The South Australian Register of September 8, 1923 described Copeland as “a thoughtful and poetic preacher, a faithful pastor and the loving friend of the poor. He was largely instrumental in the formation of the fellowship at Meningie that took place in 1882”. The impetus for the house’s construction was probably his marriage, which took place in September 1879, when his stipend was increased from £500 to £600. Copeland was very actively involved in the public questions of the day, such as the removal of the opportunities for vice, especially drinking and gambling. He led a crusade against the latter: the totalizator had been introduced in 1879 and the volume of gambling had increased. Copeland and Conigrave (a church member) and other leading Congregationalists were successful in having the totalizator abolished, but as their influence waned, it was reinstated in 1888. By then Copeland had moved on to Melbourne.
The building was later used as a girls’ school known as Creveen, started by Miss Rita Cussen in 1910. Additions were made in 1915-16 when Creveen became a secondary girls’ school under the guidance of Miss Kathleen Cussen. It was closely associated with the Church of England, religious services being held regularly at Christ Church (across Palmer Place) with the rector acting as school chaplain: “By 1922 the school was in a very flourishing condition and was considered one of the most influential schools of its type in South Australia . . . the enrolment had grown to 125 scholars .. . For the next decade, the school continued to hold an honoured place in the educational life of the State.”
The school was, however, badly affected by the Depression, enrolments dropped, and it was closed at the end of 1934.