Quakers have a long and illustrious history of being involved in many aspects of culture without making the kind of ripple that you might expect. Some Conservative Friends point that out explicitly:
Bene qui latuit bene vixit. . . .
meaning, "He who has lived in obscurity has lived well." But obscure or not, Friends have been involved in human culture in surprising ways. We present here a photo gallery of Famous and Infamous Quakers, drawn from an eclectic pool of a peculiar people. We have chosen these individuals to introduce you to the real people of the Society of Friends, some with beautiful faces, others not so. We do not recommend that you follow all of them as examples, but we want you to learn who we are, and who we have been.
Some of the people we list here have been Good Quakers--those whose exemplary lives serve as guideposts to us all in our own journey in following the Light. And some have been Bad Quakers, people whose folly or questionable ethics make the members of their meetings cringe when the names are brought up. Some were Quakers all their lives. Some were born into the Society, and left it early. Some came to the Society as adults.
What they all have in common is a link to the Society and to human culture, a link that all-too-often passes unnoticed by those who believe that Quakers passed on into history decades or centuries ago.
'T ain't so. As Mark Twain once said, "It ain't the things that people don't know that are the problem. It's the things that they do know that just ain't so."
Take a look, and if you come up with additions to the list, let us know on our Contact Us Page, and we'll get busy.