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This book recovers the stories a group of men of vision behind the elevation and civilising of Birmingham's citizens, men who have not received their due: the architect J.H. Chamberlain, the Shakespeare scholar Sam: Timmins, the reforming lawyer Arthur Ryland, the newspaper proprietor J.T. Bunce, the ministers R.W. Dale and Henry Crosskey and others in seeking to nurture intellectual development and aesthetic taste with art and technical education, free libraries and fine civic architecture.