Lobb, John (1840–1921)
Prominent British businessman and public figure who became
active in the cause of Spiritualism. Lobb was born on August
7, 1840, in Middlesex, England, and became a lay preacher
in the Methodist ministry as well as editor of successful
journals. He emerged into public life in 1876 after he raised a
fund for the Rev. Josiah Henson, an African-American minister
who inspired Hariette Beecher Stowe’s Uncle Tom’s Cabin. Lobb
lectured and preached on Henson and edited Henson’s life
story, which sold over 30,000 copies in the first six weeks and
was later translated into 12 languages. Lobb and Henson were
honored with a command to meet the queen at Windsor Castle
on March 5, 1877.
Through the rest of the century Lobb maintained an active
public life. He belonged to the London School Board, was
guardian of the City of London Union, and served on the Metropolitan
Asylums Board, the Central Markets committee, and
the London city council. He succeeded in exposing many scandals
and abuses in the educational system, the police force, and
other areas of social and public life.
After 1903 Lobb campaigned vigorously on behalf of Spiritualism
by lecturing and publishing. He traveled all over Britain
and claimed to have addressed some 40,000 individuals on
such subjects as survival of personality after death, spirit photography,
and materialization.
Lobb, John. Talks with the Dead. N.p., 1906.
———. Uncle Tom’s Story of His Life. N.p., 1877.

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