Bibles to the Explorers

Pelsall Hall Colliery Disaster 1872

Towards the end of August this year, I received a message from Mr Andrew Weller of Pelsall History Centre to say 'I've some good news, you must pop into the centre and see our latest acquisition, you will be so pleased and amazed'.

When I visited, he handed me a pair of white gloves then went on to reveal his find.

By some 'miracle' a copy of a Bible presented to one of the men who attempted to rescue the victims of Pelsall Hall Colliery disaster back in 1872 had somehow managed to find its way onto the internet and be seen by Mr Andrew Weller.

Last week I visited Pelsall History Centre again, this time to photograph the Bible which had been presented to John Finney, in the hope that this may prompt anyone else who may have one in their possession to share a photograph of it with us.

So far, the history centre has photographs relating to three other Bibles, one of which belonged to Clara Starkey, the young wife of John Starkey, another which belonged to Benjamin Walker and another which belonged to John Rounds. 

I am aware that there are others out there and would urge their owners to please get in touch.

Gladys Croxall of Pelsall History Centre with the Bible presented to John Finney

The Inscription in the Bible 

The Presentation of Bibles to the Explorers

The Bibles were presented in recognition of the heroic exertions of the explorers of Pelsall Hall pit following the disaster. The presentation took place at the National School Room.  The industrialist, Mr E Barnett, one of the Churchwardens, presided and the room was crowded.

After singing the hymn, 'God moves in a Mysterious Way', and a prayer by the Rev G Littlecot, the Rev Turner explained that while at Gloucester on 2nd December, some Christian friends there provided the means of purchasing 22 Bibles for presentation to those who specially distinguished themselves in connection with the exploration of the workings of the Pelsall Hall Colliery.  He had relied on Mr Ness and Mr Starkey for the selection of the 22.

Bibles were presented to Abraham Lindop, John Williams, Joseph W Baker, Thomas Starkey, Thomas Lees, George Goring, Thomas Davies, William Brookes, Enoch Jaudrill, John Rounds, Thomas Bramhall, George Ball, Thomas Farmer, Herbert Bluck, John Finney, Benjamin Walker, George Boot, John Hates, William Lloyd, James Adams, Henry Davis and Thomas Blower.

If you own or have a copy of a Bible belonging to any of the rescuers listed above could you please contact myself or Mr Andrew Weller of Pelsall History Centre, as we would be delighted to hear from you.