Wappingers Falls United Methodist Church
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Wappingers Falls United Methodist Church

In 1788 the Rev. Freeborn Garretson, presiding elder of the district, started the Methodist Church. The home of Joseph C. Smith at Middlebush Road was used for the services in 1824 before moving into a schoolhouse. The Methodist Society, established in 1826, purchased the first church home for $40.00 in 1827. The Methodist Church was formed in 1841 as part of the Johnsville Circuit. A church was built in 1845 on a lot donated by John Given in Channingville, then Ednamville, on the corner of West Main and Church Street.

The present church property, all pasture land, was purchased in 1868 from Margaret Reese. The church was dedicated in 1870. At this time more property south of the church was purchased. The church school was formed in 1871 by William Benjamin, superintendent, with 21 teachers and an average attendance of 117 students.

The parsonage was erected in 1872, and its mortgage was burned in 1892. The first lights were used in 1901. A new organ was given in 1910- half paid for by Andrew Carnegie. The church bell was presented in 1912 by Mrs. E.A. Underhill.

The dual pulpit, new altar, and pulpit hangings were established and dedicated in 1937. In 1955 the church school building was erected, connecting the church and the parsonage. The present organ was purchased in 1960 from Christ Church in New York City. The cross and altar refurbishing in the Memory of Edward R. Scofield was done in 1967. In 1985, the church dedicated an entryway accessible for the handicapped, complete with an elevator.

The New Hamburg Methodist Church and the Wappingers Methodist Church merged in 1973 to become the United Methodist Church of Wappingers.