Tri County Clippings- Troy Gazette Register 1901 - Yesterday's News
|These clippings from ancient
and fragile newspapers stored above the Troy Gazette-Register office are
being typed by Tri-County volunteers for presentation on site. Primarily
we are preserving the neighborhood news columns and the obituary, marriage
and birth information included in them. I intend also to include articles
that show the influences on the lives and attitudes of our local populations
at the time, and I will also illustrate the individual pages with ads from
the era. Nothing is more revealing of lifestyle than the goods and services
The TGR covers the area of all townships surrounding Troy and many neighborhoods have a local column submitted, but not necessarily every week or even every year.
Our thanks goes to the staff of the Troy Gazette-Register for giving us access to this valuable old news so that we can share it with you. There is no better way to understand the culture and customs of our old communities than by sifting through these clippings. Even the names of some of these old communities have ceased to exist in today's world, but we have them captured and preserved here. If you do not have the time to enjoy the luxury of sifting through clippings, these will be included in the Partitioned PICO Search Engine which you can reach from current What's New Page of the site. There is a partition just for the TGR Clippings.
As the early settlers of this country were for the most part from New England, they brought with them many of their New England habits, and their social, political and religious ideas; and as Congregationalism was the predominant religion in New England, so for may years it was in Bradford County. With but a single exception, the old churches in this county which are now Presbyterian were first organized as Congregationalist.
The Pedobatist Congregational church of East Smithfield was organized
in Poultney, Vt., Feb. 11, 1801, by Rev. Elijah Norton and Rev. Lemuel
Haynes, the celebrated colored preacher. The church consisted of
Solomon Morse, Samuel Kellogg, Esq., and Nathan Fellows. They chose
Samuel Kellogg their moderator, and were commended to the grace of God.
Their articles of faith were penned by Mr. Haynes. They immediately
started for the “far West,” arriving the same month in what is now East
The first record of the church, dated May 16, 1801, is the record of the baptism of Jemima Almira, daughter of Solomon Morse, Rev. James Thomson officiating. The first business meeting was Aug. 16, 1801, when Sarah Kellogg and Gemimia Morse were received into the church on profession of faith.
In 1802, Rev. James Wood under the Connecticut Congregational missionary society, preached the first sermon and administered the first communion to the church in a log school house which stood near the foot of what is now called Mitchell’s hill. The communion table was a large plank, split from a log with a beetle and wedges and hewed with a broad-axe, the table legs were sticks driven into the auger holes in the plank. The wine used was the non-fermented juice of wild grapes tempered with water and maple sugar. It was a season of great enjoyment to the little church.
The next church meeting on record is dated May, 1803; then Anna Fellows was received by letter, and Rufus Baldwin on examination; and Sept. 28, following, Thomas Barrow, Eunice Barrows, and Mary Needham were received on examination. No other record of a church meeting is found till Oct. 7, 1807. At this meeting Ruth Pierce was received by letter, and the following record is made; “Agreed to set up a meeting every fourth week. Attest” Solomon Morse, moderator.” This meeting was for public worship.
The Luzerne association was founded in 1810, and the church, consisting
then of 18 members, joined in 1811.
In 1811, a house of worship was erected on the ground where the present one stands, a small building, built at a great sacrifice, and for 20 years it remained without regular seats. It was the first house of worship erected in this part of Pennsylvania. For years it was the only one in East Smithfield. It was free for the use of other denominations when not used by themselves. This continued to be the house of worship of the society until the year 1861.
From 1814 to 1817, the church had its first regular pastor, Rev.
John Bascom. Up to this time 44 members had been received, and no
record had been made of death or removal. The church not being able
to support its pastor, he was dismissed and for a series of years the pulpit
was irregularly supplied.
In 1817, the Luzerne association took the name of the Susquehanna presbytery, and the Congregational churches entered into a “Plan of Union.” In 1837, when this plan was abolished, the church of Smithfield continued to retain its Congregational form. From 1817 to 1831 the records of the church are defective. In 1831, Rev. William Franklin became pastor of the church, and continued until after his death, in 1834. In 1835, Stephen Sargent supplied the pulpit a short time. In 1836, Rev. S. M. McClung was employed, and Rev. John Moule served in 1893. Rev. C. C. Corss was the preacher one half the time during 1838, and in 1840 one fourth the time; from January, 1841 to 1847, one half the time; and from 1847 to 1869 the church employed his entire time. In 1870, Rev. Cyrus Offer was employed about a year. March 11, 1871, Rev. J. H. Nason commenced preaching for the church, and continued to be its pastor till March 26, 1876. –Towanda Review.