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John Douglas Memorial Chapel 2 : 22-07-2013
John Douglas Memorial Chapel 2 : 22-07-2013

Photographs supplied by John Huth

The Douglas Memorial Chapel constructed at Quetta Precinct by Thursday Islanders commemorates John Douglas who was a pastoralist, Premier and former Government resident of Thursday Island who died in 1904.  The Chapel was finally opened on St Peter's Day, 29 June 1913. It contained a memorial stained glass window executed by Kayll and Reed of Leeds, of an elderly St John [in the likeness of John Douglas] at Patmos, which was donated by Torres Strait Islanders.

Prior to his appointment as Government Resident of Thursday Island, he was secretary for public lands in the Thorn ministry from June 1876 until March 1877, when he became Premier and was given the honour of C.M.G. His party was defeated at the election held in January 1879 and Douglas gave up politics.

In 1885 Douglas was appointed Government Resident and magistrate at Thursday Island and he was deeply involved in developing the settlement. He was an active warden in the Church of England and on 24 May 1893 laid the foundation stone of the Quetta Memorial Church.

He served on various local committees, and was a Cemetery Trustee from 1889 until his death. He won the respect of the Torres Strait Islanders, who in the early 1900s funded construction of the west aisle of the Quetta Memorial Cathedral Church, dedicated in 1913 as the Douglas Memorial Chapel. He is buried in the Island`s cemetery.

The Quetta Cathedral was filled on Sunday morning when the ceremony of dedicating the Douglas Memorial Chapel was performed by Bishop White. This portion of the cathedral has recently been completed and furnished, the chief amongst the gifts perhaps being the beautiful window paid for by the natives of the Torres Strait Islands, reproducing the features of the late Hon. John Douglas, in the figure of St John in his old age at Patmos. The creedence case was made from the ill fated steamer Quetta.
Cairns Post, 2nd July 2013.


Address:Douglas Street, Quetta All Souls Memorial Cathedral, Douglas Memorial Chapel, Thursday Island, 4875
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -10.584327
Long: 142.215098
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Monument Type:Structure
Monument Theme:People
Sub-Theme:Government - State
Designer:Kayll & Reed (Leeds, England )


Actual Monument Dedication Date:Sunday 29th June, 1913
Front Inscription

Plaque :

To the glory of God

And in memory of Hon. John Douglas C.M.G.
Premier of Queensland 1877 - 1879

Government Resident of Thursday Island 1885 - 1904

Who entered into rest July 23rd 1904

Loved and honoured by all


Source: MA, ADB
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au