The first settlers in the village of Clifton were all members of the Church of England and formed part of the congregation of Trinity Church, Kingston.
On August 29, 1883, The Rev. E.S.W. Pentreath of Winnipeg gave a lecture in Clifton Hall. He strongly urged the people to undertake the building of a “House of God” for the village. “A Church, neat and appropriate, and though necessarily small, yet ample for the community and beautiful as well, could be built in Clifton. That is, if the people joined together to do so, and earnestly and willingly bent to the work.”
The Rev. Pentreath, at his own expense, engaged W.C. Harris, an architect living in Winnipeg (originally from PEI), to make full plans for the church which is now noted for its gothic architecture.
The following persons were elected to arrange the necessary details: R.W. Wetmore, G.H. Flewelling, D.P. Wetmore, and W.H. Merritt. That October a plot of land of the lower end of the village near the “Sugar Loaf”, given by D.P. Wetmore for the Church Building and Burying Grounds, about one acre, was chosen.
A subscription paper and other means for raising funds were started at once. The Ladies’ Sewing Circle energetically took hold of the money-raising project and powerful auxiliary was proved before the Church was completed.
On October 29th, G.M. Merritt, J. Flewelling and R.W. Wetmore had started leveling and grading the grounds. The first sod was turned by teamster Bernard McLaughlin, a Roman Catholic.
In Spring and Summer of 1884 the foundation was prepared, the square frame all up ready for boarding, the windows set and the floor laid. The roof was contracted to Frost & Langstroth of Hampton at a cost of $490.00. The glass came from McCausland & Son, Montreal, on January 7, 1885, and was placed in the windows April 8th by a volunteer Party of Clifton people. The inside woodwork was machined by J. & J.D. Howe of Saint John. It was finished along with the plastering and seats in September and October. The expense of the “glass only” was taken care of by parties having memorial windows put in. All the windows are memorial windows.
The finished Church was recorded as having a total cost of $3 249.58. On November 3, 1885 it was consecrated under the name of “All Saints Church” by the Most Reverend John Medley, Metropolitan of Canada. The Reverend Ernest P. Flewelling was the first clergyman to hold service in All Saints Church, Clifton on November 8, 1885.
The Masonic Hall of Clifton was completed in 1863 and was built for the purpose of lodge room, for school accommodation, and for general public meetings. It later became the All Saint’s Anglican Church Hall. After its loss, Clifton people added a basement to All Saint’s Church which now serves for Sunday School and meeting space.
Resource: Anglican Parish of Kingston
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