[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.