ST. JOHN'S EVANGELICAL
By Capt. Franklin Ellis242
This society was organized at a meeting held at the house of Adam Coon, two miles from Ancram, on the 21st of November, 1846. William W. Hoysradt presided and Abraham F. Miller was secretary. There were twenty-five members, whose names were Jacob, Mary, Adam, and Philip Coon, Mr. and Mrs. Peter Johnson, Mr. and Mrs. John McIntyre, Mrs. Henry Strever, Mr. and Mrs. George Finkle, Henry Englekee, Mrs. J. P. White, Mrs. Henry Hoffman, Mr. and Mrs. John I. Lown, Widow Lown, Elizabeth Turner, Mrs. Henry Hoysradt, Mrs. Tiel Dennis, John Hines, Margaret Shook, Regina House, Lydia C. Traver, and Clarissa Cryne.
Steps were taken to build a church, subscriptions were made by one hundred and three persons to an aggregate amount of $1334, and at a subsequent meeting held at the house of John H. Miller, in Gallatin, Peter P. Rossman, Jacob F. Suydam, and Henry Silvernail were appointed as a building committee. The work was pushed forward and the church erected during the summer of 1847. A Mr. Traver, from Valatie, did the work. The cost of the building was $2400. The site was purchased of Claudius Monell, and contains a little over an acre of ground. In the fall of 1854 the front of the church was extended about fifteen feet and a belfry added, costing about $1000 in all. The parsonage was built during the pastorate of Rev. Matthew Mallinson, about 1853, at a cost of about $1500. The value of the church property is not far from $6000.
Commencing with the small number above named, the society has constantly increased in numbers until it now has a membership of one hundred and seventy. Three hundred and eighty-four persons have had their names inscribed upon it scroll of members.
The pastors have been as follows, viz.: Revs. William Askam, Matthew Mallinson, Nicholas Wert, William Hull, Matthew Mallinson, William H. Shalland, John L. Smithdeal, A. N. Daniels, and John Kling, who is the present pastor, and entered upon this field of labor in the spring of 1877. Rev. John L. Smithdeal died while pastor of this church, May 1, 1871.
The first ecclesiastical officers of the church were elected Aug. 20, 1859, as follows, viz: Cornelius Silvernail and Franklin Hoysradt, deacons; Jeremiah Williams, Jacob Lasher, and Abraham A. Vosburgh, elders.
John Scism, Philip H. Turner, Archelaus Brandt, George H. Niver, Hiram Williams, Lyman A. Backman, Michael Rowe, Philip M. Lown, and Talmadge Decker have also served as deacons, the three last named being the present incumbents.
Jonas Felts, Cornelius Silvernail, George Palmer, Hermon Miller, and Abraham A. Vosburgh have served as elders, and the three last named are the present elders.
The church was incorporated July 15, 1847, at a meeting held at the school-house in district No. 7, at four o'clock p.m. Peter Lasher and Peter P. Rossman presided. Seven trustees were elected, as follows: viz.: Peter Lasher, Henry Silvernail, John I. Lown, Jonas Felts, Peter P. Rossman, Jacob Loucks, and Jacob F. Suydam. The present trustees are James E. Stickle, John J. Stickle, Ellsworth J. Brandt, Robert Hinsdale, Robert Backman, and Horace Vosburgh. There are four Sabbath-schools connected with this church. The Ancram school numbers about fifty scholars, and its library contains about one hundred volumes. The officers are Rev. John Kling, superintendent; Abraham A. Vosburgh, assistant superintendent; Philip M. Lown, secretary; Rosa Woodward, treasurer; Philip M. Lown, librarian.
The Gallatinville school numbers about forty, and is under the superintendence of Jacob Edleman. Miss Kate Bush, secretary.
The school at the Weaver school-house, in the north part of Gallatin, has about fifty scholars. George Palmer is the superintendent, and P. P. Bush is the secretary.
The fourth school is at the Niver school-house, in district No. 3. Abraham A. Vosburgh is the superintendent, and John Felts the secretary. It has a membership of about thirty scholars.