1784-1849
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January 31, 1784, Carlisle, Cumberland, England.

February 19, 1849, Woodbridge, Suffolk, England.

Quaker Burial Ground, Woodbridge, Suffolk, England.

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© National Portrait Gallery

Barton was Britain’s counterpart to American John Greenleaf Whittier. Like Whittier, he was called the Quaker Poet. Barton attended a Quaker school in Ipswich. In 1798, he was apprenticed to a Mr. S. Jesup, a shopkeeper at Halstead, Essex, with whom he stayed until 1806. Barton then moved to Woodbridge, Suffolk, and entered into business with his brother as a coal and corn merchant. He married, but his wife died after only a year. Barton then moved to Liverpool for a short while, but returned to Woodbridge in 1810. A bank clerk by profession, he wrote 10 books of poems, many of which became hymns. His works include:

  1. Around Bethesda’s Healing Wave
  2. Fear Not, Zion’s Sons and Daughters
  3. Hath the Invitation Ended?
  4. He Who Win a Warrior’s Fame
  5. Lamp of Our Feet
  6. Say Not the Law Divine
  7. See We Not Beyond the Portal?
  8. There Is a Life More Dear
  9. Those Who Live in Love Shall Know
  10. Walk in the Light
  11. We Journey Through a Vale of Tears
  12. Wouldst Thou Share This Benediction?