To John Angell James

c. January 1850


[MS in Finney Papers #1406]

Finney's note to James was appended to the letter from Potto Brown to Elizabeth Finney.

Houghton Huntingdon

25 Jany 1850

Mrs Finney


My esteemed Friend

I have been for some time past

daily expecting a letter from you to

inform me when my best time would be

to have a little more of your & your

dear husbands company - I feel considerable

delicacy in coming as I know you both

(as you were here) are both constantly en-

gaged, yet I suppose there may be times

when there is not so great an excess of

labour as at some other times - I am well

aware you have no excess in your labour

of love in seeking to save souls, it is not

in Mr Finney's nature: please give me your

consent for my coming as early as you

can ----


[page 2]

The work has gone on here more

prosperously than I had faith to believe

thus we have a renewed proof that God

is more willing to bless, than we are to

expect the blessing - Old John Clark the

drunkard is going on well so is Barnes the

blasphemer - Ellis the pugalist - & Bass the

harlot - with many others whose names

I cannot find room for in this letter

The educated & talented C. P. Tebbutt is

also doing well has given his hands to

the work at Bluntisham The educated

& discriminating Goodmans - Neville Mary

& Susan I fully believe will make able

agents for the Saviour - We have

received abundant blessings - high & low

rich & poor unlearned & educated; you have

done well in coming to see us no

doubt our Heavenly Father sent you here

to labour & bless - You will soon require

a little recess from your exertions I am

& we all are expecting you at Houghton

[page 3]

shortly for that purpose - Please let me

know in your next when about the

time will be - Give my love in Christ

to your dear partner and believe me

to be

Yours sincere friend

Potto Brown


Our Christian regards to Mrs Roe



Dear Br. James. This letter is, as you see, from

Mr. Potto Brown a wealthy christian man who

is one of the most precious spirits I have met

with in England. We staid at his house while

at Houghton. The accompanying note is from

an accomplished Lady whose family seem nearly

all hopefully converted at Houghton. The educated

& talented Charles Tebbutts named by Br. Brown

above is her son. He is certainly one of the most talen

ted young men I have seen in this county. You love

such things as appear in these notes & will I doubt

not think them worth the time of reading.

Please preserve them for us as we value them enough

to keep them. C. G. Finney.


The letter from Mrs Mary Tebbutt is as follows:



Jany 7th 1850

My dear Friend,

You will perceive from

the date of this, that I am

once more in the midst

of my own dear Family -thro

the Providential care of our

Heavenly Father I was permitted

to have Mrs Allon and her

dear little Baby both doing well

and then to visit for a few

days my own Daughter at

Nottingham with whom Harriet

you is now staying - on reaching

Bluntisham last Monday eveng

I found a kitchen full of praying

people - not less than 40 - with

Mrs Simmons just delivering an

[page 2]

address adapted to the condition

of young converts - exhorting

them to stedfastness and entire

devotedness to the service of Christ

It seemed as I received the welcome

of one and another - as if I had

entered an element of Holy Love

I had often before rejoiced in

the affection of my children - but

now it seemed it inexpressibly

sweet and tender - united as

we felt we were by stronger

and purer bonds than Earth

can furnish -I am thankful

to be able to write of the progress

which I trust all are making

in heavenly things - all appear

to be anxious to testify their love

by doing something for Christ

The young ladies have had some

very interesting meetings on

Saturday Evengs with some Children

[page 3]

about whom they are interested

last Saturday it was quite a little

Congregation 13 Sunday Scholars - with

8 or 9 - others including our own =

Charles is evincing many valu

able parts of the Christian character

so that my hopes are greatly

raised that he will be very useful

in this neighbourhood - He yesterday

addressed the Children at the School

for the first time. He wishes

me to send his love to yourself

and Mrs Finney. I believe I may

also say that he is hoping before

long to be with you for a few days

at Birmingham - And now

my dear Friend I must express

to you the anxious desire which

many are feeling to welcome

you both here - There is certainly

a spirit of anxious enquiry

in the minds of some, who

have till lately been quite indif

ferent about their eternal welfare

[page 4]

and many Christians are

awaking to a sense of their

obligations to live more to the

Glory of God - so that I trust the

ground is preparing for the Seed

to be scattered successfully in, when

God shall direct your steps hither.

This season of the year is so much

more favorable for attendance in

an Agricultural district - that we

are almost wishing that we could

keep the short days a little longer

this year, untill we are permitted

to see you with us - We rejoice

however greatly to hear that God

is manifesting his great power

in subduing the hearts of both

Saints and Sinners at Birmingham

may the work still go on - untill

there shall be a great multitude

Redeemed from among Men -

who shall go forth as witnesses for

God - seeking to extend his kingdom

& his glory - I am commissioned

[continued across the top of page 1]

with love from

Susan & Louise

to Mrs Finney Mrs

Roe & yourself

in which most

cordially unites

Your attached

Friend & Sister

M. A. Tebbutt


John Clark was one of the original members of the Houghton Church when it formed in December 1844 (Houghton, Huntingdonshire, Union Chapel Record Book, in the possession of the Chapel).

George Barnes was one of the 17 people who had been the first intake into the Church at Houghton on 6 January 1850 after the Finneys had left. He was subsequently excluded from the Church "having embided [?imbibed] Hyper-calvanism".

Henry Ellis of Houghton was admitted to membership of the Church on February 3rd 1850. He was subsequently "excluded".

Mary Bass was one of the first members when the Church formed in 1844. She died in 1852,

Neville Goodman (1831-1890) was the eldest son of Joseph and Rose Goodman. He went into the milling business, first in Royston and then in Bow. But he gave up milling in 1862, went to Cambridge where he entered the university, and subsequently devoted his life to scientific and literary pursuits. He was a prominent figure in local affairs in Cambridge. In 1856 he tried to get Finney to return to England. (Goodman to Finney, 22 March 1856, Calendar of the Finney Papers [letter missing])

Susan Goodman (1831-1885). In 1858 she married Robert Walker Dixon of Wickham Bishops, a flour miller and farmer. Her brother Albert describes her:

Susan Dixon was of such an extremely retiring disposition that many of her acquaintances never knew that she probably was more intellectually talented than any others of her brothers and sisters excepting perhaps Joseph. She was a devoted sister, wife and mother, and was highly respected by all who knew her. Like some others of her family she was never a Church Member as her religious opinions closely resembled those of the Society of Friends (Goodman "Genealogy", pp. 235-36).

This word was originally written me, but changed by Potto Brown to us.

Finney started to write his note here, but smudged it out and commenced it again below the fold in the paper.

This note was probably the letter of Mary Ann Tebbutt to Finney, dated Bluntisham, 7 January 1850, in the Finney Papers.

Eliza Goodman (1827-1894), the eldest child of Joseph and Rose Goodman, who had been brought up since she was seventeen by Mrs Tebbutt, had married, in 1848, the Rev. Henry Allon, joint minister with Rev. Thomas Lewis, of Union Chapel, Islington. Their first child, Rose, was born on December 18th 1849. In 1875 she married William Thackray of Sunderland. See Goodman "Genealogy", pp. 227-229.

Her daughter, Nancy (born 1826), was the wife of Thomas Ashwell, a hosier of Nottingham. Harriet (born 1834) later married Sir Thomas Birkin, a lace manufacturer in Nottingham. (See Albert Goodman, "Genealogical Book", p. 130.)

Susan Goodman (1830-1885)