One of people on a front porch is Marcia Emily Root, who has spent all 79 of her summers at a cottage originally bought by her grandmother in 1904 and that has remained in the family since. People take care of each other. Photo from the WCMA website.

There is also a preacher's stand for outdoor religious services, a dining hall, a chapel, a library. There was, however, some trouble in the early years, Ms. This little gingerbread cottage is a vacation or year-round house. This summer, assembly week ends today. To request an unblock, please fill out the form below and we will review it as soon as possible. Today, more than a dozen children run and play and swim, in a pond created from some of the springs.

Photos: Youngsters splashing in lake at the Willimantic Camp Meeting Association grounds. Please enable JavaScript in your browser settings to continue. Plus use our free tools to find new customers. ROUTE 32 is an old road that twists northward in eastern Connecticut and motorists, particularly in summer when the foliage is heavy, are likely to miss a sign tucked into the trees at a side road south of Willimantic.

For your smart phone and start exploring the world around you! Groups of ruffians would sometimes go to the campground, not to save their souls but to cause trouble. Has anyone ever been turned down, or later told to leave? In fact, there are stories about one family that was not only kicked out but also had to take the family cottage off the camp property.

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Now, perhaps 150 attend the main services during the week, but basically the weeks are the same. Occasionally, however, someone will notice the sign, be intrigued by it, and turn into the road, to discover a place that appears to be rooted forever in the 19th century. Of the 100 cottages that have remained, 43 are now full-time homes and the others are only used in the warm weather.

The Willimantic experience in evangelism was off to a rousing start. The banks were not about to foreclose on tiny cottages out of sight in the woods. The camp meeting group responded by naming special constables and establishing a little jail to take care of the infiltrators. The gloomy prospect has not materialized.

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In numbers, it is far removed from the assembly weeks of the last century when thousands flocked to the campground and horses and buggies would be lined up as far as the eye could see on Route 32. In the next several decades, another 100 cottages perished from neglect or because the original owners had died off. In this century, however, the movement started to fade, Most campgrounds simply disappeared.

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Old records indicate that some 50 tents were set up for the first assembly week, that the largest audience of the week reached between 4,000 and 5,000 people and that "the unusual degree of divine influence which attended all services, resulted in the conversion of 75 persons. On the 100th anniversary, in 1960, someone predicted that in 20 years there would be no young people living there to continue on. One main bedroom and large attic bedroom great for children.

In time the campground became so successful that more land was purchased, to a total of 35 acres, and permanent buildings were erected, some known as society houses erected by individual churches so members could be dry and fed during the special summer week, others by individual families. Individuals may own the cottages but the association owns the land and anyone buying a cottage must be approved by a committee.

  • "First, they built platforms for the tents, to get off the ground, then put up walls for privacy, then roofs for protection.
  • "Now we have a vision of the future," said Shirley Slye.
  • "This is a very unusual place to live," said Bill McKee.
  • "This like a second home.

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  1. "We exist for summer assembly," she said.
  2. "We pray like crazy," she laughed.
  3. "We still call them tent cottages," said Ms.
  4. (Steve Miller for The New York Times)(pg.
    • Com/c/mt9yy4s/willimantic-camp-meeting-association from 5.
    • Screen Reader Compatibility Information Due to the method this document is displayed on the page, screen readers may not read the content correctly.
    (Steve Miller for The New York Times)(pg.A Catholic priest from the nearby Immaculata Retreat House, run by the Roman Catholic Diocese of Norwich, also preaches at one of the camp's summer vesper services each year.A third-party browser plugin, such as Ghostery or NoScript, is preventing JavaScript from running.
    Additional information is available in this.

    She arrived 20 years ago as a young bride and is now president of the camp meeting association. She is now an executive at Windham Hospital and he is caretaker of the campground and studying to be a minister at Boston University School of Theology. She lives on Cape Cod but returns each year when the weather gets warm. She met her husband, Bill, the son of a Methodist minister, when both were students at Eastern Connecticut State University.

    Some people who had cottages at the campground had become so impoverished that they lost their homes elsewhere and came to live at the cottages year-round. The Victorian-style Barrows cottage at the Willimantic Camp Meeting Association's campgrounds. The Willimantic campground, which was established in 1860, was sponsored by the New London district of the Methodist Church.

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    Slye said the buyers represented several Protestant denominations and a few Roman Catholics -- has to agree to support the church activities at the site. Slye, is that over the past few decades many young couples have bought cottages and are raising families there. Some families started to spend part, or all, of the summer there and the special week of evangelism expanded to two or more weeks. Some people came from as far away as East Hartford and Providence, R.

    An updated (as of 1 April) outline of the 2015 summer program of the Willimantic Camp Meeting Association in South Windham, Connecticut.

    • " The next year, with the nation engaged in a bitter civil war, attendance was even bigger.
    • " What resulted in most cases were slim houses with steeped roofs and porches.
    • "A person who is fractious at a meeting will show up later with a meatloaf when someone is sick.

    Eleven acres were purchased off Route 32 in Willimantic because the hilly land had a natural amphitheater, an abundance of springs for drinking water, and a nearby railroad track to bring the faithful, or prospective converts, to the camp meeting each summer. Eventually, the camp grew to a cluster of 300 buildings. Fill out the CAPTCHA to continue searching on Whitepages. For a better experience, please download the original document and view it in the native application on your computer.

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    Traveling preachers came to each camp meeting for a week known as summer assembly, a time of evangelism and conversion. Use one of your book credits to continue reading from where you left off, or restart the preview. Users whose needs exceed these parameters may only access Buzzfile's Professional (Subscription) service. We use the latest and greatest technology available to provide the best possible web experience.

    When that happens, what do members of the association do? You can see additional information about our susbcription plans and pricing below. You can walk around the circle in the evening and stop and talk to everyone on their front porches. You must enable JavaScript to use foursquare.

    As you were browsing www. At Willimantic Camp Meeting Association a Christian Community founded in 1860 just outside of Willimantic, CT 06226. At the spot, under huge shade trees, are little wooden houses, perched this way and that around a circular road that had been made just wide enough to accommodate horses and buggies going one way.

    The hurricane of 1938 destroyed a third of the 300 cottages but with no loss of lives. The progression from tents to wooden houses was understandable, said Ms. The secret of the endurance of the Willimantic campground seems to lie in the little homes that had been erected over the decades and what happened in the Great Depression of the 1930's. The spirit is as dedicated; the prayers are as fervent.

    Ingrid McKee describes the campground as a safe and wonderful place for children to grow up. It is the Willimantic Camp Meeting Association, a survivor of a Methodist evangelical campground movement of the last century and that now proudly claims to be the oldest such campground in continuous operation in the country. It seemed to be only a matter of time before the campground itself would pass along. It was a success from the start. It will be the 156th consecutive annual camp meeting held th.

    Description: An updated (as of 1 April) outline of the 2015 summer program of the Willimantic Camp Meeting Association in South Windham, Connecticut. Despite the aura of serenity at the old campground, Shirley Slye admits there is occasional dissent and friction. Differences are quickly forgotten, anyway, she added.

    Shirley Slye believes the main reason the campground has endured while so many others did not is because it has never lost its mission. Shirley Slye, unofficial historian of Willimantic Camp Meeting Association. Shirley Slye, who has lived at the camp for 20 years and is the association's unofficial historian, said Willimantic was just one of hundreds of camp meeting sites established in the 1800's, stretching from New England to the West, which was opening up to settlers.

    It will be the 156th consecutive annual camp meeting held there. Make sure your information is up to date. Nearly all of the houses have front porches, for sitting and talking on a warm summer evening. Nine are owned by Methodist ministers, even though the camp association is now nondenominational. No tips yet Write a short note about what you liked, what to order, or other helpful advice for visitors. Not searching for business use?

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