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The church in Madras : being the history of the ecclesiastical and missionary action of the East India Company in the Presidency of Madras in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries (Volume 2) online

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schools in opposition to the S.P.C.K. missionary, and supported
them at his own expense. On the other hand he acquired a
knowledge of Tamil with a view to making himself useful in his
missionary ventures. In 1819 he was sent to Vizagapatam in
the Telugu district, where his knowledge of Tamil was of very
little use to him. Here he had to minister to 500 British
soldiers in the Fort, and a few families of civilians at Waltair
' in the country four miles off.' In 1820 he was appointed
Chaplain of Black Town, Madras, and became secretary of the
C.M.S. Corresponding Committee and President of the Friend
in Need Society, in succession to Marmaduke Thompson, who
had gone to England on furlough. He founded the Madras
Auxiliary Bible Society and was its first honorary secretary.
One of his duties was to visit the military station of Poonamallee.
This he did in 1821.^ At this time his own health began to
suffer, and he lost two of his children. He left India on sick
leave in March 1822, and died at sea the following month.

The ' Life of Church ' was written by a Madras civiUan, J.
M. Strachan, and James Hough wrote the preface. Strachan
was of the ' evangelical ' school and took a pessimistic view of
human nature. He harps upon the wickedness of other people.
He says that in Church's time there were ' only a few pious
Chaplains, of a different class a large proportion.' Church
himself adopted a similar tone. He wrote from Cuddalore :
' Some time ago religion was never thought or heard of in
India ; now there are several really pious Europeans ' (p. 97).
He expressed the lowest opinion of the soldiers at Vizagapatam —
' sunk below the heathen around them.' From Poonamallee
he wrote of the * awful wickedness of the garrison.' At the same
time, like others of the same school, he spoke of his own awful

' He mentions the Asjduin for orphans of British soldiers at Poonamallee,
which cannot be traced. He probably meant the Military Asylum in the Poona-
mallee Road at Madras.


wickedness. Strachan and Hough both write of him as an
exceptionally good, righteous, and conscientious man. It is
therefore conceivable that his denunciations of himself and
his contemporaries were merely figures of speech. It is quite
certain that the Europeans of the period resented the opinions
he and Marmaduke Thompson and others held about them.

Thomas Bohinson was born in 1790, being the son of the
Eev. Thomas Robinson, Fellow of Trinity College, Cambridge,
and Vicar of St. Mary's, Leicester. He was educated at
Rugby ; matriculated at Trinity College, Cambridge, 1809,
and elected to a scholarship ; graduated B.A. 1813 (thirteenth
wrangler and second classical medallist) and elected to a
Fellowship ; M.A. 1816. He was appointed a Chaplain on
the Bombay establishment on the nomination of Charles
Simeon in 1816, and proceeded at once to India. Whilst
serving at Seroor and Poonah he studied Persian and began to
translate the Bible into that language at the latter station.
Li 1825 he attracted the notice of Bishop Heber ; on becoming
his Chaplain he was transferred to the Bengal establishment,
and he remained Heber's constant companion till his death.
He then preached his funeral sermon at St. John's, Trichinopoly,
and sent a report to the Madras Government as to what was
in the Bishop's mind at the time of his death. The Government
reverently carried out all the Bishop's wishes. In 1828 he was
nominated by Bishop James of Calcutta to the Archdeaconry of
Madras, and was transferred to the Madras establishment.
He held this appointment till the arrival of the first Bishop of
Madras in 1835, when he resigned the Company's Service and
returned to England. The office of Archdeacon seemed to be
his natural vocation, and he performed its duties as if he had
been accustomed to them all his life. He visited every station
of importance in the Archdeaconry, and brought to the notice
of Government every requirement. When he was obliged to
report negligence he did so with restraint ; when he was able to
praise he praised generously. It was intended by the promoter
of the Madras Bishopric Bill that Archdeacon Robinson should
be the first Bishop of Madras ; but other counsels prevailed, and
the Bishopric was bestowed upon the Archdeacon of Calcutta,
who was Robinson's senior in the Service by several years.

THE CHAPLAINS, 1805 TO 1835 369

Dr. Kobinson held various positions of importance and
dignity after his return to England, including that of Master of
the Temple, He died at Rochester in 1873, being one of the
Canons of that Cathedral Church. Further details of his
distinguished career are to be found in the ' Dictionary of
National Biography.' He was the author of many books and
pamphlets. He translated the Old Testament into Persian, and
these were his other notable works about India :

1819. * A Volume of Sermons preached in India.'

1821. ' Difficulties of the Clergy in India.'

1826. ' Funeral Sermon of Bishop Heber.'

1829. ' Last Days of Bishop Heber.'

1835. ' Ordination Sermon at Tanjore.'

1888. ' Lecture on Oriental Studies at Cambridge.' (He
was Reader in Arabic there.)

1845. ' Letter to the S.P.G. on the Tinnevelly Missions.'

1845. ' Rise and Progress of Missions in Tinnevelly.'

His interest in mission work was not the least interesting
characteristic of the man. When the S.P.G. took over the
work and the property of the S.P.C.K. in India, Archdeacon
Robinson formed the Madras District Committee for managing
its concerns in his archdeaconry.

Frederick S'pring was born in 1790, being the second son of
James Spring of St. Marylebone, London. Matriculated at
St. Edmund Hall, Oxford, 1808 ; graduated B.A. 1813, and M.A.
1824 while on furlough from India. He was appointed a
Chaplain in 1816. He served on the west coast from 1817 to
1829, first at Tellicherry, then at Quilon. At Tellicheny he
was instrumental in building the Chm'ch. Dming this period
he studied the Malayalim language, and in 1839 he published
at Madras his ' Outlines of the Malayalim Grammar,' a quarto
volume of acknowledged merit, which b}' permission was dedi-
cated to the Right Hon. Lord Elphinstone, Governor of Fort St.
George. He officiated at Poonamallee from 1829 to 1832, being
at the same time in spiritual charge of the Chelsea pensioners
who formed the Veteran battalion at Tripassore. The pensioners
were grateful for his ministrations, and presented him on
leaving Poonamallee with a copy of Cranmer's works. From
1833 to 1843 he officiated successively as Junior and Senior


Presidency Chaplain at St. George's, Madras. In 1843 he died.
No monmnent marks his resting-place in the St. George's
buiial-gi'ound, though he was in several respects a notable
Chaplain. He was married twice and left two sons and two

Walter Eees Morgan Williams was born in 1790, being the
son of Walter Wilhams of Devynnock in the county of Brecon.
He matriculated at Jesus College, Oxford, 1808, of which
college he was a scholar ; graduated B.A. 1812, M.A. 1815.
He was appointed a Chaplain in 1816. He served at Cochin
from 1817 till the end of the following year, when his health
gave w^ay. He took sick leave to the Cape and died at sea on
December 27, 1818. During the short time he was at Cochin
he was instrumental in establishing a school for the Em'asian
and other Christian boys ^ of the station, and raising money for
its endowment. This fund was afterwards vested in the
Archdeacon of Madras as a corporation sole. He died un-

Frederick White was born in 1783, being the son of Eobert
WTiite of Cambridge. He was educated at Baldock School ;
matriculated at Trinit}'^ College, Cambridge, 1800 ; graduated
B.A. 1805, M.A. 1808. He was the last of the six Chaplains
appointed to Madras in 1816. His appointment was made
under unusual circumstances. He entered the Royal Navy as
a Chaplain, and accompanied Admiral Sir George Burlton to
India on board H.M.S. Cornwallis. Sir George died in 1815,
and WTiite petitioned the Eight Hon. Hugh Elliot, Governor
of Fort St. George, to be appointed a Chaplain on the Madras
establishment. The Governor forwarded the petition to the
Chairman of the Company ; and the Directors,- ' out of regard
to Mr. Elliot and as a special mark of our favour,' appointed
Mr. White to succeed to the first vacancy on the Madras estab-
lishment, subject to the approbation of the Bishop of London.
This involved the necessity of Mr. White going to England and
then waiting an indefinite time. The appointment was not

Joseph IFn^/ii matriculated at St. John's College, Cambridge,
in 1815. He is described in the College entrance book as

1 The Church in Madras, i. 245. - Despatch, Aug. 28, 1816, Mil.

THE CHAPLAINS, 1805 TO 1835 371

Middlesexiensis. He graduated B.A. in 1819, and in 1821 was
appointed a Chaplain. After serving at Masulipatam for a
year he went to Trichinopoly in 1823 and remained tliere till
1830. Here he was instrumental in having the Vestry School
moved from the Fort to Puttur, and in saving the Vestry
Fund, which was originally raised for the support of the Vestry
School, from being used for mission purposes. After a year
at Poonamallee he was gazetted to Bangalore in 1832 and there
he remained till his retirement in 1837. At Bangalore he was
active in the cause of Eurasian education, as he had been at
Trichinopoly. He founded the Cantonment Girls' School, which
maintained a high character as a place of education until it
was superseded by the Bishop Cotton Girls' School in a more
open and favourable position. His effort in 1836 to get St.
Mark's Church enlarged, or rebuilt at the east end of the
Parade Ground, was not successful. He died soon after his

John Owen Parr was born in 1799, being the son of John
Parr of Bloomsbury, ' near London.' He matriculated at
Brasenose College,Oxford, 1815, and was elected to a scholarship.
He graduated B.A. 1818 ; was ordained 1821, and was appointed
a Chaplain the same year. He served at the Presidency one
year only and then returned home. He became Vicar of
Durnford in Wilts in 1824 ; proceeded M.A. in 1830 ; Vicar of
Preston in Lancashire in 1840 ; Honorary Canon of Manchester
1853 ; and died in 1877.

Cliristopher Jeaffreson matriculated at Pembroke College,
Cambridge, and graduated B.A. in 1816. He proceeded M.A.
in 1828 when on furlough. He was appointed a Chaplain in
1821. He served at Quilon seven years. After his return from
furlough he was sent to the Central Provinces, and was Chaplain
to the Nagpore garrison at Kamptee for eight years. After that
he served at Jaulnah for a year, and then finished his service
at Cannanore on the west coast. He retired in 1839; He
became Chaplain to the Edmonton Union in 1846, and retained
this appointment till his death in 1870.

Pointz Stewart was born in 1797, being the eldest son of
Pointz Stewart of Hartley Court in the county of Berks. He
was educated at Edinburgh under the Eev. J. Porteous ;

2 E 2


matriculated at Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge, 1814 ;
graduated B.A. 1819 ; and appointed a Chaplain in 1821.
During his service he assumed the additional name of Seymour
before his surname. He died at Arcot in 1834. During his
twelve years of service he was at six different stations ; this
was an unusual number in days when travelling was more
difficult and more costly than it has since become. Some men
like to be left in a station as long as possible, that they may
be allowed to see some result of their labours. Some like changes
and are always ready to see new places. The unmarried move
about more easily than the married, so that as a rule they are
called upon to fill acting appointments rendered vacant by
unlooked-for circumstances. Stewart served at St. Thomas'
Mount, Bellary, Belgaum, Quilon, Cannanore, and Arcot.

Richard William Moorsom was born in 1795, being the son
of William Moorsom of Scarborough. He was educated at
St. Peter's School, York ; matriculated at Queen's College,
Cambridge, 1817, where he resided four terms. He then
migrated to Jesus College, which he entered as a Fellow Com-
moner in December 1818 ; graduated B.A. 1821 ; appointed a
Chaplain 1822. After serving four years at Masulipatam he
was promoted to be Junior Presidency Chaplain in 1826. At
the end of another four years his health gave way and he had
to take sick leave and a sea voyage. He died at sea on the
voyage to Mauritius in May 1830. He was unmarried.

Robert Ahercromhie Denton was born in 1798 near London.
He was educated at Eton ; admitted a Scholar of King's
College, Cambridge, 1816 ; awarded the Betham scholarship in
1817 ; graduated in honours B.A. 1821, and elected Fellow of
King's. He proceeded to M.A. on retirement from the Com-
pany's Service in 1839. He was ordained in 1822 and appointed
a Chaplain in 1823. He served at Black Town, Madras, 1824 to
1828 ; Penang 1828 to 1830 ; Fort St. George 1830 to 1839.
On retirement he returned to King's College and was Bursar
from 1840 to 1844, when he accepted the college living of
Stower Provost with Todbere in the county of Dorset, and
married. He died at Stower Provost in 1857, leaving a

Denton was at Fort St. George during a critical period in

THE CHAPLAINS, 1805 TO 1835 373

the history of the St. Mary's Vestry Fund. In 1806 the
administration of the fund was taken out of the hands of the
Vestry by the decision of the High Court, which decreed with
legal accuracy that there was no such thing as a Vestry in
India. The Government took charge of the fund and asked
the Directors how they were to dispose of it. For the next
quarter of a century the Government regarded the fund as more
or less in Chancery. They doled out sufficient money monthly
to pay the establishment of the Church and the school, and
to keep the school going as it was, without allowing it either
to decrease or increase. Denton respectfully represented the
propriety of spending the whole income of the fund on the
special objects for which it had been raised, in the same way
as had been done in the previous century. The Government
were agreeable, but they seem to have been afraid of the new
High Court and the lawyers it had brought with it. Denton's
representations were referred to the Government of India, ^
and the question was referred home to the law officers of the
Company and the Crown. Meanwhile the school buildings on
the Fort were repaired out of the fund in 1831 ; - the number
of boys was kept up to fifty ; St. Mary's Church was repaired
at the expense of the fund in 1834; and the establishments of
the Church and the school were re-arranged. ^^ After some
delay Denton's contention was acceptedj't and the fund has
ever since been applied to the objects for which it was got

Denton was active in all matters connected with the educa-
tion of Europeans and Eurasians. In this he was following the
example of all former Chaplains ; all his successors similarly
walked in their footsteps. Besides being in charge of the St.
Mary's School, he was also in spiritual charge of the Military
Male Orphan Asylum at Egmore. He was keenly interested
in the appearance of the St. Mary's burial-ground, and he per-
suaded the Government to spend some money over the resting-
place of the European officers and men of former times. His

' Letter, Aug. 21, 1835, 8, Eccl. ; Despatch. March 30, 1836, 10, Eccl.
■ Despatch, Oct. 9, 1833, 18, Eccl.
■■» Despatch, March 18. 1835. 10, Eccl.
4 Despatch, July 10, 1839, 11, Eccl.


influence in Madras was always good, and he helped on all good
causes with unsparing zeal.

The office of Archdeacon became vacant in 1836. There
were four good men in the diocese at the time, all of whom
would have adorned the post — Harper, Spring, Wright, and
Denton. Harper was the senior and was appointed, and the
chance of promotion was lost to the others.

James' Boys w\as horn in 1794, being the son of John Boys
of Betshanger in the county of Kent. He matriculated at
Wadham College, Oxford, 1811 ; graduated B.A. 1815, M.A.
1818 ; appointed a Chaplain 1823. He served at Wallajahbad
in 1824 and suffered there in health like other Europeans ; from
1825 to 1829 he was Chaplain of Secunderabad. In the latter
year he was invalided home. He stopped at St. Helena on
the way, and filled a vacancy as Chaplain for two years ; he
then returned to England and retired in 1833. He was pre-
sented to the Rectory of St. Mary in the Marsh, New Romney,
by the Archbishop of Canterbury in 1836 ; and he became
Rector of Biddenden, Kent, in 1841. There he died in 1882.

John HalJcwell was born in 1795, being the son of the Rev.
John Hallewell, Vicar of Boroughbridge in the county of York.
He was educated at Thorp Arch School, under the Rev. John
Peers. He matriculated at Christ's College, Cambridge, 1813 ;
was elected to a scholarship 1815 ; graduated B.A. in honours
(twenty-seventh wrangler) 1818 ; M.A. 1821 ; elected Fellow
of Christ's 1818 ; ordained 1820 ; curate of St. Andrew's, Cam-
bridge, 1821 ; prelector and junior Dean 1821 ; appointed
Chaplain 1823. He served at St. Thomas' Mount three years,
Fort St. George one year. Black Town one year, and Cuddalore
ten years (1829 to 1839),Avhen he returned to England and
retired. In 1844 he was presented by the Lord Chancellor to
the Rectory of Chillenden in Kent. This he resigned in 1853,
and took up his residence at Stroud in Gloucestershire, where he
died in 1871.

Henry Allen was born in 1797, being the son of James Allen
of Lymington in Hampshire. He matriculated at Trinity
College, Oxford, 1815 ; graduated B.A. 1822 ; appointed a
Chaplain 1823. On arrival at Madras he was gazetted to
Cuddalore. Rosen was then in charge of the old S.P.C.K.

THE CHAPLAINS, 1805 TO 1835 375

Mission.^ Both used the mission Church for their rehgious
purposes, and Allen showed the best possible spirit towards
Rosen and his missionary work. Allen died at Cuddalore in
January 1829, much regretted by the European and the
native Christian community. A tablet was put up to his
memory in the old mission Church. He left a widow, who
married Mr. F. A. West of the Madras Civil Service in 1831.

Edward Page Lewis was born in 1802, being the younger
son of Thomas Lewis, M.D., of London, and a brother of the
Rev. Thomas Lewis who was appointed a Chaplain in 1815.
E. P. Lewis was educated at Ealing School under Dr. Nicholas ;
he matriculated at Caius College, Cambridge, 1819 ; graduated
B.A. 1823, and M.A. when on furlough from India in 1835.
He was ordained priest in London 1824, his title being a Chap-
laincy in India. This was the case with several others at this
period. He was appointed a Chaplain in 1825. He served at
Nagpore (Kamptee) five years, at Masulipatam twelve years,
at Trichinopoly one year, and retired in 1844. He married
the widow of the Rev. W. A. Keating, the Chaplain who died
in 1820. His health did not allow him to undertake work in
England. He died at Paddmgton in 1870.

Frederick James Darrah was an Irish clergyman ; he was
described in the India List as a Bachelor of Arts, and on his
memorial tablet in St. Mark's, Madras, he is denominated a
Master of Arts, but it cannot be discovered at what University
he took these degrees. He was appointed m 1826. After work-
ing at Vizagapatam and Secunderabad for seven years, he was
brought to the Presidency on the recommendation of Arch-
deacon Robinson in 1833 to be Chaplain of Black Town. It is
characteristic of the man, and a sufficient proof that he was
active in his ministry, that when he died four years later he was
Chaplain of the Military Female Orphan Asylum, Hon. Sec.
of the S.P.G., President of the Philanthropic Association,
President of the Friend in Need Society, and Chaplain and
educational manager of the Civil Male and Female Orphan
Asylums in Black Town. He was cut off suddenly in the midst
of his activities. His wife died of cholera on September 25,
1837, and he succumbed to the same disease four days later.
1 The Church in Madras, i. 295.


The parishioners erected a tablet to his memory in St. Mark's
Church. In his will he provided for his mother Ann Darrah,
his sister Elizabeth Shanklin, and his two children. One of the
executors was Sir Allen Edward Bellingham ' of Castle Belling-
ham South.'

Charles Kneller Graeme was born in India 1785, being the son
of Charles Graeme of the Bengal Civil Service. He matriculated
at Brasenose College, Oxford, 1802 ; gi-aduated B.A. 1807, M.A.
1810. He was appointed a Chaplain in 1826 at the unusual
age of fortj^-one, and it is worthy of remark that he served his
allotted time for his pension in spite of his age. His stations
were Bangalore (seven years), Quilon (three years), Vizaga-
patam (one year), and Palamcottah (six j^ears). He retired
from the service in 1846. His name is not to be found in any
Clergy List after that date. He died in 1870.

William Thomas Blenkinsop was born in 1802 at Windsor,
being the second son of the Rev. Henry Blenkinsop, minor
canon of St. George's Chapel. He was educated at Eton
College ; matriculated at Lincoln College, Oxford, 1820 ;
graduated B.A. from St. Alban's Hall 1824 ; appointed Chap-
lam 1827. He served at St. Thomas' Mount from 1827 to 1844 ;
was Junior Presidency Chaplain at St. George's Cathedral
1844-45 ; Chaplain of Ootacamund 1845-47 ; then he became
Chaplain of Cuddalore and remained there till his retirement
in 1861. The appointment to Cuddalore was probably made
at his own request. Cuddalore was a station with four out-
stations which had to be visited by the Chaplain periodically.
The Directors approved of this system of visitation in 1832,^
and sanctioned an extra allowance to each Chaplain for the
period of such visits to cover the cost of travelling and main-
tenance. The limit of this allowance was Rs.200 a month.
The allowance was a matter of importance to Blenkinsop, for
he had married twice and had nineteen children. His second
wife was Louisa, third daughter of the Rev. William Chester,
Chaplain of Vizagapatam. Two of his sons were afterwards
well-known officers in the Madras Service. On his retirement
Blenkinsop became Vicar of Little Maplestead, Essex, and
afterwards Rector of Wambrook in Somerset. When he

' Despatch, March 14, 1832, Eccl.

THE CHAPLAINS, 1805 TO 1835 377

retired from active work he settled at Bath, and died there in
1871, aged sixty-nine.

Samuel Harto'p'p Knapp was appointed Chaplain in 1827.
He arrived at the end of that year and was sent to Vellore.
In 1829 he was selected by Bishop Turner to be his Chaplain.
But he fell ill, and before the end of the year had to take sick
leave and go home. He resigned the service in 1830. He
was Eector of Letchworth, Herts, from 1831 to 1858, when he

William Drayton Carter was born in 1796, being the son of
William Grover Carter of Portsmouth. He matriculated at
Magdalen Hall, Oxford, in 1818, but took no degree. Ap-
pointed 1829 ; arrived at Madras at the close of that year ;
but he was not physically strong enough to bear the heat, so
he obtained leave at once and returned to England. His name
was kept on the establishment list for five years according to
rule, to give him the opportunity of changing his mind, and at
the end of that time it was struck off. He was Vicar of Wye,
Kent, from 1836 to 1846 ; Rector of Ridlington, Rutland,
1846 to 1858 ; Vicar of Kirby Moorside, Yorks, 1859 to 1864,
when he died.

Jackson Muspratt Williams was born at Southampton. He
matriculated at Queen's College, Cambridge, 1824 ; graduated
B.A. 1829, and was appointed Chaplain the same year. He
officiated for a short time at Poonamallee, and was then sent
to Vizagapatam. At the end of two years he fell sick, and was
sent to Madras for embarkation for the Cape ; he died on arrival
at Madras on September 3, 1832. He left a widow.

William Sawyer began his Indian career as a missionary.
He was born in 1797 in Yorkshire. Two of his brothers were
mentioned in his will ; one was George Sawyer of Hedon, co.
York, and the other was Robert Henry Sawyer of Staple Inn,
London. In the year 1818, when living at Holme near Rougham,
he offered his services to the C.M.S. for missionary work
abroad. He was accepted, trained, and ordained, and went out
to Madras with his wife in 1822. He was stationed at Peram-
bore, about five miles west of Madras, and had charge of a
mission district which included the cantonments of Poonamallee
and Tripassore. He prosecuted his mission work with great

Online LibraryFrank PennyThe church in Madras : being the history of the ecclesiastical and missionary action of the East India Company in the Presidency of Madras in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries (Volume 2) → online text (page 34 of 39)