Did You Know They Moved St. Paul’s Cemetery?

Did You Know They Moved St. Paul’s Cemetery?




photo-– Scott Reid– 175th Anniversary of St. Paul’s

Reverend Michael Harris travelled afar setting up local parishes as early as 1819 in Lanark County, and St. Paul’s Anglican Church was one of them. Set in the midst of the original cemetery overlooking the Perth Highway, the church partially built in 1852 celebrated its 175th anniversary this year.

The mission of Lanark dates from 1819 when the Rev. Michael Harris began ministering to the people in the community. St. Paul’s was built in 1842 on land donated by Mr. James H. Manahan. A new parsonage was built by 1899 and renovated in 1906 at which time the church was enlarged.  It missed being damaged by the Lanark Village fire  in 1959 but was considerably damaged by fire in 1945 and while repairs were being made, services were held in the Congregational Church. The parsonage was sold around 1990. 

It hasn’t changed much except for the small hall to the right that was built in 1964, but the belfry, porch, tower, sanctuary and vestry were added on in 1906. It thankfully escaped the Lanark fire of 1959 but it suffered fire damage to the roof and interior in 1945.

Their first organ was an old pump organ and then the United Church gave thenm mone that was powered by a hand pump. In 1953 someone willed the church their home and the contents and after the house was sold it bought Sr. Paul’s a new pulpit.

The cemetery in the churchyard was closed in 1917 and a new burial ground was obtained. St. Paul’s Church celebrated its centenary on June 28, 1942. The dead were buried strictly in the churchyards in those days, but back in 1917 local health officials requested that the original old cemetery built on the hill next to the church be closed and moved two miles out of town.  People worried about risks to public health and they came not only from the dank odours of the churchyards, but from the very water the people drank. In many cases, the springs for the drinking supply tracked right through the graveyards of the original churchyards.


Did you know suicides, if they were buried in consecrated ground at all, were usually deposited in the north end, although their corpses were not allowed to pass through the cemetery gates to enter. They had to be passed over the top of the stone wall or fence. In the case of St. James in Carleton Place they were buried outside the fence.

They once tried to ban the use of coffins altogether for health reasons, insisting that ‘all people should be buried in sacks’ for sanitary purposes. The Victorians recognized the dangers of lead coffins, and made it mandatory that pine be used as an alternative as it ‘decays rapidly,’ thus allowing the corpse to return to the earth more naturally.

Clipped from The Ottawa Journal,  23 Jan 1945, Tue,  Page 16

Other Churches

May be an image of outdoors

May be an image of outdoors

Sacred Heart of Jesus Church under construction about 1890’s, Lanark Village.
Drovers who transported the limestone for the above church from the W. C. Stead quarry.
Ken Potter

Where was the S.C. Stead quarry?
Blair T. Paul, Artist – Canadian and International

Great photos…where was the quarry? It was believed that at the end of Paul Drive, west of what used to be Playfair’s Planing Mill there was a quarry. We always called it that as kids anyway.
Ken Potter

Blair T. Paul, Artist – Canadian and International Interesting. I live at 121 Paul dr at the end of the road. It is possible that it was quarried out of the side of the steep hill next to what is now Centennial Truss. I know that is lots of limestone on my property.
Doris Quinn

My late husbands ancestors helped build this Church. Bringing the stones etc. At the time they questioned themselves thinking that soon their Church in Ferguson’s Falls would be closed and they would all travel over the hills to Lanark. And so it is. Understandable though as Lanark had a bigger population. Sacred Heart Church in Lanark opened in 1903.
My late husband, James Quinn was direct descendant of John Quinn, one of the seven Irish men who came over from Ireland in 1820. So yes I have always loved this type of history and have accumulated a lot over the years. Now to get it into the book I always planned to write. At it a bit each week.🙂


PAKENHAM PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH 1897– $338.50 on the Cornerstone?

St. Andrew’s Pakenham celebrates 175th anniversary October 9– 2015– Click here–Millstone

For the Love of St. Andrew’s– 130th Anniversary

Who Really Built the Baptist Church in Carleton Place?

Old Churches of Lanark County

Who Really Built the Baptist Church in Carleton Place?

Notes About The First Baptist Church in Perth

Smith’s Falls and District Baptist Church

Memories of The Old Church Halls

Tales From the Methodist Church in Perth

Knox Church– McDonald’s Corners

The Littlest Church in Ferguson Falls

The Beckwith Baptist Church

Old Churches of Lanark County

Before and After — Auld Kirk

Another Example of Local Random Acts of Kindness- Zion Memorial United Church

Hallelujah and a Haircut —Faces of St. James 1976

What did Rector Elliot from St. James Bring Back from Cacouna?

The Emotional Crowded Houses– St. James

A Sneeze of a Tune from St. Andrew’s Church in Carleton Place

The Old Church in Island Brook That Needs a Home

Let The Church Rise– A Little History of St. James Anglican Church

The Church that Died

St James and St Mary’s Christmas Bazaar 1998 -Who Do You Know?

Old Churches of Lanark County

When The Streets of Carleton Place Ran Thick With the Blood of Terror!

Screenshot 2017-08-15 at 18.jpg

I have been writing about downtown Carleton Place Bridge Street for months and this is something I really want to do. Come join me in the Domino’s Parking lot- corner Lake Ave and Bridge, Carleton Place at 11 am Saturday September 16 (rain date September 17) for a free walkabout of Bridge Street. It’s history is way more than just stores. This walkabout is FREE BUT I will be carrying a pouch for donations to the Carleton Place Hospital as they have been so good to me. I don’t know if I will ever do another walking tour so come join me on something that has been on my bucket list since I began writing about Bridge Street. It’s always a good time–trust me.

Are You Ready to Visit the Open Doors?

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About lindaseccaspina

Before she laid her fingers to a keyboard, Linda was a fashion designer, and then owned the eclectic store Flash Cadilac and Savannah Devilles in Ottawa on Rideau Street from 1976-1996. She also did clothing for various media and worked on “You Can’t do that on Television”. After writing for years about things that she cared about or pissed her off on American media she finally found her calling. She is a weekly columnist for the Sherbrooke Record and documents history every single day and has over 6500 blogs about Lanark County and Ottawa and an enormous weekly readership. Linda has published six books and is in her 4th year as a town councillor for Carleton Place. She believes in community and promoting business owners because she believes she can, so she does.

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