The foundation of the ancient historical laden was laid by Rev. Henry Townsend of C.M.S (Church Missionary Society) on the Marina Waterfront in Badagry, Lagos, Nigeria in the year 1842, and was later built by other missionaries in 1845. The building served as a vicarage for Saint Thomas Anglican Church and was later used by Samuel Ajayi Crowther, the first African C.M.S bishop that translated the Holy Bible from English to Yoruba.

In one of the two rooms on the upper floor of the building, there lay glass case containing the English and Yoruba version of the bible translated by Ajayi Crowther (picture down). It was said that the English bible is 173 years old while the Yoruba version is 170 years old, therefore, it was translated around 1845. According to punchng, it was said that “the floor also housed the room of the ‘first teacher in Nigeria’, Mr Claudius Philips. Philips, who wore a black shirt, suit and a white trouser in the portrait which adorned the wall, lived in the room for 23 years, from 1845 to 1868.”

In another room, the picture of Herbert Macaulay, Ajayi Crowther’s grandson hung on the wall. There was also a well in the compound of this historical building which was dug in 1842. The well served as a source of drinking water for some people living in the community.
This building was originally built with coconut fibers and bamboo, and located on an area of 1,144 square feet. The more than a century and half monument building was given a face lift to preserve it for coming generations.

Culled up from: Oldnaija