Baptist Church
1874 List of Pastors, Deacons & Parishioners
and 84 year history
West Pawlet, Rutland Co., Vermont

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St. Johnsbury, Vt Genealogy
St. Johnsbury, VT

Pastor: Rev. S. Henry Archibald
Deacon: Allen Whedon
Deacon: B. H. Nelson
Clerk: David O. Beecher
Committee on Reception of Members:
Rev. S. Henry Archibald
Dea. Allen Whedon
Dea. B. H. Nelson
George W. Beecher
Mrs. Allen Whedon
Mrs. B. H. Nelson
Miss Esther A. Nelson
A number of members of different Baptist Churches, having settled in Pawlet and vicinity, first began to hold meetings for religious worship as distinctive Baptists in December, 1789, under the direction of Elder Brown of Westfield, a part of what is now Hartford in Washington Co., NY. A Mr. Solomon Brown, licentiate, was engaged as their minister for one year. A council to recognize the first Baptist Church, in Pawlet, was called to meet the first Monday in May, 1790. This council was composed of Elder Cornell, from Manchester; Elder Dodge, Jonathan Brown and a Bro. Doane , from Granville, NY; Elder Blood from Shaftsbury; Elder Worden, from Adams, Mass; Elder Skeele, Thomas McClure, Caleb Cummins and Joseph Dickerman, from Westfield, NY.
Elder Caleb Blood was chosen moderator, and Caleb Cummins, clerk.
The constituent members were as follows:
Bennett, James Bennett, Mary
Hall, Thomas Hanks, Hannah
Brown, Solomon Hopkins, Miriam
Hascall, Joseph Agard, Caleb
Crouch, John Harmon, Nathaniel
Hascall, Joseph Agard, Caleb
Crouch, John Harmon, Nathaniel
Sisson, Samuel Abbott, Samuel
Trumble, Alexander Sheldon, Sybil
Whedon, Edmund Agard, Lydia
Wilcox, Lydia Crouch, Elizabeth
Elder Worden, of Adams, gave to these brethren and sisters the hand of fellowship. The Church was without the ministration of a regular pastor for the first ten years of its existence. In September 1800, Elder Isaac Beall was called to the pastorate and served the Church till 1831. On the 23d day of April, 1807, Daniel Hascall, afterward Professor Hascall, the founder of Madison University, received his license to preach the gospel from this Church, and from its membership at various times have persons been licensed to preach.
Its first organization was on the present homestead of Allen Whedon, and it has twice since been re-organized. A meeting house was built on the premises of Seely Brown in 1800, and a parsonage in 1802. In 1852, a new Baptist meeting house was built at West Pawlet village, and old meeting house having been taken down some years before and divided between the Baptists and the Disciples, (who were, in 1831, organized into a church, mainly from the membership of the Baptist Church, and were a part of the proprietors of the old meeting house.) The preachers employed by the Baptist Church, since its first organization, have been as follows, viz; Revs. Brown, Skeels, Green, Wait, Cornell, Dodge, Blood, Isaac Beall, L. P. Reynolds, Wetherell, Woodward, Joseph Packer, Cobb, Soullard, Sweet, Increase Jones, Mead, Sanders, Archibald Wait, Coon, Hancock, Mosher, David Beecher, R. D. Pierce, and Brethren J. C. Allen, C. A. Towne and S. H. Archibald, licentiates, the last named is the present pastor, and was ordained as Pastor over this church November 10th, 1874. Sermon by his father T. H. Archibald. Ordaining prayer by Rev. David Beecher.
The pastorate of Elder Beall covered a space of thirty years; the only other pastorate of any considerable length was that of Rev. D. Beecher, covering a space of fourteen years. Both these pastorates were eminently successful and may properly be said to embrace the only really prosperous periods in the history of this little church, excepting perhaps that of the last two years. Under the first of these pastorates, the membership reached one hundred and fifty, while a strict discipline was maintained until the latter part of the time when a disaffection occurred and Elder Beall, and quite a share of the members of the church, after a short time embraced the views of Alexander Campbell, and , in 1831, organized a Disciple Church. From this date to the settlement of Elder Beecher, July 14th, 1859, as pastor, the stay of the preacher was short, and the success of the church correspondingly weak. This pastorate found the church with a membership of twenty-three and left it with a membership of one hundred and three, and a Sabbath School of more than one hundred members. This devoted laborer for Christ still retains a warm place in the hearts of all the members of the church, and the respect and confidence of the community. Since 1859, this church has been a member of the Vermont and Shaftsbury Association, except one year when it was with the Washington Union Association. The present membership (December 1st, 1874) is one hundred and twenty-six. Its deacons have been as follows, viz; Joseph Hascall, Timothy Brewster, Josiah Tobey, Jeremiah Arnold, David Frary, Isaac Wickham, Reuben Tobey, Jeremiah Clark, Samuel Cole, Allen Whedon, B. H. Nelson.
During the eighty-four years of its existence its average membership is estimated at sixty, and its aggregate membership at one thousand to twelve hundred. In the year 1873, its house of worship was enlarged and refurnished at a cost of about two thousand dollars, and was re-dedicated November 25th, 1873, since which time the growth of the church has been marked and substantial, a revival following the re-opening of the church during which about thirty members were received.

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Last edited on July 22, 2007