Houghton is located in South Australia, in the Adelaide Hills. The Houghton area was surveyed in 1839 and the District Council of Highercombe, including Houghton, was proclaimed in 1853.
The State Library of Victoria holds a catalogue of books in the Houghton Sunday School Library dated 1869 (Rare Books 010.4 B47, v.89).
In 1895 the Houghton Congregational Sabbath School issued a medal to mark its jubilee (NU 20885).
The Congregational Church traces its lineage back to the 16th century and the English Reformation. Some considered that the reforms of the church did not go far enough or fast enough, prompting the formation of the Puritans. Fuel was added to the fire when Queen Elizabeth I proclaimed herself Supreme Governor of the church, rather than affirming the independence of state and church. From these Puritans came the first Congregationalists, formed on a theory of union published by Robert Brown in 1592. The Congregational Church stood for the authority of God's word and the independence or autonomy of the local church. They were first known as Independents or Separatists.
The first Congregationalists came to Australia in 1798, but it took until 1822 for the first Congregational church to be formally established in Australia. Henry Hopkins, a layman, considered religion in the Colony utterly inadequate, and his efforts saw Rev. Frederick Miller summoned from England in 1832.
The first recognised Congregational Church in NSW issued a call to Rev. Charles Price, who began in 1833. Other states followed: South Australia in 1837, Victoria in 1838, Western Australia in 1845 and Queensland in 1858.
In 1977 the Methodist, Congregational and Presbyterian Churches of Australia joined to form the Uniting Church of Australia. A few Congregational churches chose not to join the union.
Fellowship of Congregational Churches website http://members.ozemail.com.au/~fcccong/history.html, accessed 29 December 2003
Wikpiedia Encyclopaedia website http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Congregationalist_Church, accessed 29 December 2003.