Isle of Man Family History Society Journal Volume vi no 3 July 1984






Delving into family history has not yet satisfied my insatiable curiosity about an elusive tale told by my paternal grandmother.

My great grandfather, Captain John Killey, born in Kirk Patrick 1823, the son of a fishermen, left the Island in the 1840’s, took his master’s certificate in Liverpool in 1851 and traded to Africa in his brigantine, 'Albyn’ The story asserts that he came at the behest of an uncle or older cousin, also a sea captain of some wealth who, as an acquaintance of the Gladstone family, told a member of that family whilst walking alongside the River Mersey and within my great grandfather's hearing, that he would never be a master Mariner, This naturally provided the necessary spur. Furthermore, same uncle or cousin was the Captain Killey mentioned in the "Annals of Liverpool" for the year 1834:—

A small sloop, the hull of which cost £80, and only 13 tons burthen called the :Robina under the charge of Captain Killey and a crew of three men sailed from this port for Jamaica in December, and made short passage. She was to have been taken out on the deck of another vessel, but the underwriters refused to insure".

No Christian name was ever mentioned. My grand father died when my father was seven and he was never curious anyway. My grandmother died before I thought to ask if she knew a name I have not yet found a contemporary account in any newspaper.

John Gladstone owned estates in Jamaica and 1834 was the year of prohibition of slavery there. His son Robertson Gladstone was in Jamaica between March end October.

The stronger of the two candidates I have found for my elusive Captain Killey is one William who first appears in the directories in 1834 at the home of his brother James Brown Killey, Commission Merchant. It is apparent however that his real home is the sea. Strangely, the story of the Robina does not appear in the Annals until the 1849 issue when it was backdated to 1834. William married in about 1847 and at last had an independent home. In 1851 when my great grandfather John married Jane Lewin, born in Liverpool but of pure Manx descent, they chose a church far from their home in Pitt Street, a mile or so across the city at St. Silas’s which lay within a few yards of William’s home and also his brother James’ house.

Further confirmation is provided by the first address in Liverpool of the second possible candidate. He was an uncle of my great grandfather, called James (see 1—3—7 in the Family Tree) and was born in Kirk Patrick in 1812. His house in 1843 was in Vine Street where both William and James Brown lived. Perhaps my great grandfather was not the first to receive succour as a stranger in Liverpool.

James himself is not a strong candidate for the captain of the Robina. He would have been only 22 in 1834. He does not appear to have become wealthy nor are there any signs of acquaintance with the Gladstone family.

Through the fortuitous longevity of Jane Clague, wife of Phillip (1-3 refers) my own direct line back to Phillip (1) is reasonably certain. He left two looms to his youngest son Thomas and was therefore presumably a weaver. Final confirmation came a month ago in the shape of the splendid survey from the Society "Monumental Inscriptions of Old Kirk Patrick churchyard". Next to each other in grave survey numbers 121 and 122 are the graves of father and son, Phillip (1) died 1804 and Phillip (1-3) died 1835 together with his wife Jane Clague died in 1860 aged 90. (dates of death varied by a few months from those recorded in the registers however).

Phillip (1) and his wife Ann Cain had two sons christened John; the first 20th April 1760 at Kirk Michael and the second 30th June 1771 at Kirk German.

Presumably, the first died young. All remaining five children and his wife Ann Cain are mentioned in his will in 1804, but not John.

Captain William’s father’s name was John and it is his ancestry which has occupied much of my time over the past year or so. In 1804 he was a draper or the northern outskirts of Liverpool. He had married in Kirkcudbright on 24th February 1803 to Margaret Brown, the daughter of a farmer, James Brown. Constantly changing his abode, John arrived at the prestigious address of a house in Upper Parliament Street in 1811 by which time he was described as a merchant. For two years at least, 1813 and 1814, he was in partnership with another merchant with a Manx name, William Kermode, who was also a shipbuilder. In February 1817, after the partnership seems to have been broken, William Kermode sent the snow-rigged ship "Robert Quayle" to Calcutta. This was only three years after the East India company had been deprived of their monopoly, against which John Gladstone had campaigned. Gladstone had established a trading house in Calcutta and in fact had sent the ship "True Briton" there which sailed a month or so before the "Robert Quayle".

It is difficult to be certain what happened to John after 1814 but in October 1829 a John Killey, flour dealer and draper went bankrupt in Liverpool (On the 16th August 1833 Margaret Brown died in Liverpool aged 56 relict of the late John Killey, merchant. Perhaps the disgrace had caused the premature deaths of the couple, but no will nor burial can I find for either.

Perhaps too their son William may have sailed the Robina because he was desperate for money. If he did he never seems to have broadcast the event apart from the annals some fifteen years later. He went on to prosper as a ship broker with his company, "William Killey and Co". Then the Prime Minister, W.E. Gladstone had inherited the abandoned Liverpool home of the Gladstone family, Seaforth House, and had decided to develop it, William bought one of the newly built houses there in 1857.

William's sons maintained the family fortunes, including one other eminent sailor, Captain Charles James Killey, who made the fastest passage out to Calcutta in 1890 in "Simla’ a huge windjammer. His first command was the clipper ship "Lord of the Isles" He also commanded one of his father's ships ‘Craigmullen’ and later the largest ship of her day afloat, "Somali’. He died at sea in command of a steamer by which time his family had moved to Edinburgh.

 My great grandfather John also prospered at sea and bought houses across Liverpool some of which he owned until the 1960’s. The next generation brought tragedy when William Lewin Killey (1-3-1-2-3) was drowned as a seventeen year old apprentice in 1875 in the wreck of the barque "Bell Hill" at Balbriggan,

If the legend is true in anyway old John Killey had considerable influence on my own life even after so many years but I wonder if I shall ever find evidence for a. relationship — one way or the other.

My Direct Line

1 Phillip Killey married Kirk Michael 24 APR 1759 to Ann Cain who died 29 APR 1809 Patrick. Phillip died 21 NOV 1804 at Gordon,Kirk Patrick — Weaver.

1.1 John bap 20 APR 1760 Kk Michael Not mentioned in Phillip’s Will
1.2 Ann bap 14 JUN 176l Kk Michael mentioned 3rd in Phillip's Will
1.3 Phillip bap 19 JAN 1763 Kk Michael mentioned 1st in Phillip’s Will
1.4 John bap 30 JUN 1771 Kk German not mentioned in
1.5 James bap 1775 Kk: German mentioned 2nd in Phillip’s Will
1.6 Ellinor bap 1770 Kk German Mentioned 4th in Phillip’s Will
1.7 Thomas bap 1780 Kk German Mentioned 5th in Phillip’s Will

1.3 Phillip married Kk Patrick 13 APR 1793 to Jane Clague (bap 14 MAY 1769, died 1860 Kk Patrick), Phillip died 19 AUG 1835 with occupation unknown.

1.3.1 William bap 2 MAY 1794 Kk Patrick, Fisherman 1841, Tailor 1851
1.3.2 John bap 1799
1.3.3 Phillip bap 1802 Farmer at Ballahig, German,
1.3.4 Ann 1804
1.3.5 Jane 1806
1.3.6 Elizabeth
1.3.7 James 1812 Sea captain in Liverpool in 1841-1849.

1.3.1 William married 11 DEC 1819 Kk Patrick to Isabella Crellin Elizabeth bap 30 JAN 1820 John bap 01 APR 1823 Kk Patrick, Sea captain Liverpool 1851-1893 Jane Thomas bap 1834 Braddan Marianne bap 1836 Phillip bap 1841 John married 12 NOV 1851 (died 1893) to Jane Lewin in Liverpool John bap 1852 Elizabeth Jane 1854 William Lewin bap 1857 Drowned in Shipwreck 1875 James Phillip bap 16 APR 1859 Liverpool, bookbinder, my grandfather.

Possible "Robins" Family

1.4 (or 1.1) John married 24 JAN 1803 Kirkcudbright to Margaret Brown, Liverpool Merchant.

1.4.1 James Brown Killey, born 15 MAR 1804 Liverpool, Commission Merchant
1.4.2 Margaret Brown Killey, born 22 DEC 1805 Liverpool
1.4.3 William born 03 DEC 1807 Liverpool, Captain & Shipbroker
1.4.4 John bap 26 JAN 1810
1.4.5 Thomas bap 3l 31 DEC 1811

1.4.3 William married about 1847 to Mary ___ ? Possible Captain of Robina in 1834 William died 07 DEC 1873 Mary Pedley Killey Margaret Brown Killey George Deane Killey, Took partnership of William Killey & Co. Charles James Killey, Captain of Craigmullen, Simla, Somali, Lord of the Isles, etc.

Last Will and Testament of Phillip Killey, 1804

This being the Last will and Testament of Phillip Killey of Kk Patrick Who Departed this life on The 21st of November 1804 Being sick and weak in body but of a sound and perfect mind and memory at the making; or Uttering hereof.

First, Committing his Soul unto Almighty God and his body to Christian Buryal

Secondly, He left and bequeathed to his Son Phillip Killey: His Best Coat best westcoat and best Breaches and a Flannel wascoat

Thirdly, he left and bequeathed unto His son James Killey his best Jacket

Fourthly, He left and Bequeathed unto his Daughter Ann Killey the sum of one pound

Fifthly, He left and Bequeathed unto his Daughter Elinor Killey the sum of Ten Shillings

Sixthly, he left and Bequeathed unto his son Thomas Killey Two Looms with all there Utensals and also the Bed wheron said Thos. Killey lieth as she is now — and the sd Thos. Killey in to pay the sum of eight Pounds unto my executor

Seaventhly, & Lastly, He nominated Constituted and Appointed his loving wife Ann Killey als Cain whole and sole Executor of all the Rest of Goods moveable And Immovable of what Nature or Kind soever and excluding all other Person or Persons that might Pretend to claim any Further Right to his Goods with One shilling legacy a piece.

In presence of

Charles Ratcliffe My X
Catherine Clucas My X) Jur..

At a Chapter Court Holden in the Parish of Kk Patrick June 21st 1805.

The xor is Sworn in Court in form of Law and hath given
Pledges for the payment of Debts and Legacies namely
Charles Radcliffe The witness and William Callin of Kk Patrick.

Probatum est

Thos. Cubbon.

Obituary of Charles James Killey as quoted in M.M.N.S notes

"OBITUARY. — It was with deep regret that we and the many friends of the late Captain C.J. Killey heard the news of his death at sea, on the "Innisbrook", on the 20th December, while on a voyage from Philadelphia to Cuba. Captain Charles James Killey was born in Liverpool, and was the second surviving son of the late William Killey, who himself a Shipmaster, retired from the sea in the fifties and died in 1886, for many years being the senior partner in the firm of William Killey A Co., Shipowners and Brokers, and which firm ceased to exist at the end of 1886. Captain C.J. Killey served his apprenticeship with Messrs. E.C. Friend & Co., Liverpool, in the ‘Caractacus,’ under the command of Captain Murray. as an Officer he sailed. with the New Zealand Shipping Company, when their fleet consisted entirely of sail. His first command at an early age was the "Lord of the Isles", owned by Messrs. W.P. Coleborn & Co., Liverpool, which vessel he commanded for about two years, leaving her to join his father’s firm in command of the "Craigmullen", which he retained for six years. In 1890 he took command of the then new four-masted ship "Simla" (recently built at Acapulco), owned by Messrs C. .M Steeves & Co., Liverpool, and. in succession he had command of the "Somali" (the largest ship then afloat) , "Glenelvan", "Lodor", and the steamers "Larnaca" and "Langdale". After 16 years’ service with this firm he resigned his command seeking employment ashore He had in view an appointment abroad, which, however, he eventually decided not to follow up After 18 months ashore he determined to return to sea, took command of the new steamer "Innisbrook", just off her first voyage, owned by Messrs. Miller P Richards, of Glasgow, and it was when under the charter on the passage from Philadelphia to Cuba he died at sea on December 20th. In his sailing-ship days Captain Killey made many rapid passages, and he was looked upon as a model Shipmaster. Though a strict disciplinarian, he retained his Officers and men, and many of his old apprentices now filling honourable positions always speak of him with affectionate regard. He was spoken by one firm of Owners he sailed for as follows:— "He was a Master altogether out of the common, as besides being a skilful navigator, and making good passages, he was a very able business man, indefatigable in the interests of the ship".

Captain Killey was an old Member of the Mercantile Marine Service Association, and was on the Council of that body. In 1895 Captain Killey, when in command of the steamer "Larnaca", rescued a Norwegian crew in the Bay of Biscay, receiving a pair of binoculars from the Norwegian Government and the silver medal and vote of thanks of the Liverpool Shipwreck and Humane Society. Captain Killey leaves a widow and three children residing in Scotland, to mourn his loss. Kr. G.D. Killey, J.P., of Waterloo, and Mr. J.B. Killey, M.A., of the firm of Messrs. Morecroft, Sproat & Killey, solicitors, of Castle Street Liverpool, are brothers of the deceased gentleman.

The following letter of condolence has been addressed to Mrs. Killey:— Tower Buildings 22, Mater Street, January 6th, 1909.

Dear Madam, — The Council of this Association at their Meeting yesterday desired me to convey to you their deepest sympathy and condolence with you in the death of your husband, Captain C.J. Killey.

Your late husband has been connected with tale Association since the year 1880, and his unexpected death has caused very deep regret among his colleagues on the Council and among the members of the Association generally.

He was one of the most earnest supporters of our work and objects, never failing to uphold its interests at every opportunity; and his urbanity, kindness of heart, and sound judgement caused him to be held in the highest esteem by those who knew him and enjoyed his friendship.

In the training of young sea apprentices under him he displayed an untiring interest; and as a Shipmaster he carried out his duties in a most exemplary manner.

Again - ensuring you of our sincere sympathy in your sad bereavement.

Yours sincerely,

C.P. Grylls,

Mrs Killey, 12, Cluny Terrace, Edinburgh. Secretary."


Extract from The Porcupine, May 22, 1897

Mr. George Deane Killey, JP, the Chairman of the Waterloo Urban District Council, resides in a fine house, "Benthuther", in the breezy locality by the sea, where he labours so energetically on behalf of the public. He is only forty-four years of age, and can boast of being a Liverpool man. Pleasing in manners, indefatigable in promoting the welfare of the poor, and with an inexhaustible fund of energy for engaging in civic enterprise, he fills a large place in the bustling, busy life of Liverpool and Waterloo. His father, grandfather and great grandfather were Liverpool shipowners, having originally come from the Isle of Man; and an old copy of "Gore’s Directory" (so small that you night almost put it into your waistcoat pocket) shows that the house of Kermode and Killey, of 6 Argle Street, flourished in the early part of the present century. The subject of this notice retired from business in 1889, when the firm of Wm. Killey and Co. (of which his father was the head) ceased to exist.

For the past six years he has filled the position of Chairman of the Diocesan branch of the Church of England Society for providing homes for waifs and strays, which affords ample scope for the exercise of his Christian zeal, Liverpool presenting a fruitful field for the noble work of child rescue.

He is a governor of the Royal Albert Idiot Asylum, and is on the committee of many charitable and philanthropic institutions in Waterloo and Liverpool. A Conservative by predilection, he has always been deeply interested in politics, and at election times he renders good service to the Tory cause in the Ormskirk Division, represented by Sir Arthur Porwood. In September, 1891, he became a member of the Waterloo-with-Seaforth Local board; and on the formation of then Urban District Council, in 1895, he was returned — at a contested election — for Christ Church and along with Messrs R. Atwood Beaver (the first chairman of the Council) and Joseph B. Colton. He was re-elected in 1896 without opposition, and in April of the present year (up to which time he had presided over the Finance Committee) he was appointed to the post which he now holds. as proof of his industry in discharging his municipal duties, it may be stated that he attended 95 out of the 98/9 meetings to which he had been summoned in the course of twelve months.

In 1893, Mr Killey married May, eldest daughter of the late Thomas Barton, of Lancaster, and granddaughter of Wm Jackson, J.P. who was in 1858 Mayor of Lancaster. If a busy man like him can be said to have any leisure, his friends say that his hobbies are perhaps, flowers and fishing.

(copies of annotated original documents included in article are not scanned)





Michael N. Jackson


As a brief introduction to this short account of the Jackson family, I feel it is necessary to write a sketch history of the Primitive Methodist Church on Merseyside at the beginning of the nineteenth century.

Both Primitive Methodist founders Hugh Bourne and William Clowes were frequent visitors to Merseyside. Bourne often came to such places as Warrington and Manchester, not to mention the countless other smaller towns. His earliest visit was in 1810, but he spent most of his life travelling the North of England preaching and organizing the Primitive Methodist Church. From the start the Primitive Methodists were outcasts and had to hold meetings when and wherever they could. Often these meetings were in the open in fields or on village greens. After conversion some of the new members allowed their cottages to be used for worship. The early evangelists were mostly men and. women of little or no formal education who taught themselves whilst they worked at their trades. From these humble and often similar beginnings the Primitive Methodist Church was to become the second largest Nonconformist Church after the Wesleyans. If it had not been for the lay members of the Church, the early evangelists would have never survived the privations of hunger and thirst, shelter, sad the very clothes they wore had to be found for them. Being too poor to ride, these men and women went from meeting to meeting on foot, and with the English weather this often meant getting soaked to the skin, so it is no wonder few of them lived beyond middle age. Altogether, as I have said, it was a hard life with little reward, and all too often resulted in illness and an early death.

From the early 1810’s the Primitive Methodists were able to hire barns and other rough accommodation, in which to hold their services, and about a decade later in spite of the refusal of some landowners to sell land a start was made to build Chapels on waste ground not wanted by anyone else. All the skilled members of the building trade who were also members of the denomination were eagerly sought, and it was these particular men who supervised during their limited free time, the building of these early Chapels.

The first members of this particular branch of the Jackson family whom I can trace are a John Jackson and his wife Jane, who were farmers in Woolston-with-Martinscroft near Warrington during the last quarter of the eighteenth century. All their children were born in Woolston-with-Martinscroft on the family farm, but christened in St. Elphin’s Church, Warrington. The children were George, born 1780, Ann, born 1781, Mary, born 1783, Joseph, born 1786, Peter, born 1788 and father of Charles and James, but more about that later, Betty, born 1790, Jonathan, born 1792, Thomas, born 1796 and Jane born 1800. Further details of the majority of these children have yet to be found.

As a young man Peter left hone and went to live in Winwick on the other side of Warrington, where he was resident,at the tine of his marriage to Eleanor Goulden. Soon afterwards they crossed into Cheshire where they lived the greater part of their lives. My great, great grandfather Peter and Eleanor and a family of nine children. They were Martha, Peter (1818-1856), Charles the Primitive Methodist Minister, George, born 1821, John (1824-1845,William Goulden (1826-1855) , Thomas (1830-1831), Thomas, born 1831 and James, the future President of the Primitive Methodist Conference. Peter died in 1863 and his wife Eleanor nine years later and are both buried in the Churchyard at Stretton, Cheshire.

Rev Charles Jackson

Rev. Charles Jackson 1819-1863

Charles Jackson was born on the 9th September 1819 in Statham, (Lymm). he was the third child of Peter and Eleanor Jackson.

The Jackson children were fortunate in their parents and they seem to have enjoyed a happy home. They all attended a small private school in Lymm, and on Sundays they went to the Primitive Methodist Chapel in nearby Stockton Heath village, where Charles alone is recorded as having sung in the choir, and delivered the connexional magazines to the members of the Chapel. By 1836 Charles had left the family farm in Lymm and with his school friend, William Harnard, commenced an apprenticeship :ii’ing-t. No trace of the apprenticeship papers can now be found because they were probably destroyed when Charles later cancelled them and joined the ministry, and the trade they were apprenticed to is therefore not known.

It was William Howard who introduced Charles to the minister of Latchford. Soon Charles was once again in the choir and before long he had extended his activities to teaching the children in the Sunday School.

The big turning point in young Charles Jackson’s life came during a service held one Sunday at the beginning of January 1837, when a visiting minister preached on the theme "Will a man rob God". This sermon moved Charles to deep contemplation, that compelled him to return to the chapel on several occasions by himself for further guidance. By midsummer 1837 he had firmly decided that his own vocation was in the ministry, but being cautious by nature Charles spent the next two years as an auxiliary local preacher on the Warrington Circuit before committing himself to the full time ministry.

Charles Jackson officially joined the Primitive Methodist Church as a probationer at the Liverpool Conference held during June 1840. For his first year was stationed at Bolton, but twelve months later he was transferred by the Conference to commence a two year period on the Ramsey, Isle of Man Circuit. Whilst there Charles lived and worked in Kirk Michael, a village on the west coast of the Island. Incidentally, it is interesting to note that this was the only time when Charles served on a country circuit. The original Primitive Methodist Chapel, built in 1824 still survives. It has had a varied history, having been used as a blacksmith’s shop, a store house and later as a garage.

It was whilst Charles was serving in Kirk Michael that he met his first wife Elizabeth Skillicorn. She was a Sunday School teacher at the same chapel. Elizabeth and Charles were married on the 9th June 1846 in Kirk Michael Parish Church, as at that tine the Primitive Methodist had no legal authority to marry their members in their own chapels.

Charles in the meantime had had another move back to the mainland to Stalybridge where the young couple had their first home. Yet another transfer came at Midsummer 18-ill to Liverpool, and another a year later, this time to Haslington. After Haslington, there began a long stay in Manchester on the Oxford Road Circuit.

In the Manchester of the 1840's Charles was confronted with a depth of poverty even he had not seen in Liverpool, then reputed to be one of Britain’s worst slum cities.

For some time his wife’s health had been poor and was steadily growing worse. This was not surprising as thee ministers lived and worked in the poor districts where their work was, and were in frequent contact with the epidemics which killed many members of their congregations.

By the summer of 1850 Charles felt that his only hope of saving his wife’s health was for her to return to the milder climate of the Isle of Man. Accordingly Charles approached the General Assembly of that year’s Conference for permission to be stationed once again at his Old Kirk Michael Chapel. Some months later this request was granted and Charles, Elizabeth and their small son boarded the steamer for the Isle of Man.

In spite of the change it became increasingly evident that Elizabeth’s health was further deteriorating. She died a fortnight before Christmas 1851 and was buried amongst her relatives already in Kirk Michael Churchyard near to the spot where her husband was later buried.

About six months later Charles returned to England as Station Superintendent of New Mills, Derbyshire.

Sometime during the first or second year at New Mills Charles remarried. His second wife was Katherine Callister and, like Elizabeth Skillicorn, came from the Isle of Man.

The Jackson family remained at New Mills until 1857 when he was stationed at Bury for two years. To complete his ministerial career Charles spent another short period in nearby Blackburn but had to retire because of ill-health. Within a matter of months of being in Blackburn Charles was advised by his doctor to leave Blackburn and to take a rest in the milder climate of the Isle of Man. At about the sane time Charles sought and was granted superannuation for himself and his family, thus enabling them to live in Ramsey, and for a short-time afterwards they went to Kirk Michael, where Charles bought a small farm as an investment for the family’s future.

Charles Jackson died in the early autumn of 1863 and was buried in Kirk Michael Churchyard,

[Photo Rev. James Jackson 1835-1837]


Peter and Eleanor had recently begun to farm in Lymm when their eleventh child James Jackson was born on the 4th March 1835 and was baptised four weeks later in Lymm parish church.

Like the other Jackson children proper attention was paid to the youngest child’s schooling. After going to a Mr. Howard’s private school in the village he went to live with his brother Charles and family in Manchester where he began to study at a private academy in that city. The main object was that with his superior ability James could then qualify for entrance to one of the learned professions. However, with the sudden closure of the school owing to the accidental drowning of the owner, James’s parents’ plan for their son had to be quickly changed. James Jackson’s father finally decided to enter his son on a commercial career in Manchester and apprenticed him to a firm particulars of which are not known. During these years in Manchester James continued to attend the Primitive Methodist Chapel in Rosamond Street which played such an important part in the young man’s life. It was at Rosamond. Street in 1852 that he began his work as a local preacher and after another two years he was accepted as an auxiliary before becoming a probationer in the following year. Where and when James seriously considered becoming a Primitive Methodist is not recorded.

In those days Rosamond Street Chapel was considered the Chief chapel for Lancashire and Yorkshire. It was under the direct authority of the General Committee which meant that all probationers attached to three chapel were sent away for several months to circuits all over the north of England. These months were the trial period when a candidate either accepted. or rejects the ministry. his duties were to work under the direct guidance of the resident minister and included taking services and preaching in isolated villages in the circuits,

It was during James Jackson’s probation that he was sent to Stokesley and. later to Middleton in Teesdale where he first met his future wife Eleanor Dodd of Caresdale. Miss Dodd was the daughter of Leonard Dodd a well respected local preacher.

On the 22nd June 1853, James Jackson was ordained in the Rosamond Street Chapel in the presence of his father and mother and the officials of the Primitive Methodist General Committee.

A few days later James travelled to Garesdale where on the 7th July he was married to Eleanor Dodd in the Salem Chapel in Selburgh.

James was first appointed as a junior minister to Newcastle-upon-Tyne and for the nex:t decade continued to travel around the majorr circuits of the North. These included suchl places as Kendall and Darligton. This of course gave him invaluable experience and knowledge which was of value in later years. His success in these towns brought him to the notice of the General Committee who even at this early stage of his career considered him to be an outstanding minister.

In 1865 James had risen to become Superintendent of the Tyneside Port of Blyth. However, at about the same time he sufferred from an attack of aphonia which forced him to take a prolonged rest in Garesdale, but fortuneately he soon recovered and was back at his Ministerial duties. It was during James Jackson's years at Blyth that he raised the branch to circuit status.

In the late autumn of 1865 James’s father Peter died in Lancashire where he and his wife had been living for several years.

When James returned to the active duties he was appointed Senior Minister in Durham City. Then two years later he became Superintendent of Stockton-on-Tees. Whilst in Stockton James suffered from another attack of aphonia and was forced to return for a short time to Kirby Stephen. During their short stay in Stockton there were several moves to different houses in the town. It was during this unhappy period that several members of the Jackson family died, including his mother and a daughter.

Then James had recovered sufficiently he was able to preach once again and become an Assistant Minister at Kirby Stephen Chapel. By the Spring of 1882 James felt completely recovered and was naturally anxious to be on the active list, so in the June of the same year he applied to Conference for a station and was given the position of Assistant Minister at Lymm, the village where he was born and had spent all his childhood. He remained there until the summer of 1884 when he was transferred to the Everton Road Circuit, Liverpool.

Whilst in Liverpool James Jackson was elected for the first time as a member of an official delegation to the Annual Conference. But his first great success came at the 1888 Liverpool Conference when he was nominated and elected the Conference Secretary, a position well suited to him and one he held with distinction.

In 1889 Jackson was elected to be the permanent Secretary of the Local Preachers Provident Society, another position he held to the benefit of the members of the society.

More travels followed, starting in the autumn of 1888 with a three year posting to Fleetwood, then in 1891 back to Newcastle-on-Tyne, this time as Superintendent of the No. 1 Circuit; finally to Barnard Castle from where he retired.

The grand climax of James Jackson’s ministerial career came at the Leeds Conference of 1896 when after a second ballot he was elected President for the following year. His election was a tribute to his forty three years’ service and his work during those years.

For him it was another happy coincidence that he should have been elected to preside over a Conference held in Manchester, as it was without doubt a personal triumph to return to Manchester as President of the Church he had joined as a youth.

On the 15th June 1907, now aged 62, James Jackson was sworn in as President of the eighty-seventh Conference before a standing assembly of Delegates which included his own son Jes Dodd Jackson who stood with him on the platform in the Free Trade Hall.

Two days later in. front of another packed assembly again in the Free Trade Hall James delivered the Presidental speech. It was rightly enthusiastically received by the delegates and critics alike and at the end he was given a prolonged ovation.

On the following Sunday James Jackson had the great pleasure of preaching once again in the Rosamond Street Chapel.

The presidential year was one of the most arduous of his life, but he enjoyed it in spite of the tiring nature of the work and his relatively advanced age. For instance, during that one year as President he chaired all the Connexional Committees and travelled throughout the United Kingdom visiting circuits and opening new property including the now famous Hartley Victoria College in Manchester.

But by far the happiest moment of that thrilling year came when at Easter 1897 he officially opened the new Primitive Methodist Chapel in Lymm which stands next to the earlier building. It is strikingly different from the original building erected as long ago as 1840 and from 1897 onwards was to serve as the Chapel Sunday School.

After completing his Presidential year James returned horns to Barnard Castle full of wonderful memories of his year of office. In spite of everything he seemed to be pleased to start work once again in his own circuit amongst his own ministers and congregation. For two years he stayed at Barnard Castle before finally retiring.

The remaining years of his life were spent in Appleby and later, after a brief return to the Ministry when he served in Bolton and Manchester, he settled again in Kirby Stephen seeking seclusion amongst his friends and those Westmorland hills he loved so much.

James Jackson died on New Year’s eve1907. :His funeral service held in Kirby Stephen Chapel was attended by the Connexional Oficers and the service itself was conducted by the President.

His wife Eleanor lived on in Kirby Stephen with her sister Both of them died within weeks of each other at the time of the 1913 influenza epidemic.

James and Eleanor Jackson’s son James Dodd was born on the 9th December 1861, soon after their arrival at Mulberry Place, Darlington.

James Dodd had a fine clear voice for preaching, but the main difference between father and son was that the latter, unlike his father, was imaginative which later led him to write for the various connexional magazines. For a time he was educated at a private school in Kirby Stephen until he was old enough to become a booking clerk at the LNER station at Kirby Stephen.

One Sunday whilst attending Divine Service with his parents in Garsdale Chapel, James Dodd felt an ‘inner power’ persuading him to think again about his life and career. Naturally it took the young man many weeks to reach the decision he did to join his father in the ministry. After a period of some months an application was made, first to the Circuit Superintendent and later to the Conference Committee who after careful consideration admitted him as a probationer at the beginning of the following year when he was twenty-two. He started his probation on the Kilburn Circuit of London in January 1883. Whilst there he did all the usual offices of a junior probationer and once a week he attended lectures at the Lambeth Chapel to pursue his theological education to enable him to take the examinations at the end of his three years.

At the sane time James Dodd began. his life long interest in swimming with a daily swim in the Serpentine.

After his ordination in 1887 James Dodd returned to the North. his first appointment was to Padiham where he stayed for the next three years.

It was when James Dodd visited his father who was serving in Lymm, Cheshire that he met his future wife Sarah Anna Thomson. Their marriage took place at the Booth’s Hill Chapel a few days after his ordination.

After Padiham the young minister moved to Bootle and after the customary three years there he was appointed to Heaton, Newcastle-on-Tyne where he remained an extra year following the Chapel Committee’s decision to retain him.

In April and again in August 1894 James Dodd suffered the double tragedy of losing first an infant daughter and in August his wife he was now left with two children to look: after but was fortunate in having an extremely capable housekeeper who stayed with the family until her own death.

During October 1894 James Dodd was sent, on the advise of his doctor, on a sea voyage aboard a freighter bound for the Eastern Mediterranean. He was away for -two or three months and. visited the tourist sights in all the ports of call. Finally he arrived in the Holy Land where he visited all the Holy places. For his homeward journey he joined a passenger liner destined for Liverpool at Alexandria.

Most of 1896 James Dodd spent in preparing and writing his father’s Conference Speech for the Manchester Conference of 1897 when father and son were together on the platform.

James Dodd had his first series of short stories published in the Aldersgate Primitive Methodist Magazine. These were later collected together and reprinted in a volume of short stories under the title "Twixt Moor and Mend" The next story was a twelve part serial called "The People of the Haven" that appeared in the same periodical during the Golden Jubilee year. All his fiction was set in Garsdale and written in the local dialect. It relates the various happenings of the ‘Garsdale’ folk as recounted by the village cobbler, the Chapel Keeper and other ‘locals’.

By June 1897 James Dodd had completed his extra year at Heaton and was very pleased when the Conference Committee transferred him to Grimsby. He was there only two years, an unusually short time for him. Then came a period at Preston, Crewe, Ellesmere Port and finally London.

The 1906 Manchester Conference was the last public appearance when James and James Dodd Jackson were seen together on the same Conference platform. However this was an important Conference for James Dodd as he was appointed Vice-Editor of the Primitive Methodist Connexional periodicals for the next five years. Now with less time to devote to his writing he was only able to complete two short series of short stories. These were "Tales of a Chapel Keeper" and "Leaves from an Old Notebook", both published in the Primitive Methodist Leader.

Then in 1910 the Conference Committee commissioned James Dodd to write and deliver the Hartley Lecture for Norwich Conference. his theme was to be ‘Preaching’ , a :subject in which he was considered an expert by the Committee. The lecture was duly delivered and subsequently published under the title "The Message and the Man" All the reviews which exist give the lecture and the book: unqualified praise.

After the Norwich Conference, James Dodd stayed on in London until he had completed his five years as Editor. On his retirement from the office he was advised by his doctor to leave London for a country circuit where be would be able to rest after the strain of his ten years on the editorial board. In due course he was given the Tunbridge Wells station until his health returned and he was able once again to take a prominent position within the Primitive Methodist Church.

During those years at Tunbridge Wells he wrote a further series of short stories and several complete stories, besides his weekly contribution of editorial comment under the pseudonyn of ‘Lucius Lyte’ and My Lady Oracle’ for the Aldersgate Magazine.

At the Conference of June 1916 the Connexional Committee put forward James Dodd as a prospective candidate as the next President. However, in spite of his obvious pleasure at being noninated, he felt that he should stand down and allow a more senior colleague the distinction.

Whilst on holiday at Lymm, James Dodd was taken ill and on his return home to Tunbridge Wells he consulted several doctors but did respond to any of the prescribed treatments and died three weeks before Christmas 1918.


1778, Feb. 5 Marriage of grandfather John Jackson & Jane Garton at St. Elphin’s, Warrington.

1788, May 8 Birth of Peter, son of John & Eleanor Jackson.

1807 May 31 Beginning of Primitive Methodist movement:— Mow Cop Camp Meeting.

1810 Official break from Wesleyan Methodism by Hugh Bourne & William Clowes and start of P.M. Church as a separate movement.

1813 Feb. 5 Marriage of Peter Jackson & Eleanor Goulden at Winwick, Lancashire

1813-16 Jackson family lived in. Lowton, Lancashire.

1817 Peter & family crossed River Mersey and "set" up house in Thelwall, Cheshire.

1819 Sep. 26 Charles Jackson, born at Statham, Lymm.

1820 First Primitive Methodist Conference held.

1820-39 Jackson family resident in various houses with the Parish of Lymm.

1821 Primitive Methodist Magazine launched.

1835 Mar. 4 James Jackson born at Lymm

1837 Jan. Charles appointed Auxillary and Sunday School teacher at Latchford Chapel, Warrington.

1837-8 Charles becomes Auxillary Local Preacher on the Warrington Circuit.

1840 Original Lymm Primitive Methodist Chapel built.

1840 June P.M. Conference accepts Charles as Probationer.

1841 Charles is ‘Stationed’ in Bolton, Lancashire.

1841 Apr. Census:— Peter & Eleanor living at Streeton, Great Budworth.

1844 June Charles Jackson marries Elizabeth Skillicorn at Kirk Michael, Isle of Man, where he has been stationed for the last twelve months.

1845 Charles returns to ‘mainland’ to Trannere, Cheshire.

1847 James leaves home to attend Academy in Manchester.

1847 Charles appointed as Superintendent of Oxford Road, Manchester Circuit.

1850 James commences apprenticeship in Manchester.

1851 Apr. Census:— Peter and family still living at Stretton, Cheshire.

1851 Dec. 9 Death of Elizabeth, wife of Charles Jackson at home in Kirk Michael. Buried in Churchyard.

1852 Charles leaves Isle of Man with only surviving child: Thomas Skillicorn Jackson (1847-1871)

1852 James appointed Auxillary Preacher at Rosamond Street Chapel, Manchester.

1853 June Charles Jackson married at Kirk Maughold, Isle of Man to Catherine Callister.

1854 James accepted as Probationer by PM. Conference. He commences work on the Middlehan Circuit, North Yorkshire.

1858 June James Jackson marries Eleanor Dodd at Salem Church, Sedbergh.

1853 June James ordained at Primitive Methodist Conference.

1859 James ‘Stationed’ at Kendal.

1859 Charles ‘super’ at Blackburn, Lancashire.

1861 Oct. Birth of James Dodd Jackson at Darlington.

1862 After continued illness Charles superannuated and returned to Ramsey, and later to Kirk Michael where he purchased a small farm.

1863 Sep. Charles died.& buried in Kirk Michael Churchyard.

1865 Nov. Peter, Charles’s father, died at Lymm, buried at Stratton, Cheshire.

1868 James appointed Supervisor at Durham.

1870-80 James ‘Stationed’ at Stockton-on-trees.

1875 James suffers from continual illness and retires.

1877 James Dodd Jackson joins LNER as clerk.

1882 James Dodd accepted as a Probationer in PM.. ministry.

1882 James resumes ministerial career at Lymm.

1887 James Dodd Jackson marries Sarah Ann Thomason in the Primitive Methodist Chapel, Lymm.

1888 James appointed Conference Secretary.

1896 James attends Leeds Conference. His name submitted and subsequently elected President for 1897—1898.

1897 James Jackson’s Presidential Year commenced with the Ritual at Manchester Conference. James Dodd, son, wrote the Conference Speech., Twixt, Moor & Mead published.

1898 James retired from Presidency and the Ministry. He returned to Barnard Castle and later moved to Appleby.

1899-1900 James returns to Nateby, Kirby Stephen.

1902 James Dodd Jackson:— book of short stories £50.000 [sic ? 350,000] published.

1902 James returns to active Ministry in Manchester,
1905 James Dodd elected Deputy Editor of Connexional magazines.
1906 James attends last Conference with J.D.J. his son.
1907 Century celebrations of ‘Mow Cop’.
1907 Dec. 31 Death of James Jackson at Nateby. Buried at Kirby Stephen.
1910 James Dodd appointed Editor of the Connexional Press,
1912 Message & the Man published just before Norwich Conference, J.D.J. gives Hartley Lecture on the same theme using the book's text.
1912-16 James Dodd Jackson writes various series of short stories using psued James Fergus & Charles MacAndrews.
1915 James Dodd retires from Editorship and goes to live in Tunbridge Wells,
1918 Dec. James Dodd Jackson dies at Tunbridge Wells.
1919 Eleanor, wife of James Jackson (P.M. President) died and and buried at Kirby Stephen.



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