The American Ceylon Mission, founded by chance
Brief Sketch of the American Ceylon Mission,
with an appendix. Jaffna American Mission Press 1849
First edition pp.56, 2 folding tables. A very good disbound copy.
This pamphlet provides an overview of the American mission's activities, especially its educational initiatives, and of its operating principles, including its Articles of Belief and Rules of Life. It also contains brief biographies of the missionaries connected with the American Ceylon Mission, and short obituaries of Tamil converts. The tables show the annual expenditure of the Mission from 1816 to 1848, and record the Tamil, and English-and-Tamil schools connected with the different mission stations over the same period. The American Ceylon Mission was founded by chance. The American Board of Foreign Missions had sent its first missionaries to India in 1812, but with the Anglo-American War underway they were ordered by the Governor-General to leave Calcutta by the same vessel on which they had arrived. On the return voyage, one of them, Samuel Newell, happened to land in Ceylon. He saw the potential for a mission and, although he himself moved on to Bombay, three missionaries were sent to the island in 1816, where they made their base in Jaffna.