At St John’s Church in 1835 the Chaplain was the Reverend Dr William Henry Browne, LLD and his churchwardens were Lewis Gillies, and William Kenworthy who was in office when the church was built.
The church was small with a Robing Room, a Library and an organ.
Lewis Gillies was the father of two children who died very young and whose memorial is on the west wall.
Lewis was much respected in the Launceston banking community and was the first Managing Director of the Tamar Bank (1835), a Trustee of the Launceston Church Grammar School 1838-1846, (the building and establishment period).
He was a man of means with interests in property and sheep farming, importing Saxony and Merino breeds to the colony.
William Kenworthy was a leading figure in the establishment and building of St John’s Church as on-site work superintendent.
He came as a Lieutenant in the 48th Regiment to Sydney and was appointed Naval Officer and Inspector of Public Works at Port Dalrymple in 1821. He was appointed a Justice of the Peace by King George the Fourth in 1828.
Probably it was Kenworthy, in a very beautiful hand, who prepared an inventory of items in use in the church area and associated rooms in the 1830s.
Dr Browne was an avid reader and apart from his holy testaments he established a large collection of biblical reference books and other sacred texts.
In the Library there were also ‘two folio Bibles, one folio Prayer Book, two quarto Prayer Books and one small 16th size Prayer Book.’ There was also a large wardrobe.
In the Robing Room, Dr Browne kept his two white surplices, a table with two chairs, a wash-stand, ewer and jug and a looking glass.
On the table stood two brass candlesticks and an ink stand. A chest was kept nearby, there was a fender in front of the small warming grate and hidden somewhere was a ‘Chamber Mug’.
The Communion salver and chalices were kept safely in the church.
For Communion there was a table with a crimson covering cloth, two damask table cloths and damask napkins.
Three crimson-covered cushions and two stools were provided.
The organ stood on the balcony at the tower end and there were bench-seats, cushions and footstools for the children’s choir.
Large cushions for the prayer desk and pulpit and a set of ‘velvet drapery’ was provided to mark the church ‘seasons’.
Eighteen pairs of branch brass sconces and 12 plain sconces were provided for the congregation with many cushions for the pews. The church was well equipped for the 1830s.