Our denomination, the United Church of Christ (UCC), was formed in 1957 by the merger of the Congregational Christian Churches and the Evangelical and Reformed Church. Each of those two demonimations had merged earlier, being four originally: the Congregational, Christian, Evangelical, and Reformed. Our roots, Congregational, are deep in Connecticut, going back to 1630! Both the Separatist Pilgrims of Plymouth and the Puritans of Massachusetts Bay are our forbears in the faith.
Our churches in CT were instrumental in the 19th-century abolitionist movement and led the struggle to free the captured Africans of The Amistad. (The Conference helped reconstruct the Amistad replica at Mystic Seaport.) We founded Yale College to train our ministers and provided the impetus for the establishment of Dartmouth. After the Civil War, we helped found traditionally African-American colleges and churches across the South through the American Missionary Association.
Our Congregationalist ancestors in the faith were the first mainline denomination to ordain an African-American, Rev. Lemuel Haynes of West Hartford, in 1785, and the first woman, Rev. Antionette Brown Blackwell, in 1853.