Dictionary of Welsh Biography

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JOSHUA , SETH ( 1858 - 1925 ), minister (Presb.) .

Born 10 Apr. 1858 in Ty Capel , Trosnant Uchaf , Pontypool, Mon. , son of George Joshua and Mary (née Walden ) his wife. He m. Mary Rees , Llantrisant , in Neath, Glam. , 23 Sept. 1883 , and they had eight children (one son, Peter , was a minister and a popular evangelist in America ; another son, Lyn , was responsible with Mai Jones for the radio programme ‘ We'll keep a welcome in the hillside ’). Seth attended the local British School. He worked closely with his brother Frank founding the Mission Hall cause in Neath . He was a noted evangelist , travelling through Britain and visiting U.S.A. In 1893 he was ord. minister (Presb.) and worked with the Forward Movement , a branch of the Connexion's Home Mission , establishing evangelising centres in Glamorganshire and Monmouthshire . He d. 21 May 1925 and was buried in the Council cemetery , Llanilltud Fach , Neath .

A younger brother was FRANCIS JAMES JOSHUA ( FRANK ; 1861 - 1920 ), minister (Presb.) . Born 15 Dec. 1861 . He and Seth went to Neath in 1883 to hold an Evangelistic Campaign under the auspices of the Free Mission , Cinderford . In 1901 the Free Mission Church in Neath came under the auspices of the Calvinistic Methodists as a branch of the Forward Movement and he was ord. in the Cilfynydd Association (Presb.) in 1903 . The whole of his ministry was spent in Neath where he raised a strong and flourishing church, and he became known in the town as ‘ St. Francis of Neath ’. He d. 13 Sept. 1920 a bachelor and was buried in Llanilltud Fach churchyard , Neath .


  • T. M. Rees , Seth Joshua and Frank Joshua, the renowned evangelists (Wrexham, 1926) ;
  • see also centenary booklet of the Mission Hall, Neath;
  • Howell Williams , The Romance of the Forward Movement of the Presbyterian Church of Wales (Denbigh, 1949) ;
  • J. Morris-Jones , Hanes symudiad ymosodol y Methodistiaid Calfinaidd (Caernarfon, 1931) ;
  • Annie Pugh Williams , Adgofion am John Pugh (Llandysul, 1944) ;
  • Robert Ellis , Living echoes of the Welsh revival 1904-5 (London, 1951) ;
  • reminiscences of Peter Rhys Joshua in Treasury (Caernarfon) , 1978 .


Reverend Richard Leslie Jones, Llandaf

Published date: 2001