Cowley, Abraham

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Cowley, Abraham

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Church Missionary Society missionary to Rupert's Land from England.


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Abraham Cowley was born in England and educated at the Church Missionary Society college at Islington in north London, England. On January 5, 1841, Abraham and his new bride Arabella Cowley set sail for the Red River Settlement via Montreal. They planned on travelling with Bishop George Jehoshaphat Mountain who was already planning to travel to Red River and could ordain Cowley in the Church of England. The Cowleys arrived in Montreal on 28 February. Bishop Mountain had to postpone his trip, leaving the Cowleys with no way to reach Red River on their own. They decided to return to England and take a ship to Hudson Bay. They reached Red River on September 28, 1841, after completing three crossings of the Atlantic ocean in nine months. Rev. Cowley established the Partridge Crop mission, later renamed Fairford, and spent many years at the "Indian Settlement" at Netley Creek. He was eventually made Archdeacon of Cumberland.

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F. A. Peake, “COWLEY, ABRAHAM,” in Dictionary of Canadian Biography, vol. 11, University of Toronto/Université Laval, 2003–, accessed May 13, 2016,

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