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The Lammermuir Party of 1866 was a British Protestant Christian group of missionaries to China with the China Inland Mission led by James Hudson Taylor, who were identified with the tea clipper Lammermuir which brought them to China. Mission historians have indicated that this event was a turning point in the history of missionary work in China in the 1800s. This was the largest party of Protestant missionaries to date to arrive at one time on Chinese shores. It was also noteworthy that none of the members of the mission were ordained ministers, and only two had any previous overseas experience. In addition to this there were among them nine unmarried women traveling to a place where single European women were rare for many reasons.
A fast clipper
On the morning of 26 May 1866 the 34 sailors and 18 missionaries with 4 children boarded the Lammermuir which lay tied up to the East India Docks of London. It was only a 2 year old clipper ship with 3 masts and square-rigged sails. Her frame was built of iron and by the standard of the day she was a first class sailing vessel. A voyage halfway around the world would only take 4 months–a fast trip–compared to the 6 month duration of some of the older ships of the decade previous.
|“|| Over the dark blue sea, over the trackless flood,|
A little band is gone in the service of their God;
Hudson Taylor, the missionary recalled the most perilous time in the voyage:
|“||“The appearance of things was now truly terrific. Rolling fearfully, the masts and yards hanging down were tearing our only sail... and battering like a ram against the main yard. The deck from forecastle to poop was one scarcely broken sea. The roar of the water, the clanging of chains, the beating of the dangling masts and yards, the sharp smack of the torn sails made it almost impossible to hear any orders that might be given.”||”|
Taylor wrote after twelve days of this experience: :
|“||And for three days after that the danger only increased, as the ship was making water fast. Fires were all out and cooking was impossible. For a time no drinking water was obtainable, and the women as well as the men worked at the pumps. But through it all prayer was so wonderfully answered that no lives were lost or serious injuries sustained.||”|
The badly damaged ship caused a local stir in Shanghai. Emily Blatchley noted,
|“||Our broken and dismantled condition made us an object of general curiosity; but we, in our hearts, thanked GOD for the great deliverance He had wrought for us in sparing the lives of all on board in such unusual peril-peril arising not only from the oversweeping waters themselves, but from the frequent falling of splintered yards, etc. But although Mr. Taylor had plenty of surgical practice with severe bruises and such-like hurts, not one life was lost, nor were any limbs broken. It is needless to say there were many narrow escapes. A vessel came in soon after we did, which had passed through the same typhoon, but only six lives remained out of twenty-two; sixteen had been drowned! It was well that we got in on the day we did, for they had some terribly stiff gales outside, which in our disabled condition we could scarcely have weathered.||”|
List of missionaries and children
- James Hudson Taylor
- Mrs. Maria Jane Taylor (Maria Jane Dyer) (died of cholera 4 years later - 1870)
- Grace Dyer Taylor (died of meningitis in the first year - 1867)
- Herbert Hudson Taylor
- Frederick Howard Taylor
- Samuel Dyer Taylor (died less than 4 years later of tuberculosis in 1870)
- Lewis Nicol, Arbroath
- Mrs. Eliza Calder Nicol
- George Duncan, Banffshire (died seven years later in 1873)
- Josiah Alexander Jackson, Kingsland
- William David Rudland, Eversden
- John Robert Sell, Romford (died of smallpox in the first year - 1867)
- James Williamson, Arbroath
- Susan Barnes, Limerick
- Mary Elizabeth Bausum, Walthamstow
- Emily Blatchley, London (died of tuberculosis eight years later in 1874)
- Mary Bell, Epping (later married William David Rudland - she died in 1873 of tuberculosis)
- Mary Bowyer, London (later married Frederick W. Baller)
- Louise Desgraz, Liverpool and Switzerland
- Jane Elizabeth Faulding, London (later second wife of Hudson Taylor)
- Jane McLean, Inverness
- Elisabeth Rose, Barnsley (later married James Joseph Meadows)
Chronology of voyage
- 26 May 1866: Depart East India Docks, London
- Last sight of England is Start Point lighthouse, Devon
- 3 June: near Cape Finisterre
- 12 June: near Canary Islands
- 18 June: near Cape Verde Islands
- June Atlantic Ocean doldrums
- circa 7 July: near Trinidad Island
- pass The Great Tea Race of 1866 Fiery Cross, Taeping, Ariel, Serica, and Taitsing (later 3 others) bound for London
- pass Belted Will, Flying Spur bound for London
- sight Cape Town lighthouse
- pass the Min and Falcon bound for London
- conversion of many of crew to Christianity
- 3 August: early morning Taylor wakes several to tell of First Mate Brunton’s conversion
- 4 August: heavy seas–sternsail boom breaks and hits William Carron. Jennie Faulding talks with Grace Taylor and it is evident that she has had a Christian conversion experience
- c.14 August: near Amsterdam Island
- sight flying fish in Indian Ocean
- 27 August: Sunda Strait past Mt. Krakatoa
- 28 August: Anjer Roads, Java: shore leave & baptism service
- 31 August: Selat Gelasa (Gaspar Strait), past wrecks of other ships including the first Lammermuir, wrecked in 1863
- 1 September: South China Sea cross Equator
- 10 September–14 September: first typhoon in the East China Sea
- 14 September–19 September: stormy detour around Taiwan
- 18 September: near Fujian coast
- 20 September–24 September: second typhoon in Pacific Ocean nearly wrecks the ship
- 21 September: bulwarks gone
- 22 September: all three topmasts gone
- 23 September: Hudson Taylor kisses children and then goes out in storm to help crew
- 28 September: near Ma-an Liedao (Saddle Islands)
- 29 September: The Lammermuir arrives near Wusong, China
- 30 September 1866: arrives Shanghai
- Broomhall, Alfred (1984). Hudson Taylor and China's Open Century: Survivors' Pact. London: Hodder and Stoughton.
- Broomhall, Marshall (1915). The Jubilee Story of the China Inland Mission. London: Morgan and Scott.
- Guinness, Mary Geraldine (1893). The Story of the China Inland Mission vol II. London: Morgan and Scott.
- Pollock, John (1964). Hudson Taylor and Maria Pioneers in China.
- Steer, Roger (1990). Hudson Taylor: A Man In Christ. London: Hodder and Stoughton.
- Taylor, Dr. and Mrs. Howard (1918). Hudson Taylor and the China Inland Mission; The Growth of a Work of God. London: Morgan and Scott.
- Tucker, Ruth (1983). From Jerusalem to Irian Jaya A Biographical History of Christian Missions. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Zondervan. ISBN 0310239370.
- OMF International (formerly China Inland Mission and Overseas Missionary Fellowship)
- Christian Biography Resources
- Historical Bibliography of the China Inland Mission
- "Hudson Taylor's Spiritual Secret" by Geraldine Taylor, Ed. Gwen Hanna 2007zh:兰茂密尔团队