The Dutch Cemetery in Chinsurah: A Digital Archive of Memories

J.W. Ultimus Morton

Last Name: 
First Name: 
J.W Ultimus
year of death: 
date of death: 
25 November 1854
Age at death: 
3 1/2
Son of Reverend Morton
Full Epitaph: 
Sacred to the Memory of John W. Ultimus Son of Rev. W. Morton Who too early lost Changed Earth for Heaven Nov 25 1854 Aet 3 1/2 yrs
Tomb architecture: 
Obelisk on top (cross-vault?)
Detailed information: 

The Clergyman here mentioned is the Rev William Morton [...] He has been placed at Chinsurah by the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel Of the Native Schools of the Mission it is reported. The Schools under the exclusive controul of the Mission are increased to six of which five are for Boys and the remaining one for Girls The aggregate number of Boys under instruction in these Schools is about 320. Of the progress of the Native Females under instruction at this Station who are now united in one school we have received no report during the past year. (Source: Missionary Register. Seeley, Jackson, & Halliday, 1827.

Reverend Morton in mentioned in Bishop Heber's letters where he is described as being transferred to Chinsurah from Cossipore. However, with the British takeover of Dutch territory, there is also a sense of similar expansion by the Church of England and the 'dissenter preacher' (Rev Alphonse Lacroix, probably). Heber's desire to possess the episcopal rights over Chinsurah is clear:

[U]rging that the inhabitants of Chinsurah have been always accustomed to the presbyterian form of worship &c. To prevent or frustrate this it will be desirable to have an early communication with the principal Dutch and English inhabitants of the place to conciliate them in Mr Morton's favour and to point out the advantages of a regularly resident clergyman for the celebration of marriages &c. If you can find time to accompany Mr Morton on a visit to Chinsurah for this purpose taking with you any body of your acquaintance who knows the leading people there (Mr Thomason I think answers to this character) it may have the best effects. Should the character of the dissenting preacher who has now possession session of the Church supposing such a person to exist situated be respectable and should it seem probable that he be able to excite any formidable opposition to us I am even prepared to say that a compromise may be allowable I mean so as to tell him that we do not mean any thing personally hostile him and that he and his congregation may still for the continue to use the Church once every Sunday in the same as I am told that there are alternate Dutch and English at the Cape and at Colombo. We shall thus obtain firm peaceable if not an undivided possession of the Church and it not improbable that so marked a preference will be shown to ceremonies and to Mr Morton's preaching assisted as he may by other aids from Calcutta as will induce the methodist of to withdraw from a theatre in which his inferior popularity will apparent. At all events when the present missionary dies / leaves the neighbourhood the Church will be ours entirely. [...] Now that Chinsurah is open to us there is no doubt think but that it is preferable either to Patna or Murshidabad. Should our means enable us hereafter to go further a field I agree with you that the latter station is preferable to those which I mentioned. (Source: Heber, Reginald, and Amelia Heber. The Life of Reginald Heber, D.D. Lord Bishop of Calcutta: With Selections from His Correspondence, Unpublished Poems, and Private Papers : Together with a Journal of His Tour in Norway, Sweden, Russia, Hungary and Germany, and a History of the Cosacks ; in Two Volumes. Murray, 1830.

The Thacker's Guide to Calcutta, however, mentions Morton as living in perfect amity with Mr Lacroix. Heber is also said to have visited Chinsurah in 1826. The Chinsurah 'station' supposedly closed down in 1837 according to the Indian Missionary Directory and Memorial Volume (


Any reason for importance: 
Thomas Morton was a preacher from the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel's Missionary at Chinsurah and is reported to have died at Boglipore of jungle fever. He is mentioned in Bishop Reginald Heber's memoirs volume 2
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Photo 2 close up: 
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