A Brief Early History of the Church of England in Random, Trinity Bay

By Leslie J. Dean, November 2018

St Alban’s Church, Gooseberry Cove c1955 with the old school behind the church.

The origin of the Church of England presence in the Random Region can be traced to the permanent settlement of its oldest community, Heart’s Ease Beach (Harts Ease), circa 1750 as an offshoot of Trinity, the historical mercantile centre of the Trinity Bay fishery. The Church of England was the only church with an official presence in Trinity Bay at that time and was served by one resident minister (Rev. Balfour) headquartered at St. Paul’s Church at Trinity. Over the 1753-1800 period a number of church records related to Heart’s Ease Beach residents appear in the Trinity church records relative to a number of seasonal residents and that of its first permanent family, John and Grace Baker and their immediate descendants. We can assume that they would have travelled to Trinity by boat whenever their religious needs arose to attend services and have family members baptized, married, or interred. There is no known record of any Church of England minister visiting Heart’s Ease Beach over this period but infrequent visits may have occurred.

One of the first recorded Church of England baptisms recorded for Heart’s Ease Beach is that of Elizabeth Baker a daughter of John (Sr) and Grace Baker who was baptized at St. Paul’s at Trinity on October 14, 1758. The 1753 census indicates they had four children by this date; two boys and two girls. The deaths of John and Grace Baker, probably over the 1775-1790 period, are not recorded in the St. Paul’s Anglican Church parish records which date to 1753 but this was not unusual for the period for a variety of reasons. It is believed, however, that they were both interred in St. Paul’s cemetery at Trinity as were a number of their family including possibly a son Joseph in 1776, a grandson John of their son John (Jr) in 1784,  and their daughter-in-law  Elizabeth, wife of John (Jr) in 1784 as well. The baptisms of at least 14 other children of John Baker (Jr) and his first wife Elizabeth (Spurrell) Rogers and his second wife, a widow, Mary Piercey of New Perlican, also appear in St. Paul’s records over the 1778-1808 period. John Baker (Jr) died at Heart’s Ease Beach in 1808 and was interred at Trinity. His second wife, Mary, died at Heart’s Ease Beach and was interred at Trinity in 1839 and had remarried to Charles Pitcher (Jr) in 1813.

Another interesting pre-1790 Church of England family at Heart’s Ease Beach was that of Robert James Pinson (Pinsent) and Elizabeth (Suley) Pinson (Pinsent) who were married at St. Paul’s in Trinity on October 4, 1760. It is not known when they moved to Heart’s Ease Beach where James died in early August, 1788 and was interred at Trinity on August 10, 1788. It is believed they had at least five sons and two daughters born over the 1761-1776 period. The youngest, Benjamin, was baptized at New Perlican in 1793 at the age of 16 years after the passing of his father. Elizabeth Pinsent died in 1822. The well-known Newfoundland- born actor Gordon Pinsent is a direct descendent of this James and Elizabeth Pinson (Pinsent) of Heart’s Ease Beach.

Over the 1800-1825 period a number of other individuals primarily from the Heart’s Content, New Perlican and Winterton area resided at Heart’s Ease Beach on either a seasonal or permanent basis. They included members of the Hull, George and Langer families from Heart’s Content, the Hiscock family from Trinity and Winterton (Scilly Cove), and the Warren, Pitcher and Delaney families of New Perlican. John Dodge from Trinity, through a relationship with Mary Baker, was the father of Robert Baker Dodge who was born at Heart’s Ease Beach in 1811. This John Dodge died at Trinity in 1841 and was the patriarch of the Dodge family of Heart’s Ease Beach even though he did not marry Mary Baker, daughter of John Baker (Jr). All of these families are believed to have been members of the Church of England during this period. James Baker Langer was born at Heart’s Ease Beach in 1807 of Thomas Langer of Heart’s Content and Mary Baker of the former settlement but they did not marry.

The second Church of England church in Trinity Bay was erected at Heart’s Content in 1821 (one source says 1814) and was consecrated in 1827 by Bishop Inglis of Nova Scotia and Newfoundland.   This was followed by other Church of England churches built at Scilly Cove, New Perlican and New Harbour over the next decade or more. These four communities were predominately Church of England and through church, family and marriage connections the residents of Heart’s Ease Beach maintained a close connection with them. Over the 1821-1865 period Church of England ministers from St. Mary’s Parish at Heart’s Content made visits to Heart’s Ease Beach and from 1865-1880  Church of England residents of Fox Harbour (Southport), Heart’s Ease Beach, Gooseberry Cove, George’s Cove, Butter Cove and St. Jone’s Without were primarily served by the New Harbour parish. Nevertheless, the extended Baker family of Heart’s Ease Beach in particular had a direct association with St. Paul’s Church at Trinity until around 1865. This likely reflected the Baker family Trinity roots and their long relationship with Trinity merchants such as the Lesters, Garlands and Slades. John and Elizabeth Hodgion from Trinity resided at Heart’s Ease Beach over the 1825-1830 period and their daughter, Nahomi, was baptized in the Methodist Church at Hant’s Harbour in 1828. They may have been the only Methodists at Heart’s Ease.

In 1827 Bishop Inglis of Nova Scotia appointed Deacon Otto Weeks of Nova Scotia to the St. Mary’s Parish at Heart’s Content which also included New Perlican, Scilly Cove, Heart’s Delight and New Harbour. Deacon Weeks may have also served Heart’s Ease Beach as well before he departed Heart’s Content in 1830 under clouded circumstances. During his three year stay it is known that residents of Heart’s Ease Beach had entrusted him with seed funding they had collected to commence the construction of a church at Heart’s Ease Beach but their dream had to await the erection of their school chapel in 1859. Little is known about the first school chapel other than an 1876 description which noted that “a hundred feet up the hill over the beach is the church, in the form of a large ordinary house, isolated and conspicuous.” Unfortunately, the St. Mary’s Parish records for this early period were lost in a fire which destroyed its Heart’s Content parsonage circa 1880 and which also included Heart’s Ease Beach and nearby Random community entries relative to their early linkage with the Heart’s Content parish.

It is not certain when the first Church of England cemetery in the Heart’s Ease Beach area was consecrated but it is possible that this occurred over the 1825-1850 period. This old overgrown Church of England cemetery is located underneath Jack Baker’s Hill and overlooking Heart’s Ease Beach where some local residents were interred until circa 1880. It was located behind and above the first 1859 Church of England school chapel that was located on the north side of the beach. At least two headstones are located there but have fallen and lie covered in the mossy underbrush, one of which may be of Abraham Barrett of Barrett’s, near Butter Cove, who died around 1880. When the second Church of England church was erected at the “Crossroads” circa 1880 a new and much larger and more accessible cemetery was opened off the road to Southport above Dodge’s (Heart’s Ease Beach) Pond.

It is unlikely that any residents of Heart’s Ease Beach were interred in a very old burial ground that was located adjacent to a little beach on its south side behind the old potato gardens. This cemetery was referred to by locals as the “Old French Graveyard” but its origins are lost with time. It was quite visible in the early 1900s and, from time-time to time human remains were observed as it gradually eroded into the sea over a period of years. One written description of this burial site referred to swords and old bows and arrows being found and concluded it was the site of an early encounter between Beothucks and early European seasonal fishermen. A small band of Beothucks was observed at Heart’s Ease Beach as late as 1615 by crew members of Sir Richard Whitbourne’s fishing ship, the Seraphine.

There were several Church of England family burial grounds opened around the 1855- 1865 period at Little Harbour, likely by the Jacobs/Norris families and at Clay Pitts by the Vardy and Benson families as well as that of the James Vey family of Long Beach around 1868. The first Little Harbour burial site was located by the Batt’s Cove path west of the R.C. cemetery at Batt’s Cove and just east of the new Salvation Army cemetery where a member of the Dodge family is known to have observed wooden grave markers in the 1940s. Some years earlier a member of the Jacobs family is reported to have come across a fallen headstone while cutting firewood in the same area. It is known that a seven year old son, William Henry of Thomas and Mary (Adey) Jacobs died at Little Harbour on December 27, 1860 and that his body was exhumed in the spring and reinterred on May 5, 1861 at Bay de Verde, the ancestral Jacobs family home. This was one of the first recorded deaths in the Southwest Arm above Southport during this early settlement period. Several years later after the James Drover cousins settled at Hodge’s Cove one or more of their children died and were taken to Southport for burial either in the Methodist Cemetery there or in the Church of England cemetery at Heart’s Ease Beach.

After 1875 most consecrated church cemeteries were associated with the construction of community churches but the present Church of England cemetery at Little Harbour predated the dedication of St. Peter’s Anglican Church at Little Harbour circa 1925. There is another small burial site located on an overgrown meadow at the very bottom of Ford’s Harbour where several wooden crosses could be observed in the early 1940s. A former resident of Loreburn who saw these markers thought they might have been the graves of several children of Church of England residents from either House Cove or Little Harbour who had winter tilts at Ford’s Harbour in the late 1800s or early 1900s. There is another family cemetery off the Southport-Gooseberry Cove road with a marble headstone to the memory of Elizabeth (Seward) Smith, the first wife of Thomas Smith (Jr) of Southport, and their infant daughter Lillian both of whom passed away in 1887. Elizabeth was a daughter of Richard (Dickie) Seward of Gooseberry Cove who erected this headstone and who passed away at Gooseberry Cove in 1942 at the age of 101 years.  It is believed that family differences arising from this mixed marriage led to their burial at this isolated location.

The Rev. Henry Lind from the Heart’s Content Church of England parish was another member of the clergy to visit Heart’s Ease Beach, Fox Harbour and Gooseberry Cove during this early period. In 1846, following his visit to these communities, he petitioned the Newfoundland Legislature for funding to construct a road connecting the three communities which were only connected by a footpath at that time. In 1863 funding amounting to $75 was provided for road building between Fox Harbour and Clay Pitts and $50 was also approved to upgrade the footpath between Heart’s Ease Beach and Gooseberry Cove. In August, 1859 the Rev. Henry Petley (Sr), who was a Missionary for the Society of the Propagation of the Gospel of the Church of England was the resident minister at Heart’s Content, made an extensive visit throughout the entire Random Region including the Northwest Arm, Smith’s Sound, Ireland’s Eye, and Heart’s Ease Beach. His “pilot” for this visit was Moses Spurrell (Sr) of Butter Cove who had taken up permanent residence there from Trinity around 1850.

Most of the early settlers of White Rock, Burgoyne’s Cove and the Brittania area settled there from Trinity and the Bay de Verde area in the early 1850s and were members of the Church of England. Ireland’s Eye, which had been settled earlier, was also predominately Church of England and was part of the St. Paul’s Parish at Trinity. At the time of Rev. Petley’s 1859 visit to these communities the only church that had been constructed was a small school chapel at Ireland’s Eye in 1854. However, his visit provided the impetus for the construction of a number of Church of England community churches over the following two decades including those at White Rock, Monroe, Burgoyne’s Cove and Upper Lance Cove.

Rev. Petley was invited to offer prayers in a number of predominately Methodist family homes in the Northwest Arm he visited including those of Methodist layreaders Hezekiah Blundell of Reekes (Hickman’s) Harbour and Scholar John Tilley of Upper Shoal Harbour. He noted that the only individual representing “the king of men” who had visited the first Church of England settlers in the lower Smith’s Sound area was the sheriff from Harbour Grace (Mr. Thomas Godden) who paid a visit last spring (1858) and conducted a service in the home of Mr. G. Bowering, the first known service conducted in that area. At Burgoyne’s Cove, William Carberry (Sr), who hosted Rev. Petley, had an old Englishman, Mr. Steele with him who was the only resident who could read and “has been in the habit of reading part of the services on Sunday”. Mr. Carberry wished to have a burial ground consecrated but Rev. Petley later noted that “as this was beyond my power, and as performing a partial service might have seemed to fix a station for a church, I thought it best to ask him to wait for the present”.

Rev. Petley was also invited to visit Ireland’s Eye by one of its residents where, Rev. Petley observed, “there is a little school-church, in which, if report speaks correct, psalmody is unknown. But as this (Ireland’s Eye) is outside my Mission (of Heart’s Content) I could only say I had no time for such a visit”. He did visit Rider’s Harbour where he held a service in the home of Mr. Bayly (Bailey) and christened two of his children, “sponsors for whom and the majority of the congregation were from some boats (fishing) lying in the harbour”. After several days Rev. Petley returned to Gooseberry Cove with his pilot, Moses Spurrell, in his little boat.

Rev. Petley was born in Kent, England in 1815 and was a member of an old English landed gentry family whose ancestral home was at Halstead, Kent. One of his ancestors was a Member of the British Parliament. He married Elizabeth George of Dildo in 1869 and they had five children including Rev. Henry Petley (Jr.) who served on the Random South Mission from 1893 to 1895.  After he married he developed a cottage estate at Dildo which was landscaped with a variety of shrubbery and trees. He and his family spent several years in England around 1875 before returning to Dildo where he died in 1898. Rev. Petley attended Oxford University and the writer has a small leather bound gilt edged book that he owned and signed while attending Oxford in 1838.

The first Church of England school chapel at Heart’s Ease Beach opened in 1859 under school teacher, layreader, Sunday school teacher, surrogate doctor, and Justice of the Peace, George Vardy of Clay Pitts. He was a native of Burton Green, Hampshire, England and immigrated to Grate’s Cove around 1839 before moving to Clay Pitts with his family around 1854. He walked almost daily from Clay Pitts to Heart’s Ease Beach for a period of twenty years. In an 1860 comment by the Protestant inspector of schools upon Mr. Vardy’s appointment as a teacher he noted : “I presume the master is engaged partly for the purpose of leading religious services on Sunday in a locality that can seldom have the visit of a clergyman”. His annual salary in 1865 was 30 pounds (approx. $100). One of his daughters, Eliza Jane, was also a Church of England school teacher in Random in the 1880s. She completed secondary school at Trinity in 1880 and teacher training at St. John’s in 1882. She married Edmund Seward of Gooseberry Cove shortly thereafter and around 1886 they took up residence at Fox Harbour (Southport) before moving to Clarenville circa 1895. George Vardy passed away suddenly in January, 1882 and was interred in the Clay Pitts family cemetery at the age of 64 years. His wife, Mary (Martin) Vardy passed away at Clarenville in 1895 and her burial service at Clay Pitts was conducted by layreader William Balsom of Gooseberry Cove/Georges Cove. By the time of his death Mr. Vardy had conducted funeral services for over 130 individuals of the Church of England and Methodist faiths.

The population of the entire Random Region increased significantly over the 1860-1900 period through an influx of settlers from older communities in Trinity Bay and the north side of Conception Bay. It increased from 162 in 1836 to 1826 in 1874 and to 4322 by 1901. In 1874 there were 965 Methodists, 814 members of the Church of England and 46 Roman Catholic Church members residing throughout the entire Random Region including Southwest Arm, Northwest Arm, Smith’s Sound and Random Island. By 1901 these numbers had increased to 2476 Methodists, 1277 Church of England members, 112 Roman Catholics, 47 Congregational Church members, 6 Salvationists and 1 Presbyterian.  

After 1860 new communities were established throughout the Region including Little Heart’s Ease, House Cove, Capelin Cove, Hodge’s Cove, Island Cove, Long Beach, Queen’s Cove, North West Brook, Ivany’s Cove, Northern Bight (Hillview), Hatchet Cove, St. Jone’s Within and Long Cove (Loreburn) in the Southwest Arm of Random. This population increase resulted in Methodist and Church of England churches being erected in many of these communities. During this period a new replacement Church of England church for the 1859 school chapel at Heart’s Ease Beach was erected at the “Crossroads” on the Southport-Gooseberry Cove road in 1879-80.

Reverends H. Taylor and J. Godden conducted a service in the partially constructed Church of England church at Hodge’s Cove in August, 1879. The initial services at Hodge’s Cove circa 1865 were held in a fishing store loft. They also conducted a service in a partially finished school chapel at Northern Bight (Hillview). It is believed that Church of England and Methodist residents conducted shared services in the community’s “Union” or interdenominational school which was built around 1874. In 1890 Rev. Romilly noted that he conducted service in the nice school at Northern Bight which also functions as a chapel and that the old school chapel (Union) was torn down in 1890 and a new Church of England church is being built.   A Church of England school chapel was completed at St. Jones Without in 1892. In Smith’s Sound new Church of England churches were also nearing completion at White Rock, Burgoyne’s Cove, and Upper Lance Cove in 1889. A school chapel may have been erected at Monroe in 1879.

After Rev. Petley’s 1859 visit to the Northwest Arm of Random the Church of England obtained a nine acre land grant for church development purposes at Petley’s Brook at the northern end of Clarenville and a small school chapel was erected there much later. By the late 1800’s Clarenville was a predominately Methodist community with the Salvation Army having established a presence there in 1892. A small number of Church of England families resided there by 1910, including the Long family from Champneys and members of Edmund Seward’s family from Fox Harbour/ Gooseberry Cove who passed away at Clarenville in 1905. These families were under the pastoral care of the White Rock (Smith’s Sound) Mission and services were conducted in the dining room of the Central Hotel at Clarenville which was owned by the Long family. Around 1922 a building was renovated to serve as a Church of England school chapel which served its congregational needs until 1965 when a new St. Mary’s Anglican Church was dedicated at Clarenville.

By the late-1870s the leadership of the Church of England in Newfoundland became increasingly concerned over its increasing church membership in the Random Region not having access to a resident minister(s). It lamented the fact that the Methodist Church had three resident ministers serving its large membership and that the Church of England could only provide infrequent ministerial pastoral care from outside the Random Region. Bishop Llewelyn Jones succeeded Bishop Aubrey Spencer in early 1878 and later that fall Bishop Jones made what may have been the first visit by a Church of England Bishop to Random. He visited Smith’s Sound and the Southwest Arm (Hodge’s Cove, Long Beach and Northern Bight) likely in the Church yacht “The Lavrock” and again in September, 1880 but it appears he may not have visited Heart’s Ease Beach or Gooseberry Cove during his initial visits. Bishop Jones did return in 1882 and 1884 and held confirmation classes at the “Crossroads” (Gooseberry Cove) in the new church of St. Albans the Martyr and at Hodge’s Cove and at Long Beach, and Northern Bight. Samuel Benson, a son of David Benson, was a Church of England layreader at Northern Bight during this time.  

Over the 1878-1880 period visits were made to Random by Reverend Murray from St. Mary’s Parish at Heart’s Content; by Rev. Holland Taylor of Queen’s College in St. John’s; and by Rev. John Godden from the Harbour Grace South Church of England Parish. The joint visit by Reverends Taylor and Godden in August, 1879 lasted three weeks during which they held thirty four services throughout the Southwest Arm and Smith’s Sound. In commenting on their 1879 visit to Long Beach they noted that “the women of the community made a commitment they would press the menfolk to commence a school chapel and they would clear a piece of land for this purpose”. This Church of England school chapel is believed to have opened in 1880. Construction was underway on a new church (St. Mark’s) at Long Beach in August, 1898 with expectations that it would be finished by the fall of 1899. It was consecrated in 1907 before which time John Vey (Sr) and George Barfitt (Sr) were community layreaders for many years. They were followed by George Barfitt’s two sons John and Llewelyn Barfitt.

In 1880 the Church of England residents throughout Random welcomed the formal establishment of the Random Mission which encompassed Southwest Arm, Northwest Arm, Random Island, and Smith’s Sound. This new Mission, which first appeared in the Trinity Bay Deanery in 1882, was initially headquartered at the “Crossroads”, Gooseberry Cove and its first resident minister is believed to have been the Rev. J.S.S. Sanderson who served the Mission from October, 1880 to May, 1882. Other pre-1900 ministers who served on the Mission included the Rev. Henry Petley (Jr) who served from 1893-1897 and the Rev. Llewelyn Romilly from 1887-1891. In October, 1893, Rev. Petley’s father, Rev. Henry (Sr) accompanied his son to the church at Heart’s Ease (Gooseberry Cove) and baptized several individuals. Rev. Romilly noted in the Diocesan Magazine of July, 1892 that on May 23, 1892 he held a service in Mrs. Smith’s kitchen at Island Cove. The first Church of England church, which also served as a school, was built at Island Cove around 1905. Its residents were affiliated with the Hodge’s Cove Church of England congregation before this date. The Island Cove church school was removed after its residents resettled in 1961.

Likewise, small Church of England school chapels were erected at North West Brook in the late 1880s and possibly at Queen’s Cove in the early 1900s. St. Aiden’s Anglican Church was built at Queen’s Cove in 1958 and All Saints at North West Brook in 1962. At North West Brook the small Anglican community previously worshipped for many years in a chapel attached to their school. Before these latter dates the Anglican membership at Northwest Brook, Ivany’s Cove and Queen’s Cove had a close association with their Hillview St. Michael and All Angels Church counterparts and some of these community residents were interred at Hillview. The first small St. Stephen’s Church or school chapel erected at Hatchet Cove is believed to have been constructed around 1909 before which time some members of the Bishop and Lambert families were associated with the St. Mark’s congregation at Long Beach and several residents were interred there. By the early 1940’s services were conducted in a replacement school to which a small church extension was made circa 1940. It served the Hatchet Cove Anglican congregation until a new joint United Church/Anglican Church sanctuary was dedicated at Hatchet Cove in 1973.

The Random Mission’s population continued to increase and in order to meet this increase it was divided into Random South and Smith’s Sound in 1898 with a resident minister on each Mission at Gooseberry Cove (Heart’s Ease) and White Rock in Smith’s Sound. The writer’s paternal grandmother, Jessie (Dalton) Dean was born at White Rock in 1882 and was confirmed there on August 2, 1900. She was a cousin of Bishop William White of Trinity who was appointed the first native born Church of England Bishop in 1918. She married Thomas Dean of Southport and along with her three daughters paid frequent visits to the last two Church of England residents of Heart’s Ease Beach, Joseph and Mary (Short) Dodge, before they passed away in 1923 and 1924 respectively by which time Mrs. Dodge was blind.

In August, 1889, Rev. Romilly made a pastoral visit in the Church ship “The Crusader” to the outlying communities of St. Jones Without, Upper Deer Harbour, and Garrett’s Cove where services were conducted in private homes/cottages. St. Jones Without had been settled primarily by former residents (Greens, Hiscocks, Pitchers, and Bantons) of Winterton in the post-1860 period and was the largest of these three communities. Rev. Romilly noted that there was only one family (probably from Gooseberry Cove) residing at Strong’s Tickle in Upper Deer Harbour and that he held two family services in the owner’s cottage sitting room. The following day (August 15, 1889) he left for Garrett’s Cove where there was also one resident family (likely that of Stephen and Leah (Janes) Seward) of New Perlican and “quite a number of fishermen from New Perlican who fish here during the fishing season”. Rev. Romilly commented that the 7 p.m. evening service was “quite the sight” with 40 men, women and children assembled in the small kitchen and porch and “that two small lamps gave dim light and the singing was most hearty”.

In November, 1889 Rev. Romilly, who resided at the Church of England parsonage at Gooseberry Cove with his family, wrote in the Diocesan Magazine: “The Mission of Random includes 24 settlements spread over 150 miles and is unique in Newfoundland for it embraces all sorts and conditions of men; Church of England, Roman Catholic, Methodists, Congregationalists, one Presbyterian and two-three Calvinists; a motley crew indeed!” He then commented on the Sunday school retreat held at the “Crossroads” at Gooseberry Cove on September 9, 1889 which was attended by 150 children and later that evening some 300 persons of all ages sat down to tea”.

After 1900 the Church of England continued to experience further growth within the entire Random Region. At Hodge’s Cove its first small church measuring 25 feet in length with two short ranks of seats was torn down in 1903. It was replaced with a much larger St. Mary’s Church which opened in late 1906 or early 1907 which had a roof of slate quarried near Hickman’s Harbour and three ranks of pews with two aisles. It became to be known as “The Large Church in Random”.  Around 1912 a new parsonage was erected near the church and it is believed the headquarters of the Random South Mission was then transferred from Gooseberry Cove to Hodge’s Cove which was a more central location for the Mission.

Layreaders at Hodge’s Cove included James Drover by the 1880s and John Peddle around 1900. About this time the Heart’s Ease (Gooseberry Cove) Parish of the Church of England became known as Great Heart’s Ease and encompassed Fox Harbour, Gooseberry Cove, Butter Cove, Heart’s Ease Beach, George’s Cove, St. Jones’s Without, Garrett’s Cove, Clay Pitts, and Little Harbour. Layreaders who followed George Vardy after his passing in 1882 included William Balsom, Moses Spurrell (Jr), Charles  Pitcher, Arthur Hiscock, William Henry Seward, and Moses Seward.

The population of the entire Random Region had stabilized at 4750 residents by the early 1920s because of a variety of social and economic related reasons including out-migration and the decline of the region’s relatively large Labrador schooner fishery from 74 vessels in 1901 to 32 in 1921; the decline of its slate quarrying and brick making industries; and a reduction in lumber production. By this latter date, however, a diversified economy and a well-structured institutionalized society had emerged which was grounded by its dominant Methodist and Church of England faith communities and much smaller Roman Catholic, Congregational and Salvation Army faith communities.

The evolution of each faith community within the Random Region by 1921 represented important chapters in its overall history and is a legacy to individuals who were driven by a strong faith and a determined sense of purpose. This brief early history of a the Church of England (Anglican) presence in the Random Region illustrates the many challenges it faced at meeting the pastoral care needs of each  community and its residents in a rugged but appealing landscape. These challenges could not have been met without the dedication and commitment of its lay community and its local lay leadership concurrent with the effective settlement of the entire Random Region in the post-1825 period.


(Note: The writer has made every effort to ensure the historical accuracy of this summary paper but fully recognizes that it may be subject to correction. L. J. Dean)