Ernest Bevin (9 March 1881 - 14 April 1951), British labour leader, politician, and statesman, was born in a small village in Somerset, England. His father, whom he never knew, was an agricultural labourer and his mother was a housemaid who died when he was eight. He had little formal education, leaving school in Crediton, Devon in 1890. At the age of eleven he went to work as a labourer, then as a truck driver in Bristol. In 1910 he became secretary of the Bristol branch of the Dockers' Union, and in 1914 he became a national organiser for the union.