A.R. MacDuff’s Memories of Missionary Life in North-Western India

A.R. MacDuff, The Utmost Bound of the Everlasting Hills or Memories of Christ's Frontier Force in North-Western IndiaThe Rev. A.R. MacDuff served as domestic chaplain to the Henry James Matthew Bishop of Lahore [15 January 1837 – 2 December 1898]. In this book he shares some of his experiences serving in the North West of India during the late 19th Century. Many thanks to Redcliffe College for providing me with a copy of the book to scan. This title is in the public domain.

A.R. MacDuff, The Utmost Bound of the Everlasting Hills or Memories of Christ’s Frontier Force in North-Western India. London: James Nisbet & Co., Ltd., 1902. Hbk. pp.279. [Click to download complete book in PDF]


  • Acknowledgement
  • Introduction
  • Bivouacking With a Bishop in the Bolan Pass
  • George Shirt, Roadmaker to the Great King
  • The Parson Who Laid His Cricket on God’s Altar
  • The Philanthropic Octopus of Kashmir
  • Moti, The Snow Leopard, and How he Became a London Lion
  • Three Earthly Stories with One Heavenly Meaning


I was driving through the streets of a certain lakeside and collegiate town in the western portion of New York State and, as all strangers do, was admiring the, rows of umbrageous elms and maples with which its main thoroughfares are lined. Suddenly my companion – who by-the-bye occupied the seat of Jehu-pulled up to the sidewalk, and hailing a passing pedestrian, accosted him thus: “Howdy do? I’ve got your brother’s next-door neighbour with me, and I want to introduce him.” Then the “Man in the Street” made obeisance and confessed to fraternal relationship with the right reverend, the bishop of a vigorous and deeply interesting diocese in China. [Continue Reading]

Pennell of the Indian Frontier

Norman James Davidson [1860-1936], Pennell of the India FrontierThe story of Theodore L. Pennell [1867-1912] and his work as a medical missionary on the Afghan frontier retold for children. My thanks to Redcliffe College for providing me with a copy of the book to scan. This title is in the public domain.

Norman James Davidson [1860-1936], Pennell of the India Frontier. The Fine Story of Dr. T.L. Pennell’s Life on the Afghan Frontier Told for Boys & Girls. London: Seeley, Service & Co. Ltd., 1927. Hbk. pp.60. [Click to download complete book in PDF]

The family of the Pennells is of ancient West-country origin, and traces its descent from ancestors who were already living at Penhall, in Cornwall, before the Conquest. Subsequently the family moved to Lupton in Devonshire, where they resided for some centuries.

About 1890, John Penhale and Richard Penhale are recorded as being Priors of Plympton Priory, and in 1415, a certain Richard Pennell, who was Canon of Crediton and Exeter, and Vicar of Paignton, became Archdeacon of Cornwall. He was also President of the Consistorial Council.

Among the girls, chief interest is attached to Rosamond, who at the age of six weeks was adopted by her eldest sister, then the wife of the Right Hon. John Wilson Croker. It was only by accident that she eventually learned that her supposed mother was really her sister. She was celebrated for her beauty, and her portrait at the age of seventeen by Sir Thomas Lawrence is a renowned and familiar picture. When a child at Kensington Palace, she was sent for to play with Queen Victoria. The ” Croker Papers ” are full of references to “Nony,” as she was called. [Continue reading]

Yarns on Heroes of India

J. Claverdon Wood, Yarns on Heroes of India, 5th edn.Yarns on India is a collection of inspiration talks intended for 12-16 year old boys attending Boys’ Brigade meetings. It includes material on William, Carey Alexander Duff, Theordore Pennell and number of other missionaries. My thanks to Redcliffe College for making a copy o this book available for scanning and to the Church Mission Society for their kind permission to place it on-line.

J. Claverdon Wood, Yarns on Heroes of India, 5th edn. London: Church Missionary Society, 1922. Pbk. pp.95. [Click to download complete book in PDF]


  • Foreword
  • Map of India
  1. Given to the Flames – William Carey
  2. Cast Up by the Sea – Alexander Duff
  3. A Massacre That Made a Man Think – Shekh Salih
  4. Cursed by a Brahman – Subrahmaniam
  5. A Mountain Tiger in His Den – Theodore Pennell
  6. A Fight With Death – Emilie Posnett
  7. Making Men Out of Jellyfish – Tyndale-Biscoe
  8. The Wolf of Attock – Dilawur Khan
  9. A Soldier of Nepal – “Nepali”


“YARNS ON HEROES OF INDIA” is the third of a series of text-books prepared for those who work among boys aged twelve to sixteen. It is thus specially suitable for Boys’ Brigade Officers and Scoutmasters. It is written in the belief that stories of missionary adventure appeal to the instincts of hero worship and space hunger, which develop in a boy at this age, and will not only create missionary interest, but will also have a powerful influence in the development of Christian character. Such stories represent Christianity in action, and often show the meaning of Bible truths even better than direct lessons on the Bible itself.

The Yarns themselves are historically true. The realistic detail and local colour give accurate setting without doing violence to the essential facts. [Continue reading]

Battling and Building Among the Bhils

Bhils or Bheel are primarily an Adivasi people of North West India. Bhils are also settled in the Tharparkar District of Sindh, Pakistan. They speak the Bhil languages, a subgroup of the Western Zone of the Indo-Aryan languages. According to Census, 2001, Bhils were the largest tribal group in India followed by Gond tribe. [Wikipedia]

A.I. Birkett [1863-1916], Battling and Building Among the BhilsThis little book tells the story of the Church Missionary Society mission to the Bhils. My thanks to Redcliffe College for providing me with a copy of this book to scan. This title is now in the public domain.

A.I. Birkett [1863-1916], Battling and Building Among the Bhils. London: Church Missionary Society, 1914. Hbk. pp.95. [Click to download complete book in PDF]


  1. Bhil Characteristics and Customs
  2. Pioneering
  3. The Dawn of Light
  4. Advance
  5. Times of Blessing
  6. Kerwera and Education
  7. Biladia
  8. Kotra
  9. Medical Work
  10. Church Organisation
  11. Women’s Work in Camp and Station
  • Appendices


This little history has been written by a lady who asks that it “may be published without her name being given, as the information it contains is culled from many sources, and many others have given helpful criticisms and contributions.” On behalf of those who have helped her I would express our gratitude for the labour which has shaped the mass of materials into the present interesting history. I have myself as far as possible compared every statement with the original sources and believe it is absolutely trustworthy.

It is sent out now for the information of many who have asked for a book on the Bhil Mission, with the prayer that God will so use it that all who read it may be helped to more earnest and persevering prayer that the little Bhil Church may be sanctified and built up in the Lord and’ become a channel of life and blessing to its own land. [Continue Reading]

Progress of Missions in the Hundred Years After Carey

Delavan L. Leonard [1834-1917], A Hundred Years of Missions or The Story of Progress Since Carey's BeginningAlthough Delavan Leonard’s history of missions covers early church and medieval missions, his primary focus is in “The Great Century” following William Carey. He provides an overview of progress of the Great Commission by Continent as well as a chapter of work still to be done. My thanks to Redcliffe College for providing me with a copy of this book to scan. This title is in the public domain.

Delavan L. Leonard [1834-1917], A Hundred Years of Missions or The Story of Progress Since Carey’s Beginning. New York: Funk & Wagnalls Co., 1895. Hbk. pp.430.  [Click to download complete book in PDF]


  • Preface
  • Introduction
  1. The Christian Idea of Missions
  2. Missions in the Early Centuries
  3. Conversion of Northern and Western Europe
  4. The Non-Missionary Centuries
  5. Reformation ad Discovery of America
  6. Roman Catholic Missions
  7. Preparation For Foreign Missions
  8. Protestant Missions Before Carey
  9. The Carey Epoch
  10. The Great Missionary Revival
  11. Genesis of Missions in America
  12. The Phenomenon of Missionary Expansion
  13. Missions in India
  14. Missions in Africa; Madagascar
  15. The Islands of the Sea
  16. Turkish Empire: Persia
  17. Chinese Empire’ Korea
  18. Missions in Japan
  19. Missions in Spanish America
  20. Missions Among the American Indians
  21. The Land Which Remains to be Possessed


It is sometimes a question how far an introduction helps the book it introduces. If the author is well known he needs no such formal entrance into the literary world; if he is as yet unfamiliar to a wide circle of readers, his book itself is his best recommendation.

Dickens used to say that it was an easy thing to ” come out into society, but a difficult thing to prevent going in again.” And so a book or an author that proves unworthy of the introduction to the public, cannot long float, notwithstanding the outside supports intended to give it buoyancy. [Continue reading]

Fanny Jane Butler – Pioneer Medical Missionary to India

E.M. Tonge, Fanny Jane Butler, Pioneer Medical MissionaryDr Fanny Jane Butler was, according to Wikipedia,

…among the first female doctors to travel to India and the first fully trained doctor from England to do so. Prior to her work in Kashmir and other parts of India, Butler was a part of the first class of the London School of Medicine for Women, becoming a member of the forefront of female doctors. Butler spent seven years in India until her death in 1889 and opened medical dispensaries in Srinagar and Bhagalpur, where no medical facilities had previously existed. Butler also initiated the building of the first hospital in Srinagar in 1888 called the John Bishop Memorial Hospital and provided necessary medical care for Indian women, for whom little care had been available.

Thanks to the kind permission of the Church Mission Society I am able to make available one of the standard biographies of this remarkable lady – kindly provided by Redcliffe College. This book is copyright Church Mission Society.

E.M. Tonge, Fanny Jane Butler, Pioneer Medical Missionary. London: Church of England Zenana Missionary Society, 1930. Pbk. pp.54. [Click to download complete book in PDF]


  • Foreword (Contributed)
  • Prologue
  1. By the Thames
  2. “Not Disobedient to the Heavenly Vision”
  3. Student Days
  4. Buying Experience
  5. By the Ganges
  6. Off the Beaten Track
  7. A Lover of Children
  8. A Stenuous Furlough
  9. By the Jhelum
  10. Overwhelming Opportunities
  11. The Last Journey Down the River
  • Epilogue (Contributed)


It is a real honour and pleasure to contribute a brief Foreword to this most interesting sketch by E. M. Tonge of the Life and Work of the late Dr. Fanny Butler.

The whole story reads as might the life of some mediaeval saint, one of the men and women who had so dedicated themselves, their powers, and their lives to Christ’s service that they could say: “it is not I who live, but Christ Who liveth in me.”

It is perhaps an advantage that the sketch presented for the help and encouragement of a later generation of women doctors should be so restrained and so shortened. These are busy days, and it is probable that the little, unassuming” life” of a devoted woman who was at once both saint and heroine should have been cast into a form that will make but little demand on the time, but ought to make great demands on the development of her successors. [Continue reading]


William Carey Pioneer Missionary to India’s Millions

John Brown Myers [1844/45-1915], William Carey. The Shoemaker Who Became "The Father and Founder of Modern Missions"John Brown Myers [1844/45-1915] provides us with a brief biography of William Carey – “The Founder of Modern Missions”. The book includes chapters on Carey’s role as a translator, a philanthropist and a naturalist. My thanks to Redcliffe College for providing me with a copy to digitise. This book is in the public domain.

John Brown Myers [1844/45-1915], William Carey. The Shoemaker Who Became “The Father and Founder of Modern Missions”. Kilmarnock: John Ritchie, [1905]. Hbk. pp.151. [Click to download complete book in PDF]



  1. His Early Years
  2. His Life at Moulton and Leicester
  3. He Offers Himself as a Missionary, and Starts for India
  4. First Experiences
  5. Removal to Serampore
  6. The Serampore Mode of Life
  7. Three Important Events
  8. Various Circumstances
  9. Carey as a Translator
  10. Carey as a Philanthropist
  11. Carey as a Naturalist
  12. Carey and Serampore College
  13. Conclusion

Chapter 1: The Early Years

If Thomas Fuller, the author of the “Worthies of England,” himself a Northamptonshire man, had died a century after instead of exactly a century before William Carey was born, he might have written a work restricted to the worthies of his own county, and to those two hundred years, as voluminous and interesting as his well-known folio. From Dryden, whose birthplace, like his own, was the village of Aldwinkle, down to John Clare, who may be regarded as the English Robert Burns, how many celebrities, and that not alone of poet fame, would have received biographical notice! The dwellers in the midland shire may well be proud of the eminent men who have been born upon its soil. [Continue reading]

Things Seen in Northern India by T.L. Pennell

Theodore Leighton Pennell [1867-1912], Things Seen in Northern India“Things Seen in…” seems to have been a series of guidebooks aimed at European visitors to foreign parts in the early 20th Century – roughly the equivalent of today’s Lonely Planet Guides. Who better to write the entry for Northern Indian than the veteran medical missionary to the region Theodore Leighton Pennell [1867-1912]. It would provides excellent background information for anyone studying India in that period. My thanks to Redcliffe College for providing me with a copy to digitise. This book is in the public domain.

It is worth comparing Pennell’s experiences with those of Edward Petter, a Brethren Missionary-Salesman who travelled extensively in India during the 1880s. You can read his letters from India in 1887-1888, 1888-1889 and 1889-1890.

Theodore Leighton Pennell [1867-1912], Things Seen in Northern India. London: Seeley, Service & Co., 1913. Hbk. pp.253. [Click to download complete book in PDF]


  1. First Impressions
  2. The People of the Country
  3. The Country and its Climate
  4. Modes of Travel
  5. Rajputana and the Native States of the North
  6. Dehli and its Empire
  7. The Religious Romance of the North
  8. Where Faiths are Born
  9. Rural Life
  10. The Mountaineers of the Borderlands

Chapter 1: First Impressions

Every morning since leaving Aden the traveller has looked eastward over an unbroken expanse of sea and sky, but, on the fifth morning, he must be up betimes to receive the first salutations of the East.

The harbour of Bombay ranks with those of Naples, Sydney, and Rio de Janeiro, and it is alive with the craft of all nations, while its wharves are piled high with the merchandise the East and the West.

First you descry the revolving gleam of the lighthouse off Colaba Point, and then a long, low shoreline on your port bow. As you draw nearer you see the crescent-shaped bay culminating in Malabar Hill over to the left, where the fashionable residences of the rich merchants and officials nestle among beautiful hanging gardens, and then you dimly descry the fine public buildings lining the bay itself. Cocoanut palms are gleaming and waving in the light, and whispering to you the welcome of the sunny East Over on your starboard bow you see the lovely palm-covered islands that stud the harbour, on one of which are the wonderful caves of Elephanta. [Continue reading]

Evangelistic Incidents Among Indian Women by Winifred Booth

Winifred Booth [1874-1942], Pictures from a Missionary's Album. Or, Evangelistic Incidents Among India's WomenWinifred Booth [1874-1942] established a mission and was active in Zenana work, serving alongside her husband Ernest A. Booth [1873-1939] in India. In this book Mrs Booth recounts some of her experiences. My thanks to Redcliffe College for providing a copy of this book to scan. This title is in the Public Domain.

Winifred Booth [1874-1942], Pictures from a Missionary’s Album. Or, Evangelistic Incidents Among India’s Women. London & Edinburgh: Marshall Brothers Ltd., [1922]. Hbk. pp.76. [Click to download complete book in PDF]


  • Introduction
  1. Ganesa With the Fiery Eyes
  2. “Where the Lights is as Darkness”
  3. “A Serpent by the Way”
  4. Widowhood
  5. Possessed
  6. “Ears, But They Hear Not”
  7. The Wisdom of This World
  8. Pilgrimage
  9. “Married to the Gods”
  10. Sorrow Upon Sorrow
  11. Three Coconuts
  12. An Unfinished Picture
  13. “A Little Child Shall Lead Them”
  14. The Entrance of His Word
  15. Hidden Fires
  16. Light at Eventide


These pictures were gathered and stored in a missionary’s heart in a land of sunlight and shadows. While visiting the Tamil people with the message of God’s Grace, in and around the city of Madras, one walked unexpectedly into scenes of tragedy, or stepped unawares on holy ground. Glimpses of twilight, and flashes of starshine, were unwittingly disclosed; and this little book is an endeavour to reproduce faithfully things as we have seen them.

The pictures make no claim to beauty, for the writer is fully aware of their artistic lack; but they are every one of them true. They are reproduced to depict a few of the joys and disappointments of missionary service in India, also as an appeal for more labourers into His harvest field.

If, through God’s blessing, they accomplish this twofold purpose, they have not been published in vain. [Continue reading]

Reginald Heber – Bishop of Calcutta

Arthur Montefiore [1859-1927], Reginald Heber. Bishop of Calcutta. Scholar and Evangelist.Reginald Heber [1783-1826] served in Norway, Sweden and Russia before becoming the second bishop of Calcutta in 1823. My thanks to Redcliffe College for providing me with a copy to digitise. This book is in the Public Domain.

Arthur Montefiore [1859-1927], Reginald Heber. Bishop of Calcutta. Scholar and Evangelist. New York: Fleming H. Revell Co., 1894[?]. Hbk. pp.160. [Click to download complete book in PDF]


  1. Early Years
  2. Scandinavia and Russia in 1805
  3. Among the Cossacks
  4. The Country Parson
  5. Literary Life
  6. The Bishopric of Calcutta
  7. The Last Year


As far as I am aware, no Life of Bishop Heber has appeared since that which his widow issued almost immediately after his death in 1826. This work was largely made up of his journal, his correspondence, various literary fragments, and newspaper reports of numerous meetings held in India and England to mark the universal regret felt at his sudden and almost tragic end, and to set on foot various statues and other memorials of his services to his country and his Church. The work was necessarily rendered so expensive by its bulk that no cheap and new edition of it could be expected, and consequently it has not lain in the power of the many who admired his career, or loved him for his gift of sacred song, to become acquainted with the main incidents of his life or the channels along which his thoughts and hopes had travelled.

It has therefore been thought that a sketch of his career would be welcome to not a few, and it has fallen to my lot to write an outline of his life which should indicate its chief features, and describe, if it does not fill in, the arc on which his energies were projected. [Continue reading]