SOUTH-AFRICA-EASTERN-CAPE-L ArchivesArchiver > SOUTH-AFRICA-EASTERN-CAPE > 2005-03 > 1111354627
From: "Doug Bailes" <>
Subject: Re: [ZA-EC] Newspaper cuttings from the Eastern Cape - St. John's Church in Bathurst
Date: Sun, 20 Mar 2005 23:07:06 -0800
Extending on the Thomas Hartley story:-
Thomas Hartley Senior played an important part in the day to day living at
Bathurst. He was the local Smithy and "tooth puller". Not many years after
his arrival he spread his wings into building. A Plaque in the entrance of
the Pig & Whistle states that in 1831 he built the Inn then known as the
Although he was a leading member of the Church of England, it is recorded as
far back as 1825 that he allowed his Methodist friends to hold their weekend
services at his forge.
William Boardman the resident Anglican minister who accompanied the
settlers from England and Mr Thomas Hartley senior had some major
disagreement which in later years led to Thomas deciding to leave his church
and he together with his family crossed to the Methodists.
Hartley "was an adopted son of the Methodist Church" for many years but at
heart he must have had a calling to the Church of England because when he
fell seriously ill he asked Rev Barrow (the third incumbent since Boardman)
to take him back into the Anglican church. In July 1840 he died and was
accorded the honour to be buried alone in the front section of the St John's
----- Original Message -----
From: "Becky Horne" <>
Sent: Sunday, March 20, 2005 5:20 AM
Subject: [ZA-EC] Newspaper cuttings from the Eastern Cape - St. John's
Church in Bathurst
> Hi Folks
> Please join me in welcoming Carol to the List. Hope you going to be very
> happy with us. I'm not sure what surname you are researching, so I'm
> adding a snippet of news from an Eastern Cape Newspaper.
> Newspaper cuttings from the Eastern Cape.
> Weekend Post, October 1973.
> CHURCH PLAYED ROLE IN SETTLER HISTORY
> St. John's Church in Bathurst, is the oldest unaltered Anglican church
> in South Africa and is a National Monument. This historic edifice is not
> only representative of the heroism of the 1820 Settlers and of the
> dangerous times in which those people lived but also their determination
> to build a worthy place of worship. Though services were begun as early
> as 1820 - in a marquee - it was not till 1838 that the church was
> completed and opened for worship. In that time it was used on more than
> one occasion as a place of refuge for the local inhabitants.
> FIRST SOD
> Those first services in the marquee were presided over by the Chaplin of
> Bathurst, the Rev. William BOARDMAN. He died in 1825. A successor was
> not appointed for nearly three years. In 1832, during the ministry of
> the Rev. George PORTER, the first sod was cut for the foundations. The
> foundation stone was laid two months afterwards.
> By the time the Rev. James BARROW took over in August, 1833, the masonry
> was completed. The bell was hung in the tower that December. In October,
> 1834, tenders were received for roofing the church with zinc. Then in
> December, war broke out. Lower Albany was overrun by rampaging Xhosa.
> Outlaying settlers were ordered to abandon their homesteads and
> concentrate in Bathurst.
> The most secure building there was the church. Women and children were
> sheltered there while men guarded the building and the cattle kraal
> established nearby. Periodic attacks were repelled till a week later,
> the settlers were evacuated to Grahamstown in an escorted wagon convoy.
> In January, 1835, the military re-occupied Bathurst and garrisoned the
> church, which was incorporated in the military post for the period of
> hostilities. The building was strengthened with outer earthworks and
> survived attacks till the end of the war in September. In October a
> meeting was held to organise resumption of work on the church. The
> furnishing of the church was completed by December, 1837, and it was
> opened with a service on New Year's day, 1838.
> The peace in the district was again disrupted when war broke out in
> April, 1846. On this occasion 300 people had to sleep in the church, its
> windows blocked by sandbags. War ravaged the country for a third time in
> December, 1850. As before, the church became a night-time shelter for
> the people in the area. When peace came in 1853 it also ended the
> turbulent period in the church's history.
> The churchyard is also a focal point of historical interest and Mr.
> George BRISCOE, a retired farmer living nearby, says almost every grave
> has an engrossing background. One of the graves is that of Thomas
> HARTLEY, a settler from Nottingham. He was Bathurst's village
> blacksmith - who also pulled teeth as a sideline, much to the objection
> of dentists in Grahamstown. He was also one of St. John's first wardens.
> It is interesting to note that most of the settlers from Nottingham
> actually made their homes in Bathurst. Another grave is that of little
> Catherine BARROW, a daughter of the Rev. James BARROW. She died aged six
> in 1860 when the infant mortality rate was particularly high. There are
> also many graves of people who died in the Blaauwkrantz train disaster.
> Best wishes