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Maine, New England, USA
Owner of Worthington Hall
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Gregory Trask (1845 - 1897) was a preacher and educator who ran Worthington Hall, a private school for orphans with his wife, Minerva, and daughter, Charity. He was the son of Elias Trask, the grandson of Lamar Trask, and the great grandson of Reverend Trask. He may have been the great-grandfather of Tony Peterson, although it was never mentioned.
Gregory Trask was born in 1845, the son of Elias Trask, and left at the Milldfew Orphanage, Massachusetts; his mother was one of the women Elias had affairs with, possibly a prostitute and possibly the one who infected Elias with syphilis. At age 10, Gregory was "adopted" by Elias and given the surname of "Trask". Shortly afterwards, Gregory actually came face to face with his mother when she paid a night-time visit to Elias' church, but she was thrown out by Elias, who then brutally told the boy that he was illegitimate.
Gregory's first "crime" was the deliberate and false accusation of his stepmother Mathilda Benton Trask of Collinsport in 1859, which resulted in Mathilda being cast out and the marriage being annulled. Elias left his ministry in 1861, to become a traveling preacher in the western territories during the American Civil War and Gregory traveled with him from 1861 to 1865, eventually settling near Salina, Kansas. Where Elias died of syphilis in 1868, Gregory was ordained minister and assumed Elias' congregation, but left Salina in 1870, when his congregation fell away because of Gregory's continual fire-and-brimstone attitude. He eventually returned to New England and in 1871, and participated in a “witch hunt” in Derby, Connecticut (the "witches" were in fact suffragettes and the "leader of the coven" was a wealthy heiress accused by her husband to obtain her money and property) which ended with Trask and their husbands locking the women away in a madhouse.
In 1875, Trask married Minerva Briar when she was pregnant with their daughter Charity, during that time, he became a ruthless headmaster of Worthington Hall, originally starting out as a teacher, he would often separate the students from eatch other and once locked Tim Shaw and Rachel Drummond once he found them together and locked them in a cupboard, for 30 days, and beat and starved them, until they promised to stop seeing each other (727).
Arrival in Collinwood
In 1897, Trask arrived at Collinwood at the behest of Edward Collins to take his children, Jamison and Nora away to his school, Worthington Hall (725) in Rockport. Worthington Hall had a very grim nature due to the fact that Trask abused orphans and other unwanted children. The school later caught on fire due to Laura Collins' magic.
His timing was most auspicious, for Judith Collins was busy trying to deal with a family crisis, namely her brother, Quentin had been first turned into a zombie and then his spirit had possessed his nephew, Jamison Collins. Rev. Trask was able to remedy the situation by praying for a soul transfer, which not only returned Jamison's soul to it's rightful body, but apparently restored the previously dead Quentin to life (It was actually Angelique who had restored Quentin's life). This increased the trust Judith had in him (726). Judith helped Trask rebuild Worthington Hall after it burned to the ground.
He was, however, spotted by Barnabas Collins, who recognized him as a relative of Reverend Trask whom he had killed just over 100 years earlier. When the subject of Reverend Trask came up, Gregory Trask said he was his great-great grandfather, who mysteriously disappeared after he left Collinsport and returned to Salem (726).
Gregory Trask knew of Rachel Drummond from when she had been a student and then teacher at Worthington Hall, where she claimed he kept her salary and overcharged her while she was there (726). Trask did not deny this, but said that the authorities would never believe her over himself. Rachel Drummond referred to Trask as a sadist (731).
Trask planned to take Jamison and Nora to Worthington Hall, but Jamison hid with Quentin's help and returned once Edward returned home, and gathered his promise to wait a couple of days before he made a decision (727).
Trask's Various Schemes
Trask was also a devious blackmailer. He blackmailed Evan Hanley into helping him arrange the death of his wife, Minerva Trask, after discovering Hanley trying to contact the devil. Evan hypnotized Tim Shaw, a teacher and former student at Trask's school, into poisoning her. After Minerva's death, Trask married Judith Collins so he can get control over her money and Collinwood. Trask closed Worthington Hall to live at Collinwood. He and Evan Hanley tried to drive Judith insane with the ghost of Minerva Trask. Trask and Evan later convinced her to sign a document committing her to a sanitarium. After Judith was committed, they disposed of Minerva's spirit for good. When Jamison becomes possessed by Count Petofi and Edward Collins acts like a servant, Trask wanted Evan to draw up papers to have them put into a sanitarium. Under the spell of Petofi, Evan tricked Trask into signing a confession saying that he and Evan killed Minerva. Due to Petofi's spell, the confession letter kept coming back to him. Charity found his confession, but she didn't turn it into the police. Quentin later found Trask's confession and threatened to give the letter to the police if Charity tells anyone about him being the werewolf. Trask later suspected Quentin Collins of being the werewolf after finding him chained up in his room. Trask locked Quentin in a cell in the basement of Collinwood to wait for the transformation and got his confession back. Trask buried his confession in the woods and it never appeared again. Angelique put Trask under a spell that almost killed him, using black magic to force Trask into committing suicide. Petofi walked in on Angelique and Trask was free of her spell. He went back to the cell to watch Quentin's transformation. Quentin didn't transform due to the portrait of himself and he was set free. Judith returned home after four months in the sanitarium, reclaimed her power over Collinwood with the help of Evan Hanley and planned to write Gregory out her will. Tim Shaw told her that during the time she was in the sanitarium, Trask was seeing a wealthy widow named Mrs. Curry who wanted to marry Trask, who had failed to tell that he was already remarried. When she found out, she committed suicide. After hearing that, Judith asked Tim to help her get revenge on her husband. Gregory tried to get Aristede to murder her in exchange for getting rid of Garth Blackwood to prevent Judith from writing him out her will. Aristede was to make Judith's murder look like a robbery. Aristede failed to kill Judith when Blackwood walked in on him.
Once more, Gregory Trask met his end when Judith Collins and Tim Shaw bricked him up behind a wall just like his great grandfather (879). Judith tormented Trask over Quentin's telephone. She also tormented him with the portrait of Amanda Harris, who Tim used earlier to get revenge on Trask. Gregory Trask shot himself with a pistol left by Judith after realizing that there was no escape from Quentin's room (884).
Jerry Lacy reprised his role as Gregory Trask forty years after the character's final appearance in the 2009 audio drama, The Wicked and the Dead. In that story, as he descends into madness in Quentin's sealed room, Trask is visited by the ghost of Carl Collins. Carl forces Trask to remember his past and realize the eventual destinty of all the Trask men.
Reverend Trask returned again in the 2011 audio drama The Carrion Queen. The story takes place immediately after The Wicked and the Dead, and the blurb reads:
Death is not the end for the Reverend Gregory Trask. After shooting himself to escape the torture of being walled-up alive, the priest is sent to the Dark Lord himself for Judgement. To the holy man’s horror, he is partnered with the equally cursed witch Angelique and sent to a vast battlefield in 1861 to compete for the return of their mortal soul. But neither is expecting to be pitched into the aftermath of one of America's most deadly historic battles, nor to encounter the mysteriously beautiful woman who stalks it.
The production stars Jerry Lacy as Trask and Lara Parker as Angelique.
Gregory Trask returned once more in the 2012 audio drama The Fall of the House of Trask which takes place in:
1941: The Reverend Gregory Trask has come back from Hell to be reunited with his daughter, Charity.
But why has he returned? Is he really free of the influence of The Dark Lord? The ghost of Pansy Faye doesn’t think so and is keeping a close eye on him. Torn between the spirit who haunts her and a father returned from beyond the grave, whose side will Charity take?
And just why is Gregory so interested in the unborn child of Sister Audrey Pearce?
The production co-stars Nancy Barrett as Charity Trask/Pansy Faye and Marie Wallace as Sister Audrey Pearce with a special appearance by David Selby.
In the Big Finish audio drama The Crimson Pearl, Gregory Trask is mentioned but not seen. In events that take place some time before the 1897 storyline, the titular pearl has come into his possession from his father Lamar Trask but is stolen from him by his wife Minerva's brother Simon, who in turn has it forcibly taken from him by Angelique.
Gregory Trask was Jerry Lacy's third role on the show.
The character of Gregory Trask is based on Mr. Brocklehurst from Jane Eyre.
The death of Gregory Trask was also based on the death of Fortunato in Edgar Allen Poe's The Cask of Amontillado.