Thomas Rowland (1792-1858)
Thomas Rowland was born in Manchester. He was orphaned at the age of ten and joined the Wesleyan Methodists three years later. Converted after hearing a sermon by Jabez Bunting, he entered the Wesleyan ministry in 1813. Rowland served as a circuit minister until 1857 when he was expelled by the Conference for refusing to vote in favour of the expulsion of supporters of reform.
Rowland subsequently joined the Wesleyan Reformers and latterly the United Methodist Free Church. He died suddenly just a week after preaching at the opening of a new chapel at Morley near Leeds.
Rowland is referred to in correspondence deposited at the Methodist Archives as allowing women to preach in chapels under his supervision as late as the 1830s.
Source: Minutes of the United Methodist Free Church Conference 1859, Hill's Arrangement 1841, Fletcher-Tooth collection (MARC), Encyclopedia of World Methodism (1974) and Oliver Beckerlegge, United Methodist Ministers and their Circuits 1797-1932 (1968)