Baptist Church of Sherburne, Chenango County, New York
The Baptists residing in Sherburne village and vicinity commenced holding meetings in the academy in that village in March, 1836, and employed Mr. Ewell, a student of Hamilton Theological Seminary, to preach for them.
July 2, 1836, they convened in the academy for the purpose of forming a church conference. A. H. Burlingame was chosen moderator and E. C. Wheeler clerk. A church covenant was adopted and signed by Charles Lewis, John Benton, Willard Stebbins, Ezra Race, Sylvester Benton, Carloss Benton, Horace Eaton, Hendrick Bresee, E. C. Wheeler, Calvin Locke, H. B. Hale, John Benton, Jr., Clarissa Eaton, Mary Bresee, N. J. Benton, Sophronia Benton, Amy Foster, Jane Wheeler, Deborah Lewis, Elizabeth Lewis. Susannah Rogers, P. B. Reynolds, Betsey Race, Eleanor Locke, Abigail Stebbins, Maria Shaw and (???) Marsh, who, having received the consent of their respective churches, were constituted members of this. July 16, 1836, articles of faith were adopted. Oct 7, 1836, a council convened in the Congregational church, and after some alterations and additions to their articles of faith and covenant, admitted them to church fellowship. Elder J. S. Swan was appointed to preach the introductory sermon, Elder A. Wheelock, to address the church, and Elder J. Corwin, to present the right hand of fellowship.
Nov. 12, 1836, Elder J. Corwin performed the rite of baptism on Betsey Benton and Fanny Stafford, and broke bread to the church for the first time.
The church was incorporated as the Sherburne Village Baptist Society, Dec. 3, 1836, and Willard Stebbins, Charles Lewis, Horace Eaton, Ezra Race and Ira Wright were elected trustees.
Their church edifice was commenced in 1837 and finished in 1838, at a cost of about $2,300. Services were held previous to that time in the academy. April 23, 1837, C. H. Slafter was hired to preach for eighteen shillings per Sabbath. March 31, 1838, it was voted to hire Daniel H. Gillette for the year. He was dismissed May 19, 1839. August 25, 1839, it was voted to extend a call to E. E. L. Taylor for one year, at a salary of $300, his salary to commence when he was ordained and devoted his whole time to the church. He commenced his labors the first Sabbath in August, 1839. March 15, 1840, a call was given Rev. S. P. Way, who commenced his labors March 22, 1840. Aug. 22, 1841, it was voted to call Elder Crain, but the records do not show whether he accepted. Dec. 6, 1842, it was voted to invite Rev. Alba Gross to preach the ensuing year, commencing the second Sabbath in December, 1842. Charles B. Post was ordained pastor of this church Dec. 3, 1845. Aug. 12, 1848, it was voted to call Leonard Ilsley to ordination. Rev. Nelson Mumford became the pastor in the early part of 1849. He labored with them five years. Nov. 25, 1854, the church resolved to make an effort to secure the services of Rev. S. M. Ferguson, who served them till 1856. After Mr. Ferguson left the pulpit was supplied mostly by students from Hamilton till March, 1858, when a call was given Rev. J. M. Ferris, who commenced his labors as pastor the first Sabbath in April. His resignation was accepted Dec. 22, 1858. The pulpit seems to have been supplied by students from this time till March 19, 1862.
July 26, 1862, the Church voted to call Rev. T. K. Brownson to the pastorate. August 20, 1864, the committee were instructed to engage Elder Jones to supply the pulpit one-half time for the present. Feb. 19, 1867, voted to invite Rev. A. M. Bennett to continue as pastor for one year from the succeeding April. Elder Brown commenced a brief pastorate April 1, 1869. Rev. J. L. Bennett became the pastor some time in 1870. His resignation was accepted Jan. 31, 1872.
Rev. D. D. Brown succeeded Mr. Bennett in the pastorate some time in 1872. He united with the church by letter in October of that year, and was dismissed by letter September 28, 1873. He was followed, but at what time does not appear, by D. P. Pope, who was ordained by this church September 15, 1874. He remained but a short time however. The present pastor is George Burnside, who became the settled pastor in 1876, but had supplied the pulpit for two years previously while living at Earlville.
In the summer of 1876 the church was repaired at a cost of about $1,500. Meetings were held in the meantime in the Universalist church. In 1877, a rear addition was built at like cost.
The present number of members is 193; the average attendance at Sabbath school, 130.
The church has licensed one person to preach–Thomas Dunham, April 8, 1843. The following named persons have been elected deacons: Solomon VanWagner and Charles Lewis, October 7, 1836; Ezra I. Race, October 13, 1849; Joseph Smith; Orrin Hendee, January, 1871; Isaac Heady, November, 1872; Cyrus Merrihew, (for one year) Oct. 12, 1878.