William Galpin was a Banker from Salisbury who became a fan of Owen and contributed funds towards the Harmony Hall Community. This community was set up by the Rational Society in 1839 and was based around a 3 storey building with farms. Galpin became general secretary of the Rational Society in 1842 but left in 1843. He became a follower of sacred socialism and when Harmony Hall dissolved in 1845 he and Isaac Ironside (Sheffield Owenite) set up a group of colonists at the nearby Little Bentley Farm. He encouraged all members of the Rational Society to join him.
Following the collapse of the colony at Little Bentley, Galpin left for Dublin and joined the Universal Community based at Newlands, Tallaght. Here Galpin was part of a sect which practiced a strict form of vegetarianism. Owen visited the community sometime in 1847.