Black and white photograph of William Morris, an older man with a graying beard resting his head on his right fist.

Dedicated to the life and work of

William Morris

Founded in 1971, the William Morris Society in the United States is a group of scholars and enthusiasts brought together in fellowship by our shared interest in the life and works of the nineteenth-century writer, designer, and political thinker William Morris.

Images: Portrait of William Morris by Frederick Hollyer, 1884. William Morris, Jasmine, wallpaper, 1872. Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Announcements

Radical Victorians Online Conference, Jan. 20-22, 2022

Radical Victorians Online Conference, Jan. 20-22, 2022

The major conference "Radical Victorians: Race, Labor, Identity" will take place online from January 20-22, 2022. Organized by The Frick Pittsburgh, the School of Art at Carnegie Mellon University, and Yale University, the conference will offer new responses to...

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‘The Earthly Paradise’ Virtual Reading Group

Dr Serena Trowbridge, Reader in Victorian Literature at Birmingham City University, UK, is organizing an online reading group for The Earthly Paradise. Beginning in February 2022, the group will read through Morris's epic over the course of a year. The Earthly...

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Leadership Changes at the Society

Leadership Changes at the Society

The William Morris Society in the United States is saying farewell to President Michael Robertson, who is moving to London, where he will be an Honorary Research Fellow at Birkbeck College, University of London, while he completes his biography of William Morris. Former President Jane Carlin is serving as Interim President until Jude Nixon becomes President in early 2022.

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A brief introduction to

William Morris

William Morris (1834–1896) is remembered for his contributions to literature, political and social thought, historic preservation, and the history of art and design.

Widely recognized as the leader of the Arts and Crafts movement, Morris advocated for the importance of craft. Believing that art was the expression of ‘pleasure in labour’, Morris’s passion for the arts of everyday life and abhorrence of Victorian industrial society led him to political activism. Influenced by Marxism, anarchism and revolutionary socialism, Morris co-founded the Socialist League, campaigned for workers’ rights, and lectured widely on art, labor, and politics.

Morris was himself a prolific designer in a variety of media. His printed textiles, tapestries, carpets, tiles, and wallpapers transformed Victorian interiors. As founder of the Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings, Morris has had a lasting impact in the field of heritage preservation. Towards the end of his life, his creative energies were focused on book printing.

Morris’s legacies survive today in myriad forms—in his poetry and prose, in his widely reproduced pattern designs, and in artistic, environmental, and political activism inspired by his life and work.

Image: William Morris, “Woodpecker” tapestry. Morris & Co., 1885.

join the society

membership

The William Morris Society in the United States is open to all residents of the US.

Members of the William Morris Society US are also members of the William Morris Society in the UK. They receive our magazine, Useful and Beautiful, and the Journal of William Morris Studies.

We hope you’ll join our community of engaged enthusiasts and scholars.

Upcoming

Events

Radical Victorians Online Conference, Jan. 20-22, 2022

Radical Victorians Online Conference, Jan. 20-22, 2022

The major conference "Radical Victorians: Race, Labor, Identity" will take place online from January 20-22, 2022. Organized by The Frick Pittsburgh, the School of Art at Carnegie Mellon University, and Yale University, the conference will offer new responses to...

read more

“Aspects of Britain” Symposium to Honor Peter Stansky

Aspects of Britain is an online symposium celebrating the historian Peter Stansky's work on George Orwell, William Morris, and the Bloomsbury group, on the occasion of his 90th birthday. Stansky is Frances and Charles Field Professor of History, emeritus, at Stanford...

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MLA 2022: Session Details

The William Morris Society in the US is hosting two sessions at the 2022 Modern Language Association Annual Convention, to be held January 6-9, 2022 in Washington, DC. Thursday, January 6th, 12 noon: "The International Morris" Marriott Marquis, Silver Linden Moderated...

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Image: William Morris, Fruit, wallpaper, c. 1866. Victoria and Albert Museum.

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