Arnfield, Robert (1832-1880)

Transcription of Obituary published in the Minutes of Conference by Thomas J Penrose

ROBERT ARNFIELD was born at Mellor, Derbyshire, April 18, 1833. When he reached his sixteenth year he consecrated himself to the service of God, finding peace through believing on Christ. He soon became a local preacher, and in that capacity was hired before his twentieth year to preach in the Haslingden Circuit. At the Conference of 1854 he was accepted as an itinerant preacher and appointed to the Preston Circuit. Afterwards he laboured in Manchester Third, Preston Brook, Stockport, Rochdale, Oldham, Liverpool, Manchester Fourth, Douglas, Haslingden First, Stalybridge, and Liverpool First Circuits. He was superannuated by the Conference of 1876, having been smitten down by paralysis. He resided for a short time at Oldham, then went back to Liverpool, ultimately, however, settling at Ashton-under-Lyne, in the Stalybridge Circuit, where he died September 9, 1880. His sun has gone down while it was yet noon. He has left many friends and a large family to mourn his departure. His mortal remains now sleep near those of his wife’s in the beautiful cemetery of Dukinfield, awaiting the summons of the resurrection morn.


Robert was born on 18 April 1832 at Mellor, Derbyshire, to parents John, a cordwainer, and Betty. He was baptised on 10 June 1832 at Mellor, Derbyshire.

Robert worked as a cordwainer before entering the ministry.

He married Margaret John son (abt1841-1874) in the spring of 1861 in the Preston Registration District. Census returns and birth records identify eight children.

  • John (b1862) – a shopman (1881-
  • Elizabeth Jane (1863-1887) – a trimmer (1881)
  • James (abt1865-1888)
  • Margaret Johnson (1866-1945) – a hosiery knitter (1891); married Joseph James Agnew, a school teacher, in 1901
  • Ann Helen (b1868) – married in 1897 but unable to find in 1901 census.
  • Robert (1871-1926) – a winding master (1911)
  • William (b1872) – farmer’s assistant (1891); possibly emigrated in 1895
  • Emily Caroline (1874-1950) – a draper’s shop assistant (1911); married Richard S Morgan in 1917

Robert died on 9 September 1880 at Ashton under Lyne, Lancashire.


  • 1852 Preston
  • 1853 Manchester III
  • 1854 Warrington
  • 1855 Stockport
  • 1857 Rochdale
  • 1860 Oldham
  • 1861 Liverpool
  • 1864 Manchester IV
  • 1866 Douglas
  • 1869 Haslingden
  • 1870 Stalybridge
  • 1874 Liverpool I
  • 1876 Oldham (Sup)


PM Minutes 1881/7

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

Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers


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