Ellis, Lowther Ellerby (1839-1916)

Primitive Methodist Magazine 1897

Early years

Lowther was born on 10 December 1839 at Leeds, Yorkshire. His father James was a shoemaker.

The family moved to Pickering when Lowther was young. He was converted aged 16 under a sermon preached by Rev Richard Tanfield. He soon became a Sunday School Teacher, missionary collector and then a local preacher.

Lowther worked as a tailor’s assistant before becoming a minister.


The qualities of his ministry were solid rather than showy. He was essentially a circuit minister; plodding, conscientious, meeting difficulties with a cheerful spirit that was certain of victory, giving the wealth of his brain and the emotions of his heart to his own people.

Early in his ministry, Lowther published a small volume of poetry.


Lowther married Emma Glover Wilson (1842-1879) in the summer of 1867 at Sheffield, Yorkshire. Census returns identify four children.

  • Alice Wilson (1868) – a nurse; married Ernest Warburton, a PM Minister; emigrated to New Zealand
  • William Lowther (1870-1943) – a tailor and clothier dealer (1911)
  • Charlotte Ann (b1871) – married Arthur Varney, a schoolteacher; emigrated to New Zealand
  • John Edmund (b1873) – a clerk (1911)

Lowther married Emma Key (1849-1938). Census returns identify one child.

  • Erle Rawson (1881-1971) – a clock and watchmaker; later an insurance agent (1911)

Lowther died on 21 October 1916 at Alfreton, Derbyshire.


  • 1862 Burnley
  • 1864 Barnsley
  • 1867 Shipley
  • 1869 Otley
  • 1871 Halifax
  • 1873 Pickering
  • 1874 Rossendale
  • 1876 Pateley Bridge
  • 1879 Batley
  • 1882 Heckmondwike
  • 1884 Leeds VIII
  • 1885 Barnsley
  • 1888 Belper
  • 1892 Pocklington
  • 1894 Howden
  • 1898 Winster
  • 1903 Hoyland (Sup)


Primitive Methodist Magazine 1897/883

PM Minutes 1917/253

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

Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers


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