Ledyard Congregational Church is blessed to have such a long congregational history.  The table below lists our pastors and the years they have served us.  The rows in boldface indicate “settled”, aka., long-term, pastors.  The rest are either interim ministers or documented guest preachers.

Q:  Who was the first pastor?

A:  It depends–does a temporary pastor count?  Samuel Seabury was a temporary preacher, hired in 1725.  But Ebenezer Punderson was the first settled pastor, hired in 1729.

In January 1726, the new North Groton (now Ledyard) Ecclesiastical Society (predecessors of our current LCC Ecclesiastical Society) began meeting.  They hired the first of a series of temporary preachers, recent Harvard graduate Samuel Seabury.  He was hired to preach for ten Sundays in private homes.  Over the next few years, a meetinghouse was begun and a permanent, or “settled,” minister was hired in 1729.  This was Ebenezer Punderson, who left the North Groton Church in 1734 and established what is now St. James Episcopal Church in Preston.

Pastor From To Photo and Notes
Samuel Seabury 1725 1726 A recent Harvard graduate, Mr. Seabury was neither ordained nor licensed when he preached here.  He was hired to preach for 10 weeks.  His father was John Seabury, a Deacon of the Groton church.  The famous Bishop Samuel Seabury, Jr. was the son of this Samuel Seabury, born several years after this time.
Simon Bachus 1726
Dudley Woodbridge 1727
James Calkins 1728 1729
Ebenezer Punderson 1729 1734
Thomas Welld 1734
William Adams 1734  1736
Andrew Croswell 1736 1746  or 1736 -1748
Jacob Johnson 1749 1772
Park Allyn 1774
Mr. Newell 1797
Nehemiah Dodge 1798
Asa Meech 1799 1800
Aaron Kinne 1799
David Avery 1806  1807
Timothy Tuttle 1810 1864 Rev-TuttleTimothy Tuttle was born in East Haven Nov 29, 1781 into a large family of moderate means. He had to work his way through Yale, where he studied theology. Rev. Tuttle came to preach to both Groton area churches (now known as Ledyard and Groton) in 1810.  His starting salary was paid by both churches: “$450 Dollars & his Wood found, or $500 Dollars & find himself Wood.”  He worked for both until 1834, when he asked to be relieved of duties for  South Groton.  Two years later, the town of Ledyard was incorporated.

Rev. Tuttle organized the first Sabbath School for young people (he later claimed this was the first in the entire country). Rev. Tuttle continued to preach each Sabbath, until within three weeks of his death on June 6, 1864.  He had served as a pastor and leader for 54 years.

During Rev. Tuttle’s tenure here, the Town of Ledyard was established (1836), and some years later, the church name was changed from North Groton Church to Ledyard Congregational Church.

Nehemiah B. Cook 1860 1868 Rev-Nehemiah-CookSon-in-law of Rev. Tuttle, Nehemiah Cook began to assist the aging minister in the pulpit in 1860.
Charles Cutting 1868 1881  Rev-Charles-Cutting
John Avery 1881 1892  Rev-John_Avery
Albert Kinmouth 1893 1907  Rev-Albert-Kinmouth
William J. White 1908 1914
Giles F. Goodenough 1914 1926
Ralph Krout 1927 1928  Seminary student
Nelson Schlegel 1928 1929  Seminary student
Edward P. Kelly 1929 1933
Frank B. Loper 1933 1937
Loring D. Chase 1939 1944
Earl F. Mathewson 1944 1948
John B. Schoning 1949 1953
Hubert F. Leach 1953 1959
John D. Mowrey 1960 1963
Joseph A. Porter 1963 1966
Frederic E. Reynard 1967 1984
Stephen Jones  1984  1985
Fred Coulter 1985 1994  
Robert Woodward 1994 1996
Mary Larson ne. Brown 1996 2008
Michael Ader 2008 2010  
Catriona Lanza

ne. Grant

2010 present  revGrant-in-office-4-x-6