Stephen Dodge (1910-1951)

First some facts…

Stephen Dodge (Photo courtesy his great nephew Norm Bailey)

Stephen Dodge, youngest son of Robert J. and Mary Elizabeth (Norris) Dodge, was born on February 12, 1910 in Little Harbour. He became a teacher with the Church of England school board and taught at a few communities within Southwest Arm:

1939-40 – Butter Cove – Church of England
1940-41 – Black Brook – Church of England
1941-42 – Island Cove – Church of England
1945-46 – Long Beach – Church of England
1946-47 – Butter Cove – Church of England
1947-48 – Hodge’s Cove – Church of England

As was the case in that time-period, teachers also acted as lay readers in the communities where they taught. Looking at the Southwest Arm Church of England records, I found the following entries where Stephen served as the lay reader for 19 baptisms and five burials. These records imply that Stephen also taught in Hatchet Cove and Little Habour.

Baptisms (as some of these people may still be living I will just list the year and community)
November 1929 – Hatchet Cove
January 1930 – Hatchet Cove
June 1933 – Little Harbour
June 1933 – Little Harbour
August 1936 – Little Harbour
May 1937 – Butter Cove
June 1938 – Little Harbour
September 1938 – St. Jones Without
August 1939 – Butter Cove
September 1940 – Black Brook
August 1944 – Little Harbour
March 1946 – Long Beach
September 1946 – Butter Cove
February 1947 – Gooseberry Cove
June 1947 – Little Harbour
June 1947 – Butter Cove
June 1947 – Little Harbour
November 1947 – Little Heart’s Ease
November 1947 – Hodge’s Cove

1936 – Stephen was a witness to a marriage in St. Jones Without

1936 – Ernest Smith, Little Harbour, only 2 ½ hours old
1939 – Delilah Green, St. Jones Without, 9 months old
1941 – Mary Kathleen Vey, Long Beach, 1 month old
1945 – Mark Green, St. Jones Without, 93 years 9 months old
1947 – Melvin John Lambert, Southport, 7 weeks old

From these church records, it is felt that Stephen may have also taught in Hatchet Cove and Little Harbour. Stephen was known as a quiet man. He had a disability; he walked with a limp, but it certainly didn’t stop him. He regularly walked from him home in Little Harbour to his teaching position in St. Jones Without!

Stephen died of appendicitis on 16 March 1951 at the young age of 41 years. He is buried between his two brothers, John and James Dodge, in St. Peter’s Anglican Cemetery, Little Harbour.


Memories of Uncle Stephen Dodge by Eric Dodge

Stephen Dodge and his niece Mary Elizabeth (Penney) Bailey (Photo courtesy Norm Bailey)

As I think of my Uncle Stephen Dodge, I remember him as being a smartly dressed man. I recall that whenever he was sitting or relaxing, he always enjoyed having a book to read. He must have had a love for reading and learning and had a desire to teach others.

As a young man, he taught school with the Church of England School Board in a number of different places. He was considered to be a smart man and had a wealth of knowledge. I do remember that he taught school in the small community of St. Jones Without. This meant that he regularly walked across the country to perform his duties as the school teacher. In addition to his teaching responsibilities, wherever he was teaching, he also served as a Lay Reader at the local church.  He had an excellent memory and rarely needed to read from the any of the Prayer Books or Hymn Books. Most of the material he knew by memory.  He was also a very gifted speaker. In the absence of the Minister, he often conducted church services especially at Christmas and Easter.

I remember attending the little church down the road in Little Heart’s Ease, with my sister, Ivy. Uncle Stephen was often the one who led the services.

He was well respected in the community.  People often came to him to have him write a letter for them, on some important issue. Or if someone received an important letter, they took it to Uncle Stephen to explain its contents. 

He was also given the responsibility of conducting funerals in the absence of the minister. I also recall that he was the one a lot of people depended upon to engrave name plates for the casket of their loved ones. He carefully formed the name, age and date of the individual.

He was only a young man when he passed away, but he was considered to be a very important person in our community.


Special thanks to Alma Whalen and Eric Dodge for this profile on their Uncle Stephen Dodge