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Paynes Corners Christian Church

Paynes Corners Christian Church was formed as the Disciple Church in May of 1858, after gospel meetings were held in the one-room schoolhouse still standing (2014) at the site of the church building on the southeast corner of Warner and Warren-Sharon roads.


Before the church was formed, residents at Paynes Corners traveled to church to Brookfield or Vienna Center, about three miles away, on horseback, horsedrawn buggies, or on foot.  In the winter, sleds were used to travel to churche.  The residents decided that they wanted a church in their own neighborhood.

The church was founded by Elder Theobald Miller, Reverend Mathias Christy, and James Bradley.  There were approximately 50 charter members.

The land upon which the church building stands was purchased by Sylvester Merriam for $50 and deeded to the members by Alfred and Sabra Andrews Wheeler on October 1, 1858.  It was noted that the largest donors were Henry Lane and Sylvester Merriam, each giving $60 for the construction of the church.  The deed for the lot was signed on October 2, 1858.  The building contract of $720 was given to John Groves of Brookfield. The final cost of construction was $1,000.

The first person baptized at the church was Polly Payne.

Paynes Corners Christian Church sign, 2020.
Photo contributed by Christine Novicky

In 1900, church services were held in the schoolhouse while some remodeling was done.

The church building was first heated by two coal stoves. In 1923, the Ladies' Aid Society raised funds to remove the two stoves and chimney and to install a new coal furnace underneath the building. A basement and stairway was added in 1945 with the help of Clate Waldorf. Elmer Brunswick wired the building for electricity, ending the use of kerosene.  In 1973, new siding was placed on the building, which is still the original structure.

The original pulpit was massive and was reached by several steps in the west end, with a window in the rear.  When a new floor was laid in the church, the pulpit was placed in the east end and a vestibule was added.  The carpenter that made this improvement was Asa McDaniels.

The church was eventually renamed Paynes Corners Christian Church after the Solomon Payne family, the first settlers at Paynes Corners.

Charter Members

Mrs. Eliza Alderman
Mrs. Sylvia Alderman
Mary Alderman
Mary Eliza Merriam Amy (wife of Guy Amy)
Mr. John Andrews
Mrs. John Andrews
Mrs. Nelson Baldwin
James Bradley
Mr. William Burton
Mrs. William Burton
Catherine Cauffield
Eliza Cauffield
Jane Cauffield
John Cauffield
Mary Ann Cauffield
Jane McMullin Christy (wife of Matthias Christy)
Matthias Christy
Lester Clark
Lewis Clark
Chauncey Forward
Mary Ackley Forward (wife of Chauncey Forward)
Martha Grosscase
Mary Ann Groves
Mr. William Groves
Mrs. William Groves
James Haney
Phoebe Williams Pope Hudson (wife of Robert Hudson)
Robert Hudson
Henry Lane
Eliza Alderman Mervin (wife of Lester Mervin)
Julia Patterson Mervin (wife of Norris Mervin)
Lola Mervin
Norris Mervin
Alcina Vinton Miner (wife of James Miner)
James Miner
Matilda Musser Hill (wife of Stanley Hill)
Stanley Hill
Daniel Patterson
Fannie Flower Patterson (wife of Daniel Patterson)
Ichabod B. Payne
Polly Gates Payne (wife of Solomon Payne
)

Mrs. Julia Robb
Mr. Scoville
Mrs. Scoville
Rachel Spencer
James Struble
Nancy Smith Struble (wife of James Struble)
Mary Ann Struble
Sabra Andrews Wheeler (wife of Alfred Wheeler)

The congregation celebrated the church's 125th anniversary on Sunday, May 1, 1983 under Reverend Henry W. Cadwell.  On that day there was an 11:00 AM service followed by a covered dish dinner, and then a church rededication service at 2:30 PM.  At the time the church had 75 members.

The cemetery behind the church referred to as the Payne's Corner Cemetery.  A link to the cemetery may be found here.  The first burial in the cemetery was Robert Burns.  Reverend Matthias Christy, one of the founders of the church, is  buried there, along with Lester Mervin, who for years was a Sunday school superintendent there.

Paynes Corners Christian Church Cemetery, 2020.
Photo contributed by Christine Novicky

Updated 9/12/2020

Sources:
Fred L. Martin, "Places of Worship," in Vienna, Ohio, Where We Live and Let Live: Town 4, Range 2 of the Connecticut Western Reserve (Apollo, PA: Closson Press, 1999), pp. 150-151.
"Paynes Corners Church Organized 67 Years Ago," The Youngstown Vindicator, 10 May 1925.
Bonita B. Peterson, "Paynes Corners Church to Mark 125th Year at Services Today," The Youngstown Vindicator, 1 May 1983.
"Paynes Corners Church to mark its 125th year," The Free Enterprise, 26 April, 1983.
"Sketch of Paynes Corners," unknown newspaper, unknown date (circa 1912).