History of our Church
It was some time in the year 1796, that Brother Nathaniel Guptil had the privilege of attending an association meeting with Baptists. He there became deeply interested in the Baptist preachings. Having a strong desire toward the advancement of religion in his own town, he invited the ministers of the association. There being no house of worship they met in a bark house owned by a Mr. Gowen in Lebanon. In August 1797, they formed themselves into a Baptist Society and soon after engaged Elder John Chadborn to preach with them.
On October 22, 1800, a church numbering nineteen males and twenty-eight females was organized by a Council called for that purpose. The first settled minister was Zebedee Delano, who was ordained here June 1801 and served as pastor for thirty years during which time one hundred members were added. According to a written statement by Mrs. Addie Libbey, the pulpit which we use was made by Robert Staples of Oak Woods, North Berwick, about 1825. Several men from this church have gone on to preach in other places. Brother Ivory Clark received his appointment as a Missionary to West Africa in 1837. He was born in Lebanon in 1802 and died at sea April 24, 1848, while on his way home to this country on account of enfeebled health. Brother William Chase was ordained here in 1863 and appointed Chaplain of the First Louisiana Regiment.
Our church was remodeled extensively in 1846. New foundations were laid, the galleries removed and the roof lowered. Later, the old pews, fifty-eight in number were sold for two dollars apiece and forty new ones were put in their place. The expense of this work was met by selling the new installed pews to parishioners for twenty-three dollars or more each.
In August 1963 the church received a very generous gift from Mr. Hervey A Hanscom of Medford, Massachusetts. The gift provided for a trust fund to maintain the meeting house in a sound and proper manner on the exterior, In December 1980, the Lebanon and North Berwick Baptist Society received a gift from Donald E Chick of Lebanon, Maine. The gift provided for a trust fund for the interior of the meeting house to be physically maintained in a sound and proper manner.
From 1919 to 1970 services were conducted in the summer months by religious students and pastors of nearby Churches. Since 1970, services have been conducted on a regular weekly schedule which consist of Sunday Morning, Sunday Evening and midweek prayer meeting. An annex for Sunday School and other Church activities was started in October 1974. The annex is twenty-four feet square and is now complete.
It is our earnest prayer that services may be maintained in this Church for many years to come and precious souls be brought into the "Kingdom of God."
This was written by Howard A Chick, Deacon (deceased)