The Clergy on North Congregational Church
New Hartford, Connecticut
Written & Contributed By
Rev. Dr. Greg Dawson
Adams Baldwin Bedford Bond Brewer Child Clark Cleaveland Dawson Grisbrook Hawley Hughes Landolt Leadbetter Lord Martyn Novotny Paterson Peatt Peck Peterson Putsch Rosser Saxton Sleeper Spencer Stafford Winter Woodbridge
Rev. Burr Baldwin
Rev. Burr Baldwin was the first minister to serve the newly formed North Congregational Church in North Village, New Hartford, CT. A Presbyterian minister he was born in Weston, Conn., (Now Easton) Jan. 19, 1789. He graduated Yale College in 1809 and Andover Theological Seminary in 1813. In 1815 he established the first Sabbath school in Newark, NY, for the children of all classes. This included the rich and the poor, the colored as well as white children. Instruction was principally of a religious character. This led to the organization of the American Colonization Society. He then taught at Newark NJ Academy as a home missionary in Ohio in 1816. He was ordained in 1819 and then served as a home missionary for the United Board of Foreign Missions in New York and New Jersey, between 1819-1823. Afterwards he moved to Montrose, PA for his health. While there he was called to the pastorate of the First Presbyterian Church of Montrose in 1824; which held itís services at that time in the court-house. During his ministry the first meeting-house was built and dedicated in 1826. While attending the Pennsylvania Synod of the Presbyterian Church in 1828 Mr. Baldwinís mind had been awakened by the question of temperance. Upon returning to his church he spoke with Deacon Hawley about the alarming increase of drunkenness in the county, and of the responsibility of the church in regard to it, and asked him to give up his distillery. "Canít do it, Brother Baldwin. Itís the support of my family." Months passed on, and the parties again met. "How about that distillery, Brother Hawley?" asked Mr. Baldwin. "Brother Baldwin, I canít give it up; itís the support of my family." Other months went by, and the deacon again met his reprover. "How about that distillery?" Baldwin asked. "Itís given up," was the reply. "Ah, indeed! but how about the family?" Mr. Baldwin asked. "Oh, theyíre living yet." Deacon Hawley answered with a significant smile. The victory was achieved and from that day deacon Hawley became an earnest advocate of temperance.
After leaving Montrose he served at Reading, PA, from 1828-1830, then in 1830 he went to New Hartford, CT were he served our church. It was in this year that the Underground Railroad was begun to assist escaped slaves to find their way North to freedom. It was in this year of 1830 that the Baptists organized in the southwestern part of town, and built a church in Bakerville. In 1834 Mr. Baldwin was dismissed because members were dissatisfied with his preaching. From here he went to Ashland, Mass., 1836-1838; then nine years as a teacher in Newark NJ. From 1838 to 1847 he returned to Montrose, PA where he did missionary work supplying feeble churches, planting new ones, raising money to build sanctuaries and to support ministers. At the age of sixty-seven he made a tour of inspection through Texas, under the auspices of the Southern Aid Society. Returning, he gave a few more years of missionary work in Montrose and Genessee Valley Presbyteries. There is evidence that he may have received a posting as a hospital chaplain in Eastern Virginia in 1862 by Edwin Stanton the secretary of war. At seventy-six he began a yearís missionary work in Southeastern New York. After this he spent a graceful old age in retirement, but not in idleness, among the people of his former church in Montrose, and died January 23, 1880, at the age of ninety-one years and four days, the oldest survivor of Yale U. class of 1809.
Rev. Dr. Willis Lord, DD, LL.D.
"True repentance leads to a holy life;
and a holy life is the fruit and proof of true repentance"
Willis Lord, Christian Theology for the People, 1875
Willis Lord was born in Bridgeport, Conn., Sept. 15, 1809; son of Daniel and Anna Choate Lord, and great-grandson of Rev. Benjamin Willis Lord who was the pastor of the Congregational Church in Norwich Ct, for 67 years. Willis Lord graduated from Williams College in 1833, studied theology at Princeton Theological Seminary, 1833, and was ordained Oct. 15, 1834. The honorary degree of DD was conferred on him by Lafayette College in 1847, and that of LL.D. by the University of Wooster in 1873. He became pastor at our church in New Hartford, CT, in 1834. In 1835 the Baptist church in Bakerville became a union church and eventually was taken over by the United Methodist Church. While Mr. Lord served as our pastor the Academy Hall was built. It opened in the fall of 1837 with Illinois Winter, principal. It was the first Academy in town and offered course of study beyond elementary grades.
After leaving our church he pastored in Providence, RI, from 1838-1840; then at Philadelphia, Pa., from 1840-50; Cincinnati, Ohio, between 1850-1854, and at Brooklyn, NY, 1855-59. He was then chosen by the general assembly of the Presbyterian church, professor of biblical literature and pastoral theology at Lane Theological seminary, and served there between 1850-1854. Following this he took the pastorate at the First Presbyterian Church of Plymouth, serving between 1854-1856; and then as professor of biblical and ecclesiastical history and McCormick Professor of Didactics and Problematical Theology at the Northwestern Theological seminary at Chicago, Ill., from 1859-1870. It was also during this time that he organized the Fullerton Avenue Presbyterian Church in 1864. He then became president and Mercer professor of biblical Instruction at the University of Wooster, from 1870-1873 until failure of his health compelled him to resign. Though he was president for only three short years he set the tone for the collegeís future.
The Wooster Alumni Bulletin (Jan. 1926, p. 12) notes:
"Dr. Willis Lord, the first president, was not only a ripe scholar, but added all the graces of a courtly gentleman. He was the soul of dignity, yet accessible to every student. He could trace his lineage without a break, through a score of English kings, even to the great Alfred, and reflected credit on his ancestry. He was stronger in the pulpit than in the class-room (sic), yet allowed no slovenly thinking to pass unchallenged. He was at his best in guiding a class through Butler's Analogy."
But more than personality Willis Lord made a strong commitment to coeducation, warning the early classes that Wooster had the same expectations of its women as it had of its men and that men and women would be taught in the same classes and pursue the same curriculum. In 1870 this was a controversial policy. Likewise, on the matter of race, the first President declared that Wooster should be a place of studies for all:
"The sameness of our origin as men and women carries with it our original and essential equality. Had our national life been the true _expression of our national creed, slavery would have been forever impossible. Caste, in whatever name, strikes at the soul of our humanity and liberty."
Following his work at the seminary he took a pastorate in Denver, Col., 1875-1876; at Columbus, Ohio, 1877-1879; and then resided at Colorado Springs, Col., 1879-1883, and was president of the Presbyterian College of the Southwest, Del Norte, Cal., 1883-84. He was a trustee of Lafayette College, 1839-1849, and of the University of Wooster, 1877-1879. Mr. Lord preached his last sermon at the First Congregational Church (July 1887, Shoreline Times) in Guilford, CT. While in Guilford he was married to Ellen Agnes Seward Pinney, who grew up in Guilford and was the daughter of Amos and Sarah Hubbard Seward. After the death of her first husband, Rev. John B. Phinney, D.D. of the American Colonization Society, in 1882 she married Rev Willis Lord on July 21, 1884. He died at Guilford, Conn., Oct. 28, 1888 of inflammation of the heart, but his body was removed to Colorado Springs, CO.
For publications see endnote 1
Rev. Dr. John Woodbridge
John Woodbridge was born Dec 2, 1784, in Southampton, Mass. His parents were Dr. Sylvester Woodbridge and Mindwell Lyman. He graduated Williams College, 1804. He settled in Hadley Massachusetts where he was ordained on June 20, 1810 (having been at first a colleague of Dr. Hopkins). He remained in Hadley for 20 years until Sept. 15, 1830, when he took the pastorate of the Bowery Presbyterian Church in New York City. After just a short stay he settled in Bridgeport, CT, 1830-1839, and then New Hartford, CT., were he served as our pastor from 1839-1842; He then served the Russell Society in Hadley, from 1842-1857. Afterwards he resided in Hadley. He died on 26 Sep 1869 in Waukegen, IL where he had gone for the summer. Rev. Woodbridge had nine children, the seventh child John studied law in New Hartford after graduating from Amherst College in 1849. He later moved to Chicago where he worked for the firm of Woodbridge, Blanke & Woodbridge.
For publications see endnote 2
The Woodbridge Descendants
In many ways, what is most fascinating about John Woodbridge is not the man himself but the family he came from. Mr. Woodbridge descended from a family of clergymen. Rev. Timothy Woodbridge settled over the first church in Hartford, in 1685, and died in 1732. He was the second son of Rev. John, who married a daughter of Gov. Dudley of Massachusetts, and was settled at Andover, in that colony, in 1644. Thomas Woodbridge was first married to a daughter of Hon. Samuel Wyllys, of Hartford, and was the ancestor of Sheldon Woodbridge, Esq., of Hartford. A daughter of Thomas married Gov. Pitkin. Rev. Samuel was settled over the third church in Hartford, in 1705, and died in 1746. He was a grandson of Rev. John, of Massachusetts, mentioned above--from him are the descendants of those of the name in Hartford, East Hartford, and Manchester. Rev. John Woodbridge was settled at Killingworth. Rev. Dudley Woodbridge was settled over the first church in Simsbury, and died in 1710.
The second Rev. Timothy, son of the first Timothy, was settled also at Simsbury, over the first church in 1712, and died in 1742. Rev. Ashbel was settled at Glastenbury, in 1728, and died in 1758;-- he was the son of the first Rev. Timothy by his second marriage to Mrs. Howell. Rev. Benjamin was settled at Amity in the town of Woodbridge, in 1742.Rev. Ephraim Woodbridge was settled over the first church in Groton, in 1704, and died in 1724--neither of whom were either dismissed or removed from their places of settlement. The first Rev. Timothy, was a member (in 1708) of the Convention which, for the better regulation of the administration of church discipline, formed the noted Saybrook Platform, of which meeting Rev. James Noyes and Thomas Buckingham were moderators, and Rev. Stephen Mix and John Woodward were chosen scribes.
For more on the Woodbridge line
please read "The Woodbridge Clergy"
Rev. Alexander Leadbetter
At the present time there is little we know about Rev. Alexander Leadbetter beyond the fact that he came from Edinburgh, Scotland and that he became a supply pastor for the Newtown Congregational Church from 1840-1842 until he was dismissed due to lack of funds. He then pastored the North Congregational Church in New Hartford from 1844-1849. It was in the year 1848 that 56 members departed the Town Hill Church to form the South Congregational Church in present day Nepaug. In 1849 Roman Catholic services were first held in New Hartford, but no permanent structure existed at that time. It was in 1849 that Rev. Leadbetter left New Hartford to take the pastorate at the Bethany Congregational Church. He served there from 1851-1854. From this point we have no records.
For publications see endnote 3
Rev. Joseph Addison Saxton
Joseph Saxton was born in Tolland, Connecticut, Nov. 27, 1810. He graduated from NY, University, with a B.A., in 1835. He then attended Yale Seminary, graduating with an M.A. in 1838. He also attended Union Seminary, NY, 1839; and Andover Theological Seminary, 1842. He then served as associate pastor at Marlboro, Mass. and Harrisonburg, Va. 1840; Ware, Mass. 1841; Ashburnham, 1842; licensed by New Haven Congregational Association, CT, 1838; Ordained by the Presbytery of Long Island, 1843. He held Pastorates at Greenport, Long Island, NY, 1843-1845; S.S. Presbyterian Church, New River, La., 1845-1850. He served our church in New Hartford, CT between the years of 1851-1852.
When Rev. Saxton left our church he went on to take a pastorate at a Presbyterian Church in South Haven, Long Island, New York, 1853. He is recorded as being a teacher at Bellport Collegiate, New York City between the years 1854-1856. He then became pastor at the S.S. Congregational Church, New Preston CT., 1857; Brookfield CT., 1858; and Fitchville, CT, 1859-1861. He was a Chaplain at Mohegan, CT., from 1863-1865; Proprietor and Principle at Collegiate Institution, Norwichtown, CT., 1859-1867; Professor of Geometrical and Mechanical Drawing in the Cooper Union's Night Schools of Science and Art from 1867 to 1901; also professor of Mechanical and Architectural Drawing, NY University, 1871-1872; He died February 11, 1902.
Rev. Franklin Augustus Spencer
The Spencer family first arrived in New England when four brothers came over from Bedfordshire England and settled in Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island. His father John Spencer was born on 18 Oct 1762 in Winchester, CT. Records show that John served in the Revolutionary War in the same Co. with his father. His was married to Abigail Marshall on 14 Feb 1793 in Winchester, CT. Franklin Augustus Spencer was born on Dec. 24, 1811, one of 11 children. His father died when he was 15 years of age on 14 Feb 1826 in Verona, NY. Franklin went on to graduate Oneil in 1838, and Union Theological Seminary in 1840. He was ordained by the Utica Presbytery in 1842. He was fires married to Lucia Whiting, born on Sept 7, 1815. After her death on Sept 19, 1849 he remarried a Caroline Elizabeth King in 1850. From this marriage he had three son: Willard K. Spencer, Franklin A. Spencer, and Charles Whiting Spencer. Rev. Spencerís first pastorate was to serve as an associate in the Congregational Church in Westmoreland, NY, 1841-1850. During this time period his mother died on 12 Jul 1849 in Verona, NY. He then served at a unknown church from 1850-1853. He came to our church in New Hartford, CT., in 1853. It was in this year of 1853 that Antoinette Brown was ordained as the first woman pastor in history of the Congregational Church, she served in South Butler, New York. While serving our congregation Mr. Spencer was an outspoken supporter of the Union during the Civil War which may have been due to his father and grandfather having served in the revolutionary war. Whatever the reason, this support of the Union gave offense to some in the congregation.
In 1859, several events took place that would impact our church. The first was when the remaining members of the Town Hill Church disbanded. Then on Dec. 23, a fire destroyed St. Johnís Episcopal church. The third event was when the south fired on Harperís Ferry, igniting the war between the states. In this same year the New Hartford (North) Baptist church was organized by twenty-two members resident in this town, formerly belonging to the Pleasant Valley Church. At that time meetings were held in the Greenwoods District school house. In 1860 Cyrus and Richard Yale, sons of Rev. Cyrus Yale, purchased the Town Hill Church building from the surviving members of the ecclesiastical society for the sum of $100 with the proviso that they keep it in repair. Occasional services were held in the old church until a rumor was spread about that Richard Yale, then living in New Orleans was a southern sympathizer. Marauders broke into the building one night and wrecked the interior, taking away the pulpit and pews. From that point on, writes Catherine Gay, the Town Hill Church
"stood a lonely, stately sentinel on the broad plateau at the top to the hill."
In 1861 the members of St. Johnís opened their new church on Christmas Eve. In 1862, the Baptist Church in New Hartford purchased the Baptist Church in Pleasant Valley (then unused), and brought it over the Greenwoods Pond piece by piece and rebuilt it. The Church was located on the East side of the Farmington River because of plans to bring a road in front of itóbut these plans were changed. While serving as pastor of North Congregational Church 107 people were received into membership. When Mr. Spencer left our church in 1863 he went on to pastor in Terryville, CT., 1863-1865; then as Sunday School President, Fulton. NY, 1865. He then joined the NY State Temperance Society, 1865-1869. After this he is listed in the following places: Clinton, NY., 1869-1884; and Sunday School, Hector, NY, 1881-1884; He died in Clinton, NY., in 1884.
A funny story is told of Rev. Spencer in the book "Sketches of the People and Places of New Hartford in the Past and Present" by Sarah Lucia Jones. The story tells of an encounter Rev. Spencer had with a local hustler in New Hartford by the name of Amasa Cooper who was an expert at rat catching. One day he captured an enormous rodent which he fastened to a broom stick in such a way that he could run it in behind a stable feed box and make it peep out at the other end of the box in such a manner to deceive the keenest hunter. Thus he would pretend to stir up the animal and get some passer by to strike at the rat and raise a shout among the bystanders. At one of these times Rev. F.A. Spencer came along and inquired what the excitement was. Amasa told him he had a rat behind the box. Rev. Spencer, "who hated a rat as he did a sinner," seized a fork stale and told Amaza to drive him out. As Rev. Spencer struck at the rat in vain Amasa would cry out, "Give him h--- parson." The reverend kept pounding away until he was in a terrible sweat, and the crowd around him had burst nearly all their buttons off with laughter. Finally the rat was hit, when Amasa drew him out all fastened on the stick, with the remark, "By G-- parson, youíve killed him." The next Sunday there was a sermon in the Congregational Church upon the Third commandment, in which Rev. Spencer remarked, in all the time he had lived in New Hartford, he had heard but one person use a "profane oath." That person was generally supposed to be Amasa Cooper.
Rev. James Bradford Cleaveland
James Bradford Cleaveland was born in Sharon, CT., August 20, 1821, the son of John and Mary Ingraham Cleaveland. He was a direct descendant of Governor William Bradford, of the Mayflower, and Moses Cleaveland. He graduated Yale College in 1847. While in college he acted as leader of the Beethoven choir, which corresponded to the present Glee Club. He then graduated from Yale Theological Seminary, in 1851. John G. North of New Haven stated that, while as a student at Yale Divinity School, Mr. Cleaveland so exerted himself in behalf of the languishing Temple Street Church and Sunday-school for colored people that by his influence and that of another they were revived, relieved from debt, and encouraged to grow so that they became the Dixwell Avenue Congregational Church. Always a zealous friend of the slave, he was impelled to write as follows to President Lincoln:
"Sir:--Equal to the exigency of the times, your name will hereafter be as conspicuous in the history of this nation as is that of Moses in the sacred history of Israel. Moses is honored as Liberator: that such may be your renowned title on the future page of the republic now so ably presided over by you, is the prayer of millions." Nov. 22, 1861
Lincolní Emancipation Proclamation was September 23, 1862
As he approached the conclusion to his seminary studies he became principal of the Washington school, which position he retained for a year after he had completed his studies. As a teacher he was exceptionally successful. The Board of Visitors for the first School Society in New Haven reported in October, 1851, the condition of the Washington school as follows:
"We have never been able to give our hearty approval to this school until this time. It is now highly creditable to the district. Mr. Cleaveland has succeeded in mastering the turbulent and securing the confidence of the well-disposed. The exercises of the school have all been very pleasing since he has had charge of it. He has a Latin class of ten scholars ... and a class of thirty who practice composition."
During his last year with the school he received a call to the pastorate of the Congregational Church in Durham, the church agreeing to wait for him till the close of his school, nearly a year later. He was then ordained at North Church in Durham, CT., on September l8, 1852. He served there until 1853 when trouble with his eyes caused him to resign the more confining duties of his pastorate to became an agent for the American Sunday School Union in Connecticut, for whom he served from 1853-1855. In 1855, he accepted a call to the Congregational Church in South Egremont, Mass. During this pastorate his son Livingston was born. It is here that his wife, Elizabeth H. Jocelyn Cleaveland wrote her widely read poem "No Sects in Heaven."4 After a pastorate of seven years he moved to the Congregational Church in Goshen until he received a call to our church in New Hartford, CT., where he served from 1863-1867 during the years of the Civil War. While at New Hartford he was made a member of the Northern Star. After he left our church in 1867 Rev. Cleaveland had consecutive pastorates in Bloomfield, CT., 1867-1875; and Kensington, CT., 1875-1879. While at Kensington, the first Church Manual, issued in 1877, was prepared in his time and under his direction. He then went on to pastor in Granby, CT., 1880-1885; Oxford, CT., 1885-1888; and finally without a charge he returned in 1888 to New Haven, CT., where he remained until his death on May 21, 1889.
For publications see endnote 5
"In his social relations he was a natural, unassuming and original. A dry humor always pervaded his conversations and many of his contributions for the press, and his witty and almost quaint remarks carried with them the impress of a strong personality, yet he never trifled but was intensely candid and sincere. Policy was no element in his character. He could not deceive and he would never compromise with evil. He never shrank from siding with the few as against the many if the few were in the right."
Religious Herald, June 6, 1889
"Mr. Cleaveland was an honest, earnest, able and faithful minister of the gospel. The congregations of which he had charge during a long life spent in the service of his Master will remember him with love and reverence. In the early days of the anti-slavery movement he was an ardent advocate of abolition, and at the time when it most needed supporters. Many of his parishioners were southern sympathizers and frequently showed their disapproval of their youthful pastorís patriotic sermons, but he continued to speak burning words for the liberation of the slave" and was "ever ready to advocate the cause of temperance." New Haven Morning Palladium, May 25, 1889
Rev. Alpheus Winter
Alpheus Winter was born on February 17, 1838 in Belchertown, Mass. He graduated from Rock River Seminary, Mount Morris Ill., and studied theology privately with Rev. Samuel Foster in Ornagra, Ill. He was ordained by the Ecclesiastical Council at Onarga, Ill., on May 7, 1863. His many pastorates included: Onarga, Ill., 1862-64; South Coventry, Conn., 1864-1868; and then our church in New Hartford, Conn., from 1868-1869. In that first year of 1868 the Church of the Immaculate Conception was started by Rev. John Fagan. In that same year Walter Beaney took charge of the maintenance of the Academy Hall and the upper rooms were used by the church for religious purposes. The downstairs was used by the town prior to construction of the Town Hall. After pastoring our church Rev. Winter spent a short time with the Connecticut State Temperance Association, from 1870-1874. He continued his involvement with the Temperance Association serving as secretary for 11 Years. He then returned to the pastorate serving in North Greenwich, Conn., 1874-1878; and Tryon, N.C., 1894-1902. Rev. Winter died in Tryon, N.C., on May 29, 1903. His wife Flora Damaris Thompson Winter died on May 30, 1918. They were both buried in the Tryon City cemetery.
For publications see endnote 6†
Rev. Sanford Smith Martyn
At the one hundredth anniversary of his church at Newington, CT., Rev. Martyn said:
"I stood in the quiet cemetery near by and read this inscription upon the monument of a former Pastor: ĎA good Minister of Jesus Christí and I said, Let that be my motto and let me live and die like him, a worthy exemplar of my Master and a help to my kind.í"
Sanford Smith Martyn was born in Haverhill, Mass., on July 23, 1839. His father was the Rev. Job H. Martyn, M. D. (Middlebury 1837), for many years a Congregational minister in New York City. His mother was Grace Fletcher Smith. He was the fifth generation of Congregational ministers, including his grandfather and great-grandfather on his motherís side, one of whom served as an army chaplain, and the other as a soldier, in the Revolutionary War. In New York City he received his preliminary education in the public schools, and later, he read law with his brother-in-law, Judge Wright. He then spent several years in the office of the "Springfield Republican," where he experienced training which he considered invaluable after life. In 1861 he entered Yale and graduated with the class of 1865.
He enlisted as a volunteer in the Civil War, but was not accepted, owing to defective eyesight. In the Fall of 1865 he entered the Yale Divinity School, where he received the degree of Bachelor of Sacred Theology in 1868 as well as an M. A. Ordained at the Congregational Church at Newington, Connecticut, April 19, 1868. After serving the church for two years he accepted a call to our church in New Hartford, CT. In 1874, the ladies of the church remodeled the upper rooms of the Academy Hall and a kitchen was installed. These renovations provided a meeting space for Edwin R. Lee post, Grand Army of the Republic and its auxiliary; Womenís Relief Corps. After he left our church he went on to pastor in Nashua, N. H., Terre Haute, Ind., Peacham, VT., Windsor, VT., Derby, CT., and Haydenville, Mass., when failing eyesight compelled him to relinquish all pastoral duties. His activities in religious revivals resulted in having some six hundred received into church membership on confession of faith. His pastorate covered over thirty-seven years. In the Fall of 1904 he retired to Plantsville, CT., where he bought a pleasant home. There in April, 1916, he celebrated his golden wedding and there, also, he died suddenly of cardiac embolism in the early morning of December 5, 1919. The Rev. William R. Eastman, who had officiated at the marriage ceremony fifty-three years previously, officiated at his funeral.
For publications see endnote 7.
A fitting epitaph
"a faithful and fearless pastor, an eloquent and learned pulpit orator, sound in the faith and keeping abreast of the times with freshness and variety in his sermons."
From a testimonial presented by the congregation of the Church at Windsor, VT.,
Rev. Frederick H. Adams
Frederick Adams was the son of Frederic and Lucy Henrietta Chater Adams, born in London, England, June 22, 1834. He graduated Peekskill Academy; New York University, in 1858, and Union Theological Seminary, in 1861. He began the pastorate in Constantia, NY, serving between 1861-1864. He was then ordained in the Presbyterian Church in New York City on April 25, 1865. He went on to minister in Marquette, Mich., 1865-1967; Saline, 1867-1869; and Wilson, NY, 1870-1875. He then came to our church in New Hartford, CT., where he served between 1875-1887. Tragedy struck the church in 1879 when five member of North Congregational church were killed returning from a Moody meeting in Hartford when their train derailed dumping over 100 people into the Farmington river. In 1880 and Federal Census was taken of the country and records that he was married to Electra J. Borthe and had the following children: Dr. Walter B. Adams (1878); Grace O. Adams (1884); Frederick J Adams (1884); and Edith E. Adams. Along with the children a Mary Anthony was living with them as a domestic servant and a Frank H. Borthe, Electra Adamsís brother. In the year 1885 New Hartford received a new church, St . Paulís Lutheran Church, initially meetings were held at the Academy Hall. His son, the Dr. Walter Booth Adams, would go on to marry Anna Louise Carter, the daughter of deacon Edwin Richardson (1888) and Catherine Pettibone Carter (1875). Anna joined North Congregational Church in 1884 along with Frederic and Grace. In 1887 Rev. Adams moved to River Point, RI, were he lived until his death on Feb. 6, 1899. After his passing Edward Carter served as a deacon at North Congregational Church from 1901-1910.
For publications see endnote 8
Rev. John Philo Hawley
John Philo Hawley was born nearby in Norfolk Connecticut, on April 24, 1829. He was the son of Philo and Alma Wheeler Hawley. The Hawley family were numerous, prominent and influential in the northwest part of Connecticut. Some of them were Samuel, Earl Percy, and Deacon Philo Hawley. Deacon Philo is recorded as being an enterprising farmer, who kept a dairy farm of some fifty cows for many years; and bought and shipped cheese to the Baltimore market. His son, Austin, succeeded his father on the farm and is recorded to have been an excellent citizen. John Philo Hawley was educated at the Norfolk and Rockwell Academies, and spent the first years of his career in teaching school in Norlfold and also in the districts schools of New Jersey. He then moved to Illinois where he worked in a law firm. Obliged to leave that position on account of trouble with his eyes, he returned to Norfolk where he was employed in a store as a clerk. John Hawley later became a partner of N. B. Stevens and served as Constable, Selectman, and Justice of the Peace. In 1855 he married Imogenet Brown, born in Winsted the daughter of Harris Brown. She bore him three children, John Stevens, Mabel W., and Alfred M. Later he sold his interest and moved to New York and entered into business there until he returned to Connecticut to enter the Hartford Theological Seminary. He was licensed to preach by the New Haven East Association on May 26, 1868 and after graduating from seminary in 1869 he took his first pastorate at South Coventry, 1869-1875. After successive pastorates in Talcottville, (South Vernon) 1875-1879; Chester, 1879-1880; Westerly, R. I., 1880-1881; and Stafford Springs, 1883-1888, he accepted a call in 1888 to the North Congregational Church in New Hartford.
During his pastorate the church was renovated in 1890-1891. Rev. John Hawley remained with the church until obliged by failing health to take an indefinite vacation in the spring of 1897, and resigning his charge during the following summer. During his lifetime he would served in the Connecticut Legislature on three separate occasions. The first was while he was in 1862 while he lived in Norfolk, then in 1874 while he pastored in Coventry, and finally in 1885 while he lived in Stafford, making an excellent record as a legislator. He served as Trustee of Hartford Seminary, the Hale Fund in Tolland County, and the Monson, Mass., Academy. He was a member of the independent Order of Odd Fellows, the Sons of Temperance, the Masonic Lodge at Norfolk, and the Chapter of Royal Arch Masons at Winsted. He was a seventh degree member of the Patrons of Husbandry, and Chaplain of the Mountain County Pomana. He died July 5, 1898 of "nervous prostration" at the Hartford Asylum.
"after being a merchant, hotel keeper, etc., became a thoroughly converted man; in middle life studied theology, and for many years was an able and successful minister. He died in 1898, having been pastor of the North Congregational Church in New Hartford for several years. "
The History of Norfolk, Litchfield County, Connecticut, 1744-1900,
For publications see endnote 9
Dr. Frank S. Brewer
Frank Brewer was born January 7, 1869 in Ashton, Illinois. He received his training at Beloit Academy and College where he received a BA, and his theological training at Hartford Seminary graduating with a B.D., in 1894. He was ordained by the Congregational Council of South Glastonbury, CT., in 1894. He held pastorates at South Glastonbury, CT., 1894-1898; and New Hartford, Conn., 1898-1906. In his stay with our church Dr. Brewer would serve during two American wars. The war with Spain in 1898 and the war with the Philippines (1899-1901). In 1900 New Hartford missionary, Horace Tracy Pitkin was killed in China during the Boxer Rebellion. In 1903 Dr. Brewer was on hand when the church celebrated itís 75th anniversary. Then in 1906 he led the church to declare a resolution against the New England Railroad Company for the new practice of running train service during the Sunday Morning Worship. The train tracks at that time ran right behind the sanctuary. Dr. Brewerís next pastorate was in Palmer, Mass., from 1906-1913; He then served as professor of Theology and Church History at Talledga Theological Seminary from 1913-1916. From there he served as pastor in Naperville, Ill., from 1917-1919. While in Naperville Illinois Mrs. Brewer died. After some years he was married to Miss Eva Netzley, Naperville. He then served First Church, Geneseo, Ill., from 1920-1926; and at Sheffield, Ill., 1928-1932. In 1932 he retired and took up his residence in Glen Ellyn. Mrs. Brewer died in 1935. Dr. Brewer was in poor health following her death and died May 30, 1937. His obituary states that he had given himself during the years of his retirement in Naperville to Bible teaching and to other constructive activities in connection with the local church and the denomination. He had also made a very fine contribution to the work of the Midwest Congregational Historical Society.
Dr. Edward O. Grisbrook
Edward Grisbrook was born on September 26, 1866 in London England. He attended McGill University in Montreal, Canada, where he received a BA in 1893. He pastored in Barrie, Ontario Canada from 1893-1894, and was ordained in Barrie, Ontario Canada in 1893. He then began his US fellowship in 1894, pastoring in Worcester, Vt., from 1894-1896. Afterwards he went onto Plainsfield Vt., 1896-1898; and then South Deerfield Mass., 1898-1902. He then took a church in Poquonock, CT., serving from 1902-1907. While there he attended Hartford Theological Seminary from which he earned his BD in 1904. Then in 1907 he came to New Hartford, CT. While he was with us new Pilgrim hymnals were bought for the sanctuary in 1908. In 1912 a gale snapped the steeple of the Town Hill Church piercing the roof point first and then resting in the balcony. In 1916 St. Johnís Lutheran Church bought the Baptist Church in New Hartford, thus ending a Baptist presence in New Hartford. When Dr. Grisbrook eventually left our church in 1918 he went on to serve in Newtown, CT., 1918-1923; Deep River, CT., 1923-1932; Griswold, CT., 1934-1941; supply pastor at Orange City, Florida, 1944. He died in Deland, Florida on May 8, 1944.
For publications see endnote 10
Rev. Hubert S. Stafford, D. D.
All that is known is that he was Ordained in 1912. It was during his time at our church that Prohibition began in 1920.
Rev. Arthur E. Paterson
Arthur Paterson was born on January 29, 1884 at Middletown Connecticut, the son of John and Adeline Lucas Paterson. He attended the Central Grammar School and Middletown High School from which he graduated in 1902. He then entered Wesleyan University and graduated with a BA in 1906. While in college he specialized in social science and biology and upon graduation went into scientific research work in the United States Public Health and Marine Hospital Service at Washington, D. C., personally assisting Dr. Charles W. Stiles, the noted specialist in parasitic diseases who did more than any other man to stamp out the hook worm. While he held that government position he began the study of law in Colombian University in Washington. Later ill health compelled him to give up sedentary work and interrupted the study of law. Subsequently, Mr. Paterson returned to Middletown and was employed in the Pathological Laboratory at the State Hospital in that city as scientific assistant in medical laboratory work.
After that experience he went into educational work and became the head of the English department at Kent Hill Preparatory School and Woman College in Maine. He was also principal of the Stony Creek grammar school and of the Washington High School. His next venture was three years of continuous service on the Hartford Times as a member of the city staff of reporters covering all the types of city activities during which time he became familiar with the civic and social life of Hartford. Finally, desiring more constructive work he decided to take up educational work under Christian auspices. He spent the next two years in the South at Emerson Institute, Mobile, Ala. and Brewer Institute, Greenwood, S. Carolina teaching and having charge of the teaching of Negro children as an employee of the American Missionary Association. On June 26, 1918 he married Miss Harriet L. Barstow, born November 15, 1892, a daughter of Rev. John Barstow who at that time was pastor of the Church of Christ, Norfolk. Harriet was a 1915 graduate of Mount Holyoke College and a teacher in the Hartford public school system. That same year of their marriage, at the request of the American Missionary Association, Mr. Paterson was ordained to the Congregational ministry and he and Harriet went to Fort Berthold, North Dakota, where he served for two years as principal of the educational work in the Indian mission boarding school and as assistant in the religious side of the work.
Rev. Paterson then returned to New Haven Connecticut for a period of time before moving to California where he served pastorates at Barstow and Lemon Grove. While in California he completed a full course of study at the Pacific School of Religion at Berkley California from which he received a MA in 1924 and a Bachelor of Divinity in 1925. Family reasons brought him back to Connecticut in 1925 where he became pastor of the North Congregational Church in New Hartford. While he was here the church was incorporated in 1926. In 1927 he moved to Middletown where he taught for three years in Middletown High School, and for 20 years served as Protestant chaplain to Middlesex Memorial Hospital for the Northern Middlesex Council of Churches. During this time he became active in Republican circles, serving as house chaplain in the General Assembly in 1937 and State Senate in 1939 and 1941, and was guest chaplain twice in the U.S. Senate. He was also a chaplain of the Republican National Convention of 1940 in Philadelphia. In 1963 he was awarded the degree of Doctor of Divinity by Galilean University in recognition of his research and services in the field of Clinical Pastoral Care. He was a life member of St. Johnís lodge, No. 121, AF&AM, of New Hartford, and was cited for 50 years of service in the Congregational Ministry.
He died on January 5, 1981 at Stula Pavilion Nursing Home in Danielson, Connecticut. A funeral service was held at the South Congregational Church in Middletown, the Rev. Thomas Niblock officiating. Harriet Paterson died the following year on November 14, 1982, at Canterbury Hills Villa in Danielson. A funeral service was also held at the South Congregational Church in Middletown, with the Rev. Thomas Niblock officiating. Arthur and Harriet had three children: Arthur E. Paterson Jr., a retired news producer with CBS-TV News; Mary Paterson Larson, a retired school teacher, and the Rev. John B. Paterson, a retired Presbyterian pastor.
Rev. Robert Waldemar Putsch
Robert Putsch was born in Winona Minnesota on March 19, 1904. He graduated from Carleton College, in 1925. Between 1927-1930 he pastored in New Hartford, CT., while he was a part-time student at Hartford Theological Seminary. Under his supervision the stained glass windows were re-leaded and strengthened. He was ordained in New Haven CT., in 1928. During that same year our church celebrated itís 100th anniversary. In 1929 Rev. Putsch was ordained and in the same year Town Hill Church collapsed. The following summer Rev. Putsch left the church to attend Harvard Divinity School from which he graduated in 1931. After Harvard Rev. Putsch served as an associate minister at the First Church in Cambridge, Mass., from 1931-1934. He then went to Hancock UCC in Lexington Mass., from 1934-1940. From there he served pastorates in White Plains, New York, 1940-1957; Great Falls, Montana, 1957-1967; and Grandview Colorado, 1966-; Denver, Co; Wheat Ridge, Co. He died in Wheat Ridge, Co., on February 17, 1981.
Rev. Frank Landolt
Frank Landolt was born in Camden, NJ on October 31, 1906, the son of Ethel Mary Eyre and John Theodore Landolt. He had a ministry that spanned 73 years, from 1924 to 1997, beginning as a part-time traveling minister in the area around Philadelphia, to 1997, when his last official act was the baptism of his great granddaughter in Gales Ferry, Connecticut. He came to our church in 1931 as a third-year student at Hartford Theological Seminary, and served during the height of the Great Depression. In the year of his arrival the Congregational Church and the Christian Church merged to become the Congregational Christian Church. While he served our church Rev. Landolt conducted the first summer church day school, and was instrumental in organizing a Junior Choir. On July 2, 1932 he married Helen W. Shipman of Camden, NJ. and in 1933 Rev. Landolt graduated from Hartford Seminary. In 1934 their first child, Suzanne, was born in New Hartford but, tragically, lived for only four hours. In this, his last year with our church, repairs were done on the Academy Hall, the church steeple, cupola and church roof. A new stove was also installed in the upper floor of the Academy Hall. The Landoltís departure in 1934 from North Congregational was a mixed blessing because they became separated from wonderful friends; many of these friends remained close and dear to them for more than 60 subsequent years. He left our church to became the Associate Pastor at a congregational church in Baltimore, Maryland. Following this pastorate he served at the Pilgrim Church in North Canaan (which is now the North Canaan Congregational Church UCC) where he and Helen were blessed with a daughter Willemina, and son, Peter. They moved to Arlington, MA in 1940, where he became the Pastor of the Park Avenue Congregational Church.
With the outbreak of WW II he volunteered for military service and served as the Chaplain of the 405th Fighter Squadron in the 9th Army Air Force from 1942 to 1946. Chaplain Landolt's squadron provided fighter support out of England in the air campaign against Germany during 1943 and 1944. He participated in the D-Day Normandy landing and served with troops on the European mainland until the end of the war. His squadron provided air support for all the major battles through France and Germany. During the war of terrible aircrew attrition, it was necessary for him to conduct funerals at the rate of one per week for more than two years. At the end of the war in Europe he was assigned by the Allied High Command to collect information and report on conditions of the population, towns and prison camps in Germany. For forty years after the war Rev. Landolt communicated regularly with more than 100 families of airmen whom he buried in the battlefields of Europe.
Following his military career, he graduated from the New York General Seminary in 1947 and was ordained as an Episcopal Priest. He served at Christ Church, Plainfield, NJ; Trinity Church, Hartford, CT; Trinity Church, Cranston, RI; St. John's Church, North Adams, MA; and finally at St. Mark's Church in Mystic, CT, where he officially "retired" in 1973. He carried on an active ministry as an assistant priest and substitute preacher for many years after retirement, both in Florida and Connecticut.
Rev. Landolt's wife Helen, died on February 21, 1997, at the age of 89. He died on October 14, 1999, after extended illness and four years of residency in the Groton Regency Nursing Center. Before his death, Rev. Landolt, almost 93 years in age, was the oldest Priest in the Episcopal Diocese of Connecticut. Frank and Helen are buried in the Memorial Garden at St. David's Episcopal Church, Gales Ferry, CT. They leave a legacy of two children, six grandchildren, fifteen great grandchildren and one great-great grandchild to carry on their memories. Their daughter, Willemina, and son, Peter, still reside in southeastern Connecticut and Willemina (Billie), is good friends with Rev. Doretta (Clark) Colburn. They have served together in Rotary, and have done much good work for the community in South East CT!
Rev. Henry Ammen Peck
Henry Peck was born in Lobelia, West Virginia, on January 1, 1901. He graduated from Yale Divinity School. He was ordained in the Congregational Church, Naugatuck, CT., in 1929. He then served there as director of religious education from 1927-1935. He came as pastor to New Hartford, CT., in 1935. In 1936, his second year with our church, there was a local flood. In response to this disaster the Academy Hall was used as soup kitchen. It was in this year that the Womenís Auxiliary was begun (1937-1997). While he was with us, Rev. Peck organized a Boy Scout troop and was a scout leader. During his ministry repairs were made in both the parsonage and the Academy Hall, the steeple and roof of the Church were strengthened and painted, one hundred new Hymnals were subscribed for, and the railroad property back of the Church was purchased. In 1939 the interior of the church was painted and redecorated and a rededication service was held on the 5th of November. When Rev. Peck left our church he went to Windsor Locks, CT., 1941-1961. After this he pastored the yoke charge at Wilmington and West Dover, Vt., 1961-1971. He died in Wilmington, VT., Jan. 30, 1971.
Rev. Ellis E. Peterson
Rev. Ellis Peterson came to Connecticut from Omaha, Nebraska as a probationary member of the Nebraska Conference of the United Methodist Church in 1942, appointed to attend school at Hartford Seminary. While at school he served a pastor of the North Congregational Church in New Hartford. During Rev. Petersonís stay, a Church Flag was given in memory of Dr. Frederick Parker Gay, and much war relief work was undertaken. After he left our church he was elected elder by the Nebraska conference of the United Methodist Church in 1945 and ordained at a later date at St. Stephenís Church in New York City. He is listed as serving the Methodist Churches in Imperial Nebraska in 1946-1947, and then transferred to California. From 1948-1953 he served Oroville in the Shasta District, and from 1954-1956 he served Porterville in the Fresno District. In 1957, he is reported to have withdrawn from membership in the Methodist Church, California-Nevada Conference.
Dr. Archie Goff Bedford
( ?-2000) Congregational
Archie Bedford was born the son of Rev. Archie B. Bedford, the 33rd minister of the New Harmony Christian Church in Curryville MO.; his mother was Violet Josephine Mitchell. Raised in Syracuse, NY, his education was in political science at Syracuse University. He then attended Yale Divinity School. He was stationed at Ft. Jackson in South Carolina during W.W.II where he served in the 501, 502 & 506 paratroops regiments. After the war he earned a B D degree from Emory University and served as minister of Congregational and Christian churches in CT (where he served New Hartford, 1943-1945). Rev. Bedford left our church in 1945 and had pastorates in PA, GA, AL & KY. During his years as a minister he earned a MA in history at West Virginia University in 1958. He complete a doctorate of ministry at Lexington Seminary. He then purchased the old family farm in KY and died there on the 22nd of December 2000. For publications see endnote 11
Rev. Glyn Rosser
Glyn Rosser was born in Glynneath, Glam, South Wales, Mar 15, 1907. He graduated from Hartford Theological Seminary and was ordained in Taylor, View, Iowa, where he served between 1914-1917. He then served in Hatfield, Mass, 1941-1943. He returned to Hartford to seek an advanced degree from Hartford Seminary. While serving as part-time pastor at the Nepaugh Congregational Church (1943-1951) he was asked to serve our church as well. He became resident in our parsonage, and our church changed the hour of service to 11:15 to accommodate worship in Nepaug at 10:00 A.M. During his ministry the Churchís By-laws were revised and the executive officers of the Church were combined with the Ecclesiastical society. The Church roof was painted and repaired, and a new oil-burning heating system was installed in the church at a cost of $1760. A beautiful silver communion service was given in memory of Mrs. Henry R. Jones, presented by Mr. and Mrs. H. Rogers Jones. In 1949 William Gay, a lay member of our church, entered ordained ministry and became pastor of the First Congregational Church of Jefferson, Ohio. On the 11th of May, 1951, just after he had attended a meeting of the "Menís Club", Rev. Rosser succumbed to a heart attack and died almost immediately. He held a vision for a new parish hall which would only be built after his death in 1961.
Dr. Joseph Novotny
(1886-1966) - Baptist
Joseph Novotny was born in Prague Czechoslovakia. He was the son of the Dr. Henry Novotny, founder of Baptist work in that country. He received his education at the universities of Prague, Vienna and Geneva, Nottingham England, and received a Doctor of Divinity degree from Acadia University in Nova Scotia. He was ordained in 1909 and served as pastor of the Prague Baptist Church. When Czechoslovakian patriots revolted against the domination of Austria by the Bolsheviks during World War I, he was sent by the YMCA to serve as a chaplain to Czech troops aiding the White Russians. For his service he was awarded the Revolutionary Medal by the Czech government. Returning to Prague he served as pastor of the Baptist Church, and became the founder and first secretary of the Prague Y.M.C.A. In 1928 he came for a second time to the United States (first in 1919) to teach at the International Baptist Seminary in East Orange, NJ. During World War II he served as pastor to two Baptist churches in Yonkers and one in New York. He accepted a posting to Weisbaden, Germany, in 1946 where he served as director of the Christian Relief agencies licensed to operate in Germany after World War II. While there he became a delegate to the first assembly of the World Council of Churches held in Amsterdam. On his return to the United States in 1952 he stayed with his son Daniel who at that time was the pastor of the Congregational Church in Goshen. While there he was approached by the North Congregational Church of New Hartford about becoming their pastor. He accepted, serving from 1952-1956. While our pastor, membership doubled and Sunday School and youth group membership quadrupled. The congregation also built an outdoor temple unique in the state (see newspaper article in Novotny records) and the church was extensively refurbished in 1952. Renovations included the replacement of the Johnson Organ with that of a Wurlitzer Pipe Organ. In that same year a memorial service was held at North Congregational Church in memory of Rev. Glyn Rosser who died the previous year. The Literary and Social Club planted a shrub on church grounds in memory of Rev. Rosser. (Kitty Bsullak claims the shrub is the center left bush in front of the Sanctuary) In 1953 the church observed itís 125th anniversary with several events. Catherine Mills Jones Gay wrote a History of the Church outlining the various pastors. Rev. James English, superintendent of the Connecticut Conference gave a discourse on "The Old Church in the New Day." Mrs. Elizabeth Russell contributed flowers in honor of her great-great grandfather Col. William Goodwin, and messages were read from six former pastors. During this year plans were made for a new Parish House. In 1954 the Bakerville Methodist Church burned down. In 1955 the Farmington river flooded New Hartford. Dr. Novotny was vacationing at the time in Cape Cod, but upon hearing of the flood sought to return to his congregation. When he was stopped by the Connecticut National Guard he showed them paperwork attesting to his commission as a Lieutenant Colonel in the United States Army. He had received a commission during his service in Germany as the director of the Christian Relief agencies to better facilitate his work with the US occupation force in Europe. As a result of showing his commission he was transported to New Hartford by Army Helicopter. Retiring in 1957 he moved to Harwich Massachusetts where he served as interim at a number of Cape Cod churches. Rev. Joseph Novotny died November 29, 1966 at Cape Cod hospital in Hyannis, Mass. He was the author of more than 50 religious books and childrenís stories and was an painter in both oil and water colors. For publications see endnote 12
Rev. Murray Sleeper
Murray Sleeper was born in Worcester, Mass., on May 26, 1920. He graduated Worcester Junior College in 1942; Clark University in 1944; and Andover Newton Theological School in 1947. He was ordained in Worcester, Mass., on May 26, 1947. He served Churches in Mattapisett, Mass., 1947-1953; Fitchburg, Mass., 1954-1958. Then he came to serve New Hartford, Connecticut between 1958-1963. Several events took place while Rev. Sleeper served in New Hartford. In 1957 the Bakerville Methodist Church began building a new church building to replace the one that burned down in 1954. This same year the United Church of Christ was formed. On March 14, 1958 the Academy Hall was finally torn down to make way for a new parish hall to be built. Also in 1958 North Congregational Church was left the homestead of Augusta Berard Chandler for a menís club in memory of her grandfather John Cotton Smith and $30,000 for maintenance. Along with this gift $10,000 worth of stock was left in trust of the New Hartford Cemetery to pay the dividends to maintain a chapel. In 1960 the sanctuary of the Bakerville Methodist Church was completed and in 1961 the new parish hall for North Congregational Church was opened and the cornerstone dedicated in the memory of John Cotton Smith. It was in this same year that our church voted to become a member of the United Church of Christ. Rev. Sleeper left our church in 1963 to take a pastorate in Benzonia, Mi., 1963-1977. He then held pastorates in Luzerne, Mi 1978; Gaylor, Mi 1978-1982. He died in Gaylor, Mi., Aug. 9, 1983. For publications see Endnote 13
Rev. Graham Child
Graham Child attended Greenwich High School and received his BA degree from Drew University in 1937 and a B.D. degree from Hartford Theological Seminary in 1943. He was ordained in the Second Congregational Church of Greenwich in 1943. He served as pastor of the Winchester Center Church and the Poquonock Community Church of Connecticut. He also served at the First Congregational Church of Niagara Falls, NY, and at the Wantaough Memorial Church of Wantaugh, L.I., NY. In 1969 he came to pastor the North Congregational Church of New Hartford during which time he married Dorothy Carlson (Dottie Child). In 1969 the Sanctuary was refurbished and a lighted cross was installed behind the pulpit. While serving as pastor of North Congregational Church 119 people were received into membership. After his retirement in 1977 he was named Pastor Emeritus in 1978 and served as supply pastor and interim to many area churches. He was extremely active in the Sky Top Lane Bowling League of Torrington and was a member and past master of Amos Beecher Masonic Lodge of New Hartford. He died in 1998. While the church was looking for a pastoral replacement Rev. Harry Peatt served as our interim.
Revs. Dale & Dolly Bond
During their ministry the Church celebrated itís 150th anniversary in 1978. As part of this celebration the ladies auxiliary designed a quilt of historic places and buildings. This quilt hangs in the sanctuary.
Dr. Harry L. Peatt
Harry L. Peatt was born on January 24, 1940. He attended High School in Stamford, CT. He graduated from Southern Methodist University (BA 1961), the Yale Divinity School (M. Div. 1965), He served as the administrative chaplain of Southbury Training School in Southbury, Connecticut from 1973-1981, and was an officer in the American Association on Mental Deficiency. During this time he pursued a D. Min degree with Andover Newton Theological School graduating in 1977. In 1981 he came to North Congregational Church. After leaving us he went on to serve a number of churches in New York, New Hampshire and finally Perkinsville, VT. He has been recognized as a Diplomat in Pastoral Counseling and has a considerable background in the fields of mental health and substance abuse treatment. An accomplished folk musician, Pastor "Hank" frequently brought his 12 string guitar and Appalachian dulcimer to church, adding to the joy of the worship experience. In 2002 he retired from the Perkinsville Congregational Church.
Rev. Marshal Hughes
During his ministry at North Congregational Church the following events took place: shuttle Challenger exploded in 1986, the Berlin Wall was torn down on November 9, 1989, the United States invaded Panama, and Desert Shield/Storm took place between 1990-1991, and American troops are sent into Somalia from 1992 till 1994. Rev. Hughes went on to serve churches in Maine, Massachusetts, and Connecticut. After thirty years in ministry with a strong commitment to Pastoral Care and Peace and Justice, he retired to Maine where he fills his time as a real estate investor.
Rev. Doretta Clark
United Church of Christ
Doretta Clark graduated Glassboro State College, NJ in 1978 with a BS in Education and a minor in Environmental Science. After college she taught middle school science for five years after which she moved to Connecticut where she took a part time position at Center Church in Manchester in 1990 as the Director of Parish Care and Development. Between 1991 to 1992 she took classes at Andover Newton Theological and St. Josephís College until she went to Yale Theological Seminary. In 1994 she received her Masters of Divinity, and was ordained at Center Church in Manchester, Connecticut on Sept. 25, 1994.
Her first pastorate was with North Congregational Church in New Hartford Connecticut were she offered two weekly programs on the public cable station: Rhythms of Life which were five minute inspirational pieces and then Words of Inspiration which were Sunday morning messages. She was also involved extensively in the community through groups such as: the United Way, Hospice Advisory Team and Chaplain, New Hartford Business Council, Library Board, Committee on Ministry for the Litchfield North Association, Greater Winsted Ministerial Association, 1421 Opportunity (housing needs for young women), the Salvation Army, the Rotary Club, Municipal Agent for the Elderly, as well as serving as the chair of Commission on Aging. Outside of New Hartford she was actively involved with leading workshops and serving as a key note speaker at the Crystal Cathedral during their Successful Church Leadership Institute in January every year. She also served on the General Council of Churches Uniting in Global Mission (CUGM) an ecumenical group of pastors across the US. In 1997 the steeple was rebuilt, a handicapped ramp was installed both inside and outside of the parish hall, and an outside light was installed to spotlight the Shepherd window. Towards the end of her ministry in New Hartford the church experienced numeric growth.
When Rev. Clark first came to the church the only children were her two daughters. By the time she left there were between 25-30 children in Sunday School. In 2000 she moved on to her second church as senior pastor at the Mystic Congregational church, in Mystic CT.
Rev. Dr. Gregory E. Dawson
Greg Dawson was born on January 17, 1957 in Midland Michigan and graduated from U-32 High School, Montpelier, VT in 1976. He then entered the United States Navy where he gave his life to Christ and got involved with the Navigators, a para-church organization. During his military service he had the opportunity to travel to places such as Cuba and Haiti and he was introduced to several missionary efforts. Of these event he writes,
As a young Christian this was all new to me and set my heart on fire. Clearly God was at work here, and I desperately wanted to be involved. This experience impacted me greatly and led me to ask God to use me in this manner to do His will in the world.
In 1979 he attended the University of Vermont and received a commission as a 2LT through the Army National Guard. In 1983 he graduated from University of Vermont with a BA in Studio Art and then attended the Nazarene Theological Seminary in Kansas City. A year later he became an Army Chaplain (Reserves). He returned to Vermont to marry Rosemary Simao in 1986 and together they graduated seminary in 1989.
They co-pastored the Houlton Church of the Nazarene in Houlton, Maine from 1989-1991. In 1990 Greg served in Desert Shield/Storm as an Army Chaplain. Greg and Rosemary were ordained in 1991 in Portland Maine by the Maine district of the Church of the Nazarene. Following this Greg attended Clinical Pastoral Education at Geisinger Medical Center. After a two year residency in CPE (1991-1993) Greg served as pastor of the Millville Christian Church (1993-1999), a member of the Disciples of Christ. Then in October of 2000 Greg received the call to become pastor of the North Congregational Church in New Hartford, CT and transferred his standing into the United Church of Christ in 2001, and resigned his commission as an Army Chaplain. In 2002 he completed his doctoral studies (DPM) from the Masterís Graduate School of Divinity. He is serving as pastor of North Congregational Church as it approaches itís 175th anniversary.
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