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Blairstown in Warren County, New Jersey — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

First Presbyterian Church of Blairstown

 
 
First Presbyterian Church of Blairstown Marker image. Click for full size.
By Michael Herrick, September 10, 2016
1. First Presbyterian Church of Blairstown Marker
Inscription.
In March of 1839, the citizens of Blairstown (then Gravel Hill) and vicinity convened for the purpose of electing trustees of a Presbyterian church. John I. Blair was made chairman and Dr. John Albright secretary. Prior to this meeting, the practicing Christians were divided between the Presbyterians and the Methodists. The Presbyterians would take part in services by traveling to nearby towns or by gathering in their homes.

Two Presbyterian churches have stood at this site. The original church was erected by the fall of 1840 on a lot that was secured from the property of Mrs. William Hankinson. The church was a substantial stone structure that had a seating capacity for two hundred people, handsomely rough-cast Gothic windows and was surmounted by a well-proportioned belfry and spire. The bell, weighing two hundred eighteen pounds, was sometimes heard up and down the Paulins Kill as far away as Stillwater and Hainesburg. The church was dedicated on December 10, 1840, with Reverend Condit preaching the sermon. By 1845, Reverend John Reiley was installed as pastor. He was also referred to as the brainchild in the founding of what is now Blair Academy.

After thirty years it was decided that a larger church would be needed, and the original church was torn down. The cornerstone was laid in 1870, and the new church was
First Presbyterian Church of Blairstown image. Click for full size.
By Michael Herrick, September 10, 2016
2. First Presbyterian Church of Blairstown
dedicated on February 16, 1872. It has more than double the seating capacity of the original church. The old bell was removed and taken to Blair Academy where it was used as a call bell until 1897, at which time it was melted down and made into tea bells bearing the inscription “Blairstown Presbyterian Church 1840.” A new bell weighing one ton was put in place and still rings weekly, signaling the start of the Sunday worship service. In August of 1874, John I. Blair presented the church with a pipe organ that was made by Jardine & Son of New York.

The First Presbyterian Church of Blairstown has seen numerous and significant changes over its lifetime, but its faith and commitment to the community it serves have never wavered.
 
Location. 40° 59′ N, 74° 57.518′ W. Marker is in Blairstown, New Jersey, in Warren County. Marker is at the intersection of Main Street and Bridge Street, on the left when traveling west on Main Street. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 1 Main Street, Blairstown NJ 07825, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Simeon Cook Residence (a few steps from this marker); Dr. John C. Johnson Residence (within shouting distance of this marker); Flatiron Building (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); The Mill (about 400 feet away); The Water Works (about 500 feet away); The Rainbow Confectionery (about 500 feet away); Branigan’s Pharmacy (about 700 feet away); Roy’s Hall (about 700 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Blairstown.
 
Categories. Churches, Etc.Settlements & Settlers
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on September 12, 2016. This page originally submitted on September 12, 2016, by Michael Herrick of Southbury, Connecticut. This page has been viewed 158 times since then and 47 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on September 12, 2016, by Michael Herrick of Southbury, Connecticut.
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