Oliver, Jabez (1834-1893)
Jabez was born in November 1834 at Donington Wood, Shropshire to parents Thomas and Eliza. Thomas was a miner. Eliza was a Primitive Methodist.
Jabez was converted aged 14 and was on the plan in 1852 in the Wrockwardine Wood circuit. He supplied for the 3rd minister in the circuit for a while and was judged to have done well. He was recommended for the ministry.
In 1851, Jabez is working as a horse driver.
His first appointment was to Tredegar. Jabez spent 24 out of his 37 years in active ministry on the ground covered by that original circuit.
His obituary records that Jabez had a pleasing appearance, a good voice, and a genial and winning manner. As a preacher he was solid, practical, and instructive: his aim was not to impress his hearers with his own importance and skill, but to save and edify, and many were converted under his ministry. He was conscientious, painstaking, and methodical in all business matters, taking an intelligent and deep interest in the general welfare of his stations.
He shrank from official position outside his stations, preferring to use his time and talents in developing their resources.
In the last five years, Jabez wrote; ‘I have travelled 9946 miles and visited 7628 families.’
Jabez died suddenly shortly after taking up his appointment at Glastonbury.
Jabez married Margaret Candlin (1834-1888) in 1863 in the Wellington Registration District, Shropshire. Census returns identify three children.
- Henry Artha (1872-1929) – an accountant
- Ruth (1875-1920) – married Robert Blundell, a bricklayer
- Jabez (b1876)
Jabez died on 24 July 1893 at Glastonbury, Somerset.
- 1857 Tredegar
- 1858 Bath
- 1860 Hereford
- 1861 St Day
- 1863 St Ives
- 1865 Bristol
- 1867 Kingswood
- 1868 Aberdare
- 1871 Penzance
- 1874 Brynmawr
- 1878 Tredegar
- 1884 Aberdare
- 1888 Pontypridd
- 1893 Glastonbury
Primitive Methodist Magazine 1886 (portrait); 1890/180 (Margaret)
PM Minutes 1894/24
The Primitive Methodist 1893/507
W Leary , Directory of Primitive Methodist Ministers and their Circuits , 1990
Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers