Catskill, New York
1803 – 1953
pamphlet located at the Vedder Library. Transcribed by Arlene Goodwin.
our heritage and to recognize present leaders this booklet is presented.
By order of
Deut. 32:7 Ps. 78:4
SESQUICENTENNIAL HIGHLIGHTSJan. 3—Birthday Calendars distributed, a project of the Dorcas and Andrew Society.
During the year, from time to time, historical facts were printed in the weekly bulletin.
(Note: written in margin, George Bagley 26 Jan 1964)
Some Historical Highlights 1803-1953
1803, February 7—Incorporation document signed by 102 people. Rev. David Porter’s initial salary was $350.00 plus $50.00 raised by subscription. Was permitted to train young men for college.
1803-1809—Services were held in local academy or Court House—now the Masonic Temple.
1808—“Meeting House” was a simple boxlike structure. Remained unchanged until 1853.
1810—Ruth Croswell (Mrs. Dr. Thomas Crowell) started a female prayer meeting. This makes our Missionary Society the oldest continuous women’s organization in the denomination. Mrs. Crowell predated the first Temperance Society by persuading Catskill ladies to refrain from serving intoxicating cordials at afternoon teas.
1812—Christ’s Church, Catskill, was admitted to Presbyterian fold by Columbia Presbytery.
1820—First annual public auction of pews netted $317.03.
1826—Chapel (Lecture Room) erected for Sabbath School and other religious services.
1828—First Sabbath School Records. Thirteen men teachers.
1831—Ninety-four confessed Christ as their Saviour.
1841—Session voted $1.00 a week to pay in full for care of mother-less child.
1853—Congregation raised $2,500.00 to repair church edifice. Other repairs in 1875, 1893,1901,1937,1940.
1864—Pipe organ presented by Miss Caroline Day. Organ was placed in rear of sanctuary.
1869---70—Extensive repairs—alterations and enlargements of church building. ($15,000) Transept. Porch and six white pillars added.
1891—Dr. J. Wilbur Chapman conducted a series of meetings. Forty-nine accessions. Manse on Liberty Street purchased from Miss H. L. Beattie. Formerly occupied by Sisters of St. Patrick’s Academy.
1892—Sunday School enrollment 264.
1896—Fire in Church Basement. Building saved by prompt action of fireman.
1897—Miss Helen Mackey gave present pipe organ in memory of her parents. First organ still functioning in Durham.
1902-03—Centennial Celebration—ten services in one week. Interior of Church attained it s present form. Opalescent windows. Baptismal font, communion table give by relatives of Dr. Porter and Dr. Howard.
1918—First box of gifts sent to Maude Ballington Boothe to be used by her for Christmas gifts for prisoners’ children. Annual “White Gift Service” still sends presents to V. A. P. L.
1939—Young Adult Group organized. Raised $500.00 for China relief.
1941—Complete renovation of chapel. Cost $10,000.
1949, June—Christ’s Church entertained Rev. and Mrs. Albert B. Newport of Philadelphia, Pa. Prior to their sailing to Thailand, to serve as our ambassadors for Christ in a foreign land.
1950—Young Adult Group assumed the name of Dorcas and Andrew Society. Community Daily Vacation Bible School held. Continued in 1951,1952,1953.
1952—Rev. Wilbur A. Siddons installed as ninth pastor. PYPS. (Presbyterian Young People’s Society) formed. Lamplighters (a young adult group) formed.
Sun., June 16—New Manse on Day Street and sound recording equipment dedicated. In after noon, congregation attended an “Open House” at the Manse, 44 Day Street.
DAVID PORTER (1803-1831). Born May 17, 1761, at Hebron, Connecticut. He was a graduate of Dartmouth College and taught there for two and a half years before going to Spencertown, New York, as pastor. He spent his remaining years in Catskill and died in 1851.
His theology was “high, deep and strong.” His patriotism was outstanding; and he helped to hold the young community and the younger congregation. Greatly beloved by his people, he had an uncanny ability to open purses. He was instrumental in the salvation of many souls.
THOMAS M. SMITH (1831-1839). Born March 7, 1787 at Stamford, Connecticut, son of a Congregational minister. He was graduated from Yale College and Andover Theological Seminary. He held charges in Fall River and New Bedford before coming to Catskill. In 1845 he entered the Episcopal ministry, taught “Systematic Divinity” in the Episcopal theological Seminary, and later was president of Kenyon (Ohio) College. He died in 1864 in Portland, Maine.
GIDEON N. JUDD (1840-1849). Born in 1787 in Danbury, Connecticut. While still young his family moved to Cairo, New York where young Gideon sat under Dr. Porters preaching. Later be became a pupil and life-long friend of Dr. Porter.
He graduated for Union College and Princeton Theological Seminary; and he served as pastor of Montrose, Pa., and Bloomfield, N. J. before coming to Catskill. His last pastorate was in Montgomery, New York. Of Mr. Judd, it is recorded; “He was respected by all, by many greatly loved, . . . A sermon even as he walked through the streets . . . Ernest, faithful, devout, a great doctrinal preacher.”
GEROGE ALVIN HOWARD (1850-1890). Was graduated from New York University and Andover Theological Seminary. Catskill was his only charge although calls from several larger parishes were extend to him. After April, 1890, he served as pastor emeritus. He was alert and vigorous, often gave book review, travel talks or lectures. (he spent the summer of 1891 in Europe). He delivered 143 sermons or lectures in the fortnight preceding his death.
“Dr. Howard had a genial, magnetic personally, rich social instincts and the ability to make and hold friends. He was strong in his convictions of truth and averse to controversy.” The center of his life was Christ.
GEROGE CHRISTOPHER HAZARD (1891-1919). Born May 9, 1853 at Newport, Rhode Island. H left a profitable mercantile career to study theology. He was licensed to preach by the Congregationalists and held pastorates in Hancock, Brunswick and Schagticoke, New York. Upon receiving a call to Catskill on December 25, 1890 he said, “It’s the best Christmas present I ever had.” He received the honorary degree D. D. from Rutgers in 1907 and that same year was a summer pastor in The Hague, Netherlands. He as pastor emeritus in Catskill by whose citizen he was revered and loved.
JAMES FORSYTHE RIGGS (1919-1924). He is a descendent of a long line of clergymen and missionaries, and was graduated from Princeton University and Princeton Theological Seminary. He served as assistant pastor at the Lafayette Presbyterian Church in Brooklyn before coming to Catskill. His pastorate here was short, but characterized by many worthwhile activities. Among them were neighborhood prayer groups, communicants, classes, Westminster Girl’s Circle, Daily Vacation Bible School, union services, and the inauguration of the every member canvass.
Mr. Riggs gave many years of valiant service after leaving Catskill. In 1929 he became a member of the Board of National Missions, later was the director of the Department of Education and Publicity, secretary of the Youth Budget Plan, editor of the Presbyterian Plan Book, and a member of the General Council of the General Assembly.
Although Dr. Riggs retired in 1952 he is very active in serving the Presbytery of Rochester in many different ways.
ANDREW HANSEN (1924-1947). Was graduated from Rutgers Preparatory School, Rutgers College with both B. A. and M. A. degrees, and New Brunswick Theological Seminary. He mad two trips to Europe. Before coming to Catskill he served parishes of the Reformed Church at Millstone, N. J. and Albany, N. Y. A great lover of mountains and gardens, extremely fond of writing. Intensely interested in the historical, Mr. Hansen emanated this love in his many anniversary observances of Christ’s Church with historical sermons. He served in a Presbyterian Church in Gloversville from 1947 to 1954 and now is pastor in the Reformed Churches at Mt. Marion and High Woods, N. Y.
From resolutions passed by the congregation of our church; “We have enjoyed and profited by his wide study of the Scriptures . . . He has been one with us in our joys an din our sorrows and his concern has ever been for the welfare of Christ’s Church and its people. His desire has ever been to exalt the name and cause of Christ.”
FREDERICK W. EVANS, JR. (1984?-1951) Was graduated from Wooster (Ohio) College and Princeton Theological Seminary. Ordained by the Presbytery of Troy, this son of a former Moderator of our General Assembly came to Catskill as his first charge.
Mr. Evans is at his best in the pulpit. He is earnest, devout, eloquent, and able to effectively quote lengthy passages from the Scriptures. He is intensely interested in missions; and under his guidance Christ’s Church assumed a large portion of financial support of the Newports, missionaries to Thailand. From Catskill Mr. Evans went to pastor the Bedford-Central Presbyterian Church of Brooklyn.
WILBUR A. R. SIDDON, (1952- ). Our present pastor brings to Catskill a life characterized by broad study and wide experiences which include business training, graduation from the Moody Bible Institute, Wheaton (Ill.) College, and Gordon Divinity School (Boston), and in addition, studies at four other higher institutions, including Harvard Divinity School and Boston University. Although ordained a Baptist, he served the Woodbury Union Presbyterian Church of Warwick, R. I., and the First Presbyterian Church of Lynn, Mass. before coming to Catskill.
His two years in Catskill have been years of unremitting labor for Christ’s kingdom. Due to him our organizations are presenting a more business-like air; and his work with audio-visual aids has been an uplift to both Presbytery and our local congregation. His teaching and Biblical instruction have brought new and rich insight to many.
Wilbur A. R. Siddons
Howard E. Muller………………………Clerk
Herman C. C. Cumming, Sr……………..Financial Secretary
Robert S. Smith ..………………………Church Treasurer
Francis A. Ruf…………………………..Benevolence Treasurer
Sanford C. Eastgate……………………..President, Board of Trustees
Arthur S. Conklin……………………….Secretary, Board of Trustees
Carrie I. Person…………………………Organist
Adeline V. Muller………………………Choir Director
Clarence R. Warrington…………………Sexton
Anastas G. Augustine
Charles A. W. Beach Herman C. C. Cumming, Sr.
Percy W. Decker Arthur W. DuMond
Willis P. Goldin Ada L. Eastgate
Sanford C. Eastgate Howard W. Hawthorne
Howard E. Muller Jessica R. Hooker
Harold H. Niekamp, Sr. George A. Smith, Sr.
William M. Rapp Lewis C Sopris
Francis A. Ruf Elbert J. Teetsel
Minchen Rusack Clarence R. Warrington, Sr.
Trustees Ushers Committee
John L. Carl
Arthur S. Conklin Charles A. W. Beach
Percy W. Decker Evan H. Boardman
Sanford C. Eastgate John L. Carl
Willis P. Goldin George R. Clapper
Robert B. Smith John R. Clapper
Arthur S. Conklin
Herman C. C. Cumming, Sr
Endowment Fund Committee
Sanford C. Eastgate
Charles A. W. Beach Harold H. Niekamp, Sr.
Willis P. Goldin Robert B. Smith
Howard E. Muller Lewis C. Sopris
Robert S. Smith Elbert J. Teetsel
George A. Smith, Sr.
Jessie L. Bouton
Herman C. Cumming, Sr.
Robert V. Warrin
Francis A. Ruf, superintendent
Patricia A. Felter, secretary
Arthur W. DuMond, Treasurer
Department Officer and Teachers
Mary Ellen Smith Edith M. Luce
Alice D. Ruf
Beginners: M. Elizabeth Siddons
Eleanor J. Beach
Dorothy E. Johnson Intermediates:
Grace Decker Lola K. Conklin
Lewis C. Sopris
Lorraine Carl Seniors:
Mafalda M. J. Cardinale Adeline V. Muller
Anita F. Teetsel
Constance Collins Adults:
Anastas G. Augustine
Wilbur A. R. Siddons
Women’s Missionary Society
Mafalda M. J. Cardinale, pres. Lola K. Conklin, president
Emma Marlor, vice-pres. Ada L. Eastgate, vice-pres.
Grace Decker, secretary Allene Moore, secretary
Alice Bloom, Treasurer Frances M. Jones, treas.
Dorcas and Andrew Society The Lamplighters
Iva Cammer, president Arthur W. DuMond, president
Pearl Kutscher, vice-pres. Malfalda M. Cardinale, vice-pres.
Clarence R. Warrington, sec. Anita R. Teetsel, secretary
Arthur S. Conklin, treasurer Virginia L. Fuller, treasurer
P Y P S
(Presbyterian Young People’s Soc.) Forget-one-not Mission Band
Alice D. Ruf, advisor Edith M. Luce, director
Wilbur A. R. Siddons, advisor Lola K. Conklin, leader
Alan F. Ruf, president Jessica R. Hooker, leader
Virginia Rivenburgh, vice-pres. Lorraine Carl, leader
Julia F. Ruf, secretary Allene Moore, leader
Joan Auston, treasurer
Senior Choir Junior Choir
Howard W. Hawthorne, pres. Linda L. Kutscher, president
Dorothy E. Johnson, secretary Karol E. Fuller, vice-pres.
Grace Decker, treasurer Grace J. Cardinale, secretary
Shirley Pollock, reporter Mary Belle Smith, treasurer
Thalia Augustine, reporter
Membership Roll -- January 1, 1954
1. Anable, Barbara A. (Miss)
2. Augustine, Anasta G. (Dr.)
3. Austin, Walter A.
4. Austin, Belle (Mrs. Walter )
5. Austin, Joan T. (Miss)
6. Ballard, George L.
7. Ballard, (Hilda Mrs. George)
8. Barker, Sarah (Mrs.)
9. Barringer, Frederick
10. Barringer, Mary (Mrs. Fred.)
11. Beach, Charles A. W.
12. Beach, Eleanor (Mrs. Chas.)
13. Beach, Leone T. (Mrs.)
14. Beare, Elsie (Mrs. Roland)
15. Bell, Helen G. (Mrs.)
16. Betts, Clara W. (Miss)
17. Blackett, Charles W.
18. Blackett, Ruth (Mrs. Charles)
19. Bloom, Clarence O.
20. Bloom, Marcus
21. Bloom, Alice J. (Miss)
22. Boardman, Evan H.
23. Boardman, Marion (Mrs. Evan H.)
24. Bogardus, Edith (Mrs. Evan H.)
25. Boice, Elizabeth (Mrs. Lester)
26. Bostwick, Frances (Mrs. Arthur)
27. Bouton, Jessie L. (Miss)
28. Brandow, Walter V.
29. Brink, Beatrice (Mrs.)
30. Britt, Chauncey
31. Britt, Marion (Mrs. Chauncey)
32. Brooks, Karolyn (Mrs.)
33. Brooks, Lou E. (Miss)
34. Cammer, Iva E. (Miss)
35. Cardinale, Mafalda (Mrs. Rocco)
36. Carhart, Elizabeth (Mrs.)
37. Carl, John L.
38. Carl, Dorothy (Mrs. John L.)
39. Carl, Lorraine (Miss)
40. Carl, Pearl J. (Miss)
41. Carl, Mary Lou (Miss)
42. Carl, William
43. Carl, Lillian (Mrs. Wm.)
44. Castle, Helen (Mrs. Wm.)
45. Chase, Alma (Mrs. Albert W.)
46. Clapper, George R.
47. Clapper, Vivian (Mrs. Geo.)
48. Clapper, John F.
49. Clapper, John R.
50. Clapper, Vera F. (Mrs. John R.)
51. Conine, Mazie (Mrs. George)
52. Conklin, Arthur S.
53. Conklin, Lola (Mrs. Arthur)
54. Cowen, Agnes (Mrs.)
55. Craig, John R.
56. Craig, William J.
57. Craig, Ellen (Mrs. Wm. J. )
58. Crook, C Lauren
59. Crook, Allene (Mrs. C. Lauren)
60. Cumming, Herman C. C.
61. Cumming, Mildred (Mrs. Herman)
62. Cumming, Herman C. C. Jr.
63. Dean, Marjorie E. (Miss)
64. Deane, George A.
65. Deane, Harriet (Mrs. George A.)
66. Decker, Grace (Mrs.)
67. Decker, Percy W.
68. Decker, Jessamine (Mrs. Percy)
69. DeNyse, Hannah (Mrs.)
70. Driscoll, Carrie (Miss)
71. Driscoll, Louise D. (Miss)
72. DuMond, Arthur D.
73. DuMond, Ethel M. (Miss)
74. DuMond, Mae (Miss)
75. Eastgate, Duane C.
76. Eastgate, Sanford
77. Eastgate, Ada L. (Mrs. Sanford)
78. Ernst, Robert F.
79. Ernst, June (Mrs. Robert)
80. Federal, Julia (Mrs. Arthur)
81. Felter, Elizabeth (Mrs. Abram)
82. Felter, Kathryne M. (Miss)
83. Felter, Patricia A. (Miss)
84. Florek, Arbeatrice (Mrs. Stan.)
85. Freese, Elizabeth W. (Mrs.)
86. Fuller, Virginia (Mrs. William)
87. Garis, William H.
88. Gildrie, Hazel, (Mrs. Gilbert)
89. Gill, Clara (Mrs.)
90. Gilmour, Gladys
91. Goldin, Willis P.
92. Gordon, Eugenia S. (Miss)
93. Gordon, Ida (Mrs.)
94. Hartman, Donald S.
95. Hawthorne, Howard W.
96. Hawthorne, Clarese (Mrs. H. W.)
97. Hines, Maude (Mrs. Stephen)
98. Hooker, Jessica (Mrs.)
99. Hull, Frances G. (Miss)
100. Hunt, Mabel (Mrs.)
101. Jennings, Ellen (Mrs.)
102. Johnson, Dorothy (Mrs. Don)
103. Johnston, Mary E. (Mrs.)
104. Johnston, Lois S. (Miss)
105. Jones, Frances M. (Miss)
106. Jones, Nellie L. (Miss)
107. Klepser, F. Jacob
108. Knapp, Frank E. G.
109. Knapp, Theresa (Mrs.)
110. Kortz, Anna E. (Miss)
111. Kortz, Emily I. (Miss)
112. Kortz, Mary M. (Miss)
113. Krebbs, Wilda (Mrs. Paul)
114. Kutscher, Irving L.
115. Kutscher, Pearl (Mrs. Irving)
116. Kutscher, Phyllis M. (Miss)
117. Lampman, Edwin
118. Lampman, Eudora (Miss)
119. Lasher, Charlotte (Mrs.)
120. Leonard, Mary (Mrs. James)
121. Luce, Edith M. (Miss)
122. Lydecker, Lizzie M. (Miss)
123. MacNeill, Clara B. (Mrs.)
124. Marlor, Emma (Mrs.)
125. Marquoit, Leslie
126. Martin, Ella L. (Mrs.)
127. May, Orrie B. (Mrs.)
128. Mellen, Sheridan W.
129. Moore, Alliene R. (Mrs.)
130. Moore, Virginia (Miss)
131. Moore, Honor (Mrs. Robert)
132. Morris, Emma H. (Mrs.)
133. Morrison, John R.
134. Morrison, Alma (Mrs. John R.)
135. Morrison, Paul R.
136. Morrison, Gertrude (Mrs. Paul)
137. Muller, Frederick J.
138. Muller, Howard E.
139. Muller, Adeline (Mrs. Howard)
140. Myers, Frank
141. Nichols, Esther (Mrs. Henry)
142. Niekamp, Harold
143. Niekamp, Greta (Mrs. Harold)
144. Notarnicola, Edna (Mrs. Harry)
145. O’Bryon, Jennie K. (Mrs.)
146. O’Bryon, Raymond H.
147. O’Bryon, Marie (Mrs. Raymond)
148. Ormerod, Sarah (Mrs. John, Jr.)
149. Ostrander, Lawrence
150. Ostrander, Alice O. (Mrs. L.)
151. Overbaugh, Willis P.
152. Overbaugh, Ruth (Mrs. Willis)
153. Palmer, Evelyn (Mrs. Wm)
154. Peters, Edna (Miss)
155. Peters, Mildred (Miss)
156. Phinney, Margaret (Mrs. Chet.)
157. Place, Orena M. (Miss)
158. Pollock, John
159. Pollock, Shirley (Mrs. John)
160. Pousont, Minnie (Miss)
161. Pousont, Minnie (Miss)
162. Prince, Barbara (Mrs. Floyd)
163. Rapp, William M. (Dr.)
164. Reay, John W.
165. Reich, Julia (Mrs.)
166. Renne, Helen (Mrs. Arthur)
167. Reynolds, Fannie D. (Mrs.)
168. Rice, Emma (Mrs.)
169. Richmond, Leon J.
170. Richmond, Beulah (Mrs.)
171. Rivenburg, Virginia (Miss)
172. Roe, Pearl I. (Mrs.)
173. Root, Edith G. (Miss)
174. Root, Mabel V. (Miss)
175. Ruf, Francis A.
176. Ruf. Alice (Mrs. Francis A.)
177. Rusack, Minchen (Miss)
178. Russak, Frieda (Mrs.)
179. Sack, Doris (Mrs. Wm. L.)
180. Sauer, Dorothy (Mrs. Harold)
181. Shanks, Caroline L. (Mrs.)
182. Sherman, Elizabeth (Mrs.)
183. Sherman, Wendell S.
184. Shufelt, William J.
185. Shufelt, Agnes (Mrs. Wm. J.)
186. Shufelt, William J., Jr.
187. Siddons, M. Elizabeth (Mrs. W.)
188. Smith, Carrie C. (Mrs.)
189. Smith, George A.
190. Smith, Victoria (Mrs. Geo. A.)
191. Smith, George A. Jr.
192. Smith, Lester R.
193. Smith, Robert B.
194. Smith, Mary Ellen (Mrs. Robert)
195. Soffel, Lena (Mrs. Charles)
196. Somerville, Mabel (Mrs.)
197. Sopris, Lewis
198. Sopris, Betty (Mrs. Lewis)
199. Stanley, S. Kathleen (Miss)
200. Steenburn, Floyd L.
201. Steenburn, Ruth (Mrs. Floyd)
202. Steenburn, Donna Lou (Miss)
203. Steenburn, Dorothy L. (Miss)
204. Steenburn, Harold E.
205. Steenburn, Anna (Mrs. Harold)
206. Taylor, LeRoy
207. Taylor, Mildred (Mrs. LeRoy)
208, Teetsel, Elbert J.
209. Teetsel, Anita (Mrs. Elbert)
210. Thuresson, Raymond C.
211. Thuresson, Lillian (Mrs. Ray)
212. Timmerman, Mary C. (Miss)
213. Timmerman, Mary C. (Miss)
214. Torchia, Pasquale
215. Torchia, Myrtle (Mrs. Pasquale)
216. Truesdell, William T.
217. VanDeusen, Janet (Mrs. Elisha)
218. VanLoan, Louis J.
219. Warrin, Robert V.
220. Warrin, Ione (Mrs. Robert)
221. Warrington, Clarence R.
222. Warrington, Susan (Mrs. C. R.)
223. Warrington, Clarence R., Jr.
224. Werksman, Leona E. (Mrs.)
225. Wheeler, Olive (Mrs. Frank)
226. Whitney, Mary V. M. (Mrs.)
227. Winnie, Frances G. (Miss)
228. Young, Elsie (Mrs.)
229. Ziegler, Eliza (Mrs.)
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