John Miles

John Miles (or Myles) - His family came from Llanigon in Brecon, and he was born in 1621 at Newton which is thought to probably have been a hamlet near Clifford, Herefordshire.

He is thought to have served as chaplain with the Roundheads (Parliament's forces) in South Wales. He also served as a trier in the Commission of Triers, a 38-member administrative commission established by Oliver Cromwell. It was then when he approved the Propagation of the Gospel in Wales Act of 1650.

It was around the time of the beheading of Charles I that he was baptized at a Baptist church in London and was trained for the ministry. His mission in Wales involved him baptizing 261 believers. He established the Baptist congregation in Hay-on-Wye in 1649, and other places where churches were planted include Caermarthen, Ilston, Abergavenny and more.

At the Restoration of the monarchy, Miles and his preachers had to surrender their livings. Miles emigrated to America and founded the town of Swansea in Massachusetts and organised the Baptist church there in which he pastored for twenty years.

At one point he had to flee from Indians during King Philip's War. The war was named so as New England was fighting on the side of the Wampanoag whose chief who adopted the name Philip due to his friendly relations between his father and the Mayflower Pilgrims, and had maintained a long-standing alliance with the colonists.

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