Brentnall, Isaac (1857-1920)

Primitive Methodist Magazine 1914
Claudia Brentnall
Primitive Methodist Magazine 1906
Amy Jane Brentnall
Primitive Methodist Magazine 1914

Early years

Isaac was born on 14 February 1857 at Wirksworth, Derbyshire to parents Isaac and Ann. Isaac, senior, was a cotton tape weaver at the time of the 1861 census.

Isaac was converted on 12 November 1871 and started to preach when aged fifteen. Isaac was denied the opportunity of college training, but two years as a hired local preacher in and around Bristol prepared him for fuller ministerial service.


As a preacher, Isaac was distinctly evangelistic, and had the joy of witnessing numerous revivals. In the midst of the Welsh revival, he kept the church open day and night. He was never content to report his circuits as stationary, but always sought to create conditions out of which increases were recorded. Isaac was also an ardent social reformer and temperance leader.

Isaac served as district Temperance and Christian Endeavour Secretary.

Isaac had a repertoire of some thirty lectures on different subjects and sang the gospel as well as preaching it.


Isaac married Claudia Harry (1864-1905) in late 1882 at St Austell, Cornwall. Her brother, Samuel, was a PM Minister from 1886 to 1915. Census returns identify seven children. Claudia’s obituary identifies that a further two sons died in infancy.

  • Harry Leopold (1884-1898)
  • Claudia Agatha (1885-1957) – married William R Howes
  • Francis Isaac (1887-1929) – a grocer’s assistant (1911)
  • Albert Thomas (1890-1959) – a boot salesman (1911)
  • Daisy Gwendoline (1891-1966) – married Arthur Richard England
  • John Holden (1893-1916)
  • Ida Victoria M (1897-1981) – married William John King

Isaac married Amy Jane Bungard, nee Hamilton, (1865-1950) in early 1906 in Bermondsey, London. Records identify one child.

  • Frederick Harry (1907-1974)

Isaac died on 21 December 1920 at Midsomer Norton, Somerset.


  • 1878 St Austell
  • 1880 Aberavon
  • 1882 Midsomer Norton
  • 1885 Aberavon
  • 1888 Colnbrook & Uxbridge
  • 1889 New Wandsworth
  • 1892 Lydney
  • 1895 Dudley
  • 1898 Derby III
  • 1901 Exmouth
  • 1903 Aberdare
  • 1905 Rotherhythe
  • 1907 Kingston on Thames
  • 1909 Dawley
  • 1912 Northampton
  • 1915 Leicester III
  • 1917 Midsomer Norton


Primitive Methodist Magazine 1906/409 (Claudia); 1914/294

PM Minutes 1921/249

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

Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers

Comments about this page

  • In 1881 Isaac was visiting my ancestors at Sturston Mill. Derbyshire. He is listed as a ‘visitor’. My great grandfather, Brian Wibberley, was 14 years old. Brian went on to be ordained and sent to Australia as a PM Missionary in 1885.

    By Sally Anne O'Wheel (18/02/2022)
  • I believe the 2 sons who died were both called Samuel.
    Samuel Tehernaya Brentnall (1889-1889)
    Samuel Brentnall (1903-1903)

    By Kathy Anstiss (05/10/2021)
  • Thankyou for adding Samuel. The incident I refer to took place in Guernsey where he was imprisoned for 6 months for marrying a man and his niece. He was then subsequently pardoned; I believe by Queen Victoria. Ref:the Star newspaper, Guernsey, Sat February 9th 1895. Although it has been mentioned in the family, no one would commit to what actually happened, and I think it has become taboo to talk about!

    By Kathy Anstiss (16/06/2014)
  • Kathy,

    I have added a page about Samuel Harry based on  information in Leary and census records etc. I have not found any information about Samuel, or a picture, in the Primitive Methodist Magazine. You imply that there was an incident in Guernsey, but I have not found anything about it in my searches.

    By Geoff Dickinson (06/06/2014)
  • Thankyou for adding info on my great grandparents. I have been following Isaac around the country doing family tree and unfortunately the chapels have either been pulled down or have change of occupancy the one in St Austell is now a carpet dealer! Any further info on him would be great. Could you also add info about Samuel Harry, plus pics if you have any. I know he ended up in drumbo Canada ? Dying in America. After the incident in Guernsey did he leave the church and restart over there? Many thanks kathy

    By Kathy Anstiss (01/06/2014)

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