The early settlement of Euphrasia Township in Grey County centred around the village of Fairmount. Anglican services were initially conducted in homes and schools by the famous Rev. Mulholland, who travelled the area on horseback. In 1866 a 1-acre plot a mile north of the village was purchased for one dollar and in September, 1867, a small frame church opened for worship.
During the latter part of the 19th century the congregation grew with the population of pioneer settlers, including escaped slaves from the US who sought freedom in Canada via the Underground Railroad: James L. Wilson, a prominent member of St. James', was one of these. In 1907, the wooden church on "the English Church Road" was replaced by the present red-brick Ontario Gothic structure at the intersection of what are now Grey Roads 7 and 40.
The village of Fairmount with its store, post office, hotel and cobblers' shop is long gone. The red brick schoolhouse where the St. James' Vestry first met in April, 1867, about a mile south of the church, still stands but it has been converted to a vacation home, symbolizing the changes in the rural population over the years.
Reprinted from St. James' website with permission.
- Added: 22 Jul 2012
- Find A Grave Cemetery: #2458652
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