Story of James Gilmour and the Mongol Mission

Mary Isabella Bryson [?-1913], The Story of James Gilmour and the Mongol MissionMary Bryson’s account of the life and work of James Gilmour [1843-1891] among the Mongols. My thanks to Redcliffe College for providing me with a copy to scan. This book is in the Public Domain.

Mary Isabella Bryson [?-1913], The Story of James Gilmour and the Mongol Mission. London: The Sunday School Union, [1928]. Hbk. pp.144. [Click to download complete book in PDF]


  1. A Forgotten Land
  2. The Call to Service
  3. The Massacre of Tientsin
  4. Through the Desert of Gobi
  5. The Sheep Without a Shepherd
  6. Plans For Work
  7. A Missionary’s Romance
  8. Enduring Hardness
  9. The Daily Task
  10. The First-Fruits of a Coming Harvest
  11. The Discipline of Sorrow
  12. “In Weariness and Painfulness, In Watchings Often”
  13. The Last Sight of Home
  14. Glimpses of Inner Life
  15. The Patient Sower of the Heavenly Seed
  16. The Dawn of Eternity


The accompanying pages are the result of an attempt to sketch the life of James Gilmour from the standpoint of his fellow-workers in the North China mission field.

The book is not an abridgment of any former work, but consists principally of the writer’s personal reminiscences, and extracts from letters written by Mr. Gilmour to herself and her husband. For other letters she is indebted to Dr. Roberts, for a time Gilmour’s colleague in the Mongolian work. Some of the recollections of the Rev. G. Owen given at a memorial service held ill Peking are also included.

From the pages of the Chinese Recorder, to which journal Gilmour was for many years a constant contributor, some of the incidents of the missionary work on the Mongol plain have been taken, and some of the letters he sent to the Chronicle of the London Missionary Society have also been included.

Gilmour was a man most loved and honoured by those who knew him best. To fellow-workers his life was ever an inspiration, and the Mongols among whom he lived and worked so long, received the news of his death with a sense of personal loss. [Continue reading]

James Gilmour – Among the Mongols

James Gilmour [1843-1891], Among the MongolsThis is the travelogue of James Gilmour [1873-1891] written in the course of his missionary work in Mongolia. My thanks to Redcliffe College who provided me with an original copy of the book to scan. This book is now in the public domain.

James Gilmour [1843-1891], Among the Mongols. London: Religious Tract Society, n.d. Hbk. pp.288. [Click to download complete book in PDF]


  1. First Acquaintance With Mongolia
  2. Picking Up Mongolian
  3. The Baikal in Winter
  4. Traces of the Old Buriat Mission
  5. Learning to Ride
  6. A Night in a Mongol’s Tent
  7. Buying Experience
  8. How to Travel in Mongolia
  9. Dining With a Mongol
  10. Appeal to a Mongol Mandarin
  11. Lama Miao
  12. Urga
  13. Wu T’ai Shan
  14. Kalgan
  15. Doctoring the Mongols
  16. The Gospel in Mongolia
  17. Mongols’ Difficulties About Christianity
  18. The First of the White Month
  19. Norbo’s Marriage
  20. Friendly Mongols
  21. A Mongol Court of Justice
  22. A Mongol Prison
  23. Whisky in Mongolia
  24. Mongol Toilet
  25. The Mongols in Peking


This book aims at representing to the western reader whatever is most noteworthy and interesting in the home life, manners and customs, occupations and surroundings, modes of thought, superstitions and religious beliefs and practices of the Mongol tribes who inhabit the eastern portion of the plateau of Central Asia lying between Siberia on the north and China on the south.

It is not a missionary’s report nor a traveller’s diary, nor a student’s compilation, but has for its source things seen, heard, and experienced by me while travelling with natives through the desert, Sharing with them the hospitality of the wayside tent, taking my turn in the night-watch against thieves, resting in the comparative comfort of the portable cloth travelling tent, or dwelling as a lodger in their more permanent abodes of trellis-work and felt while engaged first of all in learning the language and acquainting myself with the country, and afterwards in the prosecution of my missionary duties.

Starting from Peking as head-quarters, I first saw the plain in August, 1870, and during most of the intervening years have spent the summer months itinerating among the tribes to the west, north, and east of Kalgan; and have had the opportunity during the winter months in Peking of meeting Mongols who come to that great centre on Government duty from nearly all the tribes scattered over the vast extent of desert territory which acknowledges the Chinese rule. [Continue reading]

Story of the London Missionary Society by C.S. Horne

C. Silvester Horne, The Story of the L.M.S. with an Appendix Bringing the Story up to the Year 1904, new ednI cannot think of the London Missionary Society without their work in the Pacific Ocean coming to mind. The transformation of the people of the Pacific Islands by the power of the Gospel was truly dramatic and accounts found their way into popular culture through such books as The Coral Island. Much of the information in R.M. Ballantyne’s book was drawn from accounts of missionary’s working there, as Ballantyne had never travelled in the Pacific.

The L.M.S.’s innovative use of missionary ships is noteworthy and their legacy can be found today in such ministries as Mercy Ships and Operation Mobilisation. The work of the L.M.S. however was truly global, reaching Africa, Asia and South America. This book provides a comprehensive account of its work up to 1904. It contains a great many pictures which I wanted to include in greyscale to preserve their quality, so the file size of this book is much higher than usual (22MB).

C. Silvester Horne, The Story of the L.M.S. with an Appendix Bringing the Story up to the Year 1904, new edn. London: London Missionary Society, 1908. Hbk. pp.460. [Click to download in PDF]


  1. Laying the Foundation
  2. The South Seas
  3. South Africa
  4. India
  5. China
  6. British Guiana
  7. Madagascar
  8. Expansion in Polynesia
  9. Southern and Centra; Africa
  10. Progress in India
  11. Further Work in China
  12. Developments in Madagascar
  13. North China and Mongolia
  14. New Guinea
  15. Summary


The London Missionary Society Steamship "John Williams"


James Gilmour of Mongolia


James Gilmour of Mongolia by Richard LovettRichard Lovett’s biography of James Gilmour [1843-1891], missionary to Mongolia is now available on-line as a pdf. Note that there are several errors in the pagination of this book, giving the (incorrect) impression that there are pages missing. The text is complete as originally published.

Richard Lovett [1851-1904], James Gilmour of Mongolia. London: Religious Tract Society, n.d. pp.312. Click to download.


I. Early Years and Education
II. Beginning Work
III. Mongolian Apprenticeship
IV. The First Campaign in Mongolia
V. Marriage
VI. ‘In Journeyings Often, In Perils of Rivers’
VII. The Visit to England In I882
VIII. Sunshine and Shadow
IX. A Change of Field
X. Personal Characteristics as Illustrated by Letters to Relatives and Friends
XI. Closing Labours
XII. The Last Days


This book in its more expensive forms has been before the public for several years. It has been very widely read, and it has received extraordinary attention from many sections of the press. The author has received from all parts of the world most striking testimonies as to the way in which this record of James Gilmour’s heroic self-sacrifice for the Lord Jesus and on behalf of his beloved Mongols ·for the Master’s sake has touched the hearts of Christian workers. It has deepened their faith, strengthened their zeal, nerved them for whole-hearted consecration to the same Master, and cheered many a solitary and lonely heart.

Many requests have been received for an edition at a price which will place the book within the reach of Sunday School teachers, of those Christian workers who have but little to spend upon books, and of the elder scholars in our schools. The Committee of the Religious Tract Society have gladly met this request at the earliest possible moment. In this new form their hope and prayer is that James Gilmour, being dead, may yet speak to many hearts, arousing them to diligent, and faithful, and self-denying service for Jesus Christ

James Gilmour died in 1891, and some years later the London Missionary Society handed over the Mission to the Irish Presbyterian Church. In February 1907, sixteen years after Gilmour’s death, a remarkable testimony to the consistent life, effective preaching, and influence of this beloved missionary reached England in the shape of a communication from Liu Yi, one of his early converts, in which he speaks of the great debt which he feels he owes to the faithful ministry of James Gilmour. ‘Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth: Yea, saith the Spirit, that they may rest from their labours; and their works do follow them.’