An Episcopal Society comprising Branford, Guilford and New Haven was established in 1748, but it was not until 1784 that Episcopalians in Branford legally organized Trinity Parish and erected a church, completed in 1786. This original church, a wooden structure without a steeple, was used until a new church was constructed just southeast of the old one. The cornerstone was laid in April 1851 and the church was consecrated by Bishop Brownell on January 27, 1852. Trinity Episcopal Church was designed in the English Gothic style by Sidney Mason Stone of New Haven. Some of the church‘s original exterior decorative elements were removed over the years. In 1920, the outside walls were covered with white stucco as a protection. The stucco was replaced with long leafed southern pine in 1944. A parish hall was added next to the church in 1916. It served as an infirmary during the great influenza epidemic of 1918.
The Polish National Catholic Church was established in 1897 by Polish-Americans who were Roman Catholics but were unhappy with the Catholic Church hierarchy of the time. The PNC Church today seeks full communion with the Holy See, although it has important theological differences. Holy Cross Parish, part of the Eastern Diocese of the Polish National Catholic Church, was organized and built a church at 723 Enfield Street in Enfield in 1935.
The church at 19 May Street in Hartford was built in 1929 as the Adventist Church of Hartford. Today the building is used as the food pantry run by Glory Chapel International Cathedral. Read the rest of this entry »
The Second Baptist Church of Suffield was established in 1805 by members of the First Baptist Church. The original wooden church was replaced by a brick Greek Revival edifice in 1840, located at 100 North Main Street. The church was designed by local architect Henry Sykes, who had trained under Chauncey Shepherd of Springfield and Ithiel Town of New Haven. Additions were made to the church in 1953 and 1959.
The Baptist Church in Lyme was established in 1752 and the first meeting house was built in 1754 on Meetinghouse Hill. By the later eighteenth century, membership in the church had grown to point that Baptists outnumbered Congregationalists in the parish. Repairs were made to the meeting house in 1788 and in 1804 the building was plastered for the first time. Originally known as the Lyme Baptist Church, the name was changed around 1810 to the “First Baptist Church of Lyme” after a second Baptist Church was formed in town. In 1839, when the area containing the church became part of the new town of East Lyme, the church became the First Baptist Church of East Lyme. A separate Baptist church in Niantic (part of East Lyme) was formed in 1842. By that time, demographic changes had resulted in the meeting house no longer being as centrally located as it had once been. With new churches established in Niantic and Old Lyme, the First Baptist Church moved to the village of Flanders in East Lyme, completing enough of the new meeting house to make the transfer from Meetinghouse Hill to Flanders in the spring of 1843. The old meeting house was taken down and sold for lumber to help pay for construction of the new building. A parsonage was built next door in 1879. The church has been known as the Flanders Baptist and Community Church since 1929.
The building at 349 Main Street in Cromwell was built in 1853 as a Baptist church and later served as an American Legion Hall. The church was organized in 1802. According to Rev. Myron Samuel Dudley’s History of Cromwell (1880):
In 1803 the church built a plain frame edifice Meeting-House on the West Green, and held their public meetings there until 1833, when the house was moved to the central part of the village and placed on a lot nearly opposite the present site of the Post Office. Worship continued in this house until Nov. 3, 1853, on which day a new house of worship, located a little North of the old one, built during the pastorate of the Rev. C. W. Potter and largely through his instrumentality, was dedicated. This latter edifice was remodeled, somewhat, internally in 1872, and is the house of worship of the church at the present time.
The church disbanded in 1936 and the building’s steeple was removed.
St. Mary Star of the Sea Roman Catholic Church in New London began in the 1840s, serving Irish workers from a storefront on Bank Street. Soon, St. John’s parish was formed and a chapel was erected on Jay Street. In 1855 a new church, St. Patrick’s, was consecrated on Truman Street. The parish acquired a large lot at the corner of Washington and Huntington Streets in 1866 and the following year work began on a new church, designed by Patrick Keely of New York. The parish was renamed St. Mary Star of the Sea in 1874 and the new church was completed and dedicated in May, 1876. The church tower was built in 1911.