Thursday, September 8, 2016

Islay Bowmore Baptist Church

During the rennovations of this church a letter was found dated 1869.

Baptist Church Bowmore: A letter from the year 1869.

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During renovation works in 1992 on the Baptist Church in Bowmore a copy of a letter was found in a bottle under the pulpit. Closer examination learned the letter dated back to more than 120 years ago. A stunning discovery. The original letters are kept safe in the Islay Museum. I received a copy from Rae Woodrow who was kind enough to "translate" the letter into a readable Word document. Please find below the original text, it may contain some errors because the original letter wasn't of the best quality after so many years.

Bowmore, Islay
23rd Sept. 1869.

This is intended to preserve the remembrance of the repairing of this place of worship, which is (henceforth to be called The Bowmore Tabernacle). Previously to these repairs, the place was most unsightly to behold, and most uncomfortable as a place of worship, by reason of cold and damp. The house was built about the year 1849 while the Rev, Angus Mc Naughton was minister of the church. Mr Mc Naughton was minister of the church, Mr McNaughton having emigrated to Canada, he was succeeded as missionary in Islay by the Rev James Miller who was minister of this church for upwards of twenty years, until the end of 1868, when being nearly 87 years of age, he retired on a small allowance granted by the Baptist Home Missionary Society for Scotland, which Society has supported the causes in Islay from its commencement.

Towards the end of February 1869, the present missionary, Mr Alexander McDougall who was formerly pastor of the Baptist Church in Rothesay, and had been educated at Mr Spurgeon’s College London, was engaged by the acting committee of the Baptist Home Missionary Society for Scotland, to labour in connection with the above Society in Islay and Colonsay, preaching in Gaelic and English. Immediately on entering upon this field of labours, Mr McDougall determined to make an effort towards repairing the place of worship and the ministers’ dwelling house above it, neither of which had ever been of ?? Although the house had been built 20 years.

For the rest of the post go to: Link It's quite a letter to read.

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