Later Victorian Portraits Catalogue
Jesse Boot, 1st Baron Trent (1850-1931), Retail and manufacturing chemist and philanthropist
It is recorded that, being deeply devout, Boot ‘never paraded his religion … Display in such matter he hated’.  He was ‘no snob, remaining to the last a homely individual very interested in homely things’  and resolutely opposed to personal publicity. Rosy faced and keen eyed, from middle life he suffered from severe rheumatoid arthritis, which eventually confined him to bed. ‘Afflicted as he was he never knew the meaning of the word “impossible”,’ recalled a colleague. ‘He had a firmness of determination, a burning enthusiasm, a sincere and earnest conviction which carried him over one after another of these obstacles with as much ease almost in his progress as if they had not been there.’ 
Dr Jan Marsh
Footnotesback to top
1) ‘A close friend’ writing in Nottingham Journal, 15 June 1931, p.4, quoted in Chapman 1974, p.36.
2) Mrs A. Verini, letter, Nottingham Evening Post, 13 June 1931.
3) Alderman E. Huntsman, speaking on 7 Jan. 1937 at the installation of a memorial to Boot at the then University College Nottingham, reported in Nottingham Journal, 8 Jan. 1937, reprinted in Beacon, Feb. 1937, p.7.
Referencesback to topArmstrong 1980
Armstrong, K.C., Behind a Painted Smile: A Biography of James W. Popple, Fine Art Restorer, Nottingham, 1980.
Beckett & Brand 1997
Beckett, J.V., and Brand, K., Nottingham: An Illustrated History, Manchester, 1997.
Briscoe, J.P., Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire at the Opening of the Twentieth Century: Contemporary Biographies, ed. W.T. Pike, Pike’s New Century Series, no.5, Brighton, 1901.
Chapman, S.D., Jesse Boot of Boots the Chemists: A Study in Business History, London, 1974.
Chapman, S.D., ‘Boot, Jesse, First Baron Trent (1850–1931)’, ODNB, Oxford, 2004.
Grant, I.C., comp., You Have Nothing to Do but to Save Souls: The Evolution of the Nottingham Central Methodist Mission, Nottingham, 2000.
Jeremy, D.J., ed., Dictionary of Business Biography: a biographical dictionary of business leaders active in Britain in the period 1860–1980, 3 vols, London, 1984–6.
Roberts, C., Achievement: A Record of Fifty Years’ Progress of Boots Pure Drug Company Ltd, Nottingham, 1938.
Weir, C., Jesse Boot of Nottingham: Founder of the Boots Company, Nottingham, 1994.