Clough Meeting House

32 South Lisbon Road, Lewiston, Maine


1846 Clough Meeting House, Lewiston Maine

Photo taken by Brian Bartlett

View this photo at


Street View 


The Clough Meeting House was constructed in 1846 by local farmer Henry M. Garcelon (1819-1884) to serve the Second Free Will Baptist Church of Lewiston. Located across the street from the Clough Cemetery, the attractive but austere, one story wood frame building shares many characteristics common to rural mid-nineteenth century houses of worship, including symmetrical composition, few stylistic details and gable-front orientation. However this otherwise vernacular building features a pulpit situated between the front entrances and pews that face the facade rather than the back wall, of the church.This relatively uncommon church arrangement is known as a 'reverse plan', and was used extensively in Maine by Free Will Baptist church organizations. The building specifications detailed by the congregation in 1846 are extant and provide information about another, now destroyed, reverse plan church in a neighboring town. In addition, this well preserved and intact church is notable for its wealth of grain painted interior decoration, including the only known example of smoke painting in the state. The Clough Meeting House is nominated to the National Register of Historic Places at the local level of significance under Criterion C for its architectural significance as the best preserved example of a reverse plan church in Maine, and for the artistic significance embodied in the rare smoke grain decoration. By virtue of the building's use as a place for religious services during its period of significance, Criteria Consideration A also applies.

Update Log 

  • June 2, 2015: Updated by Brian Bartlett: fixed coordinates
  • December 21, 2013: Photo imported by Brian Bartlett
  • December 17, 2013: Added by Brian Bartlett