‘Adbu’l-Baha and Manchester’s Baha’is

An early written history, called the ‘Bahá’í Dawn in Manchester’ (published in 1935) has enabled us to know that a number of local people became Bahá’ís after the time of Sarah Ann Ridgway‘s return from the States, during the 1910s and 1920s.

Some other early Bahá’ís were Edward T. Hall and his family, Norah ‘Nonie’ Crossley, Geoff and Albert Joseph (both members of the local Jewish community before they became Bahá’ís), Mr and Mrs Craven, and the Sugar family.

Photos of ‘Abdu’l-Baha; (Left) taken in Paris, 1911 and given to the Manchester Baha’is by Shoghi Effendi in October 1921. Shoghi Effendi wrote on its back: ‘Presented to my beloved brothers and sisters in Manchester as a token of my deepest Baha’i affection. Shoghi.’

One of the central figures of the Bahá’í Faith, ‘Ábdu’l-Bahá (Bahá’u’lláh’s eldest son and head of the Faith from 1892-1921) visited the UK in 1911, en route to North America and Canada. Sarah Ann Ridgway seems to have met with ‘Ábdu’l-Bahá in London at this time.

Other early Manchester Bahá’ís were also privileged to meet with ‘Ábdu’l-Bahá when he passed through port at Liverpool during his return voyage in 1912.

‘Adbu’l-Bahá was also in correspondence with the early Bahá’ís in the Greater Manchester area. He wrote a number of letters (or ‘Tablets’) to our nascent local Bahá’í community. Translated copies are now part of our local archives.

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