St. Alban the Martyr Anglican Church

In 1920, the people of Capreol were receiving Anglican services from Reverend Percy Paris, the Rector for the Church of the Epiphany in Sudbury, during his regular visits to the community. Between July 1920 and September 1921, Reverend Paris had baptized seven children in the Capreol area.

The first regular Anglican mass was performed by Howard H. Clark, a student minister, in the Imperial Theatre on Young Street. It was held on July 10, 1921 and was attended by 18 people. Reverend Paris preached the sermon at both the morning and evening services.

Mr. Clark remained in Capreol until September 18, 1921, when he left the town to resume his studies at Trinity College in Toronto. He was replaced by Reverend Harry Heard on October 16th and the services continued to be held at the theatre. Parishioners of this time had not yet considered building a church for themselves.

On January 29, 1922, the Diocesan Bishop made his first visit to Capreol to perform the sacrament of confirmation to eleven young adults. During this year, an outbreak of diphtheria resulted in the death of 12 year-old Aileen Edith Wicks. It was the first burial recorded for the Anglican community.

Another tragedy followed on January 4, 1923 when the Imperial Theatre burned down. The fire spread from the theatre and engulfed the pool rooms, the butcher's shop, the car sales office, the drug store, and the hardware store. The fire was able to run rampant as the gasoline engine in the pumping station had frozen, resulting in insufficient water pressure with which to fight the fire for over half an hour. A "bucket brigade" battled the blaze by breaking a hole in the frozen Vermilion River and extracting water.

Later, it was learned that the heater which was supposed to keep the pumping engine warm had been allowed to extinguish. Joe Moor, the town foreman who was responsible for ensuring that the heater remain lit, was asked to resign.


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