Quaker Man Dressed in Simplicity
300 years of Quakers in Tottenham

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Tottenham Quakers

Thomas Shillitoe's ministry

In 1806 Thomas Shillitoe retired from business, believing it right for him to devote himself entirely to ministry. His means were limited but his wants were few and his habit very simple and moderate. He was negligent in his dress, caring only for the purpose in mind. He walked for miles on his journeys, often labouring in fields and gardens as he went. He would walk thirty and forty miles a day and begin next day after just one night's rest.

Thomas Shillitoe was a man of strong purpose. He was not put off by people's position. He met and spoke with people from all backgrounds. His obvious sincerity and simplicity enabled him to gain audiences with royalty at home and abroad. He was a strong speaker who managed to arouse people from a state of indifference and unconcernedness.

His speeches frequently addressed his concerns regarding the observance of Sunday and legislation for temperance and morality.

"His watchfulness and circumspect conduct had, it is believed, a salutary influence among us" (quote from Testimony to Thomas Shillitoe).

During the last fifty years of his life Thomas Shillitoe was a vegetarian and teetotaller. He died in Tottenham in 1836. He was buried in the Friends Burial Ground behind the Meeting House.

Quaker Woman