1863: St Joseph’s Catholic Church, Collingwood, Victoria.

In late 1867 James Urie, of the Melbourne stained glass firm Ferguson & Urie, toured Tasmania with a catalogue of the firms designs for stained glass. On the 13th August 1867, the Hobart Mercury reported a detailed account of commissions he had received for stained glass windows and mentioned some that the firm had already executed in Victoria. Amongst those listed was “…St Josephs Roman Catholic Church, Collingwood…”[1]

The foundation stone of St Joseph’s Church & School was laid on 16 December 1860[2] and formally opened on Sunday the 1st of February 1863[3]

The Victorian Heritage Database indicates that St Joseph’s contained stained glass windows by Ferguson & Urie, Rogers & Hughes, and William Montgomery[4].

At about 6am on the  2nd of April  2007, fire broke out and destroyed the majority of St Joseph’s leaving just the shell [5]None of the historic stained glass windows survived.

Early photos taken in the 1990’s and kindly contributed by Dr. Bronwyn Hughes, 01/06/2013.

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The Argus, Melbourne, Vic, Monday 2nd February 1863, page 5.

The Roman Catholic Church of St. Joseph, situated in Otter-street, East Collingwood, was formally dedicated for public worship yesterday morning, by the Roman Catholic bishop of the diocese, Dr. Goold. High pontifical mass was performed, the Rev. H. England acting as deacon, and the Rev. W. Donovan as sub-deacon. The discourse was delivered by the Rev. E. Scully. The church which is of neat brick erection, was opened for the first time yesterday. It was commenced about three years ago, but a great deal of work still remains to be done, both with regard to the internal and external fittings. The building has been erected with the view of being used as a school-house as well as church. It accommodates about 400 people, and its cost (about £1,000) has been already subscribed. A numerous congregation assembled upon the occasion of the dedication, and many of the most influential Catholics of the neighbourhood were present. Imperial Mass, No. 8, was beautifully given by a choir, which included Mrs. Tester, Miss Julia Matthews, and Messrs. Power and Ewart.”

Related post:

13-08-1867: James Urie visits Tasmania on Ferguson and Urie business.

External links:

YouTube Video, St Joseph’s fire: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ecIH37XquCM



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