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Reverend Frederick Robert Smith (1854-1917), was a Wesleyan Methodist minister who wrote popular tales of Lancashire working-class folk under the pen name John Ackworth. He was a notable author in the Lancashire dialect. Ackworth's tales while not overtly religious, adhere strictly to the beliefs, the dogmatism and the ways of life of a close-knit rural Methodist community. As a preacher, he was described as striking, original, fearless, thought-provoking, and conscience-stirring. In 1896, he achieved great success with his first book, Clog Shop Chronicles. His other works include: Beckside Lights (1897), The Scowcroft Critics (1898), Doxie Dent: A Clog- Shop Chronicle (1899), The Mangle House: A Lancashire Tale (1902), From Crooked Roots (1903), Old Wenyon's Will (1904) and The Partners (1907).