English industrialist and philanthropist
Sir Titus Salt, 1st Baronet (20 September 1803 – 29 December 1876) was an industrialist and philanthropist who lived near Bradford, West Yorkshire. He is best known today for having built what is now a World Heritage Site at Saltaire.
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- Ladies and gentlemen, it is with no ordinary feelings, I assure you, that I rise on this occasion to thank you for the very flattering manner in which you have received the last toast, and for the good wishes expressed therein. I cannot look around me, and see this vast assemblage of my friends and workpeople, without being moved. I feel gratified at this day's proceedings; I also feel greatly honoured by the presence of the nobleman at my side. I am more than all delighted at the presence of this vast assemblage of my workpeople. Perhaps it may be permitted me to remark that ten or twelve years ago I was looking forward to this day (on which I complete my his fiftieth year) as the period when I hoped to retire from business and enjoy myself in agricultural pursuits, which would be quite congenial to my mind and inclination. As the time drew near, looking at my large family (five of them being sons) I reversed that decision, and resolved to proceed a little longer and remain at the head of the firm. Having thus determined, I at once made up my mind to leave Bradford. I did not like to be a party to increasing that already overcrowded borough, but I looked around for a site suitable for a large manufacturing establishment, and I fixed upon this, as offering every capability for a first rate manufacturing and commercial establishment. It is also, from the beauty of its situation, and the salubrity of the air, a most desirable place for the erection of dwellings. Far be it from me to do anything to pollute the air or the water of the district. I shall do my utmost to avoid these evils, and I have no doubt of being successful. I hope to draw around me a population that will enjoy the beauties of this neighbourhood—a population of well paid, contented, happy operatives. I have given instructions to my architects (who are competent to carry them out) that nothing shall be spared to render the dwellings of the operatives a pattern to the country, and if my life is spared by Divine Providence, I hope to see satisfaction, contentment, and happiness around me.
- The speech he made to the 3,500 guests (including his workers) at the banquet on 1853-09-20, which he held to celebrate both his fiftieth birthday and the opening of his new factory at Saltaire. "Inauguration of the works at Saltaire". The Bradford Observer: pp. 8. 1853-09-22. Retrieved on 2012-06-07 (subscription site).
- A slightly edited version (in the third person) appears in Holroyd, Abraham (2000) . Saltaire and its Founder. Piroisms Press. pp. 14-15. ISBN 0-9538601-0-8.