The Free Will Baptists were organized in 1821.
The Free Will Baptists, formed a Union Church with the Methodist Episcopal Church and the Christian Church in 1838.
Until the 1860s, the Free Will Baptists used the church one quarter of the time, the Methodist Episcopals one half the time, and the Christian Church one quarter of the time.
In 1868, the Baptists built their own church, a large two story Greek Revival style building across the street from the Meeting House.
In 1919 the Methodists voted to join in federation with the Baptists forming an united church and met in the larger Baptist Church.
For additional information on the Free Will Baptists, see Chapter 1960 in Bertha's Book
Edited by H. P. Smith
D. Mason & Co., Publishers
The First Freewill Baptist Church, located at Starksboro, was
organized September 20, 1821, by Rev. Charles Bowles and Rev. Sylvanus
Robertson, with seventeen members, Mr. Bowles, a colored man, acting
as their first pastor. Rev. M. B. Minard became pastor of the society
in 1866, there being at that time 113 members, and no church edifice.
A house of worship was sadly needed, and in the face of adverse
circumstances Mr. Minard set to work to create a sentiment in favor of
the project, and the result was that at the close of the year 1868 the
present beautiful structure, costing nearly $7,000, with
accommodations for 300 persons, was ready for occupancy, and has ever
since been a source of pride to the society, which now numbers 163
members, under the pastorate of Rev. Francis Reed, their property
being valued at over $8,000.
This history page is based in part on the application by the Meeting House for listing on the National Register of Historic Places. The full application can be seen here.