Showing posts from September, 2019

No. 556 - Strickland - St Paul's Anglican Church - "A Stupendous Effort"

Strickland is a small isolated settlement in the hills above the River Dee, approximately 15 kilometres northwest of Ouse and the Lyell Highway. It was previously known as Saggy Flats before it was renamed after Sir Gerald Strickland, Governor of Tasmania (1904-9). St Paul’s Anglican church was built in 1910 by Mr Alexander Fyle. It was consecrated in March 1911 however no published report of the ceremony or description of the church seems to have survived.  A photograph published in the Tasmanian Mail shows a small timber building capable of accomodating about 60 people. In October 1926 the church was destroyed in a fire as reported in the Mercury: “St. Paul's Church of England at StrickIand, near Ouse, was completely destroyed by fire on Saturday. Members of a working bee were engaged on the ground surrounding the church, clearing it of debris to remove the risk of fire from the building. A pile of rubbish was made about ten yards from the church, and a match put to it. After som

No. 555 - Paradise Baptist Church - 'Ill Winds in Paradise'

Paradise is a rural district approximately 8 kilometres south of Sheffield. Its original name was ‘Reuben Austen's Paradise’, after one of the first settlers who remarked upon seeing the sun glistening on the picturesque mountain vista, "This is Paradise.” A Baptist community was active at Paradise from about 1890. For 15 years services were held in a large dining room in a house belonging to Mr James Manning. By 1904 attendance had increased to the point where the dining room was no longer adequate and the Baptist Union was approached for support to build a church at Paradise. In 1904 construction of a church began on land donated by James Manning. The church was officially opened in January 1905 with the dedicatory services reported in the North Western Advocate and the Emu Bay Times: “…There was a fair attendance considering the unpropitious weather, and it being Claude [Road Methodist Church] anniversary as well. Special hymns were sung by the choir, Mrs Newman presiding

No. 554 - Sulphur Creek Methodist Church - "His Snakeship"

Sulphur Creek is a small coastal settlement approximately 5 kilometres west of Penguin in the north west of Tasmania. It was originally known as Penguin Creek before the town Penguin was established. For many years Sulphur Creek was a venue for horse racing. According to Max Stansall [Tasmanian Methodism] the land on which a Primitive Methodist church was built formed part of a racecourse and was donated by Andrew Ballantyne with the intension of breaking up the racing. A report on the church’s opening in January 1890 was carried by The Examiner and The Tasmanian: “A Sulphur Creek correspondent writes: — The Primitive Methodists opened their new church on Sunday, the 5th inst. The Kev. J. T. Pithouse preached in the morning, Rev. W. Bowe in the afternoon, and the Kev. J. May (Wesleyan) in the evening. The congregations were large and attentive. On Monday tea was provided, which was well patronised…. A public meeting was held, which was addressed by the Revs. J. May, J. T. Pithouse, a

No. 553 - St Matthias at Woodsdale - "A Troublous Question"

Woodsdale is a farming district approximately 30 kilometres southeast of Oatlands. It was first settled in the 1860’s by Martin Bourke and later named after Norman Woods, an Inspector of Roads, who laid out the district’s roads in 1881. A State school and a post office were established in 1884 but Woodsdale had to wait a quarter of a century more before it acquired a church. Perhaps the most interesting aspect of the history St Matthias Anglican Church is that it took almost 20 years to build. The reason for this delay was squabble over selecting the best site for a church to serve the district. The saga was described in the Hobart Mercury on the occasion of the foundation stone laying ceremony in August 1909: “It is somewhere about eighteen years since the erection of an Anglican church was first mooted at Woodsdale. Two sites were offered gratuitously - one by Mr. P. C. Wagner, and the other by Mr. F. George Roberts - and were situated about a mile apart, the former one about three

No. 552 - Cam River - Thomas Wragg's Chapel

Somerset is located on the estuary of the western bank of the Cam River midway between the town of Wynyard and the city of Burnie. The origin of the town dates back to the mid 19th century when the area was settled by Thomas Wragg. It continued to be known as Cam River or the ‘Cam’ long after it was renamed Somerset. Little is known about the first church built at Somerset by Thomas Wragg. He was the eldest son of a solicitor and was born and educated in London. Wragg was an engraver on wood and also a draughtsman and artist employed by the Illustrated London News. He came to Tasmania in the early 1860’s and settled in the vicinity of the Cam River which was covered with dense forest at the time. Wragg built several houses at the Cam as well as a general store and his own residence. In 1862 he built a chapel for Church of England services where he acted as reader and Sunday School teacher. The chapel was replaced by St Barnabas church in 1883. At the time it appears that their was

No. 551 - Tea Tree - St Thomas' Anglican Church - "Crowned with Success"

Tea Tree is a semi-rural settlement and agricultural area approximately 5 kilometres east of the Midlands Highway near Brighton and about 20 kilometres north of Hobart. The name comes from a native bush which was gathered by the early settlers to make medicinal tea. St Thomas’ Anglican church has a long but mostly uneventful history which began almost 140 years ago. In January 1880 the Church of England Diocesan Synod announced preliminary steps to establish a small church at Tea Tree. Rapid progress was made and tenders were called for in August of the same year. In December the foundation stone was laid in a ceremony reported by the Hobart Mercury: “On Tuesday last, being St. Thomas Day, the corner stone of the new church was laid by the Ven. Archdeacon Davenport, in the presence of about 60 residents. The Rev. F. B. Sharland incumbent of the parish, and the Rev. J.K. Willmer, incumbent of St. Mary's, Kempton, assisted in the ceremony. The weather was all that could be desired