The Watchman - 1850 to 1859

As its full title suggests, The Watchman & Wesleyan Advertiser was a Methodist weekly - born in 1835, in the aftermath of 19th century Reform agitation and legislation; four of the six 'Tolpuddle martyrs' who attempted to form an early trade union were Methodists.

It was the issue of increased recognition of Irish Catholicism, seen as a threat to the British establishment, that triggered a newspaper as an official organ for the Wesleyan body. The Watchman's stated aim was to defend 'the principles and economy of Wesleyan Methodism, as settled by its venerable Founder and by the Conference since his decease'. Its reactionary political sympathies were evident and it was supported by The Times, notably pro-establishment, which occasionally reprinted its articles. It ceased publication in 1884.

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