Baptist School, Church and Presbytery
The Baptist school, church and presbytery are recognized for their architecture, religious significance and educational contributions within the community.
A) Baptist School, 1595 Laurier Street
In 1880, the growth of the Edwards mills contributed to the rapid development of the English-speaking community. Leaders of the Edwards Company, along with some influential men, decided to form a school board and built a public school to educate the children. Located downtown on Laurier Street, the school had two classes that housed about 60 students. Two teachers taught grades one to eight. It took a few years before the Ontario Ministry of Education, who sought to improve the curriculum, the services and school materials in their schools, recognized the public school.
The English-speaking community, which significantly shrank following the mill’s closure, continued to attend school until 1966.
B) Baptist Church and Presbytery, 1587 and 1575 Laurier Street
In 1885, the English-speaking community of Rockland was mainly Baptist and needed to travel to Clarence Point to attend mass. It was only in 1890 that the English-speaking community decided to build its own church and presbytery in Rockland.
In 1926, the closure of the Edwards sawmills led to a sharp decline in the number of the parishioners and the church closed its doors. The building then housed several shops, and was eventually demolished in 2015.