Joseph Rowntree (educationist)

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Joseph Rowntree (10 June 1801 – 4 November 1859) was an English educationist and shopkeeper.

Rowntree was born in Scarborough, North Yorkshire, England, the son of the Quakers John Rowntree (1757–1827) and his wife, Elizabeth Lotherington (1764–1835). In 1822 he started a grocery shop in York. The business was successful. On 3 May 1832 he married Sarah Stephenson (1807–1888). They had five children, of whom one was the chocolate magnate and social reformer, Joseph Rowntree.

He made an impact on both the education of Quaker children, the training of male and female teachers and the education of poor children in York, through the British and Foreign School Society. He was active in municipal reform in York. He became an alderman in 1853. He also helped British Quakers to reform their Marriage Regulations, so that people were no longer automatically "disowned" if they married a non-Quaker.

He died in York on 4 November 1859.