Adirondack Mission History
The Adirondack Mission is a parish made up of five churches. The church buildings came into existence beginning in the mid 1800’s just as the unwieldy Diocese of New York was in the midst of being divided. The Diocese of Albany consecrated its first Bishop, The Rt. Reverend William Croswell Doane on the Feast of Purification, February 2, 1869. The Church of the Good Shephard in Chestertown was organized shortly thereafter in 1876 with the church built in 1880. St. Paul’s, Brant Lake began holding services in the mid-1880’s, led by The Rev. Alfred Taylor, Priest-in-Charge of Good Shephard; their church was built in 1890. St. Andrew’s, Schroon Lake, originally sat on the site of the Leland House overlooking the lake. The church was lost to fire when the Leland House burned. The church reopened on its present site in a roofed cellar in 1938. The congregation of St. Christopher’s, North Creek began meeting in the local firehouse. In 1949 the congregation purchased two pre-fabricated garages, which arrived by rail car and were constructed into the church building. St. Barbara’s, Newcomb is a log building, originally built in Tahawus, New York, and was donated by The National Lead Company. The cabin was moved 10 miles away on the back of a truck, along with many other buildings from that town to Newcomb in 1963 when the Federal Government started mining Titanium in Tahawus. For several years, Christ Church, Pottersville, originally built in 1848, was also a member of the Mission. Until 1959 these churches remained independent, although often shared clergy.
In the mid 1950’s Bishop Barry, the fourth Bishop of Albany, decided that the way to keep these churches open was to have a planned use of shared clergy, living and praying together at Barry House, a beautiful property on the eastern shore of Brant Lake, a gift of the Judge Irwin Untermeyer family, which would become the retreat and conference center for the Diocese, taking the place of the Eagle Lake property near Ticonderoga. It would also serve as the headquarters for the then six mission churches. Three priests with a caretaking couple took up residence in the summer of 1959. The Rev. D. Delos Wampler came to the Adirondack Mission along with Rev. Canon Edward T.H. Williams to begin this shared ministry. Margaret and Allen Girvin, with sons David and Steven, joined them as caretakers. The Adirondack Mission shared clergy, programs, and resources, with Barry House serving as its combined parish hall. In 2003 Barry House was closed but The Rev. Robert Limpert continued serving the Mission for more than a decade with the assistance of part time clergy.