History of Township Churches

Kensington Baptist Church
The Baptist denomination have had for more than a quarter of a century a society in the township of Brighton. Previous to that time, the attendants upon the Baptist services worshiped at Kensington, hence the name of the organization. In the year 1854, the membership in Brighton having reached nearly 30 in number, it was deemed expedient to erect a house of worship. A plain but commodious structure was built, and since that time the condition of the church has varied. Five years ago the Rev. G. T. Ellis filled a pastoral relation with the people, and infused new life and energy into the society. His labors have been greatly blessed, both spiritually and in a temporal sense. The house has been remodeled and greatly improved, and the membership has reached 80. A flourishing Sabbath-school is also maintained in connection with the church. Gardner Spring is the church clerk.

This History was written in 1880 - Author Unknown

The Pleasant Valley Wesleyan Methodist Church*
* Prepared by the pastor

This church is located in Pleasant Valley, about five miles east of the Village of Brighton, on the road to Milford.

The society was organized March 9, 1873, by Reverend John C. Martin, of Williamston, Ingham Co., who took charge of the church as its pastor, and labored arduously to promote the interests of the work committed to his care. At the time of its organization there were 24 members, nearly all heads of families, and they found that much persistence was required to stem the tide of opposition that set against them. The society held their services at that time in what is known as the Lyon School-house, and notwithstanding the persistent opposition, their numbers increased, and they steadily and confidently looked ahead to the prosperity that awaited them. In the fall of 1873, Reverend J. H. Canfield was invited to serve them as pastor, and during the following winter his labors among them resulted in a powerful revival of religion, the influence of which was widely felt.

In the spring of 1874 a project was entered into to build a house of worship, and through the energy and persistent efforts of the pastor, assisted by some of his members, sufficient subscriptions were raised to cover the entire expense of the contemplated building. They looked upon the "pay as-you-go" system as being safest in the end, hence all bills were promptly paid; and when the church was completed, it was dedicated to the Lord as free property, without a mortgage or debt. The church is 48 feet long by 32 feet wide, and the posts are 18 feet high. The seats are so arranged as to comfortably seat about 250 persons. Mr. Thomas Hunter took the contract for building, and the work was executed conscientiously, and to the entire satisfaction of the committee. It was completed and dedicated in the fall of 1874, and a large congregation listened to the dedicatory sermon preached by Rev. Adam Crooks, of Syracuse, N.Y., who was called a few months after to enter his eternal rest. The whole cost of building the church, as reported by the board of trustees, was $1727.50.

The society having a house of worship of their own, took new courage, and as they put forth increased efforts to improve the moral condition of the community, they were permitted to see a corresponding degree of increase in the interests of the society. New members were added from time to time, and many who had not been in sympathy with them attended their meetings.