Tristram, James (1842-1928)

Primitive Methodist Magazine 1903
Primitive Methodist Magazine 1929

Early years

James was born on 29 September 1842 at Ludlow, Shropshire to parents James Tristram and Jane Russell. James senior was a Deed Poll member of Conference and worked as a mason.

James was converted at the age of twelve in the prayer meeting after the Ludlow District Meeting Lovefeast. He was on the plan as an exhorter at the age of fifteen. James received a call to ministry at the age of eighteen, but felt unequal to the great work and refused. He records that he sinned and suffered like Jonah; then cried unto God; was again called; and obeyed.


For forty-nine years without a break, James served Priestfield, in the Bilston circuit, for school anniversary services. Only illness prevented a fiftieth. He also once baptised twenty-six children in one service at Idle Chapel, Yorkshire.

In the Devon and Cornwall District, James served as Secretary of the Equalisation Fund and of the District Committee.

James followed his father and became a Deed Poll Member of Conference in 1923.

His obituary records that his long ministry was characterised by hard work, much money raising, chapel building, long journeys, and methodical home visiting; but chiefly by great preaching, full of Gospel truth. He was always evangelistic. Conversion was his distinctive passion and purpose in every sermon, and he often succeeded.


James married Alethea Annie Fletcher (1843-1904) in the summer of 1866 at Madeley, Shropshire. Census returns identify six children.

  • George Frederick (1867-1941) – a plumber and painter
  • Rebecca Annie (1869-1934)
  • Isaac James Arthur (1871-1956) – a tailor shopkeeper
  • John William Fletcher (1873-1952) – an assurance superintendent (1911)
  • Jane Ellen (b1875) – married Samuel Hill, a Methodist Minister; emigrated to USA in 1912
  • Marion Gertrude (1879-1968) – married Herbert Pidduck Ellis, a PM Minister

James died on 14 August 1928 at Edgmond, nr Newport, Shropshire.


  • 1862 Ludlow
  • 1863 Dawley
  • 1864 Ramsor
  • 1867 Tunstall
  • 1869 Oswestry
  • 1871 W Bromwich
  • 1872 Bromsgrove
  • 1876 Worcester
  • 1879 Dawley
  • 1882 Shipley
  • 1885 Otley
  • 1888 Tipton
  • 1892 Wrockwardinewood
  • 1895 Chatham
  • 1898 Penzance
  • 1902 Ebbw Vale
  • 1906 Newport, Salop
  • 1910 Newport (S)


Primitive Methodist Magazine 1903/254; 1929/121

PM Minutes 1929/289

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

Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers

No Comments

Start the ball rolling by posting a comment on this page!

Add a comment about this page

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *