WEST METHODIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH OF HILLSDALE
by Captain Franklin Ellis14
Previous to the organization of a class there was occasional preaching in
the west part of the town by preachers from Hudson, Hillsdale, and other
These early meetings were held at different places, among others at Knapp school-house and the residences of Augustus Reed and Thomas Heywood.
The class was a small one, and was formed about 1835. It was a outgrowth of the church at Hillsdale village. Among the prominent members were Joseph Morehouse, Benjamin Snyder, William Higgins, John Higgins, Josiah Knapp, Titus Simpson, D. Higgins, Joseph D. Goodsell, and Andrew Higgins, who was the first class-leader, and held that office from 1835 till his death, in 1875.
The church building was erected in the summer of 1854, and was finished in 1855. It is forty-two feet long by thirty feet wide, and the posts are twenty feet high. It was built by Robert L. Burdick, who received as his remuneration the sum of $1495. The bell cost about $260, and the furniture about $50. The total cost of the structure was nearly $2100. The site, consisting of one acre of land, was given by Milo and Amanda Bissell, and the lot was surveyed by Hezekiah Van Deusen, May 7, 1853. The deed bears date May 31, 1853.]
The society became incorporated April 3, 1855, and elected Js. D. Goodsell, Moses Becker, Milo Bissell, trustees. Alanson D. Apley and Joseph D. Goodsell presided at the meeting, and Andrew Higgins acted as secretary. Rev. Daniel Wager, of Ghent, a local preacher, was one of the earliest preachers; also Rev. Timothy Benedict. Since 1850 it has been supplied in connection with the Methodist Episcopal church in Hillsdale village until 1875, since which time it has been connected with the North Hillsdale church. The pastors since 1850 have been Revs. Lucius H. King, William Ostrander, Alexander H. Ferguson, Henry Cox, Marvin R. Lent, H. B. Mead, James N. Shaffer, Charles S. Brown, L. W. Walsworth, Oliver V. Amerman, Henry H. Birkins, William S. Bouton, Abram Davis, Alfred Coons, E. H. Roys, J. H. Lane, O. P. Crandall.
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