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Brick Street Methodist Church

Brick Street Methodist Church
Plaque no. 22
Date of plaque unveiling
16 August 1977
Speakers
Rev. Orlo Miller
Location
362 Commissioners Road West, London, Ontario

Take a tour of Brick Street Methodist Church on HistoryPin

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History

The northern concessions of Westminster Township, through which Commissioners Road passes, were first surveyed in 1809 by an American, Simon Zelotes Watson. After a land dispute with Colonel Thomas Talbot, during which Watson challenged Talbot to a duel (a challenge which Talbot contemptuously rejected), Watson returned to the United States.

In preparation for war with the United States, a road was driven through the bush from Burlington Bay to the Detroit River. Locally, Commissioners Road soon served its purpose as a retreat route for British General Henry Proctor after his defeat at the Battle of the Thames on October 5, 1813. The retreating column is thought to have engaged in a skirmish with pursuing Kentucky riflemen on what is now Reservoir Hill. During the engagement, local settler Phoebe McNames is said to have passed out ammunition and assisted with the wounded under fire.

Early settlers, Phoebe McNames and her husband Peter, once owned Lot 34, Concession 1, Westminster Township on which this church and its cemetery are now located.

The first burials occurred about 1813, making this one of the oldest cemeteries in the area.

American Methodist circuit riders travelling along Commissioners Road preached to local settlers and a Methodist Episcopal church was organized in 1816. The congregation erected their first church on this site shortly thereafter.

They replaced it in 1852 with the present church using brick supplied by one of the many brickyards that gave Commissioners Road its local name, Brick Street.

In 1925, the congregation became part of the United Church of Canada. The church was stuccoed in the early 1930’s and was sold in 1962 to the Free Christian Reformed Church.

It is the second oldest church building in London, and currently houses a Montessori School.