Isaac Rains Barnsley

Photo:Primitive Methodist Magazine 1899

Primitive Methodist Magazine 1899

Photo:Priscilla Barnsley, nee Watts

Priscilla Barnsley, nee Watts

Primitive Methodist Magazine 1907


By Geoff Dickinson

Early years

Isaac was born on 2 September 1840 at Aldwark, Derbyshire to parents William Barnsley and Lydia Rains. William was a farmer and PM local preacher for sixty-six years.

Isaac gave his life to God when a boy, aged ten years old. He was a local preacher for four years before entering the ministry.


Isaac’s obituary records that he had a most honourable and useful record in his circuits and in some of them was favoured with great spiritual success. The financial interests of the churches were greatly benefitted by devoted and painstaking labours. New chapels were built in the Burton, Wirksworth and Lymm circuits.

Those who heard him preach most frequently said his sermons were well prepared, and sounded the evangelical note, characterised by freshness of thought and often bore evidence of wide reading. In delivery he was always sober and sincere.

Isaac was pre-eminently a circuit minister, intently concerned for the progress and increasing influence of his church as a moral and redeeming force in modern life.


Isaac married Priscilla Watts (1840-1906) in the summer of 1868 at Southwell, Nottinghamshire. She was the daughter of Rev William Watts . Her obituary records that she was baptised by Hugh Bourne. Census returns identify three children.

  • Annie Maria (b1870) – a pupil teacher in 1901
  • Walter (1873-1958) – a PM Minister
  • Elizabeth (1876-1973) - married George Lawrence Welford, a solicitor

Isaac married Clara Charlotte Clarke (1859-1934) in the summer of 1907 at West Ham, Essex

Isaac died on 9 February 1913 at Southampton, Hampshire.


  • 1864 Melton Mowbray
  • 1866 Nottingham II
  • 1867 Loughborough
  • 1869 Sheffield I
  • 1872 Rotherham
  • 1875 Sheffield II
  • 1877 Derby I
  • 1879 Buxton
  • 1882 Wirksworth
  • 1886 Grantham
  • 1888 Burton on Trent
  • 1891 Wakefield
  • 1894 Lynn
  • 1898 Ashbourne
  • 1901 Lichfield
  • 1904 Oakham
  • 1906 Southampton (S)


Primitive Methodist Magazine 1899/803; 1907/158 (Priscilla)

PM Minutes 1913/14

W Leary , Directory of Primitive Methodist Ministers and their Circuits , 1990

Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers

This page was added by Geoff Dickinson on 09/12/2013.

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