The Gothic Stained Glass Windows
From the Bristol Herald, March 23, 1995
David Ferguson was
born in Starksboro, Vt., April 3, 1808. His grandfather had
two sons, Elijah and Elisha. Having a great amount of
territory in the town of Starksboro he gave a farm of 200
acres to Elisha, father of David Ferguson, where David spent
his boyhood days. The deceased had three brothers and two
sisters, all of whom died before he did. The widow of his
brother Andre still lives and was 91 on the day of his death.
He was converted in October, 1831, under the preaching of
Joseph Ayers, but not having an experience like some others he
began to doubt, which led to neglect of duty until eleven
months of captivity passed; then he started again for Canaan
by faith. He joined the M. E. Church at Starksboro in January
1833, and on that day commenced the family altar which has
always been kept up and held sacred. He was appointed class
leader of the Starksboro class in January, 1834 and received
his first license to exhort by Anthony C. Rice in January,
1835. He received a license to preach on Nov 25, 1935 and
preached his first sermon on Dec. 30, 1835, at Starksboro, Vt.
from Ps. 90:3, and then labored on the Hinesburgh circuit for
nine months with Rev. L. Potter, He was ordained deacon at
Middlebury, Vt., by Bishop R. Roberts on June 21, 1840, and
four years after was ordained elder at Starksboro by Bishop E.
Hedding, who was his mother's brother, assisted by J. Haslem,
J. P. Foster and Newell Bixby. He has often related to me some
of the bishop's experiences when a young man living near here,
and the many precious visits from him after he became bishop.
He seemed not to be satisfied until I went, last year, and saw
the very stone on which the bishop kneeled when he was
baptized. The stone has been taken from the brook and layed
in a stone wall nearby. He also received as a present the
commentary used by Bishop Hedding, which he prized very
evening, Sept 12, 1850, between 9 and 10 o'clock at the camp
meeting at Shelburne Point he received the baptism of the Holy
spirit. Entire sanctification has been his theme ever since
in testimony, sermon and life. He had a longing desire to see
the unconverted saved and believers sanctified.
He was married to
Julia Amelia Bushnell in April 1827 who died Jan. 8, 1840,
leaving a daughter, still living, He afterward married Abigail
Holcomb, who died Aug. 5, 1851, leaving a daughter who has
since died. He next married Sarah B. Edwards of Bristol; who
died Sept. 25, 1854. He then married Belvia A. Foster, widow
of the late J. P. Foster, who had preached here. She, with her
daughter Susie and his daughter Mandana and five grand
children, still live mourn the loss of a devoted husband,
father and grandfather.
supplied on the Starksboro circuit from 1853 to 1854 and from
1865 to 1866 and also part of 1873. He supplied on Weybridge
charge from 1854 to 1856 and Monkton from 1857 to 1860. In
1888 he preached a sermon on the anniversary of his 80th
birthday from 2 Tim. 4:6, 7, 8. He has not been able to preach
much, since. He would have been 87 years old on April 3, 1895.
He was larger
than the average man and had a strong constitution. He was
sick very little during life, excepting the last few years,
when from old age and kidney trouble he suffered very much. He
was always found in his place in class and prayer well as the
regular preaching services. He was at the Sunday morning
service on Feb. 17, and was taken with erysipelas on the
Tuesday following, and on Sunday, Feb. 24, blood poisoning set
in and he was taken to be forever with the Lord about 5 p. m.
I was with him a few hours before he died when, instead of
having his mind on his suffering, be was anxious to know about
the Lord's work, and as we prayed together he shouted: Praise
the Lord! His will be done not mine!
He was buried
Feb. 26 at 10:30 a. m. in Starksboro, after which the funeral
sermon was preached in the church by Rev J. J. Noe, presiding
elder. Rev. E. B. Fuller and his pastor made a few remarks.
The large gathering of friends then left feeling that an
honored friend bad been taken from them.
J. Melvin Smith, Pastor.