The Willington Baptist Church was organized on December 18, 1828 and the Baptist Meeting House was completed the following year. Albert Sharp, a local carpenter, was the builder. Members of an earlier Baptist church, established in the north part of town, joined the congregation of the new church. A conference room and Sunday school room were added to the building in 1842. Willington’s Baptist and Congregational Churches merged in 1911 to form the Federated Church of Willington. The federated congregation built the Clara Hall Elliott Memorial Church that same year and sold the old Congregational church building to the town in 1924. The Federated Church holds services in two buildings, from late September to Easter Sunday in the Hall Memorial Church and in the summer at the former Baptist Meeting House, now called the Hill Church.
The house at 99 Main Street in the Warehouse Point section of East Windsor was built c. 1810-1830. According to the 1869 Baker & Tilden atlas of Hartford County, the house at that time belonged to B. Sexton. Bezaleel Sexton (1811-1891) was president of the East Windsor Woolen Company. In 1860 he had a patent for “Improvement in Machinery for Drying Cloth.” In 1836 he married Elizabeth Phelps. Their son, Thomas Bezaleel Sexton, Trinity College Class of 1860, later owned a ranch in Sonora, Mexico.
The first meetinghouse of Bethany’s Congregational Church was erected between 1769 and 1773. It stood on Meetinghouse Hill on what is now Dayton Road. In 1831, the building was dismantled and material from it was used in the construction of the current Congregational Church, located at 511 Amity Road. The new church was designed by Ira Atwater and it is said that architect David Hoadley sat on the advisory committee. Among various alterations over the years, in 1866 the front portico was enclosed to enlarge the vestibule and in 1931 the church was moved back several feet to accommodate the widening of Amity Road.
A section of the former W. L. Wellwood General Store at 1140 Main Street in Coventry dates to 1787, making it one of the oldest general store buildings in the nation. In 1820, the large Greek Revival portion was added to the original store and living quarters, which also attach to a later Italianate residence to the northeast. Another addition, containing the west wing grain room and butcher shop, was added in 1883. The Loomis family owned the store from about 1810 until 1881. After 1905 it was owned and operated by the Wellwood family. In 1974 the building went from housing a general store to becoming an antiques shop. It has more recently been the “Coventry Country Store” (as in the image above) and is currently “Coventry Arts & Antiques.”
The parsonage (minister’s residence) for the North Stonington Congregational Church, located at 91 Main Street, was built c. 1851-1853. Ministers regularly resided in the Parsonage until 1983, when the church, for the first time, permitted the then minister to purchase his own home (see “Parsonage; A Home of His Own Doesn’t Mean Abandoning His Flock,” The Day, October 17, 1983). Read the rest of this entry »