Langham, James Peck (1850-1928)

Primitive Methodist Magazine 1906
Primitive Methodist Magazine 1910

Early years

James was born on 9 June 1850 at King’s Lynn, Norfolk to parents James Langham and Ann Peck Hemm. James, senior, was a PM Minister.

James was converted at Baldock when only nine years old. He spent nearly three years as a pupil teacher in the Luton Wesleyan day School, obtaining much scholastic help from the master, Mr J. Manning. When about seventeen, James began to speak in public. He spent a quarter each on note, as prayer leader, exhorter, on trail and full plan before being recommended for the itineracy.


James obituary records that he was one of the greatest preachers of the PM church. He preached authoritatively, originally, experimentally, and evangelically. He was disciplined in his preparation and used Saturday evenings to steep himself in his message and in God.

James was appointed Secretary of Conference in 1897. He delivered the Hartley Lecture in 1915, entitled ‘The Supreme Quest’. He was also Treasurer of the Friendly Society.

After superannuation James assisted his son Samuel until Samuel’s death in 1923.


James authored the following.

‘The faithful minster:’ a funeral sermon for the Rev. Jesse Spooner, Primitive Methodist minister, together with a sketch of his life and a portrait in permanent photography , 1878

The Tunstall book: a souvenir of one hundred years of grace

The supreme quest or the nature and practice of mystical religion, 1915


James married Betsy (Bessie) Lawrence (1850-1910) on 1 October 1873 at Luton, Bedfordshire. Census returns identify six children.

  • Winifred Lawrence (1874-1945) – a music teacher (1911)
  • Frederick James (1876-1944) – a draughtsman
  • Alice Bertha (1878-1961) – assistant school mistress (1911)
  • Samuel Arthur (1880-1923) – a PM Minister
  • Ernest Charles (1885-1944) – a draper’s assistant (1911)
  • Frank Simmonds (b1891) -an electrical engineer apprentice (1911)

James died on 21 June 1928 at Eltham, Kent.


  • 1869 Peterborough
  • 1872 Baldock
  • 1874 London II
  • 1875 Dunstable
  • 1877 Reading
  • 1881 Northampton II
  • 1883 Plumstead
  • 1886 Manchester II
  • 1890 Oldham II
  • 1895 Grimsby I
  • 1899 Liverpool III
  • 1901 Paisley
  • 1905 W Hartlepool
  • 1908 Tunstall
  • 1912 Church Gresley
  • 1916 Lincoln I
  • 1919 Otley (Sup)


Primitive Methodist Magazine 1906/843; 1910/321 (Bessie); 1928/580

PM Minutes 1929/273

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

Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers


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