Independent Chapel, Collins St/Knox’s Free Church/Primitive Methodist Church, Hobart

Collins St, between Campbell & Argyle Sts, Hobart

From “My Primitive Methodist Ancestors”, (Hobart Wesley Museum collection?)
Another photo on LINC

Built by Henry Hopkins and opened in January 1837.

In 1835 Hopkins was again instrumental in bringing out a second Independent minister, Rev. John Nisbet. He also gave land for the Berea chapel in Liverpool Street and in 1837 built the Collins Street chapel, Hobart, at his sole expense. When this became too small and a meeting discussed the building of Davey Street Church, the minute book recorded that ‘Mr. Hopkins engages to pay a sum equal to that which may be collected within the twelve months from 1st August 1853’.
Australian Dictionary of Biography

Hobart Town Courier, 30 December 1836
Hobart Town Courier, 30 December 1836

In 1857, the congregation moved to a new, bigger church in Davey Street. The chapel building was sold and became Knox’s Free Church.

We learn with pleasure that the congregation of the Rev. John Downes has purchased from Henry Hopkins, Esq., for the sum of £1400, Collins-street Chapel, which it is expected will be opened for Divine Service on Sabbath, the 25th instant, under the designation of Knox’s Church. This surely affords a pleasing evidence of what can be done by a willing and attached people.-
The Courier, 12 October 1857

Knox’s Church, Collins-street, near the New market, will be opened on Sabbath next, 1st Nov. Service in the morning at eleven, and in the evening at half-past six o’clock, by Rev. Jno. Downes, and in the afternoon at three o’clock, by the Rev. Geo. Clarke. A collection will be made at the close of each Service, in aid of liquidating the debt incurred in the purchase of the Church.
Hobart Town Mercury, 30 October 1857

Last Sunday Knox’s Church, in Collins- street, was opened for divine worship,–the Rev. J. Downes preaching morning and evening, and the Rev. G. Clarke in the afternoon.
Launceston Examiner, 7 November 1857

Part of map
Jarman’s Map of Hobart places the Knox’s Church in Collins St, opposite the hospital.

In 1861, the chapel passed to the Primitive Methodists.

The Mercury, 7 December 1860
The Mercury, 7 December 1860

Mercury, 22 December 1860

KNOX’S FREE CHURCH. – The Primitive Methodists, have recently taken this church for a piece of worship, the late officiating minister, the Rev. J. Downes, having received, an appointment in Victoria.
The Mercury, 24 April 1861

Mercury, 27 April 1861
The Mercury, 27 April 1861

Mercury, 14 May 1861
The Mercury, 14 May 1861

The Primitive Methodist Church, which nearly faces St. Peter’s, was auctioned to-day, and passed into the hands of a Mr James Boxall lor the sum of £900. The conditions of sale prevented many people bidding. The auctioneer gave out that the building was not to be used for liquor or dancing hall purposes, and this announcement somewhat damped the competition. Mr Boxall got hold of a cheap property, but what he intends to do with it goodness only knows. Wharf business has moved now right up to the doors of the “old Primitive,” and the probability is that it will be used for commercial pursuits of some kind or other.
Daily Telegraph, 17 June 1903

One thought on “Independent Chapel, Collins St/Knox’s Free Church/Primitive Methodist Church, Hobart

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    October 18, 2021 at 5:11pm

    Rev. Edward Cook Pritchard was a forebear on my mother’s father’s side of the family. Her mother was born on Mt. Lofty, nr. Adelaide & eventually met & married my grandfather, Geoffrey, who was a sheep farmer at the time.
    Rev. ECP wrote a book ‘Under the Southern Cross’ about his ministry & adventures in Australia.

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