Dudley, Charles (1840-1914)
Charles was born on 5 October 1840 at Stourbridge, Worcestershire to parents Thomas and Jemima. Thomas was a glass-maker. Thomas was one of the earliest Primitive Methodists at Stourbridge being involved when the Primitive Methodists, John Thorpe, Joseph Reynolds and Thomas Brownsword, were subject to persecution and imprisonment for preaching in the streets.
Charles was brought up in a Christian home and experienced conversion at the age of fourteen. He had little schooling and started work for his older brother at Wordsley at the age of eleven. Charles became an exhorter at the age of seventeen.
Charles worked as a tailor before entering the ministry.
Whilst on the Brierley Hill station, Charles had a remarkable spiritual success where he witnessed no fewer than 400 persons make public confession of Christ.
His obituary records that first of all and most of all, Charles was an evangelist of great power and passion. In service he was a flame and a charm. He lost himself in the vision of his theme and spent himself in service. He delivered the Gospel message with great enthusiasm and expected immediate results. He was an attractive personality: he could create and sustain confidence and devotion. He always created an atmosphere of joy and hope: he was always bright and cheerful and quietly inspired the same qualities in others.
Charles authored the following.
Tossed on the billows, or, a widow’s trials, and how she bore them , 1884
Charles married Ann Maria Robbins (1848-1922) in late 1869 at Stourbridge, Worcestershire. Census returns identify five of their six children.
- Agnes Sarah (1870-1955) – married Charles Schofield, a schoolmaster
- Luther Charles (1873-1970) – a schoolmaster
- Ernest William (b1878) – a chartered accountant; emigrated to USA in 1906
- George Herbert (1881-1960) – a schoolmaster
- Olive Jemima (1883-1965) – a music teacher (1911)
Charles died on 10 February 1914 at Sheffield, Yorkshire.
- 1865 Maldon
- 1867 Stratford
- 1869 Old Hill
- 1871 Ramsor
- 1872 Darlaston
- 1874 Brierley Hill
- 1876 Knighton
- 1878 Dudley
- 1881 Wolverhampton
- 1883 Bury
- 1886 Northwich
- 1889 Chester II
- 1892 Hoyland
- 1894 Sheffield VI
- 1898 Barnsley I
- 1901 Sheffield II
- 1905 Sheffield
Primitive Methodist Magazine 1901/83; 1914/325; 1924/213
PM Minutes 1914/12
W Leary , Directory of Primitive Methodist Ministers and their Circuits , 1990
Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers