Stephenson, John Robert (1830-1854)


A transcription of obituary published in the Primitive Methodist Magazine by William Stephenson, his brother, is attached. William writes as follows.

‘As a preacher, he possessed considerable ability. Having acquired an extensive knowledge of the English language, he invariably used great propriety of speech; and whether his object was to excite terror, or awaken remorse, or melt into tenderness, the vehicle of his conceptions was always adequate to their pathos and power. He seldom meddled with mysteries. He rarely ventured among Ezekiel’s “terrible crystal and stones of fire,” or molested the “piled up thunders” of the Apocalypse; but when he entered “Olivet,” or his eye rested on “Calvary,” he was at home, and he painted his Ecce Homo (“Behold the Man!”) like one who had “fellowship in his sufferings.” “The ransomed of the Lord returning to Zion,” “the emerald gates of bliss,” “the banks of deliverance,” “the Lamb upon the throne,” and “the spirits of just men made perfect,” he could set forth with the clearness and accuracy of a “fellow-citizen.” ‘

‘As a colleague, his superintendent speaks of him in the following terms : “His piety was deep, his sermons lucid and powerful, his acquaintance with theology vast, his disposition loving and amiable, his judgment far beyond his years, and for him to know was to do his duty.” ‘ 


John was born on 26 March 1830 at Beverley, Yorkshire, to parents William, who worked the land, and Ann. He was baptised on 28 March 1830 at Beverley.

John drowned on 4 August 1854 in Lake Erie, Canada.


  • 1852 Redruth
  • 1853 Galt & Blen – Canada
  • 1854 Walpole


Primitive Methodist Magazine 1854/705

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

Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers


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