Crowther, Samuel Adjai
CROWTHER, SAMUEL ADJAI (iSogP-tSgi), African missionary-bishop, was born at Ochugu in the Yoruba country, West Africa, and was sold into slavery in 1821. Next year he was rescued, with many other captives, by H.M. ship " Myrmidon," and was landed at Sierra Leone. Educated there in a missionary school, he was baptized on the nth of December 1825. In time he became a teacher at Furah Bay, and afterwards an energetic missionary on the Niger. He came to England in 1842, entered the Church Missionary College at Islington, and in June 1843 was ordained by Bishop Blomfield. Returning to Africa, he laboured with great success amongst his own people and afterwards at Abeokuta. Here he devoted himself to the preparation of school-books, and the translation of the Bible and Prayer-Book into Yoruba and other dialects. He also established a trade in cotton, and improved the native agriculture. In 1857 he commenced the third expedition up the Niger, and after labouring with varied success, returned to England and was consecrated, on St Peter's Day 1864, first bishop of the Niger territories. Before long a commencement was made of the missions to the delta of the Niger, and between 1 866 and 1884 congregations of Christians were formed at Bonny, Brass and New Calabar, but the progress made was slow and subject to many impediments. In 1888 the tide of persecution turned, and several chiefs embraced Christianity, and on Crowther's return from another visit to England, the large iron church known as " St Stephen's cathedral " was opened. Crowther died of paralysis on the 31st of December 1891, having displayed as a missionary for many years untiring industry, great practical wisdom, and deep piety.
Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)