CHURCH MISSIONARY SOCIETY ARCHIVE
Section VI: Missions to India
Part 3: India General, 1811-1815, and South India Mission, 1815-1884
As well as including the papers for India General, 1811-1815, this part begins with the publication of the South India material, including:
- Early Correspondence, 1815-1820
- Individual Letter Books, 1851-1884
- Letter Books, 1820-1884
- Mission Books, 1820-1834
Early Correspondence, India General, 1811-1815
The early correspondence for India General, 1811-1815, contains incoming and outgoing correspondence between the CMS secretaries and the missionaries, agents and government officials in the field. The variety of material featured here is excellent and includes letters from Rev David Corrie describing the teaching of Abdul Masih, a native catechist with journals written by Abdul Masih himself, and letters from missionaries describing their arrival in the mission and their experiences as they settled into a new way of life. There is also much information regarding the schools set up by CMS, with material on teacher salaries and a list of English and Tamil Free Schools with names of the masters and the number of scholars.
Early Correspondence, South India, 1815-1820
The early correspondence for South India, 1815-1820, is organized in a similar fashion to the papers for India General. Once again it contains incoming and outgoing correspondence between the secretaries and the missionaries, agents and government officials based at the stations. These interesting and informative papers include:
- journals by the reader Christian Madras, Rev M Bailey, Rev C J E Rhenius, Rev B Schmid, Rev and Mrs T Norton
- minutes of the Corresponding Committee with a list of donations and subscriptions
- an account of receipts and payments of the Madras Corresponding Committee
- a letter from Rev J C Schnarre, dated 1817, to Rev M Thompson detailing his journey into the countryside to visit the Free Schools
- a report by Rev C E Rhenius on the Madras schools, October-December 1818
- plans for a Protestant Mission College in Madras
Individual Letter Books for South India, 1851-1884
The individual Letter Books consist of personal letters written by the Secretary in London to the missionaries (a full index of names has also been included for easy reference). There are letters relating to the financial matters of individual missions, and papers discussing the support of female schools in Madras by ladies in England. Much is made of the setting up of the Native Church council, 1865-1866, plus the development of the native church and the relationship of native agents and CMS European staff, 1865.
Letter Books for South India, 1820-1884
The Letter Books contain copies of outgoing correspondence from the Secretary in London to missionaries and others. Much of this is concerned with mission affairs. Once again a full index of names is given. The majority of the material focuses on instructions from the Secretary in London to missionaries such as Rev M Duckham, Rev P Fjellstadt, Rev Woodcock, Rev B Bailey, Rev J H Gray, Rev F Norton, Rev Foster, Mrs Rogers and Rev Stephen Hobbs. There are also letters on general mission business from the Secretary to members of the mission staff. Other items include:
- a draft of a trust deed of the Trinity Chapel, Black Town, Madras
- a list of artifacts proposed to be sent to the English royal children by the Christians in Tinnevelly, 1850
- a circular letter to missionaries in the Travancore mission discussing the persecution of converts, 1855
- regulations for CMS schoolmasters
- a letter describing a scheme for the establishment, maintenance and improvement of mission libraries in India, 1870
- a copy of a letter from Miss M A Scott of Moncrieff, Edinburgh re the famine orphans at Bangalore, 1878
- a letter discussing the possibility of encouraging educated young native Christians to take part in direct Christian work, 1884
There are also many interesting and descriptive letters regarding the Indian Mutiny, 1857-1858.
Mission Books for South India, 1820-1834
The Original Papers were copied into Mission Books so that a legible copy was always available for the committee's use. The letters and journals from 1820 to November 1836 are copied out in full. Journals are not copied after November 1836, nor reports after 1838. Annual Letters for 1875 onwards are copied out in the backs of the volumes. An index of names and some subjects is given.
Also included in this part are letters to and from missionaries and Bishops, missionary journals (many of which give interesting and detailed information on missionary work and the customs and life of the local people), diaries of the catechist, the reader and the seminarists, and reports on a range of financial, educational and cultural issues.