History of the South Eaton Meeting House
In 1840, William B. Towle donated a plot of land for the express purpose of establishing a house of worship. Also donated was a “goodly stand” of timber. Trees were “felled and hauled to Blaisdell’s Mill” in carts driven by teams of oxen where they were milled into lumber and then returned over the steep incline known as “Horse Leg Hill.”
Stephen Allard was appointed leader and oversaw construction of the church by area neighbors. Completed in 1844, the South Eaton Meetinghouse opened its doors as a member of the Free Will Baptist Society.
The South Eaton Meetinghouse stands today in pristine condition and maintained as it was in 1844 by loyal neighbors. Non-denominational services, weddings, and local activities are still conducted in Eaton’s only structure listed on the National Historic Register.
The Pipe Organ
The organ, built by the George Woods & Co. of Boston circa 1890, was given to our member, Rachel Ward, by Doris Ashton’s family of Ossipee. Rachel, in turn, donated this beautiful instrument to the South Eaton Meeting House.
The organ has recently been renovated by William Boulton of Moultonboro. This restoration consisted of first disassembling parts of the organ case to remove the interior assembly, then lifting it away from the case which had been built into the rear pews. Then the assembly was then taken to a shop where mice droppings and nesting were cleaned out. Reeds were cleaned and tested, and reed pan and reed chamber gaskets received new leather to seal them. The octave coupler assembly had several broken pitmans which needed to be replaced. Finally, the restoration is complete and the organ is now ready for our enjoyment. Join us for a spring concert or our annual Thanksgiving Service to hear the organ played.
Located in the field across Burnham Road from the South Eaton Meeting House, is the picturesque cemetery where many people who played a prominent role in meeting house history now rest. They built the meeting house, cared for it throughout the centuries, had their family pews, attended services and were the backbone of South Eaton, NH. Today the cemerery is on private land, but maintained by friends and members of the meeting house.