THE UNITED CHRISTIAN CHURCH OF MARIETTA
The following information was submitted by John Curtin
Taken from Heffernan, Kathryn C. Nine Mile Country. Published by Visual Artis Publicans, Inc. 1978. p. 194-195. Copyright by the Board of Trustees, Marcellus Free Library, Marcellus, NY
The United Christian Church of Marietta owes its origin to a group of about twenty women. In 1901 this group organized a Women's Aid Society and elected Mrs. Susie Rathbun as their president. Other members of the organization included Dixie Briggs, Hattie Jewell, Lena Burleton, Mrs. Tillie Burleton, Mrs. Julia Bruleton, Mrs. Liza Spencer, Mrs. Liza Spencer, Mrs. Olin Baker, Mrs. John Baker, Mrs. Nellie Amidon and Mrs. Elijah Baker.
For about thirty years prior to this time, religious services had been held in the community in various homes or barns, and even in a shoe shop. The ladies of the new society felt that there was need for a church in the little community and immediately went to work to meet the need. By means of socials, sales, suppers and the like, they managed to raise fifty dollars, with which they purchased a site from Eugene Baker, and seven hundred more dollars for the erection of a building.
In 1903, Wright Brothers of Marcellus built the little church on the corner of Sevier Road and the present Route 174. Reverend William M. Case, a divinity student from the Auburn Seminary, became the first pastor.
In 1906, a granite boulder from the nearby hill was moved to the churchyard, engraved and dedicated to all the men of the community, who had served in the armed forces.
For four decades the congregation depended on ministers from nearby communities, or on divinity students to conduct their services. Then in 1947, Reverend Cecil Olcott, who had become a resident of the community, became the first resident pastor. Up until that time, the congregation had been composed of any persons who wished to attend services. There was no official membership. Reverend Olcott organized a membership roll, and in April of 1951 the United Christian Church of Marietta was officially organized and duly incorporated.
Reverend Olcott was succeeded in 1961 by Reverend Claude Hine, who served the congregation until 1965. From then until 1969, there was no resident pastor. However, Reverend Olcott and Reverend Teall Spaulding filled in until Reverend Howard Parker came in 1969. Within a few weeks after his arrival, Reverend was electrocuted while doing some repair work on the church. Lay preachers and substitutes filled the pulpit until 1970 when Reverend Leon Sanborn, who had retired as pastor of the Robinson Memorial Church at Westvale, assumed the pastorate.
The Marietta Church is mission oriented. Seventy percent of its annual budget is contributed to missionary work both at home and overseas. Reverend Douglas Jewell, a member of the church, has been serving the missions in Africa since 1947.
Return to Onondaga County Church Records page.
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12 June 1997