STRONG DRINK, RELIGION AND LAW 303
success, came in and asked for food and shelter. I was frightened at first, but, after eating, he curled himself up beside the stove and slept quietly until morning.
"One of the most serious dangers to which the early settlers were exposed was bush fires," she continued. "Some years after the work of clearing had been carried on in Flos, bush fires swept over the township. Henry Thurston had the hair burned from his head as the flames swept past him, and my husband, caught in a roadway with a roaring furnace in the bush on each side, threw a blanket over a child in the bottom of the wagon and then raced for life to the open clearings beyond. At least one life was lost, William Kerr being burned to death while fighting off the fires that menaced his buildings."
VIRTUES AND FAILINGS
The Rev. John Gray, the first Presbyterian minister in Oro, had as his field not only this one township, but all the territory from Barrie on the south to Nottawasaga Bay on the north, with part of Mara on the east side of Lake Simcoe thrown in for good measure. The nearest Presbyterian place of worship to the south was the old sixth line church in Innisfil. To the north was the unbroken wilderness that then extended all the way to James Bay.
In covering his field in summer Mr. Gray rode fifty miles on horseback over roads where stumps and swails made travel difficult, and in the intervals preached two or three times on week days and held four services on Sunday.