The earliest record of Episcopal Church services in this vicinity was 1816 when St. Stephen's Church of Perryville was incorporated. At that time Chittenango was little more than a gathering of frame and log houses. From 1816-1832 rectors from St. Stephen's held missionary services in Chittenango.
Around 1849 a few gentlemen who greatly admired and revered the beautiful services of the Church, agreed to make an effort to have services occasionally held. The Rev. S. Hanson Coxe, rector of the thriving parish of St. Peter's, Cazenovia, was induced to officiate here. Rev. Dr. A. P. Smith became rector of St. Peter's on July 1, 1850, and occasionally held services here in the Bethel, the Baptist Church, and Union Hall. By the spring of 1855 services began to be held regularly once a month in the Bethel. St. Paul's was officially organized as a parish on June 18, 1855.
On August 15, 1855, the parish was formally admitted into union with the convention of the Diocese of Western NY, under Bishop DeLancey. There were six communicants: Sanford and Charlotte Cobb, Joseph Sanger, Thomas A. and Hannah Clark, and Mrs. J. G. Stower. In 1858 Mrs. G. W. Kellogg started a Sunday School with eleven scholars. In November 1859 the ladies held the first Fair - $46 was realized. Many fairs were held between There was an earnest desire for a church building.
In July 1855 a lot of land was purchased, but was later sold and the money put into the Building Fund. From 1855 to 1865 all activities were directed to increasing the Building Fund. In 1864 Joseph Sanger died, leaving $600 to the parish. In 1863 Mr. Samuel Housely gave St. Paul's Society a lot of land in the center of Chittenango. This land was originally a basin where boats from the Erie Canal turned around. $1000 was raised by a "Tatting Society", formed of young ladies who received orders for their work from all over the country. On December 4, 1865 the cornerstone was laid. In a box deposited in the cornerstone was enclosed a Bible, Prayer Book, a Gospel Messenger, and an 1865 Almanac. Also included were the names of the Rector, Wardens, Vestry, members of the building committee and the donor of the land, the names of the ladies in the "Tatting Society" and included a sample of The plans for the church were designed after the plan of St. Peter's Church at Cazenovia. The lot, building, furniture and windows cost $5000. The building was completed in less that six months.
The first service was held in the church on Easter Day, April 1, 1866. On May 12, 1866 the church was consecrated by Bishop Coxe. The silver chalice and paten communion set was donated by the Sunday School. It was made by Fisher Silver Company in NY City.
In an article by Ida Goins in The Good News in 1993 she said, "The early notes in our record book tell of the heroic struggles these builders undertook in establishing this building we inherit. They created a house for God right after the Civil War, in a rural village, on a canal, at a time with only a weekly newspaper for communication, and only a horse for coming to work." Rev. Dr. Smith of Cazenovia preached for three years after the church was built. In 1870 Rev. James Pardee became Dr. Smith's assistant and served Chittenango. In 1872 he was suceeded by Rev. William Ely, who was really the first resident priest.
When Mr. Ely was rector the membership was reduced by 14 deaths and removals, which took away most of the members. The church experienced some rough times. Services were continued, but none of the clergy served very long terms. The bishop supplied clergy from St. Andrew's Seminary in Syracuse. The church was closed from Advent 1880 to Palm Sunday 1881. The church building was in great need of repair so Mrs. Edward Fuller and Miss May Fuller at their own personal expense saw to it that the necessary things were done.
In 1913 extensive repairs were made while Rev. James Munson was Rector. The cupolas were replaced and the church was painted. The front doors were painted red and have been red ever since. The picket fence was removed. A side entrance was put in the south, rear part of the church to furnish an outside entrance. These improvements were made possible by the Anna Gates Memorial Fund.
In 1925 Father Ernest Ladbrook came to St. Paul's and generated enthusiasm and interest. Under his direction the Parish Hall was built in 1928. A new heating system was installed, the interior was redecorated and the outside was painted. Addie Fowler was active at this time. During the depression the service was held in the Sacristy. In 1970 two upstairs classrooms were added. In 1985 an office was added and the kitchen was enlargened.
During the 1940's and early 1950's the church was used as a class room due to the booming population in the area. The room was divided by curtains. During the 1950's St. Paul's Church held smorgasbord dinners. They were very well attended by people from the surrounding areas. Marian Redding organized the ones at the Chittenango High School and Bernice Marsh and Vi Doty organized the ones at the American Legion.
In December 1965 a steel container was placed in the front left wall of the church. It contained a New English Bible, modern New Testament, a 1965 Stewardship Brochure, an ordination program, a John F. Kennedy half dollar, pictures of the church, a copy of the Messenger, a Journal of the Diocesan Convention, a copy of the Document on Mutual Responsibility and Interdependence in the Body of Christ, and a copy of the bulletin cover commemorating the centennial year.
From 1969 to 1972 Church School classes were combined with the Presbyterian Church at their church. An article by Ida Goins in The Good News in 1993 told about the restoration work Jeff Finch of Golgotha Restorations did in the Sanctuary. He discovered that in 1865 the lower section of the wall was patterned with a stenciled interlocking circle design consisting of a cream background stenciled with pale tan or beige, very soft in their effect. At the height of the window sill a stenciled band about eight inches across separated this from an upper section spotted with Jesus' monogram" I H S". At a later time a wall paper with stronger colors was placed on top of the original decoration.
In 2000 the church bought land in back of the church. In August 2003 the church bought the Union Hall building next door. It was originally built in 1820 as a warehouse on a canal branching off the Erie Canal. There was a stage and hall on the second floor of the building. It later became Chittenango Farm Supply. The building was torn down in January 2004.
Presently we do not have a Rector. Father Charles Grover, a parishioner, leads Holy Communion every other Sunday. On the alternate week a lay person leads Morning Prayer. Activities include Altar Guild, Bible Study, Fellowship Activities, a Bazaar, Oz Day, and a Metal Drive. The church participates in the Association of Churches and Sullivan Food Cupboard. We provide Christmas gifts for several families in need. The church is used by AA, Trout Unlimited for youth fly tying classes, and Girl Scouts.
The ladies of the church continue the tradition of raising money at the Bazaar, by selling hand made items and baked goods. There is a delicious luncheon. Recently raffles have been added. The Oz parade goes right by the church. Members sell hot dogs, drinks, popcorn, and baked goods. Originally we sold craft items at the church, but now have a booth at the park, where we sell tin men made out of tin cans and Oz Dolls made out of blocks
Rev. William Ely 1872
Rev. Robert Paul 1875-1877
Rev. Bowen 1877-1878
Rev. William Hayward 1878-1880
Walter Marvine 1880-1881
Rev. Horace Goodyear 1881-1883
Rev. W. C. Nesbitt
Rev. F. P. Winne 1885-1888
Rev. W. Lylburn 1888-1890
Rev. A. Ebersole 1890-1897
Rev. G. Ottaway 1897-1907
Rev. James Monson 1907-1921
Rev. W. Grimshaw 1922-1925
Rev. Ernest Ladbrook 1925-1832
Rev. George L. Gurney 1932-
Rev. Canon Auer 1945-1950
Rev. Lisle Caldwell 1953-1959
Rev. Herbert Barsale
Rev. Alfred (Ted) Tottey 1962-1968
Rev. Frederick Mills 2 churches 1968-1973
Rev. Erwin Cooper 2 churches 1973-1982
Rev. Alden Pearson Supply 1982
Rev. Robert Ligouri Supply 1982-1983
Rev. Joseph Williams Supply 1983-1986
Rev. Jeanne Fife Rector 1986-1990
Rev. George Dirghalli Supply 1990-1991
Rev. Joan Shelton Vicar 1991-1996
Rev. Hal Avery Supply 1996-1997
Rev. David Andrews Rector 1997-2006
Rev. Donald Berry Supply 2006-2007
Rev. Kathlyn Schofield Rector 2007-2013
Rev.Elizabeth Gillette Supply 2013-2014
Rev. Charles Grover Parishioner, Supply 2004-present