This is our heritage.
The building was built in 1840 by the men of the Troy community, from local hemlock and white pine trees. The timber frame (mortise and tenon joinery) construction and architectural style of the church, Greek Revival and Gothic Revival, were the construction method and style of choice in most communities of pre-Civil War Maine. Troy Union Meeting House was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on November 17, 2011.
What denomination is Troy Union Church?
Troy Union Church has been a Christian church from the beginning. Land was given by Francis Hillman, beside a post road which connected Unity to Bangor. The founders bought pews to support the building of the Union Meeting House. The townspeople had only one church, so they said other congregations could use the building, as long as they preached the Christian religion. That’s why it was called a “Union” Meeting House.
It was not used for town meetings. Now it is an independent nondenominational Christian church. For quite a few years the United Methodist Church has supplied our pastors. We have on several occasions shared a pastor with the Dixmont United Methodist Church.
Why is the steeple leaning?
The steeple (belfry tower) is leaning because the main supporting structure, built of trusses hewn from large green hemlock trees over 171 years ago have rotted. Water leaked in through the belfry roof. The south “chord’’ is sagged so the tower leans into the sanctuary. Note: this chord or beam is about 12” X 12” and spans 32 feet. The tree to replace this chord needs to be 20” diameter breast height and 40 feet tall, and must be straight and sound.
What keeps the tower from falling into the sanctuary?
A strong stabilizing support was installed April 12-13, 2011. It was built by Preservation Timber Framing, Inc. (Berwick) by Arron Sturgis and crew. This brace extends from the ground under the church up through the floor and ceiling, and on up to support the south side of the belfry tower.
When can this structure be taken down?
The stabilizing brace will be removed after the restoration of the trusses and belfry, and roof repair. Then the belfry will be supported by new trusses and won’t lean any longer. The belfry will not leak, so this should be good for another 100 years or more.
Couldn’t the steeple have been removed?
No, because the supporting structure of the north side of the tower is integrated into thestructure of the front (gable end) of the church.
Donations: Steeple Fund, Treasurer, 230 Bangor Road, Troy, ME 04987