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Lobb, John (1840-1921)

Lobb, John (1840-1921)

Prominent British businessman and public figure who became active in the cause of Spiritualism. Lobb was born on August 7, 1840, in Middlesex, England, and became a lay preacher in the Methodist ministry as well as editor of successful journals. He emerged into public life in 1876 after he raised a fund for the Rev. Josiah Henson, an African-American minister who inspired Hariette Beecher Stowe's Uncle Tom's Cabin. Lobb lectured and preached on Henson and edited Henson's life story, which sold over 30,000 copies in the first six weeks and was later translated into 12 languages. Lobb and Henson were honored with a command to meet the queen at Windsor Castle on March 5, 1877.

Through the rest of the century Lobb maintained an active public life. He belonged to the London School Board, was guardian of the City of London Union, and served on the Metropolitan Asylums Board, the Central Markets committee, and the London city council. He succeeded in exposing many scandals and abuses in the educational system, the police force, and other areas of social and public life.

After 1903 Lobb campaigned vigorously on behalf of Spiritualism by lecturing and publishing. He traveled all over Britain and claimed to have addressed some 40,000 individuals on such subjects as survival of personality after death, spirit photography, and materialization.


Lobb, John. Talks with the Dead. N.p., 1906. . Uncle Tom's Story of His Life. N.p., 1877.

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