Office of P. Sr. Bernard Esq.
Dec 19th 1870
At which time and place a meeting was held to arrange if possible for the establishment of a School for Coolie Children assisted by the Government. Present P. Sr. Bernard C.U. Dick, Dr Johnstone, A. P. Maryatt Esquires & Revs. K.J. Grant & John Morton Coolie Missionaries.
It was agreed that the gentlemen present form a Board of Managers for such a school, said Board to consist of members with power in event of death or retirement to fill up vacancies....
Voyage to Trinidad
The Rev. Dr. Kenneth James Grant in the field
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|John Morton's first visit to Trinidad was in 1864. In 1868, he returned to begin his work at Mission Village (later to be called Princes Town).|
In 1870, Dr Morton was joined by his missionary colleague and friend, Kenneth Grant; and a month after the latter's arrival, Dr. Morton arranged a meeting at Les Efforts (then a plantation) to establish the first of 73 elementary schools of the Canadian Mission. This first school was to become Grant School on Coffee Street in San Fernando, a flagship school for the mission, from 1870 up to the present day.
At the time much of San Fernando south and east of the Hill was under sugar-cane, and the location of Grant School was not remote from the plantations. "Coolie" did not have a negative connotation. It was the standard English word to denote "indentured labourer"
At left are a part of Dr. Morton's minutes of this historic meeting, more or less hastily recorded in his own handwriting in what is called a "scribbler" in Canada, a "copy-book" in Trinidad , an "exercise book" in the UK.
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