You are now in the Wilberforce Library.
This room was the counting house, which could be entered from a
passage at the back of the house by the tradesmen. Remember this house
was a workplace as well as a home.
full of big, heavy books with clerks busy keeping the accounts
balanced. Money was always changing hands following the delivery of
and timber from the
, all in our back yard, on the banks of the River
Can you spot William’s diary in his own handwriting, from 1814- 1823. Can you read what he has written? Do you keep a diary?
Above the fireplace is an unfinished painting of Wilberforce. Does
he look a kind and caring man? It will not surprise you to hear that
Wilberforce was also an animal lover. He was a founder member of what
became the RSPCA: The Royal Society for the prevention of cruelty to
This life-size wax figure of William Wilberforce was created at
Madame Tussauds in London and was presented to the city of Hull in
1933, one hundred years after his death. It shows him in his study,
with an eye glass and a quill and with a candle almost burned down; he
was now near the end of his extraordinary life.
You can see collections of poetry on the shelves, he loved reading
the poems of poets such as William Cowper and there’s a little book on
display over near the window that he gave as a present to his wife
Barbara on their wedding day in 1797. It is called, ‘The Minstrel’.
William and Barbara had six children: William, Barbara, Elizabeth,
Robert Isaac, Samuel and Henry. William was a doting father and enjoyed
nothing more than playing with his children!
If you would like to, please go back and have a closer look at some of the things on display in these two rooms.
When you are ready, make your way to the landing at the top of the staircase.