ZION Church
Manhattan, New York

A while back I wrote in with questions about the Zion Church, corner of 
Madison Avenue & 38th Street.  Since that time I've learned its history 
from a very kindly gentleman by the name of Wayne Kempton, who is the 
Archivist for the Episcopal Diocese of NYC.  Just in case there are 
others who are also researching this church, I thought I'd pass the 
information along.

Also, Wayne told me that he would be happy to help anyone who also had 
questions pertaining to the Episcopal Archives.  He can be reached via 
e-mail at: Archivesdny@mindspring.com.  He can also be reached by phone 
at 212-316-7400 or 7419.

And now for Wayne's history of the Zion Church:
"Now, with respect to Zion Church moving north - this was a very common 
occurrence back then. As neighborhoods changed many of the Episcopal 
Churches chose to move northward to "better" areas. This was also true of Zion.

Zion was organized as an Episcopal Church ca 1810. At that time it was 
located at Mott and Pearl Streets.  It soon move to Mott and Cross 
Streets where it rebuilt after an 1815 fire.  There it stayed until 1851 
when it discontinued its services at Mott Street and moved to a small 
Chapel built on the southeast corner of Madison Avenue and 38th Street 
on land donated by the heirs of Susan Ogden.

In 1853 a new edifice was erected on the same site and the Mott Street 
building was sold.

In 1860, Zion supported the organization of the Church of the Atonement 
, located at the corner of Madison & 28th Street.It was renamed Zion 
Chapel and remained open from 1860-1873 when the congregation dispersed.

In 1890, Zion Church merged with St. Timothy's Church, which was located 
at 331 West 57th Street. The Church that was being used by St. Timothy's 
burned down on Jan. 22, 1890 and the merger took place to help effect 
the building of a NEW church to seat 1200 people at the same 
location.For over 30 years this Church of Zion & St. Timothy served this 
area until on Dec. 31, 1921 that Church too burned down.

In 1922 the Church of Zion & St. Timothy merged with St. Matthews Church 
then located at 26 West 84th Street, to form The Church of St. Matthew & 
St. Timothy.

It is not likely that the original parishioners of Zion Church ca 1860 
would have themselves been still living at the same address in 1922 when 
the church merged with St. Matthews. People were moving all the time as 
were churches as the city's neighborhoods changed.

You can check New York City Directories going back to 1800 to get the 
addresses of your ancestors. Then you can see which Episcopal Churches 
would have been nearby."


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