The Constitutional Act of 1791, which established Upper and Lower Canada made it illegal for dissenting groups like the Methodists to own land. So, until 1832, Barker’s Schoolhouse, a wooden clapboard building on the north-east corner of Guelph Line and Britannia Road, was used for church services.
In 1832, they built Colling’s Church, a 34 ft. x 28 ft. wood-framed structure, on Joseph Colling’s land on the SW corner of Guelph Line and Britannia Rd. and held their first service on January 13, 1833.
Joseph Colling deeded the land to the Wesleyan Methodist Church in 1846 for 5 shillings, held in Trust by four church trustees. It was one of 25 churches serviced by saddlebag preachers.
In 1855 Colling’s Church was renamed Lowville Wesleyan Methodist Church and a new church deed that reflected outright ownership was registered on March 4, 1874. The present red brick church, built in 1872-73, officially opened on September 7, 1873.
Lowville Circuit, established in 1875 included Lowville, Davidson’s, Kilbride, Salem, Bethseda and Mountain churches. The Lowville-Zimmerman Charge, that included Salem, was constituted in 1889 and a new Methodist church was built in Zimmerman in 1891. Salem was closed in 1890 and moved to Kilbride in 1892 to serve as a community hall. Davidson’s Church closed in 1881 and was moved beside the new Lowville manse in 1885 where it served as a barn.
With Church Union in 1925 the Lowville-Zimmerman Pastoral Charge was created. Zimmerman Church was closed in 1975 and sold to Trinity Baptist Church, with money generated from the sale helping to fund the extension built onto Lowville United church in 1984.
Contributing Author: Lowville Community Calendar Committee