Fundraising for Bristol Hill Bell Tower

<p>Bristol Hill Church October 2009</p>
Bristol Hill Church October 2009

The Bristol Hill Congregational United Church of Christ was built in Volney in 1851 and in the 1920s the cupola was removed from the church. On October 5, 2009, the Bristol Hill Church selected a contractor to begin work on manufacturing a replica of the original Church’s bell tower. Through grants provided by the Network to Freedom Trail and Heritage New York, the Bristol Hill Church has been steadily working to repair and bring back the traditional architectural look of the church building. As the oldest existing congregation in the Town of Volney, members of this congregation took God’s teachings to heart and worked diligently to end slavery in the 19th century. The congregation’s mix of both European and African American members was an example of God’s love for us all and how we should love our neighbor as ourselves.

<p>Bristol Hill Church early 1920s</p>
Bristol Hill Church early 1920s

During the 19th century, Volney was primarily a farming community with open fields. It was these open fields that allowed the small church, placed on a hill, to take a prominent place in this rural community. With no large trees to obstruct the view, people could see the church building’s tall bell tower from miles around. While many people are still fascinated with the building’s current bell tower, many are surprised to learn that until the early 20th century, a cupola sat on top of the existing structure. The cupola added approximately 16 feet in height to the bell tower and actually housed the church bell (which was lowered into the existing structure).

This small church contains many historical gems for future generations as well as continuing to spread God’s word. Judith Wellman, Professor Emeritus, SUNY Oswego, once wrote that “the replacement of the cupola will be like adding a primary jewel to a lovely necklace.” We hope that you or your ancestors have been touched by our history and message.

While this project will not be simple to complete, our small congregation believes that God is in support of this project. The total cost is estimated to be $30,000 and the congregation must cover half of that cost. Our ambitious goal is to raise $15,000 by the Summer of 2010. If you would like to help us in this ambitious project, please do not hesitate to email us at [email protected] Donations can be made out to Bristol Hill Church c/o Raina Hinman, 542 Maple Avenue, Fulton, NY 13069. You will receive a return receipt of your tax-deductible charitable donation.

We are also hosting a Roast Beef Dinner on Sunday, October 25, 2009 from noon until 5:00 P.M.
Bristol Hill Congregational UCC 3199 State Rt 3 Fulton

The menu will include:
Roast beef
Mashed potatoes and gravy
Cabbage salad
Tossed salad with dressing
Rolls and assorted breads
Apple crisp with ice cream
Coffee, tea, milk and punch

Adults $7.00
Kids 6-12 $3.50
Kids 5 and under – free

No deliveries – Takeouts available call 598-5515