Park Church History - November 27, 1845
Happy Birthday Livy and Sam! November 27, 1845 for Olivia Louise Langdon and November 30, 1835 for Samuel Langhorne Clemens. Here they are shown outside Elmira's Park Church, circa 1895. Livy grew up in this congregation and was married to 'Mark Twain' in Elmira by The Rev. Thomas K. Beecher on February 2, 1870 in her home across Church Street from this building that was constructed 1874-6. Her nephew, Jervis Landgon, Jr. was the first baby baptized in the new sanctuary. Her parents, Jervis and Olivia Lewis Langdon were two of the 41 abolitionists who founded this break-away congregation in 1846 over their opposition to churches that were willing to overlook the evils of slavery. Over the twenty years that the Clemens' family came to summer at Quarry Farm, Livy would introduce her husband to many Elmirans who had influenced her childhood, including her Sunday School teacher and her sister Susan Crane's best friend, Julia Jones Beecher. Today the congregation of The Park Church continues the efforts begun over 175 years ago - a willingness to do church a little differently. We're proud of our historic legacy and even more excited about what we can create together in Elmira today.