James Chalmers: London Missionary Society missionary; born at Ardrishaig, Argyleshire, Scotland (45 miles west by north from Glasgow), August 4, 1841; died at Risk Point, Goaribari Island, Gulf of Papua, New Guinea, April 8, 1901. Converted at the age of fourteen, he was soon after called to the foreign mission field and after study at Cheshunt College and at Highgate, an institution conducted by the London Missionary Society, he was sent by that Society to Raratonga, one of the group of Cook Islands in the Southern Pacific, where he arrived in 1867. The island had been partially Christianized, but he did a good work in education and evangelization.
In 1877 he removed to New Guinea, where he encountered cannibals and did a memorable work at the constant risk of life. It was on one of these many journeys that he was killed. He takes his place beside Williams and Patterson as a missionary hero in the South Seas.
Bibliography: Consult his own Pioneer Life and Work in New Guinea, 1877-1894. London 1895; and the biographies by W. Robson, ib. 1901; C. Lennox, ib. 1902; and R. Lovett, ib. 1902 (the last-named containing Chalmers's Autobiography and Letters).
From The New Schaff-Herzog Encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge... New York: Funk and Wagnalls Company, 1908.
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