New Zealand Methodist Church OnLine History
 Go to Index


The Wesleyan Missionaries to New Zealand before 1840


New Zealand Methodists are indeed fortunate that so competent an historian as Dr. J.H.R. Owens, of the Department of History at Massey University, Palmerston North, has interested himself very deeply in the early history of the Wesleyan Mission to New Zealand.

The fruits of his extensive research into our early history were embodied in his monumental Doctoral thesis "The Wesleyan Mission to Hew Zealand, l8l9-l840," (as yet unpublished) presented in 1969. Since then, he has published a book entitled "Prophets in the Wilderness" (Auckland/Oxford University Press, 1974), a fascinating study of some of the personalities and achievements of our early missionaries up to l840.

A convenient summary of the biographical details of these early missionary families, appeared as an article in The Journal of Religious History (Australia), Vol. 7, No. 4, Dec. 1973, pp. 524-341. That article is here re-printed by kind permission of the author and the editor. To the article are added three appendices taken, again by permission, from Dr. Owens's thesis.

We believe this material will be welcomed by a wide circle of people interested in the early days of Methodism in this country.

L.R.M. GILMORE, Secretary,
Wesley Historical Society (New Zealand).
May, 1982.