Saturday, January 12, 2019

Challenge – #52 Ancestors

My biggest challenge this past year was finishing the transcription of the Jacksonville M.E. Church history. It isn’t the most exciting document. The “history” is just a recording of minutes taken from 1842 to 1946. Photos taken by local residents have been added. An index of names and events will be included.

Update on 12 January 2019: Thanks to the trustees, the file cabinet that has been locked for many years has now been opened. The bottom drawer was filled with papers and documents relating to the church's history. Best of all: My great-grandmother's leather notebook in which she transcribed the church history was found in the drawer. And, it contains the missing twenty-seven years. A volunteer is now sorting through the papers and will arrange them in file folders. This spring we will travel north, go through the papers and see how much to include in my Jacksonville Church History document. Great news!

The church history is important because the document details the struggle and resilience of the Jacksonville church community. Financial issues plagued the church throughout its history, but the community rose to the challenge each time and made sure the church survived.

An excerpt:

July 1851            Subject of uniting Jacksonville and Trumansburg again brought up at Quarterly Conference.  Bro. John W. Nevins, P.E.

Bros Ashworth and Tichenor were delegates from Trumansburg. After long speeches it was laid on the table.

October 1851             It seems that finances were a serious problem for the Jacksonville Church, so much so, that in October 1851 a committee of three was appointed to inquire into the propriety of selling the M.E. Church. The committee to see about this was Joseph Stout, Joseph Ganoung and Elisha Wilcox.

The church history is important for genealogists. Those with ancestors in the Ulysses and Tompkins County area can find out if those ancestors belonged to the church, were active members, or maybe even expelled.

The plan is to have the volume bound and presented to the church in early spring.

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