Tongue, Joseph (1833-1904)

Primitive Methodist Magazine 1882

Early years

Joseph was born in 1833 at Fulbeck, Lincolnshire to parents John Tongue and Elizabeth White. John was a farmer and Joseph worked on the farm before entering the ministry.

Joseph went to East Stockwith Primitive Methodist Sunday School. He was converted in a cottage service at Blyton Carr. This triggered a desire to study further.

Many times when going to the plough, he would take his book with him, fasten it on the plough, and master its contents as he went along.

Joseph soon went on the plan and became a ‘most acceptable’ local preacher. He went to the Hull circuit at a hired local preacher before going to Brigg as a probationer.


Whilst at Cambridge, Joseph worked strenuously, alongside his circuit responsibilities to secure a B.A. degree.

After superannuating, Joseph moved to Brixton as Principal of the Brixton College for boys. He moved back to Alkborough and then, around Easter 1903, he moved to Scunthorpe to establish a high class school for boys.

James Shaws writes; ‘In motive, gentlemanly bearing, and real Christian life, he was a true man of God. The theme of his ministry was “Jesus Christ and Him crucified”, and this was also the subject of many delightful conversations.’


Joseph married Sarah Ann Carr (1837-1918) in the summer of 1857 at Hull, Yorkshire. Census returns identify three children.

  • Edwin (1860-1949) – a Congregational minister
  • Ann (1862-1934)
  • John (1865-1939) – an Anglican clergyman

Joseph died on 23 December 1904 at Scunthorpe, Lincolnshire.


  • 1853 Brigg
  • 1855 Tadcaster
  • 1857 Driffield
  • 1859 Louth
  • 1861 Hull ll
  • 1865 Hull l
  • 1867 North Cave
  • 1870 Doncaster ll
  • 1873 Cambridge
  • 1877 Yarmouth
  • 1880 Preston ll
  • 1883 Derby lll
  • 1885 Leicester ll
  • 1887 Grays &c
  • 1888 Surrey Chapel
  • 1898 Winterton (S)


Primitive Methodist Magazine 1882 (portrait); 1906/487

PM Minutes 1905/38

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

Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers


Transcription of Obituary published in the Primitive Methodist Magazine 1906. Added October 2018.

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