1800-1850 / Document / Ministers, Preachers & Associates / Other / Paper
Ink on vellum

This interesting document is a reference for the Rev. Walter Griffith (1761-1825). It certifies that Walter Griffith had been a Methodist itinerant preacher since 1784 ('for nineteen years'), and that he was lawfully appointed by the Methodist Conference. Intriguingly, the document refers to Griffith bearing 'presents'. Sadly, we do not know what they were - perhaps books? - or for whom these were intended.

The document appears to be signed by the then President of Conference, Joseph Bradford (1748-1808), who was a travelling companion of John Wesley between 1774 and 1780, and Thomas Coke (1747-1814). Coke has since often been referred to as the father of Methodist missions and is better known today than Bradford.

However, it is odd that there are question marks in relation to Griffith's and Wesley's titles (i.e. 'Rev.?'), that both signatures look like they could possibly be by the same hand, and that there is no seal affixed to the document. Could it be that this document was a file copy of the original reference?