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Notre Dame Bay Region ~ Twillingate District

Historical Information

St. Peter's Church

This information was suppied by GERALD YOUNG and was transcribed by NATALIE HYDE & STEPHEN BAKER, March 2001. While we have endeavored to be as correct as humanly possible, there may be typographical errors.
As reported in the Anglican Diocesan Magazine, August 1931

In the Vestry of St. Peter’s church is a printed copy of some extracts from the diary of Mr. Joseph Pearce. It is on those extracts we have to rely for what little we know of the early history of the building. To reproduce them here ought to help preserve interesting facts. Perhaps others will publish information about the building of their churches: We at any rate would like to know how near we come to having the oldest church in the Colony.

Wednesday, May 16th, 1838
A meeting of subscribers for the new church met this evening at the old church.

Nov. 6th, 1839
Mr. Andrew Pearce Sr. and a few people laid the foundation for the new church.

Sunday, Dec. 11th. 1842
Divine service held in the new church for first time, Rev. Chapman officiating.

Sunday, Jan. 29th, 1843
Rev. Chapman had evening service for the first time in the new church.

Friday, July 28th, 1843
Rev. Chapman and family left for England via St. John’s in Mr. Slade’s cutter.

Sept. 29th, 1843
Rev. Mr. Boone and family arrived to fill the vacancy made by the departure of Mr. Chapman.

Aug. 20th, 1844
Mr. Murphy getting crew to put the spire on the church tower.

Sept. 14th, 1844
Mr. Murphy put the vane on the church spire, painted it, and took the scaffolds down.

Nov. 2nd, 1844
Mr. Murphy finished the church; all carpentry work done and also primed with paint.

Jan 6th, 1845
Church completed and painted inside last Fall. Total cost of church 1000 pounds.

Thursday, July 3rd, 1845
Bishop field consecrated the new church, St. Peter’s Twillingate.

Aug. 20th, 1845
Mr. John Slade gave a splendid lot of brass branches and chandeliers to the church.

Aug. 24th, 1845
The chandeliers lighted for first time.

Quite recently Mr. F. W. Matthews of Poole, Dorset, wrote to say he had come across the following in an old newspaper.

“1846. Twillingate church, Newfoundland, was presented by Robert Slade with the magnificent brass Chandelier used in St. James’ Church, Poole, till the introduction of gas.”

We understand that, despite the discrepancy in names and dates, it is the same gift as the one referred to by Mr. Pearce. The “branches” are still on the walls, with lamps instead of candles - the lamps are of glass with a piece of brass tubing to fit into the candle socket. The chandeliers have since been replaced by others.

A chancel was added as a memorial to Mr. Edwin Duder who died in 1881, the cost being borne by his son.

To commemorate the Jubilee of the church, in 1905 a Pipe Organ was installed. A brass plate on the case gives the list of Incumbents up to that date: J. Chapman, T. Boone, F.R. Murray, R. Temple, A.B.S. Stirling.

This year we tried to keep both the Patronal Festival and the feast of the dedication. Quite a fair congregation gathered for the first evensong of St. Peter on Sunday evening. June 28th. On Monday the services were: Holy communion at 7, Matins at 10, Evensong and Intercessions at 8.. Many (though there should have been more) took advantage of the 10 o’clock Eucharist on Wednesday, July 1st. to remember before the Throne those who fell in the war and all other former worshippers now at rest. Friday, July 3rd, was a gloriously fine day. Quite early in the morning two strings of flags from the church tower to the corners of the cemetery and another on the Hall served as a reminder to everybody that it was a day to be noted---the 86th. Anniversary of the consecration of St. Peter’s church. Though we could wish to have seen more at the 8 o’clock Communion, yet we were very pleased to see so many in church for Evensong . The Rev. G. Martin, Incumbent of Herring Neck, preached on “Foundations.”

Continued on page 312,,,(page 312 missing)

“St.Peter’s Church Account Book 1884 - 1940”

The following is a list of Members of St. Peter’s Anglican Church, Twillingate, who paid PEW RENT in the Year 1886.

Joseph Anstey, Samuel Anstey, Stephen Anstey, Thomas Ashbourne, William Baird, Amos Blackler, James Blackler, M.M. Blackmore, John Boyde Sr., Mark Brett, Alfred Colbourne, Jerry Colbourne, John Clarke Jr., Robert Clarke, Widow Jane Cook, Mark Cook, Peter Cook, Henry Dalley, Edwin Duder, Benjamin Elliott & Sons, Levi Elliott, Matthew Elliott, Thomas J. Every, George Fifield, Alan Findlater, Samuel Fox, William Fox, P.& W. Freeman, J. French, Job Hamlin, Joseph Harbin, Henry Harbin, Mrs Hayden, Robert Hayden, Hitchcock & Blandford, J. Hodder, James Hodder, Frederick House, Edward Hudson, Samuel Inder, D & T Jeans, Robert Jeans, Samuel Jeans, John Lunnen, John Luther, James Manuel, Obeadiah Manuel, Titus Manuel, James May, Richard May & Bros., Charles Murcell, Esau Murray & Son, Charles Newman & Son, Frederick Newman, James Newman, Richard Newman, Samuel Newman, J.M.Nurse, F. Oakley, John W. Owen, Sargeant Patton, A.A.Pearce, Elias Peyton, James Peyton, Thomas Peyton, Adam & John Pond, John Pride, A. Purchase, James Purchase, John Purchase, Thomas Purchase, William & Ann Randell, George Rideout, James Rideout, John Rideout, John Roberts, Sam Roberts, Benjamin Rossiter, Robert Ryall, Dr. Stafford, John Spencer, Thomas Spencer, William Spencer & Sons, Dr. Sterling, Josiah Sterling, Mrs. Talbot, Sarah Taylor, Rev. R. Temple, J. Templeton, William Tizzard, William Tizzard Jr., Mrs Tucker, Eli Vatcher, George Vatcher, George Warr & Bros., Waterman & Co., Edward Wells, Henry Wells, Martha Wells, Philip Wells, Mrs. Noah Wheller, John White, G. Young & Brothers, Samuel Young, Simon Young,

Reference Historic St. Peter's Church, Twillingate, Newfoundland, a booklet commemorating the 150th anniversary of the church's first service, Dec 11, 1992.

The congregation of St. Peter's can trace its history back as far as 1814, when a request for a minister was sent to the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts. In 1816, Rev. John Leigh, the first resident minister, arrived in Twillingate.

A church building had already been started and was eventually consecrated in July, 1827 by the Bishop of Nova Scotia, The Right Reverend John Inglis.

By 1838, it was decided to build a new church and in 1839 the foundation was laid. On December 11, 1842 the first service was held and the church was consecrated on July 3, 1845 by Bishop Field.

St. Peter's Church is one of the oldest wooden churches in Newfoundland and is patterned from St. Jame's Church in Poole, England from where the chandeliers were purchased.

The bell was purchased by the people of all religious denominations as a Thanksgiving for the great seal harvest in the spring of 1862. The bell bears the inscription, "In memory of the Great Haul, 1862". The bell rang for the first time on December 25, 1863.

The pipe organ, which is used today, was erected in 1897 and was hand blown until an electric blower was installed in 1963.

St. Peter's Church also has five stained glass windows given in memory of our forebears.

Facts Re St. Peter's Anglican Church:

  • October 3, 1816 - First resident minister
  • May 16, 1838 - A meeting to build a new church
  • November 6, 1839 - Foundation was laid
  • December 11, 1842 - First service held
  • January 29, 1843 - First evening service held
  • November 2, 1844 - Church construction completed
  • January 6, 1845 - Church completed - cost 1000 pounds
  • July 3, 1845 - Church consecrated
  • August 20, 1845 - Brass branches and chandeliers donated and lit for the first time on August 28, 1845
  • August, 1846 - Two plaques donated - The Ten Commandments and The Lord's Prayer
  • December 25, 1863 - Bell rang for the first time
  • 1870 - Tower clock donated by the government
  • 1884 - Chancel was built in memory of Edwin Duder
  • 1897 - Present pipe organ installed
  • 1936 - New hymm boards donated
  • 1943 - Altar Cross donated
  • 1981 - First Ordination Service
  • December 11, 1992 - Fifteenth Anniversary of First Service

© 2001 Gerald Young, Natalie Hyde and NL GenWeb
Fogo / Twillingate District