Shortly before this a Glass Works was built by Samuel Norcross – one of the original owners. When the Glass Works failed, it was taken over by Richard Mason who patented and first manufactured the Mason Fruit Jar here in Tansboro. With the coming of the Glass Works, came also an increase in the population. This caused a need for church growth.
At 2:00 p.m. on April 4, 1857, a meeting was held by members of the New Freedom Church for the purpose of electing a Board of Trustees to hold the land in Tansboro. This land had been donated by John Carroll for use by The Methodist Episcopal Church. The pastor opened the meeting with prayer and the following were elected as Trustees: M.S. Simmerman, S. Butler, H. Brown, Harry Parks, and Michael Earling.
The Rev. E. Waters, pastor of the Methodist Episcopal Church in Berlin, was the secretary for the meeting. Mr. Harry Parks declined to serve and John Kellum was elected to take his place. These Trustees filed the name of “The Trustees of the Methodist Episcopal Church at Tansboro” in the County Clerk’s Office on May 29, 1857. The remainder of that year, and the next, was spent in building and furnishing the new church. The church edifice was dedicated on January 24, 1858.
The next record we find was a meeting held on September 21, 1860 at which time the Tansboro Church was on the Burlington District and the Rev. M. H. Shimp was appointed as the pastor. He was also pastor at Long-A-Coming (now Berlin). In those days it was the custom for the men to sit on one side of the church and the women on the other. At a meeting held on May 2, 1870, a motion was made that a set of rules be drawn up and hung on the church wall and was to be read from the pulpit every three months. It was decided at that time that the men and women could sit together.
In 1878 the first organ was installed and Miss Nellie Sickler was appointed the organist for the church. During the year 1884, the name Tansboro was changed to Wilton. It remained so for a number of years but because of a conflict of names, the Postal authorities had the name restored to Tansboro.
In the Spring of 1917, new pews and pulpit chairs were installed and new carpeting was installed to cover the entire floor of the Sanctuary. Then in the Fall of 1921, a Delco electric generator, complete with all the wiring and fixtures, was installed and remained in service until 1926.
On Thanksgiving Day, November 29, 1923, the ground was broken for an additional room – with basement – at the rear of the church for the Sunday School and social room. The total cost, including equipment, was $4,923.70.
In June of 1927, a complete steam heating plant was purchased from the Winslow Township Board of Education for $250.00. It was installed in January, 1928. This heater was not used until October, 1936 when an oil burner was installed in it. Also, in 1928, the first Daily Vacation Bible School was held and a Ladies Aid Society was formed. In 1939 the name ‘Ladies Aid’ was changed to ‘The Women’s Society of Christian Service’.
On September 13, 1951, Miss Ella J. Miller died and left here estate to the church. This amounted to $1,626.00. Miss Miller had been a member of the Church for 51 years. The next September it was decided to purchase a new Hammond Organ as a memorial to her and Gertie Sharp. This was purchased and it was dedicated on November 11, 1952.
In February of 1953, a belfry was erected on the church to house the bell, which was donated to the church by Mr. and Mrs. John Blaese. In April of 1956, the church was incorporated and the necessary papers were filed with the County Clerk.
In the years that followed, several improvements were made including the paving of the parking lot and in 1990 and 1991 new fans were installed in the ceiling, new lighting and painting were done in the basement, a new tile floor was laid and an outside exit was built. Funding for these projects came from donations and memorials.