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Ovid Center Baptist Church

"Manual of the Churches of Seneca County with sketches of their pastors, 1895-96", compiled and published by the Courier Printing Co., Seneca Falls, NY 1896.
      Ovid Center Baptist church had its beginning in 1827, when, on December 8, the Ovid Baptist conference was organized at the house of Mrs. Kezia Scott, in the town of Ovid. For some time those who thus organized themselves into a Baptist conference had been in the habit of meeting at the homes of some of their numbers for religious worship. The articles of faith and the covenant adopted by the conference at this meeting, while embodying the doctrines held by Baptist churches, were unique in phraseology, differing in this respect from those generally adopted by Baptist churches; and these same documents have continued (with the exception of one sentence) to serve the same purpose in the church to the present time. Abraham Bloomer and Hevelin Ward were elected deacons, and Joseph Dunlap was appointed permanent clerk.
      The member of this conference were recognized as a regular Baptist church by a council which met at the house of Mrs. Kezia Scott on the 19th of February, 1828. At the recognition service, Rev. John C. Holt of Romulus preached the sermon, Rev. Jacob Fisk of Lodi gave the hand of fellowship, and Rev. Peter R. Roberts gave the charge to the church. The infant church began its career with seventeen members, as follows: Edward Hodge, Abraham Bloomer, Sr., William Everett, Hevelin Ward, A. M. Williams, Joseph Dunlap, Kezia Scott, Betsey B. Rowley, Phoebe Grant, Phoebe Scott, Lucinda Lewis, Sarah Hodge, Agnes Dunlap, Abigail Newbury, Sarah Everett, Althea Fingley, Ann Sayre. The church became a member of the Geneva association at its meeting in Covert that same year.
      The first pastor of the church was Rev. Edward Hodge, who came to the church from the Farmer Village Church and gave to it the faithful labor of eight years. During his pastorate the church built a house of worship, 1830, and in 1832 Abraham Bloomer, Jr., and Joseph Dunlap were elected deacons, to serve during life or good behavior. These deacons were ordained by a council consisting of Revs. Brown of Romulus, Miller of Lodi, Woolsey of Farmer Village, Abbot of Trumansburg, and others. Mr. Hodge was succeeded by Rev. William G. Wisner in 1836, whose pastorate of four years was a most fruitful one, fifty-two believers being baptized into the fellowship of the church. In 1840, Rev. Lewis Ransted assumed the pastorate of the church, baptizing thirty-nine into its fellowship. The pioneer evangelist, Thomas Sheardown, aided him in a protracted meeting. The next pastor was Rev. Hiram B. Fuller who followed in the pastorate by Rev. Benjamin Warren in 1845, who remained three years. During his pastorate, in 1849, the present parsonage was purchased, five hundred dollars of the necessary amount being bequeathed for this purpose by Mrs. Kezia Scott, one of the constituent members of the church. Mr. Taylor was succeeded by Obed Montague who was known as a Baptist Boanerges. Rev. Charles A. Votey came in 1855 and found the church in good working order and a strong body of Christians.
      In 1856 and 1862 the church was blessed with revivals. During a pastorate of nine years, seventy-seven members were added by baptism. In 1857 the house of worship was repaired and enlarged. Rev. F. D. Fenner, followed in 1864, coming direct from Rochester Theological Seminary, and was ordained by the church, September 14th. After three and one-half years of labor he was followed by Rev. M. M. Evarts for two years, and he by Rev. N. B. H. Gardner, during whose two year's pastorate forty-two were baptized. Rev. A. W. Mettler then held the pastorate for two years. In 1874 Mr. Fenner was recalled to the pastorate and served four years longer. He is the only pastor recalled in the history of the church. Rev. Enos Perry then served the church less than two years, when Rev. A. J. Brown was called to the pastorate. He was ordained May 7, 1879, Rev. J. J. Phelps of Trumansburg preaching the ordination sermon. Mr. Brown was followed by Rev. Beardslee, who gave place to Rev. Edward Royce in 1884. After a quiet, but much appreciated pastorate of four years, Mr. Royce resigned, and was followed by Rev. O. J. Rose, who also served four years, and during whose pastorate a goodly number were added to the church.
      During the later years of the history of the church the losses by removals, deaths and other causes more than kept pace with the gains in membership, so that the body was continually losing in numerical and financial strength. A series of pulpit supplies followed the pastorate of Mr. Rose, who resigned in 1892. Some of these were helpful, but the hurtful and injurious were not absent, and the church on the whole lost ground until the coming of Rev. P. F. Ogden, May 1st, 1895. The present pastorate is not far enough advanced to determine its character or results, although the letter of the church to the Seneca Baptist Association, held in September 1895, speaks hopefully of the outlook. On the whole this church ahs done much for the community in which it is situated, but like most rural churches, it has been greatly weakened by natural causes.
      The present officer of the church are as follows: Pastor, P. F. Ogden; deacons, John Purcell, J. S. Bloomer, Joseph Dunlap Jr., Isaac Wyckoff; clerk and treasurer, Joseph Dunlap jr.; Sunday school superintendent, Rev. P. F. Ogden; trustees, Joseph Dunlap, Jr.; Marshal Allen, van Nest Brokaw, Theodore Dowars.

List of Members

Deacon John Purcell Mrs. Maria Graves Miss A. H. Starkweather
James Barry Miss Helen E. Barry Mrs. Grace S. Allen
Theodore Dowers Mrs. Hannah Boise Mrs. Eliza G. Wilson
John Lewis Mrs. Martha Schooley Mrs. Anna Bennett
Deacon Isaac Wyckoff Mrs. Mary E. Barry Mrs. Mary Ella Scott
Lewis Drake Mrs. Elizabeth Covert Mrs. Della N. Scott
Deacon J. L. Bloomer Mrs. Delia Harris Miss Carrie Stevens
James Covert Mrs. Eveline Ike Miss Jennie Crissie
William S. Parish Mrs. Augusta A. Jessup Mrs. Mary Lewis
George R. Compton Mrs. Rebecca P. Lewis Mrs. Mary J. Myers
Charles D. Dowers Mrs. Martha Drake Mrs. Edith W. Stewart
Augustus S. Parish Miss Emily F. Barry Mrs. Cora B. Brokaw
Arnold H. Huff Mrs. Mary E. Brewer Miss Eva Dimick
Deacon Joseph Dunlap Mrs. Francis E. Wiggins Miss Vida Dowers
Abram Wightman Mrs. Mary E. Travis Miss Artie Flagg
Erastus Mundy Mrs. Sophia A. Slocum Mrs. Serepta Smally
Edward Whiting Mrs. Emma A. Williams Mrs. H. Leonard
Andrew Dimick Miss Maria E. Morris Miss Laura Demund
Frederic D. Ditmars Mrs. Mary C. Flagg Mrs. Edna Leonard
Marshal Allen Mrs. Emily Hadley Mrs. Anna Smith
Omar H. Bennett Mrs. Eva Bloomer Mrs. Millie D. Lewis
George B. Scott Mrs. Susan ParishMrs. Nancy Demund
Hartwell Leonard Miss Almeda Bumpus Miss Susie Warne
Eber Woodard Mrs. Georgia B. Travis Mrs. Sarah K. Dunlap
Hiram Parish Mrs. Nancy H. VanSickle Mrs. Mary K. Parish
John Parish Mrs. Euphronia Dimick Mrs. Mae C. Wilson
Henry King Mrs. Ida A. Brooks Miss Anna Barry
Mrs. Elizabeth Dowers Mrs. Sarah A. Bloomer Miss Emma Barry
Mrs. Artemisia Bloomer Mrs. Elizabeth B. Dowers

Click here for a brief biography of Rev. P.F. Ogden.

Transcription provided by Rick White.
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