Thursday, October 28, 2010

Wampsville Presbyterian Church

113 years old in 1946

My great-great-great grandfather Burton H. Dyer and his older brother Benjamin W. Dyer were two of the original supporters of this church when it was formed. Most early records of the church were lost in a fire. I have been informed that the church has stood empty for several years. It is on the historic register. I've been told the church looks much the same today as it did originally. 

Syracuse (NY) Herald-Journal
Wed. 27 March 1946
Page 3 column 6

Wampsville Church is 113 Years Old

Wampsville -- Wampsville Presbyterian Church, situated on a high knoll at the eastern outskirts of the village, will be 113 years old April 9. The Rev. oJhn(sic) R. Kay is the pastor. The society was organized April 9, 1820, or 117 years ago.

The edifice is one of the oldest in Madison County. The attractive church was the scene of the Syracuse Presbytery meeting a few years ago.

Actual dates on which the edifice was started are boscure(sic) as records were lost in a fire. The first trustees were Jared N. Avery, James Stewart, and Elisha Cranson. Worship was held in the village school prior to erection of a church.

The Rev. Hezekiah N. Woodruff was the first pastor, coming in April, 1829, as a supply. Other pastors have been George Nicholls, 1889-93; Frank W. West, 1894-5; John Burkhardt, 1896-1900; Spiko Rederus, 1901-03; D. G. Christmas, 1910-12; Jay N. Taft, 1912-15; John N. Steele, 1915-16; William Phillips, 1917-18; J. H. Nichols, 1918-24; John S. Willbanks, 1925-33; George B. Swinnerton, 1933-40; Paul Conine, 1940-42; Mr. Kay.

Families supporting the society at the time it was formed include Jared N. Avery, Harvey Cobb, Solomon Klock, James Stewart, Joseph Van Sice, Joseph A. Phillips, Jacob Foland, Alexander D. Stewart, Daniel Van Vleck, Ambrose Hill, William Spencer, Jeremiah, Jacob and Peter D. Cooper, Franklin Johnson, Elisha Cranson, Simon P. New, Benjamin and Burton Dyer, Malachi Gardinier, Ira Thompson, John A. McDougall, John Stewart, Joseph Benedict, Hartwell Johnson,  ames(sic) Cooper, Truman Benham, Thomas Loomis, William Ure and Miles Johnson.


Photo by Anita Ingalls
"This Federalist meeting house is one of the earliest churches in the area." Cited in Country Roads: Madison County's Heritage: a Resource for the Future" edited by Jennifer G. F. Solms & Paul A. Schoonmaker; published by Madison County Planning Board, Wampsville, New York; July 1976

* Many thanks to Anita Ingalls for her input about the current state of this church. Visit Anita's "Madison County, NY" website for a treasure trove of Madison County historic resources.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Tombstone Tuesday: Carrie DeHart Sherman Bear

Carrie M. (nee DeHart) Sherman Bear

Carrie M. DeHart was my paternal grandmother's younger sister. Since my paternal grandparents had both passed away before I was born, Aunt Carrie stepped in and acted as sort of a surrogate grandmother to me as a young girl. She was a classic Pennsylvania Dutch farm woman and she was fluent in both PA German dialect and in English, although her English was heavily accented.

Carrie was twice widowed, first in 1921, then again in 1961. When she passed on in 1974, she was buried in St. John's Church Cemetery, Mt. Aetna, Berks County, Pennsylvania, between her two husbands. She shares a stone with husband #1, Herbert Sherman. Husband #2, Lewis Bear, lies immediately to her right with his own military stone marker.

Carrie and Husband #1, Herbert Sherman.

Carrie's husband #2, Lewis Bear, who lies immediately to the right of Carrie.

I miss you Aunt Carrie!