Rev. Canon William Thomas Cluff was rector of St. James Anglican Church for 35 years.
“Rev. W. T. Cluff, who has accepted the appointment to the vacant rectorate of St. James’ Church, Stratford, was born on the Bayfield Line, Goderich Township, and is the youngest of three brothers . . . He was educated at Clinton Collegiate Institute, taught school for three years, entered Huron College and, on taking holy orders, was appointed to Walkerville Parish.”
From Walkerville, Mr. Cluff went to Brussels, then to Fenton, Mich., but returned to Ontario in a few years to Thorndale. He then went to Strathroy, where he was rector of St. John’s for nine years, then resigned to take charge of St. James.
In his 19 years at St. James, the arduous work of the parish was done entirely by Mr. Cluff, except from May 1921 to September 1922, when Rev. M. C. Davies assisted in the work. Reserved and sympathetic in nature, Rev. Cluff won a host of friends and admirers outside his congregation during the years he was in Stratford. He died in London, Ont., in 1931.
Rev. Cluff served in the Canadian Militia. He achieved the rank of major and was the chaplain of the 28th Perth Regiment while the family lived in Stratford.
Rev. Cluff had two sons who served in the First World War: Howard Roger Cluff, born 1889 and Reginald Alger (Rex) Cluff, born 1891.
In the spring of 1912, Howard Cluff completed his bachelor of arts degree and graduated from Trinity College in Toronto. In the same year, his brother Rex passed his first-year exams with honors.