Jersey, Francis Nathan(iel) (1797-1860)


Petty records that in September, 1821, Francis was sent to assist William Clowes in the Darlington Mission, and with his zealous aid its borders were enlarged and several new places opened.

In May 1822 he was sent to Kendal. On 26 May, Francis preached at Kendal for the first time; in the afternoon in a barn, and in the evening in the open air having a great stone for a pulpit. Three or four persons afterwards gained liberty at a prayer meeting. he preached on several successive Sundays, witnessing the conversion of many and making additions to the society. He went on to the neighbouring town of Sedburgh and also preached at Cockbeck and in Garsdale with success.

In March 1823 Francis was sent to establish a mission at Ulverstone, a barren district where he endured many hardships and much persecution, especially at Dalton. There on 14 May, he was served with a warrant for conducting riotous and tumultuous worship at the Market Cross. After a night spent with the constable he was brought before two magistrates and sentenced to four months in Lancaster Castle for preaching in the open air. He was later liberated on bail.

In April 1832, Francis sailed from Liverpool to Dublin, apparently intending to commence missionary operation in that city, but, on arrival, after discussion with some friends he judged it inexpedient to make the attempt in Dublin at that time on account of the highly excited state of the Roman Catholic population. he therefore departed for the north of Ireland and started a mission at Newry. The mission there prospered and at the following conference eighty-six members were reported.

Petty records that when in Nottingham, although Francis had been a very useful missionary, he was not at all well qualified to superintend a large circuit in difficult circumstances. His infirmities of temper unhappily irritated erring brethren, and provoked them to run to greater evils than they might otherwise have done. The resulting difficulties effectively ended Francis’ days of usefulness in the connexion. He later became a Baptist minister and emigrated to America.


Francis was born on 7 January 1797 in London, to parents Francis Jersey and Clementina Mahalam. He was baptised on 19 February at St Botolph Without, Aldgate.

He married Ruth Rishton (1806-1871) on 5 June 1823 at Ulverston, Lancashire. Records identify ten children.

  • Henry Rishton (b abt1824) – a labourer (1861)
  • William (1826-1895) – a carpenter and joiner (1851); a farmer (1891)
  • Clementine (1828-1893) – married Prentice Lyman Jenkins, a farmer (1891), in 1849
  • Mary Catherine Ann (1830-1866) – married Charles Nicholas Bedard, a farmer, in 1855
  • Elizabeth (1833-1901) – married Anson Meigs Borden, a farmer
  • Maria Louisa (1836-1874) – married Abel Calkins White, a farmer, in 1856
  • Matilda Sophia (1839-1872) – married Ira A Hadlock
  • Francis Nathaniel Greenwood (1841-1880) – a labourer (1861); a farmer (1871)
  • Ruth Lavina (1845-1881) – married George W. Hadlock, a farmer
  • Hannah Daphne (1847-1867)

Francis died on 13 March 1860 at Mansonville, Quebec, Canada.


  • 1822 Hull
  • 1824 Hexham (18 mths)
  • 1825 Sunderland (6 mths)
  • 1826 Oldham
  • 1827 Oldham & manchester
  • 1828 Manchester
  • 1829 Keighley
  • 1831 Preston Brook
  • 1834 Nottingham
  • 1836 Sheffield
  • 1837 Grimsby
  • 1839 Malton
  • 1840 Hull
  • became a Baptist and went to America


Primitive Methodist Magazine 1822/159; 1823/168; 1823/259; 1823/283; 1824/32; 1833/58; 1835/26

J Petty, The History of the Primitive Methodist Connexion, 1880, p152, p183, p189, p303, p377 

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

Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers


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