LONDON TABERNACLE MINUTES, 1743-7
(Trevecka MS. 2946)
A conference book including a general account of the affairs and
oeconomy about the Tabernacle before and after the separation by Brother
Cennick, etc.—an account of the preachers, labourers, trustees and in
connexion with Mr Whitefield from December 1743 to December 1747, etc.,
to be continued to December 1749. (fn. 1)
2. [p.3] [Monday 5 December 1743]
That Brother Cennick for the single brethren.
That Brother Church and Sister Badily agreeing do not marry at
present, but he leaves of trade and lives with Brother Symes, Mr Whitefield
proposing to pay for his board. Agreed to by the brethren and sisters that
Brother Cennick carry the news to her.
That Sister Wood live at the Tabernacle house.
That the visitors of each of the quoirs of the bands have a meeting once
a week to speak of the state of the bands they meet with and to confer on
matters relating thereto. And the superintendents of each quoir have a
meeting once a week together with the ministers to confer about and settle
any thing that is of general nature to the whole bands, and such of a private
nature as would not well be settled in the private meeting of the visitors.
That once a month there be a general conference of all those who labour
in the inward society meet to confer on all affairs of the whole society and
settle all matters relating thereto as the holy spirit shall direct for its wellfare
[p.4] That no stated time be fixt to meet the whole [brethren] together,
but that things be said to them from time to time as they meet with the society
on Wednesday night, and if there be need of a private meeting of them to
appoint it on the most convenient time.
That Jefferies and Low inspect the sick and poor of the widow bands.
Agreed to buy sundry things of Brother Peat for the minister's use at
the Tabernacle House, and any other things that are wanted.
That a school be continued under due regulation and with proper
masters and mistresses.
That the work shop be put down.
3. Monday January the 6 [sic 1744]
That if any one of the conference staid away 2 persons should be
appointed to enquire the cause, and satisfaction to be given to the conference
Sister Mason, Brothers H. Harris, Adams, Cudworth, Elsom, Ross
taken into the conference and joined themselves being by them approved.
4. [p.5] 1744 Monday March the 12th
Called over the names absent—Brothers Abbot, Barker, Cennick,
Church, Ross, Smith, Morgan, Sisters.
Brother Hammond being askt of his freedom to join with the brethren
and their plan we go upon, but having scruples after much debate he was put
aside, but [received] to preach and be with us.
Sister Weston [illegible] and Brothers Abbot, Singer (fn. 2) and Brother
Herbert Jenkins, preacher, being askt were approved of and received into the
fellowship of the conference.
Brother Smith to speak to [illegible] Brother Thomson about his
Spoke of Sister Crosland being allowed to sit with the bands and it was
thought she should not by the majority. Sister Pane to speak with her.
That if any person that has been in band would come to the private
exhortation of the respective quour (fn. 3) for a constancy, apply to the ministers
and the visitors of that quier to [allow] of it—that they have no objection
That the sisters and brethren that do not meet be appointed to sit in the
gallerys and not below.
That the minister admit a person transiently at pleasure.
[p.6] That Sister Green abide in the school for the present, but
thought not capable of good work.
That Mr Whitefield preach a charity sermon for the children Good
Fryday if here.
That there be appointed supervisors of the books to be considered next
That Brother Justice be suspended his office till his affair with Sister
Gibson be decided, and not received to it again without satisfaction given to
Agreed to class the society and consider of it further on Wednesday
5. [p.7] 1744 Monday Aprill 30
Called over the names of persons in conference. Took in Brother J.
Church and Sister Hayes after examination. Brother Sleep taken in per ditto.
Syms to speak to Abbot on account of absence and to Thomas Justice.
Ross on account of illness [deleted].
Morgan on account of her wrong spirit and behaviour put out of
Question—put round if any had a contrary opinion as to any thing
agreed to in conference than they explained at that time. Sister Wood did not
speak her mind of Ewen.
Question—put round if they have kept to the things agreed to so as
to defend and uphold them to the extreme of their power. No one pleaded
Sav. [sic] be spoken to of her [s]lyness to us before she be admitted to
conference—particularly spoke of Chatwin account of Laffeet and Sleeps,
Pane spoke to her.
That Brother Hammond be admitted to confer, (fn. 4) but not subscribing
[p.8] If a brother or sister differ from the conference in any matter that
is not essential and whereby union is not broke, that forbearance be
exercised to such a differing person as to what they differ, and such a person
on their part be silent, (fn. 5) and not to speak against the differing brethren
agreed on by the conference. Though if a person's conscience oblige them
to speak against anything, they speak of it here first.
Sister Paul to give an answer in 3 weeks if she will undertake the girls
Collack discarded and his wife to be assisted.
That there be a meeting again next Wednesday.
6. [p.9] 1744 Wednesday May 2d.
Called over the names.
Sister Laffeet sent word by her husband she is not willing to belong to
the conference and was there upon put out.
Put by having a collection and charity sermon for the children for the
That Mr Whitefield preach a charity sermon for the children of the
school before he goes out of town; at what time shall here after appear most
That there be two ministers in town always and one of them in every
That the bands are continued.
That Mr Harcourt, Mason, Hollair, Monday, Hodgson be appointed
to collect and tell the mony always, (fn. 6) and that they from time to time survey
the accounts and settle them.
That collection for the poor and school be kept up as usual. That
classing the people be deferred.
[p.10] That they be examined every time their tickets be changed.
7. Monday May the 28th 
Agreed to take the new house at £30 per year and take a running lease (fn. 7)
of the ground the Tabernacle stands upon.
That there be 7 trustees fixt for the taking of the account of all the
outward matters and in subserviance to the conference; that the persons
proposed vizt. Brother Cennick, Brother Sleep, Brother Mason, Sister
Harcort, Hollier and Monday are approved of.
Tuesday the 29th
Agreed that [No entry].
8. Monday June the 4th 1744
Took in again to conference Sister Laffeet and Jefferies, being satisfied
on both sides.
Sister Crosland (fn. 8) to come again next conference.
[p.11] That the society and bands be examined strictly every one
without respect at the time of changing the tickets, and none to have their
tickets that don't come to be examined. Brothers Cennick, Sleep, etc. are to
be employed in the work.
That all who are uneasy or disquieted in the society or band have their
cases enquired into and the faulty persons after exhorted and reproved.
Remaining restless, to be put from the bands if there—first and afterward
if they continue in the wrong spirit quite out of the society for this reason. It
is better that one member be cutt off than the whole body be disturbed.
That the trustees have liberty but in all cases of the poor of the outward
society and those of the bands by the visitors and those that meet in conference, that they take account of all the mony received and distribute and
see to the settling of the accounts.
9. [p.12] Monday July 16th 
That Brother Abbot be asked the reason of his not being there and
likewise Brother Church, (fn. 9) Brother Thompson.
That Brother Pugh go down to Olney and release Brother Hammond,
and desire Brother Hammond to go to Bristol if Mr Humphries does not go
Brother Pugh brought his report of a Sister Thornbury. The parish
will not relieve her and the conference has thought proper that all her money
shall be continued.
Sister Shaw's case was considered, and agreed that she also have her
That the conference does approve of Mr Harcourt continuing cashier
till our next meeting if he please.
[p.13] That no money be given to any out of the society.
That an account be brought to conference every time they meet as to
what is collected and what is disbursed.
Mrs Mason desiring to be excused her employment in the school, it is
thought proper Sister Richards make tryal, if she finds freedom. If not to
seek out for another.
That the children be present to hear the word Sabbath day morning
and evening and Tuesday and Friday evenings, and that Brother Cudworth
or Brother Allt be always present with them.
That Brother Cudworth and Brother Allt affair be considered next
conference, and Sister Powel to have what Sister Green had.
To consider the things in the trustees conference book.
To consider of the fixing of the time for changing the tickets to prevent
ill persons and those that have been turned out coming in again.
10. [p.14] Monday August 27th 1744
Sister Crosland came again and gave much disturbance to the conference after much tenderness and entreaty to go from us but refused—
though at length went out. Proposed to her by Brother Cennick to give her a
meeting by herself to hear all she had to say, but she stiffly refused and went
away. All the conference thought her quite wrong and agreed to what was
done and said in the affair.
Thought proper that there be an association at Bristol of all the
ministers (preachers) to confer about the work of the Lord and general plan
and their appoint further circular associations; and that the society at Bristol
be brought into subjection to the ministers and be under their government.
Agreed that Brother Cennick write a letter to Brother H. Harris to
invite him to England to be seen by the conference to the import—vizt to
lay before him Mr Humphries and peoples proposals and that the conference is agreed to all the proposals of Mr Humphries and people, and be
invited to meet the association in the bands and association.
[p.15] Mr Cennick read a letter from Mr Chapman about his difference
between Mr Wesley and him. Mr Cennick will wait on Mr John Wesley
Agreed to give Sister Richards 6s. per week while she continues with
That the time be fixt for changing the society tickets.
That Brother Sleap, Brothers Harcort, Laffeet and Syms visit the boys
[school] and take care thereof.
That Sisters Paul and Weston visit the girls school.
That Thursdays meeting be kept by all the school visitors.
Brother Pugh to be referred to the association whether or no he is to
be given up wholly to the ministry. Brother Allt to supply his place if he goes
into the country.
That Brother Cudworth have 15s. per week. Brother Altt to have 7s.
That the association should be kept Wednesday September the 4th at
That Mr Seagrave be asked to serve in the Tabernacle while the
ministers are gone to the association.
11. [p.16] Monday October 7th [sic 1744]
Read over the minutes of the last conference.
Brother Cennick read over the association minutes at Bristol. (fn. 10)
Brother Humphries letter implying he would not join unless they would
separate from Mr Whitefield and Humphries, etc. He has declared himself
not in connection.
That the conference meet the trustees to hear them speak of their
matters—particularly of the school mistresses and masters and salaries.
That no person take notice of any fault of a brother or sister (let them
be never so erroneous and blamable) to any one before they speak to the
person privately by themselves, and if they hear not them then let them take
one or two more and so proceed in the way the Lord directs and tell it to the
conference, and none write letters to any in the way of complaining.
That Brother Cudworth preach tomorrow morning for approval of the
ministers and conference.
12. [p.17] Monday October the 15 
Read the minutes of the last conference.
Brother Cennick to speak to Thomas Justice of his inclination to come
into fellowship again.
That the preaching at the little meeting in Peters Yard be kept up as
usual till the association and there to be considered of.
That the bands be universaly visited by the preachers.
13. Monday October 22d 
Brother Cennick had some discourse with Brother Godwin of the
doctrine and of Brothers Pugh and Cudworth preaching, and 'tis deferred
to the association.
Brother Cennick read part of his catechism and had no fault found
with it. (fn. 11)
14. [p.18] Monday October 29th 
Agreed to have a conference every Monday evening at half past 7.
That there be an advertizment in the Dayly General Advertizer that no
preachers of the Methodists preach but where they are sent for and make no
That Brother Collins be spoke to to meet on Saturday evening at the
15. Monday November 5th 
Read the minutes of the last conference. Agreed out of hand to put
out the advertisement of the preachers.
Brother Cennick read a part of his catechism—had a dispute about
Brother Cennick read the minutes of the Hampton association (fn. 12) and
read several letters which were agreeable and pleased us all.
16. [p.19] November 12 Monday 
Received a letter from Brother Syms wherein he gave reasons for his
not being present, the cheif of which were Sister Wood's spirit with which he
could not bear and her continual speaking against him.
We agreed to send for Brother Syms who, when he was come, gave the
same reasons for absenting himself and spake with Sister Wood, who
together with him thought it best to withdraw for a time at least. All in
conference thought Sister Wood to blame.
That we would meet the trustees and hear their complaints and weigh
their proposal of shortening the salary of some and of relieving none save the
sick poor till the Tabernacle debt was paid.
17. Monday November 19 
Read the minutes of the last conference.
That seeing Sister Wood has withdrawn her [p.20] self we send to
Brother Syms and invite him back to the conference.
That a message be sent likewise to Sister Wood to let her know that if
she sees herself in fault in the matter of accusing and grieving Brother Syms
and will be content to confess this, and be led and ruled by the brethren and
sisters as a little child droping all her suspicions, etc., we will receive her again
into our bosom and fellowship, and invite her again to labour here with us in
the Lord; but if she cannot see she has sinned, but remains still as when she
first withdrew herself, then we judge it best for her to wait upon the Lord
apart from us.
That Brother Cennick carry the message to Sister Wood.
[p.21] That conference and the trustees meet together Monday next
after sermon and hear their mind about Brother Syms, the laying out of the
18. Monday November 27th [sic] 1744
We met the trustees who agreed to let the salarys remain as they were
and not shorten them, and to relieve such sick and other of the poor whom the
brethren and sisters of the conference should find after due enquiry to be in
That the trustees should meet on Wednesday and Brother Syms
should bring his accounts and satisfy them, which he did and all things
appeared to be well settled in his accounts etc. He also told them he was
ready to answer any question which might hereafter be proposed to him of
that matter by any of them, or to meet them at any other time to give them
farther satisfaction. (fn. 13)
19. [p.22] Monday December 3 1744
Read the minutes of the last conference.
That the single brethren have a love-feast on Sunday next.
That the brethren of the association be invited up by next Wednesday
That Brother Pugh go to Braintree in Essex and stay till the association.
20. Monday December the 10th 
Brother Cennick read a letter from Sister Crosland wherein she
desired to know if she might come to conference again. If not, she desired to
have her name taken from the book. Brother Cennick is appointed to give
her reasons for waiting longer, which is the opinion of the conference she
Agreed that there be no preaching Thursday morning; no society
Wednesday but on Thursday at 7 instead of preaching.
That the women of the conference be present, but that they do not
meddle with anything disputing unless they be asked at least to take a
seasonable opportunity to say what may come on their minds. (fn. 14)
[p.23] It being asked if the conference would agree to the trustees
coming to the association, and all were against it except 2 who were for it.
The chief reasons against their coming was that a fundamental difference in
matters of faith arising among them and the preachers was there to be heard,
debated and decided, and therefore as they stood in solemn [illegible] one
with the other, it was not proper that any indifferent person should be
present. Brother Cennick to inform the preachers of this minute.
Brother Allt spoke of Sister Clerk of Clerkenwell-green requesting
medecines of Mr Hudson at the expence of the society. The answer was that
she apply to the parish.
That Brother Peat have 5s. sent him by the hands of Mr Hammond
Brother Allt spoke of Hannah With for relief—to be considered of
more after the association.
21. [p.24] Munday January 7 1744[/5]
That Brother Halt go into Staffordshire for a month and that Brother
Salmon supply his place.
Let there be a collection for the poor morning and evening on Wednesday January 9 and a collection at the society as usual.
Sister Wood confesseth her prejudices against Brother Cudworth are
removed, and upon her request is admitted again into the conference.
That Sister Starks be got into the hospital.
That Sister Norton have six shillings out of the Wednesdays collection.
[p.25] That a collection be made some Sunday evening to bear the
charges of two ministers who are to go to assist Mr Whitefield at the Orphanhouse in Georgia.
22. Monday January 14 1744/5
Agreed that Sister Paul and Brother Thompson enquire into the state
and conduct of Mrs Prior, and bring the report next Monday.
That a board be placed in the society room giving account of persons
who want places or employment.
23. [p.26] Monday January 22 [recte 21] 1744/5
Sister Paul (fn. 15) brought her report of Mrs Prior, and she has heard a good
carictor of her. That Brother Thomson enquire more to the accusation
alledged against her and bring his report next Monday. [Let her] have 2s.
this week. Sister Paul carry it [to] her.
That Sister Shaw go to the infirmary in High Park Corner, and have a
coach to go.
That Brother Peat have 5s. if the trustees can spare it.
24. Monday January 28 1744/5
That Brother Cennick speak to Sister Prior about putting her children
on the parish, and that she have 2s. allowed her for her present use.
25. [p.27] 1745 Monday February the 4th 1744/5
That Brother Cennick speak to Brother Harcourt about allowing
Sister Prior somewhat weekly.
Monday February 11th 1744/5 [No entry]
Monday February 18th 1744/5
Brother Adams has been in Essex and has had good success.
Proposed that the children that are able should pay to the school—
but 'tis agreed that non pay.
Menetion to the trustees that they in dever to get the rightings of the
That Sister Night have 6 pens per week while her child is so small.
Brother Cennick gave the above menetioned 6s. which the trustees has
not paid him yet.
26. [p.28] Monday February 25 1744/5
The fast to be deferred till next Monday and then proposed.
Agreed that Sister Scott have 6s. if it can be by the trustees.
Agreed that the day of prayer (fn. 16) be next Wednesday sevenight beginning at 10 of the clock.
Agreed that the residing minister order the letters to be printed.
Agreed that Sister Pryer have 2s. per week if it can, if not she have one
Sister Shaw's child have shewes and shurt and few necessary, and that
she bide where she is and can give her all the help.
That Brother Pugh have his horshire paid for and that he goes down
That the Tabernacle be shut up while wee are at the association, and
that one of them return to preach on Sunday evening.
27. [p.29] 1745 Monday March 25 1744/5 (fn. 17)
Agreed that Sister Conjuit have 3s. per week.
Monday April 1st 1745
Agreed that it should be mentioned to the doorkeeper, etc. a Wednesday night that they should let none in without showing their ticketts.
28. Monday April 15th 1745
Brother Adams came and declared to this purpose that he had no
freedom to meet or act with the conference seeing we differed from him so
wideley and therefore left us. Sisters Pugh, Lathun, Dilley, Jefferies, Weston,
[illegible] was of the same mind and went with him. The rest of the brethren
and sisters present, viz. Brothers Church, Heatly, Allt, Dukes, Lafitte,
Elsom, Cudworth, Sisters Laffitte, [p.30] Chatwin, Low, Richards agreed to
continue together as usual notwithstanding.
That Brother Mason be invited to the conference next Monday night.
29. Monday April [22 1745]
Agreed that we invite Brother Adams next Monday night to the
That Brother Alt speak to Mr Harcourt concerning some allowance
for Sister French.
That the next Monday night we confer concerning the money owed to
That I speak to Mr Oulier about one Sister Harris having 6s. 6d. for
rent—the poor money being deficient.
30. Monday April 29 
Agreed that Brother Elsom enquire concerning Butts debt to the
That Sister Lafette enquire of Stanley concerning her debt.
[p.31] That Sister Low enquire of Sister Wood about one Sharp a
single woman who borrowed money of the society.
Monday May 8th [sic] 1745 [No entry]
31. Monday May 20
Agreed Brother Gowen have 18 shillings from the propagation of the
gosple fund to discharge apothecaries bill at Bath. (fn. 18)
Things conferred on concerning preaching.
32. Monday May 27 1745
That Brother Cennick should print an account of the percecution at
Exeter. (fn. 19)
That collection be made on Sunday evening in the society for defraying
the charges of the law-suit at Leominster and that another [p.32] collection
be made on Monday evening in publick for the poor.
That Brother Cudworth give an account how he received his knowledge of Jesus Christ and what trials he has met within that account.
33. Monday June 24 1745
That a collection be made for Brother Blackburn, and that one of the
brethren be appointed to see that he takes up his freedom with it.
34. July 1st 1745
That Brother Hammond makes a collection for Brother Blackburn
next Sunday among the [single brethren].
That Brother Hammond speak to Mr Hodgson and the brethren with
him in the clubb to desist from meeting in that manner.
Brother Hammond speak to Brother Alt to visit the society till he goes
from the school.