Adolphus Adams

Our great great grandfather Adolphus Adams was always been an attractive character for our research because of his name. He also gives the impression of turning up in records more often than other ancestors because, when he does, you can't mistake him. This latest information was discovered by chance on the internet, on a site dedicated to the history of Upper Stratton Baptist Church.
We have discovered that Adolphus Adams, our great great grandfather, was deacon of Upper Stratton Baptist Church in Green Road, Upper Stratton, and that his son, Frederick (brother of our great grandmother, Kate Adams), was also a deacon there.

They are both mentioned in the souvenir programme from the opening of the new Sunday school in 1929. These are the relevant entries, starting with page four:

"Another pleasing thing to record is the care exercised in the election of Deacons in the Church's early history. When the first Deacons were elected two evenings, February 28th and March 1st, 1867, were set apart for prayer and instruction from God's Word over the matter, and the two Deacons, Adolphus Adams and James Bown were appointed to this important office for one year."

The church was built in 1861, so Adolphus was involved with it from its early days, and possibly from the beginning. We do not know how long he remained a deacon. It would appear that he was appointed with some kind of probationary period of a year, but the family must have maintained strong links with the church until at least 1929 because of this entry on page 11:

"We are glad to see that the mantles of our dear brethren Adolphus Adams and AN Taylor have fallen upon their sons, F. Adams and F Taylor, who are worthily following their fathers' steps as Deacons in the Church. Long may they serve Him, the best of all Masters."

We were previously aware of no family connection with the church. In fact, we were previously aware of no family connection with any church beyond births, marriages and deaths. When Adolphus's grandson, Albert Jack Carter, married our grandmother, Lucy Hale, it was not at the Baptist Church but at the Methodist Church, around the corner, and as there was also a Church of England church - St Philip's - even closer to their home, we do not know why the Adamses chose the Baptist church instead.

Frederick Adams, who stayed in Upper Stratton and lived in St Philip's Road, along with several other ancestors, is listed in one census as "engine painter's apprentice".

Incidentally, our grandmother, Lucy Hale, is buried in an unmarked grave in the cemetery opposite.

Below is a (undated but possibly c1900) picture of the Baptist Church, as seen on the church's own website (click on 'Our History' and then the entry for 1861-1929 for a scan of the entire Sunday school souvenir programme).