THE CHURCHES OF
FIRST PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH.
As early as the
beginning of the present century Presbyterian services were held
within the bounds of what was then Mount Pleasant, now Kingston,
congregation, by ministers of the old Washington Presbytery, the
territory of which embraced a part of Kentucky and southern Ohio.
One of these ministers, Rev. James Robinson, a
student of the well-known Dr. McMillan, organized, in 1808,
the Pickaway church of Ross county, to which he ministered in
connection with Mount Pleasant. He preached also
occasionally to the Presbyterians of Circleville, holding services
in the courthouse.
In 1822 Columbus Presbytery was constituted from the
territory covered formerly by the Washington Presbytery, and at
its first meeting the congregations of Mount Pleasant and
Circleville were reported as united and able to sustain a pastor.
Rev. William Burton was appointed to the charge of the
same, and installed as pastor September 13, 1822. At this
time the Circleville church had twenty members and two elders,
Jacob Hughes and Benjamin Cox.
In 1828 the congregation was
incorporated by act of assembly as the First Presbyterian Church
of Circleville. Lots one hundred and nine and one hundred
and ten were deeded by Andrew Huston to Dr. Finley
and Dr. Luckey, trustees, for the purposes of a
Presbyterian church, in consideration of one hundred dollars.
A plain, one-story brick edifice was erected on the site thus
provided - the same now occupied by the congregation. The
building had sittings for some two hundred and fifty worshippers.
In the winter of 1830-31 both the Mount Pleasant and
the Circleville congregations were visited by a through and
extensive revival, which added fifty-six members to the
Circleville church. Thus strengthened, the members extended
a call to Mr. Burton for his whole time and he was
installed as pastor of the First church of Circleville, April 8,
1831. The elders of the church at this time, from which it
dates its separate existence, were Matthew McCrea
and James B. Finley. The number of
communicants was one hundred and ten.
The pastorate of Mr. Burton continued until the
spring of 1835, when he resigned his charge to accept one at
Piketon. He was a native of Massachusetts, a graduate of
Dartmouth college, studied theology with his uncle, Dr. Asa
Burton, of Thetford, Vermont, and was a man of fine logical
and rhetorical powers.
From May 2, 1836, until March 21, 1842, the pastorate
was held by Rev. Franklin Putnam. During this period
the division of the Presbyterian church into Old School and New
School took place, and the First church of Circleville voted,
August 13, 1838, to adhere to the exscinded synods. The vote
was forty-eight for to nine against such action; and, after a
brief interval, the minority peaceably withdrew and organized the
Central Presbyterian church, in connection with the Old School
assembly. In 1842 Mr. Putham, after a prosperous
pastorate, resigned his charge because of ill health, and the
church resolved that "we feel it our duty and privilege to follow
him and his family with kind remembrances and prayers."
March 11, 1844, the congregation extended a call to
Dr. James Rowland, who ministered with great acceptance and
success, and with the favor of the entire community, until his
death, in 1854. During his pastorate the present commodious
and convenient church edifice was erected, at a cost of about
fourteen thousand dollars. The committee on subscriptions
were N. S. Gregg, S. Marfield, Dr. C. Olds, Dr. Rowland, W. W.
Bierce, Chauncey U. Olds. During the erection of the
building the congregation worshipped in the seminary. The
first with the interment of the pastor, Dr. Rowland.
His remains repose under the belfry, and a suitable mural tablet
in the vestibule expresses the affection of his bereaved
Rev. P. M. Bartlett, now president of Tennessee
university, was pastor from Jan. 29, 1855, until Apr. 1857.
Dec. 20, 1857, Rev. Henry Calhoun, formerly of
Coshocton, Ohio, began his labors as pastor. That winter was
one of deep religious interest, and thirty persons, mostly heads
of families, were added to the church at the spring communion.
After a prosperous pastorate, Mr. Calhoun resigned Dec. 20,
June 2, 1867, Rev. H. R. Hoisington entered upon
his duties as pastor. His services were highly acceptable to
the church and the community. In 1870 the Old School and New
School branches of the church were formally re-united in the city
of Pittsburgh. This step brought the First and Central
churches of Circleville into the same ecclesiastical relations,
and the subject of a union of the two was agitated. April
28, 1872, Mr. Hoisington resigned and removed to Cleveland, Ohio,
that the way might be clear for such a union. But the
Central church having declined to accept the resignation of its
pastor, the union was not consummated.
June 10, 1873, Rev. S. H. McMullin, formerly
professor of church history in the theological seminary at
Danville, Kentucky, was installed pastor of the church, and is the
The officers of the church at present are:
trustees, J. A. Hawkes, Thomas Miller, W. M. Drum; session,
Otis Ballard, H. A. Jackson; treasurer, William M. Drum;
superintendent of Sunday-school, William M. Drum.
The number of communicants is one
hundred and sixty-four; and of children in Sabbath-school, one
The church is free from all indebtedness, provides for
an annual expense list of two thousand eight hundred dollars, and
contributes an average of three hundred dollars to missionary
METHODIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH.
Among the earliest
churches of this place and vicinity is the one called Methodist
Episcopal. We only refer to what is historical, in saying
that Methodist itinerants were among the first in bearing the
gospel to those finding homes in the West.
Very early, in this century, a place of worship was
established about a mile and a half east of this, near the old
Lancaster road, at the house of a Mr. Burget. Before
preaching was established here, a few members, moving into this
place, were in the habit of going there to worship. This
town was laid out in 1810, by Mr. Daniel Dreisbach.
The first sermon preached by the Methodist minister in the
newly-opened town, was by a Methodist minister in the newly-opened
town, was by the Rev. William Swayze. Passing over
the country, he made this a place of rest. Proposals having
been made for stated preaching, the question of place arose.
After consultation, the public house of Mr. Andrw Ensworth,
standing on the east side of the circle, in the locality now
occupied by the corner of Court and Mains streets, others, upon
the ground occupied by Philip Warner), was offered and
About 1812 to 1815, a local preacher by the name of
Emmet, living west of this , in company with another, whose
name is forgotten, was accustomed to visit this place and hold
occasional services. In process of time, during that period,
a class was organized under the supervision of these local
ministers, consisting of eight persons, namely, Louisa Hare,
Elizabeth Burget, MArgaret Botkin, Margaret Davis, John Eli, Sarah
Burget, and two colored women - Lydia Smith and her
mother, Venice. Only one of the original class
survives, she who is familiarly known among the membership as
Through the instrumentality of Lydia Smith,
commonly known as Aunt Lydia, a Methodist church was raised
here among the people of her own color. She died in 1875,
having witnessed, according to the testimony of both white and
colored people, a good confession for Christ upwards of eighty
years, dying peacefully, at the extreme age of ninety-five or
The surviving member, Mother Hare, is the
daughter of one who was a pioneer Methodist in Ohio - Nimrod
Bright. She is now in extreme feebleness being in her
eighty-eighth year. She, too, for more than sixty years, has
enjoyed among her acquaintance the reputation of being a firm,
consistent, and devoted christian.
In the year 1815 or 1816, the class was regularly taken
under the care of the traveling ministry of the church. Soon
after William McArthur, subsequently known as Judge
McArthur, was appointed leader. The society formerly
meeting at the house of Mr. Burget, east of the town,
was transferred to this place. The names of John Burget,
John Wright, Mr. Hasselton, and others, are remembered as
being early added to the original number; also, William Moore,
father of S. A. Monroe, well known to our citizens, who
lived where his son now lives, was among the early additions, and
proved a devoted friend of the church and the general interests of
The first places of meeting were school-houses and
private dwellings. Mother Hare says the first place
of preaching was in a log school house, with slab seats; then in a
better school-house, more nearly in the center of the town.
When the court house was built, worship was transferred to that
building, which was used in common by nearly all the religious
denominations; then from the court house to the academy,
continuing there until a church edifice was put up, which was
about the year 1830. Two lots, numbered one hundred and
seventy-one and one hundred and seventy-two near the academy, were
purchased of Charles Shoemaker, for two hundred dollars.
The church was built of brick, doubtless made of clay from the old
circular earth wall, near which it was erected; but neither the
cost of the building, nor the length of time taken in the work, is
This church remained as the stated place of worship
until it was destroyed by fire, in 1851. The fire is
supposed to have occurred through a defective flue. This
disaster was under the ministry of the Rev. J. A. Brunner.
The first Presbyterian church was kindly offered and accepted for
preaching services, and the basement of the Episcopal church for
the Sunday school. The pastor and members immediately went
to work to secure another building. The people of all
denominations generously responded to the appeal for a new church.
Because of them town extending southward, it was thought best to
change the location. The old site was abandoned, and the
present one, on the corner of Main and Pickaway streets, was
The building committee of the present edifice consisted
of Jacob Welter, Joel Franklin and William C. Taylor,
the latter recently deceased. The cost of the present
building, according to Mr. Welter's recollection,
was twelve thousand dollars, or upwards. The bell was
the gift of a former merchant of this city, Mr. Frederick
Cogswell, now deceased. He also endowed a pew for the
pastor's family. This house was dedicated to the worship of
God by the Rev. Dr. Trimble, now of Columbus. It was
several years from the time the church was first occupied until
the audience room was fitted up for worship. From time to
time sundry improvements have been added; recently in new windows
and renovation, at a cost of two thousand dollars remains, which
the ladies are devising ways and means to remove. The roll
of membership now numbers over three hundred.
This church, after being regularly established as a
preaching place, so far as can now be ascertained, was included in
what was known as Pickaway circuit - a part of the old "Scioto
district." While in a circuit, it was served by the
||(most likely while he was on
Fairfield circuit), by Michael Ellis
||(Pickaway circuit), Michael
Ellis and Samuel Brown;
||Michael Ellis and
and Michael Ellis
and Peter Warner
||B. Westlake and
||Jacob Hooper and
||Wm. Stevens, and
J. T. Donahoe
||Z. Connel and M.
Jacob Delay and William Reynolds
||Benjamin Cooper and
||John Ferree and Jacob
||Solomon Minear and
James C. Taylor
||David Lewis and
||David Lewis and
||Z. Connell and W. T.
||J. Delay and Abraham
||(now Circleville circuit) S.
Hamilton and E. B. Chase
||S. Hamilton and E. T.
||Isaac C. Hunter and
||Isaac C. Hunter and
||J. A. Reeder and P.
||A. M. Lorraine and T.
A. G. Philips
||A. M. Lorraine and C.
C. Lybrand - making thirty-nine different pastors in
||(half station), J. C.
||(full station), J. C.
Bontecue - J. M. Trimble, presiding elder.
||Joseph J. Hill;
||A. B. Wombaugh
||E. D. Roe;
||Jacob Dimmett, who
remained only six months, the year being filled out by
Rev. John Dreisbach;
||J. A. Brunner
||J. M. Jameson
||G. W. Brush
||C. E. Felton
||A. Byers, who went into
the army - his place being supplied by Rev. E. P. Hall
||S. M. Merrill
||T. R. Taylor
||W. T. Harvey
||H. K. Foster
||C. D. Battelle
||T. H. Philips - his son
Howard supplying his place for the last year
||C. M. Bethauser, who is,
at the present time, visiting his relations in Germany.
It will be seen, therefore, that sixty-four
different ministers have been employed sine the first
organization of the society.
Two annual conferences have been held here, one in
1834, presided over by Bishop Soule; the other, in 1861,
presided over by Bishop Janes.
ST. PHILIP'S (EPISCOPAL) CHURCH
The twenty-sixth day
of May, 1817, the Rev. Philander Chase, who had recently been
rector of Christ church, Hartford, Connecticut, afterwards
bishop of the diocese of Ohio, conducted service according to
the liturgy of the Protestant Episcopal church in the United
States of America, and preached in the town of Circleville, at
which time the present St. Philip's parish was organized, with
the following instrument of parochial association:
"We, whose names are hereunder written,
deeply impressed with the truth and importance of the Christian
religion, and anxiously desirous to promote its influences in
the hearts and lives of ourselves, our families and our
neighbors, do hereby associate ourselves together by the name,
style and title of St. Philip's church, county of Pickaway,
State of Ohio, in communion with the Protestant Episcopal church
in the United States of America, whose liturgy, constitution and
canons, we do hereby adopt. [Signed]
|GUY W. DOANE
S. M. MORGAN
WILLIAM B. THRALL
|JOS. G. NOXON
JOHN E. MORGAN
J. T. DAVENPORT
In September, 1818,
at a parish meeting, presided over by the Rev. Philander Chase,
the following gentlemen were elected, to serve until Easter,
1819: Wm. Seymour and Guy W. Doane, wardens;
John E. Morgan, Jas. G. Noxon, Joshua Fulsom,
vestrymen. Wm. Seymour was elected to represent the
parish in the convention to be held in Worthington on the first
Monday in January, 1819. On the eighteenth of June, 1819,
th parish was visited for the first time by the Rt. Rev.
Phhilander Chase, as bishop of the diocese of Ohio.
The first regular minister was the Rev. Ezra B.
Kellogg, who commenced his parochial labors in Circleville,
and conducted services one Sunday in four weeks. Previous
to this time, the services were conducted by lay readers and
occasional supplies. How long the Rev. Mr. Kellogg
remained as minister in charge, the records do not show.
December 23, 1829, six years after the last recorded vestry
meeting, there were a meeting of the parish, at which a vestry
was elected to serve until the Easter following. This
vestry immediately opened negotiations with St. Paul's church,
Chillicothe, and the Rev. Mr. Bausman, minister in charge
of St. Paul's, which resulted in his conducting service here one
Sunday in every four weeks, during the two years following.
The Rev. R. V. Rogers took charge of the parish,
September 12, 1832. On the twenty-sixth of December, of
that year, it was resolved by the vestry that G. W. Doane, W.
B. Thrall and John L. Green, be constituted a
committee to petition the legislature for an act to incorporate
the wardens and vestry of St. Philip's church. The vestry
further resolved, that they accept the proposition this day made
in writing by Mr. R. Douglas for lot number one hundred
and one, on the Mound, for which they were to pay three hundred
and fifty dollars, in seven annual instalments, without
interest; and that a committee of six be appointed to draft and
circulate a subscription for the purpose of raising funds to
build a church, and that the following persons constitute said
committee: Wm. B. Thrall, R. H. Hopkins, Robert Larrimore, G.
W. Doane, J. W. Finley and Wm. McColloch. At a
parish meeting at the house of Mr. G. W. Doane, May,
1833, Messrs. J. G. Doddridge, Wm. B. Thrall and
Robert Larrimore, were elected a committee to design a plan
for a church, of the relative proportions of the Episcopal
church in Columbus, with a seating capacity of three hundred; to
contract for materials, and have in charge the building of said
charge, which was completed in the year 1834, and was a
comfortable and commodious brick building. The Rev. Mr.
Rogers resigned the rectorship to return to his home,
in England, the eleventh day of March, 1836. Previous to
the erection of this church, the services seem to have been
conducted in the court house and the First Presbyterian church.
The following were the ministers in charge from this
date to the eight day of October 1865:
Revs. W. F. Halsey
W. W. Aruat
Chas. B. Steret
A. D. Benedict
H. N. Bishop
R. L. Nash
C. W. Fearns
Thos. W. Mitchell
October 8, 1865, the Rev. E. Owen Simpson
took charge of this parish, in connection with St. John's
Lancaster. During the month of April, 1867, he resigned
St. John's and took full charge of St. Philip's, and remained in
charge until Easter, 1870. During this administration the
parish greatly prospered; the original church was torn down, and
the present very commodious, substantial and beautiful stone
church was erected, at a cost of fifteen thousand dollars, paid
for and consecrated. Rev. E. Owen Simpson and
Messrs. Wm. B. Marfield and Alfred Williams were
the building committee. The corner stone was laid August
16, 1866, by the Rt. Rev. Bishop McIlvaine, and the
church was consecrated April 23, 1868, by the Rt. Rev. Bishop
Bedell. During the erection of thier church, the
congregation worshiped in the First Baptist Church. Sine
1870, the following have been the ministers in charge:
Revs. W. C. Mills, H. C. Camp, J. T.
Franklin, C. A. Bragdon and J. H. Logie, the
latter having been ordained deacon in the church by the Rt. Rev.
Bishop Jaggar, of the diocese of Southern Ohio, on the
twenty-third day of February, 1879, and at the same time he was
appointed, by the bishop, as minister in charge of the church.
In 1874, a rectory was purchased, at a cost of four
thousand dollars, which makes the total value of the church
property about nineteen thousand dollars.
LUTHERANISM IN CIRCLEVILLE PRIOR TO 1859.
The early history of
the Lutheran church in this place is involved in much obscurity.
A division occurred in 1859, resulting from differences in
theological opinion, since which time there have been two
separate congregations, each claiming to be the rightful
successor of the original organization. We have received,
from representatives of both congregations, historical sketches,
from which we condense the following brief history of the
church, down to the time of the separation.
Among the heads of families attached to the Lutheran
church, who emigrated, principally from Pennsylvania, and
settled in Circleville and its immediate vicinity, early in the
present century, are recorded the following:
Jacob Zieger, sr., George Zimmer, Samuel Watt, Philip Zieger,
Jacob Zieger, jr., Frederick Zieger, John Valentine, Peter
Apple, Valentine Keffer, Peter Trees, Heinrich Trees, William
Moyer, Peter Herbster, Heinrich Ely, "Old Father Try," Anthony
Weaver, John Weaver, John Row, Mr. Earnhart, sr., and
In the year 1811, the Evangelical Luteran synod of
Pennsylvania delegated the Rev. Jacob Leist to go to Ohio and
Organize congregations. He preached his first sermon here
on the 28th of August, 1811. As this was less than a year
after the town was laid out, it must have been one of the first
sermons (if not the very first) preached in the place. For
a long time he held services once in four weeks. All the
members being familiar with German, the services were held
exclusively that language for several years. There was no
church building in town, and the meetings were held in such
places as could be obtained. After the court house was
built in the old circle, this denomination, as well as others,
used it for their meetings. It is claimed that the Rev.
Mr. Leist organized a church in due form; and, judging from
the amount of material which he found here at the time, as well
as from the nature of his mission, nothing can be more probable.
And yet, if such an organization was effected, two things are
very remarkable: first, that no scrap of record can be found to
testify of its existence; and second, that it should, by common
consent, have been entirely ignored in the forming of a new
organization to take its place, some twenty years later.
However this mystery is to be explained, it is certain that
records, apparently authentic, exist, which show that, in May,
1831, a congregation, taking the name of "the English
Evangelical Lutheran Church," was organized, with the Rev. N.
B. Little as pastor. Of the meeting at which this
organization was effected, Mr. George Wildbahn was chosen
president, and John Marfield secretary. Following
are the names of the gentlemen present and taking part in the
George P. Kephart, Henry Try, George Hammel, Adam Pontious,
Robert Hays, James Carlisle, Gershom M. Peters, Moses Dawley,
Michael Pontious, Joseph Landes, Daniel Funk, Michael May, John
Valentine, Henry Triece, Samuel Watt, U. P. Kerr, Philip Zieger,
John Groce, Willialm B. Thrall, Valentine Keffer, Dr. William N.
Lenker, John A. Wolfley, James Kepler, and John Ludwig.
The three last named having been appointed a
committee to examine the credentials of the Rev. Mr. Little
made a favorable report, and he was thereupon chosen as their
pastor. At the same meeting, or one held very soon after,
a committee was also appointed to confer with the Rev. Mr.
Leist, who, quite advanced in years, was still residing in
the vicinity. The object of the conference with Mr.
Leist does not very definitely appear. It is
evident, however, that he gave at least a tacit assent to the
organization, and thenceforth the venerable missionary drops out
The Rev. Mr. Little continued in charge about
two years and a half, when he resigned; and, on the 23d of
February, 1834, the congregation gave a call to the Rev. J.
A. Roof, who labored for them acceptably twenty-one years,
preaching partly in German and partly in English, when he
resigned and moved to Iowa.
In the fall of 1831, soon after Mr. Little commenced
his ministrations, steps were taken to build a church; the sum
of two thousand three hundred and thirty-seven dollars being
raised for that purpose by subscription, part of which was paid
in money, and part in materials or work on the building.
The south half of the "area on Bastile avenue" was obtained as a
site, and the corner stone was laid in the spring of 1832.
The building contained a basement and audience room, the
dimensions being sixty-five feet in length and forty-five in
width. The basement was occupied till 1839, in which year
the audience room was completed.
After the resignation of Mr. Roof, there was a
vacancy of about two years in the pastorate, when the Rev.
Joel Swartz, of Shenandoah county, Va., accepted a call in
the latter part of March, 1857. He also preached in German
and English. It was during the administration of Mr.
Swartz that the church was permanently divided. We
should have no heart, even if we had time and space, to write
the history of the painful theological controversy which
culminated in this unhappy division, nor of the still more
painful lawsuit by which the party that felt themselves
compelled to withdraw from the church, sought to regain
possession of the property. Suffice it to say that, at the
annual meeting which was held on the 7th of March, 1859, the
party corresponding to what is known as "old school," or "high
church," in other religious bodies, retired, leaving
the "new school," or "low church" party, with Mr. Swartz
at their head, (whom they retained for another year) in
possession of the church. Each party elected officers,
claiming to continue the original organization. The
so-called old Lutherans brought suit against the so-called new
Lutherans, for the possession of the church property, both
parties claiming their right to it.
The decision of the court of common pleas, in which the
case was tried, was in favor of the so-called old Lutherans.
The case, however, was appealed to the district court, which (in
effect, at least) reversed the decision of the court below.
The old Lutherans could have brought suit by another form of
action, but concluded not to do so. They were served for a
time by neighboring ministers, and remained in the Ohio synod.
Mr. Swartz and his congregation connected themselves with
the Miami synod. Thus two congregations existed. The
party that adhered to Mr. Swartz took (or retained) the
THE ENGLISH EVANGELICAL LUTHERAN CHURCH.
The Rev. Mr.
Swartz continued in charge one year, when he resigned, and
the Rev. Thomas Hill was elected in his place, May21,
1860. He was succeeded by the Rev. M. L. Wilhelm,
March 31, 1866. During the administration of Mr.
Wilhelm a new brick church was built, at a cost of about
eight thousand dollars. He remained till the church was
furnished and dedicated, when he resigned, and was succeeded by
the Rev. H. B. Miller, December 29, 1868. Mr.
Miller remained a little less than a year - then
resigned and went to Tarleton, Ohio.
The names of the ministers who succeeded him, with the
length of the ministry of each, are as follows:
The Rev. Thomas Hill (second term), one year; Rev. E.
W. Sanders, three years. Then there was a vacancy one
year, and the Rev. J. M. Ruthrauff was elected, September
13, 1874, and continued a year and a half. The present
minister, Rev. J. W. Swick, accepted a call to the charge
of this congregation, April 6, 1879.
The party that withdrew from the church took the name
TRINITY EVANGELICAL LUTHERAN CHURCH.
In June, 1859, the
Rev. C. Albrecht received and accepted a call to the
pastorate of this congregation, and remained until April, 1860,
when the Rev. John Wagenhals was called. Then the
Trinity congregation obtained, by order of the court of common
pleas, from the director of the town, W. W. Bierce, a lot
known as the "public," or "city," or "Presbyterian" burying
ground; and built thereon a neat brick church, at a cost of
about five thousand dollars. It was dedicated May 27,
1866. A commodious parsonage was built on the same
lot, about the same time.
In 1868 the Rev. Mr. Wagenhals resigned his
pastoral office, on account of feeble health and advanced age,
having served eight years. In the same year the Rev. B.
M. Lenker accepted a call from the church, and remained
On account of a diversity of opinion in the Ohio synod,
on certain doctrinal points in dispute among the clergy, a
division took place in the English district of this
congregation. A number of older families withdrew, as they
were not willing to make these questions a test of true
Lutheranism, having previously been considered open questions,
left to the discretion of pastors and congregations. The
members remaining in the church after the resignation of Mr.
Lenker, were served first by the Rev. E. L. S. Tressel,
and subsequently by the Rev. A. H. Schultze, who resigned
in May, 1879 - the pastorate being still vacant.
UNITED BRETHREN IN CHRIST.
At a general
conference, in May, 1833, it was resolved that the United
Brethren church should have a printing establishment of its own,
and that said establishment be located at the town of
Circleville. So, to carry out this resolution, the
conference appointed a board of trustees consisting of George
Dreisbach, Jonathan Dreisbach and Rev. John Russel.
On the twelfth day of April, 1834, the trustees bought a
printing press, together with type and causes; and also a lot
and two houses of Mr. Z. R> Martin, on North Main street, and on
the thirty-first day of December, 1834, the first number of the
Religious Telescope was issued, with Rev. W. R.
Rinchart as editor. The publication of the
Telescope was conducted for several years without any church
organization, there being no members of the society in town
except the editor, and perhaps some of the employees of the
In the spring of 1837, Rev. William Hanley, with
his family, moved to Circleville, and during this year regular
preaching, on alternate Sabbaths with the Universalist
preachers, was kept up in the old court house, standing in the
center of the circle, where the two main streets now cross.
In the winter of 1838, services were held in the academy,
instead of the court house, a building situated in the northeast
part of town, close to the lot occupied by the old Methodist
church. During this year  a very interesting meeting
was held, during which penitents were often seen on the streets
enquiring for the United Brethren prayer meeting, and in some
cases, as soon as they entered the enclosure of the meeting,
they would fall upon their knees and beg for an interst in the
prayers of God's people. This meeting resulted in the
conversion of a number of persons, and the organization of a
United Brethren society of about one hundred members. The
tide of the public sentiment was turned in the direction of the
new organization, and the people were generally anxious to hear
what the newcomers had to say on religious subjects. The
academy building was becoming entirely too small for the
attendance; hence, during the year 1839, a church house was
erected on East Main street, sixty-six by forty-six feet, made
of good material, and, at the time, the largest, and perhaps the
best, in the town.
On the nineteenth day of October 1839, the first
quarterly conference was held in the new church, with the
Rev. J. Coons as pastor. The official members of the
first conference were Rev. J. Coons, Rev. Elias Vandemark,
Rev. William Hanley (being then editor of the Religious
Telescope), William Freman, W. R. Rinehart, Robert
Levering, Samuel Hargus, James Moodey and Abraham
Hostteton. During this year the church did not meet
with any very flattering success. A few, however, were
converted and joined the church.
At teh annual conference of 1840 Rev. W. W. Davis
was sent to Circleville as pastor. He had some success,
but received such a small salary that he would not stay longer
than one year. It would be well to remark here that the
reader will have to excuse the writer for not giving the salary
of the early pastors, as there is no record of it. AT the
next conference, in 1841, Rev. P. Brock was appointed as
pastor, and labored for one year, with little encouragement.
He was assisted during the year by the Rev. W. G. Jarvis.
In the spring of 1842 Rev. L. Davis, now Dr. Davis,
of Union Biblical seminary, Dayton, Ohio, was placed in charge.
During this year there was quite a falling off in the
membership. In the year 1843, Rev. Davis was
succeeded by the Rev. E. Vandermark. During this
year the church was much embarrassed by debt, and, as a result,
had little or no prosperity. In the spring of 1844,
Rev. D. Edwards was appointed as pastor. In May, 1845,
the general conference of the whole church was held in
Circleville. At this conference the pastor, Rev. D.
Edwards, was elected editor of the Religious Telescope,
and was succeeded in the pastorate by Rev. I.
Kretzenger. During this year the Scioto conference
changed its time of meeting from spring till fall; hence, in the
fall of 1845, Rev. Kretzenger was succeeded by Rev. R.
Hastings. In October, 1846, Rev. J. M. Spangler
was called to the station. He remained its pastor for two
conference years, and his labors were blessed with good results.
At the close of 1847, Rev. H. Jones was appointed as
pastor, and served one year. In the fall of 1848, Rev.
Spangler was again appointed. In 1849 Rev. William
Fisher was appointed, and served two years. During the
last few years the church had been gradually decreasing in
membership, and its success, as a separate congregation, was
despaired of. Rev. J. Swarence was succeeded, in
1852, by Rev. T. Sloan. At the close of this year
it was admitted that it could not succeed alone, its membership
being of the poorer class and unable to support a pastor;
consequently it was attached to Pickaway circuit, in charge of
Rev. W. W. Davis. During this year, parties holding
claims against the church became impatient, and the sale of the
church was threatened; consequently at an annual conference held
at the Moris church, Pickaway county, it was resolved that a
vigorous effort must be made to lift the claims. The
conference appointed Rev. William Hanley to solicit funds
for that purpose, and on the twenty-fourth day of September,
1854, after a debt of over two thousand dollars was provided
for, the church was solemnly and joyfully dedicated to the
service of almighty God, fourteen years after it was built.
At the conference above named (1854) Rev. Mr. Fisher
was again appointed its pastor. This year the salary was
exceedingly small - indeed, smaller than ever before, owing to
the removal of the Telescope office of Dayton, Ohio,
which had occurred the year previous. In the year 1855 we
find the Rev. J. S. Davis as pastor. Rev. Mr.
Davis was an excellent man, also a good pastor and preacher.
He filled his own pulpit with credit, and had frequent
invitations to exchange pulpits with other ministers of their
town. But alas for the church! just when his success in
building up her interests seemed a fixed fact, the Master called
him from labor to reward.
In the fall of 1856 Rev. E. Vandemark was again
placed in charge. During this year the church and pastor
became involved in a difficulty about his salary and secret
societies, that resulted in almost the entire overthrow of the
From July, 1857, to January, 1862, we have no records
whatever upon the journal of the proceedings of the church.
At the last-named date we have Rev. Mr. Fisher again as
pastor. From the close of 1862 to 1866 we find another gap
in the records. I believe there were no services kept up
during this time.
At an annual conference in September, 1866, it was
resolved that Circleville church be called a mission station and
receive an appropriation from the conference funds to sustain
it. Rev. D. Bonebrake was then appointed to take
charge of the congregation. In coming to the work he found
the membership reduced to twenty-nine members. His labors
were greatly blessed, and a number added to the faithful few.
Rev. Mr. Bonebrake received a salary of five hundred and
forty dollars. In Oct., 1867, Rev. J. H. Dickson
was placed in charge, and received a salary of four hundred and
sixty dollars. Mr. Dickson remained in charge three years,
receiving about the same amount of salary each year. His
labors were blessed with fair results. In October, 1870,
Rev. William Brown received the appointment. This year
there was considerable decrease in the membership by removals.
Mr. Brown received four hudred dollars. Rev. Mr.
Bonebrake, in 1871, was again returned. His labors,
however, were not so successful as before. His salary,
this year, was only three hundred and twelve dollars. In
1872, Rev. D. A. Johnstone received the appointment and was
continued for three years, with fair success, receiving a salary
of five hundred dollars each year. In October, 1875,
Rev. Peter Wagner was appointed, receiving a salary of three
hundred and twenty-five dollars. Rev. Mr. Wagner
was succeeded, in 1876, by the Rev. J. Everhart.
Owing to ill health, Mr. Evarhart had but little success.
He received for his services a salary of three hundred and fifty
The annual conference of 1877 appointed Rev. J. M.
Mills. Mr. Mills took charge of the
congregation when it was in a very weak condition. He had,
however, some success the first year, and received a salary of
five hundred and fifty dollars. At the conference of 1878,
Mr. Mills was again returned, and at this writing - July,
1879 - is still laboring successfully, and is well received by
his church and community.
The present membership of the church is one hundred and
ten; Sabbbath-school scholars enrolled, one hundred and
seventy-five; average attendance, one hundred and twenty.
Present official board of the church:
J. M. Mills, Stephen Miller, Henry Pontious, Samuel Denman,
E. Cave, A. Moris, James Sims, and George Denman.
THE AFRICAN METHODIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH
was organized with about twelve members, by the
Rev. I. Davis, in the year 1834. The succession of
pastors since that time is as follows:
The Rev. Messrs. Burd, Adkeson, T. Lawrence, L. Davis, Tilman,
Coleman, Peters, Arnold, Gibbons, J. Tibbs, W. Lewis, W. D.
Mitchel, W. Davison and R. H. Morris, who is the
present pastor. Its membership numbers, at this time, one
hundred and sixty-three.
Mr. Morris and his band of faithful workers are
now in the midst of a great struggle to build a new church
edifice, the corner stone of which was laid only a few days ago,
with appropriate ceremonies. It is to be a very fine
building, forty by sixty feet in dimensions. The
congregation have insisted on calling it "Morris Chapel," in
honor of their present beloved pastor.
THE FIRST REGULAR BAPTIST CHURCH
In 1838, a number of
persons holding letters from Baptist churches in different
States, especially Virginia, decided to organize themselves into
a regular Baptist church. For this purpose, on the
twenty-seventh of July, the following persons met at the house
of Abram VanMeter; Gershom M. Peters, Jacob Van Meter, Acker
King, Thos. B. Godard, Milton Peters, Samuel Creighton, Enoch
Lamb, Nahum Newton, Maranda Peters, Emily Van Meter, Maria Van
Meter, Mary Van Meter, Adelaide Newton, Amy A. King, Eve
Everett, Agatha Menear, Priscilla Lamb and Eliza Lamb,
and adopted articles of faith and a church covenant. They
were recognized by a council, called on the eighteenth of
August, composed of the following persons: Dr. Jonathan Gonig, president of Granville college, who addressed the church;
Rev. T. R. Cressy, who preached the sermon; Rev. Jacob Drake,
who made the prayer, and Rev. Ezra Gonig, who gave the hand of
fellowship. There was also a Mr. John Rees present, from
Of these original members, six died in the fellowship
of the church; three were excluded; one joined the
Presbyterians; one Acker King, is still an active member, having
held the office of deacon from the organization of the church to
the present time. The recognition services took place in
the Presbyterian church, which was kindly offered for this
purpose. On the day following the recognition services,
Charles Dean was received and baptized by D. E. Thomas.
The first pastor was Rev. Isaac
K. Brownsen, who had just graduated from the Theological
seminary, at Hamilton, New York, and who, after his ordination
at Petersboron, New York, was sent, under the auspices of the
Home Mission society, to the then western State of Ohio, and
though the influence of Rev. T. R. Cressy, of Columbus,
came to Circleville, and took the oversight of the church, Oct.
1838, and remained with them fifteen months. A portion of
this time he was joint pastor of the church at Frankfort, so
giving each church but half the time preaching. A few were
added by baptism, but several families moving away, the church
was much weakened.
The young church took hold it its work with zeal, and
at a time when the question of anti-missions was agitating the
churches throughout the State, took decided grounds in favor of
missions, and the first Sabbath evening of each month was
devoted to prayer and contribution to that object. The
tenth day of November, 1838, was observed by them as a day of
fasting and prayer; thus the work began in humble reliance on
God. They were too poor to erect a house of worship, so
they met in the octagonal court house, a portion of the time,
and another portion in the Atheneum building and public school
building. They were not left without a pastor when Mr.
Brownsen went away, as Rev. John A. Peters had moved
into the neighborhood, to be near his brother, G. M. Peters,
and, though in feeble health, he undertook the pastoral care of
the church, and preached; not only in the town, but at Mrs.
Pancake's three miles west of town.
In September, 1840, they joined the Scioto association,
and in May, of the next year, organized a Sunday school, which
was not a common thing in those days, commencing with forty
scholars, and soon increasing to seventy-five, a number which
has not been greatly exceeded since. G. M. Peters
was the superintendent. The pastor's health was gradually
failing, so that the preaching and baptizing were mostly done by
neighboring pastors. In November, 1841, the pastor died,
greatly regretted by all the church. Shortly after his
death, two of the neighboring pastors, W. D. Woodfuff, of
Frankfort, and T. R. Cressy, of Columbus, held a series
of meetings that resulted in much good to the church, and ten
persons were baptized, and at a communion season that followed,
thirty-two persons sat down to the Lord's table together.
The church was dessirous of securing a pastor, and applied to a
Rev. M. Wheaton, of Columbus, but failed to secure his
services. Rev. (afterward Dr.) J. L. Moore
visited the church and preached a few weeks, but not with a view
to the pastorate. His labors were very acceptable, and
several were added to the church. At the June meeting, a
committee, consisting of G. M. Peters, A. King, J. H.
Welsheimer and J. Jaswell, was appointed to inquire
into the expediency of building a house of worship. At
about the same time Rev. Henry Billings was called to the
pastorate, preaching two Sabbaths in the month. He
remained with the church one year, and when he left, the church
abandoned the idea of building a house of worship, though the
committee had gone so far as to lease a lot for six years.
The cause was in rather a discouraging state, and what made it
still worse, they were unfortunate in calling a young man named
Edward Lyons, and at his urgent request called a council to
ordain him, February 21, 1844. He stayed with them but six
months, and left them, weakened by his influence, which was not
good. He was published in the Cross and Journal, by
vote of the church.
The next year, in March, Rev. W. D. Woodruff
became pastor, and the Sunday-school was revived, and E. P.
Peters elected superintendent; but he did not hold the
position long, for in November L. L. Woodruff was chosen
to that office. At the end of two years the prospects of
the church were so low that Mr. W. D. Woodruff resigned
the pastorate to go to a more hopeful field. Still a few
members held on to the cause, and were not willing to give it
up. In August, 1850, the few members came together at the
house of J. H. Walsheimer where a vote was taken
appointing Eli Todd, L. L. Woodruff, John H. Welsheimer
and A. King a committee to purchase a lot on which to
erect a house of worship. Mrs. Catharine Brower, of
Pennsylvania, was here at the time, visiting her daughter,
Mrs. Anna B. Darst, and took a lively interest in the work,
and volunteered to raise funds among her friends east, which was
greatly appreciated by the little church, for with that timely
aid, and by borrowing fifty dollars, they were enabled to build
the house in which they still worship; a small but comfortable
house, twenty-five by fifty feet, which was dedicated October
19, 1851. Rev. - now Dr. - D. A. Randall was called
to the pastorate, but after preaching six months he was obliged
to give up the worked on account of ill health. The church
was loth to part with him, as his preaching and work were very
acceptable, indeed, to all. Through Mr. Randall the
church was induced to extend a call to Benjamin Bedell, a
recent graduate of Granville college, who was invited to preach
to them six months, with a view to final settlement.
Mr. Bedell arrived in Circleville the last of January, 1853.
Before the end of February it was deemed advisable to call a
council to ordain him, which was done Mar. 2, 1853, Rev. Dr.
H. Davis, Rev. S. T. Griswood, Rev. W. D. Woodruff and
Rev. D. A. Randall participating. This pastorate was
the longest the church ever had, being three years and eight
months. During that time the church enjoyed two revival
seasons, and more than doubled its membership.
In the spring of 1855, after a very interesting work,
in which the pastor was assisted by Rev. H. A. Brown, it
was decided to proceed to put up a parsonage on the church lot.
It was quite an undertaking for the church, but by much personal
sacrifice, and with outside help, it was accomplished and the
pastor moved into it on the third day of July, the same year.
That was a very joyful period for the church, and it was hoped
its dark days were over, but it was not be so. The Scioto
association met with the church that year, in August, and during
the session of the association the pastor was laid aside the
sickness from which he did not sufficiently recover to resume
labor for several weeks, and wehn he did resume labor the
interest had sensibly diminished. The heart of the young
pastor was discouraged, but he did not decide to leave the field
until September, 1856, when several families, that had been good
helpers, having moved away, and the congregation being reduced
to a very small number, the pastor gave in his resignation and
went to Wilmington. The church was greatly enfeebled and
disheartened, and suspended meetings, and for a period of
sixteen years the church stood idle, only as it was rented to
other denominations, who occupied it while they were building
their own houses of worship. It was thus occupied by the
Episcopal, English Lutherans and Evangelical churches. In
June, 1872, Rev. J. Kyle, a missionary of the Scioto
association visited the place and found the few old brethren
that were left, together with quite a number who had moved in,
ready to resume work, and as they could have preaching only
occasionally, they chose Mr. A. C. Elster a leader of the
meetings. Rev. Dr. S. Talbot, president of Dennison
university, and Rev. A. J. Lyon, of Lancaster, preached
for a few times till, in November, they called Rev. J.
Chambers to preach for them half the time. There was
no especial growth, but they kept together and sought to regain
the ground that had been lost. They moved the house of
worship to the side of the lot on which it stood and purchased
an organ, so that, when Mr. Chambers left, after two
years' labor, the church was in condition to go right forward,
and they called Mr. J. Adams, just from Chicago
Theological seminary, to the pastorate. In the meantime
the house of worship had been repaired and gas fixtures
introduced. Mr. Adams began his work in
August, 1875, and was ordained the next month, September 16th,
Rev. Dr. D. A. Randall, Rev. G. G. Harriman, Rev. E. W.
Dannells, Rev. J. Chambers and Rev. W. W. Sawyer
taking part in the services. The pastor addressed himself
to the work before him with characteristic energy, and his work
told for good. The cause rose sensibly under his
ministration. The membership increased from twenty-seven
to sixty-one during his three years and one month pastorate.
When, at length, he felt compelled to resign and leave the field
(September, 1878,) it was a great grief to many members of the
church. The church then recalled Rev. B. Bedell,
a former pastor, who returned to this, his first pastorate, and
began his second term of service in October, 1878. The
first work that was done was to repair the parsonage, so that it
was made a very comfortable home for the pastor.
In this review of the forty years' history of the
Baptist church of Circileville, we find that over twenty years
of that time they had no pastor and no regular service.
There have been connected with them, from first to last, two
hundred and eight members. They have had nine pastors -
I. K. Brownson, j. A. Peters, H. Billings, E. Lyons, W. D.
Woodruff, D. A. Randall, B. Bedell, J. Chambers and J.
Adams; for deacons - A. King, G. M. Peters, J. J. Bugh
and F. L. Lemon; thirteen clerks - N. Newton, S. K.
Greenleaf, E. Lamb, E. P. Peters, G. Dalton, W. C. Gildersleeve,
C. T. Emerson, L. L. Woodruff, W. H. H. Stone, W. H. C. Dodson,
A. C. Elster, S. Ward and L. D> Lyon; seven
Sunday-school superintendents - G. M. Peters, E. P. Peters,
Dr. S. H. Potter, L. L. Woodruff, A. C. Elster, S. Ward and
F. L. Lemon. For the year 1877 and the present year
(1879) they have maintained mission Sunday-schools; of the
school for the year 1877, which was located three miles in
the country, L. D. Lyon was superintendent, and of the
school established this year, in town, Dr. J. C. King is
CENTRAL PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH.
In 1838, just after the disruption of the Presbyterian
denomination, the Central Presbyterian congregation was formed.
In the old church, known as the "First," the minister Mr.
Putnam, and a majority, voted to join the New School branch.
They retained the old site and building. The minority
withdrew peaceable and came down town to organize the Old School
church - the one now called the "Central." Of the sixteen
or seventeen persons who formed it, only one is now remaining.
They held a meeting in "Squire" Bell's parlor, in the
house now owned by Mr. L. S. Scovil. Dr. James
Hoge, of Columbus, organized them as a church. In
various parlors they worshipped. It was "the church in the
house." Out on one of the streets called East Street which
started from the center of the town like the spokes from the hub
of a wheel - for the town was circular - stood the old brick
academy. Here, for a time, the Old School Presbyterians
Rev. George Wells, a young man, became the first
pastor. He was ordained and installed at a meeting held in
teh Lutheran church. The audiences increased, the house
became too small, and the Rev. Mr. Roof, of the Lutheran
church - a warm personal friend of Elder Matthew McCrea -
tendered the use of the Lutheran church. For two years the
congregation worshipped there every two weeks.
Subsequently they rented a large room in the building called
Olds' block - a room over the Wallace dry-goods store. The
lower room was occupied as a liquor saloon. Hon. Samuel
Galloway, one evening, beginning a temperance address in the
church room above, rose and gravely said:
"There's a Spirit above and a spirit below;
The Spirit above is a Spirit divine -
The spirit below is a spirit of wine.
But the people were not satisfied with a room merely; they
wanted a house and home of their own for worship. Elder
Matthew McCrea said he would build a church on his own lot, if
they could not get one elsewhere. They leased ground where
now is Wagner's grocery store, and reared a little frame
church. A thankful company they were. They put a
little bell up in the cupola, and elders and ladies' hands
pulled that bell rope and rang the people to worship. A
noted revival came upon them in that little house. But
their five years' lease expired. Their house was purchased
and moved across the street. It is now the hardware store
of Mr. Ensworth. The congregation moved again into
Olds' block, and worshipped in the lower room. Mr. Wells,
their pastoral, died, and Mr. McKennon became their next
minister. Soon he was succeeded by Rev. Milton A. Sackett.
Mr. James McCoy donated to the church
the lot of ground whereon their present edifice stands. A
subscription of one thousand six hundred dollars was made, and
the congregation began to build. Six thousand five hundred
dollars were finally expended on the building. For two
years the basement only was used for worship. Then the
upper room was finished, and, in 1865, June 3d, the church was
dedicated to the service of God. The ministers present,
besides the pastor, were Rev. W. C. Anderson, D. D., of
Chillicothe, Rev. Josiah D. Smith, of Columbus, and
Rev. J. M. Lowrie, of Lancaster. The dedication sermon
was by Mr. Smith; text - "We have thought of thy loving
kindness, O Lord, in the midst of thy temple."
Mr. Sacket, the pastor, removed, and Rev.
George L. Kalb, now of Bellfontaine, succeeded him for ten
In the autumn of 1864 Rev. William McMillan, the
present pastor, assumed the charge. The congregation
increased, and the Sabbath-school, under the superintendence of
Mr. A. McCrea, so enlarged that there was not room enough
in the lower chamber. It was the largest school in the
synod of Columbus, Old School.
In January, 1869, the building was enlarged by twenty
feet in length. In 1873 repairs again were needed, and the
entire roof was removed, the walls heightened, and the present
elegant architecture finished.
ST. JOSEPH'S (ROMAN
The first religious services held in this place, according to
the forms of the Roman Catholic communion, were, in the spring
of 1841, at the house of Mrs. Turner. The next were
in the fall of the same year, at the house of Andrew Lynch.
The old church was situated on Franklin street,
directly north of the spot where the first Presbyterian church
now stands. The ground (which was purchased of Thomas
Huston for a small sum) was partly covered by the ditch and
embankments of the old circle. The people turned out en
masse, Protestants as well as Catholics, to fill up the
ditch and prepare the ground for the building. This was
commenced in 1843, but not finished till 1846.
When this church was begun, there were only four
permanent families connected with the society, viz: Barnard
Riley, Andrew Lynch, George Myers, and John McLane.
A good many new families were brought in by the building of
the first turnpike, which was commenced about this time.
The parsonage, connected with the old church, was built in 1854,
at a cost of about two thousand dollars. The whole was
sold in1868 for about two thousand five hundred dollars, and the
price was put into the new church.
The ground for this fine brick edifice, which is
situated on Mound street, was bought of Henry F. Page for
about fourteen hundred dollars, and presented to the church by
one of its most liberal benefactors, Edward Smith.
The building was commenced in the summer of 1866, the foundation
only being laid that year. It was enclosed and roofed the
year following. Services were first held in it in 1868,
although it was not then plastered. That work was done in
1869. The pews, altar, pulpit, etc., were put in in
1870,and finally, in 1874, it was brought to its present state
of completion. The entire cost of the building was about
fifteen thousand dollars, which was raised by the liberal
contributions of many outside of the church, as well as by the
self-denying liberality of all those in it.
The elegant and commodious parsonage, adjacent to the
church, was built in 1871 or '72, at a cost of about twenty-five
The priests who have ministered to this church are
named (in the order of their service) as follows:
Father Young, Father Junker (both of whom
afterwards became bishops), P. Tschieder, Michael Ford, I. N.
Thisse, I. D. Duffy, Edward Fitzgerald, C. L. Pindar, Sergius
Stehoulepnikoff, A. M. Marzeand, D. B. Cull, and A. O.
Walker, who is the present incumbant
THE SECOND BAPTIST
was organized in the year
1856, by the Rev. William Norman, with three communion
members, namely: Lucy Winters, Enoch Weaver, and Sarah
Hollinsworth. For some time their meetings were held
in the houses of the members, but before the first year was
ended they had purchased a lot for a church, with a dwelling
house on it, which was used for their religious services till
1869. This lot is on the corner of Water and Mill streets.
It was bought for six hundred dollars, and was paid for by the
end of the fourth year.
Their present substantial brick
edifice was built in 1869, at a cost of four thousand five
hundred dollars. Quite a heavy debt was incurred in the
building, which was secured by a mortgage on the property; but
this debt, also, was wiped out by the end of the fourth year,
and they are now even with the world, as every church out to be.
The succession in the pastorate is as follows:
William Norman, Grayson Jones, Elder Day, from Springfield;
Jesse Meeks, Andrew Hunt, Wm. Norman (second term),
Andrew Hunt (second term), Wallace Shelton, and
William Nash, whose ministry began October 23, 1878, and who
is still serving. The membership, at the present time,
numbers one hundred and twenty-nine.
We cannot help thinking that this
is a very creditable record for a people who have so much to
struggle against as the Africans have in this country.
William Norman, the
patriarch of this little flock, has long enjoyed the confidence
and esteem of this community. He is a mulatto, with almost
Caucasian features, and as he evidently does not regard
cleanliness as the chief of the moral virtues, he might pass for
a European of rather untidy habits. He was born near
Richmond, Virginia, about the year 1815, his father being a
slave and his mother a free woman. At the age of eight
years he was taken to Tennessee and "bound out" to a certain
Dr. Calhoun. Being cruelly treated, he ran away from
his master at about eighteen years of age, and, after passing
through the usual experiences of a fugitive slave, he found
himself, in 1833, in Chillicothe. There he remained till
1856. About the year 1841 he became converted and was
baptized. Two years later, having "picked up" considerable
education, and being somewhat gifted in discourse, he was
ordained to the ministry of the Baptist communion by Elder W.
Shelton. He settled here in 1857, having been here a
year before in the capacity of missionary, and assisted, as
above slated, in the organization of the church of which he was
the first pastor and has always been the main pillar. He
has acted as the financial agent of the congregation in the
purchase of their property and in the building of their church;
has raised most of the subscriptions collected here and
elsewhere to aid in paying their debts, and has contributed
largely from his own earnings for the same object. Even
when acting as pastor of the church, he has always followed some
temporal calling. Like the early apostles, he believes in
immersion and deals in fish. By industry and the closest
economy, he has amassed a nice little property of about four
thousand dollars. Long may he live to enjoy the fruits of
CALVARY CHURCH OF THE EVANGELICAL ASSOCIATION.
This church was organized by the Ohio conference, in 1869, under
the pastoral charge of Rev. Wm. Whittington, missionary.
In 1871, Rev. Jesse Lerch succeeded Rev. W.
Whittington, and labored for three years with success and
acceptability. In May, 1874, Rev. Vandersall became
the pastor, and labored for three years with success. In
April, 1877, Rev. S. S. Condo was stationed in charge of
the church, and is now spending his third year successfully.
Since the organization of this
church it has continued to prosper, year after year, and is the
most prosperous church in the city. At the close of the
two years' labor of its first pastor, its membership was
sixty-two. Its present membership is two hundred.
Its sustains a Sunday-school of two hundred and sixty scholars,
and a Young Mens' Christian association. Pastors cannot
remain longer than three years, according to the laws of the