Robert Owen Biography
Birthday: May 14, 1771 (Taurus)
Born In: Newtown, Montgomeryshire, Wales
Robert Owen, one of the founding fathers of utopian socialism, was a man much ahead of his times. He was a successful textile mill owner who was as much concerned—or maybe even more—about the quality of life his employees and the community members led than the profits he made. From a young age he was a bright boy who was good in studies and loved to read. He was forced to work in a textile mill from an early age and grew up observing the lifestyle of the working class. A hard working and ambitious young man, he became a mill manager by the time he was 21. He became a member of the Manchester Literary and Philosophical Society and was greatly influenced by the ideals of the philosophers and reformers. Eventually he became the manager and co-owner of the New Lanark mill, a highly successful mill in Glasgow. As the manager of such a large organization he was determined to bring about an improvement in the quality of life of its employees. He implemented several revolutionary reforms which included prohibition of child labor, provision of health care and education to the workers’ children, and creating a better society. He was an early proponent of social reforms for the working class and was considered an enlightened employer.