From: "A History of the
Scotch Presbyterian Church, St. Gabriel Street, Montreal"
By Rev, Robert Campbell, M.A., 1887
William Hunter was one of several brothers, natives of Kilmarnock, Scotland, who came to Montreal in the eighteenth century, and became general merchants. He subscribed ten guineas for the erection of the St. Gabriel Street Church, and five pounds in 1800, when the debt on the original cost of the building was extinguished.
He was one of the first three elders of the Church, and was Session-Treasurer from the time of Mr. Bethune on till he left the congregation. He had been a contributor to Christ Church in 1789. When the first Protestant Burying-Ground was formed in 1799, he was chosen as one of the five first trustees.
He was a warm friend and supporter of Rev. John Young; but when the congregation resolved, in 1803, to extend a call to Rev. James Somerville, he led the opposition, being in favour rather of Rev. Robert Forrest. He kept a diary in which he noted the ecclesiastical events of his time, and to it we are indebted for a good deal of our information regarding the early efforts to plant the Presbyterian Church in Montreal. He owned pew No.2.
Mr. Hunter married Mrs. Stewart (Isabella Cowan), widow of William Stewart. William Stewart Hunter, Notary, father of James Stewart Hunter, Notary, and grandfather of Herbert Story Hunter, of this city, was a son of this marriage.
Mr. Hunter's subsequent ecclesiastical
career was connected with what is now St.
Andrew's Church, and so we have no farther concern with him. His brother,
Robert Stewart, however, continued to belong
to the Church in St. Gabriel Street.
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