5. Thomas Dixon Spain (Rev.)

Reverend Thomas Dixon-Spain

Reverend Thomas Dixon-Spain

dob: 1846, Lincoln
dod: 1925

* The title of the page gives Thomas’s full name at christening, ie. Thomas Dixon Spain, the Dixon being a middle name, and like his father (probably) his mother’s maiden name. Particularly significant here is the previous TDS who died at four. This restatement of the name suggests that Dixon was the maiden name of his mother (we think) Mary. We are looking here at the genesis of the ‘Dixon-Spain’ surname by Tom D. Spain.

Siblings: Mary Ann*, Elizabeth*, Thomas Dixon Spain (died at 4 yrs), William Banks Spain**

*Assuming that Thomas Burkill Spain and Mary are Thomas D. Spain’s parents….

Vicar of Long Sutton. Pamphleteer and Organiser for the Temperance Movement. Visited America and corresponded with Bill Hickock.

In 1923 was made Companion to the Memorial of Merit of King Charles the Martyr (ref. here)

Son of Thomas Dixon-Spain, of Lincoln;
born at Lincoln, April 4th, 1846;
educated privately by Professor Judd, in Horncastle, and in Westminster.

from DJS:
“1871 census: At Burgh le Marsh, Lincs – Thomas Dixon Spain age 26 Schoolmaster. Elizabeth DS age 23 Wife. Lizzie Madeline age 8 months Daughter. Selina Barker age 20 Visitor (neice of Thomas). Address appears to be the schoolhouse.”

Ordained Deacon, 1885, Priest, 1886, by the Bishop of Bath and Wells;
Curate of Twerton-on-Avon, 1885-93;
Organising Secretary, Church of England Temperance Society for Lichfield, 1874-85; for Bath and Wells,1885-95; for Lincoln, 1895-1907;

Rector of Rand St. Oswald, 1895-1906;
Vicar of Long Sutton since 1906 (Crockford’s say, from Easter 1907);
Chairman of the House Committee, and Vice-Chairman of the Boarding-Out Committee of the Lincoln Union;
Commissioner of Taxes;
Chaplain of St. John’s Masonic Lodge, Lichfield, and the Lodge of Honour, Bath;
Author of many pamphlets upon great social questions, and of the Practical Guide of the Church of England Temperance Society, the well known hand-book of temperance in the Church.
Married twice, and had issue five sons and two daughters;

Thomas’s book was “A practical guide to the formation & management of parochial branches of the Church of England Temperance Society.”
Imprint: Westminster: Church of England Temperance Society, 1892.
71 03144

While at Bath and Wells during the 1890s, Thomas’s household was recorded in the 1891 census:


This record is courtesy of David Secker

NOTE: Thomas is listed here as “Thomas D. Spain” leading to speculation that the ‘Dixon’ was more of a middle name than part of the surname. Perhaps this was a short-coming in the census rather than actual usage. The publication of the Temperance book in 1892, a year later, would seem to suggest the correct form.

Thomas’s obituary from the Lincolnshire Free Press:

First half of Thomas's Obituary Second half of Thomas's Obituary

Thomas’s grave, present day, courtesy David John Secker:


The grave of Thomas Dixon-Spain

The grave of Thomas Dixon-Spain


  1. David secker
    Posted August 24, 2009 at 4:38 pm | Permalink

    Vicar of Long Sutton from Easter 1907. Retired in 1924. Crockford’s Directory records him as still alive in 1925 and residing at ‘Duns House’, Woodhall Spa, Lincs.

  2. Admin
    Posted August 25, 2009 at 11:11 am | Permalink

    Ah, maybe there’s been a transposition of retirement and death in Thomas’s dates — I’ll reflect that in the main page. Interesting that he lived at Duns House … we now live at Dunans House!

  3. David Secker
    Posted September 1, 2009 at 8:01 pm | Permalink

    Died 25th March 1925 aged 79 (death registered in the Horncastle registration district which includes Woodhall Spa.)

  4. kate Rayner
    Posted November 12, 2013 at 3:49 am | Permalink

    Hello. I am Kate Rayner, grandaughter of Joan Dixon-Spain. As a child she used to tell me of an ancestor who was a vicar, who leapt over the garden gate to propose to his son’s fiance, and married her. Could this be him??

  5. Charles Dixon-Spain
    Posted February 17, 2014 at 6:10 am | Permalink

    Now that is a story I have never come across – how wonderful!

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