Methodist Chapels

[xxx] “The Established Church is by no means out of favour, but, as the many elegant and commodious Nonconformist churches erected within a few years in Douglas testify, dissent is perhaps the more popular form of religion.”
Black’s Guide to the Isle of Man. London: Adam and Charles Black, 1896.

We need little to be told that Dissent or Methodism was a driving cultural and social force in Manx life until recently. At present, I am interested in the interaction between Methodism and vernacular song culture as well as the change in the musical life of the chapel.

This has not been studied to date and the reason for this as ever is source material. There is material to hand and it lies “tucked away” in the various Anniversary Booklets put out by Methodist Chapels. I will post some extracts under to show you the material that you can dig out of them.

But of course, first we need to know just what there is to dig into and the Island’s ephemera literature (ephemera only in the sense of printed format and not value) is difficult to track down.

I will reply to this thread by starting a checklist of what I have found (and for which chapels) and then add the material on the theme of chapel and musical life.

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5 thoughts on “Methodist Chapels

  1. Agneash
    Agneash Methodist Chapel: Centenary Celebrations, 1857–1957. n.p.: n.pub., 1957.

    Croit-e-Caley
    E[lliott], Rev. J.K., J.R. C[orrin], and W.E. C[ollister]. Primitive Methodist Church. Croit-e-Caley. Castletown Circuit. Jubille Souvenir 1881–1931. n.p.: n.pub., n.d. [but 1931].

  2. Thanks to Alan Franklin of the MNHL there is a listing of the Methodist Chapels for which the Library has holdings largely of what is described as anniversary service sheets but with the hope that in amongst them will be the material that is of more value for research on various areas of Methodism.

    • A
      Abbeylands Wesleyan
      Abeylands [Onchan]

      B
      Ballabeg Wesleyan
      Ballabeg
      Ballafesson
      Ballagarey
      Ballakaneen Wesleyan
      Ballakilpheric Wesleyan
      Ballakilpheric
      Ballaleigh Primitive
      Ballamoda Wesleyan
      Ballamoda
      Ballasalla Sunday school
      Ballaugh Primitive
      Ballaugh Wesleyan
      Ballaugh Village
      Ballaugh New
      Barregarrow Wesleyan
      Barregarrow
      Braaid

      Castletown
      Castletown Wesleyan [Arbory St]
      Castletown Primitive [Malew St]
      Castletown Malew Street

      C
      Colby Wesleyan
      Colby
      Colby Main Road
      Colby Station Road
      Cooill Wesleyan
      Croit-e-Caley Primitive
      Croit-e-Caley
      Crosby

      D
      Dalby Wesleyan
      Dalby

      Douglas
      Bucks Road Primitive
      Bucks Road
      Loch Parade Primitive
      Loch Parade
      Rose Mount
      Salisbury Street Wesleyan
      Salisbury Street
      Thomas Street Wesleyan
      Trinity
      Victoria Street
      Well Road Wesleyan
      Wellington Street Primitive

      E
      Erystain Wesleyan

      F
      Foxdale East Primitive
      East Foxdale
      Lower Foxdale Wesleyan
      Lower Foxdale
      Foxdale Wesleyan

      G
      Glascoe Wesleyan
      Glen Auldyn Wesleyan
      Glenmaye Primitive
      Glen Rushen Wesleyan
      Gordon Wesleyan
      Greeba Wesleyan

      H
      Hillberry Wesleyan
      Hillberry
      Howe

      K
      Kentraugh Mill Primitive
      Kerrowgarrow Wesleyan
      Kerrowgarrow
      Kerrowglass Wesleyan
      Kerrowglass
      Kerrowkeil Wesleyan
      Kerrowkeil
      Kerrowmoor Primitive
      Kerrowmoar Primitive
      Kerrowmoar
      Kirk Michael Ebenezer Wesleyan
      Kirk Michael Ebenezer
      Kirk Michael Primitive
      Kirk Michael Park View
      Kirk Michael Wesleyan

      L
      Lambfell Wesleyan
      Lambfell
      Laxey Glen Wesleyan
      Lhergydhoo Wesleyan
      Lhergydhoo
      Little London Wesleyan

      M
      Minorca Primitive

      N
      Newtown see Santon

      O
      Onchan Wesleyan
      Onchan Main Road

      Peel
      Peel Primitive
      Peel Wesleyan

      P
      Patrick Primitive
      Peel Primitive
      Peel Wesleyan
      Poortown
      Port-e-Vullen Wesleyan
      Port St Mary Wesleyan

      Q
      Quine’s Hill

      Ramsey
      Ramsey Parliament Street
      North Ramsey Wesleyan
      Ramsey United

      R
      Ronague Wesleyan
      Ronague

      S
      Santon Wesleyan
      Santon [Newtown]
      St John’s Wesleyan
      St John’s
      Strang Primitive
      Sulby Wesleyan

      U
      Union Mills Wesleyan

  3. Agneash Methodist Chapel: Centenary Celebrations, 1857–1957. n.p.: n.pub., 1957.

    Corlett, J.R. “Our Story.” In Agneash Methodist Chapel: Centenary Celebrations, 1857–1957. n.p.: n.pub., 1957. [3]–[5].

    [5] “[…] On the musical side progress was at first slow. There was no musical instrument and reliance was placed upon two or three voluntary precentors to raise the tunes, aided by a tuning fork operated by John Kelly from Laxey Wheel. Later his neighbour, Robert Skillicorn, came to help with a cornet.
    At last a good harmonium was obtained which brought about a vast improvement in the singing. […]
    With the arrival of the harmonium a choir was formed, James Henry Kelly being its conductor for many years. With the musical parts being correctly blended the singing was something to be remembered. Indeed, at times, there was a separate male choir as well. It was a great pity that when the mines ceased to operate the musical side should suffer so much through removals.”

  4. E[lliott], Rev. J.K., J.R. C[orrin], and W.E. C[ollister]. Primitive Methodist Church. Croit-e-Caley. Castletown Circuit. Jubilee Souvenir 1881–1931. n.p.: n.pub., n.d. [but 1931].

    “Records of Revivals,” 7 & 9.
    Occurred in 1866, 1872, 1876, and 1890. Lasted nine to ten weeks.

    “Ebenezer Chapel” 13 & 15.
    “The musical arrangements were in the capable hands of Tom Costain who held a gift for ‘rising [sic] the tunes.’”

    “Choirmasters and Organists” 28
    “At first there was no musical accompaniment, except on special occasions when violins and kindred instruments were requistioned. The starting of the tunes was usually undertaken by Jane Costain and her son Richard Qualtrough, James Costain and T. Bridson.”

    [28] c. 1890, harmonium was purchased.

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