Allen, Henry James (1816-1888)

Transcription of Obituary published in the Minutes of Conference by E. Parsons

Henry James Allen was born at Creselley, Pembrokeshire, Wales, on November 5, 1816, and died at Eastbourne, September 24, 1888. He was converted to God early in life, and soon entered the Primitive Methodist ministry, travelling with much acceptance on the following stations: Andover circuit and Romsey Branch, Aylesbury and Buckingham, Wallingford and Chinnor, Winchester, Yeovil and Sherborne, Wickham Brook, Haltwhistle, Brough, Wolsingham, South Shields, Eynesbury, St. Neots, Hammersmith, and East Grinstead – part of the Red Hill Mission. Here his health failed, and he was compelled to seek superannuation in 1871, after twenty-seven years hard and successful toil. In many circuits scores were brought to God through his labours. On some he was severely persecuted, as his journals give abundant proof. He had a very wiry constitution, and it was needed, for the long journeys he travelled required hard physical labour. At Eynesbury he lost his wife, leaving him with six young children, who to this day remember with deep gratitude the kindness received from friends on the station. After leaving East Grinstead our brother settled down at Brighton, still preaching and doing what he could. He suffered intensely during the last two years of his life from dyspepsia, and it was evident he was near his end. Neither skilled physicians in London, nor change of air and scene at Eastbourne were of any avail, for a few days after his arrival at the latter place he peacefully fell asleep in Jesus. But a few moments before passing away he exultingly cried, ‘When my heart and my flesh faileth, God is the strength of my heart and my portion for ever.’ He was surrounded in his last moments by his sons and daughters, and his sons-in-law. His body was removed to his home at Brighton. The funeral was conducted by the Rev. W. Dinnick, superintendent of Brighton First, assisted by the Revs. C. Harrison, W.E. Crombie, W.J. Smith, J.D. Dinnick, and A.J. Butler. The Good Templars also held a service over their departed brother’s grave, led by Major Williams (4th Dragoon Guards). There were thousands of persons present, most of whom knew the deceased. We ought to mention that our brother was author of several works, viz., ‘A Guide to the Scriptures,’ ‘ Bible Reader’s Friend,’ &c., &e., and he left a legacy of £10 to the Superannuated Preachers, Widows, and Orphans’ Fund. May we all meet him in heaven is the prayer of the writer.

Family

Henry was born on 5 November 1816 at Cresselly, Pembrokeshire.

He married Sarah Taylor Sone (1835-1968) in the spring of 1853 at Winchester, Hampshire. Census returns identify six children.

  • Henry James (b1854) – a coal agent (1911)
  • Alice Eliza (1856-1937) – married Albert Knight, a carpenter & Joiner (1911), in 1882
  • William John (1858-1908) a canteen steward (1901)
  • Sarah Jane (1860-1956) – married Ebenezer William Parsons, a railway clerk (1911), in 1885
  • Joshua Joseph (abt1863-1939) – a printer (1881); a night watchman (1911)
  • Albert Edward (b abt1865) an office caretaker (1911)

Henry died on 24 September 1888 at Eastbourne, Sussex.

Circuits

  • 1844 Andover
  • 1845 Buckingham
  • 1847 Aylesbury
  • 1848 Wallingford
  • 1849 Chinor
  • 1850 Wallingford
  • 1851 Bishop Waltham
  • 1853 Winchester
  • 1854 Basingstoke
  • 1855 Sherborne
  • 1856 Saffron Walden
  • 1857 Wickham Brook
  • 1858 Haltwhistle
  • 1860 Brough
  • 1861 Wolsingham
  • 1863 South Shields
  • 1864 Hammersmith
  • 1866 Eynesbury
  • 1869 Redhill
  • 1870 East Grinstead
  • 1871 Brighton (Sup)

References

PM Minutes 1889/19

W Leary, Directory of Primitive Methodist Ministers and their Circuits, 1990

Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers

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