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Life Thursday Doors

Thursday Doors JWH

John Woolman was a famous Quaker in the 18th Century. He lived in New Jersey and was a strong abolitionist. In 1772 Woolman sailed to Britain to speak out against slavery. Instead of taking a passenger’s cabin, he showed his egalitarian spirit by lodging with the crew. When he arrived in London, the Quakers were rather taken aback by his shabby clothing, but when he spoke condemning the injustice of slavery, he was accepted.

To spread the word, he set off to travel north to York but declined to travel by stagecoach because he felt it was cruel to drive the horses so hard. Instead, he walked, preaching against slavery en route. Sadly, he picked up smallpox along the way and died just after reaching York. He is commemorated by the establishment of John Woolman House. This is a Quaker residential home for older people, close to New Walk. The doors facing New Walk are painted in bright colours.

This door without a handle is not part of John Woolman House
And neither is this distressed door. It is on Princess Street Backways.

By Dr Alfred Prunesquallor

Maverick doctor with 40 years experience, I reduced my NHS commitment in 2013. I am now enjoying being free lance, working where I am needed overseas. Now I am working in the UK helping with the current coronavirus pandemic.

9 replies on “Thursday Doors JWH”

I used to live just around the corner from John Woolman House, as you know. I never knew that fascinating story about him being a Quaker abolitionist of superb egalitarian views. But I have always understood that the facade facing Museum Square is entirely reproduction. It was rebuilt to modern proportions when the Residential Home was added behind. It doesn’t stop the doors being handsome, but they may be 50, rather than 150 years old.

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Those are bright and beautiful doors, and I love the roof details. John Woolman is such an interesting man, a man of unique convictions. Thanks for sharing this with Thursday Doors.

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