Rev John Newton
(1725-1807)

Died aged c. 82

John Newton (/ˈnjuːtən/; 4 August [O.S. 24 July] 1725 – 21 December 1807) was an English Anglican cleric, a captain of slave ships who later became an investor in the slave trade but subsequently became an abolitionist. He served as a sailor in the Royal Navy for a period after forced recruitment. Newton went to sea at a young age and worked on slave ships in the slave trade for several years. In 1745, he himself became a slave of Princess Peye, a woman of the Sherbro people. He was rescued, returned to sea and the trade, becoming Captain of several slave ships. After retiring from active sea-faring, he continued to invest in the slave trade. Some years after experiencing a conversion to Christianity, Newton later renounced his trade and became a prominent supporter of abolitionism. Now an evangelical, he was ordained as a Church of England cleric and served as parish priest at Olney, Buckinghamshire, for two decades. He also wrote hymns, including "Amazing Grace" and "Glorious Things of Thee Are Spoken". Newton lived to see the British Empire's abolition of the African slave trade in 1807, just months before his death.

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Commemorated on 3 plaques

1725-1807 John Newton Abolitionist & clergyman Author of the hymn 'Amazing Grace' Surveyor of Tides 1754-1755 lived here

Orleans House, Edmund St, Liverpool L3 9NG, Liverpool, United Kingdom where they lived

The Rev. John Newton 1725-1807 slave-trade abolitionist (once a slave-trader himself), lived at Marchfoot House in Aveley parish as a youth and began his sea career here at Long Reach. His hymn still touches hearts worldwide: 'Amazing Grace... that saved a wretch like me'.

Children's Centre at the Garrison Estate, Purfleet, United Kingdom where they began a sea career and lived near

Olney Parish Church. Completed in 1325AD, this church is associated with William Cowper, the poet, and John Newton, Curate-in-charge and one-time slave trader; these two wrote "The Olney Hymns". Other outstanding characters include Henry Gaitlett, "Father of English Church Music", Moses Browne, of many parts (and many children) and Thomas Scott, the Bible commentator. The church of the Olney Pancake Race.

Olney Parish Church, Olney, United Kingdom where they worked (1764-1779)