kidd-ireland aa02

Askamore Appendix 1


Franklin Kidd’s Family




Descendants of Benjamin Kidd (Franklin's grandfather)

1            Benjamin Kidd     b: Bet. 1831 Shellelagh Co Donegal         d: 1914 Wicklow Co Wexford Occ. Royal Irish Constabulary

+Mary Rebecca Dawson b 1833 d 1916  married 1858

---   2        Annie Louise Kidd           b: 28 July1864 Annacarriga CO Clare        d: Bet. 1950 – 1951

                                I am in communication with some descendants emigrated to the USA

---   2        Charles Albert Henry Kidd (Paragraph 3 letter from California) b: Aug 28 1860        d: 1945

            + Mary Ann Lish b Aug 29 1863 Hackney London m Jan 29 1883 d 1948 emigrated to the USA My Tree – several living descendants (only a few with surname Kidd).

----2      Albert Kidd b 1861

---   2        Elizabeth Kidd     b: Annacarriga CO Clare 1865      d: Santa Barbara 1954

                                No descendants emigrated to the USA

----2       Harriet Kidd b Sept 10 1867 CO Clare  d c1868

----2       Harriet Elizabeth Kidd b Feb 15 1869 CO Clare

----2       Eva Kidd b Aug 12 1871 CO Clare

----2       Helena Augusta Kidd  b Nov 9 1873 CO Clare

----2       Isabella Kidd     b c 1875

----2       Wesley Dawson Kidd b Jan 16 1877 CO Clare 

----2Descendants of Benjamin Kidd (Franklin's father)

     Benjamin Kidd b: Sep 09, 1858 Bandon CO Cork d: Oct 02, 1916 South Croydon London

- +Maud Emma Isabella Perry b:Barton Gloucestershire 1860 d: Mar 8 1929 Godstone Surrey Married 1887 Daughter of John Perry

--- 3 Franklin Kidd b: Oct 12, 1890  Weston- Super- Mare Somerset d May 7 1974 Greet     Shelford Cambridgeshire Occ Superintendent of Low Temperature Research Station

------ +Mary Nest Owen b: Dec 6, 1891 m: April 20, 1920

--- 3 Rolf Coome "Roy" Kidd b: Jul 07, 1892 d: Oct 12, 1959

------ +Nilley Fairhead m: 1927

--- 3 John Coome "Jack" Kidd b: Jul 07, 1892

------ +Margaret Griggs m: 1922

--------- 4 Mary Coome Kidd b: 1924

------------ +Peter Briggs

-------------- 5 Janet Alison Briggs b: 1953

-------------- 5 Martin Briggs b: 1956

--------- 4 John Franklin Kidd

------------ +Gwenllian Anne Talbot Lewes b June 19 1934 M Dec 10 1955

-------------- 5 Elizabeth  Ceridwen Kidd b Aug 8 1958

-------------- 5 John Christopher William Kidd b: Feb 4 1957


From your Web site "Branches of The KIDD Family - In Southern Ireland", Franklin's introduction tells of a letter from his father's youngest brother in 1927 living in California.  That is my great grandfather Charles Albert Henry Kidd.  I hope the following helps you understand the relationship.  


Paul Kidd

Los Angeles

Additional Information Provided by Peter Kidd in the following PDF and in the Biography below.

Descendants of Benjamin Kidd

Benjamin Kidd Biography

Kidd, Benjamin (1858-1916), sociologist, was born on 9 September 1858
near Bandon, co. Cork, the first of eleven children of Benjamin Kidd
(c.1831-1914), constable in the Royal Irish Constabulary, and his
wife, Mary Rebecca (1833-1916), daughter of John Dawson, landowner of
Farranhavane. The Kidd family was protestant, descended from the
Askamore Kidds of co. Wexford, while the well-educated Mary Dawson
came from urban bourgeois origins. The young Kidd was educated at a
small country school in Ennis, co. Clare. The region around the River
Fergus estuary instilled in him a lifelong love of rural beauty and
wildlife. He became an enthusiastic naturalist with studious habits, a
passion for knowledge, and a determination to succeed by means of the
classic Victorian virtues of self-help and abstinence. His was to
become a classic 'rags to riches' story. His self-belief and drive
were to be offset by a retiring disposition, parsimony in money
matters, opinionated views, and a pronounced aversion to criticism.

Kidd left school at seventeen, then read part-time for six years under
private tutors, first for the Indian Civil Service, later for the
Chinese consular service. Meantime in 1877, aged eighteen, he passed
the lower division civil service examination and was appointed clerk
to the Board of Inland Revenue, London. He moved to London in 1878,
and lived a frugal and solitary life until his family emigrated to
London in 1881, spending his sparse resources on evening classes
(including science) and reading for the bar (ultimately abandoned). He
gained publishing and editorial experience, and modest earnings, by
preparing civil service examination textbooks, guides, and journals,
and by writing naturalist articles. A great deal of his abundant
energy during his twenties and early thirties went into civil service
reform. He was prominent in the active lower clerks' association: he
became the association's secretary (1883-4) and represented the
clerks' cause at the Ridley commission of inquiry (1886-8). In 1887
Kidd married Maud Emma Isabel Perry, a handsome, independent woman of
west-country origins. It was a love match that proved successful, and
the marriage produced three sons: Franklin (1890-1974), and twins John
and Rolf (b. 1892)). Franklin was to study science at Cambridge and to
become a pioneer in food preservation and a fellow of the Royal

From 1887 Kidd read voraciously across broad fields in a missionary
effort to create a new 'science of society'. In Freiburg in 1890 he
interviewed the renowned German zoologist August Weismann, whose germ
plasm theory he applied to social theory and human behaviour. Kidd was
to become an overnight celebrity and social prophet when his Social
Evolution was published by Macmillan in 1894, with the help of Kidd's
chief at the Inland Revenue, Alfred Milner. The book was to become a
global best-seller and was translated into at least ten languages,
including Chinese and Arabic. What explains the book's success? At a
time of challenge for the churches, Kidd justified religion as a
countervailing force against destructive, self-assertive rationalism,
helping to validate altruistic human behaviour and social conduct that
focused upon race survival. Kidd also touched upon widespread fears
that socialistic elimination of competition, combined with
over-population, would result in degeneration of the human species.
However, it is misleading to see Kidd as an aggressive apostle of
rugged individualism. His reformist style of social Darwinism was more
in tune with British 'new Liberalism' or American progressivism. He
argued that the answer to society's deep-seated social problems lay in
a 'socialized' liberal capitalism and extended democracy. This system
would foster the improvement of the race by bringing the masses into
the rivalry of life on a footing of equality of opportunity, by
raising competition to new heights of efficiency. Social Evolution was
written with verve and hyperbole at a time of western revolt against
reason and debate about genetics, and it caught the temper of its
times. However, it also exasperated many intellectuals with its loose
speculation and narrow view of reason as the slave of self-interest.
Kidd's critics included W. H. Mallock, D. G. Ritchie, J. A. Hobson,
Karl Pearson, John Dewey, and Theodore Roosevelt.

Kidd's success gave him financial security and entry into British
intellectual and club life. He was drawn into Liberal political
circles by William Clarke, the radical journalist, and made enduring
friendships with Grant Allen, W. T. Stead, and John Saxon Mills. In
1898 he was elected to the Athenaeum. Serious eye trouble, occasioned
by his work on death duty statistics, led him to resign from the civil
service in November 1897. He bought shares and property, and became a
full-time writer. Photographs show him to have been a small, balding
man, with a heavy moustache and piercing dark eyes.

Although not without influence, none of Kidd's later works achieved
the extraordinary impact of Social Evolution. In his pamphlet Control
of the Tropics (1898), originally published as a series of articles in
The Times, Kidd emphasized the importance of tropical resources for
the world's industrial nations. He linked a bio-political defence of
empire with a programme of social reform at home and a colonial policy
of trusteeship that would deliver 'a higher type of social order', and
eventually independence, to indigenous peoples. Kidd regarded racial
differences as due to cultural rather than genetic factors, and
attributed the hegemony of white peoples to their superior 'social
efficiency'. Kidd's imperial ideas influenced a generation of
administrators and politicians, including Milner, Lugard, and Joseph
Chamberlain. His book seemed supremely opportune to expansionists in
the United States, and Kidd was lionized when he made a two-month trip
to North America in 1898, shortly after the Spanish-American War. Kidd
made a significant impact within 'social gospel' circles, among
protestant reformers who wanted to apply the 'social law of service'
to empire and world politics-most notably Richard T. Ely, Lyman
Abbott, Washington Gladden, and Josiah Strong.

In Principles of Western Civilisation (1902) Kidd put forward an
un-Darwinian type of evolutionary teleology, which stressed the
collective future needs of the human species over the short-term
interests of the individual. 'Projected efficiency', not present
efficiency, was the ruling concept of evolution, and would be the
basis for a futurist world order. Influenced by Henry Demarest Lloyd,
Kidd made a slashing attack upon global trusts and big business. The
book inspired Mao's early mentor Liang Qichao and made a strong impact
on Chinese Marxism, but won neither popular nor scholarly acclaim in
the west. Many were alienated by Kidd's overblown style, by his
semi-mystical and non-testable doctrines, and his reputation began to
decline. However, he infiltrated his ideas into the 1902 edition of
the Encyclopaedia Britannica, for which he wrote the first separate
article on sociology. Kidd was a founding father in 1903 of the
British Sociological Society. He kept up a busy role in the society's
early activities, although he was soon feuding with eugenists led by
Karl Pearson, whom he regarded as authoritarian.

After a trip to South Africa in 1902, Kidd immersed himself in
political and journalistic agitation. He closely associated himself
with 'Milnerites' and Lord Rosebery's Liberal Imperialist pressure
group in a campaign to detach the Liberal Party from outworn dogmas of
anti-imperialism and free trade. He was won over by the charisma of
the unionist statesman Joseph Chamberlain. Kidd resigned from the
Liberal Party in January 1905, and became a significant theorist for
Chamberlain's politically disruptive tariff reform movement. The
Liberal victory of 1906 spelt the end of Kidd's political career. He
buried himself in work at his rural retreat in Tonbridge (having moved
from Croydon in 1904), but kept in touch with affairs through his
journalist friend J. L. Garvin, an associate of the press baron Lord
Northcliffe. Between 1905 and 1908 Kidd wrote over ninety pieces for
Garvin's Chamberlainite review The Outlook. In 1906 he addressed the
Royal Institution on group selection, and reworked the themes in his
pamphlets Two Principal Laws of Sociology (1907-8) and Individualism
and after (the Herbert Spencer lecture, 1908). He argued that while
lower-order evolution took place under red-toothed laws of conflict,
higher-order human evolution was subject to natural laws of
co-operation and altruism. Apart from an involvement in the
suffragette movement in 1912, Kidd spent the last six years of his
life in cloistered study at Ditchling, Sussex, working on his last
book The Science of Power (1916). His mind became increasingly
dominated by a pessimistic economism that prophesied a global conflict
for resources. He finished his first draft only days before the
outbreak of war. This forced him into renewed study of Prussian
militarism and prolonged rewriting, despite grievous ill health. He
died at his home, 39 Blenheim Park Road, Croydon, from a heart attack
on 2 October 1916, and was buried in Bandon cemetery, only a month
after completing his book. It was a searing indictment of western
civilization, in which Kidd renounced his belief in Darwinism and
imperialism, whose doctrines of pagan force had brought the world to
the edge of apocalypse. He rested his hopes upon a collectivist
future, achieved through a directive cultural conditioning and
crucially involving women to achieve peace and altruism. Kidd's
writings had been important documents of their time. They faded into
obscurity as circumstances changed after the First World War. If there
were potentially authoritarian overtones in his work, he also wanted
to liberate the forces of the inner life to make a better human
existence. In that respect he heralded the twentieth-century revolt
against secular materialism, and the search for a new consciousness.

D. P. Crook

D. P. Crook, Benjamin Kidd: portrait of a social Darwinist (1984)


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