The Salvation Army was founded in 1865 in the East End of London by William and Catherine Booth. From the beginning, the Army has had a strong social conscience, working and living amongst the poorest of the poor, feeding the body as well as the soul. This new approach, known to Salvationists the world over as "soup, soap, and salvation", was pivotal in the Army's rapid spread throughout the world. Their penchant for parading through the streets with their often rag-tag band often led to charges of disturbing the peace, with more than one officer or soldier being thrown into jail! Seventeen years after its appearance on the streets of London, The Salvation Army appeared in Canada.

The International Spread of the Army (150th Anniversary) in 2015 (Journey of Renewal - Building an Accountability Movement) revealed the expansion in terms of countries from 1865 (1 country) to 1965 (75 countries) to 2015 (127 countries). In 1900 there were 193,092 soldiers and in 2013 1,174,238 and growing.


The Army made its first appearance in Chatham in 1885 with Captain Emily Wadds and officially in Newcastle on August 5, 1886 with Captain William Veale and Cadet Jacob. Cadet Jacob held Cottage meetings in the homes of local citizens and attracted a number of individuals.

There were vibrant and spirit-filled meetings during those initial years, as witnessed by Captain Tom Scott (Glory Tom), Captain Nancy McDonald, Captain Lizzy Woods, Captain Nora Wheeler and Captain Jesse Knight, until the crowds could no longer be contained within their homes. An agreement was made with the local Masonic Lodge in Newcastle for the use of their building on Sunday and Thursday nights.

"The enthusiasm of the Army members was clearly visible to all with their novel parading in the streets with drums beating and hymn singing. The police committee, reported the Miramichi Advance of 1887, "have had a number of complaints before them in reference to the danger to life and property caused by The Salvation Army's drum-beating and blazing torches on the streets." A young boy had been knocked down by a frightened horse and this was one of the chief's complaints. The Army when approached about curtailing the drum-beating and noise was defiant. In October, 1887 D.G. Smith, editor of the Miramichi Advance and a county councillor, laid a complaint against Volpi Luigi, an Army drummer.

The matter was brought to the court and the drum-beating was permitted, largely because the various bands had always been permitted to play in the streets, though they did so less regularly."

(By Favorable Winds-History of Chatham by J. A. Fraser)

Note: Corps in Chatham officially closed Dec 11/1942 (no records available)


With a growing congregation, the decision was made for The Salvation Army to purchase property so that a citadel could be erected. The May 15, 1889 Union Advocate reported:

"The ground for The Salvation Army was dedicated Thursday, May 9. A banquet was held in the Masonic Hall, followed by a march to the site on Pleasant Street, formerly the William Gremely house. A citadel will be built there. Addresses were given by Major Southall (Commander), Capt. Bent (Bathurst) and Capt. Wheeler (Newcastle). Several choruses were sung."

Two years later, after much work and prayer, the building which was to serve as a meeting place and officers' quarters was completed. The Newcastle Corps was officially opened in 1891. Captain Veale and Cadet Jacob were the Corps Officers and they had as their guest Captain Southall who conducted the Opening Services.

The Newcastle Corp was located at 234 Pleasant Street until it closed in 2000. The building was later sold to Jean Coutu Pharmacy, and demolished in the winter of 2009 to make room for their expansion.

Gordon & Salome Legge, both Salvationists originally from Newfoundland, were hired as Social Services Coordinators to continue the Thrift Store and Family Services at 447 King George Hwy (behind the former Scholten's (now N & J Convenience).


Thrift Store & Family Service Office

A building was secured in the winter of 2004 at 231 Pleasant Street - directly across the street from the former Newcastle Corp site. How fitting that The Army would relocate there.

Renovations were completed and the GRAND OPENING of The Salvation Army Community Resource Centre was held on May 17, 2005. Extensive repairs were made to the façade of the building in the Fall of 2014, and complete renovations to The Thrift Store in the spring of 2016 as part of the 130th Anniversary Events.

Community Ministries Directors (since 2003):

Debbie Churchill (2003 - 2008)
Major Denise Daigle (2008)
Majors Wilson & Darlene Sutton (2009 - 2014)
Retired Major Lilllian & Gerald Colbourne (2014 - 2015) Major Deborah Hilliard (2015 -
The Thrift Store
Where you can purchase good quality used and new items at VERY LOW PRICES
Family Service Hours
Monday to Thursday
8:30 a.m.-4:00 p.m.
8:30 a.m. - 2:00 pm CLOSED 12 - 1 daily

Thrift Store Hours
Monday to Friday
9:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Close Saturdays