Thursday, October 22, 2015

Bethesda Congregational Cemetery, Oro-Medonte ON





















Bethesda Congregational Cemetery is located on the north side of Old Barrie Rd, just west of Line 2 in Oro-Medonte.  The congregation was originally established in 1838 by Rev. Ari Raymond and his wife who were sent to the area by the Congregational Church Mission in Boston to administer to the black community.

The original church on this site burnt to the ground in 1845. In 1846 Rev. Raymond built another house on this land and held services in the kitchen for many years.  In 1859 another wooden framed church was built and it was bricked over in 1890.  The congregation closed in 1899 and the church building was finally removed in 1965. In 1971 a memorial cairn was erected on the property.

The first burial took place around the early 1830's the last was in 2010.  The cemetery still receives burials for those who hold family plots.

Rugby Congregtional Cemetery, Rugby, Ontario





Located on Old Barrie Rd near 12th Line or Conc. 12, Lot 11 is the little cemetery known as Rugby Congregational Cemetery.  There is no cairn or plaque located here, just a small patch next to an old building, east of the Rugby Community Hall.  

The cemetery probable saw it's first burial in 1831 when little Mary Brown aged 4 years, 11 months died on September 15th, 1831.  This was followed by William Brown in 1834 at the age of 44 years. 

The congregation was not formed until 1847 by Rev. Ari Raymond, who built the church that once stood here and established the cemetery. The land was more than likely owned by the Brown family and used as a family burial plot until the congregation was established.

The congregation survived until the Methodist and Congregational church union in 1925 (United Church of Canada), then it moved to Hawkstone.  Sometime after that the church building was demolished, leaving the cemetery to mark the spot.  The last burial appears to have taken place in the early 1930's. 

The cemetery is closed and receives minimal maintenance.