Niagara Gazette

Columns

December 30, 2013

HIGGS: Methodist beginnings in Niagara

Niagara Gazette — Pete Ames came to the rescue again as well as former pastor Calvin Babcock. Pete loaned me his copy of the 25th anniversary booklet of the St. Paul’s Methodist Church - 1788-1948, and Cal dropped off “a short history of St. Paul’s.” This church was next on the list of established congregations at the time the various villages merged and became the city of Niagara Falls in 1892. From these documents we will get a look at early religious life in our city.

Back in 1788, Methodist missionaries held preaching services throughout the Niagara area. As many as 77 Methodist preachers traveled the local circuit. Some held meetings in private homes. Following the War of 1812, when things settled down in 1815 the first two Methodist Societies were started in Manchester (now Niagara Falls) in what is believed to be in the parlor of a private home and in Olcott.

The Holland Land Company holds the record of the first existence of this church organization by deeding to the Methodists 100 acres of land on what is now Lockport Street which was in the Town of Niagara at the time.

The first building was purchased in 1824 and was used as a preaching center. It was located where the former Gorge Terminal Building was built on Falls Street in later years. It was known as the Union Chapel and later as the Methodist Chapel. The society met there for 25 years and the first Sunday School was organized in 1839 with 78 pupils and 11 teachers. The Rev. John Cannon (1835) was the first regular pastor of he church. One of the preachers during 1839 in Union Chapel was the Rev. Ebenezer Cleveland Sanborn.

Rev. Sanborn was married to Almira Smith and they had six children. After Almira died he married Elizabeth “Betsy” Randall, one of 10 children of Methodist Minister, the Rev. Stephen Randall and Mary “Molly” Rice Randall. He and Molly had two children, Lee Randall Sanborn and Francis Emery Sanborn, and they settled in Lewiston. Lee Randall Sanborn was the postmaster of South Pekin which he succeeded in renaming to “Sanborn” in honor of his father.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Columns
  • NIA Confer, Bob mug CONFER: A constitutional convention is not the answer For the past few years it has been popular for folks of the right persuasion (Republicans and neoconservatives) to call for a constitutional convention ("Con-Con") in hopes of passing a balanced budget amendment (BBA.) A lot of people have jumped on that bandwagon; no doubt your email inbox or Facebook news feeds have shown that.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • NIA Scheer, Mark mug CITY DESK: Hobel will be missed

    Lost in all the hoopla surrounding last week’s announced retirement of state Sen. George Maziarz, R-Newfane, was the loss of another well-known figure in local government and politics.

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • NIA Higgs, Norma mug HIGGS: More pastors, a new church and more of everything Before I go further back in time, I want to just go back to last week where I took my own advice and spent a couple of hours at the Como, where I enjoyed one of their traditional "parade of bowls and plates of great salads, pasta and meat dishes" and listened to longtime friends of Tom Darro roast him with humor, accolades and best wishes. And best of all no one who came to the microphone mentioned garbage totes or carts. It was a welcome relief.

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • NIA Glynn, Don mug GLYNN: Border Patrol chief examines deadly acts A former Buffalo police chief now has the formidable task of reviewing cases where border agents have used deadly force.

    July 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • SINGER: Nostalgia for nostalgia: Where will it end? Not only has there been a huge nostalgia boom in America, but we're now getting to the point where there's much nostalgia for nostalgia! Maybe signifying that nostalgia will wear itself out, or, as in the old adage, that it ain't what it used to be?

    July 20, 2014

  • NIA Smith, Doug and Polly LETTERS FROM THE ISLAND: Driven to distraction by recent incidents For reasons best left unexplained, Doug drives home from Niagara Falls at twilight many nights, usually alone. It's about 10 miles, 15 minutes, from pressbox to driveway. He exits I-190 at the Beaver Island ramp, hugging its right edge in deference to any mainstream traffic, which would be coming downhill from the left at a 140-degree angle.

    July 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • NIA Hamilton, Ken mug HAMILTON: Council, administrative hypocrisy, and that is the gospel truth If there isn't a walk-on resolution on the Niagara Falls City Council's upcoming last agenda before the August recess to change the zoning back to what it was prior to the South End Niagara Gospel Rescue Mission opening its hearts and doors, then the city council should just cease its hypocritical practice of even saying prayers before the meeting.

    July 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • NIA Glynn, Don mug 071714 GLYNN: Hochul retains a low profile as running mate If you're still not convinced that politics makes strange bedfellows, consider the report claiming Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo has been keeping his running mate out of the spotlight.

    July 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • NIA DeLuca, Michele mug DELUCA: Chiropractic doc wants to help area vets

    The idea came to her when she was running a half-marathon in June. Kristin Jacobsen is that type of person. The Pine Avenue chiropractor says she gets her best ideas when she runs. She also uses that time to pray.

    July 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • NIA Bradberry, Bill mug BRADBERRY: Really good summer reading, still great after all these years I am always impressed by the power of the pen, or, in today's parlance; the keyboard. Words can bring joy; they can also bring sorrow; they can bring life, they can be deadly, and they can bring justice which can often deliver neither joy nor sorrow.

    July 16, 2014 1 Photo

Featured Ads
House Ads
AP Video
Raw: Lawmakers Scuffle in Ukraine's Parliament The Rock Finds His Inner 'Hercules' Michigan Plant's Goal: Flower and Die Raw: MH17 Passenger Remains in Kharkiv, Ukraine Raw: Israel Hits Gaza Targets, Destroys Mosques ShowBiz Minute: Hoffman, Oberst, Box Office WWII Vet Gets Medals, 70 Years Late Raw: Israel Bombs Multiple Targets in Gaza Veteran Creates Job During High Unemployment Raw: Cargo Craft Undocks From Space Station Widow: Jury Sent Big Tobacco a $23B Message New Orleans Plans to Recycle Cigarette Butts UN Security Council Calls for MH 17 Crash Probe Obama Bestows Medal of Honor on NH Veteran Texas Sending National Guard Troops to Border Hopkins to Pay $190M After Pelvic Exams Taped Foxx Cites Washington 'Circus Mirror' NASA Ceremony Honors Moon Walker Neil Armstrong
Opinion
House Ads
Night & Day
Twitter News
Follow us on twitter
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Front page