NL GenWeb

Conception Bay North


Information on John Holmes (1790s through 1810s)
Adams Cove, Conception Bay, Newfoundland

In the course of reading various materials, I have come across several references to a Mr. John HOLMES of Adams Cove. These items may or not refer to the same individual. But although the sources of information are disparate, there appears to be a certain continuity of story-line. I thought I would post the information in the event that another researcher may be able to tie it together better with other information.
Frederick M. Swed, Jr.
Madison, Wisconsin
The records were transcribed by FRED SWED JR in June 2000. While I have endeavored to be as correct as humanly possible, there may be typographical errors.

Date Event Source of Information
John HOLMES occupies a fishing room in Adams Cove that he received "by deed of gift from his mother." (This would imply that his mother was still alive, and father was deceased.)

1805 Plantation Book
In Harbor Grace Surrogate Court, John and Grace HOLMES are sued "for recovering a Book Debt for Goods sold and Delivered in the year 1791 – amounting to Twenty-Eight pounds." The author states that John and Grace are husband and wife (which makes the lawsuit unique), but since the year in which the debt occurred was 1791, I wonder if Grace is the mother of John, who turned over the fishing room to him in that year (perhaps already in debt.) In any event, the suit is settled by the Holmes agreeing to pay off the debt by a 6-year mortgage on their fishing room.

"Hope and Deception in Conception Bay", Sean T. Cadigan, University of Toronto Press, 1995, p. 72.
John HOLMES is resident at Adams Cove.

1805 Plantation Book
The year of John HOLMES’ death. Mr. Holmes is discussed at length in a letter by a Wesleyan missionary, John Walsh. The letter was posted from Blackhead on Oct. 20, 1819. He was described as the eldest son. His mother was still living, and she in turn was described as the "first fruit of Mr. Laurance Cougland’s labors." This apparently is a reference to a religious conversion accomplished by Rev. Laurence Coughlan, Wesleyan missionary to Harbor Grace and Conception Bay during the period 1766 to 1773. (Thus, the elder Mrs. HOLMES would have been born sometime prior to 1766 and resident in the vicinity.)

United Church Archives, Toronto. Collection of missionary letters on microfilm, 78.128C MIC D.8.1, roll #2.

© Fred Swed Jr. & NL GenWeb
Conception Bay North, Northern District