New, Charles
1840-1875; e.m. 1860

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Early UMFC missionary to Kenya and campaigner against slavery in East Africa. He was born in Fulham on 25 January 1850. Trained as a bootmaker, he equipped himself for his ministry by reading widely. His travels were distinguished by careful observation and diligent recording. The first person known to have reached the snowline on Kilimanjaro (in 1871), he died at Rabai, Kenya on 14 February 1875, returning from an unsuccessful attempt to establish a mission post near the mountain. He wrote Life, Wanderings and Labours in Eastern Africa (2nd edition, 1874).

His older brother Joseph New (1835-1862) was born on 20 December 1835 at Waltham Green, London. He was associated with WM and then with Wesleyan Reform before joining the UMFC and entering their ministry in 1856. An appeal by Robert Eckett in response to an appeal by the West Africa Methodist Society (a secession from WM in 1828 in a dispute between natives and liberated slaves), led him to offer for missionary service. In May 1859 he and his wife sailed from Liverpool for Sierra Leone as the UMFC's first missionaries. He died at Freetown after only three years, on 6 August 1862.

  • Methodist Recorder, 24 May 1951; 31 August 2012
  • S.S. Barton, Memorials of the Rev. Charles New (1876)
  • R. Elliott Kendall, Charles New and the East Afric Mission (Nairobi, 1978)


Entry written by: JRP
Category: Person
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