Brethren Archive

Frances (Fanny) Jane Elwood

Born: 1830
Died: 17th July 1927
Appears in Stoney / Elwood

Intro, Biographical Information, Notes etc:

Well-known hymn writer - born in Ireland, but lived most of her years in the Clapham, Surrey area, latterly with fellow hymn writer Miss Elizabeth Mary Ceuta Thompson, a daughter of Colonel Charles Thompson (1774-1848).

She was completely deaf for the greater part of her long life. She has two hymns in the Little Flock Hymn Books - #223 (1932, #192 from 1951) and #249 (1932, #479 in 1951, then #347 from 1962) and has five poems in G. H. Stuart Price's A Selection of Poems by Christian Authors.

Tom said ...

Btw, the Ancestry user I got the above from mailintegritex, has done a number of interesting trees for Brethren figures. If anyone knows who this person is, or they ever read the website, it would be great to get your help! They may well be PBCC from the people they seem interested in.

Fanny Elwood's sister Mary married J.B. Stoney, so I'm going to add a family tree for that.

Sunday, Dec 16, 2018 : 21:59
Tom said ...
If anyone has time to extract her various hymns and poems, I will add them here.
Sunday, Dec 16, 2018 : 23:21
Rodger said ...

Interesting tidbit from EEC's Songs of Pilgrimage...: "Miss (Cenita) Thompson contributed poems to the periodical, "A Voice to the Faithful", and these, with others found after her departure, were published in 1909 as "Songs of Praise". She had long resided at Clapham with Miss E.J. Elwood, who herself has written poems, the title of her book being "Poems and Hymns"." Possibly could find FJE's poetry in its original publication in the Voice as well. I notice that the Australian National Library has a copy of her Poems and Hymns, published by Morrish. Perhaps one of our brethren does as well?

Monday, Dec 17, 2018 : 13:00
Greg said ...
Done. No edition number is given in this but it must be the third.
I also have the second edition (1885) in which FJE was anonymous but which included a preface by Edward Denny.
Monday, Dec 17, 2018 : 15:13
Rodger said ...
Thanks, Greg. Do you also have "Songs of Praise"? I see that FJE was the editor for Miss Thompson.

It would be interesting to note how many collections of poetry were published by Morrish.
Monday, Dec 17, 2018 : 20:21
Rodger said ...
Also, the trends of poetry among brethren. For example, poetry conspicuously dies out from the earliest Bible Treasury's, but was always a staple in periodicals edited by Stoney, Reynolds and Dennett, especially towards the end of the century and beginning of the new. In fact, it seems to have always thrived among brethren associated with London from the end of the century and on, so that GHSP's "classic" collection is no surprise.
Monday, Dec 17, 2018 : 20:41
Tom said ...

This is a good question Roger; I've picked up quite a few of these over the years, and seen others in Catalouges that I haven't been able to get.

Just looking through my collection, some I do have are;

  • "Poems" by Alexander Carruthers (author of the hymn 'We bless Thee, God and Father,  We joy before Thy face;', published privately 1931.
  • "A True Tale and Other Poems" by Mary Cathness, published by George Morrish.
  • "The Dawn of Life and Other Poems" by K.M. (Mrs Kate Morford) , Morrish, 1908.
  • "Hymns of Praise and Spiritual Songs" by E.R. (intro by E.L.B.) Morrish.
  • "Spikenard; Verses by Margaret Scott Stevenson", Morrish, 1931.
  • "A Name Above Every Name, and Other Musings in Verse", by E.E. Nichols, Morrish, 1954
  • "Circle of Praise" Compiled by Clement H. Bromley, Morrish.
  • "Making Melody - A Book of Tunes by C.T. Lambert", Morrish.
  • "Twilight Songs for Little Children, Adapted to Music by M.L.T." Morrish, 1902.
  • "But for a Moment, and Other Poems" by H.G. London Gospel Tract Depot, 1910.

I also have "Songs of Praise" somewhere, though can't locate it right now.


Tuesday, Dec 18, 2018 : 01:30
Rodger said ...
Fascinating! It might be worth appending a poetry section to your hymnology page.
Beyond Morrish there is also ELB's Poems and there is a collection by Charles Leflaive himself, is there not?
Tuesday, Dec 18, 2018 : 02:36
Timothy Stunt said ...

Worthy of inclusion on Tom's list would be Hannah K Burlingham's Wayside Songs: Poems and Hymns, edited by T. Willey and published by Morrish (2nd ed. 1901)   Timothy

Tuesday, Dec 18, 2018 : 03:36
Tom said ...

Yes I didn't include that as we have a scan already;

Another bigger one of interest I have is, "Hymns of Faith, Hope and Love, Collected by Katherine M. Hammond" James Carter, 1903.

Roger, there is a "PERSONAL COLLECTIONS OF HYMNS / POEMS" section, though maybe I could split that out into seperate ones for Hymns and Poems, though the distinction is often ambiguous.

I don't have Leflaive's or Bevir's .. do we know the names of these collections?

Tuesday, Dec 18, 2018 : 03:43
Rodger said ...
Ah yes, I see, Tom. Clearly I don't visit the Hymnology page very often.

Bevir's is simply called Poems, and is edited, published and prefaced by Leflaive. I'm certain you have it. But all rights are reserved by Leflaive, circa 1920s-30s (?), so doesn't that restrict putting it online?

There is also a collection of Mr. Pellatt's poems as well...
Tuesday, Dec 18, 2018 : 10:06
Theophilus said ...
There was also a volume of poetry by EHC.
Wednesday, Dec 19, 2018 : 05:23
Tom said ...

Some more that a friend has.


Monday, Dec 31, 2018 : 06:41
Nick Fleet said ...
Btw, the hymn-writer often known as "C.T." is indeed Miss Elizabeth Mary Ceuta Thompson, as stated. The name 'Ceuta' is from her place of birth and was at that time part of Morocco but is now under Spanish rule! (Ceuta is opposite Gibralta across the straits - if Spain wants Gibralta back, maybe it should give back Ceuta? - but I digress!). Miss Thompson's name is variously given as Centra or Cenita but this seems to me to be down to the mis-reading of handwritten documents.

It is also said that her father was 'Captain T H Thompson, a friend of JND' but I'm fairly certain it was actually Colonel Charles Thompson (1774-1848). T H(inde?) Thompson appears to un-related to this branch of the Thompson family but does appear to have Brethren connections - was a neighbour of the Wellesleys, for example.
Tuesday, Jan 15, 2019 : 02:17
Roger Holden said ...
Frances Jane Elwood evidently worked as an editor for George Morrish. She edited some of the earlier notes of meetings by James Taylor, senior. But on the evidence of some letters of Taylor to C. A. Coates she evidently became suspicious of Taylor on the issues of 'fulfilled responsibility' (1916-7) and the basis of assembly discipline (1918-20), in which she may have been influenced by Anna Maria Stoney. In December 1918 she wrote to Taylor 'vigorously condemning' his answer to 'Mr Higgins'. The last we hear of her is in February 1919 when Taylor remarks that he had been hoping to visit her while in England, but had been prevented because of a 'delay to the train'. The fact that her name has not been elided to 'Miss _____' in the published letters suggests that, despite this, she remained in the Taylor fellowship until her death in 1927. Can anybody confirm this please?

Roger Holden
Friday, Mar 15, 2024 : 01:08
Nick Fleet said ...
Roger, when she was buried in Streatham Cemetery (next to Miss C. Thompson, as directed in her will) the interment was conducted by D. L. Higgins (according to burial records). I have visited the cemetery but could not find any headstone for either sister.
Saturday, Mar 16, 2024 : 17:12
Roger Holden said ...
Nick, thanks for the information. That confirms that she did remain in the Taylor fellowship. Higgins himself was something of a survivor because at various times he was at odds with Taylor. However, he defended Taylor's view on the eternal son in 1929.
Saturday, Mar 16, 2024 : 20:49

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