The Friends' Meeting



Columbia County,

New York

By Capt. Franklin Ellis375


     The pioneer meetings of the Friends in the town of Ghent were appointed for Thomas Scattergood, a traveling minister of the society from Philadelphia, at the house of Abram Macy, in the summer of 1793.  The capacity of the house proving too limited to accommodate those who attended, the meetings were held in the open air.  A year later, Mr. Macy erected a more commodious house, in which the meetings were held until 1795, when a small house of worship was built on the spot occupied by the present meeting-house, in the eastern part of Ghent.  A number of Friends settled in this neighborhood, and among the early members of the meeting were Abram Macy, John Macy, Robert Macy, Tephania Coffin, John White, Israel Trip, Francis Bunker, Richard Worth, David Ring, John Burtiss, James Golding, Stephen Earle, Samuel Crandell, Dr. Amos Carpenter, and Samuel Coleman.

     Dr. Amos Carpenter was the first, and for many years the only, approved minister of the meeting.  Charles M. Robinson and Eliza A. Shepard are ministers belonging to the meeting at present.  Many of the members have exercised the privilege of becoming instructors, and have exhorted at the meetings.

     The present meeting-house is the third erected on this spot.  It is a plain building, twenty-four by thirty feet.  The removal of many of the members has diminished the membership of the meeting to about forty persons.

     A First-day school was organized in 1870, having Charles M. Robinson for its superintendent.  The school has been conducted in an interesting manner, enlisting the interest of all the members of the meeting.  The attendance averages twenty-five scholars.