In respect of his report on developments in Lincoln, Kendall writes; ‘A Reformatory had been built at Burton, a suburb of the city, but the class for whom it was designed showed little disposition to enter its precincts. At this point a public-spirited Wesleyan—Mr. Warrener—made a proposal to the effect that, under the direction of our Church some suitable person should be engaged to preach in the open-air and visit and work right amongst those whom we euphemistically call “unfortunates,” promising if this were done to bear most of the expense. Whereupon, Jabez Langford, an unpolished agricultural labourer hailing from the borders of Donnington and Sleaford Circuits, was engaged and carried on his mission with most gratifying results. Some remarkable conversions took place. The stigma of ill-fame which had attached to certain houses ceased, and the Reformatory now went on with its Christianizing work, Rasen Lane was in one of these cleansed districts, and here a new Connexional interest was begun which ere long had its centre in Rasen Lane Chapel, and in 1870 became the head of Lincoln Second Circuit.‘
Jabez was born on 16 May 1822 at Gosberton, Lincolnshire, to parents Robert Snelling Langford, who worked the land, and Ann South. He was baptised on 2 April 1826 at Swineshead, Lincolnshire.
Census returns identify the following occupations for Jabez.
- 1841 no occupation
- 1851 PM minister
- 1861 PM minister in Australia
- 1871 unknown
- 1881 United Methodist Free Church minister at Loughborough
- 1891 minister of the Gospel at Cheltenham
- 1901 United Methodist Free Church clergyman at Boston
He married Mary Ann Harvey (1818-1891) in the summer of 1854 at Nottingham, Nottinghamshire.
He married Elizabeth Sansom, nee Swift (1835-1918) in the summer of 1892 at Nottingham, Nottinghamshire.
Jabez died on 18 September 1901 at East Heckington, Boston, Lincolnshire.
- 1850 Lincoln
- 1851 Oxton
- 1853 Ilkeston
- 1854 Sydney- Australia
- 1857 Greendale & Cam
- 1860 Sydney
- 1863 Wellington NZ, but refused to go; ceased
H B Kendall, Origin and History of the PM Church, vol 1, p.468
W Leary, Directory of Primitive Methodist Ministers and their Circuits, 1990
Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers