Brown, Samuel (1816-1855)

Transcription of obituary published in the Primitive Methodist Magazine

SAMUEL BROWN was born at Nottingham, in the year 1816. At the time of his birth his parents were not members of any Christian community, but had the reputation of being honest and virtuous people, who paid attention to the externals of religion, and endeavoured to bring up their children in the right way. By being a constant hearer of the gospel in early life, our brother became seriously and deeply impressed with the paramount importance of religion, and when not more than sixteen or seventeen years of age, he was induced to yield his heart to its purifying and elevating power. Soon after this renewing of his mind took place, his master, to whom he was apprenticed, died, and he was compelled to leave home in search of employment. He resided for a time in Birmingham, and afterwards in Leicester. When from under the guiding eye of his friends and early religious associates, he did not, however, throw off, as too many of our young people in similar circumstances do, the restraints of religion, but connected himself with the people of God, and endeavoured to keep himself unspotted from the world. At the age of twenty-four he returned to his native place, connected himself with the Society at Hockley Chapel, became a local preacher in the Nottingham second circuit, and sought in many ways to be useful to the cause of God.

In the year 1844 he complied with a call from the Bottesford circuit, to become a travelling preacher. He remained two years in that circuit, and was stationed subsequently at Loughborough, Barnsley, and Belper. When at Belper his health, which had for some time been delicate, failed, and he was compelled to retire from the ministry into easier and quieter life. He took up his residence amongst his old friends in Nottingham, and laboured as a local preacher till the death of his mother. Soon after that event he married her who is now his widow, and removed to Ilkeston, where he continued to live and to labour till his death. 

And a very solemn and impressive death was his. On the morning of September 25th, 1855, he left his home more happy and cheerful than usual, to do some repairs at a corn-mill in the neighbourhood. He had to mount a lean-to, which covered a water-wheel that was at work. The roof broke under him;, he fell upon the wheel; a strong and agonizing cry was heard, but no help could be afforded: he passed at once into eternity! Truly sudden was his fall; we hope it was as safe. For twenty years he had, we believe, honestly aimed at being right. Perhaps in many instances he had failed to realize his own idea of rectitude, and perhaps he had been inconsistent sometimes in the opinion of others. We ask no one to believe that he was perfect; but we believe that he aimed at being right – that he tried to be consistent – and that his feeling and confession ever was, “By the grace of God I am what I am.”

“No further seek his merits to disclose,
Or drag his frailties from their dread abode,
There they alike in trembling hope repose,
The bosom of his Father and his God.”


Samuel was born in 1816 at Nottingham. 

I have not been able to identify Samuel’s parents or wife in online records. Can anyone point me in the right direction?

Samuel died on 25 September 1855 at Ilkeston, Derbyshire. he was buried at St mary Ilkeston, on 27 September 1855.


  • 1845 Bottesford
  • 1846 Loughborough
  • 1847 Barnsley
  • 1849 Belper
  • 1849 retired


Primitive Methodist Magazine 1856/9

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

Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers

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