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Enoch Arnold Bennett in the 1871 Census

Novelist Enoch Arnold Bennett was born in the Potteries, Staffordshire. The Potteries were a group of six towns (later to become Stoke-on-Trent) and Bennett used his experiences in these places as influence for his writings.

His father changed career from pawnbroker and clother to soliciter, and he is believed to have encouraged Arnold (as he was known) to follow in this footsteps, but Arnold moved to London and started writing for magazines. His first book was published in 1898 and A Man From the North earned him enough income to start writing full time. He went on to write 30 novels, and numerous non-fiction works.

Bennett's writing style was often criticised as being weak, but he was not shy to admit that he wrote for an income as well as pleasure, which may have upset come of his contemporaries. His most successful works included Anna of the Five Towns, The Old Wives' Tale, and Clayhanger. Several of his books were adapted for the screen.

The 1871 Staffordshire census shows Enoch A Bennett at the age of three, living with his family and servants in Shelton (RG10/2866 page 113).

The 1871 Census for Staffordshire is available on CD from British Data Archive.

Related Website: http://www.britishdataarchive.com/

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