The growth of the Catholic Church in Sullivan, Orange & Ulster Counties began along the Hudson River in the 1830â€™s. Prior to that the faithful would have been served by circuit riders out of New York who would administer the sacraments as they visited the area about once a month. In the early 1800â€™s the Diocese of New York included all of New York State as well as New Jersey and much of eastern Pennsylvania, a large territory to cover!
In the 1830â€™s parishes were established in Saugerties and Newburgh, as well as one inland parish at Goshen. This certainly cut down the amount of travel that priest had to do to serve the region.
By the 1840/1850â€™s more inland parishes were established to deal with the growing population in Kingston, then Ellenville. There were many settlements along the Delaware River; most were predominantly German speaking. Parishes sprang up in Port Jervis, Obernburg and Narrowsburg, then later, Callicoon where there was also a seminary.
Eventually parishes were founded in the villages of Monticello and, later, Liberty in 1875 and 1897 respectively. Port Jervis had a second parish â€“ one was for the railroad workers, the other for the middle- and upper class families â€“ which were merged into one during the next century. Kingston, also, had two parishes â€“ St Maryâ€™s, at 160 Broadway, in 1842 and St. Peterâ€™s, on Wurts St., in 1858.
Although many of the church buildings were erected prior to the establishment of the parish, the priests who serviced that parish would have ridden out from another parish. For example, Wurtsboro was serviced by Kingston, then Ellenville prior to the formation of St. Josephâ€™s parish.
It is helpful to know how and when the churches were founded to find the correct parish from which to obtain baptismal, confirmation, marriage, and funeral records. Below is a listing of the churches in Sullivan, Orange, and Ulster Counties that were established during the 1800â€™s. Hope you find this helpful.
Town Name of Church Founded
Saugerties St. Mary of the Snow 1833
Goshen St. John the Evangelist 1837
Newburgh St. Patrickâ€™s 1838
Kingston St. Maryâ€™s 1842
Ellenville St. Mary & St. Andrew 1850
Port Jervis Immaculate Conception of Mary 1851
Obernburg St. Maryâ€™s 1854
Kingston St. Peterâ€™s 1858
Narrowsburg St. Francis Xavier 1862
Monticello St. Peterâ€™s 1874
Callicoon Holy Cross 1875
Wurtsboro St. Josephâ€™s 1880
Liberty St. Peterâ€™s 1897
Livingston Manor St. Aloysius 1899
Port Jervis Sacred Heart 1899
Forestburgh St. Thomas Aquinas 1900