Categories: Missions

James Chalmers of New Guinea by William Robson

This is a biography of the famous missionary to the Cook Islands and Papua New Guinea (as they are now called), James Chalmers.

My thanks to Book Aid for making a copy of this public domain title available for scanning.

William Robson, James Chalmers of New Guinea. London:Pickering & Inglis, [1933]. Hbk. pp.191. [Click here to visit the download page]


  • Preface
  1. The South Seas
  2. Life and Work in Rarotonga
  3. The New Guinea Mission]
  4. Exploring for Stations
  5. Peace, Mercy, and Justice
  6. A Voyage in a Lakotoi
  7. The Work Consolidated
  8. The Fly River
  9. A Martyr’s Crown


A life more varied than that of James Chalmers cannot be found in the annals of Christian service. Many of its highest acts of heroism are unrecorded. He was one of the few men who have gone to foreign shores that answer to the popular conception of an ideal missionary. His journeys among the islands were those of a daring pioneer, his life among the savages that of an intrepid adventurer. But he was also a noble servant of God, a humble man of prayer and faith, a fearless saint in the face of danger, a wise counsellor in the midst of trouble, a contented man in the monotony of the humdrum.

The reference to his work in Rarotonga is necessarily brief. Numerous reforms were introduced into the Mission there. He was not the man to rest con – tent with a round of duties which might be helpful only to those who voluntarily came to church, or lived near the Mission premises, but regarded every soul upon the island as put by God under his care, and having. equal claim for spiritual help. Thus he interpreted his Lord’s command, “Go ye … and preach the Gospel to every creature.”

Those ten years in Rarotonga were a fitting prelude to the more difficult work performed in New Guinea. The perils attendant upon much of it we can but imperfectly realise.

His labours ended by his gaining the martyr’s crown, but the result of his life’s work was the marmarvellous transformation which was wrought in the character and lives of the savage people among whom he had lived.

The life of a man such as James Chalmers can never fail to be a source of interest, inspiration, and noble resolve to every one. May he “being dead, yet speak” to those who would “serve the Lord Christ.”

William Robson

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