Beech Plains Church needs public support
Thursday, June 28, 2012 - 1:14 pm

In the Town of Pierrepont there is a little corner, a place called Beech Plains. While smaller than the smallest hamlet, the area has known its share of local history for over 137 years. In 1875, local residents built the Beech Plains Free Church, a communal meeting house where all faiths would be welcome to hold their services. For well over a century, this small church with its two-seater outhouse, served as a focal point for its small community.

For those many years, neighbors and families have stewarded the church and its adjoining cemetery. Today, the church is cared for by the newest iteration of the Beech Plains Free Church Association and by the Beech Plains Ladies Aide Society, many of whose members are the children and grandchildren of past supporters.

The steeple casts its shadow over a much different world than it knew in 1875. For one thing, the important role of the small farm community church has begun fading into memory. In such a climate it has become a real challenge to meet the costs of upkeep but we have been blessed with much success. Our supporters have helped us keep the roof watertight, the walls painted, and the foundation strong, but when a section of our 137-year-old floor failed, we were faced with a large capital expense that was never budgeted for.

The expense is not insurmountable. The church raised by community-minded farmers and country-folk in 1875, will be mended. But the church will need to call on a wider audience to see it through. Our capital goal is small. This project will only require a few thousand dollars to complete, dollars from people who remember the Beech Plains Free Church and the part it has played in local lives for generations. If you were married or baptized in our church, if you have relatives laid to rest in our cemetery, or even if you have driven past on a clear spring day and admired the facade, this church is your church too.

Please consider becoming part of our effort to preserve this important place for generations to come. Inquiries are welcome. Checks in any amount can be made out to the Beech Plains Ladies Aide Society and mailed to 62 Bay Street, Potsdam NY 13676.

Cathy Connolly, Perrepont