Huskisson, William

Huskisson, William hŭsˈkĭsən [key], 1770–1830, British statesman. First elected to Parliament in 1796, he was secretary of the treasury (1804–5, 1807–9) but resigned with his close associate George Canning. He joined (1814) Lord Liverpool's administration, holding minor office until appointed president of the Board of Trade and treasurer of the navy in 1823. Although a Tory, Huskisson was an advocate of free trade and did much to liberalize Great Britain's trading regulations. He reformed the Navigation Acts, reduced import duties, and attempted to introduce a sliding scale to relax the effect of the corn laws. He served (1827–28) as colonial secretary and leader of the House of Commons under Viscount Goderich and the duke of Wellington, resigning after a dispute with Wellington over parliamentary reform. He was killed by a locomotive at the opening of the Manchester and Liverpool Railway.

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