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

What was happening in 1816?

What was happening in 1816 when Copper Hill Church was founded?

I do not know why Seth Griffin, Aristarchus Griffin, Calvin Gillet and their wives founded the church in 1816, but we do know some of the things that were going on at the time.  The first one is political.  In 1815, Episcopalians, Baptists, and Methodists, and members of other dissident denominations to the established Congregationalist church, combined with the Democratic-Republican party to form the Toleration Party . In 1816, they held a convention and ran a slate of candidates. In 1817, they took control of the state Assembly (lower house), and elected Oliver Wolcott, Jr as Governor.  This lead to the Connecticut constitution of 1818 where any man with property could vote.  By 1816 many churches were forming because they knew they would be able to vote soon.

The second one was weather.  1816 was the year with no summer.  There was frost here every month and only about 10% of the crops were harvested. (http://connecticuthistory.org/eighteen-hundred-and-froze-to-death-1816-the-year-without-a-summer/).  It was a cold period due to sun spots but the dust from Mount Tambora that erupted in early April of 1815 made for a very cold summer across New England, northern Europe and northern China.  People did not understand this climate change.  Many did not understand what God was doing.  Many moved to western New York and Ohio for better weather.  – Submitted by Robert Loomis

(Incidentally, Bishop Francis Asbury, one of the founders of American Methodism and the person responsible for the itinerant system of circuit riding preachers that facilitated the founding of churches like ours, died on on March 31, 1816.)