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History of Webster

In 1834 construction began on Webster Church, the oldest building in continuous use in Washtenaw County. Built on land donated by Hannah Williams Kingsley, it was completed in 1835 after Moses Kingsley secured donations from Daniel Webster and others in the East.

The church had been founded in 1833 under the leadership of the Rev. Charles G. Clark, a New York missionary to the Michigan frontier. Clark was pastor until 1858. Originally Presbyterian, the church polity changed to Congregational in 1860 and to United Church of Christ in 1961.

Changes to the building have included the remodeling of the doors and windows, the loss of the spire due to lightning in 1914, the addition of the church school in 1954, and the addition of the fellowship hall (the church was literally lifted off the ground to build the basements walls of the fellowship hall) in 1986.

The adjacent cemetery was founded in 1837.

Webster Church is a Michigan Registered Historic Site. Most of the above information is taken from the plaque at the front of the church. Detailed information about the history of the church and Webster Township can be found in the book "Webster: a Time, a Place, a People: A History of Life in Webster Township, Washtenaw County, Michigan from 1824 to 2008" by Grace Shackman (the book's publication was a joint project of Webster United Church of Christ and the Webster Township Historical Society).

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