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St. Stephen's Anglican Church (Thamesville, Ont.)
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St. Stephen’s Anglican Church at 143 London Road, in Thamesville, Ontario, was built in 1871. When the town of Thamesville was surveyed, land was set aside for a church in lot 12, 13, Block N, and on November 7, 1864, an “Indenture of Bargain and Sale” was made between David Sherman, of the village of Tecumseh, town of Camden, Co. Of Kent, Province of Upper Canada, and the Church Society of the Diocese of Huron. The one-fifth acre was sold for one dollar. It was the first brick church erected in Thamesville. When the church was built, Thamesville was a mission of Bothwell, and constituted a parish along with Moraviantown. Rev. W. Davis began his incumbency of St. Stephen’s in 1881 and a rectory was built near the church.
The stained class Chancel window featuring Christ knocking on the door was placed by the congregation in memory of Rev. Captain R.J. Kain, (incumbent from 1916-1918) after he enlisted for service in World War 1. Rev. Kain died on October 17, 1918, from the Spanish Flu.
In April 1948 a new Sunday School was built connecting to the church vestry and thanks to a legacy left by William Wadells of Chicago, the parish hall was completed in 1949. Another legacy from Charles Watts allowed for the purchase of a lot at the corner of Wallace and Mary streets. The new Rectory was finished in 1959 and cost $16,000. The W.H.T Mooney Estate in turn paid off the Rectory mortgage, and interest on this legacy was used to support the Sunday School. Between the 1960s and 1980s minor building improvements included a complete rewiring, the replacement of floor joists, new roof shingles and new floor tile. The roof was replaced in 2001 and an interior revitalization project was completed in 2004.
In 2002, St. Stephen’s was amalgamated into a six-point parish known as “Parish of the Greater Thamesville region” along with Church of the Advent, Ridgetown, Church of the Redeemer, Highgate, Christ Church, Dresden, St. Matthew’s, Florence, and St. John-in-the-Woods, Aughrim. In May 2002, the name of this six-point parish was changed to “The Anglican Parish of the Transfiguration”.
At the Diocesan Council meeting on October 19, 2019, a motion was passed to disestablish the church effective December 31, 2019, and the building was sold. St Stephen's last regular worship service was Sunday, December 29, 2019. A Service of Thanksgiving and Deconsecration of St. Stephen’s Anglican Church, Thamesville, was held on the 27th of November 2022.
List of Clergy of St. Stephen’s, Thamesville 1871 – 2022
Rev. R Deacon 1871-1881
Rev. W. Davis 1881-1884
Rev. R. Fletcher 1884-1888
Rev. Wm. Hinde 1889-1892
Rev. R. Bray 1893-1896
Rev. G.F. Sherwood 1897-1900
Rev. M.G. Freeman 1901-1905
Rev. T.E. Burgess 1906-1911
Rev. C.K. Masters 1912-1913
Rev. J. Tully 1914-1916
Rev. R.J. Kain 1916-1918
Rev. J.H. Whealen 1918-1919
Rev. M.A. Hunt 1919-1929
Rev. L.W. Diehl 1930-1935
Rev. Jack James 1935-1940
Rev. E.O. Lancaster 1940-1947
Rev. C.J. Draper 1947-1951
Rev. E.H. Priest summer of 1951
Rev. Frank Baldwin 1951
Rev. W.K. Morrison 1951-1952
Rev. R.A. Murray 1953-1954
Rev. G.D. Vogan 1954-1958
Rev. W.F. Ralph 1958-1970
Rev. W.R.D. Craven 1970-1976
Rev. John Lombard 1976-1989
Rev. Sylvia Doran 1989-1994
Rev. Jack Beedle 1995-2002
Rev. Dr. Greg Gilson 2004
Rev. Michelle Collins-Wongkee (interim) 2005
Rev. Stephen Demitroff 2005-2012
Rev. Gary Parker 2013
Rev. John Maroney 2014-2018
Rev. Gary Parker 2019-closed.
Scope and content
Fonds reflects the administrative history of St. Stephen’s Anglican Church in Thamesville, Ontario and its role in the community from its consecration in 1871 to its deconsecration and closure in 2022. These records are organized into six series and three sous-fonds.
Sous fonds included:
- Women's Auxiliary
- Brotherhood of Anglican Churchmen
- Anglican Young People's Association
Some materials have been water damaged.
Immediate source of acquisition
St. Stephen's, Thamesville
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Restrictions on access
The V.P. Cronyn Archives reserve the right to restrict access to the collection depending on the physical condition of the material and the purpose of research at the discretion of the archivist.
Clergy personnel files are restricted from access until 100 years after the death of the cleric AND their spouse (whichever date comes later).
No researcher will be permitted access to materials containing sensitive, confidential, or personal information such as health records, compensation records, or other materials deemed restricted by the Archivist or by donor agreement.
Terms governing use, reproduction, and publication
Access for research does not immediately grant permission for reproduction, display, or publication. Use of materials for these purposes must be requested and permission granted in writing.
Series and file lists available.
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Uploaded finding aid
Parish of the Transfiguration
No further accruals are expected.