HISTORICAL NOTICES OF THE
1ST CONGREGATIONAL CHURCH OF CANTERBURY, [WINDHAM Co.], CONN.
With Catalogues of its Officers & Members
From its Organization in 1711 to December, 1853
Robert C. Learned
Transcribed by Jane Devlin
NAME BORN GRADUATED SETTLED DISMISSED DIED AGE
Samuel EASTBROOK Concord, MA, 1674 H. U. 1696 13 Jun 1711 26 Jun 1727 53
John WADSWORTH Milton, MA, 1703 H. U. 1723 3 Sep 1729 27 May 1741 15 Jun 1766 63
James COGSWELL Saybrook, 1720 Y. C., 1742 28 Dec 1744 5 Nov 1771 2 Jan 1807 87
Solomon MORGAN Groton, 1744
30 Sep 1783 Mar 1797 3 Sep 1804 60
D. C. 1805 3 Feb 1808 29 Aug 1810 Jun 1834 51
Asa MEECH Preston, 1775 B. U. 1807 28 Oct 1812 May 2822 1849 74
Thomas J. MURDOCK Norwich VT, 1790 D. C. 1812 20 Nov 1822
15 Dec 1826 36
James R. WHEELOCK Hanover, N.H., 1790 D. C. 1807 20 Dec 1827 8 Apr 1829 26 Nov 1841 51
Dennis PLATT Danbury, 1800 Y. C. 1824 31 Mar 1830 1 Jan 1833
Otis C. WHITON Whichendon, Ms., 1794 D. C. 1815 20 Jun 1833 17 Jan 1837 17 Oc 1845 51
Charles J. WARREN Boston, Mass., 1796 B. U. 1826 13 Sep 1837 1 Apr 1840
Walter CLARKE Farmington, 1812 Y. C. 1837 18 May 1842 23 May 1845
Robert C. LEARNED New London, 1817 Y. C. 1837 22 Dec 1847
Mr. ESTABROOK was the third son of Rev. Joseph ESTABROOK, and married Rebecca, daughter of Rev. Nehemiah HOBART, Newton, Mass. She died soon after her husband and lies by his side in the burial ground just north of the Green. Hobart ESTABROOK, one of their sons, became an esteemed pastor in East Haddam, Willington Society.
Mr. WADSWORTH withdrew from his charge without a regular dismission, under the imputation of immoral conduct. He lived afterwards in his native town, and died (according to tradition) of apoplexy, in the pulpit. His wife was Abigail SPROAT of Middleboro, Mass.; his only son died in youth.
Mr. COGSWELL's parents lived in Lebanon, during his childhood, but afterwards followed him to Canterbury, and died in his house. (See Nos. 229 and 230 of members.) After his dismission hence, he was settled in Scotland from 1772 to 1804, when he removed to Hartford, on account of his many infirmities. There he died at the house of his only surviving child, Dr. Mason F. COGSWELL, having outlived that strength of mind which once made him honored, but not those graces of the heart, for which he was beloved. He was married, first to Alice FITCH of Canterbury; secondly, to the Widow of Rev. Mr. DEVOTION of Scotland, and thridly, to Widow Irena HEBARD. He received a Doctorate from Yale College.
Mr. MORGAN was not educated at College. He had been pastor of a church (since dissolved) in Nazareth Society, Voluntown, from 1772 to 1782. Soon after leaving here, we was settled over the North Church in Canaan, where he died. He married a Widow HASKELL, one of whose sons became President of the University of Vermont. One of his sons graduated at Yale College, but died young, a lawyer in Vermont.
Mr. LEONARD's doctrinal views were not satisfactory to some of the memebers of the church. He afterwards entered the ministry of the Episcopal church, and in that connection officiated at Windsor, Vt., from 1818, till near the time of his death. He died of consumpton, while journeying for the benefit of his health.
Mr. MEECH was not educated at College, but received an honorary degree, while pastor at North Bridgewater, Mass, where he remained from 1800 until 1811. From this place he removed to Canada, and died in Hull, C. W., near the close of 1849. He was thrice married. His second wife and several children were drowned, soon after their arrival in Canada.
Mr. MURDOCK had been from 1819 to 1821, pastor of a church in Portland, Me., which is now extinct. He died, much lamented by his congregation, and sleeps near the first pastor of the church. He was thrice married, but left only a daughter, since deceased.
Mr. WHEELOCK was a grandson of Rev. Eleazar WHEELOCK, the founder and first President of Dartmouth College. He first undertook the practice of law, but changed his profession, was settled successively in Newport, N. H., and in Norwich, Vt. On leaving his station here, he went to Indiana as a missionary; but returning in 1836, with impaired health, was settled in Barre, Vt. Here he was broken up in a few years, by affliction which resulted in partial disorder of his mental faculties. He died in Boston, having been twice married, and leaving several children.
Mr. PLATT began his labors in 1828, at Willimantic, where he organized the church, and remained some two years as an evangelist. Not many months after leaving this church, he went into New York, and has been there since, -- from 1834 to 1842, pastor in Homer; from 1842 to 1845, pastor in Manlius; 1845-6, editor of the Recorder at Syracuse, and from 1846 to 1853, pastor in Binghamton. He married Miss Caroline DWIGHT of New Haven; his oldest son died at Yale College.
Mr. WHITON had been settled previously in North Yarmouth, Me., and in Troy and Westmoreland, N. H. He was afterwards pastor in Scotland, from 1837 to 1841, and thence removed to Harrisville, N. H., where he died suddenly. He was twice married, but without children.
Mr. WARREN had been settled in Attleboro and South Weymouth, Mass., and in Wethersfield. He has been since engaged in various labors connected with the Temperance Reform, and is now Secretary of the New York City Temperance Alliance.
Mr. CLARKE is now pastor of the South Church in Hartford, and has lately received a Doctorate from Williams College.
NAMES CHOSEN RETIRED DIED
Eleazar BROWN 25 Jun 1711
22 Jan 1720
Timothy BACKUS 11 Jun 1719 1744 28 Feb 1762
Thomas BROWN 1720
13 Apr 1838
Deliverance BROWN 16 Jun 1737
14 Jan 1768
John BACON 16 Jun 1737
19 Feb 1741
Stephen FROST 1 May 1746 1770
Samuel HUNTINGTON 26 Mar 1753 1769 20 Mar 1797
Eliashib ADAMS 24 Aug 1769 1797
Jabez FITCH, Jr. 25 Jan 1771 1796 19 Dec 1806
1821 27 Aug 1839
Joseph MOORE 23 Feb 1792 1821 29 Jan 1823
Joseph SIMMS 2 Mar 1821 1824
Lucius BACON 2 Mar 1821 1847
John FRANCIS 28 Dec 1824
24 Jan 1826
John M. FRANCIS 21 Nov 1844
Thomas G. CLARKE 21 Oct 1847
Dea. BACKUS left the Church in 1744, with the Separatists.
Dea. John BACON is not set down in the record among the members received, and his name is therefore not in the list following.
Dea. Stephen FROST was one of those who in 1770 formed the new church in Westminster Society.
Dea. HUNTINGTON was born in Lebanon, and graduated at Yale College in 1743. He was a merchant here. About 1769, he removed to East Haddam, where he died.
Dea. ADAMS removed hence to Massachusetts after 1796, and thence to Maine, where he died.
Dea. FICH was the father of President FITCH of Williams College, and was himself a physician of reputation. After 1795 he followed his children to Vt., and died at Sheldon, in that State.
Dea. Daniel FROST was chosen probably a short time before Dea. MOORE. These two retired from active service on the election of others in 1821.
Dea. SIMMS in 1824 removed to Plainfield, N.Y., where he died.
Dea. KINNE graduated at Yale College in 1804. He and Dea. Lucius BACON retired from active service in 1847.
In the following catalogue, the names found on the records have been arranged under the years in which they were received, -- the spelling being conformed to modern usage.
Names of females are given as they were at the time of admission. If previously married, the name of the husband is also given, preceded by w. for "wife of", or wid. for "widow of". If females married while members, the husband's name is appended in italics, preceded by --m.-- for "married."
An § prefixed marks those received by letter.
Figures (in a parenthesis) after a name, refer to the father's name, if on the catalogue; --otherwise to that of the mother. A name (in like position) is either the family surname of a married female, or the abbreviated name of the father, when neither parent is named in the catalogue.
Figures in the last column show when the connection with this church came to an end, and the characters and letter preceding show how it ended. They signify, either:--
* that a person died in connection with this church;
or, D. that a person was regularly dismissed to another church;
or, W. that a person irregularly withdrew to some other denomination;
or, Sep. that a person adhered to the Separatists in the schism of 1744;
or, Br. that a person was one of the founders of the Brooklyn church;
or, West. that a person was one of the founders of the Westminster ch.;
or, Ex. that a person was finally excluded from communion.
Miss Mary ADAMS (No. 340) is the first person on the catalogue, now living in Canterbury. After her name the absentees are marked by an A. , that those who desire may ascertain who are the actual resident members.
Or persons received to full communion
June 13, 1711
Within a few years after 28 Dec 1744