Peake, Edward (1829-1904)
Transcription of Obituary in the Primitive Methodist Magazine
On Sunday May 15th, 1904, Edward Peake, one of the veteran local preachers of the denomination, passed to the sphere of richer life and fuller service at the age of seventy-five. For half-a-century he had served faithfully and well in the ranks of the lay ministry; having laboured in turn in Dawley, Wrockwardine Wood, Welshpool, Oswestry, Shrewsbury, Wrexham and Worcester circults.
His gifts as a student and preacher of the inspired word marked him out in early life as one to enter the regular ministry, but a widowed mother and a family of younger brothers and sisters being dependent upon him he was compelled to keep to his trade for their support, and so he entered the ranks of that army of noble and brave men who have served the Connexion in voluntary service as local preachers; men to whom Methodism owes much, and upon whose sturdy endeavours, both in town and country, it depended very largely in the earlier years of its history.
During the whole of his long term of service he was a thoughtful and prayerful student of the Scriptures. Such painstaking investigation of God’s Word, combined with wide reading, resulted in valuable and effective pulpit work; and although the term, “acceptable local preacher,” may not carry with it any academic value or distinction, yet to the minds of many it means much. It could be said of him that he won “many to righteousness.” He never spared himself in his labours, giving his whole heart and soul to the work of his Lord and Master. Often after the arduous toil of the week he has walked many miles on the Sabbath to distant hamlets and villages to tell men of the Saviour he loved. Many a Sabbath he has started on a six or seven miles walk when physically unfit for the bodily and mental strain the day’s work involved, not only in discharge of his own appointments, but often cheerfully taking the place of a sick brother, of whose inability perhaps he was only informed on the Saturday night, and when in the enjoyment of the prospect of a Sabbath at home.
In circuit life and work he was a faithful and devoted comrade of the ministers. His home was their home whenever they chose to make it such, and many of our ministers who are still living have been inspired and cheered by his hospitality and friendship. He was the personal friend and guide to many young men who afterwards entered the ministry, and who received from him their first help along the roadway of mental effort and public duty.
He was a kind husband and father. His eventide was spent with his eldest son, a Baptist minister in Stalybridge, and though the days of active service were past, he took a keen interest in the local Primitive Methodist cause, and the affairs of the Connexion at large. His end was peace and joy in the Holy Ghost. Four Primitive Methodist brethren carried him to his last resting-place. Two sons, to whom he has bequeathed the heritage of a godly example, mourn his loss.
Edward was baptised on 15 February 1829 at Whitchurch, Shropshire. His parents were John, a labourer, and Martha. John died before the time of the 1841 census. In 1841 Martha was supporting the family as a washer.
Census returns identify the following occupations for Edward.
- 1841 labourer
- 1851 porter (for grocer)
- 1861 cooper
- 1871 hoop maker
- 1881 hoop maker
- 1891 wood hoop maker
- 1901 journeyman hoop maker
Edward married Susan Powell (abt1831-1867) on 5 September 1859 at St Chads, Shrewsbury. Census returns identify one child.
- Edward (b1866) – a Baptist minister
Edward married Mary Vickers (1833-1882) in late 1868 at Shrewsbury, Shropshire.
Edward married Mary Pugh (1843-1894) in the spring of 1883 at Shrewsbury. Census returns identify one child.
- Alfred (1884-1947) – a printer’s apprentice (1901); a gas meter inspector (1911)
Edward was interred at Stalybridge, Cheshire on 18 May 1904.
Primitive Methodist Magazine 1905/748
Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers