LARCHMONT, N.Y. -- Join David Osborne, historian with the St. Paul’s Church National Historic Site, for a program about the church’s role in our nation’s history and its connections to Abraham Lincoln on Friday, June 17, at the Larchmont Public Library.
In April of 1865, President Abraham Lincoln was assassinated by John Wilkes Booth. It’s a story that all know very well. However, it isn’t as well-known that St. Paul’s Church in Mount Vernon has a striking and surprising connection to the event.
In 1763, the people of Eastchester began building the present stone and brick church of St. Paul's. The building replaced a wooden meetinghouse that had been in use since around 1700, which stood just west of the current church. In the early 1850s, the area now known as Mount Vernon was established, and the church became a part of Mount Vernon.
The church, which is one of New York state’s oldest parishes (1665-1980), has played a role in a number of our nation’s historic events, including being used as a hospital during the Revolutionary War and with a burial ground with burial stones dating to 1704. The grounds contain the remnants of a Village Green that was the site of the election of 1733, which raised issues of freedom of religion and press.
The church was restored in 1942 with funds that were raised by a committee chaired by Sara Delano Roosevelt (the mother of FDR). The church ceased to provide services in 1980, when the land and buildings were transferred from the Episcopal Diocese of New York to the National Park Service.
The church and grounds were opened as a national historical site and museum in 1984. The church is part of the National Park Service, which is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year.
The event begins at 3 p.m. For more information about the program, call the library at 914-834- 2281 or visit www.larchmontlibrary.org .
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