'Amazing Grace: John Newton's Story'

Scope and Content

Draft manuscript version of John Pollock's book 'Amazing Grace: John Newton's Story'

Administrative / Biographical History

Rev Dr John Charles Pollock (1924-2012) was a Christian author who wrote a number of biographies including 'The Apostle, A Life of Paul', 'Wesley the Preacher' (on John Wesley), 'Wilberforce: God's Statesman' (on William Wilberforce) and 'Amazing Grace: The Life of John Newton' which was published in 1983.

John Henry Newton (1725-1807) was press-ganged into service with the Royal Navy and was involved in the slave trade and enslaved for a while. He became an evangelical lay minister after a religious conversion and became a prominent supporter of William Wilberforce's campaign to abolish slavery - dying a months after the Slave Trade Act was eventually passed in 1807. In the 1760s whilst he was curate at Olney he worked with poet William Cowper to produce a volume of hymns which included 'Faith's Review and Expectation' which is better known today from its opening line 'Amazing grace! How sweet the sound' which was written for a sermon Newton delivered on 1st Jan 1773 and appeared in 'Olney Hymns' when it was published in 1779. It has been used with many different tunes but the version we know today is a tune called 'New Britain' written in 1835. It subsequently became adopted by religious movement across America and is now an iconic piece of American culture.

Access Information

Access will be granted to any accredited reader

Custodial History

Donated by Canon GB Bridgman, Hull, July 1983

Related Material

Small collection of William Wilberforce material, 1799-1832 [Ref L DFWW]