The Third Congregational Church of Middleborough

North Middleborough Congregational Church
Titicut Parish 38 Plymouth Street, North Middleborough, MA

View of present North Congregational Church of Middleborough (No.4), looking east from Titicut Parish Green.


Chronology of Events


May 25, 1743 Petition to General Court to become a distinct parish.

Feb. 25, 1744 The Titicut area became a distinct parish. This included part of Bridgewater to the 4 mile line.

1746 Praying Indian John Thomas gave 5 acres of land for a meeting house, burying place and training green. Two other Praying Indians gave 33 3/4 more acres to encourage the settlement of a Gospel Ministry. Land later used for the parsonage, Pratt Free School, etc. This seems to be a verbal gift.

April 3, 1747 Acquired the frame from another building and moved to the site of new church. This church was a barn-like structure with no spire, tower or bell and no heat.

Feb. 26, 1748 The church is first organized as a public meeting house.

Mar 31, 1748 Offices chosen from Bridgewater and Middleborough members. They voted to enclose and cover the frame of the church.

Apr 13, 1748 Members voted to hire Rev. Isaac Backus as their first pastor. He was ordained and as a "new light preacher" continued his evangelistic tours beyond his parish.

January 1749 First annual meeting officially held.

Aug 15, 1750
Signed deed to church by John Thomas and other two Indians.

June 27, 1754 Signed deeds taken to Plymouth and acknowledged.

1755 Finished outside of church building.

Jan 16, 1756 Rev. Backus and 6 members left the Congregational Church to form a Baptist Church nearby. Some members had become upset over the technique of baptism and the subject of immersion.

Oct 21, 1756
Pew spots were sold to obtain money to finish the church and to obtain a new pastor.

Jan 26, 1757 Rev. Solomon Reed starts his work as new pastor.

May 17, 1757 Deed to church land is finally recorded in Plymouth.

1808 New church building erected with a belfry and a bell, on location close to present site of church.

1817 First parsonage built. Stove not added until 1828.

1818
First Sunday School started.

1823 Bridgewater part of Titicut Parish was reunited with the town of Bridgewater.

1849
Ladies Benevolent Society was formed. Worked during 3 wars - Civil War, World War I and World War II.

Feb 28, 1852 Second church is destroyed by fire.

June 2, 1852 Third church building is erected.

1876
Watering trough and pump erected on Titicut Parish Green. This pump provided water for several homes and Pratt Free School.

March 15, 1893 Lightning storm - struck church and burned down third building.

April 19, 1894
Fourth church dedicated - this a more modern building. This new church is existing today.

May 10, 1900
North Middleborough Congregational Church is incorporated.

April 29 to May 4, 1948 Two hundredth anniversary of North Congregational Church.

March 5, 1962 Members voted to become a member of the United States Church of Christ. Today is known as: North Congregational Church - United Church of Christ - Middleborough, MA

June 14, 1987 Congregation adopts Constitution By-Laws of The North Congregational Church and Parish.

April 17, 1994 One hundredth anniversary of present church (1894-1994).

November 1, 1998
250th anniversary celebration of the North Congregational Church.

1900's From the Ladies Benevolent Society new church groups were formed during the early part of the 1900's, to make money for special church needs and expanding missionary projects. The New Era Club made quilts to sell for over 70 years. The Ladies Church Aid Society ran church suppers periodically to raise money. Other fund raisers included raffles, rummage and yard sales, and Titicut Parish fairs.

References:

Emery, S. Hopkins: 1876 The Congregational Church of North Middleborough, MA by Harlow & Thatcher, Steam Book and Job Printers.

Townsend, Charles D.: History of The Church of North Middleborough, MA. Reprinted by request of the Church and Congregation. Aceto Bookmen, Sarasota, Florida.

 

 

 

 

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Thank you to one of our local historians,
Bill Taylor of Middleborough for photo and story.