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Manuscript Library

Welcome to the Booth Library manuscript index. 

The manuscript index contains links to finding aids for the collections of the Booth Library.  Each finding aid has a description of that collection along with a listing of the items within that collection.  The Booth Library staff and volunteers are updating the index daily in order to make your research experience more productive.

The Manuscript Index is arranged alphabetically by collection name.  To access a finding aid, please click on its name.

To search the Manuscript Index for a specific research topic, please enter the term into the Search Library Box below. 

Please keep in mind that many collections have not been inventoried while others are currently in progress.  If you have any questions regarding the Finding Aids or the Index, please contact the archivist at

Collection TitleCL 136 United Baptist Church CollectionCreatorBooth Library
Processed ByRachel Dworkin, Kristen Goble
Date Completed:December 2014
Provenance:The items in this collection were donated to the Booth Library by the United Baptist Church in 2011. 
Terms:Elmira (N.Y.); Churches, Baptist


Official recognition of First Baptist Church took place in 1829.  The first church building went up in 1830 on land donated by Geoffrey Wisner.  Membership grew steadily in the church and by 1847 it became necessary to build a second, larger edifice.  Also in 1847, escaped slave John W. Jones came to Elmira and began his fifty years of service as Sexton for First Baptist Church.  In 1892, the church spent over $70,000 on a third and final building, which still stands today. 


Southside Baptist Church began around 1888 when residents of the south side of Elmira opened their homes for Friday evening prayer meetings.  Soon, attendance at these meetings warranted the building of a permanent church home.  In 1891 the Baptist Mission Sunday School was formed and Wednesday evening prayer meetings were held in a rented store on the corner of Pennsylvania and South Avenues.  Three years later Southside Baptist Church was officially organized.  In 1895 the lot where the temporary church was located was bought and construction on the church building began.  An addition was built in 1953 to accommodate the flourishing membership.


First Baptist Church and Southside Baptist Church combined around 2011 and now form United Baptist Church.


The United Baptist Chuch Collection is broken down into several series.

Series I: First Baptist Church Membership Files - Church membership files, 1950s-2000s, featuring genealogical information, newspaper clippings and photographs.

Series II: First Baptist Church Collection - Church administrative documents, annual reports, programs, newsletters, photographs and assorted documents.

Series III: Southside Baptist Church Collection - Church administrative documents, programs, photographs and assorted documents. 

Extent13 linear feet
Date Span1829-2009
AbstractThis collection contains the records of the First and Southside Baptist Churches of Elmira.  From the First Baptist Church, it includes membership files, programs, newsletters, photographs and miscellaneous records.  From the Southside Baptist Church, the collection includes programs, newsletters, photographs, newspaper clippings and miscellaneous records.   

Filter by:
TitleDocumentBox NumberFolder NumberLocation
Southside Baptist Church Files
Letter - to the trustees at Southside Baptist Church regarding repairs to the organ; 1955.LetterQ1923
Letter - Letter from Mrs. W.E. McCoy, Associate Clerk of Chemung River Baptist Association to pastors and clerks regarding fiscal calendars; March 1, 1956.LetterQ1924
Letter - Letter from Chemung River Baptist Association Associate Clerk, Mrs. W.E. McCoy to church clerks regarding annual meeting reports; August 27, 1956.LetterQ1925
Letter - Letter from Richard Denton of Law Offices of Denton, Winding & Moseson to John Mulligan regarding the sale of Southside Baptist Church property; September 17, 1956.LetterQ1926
Letter - Letter from Southside Baptist Church Board of Trustees Chairman John Mulligan to Richard Denton regarding the sale of church property; September 24, 1956.LetterQ1927
Minutes - Motion to sell Southside Baptist Church property; September 27, 1956.MinutesQ1928
Program - Southside Baptist Church Mortgage Burning Service; October 14, 1956. ProgramQ1929
Letter - Letter from Southside Baptist Church to Reverend George Lang extending the call to become pastor; December 12, 1956.LetterQ1930
Budget - Proposed budget for Southside Baptist Church; 1957.BudgetQ1931
Certificate - Recognition Certificate presented to Southside Baptist Church from The Council on Missionary Cooperation of the American Baptist Convention; February 18, 1957.CertificateQ1932
Program - Southside Baptist Church Organ Dedication Service; November 24, 1957.ProgramQ1933
Program - Southside Baptist Church Easter Sunday Services; April 6, 1958.ProgramQ1934
Program - Southside Baptist Church Dedication Service; October30, 1960.ProgramQ2001
Letter - Letter from American Baptist Foreign Mission Society to Ethel Nichols regarding her retirement; May 17, 1961.LetterQ2002
Letter - Letter from co-workers at the Gauhati Baptist Church to Ethel Nichols regarding her retirement; May 1961.LetterQ2003
Letter - Letter from members of Student Christian Movement in Guahati to Ethel Nichols regarding her retirement;1961.LetterQ2004
Manuscript - "Farewell Address" by W.M. Hostel to Ethel Nichols; March 1961.ManuscriptQ2005
Resolution - Resolution of appreciation on the retirement of Ethel Nichols; November 1961.ResolutionQ2006
Card - Goodbye card sent by Mrina to Ethel Nichols; 1961.CardQ2007
Report - Annual report of Southside Baptist Church; January 20, 1965.ReportQ2008
Program - Southside Baptist Church Women's Council; 1966-1967.ProgramQ2009
Letter - Letter from Ethel Nichols to Winifred Susemihl regarding her birthday and the state of affairs in Assam; September 6, 1967.LetterQ2010
Letter - Letter from Ethel Nichols to Day Circle friends at Southside Baptist Church; December 21, 1967.LetterQ2011
Requiem - Composed by Dennis Holly; 1968.RequiemQ2012
Newsletter - American Baptist Mission, Guahati newsletter about Nichols English School, named after missionary Ethel Nichols; 1969.NewsletterQ2013
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