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The early history of Southampton, L. I., New York online

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there was a vacancy in the pulpit until 1784. During this inter-
val the pulpit was supplied by Mr. Osias Eels, and Mr. James
Eels, of whom nothing is known to the writer save their names.
Doubtless they are written in the Lamb's Book of Life and they
themselves gone to their rest.

9. Joshua Williams.

The ninth pastor was the Rev. Joshua Williams. He preached
as a candidate as it appears from his own record from September
to December 1784. Tuesday December 14 the parish held a
meeting and came to a determination to call Mr. Williams to the
pastorate. After some time spent in negotiation an agreement
was entered into upon the following terms :.

" Copy of a covenant between the inhabitants of the First
Parish in Southampton and Joshua Williams, A. M.
" To all people to whom these presents shall come greeting :

" Know ye that we ye subscribers inhabitants of the first Parish
of the town of Southampton, in the County of Suffolk and State
of New York do each of us covenant and oblige ourselves to pay
unto Mr. Joshua Williams or his certain attorney Executors
Administrators or Assigns yearly and every year during his con-
tinuance in sd Parish (a Collector being appointed to collect the
same) a full and just sum of seventy pounds current money of the
state of New York. Likewise to deliver to sd Williams at his


History of Southampton.

door forty loads of wood yearly. Likewise to put the fences of
the parsonage land in good repairs, sd Williams to keep thern in
repair hereafter so long as he shall improve said lands. Likewise
we covenant to keep the buildings and well in repair. And (in
case he should leave a widow) to give her the sum of forty pounds
of ye aforesaid currency. On the receipt of which she shall quit
the Parsonage. Sd Williams to carry no manure off sd lands nor
cut more wood or timber than is necessary to keep the fences in
repair or for his own firing in case he shall need more than what
is above sd to be found him.

" Sd Williams to have the full improvement of sd lands and the
buildings thereon, during the above said term. And for the true
performance of the abovesaid covenant, We the subscribers have
hereunto set our hands in Southampton this thirtieth day of
December anno D. 1784.

" N. B. Be it remembered that one half of the above £70 for
the first year is to be paid in three months from this date."

David Burnett.
John Bishop.
John Bishop, Jr.
James Bishop.
Samuel Bishop.
William Brewster.

Zebulon Cooper.

Widow Hannah Cooper.

Moses Culver, Jr.
[10] Caleb Cooper.

Zophar Cooper.

William Culver.

Silas Cooper.

James Culver.

Gershom Culver.

Charles Cooper.

Obadiah Cooper.

Samuel Cooper, Jr.

Widow Ruth Cooper.
[20] Christopher Foster.

Benj. Foster.

Abraham Fordham, Jr.

Deac. David H. Foster.

Abraham Fordham.

Wid. Ann Foster.

Elias Foster.

Nathan Foster.

Hugh Gelston.




Joseph Goldsmith.

Silas Halsey, Jr.
Elias Howell, 3d.
Benj. Huntting.
Zebulon Howell.
Stephen Howell.
Deac. Samuel Howell.
Ephraim Howell.
We. Hallock.
Ebenezer Howell.
Samuel HowelL- Jr.
John Halsey.-''^
Elias Howell.
Wid. Eunice Howell.
Wid. Martha Herrick.
Elias Howell, 2d.
Obadiah Howell.
Richard Howell.
Sylvanus Howell.
William Herrick.
John Howell.
Stephen Howell, Jr.
Zebulun Halsey."
Joseph Hildreth.
Joseph Hildreth, Jr.
John Howell, 3d.
George Herrick.
Wid. Mary Haines.
Henry Harris.

The Eaely Chuech.


Henry Hudson.
Isaac Halsey. s
[60] Daniel Hildreth.
David Howell.
David Howell, Jr.
David Halsey./'

Wid. Eleanor Jacobs.

Wid. Mary Jones.

Zebulun Jessup.

Ebenezer Jagger.

Wid. Pbebe Jagger.

Thomas Jessup.
[70] Lemuel Jennings.

Samuel Jennings.

Sylvan us Jennings.

Wid. Rachel Jennings.

Samuel Jagger.

Nathaniel Jagger.

Stephen Jagger.

Jeremiah Jagger, Jr.

Thomas Jones.

Elias Pelletreau.
[80] Elias Pelletreau, Jr.

Timothy Pierson.

Elias Pierson, Jr.

Henry Post.

Elias Pierson.

Stephen Post.

Samuel Pierson.

Isaac Post.

Isaac Post, Jr.

Jeremiah Post.
[90] James Post.

John Pelletreau.

Uriah Rogers.

Jeremiah Rogers.

Zephaniah Rogers.

Adonijah Raynor.

Stephen Reeves, 3d.

Stephen Reeves.

John Reeves.

Stephen Reeves, Jr.
[100] Moses Rose.

David Rose.

Wid. Deborah Rugg.

Joel Reeves.

Wid. Mary Reeves.

Paul Sayre.

Wid. Ruth Smith.

Abraham Sayre, Jr.

Matthew Sayre/

David Sayre. / .-
[110] Abraham Sayre. •/

John Sayre. ^

Wid. Mehetabel Stevens.

Jackson Scott.

James White.

Henry White.

John White, Jr.

William White.

Charles White.

Zebulun Wick.
[120] Silas Woolley.


On May 26, 1785, the Presbytery of Long Island met at
Southampton, and, after examination of the pastor elect on the
next day, proceeded to ordain and instal him over the church
founded there in 1640. According to Mr. Williams' minutes of
this occasion " Mr. Goldsmith made the first prayer. Mr. Buel
preached a sermon. Mr. Goldsmith enquired concerning ye
[rates ?] Mr. Stores the ordaining prayer. Mr. Buel the charge.
Mr. Davenport the right hand. Mr. Hart ye exhortation to ye
people and concluding prayer."

The next June Thomas Jessup was chosen to be a deacon, and
Christopher Foster and David Burnett to be elders.

Mr. Williams labored as pastor until April, 1789, a period of
three years and eleven months, having admitted to communion
in that time, as he says, 486 persons.

114 History of Southampton.

10. Heeman Daggett.
From Dr. Sprague's Annals the following account is taken:
He was born at Walpole, Mass., September 11, 1766. He was
a son of Dr. Ebenezer Daggett, a highly respectable physician in
his day, who was a brother of the Eev. Naphtali Daggett one of
the Presidents of Yale College. The first ancestor of the family
in this country was John Daggett, who, a. few years after the set-
tlement of Plymouth, came and took up his residence on the
Island of Martha's Vineyard. Dr. Daggett removed with his
family from Walpole to Wrentham, when his son Herman was a
boy, and there continued iu medical practice till his death, which
occurred February 26, 1782. The son was at his father's decease
between fifteen and sixteen years of age. He had the reputation
of being an amiable and discreet youth, and withal had an un-
common thirst for knowledge. Quickened however in his efforts,
by his zeal for knowledge, he passed rapidly and successfully
through his course preparatory to College, and became a member
of Brown's University in 1784. His standing there as a scholar
was highly respectable, and he graduated in 1788. In the second
year of his college course, his mind, which had before been seri-
ously directed by the influence of a Christian education, became
deeply impressed with the subject of religion as a practical con-
cern ; and it was to this period that he referred the commence-
ment of his religious fife. His ardor in literary pursuits, seems
not to have been at all repressed by the change in his moral feel-
ings, though all his faculties and attainments were from this time
evidently consecrated to the glory of God and the benefit of his
fellow creatures. Shortly after his graduation he placed himself
as a theological student under Dr. Emmons, who even at that
early period, had acquired the reputation of being very learned in
his profession. Having spent about a year in his preparatory
studies, he was licensed to preach by the Association, holding its
session at Northbridge, in October, 1789, and preaching for the
first time on the succeeding Sabbath in Dr. Emmons's pulpit.
"Within a short time after he was licensed^ he visited Long Island
with a view of being engaged as a preacher, thinking that the

The Early Church. 115

climate would, prove more congenial to his health than that of
New England. Here he was received with more than common
favor. Eor ajear he supplied the Presbyterian congregation at
Southold ; and though they gave him a unanimous call, yet being
unwilling to practice on the " Half-way Covenant,"* he felt con-
strained to decline it. Thence he was called to preach at South-
ampton, where also he was unanimously invited to the pastorship.
This latter invitation after considerable hesitation, he accepted,
and was set apart by the presbytery to the pastoral office, April
12,1Y92. On the 3d of September, following, Mr. Daggett was
married to Sarah, daughter of Colonel Matthewson, a respectable
and wealthy citizen of Providence, R I. Mrs. Daggett was a
lady of fine accomplishments and most exemplary character, and
survived her husband many years. She died, having never had
any children, November 20, 1843.

Mr. Daggett's continuance at Southampton was for less than
four years. Almost immediately after his settlement, a difficulty
arose between him and a part of his people on the subject of the
" Half-way Covenant " (he being unwilling to practice on that
principle), which ultimately extended to many other churches,.
and was the principal, if not the entire cause, of his resigning his
charge He behaved with great moderation and dignity through-
out the whole controversy, and his character for discretion was
never impugned. It was a sufficient evidence that he came out of
this controversy at Southampton unscathed, that, almost imme-
diately after he was at liberty, he was called to the pastoral care
of the church at West Hampton, a village in the immediate
neighborhood of the one he had left. Here he continued greatly
respected and beloved by his people from September, 1797, to
September, 1801, when he was dismissed chiefly on account of an
inadequate support.

In October following he was installed pastor of the church at.
Fire Place and Middle Island in the town of Brookhaven, and

* A very bad practice originated early in New England (Records of Synod of Boston, 1662),
of administering the rite of baptism to children of baptised persons who made no preten-
sions whatever to personal piety upon their " owning the covenant," though they neglected
every other ordinance. This was called the " Half-way Covenant," and was productive of
immense evil in the churches.

116 Histoey of Southampton.

preached alternately to the two congregations till April, 1807,
when his health had become so far reduced that he resigned his
charge with an intention of never resuming the responsibilities
of the pastoral office. During the eighteen years of Mr. Dag-
gett's residence on Long Island, and in each of the four several
charges with which he was connected, he enjoyed a large measure
of public respect, and his labors were, by no means, unattended
with success. He was greatly esteemed, especially by his breth-
ren in the ministry for the wisdom of his counsels, not less than
for the consistency of his general deportment.

After leaving Long Island his health was considerably improved
so that he was able to preach frequently, and even for a consider-
able time without interruption. For a year he preached and
taught school at Cairo, Greene county, N. T. For some time he
preached also at Patterson, Putnam county, and for two years he
preached and taught an Academy at North Salem, "Westchester
county. Thence he went to New Canaan, Conn., where he took
charge of an Academy.

When the Foreign Mission School was established by the
American Board of Foreign Com., at Cornwall, Conn., Mr.
Daggett was placed at the head of it, May 6, 1818. Here a great
and important work devolved upon him of harmonizing and in-
structing youth of all ages from the mere child to manhood, and
of many various races. Although but about thirty in number,
there were natives of Sumatra, China, Bengal, Hindostan, Mexico,
New Zealand ; of the Society and the Marquesas Islands ; of the
Isles of Greece and the Azores; and Cherokees, Choctaws,
Osages, Oneidas, Tuscaroras and Senecas of the North American
Indians. Here he labored with success for nearly six years until
1824. Ill health then terminated his labors and for the next
eight years he rested, waiting for his eternal Sabbath rest to
which he was called in peace on the 19th of May, 1832.

11. David S. Bogabt.
The Rev. David Schuyler Bogart was born January 12, 1770,
in the city of New York. He descended from one of the oldest
and most respectable Dutch families. He was graduated from

The Early Chuech. 117

Columbia College in 1790, with the highest honors of his class.
After his graduation he studied for the ministry with his pastor,
Dr. John H. Livingston, and preached frequently in various
churches of New York. In the autumn of 1795 he visited
Southampton, and his ministrations proving acceptable to the
people, a call was made out. On the 20th of May, 1796, Mr.
Bogart removed with his family from New York and intended to
accept there the pastorate. Before the Long Island Presbytery
met, however, to install him, he received an urgent call from the
First Presbyterian Church in Albany. After consultation with
his friends he concluded to accept the call to Albany, where he
remained from January to August, 1797. His health having
been impaired at this place, and the church at Southampton be-
ing encouraged to renew their call, he returned to the church by
the sea, and was installed in the autumn of 1798. Dr. Thomas
De Witt, in the sermon preached at Mr. Bogart's funeral (from
which sermon we have obtained some of the facts herein stated),
says that while at Southampton he received several calls but re-
fused them on account of the united affection of his people. In-
fluenced by the associations of his earlier years he, in 1806,
accepted a call from the Beformed Dutch Church of Blooming-
dale in the city of New York, but was prevented by circumstances
of a domestic nature from moving his family. The Southamp-
ton Church then made out a third call and he was re-installed as
their minister and so remained till his final dismission, April 15,

In this year he accepted a call to the two Beformed Dutch
Churches of Success and Oyster Bay. He continued in these
churches, fourteen miles apart, for thirteen years until failing
health obliged him to resign. In 1826 he returned to New York
and there resided until his death on the 10th of July, 1S39,
preaching as he found opportunity.

The people of Southampton were very warmly attached t»
him as is evident from their repeated invitations to him to settle
among them. He is still spoken of by some of his old parishioners.
in terms of the warmest affection. In the pulpit he used much

118 History of Southampton.

action, was full of vivacity, flowery in style, and graceful in

During the next three years, from 1813 to 1816, the pulpit was
supplied by Mr. Joshua Hart, Messrs. Andrews and Fuller, Her-
man Halsey and Amos Bingham, of whom nothing except their
names is known to the writer.

Mr. Hart once upset a peddler's wagon which was in his way.
The next Sunday morning he found a note on the pulpit enclosing
a pistareen with the following distich :

"Eighteen pence to Mr. Hart
For overturning a tinman's cart."

Here is another pulpit token found by a minister on his desk
one Sabbath morning, an old riddle simple enough in itself, but
the pertinence of which is not so evident :

" A certain something there may be,
Which earthly kings may often see ;
Poor mortal worms may oft descry it,
But God Almighty can't espy it."

12. John M. Babbit.

The twelfth pastor was the Rev. John M. Babbit. He was
installed November 19, 1817, and dismissed April 18, 1821.

Rev. James M. Huntting, of Jamaica, says, in reference to the
revival in Mr. Babbit's day : " For some time previous to that
revival an increased tenderness, fervor and interest in prayer,
became manifest in the social meetings generally but seemed to me
most manifest in one attended weekly at Miss Harriet Foster's,
on the road leading to Bridge Hampton and opposite where the
Messrs. Elias and "William "Woolley then lived. I had for several
years greatly desired to see a revival such as I had seen at East
Hampton, and which left me, much to my sorrow, without hope
and God in the world. Hence I visited all the prayer meetings
I could. Others noticed it. On one evening, however, when I
was not present at the meeting above alluded to, the joyful news
was communicated that Capt. James Post and his wife were
rejoicing in hope. The next morning a young friend of mine
hastened to me to tell me the joyful news. The whole village

The Early Chueoh. 119

soon was filled with deep solemnity and on the following Sabbath
the sanctuary was unusually full, and the presence and power of
the Holy Spirit were very manifest. The prayer meeting that
evening was at Mrs. Huntting's, and so many came that the store
and all the rooms adjoining were opened and filled with the
solemn assemblage. Many not able to find seats, stood the
whole evening — prominent among them, and near the front
window, stood Oapt. James Post. When the meeting closed
nearly all remained and many approached him to hear him
speak of Jesus. Meetings became very frequent at once,
and very full at evening, and the church was opened and
largely attended one afternoon and evening each week, when the
neighboring ministers came to help Mr. Babbit, and elders and mem-
bers from the neighboring churches were often present, and took
part in the prayer meetings — prominent among whom was Deacon
Stephen Rose, of Bridgehampton. Conversions were constantly
occurring among all classes, and the church, which I understood
consisted of 70 members when the revival began, received an
accession of about 45 among whom were nine husbands with
their wives. Many of the most interesting, youth of the place
had been gathered in Bible Classes, which the Pastor conducted
so as greatly to increase the study of the Bible, and make the
new members of the church able to give a scriptural and satisfac-
tory reason of their Christian hope. The Word of God was the
chief theme of conversation in the youthful circles I visited, es-
pecially the lessons we recited from it weekly to the Pastor and
Elders. Bev. Dr. McDowell's Question Book was used, and
some of the class found out and interlined the answers with pen
and ink, from the beginning to the end of that Question Book.
The attachment of the new converts to each other and to Christ,
made life pass so sweetly along, that deep regret was often ex-
pressed when any of them had to leave the place. And on my
return to the place to teach school, after a year's absence to study
in the Academy at East Hampton, I found that delightful Chris-
tian grace ' Brotherly love,' delightfully prevalent. So it re-
mained during the two and one-half years that I remained there
in the school."

120 History of Southampton.

Mr. Babbit says in answer to an invitation to be present at the
celebration of the 225th Anniversary of the settlement of the
town, December 13, 1865 :

" The meetings held frequently, for the special benefit of those
seeking an interest in Christ and indulging recently obtained
hopes that they had found it, were very useful. The counsel
given in them and from house to house was well adapted to lead
all to build their hopes of heaven entirely on Christ. The views
of the converts were elicited, and when erroneous, thoroughly
corrected, and advice given adapted to make their practice also
correct. Town meeting day had often been a day for social rec-
reation by the young. On its approach that spring, some ex-
perienced Christians counseled us to take care and not let it be in-
juriously spent. To the delight of many it was suggested that
the young who were not needed among the electors, should meet in
the north school-house for social prayer. The house was soon
filled and word reached the electors' meeting of it, and several of
the good deacons and elders came to the school-house and de-
lighted its, and seemed delighted themselves, as they addressed
us and prayed with us.

The church which had for a long time before seemed languish-
ing, from that time grew so that I found the last time I preached
there just four times as many members in it, i. e. 280 instead of

May the Lord ever bless that church, as dear to my heart then
and ever since, and make your anniversary a soul refreshing time."

In 1815 Mr. Babbit founded the Education Society of South-
ampton, which has since done much good in educating pious
young men for the ministry'.

13. Petee H. Shaw.
The thirteenth pastor was the Bev. Peter H. Shaw, who was
ordained and installed September 19, 1821, and dismissed June
2, 1829. His grandfather, John Shaw, came to this country in
1785, with two sons, John and William, the latter of whom was
the father of Bev. Peter H. The grandfather was a ruling elder
in the Associate Church in Greenock, Scotland, and the two sons.

The Early Church. 121

with their wives, were members of the same church. They
settled by the advice of Dr. Witherspoon, of Princeton, K J., in
Barnet, Yt. His great grandfather, Eev. John Shaw, together
with Eev'ds Kalph and Ebenezer, formed the first Seceding or
Associate Presbytery of Scotland. The library of this worthy
minister brought to this country by his son, contributed much to
moulding the mind and shaping the principles of his great grand-
son in his youth. He graduated at Dartmouth College.

Mr. Shaw, while pursuing his education in New York, came
under the influence of two eminent Christian ladies, Mrs. Graham
and Mrs. Hoffman, and from their pious efforts in establishing
Sabbath schools for the instruction of the poor, he learned the
value of this institution. On his instalment in Southampton, he
first instituted the Sabbath school here, which, however, soon
embraced all the children in the community. He also, in 1826,
was the originator of the temperance reformation in Southampton.
Under parental training his mind had been directed to the evils
of intemperance, and the publication of Dr. Beecher's sermons on
this subject, opened the way for action. "With characteristic
modesty, he obtained these sermons, and at his third meeting on
Sabbath evening, he read them on three successive Sabbaths.
They caused much excitement and even opposition. Many said
they could as well do without bread as ardent spirits. The fol-
lowing spring the General Assembly recommended the clergy to
preach on the subject. After a reluctant consent of the session,
a day was appointed when Mr. Shaw would preach on the evil
which was increasing in the community to a fearful extent. On
the day after the appointment was made, he was informed that
none of the neighboring ministers had co-operated with him on
the subject, and went over immediately to Bridge Hampton, Sag
Harbor and East Hampton, and asked the clergy to countenance
him at least so far in the movement as to be present. But they
all declined — he stood alone, the youngest member of the
Presbytery, but determined, under divine assistance, to go on.
He says of this — " The day came. It was a cold, uncomfortable
day, I think, of November. I had endeavored to prepare myself
with what care I could. As I entered the pulpit I saw the house

122 History of Southampton.

was filled to overflowing. Every drunkard was staring me in the
face I saw not onlj that attention, but that feeling was awake
on the matter before me. I quailed under it ; but it was to be
met. I never had had such a sensation before nor since. But
Cod sustained me. I preached a sermon in the morning an hour
and a half in length, and in the afternoon better than an hour.
The object was to present the whole subject so far as I was able.
And so large and attentive an audience I had not seen before
nor since in Southampton. And before the blessing was pro-
nounced, a motion was made to adjourn to- my house that even-
ing, to draw up a constitution and form a society on the principle
of total abstinence."

14. Daniel Beeks.

The fourteenth pastor was the Rev. Daniel Beers, who was in-
stalled June 8, 1830, and dismissed April 21, 1835. On leav-
ing Southampton he was called to the Presbyterian Church of
Greenport, where he was installed, December 2, 1835, and re-
mained till January 31, 1839. Thence he removed to Orient,
preaching, as stated supply, for a number of years, having com-
menced his labors there in February, 1839. He was a laborious,
painstaking and useful pastor, and his labors in Southampton
were abundantly blessed. It was in some measure owing to his
energy and ardor in pushing on the enterprise, that the Academy
was erected in 1831.

15. Hugh JST. Wilson, D. D.
The fifteenth pastor was the Eev. Hugh N". Wilson. His
father was James Wilson, Esq., of Elizabeth, N. J. He was born

Online LibraryGeorge Rogers HowellThe early history of Southampton, L. I., New York → online text (page 10 of 41)