Dictionary of Welsh Biography


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EVANS , EVAN ( 1671 - 1721 ), cleric and missioner in Pennsylvania ;

b. at Carno, Mont. , in 1671 . He graduated from Brasenose College , Oxford , in 1695 ( M.A. and D.D. 1714 ). From 1696 till 1700 he was curate at Wrexham , but he went out to Pennsylvania , as rector of Christ Church , Philadelphia , in 1700 . The most interesting feature of his work there is his vigorous Anglican mission-work among the Welsh Quakers in the colony; in 1706 , a contemporary says that Evans had christened as many as 800 persons in Philadelphia , and the S.P.G. sent out Welsh -speaking clerics and schoolmasters to support him (three school-masters , e.g., in 1711 ). He held Anglican services in Radnorshire as early as 1701 (in a private house), and also in the Gwynedd district; churches were built in these places later. He d. either in Maryland or at Philadelphia , 11 Oct. 1721 . An account of his work (including also accounts of his Welsh fellow-workers), based upon S.P.G. records, will be found in two articles by J. A. Thomas in the Journal of the Church in Wales Historical Society , 1954 and 1955 . David Williams ( Wales and America , Cardiff , 1946 , 80-1) points out that Evan Evans 's grandson, Oliver Evans , an inventor , was the first to build a steam-engine in the U.S.A.

Author:

Emeritus Professor Robert Thomas Jenkins, C.B.E., D.Litt., Ll.D., F.S.A., (1881-1969), Bangor

Published date: 1959