The History of Otsego, NY 
Burlington Churches & Lodges

By Holice and Debbie


Churches and Lodges


The first religious organization in the town of Burlington was formed by the Baptist denomination, at Burlington Green, in 1793, by Rev. James Southworth, the first pastor. The society as at first organized consisted of thirty members. This church has had two houses of worship, he first erected in 1804, and the present in 1839.


In giving the history of this church, the writer labors under difficulties from defective records, but in the main believes he is correct.

On the 9th day of February, 1797, three brethren and four sisters met together for the purpose of consulting whether it was expedient to organize a gospel church, and agreed to meet on the 21st day of the same month, at which time they appointed Elder Ashbel Hosmer and Jonathan Nichols to draw up articles of faith, and covenant. On the 7th day of March following, the said brothers and sisters, with some others, net at the house of William Millings, and entered into a particular examination of the articles of faith and covenant, on which they found themselves agreed. On the 16th day of the following May, the brothers and sisters again met at the house of Brother Millings, and subscribed themselves to the articles of faith and covenant, and formed themselves into a gospel church, and agreed to be known as the North Baptist church, in Burlington. On the 14th of June, same year, a council of brethren, from several churches convened at the house of Brother Millings, and after carefully looking into the matter, did unanimously give their fellowship as a church of Christ in gospel order, and also fellowshipped the church in choice of elder Hosmer as pastor. The council made choice of elder William Firman as moderator, and elder John Bostwick, clerk; Elder John Lasure preached a sermon; and the moderator gave Elder Hosmer the pastoral charge and the right hand of fellowship.

In December, 1802, the church agreed to unite with the Third church, of Burlington, but in July, 1803, withdrew on account of not agreeing upon a place to build a house of worship. Elder Hosmer continued pastor until about 1806. From 1806 to 1815 the venerable Father Taylor, of Edmeston, p[reached and administered the ordinances of the church once in each month. In March the church secured the services of elder David Robinson for one-half the time, who continued until 1818. The church was supplied by various ministers until 1822, when the church gave a call to elder Israel Hodge, who remained until 1831. In 1831, the church enjoyed a powerful revival under the preaching of Brother J. H. Vinton, a licentiate; thirty-seven members were added. The following January, Brother Vinton was ordained as pastor of the church. In the year following, eighteen more were added. In November, 1833, the church secured the services of Elder Robert Adams, who labored until April, 1835, when the venerable Father Cutler became pastor, who continued with the church nine years. During his ministry the church passed through two revivals, and over fifty were added to their numbers. At the close of his labors the church secured the services of Rev. L. Casler, who remained with us three years.

Since that time we have had various pastors and supplies, including Elder H. Fitch, who has just gone home to his reward, and Rev. H. H. Fisher, who is now laid aside by ill health. Our present pastor, Rev. L. Casler, is now with us for the third time. The church held their meetings in dwelling, school-houses, and barns until 1829, when they united with other denominations in building the Union church, which they occupied once in each month until 1837, when they erected their present house of worship. It is worthy of note that our preent church edifice stands upon the same spot once occupied by Brother Millings’ dwelling; so we are occupying the same ground on which the church was first organized.

During the seventy-seven years of the existence of this church, we cannot tell how many have been added, died, or diminished. We have seen times of prosperity and times of adversity; times of joy and times of mourning; but through them all have maintained our visibility, and endeavored to set our light on a candle-stick, and not under a bushel, that we might be a beacon to the wanderer, and guide him to his Father’s house.

The Otsego Baptist Association was organized in the eastern part of this town at what was called the "Yellow meeting-House," which has been gone a score of years.


at Burlington Flats was organized March 9, 1825, by Rev. Mr. Hunt, Esterbrooks, Benjamin Roland, Phipps Lake, and Messrs. Hudson, Millicon, and Fitch. The church as at first organized consisted of sixteen members. The first pastor settled over the little flock was the Rev. William Hunt. The society held its meetings in various places until 1829, when their church edifice was erected at a cost of about $1000.


at West Burlington was organized May 16, 1794, by a council composed of members from Springfield, Unadilla, and the First Baptist church of Burlington, and consisted of fifty-nine members. The first pastor was Rev. Ashbel Hosmer. The first church edifice was erected in 1803, and the preent one in 1841. At the organization of the church five brethren were chosen as leaders, and elder William Firman administered the ordinances every four weeks. Rev. Mr. Hosmer, mentioned above, came into the town about this time, from Connecticut, and subsequently became the pastor of the church, and officiated in that capacity until 1797, when he removed to Burlington Flats. The first leading brethren were Martin Luther, Joseph Vaughn, Paul Gardner, and James Roberts. The council which organized the church consisted of Elder William Firman and William Hill, of Springfield, Rev. James Southworth and William Goff, of the First Church, Burlington, Solomon hatch and Increase Thurston, of Unadilla, and Josiah Mattison, Jonathan Pettit, Stephen Taylor, David Sweet, Reuben Ellis, and Abraham Bowdish, transient brethren.


This church was organized in 1871, by Rev. W. R. Cochran, with the following members: Levi Lee Valley, C. lee Valley, A. Thompson, Mrs. Price, Miles Fenton, Maria Fenton, W. C. Fisk, Frank Fisk, George Fenton, Emma Fenton, Synthy Fisk, Philena Fenton.

The first officers of the church were Levi lee Valley, G. W. and M. A. Fenton. The first minister was Rev. A. S. Bartholimew. The church edifice was erected in 1871, at a cost of $3130. Size 32 by 48 feet. The pastors from the organization of the church to the present time have been A. G. Bartholimew, H. H. Dresies, H. Harmon, and H. B. Cook, present incumbent.

The present officers are as follows: G. W. Fenton, Miles Fenton, and Levi Lee Valley.


Christ church, of West Burlington, was organized in 1841, through the labors of the Rev. John V. Hughes, for many years a most useful and indefatigable minister engaged in missionary work in this county. His successors were E. N. Goddard and Joel Davis. The parish was once visited by bishop Onderdonk, and once by Bishop Potter, and the ordinance of confirmation administered. In March, 1865, West Burlington was made a station for circuit mission.

Sept. 22, 1868, the corner-stone of the Moss Memorial church was laid by the right Rev. Daniel S. Tuttle, bishop of Montana, Idaho, and Utah, assisted by Rev. J. V. Hughes, the missionary in charge, Rev. D. Hillhouse Buell, of Cooperstown, and Rev. N. S. Rulison, of Morris; and in 1871 the church was admitted into union with the Diocesan Convention.

A good church edifice and vestry show that the existence of the organization has not been without substantial work and results. This church is now under the pastoral supervision of Rev. Hobart Cooke, rector of Zion church, Morris. Mr. Cooke is assisted by Rev. Ernest A. Hartman.


of Burlington, was organized June 8, 1835, at Burlington Green, by Rev. H. S. Wilkins, of Springfield, under the direction of the Presbytery of Saratoga of the Associate Reformed Church.

The first ruling elders were James Oliver and John Hume. Nov. 2, 1844, William Bennett and James Trewhit were added to the session of the congregation.

The first pastor was Rev. Samuel Topping, ordained and installed Feb. 1, 1840. He was released June 19, 1844.

Among the first members were James Oliver (elder) and wife and family; John Hume (elder) and wife and family; Arch’d Rutherford and wife and family; Jobu Rutherford and wife, William Bennett and wife, James Trewhit and wife, Robert Hume, Thos. Hume, James Hume, William Frater, John Frater, Thos. Still and wife, John Elliott and wife, George Chisholm and wife, Alex Trotter and wife, Thos. Rutherford and wife, Robt. B. Hume and wife, Thos. Hume, Andrew Brow and wife, William Lardler and wife, Currey and wife, Geo. Lough and wife. Also families of Telfers, halls, Mills, Bonnars, Bolans, Ayers, Alexanders, etc. etc.

Forty-two persons united in the organization of the congregation.

The first church building was occupied soon after organization. Small frame building yet standing, used for a stable.

Present officers:
Elders—Adam H. Elliott, John Hume, John T. Hall, and Geo. Robinson.
Trustees—John T. Hall, Mark Hall, and Danvers C. Rockwell.

There are two church buildings. A number of families living about Garrattsville thinking to do more good to themselves and others, some six or seven years ago erected a neat and comfortable church in Garrattsville. Services are held at Burlington church in the forenoon, and at Garrattsville in the afternoon of each Sabbath. It is but one organization,--Burlington. Garrattsville is yet is only a preaching station. By a union of the Associate Reformed and Associate churches in 1858, the United Presbyterian Church was formed. This congregation centering into that union, is now called the "United Presbyterian Congregation of Burlington."

Present membership is one hundred.

The society is in a prosperous condition, and is under the pastoral care of Rev. Thomas A. Scott.


"Be it known that on the 9th day of Feb., 1797, a church of Christ of the congregational order was formed by the advice and assistance of the Rev. Aaron Kinney, missionary from Connecticut, in Burlington. And the following persons united in this solemn relation, viz.:

"Daniel Morse, Jonathan Hitchcock, Jonathan Brown, Mnetriphanthaem Church, Abigail Dart.
"Jonathan Brown, Moderator."
Feb. 22, 1797, Abner Ransom and Dorcas his wife, Mrs. Elizabeth Mather, and Mrs. Rachel Fenton, were received.
March 11, Mr. Daniel Nickerson was received.

Sept. 5, 1797, the church convened at the house of Mr. Abner Ransom, and began with prayers, after which Mr. Amos Thurston, Hannah, the wife of Jonathan Brown, and Sally, the wife of Charles Brown, were received into its communion.

Sept. 6 and 10, 1797, the widows Church and Cogshall, Mrs. Hitchcock, widow Wadsworth and Ruby, wife of Justus Brown, Mr. Andsell and Helena, his wife, Mr. Solomon Benjamin and Lucy, his wife, and Mr. William Badcock, united with us in church relations.

"Jonathan Brown, Moderator."

1798, Mrs. Rathbun, Southward, and Stetson, joined. Jonathan Brown was chosen deacon.

Messrs. Elijah Turner, Dr. Caleb Richardson, and Edminster Hammond were chosen choristers.

No records till May 9, 1801. Rev. Henry Chapman was the first ordained minister of this church in 1807.

The church held their meetings in the usual places of all newly-organized societies,--in private houses and school-houses. Subscriptions were made for a church building in 1801, and the frame was put up in 1802 and finished in 1803. Size, 52 by 40. Dedicated Feb. 10, 1806.

The constitution, confession of faith, and covenant was revise in 1801 by Rev. Wm. Stone, A.M.

Revised again in 1810 by Rev. Henry Chapman. In 1811, Rev. Henry Chapman closed his ministry, or left this church for other fields.

March 12, 1805, Resolved, that this society, being sensible of the generous proposal made by Wm. Cooper, Esq., of giving 50 acres of land for the support of preaching in this society, do vote general and hearty thanks.

Jonathan Brown, deacon, Ephraim Campbell, and Andrew Sill were trustees; Artemus Sheldon, clerk.

Aug. 22, 1805, Resolved, that this society discontinue any connection with Hartwick society as to hiring minister, and voted to hire Rev. Wm. Stone to preach three months or thirteen Sabbaths, if he can be obtained. A committee was chosen to confer with Mr. Stone.

May 12, 1820, voted that the meeting-house shall be open one-quarter the Sabbaths for one year for the use of the people called Episcopals, Methodists, and Baptists, unless the Congregationalist society shall have preaching therein, and that Rev. Mr. Paddock be the man for on-fourth part of the time in preference to any other.

September, 1820. This church called Rev. Silas Parsons.

1821. Voted that the meeting-house be opened one-quarter the time for the use of Episcopalian preaching.

Rev. Silas Parsons was called for three-quarters of the time.

Aug. 26, 1822. On motion of A. Sheldon, seconded by Mark Mack, Resolved, That the meeting-house belonging to this society may be occupied by the Rev. Mr. Nash (Episcopal) one-quarter part of the Sabbaths until the 1st day of January next, and begin on the second Sunday of Septemb4r next, and every fourth Sunday thereafter.

Some repairs wee made to the church in 1824. From this time up to 1839 the church had no settled minister; but the pulpit was supplied occasionally by the following:

Rev. Mr. Rexford, Rev. Mr. Goodrich, Rev. John P. Pepper, Rev. Mr. Harwood, Rev. Timothy Darling, Rev. Mr. Storrs, Rev. Mr. Truair, Rev. Alex B. Corning.

In 1840 the society reorganized and repaired their church. The trustees were five in number, but the next year reduced to three,--Ebenezer Sheldon, Avery Park, and Norman Chapin,--Amasa Avery, clerk.

The church was subsequently abandoned, and the property sold to the United Presbyterian Church.

FARMERS’ LODGE, NO. 553, F. and A. M.

was organized under dispensation of the grand lodge, July 14, 1864, with the following officers; D.A. Taft, M.; L. D. Johnson, S. W.; E. E. Collins, J. W. The lodge was chartered June 10, 1865.

The following have officiated as Masters, Senior and Junior Wardens, from 1865 to 1878:



Senior Warden.

Junior Warden


L.D. Johnson

L. D. Johnson

Silas Gray


D. A. Taft

L. D. Johnson

Silas Gray


L. D. Johnson

H. L. Breese

Lewis Spencer


L. D. Johnson

H. L. Breese

Lewis Spencer


L. D. Johnson

Lewis Spencer

E. W. Hall


L. D. Johnson

L. L. Valley

Isaac C. Chapin


Lewis Spencer

E. W. Hall

J. P. Wheeler


E. W. Hall

William Talbott

C. D. Webster


E. W. Hall

William Talbott

H. L. Breese


William Talbott

Alvah Mayne

J. C. Arnold


L. S. Johnson

Lewis Spencer

E. W. Hall


E. W. Hall

S. C. St. John

L. T. Hubbard


S. C. St. John

L. T. Hubbard

Joseph Gorton

Transcribed by Holice B. Young

HTML by Debbie

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