[From Manx Quarterly, #4 1908]
Died February 17th, 1908.
To the great sorrow of all who had the pleasure and advantage of his acquaintance, Mr Andrew Craine, of Woodbourne Square, Douglas, passed away on Monday, Feb. 17th. A Christian gentleman-in the true sense of the word gentleman the key-note of Mr Craine's life was consideration for other people. Of high principle and strong convictions, he ever endeavoured to so bear himself as to avoid wounding the feelings of others; and it can truly be said of him that no man gave less cause of offence to his fellows than he. Gentle, modest, and unassuming of demeanour, his career approached nearly to the blameless, and in his death the town of Douglas has lost a citizen of uncommon worth. The news that he had joined the Great Majority came as a great shock, for few outside the circle of his intimate friends knew that he was unwell. Indeed in the early part of last week he was out and about, and went to the South of the Island, in company with Mr F. C. Poulter, to inspect some organs. It is thought that while so engaged he caught the chill which developed into an attack of bronchitis. Heart affection supervened, and was the immediate cause of death. Up to Sunday, he appeared to be making good progress towards recovery, but on Monday there was a relapse, and Dr Marshall, his medical attendant, called in Dr Pantin for consultation. Everything that medical skill could devise was done with a view to overcoming the malady, but without avail, and the end came peacefully. Mr Craine was the only son of the late Mr Joseph Craine, baker, of Church-street, Douglas, and on his father's death he succeeded to the busi-ness. About twenty years ago he retired, while yet a comparatively young man, with the intention of spending the remainder of his days quietly. About six years ago he took up the Manx agency of Messrs Thos. Rigby & Son, of Liverpool, corn merchants, which firm he represented for the remainder of his days. A staunch Wesleyan Methodist, Mr Craine never made a parade of his religion; yet was he sincerely devout, and did much quiet but effective work for the church with which he was connected, while he sympathised with other forms of Christianity. Ere attaining to manhood he became a Sunday-school teacher, but during his latter years his Sunday-school work was confined to training the children in the musical portion of Divine Worship. He was an enthusiastic lover of music and was well-versed in the science of sweet sounds. For thirty-five years he was an honorary organist in connection with Douglas Wesleyan Churches-for thirteen years at Well-road, and twenty-two years at Rose Mount-and the musical portion of the services in these churches owed much to his intense and constant devotion to his self-imposed duties. Mr Craine was twice married, his first wife, a daughter of the late Mr Henry Kellett, and sister to Mr J. D. Kellett, Douglas, predeceasing him. His second wife, who survives him, is a daughter of the late Mr W. Kneen, of Kirk Patrick, farmer. By her he has a son and a daughter, both of whom are grown up. The son, Mr Fred A. Craine, quite recently passed the senior Cambridge Local Examination, he being the only successful male candidate so far as the Isle of Man is concerned. Miss E. M. Craine, the daughter, is well-known in Manx musical circles as an accomplished pianist. Mr Craine's only sister, to whom he was deeply attached, is the wife of Mr W. D. Cowin, of West View, Douglas.
A very large and representative gathering assembled at his late residence on Thursday afternoon to nay their last tribute of respect to the deceased gentleman. The ceremony was a simple one, and the only service connected with it was a short one conducted by the Revs B. Burrows and J. W. Hall, held in the mortuary chapel at Braddan Cemetery, where the interment took place. The funeral procession went by way of Woodbourne Road and Alexander Drive, and, despite the fact that rain fell almost continually, many who were not accom-modated with carriages followed on foot to the graveside and took part in the impressive service. The ministers who conducted the service occupied the first carriage, the mourning coaches being occupied by the following:-
First carriage: Messrs Fred Craine (son), T. Leece, W. D. Cowin, J. D. Kellett (brothers-in-law), and J. E. Douglas (nephew).
Second carriage: Messrs R. F. Douglas, W. A. Douglas, Herbert W. Douglas, and Tom Dodd, and Master Eric Douglas (nephews).
Third carriage: Messrs Robert Craine (Ballavagher), Thomas Craine, John W. Craine, and Frank Craine (Ballakinnish) (cousins).
Fourth carriage: Messrs R. J. Clague, W. Kneen (Croit-e-Caley), Edward Killey (Foxdale), and Norman E. Nash.
Fifth carriage: Messrs W. J. Kermode, a.K., T. Stowell, and R. Stowell.
Sixth carriage: Messrs T. Shimmin, John Corkill, J. Gelling, and J. Royston. Mr R. G. Fargher, Wesleyan circuit steward, accompanied the ministers.
Of the Rose Mount society and poor stewards, Messrs A. C. Lewthwaite, A. H. Kermode, and J. Taylor attended.
Among the general public were no - Messrs A. Barthelemy, G. J. Burr S. Broadbent, Alderman Caley, WmA J. C. Cannell, R. L. Cain, J. E. J. H. Clarke, D. Clarke, W. Caley Councillor H. C. G..Clague, J. Chap Supt. Cain, R. C'lucas, J. F. Clucas, Cowin, T. Cowin, W. J. Goole, J1_ Corran, M. Creer, J. Crellin, Counc R. Curphey, E. Corteen, J. T. CoweD, J.P., x.x., Alderman R. Corlett, J. J. Corlett, P. Crellin, J. Crellin, Councillor R. D. Cowin, F. Cowin, Thos. P_ Ellison, Josiah Goldsmith, William Goldsmith, a.x., James Gell, R. D. Gelling, W. Clucas Gelling, F. Gelling (Ballavar), Alderman Joughin, C. H. Kay, S. Kay, J. Kneen, W. Kelly, T. Keig, J. Kewley, _. Kelly, E A. Love, Arthur Gelling, R. B. Moore, W. J. Moore, P. Moore, junr., Tom Moore, W. Moore, Councillor R. Moughtin, A. C. Paterson, W. Paterson, F. C. Pointer, G. Pollard, E. Quine, J. E. Quayle, A. J. Ridge, J. Radcliffe (painter), J. C. Radcliffe, R. Radcliffe, J. Ritchie, A. Robertson (Town Clerk), J. Roy ston, H. Shimmin, J. Shimmin, jun. (BalLacreetch), W. Shimmin, P. Shimmin, S. Watterson, A. W. Moore, C.V.O., S.H.K., etc.
REFERENCES AT ROSE MOUNT. At the Sunday-school convention at Rose Mount, on Thursday afternoon, the Chairman (Mr W. H. Kneale) referred to the death of Mr Craine. The deceased was a true Christian gentleman in every respect-one whom it was always a pleasure to work with. Mr Craine had never thought it a trouble to do anything for the children in the Sunday-schools throughout the town, looking upon them as the lambs of the flock of Jesus Christ. His place would be exceedingly difficult to fill.-Mr Chapman seconded a vote of condolence with the family, which was unanimously passed.
At the evening public meeting, Mr J. T. Cowell made a similar reference, and the meeting, by standing vote, . expressed sympathy with the sorrowing family.
The Rev Bamford Burrows occupied the pulpit at Rose Mount Wesleyan Church at both morning and evening services on Sunday. At the close of the morning service the "Dead March" in " Saul " was impressively rendered on the organ by Mr J. J. Frowde, in memory of the late Mr Andrew Craine, for many years the organist of the church, and of Mrs W. Kneen, of Clypston. As a tribute of respect to their late choirmaster, the members of the choir wore mourning. In the evening, the Rev B. Burrows preached from the text II. Cor. v. 8, which in the revised version reads: "We are of good courage, I say, and are willing rather to be absent from! the body and to be at home with the Lord."
In concluding a very beautiful and impressive sermon, he said: And may we not here and now remember the un-assuming modesty, the faithful, loyal love of this house that so long has been shown by the one who played the organ for us this day fortnight. You will join in prayer that those who have been bereaved may find that through death there is more abundant life, through sorrow there is a fuller happiness, through darkness and mystery there is a clearer revelation of the face of God.
The hymns were well chosen and were in keeping with the subject of the sermon, at the close of which the choir feelingly rendered an appropriate selection.
As an opening voluntary, the organist played " O rest in the Lord."
We regret to record the death, at the early age of 45, of Mr Quayle, schoolmaster, Baldwin, which took place on Jan. 5th. Mr Thos. Philip Quayle,, a man of considerable scholastic attainments, gained principally through his own per-severance and ability, was educated at St. George's School, Douglas, where he served as a pupil teacher, and later on gained his certificate as a teacher, a London B.A., and his intermediate B.Sc., entirely as the result of his own efforts, and without passing through college. From St. George's he went to the Clothworkers' School, Peel, under Mr Fargher, and later to St. Mark's. He was appointed head master of his old school, St. George's, Douglas, in 1889, and about three years later transferred to Baldwin. For some years past the deceased has been mathematical and chemistry master at the Douglas Grammar School, and has done a large amount of private teaching, especially of navigation. Mr Quayle was a member of the N.U.T., and was clerk to the Braddan Parish Commissioners. The interment took place in St. Luke's, Baldwin, on Tuesday afternoon, and the funeral was largely attended.
We grieve to announce the death of Mrs Kneen, which took place at her residence Clypston, Douglas, on Friday morning, Feb. 21st, at two o'clock. She had been for some years in delicate health, but the shock of the death of Mr Andrew Craine, her son-in-law, on Monday last, and of that of her daughter, Mrs John Crellin, some little time ago, no doubt hastened the end. Mrs Kneen had reached the age of 83, and to the last her mind and memory were extraordinarily clear. She was assiduously attended to by her daughter, Miss Nellie Kneen, who, together with her grandson, Mr Tom Dodd, formed a united and happy household. Mrs Kneen was twice married. Her first husband was Mr Leece, of Dalby, by whom she had a son Mr T. Leece, of Dalby. Her second husband was Mr Wm. Kneen, farmer, also of Dalby. The family came to Douglas about 25 years ago, eventually taking up residence at the Masonic Boarding House, Loch Promenade, which, after Mr Kneen's death, she purchased. In it, with the aid of her daughters, she carried on a successful business, retiring a few years ago, first to Hillary Park, and afterwards to Clypston. Her death will be much lamented She was of a refined and affectionate disposition, and was a devoted member of the Wesleyan Church Three daughters, Mrs Andrew Craine, Mrs Clement Vickers (London), and Miss Kneen, and one son, Mr T. Leece, survive her.
Died April 24th, 1908.
On Monday, April 27th, the funeral took place of Mr Flaxney Stowell, of Arbory-street, Castletown. It was a large and representative funeral, a fitting tribute to the influence and popularity of the deceased gentleman.
Mr Stowell, or, as he was better known, " Flaxen," occupied a unique position in Castletown-in fact his name was for most of his years well-known and respected throughout the whole Island. He was born on May 22nd, 1812, so that on the day of his death (April 24th), he was almost in sight of his ninety-sixth birthday; and in spite of his great age up to a short time ago he in a remarkable way preserved his physical activity and mental vigour. He was married at the age of 19, and his wife (Catherine Fell) died some ten years ago, after having lived happily with him for about 67 years.
In his early life he became associated with the Primitive Methodist Society, but after a short connection with that body, he went over to the Wesleyan Methodist Society, of which he remained a member to the day of his death a period of over 70 years. To the Wesleyan Church he has been a useful and devoted adherent. His special interest was in the Sunday-school, and he gave his time and services to its work with great zeal and joy. He was for most of his life a Sunday-school teacher; and for one year he filled the office of treasurer. He was elected superintendent about 43 years ago, and he held the position up to the time of his death. Up to about two years ago he attended the school regularly, and took his full share of the duties. He was specially interested in the morning Sunday-school, and during the whole of his connection with it was in his place at 9-30 a.m. on Sunday morning, with unfailing precision. In fact, he was missing from his place on very few Sunday mornings during the 70 years of his connection with the school. "Help the teachers to come to school on Sunday morning" was a prayer frequently on his lips.
For many years he conducted a prayer meeting at seven o'clock every Sunday morning, and occasionally organised bands of singers to go round the town at 6 a.m. on Sunday morning. He always refused to accept office in the church itself. Though often pressed to take up various positions, he persistently declined to do so; nevertheless he lent his assistance with pleasure to all the church's enterprises. During the first outbreak of the cholera, he displayed great courage in visiting all who were stricken with the plague, and rendered valuable assistance to them. Through all his life he never knew what fear was, courage, determina-tion, and a well-developed sense of humour, combined with keen mental power, being perhaps the outstanding features of his character. It is interesting to note, in connection with his determination not to occupy any office in the church, that he on one occasion, after great coaxing, was induced by his friends to preach. But although he was an able platform speaker, he had such a "time" on this occasion that he could never be induced to enter the pulpit again.
Perhaps the work in which he gained his fame was the temperance cause. He was certainly one of the pioneers of that movement in the Island. Early in his life, James Teare, one of "the seven men of Preston," visited Castletown on a temperance crusade, and it was then that " Flaxen " determined to use his influence for the promotion of the cause. He soon organised a Band of Hope in Castletown, which for many years he conducted almost single-handed. All the children of the town attended it, and he exercised a wonderful control over them. He could hold their attention for any length of time while he spoke of the benefits of total abstinence in a style at once interesting and effective. Much of the temperance sentiment that exists in the town today may be traced to his unselfish efforts. A popular feature in his Band of Hope was the annual picnic. He had the children rowed across to Langness every year, and there regaled them with " good things" in a generous manner. Upon the return home at night, the children would be met at the quay by the parents, and in a procession they would march up to the market place, where, after singing a temperance hymn, " Flaxen" would make a speech.
His temperance efforts were by no means confined to Castletown. With his brother, Mr Quayle Stowell, he several times toured the Island on behalf of the cause, and in addition addressed hundreds of temperance meetings. During the ministry of a Wesleyan minister, the Rev F. R. Smith, in Castletown circuit, he and a body of workers and the choir of Castletown Wesleyan Chapel held temperance meetings in every chapel throughout the circuit. One at least of the meetings-at Ronague-was reached amid difficulties, far the ground was thickly coated with snow at the time; but Mr Stowell, though he was then about 80 years old, could not be restrained from making the journey.
As a temperance orator, he possessed a style entirely his own. He was extremely humorous as a rule, while when occasion. demanded, his ringing tones were charged with deep pathos. He was a regular subscriber to the funds of the United Kingdom Alliance for many years; and it is understood that in his will he has left the U.K.A., and also the Nonconformist Bands of Hope in the town very liberal bequests.
By occupation a builder, he was for many years one of the foremost erectors in the South of the Island. He had, moreover, no little taste in architecture, and he frequently built houses from designs of his own. Among others, he drafted the plans of his own house, the great feature of which is the beautiful hall and double staircase.
As a poet also he was not to be despised, and one at least of his works deserved to be more widely known. It is entitled " The Bells of St. Mary's," some of the stanzas of which are interesting as revealing the freedom of his mind from narrow sectarianism. They are as follow:-
Not an oar nor a sail for pleasure that day
Will bend on the waters of Castletown Bay.
The commandment stands good, "
My sabbaths revere,"
While the bells of St. Mary's respond through the air.
The curlew so fearful, so timid, so shy,
Comes nearer the beaeh with its whistling
By the hand of the sportsman it's sure not to fall-
The bells of St. Mary's sound safety to all.
O ye youth of our town, your sabbaths pre-serve,
For go where you will, ne'er such will you have,
If you travel abroad, the whole universe round,
When the bells of St. Mary's are far out of sound.
Throughout the while course of his life it is doubtful if he ever made q single enemy, and while on principle be was strong and firm, yet he was at heart as tender and kind as a child He never aspired to public offices; but he held a seat on the Town Commission for the first three years of its existence. He was also a member of the voluntary Poor Relief Board. He was a great believer in the simple life, and he frequently litributed his long life to his abstemious habits.
Mr Stowell was the author of a book entitled "Castletown a Hundred Years Ago," giving some very interesting reminiscences.
His funeral on Monday was large and representative. The service was conducted by the Rev S. R. Wilkin in the Wesleyan Chapel, at which Mr Stowell was such a loyal and devoted attendant.
A correspondent writes:
Some fifty years ago, Mr Flaxney Stowell co-operated most heartily in a movement initiated by the late Rev T. E. Brown, the Manx poet, for affording the youth of Castletown opportunity for securing further education. In those days, Mr Brown was a master at King William's College, and they with the help of a number of people resident in Castletown and the district, arranged for lectures of an instructive character-in a way, he anticipated the University Extension and Gilchrist Lectures. Mr Stowell was one of his most enthusiastic supporters, and the movement, which while it lasted was attended with excellent results, owed much to his energetic advocacy of it. Mr Brown and Mr Stowell had much in common, in that they were sympathetic and unselfish, they had the poetic instinct, and they had a keen sense of the humorous. Throughout they were fast friends, and when Mr Brown gave his last lecture in Castletown-it was upon Manx Idioms-he made special and affectionate reference to his old association with Flaxney-as he ever called his friend-for the benefit of their follows.
MR. FLAXNEY STOWELL: AN APPRECIATION.
By the death of Mr Flaxney Stowell, at Castletown, on the 24th April, at the patriarchal age of 96 (within a month), a unique personality, and a man deserving of public tribute, has passed away.
He was one of the pioneers of Teetotalism, or of the temperance movement, in the Isle of Man; and was well-known as an earnest and yet genial advocate thereof. Travelling up and down his native Island, attending public meetings, forming Temperance Societies and Band of Hope organisations, he lifted up his voice against the evils of intemperance at a time when it was not so popular or reputable to be a teetotaler.
The writer well remembers, when a boy of eight years of age, being taken by his father, in January, 1852, to a large publie meeting in the Grammar Schoolroom, Castletown, when a Temperance and Band of Hope Society was formed in the town, and he, amongst many others, signed the pledge. Flaxney Stowell, as he was familiarly called, along with several others, started and promoted this important movement in his native town, and through good and evil report, he has been, through a long life, faithful to his convictions and steadfast in the work. He was very proud of the cosmopolitan character of the Castletown Band of Hope as originally formed, for it embraced children belonging to Church of England; Wesleyan and Primitive Methodists, Roman Catholics, and others; and his list of subscribers did likewise.
A droll manner, combined with a quaint dry humour, and striking anecdote, Mr Stowell had a style which was frequently laughter-provoking and ever acceptable and appreciated by an adult audience; but it may be said that his popularity was greatest amongst young people and the children, amongst whom he seemed to be always happy.
In the seventies, the writer had the privilege of being associated with him in the work, as secretary of the Temperance Committee, and saw how patiently, yet merrily and lovingly, he impressed upon the members of the Band of Hope the importance of temperance and Christian conduct. Meeting afterwards in the Town Hall, which Mr Stowell had erected, during and amongst a long series of children of school-age and upwards, there were circulated scores of thousands of the "Band of Hope Review," an illustrated paper of pure, Christian, and temperance literature, when literature was but scanty and poor.
But Mr Stowell had a serious side also to his character, and might be described as an old-fashioned Methodist. Simple in his tastes, self-denying in practice, he was one of the last to give up the 7 o'clock prayer meeting on the Sunday morning in connection with his church. Identified with the Sunday-school as an active worker, he became superintendent and continued so for about 40 years; and here also he was distinguished as the favourite children's speaker, and as one who could always command their attention, and to which the writer can bear witness personally. He was emphatically the children's friend-he had none of his own -some of them, since grown up, attended his funeral, and many more, scattered up and down over distant countries, when they read of his decease, will feel that they have last an old friend.
It might be said that he showed the practicability of uniting good business capacity with the aforegoing characteristics, for he became a successful and leading tradesmen of his town, and was elected one of its early Town Commissioners.
He had an unusual experience also in possessing a younger brother, Mr Quayle Stowell, still living, aged 92, of the same mind and heart as himself-a true yoke-fellow, engaged in the same temperance and Christian toil. A short time ago there went the round of the English newspapers a paragraph stating that Mr Quayle Stowell had been about 70 years superintendent of the Primitive Methodist Sunday-school, Castletown, and giving it as a record experience.
Surely their prolonged and useful careers, both nonogenarians, are forcible illustrations of the value of their principles, for they not only preached, but lived them cut. The best appreciation is to emulate with a similar enthusiasm, and to "go and do likewise."
On Monday afternoon, 27th inst., the remains of the late Mr Flaxney Stowell were carried to their last resting place in Malew Churchyard, followed by a large and influential gathering of people, and also by a procession of children.
" Servant of God, well done!"
T. CHAMPION. Cronkbourne-road, Douglas.