Whereas in and by a Statute of the Province of Upper Canada …

So begins the deed that permitted the conveyance of no more than 5 acres to non-established (or state) – the so-called ‘dissenting’ – religions, to found a “Church, Meeting-House, or Chapel, or a Burying-ground.”

And, with this remit the Trustees of the Methodist Episcopal Church in the Township of Thorold, in the County of Lincoln in the Niagara District of the Province of Upper Canada established Beaverdams Church on June 26, 1832.

All identified as “yeomen”, Hiram Swayze empowered the following Trustees with the establishment of Beaverdams Church for the sum of 10 pounds: James Brown, John Street Sr., Samuel Street Jr., James Hagar, Jonathan Hagar, William Moore and John Ker.

Thanks again to Robert Halfyard, we can pore over photographs of the original deed, now stored in Toronto at the United Church of Canada Archives.

Courtesy of Robert Halfyard

Courtesy of Robert Halfyard

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