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Title: Religion and society in Monmouthshire, 1840-1880, with particular reference to Thomas Thomas, the Pontypool Baptists and the campaign for disestablishment
Author: Edwards, Arthur John
ISNI:       0000 0004 6057 759X
Awarding Body: Cardiff University
Current Institution: Cardiff University
Date of Award: 2016
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This thesis examines the effects of the campaign for disestablishment upon the religious and social life of Monmouthshire in the period 1840-1880. From a position of strength in 1840, nonconformists intensified their efforts to redress their religious and social grievances and to support the programme of the Liberation Society founded in 1844. The main focus of this study is the increasing influence of the Baptists, the strongest Nonconformest denomination in Monmouthshire during this period. The importance of the Baptist College and those involved in its leadership under its principal Dr Thomas Thomas, is analysed through the Dissenters’ campaigns against compulsory Church rate and state-funded education. Thomas’s leadership was paramount, not only in the Baptist College but also through crane street chapel of which he was pastor in a joint appointment for thirty –seven years. His stature was publicly recognised when he was appointed President of the Baptist Union of Great Britain and Ireland in 1872. He had become leader of the Baptist churches in Monmouthshire by1857 when he was chiefly responsible for setting up the Monmouthshire English Baptist Association at Pontypool. Thomas became noteworthy as a leader not only of Monmouthshire Baptists but also in the religious and social life of the county. His relationships with other religious leaders and his influence upon them are examined. This study seeks to fil a historiographical gap in our understanding of the impact of the campaign for Disestablishment in its early phases upon the religious life of Monmouthshire. It also provides a picture of the two institutions that were essential to the development of the Dissenters’ campaign for religious equality, Pontypool Baptist College and Crane Street Chapel. From the available resources, an analysis is provided.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: D History (General) ; D204 Modern History ; DA Great Britain