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Cheshire Church Common

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Cheshire was settled by families from Wallingford starting as early as 1694. In 1723 the Cheshire Ecclesiastical Society was established as the West Society of Wallingford. One year later it was named New Cheshire when it was incorporated from Wallingford. The first meetinghouse was erected about .25 miles from the site of the present Congregational Church. The second was constructed in 1735 on the green east of the present church. The property including land for the burying ground along Wallingford Road was given to the Society by Reverend Samuel Hall. It was a natural site for the meetinghouse being situated at the intersection of today's Route 10 and Wallingford Road. The third meetinghouse was erected on its present site west of the green in 1826 leaving the green an open space.

A drawing of the church c. 1850 and the green in front of it shows a wide open expanse used as the driveway. To the north is a fenced portion that appears to be covered with grass and has several mature shade trees planted near the church. A photograph taken about 75 years later from a similar vantage point shows the green landscaped very much as it appears today; a grassy semicircle planted with mature trees.

A town hall was constructed across from the church in 1867. It has gone through several alterations including a substantial addition c. 1989 that changed the main entrance from the front of the building to the east side oriented toward the rear parking lot. Foot Road, a diagonal cross street to the east connecting Wallingford Road and Main Street was demolished and incorporated into the parking lot.



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