Stanley, Lord Edward Henry
b. 1826-07-21
d. 1893-04-21
Lord Edward Henry Stanley was born on 21 July 1826. Educated at Rugby and Trinity College, Cambridge, he received his MA in 1848. On 22 December 1848 he was elected to represent King's Lynn in the House of Commons, remaining there until he succeeded to the earldom in October 1869 at which time he entered the House of Lords as Lord Derby.1
He travelled widely and wrote about his experiences. His father, Edward George Geoffrey Smith-Stanley, Lord Derby, led the government in 1852 and appointed his son under secretary of state for foreign affairs, where he remained until December of that year, when the government fell. In February 1858, Stanley became secretary of state for the colonies, and, in June, moved to the India board. With the passage of the India Bill, Stanley became the first secretary of state for India but left office again in June 1859.2
When Lord Derby returned to power again in 1866, Stanley entered the foreign office, continuing in that post after Lord Derby's retirement in February 1868; however, Stanley eventually resigned in December of that year. In February 1874, as Lord Derby, he joined Disraeli's government as foreign secretary.3
On 28 March 1878, he resigned from government and from the House of Lords, opposing the Conservative government's policies. On 12 March 1880 he severed all connection with the Conservative party and from 1882 to 1885 served as secretary of state for the colonies in Gladstone's administration.4 He was knighted in 1884.
In 1886, he changed his political allegiance again, joining the Liberal Unionists and representing them in the Lords. He retired from public life in 1890 and died on 21 April 1893 of influenza at his home in Knowsley.5
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