The casket was presented to James Henry Thomas on his being made an Honourable Freeman of Newport in 1924.
Freedom casket, 1924
© Newport Museum and Art Gallery
- Gold & enamel
- 15.5 x 35 x 11.5 cm
- Art Fund grant:
- £12,425 ( Total: £31,850)
- Acquired in:
- Matthew Barton Ltd
Thomas had a remarkable political career. He was heavily involved in the National Union of Railwaymen (NUR) and as the organisations general secretary in the successful rail strike in 1919. He was elected MP for Derby in 1910 and later appointed Secretary of State for the Colonies and Lord Privy Seal with responsibility for employment. The casket has a domed lid bearing the enameled arms of the County Borough of Newport. The front has panels painted in enamel with Newport views of St. Pauls National School, Commercial Street and Newport Harbour. The back shows St. Pauls Church and the G.W.R. steam locomotive Chepstow Castle.
Right Hon. J.H. Thomas (1874-1949); thence by family descent.
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