Litchfield, Conn. South Farms Church

Church History

The Church at South Farms, Litchfield, Connecticut was gathered in 1768, a year after the South Farms parish of Litchfield was organized and the church society formed. They called their first pastor, George Beckwith, and ordained him in 1772. Several pastors followed Beckwith at the church, among them Amos Chase, Amos Pettengill, Ralph S. Compton, and David L. Parmelee, a native son of Litchfield. In 1859 South Farms of Litchfield became the town of Morris and the church became known as Morris Congregational Church.

George Beckwith graduated from Yale in 1766. He was called and ordained by the South Farms church in 1772. He served the church for 10 years before being removed from his position as pastor at the recommendation of an ecclesiastical council.


Digital Materials

Copy of the church's vote to call an ecclesiastical council, 1781 January 1

A copy of the church's vote on January 1, 1781 to call an ecclesiastical council to "finally determine a number of complaints or grievances" against Pastor Rev. George Beckwith and to also hear a number of complaints from Beckwith about the church. Those invited to the council include pastors and delegates from Hartford, Wethersfield, Newington, Glastonbury, and Oxford.

Invitation to meet, 1781 January 5

An invitation issued to Rev. Eells of Glastonbury, Connecticut asking the pastor and a delegate from the church to meet as part of a council on Wednesday, January 24, 1781.

Minutes of the ecclesiastical council, 1781 January 31

The minutes of the ecclesiastical council called by vote of the church taken January 1, 1781 and held January 31 of that same year.

Confession of George Beckwith, 1781

Written confession of Rev. George Beckwith given in accordance with the determination of the ecclesiastical council held at South Farms church in January of 1781.

Removal of George Beckwith from the office of pastor, 1781 February 6

A partial document penned by John Marsh, Pastor at Wethersfield and elected scribe of the ecclesiastical council held in January of 1781, affirming the dissolution of the relationship between the Church at South Farms and their Pastor Rev. George Beckwith.

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