Rachael sent me this:
Fragments, snippets of things continue to come our way. Some of them add to the story. [cut ...]
Barbour, Russell and Paton were not the only active evangelists among readers of the Herald of the Morning. William Carlton Irish, “a kind of traveling evangelist or itinerate exhorter,” was born in Ontario, Canada, January 5, 1846. We first meet him, date uncertain, preaching in Canada across the border from Detroit. Late in 1875 or early in 1876 he crossed into the United States preaching southward from Detroit into the American Mid-West. The Emporia, Kansas, News of January 23, 1876, reported his name and message: “The long-haired street preacher who was here recently, is named Wm. Carlton Irish, and he fixes the end of the world in 1878. We are glad it’s so near, for we always had a desire to live to see that event.”
The 1878 message is, as far as our research informs us, unique to the Barbourite movement. Before 1876 ended Irish had switched faiths, accepting baptism into the Reorganized Latter-day Saints, and was ordained a priest in that faith in October 1876. Subsequently, he left the Reorganized church and moved Westward. He is one of a number who flirted with, even preached, Barbourite or Watch Tower faith who did not persist. Included in this list are Feltwell, who drifted into Christian Science, S. I. Hickey, Presbyterian clergyman turned Watch Tower evangelist but who turned to Universalism, and others.
We lose track of Irish after 1876, except for a notice in The San Francisco, California, Morning Call of October 3, 1893. Under the headline “An Insane Street Preacher” we read: “William Carlton Irish, a street preacher, was arrested yesterday morning and locked up in the City Prison. It was evident that he was suffering from religious mania and will be taken before the experts on Insanity for examination.” As Hickey was later, he was arrested and thought insane or senile because of his street preaching. California law enforcement might have found better things to do than harass street preachers.