[p. 36] Dr. Manning
gave the charge to the pastor and offered the closing prayer.
The meeting-house was dedicated the same evening.
It was of Germanized Romanesque style of architecture, and the spire was always admired as a model of graceful symmetry.
A clock was placed by the town in the tower at its completion.
With hopes realized as to the meeting-house, the society found itself burdened with debt.
A wealthy citizen persuaded us that a church structure costing ten thousand dollars was better than the five thousand dollar chapel we first planned.
He promised five hundred dollars for himself and fifteen hundred more from some friends.
He did not redeem his own pledge, nor secure the help of his friends.
On account of the Boston
fire, November 9, 1872, some other subscribers were unable to pay their pledges, and the times were unfavorable for securing new subscriptions.
The total cost of land, building and furnishings was twenty thousand five hundred dollars. After applying all we could collect to payment of our bills, the society owed fourteen thousand two hundred dollars. We were able to place a mortgage on the property for ten thousand dollars, at eight per cent. interest, with personal endorsement on the note.
The four thousand two hundred dollars was floated by some Boston
banks on four months notes, personally endorsed and many times renewed.
Interest account was over eleven hundred dollars a year, we had pledged fourteen hundred dollars salary to Mr. Cutter
, beside heating, lighting and janitor service.
Our two first years had been a struggle.
Now our expenses were doubled.
Our membership was only thirty-four, but we had the co-operation of the community.
The ladies held a three days fair in 1873 in Brooks Hall and cleared a thousand dollars, and six months later realized five hundred more in a similar way for the building fund.
Every one paid as much pew rent as he could, pledged