Mayflower barrel at Waldoboro's Old German Church

Jul 05, 2014
This barrel, located at the Old German Church in Waldoboro, is believed to have carried dishes on the Mayflower.

Waldoboro — On entering the second floor vestibule of the Old German Church on Route 32 South, one’s attention is drawn to an old wooden barrel standing in the corner.

According to long-time Waldoboro historian Richard Wallace, the barrel came to this country onboard the Mayflower when the first English immigrants landed in Plymouth, Mass.

Esther L. Soule Gross, a well-known local genealogist who traced her ancestry back to George Soule, one of the first Mayflower settlers, gave the barrel to the church after having the barrel’s bands repaired in order to keep the original staves in place. It is believed that the barrel carried dishes and supplies for her ancestors as they journeyed to their new home and later was transported to Waldoboro where the barrel resided on her family’s farm in North Waldoboro.

Visitors may see the barrel as well as many other interesting artifacts such as the box pews, balcony with its pump organ, the wine glass pulpit, and a cemetery plot map of the accompanying grave yard when they attend the Old German Church annual service Sunday, Aug. 3, at 3 p.m.

The annual service is sponsored by the German Protestant Ladies Auxiliary and the Waldoboro Woman’s Club and will be followed by a collation under the shade trees. The church is open during July and August from 1 to 4 p.m. daily. Admission is free.

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