Whitaker, Mary (nee Rycroft) (1833-1907)

Transcription of obituary published in the Primitive Methodist Magazine by T.D.

Our cause at Guiseley has recently suffered loss by the death of our sister, Mary Whitaker, which took place on December 16th, 1907, in the seventy-fifth year of her age. She was born at Yeadon, April 17th, 1835, and spent her early days there. During a great revival she gave herself to Christ and joined the U.M.F. Church. When about twenty she went to reside at Manningham, where she again identified herself with the people of God. Eighteen years after, she was married to Brother Mark Whitaker, and came to Guiseley, where she threw in her lot with our people, and became actively engaged in Christian work. She found pleasure in visiting the sick, and many a room has been brightened by her presence. She was most devoted to the cause of God, to her husband and to her home.

As years went by her religious experience seemed to grow brighter. When the illness, which terminated in her death, took hold of her, it only seemed to strengthen her faith in God. The Divine life began to unfold in all its perfectness and beauty. It was a pleasure to visit her, and to hear her repeated expressions of confidence in the Saviour. “He will not leave me” was the keynote of her experience.

And thus she passed hence. She was laid to rest in our own burial ground on December 19th, amid many expressions of sympathy. 

A service was held in our Church conducted by the Rev. Jackson Harding and the writer, and one of her favourite hymns was sung. She leaves behind a sorrowing husband, and four daughters, all of whom are members of the Church. Her life will be a fragrant memory to those who have known her, and her example an inspiration to all the family to live for God. 


Mary was born on 17 April 1833 at Yeadon, Yorkshire, to parents Jeremiah (Jerry), a clothier, and Sarah. She was baptised on 19 May 1833 at Guiseley.

Before her marriage, Mary was a factory hand (1861).

She married Mark Robinson Whitaker (1839-1914), a widower, in late 1870 in the Wharfedale Registration District, Yorkshire. Mark was a carrier. Census returns identify two children.

  • Sarah Ann (1872-1960) – a milliner (1901)
  • Zillah (1876-1966) – a milliner (1911)

Mary died on 16 December 1907 at Guiseley, Yorkshire.


Primitive Methodist Magazine 1908/243

Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers

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