On Aug. 1, 1837, Elders Willard Richards and John Goodson arrived in Bedford, Bedfordshire, England. The next day, they took lodgings at the Swan Inn and called upon the Rev. Timothy Mathews, a brother-in-law of their colleague, Elder Joseph Fielding. Richards noted that Goodson preached that evening in Rev. Mathews' chapel, also on the evenings of the Aug. 3, 4 and 5.Rev. Matthews did not join the church, but by mid-September a small branch of 19 had been raised up in Bedford. Goodson chose to return to the United States after just a short time, but Richards continued to labor alone in the region. After a period of months, there was a branch of 60 members. The Swan Inn was built on the site of an earlier hotel in 1794-96, on the banks of the River Ouse.
Picturing history: Swan Inn, Bedford
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