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Abington, Mass. First Church records 1714-1949.

 Collection
Identifier: RG4969

Scope and Contents

The records for First Church Abington are primarily made up of vital records recording baptisms, marriages, and deaths along with Church records detailing meeting minutes, tax books, the Church Manual, the changing of pastors and repairs to the church building. This collection also contains a Church Ledger with the summary of payments made for repair work on the church. One in particular church record details the infamous "Singing Controversy" and the effect that it had on the members of the church and town. There are also small pamphlets to celebrate the church's centennial and bi-centennial along with an official souvenir program book from one of the Christian conventions they were a part of in NYC.

Dates

  • 1714-1949

Creator

Restrictions on Access

Access to this collection is unrestricted and open to the public.

Restrictions on Use

Items in this collection are subject to U.S. Copyright Law. It is the responsibility of the researcher to determine the copyright status of collection items and to secure any permissions necessary for their reproduction and publication. Requests for permission to publish material must be discussed with the archivist or librarian.
Digital Reproductions are protected by copyright and/or related rights. You are free to use the Digital Reproductions in any way that is permitted by the copyright and related rights legislation that applies to your use. In addition, no permission is required from the Congregational Library & Archives for educational uses. For other uses, you need to obtain permission from the Congregational Library & Archives. For additional information regarding copyright, please consult the Congregational Library & Archives' Digital Collections Copyright & Use policy.

Historical Note

The First Congregational Church of Abington, MA was established in 1711 and in addition to the 1st Church there were three additional churches founded in the same town: 2nd church of south Abington, now Whitman, 3rd church of east Abington, now Rockland, and 4th church at North Abington. The First Church in Abington also housed a Sunday school that was established in 1818 and is thought to be one of the oldest Sunday schools in the country. The motto of the church is “None too old to study the word of God!”

The First church was located in front of an old burial ground described as a “small meeting house” that was “without steeple, bells, or pews, only benches being used for seats.” It was demolished in 1751 so that a larger building could be built near the same location. The third building was erected in 1819 and was known as “Masonic Hall” which was later enlarged and remodeled in 1871. Along with its repairs and remodeling it was outfitted with a new organ, gifted by W.S. O’Brian and family in 1911. Part of the repairs that were done were to the church’s steeple, which had been blown off in the famous gale of 1869, were completed over a century later.

The Abington church was also home to multiple societies and organizations throughout the centuries, including the Woman’s Guild, Men’s group, Woman’s Missionary Society, Christian Endeavors Society, and Boy’s Work Org. In 1968, the First Congregational and the North Congregational Churches on Abington merged and reformed as the Church of Christ in Abington. This church is still active today and continues to serve the Abington community today.

Ministers

S. Brown
1711-1749
E. Dodge
1750-1770
S. Niles
1771-1814
H. Weeks
1815-1820
S. Spring, D. D.
1822-1826
W. Shedd
1829-1830
M. G. Wheeler
1831-1833
J. W. Ward
1834-1856
F. R. Abbe
1857-1870
G. E. Freeman
1871-1880
R. W. Haskins
1881-1893
W. S. Fritch, Ph.D
1896-1899
D. Goodyear
1900-1906
T. J. Lewis
1907-1911
A. S. Hawkes, S. T. M.
1912-1914
W. Wordsworth
1916-1920
A. Sloan
1921-1922
J. C. Millian
1923-1925
R. J. Black
1925-1928
C. S. Knott
1929-1948
H. L. Carnes
1948-1951
T. H. Campbell
1951-1962
M. M. Morse
1963-1967
W. G. Sewell
1967-1968
C. B. Adams
1967-1974
A. M. F. Coad
1969-1974
T. A. Hunt
1972-1974
A. H. Blake
1974-1984
O. Clarke
1983-1984
M. E. Mahl
1985-1986
D. E. Mehl
1985-1986
L. Delaplain
1986-1991
H. L. Greer
1991-1992
R. D. Colby
1992-1995
S. G. Duncan
1995-2008
S. J. Mederios
2001-2010
E. E. Alger
2008-2010
K. L. Coburn, P
2011-Present

Extent

0.57 Cubic Feet (2 boxes)

Language of Materials

English

Abstract

The First Congregational Church of Abington, MA was established in 1711 and in addition to the 1st Church there were three additional churches founded in the same town: 2nd church of south Abington, now Whitman, 3rd church of east Abington, now Rockland, and 4th church at North Abington. The First Church in Abington also housed a Sunday school that was established in 1818 and is thought to be one of the oldest Sunday schools in the country. The motto of the church is "None too old to study the word of God!" In 1968, the First Congregational and the North Congregational Churches on Abington merged and reformed as the Church of Christ in Abington. The records for First Church Abington are primarily made up of vital records recording baptisms, marriages, and deaths along with Church records detailing meeting minutes, Church changes and bills. The collection specifically includes a book from a Christian Convention in New York and also houses the church records of the infamous "Singing Controversy" and the effect that it had on the members of the church and town.

Arrangement

The materials in this collection have been arranged in chronological order by start date.

Technical Requirements

To access digital user’s copies via online-interface, a java-enabled web browser is required. Internet Explorer 8.x and later, Firefox 5.x and later, Opera 12 and later, Safari 5.x and later, or any version of Google Chrome are recommended.

Acquisition Information

Materials were loaned to the Congregational Library & Archives by the First Church of Abington, Massachusetts in 2017 and given RG5330. However, there is record of an earlier donation from the church given RG4969. Various Abington accruals were collected into a single collection; Accession number 2017-06.

Accruals

Additional accruals are expected for this collection in the form of full-text transcription. There is no anticipated date for this accrual.

Bibliography

First Parish Congregational Church. 250th Anniversary 1711-1961. Abington, 1961. 17.11.1 AB55.37 CalCC

Processing Information

Processed and described by Delali Davies, November 2018, using DACS Second edition. Additional processing by Zachary Bodnar, December 2018. Legacy processing by Sari Mauro, 2012.
Title
Abington, Mass. First Church records 1714-1949.
Status
Completed
Author
Delali Davies, Zachary Bodnar, Sari Mauro
Date
2018-12-18
Description rules
Dacs2 2013
Language of description
Undetermined
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note
English

Repository Details

Part of the Congregational Library & Archives Repository

Contact:
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617-523-0470