Slater, John (1837-1909)

Primitive Methodist Magazine 1909

Transcription of Obituary published in the Primitive Methodist Magazine by J.B.

In the quiet eventide of Sunday, January 10th, the spirit of Mr. John Slater; of Matlock, passed into the light of the eternal Sabbath, in the seventy-second year of his earthly life.

For over fifty years he had been connected with our Matlock Church, and was so willing a worker that a great gap is created by his call to the more enduring service of heaven.

He was a front rank man, having been Sunday School superintendent for over thirty years, and trust treasurer for thirty-four years. He was also trustee for three out of the four churches in the circuit; a local preacher and class leader; and was well-known in political and temperance circles. His life-story could be summed up in the one word “faithful.”

His wife—a splendid helpmeet-—pre-deceased him a few years, and seven sons and two daughters are left with a noble example to imitate. Most of them are actively engaged in Christian service.

The funeral was very largely attended; deputations being present from each church in the circuit, together with representatives from several public bodies.

Professor A.L. Humphries, M.A., who gave a chaste address at the funeral, writes: “Among the laymen whom I have known and honoured during my ministry, Mr. John Slater held a foremost place. I count it a very great privilege to have known him and to have been counted among his friends. It is not easy for me to say how much I admired him. He was a man who put his religion into all his life, so that people were bound to respect him for his sterling integrity, whilst, as for our church, he served it with a single-hearted devotion such as I have never known surpassed.”

Rev. G. G. Martindale says: “Mr. John Slater was transparent, loyal, generous, and affectionate. He was a most devoted member, worker, and leader in the church at Matlock. Our church, and every good cause in Matlock has lost a real friend.”

An impressive memorial service was conducted on Sunday evening, January 17th, by Rev. Jas. Burton; when every mark of respect was paid by the large congregation present. ‘‘To live in hearts we leave behind is not to die.”


John was born in 1837 at Matlock, Derbyshire, to parents William, a marble mason (1861), and Hannah. He was baptised on 14 September 1937 at Matlock.

Census returns identify the following occupations for John.

  • 1851 errand boy
  • 1861 farm labourer
  • 1871 journeyman grocer
  • 1881 grocer
  • 1891 insurance agent
  • 1901 Prudential assurance agent

He married Mary Hawley (1842-1909) on 16 February 1862 at St Giles, Matlock, Derbyshire. Census returns identify nine children.

  • William James (1863-1933) – a joiner & carpenter (1911)
  • John Samuel (1865-1949) – a grocer and Baker
  • George Ernest (1868-1942) -Prudential superintendent of agent (1911)
  • Fred Hawley (1871-1951) – plumper & decorator (1911)
  • Hannah Elizabeth (1872-1943) – married Alfred Ernest Kirby, a joiner (1911), in 1897
  • Albert Herbert (1875-1953) – plumper (1911)
  • Joseph Hawley  (1877-1956) – a printing machinery tester (1911)
  • Mary Rebecca (1879-1964) – married John Henry Paulson, a cabinet maker (1911), in 1902
  • Edwin Arthur (1881-1911) – a clothing shop assistant (1911)

John died on 10 January 1909 at Matlock, Derbyshire.


Primitive Methodist Magazine 1909/329

Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers

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