Evans, William (1828-1899)
William was born on 24 July 1828 at Muckleton, nr Shawbury, Shropshire. William’s mother died when he was three; his grandparents took charge of him. William’s father was among the first members of the Buttlers Bank Society in the Press Green circuit.
William was converted aged 15 when attending a week-night prayer meeting. Prayer was an essential focus of his life thereafter and quickly led him to supply for class leaders and local preachers. He was called into ministry by his own circuit before he had been raised to full plan.
William’s obituary records that he built 22 new chapels; improved, altered or enlarged a further 21 chapels; built 12 new schoolrooms; built 2 ministers houses. To these projects he raised a total of £16,200. He was involved in missioning 28 new places. Overall there was a net increase of over 1,100 members on his stations.
William was a progressive preacher, always faithful to the Word of Truth, and preaching plain truth for practical results. He was never stagnant or dull; and the influential circuits that he ministered in his later years testified to both freshness and fruitfulness.
William married Letitia Brace (1838-1918) on 5 July 1859 at Brilley, Herefordshire. Census returns identify nine children.
- Rose Ellen (1860-1866)
- Lucretia Mary (1862-1920) – married William Henry Dams, an insurance clerk
- Thomas William Henry (b1864)
- Alice Letitia (1866-1932) – married William Robinson, a hosiery manager (1911)
- John Brace (1869-1942) – a PM Minister
- Rose Ellen (1871-1918) – married Robert Earnest Timms, a telegraphist (1911)
- Frances Beatrice (1873-1955) – a hospital secretary (1911)
- Ethel Jane (1881-1959) – married Robert Benjamin Dack, secretary to Temperance Council
- Philip Augustus (1883-1948) – a PM Minister until 1918; later an Anglican clergyman
William died on 26 May 1899 at Small Heath, Birmingham.
- 1853 Prees Green
- 1854 Lichfield
- 1855 Bishops Castle
- 1857 Leominster & Weobly
- 1859 W Bromwich
- 1861 Brierley Hill
- 1864 Newcastle under Lyme
- 1865 Stafford
- 1867 Whitchurch
- 1868 Macclesfield
- 1870 Sandbach
- 1873 Hanley
- 1876 Tunstall
- 1879 Macclesfield
- 1881 Lichfield
- 1886 Ludlow
- 1888 Darlaston
- 1892 Tipton
- 1895 Crewe
- 1897 Birmingham (S)
Primitive Methodist Magazine 1880 (portrait); 1899/865
PM Minutes 1899/7
PM World 1899/576
W Leary , Directory of Primitive Methodist Ministers and their Circuits , 1990
Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers