Rev William Richard Rogers 1844 to 1845
A Missionary on St. Eustatius and St. Bartholomew
In 1844 Conference decided that William Richard could serve the needs of two islands about 35 miles apart with a combined membership of 592 without any assistance. St Eustatius, a Dutch Island, had historically had more members than St Bartholomew, a French Island, which for many years had had less than 150 members. Clearly so few members would have lacked the funds to maintain their own minister. The Conference of 1842 had decided that the two islands should be one station.
Conference in 1845 intended that William Richard was to continue to live and minister on St Eustatius and minister on St Bartholomew as well. A family tragedy occurred soon after the birth of his second daughter, Alice Du Cloux Rogers (my great-grandmother).
Alice Du Cloux was born on 5th March 1845 on St Eustatius and about 6 weeks later Mary Ann died, leaving William Richard with three young children. It is thought that Richard Naylor Rogers must have died before this time because there was no family mention of him.
Alice Du Cloux told her children that the Du Cloux part of her given names was to remind her of her French godmother. I would very much like to find her baptismal record. Alice Du Cloux must have been baptised in St. Eustatius before she left the island and in which case she would most probably have been baptised by her own father because there was no other ordained Wesleyan Minister on the island just like Reverend Hilton Cheeseborough did for his son in 1837. (This entry was just below the one for Richard Naylor Rogers and the place St. Eustatius caught my eye.)
William Richard decided that he would have to return to England and continue his ministry in England. Even the journey back to England was eventful because Alice Du Cloux’s coloured nurse died while they were at sea.