Episcopal Church, of Sackets Harbor, dates back in its history
to May 14, 1821, when an informal meeting was assembled to discuss
the subject of a church, and when Elisha
Camp, Samuel O. Auchmuty,
William Kendall, Robert
M. Harrison and John McCarty
were chosen a committee to look to the interests of the proposed
society until a vestry should be regularly constituted. The legal
and formal organization was accomplished August 6, 1821, with
Henry Moore Shaw, rector;
wardens Zeno Allen and Elisha
Camp; and vestrymen, Robert
M. Harrison, Samuel O. Auchmuty,
William Kendall, John
McCarty, Hiram Steele,
Thomas J. Angell, Hiram
Merrill and Thomas Y. Howe.
first who officiated and preached here was Bishop
Hobart, who, in his reports, records having visited Sackets
Harbor thursday afternoon, September 14, 1821. A church organization
was formed September 29, 1821, when at a meeting of the vestry it
was voted to give Henry Moore Shaw
$600 a year, which he accepted, and subsequently served as first
rector of the church.
1822, a subscription was circulated to obtain the means for erecting
a church. William Warring, Elisha
Camp, William M. Robbins,
Samuel F. Hooker, William
M. Sands, Samuel O. Auchmuty,
and Robert M. Harrison, subscribed
sums of $100 and upwards, for erection of the church. The corner
stone was laid May 26, 1823, with masonic ceremonies, on a lot donated
by Augustus Sacket, but was not completed till after several years
of delay. Meetings were held regularly in the Presbyterian
Church across the street, and in the school house, until the
occupancy of the stone edifice in 1826. The structure was fully
completed in 1832.
that time the church has maintained a continued existence, although
the number of communicants has never been large. In 1852, the church
reported 44 families (79 adults, and 53 children) as belonging to
the congregation, and 54 belonging to the church. In 1854 it was
receiving a small stipend from Trinity Church, New York. Until that
year the Rev. Messrs. M. Beardsley,
William L. Keese, A.
C. Treadway, Mr. Noble,
Benjamin Wright, Jr., Rufus
D. Stearns, and G. Huntington,
were all successfully employed here as missionaries. In 1898, membership
numbered 70, with wardens E. P. Evert
and Benjamin C. Scroxton, Rev.
Burr M. Weeden, Rector.
the church is recognized as one of the most important ecclesiastical
buildings in Jefferson County, both for its architectural quality
and its early use of Gothic detailing. The building reflects a traditional
pattern for 18th-century churches, with a square belfry over a columned
portico; in fact it closely resembles a design from The Modern Builder's
Guide by Federal architect Asher Banjamin.
As with other stone buildings at Sackets Harbor, squared quoins
were used to reinforce and accent the corners as well as door and
window openings. The church's major distinguishing feature is its
Gothic arches, one of the first such uses in the North Country;
at the time of construction, the Gothic was increasingly favored
as a style better suited ecclesiastical buildings than the "pagan"
classical style. The great Doric portico resembles that of the Dyer
Burnham House and foreshadowing the coming Greek Revival movement.
are presently held on Saturdays and Sundays.
Edgar C., "Our County and Its People." Boston: Boston
History Company, 1898, p. 593.
John A., "The Growth of a Century," Philadelphia: Sherman
& Co., 1894, p. 593.
Franklin B., "A History of Jefferson County in the State
of New York," Watertown, NY: Sterling & Riddell, 1854,
Michael D., "Harbor Walk: A Guide to the History & Architecture
of Sackets Harbor." Presented with permission of the Sackets
Harbor Historical Society. p. 21.