In 1914 he was made secretary of the C.M. Historical Committee ; this led in 1916 to the foundation of the C.M. Historical Society , and the inception of its Journal ( Cylch. Cymd. Hanes M.C. ), which he edited jointly with J. H. Davies and Richard Bennett (qq.v.) for four years, becoming its sole editor in 1920 . Appointed ‘ Davies Lecturer ’ in 1922 , he took as his theme ‘ The Trevecka Letters ’ — a volume bearing this title was published after his death, in 1932 ; it contains ‘prolegomena’ to the study of the letters, an elaborate inventory of them, and three essays exemplifying their value as historical sources; the work, in its unpublished form, had already obtained for him ( 1929 ) the degree of Ph.D.
No one man has rendered so great service to students of Welsh Methodist history. His very limitations were of advantage, for a man of livelier and more imaginative temperament would have shrunk from the dreary business of deciphering, cataloguing, indexing , and so forth, which he so willingly undertook. Patient, orderly, indefatigable in settling minute points, he has saved other researchers endless labour and time, notably by his Inventory already mentioned, his laborious Itinerary of Howel Harris , and his printed bibliographies. Looking at his long list of contributions to the Journal , and also to the Carmarthenshire Society 's Transactions (list of his articles on pp. 307-10 of The Trevecka Letters ), it is difficult to remember that the years which produced them were also years of diligent preaching, faithful pastoral work, and strenuous advocacy of improvements in the methods and organization of the Sunday schools in Wales .
Emeritus Professor Robert Thomas Jenkins, C.B.E., D.Litt., Ll.D., F.S.A., (1881-1969), Bangor
Published date: 1959