Laban Ainsworth

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Laban Ainsworth (July 19, 1757 – March 17, 1858) was an American clergyman and pastor. He holds the record for the longest serving pastorate in American history. He served as pastor in Jaffrey, New Hampshire from 1782 to 1858, a period of 76 years.[1] Ainsworth was also adept at writing hymnals.[citation needed]


Laban Ainsowrth was born in Woodstock, Connecticut on July 19, 1757 to William and Mary Marcy Ainsworth.[2][3] As a result of suffering a severe attack of scarlet fever in childhood, Ainsowrth's right arm became withered and "nearly useless to him for life."[2] As a result of this disability, however, Ainsworth was able to focus on his education.[2] While he hoped to enter Harvard College in 1775, the outbreak of the American Revolutionary War prevented him from doing this and instead caused him to attend Dartmouth College--from which he graduated in 1778.[2] At Stockbridge, Massachusetts, he studied theology under the guidance of Reverend Stephen West.[2] He also preached for two years at Spencertown, New York, where he served as a chaplain for a few months with Major McKinstry’s Corps in the American Revolutionary Army.[2] In 1782, he became pastor of Jaffrey, New Hampshire--a position that he held until his death 76 years later at age 100.[2][4] In 1787, he married Mary Minot (1761-1845) and had two children with her--a daughter named Sarah (1789-1857) and a son named William (1792-1842).[2][4][5]


  1. ^ Lambert, Peter (1999). "The Jaffrey Meetinghouse (brochure)". Town of Jaffrey, New Hampshire. Archived from the original on 2009-10-22. Retrieved 2008-08-15.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h Annett, Albert. "People : Rev. Laban Ainsworth". Jaffrey History. Retrieved 2019-04-13.
  3. ^ "The Revolutionary Ancestry of the Members of the Warren and Prescott Chapter ... - Massachusetts Daughters of the American Revolution. Warren and Prescott chapter. Boston - Google Books". Retrieved 2019-04-13.
  4. ^ a b "Genealogy of the Ainsworth Families in America - Francis Jewett Parker - Google Books". Retrieved 2019-04-13.
  5. ^ "History of the Town of Jaffrey, New Hampshire, from the Date of the Masonian ... - Daniel Bateman Cutter - Google Books". Retrieved 2019-04-13.