Sunday, March 31, 2013

Who holds the 1840s records of St. Andrew's Presbyterian South Lancaster?

St Andrews south lancaster, gravestones grave markers


Greetings

This search term   " Who holds the 1840s records of St. Andrew's
Presbyterian South Lancaster? "  was applied to a google search, that led to being connected to one of the Glengarry County pages.

The quick answer to this question is that there is no one, church or person who holds these particular records from the 1840's, that this writer is aware off. 

Having said that, then the following will be useful information. 

In the 1840's The three Glengarry area churches presently named St Andrews, first St Andrews in Bainsville  2nd concession of Lancaster township,  second St Andrews in South Lancaster and third St Andrews in Williamstown were all Presbyterian -- Church of Scotland, Free Church etc.

In some cases the minister for St Andrews South Lancaster and St Andrews Bainsville was the same person.

With all the various unions over the years, the church records didn't always survive or stay with the church they were connected with.

I have heard stories where these records were burned, went with the minister when that minister left or ended up is some elder's attic never to be seen again and in time thrown out as trash. Even the fact that some BMD records went back to Scotland with the minister to show the relatives and the minister died there.

Whether these 1840's records actually existed or not I do not know. St Andrews, South lancaster is the only surviving protestant church of the different denominations of churches that were established there over the past 200 years.

Basically, the church records of St Andrews in South Lancaster only start in 1930, with deaths in 1953 and the marriages in 1884-1897
These are the years that the writers had access to when their work was collected with the intent to publish on these BMD  which are as follows;

  1. Baptisms cover 1930 - 1977
    Marriages cover 1884 - 1897, 1930 - 1978
    Deaths cover 1953 - 1978

The marriages listed here  for 1884-1897 actually belong to the St Andrews 2nd concession Church, Bainsville, but are located with the church records in St Andrews Church South Lancaster, from what the writers have been able to determine.  Where did the missing records go?

When it came to deaths, it was almost like the church minister had no real part in that event. If those doing the burial didn't bother to provide the minister with the information on a death, it never got recorded. If that was not  the case and the record was recorded, then the books have either been discarded, destroyed or lost in some attic.

So depending on who you are looking for family wise, the only suggestion that can be offered on this time period is as follows;
Check St Andrew's 2nd concession, Bainsville,  BMD which start in 1833 and in a hit or miss sequence continue to the present.  The writers have put together  a transcript of the St Andrew's 2nd concession BMD from 1833 to 1978 http://www.glengarrycounty.com/4glenchubmd.html  which cover these years

  1. Baptisms cover Book1 - 1833 - 1899, Book2 - 1822 - 1894, Book3 - 1885 - 1977
    Marriages cover Book1 - 1834 - 1846, Book3 - 1920 - 1976
    Deaths cover Book1 - 1855 - 1863, Book3 - 1946 - 1978    
  2. There are gaps in these records as well
The other St Andrew's Church BMD that could be of assistance is in Williamstown which covers the period from 1779 to the present
Here,  likewise a transcript combined index of these BMD for the period 1779 - 1914 has been  published. http://www.glengarrycounty.com/standwmst.html

The period from 1779-1810 or so has baptisms some marriages and a few deaths. The entries after 1810 or so are mainly Baptisms basically no marriages and no deaths being listed. So where are these missing Marriages and deaths?

Another source for what you are looking for could be found in  the Gravestone inscriptions for these 3 St Andrew's Churches  which has also been published in the Gravestones of Glengarry Series Vol 1 and 2   http://glengarrycounty.com/gofg.html  Also in this regard, depending on where the person lived and died, even tho they might have attended St Andrews South Lancaster at a particular time, they could have been buried anywhere in the county, be it at Salem in Summerstown, Williamstown, Martintown, South Lancaster, Bainsville or even Dalhousie Mills or Cote St George.

The writer is aware of  a few instances where being denied access to local church BMD in Glengarry County area is still  very much in operation, one particular case is a similar church in central Charlottenburg township.

When the writers started this journey they had to deal with this denied access attitude, nevertheless were able to get access to many of the area BMD records. Even then once that happened they still had to work with the complexities of dealing with the various church names as well as the various churches at the time that had to be integrated so that the end result of the work published made some sense for people viewing these same BMD records.

It is wise when looking for family information, to take the time to review the BMD records available from these three St Andrew's Churches for any year concerned, if and when available as well as the other local churches regardless of religious denomination.

Also consider the following when looking for family information in any area in this time period. There were circuit riders  ministers, priests who did baptisms, some marriages and maybe even deaths. Also realize  that  a  Catholic priest who did circuit rounds at times baptised and married presbyterians.  This also happen in reverse as well when there was a presbyterian circuit rider doing his rounds. Even locally at times the Priest and Minister baptised some members of each others congregation as well as married some. These circuit riders BMD could be located anywhere from Kingston to Montreal or even maybe Ottawa or elsewhere and some of these BMD are in the local churches of both denominations.

Also consider that in regards to marriages, some Glengarry Couples went down to the Montreal area to get married, whether it was an elopement, mixed marriages or otherwise, some also went to Cornwall and even over to New York State.

Another source for finding family information in regards to deaths and marriages could be the Montreal papers, like the Witness, Gazette or Montreal Star.

If some of these missing BMD have surfaced since the writers published the above mentioned BMD records, they are not aware of this  aspect, except that Rhoda has found some additional Cote St George entries on Ancestry

Some of these BMD records might be located in the presbyterian archives in Toronto, Montreal or Ottawa as well as possibly the provincial and National archives.

In spite of the fact that some of these BMD records have not shown up, there still remains a mountain of records available. The problem is mainly accessibility and proper interpretation. This is one of the goals the writers have spent the past 40 plus years working to accomplish.

Enjoy the journey, it can be very educational as well as rewarding, where open mindedness is a necessity.

The above observations, come from our awareness, inspiration of the experience, research gained on this journey, which are from one perspective that is on the whole different from that of the reader. They are neither correct or inaccurate, they simply are as outlined to be viewed accordingly.

take care and God Bless
Alex W Fraser   Rhoda Ross
Courtenay, BC
http://glengarrycounty.com




1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing this interesting article on some history of St Andrews Church Lancaster