Mount Elvin Baptist Church – The Birthplace of Trinidad’s Baptist Religion
Mount Elvin Baptist Church sits quietly on a minor knoll off Hindustan Highway on the outskirts of New Grant in southern Trinidad. It is an unpretentious church and nevertheless it can be regarded the epicenter of the Baptist religion in Trinidad and Tobago. This church was proven in 1816 and the importance of that day has to do with the settlement of the “Merikens” in Trinidad in that calendar year.
In 1816 demobilized Africans who experienced served in the British Army throughout the War of 1812 between the British and the Americans had been settled in Trinidad in what arrived to be identified as the Firm Villages. According to A.B. Huggins in his guide “the Saga of the Firms” the phrase “Merikens” arose due to the fact these people could not effectively pronounce the letter A in American. John McNish Weiss in his paper “The Corps of Colonial Marines” states that these “Merikin” troopers ended up slaves in the United states of america who ended up promised their flexibility if they fought for the British. Recruited by the British first in Maryland and Virginia and later on in Ga, they have been a battling unit significantly praised for valor and self-control.
When the British Army firms left for residence in England in April 1815, the six Black organizations turned the 3rd Battalion Colonial Marines, garrisoned in Bermuda on Ireland Island. They did garrison duty and labored as artisans and laborers in the building of the new Royal Naval Dockyard in Bermuda. When transfer to the West India Regiments was proposed the men turned down the concept. Their persistent intransigence finally led the British federal government to offer you to place them in Trinidad as independent farmers. On accepting the offer you they still left Bermuda on fifteen July 1816.The first group of 71 settled in Dunmore Hill and Mount Elvin whilst the second group of seventy two settled in Indian Stroll.
These had been religious men and women who followed the Baptist religion practiced in the southern United States. Though there ended up no clergymen among them there had been 5 gentlemen who ended up described as Anabaptist preachers who held Sunday ceremonies. 1 of these men was recognized as Brother Will Hamilton. In 1808 the London Missionary Society (Baptist) sent employees to Guyana and Tobago and in 1809 one of them, Thomas Adam, relocated to Trinidad. He and later Reverend George Cowen even though operating on the institution of St John’s Baptist Church in Port of Spain Trinidad also gave assistance to these African-American ex-slaves who ended up training a model of the Baptist faith. In churches in Raleigh , the similarities of the faith led to the adoption of the missionaries’ edition of the Baptist religion that arrived to be referred to as in Trinidad, London Baptist.
Above time however, according to Ashram Stapleton in his book “The Birth and Growth of the Baptist Church in Trinidad and Tobago”, there developed a schism as some folks in the church desired particular African methods integrated and the London Missionary Modern society frowned on those practices. Eventually these persons remaining the church and have been initial known as the “Disobedient Baptists” and last but not least the Non secular or Shouter Baptist. Other variances within the London Baptists then led to additional variations of the Baptist religion with the improvement of the Unbiased Baptists and the Basic Baptists.