158 baptisms at Tudhoe Mount Pleasant Presbyterian Church in Durham district, from the beginning of the first register in April 1862 to the end of 1879.
Unlike Anglican baptisms of this period, these baptisms helpfully list the child’s birth order and mother’s maiden name, and nearly all of them include the child’s birth date. Abodes mentioned besides Tudhoe include Brancepeth, Cassop, Ferryhill, Kelloe, Merrington, Mount Pleasant, Spennymoor and Low Spennymoor, Sunderland Bridge, The Grange (Tudhoe Grange), Whitworth, and York Hill.
Because there is little differentiation between Spennymoor, Mount Pleasant, and Tudhoe, this church is also sometimes called Spennymoor Presbyterian. The congregation of this church first held meetings in an old Reading Room on Bessemer Terrace in Spennymoor, using a temporary minister sent by the Newcastle Presbytery. The church at Mount Pleasant, a few blocks away, was built in 1864, and the first minister there was the Reverend Charles Friskin of Glasgow, Scotland. From the “History of Spennymoor”, John Reavley, 1935:
“The Rev. Charles Friskin was a model pastor. He had a good business
training before proceeding to College. He took such a keen interest in
education that he became one of the first members of the old Tudhoe School
Board. He continued his ministry for 27 years, and died under somewhat
tragic circumstances. He expired in the pulpit whilst giving the address
following the Sacrament, on Sunday morning, 2nd March 1890.“
Several children baptized here were named after him – Charles Friskin Milne, Charles Friskin Fleming, and Charles Friskin Milne Wilson.
Sample baptisms, featuring mothers who were very likely over-tired:
- 25 Dec 1864 Charles Friskin Fleming of Tudhoe, Brancepeth, born 23 Nov 1864, 10th child, daughter of William Fleming (land agent) & Janet Davidson
- 9 Aug 1874 Caroline Belshaw of The Grange, Tudhoe, born 6 May 1874, 11th child, daughter of Charles Belshaw (miner) & Mary Jane Gilmour