Sunday January 20, 2019
A Fruitful Trip to Abney Park
Last Wednesday I re-visited Abney Park for the first time in five years - such occasions are always a more vivid reminder of how quickly time passes than anything else. Thankfully I had the help of a friend (cheers Nick!), and so a larger list of people to look for. Not much had changed, the same people were working in the office, and were as helpful as usual in identifying the location of the graves we were looking for. Here are a few pictures of what we managed to find .. I'll upload more over the next week to the various Person pages, and that might mean more close-ups that are easier to read too.
Firstly, and accidently, just walking past, we came across the grave of Samuel Morley and family, which included John Morley (1807-1896) who is included in Chief Men Among the Brethren;
Just along that same path, and also accidently, we next saw a monument to the wife, and a child of Thomas Willey; well known for his "Melodies and Chants", as well as his book "Notes on the Breaking of Bread" Ellen Jane was a daughter of William Hartridge, also buried here. Thomas Willey himself is buried in Bournemouth.
After these two pieces of luck, we began our search proper .. first one discovered was Captain Wellesley, another of the "Chief Men .. ";
Next up, William Robinson Hartridge, and family;
Others we looked for but found no evidence of a gravestone remaining were,
- Frederick Naylor (editor of the early periodical Words of Truth)
- Anna Jane Elwood (mother in law of JBS)
- Anna Elizabeth Price (d. 16 Aug 1919, also a hymn writer who authored 'Jesus, our Lord, Thou Morning Star', number 124 in the current hymn book)
- Henry Bennett (d 1868, a hymn writer who wrote 'We have a Home Above', number 185, and the book 'The Pilgrim Harp' published by Morrish on behalf of his wodow, containing his compositions).
- Andrew Miller, well known writer, and co-editor of Things New and Old for many years.
Some of the above, the site of the graves were covered with vegetation, or in one case small logs, so it is possible something of interest might be underneath if a chance to clear the vegetation occurs. Also Colonel Sydney Long Jacob, died 1911, another author, is buried in a square not yet mapped properly, so it might be possible to find this one on a future visit.
The last grave we successfully discovered before leaving was Josiah Condor - the writer of everyone's favourite hymn; "Thou Art the Everlasting Word"!