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Boston Mills

GPS Coordinates
N 43 degrees, 46 degrees, 22.7 seconds by W 079 degrees, 55 minutes, 38.8 seconds
Credit River where the baptisms took place
Entrance to
Boston Mills Cemetery
Standing's family granite monument looking back at the cemetery driveway
John Standing marker
in ground
Closeup of the side of the stone with
John and Nancy Standing's names.
Each side names other
members of the family
Street sign crossing




The village of Boston Mills, Ontario had a branch of the Church in the 1830's, and is located in what was then Chinguacousy Township, Peel County, Upper Canada.  It can be reached by going north on either Chinguacousy Road or Highway 10 from Brampton until you reach the Boston Mills Road. 


One of the few remaining places left from Boston Mills today is the historic Boston Mills Cemetery.  The first burial took place here in 1823.  This would have been the cemetery the early Saints in Boston Mills would have used.  The cemetery is across from the intersection of Chinguacousy Road and Boston Mills Road.


Between 1836 and 1838, Mormon missionaries arrived in Boston Mills and preached at the first log schoolhouse which was built in the village in 1830.   After a branch was formed in Boston Mills, the Saints continued to worship at this school, which was located in front of the cemetery.   At the time, there were no churches in Boston Mills.  


 There were three members of the Standing family who lived in Boston Mills who became members of the Church:  John Standing Sr. (born 1792) and his two sons, James (born 1815) and John (born 1821).


 John Standing Sr. and his wife Nancy Varley were born in Lancashire, England, and they were married on April 17, 1815 in Garstang, Lancashire, England.   In 1818, they immigrated to New York State, and, in 1825, the family emigrated from New York State to Boston Mills.  The Standings are believed to be one of the first families to settle in Boston Mills.


Sometime in 1836 or after, John Standing and two of his sons, James Standing and John Standing Jr., were baptized as members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  James Standing was baptized by Elder Theodore Turley who lived in Churchville, Peel County, Upper Canada.  The baptism took place in the Credit River, which runs beside the cemetery on the east.  James Standing was one of the first missionaries to preach in Essa Township, Simcoe County.  He and Elder James Lake taught the Hill family and their entire family was baptized as members of the Church.


 At some point, a wagon train of Saints left Boston Mills for the United States to gather with the Saints.  There were so few Saints left in Boston Mills that the branch was dissolved.   Both James and John Jr. were with the group that went west.


When a new school was built up the hill from the first school, Mr. Wilkinson, a farmer who lived across the street from the school, purchased the school and had it moved onto his property.  His farm is now a camp.


 John Standing Sr. chose to remain in Peel County for the rest of his life probably because his wife was a devout Baptist and never joined the Church. He remained faithful, however, for in the 1861 Canadian Census, John Sr. gave his religion as Mormon.  He and his wife, Nancy, are buried in the Boston Mills Cemetery.  He died May 25, 1866 in Peel County at the age of 74.  You can see his marker in the cemetery beside the tall granite monument that lists both him and his wife along with others in his family who are buried there.


His son James Standing was born on November 11, 1815 in Lancashire, England.  He died on June 16, 1886 in Utah.  He is buried in the Salt Lake City Cemetery.  In 1836 when the missionaries came to Boston Mills, he would have been 21.


John Standing Jr. was born on August 21, 1821 in Phelps, Ontario County, New York.  He died of measles on October 16, 1843 in Nauvoo, Hancock County, Illinois.  John Jr. would have been 15 in 1836 when the missionaries came to Boston Mills.


At least two direct descendants of John Standing Sr. who live in Ontario are Church members as of 2017.


Another interesting fact is that John Standing Sr. had a brother named James who was baptized in Preston, Lancashire, England, in about 1838, and who came to Nauvoo with his family.  His daughter, Mary, became the wife of James Standing, of Boston Mills—her second cousin--and is buried beside him in the Salt Lake Cemetery.


In Utah, James and Mary had a son, Joseph Standing, who was called on a mission to Georgia in 1879 where he was killed by a mob.  His body was taken back to Utah for burial by his companion, Rudger Clawson, who later became the President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.  The Mutual Improvement Association (MIA) erected a unique monument to Joseph Standing’s memory which stands in the Salt Lake City Cemetery.  It is said that 10,000 came to his burial.

Joseph Standing Memorial, Salt Lake City
Joseph Standing Memorial
GPS Coordinates of Tombstone
N 43 degrees, 46 degrees, 22.7 seconds
by W 079 degrees, 55 minutes, 38.8 seconds
Joseph Standing Memorial, another side
Joseph Standing Memorial, another side
Joseph Standing Memorial, another side
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