Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Weathervane Wednesday - Two Derry Churches

I've been collecting photographs of the many, many weather vanes in the Nutfield area (Derry and Londonderry, New Hampshire).If you want a challenge, I'll post the locations at the bottom of the page so you can scroll down far enough to see the photo, but not the location, and try to guess where you may have seen these lovely weathervanes.

Do you know the location of weather vanes #15  and #16 ?

Central Congregational Church, Derry, New Hampshire

First Parish Church, East Derry, New Hampshire

Both of these churches are Congregational Churches in Derry, New Hampshire.  The first one pictured above, the Central Congregational, is the newer parish, established in 1837 as the First Congregational Church.  In 1897 it changed its name to Central Congregational to avoid confusion with the First Parish Church.  It has always been a Congregational Church.  Since it was built so close to Pinkerton Academy it was considered the school's church, and for many years the pastors were on the school board of trustees. The clock tower and bells date from 1887. 

The First Parish Church was the original Presbyterian parish established by Reverend McGregor who settled Londonderry in 1719.  In the 1740s the parish was divided into east and west, with the west parish eventually becoming the town of Londonderry and the east became Derry.  During the Great Awakening in the early 1800s the congregation began to drift away from the Presbyterian theology, and by the 1860s they voted to formally leave because the southern Presbyterians were sympathetic to the cause of slavery.  It is now a Congregational church. The building dates from before 1824 when it was cut in half and lengthened, and a steeple was added. The bell tower was added in 1880. 

For more information about the churches in Derry, please see the book The Road to Derry: A Brief History, by Richard Holmes, The History Press, 2009, chapter 10 "The Churches", pages 103 - 110. 

Central Congregational Church

First Parish Church, East Derry

Copyright 2011, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

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