The Cumberland Conference was organized in Gorham, Maine on December 24, 1822. Along with other Maine county conferences, the Cumberland Conference was part of the wider General Conference of the Congregational Churches of Maine. The organization was comprised of Congregational churches within Cumberland County, and also included and reported on the activities of religiously-affiliated satellite groups. Many of these were local chapters of national organizations based in Portland, Me., such as the Portland Congregational Club, Seaman's Friend Society, Ladies Missionary Society, the Young Men's Christian Association, the Main Deaf Mute Mission, the Society for Christian Endeavor, and numerous Sabbath schools.
The Conference's annual meetings were held in June, with other single-day meetings in January and October. Typically these consisted of prayer meetings, discussions, sermons and lectures, singing, and administration of the Lord's Supper. The Conference partook in fundraising and the supply of monetary aid to regional churches, and also published The Christian Mirror, an influential regional newspaper, from 1822 onwards. A separate conference for Cumberland North was formed in Freeport on November 12, 1878.
The Cumberland Conference exists today as the Cumberland Association of Churches and Ministers.
Materials in this collection have been digitized in partnership with the Maine Historical Society and have been made available through our New England's Hidden Histories project.