The History of Cayuga County 1789-1879 page 413
Town of Ledyard/Aurora Village - Churches

THE M. E. CHURCH OF AURORA was organized about 1836, and held meetings in an upper room in the residence of Stephen Gifford, deceased. The house is now occupied by his son, George W. Gifford. Their meetings were continued there until the old academy building was purchased, removed to its present site and repaired. The first pastors of whom we can obtain any account were S. C. Phinney and Sylvester Minier, who were here in the spring of 1839 and during that year. Peter Bridgeman succeeded them and remained one year. He was followed by A. Hamilton, John Crawford and O. M. McDowell. Isaac Parks, L. D. Tryon and Henry Ercanbrack served them in 1842 and '3; Edward L. Wadsworth and L. D. Tryon, in 1844-'5; Aaron Cross and Benoni I. Ives, in 1846; Aaron Cross and Hezekiah C. Hall, in 1847; H. C. Hall and Edwin G. Bush, in 1848; Edwin G. Bush and E. Nelson Cuykendall, in 1849; Doctor Lamkin, in 1851; Alanson Benjamin, in 1852; S. Orcott, in 1853; Richard L. Kenyon, in 1854; W. M. Spickerman, in 1855; I. O. Bower and William N. Cobb, in 1856-'7; A. Ensign, in 1859; F. B. Harrison, in 1860; D. R. Carrier, in 1861-'2; Albert B. Gregg, in 1863-'4; Ephraim C. Brown, in 1865, '6 and '7; Francis M. Warner, in 1868-'9; H. T. Giles, 1870-'72; E. Hoxie, in 1873-'5; J. S. Lemon, who left before the completion of the year and joined the Episcopal church, in 1876; W. M. Henry, in 1877-'8; and Wesley Mason, the present pastor, who commenced his labors with this church in the fall of 1878. The church is on the Union Springs charge. It is in a feeble condition, having a membership of only twenty-five.

ST. PAUL'S (EPISCOPAL) CHURCH OF AURORA was founded February 11th, 1835, under the Diocesan administration of Bishop Onderdonk, whose diocese was then the whole State of New York, a territory which now embraces five important dioceses. The Rev. Mr. Baldwin was its missionary, and under his efforts, which were warmly seconded by the family of Hon. Jonathan Richmond, the organization was effected. It lay dormant, however, for a long time, when services were renewed and continued for a series of years by Rev. John Leech. The meetings for public worship were held in the lower story of the Masonic Hall. Several clergymen continued here in missionary service after the departure of Mr. Leech. Revs. Hagar, Beauchamp, Tomkins, Perrine, Williams and Smith, bring the line down to Rev. Alfred Brown, during whose ministrations, through the abundant liberality of Mr. E. W. Arms, was erected in 1870-'71, their beautiful church edifice, which stands on the east side of Milton or the main street. By its admirable construction from the plan of the architect, Mr. S. D. Mandell, it has won a place among the most tasteful edifices in the Central New York Diocese. Its ornamented, open-timbered roof is especially admired. The structure is build of light colored brick, profusely relieved by the blue limestone of Waterloo. It was consecrated in 1874, by the Rt. Rev. F. D. Huntington. Since the beginning of 1873, the church has enjoyed the intelligent and faithful labors of Rev. William H. Casey, a graduate of Trinity College, Cambridge, England.

Strangers visiting Aurora will be well repaid by an examination of the inner roof of this edifice, which is a beautiful specimen of skilled workmanship and architectural taste; also the mural tablet, monumental to Mr. Arms, from the designs of Mr. Palmer, the eminent American sculptor. The bas relief of Grief, in bronze, has received merited commendation. The edifice fronts the broad and beautiful lake, overlooking well kept pleasure grounds, and is entered by successive flights of stone steps, which give a pleasing effect. Its handsome range of solid black walnut pews, made from the designs of Mr. Mandell, in Mich., were the gift of Hon. Erastus Corning, late of Albany.

ST. PATRICK'S CHURCH (Catholic) of Aurora was organized in 1838. The pastor is Rev. T. A. Hendrick, of Union Springs. Their church edifice is a neat though unpretentious brick structure, and being located upon the bank of Cayuga Lake, it presents a striking and beautiful appearance, as will be seen by a reference to the view of it given in this work.

SOCIETIES.--Scipio Lodge No. 58, F. & A. M., at Aurora, was chartered March 22d, 1797. The charter officers were Seth Sherwood, Master; Comfort Tyler, S. W.; John Tillottson, F. W. The charter is signed by Robert Livingston, Grand Master; Jacob Morton[,] D. G. M.; James Scott, S. G. W.; and DeWitt Clinton, F. G. W.

The information on this page was transcribed to a digital format by Roger A. Post

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