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“I Believe in The Communion of Saints:”
Ordained Ministers of the Reformed Baptist  Church 1888-1966


Vesta Dunlop Mullen

When we drove up Grampy’s driveway, he was sitting on the front steps smoking his pipe.

Although he never appeared to be interested in our schoolwork, Cliff and I  jumped out of the car and hurried over to him to show off our grading reports.

He read Cliff’s and then commented, “Sometimes getting an education can put you on the road to success. William Wiggins received a first-class license from Normal School in 1870 and was a graduate with the Degree of B. A. from the University of New Brunswick and then he went on to become a Baptist preacher.”

No more mention was made of our grades as he continued, “There have been quite a few fellows from this area who became Baptist ministers.  E. A. Allaby was from Salt Springs, Bamford Colpitts ran the old Jeffries Mill above Sussex and started preaching in the early 1870s, Horatio H. Cosman came from Midland and E. Walter Lester was born in Millstream.”

As Grampy continued to talk about preachers, it suddenly hit me that those guys were once kids just like us. The years rolled by, they grew up, married and had children. Many knew at a young age, their calling would be to the ministry.

If you are interested in learning of the personal lives of the ordained ministers of the Reformed Baptist Church, 1888 to 1966, a very informative book has just come off the press after three years of research.  “I Believe in the Communion of Saints” compiled by Vesta Dunlop Mullen whose life has been inextricably bound up with the founding and history of the Reformed Baptist Alliance. Her father was an ordained clergyman in the denomination and she married Laurence Mullen, a minister’s son who followed in his father’s footsteps plus he is a collector of church history, having the most complete collection in existence of the paper, The King’s Highway and other material. 

In her 400-page book, Vesta has compiled a collection of life sketches about the ordained men and women of the Reformed Baptist Alliance of Canada.

William Burnett Wiggins was born in Central Norton in 1849. His marriage to Alice N. Goodspeed, the daughter of Benjamin Goodspeed and Deborah McNeil took place in 1900. She was a pianist and organist, having received musical training from Professor Codwallader. She accompanied her husband as his journeys took him not only through New Brunswick but to the United States.

In 1901, in Saint John, Ella Hadassah Kinney Sanders, who married the Rev. Dr. Herbert Clayton Sanders in 1893, was the first woman in the Dominion of Canada to be ordained.

George W. McDonald was born in 1836, the son of Patrick and Harriet McDonald of Southern Head, Grand Manan. He worked as a fisherman.

S. Harleigh Clark was born in 1860, one of eleven children of Simeon and Rebecca (Jones) Clark of Upper Hainesville. He went to Saint John to attend school. In 1909, he accepted his first pastorate and moved to Perth.
Fraser Arden Dunlop was the youngest of ten children. His father Simpson Dunlop was the first deacon of the Maple Ridge Church when it was organized in 1889. At the age of sixteen, Fraser put formal schooling on hold and went to the lumber woods to help his father.

In perpetuating the memory of one hundred forty-three ordained ministers of Reformed Baptist denomination, Vesta Dunlop Mullen has not only given a glimpse of the men and women they were, the times they lived in, the challenges they faced and the accomplishments they achieved, the churches they served but also biographical information as to the names of their parents, siblings, wives, children and other personal details.

A Copy  of  “I Believe in The Communion of Saints:” Ordained Ministers of the Reformed Baptist Church 1888-1966 by Vesta Dunlop Mullen  available at


Query 1488
Kenidean: Minnie Kenidean Williamson was supposed to have been born in Saint John and her birth family lived near Lansdowne Avenue and Main Street. The story goes that her birth parents died when she was three, she was then adopted by John and Catherine (Boyne) Williamson and raised in Clones,  where she later married my great grandfather of Headline. I cannot find the "Kenidean" name anywhere.  Her tombstone says Minnie Elcie Kenidean McKinney. Any help greatly appreciated

Query 1490
McLeod: Thomas McKenzie McLeod was born in 1888 at Hill of Fearn, Fearn, Ross and Cromarty, Scotland, to Margaret Munro and James McLeod.  From correspondence I have, it appears this family came to New Brunswick and settled in East Saint John, New Brunswick about 1925.  They had a son, James, who served in WWII. I would like to correspond with anyone descended from this family.
R. R. #4, 1719 - 6th Line
Ontario, Canada
K9J 6X5

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Ruby M. Cusack is a genealogy buff living in New Brunswick, Canada. Send your New Brunswick genealogical queries to her at:  Include your name and mailing address for the benefit of the readers of the newspaper who do not have access to E-mail but could have information to share with you. Please put "Query" followed by the surnames in your query. For more information on submitting queries, visit
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