Brethren Archive

Arthur Wells

Born: 13th October 1824
Died: 31st August 1900
Appears in Ridout / Wells / Wilson Smith Family Tree

Intro, Biographical Information, Notes etc:

Tom said ...
Arthur Wells is spoken of by JND in the Letterbook that is being transcribed.

He was a well-trained railway engineer(civil engineering) and also was the Postmaster for Guelph.

He married a lady called Georgina Dora Ridout, when they were both 21 - She is distantly related to Samuel Ridout, as shown by the family tree I have made.

He was J Wilson Smith's father-in-law and he hosted the Guelph Conferences in his big house and estate; see the account of the early Guelph Conference by Ralph Evans which is online at Bible Truth Publisher's website ..

Interestingly he names one of his sons Ralph Evans Wells and another Robert Frederick Wells - clearly after his friends, Evans and the Grant brothers.

JND wrote some letters to him which are in STEM (the original 3 vols) RT Grant mentions him preaching in the letter-book.

AW was deeply impressed with JND (see Ralph Evans). At that Guelph Conference AW put up some 30 people in his house and 20 more in the stable block. The conference was held in "Wells Grove" which was the name of his estate gardens.

There are photographs online of the big house that AW built (From publically accessible Canadian public archives) There is even a family photo (late 1860's) of them all on the porch of his big house.

The house was split into flats some years ago and burnt down in 2014, but is thought to be subject to a restoration plan as it is a listed building with very strong masonry.

JND speaks of having meetings on an island. That was back in the days when the River Speed which runs through Guelph divided into 3 streams at that time creating islands with bridges to join them up. But after that the streams were diverted into a single channel, so the islands disappeared.

There is an online ancestry archive which gives some interesting details of his family;

Most disturbing is the obscure fact that just after 1880, he abandoned his wife (whom he seems to have later divorced) and went off with a servant girl called Martha Glover to Pueblo, Colorado where he got involved in a big way with planning the layout of the developing town. He had a further 8 children with her.

He seems to have had about 20 children in all (some died in infancy).

The final fact is that Robert Grant came from Los Angles to officiate at his funeral in 1900, while his first wife lived on till 1906. He maintained his Christianity to the end, but what church affiliation he had in Colorado is not stated anywhere.
Friday, Sep 1, 2017 : 12:13

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