Daniel Deacon was ordained in 1866 and became the rector at Port Rowan, Bothwell and Windsor. In 1870 he married Maria Helen Ball. Between 1871 and 1879, the couple had five children, all boys. Maria died shortly after the birth of their last son. Three of their sons eventually moved to British Columbia. Another became a well-known Stratford doctor.
In the 1881 census for Windsor, Daniel Deacon appeared as a widower with five sons. A year later, he married Emma Caroline Moore of Windsor. They had no children of their own. Soon after his second marriage, Rev. Deacon moved his family to Stratford, where he became the rector at Home Memorial Church at the corner of West Gore and Home streets. Originally called the Home Mission Chapel, it was built in 1876 on land donated by Judge J. Daniel Lizars (see Hamilton Street). It was named Home Memorial in honour of Home Lizars.
In 1899 he had the house at 157 Church St. built for his family. The Stratford Evening Herald described it as “a building of red pressed brick, 30 by 52 feet, which will be both handsome and comfortable . . . the gables will be filled in with cut shingles in the Queen Anne style so popular now.” It is interesting that the carpentry work was done by John L. Youngs, whose construction company was erecting the new city hall at the same time. The architect, Harry Powell, had also won a competition for his design of the new city hall. City council, however, turned down his proposal in favour of another architect’s work.
When St. Paul’s Anglican Church opened on Jan. 14, 1906, Rev. Deacon was the church’s first rector. His wife, Emma, was one of the lay workers who contributed to the success of the new parish. In 1909, due to failing health, he was compelled to retire, but was able to watch he sons begin successful careers, marry and have children. One of those sons, Dr. George Reginald Deacon (see Deacon Street) attended his father in his final days. Rev. Daniel Deacon died on April 15, 1918, at age 84. Emma was 75 when she died on Dec. 21, 1932. Both are buried in Stratford’s Avondale Cemetery. Sources include: Historic Plaque Properties;