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From: Thomas R Cole <>
Subject: Giles Hosier from Poole to Newfoundland
Date: Mon, 29 Jun 98 22:01:16 PDT


From: The Story of Methodism in Bonavista, by Rev. Charles Lench, c1919. pgs 53-56.

The Family of Giles Hosier, Esq.

Giles Hosier, Esq. for many years carried on merchandize at Bonavista. He came from England and subsequently married Miss Grace Newell, daughter of Captain Newell of Trinity. Mr. Hosier lived in a lordly home in good English style. He was well educated, a man of refined tastes and superior attainments, which qualities were transmitted to a large family of interesting sons and daughters. Having lived to see his happy family attain unto young manhood and womanhood, other days and other fortunes came. This was during the interval between the death of Rev. William Ward and the advent of Rev. William Ellis the following year. His son, William, a promising youth of nineteen years, had gone to St. John's to procure the Fall's merchandize and on his way home the ship and cargo valued at several thousands of pounds, was lost with all hands. The young man had been converted a little while before in a Methodist service. There was no insurance and the lost spelt ruin for the Hosiers. In a!
few weeks he died of a broken heart (followed by his other son), in his 57th year, on the 10th Nov 1812. Mrs. Hosier was left to face the world with four daughters. They were all talented and attractive. What became of them? Miss Bessie opened a day school in a room of the old homestead. There was no Government grant and she had to charge $6.00 per year for fees. After a few years she was married to Mr. Fifield and was the only one of the daughters to spend her days in Bonavista. The second daughter, Miss Jane, married the Rev. Ninian Barr who boarded with Mrs. Hosier, the motherly soul who for several years attended to the wants of the early preachers at the Hosier mansion. After seven years the Rev. Ninian Barr returned to Scotland and of course Mrs. Barr accompanied her husband. One of their sons, Thomas Barr, was enrolled as a student of Trinity College, Oxford, England, from which he graduated and obtaining Holy Orders, became a Church of England clergyman. He was a clas!
s mate of Edward, Prince of Wales, afterwards King Edward vii, and
m and the pranks of his school days at Oxford.

By a strange and fortuitous combination of circumstances, a gentleman named John E. Congdon, a graduate of Oxford University, a master of seven languages, came to Bonavista. He had travelled extensively after his college days with some wealthy students. This gentleman was enamoured of Hannah. They married and left the Colony. He opened an academy in North Dakota, USA and in the year 1888 Mrs. Congdon died at the home of Mrs. Aram, her daughter, in her 90th year.

The fourth and last daughter, Mary, married the Rev. Richard Knight (afterwards D.D.) the pioneer of Grand Bank Methodism. Mrs. Knight became the mother of eleven very clever sons and daughters, and her descendants consist of twenty grandsons, all of whom are filling influential positions in various parts of British North America, and the United States.

Mrs. Grace Hosier was a mother to the single young ministers as they came for their brief sojourns to Bonavista, and in course of time the old Hosier dwelling passed into possession of the Methodist, being the first mission house, and did good service for thirty years or more, as a young married man's parsonage, its fine gardens and fields contributing to his convenience and that of his family.

In 1858, during the ministry of Rev. Thomas Harris, it was taken down and replaced by the second minister's residence. After the death of Mrs. Hosier the furniture was sold and purchased in part by Mr. Mowland. Part came into the family of Mr. Mifflin. Three of these chairs came into possession of Dr. Campbell in St. John's, Nfld. The maker was Hipplewhite, one of three celebrated manufacturers of furniture of the 18th century. They bear the Prince of Wales crest of feathers and the Ich Dien "I Serve". One of the chairs for which Dr. Campbell gave $60.00 could have brought $250.00 a short while ago.(1919)

[a photo of the three chairs is reproduced].
End

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