Copper Hill Church, P. O. Box 422, East Granby, CT 06026 pastor@copperhillchurch.us

Historical photo located

Copper Hill Church in the 1890's

Picture discovered

Bob Stewart has recently discovered and received rights to an historic photo of our church. It was in the care of the “Keeping Society” of Guilford, CT.  The photo was taken by a photographer named C. L. Hubbard who traveled around in Connecticut in the 1890’s taking pictures of various churches. The date on our exhibit photo in the fellowship hall is 1905 but that could be a collection date rather than the date it was taken.

Bob Stewart comments about the picture, “It shows the church with the steeple and an unknown gentleman in the foreground. Another object of interest is a telegraph (telephone?) pole in the extreme right of the photo. A possibility is that the telegraph line that was on the railroad right-of-way was extended to the post office across the street from the church. It would make sense to have telegraph service at a post office.”

Observations

According to the East Granby history book, the first trunk line of Southern New England Telephone Company came through East Granby in 1887 and the company announced in 1905 that every town in Connecticut finally had service (p. 258).  According to that same source, the post office at Copper Hill existed only from 1872-1903 at which time Rural Free Delivery from East Granby began (p. 224).

We also observe that the sheds for the horses are evident in the picture and apparently were located just where we step out of the kitchen door. If so, this might explain why the fellowship hall was built offset from the center of the church. Is the roof behind the horse sheds the “new” lecture room as it was then called?  According to our historical record called the Church Register, that was built during the pastorate of  Bro. J. H. Knott who served the Copper Hill Methodist Church from 1895-1897.   Would this new addition have had anything to do with the reason the picture was being taken?    There are no annotations to tell us.

Who is the man who appears to be posing for the picture?  Could it be the pastor? If it is and the hall has been built, then according to the register, it is likely one of these four;  Bro. Knott previously mentioned or E. P. Alvord who followed him pastoring from 1897-1899, John H. Crane, a local elder who led the church 1899-1901 or Rev. George L. Coburn who pastored from 1901-1906.