History

of Our Church

 

In 2015 Union Baptist celebrated its 250th Anniversary!

An updated history of the church was published in a book titled

The Union Baptist Church of Mystic, Connecticut-It's Story.

The book sells for $10 and can be purchased at the church office.

We look forward to serving God in new ways for many more years as we worship and reach out to the community and our ever-changing world!

 

History

The Union Baptist Church has occupied a prominent place on "Baptist Hill" for many years and has been photographed by many a visitor to Mystic. The following is a just a fragment of the legacy of this dynamic and ever changing church.

The Union Baptist Church met for the first time on September 1, 1861 upon the culmination of efforts to join the congregations of the Second and Third Baptist Churches together.  The Second Baptist Church had begun as a small church on Fort Hill in the town of Groton in 1765. In 1831 the population in Mystic had grown to the point where a new Baptist Church was needed and Third Baptist Church was formed.  By 1861, both congregations saw the need to join together.  The building that houses The Union Baptist Church was formed by conjoining the two church buildings together.

According to Charles Stark’s History of Groton, 1705-1905, “the house of the Third Church was moved back on the lot and placed at right angles to the other, forming a letter “T”. The house of the Third Church was the former Mariners Free Church, an interdenominational meeting house. Teams of oxen dragged the Second Church up High Street a block to the north and placed this building with its spire and clock in front of the Third Church, facing eastward toward the bridge. The bell rang each Sunday as a call to worship. The clock served as the town clock for many years. The hurricane of 1938 took down the steeple and not only destroyed the “Town Clock”, it silenced the church bell as well. The bell had been an integral part of village life for nearly a century.  A poem written by Artis Stoddard captured the importance of “The Baptist Bell.”

My earliest recollection,

On a Sunday morning fair,

Was the Baptist Church bell ringing,

On the early morning air.

 

At ten fifteen exactly,

We could hear its heavy tone,

Telling it was church time And time to leave our home.

 

It rang for just ten minutes

And tolled for just five more,

When the last three strokes had sounded

It was time to go in the door.

 

But alas! The force of nature

Blew the old bell to the ground.

We no more hear the ringing

Of the big bell’s deep toned sound.

 

Oh! We miss the childhood playmates

And the joys we loved so well,

But we miss most, on Sunday morning,

The sound of the Baptist Bell.

 

In 1969 the steeple and clock were replaced and a carillon has replaced the old bell.

 

 

Worship Hours:

10:30 a.m. Sundays

Summer Hours:

9:30 a.m. Sundays Father's Day through Labor Day



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