Merrimac, Mass. Pilgrim Congregational Church

Collection History

Please note that as of January 2022, the Merrimac, Massachusetts. Pilgrim Congregational Church records, 1725-1848, and all future digital collections are now hosted on the library's new digital archive.

The parish which would come to be known as Merrimac was first organized in 1725 in Amesbury, Mass. A year later, the church itself was founded as the Second Church of Christ in Amesbury. The town of Merrimac separated from Amesbury in 1876, and in 1879 the church was renamed to the First Congregational Church in Merrimac, though it was popularly referred to as the Pilgrim Congregational Church. Also in 1879, the First Orthodox Congregational Society was incorporated, replacing the earlier West Parish Congregational Society. The First Orthodox Congregational Church of Merrimac was incorporated in 1894 and the First Orthodox Congregational Society was dissolved.

The Pilgrim Congregational Church continues to serve the Merrimac community today, and is a member of the United Church of Christ.

The digital collections below include three volumes of church records spanning 1726-1843, as well as two volumes of parish records including one bound and one loose, and a document containing the last will and testament of Rev. Paine Wingate.

For additional information please see the finding aid.


Digital Materials

Church records, 1726-1782

This volume includes records pertaining to the formation of the church, ordination materials, records of votes, payments made, church meeting minutes, list of members who came from another church, list of members taken into full communion, and marriage records.

Church records, 1726-1821

This volume, also known as the "Paine Wingate Book," largely contains church records, but also includes some personal records by Reverend Wingate. Included within these are the church's Articles of Faith, meeting minutes, financial records, Rev. Wingate's personal diary entries related to church members and church activities, and lists of admissions, dismissions, deaths, baptisms, votes, ordinations, a list of administrants of Last Supper, and vital records for the Wingate family.

Church records, 1788-1843

These church records include a date of purchase, church meeting minutes, records of votes, ecclesiastical council meeting minutes, church communications, ordination records, baptismal records, members lists, marriage records, and death records.

Parish records, 1725-1848

The Book of Records in Amesbury includes annual meeting minutes, records of payment for the minister's annual salary, parish meeting minutes, records of votes, records of officer selection, minutes for meetings related to Reverend Wingate's contract, pew sales, calls for town meetings, and tax collector appointments.

Parish records (loose), 1743-1788

These parish records are loose documents covering various parish activities. Included in the records are financial documents, records of votes, church and parish meeting minutes, subscribers meeting minutes, calls to assembly, certificates of membership, and certificates of office.

Will of Rev. Wingate, 1777

This is the final will and testament of Reverend Paine Wingate of Merrimac. It includes ten clauses related to how his property, money, and livestock were to be divided among his family.


Special Thanks

This digital resource has been made possible in part by the National Endowment for the Humanities: Exploring the human endeavor.

Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this resource do not necessarily represent those of the National Endowment for the Humanities.