others to request support for a new association: ‘The Society for the Furtherance of Human Brotherhood’.

See also


  1. ^
  2. ^ Broderick, Marian. Wild Irish Women Extraordinary Lives from History. New York: O'Brien, 2002. ISBN 0-86278-703-3 (p.169)
  3. ^ a b
  4. ^ Dr Caroline Bressey, , synopsis on ESRC websiteAnti-Caste: Britain’s First Anti-racist Journal (RES-000-22-0522). Retrieved July 26, 2006.


  • Leigh Rayment's Historical List of MPs – Constituencies beginning with "W" (part 1)

Further reading

  • A Compendium of Irish Biography (Dublin, 1878)
  • Legg, Mary-Louise Alfred Webb: the Autobiography of a Quaker Nationalist, Cork University Press, 1999 ISBN 1-85918-202-X (See also information from publishers accessed at [1] July 26, 2006)

External links

  • Hansard 1803–2005: contributions in Parliament by Alfred Webb
Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Douglas Pyne
Member of Parliament for West Waterford
Succeeded by
James John O'Shee