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July 1998


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"Robert E.Armstrong" <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Mon, 6 Jul 1998 10:35:40 -0500
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See my note within your text.

Ian McGiver wrote:

> Is anyone familiar with Baptist Church records dating to the late
> eighteenth and early-nineteenth centuries and how/where they might be
> kept?
> I am researching a Baptist congregation that was organized around 1805
> within
> Schoharie County. (I have checked all the usual local sources and, so far,
> I have had no luck uncovering any records for this church.)

Dear Ian,
Can you tell me what the "usual local sources" are? I descend from a family of
Baptists in Pittsford, NY, which is just southeast of Rochester. They arrived
from Leicestershire, England in about 1804. They also established a Baptist
church in Pittsford. It was then reported that one of the sons in the family
was kicked out of the fold because he was guilty of "adopting Universalist
doctrine," The son then took his wife and two small children and moved to
Ohio. I am interested in the group, and their beliefs.
Bob Armstrong Houston, TX

> I know that there is a Baptist archive in Rochester (the name slips at
> the moment and I dod not have my notes at hand). HOWEVER, my understanding
> is that most of the Rochester records are from CALVINIST Baptist
> congregations. And
> I believe that the particular congregation I am interested in tended
> toward a FREEWILL faith. And, whereas these distinctions might not have
> been so distinct toward the end of the nineteenth century, they seem to
> have played an important part in community formation in the early
> nineteenth century in the particular locale I am looking at. For example,
> I
> am noticing that people in one part of this community attended Baptist
> services in a calvinist congregation that was several miles away. But
> another  Baptist congregation (the one I am interested in) existed within
> the community.
> It is because some members traveled so far to attend a Calvinist
> congregation that I suspect that the local Baptist congregation was
> Freewill.
>         But I am not sure about this and whether or not there were genuine
> distinctions in ideology and faith. The self-segregation of the Baptists
> could simply have been a result of older clan ties that predated
> settlement in the community. (that is, the Baptists who travel so far
> rather than attend services locally may have simply wanted to associate
> with friends and kins from their older neighborhoods.)
> Thanks for your help
> Ian McGiver
> Ph.D. Candidate
> History
> University of Chicago