Built in 1883, the current First Congregational Church building is the third church building of this congregation on this spot. Information regarding the beautiful stained glass windows can be found here.
The First Congregational Church & Society was the first church organized in Franklin County, in 1807. The current building was designed by Tristram Coffin, a Boston architect, in the Norman-Romanesque style. Built on the foundation of the previous building, one of the small tunnels built in the basement to secret fugitive slaves is still intact. U.S. Vice-President William A. Wheeler (to the 19th President, Rutherford B. Hayes) was a prominent member of the congregation and contributed several features on the interior of the church, including a stained glass window in honor of his wife’s parents and the marble cenotaph in honor of Rev. Ashbel Parmelee, the congregation’s first minister. Parmelee was also the county’s first resident clergy and one of Malone’s most influential early residents.
The congregation erected its first church building in 1826 and replaced that first stone building with a second, of brick, in 1852. It is this second building that is thought to have been built with passages to secret escaping slaves on their way to Canada.