Stamp, John
c.1808-1847; e.m. 1835

Primitive Methodist revivalist and advocate of temperance and female preaching, was born at Keelby, Lincs. After a wayward youth, he began his PM ministry in 1835, the year of his conversion, in his home circuit, Louth. In 1838 he was sent to the Hull Circuit and appointed to their Sheerness and Canterbury Mission, which with growing membership became the Sheerness Circuit a year later.

He was an eloquent and persuasive preacher. But soon serious dissentions emerged and his incompetence, especially in imprudent expense in acquiring chapels, led to the General Committee sending a deputation which concluded that he was not fit for the office of travelling preacher. He was eventually expelled at the 1841 Conference in Reading, though his supporters claimed that this was for his temperance views and his use of American-style 'protracted meetings'.

He returned to Hull, where he preached and lectured on teetotalism and a defence fund was established. A chapel was built for him in 1840 by supporters calling themselves for a time the Primitive Methodist New Connexion. When his secession collapsed, the members mainly returned to PM.

About April 1845 he moved to Leeds, where little is known about his activities. However, the Stone Chapel vacated by the WMA in 1840 for their Lady Lane chapel was temporarily used by his Christian Temperance Brethren. The temporary loss of the Lower Wortley PM chapel led to it passing to Stamp's Christian Temperance Brethren, which also had a base in Hull.

Towards the end of his life Stamp moved to Manchester, where  he became the pastor of a group of revivalists who may have seceded from the Methodist New Connexion at the time of the Barkerite agitation. He died in Manchester on 29 January 1847. He has often been confused by historians with John Sundius Stamp, a member of the Wesleyan family.

Joseph Odell was inspired in his work by Stamp's ministry.

  • John Stamp, A Plain and Brief Defence of the Conduct of the Rev. John Stamp, against his unjust and illegal expulsion as preacher and member (1841)
  • John Petty, A History of the Primitive Methodist Connexion... (1860) pp.335-36
  • H.B. Kendall, The Origin and History of the Primitive Methodist Church [1906], 1 pp.454-58
  • D. Colin Dews, 'The Rev.John Stamp, Primitive Methodist Secessionist', in Wesley Historical Society Proceedings, vol.57 pt.5 (May 2010) pp. 178-89