Edwin Waugh

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Edwin Waugh (William Percy, 1882)
Waugh's Well
Waugh's Well. This monument was originally built on the site of a spring in 1866 to honour Rochdale-born Edwin Waugh. It was rebuilt in 1966 in memory of Ward Ogden, a local naturalist and rambler. It makes for a fine contemplative viewpoint and resting place on the Rossendale Way.

Edwin Waugh (1817–1890) was an English poet.


The son of a shoemaker, Waugh was born in Rochdale, Lancashire, England and, after some schooling, was apprenticed to a printer, Thomas Holden, at the age of 12. While still a young man he worked as a journeyman printer, travelling all over Britain, but eventually returned to his old job in Rochdale.[1]

Waugh read eagerly, and in 1847 became assistant secretary to the Lancashire Public School Association and went to work in Manchester. By 1860 he was able to become a full-time writer; but in 1881 he was in poor health and was granted a Civil List pension of £90 p.a.[2]

Death and legacy[edit]

Waugh died at his home in New Brighton, Cheshire, in 1890 and was buried in St. Paul's churchyard on Kersal Moor.[3] Waugh's Well was built in 1866 to commemorate him at Foe Edge Farm, on the moors above Edenfield, Rossendale where he spent much time writing. Foe Edge, was completely demolished by the North West Water Authority in the mid-1970s and no trace remains of the building.[4]


Waugh first attracted attention with sketches of Lancashire life and character in the Manchester Examiner. His first book Sketches of Lancashire Life and Localities was published in 1855 while he was working as a traveller for a Manchester printing firm.[5] He wrote also prose: Factory Folk, Besom Ben Stories, and The Chimney Corner. His Lancashire dialect songs, collected as Poems and Songs (1859), brought him local fame. He has been called "the Lancashire Burns." His most famous poem is "Come whoam to thi childer an' me", 1856.[6]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Hollingworth, Brian, ed. (1977) Songs of the People. Manchester: Manchester University Press; p. 155
  2. ^ Hollingworth (1977)
  3. ^ Edwin Waugh at Howling Dog Archived 2003-06-30 at Archive.today Retrieved 2007-11-01
  4. ^ Edwin Waugh Dialect Society Archived 2008-08-20 at the Wayback Machine Retrieved 2007-12-21
  5. ^ Hollingworth (1977)
  6. ^ Hollingworth (1977)

External links[edit]

  • Works by Edwin Waugh at Project Gutenberg
  • Works by or about Edwin Waugh at Internet Archive
  • Works by Edwin Waugh at LibriVox (public domain audiobooks)
  • "Archival material relating to Edwin Waugh". UK National Archives. Edit this at Wikidata
  • Edwin Waugh at gerald-massey.org.uk

 This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainCousin, John William (1910). A Short Biographical Dictionary of English Literature. London: J. M. Dent & Sons – via Wikisource.