William Clowes

1780-1851. Co-founder of the Primitive Methodist Connexion.* Son of a drunken potter in Staffordshire, he early followed his father's trade and habits. Converted after a Methodist “love feast” (where he received the bread and water “under the idea of a sacrament”) in 1805, he became an active Methodist, participating in the first Mow Cop camp meeting. Like Hugh Bourne* earlier, but independently, he was expelled in 1810 through Methodist alarm at such developments. Many local Methodists supported him, calling him (to his own sacrifice) as a fulltime preacher paid from their meager wages. Primitive Methodism emerges from the coalescence of this movement with Bourne's, though the relations of the founders were often strained. Clowes became a hard-living traveling evangelist, especially in the industrial Midlands and North, with Hull as his center later. Many record the remarkable power of his preaching.