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I.OHXA DKI fSW Swedes) Cliurcbn 
which is reproduced on the coviW 
ol this muguziiie, was the first pub-J 
lie lionse of worship in I'eDnsylvunia. It^ 
is situated oii Swanson .Street, below Chris-1 
tian, near the Delaware, a district whiehl 
ill the early days was the center of the 
business life of the city. When the foun- 
dations were laid on May 'JH, ItiUS, that I 
district was called Wicaco — from a nearby 
Indian village. It was built ou the site of 
a log church, also ilesigued as a block- 
linn.<>i' for (lefeu^iK against the ludians. Gus- 
taVMs Adolphus issued the proclamation 
wliii-h sanctioned tlie erection of the' 

The church was dedicated on .Inly 2,1 
170<>, by the Lutheran Swedes, and for 
130 years its pastors were sent from Swe- 
den, 'fh& last of the Swedish pastors 
'Rev. Nicholas Collin, *ho was tber< 
through the Revolution, died in ISai. He 
was one of the most promiueut men in the 
city. About that time the majority of the 
congregation hail become aympatbtic to 
the Pratest^it Episcopal faith and the 
ohurcli Was^transferred to that denomina- 
tion. 'J 

The structure is built of black and red! 
brick, with a quaint little belfry in the 
Vestern end. In 1840 a gallery was added 
on three sides of the church and windows 
cut in the walls.. The graveyard of the 
church is of venerable appearance and 
among the old tombstones is one over the 
remains of Alexander Wilson, the celebrat- 
ed naturalist and poet, whose descriptions 
of birds are among the most complete andi 
wonderful of such essays extant. 

1743 1893 


Trappe Church, 



Sesqai- Centennial Serviees 


Augustus Evangelical Lutheran Church, 

Montgomery County, Pennsylvania. 


Rev. Ernest T. Kretschmann, Ph. D., Pastor. 





Copyright by 

E. T. Kkbtschmann, 



The thought of preparing this memorial vohime of the Sesqiii-Cen- 
tennial of the Old Trappe Church was the outgrowth of the celebration 
itself. It has been prepared with a view to perpetuate the lessons which 
the services unfolded ; to secure to the congregation the wholesome stim- 
ulus which a study of its historic past may be well calculated to yield; 

|||. but with the hope also of redeeming what is worthy of a wider interest 

™ from being merely congregational. 

Although the Old Trappe Church is objectively the property of a 
specific congregation, it is in no indefinite sense the heritage of tiie 
Lutheran Church ; because that of which it is the monumental exponent 
cannot be confined to a merely local interest. It witnesses not merely 
to the founding of a separate congregation, but in a large sense to the 
planting of the Lutheran Church in America; it witnesses not only to 
the heroic labors of a certain pastor, but to the consecration and self- 
sacrifice of the Patriarch of the Lutheran Church in America. The 
Sesqui-Centennial of this venerable temple, therefore, while relating 
immediately to a circumscribed sphere, can be justly interpreted as 
memorial not simply of cz Lutheran Church, but of //if Lutheran Churcii. 
In preparing this concise history I have met with two embarassments 
— fecundity and barrenness. The superabundant material covering the 
earliest period is only rendered embarassing for a well-proportioned his- 
tory by the barrenness of records touching some later periods. Muhlen- 
berg's beautifully conducted records should have served as an excellent 
, model for all succeeding scribes, but it is to be deeply regretted that the 

nj pattern thus shown to them in the Mount was not in every instance 
rigidly adhered to. 

J The early history of the Old Trappe Church has been repeatedly 

sketched in secular and church periodicals, and notably in Dr. J. W. 
\ Richards' " Fruitful Retrospect," and in Dr. Mann's notes to the new 
iJ edition of the Hallische Nachrichten, but aside from these outlines the 
' history of the congregation has never been written. 

Much valuable and new material has been extracted from old papers, 
deeds, minute-books, financial reports, etc., which have hitherto kept 
their interesting secrets. As the various other sources which have been 
tributary to both the history and brief biographies have been very gener- 
ally indicated throughout the volume, no further reference to them need 
here be made, than to emphasize the great importance of the new edition 
of the Hallische Nachrichten (Halle Reports) as the chief source for 
the historical material, especially of the early period. 

My thanks are due to the various speakers of the Sesqui-Centennial, 
who kindly submitted their manuscripts for this volume. Other assistance 
rendered by members of the congregation is also gratefully acknowledged. 

I desire especially to express my warmest thanks to ^[r. Julius F. 
Sachse for his cordial co-operation in the work of preparing the illustra- 
tions for this volume. I am indebted to him also for the many valuable 
suggestions of his rich experience as a historical investigator and an au- 
thority on the history, more particularly, of the colonial period. 

The preparation of this volume, which is designed to be memorial 
especially of the services of the Sesqui-Centennial, was necessarily post 
eventum, but the somewhat tedious delay in its appearance is to be 
attributed to the protracted illness of the editor. 

Trappe, Pa., Easter, iSg^f. 


The Old and New Augustus Church, Frontispiece 


Fac simile of earliest entries in the church register, 3 

Fac simile of Muhlenberg's entry upon assuming the pastorate, . . 7 

Pastor Muhlenberg holding service in the barn, facing p. 16 

The Old Muhlenberg House, 32 

The Old Trappe Church, 48 

Historic vessels, 64 

Interior view of the old church, 80 

Muhlenberg family portraits, 119 

Muhlenberg's passport '44 


HISTORY OF THE OI,D TRAPPE CHURCH.— Earliest traces of or- 
ganization. — The earliest account of a pastor. — Henry Mei.- 
chior Muhlenberg. — Muhlenberg's house. — Consecration of the 
CHURCH. — Pastoral labors and trials. — Synodical meetings at 
Trappe. — Perfected organization. — Church service. — Church dis- 
cipline. — Muhlenberg's support. — Removal to Philadelphia, ... i 

PASTORATES Continued. — J. C. Hartwick, substitute. — Jacob Van 
Buskerk, substitute. — J. L. VoiGT. — J; F. Weinland. — J. P. Hecht. 
— H. A. Geissenhainer. — F. W. Geissenhainer, Sr. — F. W. 
Geissenhainer, Jr.— Jacob Wampole. — J, W. Richards. — Jacob Wam- 
POLE. — H. S. Miller. — G. Wenzel. — A. S. I. ink. — G. Sill. — John 
Kohler. — O. P. Smith. — Division of the charge, i8 

SUNDAY-SCHOOL AND SOCIETIES.— Sunday-school.— Muhlenberg 
Missionary Society. — Young People's Lyceum. — Pastor's Aid So- 
ciety, 44 

PAROCHIAL SCHOOL. — Schoolmasters. — Charity .school. — School- 
houses. — Public School, 46 

CHURCH PROPERTY.— Church lots.— Cemetery.— Bequests 54 

THE OLD CHURCH. — Description. — Pipe organ. — Church furniture. 
— Historic relics. — Church customs. — Old church during the 
revolution. — Repairs. — Anonymous poem descriptive of the old 
CHURCH, ... 60 

celebration. — Program of sesqui-centennial services. — Anniver- 
sary sermon. — Prayer. — Addresses, 71 

BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES.— Register of pastors.— Sketches of 

pastors. — Additional sketches. — The Muhlenberg family, .... 115 

APPENDIX. — Muhlenberg's second passport. — Muhlenberg's letter 

TO Dr. Richard Peters. — Organizations and officers, 165 

fjlstor^ of % 0'<^ ^9ppe (h^rcli. 

I^Y ^f)e E^ditor. 

THE Augustus Evangelical Lutheran Church is located in the village 
of Trappe,^ Upper Providence^ township, Montgomery County.^ 
It is on the Reading turnpike/ about nine miles north of Norris- 
town, and half way between Philadelphia and Reading. New Providence, 
(now divided into Upper and Lower Providence), a name appearing as 
early as 1734, was part of the tract of land reserved for a number of 

(l)The first uame of the village was Landau or Landaw, given to it by Samuel Seely, who divided 
it into town lots. But this name existed only on paper and was soon lost. About this time another 
name was applied to it which, with some modification, it has retained. In t»r. Muhlenberg's jour- 
nal, under the date November 13th, 1780, he says, " Christian Schrack, who was buried yesterday, 
was a son of John Jacob Schrack, who came to this country in 1717. . . . They built a cabin 
and a cave in which they cooked. They kept a small shop in a small way, and a tavern with beer 
and such things. As once an English inhabitant, who had been drinking in the cave, fell asleep 
and came home late, and n-as in consequence scolded by his wife, he excused himself by saying he 
had been at the Trap. From that time the neighborhood is called Trapp, and is known as such in 
all America." In the oldest deeds and maps it appears Trap and Trapp, the latter spelling as late 
as 1852 in the church records. Governor Francis Shunk strenuously advocated the name Treppe, 
claiming that its true origin was to be derived from an incident that occurred at Schrack's tavern. 
As an intoxicated German fell headlong down the high steps leading to this tavern, he anathema- 
tized " die Treppe," and so, he maintained the nameof the place ought to be spelled. (See also the 
Fruitful Retrospect, p. 12, and Hall. Nach. I 292, note 35.) But the history of its orthography 
renders Shunk's theory fatally defective, and supports tlie view of Muhlenberg, who was in a posi- 
tion to know and who speaks without doubt. So intense was the feeling aroused as to its proper 
spelling that a public meeting was held in the school-house in February, 1835, when, after 
spirited discussion, it was decided that the name should be Trapp, and so, with the subsequent 
addition of the final «, it has remained. 

(2) The origin of the name Providence is not certainly known, but tradition says it was settled by 
some of the followers of Roger Williams of Rhode Island. In 1636, Roger Williams had named 
his settlement Providence, now tbe capital of Rhode Island. Hence his followers coming 
here called this region '-New Providence" (See Dr. Mann's Life and Times of H. M. Muhlen- 
berg, p. 202, note.) Another more plausible theory is that it received its name from one of 
the West Indies Islands, viz., New Providence. This is supported by the fact that Craig, an early 
settler, came from that place, while the Lanes and Richardsons, two of the foremost families of the 
township, came from the neighboring Island of Jamaica. (Hist. Mont. Co., p. 1044). 

(3) Originally formed a portion of Philadelphia County, from which it was separated by an act of 
Assembly, passed September 10, 1784 It was named in honor of General Richard Montgomery, 
who fell mortally wounded at the battle of Quebec, December 31, 1775. 

(4) Originally known as the Manatawny (or Mahanatawny) road, of Indian origin, after the 
creek at Fottstown, signifying " tbe place where we drank." (New Hist. Atlas of Mont. Co., p. 23, 
col. L) 

2 The Old Trappc Church. 

years by William Penn' for his own use. He gave it the name of Gil- 
'bert's Manor, in honor of his mother, who belonged to the family of 
'Gilberts, but it was gradually superseded by that of New Providence, 
though occasionally found as late as 1817. The earliest settlers were 
•Englishmen, the first, of whom we have record, was Edward Lane, who, 
•vci 1684, came from Jamaica and bought 2,500 acres of this tract. They 
>were soon followed by the Germans, who, after the settlement of Ger- 
imantown, in 1683, and during the period of increased immigration from 
'Germany, 1702-27,' began gradually moving into this county. One of 
the earliest German settlers was John Jacob Schrack, who came from Ger- 
imany in 1717, and bought 250 acres of land in the lower end of the pres- 
ent village of Trappe. 

So rapid had been their increase in i 734 that, in a list of 762 taxables 
and land-holders in the present county, considerably over one-half were 
Germans, and about one-fifth probably Welsh. Of the various national- 
ities of these early settlers the German element struck the deepest 
root, and the result was a steady increase in their number as land-holders. 


One of the first necessities of these settlers was, naturally, a burying- 

Just when the oldest part of the cemetery was first used for burial 
purposes will probably never be known. The oldest inscribed tomb- 
stone bears the date September 9, 1736. Other inscriptions have been 
entirely effaced ; some stones have sunk into the ground, and many 
graves were doubtless without any, indicating that there were burials 
years before this, probably as early as 1730. The Church record of 
burials does not begin until 1745, and gives us no information. The 
earliest entry in the records is a baptism dated March 8, 1730, in the 
hand-writing of John Caspar Stoever, Jr., 3. fac simile of which is here 

(5) On March 4, ItiSl, William Penn received his grant of the province of Pennsylvania. On June 
3,1684, all the right of Maughaugsin (chief of one of the Lene Lenape tribes, then inbahiting this 
region,) to the land along the Perkionien creek, including Providence township, was duly sold and 
conveyed to William Penn, with the promise on the part of the Indians never to molest any Chris- 
tians that mightsettle thereon, (New Atlas Mont. Co., p. 6. col, 1.) 

(6) Prof J, D. Riipp, Hisl. of Mont. Co., p. 1.31. Life of Dr. Wm. Smith, vol. I, p. 29. 

The Old Trappe Church. 


-'-rsi-'C^ '■'=^" 

4 The Old Trappe CJiurch. 

Though not yet ordained, he performed ministerial acts, began the 
Church Records, as itinerant preacher held occasional services here and 
many other places, and possibly formed a rudimentary organization.' 


The first pastor of whom we have some definite knowledge, was John 
Christian Schultze. He was born June ii, 1701, in the margravate of 
Anspach, in Scheinbach, Germany, and was probably educated at Strass- 
burg. Immediately upon his arrival from Germany, on September 25, 

1732, though it is doubtful if he was ever ordained, he convinced the 
people at least of his competency as a pastor, and began his 
work at Philadelphia, Trappe and New Hanover. He left no 
record of any pastoral acts and remained only a few months, as in the 
Spring of 1733 he was sent by the three congregations, in company with 
Daniel Weisiger and John Daniel Shoener, as delegates, to make collec- 
tions in England, Holland and Germany for building churches, and to 
secure additional pastors, but Schultze never returned. He brought the 
congregation into some crude form of organization, and his work, though 
brief and meager, was deeply appreciated, for in the letter dated May i, 

1733, signed by Patrick Gordon, Governor of the Province, which they 
placed in the hands of their delegates to Europe, two of the signers of 
whichj John ('rossman and Jacob Schrack, were officers of the Trappe 
congregation, appears this testimony : " He has earnestly endeavored, 
according to his ability, by the preaching of the Word and the adminis- 
tration of the Holy Sacraments, to bring us out of the darkness and ignor- 
ance into which we had fallen, and by organizing three congregations, to 
renew and confirm our union in our most holy faith."' It is sad, indeed, 
to learn that he abused the confidence they reposed in him, and that he 
applied to his own uses the money he collected in Germany, continuing 
his disgraceful and dishonest conduct until he was arrested in March, 1 736, 
at Augsburg, deprived of his credentials and license to collect money, 
and some time after, at Nurnberg, was compelled to surrender the 
money still in his possession, amounting to 520 guldens." Of his subse- 
quent career nothing is known. 

Before his departure for Germany he had ordained to the ministrv, 
early in 1733, in the barn then used for services, John Caspar Stoever, 
Jr.,'" who became Schultze's successor as pastor, but remained only until 

(7) Dr. Mann's Life and Times of H. M. M., p. 112. 

m Halle Repoils. p. 79. (9) Hall. Nach. I, pp.ii), 65, 66. Hall. Nach. II, 197. 

(10) John Ca^pa^ Stoever was born iu Frankenberg in Hesse, Germany, on December 21, 1707. 

He sailed in the "Good Will " in I7-J8, and landed at Philadelphia on September 19th; lived in the 

neightiorhood of Trappe for a year, settled in May, 1730, in Lancaster county, near New Holland ; 

was ordaine<l in 1733, and succeeded Schultze until September of the same year. He began the 

The Old Trappe Church. 5 

the following Spring, when he removed to Lancaster county. He still 
occasionally visited Trappe, as his entries of baptisms and marriages con- 
tinue to March 9, 1735. 

For nine years after Stoever left, the congregation was without any 
pastoral attention, save that occasionally the Swedish pastors Gabriel Falk 
and John Dylander, from Wicaco, later Gloria Dei Church, Philadelphia, 
preached and administered the sacraments. No wonder, then, that after 
many years of the most irregular and sporadic ministration, and long 
periods of no pastoral care at all, the heart of the people should be de- 
pressed, and that spiritual destitution should set in. " The condition of 
the Lutheran Church, in a word, was altogether such as might be ex- 
pected to result from thirty years of confusion, disorder and neglect." 

Earnestly, tearfully, repeatedly their Macedonian cry went out to the 
fathers of Europe, " Come over and help us." But difficulties were in 
the way ; they were unwilling to pledge themselves to support a pastor 
until they knew what kind of a man was to be sent, and knew he was 
worthy of their confidence. Every obstacle, however, was at length re- 
moved, and after ten years of earnest entreaties, the answer came." 

A united and urgent call from the three congregations of Philadel- 
phia, Trappe and New Hanover, was sent to Dr. Fred. Michael Ziegen- 
hagen of London, who, on May 24th, placed the formal official call to 
the dispersed Lutherans in Pennsylvania in the hands of the man who, 
under the guidance of the Holy Spirit, was to bring order out of chaos, 


He reached Philadelphia November 25, 1742. The land he found so 
rich in its productions that, as he said, " It was a land flowing with milk 
and honey." 1\\ the country, houses were scattered miles apart along 
roads constantly penetrating dense forests, the home of wild beasts 
and betimes hostile Indians. The people were suffering many hard- 
ships : many were in destitute circumstances upon coming to this coun- 
try," and though means of subsistence were not lacking, money was very 

■Church Records at Trappe, Mode Creek, York, New Holland, Lancaster, Nordkill, Tulpehocken, 
Philadelphia and other places ; was received into the Ministerium in October, 1763, at Philadel- 
phia; lived near New Holland many years, serving the people there and elsewhere, until he re- 
moved to Lebanon county, where, on Ascension day, May 13, 1779, at a confirmation service, he 
suddenly sank down and died. 

(11) Early Hist, of the Luth. Church, by Dr. C. W. Schaeffer, chap. 5. 

(12) Hall. Nach. I. 93 ; II, 197. 

(13) So poor were they that many could not pay the passage money, and were bound out to 
labor by the ship's captain for a period of 3 to 6 years, until it could be earned. Children from 10 
to 15 years had to serve until they were 21. Parents were obliged to tratfic and sell their children 
like cattle, so that they, if the children assumed their debt as was often done, might go free. It not 
infrequently happened that as they ofttimes did not know whither theirchildren were taken, they 
never saw them again. (See Hall. Nach. I, p. 281, and second page of Dr. Spaeth's address, in this 

6 The Old Trappe C/utrch. 

scarce; people had to haul their products to the city, and then obtained 
very little for them. The densest ignorance prevailed, and the prospect 
of approaching darkness and idolatry was most distressing." " So sad, 
so degraded is the condition of our poor Lutheran people," says Muhlen- 
berg, " that you could hardly bewail it enough with tears of blood. The 
children are growing up without baptism, without instruction, without 
training, and so they sink into heathenism itself. Such was the state of 
affairs when I first came to Philadelphia.'"* They were as sheep not 
having a shepherd, and_wolves stole in and tore the sheep. Unprincipled 
" vagabonds," who assumed the pastoral office, imposed themselves 
upon the people. Karl Rudolf at Monacacy, who claimed to- 
be Prince of Wiirtemberg, but who had more to do with the 
prince of darkness than of Wiirtemberg," Engelland at Lancaster and 
York, Schmidt, the quack doctor, at New Hanover, the despicable Andeas ' 
at Goshenhoppen and Germantown, the suicide Rapp at New York and 
elsewhere, the ubiquitous Kraft and many others before and after Muh- 
lenberg's arrival, carrying their machinations everywhere, distracting and 
laying waste many fields, made confusion worse confounded. The 
Church was not only without form but deformed, not only unorganized 
t)ut disorganized. Wave after wave beat against the little ship of church, 
which, without rudder, sails, and sailors, was driven about and tossed, 
threatened with complete destruction.'' Verily the Church was, as he 
said, " non plantata sed plantanda," not planted, but to be 
planted. It was a Herculean that was set before him, 
but undismayed, with heroic energy, and reliance upon the 
grace of God, he grappled with the task. Muhlenberg entered 
upon his duties as pastor of the congregation on December 12, 1742, 
by holding a service on the barn floor. The people wept for very 
joy, and received him at once into their confidence and affection. 
They listened with rapt attention as he preached, and manifested the 
greatest interest and relish for his instruction in the Divine Word, bring- 
ing joy to his heart and lightening the burden of his care and labors. 
His entry in the Church Record upon assuming chargeof the congregation, 
reproduced on page 7, reads: "On the 12th of December, 1742, I, 
Henry Melchior Muhlenberg, entered upon my office here as called and 
ordained pastor, and preached my introductory sermon on Math. XI, the 
gospel for the HI Advent Sunday." On Christmas day his acceptance of 
the call was signed by the officers of the congregations. 

Upon his arrival he found about fifty families, one hundred communi- 
cants, belonging to the congregation. " In this township," he says, in a 

( 14) Life of Dr. William Smith, vol. I, p. 29. (16) Halle Reports, p. 26. cf Hall. Nach. 11, p. 195. 
(16) Dr. Mann's Vergaiig. Tage. p. 11. (17) Hall. Nach. If, p. 197. 

The Old Trappe Chur-ch^ 

; '5 I 


^ »1^ S v~ 



^ 1^-4^ 


8 The Old Trappe Church. 

letter," "there is already an English church." The Mennonites also 
have a meeting-house/" and, as there has never been a Lutheran church 
here, we are about building the first one."-' The building of a church 
was a necessity. The capacity of the barn was entirel)- inadequate, and 
as the members were increasing, many were obliged to stand outside, in 
rain and storm as well as in sunshine. After the celebration of Epiphany, 
Wednesday, January 5, 1 743, his fourth service, the congregation resolved 
to build a church and school house. The plan of the church was submit- 
ted and a copy of it sent to Germany for the information of the fathers. 
They determined to build a church of stone (wood being too perishable,) 
fifty-four " shoes''^' long by thirty-nine "shoes" wide, the estimated 
cost of which was about two hundred pounds sterling, one hundred 
pounds having been already subscribed. Where the remainder was to 
come from was an anxious question. Still, with faith in God, they were 
willing to contract a debt for the remaining sum, hoping that God 
would put it into the hearts of benefactors to come to their assistance. 
Their hope was not in vain. They soon received the very generous 
gift of ;^ii5 7^'. from European collections through Dr. Ziegenhagen, 
which, after having themselves raised £138 15X. 8^/., considerably more 
than had been first subscribed, reduced their debt to ;^39 i2j-. lYid. 
This was in time gradually liquidated. Those who were unable to sub- 
scribe money pledged their labor. They were all of one mind, and during 
the winter entered heartily upon the work of preparing materials for 
building in the spring, men hauling the stones and children splitting and 
shaving the oak shingles. Under date of Jan. 25, 1743, Muhlenberg 
writes: •' The deacons had engaged a master mason with whom they 
wanted to make a contract for the building of the church ; we could not, 
however, come to any agreement. Our poor members of the congrega- 
tion do what they can, and have already, for a beginning, hauled several 
hundred cart-loads (Fuderj of stone." To see them work so earnestly 
was, as Muhlenberg said, a real joy to him. The present site was se- 
lected, and on March 10, 1743, the congregation bought two 
adjoining tracts of land for church and burial purposes. By 
the fifth of January the log school-house, not frame," was fin- 

(18)Hall.Nach. I.p. IS. 

(19) St. James' Epis. Church at Perkiomen now Evansburg, 1709 ; stone church built 1721. 

(20) In Skippach township. 

(21) The arst German Lutheran church in the United States was built at New Hanover (The 
Swamp), prior to 1710. Another log church was built there in 1721. A third, begun in 1741, and 
•completed in 1747, was superseded in 1768 by the present fine stone church. 

(22) ".14 schuh lang bei 39 schuh breit," from a letter by Brunnholtz. The German "schuh," "ein 
Itengenmass," is the old term for 12 in. or a foot, long measure, and is still in vogue in Pennsyl- 
vania, and some parts of Germany. 

(2.'!) Halle Roporls, p. 12. 

The Old Trappe Church. 9 

ished, and in April the masons commenced work on the church. 
On the second day of May the corner-stone was laid with solemn service 
in the presence of an immense gathering. The seats which had been 
rudely constructed of the lumber brought there for the church, accommo- 
dated only a part of the vast number present. After singing Paul Ger- 
hardt'shymn, " Commit thy ways and all that grieves thy heart to God," 
Muhlenberg preached a sermon in German, based on the text Zech. 14 : 
7, " But it shall be one day which shall be known to the Lord, not day, 
nornight: butit shall come to pass, that at evening time it shall be light." 
He then delivered an address in English, as the English speaking portion 
of the community was present in large numbers. At this service the 
church received the name of Augustus, not in honor of any imaginary 
St. Augustus, but in honor of Hermann Augustus Francke, the- founder of 
the Halle Institutions, whose son Gotthelf Augustus Francke, was espec- 
ially influential in securing Muhlenberg's acceptance of the call. 

So rapidly had the work advanced" that on August 31st the roof was 
finished, and on September 12th the congregation left the barn and 
worshiped for the first time within the bare walls of the new church. 
From the very beginning Muhlenberg gave one-third of his time to 
Trappe, spending a week at a time in each of his three charges, holding 
services on Sunday, and " compelled by stern necessity to do the work of 
a school-master during the week." 

A special service was held on Whit-Monday when the Lord's Supper 
was administered, six adults and two youths confirmed and two children 
baptized. For two years he preached at Trappe, New Hanover, Phila- 
delphia, and other places, ^^ traveling back and forth, often exposed to 
danger,^" working single-handed and alone, but, though he performed 
gigantic tasks, it was overwhelming. He entreated the fathers to send 
him co-laborers, and at last he received assurance of help. Peter Brunn- 
holtz arrived at Philadelphia January 26, 1745, and divided the work with 

(24) A well authenticated tradition informs us that during the harvest season, when the crops 
had to be gathered, the women wheeled the mortar and tended the masons, so that the worlc should 
not be retarded. 

(25) The subordinate congregations (Filial)counecte(l with Trappe. " Because many of the weak 
and aged members cannot travel so far," Muhlenberg writes, "and the little children cannot be 
brought over such distances to be baptized in church, I therefore have an occasional service dur- 
ing the week somewhere along the Scbippach (Towamencin) and also on the other side of the 
Schuylkill (Pikestown), for it is often a very troublesome thing for the people to have to ford the 
river. (Halle Reports, Dr. Schaeffer, p. 170.) 

(26)"In this country there are several streams which sometimes rise suddenly very high, and then 
again abate. There are no bridges over them, so that they have to be crossed on horseback or in a 
canoe. In traveling from Philadelphia to the cbuiches in the country I am obliged to cross three 
streams (the Wissahickon, Perkiomen and Scbippach,) and in winter this is often dangerous." 
(Halle Reports, p. 22.) 

lO The Old Trappe Church. 

Muhlenberg, alternating from one charge to the other, making bi-weekly 

Brunnholtz first preached at Trappe, February 7, 1745. The Church 
Record contains the following entry. ■' On the Sunday after Epiphany, 
1745, I, Peter Brunnholtz, being regularly ordained and called by the 
Rev. Court Chaplain Ziegenhagen, in London, and duly commissioned 
as second pastor of the Evangelical Lutheran congregations in Philadel- 
phia, Germantown," New Providence and New Hanover, and colleague 
of the very Rev. H. M. Muhlenberg, preached my introductory sermon 
in this Providence congregation, upon the Gospel lesson for the day," 
{Math.&: 1-13- The centurion at Capernaum).™ This arrangement, 
however, only continued five months, for in June, 1745, the charge was 
divided, owing to Brunnholtz's delicate constitution, he serving the con- 
gregations at Philadelphia and Germantown, and Muhlenberg those in 
the country. 

On April 22d, of this year, Muhlenberg was married to Anna Maria 
Weiser,"' daughter of the celebrated Indian agent and interpreter, Colonel 
Conrad Weiser,'" at Tulpehocken, by Rev. Tobias Wagner, Brunnholtz 
and Schaum being present as witnesses, and in June moved from Phila- 
delphia to Trappe and commenced the building of a house. 


The lot adjoining the church property, containing thirty-three acres, 
on which he built his house with the assistance of his father-in-law 

(27) Mulilenberg preached here soon after his arrival as opportunity offered during the week. 
It was at once regularly added to the charge. 

(28 1 The titk- page of the oldest church record, begun in 1730 by Stoever, was written by Brunn- 
holtz. He also made the first entry in Muhlenberg's minute book, giving an account of the money 
contributed and expended in building the church. 

(29) Born June 24, 1727, and died .August 23, 1802, surviviugher husband fifteen years. In the ac- 
count of his marriage, sent to Halle, Muhlenberg states that he had always intended to remain un- 
married. But after being accosted in the city by some oflBcious match-makers with, " Sir, you must 
stay in this country and be with us, I know a good espouse for you. Hereor there is an opportunity 
for you, etc.," and bearing some rude settler in the country say bluntly : " The pastor must become 
my son," and realizing too that he was being hampered in his labors, " as the devil went to work in 
an infamous way to befoul him and his work," he at length prayed the Lord to give him a pious 
wife, deeming sincere piety the chief requisite. The Lord regarded his prayers and granted him a 
young woman who was *' pure in heart, pious, unpretentious, meek and active." (Halle Reports, p> 

(30) John Conrad Weiser, Jr., born November 2, 1696, at Afstett, in the dukedom of Wurtemherg, 
Germany ; came as a child with his father to this country, lived for months at a time with the In- 
dians and learned their language, customs and character. Settled at Tulpehocken in 1729, became 
interpreter and government agent in treaties with the Indians; sent trom Pennsylvania and Vir- 
ginia on long and dangerous missions to the various Indian tribes, reaching as far as Canada, and 
attaining great celebrity. Full accounts of his mission and work are contained in the " Records and 
Archives," published by the .Stale of Pennsylvania. In 1754 he was appointed a trustee of the 
Society for Propagating Christian Knowledge among the Germans of Pennsylvania; became col- 
onel of the provincial militia, October 17, 175."!; accompanied Count Ziiizendorf and various mis- 
.■<ionaries into the wilderness, and was instrumental in starting the Herrnbuter mission among the 
Indians He died at Heidelberg, July 13, 1760. 

The Old Trappe Church. 1 1 

during the Summer of 1745, he had purchased some years before, indi- 
cating that he had intended making Trappe his headquarters from the 
very, beginning. As he said, it was a heavy undertaking, as he was in debt 
for the land, and the congregation unable to build a parsonage, owing to 
the debt already upon the church. The cost of the house, for which he 
contracted a debt, was two hundred pounds current money. The house 
is still standing, a short distance northeast of the church, though it was 
remodeled in 1851. In this house eight of his eleven children first saw 
the light of day. 


It had been decided at the first service held in the church not tO' 
consecrate it until it was fully completed in all its parts, and this having 
now been accomplished after a lapse of two years, the delay occasioned 
by the difficulty of securing the necessary funds for the work, Muhlen- 
berg, on October 6, 1745, the Sunday after Michaelis, consecrated the 
new church with solemn ceremony, assisted by Peter Brunnholtz, Tobias 
Wagner and Lawrence T. Nyberg (Newberg), the catechists John 
Helfrich Schaum and John Nic. Kurtz being also present. On this 
occasion the dedicatory stone was placed in the wall of the church, bear- 
ing the following Latin inscription : 


Una CUM censoribus- i • n ^ 

5k HA510. ET. G • KEBNERO. 
^A. D . MDCCXLIir- 

" Under the auspices of Christ, Henry Melchior Muhlenberg, together with his Coun- 
cil, I. N. Crosman, F. Marsteler, A. Heilman, I. Mueller, H. Haas and G. Kebner, 
erected from the very foundation this temple dedicated by the Society holding the Augs- 
burg Confession. A. D. 1743." 

An interesting feature of this service was the baptism of three negroes, 
slaves of Mr. Pawling, a church warden of St. James' Episcopal Church, 
Perkiomen, now Evansburg, who stated that " Dutch baptism was good 
enough for blacks." After public examination in the fundamental doc- 
trines of the Church, having been duly instructed and prepared for the 

12 The Old Frappe ChurcJi. 

rite by Muhlenberg, they were baptized and named John, Jacob and 
Thomas. Brunnholtz, Wagner and Newberg acted as sponsors." 


During these years Muhlenberg exercised a general supervision over 
all the congregations in the province, endeavoring to preach to each of his 
country congregations at least once in six weeks. In the Summer season 
he preached regularly at New Hanover, and at Trappe every two weeks, in 
German in the morning and English in the afternoon, as " there were 
rather more English than German inhabitants," and held service as cir- 
cumstances permitted at the various outposts (Filial Gemeinden), beyond 
the Schippach (Towamencin), across the Schuylkill (Zion's), in the 
Oley mountains (a few miles from New Hanover), at Saccum, Upper 
Milford, the Forks (Easton), and other places as they were added from 
time to time. He was assisted at [these various points by John Nic. 
Kurtz, John H. Schaum, L. H. Schrenk and others, especially during 
the periods of more extended absence in New York and at Raritan and 
Cohansey in New Jersey. 

Muhlenberg experienced many hardships in attending to the pastoral 
duties of this immense parochial district. " During the winter months," 
he says, " one must be glad, if the general duties in the churches and at 
the outposts can be attended to. Frequently the roads, the rivers, the 
storms, the cold, the snow, the weather, are such that one would not like 
to drive his dog out of the house. Yet the pastor must go his round. 
God in His mercy often saved me in most imminent danger, and pre- 
served my poor bones when horse and rider fell."'- 

Not the least of the trials he had to endure was his contact with the 
godlessness prevailing in so many places, as he was frequently called to 
duty at many promiscuous gatherings, when men did not hesitate to in- 
dulge in the most shocking oaths, blasphemies and scofifings at ministers 
and religion in general. 

At the marriage of a daughter of one of his members to a Reformed 
neighbor, people gathered in large numbers, with and without invitation. 

(31) The fact of the baptism of these slaves reveals the sympathy which Muhlenberg, on many 
occasions showed for the colored race, (Life and Times of H. M. M., p. 280.) and Mr. Pawling's re- 
mark may be regarded as an illustration of the well-Iinown prejudice in certain Episcopalian 
circles against the reception of negroes into the Church. (Fee Hist. Collections relating to the 
Amer. Colon. Churches, vol. 2, p. 184.) There were negro members of the Church continuously for 
many years after Muhlenberg's time. The two last, still well remembered by old members of the 
Church, were *' der schwartze Sambo." who, according to the records, acted as sexton for a time, 
and Hans Haddens, who, for a 'number of years, sang bass profuttdhsimo, as a member of the 
choir, but subsequently turned to be a consummate scoundrel. 

(32) Dr. Mann's Life and Times of H. M. M., p. 202. 

The Old Trappe Church. 13 

and forthwith, as was frequently the case, a scene of ribaldry, dancing, 
drinking and profanity ensued. Muhlenberg, who officiated, and Brunn- 
holtz, who was also present, together with some members of the Church, 
were placed in a room by themselves. There they improved the occasion 
with profitable intercourse, and spiritual hymns, whilst in the adjoining 
room they danced around the altar of Baal. Muhlenberg and Brunn- 
holtz were sickened at their levity and godlessness, and after admonish- 
ing them several times in vain, went home. Muhlenberg afterwards said 
he would rather be confined in a reeking dungeon than be in such com- 


On June 17th and iSth, 1750, the third meeting of the Synod was 
held at Trappe with sixty-five'^ delegates in attendance. From Muhlen- 
berg's house they moved in procession to the church. Brunnholtz made 
the preparatory exhortation, and Handschuh preached the sermon, but 
being in great weakness at the time, his voice was so faint that many 
afterward complained to Muhlenberg they could not understand him. 

After the Communion was celebrated Muhlenberg briefly addressed 
the general audience in German on the " Footprints of God during the 
past eight years," and then delivered a Latin address to the clerical 
brethren. The number of people gathered together on this occasion was 
so great that the window sash were removed and temporary screens of 
green branches placed around the Church, so that many who could not 
get into the building might still enjoy the service with comfort. 

Ten years later, October igth and 20th, the eighth synodical session 

(33) I. Pastors — Muhlenberg, Brunnholtz, Handschuh, Kurtz and Schaum. 

II. Catechists — Weygand and Schrenk. 

III. Conrad Weiser and Mr. Rauss as friends. 

IV. Church councilmen and vorsteher — Philadelphia, 7delegates, STisitors, totallO; (Muhlen- 
berg gives 8), Germantown 5 (Muhlenberg 6), Brunnholtz, pastor ; Lancaster 1 (came without cre- 
dentials of his own accord, the congregation, in which there was dissension at the time, refusing to 
send a delegate), Handschuh, pastor; York 2, Schaum, pastor ; Tulpehockcn 3 (Muhlenberg 4), 
Kurtz, pastor ; Raritan, N.J. , 5 (Muhlenberg C), (three of whom came to protest against Weygand's 
ordination,) served by Weygand, ordained the following December ; .Saccum (Saucon) 1, Upper Mil- 
ford 1, Forks (Easton) 2, served by Schrenk, ordained at Trappe, November 5,1762; Perkasie 2, 
(Muhlenberg omits), without a pastor, but by the action of Synod, united with Goshenhoppen and 
Indianfield to form a charge ; Goshenhoppen 4, served the following year by Rauss, ordained No- 
vember 5,1752; Cohansey, N. J., 2, without a pastor, thereafter to be served temporarily by the 
schoolmaster, who was examined during the afternoon and furnished with credentials ; Providence 
(Trappe) 12, New Hanover 4 (Muhlenberg 6), Muhlenberg, pastor ; Macungie 2, without a pastor, to 
be served by Schrenk as circumstances permitted, total 65. See minutes of Synod, by Handschuh, 
Hall,Nach. I, p. 471. Muhlenberg's account. Hall. Nach. I, p. 507, gives a total of 69, in which number 
delegates of Tohicon (2) and the Swedish English Congregation (1) (Molatton, Berks Co.) are in- 
cluded, cf. Hall. Nach. I, p. 221. The difference of the two reports may be accounted lor by the fact 
that Muhlenberg's is dated the 17th, whilst Handschuh records the attendance on the ISth. The 
Swedish Provost, Israel .\crelius, who arrived at Philadelphia from Sweden, November 6, 1749, 
promised to attend the session, but could not come. 

14 The Old Trappe Church. 

convened once more at Trappe. The Rev. Provost C. M. Wrangel, D.D., 
was present at this session and preached in the afternoon of the second 
day from ^c/y 24 : 24-5, taking as his theme "The unhappy exertions 
made by wilful sinners to weaken in their souls the gracious operation of 
the Holy Spirit." It was at this meeting that Muhlenberg received the 
honorary title of Senior^' of the Ministeriuni. From its organization to 
his death he attended twenty-three meetings of the Synod, over which 
for a number of years he had presided. 


One of the Patriarch's gifts was his organizing faculty. Though he 
found Vorsteher and Elders" in the congregation, when he came, yet the 
organization which was thereby indicated was most crude and rudimen- 
tary. This division of officers he retained, and with a master hand soon 
guided the congregation into a well-developed organization. But it was 
not until 1750 that he prepared a constitution for the more perfect gov- 
ernment of the congregation, which on July 8th wasadopted and signed by 
tv.'elve elders who had been elected on May 24th, under certain conditions 
for life, and four vorsteher who were elected for one year. This is the earli- 
est written document having at all the nature ofa congregational constitu- 
tion which has come down to us from the Halle men.^'^ If there was 
nothing else this alone would be sufficient to confute the groundless 
charges brought against Muhlenberg by Lucas Rauss. It requires that the 
elders and vorsteher conform their lives to the Evangelical doctrine, 
upon the foundation of Ihe Apostles and Prophets and according to the 
symbolical books, see that the same be perpetuated in church and school 
to their descendants, and guard the pulpit against strange preachers 
outside of their communion.^' It provided also that the accounts of the 
congregation be submitted and e.xamined the day after New Year, when 
inquiry was also to be made as to the payment of the pastor's salary. The 

(34) This title, which unfortunately has been suffered to fall into disuse, though never formally 
abrogated, was last borne by llev. William Bates of Lancaster, who died August 17, 18GT. 

(35) This provision of Elders and Vorsteher was derived from Ihe Swedish Lutheran Church on 
the Delaware, the Swedish Lutheran Church in New York and New .lersey, and ultimately from 
the German Lutheran Church in London, and the Dulch Lutheran Church in .Amsterdam, the. 
latter being the most important and influential source. See Dr. Schuiucker's Organizat. of congre- 
gat., pp. 5, 12. 

(36) Dr. Schmucker's Organizat. of the cong., p. 28. 

(37) This was especially meant to keep out the miserable " vagabonds," and does not necessarily 
indicate a rigid exclusivism. Whilst Muhlenberg was decidedly opposed to indiscriminately per- 
mitting any one to enter his pulpit, hedid, however, on distinct occasions, grant such privilege, so 
that it might appear that he used " more freedom in practical interdenominational relations than 
appears compatible with his sirict Lutheran convictions." (See Dr. Mann's Life and Times of 
H. M. M., p. 332) 

The Old Trappe Church. 15 

minister himself had two votes, and no meeting could be held without 
him, much less any resolution enforced without his signature.'" 


A uniform liturgy Muhlenberg regarded as in the highest degree neces- 
sary, fully appreciating the importance of a proper responsive participa- 
tion on the part of the congregation. At first his method of conducting 
service was very simple. "The sermon itself," he says, "occupies an 
hour or three-quarters of an hour. Afterward I catechise the whole 
congregation upon the subject of the sermon."''' Appropriate hymns were 
selected and sung from the Marburg hymn-book, and selections occasion- 
ally made from the revised edition of the Halle hymn-book. '" The 
prayers and other forms used he had collated from various sources, and 
for the English services, which he continued to hold regularly, he doubt- 
lessly used parts of the Episcopal Book of Common Prayer with wliich he 
had been long familiar." But this proved unsatisfactory and insufficient, 
and with the co-operation of Brunnholtz and Handschuh, at a conference 
at Trappe, April 28, 1748, he prepared a uniform and well-digested lit- 
urgy*^ on the basis of the liturgy of the Savoy congregation in London, 
which was adopted by synod in August of the same year, and introduced 
into the congregations without serious opposition." 

(.33) For a complete translation of this constitution, see Dr. Sclimuclier's Organizat. of Cong., 
p. 28. (39) Halle Reports, p. 170. 

(40) Tlie revised edition was published by J. A. Freylinghausen in 1741, with an introduction by 
Gotth. Aug. Franclte. The first official Lutlieran hymn-booli, published in America, containing 
706 hymns, chiefly selected by Muhlenberg, and 19 prayers " on all the days of the weelc and other 
circumstances," by Helmuth, appeared in 1786, with an introduction from Muhlenberg's pen 
published at Germantown by Leibert &. Billmeyer. lu the same year the official liturgy (Kirchen- 
agende) was published, printed by Steiuer in Philadelpliia. 

(41) Dr. Mann's Life and Times of H. M. M., p. 268. Stoever's Memoirs of Muhlenberg, p. 47. 

(42) The following is a brief outline : Chap. 1. I. Hymn, " Now, the Holy Ghost we pray." The 
entire hymn, or several verses, or a verse of the hyran "Come, Holy Ghost Lord God." II. Confes- 
sion of sins— The Kyrie. III. Hymn, "All glory be to God on high." IV. Pnstor: The Lord be 
■with you. Cong.; And with thy spirit— Collect for the day from the Marburg hymn-book— Epistle 
lesson. V. Hymn from the Marburg hymn-book. VI. Gospel lesson— The minister shall then 
offer in prayer the hymn of faith, " In one God we all believe." The Gospel lesson and prayer may be 
omitted if children are to be baptized. VII. Hymn, " Dearest Jesus we are here," or " Lord Jesus 
Christ be present now," entire or in part. VIII. Sermon, not to be more than three-quarters of an 
hour or an hour in length. The general prayer. Nothing else shall here be used except the litany 
as a change. Special petitions for the sick, etc., may then be added. Lord's Prayer. Benediction, after 
whichoneverseofahymn shall besung. Chap. 2. Order for baptism. Chap..S. Order forproclamation 
and marriage. Chap. 4. Order for preparatory service and Lord's Supper. Chap. .^. Order for burials. 
(See Hall. Kach. I, p. 211). This liturgy was never printed, so thit each pastor of the ministerium 
was obliged to make his own copy. Two of these, one by Jacob Van Huskirk, 1763, and the other 
by Peter Muhlenberg, 1769, were rescued and preserved by Dr. J. W. Richards, a grandson of Muhl- 
enberg. It formed the basis of the liturgy (Kirchenagende) published by order of the synod in 1786. 

(43) The elders at synod reported the general satisfaction with which the new order was received, 
with the slight objection that it was rather too long, especially for the cold winter months. (They did 
not have then the luxury of a stove in the church). In view of this objection synod abbreviated the 
services somewhat. The real opposition came from disaffected ministers like Stoever and Wagner. 

i6 The Old TrLXppe Church. 

The want of catechisms was also felt. " It would seem," he said, 
" as if a catechism was as necessary for us as is our daily bread, for the 
children ought to be well grounded in catechetical doctrines, and to do 
so the adoption and uniform use of the most suitable terms for expressing 
such doctrines is important. If one pastor and teacher adojjts his own 
plan, and another uses the Wittenberg catechism, a third that of Giessen, 
a fourth the Holstein catechism, confusion would be sure to follow."** 

He found, in fact, over fifty varieties of catechisms and hymn-books 
throughout the congregations, brought over from Germany, where almost 
every city had its own peculiar forms, all claiming to be Lutheran, so 
that one uniform catechism was eminently necessary. 

As Dr. Ziegenhagen did not furnish such a desired catechism as 
he had promised, Mulilenberg and Brunnholtz had Luther's small cate- 
chism published in German by Benjamin Franklin in Philadelphia in 
1749, which soon came into general use. 


which Muhlenberg introduced and enforced, exercised the most salutary 
influence upon the congregation, a matter in which the Church has un- 
fortunately retrograded. A week before_the Lord's Supper was celebrated, 
the members of the congregation were required to meet the pastor at the 
church or school house, when inquiries were made into their spiritual con- 
dition and their relations to their neighbors, and warning or comfort 
given as the circumstances demanded. After the sermon, during prepar- 
atory service, the congregation gathered around the altar in a semi-circle. 
Any who had given public offense were required to come forward, when 
with affectionate exhortation they were reminded of their sins, and en- 
couraged to repentance. All were then asked if they would forgive their 
brethren who had erred, which was generally done " with heartfelt tears." 
The rest were admonished not to deem themselves better than these sin- 
ners, but to think of their own sins, and watch over their own hearts. 
After confession was made kneeling, absolution was pronounced, and 
warning given to the impenitent. If any still harbored ill-will they 
would meet in the parsonage, forgive each other and be reconciled. 

During service Muhlenberg insisted on perfect order and sought to 
inculcate a proper reverence for the house of God. Misbehavior was a 
serious matter. On one occasion a man by the name of Shadrack Samuels, 
wlio had giveu public offense during service, was prosecuted and had to 

(44) Halle Reports, p. 170. 

The Old Trappe Clnirch. 1 7 

appear at court in Philadelphia, where his case was tried. It involved 
the congregation in considerable expense.** 


The congregation had agreed from the beginning to pay a salary of 
^40 (gio6.66 present valuation), but even this amount they were scarcely 
able to raise. The first two years, as the congregation was burdened with 
the church debt, and the fathers in Halle had agreed to provide tempor- 
arily for his support, he waived all payment of salary on the part of the 
congregation. But this promised support was so meager that he was sub- 
jected to great personal inconvenience and the sternest self-denial. " My 
clothes," he says, "during the first and second years, were so totally 
worn out by my continuous traveling, that I had to contract a debt of 
sixteen pounds to buy underclothing and outer garments.*" After 
this his salary was only paid in part, but what the members were un- 
able to contribute in pounds they very generously donated in provisions. 
" Though they are not able to raise much money," he says, " they can, 
nevertheless, easily pay a salary in the form of provisions and such pro- 
duce as is necessary for housekeeping. They offer so many kind gifts in 
the form of meat and drink that there is a superabundance. They do not 
know how to make their good-will toward me sufficiently manifest."*' But 
up to the time of his departure there was an arrearage of many years' 

(45) Muhlenberg, in his account boob, records it as follows; 

*' Tn the year 1760, March 18th, settlement was made at a meeting of the church council con- 
•cerning an action, which was ' debated ' in court at Philadelphia against Shadrach Samuels, who 
had given offense in the public service of God. 

I. Plaintiifs were chosen from the congregation, viz. Messrs. John Koplin, Esq., Valentine 
Sherer, Fred. Setzler, Fred. Rieser, Nic. Custer, John Kepner, who have each spent 6 days. Six 
shillings a day for every person amounts in all to £10 16s Od 

II. To the King's Attorney and Mr. Ross 7 00 

III. Per Henry Muhlenberg again to the King's Attorney and Mr. Ross, 4 

IV. For summons of a witness before Esq. Koplin 8 

Sum of the total expense, 22 4 

(46) Dr. Mann's Life and Timesof H. M. M., p. 139. 

(47) Halle Reports, p. 178. Dr. Jtann's Life and Times of H. M. M., p. 132. Dr. Jacobs' state- 
ment (Hist, of the Luth. Ch. in the U. S., p. 219} that " the Providence people gave him nothing 
whatever" must be understood to refer to the payment of a salary in money. (See below on the 
same page). In enumerating some of the gifts Muhlenberg writes to Halle (H. M. M. Autobio- 
graphy, Dr. W. Germann, p. 173^ " One brings a sausage, another a piece of meat, a third a chicken, 
a fourth a loaf of bread, a tifth pigeons, a sixth hares, a seventh eggs, an eighth tea and sugar, a 
ninth honey, a tenth apples, an eleventh partridges, and so on. * '•' About such crumbs, however, 
I am not concerned, but much more about the heart, if only that can be won with love. I have 
done away with the perquisites for baptism and the Lord's Supper as the circumstances (the abuses 
of impostors who were chiefly concerned about the fees) made it necessary." The first year, the 
New Hanover congregation presented him with £12, the first he received in Pennsylvania, "to buy 
2k horse, and to afiord him in addition a slight recreation," promising also to supply free horse feed. 
In Philadelphia his first year's salary did not suffice to pay his house rent. 

1 8 The Old Trappe Church. 


A gloom was cast over the church council when, on September 19, 
I 761, Muhlenberg summoned them together in his house and announced 
that he felt necessitated to go for a time to the relief of the Philadelphia 
congregation, and endeavor by God's merciful assistance to bring the 
troubled affairs there into order and harmony. But only after being con- 
vinced of the great urgency of the situation did they consent to have 
him go, and then only on condition that he would not give up the con- 
gregations here, but retain them under his supervision, visit them when 
opportunity offered, provide them with good teachers during his absence, 
and as soon as possible come " home" again and serve them. 

Muhlenberg then proposed that either Schaum should serve the con- 
gregation in Providence and New Hanover, and Van Buskerk takeSchaum's 
place, or that effort should be made to secure pastor Hartwick, who might 
at the same time assist Van Buskerk, then preparing for the ministry, in 
his theological studies. They chose the latter alternative, elected 


and offered him, on condition of his serving them faithfully, 
the same salary which on their subscription list they had promi.sed to 
Muhlenberg. The following day, September 20th, after administering 
the Lord's Supper to his people, on which occasion Hartwick 
who was visiting Muhlenberg at the time preached the sermon, 
he announced the decision of the church council to his saddened 
people. On October i8th he preached his farewell sermon in per- 
man and English in the presence of a large multitude, and a week 
later moved with his family to Philadelphia. Hartwick immediately 
took charge as adjunct pastor. He had visited Muhlenberg on vari- 
ous occasions, attended the confirmation services on April 7, 1751, 
and preached to the people, so that he did not come as a stranger or un- 
known. But as in so many places before and afterward he did not suc- 
ceed. Dissatisfaction and dissension soon arose, and in a short time, 
when Muhlenberg's hand was no longer on the helm, 'the shi|) of churcli was 
amid the breakers and in danger of the shoals. Some disaffected mem- 
bers wanted to engage the services of a mountebank preacher, who had 
been a papist and never ordained, and matters waxed so unpleasant for 
Hartwick that after six months, having informed Mulilenberg of his in- 
tention to leave, removed in April to I''rederick, Md. 


Muhlenberg, who had ])romise(l to supjily the congregation with 
comiietent pastors, promptly aii[)eared upon the scene, and soon restored 

The Old Tr'appe CJiiirch. ig 

peace and order. He preached to the congregation and administered 
the Lord's Supper on May i6th. After service it was decided that 
"young Van Buskerk," then stationed at New Hanover, should be en- 
gaged to preach every two weeks at Trappe, Muhlenberg himself agreeing 
to preach every six weeks. 

On this occasion Muhlenberg produced a note which he held against 
the congregation, signed by two of the trustees, according to which they 
owed him from May, 1759, to the Fall of 1761, viz., two years and a 
half, £,20 with interest, amounting to ^23. This indebtedness, repre- 
senting the amount which Muhlenberg had advanced toward the payment 
of the church debt, being now fully discharged, he handed the 
note to the trustees, having first torn away their names, saying " that 
the church was accordingly free from debt. Thank God." 

On one of his visits to his country congregations, in May, 1763, 
which he made especially in response to Van Buskerk's urgent request, 
who since February had a class of fifty-nine in course of preparation for 
confirmation at New Hanover, he found that the catechumens had mas- 
tered the five parts of the catechism, a brief order of salvation and proof 
texts, and on May 8th confirmed them. 

On Ascension day, May 12, 1763, he conducted services at Trappe, 
preaching from Colossians 3, i. Mr. Van Buskerk was then en- 
gaged to continue six months longer, though the congregation was 
dissatisfied that Muhlenberg did not return to them altogether. On 
June 28th of the same year Muhlenberg sold his residence and land, real- 
izing that his engagement in Philadelphia would be more lasting than he 
at first anticipated. In speaking of the sale, he says in his journal on the 
same day, " I have reserved five acres situated along the road and near 
the church and several acres of woodland in the rear, which in the future 
may serve for a convenient parsonage if a house be built on it ; the con- 
gregation shall have the first refusal of it."'* Muhlenberg kept this lot 
until his death, and afterwards his son, Gen. Peter Muhlenberg, reserved 
it for many years, but as the congregation did not seem disposed or able 
to buy it, he finally sold it. It was not until 1836 that the congregation 
bought the lot of Michael Shupe and built the present parsonage thereon. 

Three weeks later Muhlenberg again appeared at Trappe, and on 
August 20th held preparatory services, taking Pliil. 3 : 18-21, as the basis 
of his exhortation. The next morning he preached to a great multitude 
in and around the church from Acts 10: 10-16, and administered com- 
munion to the congregation. A vast throng of all sorts of religious par- 
ties assembled at the English service in the afternoon. As the organist 

(48) Hall. Nacli., Old Edition, p. 1107. 

20 The Old Trappc Clnircli. 

" did not have the English melodies in notes," a German hymn was sung, 
after which Muiilenberg preached in English from Math. i6 : 13-18. 

It is an interesting fact that a few weeks later, on September 9th, at 
Philadelphia, one of the negroes whom he had baptized at Trappe on 
the occasion of the consecration of the church, John Billing, who con- 
tinued faithful to the profession he had made twenty years before, had 
Muhlenberg baptize his child. 

Van Buskerk, for whose ordination the congregations had repeatedly 
and urgently applied, was duly examined on October 3d of this year by 
Provost VVrangel and Muhlenberg in the theory and practice of dogmatics 
and morals. The ordination services which had been appointed to take 
place in Augustus church," were, however, at the special request of the 
•congregation in New Hanover, held at that place on October 12th. 
Provost Wrangel, after preaching the sermon hom John 21 : 15, "Feed my 
ilambs," on the theme, " The tender human love of Jesus for dearly pur- 
chased souls," ordained Van Buskerk as diaconus, assisted by Revs. Muh- 
lenberg, Kurtz and the Swedish missionary Heggeblat. 

During these years, after Muhlenberg's withdrawal to Philadelphia, 
the Trappe congregation was sadly falling off. The officers informed 
him that if he did not speedily return and assume the pastorate, the con- 
gregation would go to nothing, and the church and school-house stand 
anerely as monuments of their death. After again being informed by a 
Mr. J. P., of Providence, who visited him on November 5th, that the 
congregation was diminishing and would soon go to ruin, Muhlenberg, as 
soon as his other duties permitted, came to Trappe, preached to the con- 
gregation on November 28th, and encouraged the people to hope 
for assistance from Europe, which had been assured. After the 
service, he stated that inasmuch as they feared he or his heirs might 
■claim the large sum, they acknowledged they owed him as arrearage for 
many years' salary, he publicly and generously forgave them the entire 
debt.^ "One thing, however," said he, "I publicly state, you know for 

(49) Two other cntechists, Ludolf Heinrich Schrenk and Lucas Rauss, who arrived together at 
■Philadelphia, from Germany in February 1749, were " under pressure of circumstances" examined 
and ordained in Augustus Church, on Nov. 6, 1752, the twenty-.second Sunday after Trinity. Both 

-of these individuals turned out badly. In career and cliaracter they closely resembled each other, 
tieiog equally unsuccessful in their work, selfish in disposition and violent in temper. Both of them 

■requited Muhlenberg's many kindnesses with the most shameful ingratitude and calumny. 
Muhlenlierg's comment on Schrenk (Hall. Nach. I. 562), who was last heard of preaching to 
Lutherans in Ireland, might with almost equal justice be applied to Rauss, who rendered himself 
particularly obnoxious and notorious by his absorb charges of heterodoxy against Muhlenberg: 
'* If ever mortal creature abused my love and racked my patience it was Schrenk. May God be 

.gracious and merciful to him, and pardon his sins for Jesus sake. Amen." 

(50) On the preceding evening, at the house of one of the elders, a private conference was held 

■ between JIublenberg and a number of the elders and deacons (vorsteher). "At this meeting," Muli- 

The Old Trappe Church, 2 \ 

what object this Augustus church and school-liouse were founded, hinlt 
and designated forever in the writings of the corner-stone and in 
other instruments (the constitution); and to secure that object )ou, who 
are at present the church council, and your successors, should strive, 
namely, that our holy evangelical doctrine, according to the foundation 
of the Apostles and prophets, and the unaltered Augsburg Confession, 
together with the holy sacraments, be continued to the latest posterity,, 
and in so far I will still watch with you."^^ 

More because of a persistent hope and longing for Muhlenberg's 
return than any real prejudice against Van Buskerk, the congregation 
grew more and more dissatisfied, so that at length in 1764 Van Buskerk 
discontinued his services at Trappe altogether, and retained New Hanover 
and Pikestown under his charge until the following year when he was 
called to Germantown. During this period the congregation was without 
services, the most prominent elder in consequence moved with his family 

lenberg says in an extract of his journal sent to Halle, (Hall. Nach. 11S7 et seq. Old Ed.,) " the fol- 
lowing matters were discussed; 

" 1. AVhy they, the elders of both congregations, received no answer to their written presenta- 
tions concerning my return? Answer: Their letter came tou Uite. It was read at Synod, but the 
Providence congregation had no delegate there. 

*' 2. Why, in the beginning when I went to Philadelphia, I promised soon to return and did not 
keep my word, although two years had already flown by, and the congregation was going to ruin? 
Answer: I made such promise conditionally, viz., as soon as the Philadelphia diflSculties would be 
adjusted and help come from Europe. Since both of these things had not been accomplished, the 
matter still remained where it stood two years ago. 

*'3. Whether I did not say publicly, after I came home from Raritan witli my family in 1760, 
that I would now remain, live and die in their midst? Answer; Yes, also on condition, viz., if the 
congregations would make better use of the means of grace, with their hearts become cor.verted to 
Jesus, and live for Him who died and rose again for them. This they had not fulfilled, and I on 
the other hand had not served a strange congregation in these two years, but that in Philadelphia 
which also stood in my call as well as the two country congregations. 

" 4. The deacons especially disclosed a matter of grave concern ; viz., pastor Muhlenberg has the 
right to demand, according to his call, £40 sterling, annually ; he has served nineteen years in the 
two first country congregations, and the Providence congregation has not yet made up its 'quo- 
tum.' Now if pastor Muhlenberg chooses to proceed according to law, he can demand a large sum. 
Some of the members have, in the meantime, changed their places of residence, many have died, 
and others have moved away ; consequently the debt could be demanded of the elders and deacons ; 
how is this knot to be untied? Is not pastor Muhleriberg himself to blame for not demanding his- 
salary at the proper time? Answer; To-morrow, so please God, I will untie this hard knot for you. 

"5. But how is the waning congregation to be succored? Answer: I have recently received a 
fatherly letter from the Rev. Court-chaplain Ziegenhngen, in which he most graciously slates that a 
faithful inspector of the orphanage at Halle, Jlr. Voigt, has accepted a call to Pennsylvania and 
that another faithful laborer is being sought for. If this poor congregation is, by God's mercy again 
to be restored, it must be done as the Swedish Provost did with a congregation ihat had entirely 
fallen away ; he went from house to house, catechised children, parents and servants, and gradually 
gathered together a large and flourishing congregation. A man, who has two or more widely sepa- 
rated congregations is scarcely equal to the general not to speak of the special duties. If there- 
fore a special young laborer would be engaged at Providence alone, and if need be at one other 
affiliated station (Filial), who would do like the Provost, similar results under the gracious assist- 
ance of God might be expected. 

"6. But the Providence congregation is to*o weak to support a laborer alone? Answer : If men 
seek first the kingdom of God, all these things shall be added unto them." 
(51) Hall. Nach. Old Edit. p. 1139, 

2 2 J he Old Trappe Church. 

to Lancaster, tlie members were being scattered and the church stood 
empty. But a new and promising era in the life of the congregation was 
inaugurated by the advent of a regular pastor. 


was the first pastor regularly elected after Muhlenberg, who, however, 
still continued to sustain a definite official relation to the congregation 
until his death. He was called in March, 1765, moved in December 
from his former charge in Germantown, took up his residence in the 
neighborhood of Trappe, and assumed charge of the congregations in 
Trappe, Pikestown, west of the Schuylkill, and at New Hanover. 
Muhlenberg, under the date of Dec. 8, 1765, writes somewhat humor- 
ously of his arrival: " Voigt was glad to cast off the Germantown 
yoke and enter the paradise where old Muhlenberg lived like a bird 
in hemij-seed for so many years; the diaconus (^Van Buskerk who 
succeeded Voigt at Germantown) found it expedient to offer Voigt 
his large house, garden and meadow for ^^lo a year, . . . but some 
thought that Voigt might very well occupy the upper room in the school- 
house and board with the schoolmaster's family, since Muhlenberg in the 
beginning lived in still smaller and more wretched quarters. This, how- 
ever, I opposed, declaring that we no longer lived according to old style 
in America but the new." Voigt accordingly removed his residence to 
New Hanover, preached there every two weeks, and on the Sunday thus 
left open alternated at Trappe and Pikestown. In 1772, when the new 
St. Peter's church (beyond the French Creek a few miles to the southwest 
of Zion,) was built by some members of the Zion congregation, he min- 
istered there also. About this time the little flock at Pottstown was 
added to the charge of which Voigt became the first regular pastor. 
In 1774 Muhlenberg, intending to visit Ebenezer, came to Trappe 
to take leave of his friends, after having assisted at the laying of the 
corner-stone of Zion's new Church in Pikestown August 15th, and 
preached to the congregation on August 16th. Pastor Voigt, who was 
a skillful musician, presided at the organ, and afterward with some 
officers of the vestry and a number of friends gave Muhlenberg a farewell 

Two years later, Muhlenberg, who always decidedl\ jjreferred the 
country, finding the e.xacting duties of the city charge too arduous for 
his failing strength, his eyesight also growing defective, and under the 
pressure of the Revolutionary war, decided once again to move to the 
place he loved, and on July 28, 1776, occupied his new home in Trappe, 
which he had i)urchased in January. This house, now belonging to the 
Hunsberger estate, is about a quarter of a mile distant from the church. 

The Old Trappe Church. 23 

The window from which lie could view the American troops as they 
frequently passed by, or were encamped in the neighborhood in 1777 
during the war, is still pointed out to visitors. 

His removal to Trappe was a practical resumption of his pastorate, 
Voigt continuing rather as his assistant. This year, 1776, Voigt resigned 
the congregation at New Hanover and moved to Pikestown, Chester 
County, and soon after occupied the parsonage purchased by Zion's and 
St. Peter's congregation. He now preached once a month at Zion's, St. 
Peter's, Pottstown and Trappe, dividing the work here with Muhlenberg, 
who ministered at Trappe and New Hanover, assisted for a time by his 
two sons, Frederick Augustus and Henry Ernst. But in 1778, owing to 
Muhlenberg's increasing infirmities, the burden of the pastoral care fell 
upon Voigt. During this time Muhlenberg not only preached at Trappe 
and Nevv Hanover, but also at times in neighboring churches and still 
occasionally in Philadelphia. When Voigt held service he sometimes 
played the organ. In April, 1779, on account of age, loss of hearing and 
general weakness, he formally resigned the Philadelphia congregation. In 
the Spring of 1781, despite his growing disability, he instructed forty- 
four catechumens in New Hanover and five others at Trappe. But the 
shadows of his life were lengthening toward the East. He preached his 
last sermon at Trappe Sept. 26, 1 784. As the end approached, in addition 
to the swelling of the feet, with which he had been plagued for some 
years, aggravated dropsy and other painful disorders set in. During his 
last Voigt was a frequent visitor. Eight days before his death, 
Voigt was again with him and expressed his joy at the signs of improve- 
ment he seemed to find, but when he left Muhlenberg said it was farewell 
and repeated the beautiful hymn, 

" A heavy road before me lies 
Up to the heavenly paradise, 
My lasting home is there with thee 
Bought with thy life blood once for me." 

On Saturday, October 7, 1 787, at midnight, with the words of the last verse 
of Paul Gerhardt's hymn upon his lips, " Befiehl du deine Wege" (Com- 
mit thy ways), the soul of the Great Patriarch returned to Him who gave 
it. He was buried on October loth in the presence of a large multitude, 
who gathered from far and near. The ministers present were Voigt, 
Schultze, Helmuth, Van Buskerk, Wildbahn, Roeller, Schaum, his son 
Henry Ernst Muhlenberg, and the Reformed ministers Schlatter and Dal- 
iger. The hymn " My life it flees away," was sung at the house, and after 
Dr. Helmuth offered prayer, the body was taken to the Trappe Lutheran 
cemetery and laid in the grave immediately back of the Old Church. As 
the church could not accommodate the vast number present, Voigt de- 

24 The Old Trappe Church. 

livered a short funeral discourse in the open air from Psabns 15 : i, 2, 
"Lord, who shall abide in thy tabernacle? who shall dwell in thy holy 
hill ? He that walketh uprightly, and worketh righteousness, and speak- 
eth the truth in his heart." In different cities bells were tolled with 
muffled tongues, churches were draped in black, and funeral orations de- 
livered, in testimony of the great love and veneration in which the 
Patriarch was held. 

The large marble slab erected over his grave, bears tlie following, 
epitaph : 


Monumentum sacrum esto 

Memoriae beali ac venerabilis 


Sacr^e Theologije Doctor et 

Senioris Ministerii Lutherani 


Nati Sept. 6, 171 1. 

Defuncti Oct. 7, 1787. 

Qualis et quantus fuerit 

Non ignorabunt sine lapide 

Futura Saecula. 


Be this monument to the 

Memory of the blessed and venerable 


Doctor of Sacred Tlieology and 

Senior of the .American Lutheran 


Born Sept. 6, 171 1. 

Died Oct. 7, 1787. 

Who and what he was 

future ages will know 

without a stone. 

' Who and what he was, future times will know. 
Without a monument of stone." His sacred dust lies low, 
Rests undisturbed, in the last solemn longest sleep. 
Whilst seasons come and go, whilst mortals smile and weep ; 
He was an humble Christian, saved by Sovereign grace, 
Holding within the Church, a St. Paul's highest place. 
His is a household name, where'er the Lutheran faith. 
Its temple, membership, communion, history, hath.*' 

(S2) Dora B. M'Knight, in 2V/f Busy Bee, Oct. 1887. 

The Old Trappe Church. 25 

Beneath the same stone rest the earthly remains of his wife, who 
died August 23, 1802. 

Voigt continued to serve the congregation until 1790, but main- 
tained a nominal pastoral oversight until 1793. He remained pastor of 
Pottstown, Zion's and St. Peter's congregations until his death, December 
28, 1800. 


who, in 17S9, entered upon the charge of the congregation at New Han- 
over, relieved Voigt of his pastoral duties at Trappe in August of the fol- 
lowing year. From this date the records continue regularly in Wein- 
land's hand, and in the synodical minutes of 1 793 he appears as the regular 

On March 20, 1805, at the special instance and under the direction 
of Gen. Peter Muhlenberg, whose name appears in the charter as one of the 
members of the Augustus Church, the congregation was incorporated at 
an expense of ^52.03, which General Muhlenberg himself bore. In 
August of the same year, Weinland, who had previously resided at Fruit- 
ville, now occupied the school-house, as for a time there was no resident 
school-master. The pastor's salary was still fixed at forty pounds. In 
the subscription list there were two classes who contributed, first, the reg- 
ular members of the congregation, and secondly, non-members, including 
Reformed and others, who were, nevertheless, willing to subscribe to his 
support. Of the ^^40 salary which Weinland received in 1806, ^^ 6s. id. 
was paid in corn, a bedstead, pair of shoes, wood, butter, a hat, fiour 
and groceries, — a method of paying salaries which has fortunately been 

Though the Augustus church was never a union church,*' the Re- 
formed worshipped with the Lutherans under the Lutheran minister for a 
number of years, and were frequently and for a number of years regularly 
accorded the privilege of the building, when they had their own minister. 
In the by-laws attached to the charter and constitution at the time of the 
incorporation of the congregation, though " strange preachers" are dis- 

(53) Wheu it was first proposed to build the church in 1743, a number of Keformed members 
came to Muhlenberg, desiring to have a share in the undertaking. They were willing to assist in 
building the church. They were told that there were two ways possible— the way of equity and 
the way of charity ; if they claimed a certain portion of the rights, they would have to pay a pro- 
portional share of the expenses. To this they would not consent, since they were few in numbers. 
The other way, the way of charity, was this: that if they would now, as good neighbors, assist to 
some extent in building this church, the Lutherans would put it in their written records for the 
succeeding generation ; if, however, during the present generation they were able and willing to 
erect a church-building, the Lutherans would not stand back, but assist them. In this way the 
building of a so-called union church, so often the cause of disunion and other attendant evils, was 
avoided and good-feeling between the two sides preserved. Dr. Mann's Life and Times of H. M. M., 

26 The Old Trappc CInircIt. 

tinctly excluded from the |)iilpit, it is expressly stated that this restriction 
is not to be applied to the Reformed minister. 

Notwithstanding the fact that his name had been stricken from tlie 
roll of synod in 1796, in consequence of the unfortunate habit of drink, 
which he excessively indulged, but which he seems subsequently to have 
conquered, he continued to serve the congregation until his death, in 
the Fall of 1807. He was buried here in the cemetery, the congregation 
cheerfully bearing the funeral expenses ; but his grave is unmarked and 

For several months after Weinland's death. Dr. Frederick William 
Geissenhainer, then living at New Hanover, as pastor of the congre- 
gation there and at Pottstown, served the congregation, receiving 
for his services $71.67. On the 13th of May he installed trustees, 
elders and wardens, who had been previously elected, and a few days 
later removed to New York and became Dr. Kunze's successor. The 
Reformed minister in the vicinity. Rev. Germann, was also engaged 
to supply the pulpit at stated intervals from the time of Weinland's death 
throughout the year, and administered the communion to the congrega- 
tion on Easter, an irregularity which points to a general laxity in the 
condition of affairs then prevailing.** For his services he received $40.00. 


A young man of promising talent, eighteen years of age, began sup- 
plying the pulpit during the months of November and December of 1S07, 
who soon became the regular pastor. Licensed as candidate, with full 
power to act as pastor, at the meeting of the Ministerium held at Han- 
over in May, 1809, John Peter Hecht was immediately elected as pastor, 
and preached his introductory sermon June nth. His first official pas- 
toral act was the installation of church officers on July 22d. He became 
pastor also of the congregations at Pottstown and Amity, preaching every 
three weeks in the morning at each place. From the Trappe congrega- 
tion he received a salary of ^40 "good money," each congregation in 
addition paying one-third of his house rent and supplying him with one- 
third of his fire wood. He became at once deeply interested in the edu- 
cation of the young, and soon the school-house, whose doors had been 
closed for some years, was once more opened. The German received 
especial attention and the congregation was urged to send their children 
to the school so that the German might not sink into total oblivion. A 
school-master, Valentine Unger, was promptly engaged, who spent one- 
third of his time in each congregation. In Pottstown, where Hecht re- 

(54) See Dr. Jacobs' Hist, of the Ev. Luth, Church in the U. S., 1893, p. 309 e( mj. 

The Old Trappe Clmrcli. 27 

sided, he opened a school in his own house. Francis R. Shunk, who for 
a time was the village school-master, and elected Governor in 1844, be- 
came deeply attached to him, and a friendship was formed between them 
which was never broken. 

In iSio Hecht increased his services, preaching every two weeks in 
the morning for six months, and every four weeks during the rest of the 
year. During the summer of 181 3 he resigned and removed to Carlisle. 


became jiastor in October, 1813. He made his home in Whitpen town- 
ship, below Trappe, until April, 181 7, when he purchased and moved to 
a farm in Pottstown. He preached at Trappe every two weeks, holding 
service regularly also at Pottstown and Limerick, where a congregation 
had been recently established — these three congregations now constitut- 
ing the charge. The congregation pledged him a salary of ^50, with 
the additional promise of the surplusage if the subscriptions e.xceeded that 
amount. Hitherto the congregation depended on the voluntary sub- 
scriptions of the members for raising the pastor's salary and meeting 
other expenses, but this method proving more and more unsatisfactory, it 
was resolved, in 1816, that the members should be apportioned according 
to their estates. The congregation was accordingly divided into six 
classes. Members owning eighty or more acres were taxed g6.oo ; those 
owning forty to seventy-nine acres, ^4.00 ; twenty to thirty-nine acres, 
^3.00; one to nineteen acres, and those without any land but otherwise 
in good circumstances, J 2.00. The last class consisted of those who de- 
pended upon manual labor for the support of their families and were as- 
sessed ^i.oo. If any member remained in arrears at the annual settlement, 
due notification was to be given, and if the overdue amounts were not paid in 
four weeks, the church councirwas empowered to enforce payment by legal 
process. This arrangement was tentatively adopted, continuing in force, 
with some readjustment, for several years. At this time the exceedingly 
obnoxious provision for the annual election of the minister, by which 
the congregation was subsequently much distracted, was added to the 
by-laws. On April 12, 1852, a motion to repeal this law was lost by 
one vote. On April 23, 1861, an amendment, striking out the clause 
" for one year," was carried but speedily forgotten. It was abrogated on 
November 30, 1863, but even after this the old enactment was once again 
illegally enforced. It was entirely expunged when the by-laws were re- 
vised in 1874. 

Dr. Geissenhainer served the congregation with fidelity and accept- 
ance until April, 1821, when he resigned and accepted a call to Pittsburg. 

2 8 The Old Trappe Church. 


who, during the vacancy created Ijy the death of Rev. Weinland, had 
ministered to the congregation for a few months, succeeded his 
younger brother in the charge, having been unanimously elected on 
April 23, 1821.*^ He now moved from Vincent, Chester County, where, 
since 1818, he had been living with his son Frederick William, Jr., assist- 
ing him in his pastoral charge of Zion's and St. Peter's, and took up his 
residence at Pottstown. English services, which soon after Muhlenberg's 
time had been discontinued, were now once more introduced with but 
little dissent. At a congregational meeting, held in the school-house on 
Easter Monday, 1822, it was "decided to have English preaching in 
the church every sixth Sabbath, only two of the thirty-two votes cast 
being in opposition to English preaching altogether." After a short pas- 
torate of but two years, Dr. Geissenhainer, for the second time, accepted 
a call to New York, and left in April, 1823. 


became pastor of the congregation on Easter, March 2,0, 1S23. Find- 
ing it now impossible to assume the burden of the two combined charges 
of Trappe and Pikeland, he relinquished Pottstown and retained Limerick, 
Trappe and the two Pikeland congregations, (Zion's and St. Peter's) 
as his charge. In 1824, as some of the Reformed members who were 
still holding their services in the church, did not seem disposed to con- 
tribute to the general expenses, the vestry resolved, on April 19th, " that 
those Reformed members who did not contribute to the Lutheran congre- 
gation should be held to pay for breaking ground at burials two dollars 
for each grave." 

Dr. Geissenhainer served as pastor until 1827. On a Sunday, in 
February of that year, he announced that he had received a call from the 
Lord to New York. Considerable excitement was aroused, and after 
service several parties took it upon themselves to express their disapproval. 
Though in ignorance of the amount of salary offered, it was insinuated that 
he was attracted by the money ; and a hotel-keeper, whose temper was in 
excess of his judgment, exclaimed in German, more vigorous than elegant, 
" der devil hat dich gerufen, nicht der Herr." 

(55) Dr. Scbmucker, in his " Historical discourse on the Lutheran church in Pottstown," p. 32, 
says: "In 1821, when his brother Henry gave up the charge of the Pottstown. Limerick and 
Trappe congregations, they were added to that of the father onrf/Ac son," (then jointly serving Zion's 
and .St. Peter's, Cliestcr County, and ou p. 14, " The two logellier took charge of the churches at 
Pottstown, Trappe and Limerick." So also in Hall. Nach. I, p 3S. As far as Trappe is concerned, 
there is no tiace in the records of any joint pastorship of father and son at this lime. (>uly the 
lather was elected here, and all the entries of pastoral acts are in his hand. The son may have oc- 
casionally assisted the fiithcr as nece^sily arose. 

Tlie Old Trappc Church. 29 

They were evidently loath to see him leave; but we can easily un- 
derstand how the call to become assistant to his father, who was over- 
burdened and worn down, would appeal to him with special force. He 
entered his last pastoral act, a baptism, in the Church Record on Feb- 
ruary 25, 1827, and in March moved to New York. 


having been elected pastor, entered upon his duties July 22, 1S27, and 
moved into the parsonage, one mile from Zion's church, Chester County, 
the two Chester County Congregations (Zion's at St. Peter's), Limerick 
and Trappe, still constituting the charge. A new impulse was given to 
the life of the congregation by his energetic labors, and large numbers 
were added to the church. Two new congregations were organized 
and united with the charge, Christ's church (known as the brick church) 
in Towaraencin township,"' about four miles west of Lansdale. early in 
1833, and in the same year St. Matthew's in Warwick township about 
five miles from St. Peter's. 

On April 12, 1830, at a congregational meeting in the school-house, 
with only one vote in opposition, English and German were co-ordinated, 
a service in each language thereafter being held alternately every two 
weeks. For the security of the German, which this increase in English 
services seemed to threaten, the action was adopted with the distinct un- 
derstanding that, "as long as ten members insist on the present arrange- 
ment, no alteration should be made." But the constantly increasing de- 
mands of the enlarged parochial district so overtaxed the strength of the 
pastor, that it became necessary to divide the charge. Accordingly in 
January, 1834, Rev. Wampole resigned, and after April 27, confined him- 
self to the two Chester County congregations. 

(56) One of the outposts where Muhlenherg frequently held services. A congreg<ation was not 
regularly organized until 1833. Isaac Wampole, conveyancer, and uncle to Rev. Jacob Wampole, 
donated a lot and S500 for the building of a church and subsequently added an endowment of 
32000, the interest of which was to be devoted to the payment of the pastor's salary. The cor- 
ner-stone of the church was laid on Whit-Monday, May 27, 1833, by Rev, George Roeller. In the 
cavity of the stone were deposited an English Bible, a German hymn-book, " used conjointly by the 
Lutheran and Reformed churches in North America," Lulher's small catechism and a catechism of 
the Gernian Reformed church. The building was consecrated as Christ's church on October 15, 
1833, by Dr. Ph. T. Mayer, who preached in English from /'s. 65 ; 2. Dr. C. R. Demme, Revs. G. 
Roeller, G. Heilig and J. Wampole were the Lutheran clergymen who assisted at the service. The 
following were the successive pastors : Jacob Wampole, October, 1833, to May, 1834 ; John W. Rich- 
ards, June, 1834, to April, 1836 ; J. Wampole, again, April, 1836, to January, 1838; Henry S. Miller, 
April, 1838, to May, 1852; G. A. Wenzel, August, 1852, to October, 1854; A. S. Link, November, 1854, 
to March, 1859 ; G. Sill, April, 1859, to September, 1863; F. Berkemeyer, January, 1864, to Septem- 
ber, 1866 ; E. J. Fleckenstine, September, 1866 to 1868; William B. Fox, September, 1868, to March, 
1871; supplied by students and others, March, 1871 to April, 1873; Rev. S. A. Ziegen fuss, April, 
1873, to November, 1S76 ; James L. Becker, June, 1877, to the present time. (For this brief sketch 
.1 am chiefly indebted to the kindness of Rev. James L, Becker.) 

30 The Old Trappe Church. 


On March 12, 1834, Rev. John W. Richards of New Holland, Lan- 
caster County, was unanimously elected as pastor of the newly constituted 
charge, Trappe, Limerick and Towamencin, and preached his intro- 
ductory sermon here on May nth. His ministry opened auspic- 
iously, and at his first confirmation the unprecedented number of ninety 
catechumens were received into the church. In April of this year, the 
F^nglish Lutheran congregation at Pottstown was organized by Rev. 
Richards in co-operation with Rev. Conrad Miller, and added to the 
charge. About this time considerable excitement was aroused in the con- 
gregation by the rumored intention of the Reformed congregation, wor- 
shipping in the church by permission, to hold a protracted meeting, and 
on March, 23, 1835, the vestry resolved, " That it was inexpedient at 
this time for this (Reformed) or any other congregation to hold a pro- 
tracted meeting in this church, and that no such proposition could be 

Inaletter, April 16, 1835, the Reformed minister, Rev. L C. Guldin, 
then living at East Vincent, Chester County, again sought the consent of 
the Lutheran congregation to hold protracted meetings in the church, 
stating that he was so determined in the matter that " nothing under the 
canopy of heaven, neither calumny, slander without measure, nor the 
deadly sword itself could cause him to desist," and in addition a com- 
mittee of the Reformed members, consisting of Dr. Philip Wack and 
Henry Shade, was appointed to petition the vestry for its consent. 
The vestry, however, reaffirmed its former action, and no protracted 
meeting was held. In a supplement to the by-laws, enacted May 7th of 
the same year, the Reformed congregation, using the church once in 
four weeks, was required to pay thirteen dollars in lieu of the part of the 
annual expenses which they had hitherto borne. In a few months, how- 
ever, they withdrew and began the building of a new church in Trappe, 
the corner-stone of which was laid August 15th, when Rev. Richards 
preached the sermon. 

On April 4, 1836, a deed was executed for a house and lot for a 
parsonage, purchased of Michael Raser, at a cost ofJisSo. Rev. Rich- 
ards did not occupy this parsonage, as in March, having accepted 
a call to Germantown, he resigned the charge, and in April moved to 
his new field of labor. Just before he left he organized the New Jeru- 
salem (Keely's) congregation, one mile from Schwenksville, which was 
at once added to the charge. Dr. Richards was held in great esteem 
and affection by the congregation he had faithfully served. On June 7, 
1835, when delegates were elected to attend the Synod at Germantown, 

The Old Trappe Church. 31 

they were instructed to " convey to the said synod the entire approba- 
tion of the vestry of the official conduct of the Rev. Mr. Richards since 
he has had the pastoral charge of this congregation." 


was elected pastor for the second time on Marcli 22, 1836, and preached 
his introductory sermon April 4th. He moved from Chester County and 
occupied the parsonage at Trappe. The building, however, proving too 
small, the congregation, on June 20th, bought five acres of ground (the 
lot originally intended by Muhlenberg for a parsonage) of Michael Shupe 
at a cost of §1150, and erected thereon the present commodious build- 
ing. On the same date the old property was disposed of at cost price, 
a title for which, however, was not executed until April i, 1837, at a 
meeting of the vestry held at Hoebner's tavern. In July, 1S37, Rev. 
Wampole moved into the new parsonage, only to move soon again, but 
this time into " a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens." 
Before the close of the year he was seized with an acute attack of quinsy 
and fell a sudden victim to the treacherous disease on January 3, 1838. 
An immense concourse of people, estimated at three thousand, gath- 
ered at his funeral three days later. After brief preliminary addresses at 
the house, by Rev. George Roeller and Dr. John W. Richards, the funeral 
service was held in the church, though not half of the number present 
could get within the building. Rev. Conrad Miller preached in German, 
choosing as his text John 16 : 22, " And ye now therefore have sorrow; 
but I will see you again, and your heart shall rejoice, and your joy no 
man taketh from you." Rev. F. Ruthrauff followed with an address in 
German, based on Psalms 102 : 23, 24, " He weakened my strength in 
the way : he shortened my days. I said, O my Lord, take me not away 
in the midst of my days : thy years are through all generations." Eleven 
ministers, in addition to those already mentioned, were present at the 
funeral, several of whom also took part in the services. 

Rev. Wampole was buried in the church cemetery near the grave of 
the illustrious Patriarch. A large marble slab was erected over his grave, 
witli this inscription : 

Sacred to the Memory of 


Born, December 26, 1802 : Died, January 3, 1838, 

Aged 35 years and 8 days. 

" To me to live is Christ, and to die is gain." 

His death was an unexpected blow to his congregations and friends. 
He died in the prime of life, much beloved by all who knew him, and 
deeply lamented by his congregations. 

32 The Old Trappe ChurcJi. 


after having preached a "visit sermon" in English and German, on 
January 28, 1838, was elected on the 31st. He accepted the call to be- 
come pastor of the five congregations of the charge, Trappe, Limerick, 
Keely's, Pottstown and Towamencin, and preached his introductory ser- 
mon at Trappe in German, on April 8th, and in English on the 22d. 
He preached every two weeks in German and English alternately, and 
after 1839, held an additional English service every four weeks, in the 
afternoon. But the afternoon service not being well received, all the 
services were soon held in the morning. He received a salary of S160, 
sulisequently increased to §200, with parsonage and lot, from the Trappe 

On May 7, 1839, a petition, signed by twelve members of the Re- 
formed Church of Trappe, was presented to the vestry, in which the 
petitioners stated that as " protracted and night prayer meetings were 
being held in their church (by Dr. I. C. Guldin, Reformed pastor,) which 
they deemed to be entirel) at variance with the principles and practice of 
the German Reformed Ciuirch, they felt themselves excluded from the 
worship and requested the use of the Augustus church." The vestry, 
however, declined to enter into any engagement with them for any 
specified time, not knowing how soon they themselves might wish to use 
the building every Sunday, but for special reasons, not without weight, 
granted them the privilege of the building when not 'required for their 
own services, expressing the hope and wish that by mutual concessions 
their difficulties might be happily adjusted and peace and harmony soon 

The one hundredth anniversary of the establishment of the Church 
was now approaching, and in the Fall of 1842 it was resolved to com- 
memorate the interesting event with appropriate services, and invite the 
First Conference of the Ministerium of Pennsylvania to convene at 
Trappe and participate in the celebration. Accordingly, in 1843, from 
April 29th to May 2d the centenary jubilee was fittingly observed. 

Preparatory services were held on April 29th, Rev. Peixoto of 
Old Goshenhoppen preaching in German ixQra. Exodus 15 : 13. On Sun- 
day morning, April 30th, after preaching in German from Psalms 26 : 8, 
on the theme "The reverence due to the house of God," the pastor, as- 
sisted by his predecessor Dr. Richards, administered the Lord's Supper 
to eighty-five communicants. In the afternoon Dr. Richards preached 
in English from the text Luke 14: 28-30, with special reference to the 
catechumens, choosing as his theme, " Counting the cost." Services 
were again resumed on Monday. After a sermon in English and a 

The Old Trappe Church. 33 

public examination of the catechumens, the pastor administered the 
rite of confirmation, closing with the preparatory service. In the after- 
noon Dr. C. T. Welden, of Vincent, Chester County, occupied the 
pulpit, preaching from Ephesians 4: i, setting forth " the dignity, im- 
portance, and responsibility of the Christian character." 

Tuesday, May 2d, the special day of the anniversary service, com- 
memorating the laying of the corner-stone, dawned auspiciously. In pro- 
cession the vestry and catechumens, led by the pastor, Drs. Welden and 
Richards, moved from the school-house to the church, which had been 
beautifully decorated with evergreens. The following programme was 
then rendered : 

Anthem, "Wake, the Song of Jubilee,'' Choir. 

Hymn No. 44, " Before Jehovah's awful throne,'' Congregation. 

Confessional Service, Conducted by the Pastor. 

Scripture Lesson, Psalm 48, . . Rev. C. T. Welden, D. D. 

Hymn No. 530, ''Hark, the Song of Jubilee, " Congregation. 

Prayer, By the Pastor. 

The Centenary Sermon, text. Psalms 78 : 2-8 ; theme, " The 

Fruitful Retrospect, By Rev. J. W. Richards, D. D. 

Prayer, By Rev. J. W. Richards, D. D. 

Anthem, " Sanctus Hosannah," Choir. 

The Holy Communion, . . . Administered by Rev. Miller, Drs. Richards and Welden. 

Concluding Prayer, By the Pastor. 

Farewell Hymn, " Farewell, farewell, for we must part," Congregation. 


Conducted by the pastor, assisted by Drs. Richards and Welden. 

Sermon, Acts 26 : 28 ; theme, "Reasons why many are not altogether Christians,'' by 

Rev. G. Mintzer, rector of the Episcopal church at Evansburg. 
Director of the Choir, - Matthias Haldeman, Esq. 

The following grandchildren of Dr. H. M. Muhlenberg were present : 
Hon. H. A. Muhlenberg, Hon. M. S. Richards and his son, William 
Augustus, of Reading; Rev. J. W. Richards, D. D., Germantown ; Mrs. 
Charlotte T. Oakeley and Mrs. Hetty Hiester, of Reading, her daughter, 
Mrs. Ann Jones, and her son, Francis Hiester. 

By a resolution of the vestry Dr. Richards was requested to furnish his 
sermon for publication. It was accordingly printed, and though now a 
very rare pamphlet, we may be exceedingly grateful that this excellent 
discourse, containing a judicious compendium of the church's early his- 
tory, was not altogether lost. 

In addition to his services at Trappe, Rev. Miller preached every 
four weeks in English at Pottstown, in English and German alternately 
at Limerick and Towamencin, and in German at Keely's. 

For some years the capacity of the old church was becoming more and 

34 The Old Jrappe Church. 

more inadecjuate, and in 1851 the congregation, notwithstanding "the 
respect and regard they felt for the old building and its antiquity," re- 
solved to build a new church. On February 27, 1851, the plans were 
adopted, providing for the building of a brick church, 75 feet long by 50 
feet wide, and in the Spring of the following year the work of building 
began. But at this juncture Rev. Miller, on May 1, 1852, resigned the 
charge and preached his farewell sermon in English on the i6th, and in 
German on the 30th, bringing his pastorate abruptly to a close. 


was invited to preach to the congregation on June 27, 1852, in German 
and English, and immediately after the services was unanimously elected 
as pastor. According to the terms of the call, Dr. Wenzel was required 
to preach at Trappe every two weeks, English and German, alternately, 
with an additional service every four weeks, all in the forenoon ; every 
four weeks at 'I'owamencin in German and English, alternately, and at 
Keely's in Geruian, the three congregations offering him a salary of §235 
with parsonage and lot, $155 and §60 respectively. 

Pottstown" and Limerick now withdrew from the charge, being served 
after the resignation of Rev. H. S. Miller, at Pottstown, August 20, 
1848, and at Limerick, May i, 1853, by Rev. Geo. F. Miller. 

Dr. Wcazel entered upon his pastoral duties August 22, 1852. But 
the work of building the new church, begun on May i8th, had in the 
meantime so far advanced that the corner-stone was laid on August 8th, 
before Ills arrival. "An immense concourse of citizens and members" 

(57j A conijregation was here organized and a log church built prior to 1772. The first pastor 
•was John Ludwig Voigt, whoassuincd regular charge about 1772 and continued as pastor until a 
short time before his death, Dec. 28, ISOO. In 1790 the old log church was replace<I by a brick struct- 
ure, built by the I-utherans and Kefoi uied at a cost of about $6000. .Tohn Fred. Weinland bogan 
rvlieving Voigt in 1799 and served as pastor after the latter's death until 1806. He was followed 
successively by F. W. Gcissenhaiuer, Sr., Jlay, 1807-1808; J. P. Hecht, May, 1809-1813; J. E. I,. 
Brauns (Brauusius), Jan., 1814-1815; H. A. (;eissenhainer,.\ugusl. 1816-Jan., 1821 ; F. W. Geissen- 
haiuer, Sr, again, assisted by his son Fred. Wm . Jr , 1821-April, 1823; Conrad Miller, May, 1821- 
July, I8t8; G. F. Miller, July, 1848-1801; H. Wcndt, iMay, 18Cl-0ct. 1864; A. H. Gruh, Oct., 1864- 
Nov., 1863; W. G. Laitile, Jan., lS66-0ct , 1874. During his pastorate the Lutlierans sold out their 
inrerest in the old brick church to the Reformed in May, 1871, and built a new church, iucorporated 
as ihe German and English Ev. Luth. Emmanuel's Church. The corner-stone was laid June 22, 
18T1. and the church, costing about S:i3,000, was consecrated Sept. 28-9, 1872. Since 1875 the congre- 
gation has been regularly served by Rev. D. K. Kepuer. 

The English Luth. congregation was separately organized by Rev. Conrad Miller and Dr. J. "W. 
Richards in 1834 but used the original brick church also for services. The pastors were J. W, 
Richards, May, 1834-April, 1S36; J. Wampole, April, 1836-Jan,, 1838; H. .S. Miller. April, 163S-.\ug., 
1848; G. F. Miller, Aug., IS48-1868. In 18.59 the congregation began the erection of a new church 
incorporated under the name of "The English Ev. Luth. Church of the Transfiguration." The 
corner-stone was laid .\ugust 5, 1859, and the new edifice consecrated Feb. 16, 1861, on which occasion 
Dr J. A. Seiss preached the sermon. The cost of the new church $12,0-50. The succeeding pas- 
tors were G. W. .Schmucker, June, 1868-1870; C. Keener, June, 1871-18S0 ; B. .M. Schmucker, 1881- 
1889. In 1.889 the present pastor. Rev. O. P. Smith, took charge. (A hrief history of these congre- 
gations w;is published by Dr. B. M. .Schmucker in 1882.) 

The Old Trappe Church. 35 

gathered to witness the ceremony. The sermon in the morning was 
preached by Rev. J. W. Richards, D. D., of Reading, from Detit. 22 : 8, 
followed by Rev. John R. Kooken, a German Reformed minister of Nor- 
ristown, with a short German address. In the afternoon, after delivering 
a brief address in English on the texts Zech. 4: 7 and 14: 7 (the latter 
text used by Dr. Muhlenberg at the laying of the corner-stone of the 
Old Church, May 2, 1743), Dr. Richards laid the corner-stone, assisted 
by Rev. Kooken. A tin box, ixY^ inches long, 4j< inches wide, and 
3}^ inches deep, with a double lid, and tipped with brass mountings, 
was deposited in the corner-stone, containing the following articles : 
An account of the day's proceedings, an English Bible, Luther's small 
catechism in English and German, an English and German Lutheran 
hymn-book, a copy of the Evangelical Review, a German copy of the 
minutes of the ministerium of 1852, Dr. Richard's sermon, "The Fruit- 
ful Retrospect," a catalogue and constitution of the Theological Semi- 
nary at Gettysburg, and a Lutheran almanac of 1852. 

The new church was rapidly carried to completion, and on Nov. 5th 
and 6th the consecration services took place. Rev. E. Peixoto preached 
on Saturday morning, November 5th, the pastor, Rev. Wenzel, assisting 
in the service. On Sunday the pastor duly consecrated the new edifice 
to the worship of the triune God. Services were held both morning and 
afternoon, Dr. Richards, of Reading, preaching in the morning and 
Dr. Baker, of Philadelphia, in the afternoon. The collections amounted 
to giii.04. The total cost of the new church, in which igi,ooo bricks 
were used, was ^7,112,29. 

Dr. Wenzel remained in charge of the congregation but two years. 
Having received a call to Philadelphia, he resigned on August 5, 1854, 
and preached his farewell sermon on September 17th. He carried with 
him the love of the people. Li answer to an article on " The Old Church, 
a Dream of the past," which appeared in the Montgomery Watchman, 
February 27th, of the following year, and which was regarded as a 
" commixture of truth and misrepresentation, calculated to reflect upon 
the congregation and Dr. Wenzel," the vestry published the following 
vindication : 

" Resolved, That we hereby publicly express our exalted opinion of the character of 
Rev. Mr. Wenzel, the high estimation in which he was held while pastor of this congre- 
gation, and the sincere regret with which we were called upon to part with him." 

This good feeling was heartily reciprocated by their pastor. As his 
last entry in the record he writes these words : "I part from my people 
with deep regret, for they have been very kind to me, and though I have 
been among them but a short time, I have learned to love them with a 

36 The Old Trappe Church. 

fervor, such as I never felt for any people under my charge. May the 
chief shepherd of souls lead them safely through life's journey and land 
them all securely where the wicked cease from troubling and the weary 
are at rest." 


of Centreville, Cumberland County, was called to succeed Dr. Wenzel, on 
September 12, 1854, as pastor of the charge, still consisting of Trappe, 
Keely's and Towamencin. No change was made in the arrangement and 
number of services. In addition to the use of the parsonage and lot, the 
pastor's salary was increased to S525, Trappe paying §278, Towamencin 
$175, and Keely's $72. 

During Rev. Link's pastorate the membership roll rapidly increased. 
His great power lay chiefly in his emotional appeals, and by the solemn 
earnestness and at times striking originality of his manner he attracted the 
people, so that the church was frequently crowded to its utmost capacity. 
On November 11, 1855, he recorded 206 English communicants, with 
the note that it was the largest ever held in the Trappe church. But this 
number was subsequently exceeded, for on March 28, 1858, he enters the 
names of 255 English communicants, again stating that it was the largest 
ever held, and adds the prayer that it may prove to have been a season 
of great refreshing to God's people. 

Rev. Link was in strong sympathy with the "new measure" movement, 
and strenuously advocated it in the congregation. On the third and 
fourth Sundays in January, 1858, he preached on the subject of " Social 
Prayer or Prayer Meetings,'" and as the subject was new and had Leen 
previously announced it brought out an unusually large attendance on both 
occasions. He forthwith introduced prayer-meetings, holding them at 
the different houses of such members as received the innovation with ap- 
proval. The majority of the members, however, fearing that it repre- 
sented a tendency to e.xtreme emotionalism, viewed the entire movement 
with suspicion, and although it was doubtlessly attended in many instances 
with signal blessing, it finally produced such a tremendous upheaval in 
the congregation as to threaten its disruption. A large number, favor- 
ing the new measures, withdrew and contemplated the building of a 
church. Indeed, a site for a burying-ground and church was actually 
selected and purchased in the village. The ground for the parsonage was 
staked off, a well dug, and the prospective cemetery laid out in lots. The 
movement which Rev. Link had tlius aroused he was unable to control. He 
did not anticipate any such catastrophe as an actual division, and rather 
than see it effected, handed in his resignation on December 22, 1858, 
which went into effect March ist. Soon after this, the newly-made con- 

The Old Trappe CluircJi. 37 

tract was canceled, the project abandoned, and the fever-heal gradually- 


Having preached to the congregation by invitation, on February 20, 
1859, Rev. George Sill was elected pastor immediately after the service. 
On February 23d he was informed that he had been unanimously chosen 
to become pastor of the charge, including the three congregations, 
Trappe, Keely's and Towamencin, and having forwarded his acceptance 
on the 26th, preached his introductory sermon on March 27th. At this 
time an extra English service, every four weeks, was introduced at Keely's, 
in the afternoon, the services at the other two points remaining as before. 
The pastor now received a salary of g6oo, with the use of the parsonage 
and appurtenances, Trappe paying ;g325, Towamencin $175, and Keely's 
f 100. 

On the 30th of July, 1859, the vestry granted the pastor permission 
to have a chandelier and lamps placed in the church, so that evening 
service might be held, on condition that the money for the purchase should 
be collected specially for the purpose, and that no protracted meetings 
or anything else outside the regular order of worship and the estab- 
lished rules and customs of the congregation be introduced. The 
necessary lamps having been procured, the first evening service was 
accordingly held on the i6th of October, 1859. Rev. Sill preached 
from the text Genesis 25 : 34, with "Our birthright" as the theme. At 
this time Wednesday evening services were introduced and regularly con- 
tinued for some time. 

During Rev. Sill's pastorate the annual commencement of the Female 
College of CoUegeville, Pa., Prof. J. W. Sunderland, LL.D., President, 
was regularly held in the new church, by permission of the vestry. On 
August II, 1 86 1, a sacred concert was given in the Old Church by the 
young people of the congregation and the proceeds devoted to the Sun- 

A resolution was passed on September 3d, of the same year, author- 
izing the pastor to withdraw from the " Old Synod " and connect himself 
with the East Pennsylvania synod if he saw fit to do so. Rev. Sill at- 
tended the meeting of the East Pennsylvania Synod, held at Harrisburg 
in the Fall of 1859, and after presenting a statement of the case, the 
synod deemed it inexpedient to take any action in the matter, and so 
fortunately the resolution was not carried into effect. The method of 
voluntary subscriptions having proved insufficient to meet the current ex- 
penses of the congregation, the renting of pews was introduced by a res- 
olution on April 23, i860, and has been retained ever since. 

38 The Old Trappe Church. 

At a congregational meeting, held April 21, 1862, the sad tidings of 
the sudden death of Rev. A. S. Link, Rev. Sill's predecessor, was an- 
nounced, and after soliciting subscriptions the congregation sent a gift 
of ^57.25 for the relief of the stricken family. 

In 1862, the English Lutheran congregation at Limerick was again 
brought in connection with the Trappe charge, and was regularly served 
by Rev. Sill, Rev. George F. Miller being the pastor of the German por- 
tion of the congregation. 

The last few years of Rev. Sill's pastorate were years of great politi- 
cal agitation, and as in so many places during the civil war it was the 
means of precipitating trouble. His patriotic enthusiasm scintillated 
from the pulpit, and the feeling thereby aroused against the pastor, was 
intensified by his attitude on " Protracted and Prayer meetings." On 
March 11, 1S61, he read a discoursive paper to the vestry on the subject, 
prefaced with a consideration of the duties and rights of the church- 
councilmen and pastor. The matter was referred to a congregational 
meeting when it received a partial endorsement ; the vestry, however, 
laid the congregational report on the table, and thus, though acting un- 
der the impulse of a zealous spirit, the measures which Rev. Sill pro- 
posed to introduce militated against him. 

The provision for the annual election of the minister, practiced from 
the beginning of Weinland's pastorate, as early as 1800, enacted as a 
by-law on April 14, 1816, but for the most part remaining a dead-let- 
ter, was now revived, and at the election held April 6, 1S63, Rev. J. 
Kohler, whose name had been proposed without his knowledge or con- 
sent along with Rev. Sill's, was elected. The experience of the congre- 
gation fully verified the opinion expressed by Dr. Mann, in his report 
as President, at the meeting of Synod at Reading in 1863, where the 
matter came up for consideration, that a " by-law, which was an instru- 
ment to depose at a yearly election, without any formal charge or trial, 
any minister of the congregation, was calculated seriously to detract from 
the dignity of the ministerial office and seriously to disturb the peace of 
the congregation." The First District Conference, to whom the subject 
had been referred, at the meeting held at Pottstown, July 28th of the 
same year, in the report of the sixth committee, earnestly recommended 
the congregation, as was subsequently done, to erase this the eleventh 
by-law from the Statute book, as being a provision altogether, as far as 
the committee were aware, unknown in the usages of our church. They 
at the same time recommended that as far as possible the congregation 
should practically retrace their steps and place themselves in the exercise 
of mutual forbearance and confidence in the same relative positions they 
held three years before. This, however, under tlie circunislances, was 

The Old Trappe Church. 39 

deemed impracticable, and Rev. Sill having accepted a call lo White- 
marsh, Montgomery County, terminated his engagement with the con- 
gregation on October i, 1863. During his pastorate no formal complaint 
was ever made against his character or behavior in office, and two of 
the congregations of the charge expressly testified to the conscientious 
fidelity with which, under the manifest blessing of God, he had con- 
ducted his ministry among them. 


who did not consent to the former irregular election, and who, after 
having preached to the congregation on October 25, 1863, desired that 
another election should be held, was accordingly on November 29th, 
unanimously elected as pastor. 

On several Sundays during the brief interim after Rev. Sill's with- 
drawal, the pulpit was supplied by Dr. J. Fry, then of Carlisle, and Dr. 
Wenzel of Philadelphia, a former pastor. 

On January 1, 1864, Dr. Kohler entered upon his pastoral duties. A 
change was now made in the charge. Towamencin withdrew, and the 
two Limerick congregations, English and German,*' were once more 
united with the Trappe charge. Rev. Kohler jireached at Trappe in Eng- 
lish every two weeks and German every four weeks, and English and 
German alternately at Keely's and Limerick every four weeks, observ- 
ing the chief festival days in the three congregations alternately. 

In October, 1864, special efforts were made to liquidate the debt 
still remaining on the church, amounting to §1500. The congregation 
was accordingly assessed so as to pay the debt in two installments, the 
first after January i, 1S65, and the second during the following year. 
The entire indebtedness, however, was not fully paid off until some years 

On the 23d of October, 1867, the seventh Jubilee of the great Refor- 
mation was becomingly celebrated. The church was beautifully and 
tastefully decorated with evergreens and flowers. The wall to the rear of 
the pulpit bore the inscription in evergreen, " The Seventh Jubilee of the 

(58) Built as St. James' union cliurch, the corner-stone of wliich was laid April 17, 1817, by Dr. 
.Jacob Miller, and the church consecrated on Whitsunday, 1SI9. The first pastor was Rev. Henry A. 
Geissenhainer, 1818-21 ; his successors were Dr. F. W. Geissenhainer, Sr., assisted by his son Fred. 
William, Jr. 1821-2.'i-, Dr. Jacob .Miller, 18.'3-29; Conrad Miller, 1829-37; Henry S. Miller, 1838-62; 
George F. Miller, 1852-69, except from March, 1S6I, to the following April 6th. The first English 
service wasprobably held l)y Dr. F. W. (jeissenhainer, Sr. The English portion of the congregation 
was separately organized by Jacob Wanipole, and served by him from 1827-34; hissnccessors were J. 
W. Eichards, I8:t4-:ti; , Jacob Wampole, again, 1836-38; Henry S. Miller, 1838-52; George F. Miller, 
1852-61; George Sill, 1812-64. During this period the English and German congregations were 
united under Henry S. Miller, and again finally nnited and served by John Kohler, 1864-74; O. P. 
Smith, 1874-89, during whose pastorate in 1875-76, the new church, costing SlO.CiOO, was built of .stone 
and rough cast ; Kelson F. Schmidt, 1889 lo the present time. 

40 riie Old Trappe CImrcIi. 

Great Reformation," and on eitlier side the dates 1517 and 1S67. In 
the morning, after Dr. Fry iiad conducted tl.e liturgical service, Dr. J. A. 
Seiss preached tlie sermon in which he set forth the great blessings re- 
stored to the churcli by the great reformation. Dr. Krotel followed in a 
short address in German. The pastor opened the services in the after- 
noon, when Dr. Krotel delivered an address in English, and Dr. Seiss 
closed the exercises with a few appropriate remarks. Services were again 
resumed in the evening. Dr. Fry delivering the main address. All these 
services were largely attended. The thank-offerings contributed for the 
benefit of the Theological Seminary and Muhlenberg College amounted 
to $500.50, the names of all contributors being entered in a blank 
memorial volume specially prepared for the occasion. Revs. Henry S. 
Miller, a former pastor of the congregation, and L. Groh. were also 
present at these services. 

During the Summer of 187 1 the parsonage was extensively repaired 
and renovated at a cost of $701.54. In April, 1870, the double row of 
maple trees leading from the street to the church was planted, and now 
having grown up into the full stature of well developed maples, afford 
delightful shade and enhance the appearance of the grounds. 

Dr. Kohler, during his pastorate, discountenanced the new measures 
hitherto more or less prevailing, and had no sympathy for any meretricious, 
emotional forms of service. He endeavored to place the congregational 
worship on a solid basis by introducing part of the liturgy, but in this he 
was obliged to encounter many more obstacles and deeply rooted preju- 
dices than did Dr. Muhlenberg in the early days. He was, however, un- 
willing to compromise his conscience for the ease and comfort he might 
otherwise have enjoyed, and was ready to suffer reproach in advancing 
what he deemed of vital importance to the church. But the consequences 
of a tendency for years in an opposite direction were not to be so readily 
counteracted. Dissatisfaction arose, and again the odious and trouble- 
some by-law. No. II, on the annual election of the minister, which, on 
November 30, 1863, had been unanimously repealed, was illegally ap- 
plied. On May 8, 1873, ''^^ First Conference convened at Trappe, when 
the existing difficulties were duly considered and apparently adjusted. 
However on the 27th of September Dr. Kohler resigned the charge and 
accepted a call to Stroudsburg. 

On December 14, 1873, Rev. S. A. Ziegenfuss was unanimously 
elected to succeed Dr. Kohler, but declined the call. 

The Old Trappe Church. 41 


While yet a student in tlie Lutheran Theological Seminary of Phila- 
delphia, Rev. Smith was elected on March 29, 1874, to become pastor after 
his ordination. Having been regularly ordained by the Ministerium at 
Lancaster on June 2d, he was installed on the loth, and at once assumed 
the charge of the three congregations. According to the requirements of 
the call, he preached every Sunday at Trappe, one service every four 
weeks being German, and one of the English services being held in the 
afternoon. After May, 1879, the German service was transferred to the 
afternoon, and the English afternoon service to the morning, and in the 
Fall of 1885 an extra English service was introduced on the morning 
still left open. At Limerick and Keely's Rev. Smith held service every two 
weeks alternately English and German. On the 23d of May, 1874, an 
improved set of by-laws, both in form and substance, having been drafted 
by D. Y. Custer and J. T. Miller, was adopted by the congregation and 
printed in pamphlet form. In June, 1877, the envelope system for benef- 
icence was introduced in the congregation and has been regularly contin- 

The church as it then stood did not contain many necessary arrange- 
ments and conveniences, and this being more and more felt, it was at 
length resolved, on March i8th, to have it entirely remodeled. Subscrip- 
tions for the work, amounting to J3000, were soon reported. The work 
of reconstruction at once began and on January 14, 1879, ''""^ newly re- 
modeled building was solemnly rededicated. Services were held on Satur- 
day and Sunday, morning, afternoon and evening, a number of clergy- 
men having been engaged to preach and assist in the services. The 
building was finished in fine modern style, chaste and churchly, with 
entirely new furnishings, the special new features being the basement, 
recess for chancel and pulpit, and semi-circular pews on a slightly inclined 
floor. The total cost of remodeling was ^6,658.88, of which sum ^803. 25 
was contributed by the ladies of the congregation for furnishing the 
church with carpet, cushions, etc., $107 by the Bible class for chairs and 
table in the basement, and ^80 by the Sunday-school for a new cabinet or- 
gan. The debt remaining on the church was gi 716.68, but this was speedily 
liquidated. At this time, in January, 1879, '^■'s. Samuel Gross Fry (now 
Mrs. Charles Gross,) presented the congregation with a handsome silver 
communion service. In April, 18B1, the valuable gift of a large marble 
baptismal font was received from Messrs. F. S. Gross of Lee, Mass., 
and C. H. Gross of Philadelphia. The congregation is also indebted to 
the generosity of the Gross brothers of Lee, Massachusetts, for the marble 
walk, laid in 1889, leading from the gate to the church. During the 

42 Tlie Old Trappe Church. 

Fall of 1881, repairs and alterations were made at the parsonage at an 
expense of $376.97. 

The year 1883 was the meinorable quarto-centennial of the birth of 
the great Reformer. This event, which was so universally and enthusi- 
astically celebrated on October 23d, was duly observed by the pastor, 
assisted by a number of Lutheran ministers, with highly interesting and 
appropriate services in both the old and new church. The memorial 
offerings of the congregation contributed this year for the new Seminary 
at Mt. Airy, including the collections at this service, amounted 108365.05. 
The remaining sum of the congregation's apportionment toward the new 
Seminary, §130, was finally paid on January i, 18S9. 

On June 30, 1884, the pastor sustained a severe blow by the early 
death of his cherished help-meet. Mrs. Laura Affie Smith, nee Barnes, was 
deeply mourned by the congregation to whom she had endeared herself 
by many lovable traits of cliaracter. She was buried in the cemetery 
connected with the church. 

In 18S7 the first district Conference was invited to convene at 
Trappe and participate in the celebration of the centennial anniversary of 
the death of the Patriarch of the church. Special services were held in 
both churches, and a collection of $74.50 was gathered, S3 1.73 contrib- 
uted to Muhlenberg College, and the remainder to the seminary. 

Rev. Smith's ministry at Trappe was singularly blessed. The i)re- 
judice against the liturgy still existing when he assumed charge, was by 
judicious tact gradually allayed. Peace and harmony were fully restored 
and maintained, and the congregational life and work much advanced, 
but as the three congregations were gradually expanding, the work re- 
quired was more than one man could perform, so that Rev. Smith be- 
came convinced of the necessity of dividing the charge. A call to 
Pottstown afforded the opportunity and became the occasion of effecting 
such a division. Rev. Smith resigned the charge on February loth, which 
went into effect May ist, thus bringing to a close the longest and one 
of the most successful pastorates since the time of Muhlenberg. 

Hy a unanimous vote on March 10, 1889, the congregation resolved to 
call and support their own pastor, Limerick (St. James') and Schw enksville" 

(.'i9) The Old Keely's cluirch (Xew Jerusalem miioa church), still stundiu^; but no longer u^ed, 
is located about a mile West of Schwenksville. On February U. 17.W, a deed was drann up !)>• 
Valentine Keely and his wife Susanna, to Hieronimus Ha-as and John Kepler, miller, members of 
tlie Trappe Lutheran church, for one .acre of land lor a burying ground, tlie erection of a school- 
house and the maintenance of a (.ienuau school Hut as the framers of the deed died shortly after- 
wards, it was never executed. A purchase was, however, etTected on the part of the Lutheraus by 
George Michael Bastian, John Kepler and Valentine Krause, members of the Trappe church, aud 
for the Gerniau Reformed by Martin Keeler, Henry Keely and Valentine Sbeelich as trustees. It 
was also stipulated that if a house of worship should be erected thereon, it was to be held jointly by 

The Old Trappe Church. 43 

(New Jerusalem) uniting to constitute a separate charge. Rev. Nelson 
F. Schmidt, residing in Schvvenksville, became pastor of the latter charge, 
and the present pastor of the Trappe congregation was called April 4, 
1889, and installed as pastor on June 23d by Rev. J. P. Deck of Ger- 
mantown, deceased, Dr. C. W. Schaeffer preaching the installation ser- 
mon ixoxxi. Acts 20: 27. English services are now regularly held every 
Sunday morning, and every two weeks in the evening, and a German 
service every four weeks in the afternoon. The Lord's Supper is admin- 
istered four times a year instead of semi-annually as heretofore. 

At the time the charge was divided a large number of the substan- 
tial members of the congregation united with other Lutherans at Royers- 
ford, to form Grace Lutheran church. Rev. J. Neiman, pastor, but in 
spite of this loss and the increased expenses now incurred, the congre- 
gation has always promptly and fully met all its financial obligations. 
The congregation is widely scattered, and the pastor in going his rounds 
must cover a circle of about eight miles diameter. 

It will be sufficient to indicate the present status and work of the 
congregation by appending a summary of the last synodical report : Num- 
ber of members four hundred and fifty,™ communed within the year, 
four hundred and eleven. Officers and teachers of the Sunday-school, 
twenty; scholars, one hundred and forty-nine; value of church property, 
$10,000; current expenses, J 1 300.50 ; Foreign MissionSj $25.00 ; Home 
Missions, $66.66; General Beneficence, $100; Theological Seminary, 
J15.00; Orphans' Home, $125 ; other charitable purposes, $139.25. 

the two denominations. A log school-house was built in 1762, in which leligious services were oc- 
casionally conducted. After the battle of Germantown, October 4, 1777. ii was used for a short 
time as a hospital for the sick and wounded soldiers. After the war the building was enlarged and 
divided iuto two apartments, one being used for the school and the other exclusively for worship. 
It was torn down in 1834. The church (from the beginning known as Keely's), a two-story stone 
building, with an interior gallery on three of its sides, was erected in 183-"., and consecrated in the 
Fall of 1830. It was organized by Rev. J. W. Richards, D D., just before hio departure for German- 
town, and served regularly by the pastors of the Trappe congregation until the linal division of the 
charge. In 1887, during Rev. 0. P. .Smith's pastorate, the Lutherans withdrew from the old union 
church and erected a fine brick edifice in .Schwenksville, the corner-stone of which was laid on Sun- 
day, October 9, 18S7, by Rev. Smith, and the church (New Jerusalem) consecr.lted by him on Easier 
Sunday, April 21, 1889. Rev. Prof. William Wackernagle, D. D., preached the consecratiim sermon. 
Rev. Jas. L. Becker and the present pastor of the Trappe congregation participating in the services. 
On the following Sunday Rev. Nelson Schmidt was unanimously elected as pastor and entered up- 
on his duties in the charge on May 1, 1889. The debt remaining upon the church, which cost about 
$15,000, when Rev. Schmidt became pastor was $2700, of which ?l(i55 was paid the first year by the 
apportionment system which Rev. 0. P. Smith had inaugurated, and the remainderof the debt liqui- 
dated in 1892. On Jlay 8, 1892, the pastor conducted a very interesting service of praise in recog- 
nition of this fact. Rev. Schmidt has iirmly entrenched himself in the hearts of his people, and is 
approved a faithful laborer by the fruits with which his labors are being crowned. 

(60) This includes all whose names appear in the records as members, but is somewhat in ex- 
cess of the actual active membership, representing a number who have removed from the neighbor- 
hood, regularly attend and contribute to other churches, but who, because of ownership of burial 
lots in the cemetery of the church, and for other reasons, retain a nominal membership' and attend 
communion. The reasons for a regular connection with other Lutheran churches in such cases are 
cogent and obvious and have been repeatedly urged. 

44 The Old Trappc Church. 

5unday=School and Societies. 

The Sunday-school was organized during tlie pastorate of Rev. J. W. 
Richards, D. D., in 1836. There was at first strong feeling manifested 
against its introduction, but it never broke out, as in so many other 
places, in open, violent opposition. The vestry would not permit the 
Sunday-school to be held in the church, but owing to Dr. Richard's 
urgent efforts, heartily supported by Matthias Haldeman, Esq., and 
Major Daniel Fry, permission was obtained to use the school-house 
for Sunday-school purposes. Here the Sunday-school continued to be 
held for a number of years, when it was transferred to the old church. 
In 1859, as the old church was leaking in many places and scarcely 
serviceable, the Sunday-scliool moved into the new church. But after 
the old church was re-roofed and thoroughly repaired in the Spring of 
i860, it was re-opened for the use of the school in September. For sev- 
eral years the Spring and Summer sessions were held in the old church, 
and in Winter the Sunday-school again used the new building. The first 
superintendent was David Y. Custer, one of theoldest members still living, 
assisted by Margaret Young. After the church was remodeled the Sun- 
day-school permanently occupied its present comfortable quarters in the 

The fiftieth anniversary of the Sunday-school was commemorated 
with special services on the last Saturday of August, 1886. Dr. Fry de- 
livered the main address in the new church in the morning, the i)astor, 
Rev. O. P. Smith and several other clergymen also participating. In the 
afternoon the Ringold Band of Reading, then enjoying a national repu- 
tation, gave a concert on the grounds. The mercury had reached the 
highest point of the season, but despite the heat the largest crowd that ever 
assembled during the pastorate of Rev. Smith was attracted to the cele- 
bration. The Sunday-school, which before the present pastor assumed 
charge, closed with the Christmas festival and re-opened in the Spring, is 
now held continuously throughout the year. In addition to the 
regular congregational contribution, the Sunday-school sends an 
annual Christmas gift to the Orphans' Home at Germantown, and this 
year donated ^25.00 to the orphans. The present officers are Mr. Ed- 
win G. Brownback, superintendent; Mr. Milton H. Keeler, treasurer; 
Miss Hallie R Vanderslice, secretary, and Mr. John I. Bradford, librarian. 

The Old Trappe CInirch. 45 


was organized by Rev. Jacob Wampole in 1837. This society was in ac- 
tive operation for some years after Dr. Wenzel's pastorate in 1854, and 
was then discontinued. 


This Society was organized and introduced by Rev. O. P. Smith 
on November 22, 1879. The object of its establishment was the advance- 
ment of the social and religious interests of the young people and the 
cultivation of a literary taste. A very choice library, containing select 
works of the various standard authors, was also established by the society 
under the direction of the pastor and Prof. Abel Rambo then president 
of the vestry. In 1889, when regular evening services were introduced 
by the present pastor, the society presented a new chandelier and lamps 
to the congregation, and has since in many ways contributed to the 
church and Sunday-school and other benevolent objects. It still con- 
tinues to prosper. At the last annual meeting, held October 26, 1893, 
Prof. M. H. Richards, D. D., of Allentown, delivered a very excellent 
and well received lecture on " My Den of Eden." 


was organized by the present pastor on Saturday, October 10, 1891, with 
thirty-five members. It is but two years old, but it has long since justi- 
fied its establishment. The membership now numbers eighty-two. At 
an expense of ^60, it provided the church with a large iron safe for the 
custody of the historic relics and records of the church. It has been in- 
strumental in accomplishing much good in the visitation of the sick, re- 
lief of the poor, work for the orphans, and general beneficence, and has 
always proved true to its name. 

46 TJie Old Trappe Church. 

The Parochial School. 

The honor of building the first school-house in tlie township belongs 
to the Augustus congregation. It was built of logs in December, 1742, 
as on January 5th, Muhlenberg speaks of it as being already erected." 
Some of the Reformed members and a number of " unbaptized Pennsyl- 
vanians " in the neighborhood contributed somewhat to the work and cost 
of building. On Monday, January to, 1743, the school opened with 
Muhlenberg himself as the first school-master. "Since ignorance among the 
youth is so great in this country," he says, " and good school-masters very 
rarely found, I had to take this matter also in my hands. "°^ Children (?) 
from seventeen to twenty years of age, with A, B, C books under their 
arms, came as his first pupils. He spent a week alternately at Philadel- 
phia, Trappe and New Hanover, teaching both German and English. 
But this, of course, could not long continue. In i 745 he secured as paro- 
chial school-master, John Jacob Loeser, who l>y his excellent Christian 
character and fidelity had won Muhlenberg's confidence. He taught 
the school during the Winter, and in Summer, when the school was 
closed, supported himself by manual labor. The following year, 
as Loeser was called to New Hanover, Muhlenberg engaged the ser- 
vices of John Frederick Vigera, wlio, however, went to Lancaster in 
1748, and in 1750 moved to Philadelphia where he taught for two years. 
After Vigera's departure, .\dam Meier, who hailed from Germany, 
took charge. About thirty or forty scholars at this time attended the 

(61) When the members armed with broad-axes, hand-mauls and wedges, assembled to build 
the school-house, some felled the trees, others notched the logs and put them in place, and still 
others split chtp-boards or shingles for the roof Some sought out and hauled shapely stones for the 
fire-place, and some prepared the sticks and mud for the chimney. The building was about IS x 22 
feet, one story seven feet high, built of round logs with the cracks daubed with mortar called " kat 
and clay." The door was made of split logs, roughly hewn, called " puncheons ;" the hearth was of 
stone, about four feet wide and as long as the width of the fire-pl.ace, the back wall aitd sides of the 
fire-place being also of stone. A.I the hearth a piece of ground left without a floor, to alTord the 
scholars a place 10 stick their goose-quills to make them of uniform pliability. Then- was one 
ledge-door in the side of the building with wooden hinges and latch. The windows ran the whole 
length of the side or end of the building, three to twelve inches high with little posts set in a foot 
apart on which oiled paper was pasted in lieu of glass. The second log school-house, however, built 
in 17.50, was provided with regular window frames, sash and glass panes. Slanting writing boards 
were fastened along the wall even with the under edge of the windows. The scholars mounted slab 
seats without backs, and a short slanting board in one corner near the end of the hearth consti- 
tuted the school-master's desk. Wood stoves were set up in the Winter, and during the noon re- 
cess the boys split up the logs for kindling, (cf. Hist, of Mont. Co., p. 364.) 

(62) Dr. Mann's Life and Times of H. M. M., p. 130. 

The Old Trappe Church. 47 

school. As the school-master had a family, and the school-house con- 
tained but one room, it became necessary to erect another building. A 
new log school-house was accordingly built in 1750. The expense in- 
curred did not exceed ;;£'3o. At this time Muhlenberg drafted a consti- 
tution and a series of rules^'^ for the parochial school which, on December 

(63) The following Rules for the parochial school, ncorded in Muhlenberg's miDiite book, were 
adopted on December 29, 1750 : 

" 1.— We (the vestry) unanimously pledge ourselves to see that our school-house is at all times 
provided with a competent and faithful Evangelical Lutheran school-master. 

2.— The school-master, before being engaged, shall he examined by the pastor, or in his absence 
by his substitute, to ascertain whether he is well grounded in our evangelical doctrines and lives in 
accordance with them ; whether he is efficient in reading, writing, arithmetic, singiug, organ play- 
ing, also in the English language, if there is demand, or has good gifts to make up readily whatever 
deficiency may stUl remain. 

3. — After being duly declared competent by the pastor, he shall be regularly presented and 
introduced to the congregation. 

4.— The school-master shall regularly instruct the children according to the iustruction and 
method appended to these articles. (This is unfortunately missing, as the pages immediately fol- 
lowing these rules are torn out.) 

5.— He shall manifest the same fidelity in teaching children of neighbors and of other denomi- 
nations as those of our own church according to the prescribed method of instruction. 

6, — He shall, whenever possible, teach six hours every day, and in short days at least five hours, 
at noon give the children not more than one hour recess, during which time, as well as during 
school hours, see that the children do not misbehave, and especially that Lhey do not fight, quarrel, 
swear, or use improper language, and if found guilty of these things, earnestly reprove them or use 
other disclplimiry measures if necessary. 

7. — Not the slightest oath or any idle talk shall be heard in or out of the school, on the part of 
the school-master, his wile, or chiLiren, so that the little ones be nototfended and made partakers 
of like grievous sins as well as God's righteous judgment. 

(8) The school-master shall e.xercise proper discipline over the children, give them directions 
how they should enter and leave the school-house, admonish them to behave in a Christian-like and 
becoming way on the street if they would live as Christian children and not as Indians. 

9.— The school-master shall not entertain any complaints from parents or employers, but shall 
direct them to the pastor and vestry, when their complaints shall be properly heard and investi- 
gated. Neither school-master, wife, nor children shall accost any one rudely in the school-house, 
much less begin a quarrel, or resort to angry words or blows. 

10. — On Saturday the school-master shall instruct only in the morning, and in the afternoon 
i>h;ill clean the church ; and when divine service is tu be held shall open and close the shutters at 
the proper time, cover the altar, lead the singing, play the organ, and be ready to assist the pastor 
whenever it may be necessary 

11.— The school-master shall not open the school-house for any but the regular preacher of our 
united congregations and their representatives, and by do means give the keys to disorderly 
" vagabonds.'' 

12. — If the school-master has any complaints to make he shall modestly submit them to the 
pastor and vestry, and biok for their help and advice, but never act as his own judge, much less 
side with others to the injurj and detriment of the church and congregation." 

The school-master is then requirt^d to bind himself to the observance of the rules " with hand 
and seal," in a formula which follows. As remutieration for his services as school-master and 
organist the following is stipulated: 

" I. — He shall charge for every pupil semi-annually sev^-n shillings and six pence in money and 
oue-half bushel of grain. 

2 —He shall occupy the school-house in quiet possession and have free fire-wood. 

3.— He shall have the right to cultivate and use as much of the three acres of the church and 
school land as may be indicated and permitted by the vestry, 

4.— Ke shall receive the collections taken up on the two high festivals of the year, viz., Easter 
and Whitsunday, for organ playing. 

5. -At church weddings he shall take up the collection with the " klingelsack " and have the 
same for playing the organ. 

48 The Old, Trappe CImrch. 

29, 1750, was signed by the Eldeste and Vorsteher. In ihe following 
y( - trouble arose with the school-master, especially on account of his 
ui ^!y wife, who was frequently guilty of using profane and unbecoming 
la lage in the presence of the pupils. The school-master himself, more- 
over, was associating with people who were in open hostility to the 
church, and was gradually losing all control over the children. He 
was in consequence discharged, but as he could not secure another posi- 
tion during the Winter, was permitted to occupy the school-house dwell- 
ing until the following Spring. In the meantime the noted Gottlieb 
Mittleberger, whom Muhlenberg found " moderate, steady and willing to 
serve, "^* was engaged as school-master and organist. But owing to the 
meager support he received, and the opposition he encountered from 
parties at variance with the church authorities, he resigned his work 
in 1753, and in the following year returned to Germany. For his 
services the last year he received ;^io i8s. 7d. During this period a 
definite method of instruction was pursued which, though referred to but 
not incorporated in the rules, was substantially the same in all three 
congregations. The orphan school at Halle served as a model. As soon 
as it became possible various grades according to aptness and progress 
were differentiated, and formed into classes. The te.xt books forming the 
staple articles of the educational diet were " Das A, B, C Buch," " Der 
Psalter," " Das Neue Testament," also the English New Testament, " Das 
Glaubens Lied,"** and after 1749 "Luther's Kleiner Catechismus." Public 
examinations were held in the presence of the congregation several times 

6.— He shall enter the names of baptized children in the church record regularly and neatly, for 
which he shall receive a " gratial " from those who are not poor and are willing and able to pay. 

7. — He may also receive a small portion of the interest accruing to the congregation, but only 
if the greatest necessity demands, and if the church shall have capital invested at the time." 

These terras are made on condition of absolute conformity to the rules and prescribed method 
of instruction. If he should prove unfaithful he was to receive two or three month's notice to 
vacate the school-house, and was cautioned that if compelled to do so by the Christian authority of 
the land, any trouble that he might occasion would be at his own peril. 

(64) Hall. Nach. I., p. 6.^1. 

(65) Furnished by Dr. F. M. Ziegenhagen, containing the main doctrines of the catechism in 
verses. It was added to the edition of Luther's Small Catechism, by Christ. Saur of Germantowu 
in 1752. (Dr. Mann's Life and Times of H. M. M.. p. 201). But the Glaubens Lied, or Order of sal- 
vation was not an adequate substitute for the catechism, since it lacked the holy sacraments, (Hall. 
Nach. I, p. 113) so that Luther's small catechism was printed by Benjamin Franklin in 1749 and introduced. The honor of printing theyir^/ Luther's Small Catechism in German does not, 
however, belong to Franklin, but to Christ. Saur, the enterprising {printer and publisher of Ger- 
mantowu, who made his own type, did his own binding, manufactured his owu paper and ink; 
edited the first German newspaper and printed the first German Bible in America in 1743. The 
title }iage of this earlier edition, printed in 1744, reads : 

Der I kleiue | Catechismus | D. Martin Lulbers. | Mit Erlauterungen | herausgegeben [ zum 
Gebrauch | der | Lutherische Gemeinen | in | Pensylvanien | Germanton | Gedruckt bey Christoph 
.Saur I 1744. 

(Hiideburn's Issues of the Peunsyl. Press, Vol. I, p. 194). A copy of this catechism is iu the 
library of the Historical Society of Pennsylvania. 

Ike Old Trappe Church. 49 

during the school term, or at least when the school closed in the Sjsring. 
After the examination, printed Bible verses and " cakes " were sometimes 
distributed to the scholars."* That gratifying progress was made in the 
various schools is evident from the report which Brunnholtz sent to Ger- 
many, in which he says, that if the fathers in Europe could hear the 
American children sing, pray and read, they would shed tears of joy 
and consider themselves amply repaid for all their trouble." Muh- 
lenberg felt the loss of Mittleberger's services keenly, and in the 
same year, 1753, he writes:"' "The schools in the country congre- 
gations are still in a bad way because competent and upright teachers 
are rare and the salary is insufficient, the members are widely scat- 
tered, most of them poor and the children needed for work in the 
Summer." As early as 1746 Muhlenberg expressed the hope that free 
schools might be speedily introduced, and in 1754 felt that the per- 
petuation of the congregation depended upon their establishment."' 
This year, owing to the efforts of Dr. Richard Peters, Benjamin Frank- 
lin and especially Dr. William Smith, first provost of the College 
and Academy of Philadelphia, later the University of Pennsylvania, the 
need of free schools was brought to the attention of the Society for the 
Propogation of the Gospel, in London, and through its agency _;^i 2,000 
were soon collected in Holland, ^^^20,000 in Scotland, and a still greater 
sum in England, the interest of which was to be devoted to the charity 
schools. The Society for the Propogation of Christian knowledge among 
the Germans in Pennsylvania was organized out of the other society (S. 
P. G.) and on March 15, 1754, six trustees were appointed by it to carry 
on the work of the charity schools, viz.. Gov. James Hamilton, Supreme 
Judge William Allen, Secretary of Pennsylvania Richard Peters, Post- 
master Benjamin Franklin, Interpreter Conrad Weiser, Esq., and Dr. 
Wm. Smith, Provost of the Philadelphia Academy. Charity schools were 
immediately opened in many different places and among the rest at 
Trappe. Rev. Michael Schlatter, Reformed clergyman, was appointed 

(66) On the occasion of a visit to Kingcess, on the Schuylkill, March 7, 1763, Muhlenberg, after 
the schoolmaster had examined the children of the school in the five parts of the catechism, 
"the order of salvation," appended to the catechism, and also copious proof tests, conducted a 
brief examination on the Ten Commandments, creation of man. the fall and redemption. " I can 
well say," he writes (Hall. Nach. Old Ed. p. 1093), " that such a school for the youth as this, is the 
most vigorous onslaught upon the deeply-rooted kingdom of darkness, and is the genuine mustard- 
seed out of which the kingdom of Christ must grow. At the close we sang the 146th Psalm in 
beautiful harmony and concluded with prayer. I told the children that I was pleased with their 
diligence and was willing to send them something, either a cake or a booklet for each one; they 
should tell me which they preferred. One answered that a book lasted longer and was more 
useful, to which the rest agreed ; I am consequently a debtor." 

(67) Hall. Nach. II., p. 171. 

(68) Ibid. p. 177. 

(69) Ibid. pp. 177, 17S. 

50 I lie Old Trappe ChurcJi. 

superintendent of the system by the London Society at a salary ot^^ioo. 
Tlie Trappe school-house was offered to the trustees of the Society with- 
out charge,™ and after the ready concurrence of the Reformed members 
of the community had been obtained, the offer was accepted. The 
school was opened by Michael Schlatter on February i6, 1755, with 
Charles Cornelius Raboteau," whom Muhlenberg had strongly recom- 
mended to the trustees, as school-master at a salary of ^^25, with an ad- 
ditional allowance of ;^io for his wife. John Schrack and Nicolaus 
Kuster of the congregation were two of the seven trustees appointed for 
New Providence and Skippack. Muhlenberg was engaged as catechist 
of the Charity schools of New Providence (Trappe), New Hanover, 
Vincent Chester County and Reading and drew a regular salary." 
Children of all denominations were received without discrimination. 
Reading, writing, and arithmetic were taught in English and German, 
and the girls in addition were taught sewing. The children were in- 
structed in the general truths of Christianity and the different parties in- 
doctrinated in their respective catechisms. 

Muhlenberg, deeply concerned for the education of the steadily in- 
creasing number of Germans in the province, hailed the new scheme 
with Joy, and supported it heartily. In a letter" to Benjamin Franklin, 
which was read to the trustees, after stating that he had even attempted 
to buy a printing press to serve his countrymen, but was obliged to drop 
his design by reason of his increasing family and narrow circumstances, 
he strongly recommended the trustees to purchase a press, offering to 
undertake its management and use his whole influence to support it. 
The trustees approved his suggestion, and bought a press of Benjamin 
Franklin at an actual cost of ;^i86 3s., and immediately started a Ger- 

(70) Tlie " petition of tlie Vestrymen and Wardens in tlie name of the German Lutheran con- 
gregation at New Providence, about Perkiomen and Skippacic, in the County of Philadelphia," in 
which the offer was made, forwarded by Muhlenberg to the trustees, was subscribed by .Tohn 
Schrack, Anthony Heilman, .lacob Schrack, Valentine Sherer, John Hubner, John Heilraan, Nich- 
olas Custer, Hieronymus Haas, Michael Bastian, Conrad Yost, and Nicolas Seidel. Life of Dr. 
Wm. Smith, Vol. I, p. 70. 

(71) Muhlenberg says of hira in a letter to Dr. Wm, Smith (Life of Dr. Wm. Smith, vol, I, p. 79) : 
'* Cornelius Kabatan (more correctly Raboteau) is a true-born Englishman, a Presbyterian bred 
and . . . besides his native English, speaks indiiferent good French and Dutch. He is much be- 
loved by people of all persuasions for his decent and Christian behavior." .\s revealing the inti- 
mate and friendly relation in which he stood to Muhlenberg, we quote the following baptismal 
entry made by the latter in the church record: " Mr. Charles Cornelius Raboteau, his espouse 
Mary Elizabeth ; their first born son Charles Cornelius Henry Melchior was born Anno 1756, Octo- 
ber the l.'tth, 12 o'clock at night : baptized October the 23d. Godfathers Henry Melchior Muhlen 
berg iM.d the father of the infant." 

(72) On July 24th, 1755, he signed a receipt for £15 " as catechist to the Society's free schools 
. . . commencing from May 1, 1755." Ibid. p. 94. 

The Old Trappc CInirch. 5 1 

man periodical to advance the cause of the Charit}- schools." But as 
Muhlenberg had anticipated, the plan met with determined opposition. 
Christopher Saur, printer and publisher at Germantown, was quick to 
discern and exaggerate the political and Anglican tendency which the 
movement seemed to take, and soon excited and fostered suspicion and 
distrust through his newspaper, so that the Charity schools never grew in 
popular favor. After a few years, owing to the growing opposition and 
indifferent success, as much as to the exhausted condition of England 
after the triumphant issues of the Seven Years' War, terminated by the 
Treaty of Paris, February 10, 1763, the London Society withdrew its sup- 
port and the entire scheme of the Charity Schools gradually and in 1763, 
completely came to an end." At Trappe, in fact, the plan was little 
more than attempted. Muhlenberg says'° that on July 8, 1763, he was 
instructed by the authorities to inform the trustees and schoolmasters in 
Providence, New Hanover and Pikestown that the scheme of the Charity 
schools had been abandoned, but the statement needs some qualification. 
The two trustees at Trappe (Providence) continued to serve until the 
plan was dropped, but at this time there was no schoolmaster here in the 
pay of the Philadelphia trustees, since almost from the beginning, as far 
as Trappe was concerned, the Charity school was a pronounced failure. 
At New Hanover the plan was more successful, and thrived until it was 
doomed by the edict. Schoolmaster Walters was the last one engaged 
there by the trustees, and when the school was closed he received from 
Dr. Richard Peters, through Muhlenberg, ^18 as salary for the last three 
quarters of the year. When the school opened at Trappe, "eighteen 
poor children "" were in attendance, but already in October of the same 
year, 1755, John Fleischer appears as the parochial school-master. He 
received a salary of ^^24 and served until 1760, when he removed to 

On August I, 1760, the following rules were added to those already 
enacted. " (a) Any desiring to send children to the school for the entire 
year shall pay for each child 10 s. and one bushel of grain, and contribute 
also a portion of the fire-wood. (Ji) For one child, for half a year, 5 s. 
and one bushel of grain together with a portion of the fire-wood. {/) No 
child shall be received irregularly for a few days at a time."™ In 1762 

(74) Muhlenberg received the offer from the Society to become inspector of its publication at a 
stipulated salary, but being compelled for special reasons to decline, he recommended Bandschuh 
in his stead, who accordingly received the appointment. (Hall. Nach. II, p. 210.) 

(75) Hall. Nach. II, p. 227. Dr. Mann's Life and Times of H. H. M., p. 337. Dr. Mann's Ver- 
gang. Tage., p. 8. 

(76) Hall. Nach,, Old Edition, p. 1108. 

(77) Life of Dr. Wm. Smith, Vol. I, p. 93. 

(78) Muhlenberg's Minute Book, p. 30. 

52 The Old Trappe Clutrch. 

several short-lived schools were started in the township, and as a result, 
the main school at the church was empty. But in the following year, a 
new interest in the parochial school having been aroused, another school- 
master, who had been a subordinate officer in the German army, taught 
and disciplined the children in the school-house. His special qualifica- 
tions, which Muhlenberg ascertained when on May nth he made appli- 
cation for the position, were that he wrote a good hand and could play 
a choral upon the organ (einen Choral auf der Orgel schlagt)." The next 
day (Ascension) when Muhlenberg conducted service, the school-master 
was invited to play the organ. "After service," Muhlenberg says, " I asked 
if they (the congregation) would engage the organist whom they had 
heard, and have him conduct the school ; they assented, but said : if 
they could only raise enough for his support, for those members living 
several miles distant stated that they were obliged to maintain school-mas- 
ters in their own districts, and whilst they were willing to contribute 
something for organ-playing, the rest of the members whose ciiiidren 
could attend the school at the church, must chiefly provide for his sup- 
port. I made a test, had the members subscribe what they would give a 
year for organ-playing, and found the sum was ^^ii. If now the rest 
pay the usual school fee for their children, the school can with God's 
help again be continued.'"" Muhlenberg, who now lived in Philadelphia, 
again visited the school on June 17th, wrote out a series of regulations 
and sho.ved the new school-master how he should proceed with the chil- 
dren. And so with varying success and some intermissions, the parochial 
school was carried on until supplanted by the public school system. 

The log school-house was torn down in 1793, and superseded by a 
more pretentious structure, built of stone with white pointed joints, con- 
taining a school-room and dwelling for the school-master. Between the 
years 1808 and iSii Francis R. Shunk, afterwards Governor of the State, 
served as schoolmaster, one of his pupils being Hon. Jacob Fry, 
father of Dr. Jacob Fry of Reading, and for a number of years president 
of the vestry. His immediate successor as school-master was Hon. 
Joseph Royer. In 1816, as there was no resident school-master at the 
time, and as in consequence the school was closed, the use of the school- 
house and dwelling was granted to certain private parties for school pur- 
poses, on condition of keeping the building in good repair and 
paying a rental of $14 for the year. The following year the parochial 
school was again revived, but from this time the dwelling was regu- 
larly occupied by the sexton. In addition to the dwelling, kitchen, and 
granary connected with the school-house, the use of a stable and garden, 
which were attached at this time, and a se])arately enclosed lot for pas- 

(79) Hall. Nach., Old Ed., p. 1098. (80) Ibid. p. 1099. 

The Old Trappe Church. 53 

turage or cultivation, was granted to the sexton. The last parochial 
school-master was Abraham Miller, who taught in 1845. 

In April, 1846, shortly after the act providing for public schools was 
accepted in the township, the vestry rented the building to the directors 
of the public school for a period of six months for ^10, reserving the 
right to use it for meetings as occasion required. But the introduction 
of the public school was the death knell of the parochial school, and in- 
deed of the school-house itself. On January i, 1 851, on motion of 
George Yost, it was unanimously resolved to tear the building down. 
Amos Essig, the last sexton to occupy the dwelling, received notice to 
vacate on April ist, and in September the last vestige of the ancient land- 
mark was removed. 


54 riie Old T7-appe Church. 

Church Lots. 

On March lo, 1743, the congregation bought two adjoining tracts of 
land. The first tract was purchased of Thomas How, a member of the 
congregation, for jr^\ 15s. It is thus described: "Beginning at the 
Great road ; thence by land of Thomas How, N. E., 42 perches ; thence 
by land of John Harpel, S. E., 3 perches and i^Y?, feet ; thence N. W. by 
Harman Indehaven's land, 42 perches to said road ; thence to beginning 
— containing one acre." 

The second tract was purchased of Harman Indehaven for the con- 
sideration of five shillings "as also other good causes." This tract ad- 
joined number one and was 42 perches by 4 perches, containing one 
acre and eight perches. The titles to these lots were made in the " name 
of Nicolas Cressman and Frederick Marsteller, church wardians of the 
High Dutch Lutherine Congregation and to their society and their suc- 
cessors to and for the said congregation to erect and build a church 
thereon and burial place as the said wardens and congregation shall see 
meet and convenient." 

The next addition to the Church property was made on April 27, 
1 75 1, when the congregation bought of Henry M. Muhlenberg one acre 
and one perch for ^5, "lawful money," which the latter purchased of 
John George Krissnian on Jan. 6, 1747, for JT^-Xi- This conveyance was 
made to " Frederick Marsteller and Jacob Schrack, their heirs and assigns, 
in trust and for use, intents and purposes of the church called the Augus- 
tus Church, belonging to the Lutherien congregation according to the 
unaltered Augsburg Confession." The indenture records it as follows : 
" Beginning at a stone on the N. E. side of the confirmed Great Road, 
thence by Church land 40 perches and 7 feet to a stone in the line of said 
Henry Muhlenberg's other land; thence by the same S. E., 4 perches to 
a stone; thence S. W. by said John George Krissman's land, 40 perches 
and 3 feet to a stone on the side of said Great Road : thence by the same 
N. W. 4 perches to the place of beginning." Muhlenberg duly acknow- 
ledged this conve)'ance as his deed before Conrad Weiser, Esq., Justice 
of the peace. This land was sold by William Penn to William Streeper 
on Jan. 21, 1705, in a tract of five hundred acres. The latter sold it to 
Peter Johnson on March i, 1714, and on the 20th of Dec, 1722, John- 
son sold two hundred and fiftv acres of it to Harman Indehaven, who 

The Old Trappe ChttrcJi. 55 

practically presented one acre and eight perches of it to the Church, and 
sold tliirty-one acres of it to John George Krissman on July 20, 1746. 
The latter sold one acre and one perch of the thirty-one to Muhlenberg, 
who duly conveyed it to the trustees of the congregation. 

The last purchase of land, a deed for which was executed on April 3, 
1837, was made of Micliael Shupe for gi 152, on June 30, 1836, including 5 
acres and 39 perches adjoining the first two lots. This land was owned by 
Dr. Muhlenberg and sold by Peter Muhlenberg to John Winner and by 
him on June 14, 1809, to John Groves and conveyed successively to John 
Graff on May 31, tSii, to Cornelius Tyson March 28, 181 3, to Elias 
Laver March 31, 1829, to Michael Shupe April 6, 1830, and sold by him 
to "Rev. Jacob Wampole, the Trustees, Elders, Wardens and their suc- 
cessors, in trust for the congregation." The first three lots were inclosed 
by a rough-cast solid stone wall with board coping, completed in 1759. 
After the addition of 1836 was made to the property, the greater part of 
it was removed and the enlarged grounds were compassed by more 
modern fencing. 

The Cemetery. 

The part of the first two lots to the rear of the Old Church was used 
as a burying-ground about thirteen years before it was duly purchased 
by the congregation in 1743. The first addition, made in 1751, was the 
part of the lot bought of Muhlenberg, parallel to the original burial-ground 
on the S. E. side, and a narrow strip of fourteen feet from the lot last 
purchased was next added on the N. W. side in 1841. It was enlarged in 
the same direction in 1850 by sixty feet, and the last addition, by which 
the cemetery was extended to the N. W. limit of the church property, 
was made in 1865. The graves in the oldest part of the cemetery all face 
East looking toward the German Fatherland and significant of awaiting 
the resurrection. Here, 

Each in his narrow cell forever laid, 
The rude forefathers of the hamlet sleep. 

The oldest legible epitaph reads : "Here Lyeth the Body of Hanna 
ScHRACK. Was Bom April '\7, 1722. Died September 9, 1736." 
The oldest person buried in the cemetery was, as her tombstone records, 

56 I he Old Trappc C/iurch. 

" Margaret, wife of George Moser, Born July 5, 1750, died November 21, 
1854. Age 104 yrs., 4 mos., t6 days."" For many years no suicides 
were permitted to be buried in the graveyard. An application for the 
burial of a suicide was made to the vestry on Dec. 20, 1834, but was 
refused. This stricture continued in force until 1856, when on March 
24th the vestry agreed to " admit suicides to be buried in the lot of their 
friends and strangers to be put in the row in the lower end of the yard." 
This " row " is marked by one solitary grave. 

On a certain day in October, 1829, two men at daybreak surre])- 
titiously disinterred and carried oft' the remains of an infant supposed to 
have been buried three years before. Though they were discovered as 
they were moving away they managed to escape. The vestry at once 
passed a resolution and added it to the by-laws, " prohibiting, under 
penalty of $50, the removal of the remains or dead body of any person or 
persons, who have been or may be buried in this graveyard, witliout the 
written consent of the vestry." 

Four of the pastors of the church have here found tlieir last resting 
place : the patriarch Muhlenberg, whose wife was buried beneath the same 
stone, John Frederick Weinland, Henry A. Geissenhainer and Jacob 
Wampole. Here too are deposited the remains of the once fiery preacher, 
patriot and soldier. General Peter Muhlenberg, whose tombstone was 
brought from Philadelphia at a cost of S3. 50. It bears the following 
epitaph in beautiful simplicity and truthfulness : 

Sacred to the Memory of 


Born October 1st, A. D. 1746, departed this Life 

October ist, Anno Domini, 1807, aged 61 years. 

He was Brave in the Field, Faithful in the 

Cabinet, Honorable in all his 

. transactions, a sincere Friend 

and an Honest Man. 

By his side rest the remains of his wife and two daughters, Mary 
Ann and Elizabeth. Other members of the Muhlenberg family buried 
here are Mrs. Mary Swaine, wife of General Francis Swaine and daughter 
of Muhlenberg, her two daughters, Anna Maria and Maria M., and 

(81) During tlie Revolulion, when her husband was summoned to war before he liad time to 
shingle his newly erected barn " Old Auntie Moser," as she was familiarly known, herself climbed 
the roof and nailed the shint.'le.'*. Slie was a near relative of William Hurry, keeper of I he .State 
House in Pniladelphia and doorkeejier while Congress was in session His was the distinction 
of tolling tlie old bell when ibe DeclarutioD of Independence was signed, proclaiming liberly to the 
American people. When the news arrived that Cornwallis was taken, he was lying sick unto death. 
They wiihheld the glad tidings from him, fearing the excitement might hasten hisend, but hearing 
the night watchman repeat it, he exclaimed : "Good news; myjoyisnowiu heaven," and soon 
after expired. 

The Old Trappe CInircIi. 57 

Henr\- William, eldest son of Hon. Frederick Augustus Muliit nberg. 
Here are also to be found the graves of heroes of the revolu- 
tionary war, who were wounded at the battle of Germantown and 
died in the Old Church when it was used as a hospital, and also of a num- 
ber of soldiers who fought in the Great Rebellion. One of the most 
prominent monuments in the cemetery is the towering marble shaft, 
twenty-five feet high, that marks the grave of Francis Rahn Shunk. 
He was born at Trappe August 7. 1788, held various positions in the 
State, was elected governor in 1844 and reelected in 1847. l^tit 
almost immediately after resigned on account of his failing health. 
He loved the old sanctuarj-, and during his State engagements 
so arranged his visits to his native place as to be able to worship at 
least once in the quaint old building, around which clustered the mem- 
ories of his boyhood. He died July 20, 1848, and according to his last 
request his remains were brought to Trappe for interment. The monu- 
ment over the grave of this popular governor was erected by the citizens 
of Pennsylvania on July 4, 185 1. One face of the shaft bears the engrav- 
ing of the seal of the State, another the medallion likeness of the Gov- 
ernor in bas-relief, and a third a flight of stairs'^ with the legend, " Ich 
ersteige," emblematic of his ascent to a higher life. 

Could Thomas Gray have stood in this village graveyard he would 
have found a muse to inspire a still loftier elegy than he did at Stoke 
Fogis, for here indeed reposes the sacred dust of heroes who figured 
prominently in Church and State, in the camp and battlefield and in the 
councils of the nation. 


The congregation has received the following legacies during its past 
history. The first bequest received was from the estate of John Heinrich 
Haas, ^3, according to his last will, which was drawn up shortly before 
his death, in January, 1751, by Muhlenberg, who reported it to Halle. 

In 1756, from the heirs of Frederick Marsteller, £,\o. 

In 1757, bequest of P^^uphrosina Schrack, in her last will and testa- 
ment, £-^. 

(82) Dr. 0. Seidenslickcr (in the Pennsylvnnia Magazine, vol. xiii, p. 186,) is disposed to con- 
nect this allegorical stair-case with the origin of name Trappe from the German " Trcppe," which 
Governor Shunk so persistently urged. See page 1 of this volume. 

58 ; The Old Trappc Cluircli. 

In 1762, from the heirs of Conrad Yost, according to his last will, _;^6. 

On December 11, 1762, from Anna Elizabeth, widow of Peter Pools 
and executrix of his estate, ^7,. 

On May 27, 1785, from the widow of Jacob Xuss, according to his 
last will, in behalf of the church and congregation, _;^53. 

On January 18, 1794, bequest of the widow- Defried, ^50, which 
was applied to the building of the stone school-house. 

On December 12, 1809, from the executors of General Peter Muh- 
lenberg's estate, a bequest of J125, in addition to the sum of ^50 which 
Peter Muhlenberg and his son Henry M. Muhlenberg previously pre- 
sented to the congregation.*' 

On August 23, 181 2, bequest of Christian Schrack, about §250. The 
exact amount cannot be ascertained from the records. 

On November 14, 1841, bequest of Sarah Johnson, gioo, "for the 
benefit and proper use of Augustus church." This monev was used to 
pay off part of the mortgage on the parsonage lot. 

On July 8, 1847, bequest of John Burk, §300. In compliance with 
the terms of the will, the interest of this sum was applied to the " use and 
benefit of repairing the church-house and graveyard," and the principal 
subsequently expended in the " re-building of the church-house." 

On January i, 1874, bequest of Mrs. Heister, Jioo. 

On January i, 1877, bequest of Wright A. Bringhurst, Jioo, the in- 
terest of which the will requires to be applied to the keeping of the graves 
of his kinsfolk in proper order. 

On April i, 1889, bequest of Margaret A. Lewis, $200. 

On January i, 1885, bequest of Jacob Shuler, giio. 

On February 2, 1892, bequest of Jacob C. Laver, $500, the interest 
of which is to be applied to keeping his burial lot and the graves of his 
parents in good condition. 

On April 18, 1892, gift of Mrs. Sarah Yocum, $100, to keep the 
family burial lot in repair. 

(83) The letter of General Peter Muhlenberg to the eoDgregation reads thus : 
*' By John Marckley, Esq., I transmitted the sum of Fifty DoUers presented to you by luy son, 
Henry M. Muhlenberg and myself. I have like wise in my Last will and Testament bequeathed un- 
to yon in a Bank share in the bank of Philadelphia Annually, which my executors are directed to 
purchase and pay to the congregation within Twelve Months after my Pesease. This donalion of 
Money and this bequest are Intended as a small Capitol they Interest arising from which shall be 
wholly and solely appropriated to keep in Decent order and repair they buryal ground now Belong- 
ing to the Congregation, when this annual repair is Completed and a Surpluse should then remain, 
the Corporation Shall then be at Liberty to Expend the said .Surplus in any repairs to the 
Church they may think proper. I will thank the Corporation to have this Letter entered on they 
minutes accompanyed by a Resolution stating that they donation hath Iteen .\ccepted of on they 
Terms aforesaid. 

" September lOlh, I.HII7. 

" 1 am, Ceutleinen, your very humb, servl, 

"Pktkk Miiiikniikhh" 

The Old Trappe Church. 59 

The entire amount thus bequeathed to the congregation in pounds 
and dollars throughout its past history, including a bequest of ^800 agree- 
able to the will of Philip Bechtel, deceased, dated March 5, 1889, which 
the congregation is to receive upon the decease of his widow, is ^3076.33. 
The greater part of this sum has been applied to the current or special 
expenses of the church in accordance with the specifications of the wills. 


6o Tlie Old Trappe Chiircli. 

The Old Church. 

This quaint, one-story structure, built of brown stone from local 
quarries, which may be said to have a history of its own and may, 
therefore, properly be considered in a separate section, is the oldest 
unaltered Lutheran church in America, and one of the few land- 
marks of the colonial era still in its primitive condition. The total 
cost of building, including Brunnholtz's valuation of the labor con- 
tributed at ^2)'^, the expense of digging the well at the church, £^\ 4s 7d 
the cost of the chain weighing 29 J^ pounds, amounted to ;^337 9s sj^d," 
equivalent to J889.92. One of the materials, which according to the 
records seems to have been indispensable especially to the masons in build- 
ing in those days, was " rom " with " brandawein " asa frequent change. 
The interior furnishings are in keeping with the quaintness of the exterior 
and identically the same as of old. On entering the ponderous key is 
inserted in the still more ponderous lock upside down, significant of 
the inversions of modern styles. There is the original red-walnut pulpit 
with overhanging sounding board, which received its only touch of 
varnish in 1833. The high-backed ancient pews of poplar and oak, 
roughlv planed but long since polished smooth, are entirely devoid of 
paint or varnish, save the doors on which the numbers are still plainly 
visible. On the book-holders, fastened on the back of each pew, the 
numbers i, 2, 3, 4, etc., burnt in with a branding-iron, accorded a special 
place til each worshipper. Some of the pews are provided with locks, 
securing special privilege to such as furnished pews at their own expense. 
The pews in the Eastern angle under the organ gallery were reserved for 
the Eldeste and Vorsteher, the women occupied the pews on the Northwest 
side and the men the row of pews on the opposite side, while boys, 
apprentices and servants mounted the high-tiered seats in the Porkirche 
(Emporkirche) as the gallery was called, under the watchful eye of the 
sexton. The original gallery, extending on the Southeast and Southwest 
sides, is constructed of eternal oak, fastened together with wooden pins 
and wrought iron spikes, and supported by ashlers projecting from the 
walls and oak pillars, squared with the broadax, resting on red sandstone 
blocks. In the open space in front of the pulpit stands the white-painted 

(84) The pound sterling equals $4.84. The colonial pound was at that time equivalent to S2.42 
but according to the valuation of the prosont day worth $2.66%. 

Tlie Old Trappe Church. 6i 

altar movable on the floor, conforming at the same time to the usages of 
the Church of England, and the low inclined benches on which the cate- 
chumens knelt at confirmation are also still preserved. The gallery on the 
Northeast side was not included in the original plan, but was specially 
built in 1 75 1 to accommodate the newly purchased organ. This organ 
was one of the first pipe organs used in rural Pennsylvania, sent over from 
Europe through the agency of Gottlieb Mittleberger, who when he came 
to this country in 1750, brought with him a pipe organ manufactured at 
Heillbronn by John Adam SchmahP for St. Michael's Church in Phila- 
delphia. Muhlenberg consecrated the organ at Trappe on the Sunday 
before the 31st of October, 1751, at which time Brunnholtz and Hand- 
schuh were present and participated in the services. The total cost of 
the Emporkirche, organ, together with its erection, painting both organ 
and gallery, and a half-register set of pipes added in 1752, with a few 
additional repairs, amounted to ;£i23 15s 4d (^329.77), of which sum 
^ifo gs was contributed by "kind benefactors," £^t, by the New Han- 
over and the rest by the Trappe congregation. This organ was in service 
until a few years before the new church was built, when having been dis- 
abled by age and use it was supplanted by an orchestra of no mean powers. 
In the new church a melodeon was used for a short time until the 
new pipe organ was procured, which has rendered excellent service and 
now awaits a successor. On July 30, 1859, '''^ vestry resolved to sell the 
old organ, but as it had completely outlived its serviceableness, it did not 
obtain a purchaser. Some time afterwards the old organ was gradually 
eviscerated by vandals and relic hunters, so that nothing but the frame- 
work now remains. The school-masters for many years served as organist 
and "vorsinger," while the sexton performed the duties of bellows- 
blower (Orgel-treter) at a salary of ten cents a service. The first choir 
was introduced in 1825 to support the vorsinger. From that time the 
organ gallery was reserved exclusively for members of the choir. It is 
separated from the main gallery by a partition, the door of which is 
guarded by a ponderous lock to keep out intruders. The first and prob- 
ably the only paid female vocalist was Miss Mira Bean, a distinguished 
sopranist, appointed in 1855, at a salary ol %\o per annum. The Trappe 
Choir soon became noted throughout the county and filled many en- 
gagements at different places. Its services were secured to grace the 

(80) It is likely that the Trappe organ was made by the same builder. Within four years be- 
tween his (Mittelberger's) arrival and departure, 17.'50-54, according to his own words, six organs 
were imported for the Lutheran churches of the Province: "the third in Providence and I he fourth 
in New Hanover." The success of the St. Michael's organ doubtlessly induced the other churches 
to apply to him. (From a communication by Rev. Theo. E. Schmauk). One of the first organs 
used in Philadelphia was imported by Ludwig Christian !?progel and bought on Sejit. 2nd, 17t!ii, by 
the Epis. Christ's Church for £200. 

62 The Old Trappe CJmrcli. 

occasion of the first celebration held by tlie Lutheran Sunday-school at 
Pottstown on August 29, 1846. 

Against the wall still hang the long-handled Klingelsack or Klingels- 
beutel, originally with a little bell'* attached, from which the name was 
derived. They were dexterously manipulated by the wardens as long as 
the old church was used, and to be in keeping with the occasion were 
once more pressed into service at the Sesqui-Centennial. They were 
followed by the wicker baskets which in turn gave place in 1890 to a 
handsome set of silver-plated collection plates, presented by the Young 
People's Lyceum. The old chest, used in Muhlenberg's time for the 
custody of the deeds of the church, school-house and lots and records of 
collections and alms, stood also in the old church but has long since dis- 
appeared. This chest was furnished with two locks and two keys, one of 
which was in charge of the pastor and the other held by the vestry. An- 
other interesting article of church furniture was the " Weiberstuhl," a 
bench or pew for women, most probably the former, and in Muhlenberg's 
minute book distinguished from the Kirchenstuhl, the common term for 
pew. It would seem, that the ancient custom of the Churching of wo- 
men, practiced regularly by the Swedish Lutheran church at Wicaco, was 
observed also by Muhlenberg. If so, then this bench was the place 
specially designated for women upon their first attendance at church 
after child-birth, where they were required to kneel and offer either silent 
prayer of thanksgiving or a prayer that was provided. The Book of 
Common Prayer, Oxford, 1769," and similarly in editions as far back as 

(86) This little bell depending from the Klingelsack gave rise to an immense amount of trouble 
in the congregation at Germantown, in 1753, of which Handschuh was pastor at the time. Some 
outsiders made it the object of their derision, and one of the Eldeste, " possessing more of the dove's 
harmlessness than the serpent's wisdom", thought to mend matters by cutting off the objectionable 
bell, which he did on his own responsibility. It was a little matter but it kindled a great fire. The 
disaffected majority of the congregation seized upon it as a pretext for rebelling against the church 
authorities. A large number of the members at this time were recent immigrants, many of whom 
were fad ious, turbulent and intemperate, and fomented strife and contention. This disorderly 
and recalcitrant element managed to obtain possession of the parsonage and church, expelled 
the faithful minority, and called the profligate Andreae as pastor, who, however, soon disgusted 
them by his dissolute character and died a miserable death the same year. The no less notorious 
parson Rapp was then called as his successor. During one of the many tumvilts which disgraced 
the church at this time, an old man was obliged to make a precipitous exit through the window in 
order to e^'-ape bodily injury,— an incident sufficient to indicate the stale of atVairs which then pre- 
vailed. The expelled parly, about twenty families, worshipped for a number of years iu the Re- 
formed church, and in 17G3, by a favorable decision of court, regained partial right to the church. 
Two years later the entire jiosscssion of the church property reverted to the original and rightful 
owners. (Hazard's Register, Vol. IV, pp. 193-,3. cf. also Hall. Nach. I, p. 700 e/. srq.) 

(87 1 So also in Das Buch des gpineinschal'tlichen Gebets, a translation of the Book of 
Common Prayer, used iu the King's Court Chapel iu London by the German Lutheran chaplains. 
Traces of similarity in practice to the Episcopal church are readily explained by the close connec- 
tion which existed between the two communions and the correspondence to the Church ol Kngland 
in points of government, ceremonies and doctrine, the Lutheran origin of much of the latter having 
been clearly demonstrated by Dr. .Tacobsiu his '■ Lutheran .Movement in England." At a later 

The Old Trappe Church. 63 

1662, to which this practice conformed, provides for '* The Thanksgiving 
of women after child-birth, commonly called the The Churching of Wo- 
men," originally known in the first service book of Edward VI, as " The 
Purification of Women." The rubric directs that '* The woman, after the 
usual time after her delivery, shall come into the church decently appar- 
eled and there shall kneel." The prayer then follows. It should be 
stated, however, that no provision is made for this ceremony in either the 
liturgy of 1748 or 1786, so that if this custom was observed, as seems 
probable, it was not long continued. 

In the cut containing the historic relics is seen the old pewter com- 
munion vessels and baptismal laver used by Muhlenberg. There are two 
sets each comprising a flagon, chalice and two patens. The first set 
standing below in the group, and also the baptismal laver are marked 
A. D. — H. M., which Muhlenberg obtained from London.®^ The 
second set bears the engraved initials G. F., and was doubtlessly a gift of 
Gotthelf Francke of Halle. The original pulpit Bible, shown also in the 

period the tendency toward conformity went further. The Episcopal term of rector was regularly 
substituted for pastor. Muhlenberg, in letters and other papers, signed himself rector and is so re- 
ferred to frequently in the Hallesche Nachrichteu. The application for a charter for St. Michael's 
of Philadelphia, and the charter itself, dated September 25, 1765, is made in the name of Rev. Henry 
Muhlenberg, rector, vestrymen and church wardens. In the conti rmation of the charter, March 3, 
1780, the reaction against the unionistic movement is indicated by the reappearance of the term 
minister instead of rector. But before the reaction came, this approach was carried to the point of 
a proposal for union, strenuously and persistently urged by the Episcopal church. That these 
Episcopal overtures were entertained, though fortunately never accepted, is evident from the com- 
ment at Halle (Hall. Nach., Old Ed., preface to 13th coniinuation §7, "If the Lutheran congregations in 
Pennsylvania desire to unite themselves with the English church, they would no longer need the 
aid of their German mother-church, hut will be richly supported and provided with teachers by the 
former. . . . Friendly and unsectarian as the intercourse of our pastors with them is, they 
and tlieir congregations still have their doubts about entering into such a religious intermixture, 
which is generally followed by more divisions than real unity." The desire and readiness of the 
Lutherans to unite with the English church was, however, much exaggerated in Episcopal re- 
ports, and the statement that such a union was proposed by the Lutheran synod is an error. (Dr. 
Jacobs' Hist, of the Luth.Ch., p, 280.— Dr. Mann's Vergang. Tage, p. 13, cf. Amer. Colon, church, 
Vol.11, p. 412, and The Evangel. Review, Vol. VII, p. 531 etseq.) This entire movement is thoroughly 
discussed by Dr. Jacobs in bis Hist, of the Luth. Oh. in America, chap. XVII. 

(88) Muhlenberg in his diary, under the date January 16th, 1743, (Muhlenberg's Autobiography 
by Dr. W. Germann, p. 161) writes: "It is so difficult for us here, to obtain a cup; there is no one 
who can and will make it. We have also none as yet. I might well wish for a few. were they only 
of copper or tin. It would also be desirable if we could in time supply a bell ; for the people live 
far apart, and one has nothing by which to give them a signal." As this would have involved the 
additional expense of adding a steeple to the church, the bell was never procured, A steeple, how- 
ever, was not always regarded as an essential accommodation to a bell. ( hrist's Episcopal church, 
of Philadelphia,— the building being originally one story high and without a steeple,— had a bell 
suspended in the crotch of a tree near by. St. Michael's Lutheran church, of Philadelphia, on the 
other hand, was provided with a steeple but no bell. In 1750, two years after the church was conse- 
crated, the steeple was taken down because of defective construction. It was a noticeable fact that 
in Philadelphia there were very few steeples. A contributor to Hazard's Register (1828— Vol. I, p. 108) 
states: " Almost every stranger visiting the city immediately remarks as a defect we have no steeples. 
There are ninety houses of worship and only two or three'steeples."- The original communion ser- 
vice of Christ's Episcopal church, above mentioned, comprises a chalice, the gift of Queen Anne in 
1708, two Bagons of the same date, and three silver patens dating back to 1712. Other pieces of the 
J belong to a later period. (Hazard's Register, Vol. Ill, p. 272.) 

64 Tke Old Trappe Church. 

view, was printed in Basel, in 1747, by Joiin Ludwig Brandniiiller. In 
the New Testament there are frequent annotations from the ([uill of Rev. 
J. F. Weinland. It was regularly used until 1833, when, having become 
badly dilapidated, it was succeeded by a new German Bible i)resented by 
the young men of the congregation. The old Bible was rebound by two 
of Muhlenberg's descendants in i86o. Misses (Catherine and Helen Sheaf 
of Whitemarsh, Pa., "with the hope that it might be preserved and 
handed down to future generations as a memorial of a faithful and de- 
voted minister of Christ." The floor in the old church was originally 
paved with irregular flat sandstone. As these hardy pioneers did not 
enjoy the luxury of stoves in the church, the sexton was required to scat- 
ter straw in the pews during the Winter. Old and feeble women brought 
hot bricks with them to use as foot warmers. It was not until 1814 that 
the first wood stove was introduced in the old church. The heavy oak 
stool on which the stove was placed, is still an object of curiosity. In 
the early part of the present century the men on Sunday morning congre- 
gated in the tavern, and there awaited the minister. Upon his arrival 
from Chester Co., they took charge of his horse, and after short prelimi- 
naries at the tavern, proceeded to the church. This practice was broken 
up by Rev. Jacob Wampole. During the Summer months the men came 
without coats, and the boys and frequently the girls attended barefooted. 
The female catechumens, arrayed in white dresses and caps, gave a unique 
interest to the annual procession from the school-house to the church on 
the day of confirmation. The custom of wearing caps at confirmation 
was abolished here, as at other places, by Rev. Henry S. Miller. 


Though many of the Lutheran churches and congregations suffered 
during the French and Indian War, 1755-63, the Trappe church fortu- 
nately escaped all injury, as the depredations of the savages were com- 
mitted some distance further in the interior.'" But it did not survive the 

(89) This account is based chiefly upon a series of excellent historical sketches on *' Providence." 
including copious extracts from Muhlenberg's diary, covering the revolutionary period, published 
in the Providence Independent, by F. G. Hobson, Esq., who kindly placed them at my disposal, for 
which be has my warmest thanks. 

(90) Muhlenberg frequently came in contact with the Indians, especially owing to the position 
of his father-in-law, Conrad Weiser as Indian interpreter, who frequently traveled with Indians in 
his company. While on a visit to his father-in-law on July 5th, 1747, at Tulpehocken, about fifty 
miles distant from Trappe, he met an Indian chief wilii his retinue, and on April 19th of the follow- 
ing year at Trappe he entertained at dinner another Indian chief and bis sous. Ten years later 
thischtef reminded him of bis act of hospitality, adding that on that occasion the Indians gave 
him the name of one of their former sachems, Gachswungarorachs, a name long and euphonious 
enough to ineati ''a teacher whose words ought to go through the bard obstinate minds of men 

-I ^ E 
z o o 

" 9 > 

The Old Trappe Church. 65 

Revolutionary war unscathed. It was then used for a time both as out- 
post of the American militia and as a hospital. The day after the skirm- 
ish at Warren's tavern, Chester County, and six days after the disastrous 
battle of Brandywine, Washington with his whole army, on September 
I?) i777> crossed the Schuylkill at Parker's Ford and marched toward 
Trappe, a distance of four miles, coming out on the great road just above 
the church. On September 19th, Muhlenberg with a telescope could 
see the British camp across the Schuylkill. All night long the American 
army moved past the old church to the Perkiomen, one regiment at mid- 
night encamping on the bare ground in front of Muhlenberg's house. 
The next morning he missed many chickens and vegetables. The army 
retreated on September 2 2d, leaving Philadelphia exposed to the British, 
and occupied the hills above Trappe, one regiment under General Arm- 
strong quartering near the church. On September 25th, while the army 
was lying at Pottsgrove (Pottstown), Muhlenberg entertained at breakfast 
Lord Sterling, General Wayne, their aids and officers. That night his 
barn was occupied by soldiers, and the little hay that he had reserved for 
Winter was scattered and spoiled. The next day the American army 
moved from Pottstown toward Trappe, but at Limerick Square turned off 
and proceeded to Schwenksville. General Armstrong, however, with 
three or four thousand Pennsylvania militia continued down the Great 

like a saw through knotty trunks of trees." (Dr. Mann's Life and Times of H. M. M., p. 198). Muh- 
lenberg had frequent occasion to hear of Indiau massacres during the French and Indian war, 
especially from Kurtz at Tulpehocken, (Hall. Nach. II, p. 210, p. 241, and Old Ed., p. 1007-1008), 
where in 1756 at diflerent times thirty persons were murdered and scalped and on July 2, 1757, a 
family of seven ruthlessly massacred. The following extract of a letter dated Tulpehocken, July 4, 
1757, and most probably written by Kurtz, recounting the latter massacre, appeared in the " Penn- 
sylvania Journal and Weekly Advertiser," Thursday, July 14, 1757 : " The Indians are murdering 
about six miles from ray house, and if we get no assistance from the country, all the inhabitants of 
Tulpehocken will move away. The country should rise and send a large Body to drive the Indians 
away and keep a strong Guard in the houses on the Frontiers, besides the Soldiers, or all will be 
lost." At Heidelberg, Berks County, where Kurtz was also pastor of the Lutheran congregation, 
similar scenes were enacted. A graphic account of the barbarous work of the Indians in this region, 
at this time was also sent to the same journal on July 9, 1757, of which the following is an ex- 
cerpt: " Yesterday, about three or four o'clock in the afternoon, four Indians killed two children ; 
they at the same time scalped a young woman of about sixteen, but with proper care she is likely 
to live. A woman was cut terribly with a Tomahawk, her Life is despaired of One Christian 
Schrinks' wife bravely defended herself and children, wresting the gun out of the Indian's hand 
who assaulted her, as likewise his Tomahawk, but afterwards obliged to run to save her own 
life, and two of her children were taken captive in the meantime." A detailed account of the dep- 
redations of the savages throughout these regions is given by Prof. David Brunner in his " Indians 
in Berks County, Reading, 1881." Two young girls whom Muhlenberg confirmed, and who with 
their father had moved a short distance into the interior were also barbarously murdered. (Dr. 
S. S. Schmucker's Luth, Ch. in America, p. 21, and Hist, of all relig. denom. in the U. S. 1844, p. 
385.) At these and other churches during ithe earlier period, as well as during the French and 
Indian war, the men came armed to services, ready to contend against the subtle and savage foe, 
and sentinels were stationed outside to guard against surprise. (Prof. A. L. Graebner's Hist, of the 
Luth. Ch., p. 246.) The Swedish Lutheran church at Wicaco, first known as Wickegkoo, built as a 
block-house about 1669, was provided with loop-holes, " that it might be used as a place of defence 
against Indians and other enemies." (Hazard's Annals, p. i)79. Dr. C. W. SchaeBer's Early Hist, of 
the Luth. Ch. p. 22.) 

66 The Old Trappe Chtirch. 

Road and took up his headquarters in the church and school-house. The 
following morning, September 271)1, Muhlenberg went to the church to 
bury the child of one of the vestrymen, but found it filled with officers 
and soldiers, with their arms stacked in one corner. The choir-loft was 
full of soldiers, one playing the organ and the rest lustily singing. 
Straw and filth were scattered everywhere, and on the altar the soldiers 
had piled up their provisions. Muhlenberg calmly entered without a word, 
but some began to mock and others called to the player at the organ for a 
Hessian march. He sought out Colonel Dunlap and asked him if this was 
the promised protection to civil and religious liberty, but the latter ex- 
cused himself by saying that as the militia was composed of all nations it 
was difficult to maintain strict discipline. The soldiers in the meantime 
had turned their horses into Muhlenberg's blossoming buckwheat-field of 
three acres near the church, and what was not consumed was trampled to 
ruin. On October 2d, the militia under Armstong left Trappe, marched to 
Philadelphia after joining the main army, and on the 4th the battle of Ger- 
niantown took place. After the battle the army returned to the old 
camp, the militia quartering again at Trappe. The old church was now 
transformed into a hospital. Washington, on October 5th, rode up to 
the S. W. entrance of the church on his white charger, and dismounting 
entered the church and spoke words of cheer to the wounded and dying. 
Here the regiment remained until December, and on the 12th of that 
month, 1777, Washington and his whole army went into Winter quarters 
at Valley Forge. On repeated occasions while the troops were being re- 
cruited in the neighborhood for the war, Muhlenberg preached to the 
soldiers in both English and German. His son, Frederick Augustus, on 
the evening of August 23, 1776, delivered a parting sermon to a 
company of soldiers recruited in New Hanover under command of Capt. 
Richards, from the text Neh. 4: 14, "Be not ye afraid of them: re- 
member the Lord, which is great and terrible, and fight for your breth- 
ren, your sons and your daughters, your wives and your houses." 

The period during wb.ich Trappe became the scene of military oper- 
ations, was not without annoyance and danger to Muhlenberg. He not 
only sustained personal losses at the hands of foraging and reckless parties 
of the American soldiery, but was also considerably worried and alarmed 
by British menaces, to which his decided rebel sentiments and aid to rebel 
troops exposed him. On Decemberii, 1777, he wrote in his diary. " lam 
informed that the British threaten to capture me and wreak vengence ;" 
and again on the r3th, " Am in constant dread of a party from Philadel- 
phia, British. I received one message after another that the British 
officers are very bitter against me and threaten to capture me.'" He 
again states, on June 10, 1778, that he received the report "that the 

The Old Trappe Church. 67 

name of Muhlenberg is made very suspicious among the Hessian and 
English officers in Philadelphia, who threaten bitterly with prison, torture 
and death, if they can catch the old fellow. I have kept myself as quiet 
as possible and could not do otherwise, as I had no call to meddle with 
political affairs."" These threats, probably for want of convenient op- 
portunity, were fortunately not put into execution. The church itself, 
though shamefully desecrated, did not sustain any serious damage."' 

In 181 4 the old church was very extensively repaired at a cost of 
J664. 89^5^, the Reformed congregation, worshipping in the church at the 
time, contributing about gioo. The roof was re-shingled, and a board 
floor laid in the church for the first time, new window sash were put in 
and the organ, altar and choir-loft re-painted. It was at this time that 
the old church was first dashed with a smooth coating of mortar, thus 
altering its external appearance. Sixty-five bushels of lime at thirty-one 
cents a bushel, hauled from Philadelphia, were used for the purpose. 

From 1850 to i860 the fate of the old church trembled in the bal- 
ance. A committee appointed to examine the building in 1850, when it 
was deemed by some to be no longer safe for occupancy, reported that 
there was no danger of anything giving way with the exception of an iron 
brace on the king-post near the chimney, that the building was not worth 
a new roof, and that a little patching would do for the present. On 
February 22d, 1851, when the building of the new church was in con- 
templation, it was unanimously resolved that the old church should re- 
main standing ■' until a new church should be built and until the vestry 
should deem it proper to take it down." But as the old building es- 
caped this threatened demolition, it was again repaired in 1853, one hun- 
dred dollars having been generously contributed for the purpose by H. 
H. Muhlenberg, M. D., of Reading. Two years later the surplus of the 
gift still remaining was expended in repairing the roof 

The year i860 was a great crisis in the history of the old church. 
On the 1 6th of February a terrible storm demolished a part of the roof, 
leaving the walls exposed to the rude mercy of the elements. A meeting 
was called on the 28th to determine the fate of the venerable temple. If 
the great damage the church sustained was not a warrant it came very 
nearly being the " excuse for resigning it to the desolation which the 

(91) Sprague's ADnals, Vol. IX, p. 11. 

(92) In a letter to Dr. FreyliDghausen of Halle, written at Providence, in October, 1778, Muh- 
lenberg says that " St. (evidently a typographical error) Augustus church and congregation in 
Providence has hitherto been served partly by pastor Voigt and partly by my son, Frederick Au- 
gustus and myself, and (the church) has continued to be spared, excepting that it was used several 
times as quarters for large numbers of soldiers during the wet and cold weather." (Hall. Nach., 
Old Ed., p. 1410. 

68 The Old Trappe Church. 

hand of Providence itself had already begun.""' A motion was actually 
made to tear it down. The majority favored it because they felt the 
heavy debt still remaining on the new church would not justify them in 
incurring the additional expense of restoring the old building. A few, 
however, pleaded earnestly for it, and asked the privilege of soliciting 
subscriptions. A committee for the purpose was accordingly appointed 
consisting of those who favored the plan, and to their lasting honor be 
their names herewith recorded, Rev. George Sill, pastor, Samuel Gross 
Fry, David Y. Custer, Samuel Garber and Horace Royer. The committee, 
however, found few to respond to their solicitations, and when almost 
in despair, appealed to the Rev, William Augustus Muhlenberg, D. D., a 
great-grandson of the illustrious patriarch, then pastor of the Episcopal 
Church of the Holy Communion, New York City, and well-known as the 
author of the hymn No. 542, " I would not live alway." He replied 
that he, through his sister, Mrs. Rogers, and other members of the family 
would gladly extend to the committee the aid desired in securing the 
venerable old building from its impending ruin. The work was at once 
begun and speedily carried to completion. The building w-as re-roofed, 
the walls again rough-cast and the church generally repaired. The formal 
services of re-opening the old church were held on the 5th and 6th of Sep- 
tember, i860. Rev. William Augustus Muhlenberg, D. D , who had 
been very properly invited to deliver the re-opening sermon, preached on 
Wednesday morning, September 5th, to an immense congregation from 
the text Rev. 19 : 10, " The testimony of Jesus is the Spirit of prophecy." 
Dr. William J. Mann preached in German on the following morning. 
An address, preparatory to these exercises, was delivered by Rev. 
Dr. Jacob Fry, then of Carlisle, Penna., on the evening of September 
4th, and on the following evening services were conducted by Rev. George 
Sill, the pastor, Rev. E. W. Hutter, pastor of St. Matthew's Lutheran 
Church of Philadelphia, preaching the sermon. Other ministers present 
on this occasion were Revs. G. I. Miller, C. A. Baer, J. W. Hassler, Wil- 
liam Weaver, H. Wendt and J. I. Wampole of the Lutheran Church ; 
Rev. Dr. Cruse and Rev. Millett of the Episcopal Church, and Revs. 
Dechant and Kooken of the Reformed Church. Dr. Muhlenberg's ser- 
mon, in which he presented a strong plea for Lutheran -Episcopal union, 
■was printed, by urgent request, in pamphlet form. 

Since that time the old church has been kept in good repair, and 
with proper attention will safely weather the storms of many years to come. 
May the Augustus congregation ever prove faithful to the trust and re- 
sponsibility which they have thus inherited. "The house our fathers built " 
still stands. Its rubble-walls and white-pointed joints, now encased in a 

(93) Dr. William A. Muhlenberg's ".Sermon at the re-opening of the Church of Augustus," p. 13. 

The Old Trappe Church. 69 

suit of mortar, its two arched Vorliauser and the octagonal extension on 
the East side, its curiously gabled hip-roof, surmounted by antique weather 
vanes, the Latin inscription over the main entrance, together with its 
hallowed associations and experiences, have invested this sanctuary with 
a halo of rarest interest and attracted to its shrine "priest and people," 
poet and historian, artist and antiquary. The beautiful anonymous poem 
descriptive of the church, incorporated by the poet Longfellow in his 
" Poems and Places," may serve as a fitting conclusion to the history of 
Old Trappe Church. 

In tlie heat of a day in September 

We came to the old church door, 
We bared our heads, I remember, 

On the step that the moss covered o'er. 
There the vines climbed over and under, 
And we trod with a reverent wonder 

Through the dust of the years on the floor. 

From the dampness and darkness and stillness 

No resonant chantings outrolled, 
And the air with its vaporous chillness 

Covered altar and column with mould. 
For the pulpit had lost its old glory, 
And its greatness become but a story, 

Iiy the aged still lovingly told. 

O'er the graves 'neath the long waving grasses 

In Summer the winds lightly blow, 
And the phantoms come forth from the masses 

Of deep tangled ivy that grow. 
Through the aisles at midnight they wander, — 
At noon of the loft they are fonder, — 

Unhindered they come and they go. 

And it seemed that a breath of a spirit, 

Like a zephyr at cool of the day, 
Passed o'er us and then we could hear it 

In the loft through the organ-pipes play. 
All the aisles and the chancel seemed haunted, 
And weird anthems by voices were chanted 

Where dismantled the organ's pipes lay. 

Came the warrior who robed as a Colonel 
Led his men to the fight from the prayer, 

And the pastor who tells in his journal 

What he saw in the sunlight's bright glare, 

How a band of wild troopers danced under 

While the organ was pealing its thunder 
In gay tunes on the sanctified air. 

And Gottlieb, colonial musician. 

Once more had come over the seas. 
And sweet to the slave and patrician 

Were the sounds of his low melodies ; 
Once again came the tears, the petition, 
Soul-longings and heart-felt contrition 

At his mystical touch on the keys. 


The Old Trappe Church. 

There joined in the prayers of the yeomen 
For the rulers and high in command. 

The statesman who prayed that the foeman 
Might perish liy sea and by land : 

And flowers from herbariums Elysian 

Long pressed, yet still sweet, in the vision 
Were strewn by a spiritual hand. 

There were saints, — there were souls heavy laden 
With the burden of sins unconfessed. 

In the shadow there lingered a maiden 
With a babe to her bosom close pressed. 

And the peace that exceeds understanding 

Borne on odors of blossoms expanding 
Forever abode in her breast 

Then hushed were the prayers and the chorus 
As we gazed through the gloom o'er the pew, 

And the phantoms had gone from before us 
By invisible dark avenues, 

And slowly we passed through the portals 

In awe from the haunts of immortals 

Who had vanished like Summer's light dews. 

O church ! that of old proudly flourished, 

Upon thee decay gently falls. 
And the founders by whom thou wert nourished 

Lie low in the shade of thy walls ; 
No stone need those pioneer sages 
To tell their good -works to the ages : 

Thy ruin their greatness recalls. 


® ® Celebration. 

The Old Trappe CImrch. jt, 

A Brief Account of the Celebration. 

AT a meeting of the vestry of Augustus Evangelical Lutheran Church, 
held April 3, 1893, it was resolved that the Sesqui-Centennial of 
the founding of the church be fittingly observed with memorial 
services on September 12, 1893, in special commemoration of the first ser- 
vice held in the Old Church, and that a cordial invitation be extended to 
the First District Conference of the Ministerium of Pennsylvania to 
convene in its regular Fall session at Trappe and participate in the fes- 
tive services. As the pastor had not sufficiently recovered from a 
recent attack of sickness to undertake the necessary preparations for the 
celebration on this date, it was postponed to September 26th, a date also 
especially appropriate as the anniversary of Patriarch Muhlenberg's last 
service in the old Trappe church. 

Agreeable to this change of date, the First Conference convened in 
Augustus Church, Trappe, on the 25th of September. The usual opening 
services, together with the celebration of the Lord's Supper, were held in 
the morning at 10 o'clock, at which time Rev. Jacob Neiman, pastor of 
Grace Lutheran church of Royersford, preached the sermon ixoin Romans 
8 : 31-39. The theme, " The Christian's sure Triumph," was developed 
by considering that " L All help is on his side, vs. 31-32," that " IL 
An unerring God will be the Judge, v. 33," and that " IIL He has 
Christ's inseparable love, vs. 35-39." 

The regular business session of the Conference took place in the 
afternoon, and in the evening special exercises of a missionary character 
were held, Rev. William Ashmead Schaeffer delivering an address on 
Home Missions, and Missionaries Pohl and Arps on Foreign Missions. 
On September 26th, notwithstanding the threatening aspect of the 
weather, a very large gathering of people assembled at the special anniver- 
sary services. In anticipation of large audiences, a number of speakers, in 
addition to the services indicated on the regular printed programme, were 
engaged, so that services might be held in both churches morning and 
afternoon. The decorating committee of the Pastor's Aid Society, with 
others assisting, arrayed both churches becomingly for the festive occa- 
sion. Palras and choice flowers were tastefully arranged in the new 
church, and on either side of the chancel the dates 1 743-1893 were con- 

74 The Old Trappe Chtirch. 

spicuously displayed in red carnations. In the centre on an easel stood 
a large frame-work of a variety of cut flowers, from which the word 
" Welcome," running diagonally across the frame obtruded conveying 
fragrant greeting to conference-delegates and friends. Similar taste was 
revealed by the same deft and willing hands in the old church, which 
was decorated with evergreens and wild flowers, the anniversary dates 
and "Welcome" being also prominently in view. The Pastor's Aid So- 
ciety showed commendable interest also in having a portrait of Muh- 
lenberg prepared and framed for the occasion. It now holds a perma- 
nent place in the Sunday-school room. 

The musical portion of the regular programme was successfully con- 
ducted by the gifted soloist and experienced musical director Mr. George 
Frescoln, of Philadelphia, for whose hearty and successful work so cheer- 
fully rendered, the congregation is deeply indebted. Our thanks are 
likewise due to Rev. Charles W. Jefieris, pastor of the North Wales 
Lutheran congregation, who ably presided at the organ and conducted 
the music of the additional services held in the old church in the morn- 
ing and in the new church in the afternoon. The collections gathered at 
these services, amounting to $165, and including the generous gifc of 
Jioo from Mr. F. J. Clamer, of Philadelphia, are to be applied to the re- 
pairs of the old church. During the noon recess the delegates of con- 
ference, friends, visitors and members partook of an ample collation pre- 
pared by the ladies of the congregation on the grounds. 

That the services of the day proved of great interest and enjoyment 
to the large assemblies, is due to the able manner in which the various 
speakers fulfilled the parts which they were invited to assume, as well as 
to the great historic facts which were the occasion of the celebration. 
For the congregation at least, it was a memorable as well as a memorial 
day. It will not have been without profit if the services have inspired 
a greater appreciation of all that the old church and its history repre- 
sent, deepened the sense of dependence upon God's gracious Providence, 
so strikingly exhibited in the past experience of the congregation, 
strengthened faith in Him who hath helped us hitherto, and imparted an 
earnest spirit of endeavor for the future. e. t. k. 

The Old Trappe Church. 75 

1743. — 1893. 




@— SEPTEMBER 25, 1893. --® 

The Pastor : Rev. E. T. Kretschmann. 

The Musical Portion of the Services Under the Direction of 
MR. GEO. FEESOOLN, of Philadelphia. 

The Old Trappe Church. 


The sun no more thy light, — Autheui. — Woodward. 

The regular liturgical service of tlie Church book— 


Hymn : Ziou stands with hills surrounded. 


The Pkayek; — — — REV. J. L. SIBOLE. 

To be devoted as a fund for repairs of the Old Church. 

1 will praise Thee, O Lord. — Antbem. — 0. Kane. 

Hymn : A mighty Fortress is our Hod. 

Benediction, (Silent prayer.) 

T he hymns are printed on the last page of the programme. 

The Old Trappe Church. 77 



Praise ye the Lord. — — Bass Solo. — — Rupes. 


I was glad when they said unto me, Let us go into the house of the Lord : our 
feet shall stand within thy gates, O Jerusalem. 

Pray for the peace of Jerusalem : they shall prosper that love thee. 
Peace he within thy walls : and prosperity within thy palaces. 
The Scripture Lesson. The Prayer. 

Hymn : — I love Thy Zion, Lord. 



Tlie OlS Trappe Clmrcli MiihlenterO Best MoflimieEt. 


The need of a well-equipped ministry. 

The Triumph of Small Beginnings. REV. O. P. SMITH. 

Hymn: — — The Church's One Foundation. 


To meet the pressing needs of Home Missions. REV. S. LAIRD, D. D. 

To devote ourselves with love to Foreign Missions. REV. C. J. HIRZEL. 

To be devoted as a fund for repairs of the Old Church. 
Ye shall dwell in the land that I gave to your fathers. 

: — Stainer. 

' From the Depths." (Prayer.) — Bass Solo. — Campana, 

Besediction. (Silent prayer.) 


The Old Trappe Clmrdi. 

Zion stauds with hills surrounded ; 

Zion kept by power divine; 
All her foes shall be confounded, 

Though the world in arms combine. 
Happy Zion, 

What a favored lot is thine ! 

Eyery human tie may perish; 

Friend to friend unfaithful prove ; 
Mothers cease their own to cherish ; 

Heaven and earth at last remove : 
But no changes 

Can attend Jehovah's love. 

In the furnace God may prove thee; 

Thence to bring Thee forth more bright. 
But can never cease to love thee; 

Thou art precious in His sight; 
God is with thee, 
God, thine everlasting Light. 

I love thy Zion, Lord, 

The house of Thine abode ; 
The Church our blest Redeemer saved 

With His own precious blood. 

I love Thy Church, God ! 

Her walls before Thee stand, 
Dear as the apple of Thine eye. 

And graven on Thy hand. 

Beyond my highest joy 
I prize her heavenly ways. 
Her sweet communiou, solemu vows, 
Her hymns of love and praise. 

Jesus. Thou Friend divine, 
Our Saviour and our King, 
Thy hand from every suare and foe, 
Shall great deliverance bring. 

Sure as Thy truth shall last, 
To Zion shall be given 
The brightest glories earth can yield. 
And brighter bliss of heaven. 

A mighty Fortress is our God, 

A trusty Shield and Weapon; 
He helps us free from every need 
That hath us now o'ertaken. 
The old bitter foe 
Means us deadly woe ; 
Deep guile and great might 
Are bis dread arms in fight, 
()u earth is not his equal. 

With might of ours can naught be done, 

Soon were our loss effected: 
But for us fights the Valiant One 
Wliom God himself elected. 
Ask ye, Who is this ? 
Jesus Christ it is, 
Of Sabaoth Lord, 
A nd there's none other God, 
He holds the field for ever. 

The Word thev still shall let remain, 

,\tid not a tfiank have for it. 
He's by our side upon the plain. 
With his good gifts and Spirit, 
Take they then our life, 
(ioods, fame, child and wife; 
When their worst is done. 
They yet have nothing won, 
The Kingdom ours remainetb. 

The Church's oue foundation 

Is Jesus Christ her Lord ; 
She is His new creation 

Kv water and the Word ; 
From heaven He came, and sought her 

To be His holy Bride, 
With His own blood he bought her, 

And for her life He died. 

Elect from every nation. 

Yet one o'er all the earth. 
Her charter of salvation 

One Lord, one Faith, one Birth; 
One holy Name she blesses. 

Partakes one holy Good, 
And to oue Hope she presses. 

With every grace endued. 

Mid toil and tribulation, 

Aud tumult of her war. 
She waits the consummation 

Of peace for evermore ; 
Till with the vision glorious 

Her longing eyes are blest. 
And the great Church victorious 

Shall he the Church at rest. 

The Old Trappe Church- 79 

Additional Programme. 



Organ Voluntary, REV. C. W. JEFFERK. 

The regular liturgical service of the Kirchenbuch, 



The Scripture Lessons ; 1st— /*.'a/m 84. 2d — 5;. Jo/m 15 : 1-9. 

Hymn, No. 181 Exhalt uns deine Lehre, vs. 3 and 4. 


The General Prayer, REV. D. K. KEPNER. 

To be devoted as a fund for repairs of the Old Church. 

Hymn, No. 192, Kin feste Burg ist unser Gott. 

Benediction. (Silent prayer.) 

8o The Old Trappe Churcli. 

Additional Programme. 



Organ Voldstary, REV. C. W. JEFFERIS. 

The Invitatoby. 
I was glad when they said uiito ine, Let us go into the house of the Lord, etc. 

The .Scripture Lesson, The Prayer. 

Hymn: Zion stands with hills surrounded. 

Address, The Mission of the Old Trappe Church, 


Hymn, I love Thy Zion, Lord. 

Address: Greetings from the Tulpehoeken region, 


To be devoted as a fund for repairs of the Old Church. 

Hymn, A mighty Fortress is our God. 

Lord's Prayer. Doxology. 

Benediction. (Silent prayer.) 

The musical portion of the Additional Programme conducted by Rev. C. W. 
JEFFERIS, of North Wales, Pa. 

The House Our Fa/hers Built. 

The Anniversary Sermon 

Rev. Prof. Jacob Fry, D. D. 

The House Our Fathers Built. 

Luke 6: 48. ''He is like a man which built a house, and digged deep, 
and laid the foundation on a rock : and wlien the flood arose, the stream 
beat vehemently upon that house, and could not shake it: for it 7vas 
founded upon a rock." 

I come to join my heart and voice with yours on this glad jubilee. 
Let us exalt and praise His name together, who has protected and 
preserved the venerable sanctuary whose hundred and fiftieth anniversary 
we are met to celebrate. He put it into the hearts of our fathers to build 
this house, and by His providential care it has stood through all the trials 
and changes a century and a half have seen. 

To me personally, this is sacred soil ; for I am again amid the 
scenes and hallowed memories of childhood. In this old Augustus Luth- 
eran church I was taught the fear and the faith of the Lord ; at its altar 
I knelt at my confirmation, and in its pulpit I preached my first sermon. 
And the earliest recollection my memory distinctly holds, is the centennial 
celebration of the laying of its corner-stone, when the sermon was preached 
by Rev. Dr. John W. Richards, on May 2, 1843. The arrival in our 
quiet village of a number of descendants of the Patriarch Muhlenberg and 
other distinguished visitors, and the jubilee character of the services, left 
an impression on my memory which holds vividly to-day. Among the 
multitude who thronged the church on tiiat occasion, there sat a boy, less 
than ten years old, deeply interested and impressed with all the services, 
yet little dreaming he would be the preacher at the sesqui-centennial 
celebration of the same venerable church. 

This village of the Trappe, though little among the thousands of 
Judah, has occupied an important place in the early history of our church 
in this country. What Wittenberg was to the states of Europe during the 
sixteenth century, this little village of the Trappe, (then called Providence, 
a name which never should have been changed,) was to the scattered and 

"82 Tlie Old Trappe Cliurcli. 

discouraged Lutherans in America, during the second lialf of the 
last century. Here lived the greater part of liis life, Henry Melchior 
Muhlenberg, that eminent man and minister of God, universally known 
and acknowledged as the patriarch of the Lutheran Church in America. 
He arrived in this country but a year before this church was erected, to 
find, as he expressed it, '' ecclesia non phtniata, sed plantanda." Hither 
came many weary feet and anxious hearts seeking counsel and aid in the 
troubles and distresses by which our early churches were beset, and out of 
this place issued streams of wisdom and personal help to make glad the 
city of God in every settlement where our people were found. 

It was the inspiration and influence induced by the residence of 
Muhlenberg here, that led to the erection of this church, so wonderfully 
strong and substantial, within a year of his arrival in this country. Al- 
though for many years superseded by the building in which we are now 
assembled, as better adapted to the needs of the congregation, you have 
done well to let the old church stand and keep her in good repair. We 
salute her on this her sesquicentennial, as a monument and symbol in 
stone, of the stability of the Church founded by our Lord Jesus Christ, 
purified and restored by Luther, and planted in her true faith and spirit 
by Muhlenberg in this Western land. 

I have chosen my text from Luke's account of our Lord's Sermon on 
the Mount. It was spoken of those who hear and heed the Gospel, and 
may fitly be applied to Muhlenberg and his associates in the building of 
this church. In this use of the text, three lines of thoughts are suggested ; 
the Church's foundation, the Church's trials, and the Church's stability. 

I. — Her Foundation. 

I. This is all important. It begins at the beginning. It makes 
much of first principles and puts great value on a proper commencement. 
The point of the text is that the building stood because it had a good and 
solid foundation. St. Paul speaks of his work as "laying the foundation 
as a wise master-builder," and describes the Christian Church as " built 
upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself 
being the chief corner-stone." 

This was the great concern of our fathers, and is a distinguishing 
feature of our Church. Others may surpass us in attractive architecture, 
elaborate arrangements and imposing ritual ; but we are chiefly concerned 
about foundations. And if the text means anything, it means this is the 
chief thing in building the Church. And no better foundation can any 
man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ. This is the glory and 
strength of our Church and the work of its builders, to lay the foundation 
absolutely and exclusively on the doctrines, the work, and the ])erson of 

Tlie House Our Fathers Biiilt. 83 

the Lord Jesus. Others may be concerned only about the superstructure, 
but her mission and history has been to attend to foundations. 

Therefore, much of her work is unappreciated, because unseen. 
Foundations are under ground, and do not catch the public eye nor call 
forth popular applause. The work of our theologians and pioneers is not 
appreciated by casual visitors and spectators, nor has it commanded the 
admiration and praise it deserves. The foundations which lie beneath 
the surface are rarely considered. 

This Augustus Lutheran Church was thus founded, and of Muhlen- 
berg it might be said, " I will liken him to a man which built an house, 
and digged deep, and laid the foundation on a rock." Literally true is it 
that this building has a solid foundation, or it would not have stood these 
hundred and fifty years. But more true yet is it that the congregation 
here established was founded on the Rock, as the binding of its preachers 
and members to the evangelical doctrines of the Confessions of our 
Church, both in the records of its books and the inscription over its 
portal, abundantly testify. 

2. To gain this foundation we must dig deep. 

A solid foundation is not often obtained just beneath the surface. In 
religious truth especially, the rock lies deep. It requires hard work and 
toil to reach it. To dig deep is no child's play. It requires a strong arm 
and great patience and perseverance. It is a slow and tedious work in which 
many soon weary. To work downward instead of upward, confined in 
narrow bounds instead of broad fields, and employed in throwing out 
and casting away instead of gathering together and building up, is ex- 
ceedingly discouraging and tests the perseverance of the saints. 

This was the work of Luther. To bring the Church back to its true 
foundation, he had to dig deep through the accumulated rubbish of a 
thoasand years. Through the hard and stubborn strata of papal preten- 
sions, priestly profanations and popular prejudice, through errors in 
doctrine, abuses in worship, and corruptions in life, he had to dig deep 
indeed until the rock was reached and the reformation of the Church 

And this was the work of Muhlenberg to a great extent. When he 
arrived in this country he found a few scattered congregations, and most 
of them in a disorderly and lamentable state. To relay the foundations 
■of these was harder work than to establish those altogether new. Through 
the prejudices excited against him by the irregular and often unworthy 
men who claimed to be their spiritual guides ; through the abuses these 
men had practiced and errors they had taught ; and through the ignorance 
and poverty of the people to whom he came to minister, he had to dig 
-deep. To lay the foundation of our Church was no easy task, nor one 

84 The Old Trappe Church. 

which could be speedil)' accomplished. Like Paul he was in journeys 
often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils by his own coun- 
trymen, in perils by the heathen, in perils in the city, in perils in the 
wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren ; in weari- 
ness and painfulness, in watchings often, in hunger and thirst, in fastines 
often, in cold and nakedness ; and beside these things that are without, 
that which came upon him daily, the care of all the churches. 

This is the wisdom and glory of our Church, to dig deep. Our method 
of instruction in doctrine and in righteousness by patient catechisation 
before confirmation, is hard work and attracts no public attention, but it 
goes to the bottom of things and rests not until the rock is reached. It is 
no superficial system, aiming at immediate results. It seeks to have men 
" lay up in store for themselves a good foimdation against the time to 
come," and to secure this, digs deep 

3. When the rock is reached the foundalion must be laid. By these 
words we understand Christ to teach that when the rock is reached, the 
wise man begins to build. Important as is the foundation, the Church is 
something more than a foundation. Foundations are laid to be built 
upon, and he would be a foolish man who would dig down to the rock 
and there let his work cease. It is possible we may be so concerned 
about the proper foundation as to forget or neglect the superstructure. 
But when the rock is reached, the real work begins, for which the deep 
digging was only preparatory. To fail, therefore, to /ay the foundation, 
is to fail altogether. Of what benefit is it to find Ciirist if we make no 
use of Him, or do not believe in Him? Of what advantage is it to dis- 
cuss and decide what is the truth, or to settle a creed, if we never build 
up ourselves on our most holy faith, nor grow unto an holy temple in 
the Lord ? 

And when the rock is reached, and we begin to build, let every man 
take heed how he buildeth thereon. When the foundation is laid the 
lines and angles of the corner-stone must be followed It is not suffi- 
cient to say "I have found the Christ," or '■ I believe in Jesus." There 
is not a sect in Christendom but pretends to be founded on Christ and on 
His word. The question is not only do you believe in Jesus Christ, but 
■what do you believe concerning His person, His doctrine and His work? 
It is not sufficient to say " we preach Christ ;" the question is what do we 
preach and teach concerning Him, and what confession of Him do we 
require? Unless we build of proper materials, and these not carelessly 
thrown in, but fitly framed together, and on the lines of the corner stone, 
the building will not stand and our labor will be in vain 

Thus this Augustus Lutheran Church was built. Our fathers were 
not content with securing a good foundalion. but on it erected these sub- 

The House Our Fathers Btiilt. 85 

stantial walls, and rested not until the building was complete. They 
were not ashamed either of their faith or their works, for over its portal 
they placed an inscription to be seen and read by all, that this was " the 
temple of the congregation of the Augsburg Confession." 

In this application of tlie text to the Church of Christ, we turn to 

II. — Her Trials. 

"When the flood arose, the stream beat veheinently upon that 
house." Matthew's version is very graphic, " and the rain descended, 
and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house." It 
pictures a storm of terrific fury, with rain on the roof, wind at the sides, 
and floods at the base, straining and testing the house in every way. 

Persecutions, oppositions, attacks from every quarter and trials of 
every sort, have marked the history of the Church from the day when 
"the stone which the builders rejected became the head of the corner." 
The first pages of that history are written in the blood of the martyrs who 
fell in the fury of the tempest. 

So too in the days of the Reformation, " the flood arose and the 
stream beat vehemently upon that house." The conflicts which then 
raged, the animosities and hostilities aroused, and the combined efforts 
of the papal power and the empire to overthrow and crush the rising 
Reformation, culminating in the terrors of the Thirty years' war, fulfilled 
again the words of the text. 

But I am to speak rather of the storms which have tried this vener- 
able building during the hundred and fifty years of its existence, together 
with the congregation and Confession to which it belonged. Many a 
storm of wind and rain and sleet and snow has whistled and howled 
around these walls throughout these years, but our fathers built deep and 
strong, and in their fury they could not shake it. 

The men who erected this church were largely the sons of those who 
had fled from the fatherland because of the persecutions which followed 
the revocation of the edict of Nantes. Under the pressure of those 
whistling winds their sails were wafted to these Western shores. In the 
memory of the losses, trials and suff"erings their fathers had endured, they 
laid these foundations and covered these walls. But they and their chil- 
dren were also to be exposed to and tried by storms and floods, which, 
while of a different sort, would test their faith and their Church to the 

I. The trials of the Revolutionary war. I refer not so much to the 
fact that this church, located not very distant from the encampment at 
Valley Forge, and on a prominent highway, was repeatedly turned from 

86 The Old Trappe Church. 

its sacred purposes and occupied by detachmenls of soldiers, and used for 
military purposes. I allude rather to the bitterness and political strife 
which at that time separated families and broke up many congregations. 
To preserve the life of a Church when fathers were embittered against 
sons and mothers arrayed against daughters, was no easy thing. 

Fortunately, when this storm was rising in its strength, Muhlenberg, 
who had resided for some years in Philadelphia, returned and fixed his 
residence here. His wisdom and prudence, joined with his true patriot- 
ism and piety, served to guide the congregation through these tempestu- 
ous times. 

The rude shock of war had scarcely subsided when another trouble 
beset the Church and congregation, caused by the depreciation of the cur- 
rency. Financial troubles beat vehemently against churches, and the 
general distress and impoverishment tried this congregation severely. 
But above all these divisions, differences and disasters, these sacred walls 
stood unmoved. Rooted and built up in the true doctrine of the Gospel, 
this church could not be shaken, but remained an asylum and refuge from 
the storms and distresses which tried men's souls. 

2. The second flood which arose to beat vehemently against this 
hov&t \\'3& ihaX oi rationalism ami unbelief. It came in about the begin- 
ning of this century. France, which had been America's political ally, 
became her religious enemy. Infidelity, which rose to its greatest height 
during the French revolution, found sympathizing minds because of 
France's aid during the struggle for national independence. The ration- 
alistic theology which came from certain schools of Germany about the 
same time, was still more widely felt; and the evangelical doctrines of 
our holy religion were no longer taught from many pulpits which bore the 
Lutheran name. Muhlenberg was dead, and no one of equal influence 
had arisen to take his place as the teacher and defender of our Church's 
Confessions. But whilst many proved false, this church remained a true 
confessor of " the truth as it is in Jesus." Even if her pulpit may have 
at times given an uncertain sound, on her frontlets, carved in unchanging 
stone, she bore her testimony that she was " x.des societati^ 
CONFESS." During those long years when the chief doctrines of redemp- 
tion were silenced, she kept before her children the name of that great 
Confession of the evangelical preachers, princes and peoples of the six- 
teenth century. The stream did beat vehemently against this house, but 
could not shake it. 

3. The third trial was that produced by fanaticism. About the 
year 1840 this community felt the force of another flood which was surg- 
ing over the whole country. Rationalism had produced and left a dead- 
ness and spiritual blight wherever it prevailed, and when a reaction set 

The House Otir Fathers Bitilt. 87 

in, it went to the other extreme. Ministers and congregations on every 
side were advocating and practicing doctrines and measures of the wildest 
and most fanatical sort. Again the winds whistled, the rains descended, 
and the floods came. For years this Church was pointed at as hope- 
lessly dead and forsaken of God, because she would not allow strange fire 
on her altar, nor approve measures contrary to her usage and spirit. 
Calmly she bore the storm of ridicule and abuse, bearing aloft her un- 
altered banner above the howling and fury of men. Some of her people 
grew weak, and some fell away, but as a Church she remained true to her 
history. Other congregations yielded and were carried into the popular 
current, but her resistance was as firm as the rock on which she was 
founded. The storm lasted for twenty years or more, but could not 
shake this house. 

Well do I recall the controversies and excitements of those days of 
my boyhood ; and devoutly do I thank God that I was the child of a 
Church which, while tested and tried and strained at every point, re- 
mained true to the principles and practices of the men who, when they 
built this house, digged deep and laid the foundation on a rock. These 
were the times that tried men's souls, even more than in the clash of arms, 
and the men who withstood the storm and remained steadfast in the faith, 
deserve to be held in everlasting and grateful remembrance. 

What has been said of the Church's trials necessarily included much 
of what deserves, however, to be made a separate head of discourse, viz : 

III. — Her .Stability. 

" They could not shake it, for it was founded on a rock." It may 
sometimes have trembled under these successive blasts and commotions, 
but they could not shake it from the principles and purposes for which it 
was established, nor move it from the foundations on which it was built. 

I. It still stands. What changes have taken place in the country 
and in the Church generally since these walls were laid ! Could these 
stones cry out, what a large part of American history and our Church's 
development would they declare ! To go back one hundred and fifty 
years is to cover the lives of five generations. And they liave been years 
of wonderful changes. On every side old things have passed away and 
all things are become new. Beneath the hillocks in her church-yard 
sleep the men who built her walls, with their children's children beside 
them, but in their front she still stands bearing witness to the faith in 
which they lived and the hope in which they died. Antiquated may 
be her architecture, and strange her appearance and arrangements to 
modern eyes, but strength and stability are in her walls. Others, with 
more pretension and shoxv. have come and gone, whilst she remains to-day 

88 The Old Trappc Church. 

celebrating her sesqiii-centennial, a symbol in stone of the staljility of the 
faith and the Church to which she belongs. From lightning and tempest 
she has been providentially protected ; while the silent tooth of time, 
and the noisy blasts to which she has been subjected, have failed alike to 
crumble or overthrow. 

2. // still prospers. For the past forty years the congregation has 
occupied this enlarged sanctuary in which we are met, only because the 
old church could no longer accommodate the increased attendance and 
membership. It was well no attempt was made to enlarge or modernize 
her walls, and that this daughter was erected by the side, and not in the 
place of the mother. The growth of this congregation has been steady 
and solid. It has been gained by no false or questionable means, but by 
that better and surer system our Lutheran Church recognizes and em- 

How wonderful has been the growth and prosperity of our Church 
in this country since our fathers erected this house ! Then the number 
of regular Lutheran pastors could be counted on the fingers of my hands ; 
now they number over five thousand. Then there were less than an 
hundred other churches ; now there are ten thousand, with over a million 
and a quarter communicants. Like Israel in Egypt, in spite of all 
oppression, we have multiplied amazingly. Like this venerable church, 
the house our fathers built still stands. They digged deep and built well. 
They labored in great poverty and under great discouragement. We have 
entered into their labors and enjoy the fruits. The little one has become 
mighty, and an handful an exceeding great army. Let us realize our ad- 
vantages and our responsibilities. Let us prove ourselves worthy des- 
cendants of noble sires. Gathering around these sacred walls to-day, let 
us pledge anew our fidelity to the principles, the spirit, and the faith of 
the men who built them an hundred and fifty years ago. 

Let me close with a reference to a significant fact in the erection of 
the old church. It was occupied by the congregation long before it was 
completed. The corner-stone was laid on May 2, 1743, and the follow- 
ing .September their place of worship was changed from the barn in which 
services had been held, to this unfinished building. The dedication did 
not take place until it was completed several years later. So it is with us. 
The Church to which we belong is not yet completed. For eighteen cen- 
turies the work has been going on. The day of completion and dedica- 
tion may be fixed, but is unknown to us. But we have already taken 
possession, and are content to worship in an unfinished building. The 
Church of Christ on earth is not perfect. It has its weaknesses and its waste 
places. We must not rest content with things as they are, but do our part 
by ail the means and talents we possess in advancing its success and glory. 

The House Our Fathers Built. 89 

Some day the building will be completed. Not a jot or tittle of the 
promises will fail in being fulfilled. Even the bodies of those who sleep 
in Jesus, will God bring with Him, and they shall be made like unto His 
own glorious body. Then the cap-stone will be laid, and the dedication 
will take place. Christ, who loved the Church, and gave Himself for it, 
that He might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the 
word, will present it to Himself a glorious Church, not having spot, or 
wrinkle, or any such thing. May all who are gathered here, be gathered 
there, to give honor, praise and glory to His blessed name forever and 



90 The Old Trappe Church. 

The Prayer 

By Rev. J. L. Sibole. 

Almighty God, our Heavenly Father, in the Name of Thine only 
begotten Son, Jesus Christ, we, Thy unworthy but highly favored ser- 
vants, lift up our hearts and voices unto Thee in adoration, praise and 
thanksgiving. We adore Thee as the Father of ail mercies ; as the 
God of all grace ; as the Source of all comfort. We praise Thee for 
Thy works in creation; for the orderings of Thy providence; for the 
revelation of Thy will ; for the manifestations of l~hy grace ; for the shed- 
ding forth of Thy spirit. 

We give thanks to Thee, gracious Father, for that divinest of gifts to 
man. Thy Son Jesus Christ, in whom the human race finds its lost life; 
its forfeited place in Thy bosom. We thank Thee for Thy holy Word ; 
that Word which Thou hast written that men might believe, and believ- 
ing, have everlasting life. We thank Thee for the Kingdom this Word 
has announced ; for the Saviour it has set forth ; for the Church it has 
established ; for the ministry it has created ; for the faith it has begotten ; 
for the souls it has saved. We bless Thy most holy Name for the divine 
seed which Thou didst commit to faithful hands, and which was sown in 
this memorable field, where, by Thy good providence we are gathered 
to-day. We thank Thee for those men of faith and zeal whom Thou 
didst call and ordain to that work which it is our joy to contemplate 
at this time. We thank Thee that Thou hast been pleased to approve 
their labors in Thy vineyard with a fruitage rich beyond our power to 
estimate and extensive beyond our fathers fondest hopes ; a fruitage 
that remains to this day to the praise of Thy grace and the everlasting 
honor of Tliy ministry and her ministers. We thank Thee for the rich 
streams of Gospel blessing which have gone out from this sanctuary, car- 
rying refreshment and life itself far and wide. 

We thank Thee, O Thou unchanging and ever gracious God, that, 
throughout the memorable history of this part of Thy one Church, Tliou 
hast kept Thy candle burning, and that to-day it shines out with the 
brilliancy and power of the early days, creating, preserving, sanctifying. 

And now, O Lord, we turn trustfully to Thee, supplicating the con- 
tinuance of that gracious favor which has so signally blessed this peojile. 
Continue to them, and to us all. Thy Word in its purity ; Thy ministry 

The Prayer. gr 

in its power ; Thy Holy Sacraments in their saving effect. Work in us 
a spirit of gratitude for past mercies and favors. Encourage our hearts 
by what Thou hast wrouglit, and help us to see in that the promise of 
what Thou wilt work in us, and by us, through Thy saving Word. 

And unto Thee, Father, Son and Holy Ghost, be all the praise for 
what has been, for what is, and for what is yet to be, of Thy most gra- 
cious work of salvation in our midst and throughout the world. Amen. 


92 The Old Trappe Chui-ch. 

Outline of Address 

Rev. Prof. Adolph Spaeth, D. D. 

Light at Eventide. 

ZiiCH. 14 : 7. — " Al evening tide it shall be light." 

As we meet here today in this venerable building we are surrounded 
by many sacred memories. New Providence, or the Trappe, as it is now 
called, has a special claim 011 our Patriarch, Henry Melchior Muhlenberg. 
If was his home, his congregation, his territory in a peculiar sense, dis- 
tinct even from New Hanover and Philadelphia, though these latter had 
joined the people of New Providence in the original call which eventu- 
ally brought him to these Western shores. But nowhere else did the vener- 
able father of our Church in America feel so thoroughly at home as here, 
in New Providence. Here his remarkable gifts and his lovely, Christian 
character seem to have been more fully appreciated than in any other 
field of his labors. Here the people cheered his heart by their willing- 
ness, zeal and harmonious cooperation in the organization of the congre- 
gation and the building of the Church. To this place he brought his 
youthful bride, Anna Maria Weiser, and here he founded his own home, 
where his children were born, and where his family resided even 
during his pastoral and missionary work in New York. It was most 
fitting _that here also, close by the walls of this venerable church, his body 
should have found its last resting place under that stone, which, in its 
eloquent and prophetical inscription, honors the man, the pastor and 
father of the American Iritheran Church. 

On this very day, the 26th of September, and probably in this very 
hour, 109 years ago (A. D. 1784), Muhlenberg appeared for the last time 
in this pulpit, and delivered the last sermon in his beloved Augustus 
Church. The 12th of September, for which day this Jubilee Celebration 
had been originally appointed, would have been the date of the first ser- 
vice held in this building, A. D. 1743. On the 2d of May, 1743, the 
corner-stone had been laid in the presence of a great concourse of peo- 
ple. That favorite hymn of Muhlenberg's, " Befiehl du deine Wege," (by 

Light at Eventide. 93 

Paul Gerhardt), was sung (as it was also used at the corner-stone laying 
of old Zion's in Philadelphia, May 16, 1766,) and Muhlenberg preached 
from the words, which we have to-day before us as our text, " At evening 
tide it shall be light." 

We can, I think, understand in some measure, the feelings, resolu- 
tions, hopes and expectations, that moved him in the selection of this 
Scripture passage on that memorable occasiorf. The Lord had led him to 
this Western Continent with the great commission to bring to his German 
brethren after the flesh, the everlasting gospel in their mother tongue, and 
to lay a good, solid foundation for a strong and lasting churchly organi- 
zation. But what did he find, when he came to this country? The Ger- 
mans formed at that time half of the population of Pennsylvania. But 
the majority had reached this land in a condition of utter destitution and 
poverty. Having been unable to pay for their passage, they were, on their 
arrival, bound over to a state of servitude for a period of three to seven 
years, until the money due for their passage had been earned by long and 
arduous labor. There were many harsh and cruel features connected 
with this system. Families were torn asunder, their members separated 
for years, and sometimes never re-united. The disadvantages under which 
those first German settlers labored were obviously many and great. They 
were under a cloud as to their social position, their moral and intellectual 
development, their progress and prosperity in every direction. Nor was 
their religious life in a satisfactory condition. Under the State Church 
of the fatherland, these emigrants had never learned to take care of the 
administration and management of congregational matters. When this 
burden was thrown upon them in their new home, they hardly knew how 
to help themselves, and in the absence of good pastors and faithful, ex- 
perienced counselors, it is no wonder tiiat their religious and churchly 
condition was not far from chaos. Moreover, many of the people, even 
before leaving their old home, had been estranged from the faith of their 
fathers. They were, at the very start, animated by a spirit of sectarian- 
ism, which, in many cases, was the principal motive for leaving their 
former home and seeking these Western shores. 

Pennsylvania, under the leadership of Penn, was a very paradise of 
sects and Quakers, Mennonites, Bunkers, etc., found among the German 
settlers abundant material to swell their numbers. There was a wide- 
spread aversion to a regularly constituted ministry of the Gospel, and to 
ecclesiastical rules, constitutions and order in general. Tiie frequent ap- 
pearance of ecclesiastical tramps, who brought .shame and dishonor upon 
the ministerial office by their scandalous conduct, would naturally fill the 
people with doubt and suspicion against all who claimed to be pastors 
and ministers of the Word. Into this chaotic darkness Muhlenberg was 

94 The Old Trappe Church. 

called to bring light, order, and a healthy growth on a sound scriptural 

By the providence of God he was remarkably successful in this, and 
his work in the organization of regularly constituted Lutheran congrega- 
tions and of the first Lutheran Synod on this continent, proved to be a 
centre of light which shed its rays in every direction from the Hudson as 
far as Georgia, reaching down in its blessed results even to our present 

Some of the principal features of this work of our Patriarch may be 
pointed out as briefly as possible. It is Mulilenberg who, by his 
conscientious and faithful obedience to his call and commission, re- 
stored and exalted the dignity and authority of a regularly called 
and ordained ministry, among a people who were overrun by 
men of whom the Lord would say : "I have not sent these prophets, 
yet they ran : I have not spoken to them, yet they prophesied." But 
Muhlenberg, in leaving the home of his fathers, and coming to this 
distant land, was sure of one thing : He had been regularly called. He 
had been sent. He had not assumed an office, but had accepted, after 
long and prayerful consideration, the formal and solemn commission 
which made him pastor of the Lutlu-ran congregations at New Hanover, 
New Providence and Philadelphia. With this divine call he met and 
subdued, not only those crude ecclesiastical vagrants like Valentine Kraft, 
but also the refined and highly gifted Count von Zinzendorf, who, under 
the name von Thurnstein, had usurped the pastorate among the Luth- 
erans in Philadelphia. 

Again, it was Muhlenberg, who first united the pastors and congre- 
gations around him into a synodical organization. On August 15, 1748, 
the day of the consecration of old St. Michael's Church in Philadelphia, 
he opened the first convention of the Ministerium of Pennsylvania : "We 
need unity," he said ; " a twisted cord of many threads will not, easily 
break. We need order ; we must take care of our youths ; our Church 
officers have great responsibilities. We are assembled to provide for the 
things entrusted to us. Providence willing, we shall in this way assemble 
from year to year. We pastors here present did not come of our own 
will, but we are called here, and we are accountable to God and our con- 
sciences." The Ministerium of Pennsylvania, as organized by Muhlen- 
berg, was the first and only General Synod in the full and true sense of 
the word, which our Lutheran Church, ever had in this country. And if 
things had moved on steadily and without interruption in the line laid 
out by Muhlenberg and his associates, we ought to have to-day one 
general body of the Lutheran Church, firmly grounded on the pure faith 
of our fathers, a union unaffected by the diversity of languages and 

Light at Eventide. 95 

nationalities, even as it was on tliat first memorable meeting in St. Mich- 
ael's Church, when Swedes and Germans were united in brotherly council. 

In close connection with Muhlenberg's efforts to keep the pastors 
and congregations together in one organization, we must also refer to 
another point as it represents one of the most brilliant rays of light that 
proceeded from that torch-bearer of our Church in America. To him the 
unity of the Church was not only in the one faith and doctrine, but also 
in the practical sphere of using the same service, and singing the same 
hymns, and working together in one common interest. The hymn book 
and liturgy of 1786, which he was chiefly instrumental in preparing, were 
to be a strong bond of union for all the pastors and congregations of our 
Church. Whenever pastors or catechists were introduced into their dif- 
ferent spheres of labor, they were solemnly charged " not to deviate from 
the order of service prescribed by Synod and not to introduce new forms 
of their own." " It would be a most desirable and advantageous thing," 
he said, " if all the Evangelical Lutheran congregations in the North 
American States were united with one another ; if they all used the same 
order of service, the same hymn book, and in good and evil days would 
show an active sympathy and fraternally correspond with one another." 
(Letter to Dr. Gotfr. Enox of Loonenburg, November 5, 1783.) 

Was there not a spirit of prophecy in the choice of this text wjiich that 
man of God used at the laying of the corner-stone of this Augustus Church ? 
Was there not in his mind a divination of the great and wonderful future of 
this western land and of the peculiar and great commission of the Luth- 
eran faith to be a light-bearer in the eve of the world's history in this 
land of the evening ? And are not all our present efforts to bring about 
a better understanding, and a closer union betvi-een the different sections 
of our Church, to unite in one common service, etc., foreshadowed in the 
measures adopted by Muhlenberg and the work performed by him ? 

Let us take that word from him ! Let us make it our motto for our 
work in our days. Let every one of us do his very best, according to the 
talent which the Lord may have given him, that " At evening tide it 
shall be light." 

96 The Old Trappe Church. 


Rev. Prof. M. H. Richards, D D. 

The Need of a WelUEquipped Hinistry. 

Man is an embodied spirit whose condition is such that it must lo- 
calize to perpetuate and make real. When, therefore, we seek to set 
before us the spirit and the achievements of departed worthies, that we 
may catch that spirit and emulate those achievements, it is both natural 
and necessary that we associate them with some locality, some tangible 
memorial, and thus set them before us as still living, moving, and having 
their being. We have met this day to thank God for that eminent ser- 
vant of His, Henry Melchior Muhlenberg, and we have met at this 
place, and in this venerable building, because this "local habitation and 
name" answer best these conditions which we have indicated. 

The old Trappe Church is Muhlenberg's best memorial, since it is 
in it, and through it, that we can best find the setting, the body, by 
which we can recall what he was, and what his life has to teach iis. The 
occasion of its sesqui-centennial, and of grateful remembrances of him, 
are identities, ever inseparable, always mutually arising in our conscious- 
ness. Here he came in the very beginning of his ministry in America; 
this is the building which he designed and constructed, upon whose wall 
his name stands engraved in loving association with those who toiled and 
built with him, and under him; this was his ever loyal congregation, 
among whom he made his home, reared his family, to whom he returned 
again and again from his ever recurring journeys of superintendency ; 
here he sought refuge when war was abroad in the land, and here he came, 
weary with age and worn with labors, to wait until his God called him to 
his reward ; here he died, and here was he buried, and this is the holy 
shrine whither many a pilgrim comes to read, with uncovered head, the 
prophetic epitaph upon his humble stone. 

The old Trappe Church and Muhlenberg are in.separable : he is the 
spirit of which it is the body, and it is the thing visible and external, 
tangible and material, which makes it possible and real to set his virtues 
before us as ever living, ever potent, ever exhaling a fresh and fragrant 

The Need of a Well-Equipped Ministry. 97 

perfume, wholesome and invigorating, inciting to the service of God by 
fidelity in His Church. 

We must be grateful to those who have limited our thoughts by 
naming our theme. There is so much that might be said, such a richness 
of suggestion in the place and the occasion, that despair of knowing 
where to end might otherwise have resulted in perplexity as to how to 
begin. This old church stands for so much to many of us. It is ances- 
tral for not a few here present, and the bones of the generations that were 
rest within its burial enclosure, while friend and relative are still com- 
municants within its fold, and are before us and with us this very day. 
Then, too, Muhlenberg himself was so many sided, and the exigencies of 
his position were so peculiar and so diverse. As great Caesar says of him- 
self, upon one great crisis of battle, so might it be said of him for whom 
this church stands as a memorial, that " all things had to be done by him 
at one and the same time." He was to be pastor and teacher, he was to 
supply a need and create that need, or, at least, give it intelligent form 
and wholesome hunger: he was to organize the Church which was, as yet, 
to be planted, and which, nevertheless, had been in part misplanted. He 
was to be here and there and everywhere in a land without roads or 

Yet all these considerations lead us directly to the theme chosen for 
us — the need of a ministry well educated, well provided for its task. 
Surely Muhlenberg sets this preeminently before us ! Picture him land- 
ing from his tedious voyage along the coast, still enfeebled and suffering 
from it. He is absolutely alone, must force recognition upon those to 
whom he has been sent, must rely upon his own powers and address to 
make friends of those in authority, and to expose those planning and 
scheming against his Church. He must know thoroughly well what he is 
to teach and how to defend it against all objectors. He must be able to 
set it plainly before plain people, crumbing the bread of life for them, and 
yet vifith dignity and grace before the more cultured. He must rise 
above the provincialism of but one tongue, one language, into the tolera- 
tion of any or all, as vehicles for the truth he would set forth. Who but 
the well educated, well trained man is sufficient, by the grace of God 
and the courage of much faith, for all these things? Zeal may suffice for 
an assault, but this was a siege of many years' duration, and for such a 
warfare the man of God must be thoroughly furnished for all good works. 
But I realize that to have named my theme is to have proved it ; it is 
axiomatic, and its self-evidence makes it difficult to demonstrate it. 
Times may change and circumstances may vary, but the need is ever the 
same ; the Christian ministry to be effective must be well equipped for its 
work, not ignorant, though well-meaning, not neophytes, though sincere. 

gS The Old Tj-appe CInirch. 

Muhlenberg prevailed because, in addition to fervent piety and generous 
faith, he was a man of learning, of experience in social life, of trained 
executive ability, of cultured oratory, well-read in theology, of linguistic 
gifts: because he was, in a word, well educated, well equipped for the 

The descent by natural birth is but an inseparable accident : to be 
in the line of spiritual descent by voluntary act of our own is a mark of 
character. We may all be spiritual descendants of him who is set before 
-us this day as a great proto-type. Let us seek with our whole heart and 
mind to gain that adoption into his name and lineage. We shall compass 
it by striving for a well educated, well equipped ministry. We will en- 
dow and provide institutions of learning for those who would serve our 
churches in the most generous spirit and noblest conception. We will 
sustain them in that same spirit and watch over their efficiency with most 
loving jealousy. Let us do these things, and as the years roll by, we shall 
verify-again and again that epitaph which declares that posterity will need 
no towering shaft, no costly pyramid, to know that Muhlenberg lived, or 
who or what he was, and ever has continued to be. Unto this end may 
this day and this occasion inspire us anew, and confirm us therein with 
an increased measure of devotion. 


The Triumph of Small Beginnings. 99 


Rev. O. P. Smith. 

The Triumph of Small Beginnings. 

The duty and privilege assigned to me on this memorable occasion is 
to deliver a ten minutes' address on the subject, " The triumph of small 
beginnings." The I^utheran Church had a beginning in this Western 
land of ours, and that beginning was small. 

Every thing in God's Universe that is intended to grow, has a small 
beginning, and this is particularly true in reference to His Kingdom of 
Grace established among the children of men. The Prophet Ezekiel 
represents to us the growth of the Church, in his vision of the holy 
waters ; first the waters are to the ankle, and as the stream flows on it 
augments, and its depth reaches to the loins; still increasing, it becomes 
impassable. The Incarnation first manifested itself in the manger at 
Bethlehem — in the babe Christ Jesus. When Christ speaks of the growth 
of His Church, He utters this parable, " The Kingdom of Heaven is like 
to a grain of mustard seed, which is indeed the least of all seeds," and 
after He refers to its small beginning He lets us know of its wonderful 
possibilities of expansion and growth. Smallness is often the disguise 
of the infinite. You may be able to count the apples on a tree, but you 
are not able to count the trees in the apple. So you may count the 
acorns on a mighty oak, but who can count the mighty oaks in the acorns 
— there you meet infinities. It is well to remember this fact — smallness 
often the disguise of the infinite. It encourages patience ; it stimulates 
courage and perseverance ; it lightens the burdens of life — makes toil and 
labor easy even in the midst of small results at the time, and persuades us 
to wait patiently until the Lord leads on to the fulfilment of his designs. 
When Muhlenberg came to these shores, he found the Lutheran 
Church, as was God's Earth in the beginning of Creation- — "without form 
and void," but the Spirit of God had not forsaken her. 

The Lord found a man after His own heart, a man whom He had 
endowed with the faith, courage and learning of a Paul and a Luther — a 

lOO The Old Trappe Church. 

man fit for the kingdom of Heaven, who put his hand to the plow and 
never looked back. 

Out of a small number of scattered and divided Lutherans he brought 
forth organization and system. 

It was not only a small beginning, but on account ofdisadvantageous 
circumstances, a difficult beginning, but wisely, judiciously and prayer- 
fully the foundations were laid, the superstructure grew, and to-day the 
Lutheran Church can speak of her mighty triumphs, and gather her chil- 
dren around her altars in every i)art of this dear country of ours, in many 
languages and tongues, praising and glorifying God. 

In 1742, when Muhlenberg landed in this country, what was the 
numerical strength of our Church? No Synod, about ten ministers and 
three thousand communicants. In 1891 there were 61 Synods, 4,861 
ministers, 8,232 congregations, 1,185,1 16 communicant members. 

When the Mother Synod, the Pennsylvania Ministerium, was organ- 
ized, "in August, 1748, there was a synodical roll of about a half dozen 
clergymen; now that Synod has a clerical roll of 291 names, and be- 
side this roll there are at least 60 other synodical rolls, swelling the num- 
ber to nearly 10,000. 

When Muhlenberg began his work here the Lutheran Church had 
no educational institutions; there are now 25 or more Theological Semi- 
naries, 30 Colleges, 35 Academies, 12 Ladies' Seminaries. 

Then there were no charitable institutions in this country; now 
there are 33 Orphans' Homes and 42 Asylums and Hospitals : the small 
beginning has been crowned with triumph ; the mustard seed has grown 
into a mighty tree, e.xtending its branches in every legitimate channel of 
Church work, sheltering every noble cause of the kingdom of Christ and 
offering the blessing and peace of the healing of its leaves to a million of 
souls, reaching out and sending its benign blessing unto thousands in 
heathen lands. 

How suitable and fitting in this Columbian year, when the great 
World's Exposition at Chicago speaks of the triumph of small beginnings 
in every branch of industry, science, literature and art, to contemplate 
the triumph of the small beginnings of our dear Zion. 

The Lutheran Church, which has advanced so near to the front in 
the column of denominational statistics during the century about closing, 
what is before her in the next century? Her banner should move to the 
very front ; it is her possibility. This is not a statement of sectarian 
enthusiasm, but a prophecy dictated by the very signs of progress. Her 
literature is addressing itself to the English speaking people of this coun- 
try. The large number she receives from year to year by immigration is 
rapidly swelling her ranks; her confessions are more appreciated by her 

The Triumph of Small Beginnings. loi 

children. When other denominations become alienated from their con- 
fessional basis and divided, the Lutheran Church of America forms 
stronger devotion to and appreciation of her symbols of faith. Her 
wisdom in avoiding cold legalism on the one hand, and narrow puritan- 
ism on the other, gives her the golden mean, a true evangelical position, 
that will make her the Church to lead in the ecclesiastical progress of the 
twentieth century, bringing her banner to the front among the American 

If this position is not reached, it is because she has failed to do her 
<iuty ; she has been blind to her opportunities and possibilities, unfaith- 
ful to herself and false to her Master, the Great Head of the Church, the 
Lord Jesus. 

■ ^|W=^ 

The Old Trappe Church. 


Rev. Samuel Laird, D. D. 

Home riissions. 

Muhlenberg is not to be commended because he originated a new 
work, but he deserves and receives praise because of the manner in which 
he carried on the work of the Church, which was committed to him. 
Our Lord, before His Ascension into heaven, said to His apostles, " Go 
ye and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the Name of the 
Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: teaching them to ob- 
serve all things whatsoever I have commanded you." The import of 
this commission, coming down from the days of the infancy of the Chris- 
tian Church, Muhlenberg realized, and devoted himself to the close of 
his life to the performance of the duty here enjoined. The appreciation 
of the holy character of his ministerial office, the blessedness of his work, 
and the far reaching nature of the results of his labors, affecting the des- 
tiny of men both for this life and for that which is to come, so moved him 
that he consecrated himself unreservedly to the service of his Lord. So ex- 
emplary was he in his conduct, both in public and private, so wise in 
ordering the affairs of the congregations, so constant and loving in his 
ministrations, that his praise is in all the churches. 

He was animated by a spirit of self-sacrifice. When he received the 
call to his field of future usefulness, it required that he should leave his 
kindred and friends and native land, and come to this new western world. 
He cheerfully abandoned the comforts he might have enjoyed, to en- 
counter the risks and dangers of travel over sea and land, at that 
time far greater than they are' now, and to endure the hardships inci- 
dent to life on the borders of civilization. It was not in thickly popu- 
lated districts that he labored, but to sparse settlements of immigrants, 
widely scattered over a great extent of territory, requiring him to under- 
take constant journeys at all seasons of the year, which were often at- 
tended with peril. Nor was it to well-established, influential congrega- 
tions that he ministered, but to small bodies of people, frequently holding 
dissentient views and varying opinions, demanding the greatest forbear- 
ance, tact and patience, in order that they might be gathered into harmo- 

Home Missions. 103 

nious organizations. Regardless of selfish interests he continued through 
many years of time to " preach the Word ; instant in season, out of sea- 
son ; reproving, rebuking, exhorting with all long suffering and doctrine." 

Fidelity was another marked characteristic of his ministry. He was 
faithful to the truth. He recognized in all its fullness the great fact that 
" It hath pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that 
believe," and in all his presentations from the pulpit he adhered closely 
to the Divine Word. He believed thoroughly tiiat the Holy Spirit 
moves upon the spirit of man through the agency of the truth and of that 
alone, hence his anxiety that the purity of the truth should be maintained 
in the churches, and in his estimation that purity could only be secured 
by adherence to the Confessions of the Evangelical Lutheran Church. 
Hence we find him ever upholding the Church in which he had been 
ordained a Minister, and seeking in the Ministerium and in the congre- 
gations and among his brethren so to arrange that the Church of that 
period and of the future might remain true to the faith. 

Not only was he faithful in dealing with the interests of large bodies 
of people, but also with individuals. He recognized the value of an im- 
■nortal soul. Intense love for sinful mortals inflamed him, and moved by 
I sincere desire for their salvation, he dealt wisely with each one, as is 
seen from the accounts of his manner of acting with men in private as 
.veil as in public, hesitating not to rebuke where need required, as well as 
to encourage, and setting before men their sins as well as the way of 
pardon and peace. Fidelity to God, to the Church, to individuals, is a 
prominent feature in his whole career. 

He was zealous. There was no languid performance of the duties 
of his ofifiice. The Spirit of the Master influenced and quickened him. 
With heartiness he undertook the most laborious works, and prose- 
cuted them with unwearied earnestness. The great spiritual interests 
of the people whom God had committed to his care, were ever upon 
his heart, and on their behalf he labored constantly. He had a keen 
appreciation of the value of the rriinistry, and that he made full proof 
of it is abundantly shown by the results of his life-work which still 
abide among us. Pious, without cant, gentle, without weakness, firm 
and yet considerate and kindly, reverent towards God, loving to man, 
this noble Patriarch exhibited true zeal enlightened by knowledge, in 
carrying on the work of his office, so that he is held in affectionate and 
respectful remembrance wherever his deeds are known. 

Such a life is an example and an inspiration to us. The same com- 
mission which was first given to the Apostles, the force of which Muhlen- 
berg realized, is given to us. To the entire Christian Church the 
charge comes to preach the Gospel to every creature. This is a duly 

I04 The Old Trappe CInircIi. 

laid upon each individual member, which ma) not be thrust aside or 
neglected with impunity. Do we take in the meaning of the com- 
mand of our Lord to His Apostles, and do we endeavor to obey it ? 
Does love for souls so influence our hearts as that we are willing to labor 
for their salvation ? These are questions which it behooves us to answer. 
The scene which is here presented, this old building in which we are 
assembled, the memories of the jjast which come crowding upon us, all 
remind us of one who stood foremost among the men of his period in the 
work of missions, one of whose descendants has addressed us to-day. If 
these dumb walls could speak, would they not re- iterate in our ears the 
burning words of Gospel truth which issued from his lips, and bear wit- 
ness to the fidelity with which he besought men to be reconciled to God. 
Oh ! what have_)'«/ done for Jesus? What sacrifice have you made, what 
fidelity have you shown, what zeal have you exercised in the endeavor to 
save souls? Have you allowed this subject its due weight in your minds, 
and have you been so impressed by it, that your activities show the sin- 
cerity of your convictions ? 

No one should underrate his ability in this respect, and think because 
he is moving in an humble walk in life, or is not numbered among tht 
rich, that he cannot be expected to do anything. If there is true zeal ir 
the cause of Christ, ways of serving Hirri will be found so as to benefit 
our fellow mortals and win them over to a religious life. By your ex- 
ample, by your exertions, by your gifts, by your prayers the cause of mis- 
sions may be furthered. The demand is great. At home, abroad, the 
fields are white unto the harvest. The laborers are few. The population 
of our land is increasing with great rapidity. From all parts of the old 
world immigrants arecoraing, adding thousands yearly to our densely popu- 
lated cities, and bringing under cultivation the broad acres of hitherto un- 
tilled plains. These new comers, as well as the rising generation must be 
brought into the fold of the Church. The good of our country requires 
it, the value of immortal souls demands it. It is Christ's own work. He 
has commissioned us to carry it on. 

This community has entered into the possession of the blessings of 
Muhlenberg's missionary labors. The precious legac)' bequeathed from 
his untiring spiritual activity, is enjoyed most largely by those who live 
whete he established iiis home, and where his body lies buried. These 
thoughts should lead you to greater consecration in the service of that 
Lord, whose he was, and whom he served. This venerated building in 
which he preached stands as a preacher to remind you of your duty, as it 
inspires us all to do what in us lies to meet the pressing needs of Home 

Foj'eign Missions. 1 05 


Rev. C J. Hirzel. 

Foreign flissions. 

It is but proper that the celebration, which calls us together in festive 
assembly within these antiquated surroundings and amid these sacred 
associations, should reach out with broad sweep and bring in subjects of 
interest from remoter points. The preceding speakers have forcibly pre- 
sented matters of nearer interest and direct concern — and you will allow 
me, in a few remarks, to dwell on a subject of more distant setting yet of 
unending necessity. I "do this, however, conscious of having to gather 
up only remaining fragments other builders did not need. 

No thoughtful mind in this assembly will deny the powerful inspira- 
tion this hallowed church, that has withstood the blasts and fury of so 
many years, must be in the loving work of Foreign Missions. But ours is 
the subject of personal, honest, loving devotion to this never-ending work. 
We question not the necessity for it. But do we realize our personal 
duty in it ? To more properly understand the devotion for this work 
with which this old Trappe church should inspire us, we must contem- 
plate this building, and what it implies, from the other side of the At- 
lantic. To Muhlenberg and his advisors it was work in a foreign land, 
demanding the willing and ready surrender of home, friends, kindred 
and every personal comfort, preference and delight — proceeding along this 
line we note the following reasons for devotion to the work of Foreign 
Missions : 

I. — Because we have the men. 

When the distracted Lutherans of Pennsylvania, a century and a half 
ago, sent their urgent appeal to the Church in the Fatherland, the first 
question to be answered was : Have we the man? And this was soon 
answered when they thought of Muhlenberg. They had the man. And 
when Muhlenberg was asked he could only say, " If I can see the hand 
of Providence in this call, I will go." We also have the men. There 
may be and must be sons of godly parents in our Church, and in this 

io6 The Old Trappe ChiircJt. 

time-honored Trappe congregation, sons of mental power, pious spirit 
and Christian devotion, that shall be taught and trained to enter the work 
of gathering in the heathen for the possession of Christ. But, in send- 
ing Muhlenberg to this country the Church sent a man, not fresh from 
the Theological school, but experienced, tried and fitted by jiractical 
work in the ministry. 

No field is so trying, no labor in the ministry is so exacting, 
no position demands so much of the ripest wisdom, the safest judgment 
and the sharpest experience, than is and does the labor of the Foreign 
Missionary. Our loving devotion is justly required when we consider the 
great trust and courage this work demands. Muhlenberg came over to 
serve his own countrymen, people of his own blood and tongue, whose 
spirit, habits and customs were no unknown quantity. To-day, however, 
Foreign Missionaries must carry their very lives in their hands: must 
suffer all the changes of climate, food and country ; must master new 
alphabets and languages : must face untold dangers and hardships. But 
we have the men, and should devote ourselves lovingly to the work for 
their sakes as our brethren. 

II. — We have the means. 

When Muhlenberg came to America he had the Mother Church back 
of him. Should the stipulations of the longing brethren here fail him, he 
could lean with reasonable assurance on the assistance and protection of 
the fathers at home. But he must build his churches out of American 
materials and with forces on American soil. This old Trappe church 
was built with stone from American quarries, lumber from American 
forests, and with hearts and hands here on the ground. The man who 
is a Foreign Missionary, in the eyes of Halle, is a Home Missionary 
among the people in America. Out of these small beginnings have grown 
large congregations, churches and synods. From the simple means and 
limited resources of this old Trappe church have accumulated large in- 
comes and an abundance of material power. Behold the vast means we 
have inherited. To devote ourselves with love to the work of Foreign 
Missions entails no hardship, demands no sacrifice from us. It only 
needs that every one do something, and the harvest of means will be 
ripe and great. Every stone and piece of timber in this antiquated 
building was set up and put in place piece by piece. Your prayers and 
gifts, your offerings each one must bring for him or herself and set up in 
sanctified array upon the altar of loving devotion to the w^ork of bringing 
into the fold the souls groping in blindness and sin, though so far, far 
away. Who cannot spare of their plenty for this work so preeminently 
Gospel ? 

Foreign Missions. 107 

III. — Because of its exalted character. 

Angels may bring tidings of God's goodness, and from their shim- 
mering wings spread rays of heavenly truth and grace. But only the 
Christ could put into actualization the will and purpose of man's redemp- 
tion. To proclaim the glorious Gospel, to preach the blessed tidings, to 
point and tread the way of everlasting peace and life in guiding love and 
pity ; this is the hallowed work of your Missionaries. They do it for 
you. The Master's command they fulfill for you. It is your Christ-like 
work performed by sanctified lives and labors. Angels may witness the 
zeal and devotion of the Church in her endeavors ; but the Missionaries 
carry the very Christ in their hearts and hands as they labor for you 
among the benighted masses in distant lands. What task more noble 
and exalted, what calling more spiritual and sublime, than shedding the 
light of love divine and grace eternal amid the engulfing gloom of hea- 
then ignorance and despair. So exalted is your duty, your privilege ; so 
rich is your calling in blessing and promise. Then raise up and send forth 
the men, your men ; and freely give the means of love and devotion, 
your own means ; and so send out the rays of Christian love and duty 
over the raging sea of heathen superstitution, ignorance and woe, to light 
immortal souls to the haven of rest. 


io8 The Old Trappc Clntrch. 


Rev. C. J. Cooper. 

The nission of the Old Trappe Church. 

The Master's great commission to the Church is " Go and teach all 
nations." In cheerful and loving obedience, the Church has always 
sought to be faithful to this last command. Our gathering here on this 
sacred spot, in such large numbers, is the testimony of the living to the 
faithfulness of the dead in the discharge of their pious duty. Augustus 
Church is a monument in time, a sacred mile-stone marking the onward 
progress of the Church in her ceaseless activity in teaching "all nations" 
the story of Christ the crucified and risen Saviour of the world. Though 
surrounded by other monuments more costly in material, more artistic in 
design, and more imposingMn form, yet not one of them, nor all com- 
bined, can lay claim to so many precious and hallowed associations, or 
inspire us with such exalted emotions of love and devotion to God and to 
mankind, as the quaint and venerable little church, in which so many 
generations of worshippers have gathered to speed on the blessed work of 
enlightening the nations of the world. 

It may rightly be called the cradle of the Lutheran Church in Amer- 
ica, in which the infant Church was reared, that is destined under the 
Providence of God to become the great Teacher of the nations gathering 
on this Western continent. To teach is the particular mission of our 
Church as her matchless Confessions of faith, her pure and evangelical 
service, her great universities and teachers abundantly testify. 

The Augustus Church had as its first pastor the Patriarch of our 
Church in this country, a man of learning and piety. Inseparably will 
these two be associated for all time. This day reminds us of the early 
struggles of our fathers in their continued efforts to establish on this ter- 
ritory institutions of learning, built on the foundations of tlie fathers. 

The Mission of the Old Trappe Church. 109 

breathing the same spirit and devoted to the same great and noble ob- 
jects of Truth and Righteousness. 

Not far removed from Augustus Church stood the school-house. The 
school-house close by the Church is an object lesson in the history of our 
Church, which the present generation may well contemplate. It expresses 
the correct principle of education. The Bible, catechism, Church hymns, 
alongside of the secular books, give the proper character of the instruc- 
tion so necessary to develop the whole man. The fathers also directed 
their efforts towards higher institutions of learning. They believed in an 
educated ministry. Their sad experiences made them anxious to secure 
this end. They were willing to sacrifice much to attain it. The Patri- 
arch himself was willing to commit his own sons to the terrors of the sea 
as well as to the dangers of the land in sending them abroad with the 
hope of securing for the Church men well qualified to minister at her 
altars and to teach in her pulpits. But the poverty of the people, their 
scattered and unorganized condition, national differences, and revolution- 
ary wars obstructed, delayed and often defeated their efforts. 

For one hundred and fifty years Augustus Church has felt the tidal 
waves of rationalism, infidelity and fanaticism, that have successively 
rolled over our land ; and witnessed the clash of arms as well as the vio- 
lent tempests of human passions, endangering the very existence of the 
Church and State. But in this frail vessel was He whom winds and 
waves obey, even the same who continues to command "Go and teach 
all nations." Ever faithful to His command, renewed efforts con- 
tinued to be made, and only within the last quarter of a century have the 
hopes and expectations of our fathers been realized in the Seminary in 
Philadelphia and the College in AUentown. Muhlenberg College is 
proud to bear the name of the Patriarch. The Church in this country has 
not forgotten the memory of this great and good man. While it is true, 
as the inscription on his stone so forcibly expresses, " Who and what he 
was future generations will know without a stone." Yet with Augustus 
Church as the base, and Muhlenberg College as the shaft, the Church has 
erected a monument more lasting than marble or brass. The College and 
the Seminary are the flower and fruit of the planting and sowing of one 
hundred and fifty years ago, dedicated and devoted to the same great 
mission, to teach the nations. 

Let us on this day think of the toils and labors, sacrifices and devo- 
tions of our fathers in the interest of evangelical truth, and let this occa- 
sion fill us, one and all, with new and increased zeal in the great cause of 
education. Let us rally around our Church and her institutions, willing 
to consecrate our sons to the Gospel ministry, to equip and endow our 
institutions with men and means, that they may be able to do their 

The Old Trappe Church. 

divinely appointed work, to teach all nations, with joy and not with sor- 
row. Since Augustus Church was built, we have become strong in num- 
bers and in material wealth. While our institutions have shared in this 
prosperity, they are not what they should be and what we have reason to 
hope they will yet become. Our people are not educating as many young 
men as they should, and while there is a decided progress in the matter of 
liberality, there is still much room for improvement. " Go ye and teach 
all nations." 

Greetings frotn the TiilpeJiocken Region. i i i 


Rev. P. J. F. Schantz, D. D. 

Greetings from the Tulpehocken Region. 

When the appeal of the Lutheran people of Philadelphia, New 
Providence and New Hanover was sent to Rev. Doctor Ziegenhagen, 
of London, for a pastor to meet their spiritual necessities, and Patriarch 
Muhlenberg arrived in Pennsylvania in November, 1742, no one could 
tell of the importance of that call, and of the response to the same for 
the welfare of the German people in other parts of Pennsylvania. 

In the Tulpehocken region, 80 miles north-west from Philadelphia, 
between the mountains north and south of the present beautiful Lebanon 
Valley, German settlers had built a church as early as 1727, but from that 
year to the year i 743, they were without the regular ministrations of duly 
acknowledged Lutheran pastors. Their history in those years was marked 
by the want of regular ministers, by the imposition of vagabonds, by the 
strife and contentions marking this " Confusion " in which Leutbecker, 
Stoever, the Moravian ministers, and Kraft, were participants. 

The Trappe congregation, and the associate congregations, had en- 
joyed the services of their duly accredited pastor but a short time, when 
the Lutheran people of the Tulpehocken region, whose church had passed 
into the hands of the Moravians, and who had resolved to build a new 
church, the corner stone of which was laid on May 12th, 1743, appealed 
to Patriarch Muhlenberg to care also for them. 

Their appeal was not in vain. Muhlenberg visited Tulpehocken in 
the Summer of 1 743, and in the Fall of the same year, Tobias Wag- 
ner, recommended by Muhlenberg, became the pastor of the congrega- 
tion, and consecrated Christ Church on Christmas. Unfortunately the 
ministry of Pastor Wagner was not marked by that harmony between 
pastor and congregation which is necessary for the prosperity of a con- 
gregation. Sometime before his resignation the congregation had ap- 
pealed to Muhlenberg, and he had effected a reconciliation. After Pas- 
tor Wagner's resignation in the Spring of 1746, the congregation again 

I I 2 The Old Trappe Church. 

turned to Muhlenberg for help. He willingly aided them as much as he 
could, and consented to the location of J. Nicholas Kurtz in said region. 
Whilst the recommendation of Tobias Wagner proved unfortunate, that 
of J. Nicholas Kurtz, who was first a candidate, who taught and preached, 
and subsequently an ordained pastor, with full ministerial authority, who 
labored from 1746 to 1770 with great acceptance, was a great blessing. 
He was succeeded by Christopher Emanuel Schulze, son-in-law of Muh- 
lenberg, who was pastor from 1770 to 1809, assisted from 1770 to '73 or 
'74 by Frederick A. C. Muhlenberg. 

The Lebanon Valley from Reading to Harrisburg lias, to-day, many 
Lutheran congregations, whose history would be incomplete without a 
proper presentation of the services rendered by Muhlenberg, pastor of 
the Trappe Church, and his co-laborers, to the parent congregations in 
said region. 

On September 3d of this year, the sesqui-centennial of Christ 
Church, on the Tulpehocken, near Stouchsburg, Berks Co., Pa., where 
Tobias Wagner, J. Nicholas Kurtz, and Christopher Emanuel Schulze 
labored before 1800, was appropriately observed, and on last Saturday 
and Sunday followed the centennial of the Church at Womelsdorf, not 
far from the first home and burial place of Conrad Weiser, at whose house 
Muhlenberg visited often, and secured as his wife Anna Weiser, and not a 
great distance from the mountain on which on Eagle Point, Muhlenberg, 
Brunnholtz, and Hartwick, on March 22d, 1751, sang " Wunderbarer 
Konig, etc." and " Sei Lob und Ehr dem Hochsten Gut, etc." 

The ancestors of many of the members of the congregation at My- 
erstown, organized in 1811-12, whose first pastor was the sainted Father 
Baetes, for many years the honored and beloved Senior of the Ministeri- 
inn, were originally members of the First Church (Reed's), and subse- 
quently of the Second (Christ) Church on the Tulpehocken. 

On account of the relation which the Trappe region, with its Au- 
gustus Church, Patriarch Muhlenberg, Pastor Brunnholtz and other co-la- 
borers, and the Tulpehocken region, sustained to each other 150 years 
ago, as well as the bonds which unite us to-day in our common fellowship 
with the Ministerium of Pennsylvania, I had an ardent desire to attend 
the sesqui-centennial of the first .service in Augustus Church at the 

And now whilst I am here as a pastor of a Lutheran parish within 
Tulpehocken region, yet without appointment to represent the Lutheran 
people in said country, I feel confident that they will ratify what I would 
yet say to you on this glorious occa.sion. 

We rejoice in the early planting of the Lutheran Church at the 
Trappe. We rejoice that God has allowed the church in which the fath- 

Greetings from the Tulpehocken Region. 1 1 3 

ers worshipped 150 years ago to stand to this day. We rejoice that the 
congregation has for many years had the privilege of worshipping in this 
beautiful church building, erected in the present century. We rejoice 
that the congregation has, in these many years, had the faithful services of 
godly and able pastors, to minister to the members by the Word and 
sacraments of divine appointment. We rejoice with you that here many 
souls were regenerated, justified and sanctified, and made the heirs and 
joint heirs of Jesus Christ our Saviour. 

But what of the future ol Augustus congregation at the Trappe, and of 
the churches whose history is of like date? To these and to the congregations 
that were organized in the years that followed, I would say, let us stand 
firmly by the Confessions of our Church and her cultus, as did the 
fathers of 150 years ago. Your Church Record contains the action of 
the Augustus congregation on May 27th, 1750, which shows how firmly 
the fathers adhered to the doctrines of the Church of the Reformation. 
The proclamation at the laying of the corner stone of Christ (Tulpe- 
hocken) Church on May 12th, 1743, on record in the well-kept Church 
Book of the congregation, signed by 166 persons, shows not only their 
firm adherence to the Confessions of our beloved Lutheran Church, but 
also how carefully they guarded against the abuse of their sanctuaries by 

And what of the future growth of the Lutheran Church in this coun- 
try? The Ministerium of Pennsylvania, organized in 1748, held its 
third meeting in June in the year 1750, in Augustus Church at this place. 
The following ministers were present : Patriarch Muhlenberg, Pastors 
Brunnholtz, Handschuh, Kurtz, Schaum, Weygand, Schrenck and Rauss. 
The congregations had sent fifty-four deputies. Patriarch Muhlenberg 
entertained the ministers and the members of the congregation the deputies. 
The Minutes of the late Annual Meeting of the Ministerium of Pennsylvania 
contained the names of 295 ordained ministers. What a wonderful 
growth in these years on the territory now occupied by the Ministerium 
of Pennsylvania; but the figures — 60 Synods, 5242 Pastors, 9352 Con- 
gregations, and 1,330,917 Communicants in 1892, tells us of the growth 
of the Lutheran Church in America in 150 years. 

Was this growth attained without any labors of ministers and mem- 
bers of the Lutheran Church in the years that have passed ? How soon 
the names of many of us present on this joyful occasion shall no longer 
be found on the roll of the Synod ; how soon the names of many here 
present, who are now communicants of the Church on earth, shall no 
longer be regarded as communicants in the Church Militant, is known to 
God only. 

But would we labor faithfully for the preservation of that which the 


The Old Trappc Church. 

Lutheran Churcli has attained in this coinitry, and would we see her bor- 
ders enlarged to supply the spiritual wants of many in this country who 
are in great distress, and send also many messengers of Glad Tidings to 
those who are without the Word of 
Life in heathen lands? Then let all 
pray , and give liberally for the sup- 
port of institutions of learning ; for 
the aid of indigent young men who 
are called to the ministry, in their 
I,,,, preparation for the same ; for the sup- 
I l\\i port of Home Missions and Church 
Extension in our own country and 
for the support of Foreign Missions 
in heathen countries. 

Does any one lack the proper zeal 
for the Lord's cause ? Then let him 
go into old Augustus Church ; let 
liim remember that the record of 
the church shows that of the 
254 2s. and 8d. received to- 
wards the erection of the 
['church, ^^115 7s. were re- 
ceived by Muhlenberg 
from Hr. Hofprediger Zie- 
genhagen in London and 
Prof. Francke in Germany as collected monies ; let him remember also, 
that the first ministers in this country came from Germany, where they 
had enjoyed the advantages of good institutions of learning, by the liberal 
aid of Christian benefactors, and that many were receiving aid in the 
first years of their ministry in this country from Christian friends in the 

If such considerations be not sufficient, then let him kneel before tiie 
old altar in the old sanctuary, and let him ask God to increase his faith, 
and to fill his heart with love, that he may leave that sanctuary with the 
necessary inspiration to pray sincerely and to labor diligently for the ex- 
tension of the kingdom of our blessed Lord. 

God bless the pastor and members of Augustus Church, and may all 
of us, who have been permitted to rejoice with them on this festive occa- 
sion, return to our homes with increased love for the Church of our fath- 
ers, and give God the praise that is due Him for His grace. 

® ® 



Henry Melchior Muhlenberg, D. D., December 12, 1742 — October 7, 

Peter Brunnholtz, (associate), February 7, 1745 — June, 1745. 
John Christopher Hartwig, (substitute), October, 1761 — April, 1762. 
Jacob Van Buskirk, (substitute), May 16, 1762 — 1764. 
John Ludwig Voigt, December 13, 1765 — August, 1793. 
John Frederick Weinland, August, 1793 — February 4, 1807. 
John Peter Hecht, June i, 1808 — August, 1813. 
Henry Anastasius Geissenhainer, October, 1813 — April, 1821. 
Frederick William Geissenhainer, Sr., D. D., April 23, 1821 — April, 

Frederick William Geissenhainer, Jr., D. D., March 30, 1823 — March, 

Jacob Wampole, July 22, 1827 — April 27, 1834. 
John William Richards, D. D., May 11, 1834 — March, 1836. 
Jacob Wampole, April 4, 1836 — January 3, 1S38. 
Henry Seiple Miller, April 8, 1838 — May 30, 1852. 
George A. Wenzel, D. D., August 22, 1852 — September 17, 1854. 
Adam Schindler Link, September 19, 1854— March i, 1858. 
George Sill, March 27, 1859 — October i, 1863. 
John Kohler, D. D., January i, 1864 — September 27, 1873. 
Oliver Peter Smith, June 10, 1874 — May i, 1889. 
Ernest Theodore Kretschmann, June 23, 1889. 





Henry Melchior JMiihleiibcrg. i 1 9 


Eimbeck, a town in Hanover, Prussia, — where in 1826 the old Muh- 
lenberg house was destroyed by fire, where the family name has now dis- 
appeared, and where not even a tablet exists to cherish the memory of 
one of its most worthy sons, — is distinguished as the birth-place of Henry 
Melchior Muhlenberg, universally and justly acknowledged to be the 
Patriarch of the Lutheran Church in America. Melchior Henry, (the order 
given in the baptismal register at Eimbeck,) baptized on the day of his 
birth, September 6, 1711, was the son of Nicolaus Melchior Muhlenberg, 
descendant of a once baronial family, whose titles and possessions were 
dissipated by the Thirty Years' War, a member of the town council and an 
officer of the church, and Anna Maria {nee Kleinschmidt), daughter of a 
retired military officer. His early school training from his seventh to his 
twelfth year he received at Eimbeck, where he began the study of the 
Latin language. Obliged to leave school shortly after his confirmation 
in his thirteenth year by reason of the sudden death of his father from a 
stroke of palsy, he was put to work assisting his brother at his trade until 
his eighteenth year. The experience of this period was a hard discipline 
in the school of poverty, divinely blessed as a wholesome preparation for 
the privations and hardships of later years. His evenings, in obedience 
to an inner impulse, he had devoted to study for a number of years, and 
at the age of twenty-one was encouraged by Rector John J. Schiisster, 
whose private tuition he had enjoyed for some time, to re-enter the public 
school at Eimbeck. He now applied himself zealously to the study of 
arithmetic, Latin, Greek and other branches, at the same time giving at- 
tention to vocal and instrumental music. Like Luther at Magdeberg and 
Eisenach, in company with other choristers of the school, he turned his fine 
tenor voice to profitable account in singing before the doors of the more 
prosperous families of the town. The following year, 1733, he entered 
the school at Zellerfeld under Rector Raphelius, teaching four hours a 
day for his support, and devoting the rest of his time to a vigorous pros- 
ecution of his studies, mastering a number of the Latin classics and Greek 
New Testament, acquiring the rudiments of Hebrew and French and 
gaining greater proficiency in playing the clavichord and organ. After a 
year and a half at Zellerfeld, a year again at Eirnbeck, he was matricu- 
lated March 19, 1735, as a student in the newly established University of 
G<ittingen, his first year's support being secured to him by a stipend pro- 

I 20 The Old Trappe Churcli. 

vided by his native town. Here he enjoyed the special favor of his tlieo- 
logical professor Dr. Oporin, who gave him a room in his own house and 
employed him as private secretary. Providence raised up other generous 
and influential patrons for him in Hr. von Miinchhausen, founder of the 
Gottingen university, and Counts Reuss and Henkel by whom his three 
years' course was greatly facilitated. In 1736, he with two other students 
rented a room and opened a charity school, which soon grew into the 
Gottingen Orphan House and is still in beneficent operation. The fol- 
lowing year he was permitted to preach and catechise in the university 
church. After graduating in 1738 and spending a short time at the uni- 
versity of Jena, he was installed as teacher in the Halle institutions 
through the influence of Counts Reuss and Henkel. Here the serious im- 
pressions made by the death of his father and the religious awakening ex- 
perienced at Gottingen were deepened by his contact with the Halle Piet- 
ism under Gotthelf Augustus, son of Augustus Hermann Francke, founder 
of the Halle institutions, which left its impress upon his whole future 
course. At first he gave instruction to the lower but soon after to the higher 
classes in Greek, Hebrew and some theological branches, and as inspector 
of the medical ward gained an experience which proved to be of great 
practical value throughout his subsequent ministry. The plan of sending 
him as a missionary to Bengal lapsing because of a temporary lack of 
funds, he received a call on August 12, 1739, as pastor to Grosslienners- 
dorf, in Lusatia, for which, after sustaining a satisfactory examination by 
the consistorium of Leipsic, he was ordained by Superintendent Dr. 
Deyling on August 24th. As pastor at Grosshennersdorf he became also 
inspector and diaconus of the Orphanage at that place, founded and 
maintained by the Baroness of Gersdorf, Count Zinzendorf's aunt. While 
on a visit at Halle on September 6, 1741, Dr. Francke at supper offered 
him a call to Pennsylvania, adding that he should make a trial of it for a 
few years, to which Muhlenberg promptly responded that "if it was the 
divine will, he would and must follow whithersoever Providence deter- 
mined." He returned to Grosshennersdorf and preached his farewell ser- 
mon on December 9, I 741. Passing through Halle, Eimbeck where he 
saw his mother for the last time, Hanover, Amsterdam and Rotterdam, 
he took ship at Helvoetsluys, April 14, 1742, for Engl.tnd. Part of the 
way to Amsterdam was very profitably beguiled in taking his first lessons 
in the Dutch language from a Holland merchant traveling with him in 
the stage-coach. 

Arriving at England April i6th after an exceedingly rough ])assage, 
he was cordially welcomed the following evening in London by Rev. 
Fred. M. Zit-genhagen, D. D., Court preaciier of St. James' German 
chapel, and a slaiinch friend of missions especially of the Pennsylvania 

Henry Melchior Muhlenberg. 1 2 1 

field. Here he formed a brief but valuable acquaintance with a young 
man who, in 1745, became professor at Gottingen university, and subse- 
quently distinguished as an Orientalist, Exegete and Author, John David 
Michaelis. After nine weeks of the most profitable intercourse with Dr. 
Ziegenhagen and other Lutheran pastors, and further preparing himself 
for his future work by a diligent study of English, in which he had 
already made a beginning at Gottingen, he set sail for America on June 
13th. During this exceedingly tedious and wretched voyage of twelve 
weeks and three days, the great distress and discomfort he suffered from 
sea-sickness and more serious ailments, the meager accommodations of 
the vessel, the miserable stock of provisions and the failure of water, was 
poignantly intensified by the boisterous and godless behavior of the 
ship's company. Though frequently despairing of any good results, he 
after a time held service every Sunday in English, and daily ministered 
to greater profit and with more satisfaction to liimself, to a family of 
Lutheran Salzburgers bound for Georgia. 

He reached Charleston September 22A, and with pastor Gronau, 
whom he met at Savannah, proceeded to Ebenezer, Georgia, where he 
spent one week in delightful and mutually profitable conference with the 
Salzburg pastors. Revs. Boltzius and Gronau. The latter, in writing of 
Muhlenberg's visit, declared, " Never before have we spent so blessed and 
so happy a season at Ebenezer." Boltzius, who, according to Ziegen- 
hagen's plan, was to accompany Muhlenberg to Pennsylvania, went with 
him as far as Charleston, but owing to the uncertainty of finding a vessel 
for the voyage, after a few days it was deemed best for Boltzius to return 
to his congregations. After a delay of ahnost five weeks, Muhlenberg, 
on November rzth, embarked in an unseaworthy sloop, and surviving a 
most dangerous and miserable voyage reached Philadelphia on Novem- 
ber 25, 1742. His first sermon in Pennsylvania he preached at New 
Hanover, November 28th, in an unfinished log structure, his second at 
Philadelphia, December 5th, in a carpenter shop, and his third, Decem- 
ber nth, in a barn at Providence (Trappe). 

He was at once compelled to meet and withstand the assumed claims 
of Count Zinzendorf, who, calling himself a Lutheran even after he 
became a Moravian, whose dream it was to effect an amalgamation of all 
religious parties in which each might still retain its distinctive features, 
" was in a fair way to bring under him the whole German population ;" 
and to unmask the arrogant pretentions of a deposed Lutheran minister 
from Germany, Valentine Kraft, who falsely claimed to be a commis- 
sioned superintendent of all the Lutheran congregations in the province. 
Having succeeded in establishing his authority by his determined yet 
courteous stand, as well as by his credentials from Europe, he soon gained 

122 The Old Trappe ClmrcJi. 

the confidence of the people and brought his eminent gifts as an organ- 
izer successfully to bear upon the confused and distracted condition of 
affairs in the three congregations. Other stations were soon brought 
under liis pastoral supervision, and when in January, 1745, Rev. Peter 
Brunnholtz arrived from Germany as his co-laborer, after a joint service 
of five months he resigned the congregations at Philadelphia and Ger- 
mantown to his colleague, and retained Trappe and New Hanover, ex- 
tending his pastoral labors to many remoter points where congregations 
were organized from time to time. On April 22, 1745, he married Anna 
Maria, daughter of Conrad Weiser, Esq., Indian interpreter, and estab- 
lished his home at Trappe. Eleven children, four of whom died in in- 
fancy, were the fruit of this happy union. 

In St. Michael's church, Philadelphia, on August 14, 1748, he organ- 
ized the first Lutheran synod of America with four German and two 
Swedish pastors in attendance, the congregations being also represented 
by twenty-four lay delegates in addition to the entire church council of 
St. Michael's church. In the years that followed as additional pastors 
were from time to time secured and congregations multiplying, he made 
frequent missionary tours to the various Lutheran congregations in East- 
ern Pennsylvania, to those in New York and Rhinebeck on the Hudson, 
Hackensack and the other New Jersey congregations on the Raritan, 
and Frederick, Md. On February i, 1751, a pressing call came to him 
from the congregation in New York, but the claims of his own congrega- 
tions only permitted of a provisional acceptance for a specified time. 
Leaving his family at Trappe as a pledge of his return, he spent tliree 
months and eight days (May 17th to August 26th) in New York and 
Hackensack in 1751, and about the same length of time the following 
year (May 9th to August 3d.) Four days before leaving on his second 
visit he procured a passport and safe-conduct from Governor James Ham- 
ilton, permitting him to pass unmolested through the province and 
recommending him to the kind consideration of the authorities in other 
provinces. Probably the experience of his first visit convinced 
him that such a document was necessary or at least advanta- 
geous. It is interesting to observe that Muhlenberg, loyal to his 
adopted country as he was to his Church, on September 24, 1754, 
in company with Rev. J. C. Hartwig, proceeded to the Sujjreme 
Court at Philadelphia, and taking the required oath became a natur- 
alized subject of Great Britain."* For nine weeks, in 1758, Muh- 

(94) The restrictions limiting the adraiaston of foreigners to citizenship are of interest. 1. The 
privilege of becoming a naturalized subject was not accorded to any outside the Church. 2. It was 
extended only to such Church members as were in regular and good standing. 3. Koiuan Catholics 
aud Jews were excluded. This appears from the preface to the list of naturalized subjects in the 
Penna. Arch. 2d Scr. Vol. II, p. 295. which we quote : " Foreigners having inhabited aud resided for 

Henry Melchior Rhihlenberg. 123 

lenberg was engaged in missionary work in the Raritan congregations in 
New Jersey, and again visited this field the succeeding year for a period 
of fifteen weeks (June nth to September 27th). He was once more oc- 
cupied in missionary and pastoral labors in the Raritan field for four 
months in the Winter and Spring of 1759-60. In October of the suc- 
ceeding year, yielding to most urgent solicitations, he accepted a call as 
first pastor to Philadelphia, where the peace ofboth the congregation and 
pastor Handschuh, who had long and varied experiences in church strifes 
in different places, was very much disturbed by internal dissension, Hand- 
schuh being still retained as second pastor. On October 29, 1761, Muh- 
lenberg moved with his family to Philadelphia, infused new life into the 
congregation and after a time succeeded in reconciling the contending par- 
ties. He had greatly deplored that his absorbing, overwhelming pastoral 
duties and long and frequent absences from home made the neglect of his 
family and of the education of his sons unavoidable, and now that 
the opportunity presented itself, he sent his three sons to Halle 
in the Spring of 1763 to be educated and prepared for the min- 
istry. In 1766-7, to accommodate the rapid increase of the con- 
gregation under his aggressive work, Zion's church was erected, at 
that time the largest church in North America. After the death of 
his colleague Handschuh October 9, 1764, he was assisted in the pas- 
toral care of the two congregations from 1765 by Rev. Chr. E. 
Schultze, and in 1770, after the latter's removal to Tulpehocken, by Revs. 
J. C. Kunze and his youngest son, Henry Ernst Muhlenberg. Even with 
the more exacting duties of the city charge resting upon him, he still 
made frequent visits in the capacity of superintendent to many distant 
congregations, and continued to exercise a general supervision over the 
entire field. In the Fall of 1774, as the Ebenezer congregation was in- 
volved in serious difficulty and the two pastors there at variance with 
each other, having obtained a passport and safe-conduct from Governor 
John Penn, Muhlenberg, in company with his wife and one daughter, 
visited the distracted congregation, restored harmony, thoroughly revised 

the space of seven years and upwards in his Majesty's Coionies in America, and not having been ab-. 
sent out of some of the said colonies for a longer space than two weeks, and having produced to the 
said Court certificates of their having taken the Sacrament of the Lord's Supper in some Protestant 
or Reformed congregation in this province within three months before the said Court, took and sub- 
scribed the oaths." The certificates ot Muhlenberg and Hartwig showed that they had taken the 
Sacrament of the Lord's Supper on September 15, 1754. The names of naturalized Quakers to whom 
these conditions were not applied are given in separate lists. In the formula of the oath of allegi- 
ance, required of all immigrants upon their arrival, the following section (Penn. Arch. 2d Ser. Vol. 
XVII, p. 3) is inserted for the benefit of Roman Catholics: " I, A. B , do solemnly A sincerely 
Promise & Declare that I will be true & Faithful to King George, the Second, and do solemnly 
sincerely and truly Profess Testify and Declare, that I do from my heart abhor detest A renounce 
as impious & heretical that wicked Doctrine A Position that Princes Excommunicated or deprived 
by the Pope or any authority of the See of Rome, may be deposed or murtbered by their subjects or 
any other, whatlate State or Potentate hath or ought to have any power soever." 

124 •'^'^'^ ^^'■^ Trappe Church. 

the church constitution, secured the rights of the congregation to its prop- 
erty and returned to Philadelphia March 6th of the following year. 

In July, 1776, owing to impaired hearing and increasing debility, as 
well as to the prevailing political disturbances, after a pastorate of fifteen 
years at Philadelphia, Muhlenberg left the congregation in charge of his 
colleagues and retired with liis family to Trappe, where he spent the re- 
mainder of his days. He still at times preached at Philadelphia and as- 
sumed partial charge of the congregations at Trappe and New Hanover. 
In 1777-8, while the clouds of war were hovering over Trappe, he suffered 
much annoyance, considerable damage to his private property, and was 
exposed to- danger, but remained firm at his post and by his faith and 
courage stayed the wavering congregation through those dark days. In 
April, 1779, he formally resigned the Philadelphia congregation, and as 
he was being more and more disabled by physical infirmities gradually 
discontinued officiating at public services and preached his last sermon in 
Augustus church at Trappe, September 26, 1784. His general weakness, 
loss of hearing, failing eyesight, aggravated by various painful disorders, 
plainly told that the shadows of death were deepening fast, but the vigor 
and clearness of his mind remained unimpaired to the end. He gently 
breathed his last October 7, 1787. He was buried Wednesday, October 
loth, in the presence of a great throng of people. The large marble slab 
over his grave in the shadow of the Old Church eloquently proclaims that 
he needs no monument to perpetuate his memory. The Lutheran Church 
in this country is his enduring monument. His son-in-law. Dr. Kunze, 
did not deem it too high praise to say that he was the Luther of America. 
Like Luther, he was a many-sided, ever-growing, adaptable man, and like 
him, a man of the people. It would be too much to say that he was a 
brilliant preacher, but he was original, practical, natural, direct, always 
impressive, not without eloquence, and in addition to his own vigorous 
and lucid German, had a ready command of English, Dutch, Bohemian, 
Swedish, French and Latin, at times preaching on the same day to three or 
four different audiences in as many different languages. It was his aim 
to rightly divide the word of truth, and never shun from declaring the 
■whole counsel of God. His great fidelity as a pastor is strikingly exhib- 
ited in the numerous "examples" which he minutely reported to Halle. 
He never forgot his calling, always under all circumstances realizing that 
he was an ambassador for Christ, and praying men to be reconciled to 
God, instant in season, out of season, reproving, rebuking, exhorting with 
all long suffering and doctrine. As an organizer and a leader of execu- 
tive ability, he was without an equal. He placed the congregations on a 
solid doctrinal and constitutional basis, and welded them firmly together 
by synodical organization. His organizing faculty displayed itself 

Henry Melchior Jlhihlenberg. 125 

everywhere, in his ability to bring harmony and order out of the most 
discordant and conflicting elements, in the systematic, methodical way in 
which he outlined his sermons, conducted his correspondence, made his 
official reports, and kept his diary and financial accounts, and even in 
his handwriting. His solid learning evoked the wonder of his contem- 
poraries, who knew what little time his incessant labors and journeys left 
him for study. Dr. Kuntze, his most learned contemporary, declared 
" that his comprehensive erudition surpassed what he expected to find.""'* 
He was not a profound and great scholar but he might have been. Resist- 
ing the temptation, not without a struggle doubtless, to devote himself to 
scientific and theological research and literary work, he was convinced 
that the overwhelming need of pastoral work made it his duty to give 
himself up unreservedly to the practical care of all the churches, and to 
this conviction he inflexibly adhered. That was a spirit of rare devotion 
to Christ, from which every trace of selfish pride had been eliminated. 
With his saddle as his only study for many years, he had nevertheless 
"more accurately mastered the ancient languages (Latin, Greek and 
Hebrew) than had many a scholar, was an adept in theology, mental 
philosophy and medical science."* It was a well-merited distinction 
when, on May 27, 1784, he received the title of Doctor of Divinity from 
the University of Pennsylvania. Helmutli, who proposed his name to the 
trustees for the honor, testifies to Muhlenberg's humility in this comment, 
" The old father will no doubt smile at my freak, since I know how little 
he cares for the honor of the world." Muhlenberg earnestly requested his 
friends to ignore the title. 

The great pressure of pastoral and missionary labors resting upon 
him, gave him no time to figure as an author. A controversial tract in 
defense of Pietism, 1741, a sermon called forth by the Stamp Act, 1776, 
and the preface to the German hymn-book 1 786, exhaust the list of his pub- 
lications. His Halle Reports, though not written from a literary stand- 
point, nevertheless reveal a distinct literary talent and " as instructive ex- 
amples in pastoral theology are as valuable for their suggestions as any 
theoretical treatise on the subject.""' In his friendship he was cordial, 
sincere and frank, never hesitating in the spirit of meekness and love to 
point out a fault, and never simulating what he did not feel. No wonder 
that his friendship was so highly prized ! His influence as a man ex- 
tended far beyond racial or denominational lines. He was held in highest 
esteem by leaders of other communions, with many of whom he was on 
terms of intimate friendship. His appointment as a trustee of the cor- 
poration for the relief of Widows and Children of the Episcopal Church 

(95) Dr. Mann's Life and Times of H. M. M., p 528. (9G) Ibid. p. 528. 
(97) Dr. Jacobs' Hist, of the Luth. Ch. in the U. S., p. 228. 

126 The Old Trappe Church. 

is also proof of the estimation in which he was held beyond the Luiheran 
circle. Whilst always eminently loyal to the faith as confessed in the 
Lutheran symbolical books, he was tolerant of views that differed from 
his own. To his own conviction of right and duty he was always true, 
never compromising with error at the expense of truth. His open coun- 
tenance and ample forehead reveal intelligence, kindliness not unmixed 
witii humor, sound judgment, refinement and resolution. Not only nature 
but grace, by which he was what he was, might stand up and say to all the 
world this was a man, nay, more, a great man, and still more a good man. 
The Lutheran Church in America is honored by the memory of liim who 
is its Patriarch. 


He was a native of Niibiil, a village of Gliicksberg in the Danish 
province of Schleswig. Having received preliminary training in his native 
schools, mastering both Danish and Swedish, he pursued his theological 
studies at the university of Halle, at the same time teaching in the Or- 
phanage at that place. For a time he served also as catechist on the 
estates of a nobleman, Hartniann von Gensau of Farrenstiidt, who was 
deeply interested in the education of the young, and officially connected 
with the Halle institutions. On February 29, 1744, he accepted a 
call from Prof. Dr. G. A. Francke to become second pastor of the 
congregations in the province of Pennsylvania, preached a farewell ser- 
mon in a public hall at Farrenstiidt on Oculi Sunday, March 8th, from Acts 
20: 21, 25, 32, took leave of his friends and professors at Halle on April 
6th, and proceeded to Wernigerode. Here, on Friday, April loth, he 
sustained a highly creditable examination under Superintendent Samuel 
Lau, and the Counselor of the Consistorium, Ziegler, in the presence of the 
reigning court and the Count of Schwartzau, giving evidence of the fine 
attainments he had made in theological science, and the diligence with 
which he had studied the Word of God. Two days later, on the second 
Sunday after Easter, he was ordained in the Castle church by Superin- 
tendent Lau, three other pastors assisting at the service. In May he took 
sorrowful leave of his father, brothers, and only sister, at Niibiil, and 
journeyed to Hamburg. Here he welcomed as his companions for the 
voyage the two catechists, J. H. Schaum and J. N. Kurtz, and having 
obtained his passport, signed by the king of Denmark, in answer to Count 
Stolberg's direct request, and similar papers for the catechists, he took 
ship for England and after a stormy voyage of three weeks reached Lon- 
don on the 20th of July. After a detention of nine weeks in the harbor 

Peter Bi-wuiholtz. 127 

at Gravesend, the three companions finally set sail on November 29th, 
and after a tempestuous voyage arrived safely at Philadelphia on January 
26, 1745. The prayers which had been offered every Sunday in the con- 
gregations for their safe arrival, were thus graciously answered, and the 
three assistants were accordingly received with every demonstration of 
delight. A courier was immediately dispatched to Muhlenberg at Trappe, 
who hastened to Philadelphia, and on the following evening welcomed 
his co-laborers with the deepest joy. They held a short service of praise 
in the home of one of the deacons where they met, singing the hymn, 
"Praise the Lord, O my soul," (Lobe den Herrn, O meine Seele), and 
uniting in prayer. Of such vital importance for the work in Pennsyl- 
vania was the arrival of these assistants regarded, that the anniversary of 
the event was held as a memorial day for a number of years. Brunnholtz 
was at once introduced to the various congregations, at Philadelphia on 
January 31st, at Germantown on February 5th, at Providence on the 7th, 
and at New Hanover on the 9th. Kurtz was stationed at New Hanover 
as catechist and Schaum at Philadelphia. After serving the congrega- 
tions for five months jointly with Muhlenberg, Brunnholtz who by reason 
of physical weakness was unable to endure the rough exposure of travel- 
ing to the country congregations in all kinds of weather, " over unmade 
roads, fording the stream, through heat and cold, rain and snow," re- 
signed the country congregations by mutual agreement to Muhlenberg, 
and retained charge of the congregations at Philadelphia and German- 
town. From the very beginning, in addition to his other duties as pas- 
tor, he devoted himself assiduously to the instruction of the young, opened 
a school in the limited quarters of his own house at great personal incon- 
venience, and made his Kinderlehre one of the most conspicuous and 
successful features of his pastoral labors. In 1746 he prepared the out- 
lines of a constitution for St. Michael's Church, but proving more and 
more unsatisfactory as the congregation grew in numbers it gave place 
in 1762 (five years after Brunnholtz's death) to a carefully arranged con- 
stitution, the work of Muhlenberg, assisted by Handschuh and the 
Swedish Provost Wrangel. The dedication of St. Michael's church (be- 
gun in 1743 and carried to completion during Brunnholtz's pastorate) 
took place on August 14, 1748, in connection with the synodical session 
at which Brunnholtz served as secretary. Two years later the new organ, 
built in Heilbronn, was also consecrated. In 1751 Brunnholtz was re- 
lieved of the charge in Germantown by Rev. J. Frederick Handschuh. 
But even after this division of labor he was not destined long to endure 
the severe strain still resting upon him. He was always in feeble health, 
frequently prostrated by sickness for weeks at a time when his recovery 
was repeatedly despaired of, and after a short but most laborious and 

128 The Old Trappe Church. 

faithful ministry of twelve and a half years, he fell asleep on July 5, i 757, 
while Handschuh, bowed down with grief, was ministering to him at his 

As the Swedish Provost Parlin, who had been invited to deliver the 
discourse at the funeral, which was held on the 7th, was unable to attend 
by reason of sickness, and as Muhlenberg and Handschuh were too grief- 
stricken to attempt to speak, the young candidate for the ministry, Wil- 
liam Kurtz, preached the sermon from Phil. 2 : 12, 13. The professors 
of the Philadelphia Academy, all the pastors of the city numbering about 
fifteen, together with a great multitude of citizens and members of his 
congregation, gathered at the funeral to render a last tribute of love to 
their departed pastor, friend and colleague. 

Brunnholtz had never married. His library he bequeathed to St. 
Michael's church on condition that the congregation should be regularly 
served by a pastor sent from Halle, who in conjuntion with one of the 
members should have it in charge. It unfortunately was seriously dam- 
aged by a great fire that broke out on December 26, 1794, in Zion's 
church where it was kept at the time. Some of the volumes that were 
rescued are now in the Theological Seminary at Mt. Airy. " As apreacher 
Brunnholtz was simple, instructive, practical, experimental, and sometimes 
deeply solemn and pungent. He had no taste for controversy, and never 
went out of his way to attack those who differed from him, while yet he 
never hesitated for the fear of giving offence to bring out what he be- 
lieved to be the full meaning of the te.xt. He was fond of quoting from 
the writings of Luther in proof of his own positions."** Muhlenberg 
had the highest opinion of his "beloved colleague" Brunnholtz, and 
in his reports to Halle frequently testified to his- zeal, his pastoral 
fidelity, his lovable disposition, his mental gifts and rare unselfishness, 
traits which have conspired to render him a conspicuous figure in the 
early history of the Church in America and to endear him to all Lutherans. 

(98) The only obituary BrunDboltz received appeared in Christ. Saur's Pennxt/h-ania Berichte, 
July 7, 1757: " Rev. Peter Brunnholtz, pastor in Philadelphia, died Jay before yesterday early in 
the morning, and was buried to-day." In the Trappe church record of burials. Muhlenberg made 
the following entry ; " Early on the 5th of July about 4 o'clock Pastor Brunnholtz died in Phila- 
delphia and was buried on July 7th. 

(99) Sprague's Annals, Vol. IX, p. 18. 

John Christopher Harhvick. i 29 


He was born in the province of Thiiringen, Germany, on Jan. 6, i 714. 
After completing his university studies and filling a short engagement in 
I 739 under Dr. Callenberg in missionary work among the Jews, he accepted 
a call sent by Dr. Wagner of Hamburg, through Dr. Kriiuter, pastor of the 
German Trinity Church in London, to become pastor of the Palatine 
congregations at Camp and Rhinebeck in the province of New York, and 
was regularly ordained by Dr. Kriiuter on November 24, 1745, assisted by 
Rev. Pythius, pastor of the Savoy congregation in London, and the 
Swedish pastor Borg. He reached New York early in the following year 
and entered upon the pastoral duties of his congregations on the Hudson.'"" 
In 1747, without, however, resigning his own congregations, he took 
charge of Brunnholtz's work during the latter's sickness. He was one of 
the ministers present at the organization of the synod in Philadelphia on 
August 14, 1748. On his way back to his congregations he endeavored 
to reconcile the dissentient elements in the Dutch Lutheran church in 
New York, but without success. In September, 1750, he resigned the 
charge of his congregations to Lucas Rauss for six months, and 
visited Pennsylvania, preaching at Tulpehocken, Indianfield and 
at times in Philadelphia. From 1751-59 he was engaged at vari- 
ous places in New York with little satisfaction to himself and less to 
the people he served. It was on the occasion of one of his visits to 
Muhlenberg at Trappe, September 17-20, 1761, that he agreed to serve 
as Muhlenberg's substitute for a trial period of six months, after the latter 
had accepted his call to Philadelphia. In April of the following year he 
left Trappe, took charge of the congregation at Frederick, Md., where he 
he consecrated a newly built church. He next appears at the head of a few 
discontented members of St. Michael's in Philadelphia, holding services 
in the Reformed church. He explained his strange procedure in his first 
sermon by saying : " He only invited those to attend who were standing 
idle in the market place and for whom there was no room in St. Michael's." 
Muhlenberg and Handschuh, who held a private consultation concerning 
Hartwick's erratic conduct, concluded to take no public notice of his 
course. After the third Sunday, when the Reformed refused to accord 
him the privilege of their church any longer, he applied to Dr. William 
Smith for the use of the Philadelphia Academy, but was informed that 
the building would not be given to disorganizers. After this he filled 
very short engagements at Frederick, Md., Winchester, Pa., Boston, 

(100) The oft repeated statement that Hartwick came to this country as chaplain to a German 
regiment in the first French War seems to be unfoundeJ. See Hall. Nach. I, p. 184. 

130 The Old Trappe Cliurch. 

Mass, and other places, and in 1782, moved to Albany, New York, 
where, with some intermission, he remained until his death. 

On July 16, 1796, he visited Hon. J. R. Livingstone, one of his few 
intimate friends, and, though apparently in perfect health at the time, on 
the following morning, July 17th, in his eighty-third year, he sud- 
denly expired. The statement that he had a presentiment that his death 
would occur at this time, and that when he visited his friend Hon. Living- 
stone he announced that he had come to die in his house, seems to be 
without foundation.'"' His uncongenial temperament and striking eccen- 
tricities made him many enemies. During his first pastorate in New York 
he was bitterly persecuted by Rev. Wm. Berkemeier, who forwarded com- 
plaints against him to Dr. Kriiuter and in four circulated pamphlets 
denoLmced him as a Moravian. The charges against him, however, 
could not be established, and Hartwick was fully vindicated. One of 
his eccentricities was his great aversion to the female sex, and the fact 
that he had never married probably added to his instability, but in spite 
of his numerous idiosyncracies, he possessed many noble traits which 
Muhlenberg did not fail to recognize. That he was sincerely de- 
voted to the spread of Christ's kingdom may be inferred from the be- 
quest of his large estate of land, thirty-six square miles in Otsego County, 
New York, — ceded to him originally by the Mohawk Indians, with whom 
he stood in friendly relations, and in part subsequently confirmed by the 
government, — for the establishment of a missionary institution chiefly in 
behalf of the Indians, an object to which it was never devoted, .\fter 
the greater part of the estate had been appropriated and misapplied by 
fraudulent agents and a few unscrupulous executors, the remaining re- 
sources of the estate were applied to the building of a seminary in 1813, 
in Hartwick township, Otsego County, named in his honor, Hartwick 


Jacob Van Buskerk, the first native American pastor, was born 
February 9, 1739, at Hackensack, N. J., settled 1680-90 by descendants 
of the Dutch immigrants on the Hudson, of whom the Van Buskerks 
were the most prominent and influential. His father. Captain Jacob 
Van Buskerk, was in prosperous circumstances and a prominent mem- 
ber of the Lutheran church in Hackensack. Muhlenberg first 
preached to this congregation, July 18, 1751, and it was no doubt owing 

> Annals, Vol IX, p. 32. 

Jacob Van Busker k. 131 

to his influence during this visit that young Jacob was led to look forward 
to the holy ministry as his calling. After a preparatory instruction of 
four years under pastor John A. Weygand, he spent a short time in an 
English Presbyterian college, and then continued his studies privately 
under a Mr. S. as preceptor. At his father's request, Muhlenberg on the 
occasion of another visit to Hackensack in the Winter of 1759, con- 
sented to superintend his son's theological studies. Accordingly on 
January 15th, Van Buskerk accompanied Muhlenberg to Trappe and 
under his direction made satisfactory progress. In April, 1762, while 
still a candidate for the ministry, he became Schaum's successor at New 
Hanover and Zion's Chester County, was elected Muhlenberg's substitute 
at Trappe, and on October 12, 1763, was ordained by the Synod at 
New Hanover as diaconus to serve the three congregations. In 1765 
he accepted a call to St. Michael's church, Germantown, where he 
labored until 1769 when he became pastor of the congregation at 
Macungie, with which Salisbury, Saccum, and Upper Milford were at 
that time united to constitute a charge. This was the chief field of 
his pastoral labors. Here he purchased considerable property, estab- 
lished his home and reared twelve children, of whom there are still many 
prominent and highly respected descendants. In 1781 the peace of 
the Saucon congregation and pastor Van Buskerk was temporarily dis- 
turbed by the appearance of a new preacher on the field. John Beil, a 
member of the congregation, was suddenly seized with the conviction 
that he was intended for a preacher, for which he had neither gifts nor 
any previous training. Setting at nought the refusal of synod to entertain 
his application for reception, he started our to preach, giving the Saucon 
congregation the sole benefit of his homiletical ventures. They soon be- 
came convinced that, although John Beil was a very good man, he was 
not their pastor, and promptly informed him that that office belonged to 
Van Buskerk. Beil soon retired and in a short time peace was fully re- 
stored. In 1793, acting from a sudden impulse, Van Buskerk resigned his 
charge and accepted a call to the congregations at Gwynedd, Whitpain 
and Upper Dublin, Montgomery County. Macungie refused to elect a 
successor, hoping that Van Buskerk would soon return. Their hope was not 
disappointed, for in 1795 he once more took charge of the congregation 
at Macungie, and in the following year of Salisbury and Saccum, Upper 
Milford having in the meantime been provided with a pastor. He con- 
tinued as pastor of the charge until his death. While on a visit to Gwy- 
nedd, where on the preceding Sunday he had preached in the " old yellow 
■church," (torn down about twenty-five years ago) a short distance from 
North Wales, he died August 5, 1800. aged 61 years, 5 months and 26 
days. His body was buried in the graveyard connected with the 

132 The Old Trappe Church. 

church at that place. He was a conscientious and faithful pastor, 
specially gifted in catechetical instruction, and gained and held the con- 
fidence and love of his congregations. 


The first regularly elected pastor after Mulileiilierg, John Ludwig 
Voigt, was born at Mansfeld in the Prussian province of Saxony, on No- 
vember 9, 1731. In 1763, having enjoyed a liberal and classical uni- 
versity education and served as preceptor of the Orphanage and in- 
spector of a portion of the German schools at Halle, he accepted a call 
to Pennsylvania at the instance of Dr. G. A. Francke, was examined and 
ordained with his companion to America, John Andrew Krug, by the 
consistorium at Wernigerode, took leave of his friends and started on his 
journey. At Amsterdam, on his way to London, while walking through 
the city seeing the " wonders," a woman beckoned him to approach, and 
when he drew near pressed something into his hand, saying she wished 
to give it for his voyage as she heard he was going to America, and then 
hastily left. Recovering from his surprise he found the good woman had 
given him two guineas. At London, where he and Krug arrived on 
November 14th, they enjoyed a short but profitable intercourse with Ur. 
Ziegenhagen, for whom Voigt preached twice in the Court Chapel, and 
once in the Savoy church, of which Rev. John Reichard Pittius (Pytliius) 
was pastor. Having disembarked at Gravesend, January 24, 1764, they 
left the Downs February 19th, and after a favorable voyage of six weeks, 
enjoying the special favor of Captain Watt, with whom they held devo- 
tional services regularly morning and evening using the Book of Com- 
mon Prayer, they arrived at Philadelphia on Laetare Sunday, April ist, 
and were heartily welcomed by Muhlenberg and Handschuh. 

After preaching at various places, including Trappe, and thus obtain- 
ing some acquaintance with the field in general, Voigt was stationed at 
Germantown and Krug at Reading. Voigt became an earnest suitor for 
the hand of Muhlenberg's oldest daughter, Eve Elizabeth, but she, not 
esteeming Voigt less, but loving Christian Emanuel Schultze more, gave 
her heart to the latter. His appointment at Germantown was soon rati- 
fied by a regular call from the congregation, but he remained here, serv- 
ing at the same time the congregation at Barren Hill, only from June 
10, 1764 until December 13th of the following year, when on Muhlen- 
berg's recommendation he accepted a call to Trappe, Pikestown (Pike- 

John Ludivig Voigt. 133 

land) and New Hanover, moved to Trappe but soon after took up his 
residence at New Hanover. Here, during his pastorate, the present com- 
modious stone church was erected, and at the meeting of synod, Novem- 
ber 6, 1768, duly consecrated. 

On November 8, i 772, Voigt consecrated'"^ the newly erected St. 
Peter's church in West Pikeland, about five miles to the South-West of 
Zion's. Muhlenberg preached in German in the morning from Gen. 
28 : 20-22, and Provost Andrew Goernnson, of Wicaco, in the after- 
noon in English from Ephes. 2: 19-22. The Provost, little understand- 
ing the nature of the Patriarch, undertook to laud him and his family in 
his sermon, and thereby so confused and disturbed Muhlenberg in the 
worship, that, as he said, he was ashamed to raise his eyes. After the 
service he took the Provost kindly but seriously to task, and exacted from 
him a promise never to do it again. 

Zion's congregation, of which St. Peter's was a scion, now decided 
to build a new stone church. The corner-stone w^as laid two years later, 
on August 15, 1774, but the new building was not consecrated until June 
4th of the following year, when Muhlenberg preached in German, Mis- 
sionary William Currie, of St. James' Episcopal church at Evansburg, 
in English, and pastor Voigt performed the act of consecration. 
As early as August 12, 1764, Muhlenberg says in his diary he had 
promised squire J. Potts to preach as circumstances permitted at a 
place six rhiles from New Hanover and ten miles from Providence. 
This was, of course, Pottstown, where a small number (Hiiuflein) 
was organized into a congregation, which in 1772 or a little 
later was regularly included in the charge. But it became a very per- 
plexing quandary how to arrange services for all these congregations. A 
■division of the charge, now consisting of Trappe, New Hanover, Zion's, 
St. Peter's and Pottstown, was therefore eminently necessary. The diffi- 
culty was only solved when, on Muhlenberg's return to Trappe in 1776, 
he took charge of Trappe and New Hanover, assisted by his two sons, 
Frederick Augustus until 1778, and Henry Ernst from 1778-80. Voigt 
now resigned at New Hanover, removed to Chester County and soon 
occupied the stone parsonage near Zion's church on a lot of fifty acres, 
secured jointly by Zion's and St. Peter's. The title to this property was 
afterwards presented to the congregation by a Mr. Pike of London, 
through his attorney Benjamin Chew of Philadelphia. Voigt now served 
Zion's, St. Peter's and Pottstown as regular pastor and preached at 
Trappe every four weeks, assisting Muhlenberg, who, by reason of fre- 
quent absence and the infirmities of age, could not assume the burden of 

(102) }Iall. Nach., Old Ed., p. 12S6, elsrij. 

134 ^^^'^ ^^^ l^appe Cliurcli. 

the entire pastoral charge of the congregation. In 1777, after the defeat 
at Brandywine, when the American troops were quartered in his neigh- 
borhood, Voigt was denounced as a tory and much annoyed and abused 
by the soldiers for refusing to pray for the American congress. In the 
Spring of the following year, while the army was in Winter quarters at 
Valley Forge, both Zion's and St. Peter's churches were used as army 
hospitals. In 1779 Voigt had Zion's congregation incorporated. The 
same year, on November 16, Voigt, following tiie advice of his superior, 
was united in marriage by Muhlenberg with Anna Maria, widow of Con- 
rad Sollner, who brought him quite a dower, a fact which was of special 
advantage to Voigt, as he seemed to have a constitutional difficulty in 
making both ends meet. The following year Zion's congregation bought 
an organ for $150 of David Tannenberg"" of Lititz. It was conse- 
crated on October 9, 1791, the church being known from that time as 
tlie "organ church." 

About the year 1790 Voigt, feeling the encroachments of age, re- 
linquished his active duties at Trappe, though he never formally re- 
signed, and some years after, for the same reason, was excused from 
attending the synodical sessions. He, however, continued as pastor of 
the two Chester County congregations and Pottstown until his death. 
In 1799 he informed synod that he intended to resign the active ministry, 
and not long after, on December 28, 1800, both his ministry and life 
were brought to a close on earth. He died without issue, aged sixty- 
nine years, one month and nineteen days. Rev. Weinland made the fol- 
lowing entry in the Burial Record of the church: " Ludwig Voigt, a 
persecuted as well as a faithful teacher, after having served thirty-one 
years in the Lord's vineyard with all humility and fidelity, entered into 
the joy of his Lord, December 27 (!), iSoo, and was laid to rest in his 
deeply beloved congregation in Vincent Township, Chester County, on 
the 31st, a very large number of people following the body to the grave. 
Edifying addresses were made at the house by Rev. Geissenhainer, Jr., 
on Voigt's own selected words, Phil, i : 21, and Rev. Hoch on Isaiah 
57:2. Weinland preached from Luke 2 : 29-30." A marble monument, 
erected by his congregations in front of Zion's church, marks the place of 
his burial. He was a sincere, earnest, positive character, and though at 
times perhaps somewhat injudicious, won the respect and love of his peo- 
ple. He bequeathed his library to Zion's congregation. His skill as a 
musician he had frequent occasions during his ministry to turn to prac- 
tical use. "He was distinguished as a man of simple habits, earnest 
piety, fervent benevolence and an eminently exemplary life.'""* 

(103) He was the builder also of St. Michael's (Philadelphia) second organ, consecrated October 
10, 1790, and said to have been the largest and best in America at the time. A full description of 
this organ is given in Hazard's Register, Vol. IV, p. 37"i. 

(lOJ) .Sprague's Annals, Vol. IX, p. 42. 

, John Fi'cderick Weiuland. 135 


He was born April 27, 1744,111 Roeuibild, in Prussian Saxony. 
From 1769-72 he devoted himself with diligence to the study of theology 
at the royal Prussian Frederick's University of Halle, winning the esteem 
and favor of his superiors by his exemplary Christian conduct. Like all 
the Halle men he was engaged in the capacity of instructor and catechist 
at the Orphanage and worked with good results. Already at this time 
Dr. G. A. Freylinghausen regarded him as a proper candidate for the 
Pennsylvania field, but his debilitated constitution, the result of a recent 
severe fever, made it impossible for him to undertake such a trying voy- 
age. So after completing his academical course, he returned to his native 
home, and there served as a private tutor and preached as opportunity 
afforded. In response to an urgent request for more men, sent over by the 
Ministerium in 1784, and again in 1785 to Rev. Dr. John Ludwig Schultze, 
Freylingiiausen's successor at Halle, Weinland at length received the call 
to Pennsylvania, and, although the place of his appointment had not as yet 
been determined, promptly signified his willingness to go wherever the 
Lord might desire to use him. He was accordingly soon after examined 
and ordained by the Stollberg Consistorium at Wernigerode, and as the 
last missionary sent from Halle took ship at Amsterdam in May, i 786, 
and reached Philadelphia safely on the i8th of August. He began his 
pastoral career in America in September, 1786, at Germantown, where 
the congregation, notwithstanding the fact that for a time during the 
Revolution (1777-78) it was greatly scattered, and his predecessor Rev. 
John Fred. Schmidt forced to leave for a time as a fugitive, had been 
left in a flourishing condition. The following year he was received into 
the Ministerium. During his pastorate at Germantown, which continued 
until the Fall of 1789, he married Susanna . At the recommen- 
dation of synod he received a call to New Hanover, where he served as 
pastor until about the year 1795. In August, 1790, he began to assist 
Voigt at Trappe, assumed entire pastoral charge shortly after, and in 
1793 was officially recognized as the regular pastor. The Hil) church, 
Pike township, Berks County, was also added to his charge in 
1794, where he continued as pastor until at least 1797. At Pottstown he 
became Voigt's successor in 1800, but probably relieved him of his pas- 
toral duties there sometime before his death, as his entries in the church 
records appear as early as August, 1799. At New Hanover, Weinland 
became involved in serious difficulty. Charges of a personal character 
were preferred against him at synod byBernhard Gilbert in 1794, which, 
after investigation, were apparently settled. In the following year, how- 
ever, they were renewed, and as Weinland refused to attend synod to 

136 Tlie Old T7-appc Church. 

answer the charges by which he was being more and more implicated, 
and again in 1796, his name was stricken from the synodical roll. He 
now urged Dr. F. Wm. Geissenhainer, Sr., to accept the charge of tiie 
congregation at New Hanover, as he desired to leave and expected to he 
called to Reading, in which he was, however, disappointed. The weak- 
ness to which Wei nland succumbed, and which thereby became the ground 
of the charges against him, was his desire for strong drink. 'I'hat he made 
strong effort to conquer the habit may be doubtlessly inferred from the fact 
that in 1803 he made ap])lication to synod to lie restored, earnestly re- 
newed his refjuest the following year, and that, although the brethren did 
not feel warranted in receiving him at once, ihey expressed their kindly 
feeling toward him and the hope that a continuance of his imjjrovement 
would soon permit them to do so. But even after this his name does not 
appear on the minutes, as after the second refusal he proiiably did not 
again renew his application. He, notwithstanding, continued to serve as 
pastor at Pottstown until the Fall of 1806, and at Trappe until his death, 
February 4, 1807, aged 62 years, 9 months and 7 days. The Reformed 
minister of Falckner's Swamp (New Hanover). Rev. Fred. Lobrecht Her- 
man, jireached the sermon at his funeral, which took place on the 71I1. 
He lies buried in the Trappe Lutheran cemetery in a forgotten grave. 
Five of his children were buried in the grave yard of the Swamp Lutheran 
church. His wife, Susanna, survived him and on October i. 1807, was 
married to Jacob Arms at New Hanover."^ 


On February 28, 1790, in the home of his brother Anthony, whither 
his mother had fled from the yellow fever scourge from Philadelphia, after 
her husband was stricken down with the plague a few months before. 
John Peter, one of twins, completing the list of twenty-one children in 
. the family, was born. A few years afterwards, when the ravages of the 
plague had ceased, his mother returned to Philadelphia, and here John 
Peter was reared. He was a precocious youth. At the age of three years 
he began to read, and at five gained the Bible which had been held out to 
him as a promise if by that time he could read it freely. He received his 

(105) For this hitherto unnoticed record of his death and burial, copied from tlie Reformed Rec- 
ords at the Swamp (New Hanover), and according to which the statement on page 26 is tube 
corrected. I am indebted to 5Ir. G. S. Nyce, per J. M. Zimmerman. Esq., secretary of the vestry of 
Augustus church. Tlie latier's assistance also in searching several volumes of minutes of the 

vestry is gralefuHy acknowledged. 

John Peter Hecht. 137 

first school training in the parochial school of Zion's church, and so rapid 
was his progress that at the age often he had advanced in mathematics as 
far as surveying. When he was twelve years old he came in receipt of a 
stipend from tlie German society, and a few years later as this was given 
only to students at the University of Pennsylvania, continued his studies 
at that institution. At an early age he looked forward to the bol)' minis- 
try as his vocation, for which he was subsequently piepared by liis pastors, 
Drs. Helmuth and Schmidt. It is said that before he was seventeen he 
preached for Dr. Helmuth in Zion's church. Young Hecht (der yunge 
Herr Hecht, as he is referred to in the records) at the age of eighteen began 
preaching at Trappe in November, 1808, and at Pottstown, about the same 
time. Upon the application of the Pottstown and Amity congregations he 
was examined at the meeting of the Ministerium at Hanover, York County, 
Pennsylvania, in 1809, and on the 30th of May, 1809, licensed with full 
power to act as pastor. He was at once also elected as pastor at Trappe. 
He resided at Pottstown, and being as yet unmarried his tiiotherand sister 
lived with him and managed the affairs of the household. He already be- 
gan to give premise of the future eminence he attained as a gifted 
preaciier and as a pastor of great fidelity. The education of ihe young 
was to him a matter of vital importance and deepest personal concern. 
He began a school in his own home at Pottstown and re-opened the 
parochial school nt Trappe. Diu-ing the Summer of 1813 he preached 
his first English sermon at Trappe, but it proved to be his last sermon in 
Augustus church. The blind, obstinate prejudice against the introduc- 
tion of English services — the Achilles heel of the Lutheran Church in those 
days, and, indeed, the only reason why the Lutheran Church in this coun- 
try holds the fourth instead of the first place in the list of denomina- 
tional statistics, — forced his resignation. He now removed to Carlisle 
where he remained two years. Here he married Mary Ziegler of Harris- 
burg, a union that was blessed with eleven children, eight of whom long 
survived him. In December, 1815, he accepted a call to Easton, and 
became pastor of St. John's and the Greenwich congregation St. James', 
Still Valley, New Jersey. The St. John's congregation at Easton, having 
outgrown the capacity of the old church, erected a more spacious 
building in 1836, which has served the congregation ever since. As the 
rapidly increasing congregation at Easton was making the fullest demand 
upon his powers, he re.signed St. James' and continued the successful pas- 
tor of St. John's as long as he remained in the active ministry. Young 
men, preparing for the ministry, attracted by his superior attainments as 
a theologian and his success as a practical pastor sought his services as 
theological preceptor. Among the number ])repared by him for the 
holy office, were Henry S. Miller, a subsequent pastor at Trappe ; John 

138 The Old Trappc Church. 

Charles Alexander von Schoenberg, licensed in 1822 and sent as mission- 
ary to Illinois, who, however, drifted into the editorial and political field 
and abandoned the ministry ; William B. Kraemmerer, licensed in 1826, 
and for a nimiber of years pastor in Bucks County; Joseph B. Gross, 
licensed in 1827; Richard Collier, an Irish Ejiiscopalian, a weaver and 
school teacher at Easton, who became pastor at Spruce Run, New Jersey, 
in i834anddied there in 1861, and Nathan Yaeger, licensed 1844, died at 
Rieglesville, January 2, 1864. He was also instructor for a time of the 
distinguished surgeon. Prof. Samuel D. Gross, LL.D., and for some years 
held the German professorship in Lafayette College. At Easton he was 
elected a director of the public schools, of which he was an ardent advo- 
cate, and served also for a lime as superintendent. 

He resigned the active duties of the ministry in May, 1S45, ^"d in 
January, 1849, ^^ '^^e age of fifty-nine, hit earthly career was over. Dur- 
ing his ministry •' his diligence in official duties, his intellectual ability, 
his oratorical powers, his elegance and elevation of language, won him 
large audiences, and his impulsive warm heartednessand noble generosity 
of feeling and character made and kept him many friends. His active, 
intellectual activities were not always attended by stable, enduring bal- 
ance of conviction. He at times, under surrounding influences, seemed 
to accept and advocate views which were not his abiding convictions. 
He was charged with holding tenets which his most intimate friends ever 
affirmed were not his real convictions. He w-a.s a diligent minister of the 
sick, tender and fearless, and most careful of the poor and venerated by 


He was born at Miihlheim on the Ruhr, in the dukedom of Berg, now 
in Rhenish-Prussia, on Dec. 12, 1773. Having laid a good foundation in 
the schools at Miihlheim, he came to this country in 1793, at the age of 
twenty with his older brother Fred. William, by whom he was prepared 
for the ministry. He was licensed as catechist at the meeting of the synod 
at Baltimore, June 13, 1797, and under the supervision of Rev. D. F. 
Schaeffer, appointed to serve the congregations at North Wales, Whit- 
pain (Whitpen) and Upper Dublin. The license states that " he is 
authorized to catechise, to preach and baptize, to instruct (for con- 
firmation), to marry, and in emergencies to administer the Lord's Supper 
to the sick." On April i7lh of the following year he was married to 
Anna Maria Schaerer of Whitpen Township, Montgomery County, 

(lOB) Dr. H. M. Sclimucker's Hist, of the Liitli. Congs. at Pottstown, p. 37-8. 

Henry Anastasiiis Geisscnhainer. i 39 

Pennsylvania. The fruit of this marriage was four sons and five daughters. 
Henry A. was licensed as candidate in 1799. After Rev. Voigt's death, 
at the close of the following year, he was called to Chester County, and 
removed to that place. There was considerable opposition to his 
election at Zion's church, East Pikeland, and the contention waxed 
so intense as to demand the intervention of synod. He was elected 
only by the St. Peter's congregation, West Pikeland, while Conrad 
Fred. Plitt was called to Zion's. Nice's congregation, East Nantmeal, 
and that in Amity now also received his pastoral attention. Pur- 
suant to the application of these three congregations he was ordained at 
Easton on May 30, 1804, and two years later he accepted a call to the 
Jordan charge in Lehigh County. His call to three of the congregations 
of the charge, Jordan, Egypt and Trexler was issued on April 15, 1806, 
and to Ziegel, June 8th. From 1806 until the end of 1807 he had pas- 
toral charge also of the congregation at Macungie. At the laying of the 
corner-stone of the new church in AUemiingel, Berks County, on Ascen- 
sion day, May 7, 1812, he with John VVeygand of Whitpain, assisted 
pastor John Knoske at the service. He resigned the Jordan charge in 
1813 and followed a call to Trappe, in October. He was elected pastor 
at Pottstown in August 1816, and two years later at Limerick. In 
April 1 82 1 he resigned the charge and moved to Pittsburg, where he was 
pastor until 1823. While on a visit at Philadelphia in this year he was 
taken sick and was removed by his son Henry to his home at Trappe, 
where on Sunday, February 9, 1823, he died. His body was laid to rest 
in the cemetery of the church and a large slab placed over the grave. 
His mother, who died in 1816, lies buried beneath the same stone. Five 
pastors and five students of theology were present at his funeral, the 
students acting as pall bearers. The services were conducted by Rev. 
John C. Becker of Germantown, who preached from 2 Timothy 4 : 7, 8. 
His wife survived him almost thirty years, dying on April 30, 1852. One 
of his sons, Augustus Theodosius, who, according to the last request of his 
father, was educated for the ministry by the latter's older brother Fred. 
William, entered the holy office, and after a life of distinguished service 
died in 1882. 

140 The Old Trappe Church. 


Tlie older brotlier of Henry A. was born at Miihlheim, on June 

26, 1771. After his early school training at Miihlheim, where his 
grandfather was rector by whom owing to the early death of his father 
he was raised, and where he learned as a boy to use the Latin 
language fluently, as it was largely the language of intercourse at the 
school, he was admitted to the University of Giessen at the age 
of thirteen, and after a three years course, spent two additional 
years at the University of Guttingen. He then became privat-docent 
(^lecturer), was engaged in teaching two years, and afterwards served 
about a year and a half as vicar in two village congregations In 
1792, as Germany was at that time distracted by war and rumors of war, 
and as his grandfather was now dead, and the report of the death of his 
mother whom he was unable to visit in her sickness on account of the 
war had also reached him, he decided to leave the fatherland and with 
his younger brother Henry emigrate to America. On his w-ay, at Rotter- 
dam, he received a call to become pastor at that place which he, how- 
ever, declined. Upon his arrival at Philadelphia, early in 1793, '^^ ^^^* 
■directed by Dr. Helmuth to the New Goshenhoppen congregation, where 
he was elected pastor, and also at Trumhaur's and Schiitzen. On May 

27, 1794, he was married at New Goshenhoppen to Anna Maria, daughter 
■of Michael and Eve Reiter. The heritage of this marriage was six children. 
In June, 1794, his congregations applied for his reception into the 
Ministerium at Reading, where he was accordingly licensed as candidate. 
He does not, however, appear in the regular list of ordained ministers 
imtil 1798. In 1796 New Hanover was added to the charge and in 1799 
he moved to that place. In 1800-2 he occasionally ministered at Saucon, 
where for two years after the death of Van Buskerk there was no regular 
pastor. In 1807 he was elected pastor also at Pottstown. In the Spring 
of this year a Jew, who came from his native place, informed him that 
his mother was still living and enjoying good health, and that it was his 
aunt who had died and not his mother as had been reported. He 
immediately made arrangement-; to have her come to this country, and 
in the succeeding Autunm, after a separation of fifteen years, greeted 
her at Philadel|)hia as one risen from the dead. She died nine years later 
in 181 6 at the age of sixty-four years. Eaily in 1808, in accord- 
ance with Dr. Kunze's recommendation to his congregation at New 
York before his death. Dr. Geissenhainer became his successor. 
With enthusiastic spirit he entered upon his pastoral duties there, 
and labored for six years with marked success. In 181 4, being 
much depressed by the death of his son Augustus and his daughter 

Frederick William Geissenhainer, Jr., D. D. 141 

Sophia and being disheartened too by the disturbance in the congregation 
created by the introduction of English services, he resigned and leaving 
his children in the care of his older sister, wife of Rev. Jacob Miller at 
New Hanover, moved with his wife to Karthaus, Clearfield County, 
Pennsylvania, where his interests in a land and coal company were tem- 
porarily involved. During his stay here he frequently preached to the 
German Lutherans in the vicinity. In April, 1818, he moved to Chester 
County, where his son Fred. William, Jr. had charge of Zion's and 
St. Peter's, and became associate pastor. After his brother Henry re- 
signed the Trappe charge in 1821, he was called to succeed him, moved 
to Pottstown and served as pastor at Trappe, Limerick and Pottstown 
until 1823, when in April upon the recommendation of his successor at 
New York, Dr. F. D. Schaeffer, he was called back to his old field to 
take charge of the German portion of the congregation, and continued 
in service there until his death, May 27, 1838. In 1826 he was honored 
with the doctorate of divinity by the University of Pennsylvania. In 
addition to his pastoral duties he directed the theological studies of his 
brother Henry Anastasius, his son Fred. William, and his nephew Augustus 
Theodosius. Other students, whom he also prepared for the ministry 
were John George Roeller, Jacob Miller, Fred. Waage, J. C. G. 
Schweitzerbarth, J. W. Starrnan, Ernst Ludwig Brauns, Wm. J, Eyer, 
Mark Harpel, C. F. Welden, Fred. Miller and Lewis Schmidt. 

" Dr. Geissenhainer was rather small in statue. His countenance was 
uncommonly expressive, his eye remarkably clear, and when lit up in con- 
versation, beamed with intelligence. He impressed you at once with the 
idea that he had a vigorous, discriminating and well furnished mind.""" 
He was a man of fine literary attainments, an excellent Latin, Greek and 
Hebrew scholar, a learned theologian, and distinguished also for his 
profound knowledge of mathematics, chemistry, mineralogy and botany. 


He was the son of Dr. Frederick William and Maria Geissenhainer, 
and was born at New Hanover, Pennsylvania, June 28, 1797. He re- 
ceived his academic education from his father and other instructors, was 
prepared for the ministry by his father, and licensed in 181 7 to serve as 
pastor of Zion's and St. Peter's congregations in Chester County. From 
1818 to April 1 82 1, his father was associated with him in his pastoral 
charge, and when the father was recalled to New York, December 26, 

(107) Sprague's Annals, Vol. I.X, p. 105. 

142 The Old Trappe Church, 

1822, he sent iiis son to his new field, who served the congregation for 
some months until the father was able to take charge. Frederick William, 
Jr., now became pastor at Trappe, in connection with his two Ches- 
ter County congregations. One Sunday, during an exceedingly cold 
Winter, on his way from Trappe to his Chester County congregations on 
horseback, accompanied by Hon. Horace Royera prominent member of the 
Trappe congregation, he came to the Schuylkill at Royersford, when 
his companion suggested that they cross over on the ice, as the river was 
frozen to a depth of several feet and perfectly safe. But he met the 
latter's assurances that it was strong enough to bear a four-horse team, 
with the significant rejoinder, " Es hat ya keinBalken." Nothing would 
induce him to venture across, so that they were obliged to go by a very 
circuitous route of ten miles or more by way of the Pottstown bridge to 
tlie place ot appointment in Chester County. 

Ill March, 1827, he accepted a call as assistant to his father to con- 
duct English services "as long as St. Matthew's could be maintained 
without detriment to the German services." After he had served there 
about fourteen years, the congregation of Christ's church came into pos- 
session of St. Matthew's, and assumed the name. Dr. Geissenhainer then 
retired from St. Matthew's and founded St. Paul's congregation of which 
he remained pastor until his death. The church was built in 1842, but 
was superseded by another statelier edifice, consecrated in 1861. 
This new organization began with eleven poor families, but during his 
successful pastorate grew to fifteen hundred members, with a Sunday- 
School of six hundred scholars. The city of New York was the chief field 
of his life's labors and the place of his death. About three years before 
his end his strength began to fail, so that it bei-ame necessary to engage an 
assistant. In his last year he began the instruction of a catechetical class, 
but about four months before his death was obliged to resign it as well as 
all the services at the church into the hands of his assistant, Rev. Christian 
Hennecke. Though his mind occasionally wandered during his final 
;.rostration, he otherwise retained the full vigor of his faculties to the last. 
t!e did not suffer from any particular disease, but was simply "stricken 
in years" and died " in the fullness of time." On Whit-Monday even- 
ing, June 2, 1879, he gently and peacefully passed away, surrounded 
bv the members of his family. The funeral services were held on Fri- 
day, June 6ch. Eulogistic addresses on his life and character, were 
made in English by Dr. C. W. Schaeffer, then President of the Ministe- 
rium of Pennsylvania, and Dr. G. F. Krotel, and in German by Dr. Mol- 
denke and Rev. Henniger. At the time of his death he was the oldest 
minister in the Pennsylvania ministerium, his name standing first on the 
roll, and the oldest Lutheran minister in thecountrv. Seven vears before 

Jacob Wampole. 1 43 

his death he buried his wife who died Oct. 22, 1872, in her seventieth 
year. Two sons, Frederick William, counsellor-at-law, of New York, and 
Hon. Jacob A., congressman of New Jersey, and one daughter, Mrs. 
Jacob Hunter still survive him. His older sister, the widow of Dr. Jacob 
Miller, also suivived him two years and died at Reading, July 2, 1881. 

Dr. Geissenhainer, who received his doctorate of divinity from the 
university of New York, enjoyed the distinction of being the first Presi- 
dent of the Board of Directors of the Lutheran Theological Seminary of 
Philadelphia. He was eminently successful as a pastor, and loved by his 
people, who deeply mourned his death. "He was oi medium height, sparse- 
ly made but active. His face was decidedly of a German cast. His features 
were small and regular, and his eyes very small but very bright. In man- 
ner he was vivacious and cheerful, and was a very attractive and social 
companion. As a preacher he was original and practical, not glittering 
or imaginative, but terse, vigorous, and powerful, seeking to instruct 
rather than to please his hearers. He spoke clearly and with emphasis, 
with full command of the English and German languages. He was a man 
of tenacious and accurate memory and clear perceptions. His con- 
victions in regard to Lutheran doctrine were as fixed and settled as the 
foundation of the house in which he lived and died."™ 


\\\ the township in which he afterwards served as pastor, Towamencin, 
Montgomery County, Rev. Jacob Wampole, son of Jacob and Elizabeth 
Wampole, was born on December 26, 1802. He began his theological 
studies under Rev. Mr. Weiand at North Wales, but soon moved to 
Philadelphia to secure the instruction of the distinguished Drs. C. 
R. Demme and P. F. Mayer. Having been regularly examined after 
completing his theological training, he was licensed on May 23, 1826. 
His first regular charge was Zion's and St. Peter's, in Chester County, 
Trappe and Limerick, where he began his pastoral duties in July 1827, 
as successor to Rev. F. W. Geissenhainer, Jr., D. D. The following year 
he was married to Susanna Clementina Fisher, a member of Zion's 
Church, Philadelphia, who bore him two sons and one daughter ; one of 
his sons. Rev. Jacob Wampole is now pastor of the Shamokin charge, 
Northumberland County, Pa. After his death his wife who survived him, 
married a Mr. Hallman, and died March 12, 1890. Her remains were 
buried beneath the large marble slab erected over the grave of her first 

(10^) Dr. G. F. Krotel, in Thp. New York Times, June 3, 1879. 

144 ^^^^ ^^^ Trappe Church. 

husband in the Trappe Lutheran cemetery. From the very beginning 
Rev, Wampole worked with marked aggressiveness for tlie extension of 
Christ's kingdom. In 1833 Christ's church, Towamencin township, and 
St. Matthew's, in Warwick township, about five miles from St. Peter's 
were organized and added to the charge. This enlargement of the charge 
necessitated a division and Rev. Wampole accordingly resigned Trappe, 
Limerick and Towamencin in January 1839, and confined himself to the 
Chester Cout.ty congregations. After his successor at Trappe, Dr. Richards, 
removed to Germantown, he was re-elected to his former charge March 22, 
1836, now including, besides Trappe, Limerick and Towamencin, the 
New Jerusalem (Keely's) one mile from Schwenksville, which was 
organized by Dr. Richards immediately before his departure, and the 
English Lutheran church at Pottstown, to which he was called May the 
14th. He continued as pastor of the charge until his death, January 3, 
1838. In the Lutheran Observer, January 19, 1838, one of his most in- 
timate friends, who writes that their mutual love surpassed the love of 
brothers, testified to his irreproachable and examplary conduct and added 
that "as husband, father, friend, neighbor, and pastor, he was much be- 
loved and respected by all good men who knew him well, doing much 
and lasting good in all those relations of life." 


J. W. Richards, a grandson of Patriarch Muhlenberg, was born 
in Reading, Pa., on April 18, 1803. He was the son of Mr. Matthias 
Richards, Associate Judge of the Courts of Berks County, and Mary 
Salome, youngest daughter oi Muhlenberg, who were married in 1782. 
After finishing his preparatory education at the Reading Academy under 
the noted scholar and educator, Rev. John Grier, D. D., he was prepared 
for the ministery by his cousin, who had also confirmed him. Rev. Dr. 
Henry A. Muhlenberg, grandson of Henry Melchior, twenty-eight years 
the pastor of Trinity Church, Reading, and afterwards Representative in 
Congress, United States Minister to Austria and democratic candidate 
for governor in 1835. At the meeting of the Ministerium of Pennsylvania 
in 1824. he was examined by the committee appointed for the purpose, 
Drs, J. F. Ernst and J. Miller, and licensed as candidate. He began his 
ministry in the Earltown (now New Holland) charge as assistant to Rev. 
Charles Ruetze, then in a poor state of health, and upon the latter's 
death in October 1825, became his successor as pastor in the five con- 
gregations of the charge, at Earltown, Muddy (Mode) Creek, Bergstrass 

John William Richards, D. D. 145, 

and two other adjacent stations. In April, 1834, he resigned, and on May 
nth, began his ministry in the Trappe charge (Trappe, Limerick and To- 
wamencin). On MayiSth the newly organized English Lutheran church 
at Pottstown, came under his charge. He closed his pastorate at 
Trappe in March, 1836, having accepted a call to St. Michael's church, 
Germantown, where he continued in charge until 1845. I" November^ 
1845, he followed a call to St. John's church, Easton, and after a suc- 
cessful pastorate of six years, having restored harmony to the congregation 
whose progress had been seriously impeded by conflict and disunion, he 
was called to become pastor of the congregation of which he was a son. 
Trinity church, Reading. Here he faced the same conditions that had 
prevailed in his former charge, but by his meek and gentle spirit and 
admirable pastoral tact, succeeded in disarming prejudice, harmonizing 
the discordant elements and winning the attachment of his people. Here 
he labored until his death, which resulted from heart disease on January 
24, 1854. On the morning of his death, being apparently as well as usual, 
he conducted the funeral of one of his members. During the service he was 
suddenly seized with pain at the heart, and having concluded the burial 
service with difficulty, immediately returned home and in fifteen minutes, 
before the physician who had been hastily summoned could arrive, he was 
a corpse. He was buried in the city of his birth and death, in Charles 
Evans' cemetery. At the funeral. Dr. C. R. Demme preached in Ger- 
man, and Dr. J. C. Baker delivered an address in English. Dr. Richards 
was a diligent and accurate scholar, an eminent theologian, held in 
highest esteem by his brethren in the ministry, and deeply loved by all 
the congregations which he had served with unusual success. For a num- 
ber of years and at the time of his death he was president of the 
Ministerium. His " Fruitful Retrospect," a sermon preached at the one 
hundredth anniversary of the Trappe church — an excellent and now rare 
pamphlet — a sermon published at the close of his pastorate at Easton in 
185 1, the translation of Dr. Muhlenberg's journal of his voyage to 
Ebenezer in various numbers of the Gettysburg Evnngelical Review, 
1850-52, show that he wielded a ready pen. He had also commenced the 
translation of the Hallische Nachrichten, a work which in 1851 re- 
ceived the hearty endorsement of the Ministerium, and in which at the 
time of his death he had made considerable progress. During his resi- 
dence at Easton he was professor of the German language and literature 
in Lafayette College. In 1852 the honorary title of Doctor of Divinity 
was conferred upon him by Jefferson College. 

On May 21, 1835, he was married to Andora Garber of Trappe, a 
member of the Augustus congregation, who survived her husband many 
years. Two of his sons, Rev. Matthias H. Richards, D. D., professor in 

146 The Old Trappe Church. 

Muhlenberg College and H. Muhlenberg Richards of Reading, and two 
daughters, Mrs. J. V. Craig and Mrs. John McKnight, both of Reading, 
still survive him. 

" Dr. Richards was rather below the ordinary height in stature. The 
expression of his countenance was e.\ceedingly pleasant, indicative of a 
meek and benignant spirit. His manner of addiess was deliberate, not 
impulsive ; his voice was clear and distinct, his gait always staid and 
regular, never hurried. He was conscientious, sincere, methodical, of 
sound judgment, and though naturall)- diffident, was fearless in the dis- 
charge of his duty.'"™ 


He was born in Hanover Township, Lehigh County, on October 30, 
1 80 1. When two years old his father, Peter Miller, removed to Easton 
and pursued the trade of blacksmith and tinsmith. Here young Henry 
began his education in the parochial school under the discipline of school- 
master Mattes. He was prepared for the ministry by his pastor. Rev. 
John P. Hecht, but at the meeting of Synod in 1823, when his pastor pro- 
posed his examination, he w,as so ill that he feared he would be obliged 
to abandon the pastoral calling. Having, however, regained his health 
be was examined by Rev. Conrad Yeager, one of the committee appointed 
by Synod, and duly licensed. He began his ministry in the charge in 
Bucks County, consisting of Springfield, Nockamixon, Bedminster (Kel- 
lers,) and Tinicum, to which congregations he was recommended by 
his predecessor, Rev. Nicholas Mensch. Four years later ' Durham, 
which Rev. Mensch had retained, also came under his pastoral care. 
In addition to this wide range he served Appel's congregation which 
was organized during his pastorate. In January, 1838, he was called 
to the Trappe charge, (Trappe, Limerick, Pottstown English, Keely's 
and Towamencin,) and entered upon his pastoral duties in j^pril. 
After Rev. F. Ruthrauff's withdrawal from Zion's, Chester County, 
in 1840, he supplied that congregation also until 1842. In the 
Summer of 1848 he resigned at Pottstown, closed his ministry in 
the Trappe charge in May, 1852, and on June ist moved to Norristown. 
On December i, 1854, he took charge of Salem's congregation, Lebanon, 
and that in Annsville, but served only a short time. In January, 1864, 
he became pastor of the Geigertown, Forrest and Heidelberg (Eck) con- 
gregations and in July of the same year followed a call to Zion's and the 

(109) Sprague's Annals, Vol. IX, p. 165. 

George A. Wenzel, D. D. 147 

new St. Peter's, Chester county. This year at Phoenixville, where he 
resided, he re-organized St. John's German congregation which had been 
scattered during the war, and used the Mennonite meeting house for 
services. On September 29, 1872, he relinquished Zion's, two years later 
in November also St. Peter's, and confined himself to Phoenixville. This 
congregation built a church in 1872-3 on a lot purchased with money 
advanced by Mrs. Miller; the corner-stone was laid in July, 1872, and 
the new building consecrated July 20, 1873, by Drs. Greenwald and 
Spaeth and Rev. J. Neff. In 1872, Rev. Miller organized the Spring City 
Lutheran Church, to which the present pastor. Rev. Jacob Nefif, was 
called. Rev. Miller resigned the congregation at Phoenixville in Janu- 
ary, 1875. On March 20, 1823, he was married to Camilla Clemens. 
They had two sons, William H. Miller, M. D., of Williamsport and Rev. 
John Clemens Miller, who died January 5, 1859, after a short ministry of 
ten years, and two daughters, the wives of Revs. Nathan Yeager, who 
died January 2, 1864, and J. F. Fahs. Mrs Miller died at Norristown, 
October 11, 1852. Rev. Miller was again married two years later, in 
January, to Eliza Davis, of Easton, who bore him no children. She died 
in August, 1887, and two weeks later, August 29th, at his home in Phoe- 
nixville, her husband, then the oldest member of the ministerium, was 
also called to rest at the advanced age of 85 years, 10 months and 29 
days. In fulfillment of his last request, Prof. Dr. C. W. Schaeffer 
preached the funeral sermon, and Drs. Krotel and Schmucker delivered 
short addresses. Revs. O. P. Smith, Gerhart and Laitzle conducted ser- 
vices at the church and at the grave. He was buried in the family lot 
in the Norristown Cemetery, September i, 1887. 


George A., son of Daniel and Anna Maria Wenzel, was born in Ger- 
many on January 11, 1816. After his early preparatory studies he pur- 
sued his collegiate course at Jefferson College, and graduated in 1840. 
He was a student for one year in the theological seminary at Gettysburg, 
and completed his studies under Dr. C. R. Demme of Philadelphia. In 
1843 he was licensed in old St. Michael's, Philadelphia, and the follow- 
ing year was regularly ordained in Pottstown by the officers of synod. 
Hecktown, Northampton County, was the field of his opening ministry. 
Here he organized a congregation and labored for seven years. In 1850 
lie was called to Mt. Bethel, and after a pastorate of two and a half years, 
became pastor of the Trappe charge, in August, 1852. Two years later, in 
September, he became Rev. G. A. Reichert's successor as Dr. Charles 

148 The Old Tj-appe Church. 

Rudolph Demme's associate of St. Michael's, Philadelphia, and succeeded 
the latter upon his resignation in 1859, serving the congregation as pas- 
tor until 1864. This year he accepted a call to Pittsburg, where he built 
a new church and filled the longest pastorate of his ministry of fourteen 
years. He served also at Warren, Pennsylvania, two and a half years. 
In 1878 he became pastor at Washington, and resigned, after a pastorate 
of thirteen years, in 1891. Rev. Wenzel was married to Rachel B. Mc- 
Afee, who bore him no children. In June, 1887, the Doctorate of Di- 
vinity was conferred upon Rev. Wenzel by Thiel College. 

Besides achieving permanent results in his various pastorates by his 
devoted labors. Dr. Wenzel has left an impress also upon the literature of 
the Church. He has attained merited distinction as a translator, and has 
happily reproduced in English, among other works, the lives of Philip 
Jacob Spener and Paul Gerhart, and the Diet of Augsburg. He has also 
written and translated numerous articles for church papers and reviews. 
But his best and most enduring work, though probably not the most con- 
spicuous, was the service he rendered as a member of the Hymn-book 
Committee. Since 1891 he has been without a regular charge and now 
resides in Washington, Pennsylvania. 


Adam Schindler, son of John and Catherine Link, was born near 
Stanton, Augusta County, Virginia, in 1815. At a very early age he ex- 
pressed an ardent desire to preach the Gospel. This inspired the wish on 
the part of his grandfather, Adam Schindler, to have wholly accorded to 
him the privilege of preparing his namesake for the ministry. But the 
protracted illness of his mother for a number of years prevented him from 
taking a regular course at any one institution of learning. His theologi- 
cal studies were pursued partly at Gettysburg Seminary and partly at 
Wittenberg College. He was a member of the first class of the latter in- 
stitution under the presidency of the Rev. Dr. Ezra Heller. He entered 
the ministry in 1837. The previous year, on April 14th, he was married 
to Elizabeth, daughter of Rev. G. Reimensnyder. The fruit of this 
marriage was ten children, five sons and five daughters, eight of whom, 
together with his widow, still survive him. Two brothers-in-law, one of 
whom is now deceased, two nephews and one son, John Henry, of Lin- 
coln, Nebraska, are numbered among the Lutheran clergymen. Rev. 
Link's first pastoral charge was at Tippecanoe City, Ohio, in connection 
with which he served other stations in Miami and Clark Counties, for 

George Sill. 149 

about eleven years, two years in Fairfield County and two elsewhere in 
Ohio. He then accepted a call to Dickinson, Cumberland County, and 
entered the West Pennsylvania synod. On September 19, 1854, he ac- 
cepted a call to the Trappe charge and connected himself with the Minis- 
terium of Pennsylvania. Having been elected pastor at Huminelstown and 
Union Deposit, Dauphin County, on December i, 1858, he resigned on the 
22d, moved in March to Hummelstown and served there until April 27, 
1861. During this time he was a member of the East Pennsylvania synod. 
In 1 86 1 he was called to the charge in which he began liis ministry, Tip- 
pecanoe City, Ohio, and received an honorable dismission from the East 
Pennsylvania synod to the Wittenberg synod of Ohio. In this, his last 
charge, he continued to labor until disabled by sickness. In 1862, the 
question of his return to the Trappe charge was presented to him, to 
which he replied that " If God should be pleased to spare his life, and 
restore him to health, and the call would be without a dissenting voice 
and as spontaneous as the playing of a fountain, he would accept." But 
instead of being informed of his willingness to entertain a call to 
Trappe, the congregation received the sad intelligence of his death, 
which occurred on Sunday, March 30, 1862. He had frequently over- 
taxed his strength, and for a number of years before his death suffered 
from a complication of diseases. His funeral took place on April 2d, on 
which occasion Rev. Prof M. Diehl, now also deceased, preached the 
sermon from / Thess. 4: 13-14. He was buried at Carstown, Ohio. As 
a preacher Rev. Link revealed a singular power in appealing to the con- 
science and feelings of his hearers. His sermons, always carefully pre- 
pared, were delivered without manuscript, and generally under pressure of 
great emotion. His language was chaste and appropriate, his voice 
strong and his manner solemn and impressive. He was of an exceedingly 
nervous and excitable temperament, and perhaps at times too hasty and 
impulsive, but his Christian character was above reproach, and his per- 
sonal piety fervent and sincere. 


George, son of Daniel and Catherine Sill, was born in Bedford 
County, Pennsylvania, on December 19, 1820. After taking a partial 
collegiate course at Gettysburg, he pursued his theological studies pri- 
vately under Rev. George Leiter, at Mansfield, Ohio. He was licensed 
at Bucyrus, Ohio, November 10, 1841, and immediately began traveling 
as missionary through Union County, Ohio, then a very sparsely settled 
country. Living at Mount Vernon, he was obliged to pass through sev- 

150 The Old Trappe CJncrcJi. 

eral forests, one twelve miles in extent, the only sign of hiunan habitation 
being a few log cabins. Five or six miles West of Mount Vernon was a 
German settlement of Lutherans where he preached during the Winter 
in one of the cabins. There are now two large Lutheran churches in that 
community. The following Spring Rev. Sill became assistant to Rev. W. 
G. Keil, at Senecaville, Ohio, and once in four weeks supplied a congre- 
gation in Belmont County, Ohio, forty miles distant from his place of 
residence. But after two years of exposure and hard work, his health 
failed him and he was obliged to resign. As soon as his health was re- 
stored, having been ordained by the Miami synod in October, 1843, at 
Wooster, Ohio, he resumed his missionary labors in various parts of Mont- 
gomery, Lebanon, Preble and Butler Counties, Ohio. In the Spring of 
1S45 he was called to the Milville charge. Here he organized a congre- 
gation in Hamilton, Butler County, Ohio, and one at Darrtown, where a 
church was soon erected. On account of the severe and protracted illness 
of his wife he resigned in September, 1848. During this pastorate he 
was elected a member of the Board of Directors of Wittenburg College 
by the Miami synod. Rev. Sill now moved to Pennsylvania, and on 
April I, 1849, became pastor of the Belleville charge in Mifflin County, 
in connection with which he organized a congregation and built a church 
at Yeagertown. He resigned April i. 1855, and immediately after as- 
sumed the pastorate of the Grindstone Hill charge, where he remained as 
pastor until he was called to Trappe in the Spring of 1859. In 1862 he 
organized St. John's German Lutheran congregation at Phoenixville, 
where a mission had been previously started by Rev. H. W. Ries in 1859. 
In the Fall of 1863 he accepted a call to Whitemarsh, Montgomery 
County, and served the congregation there and at Upper Dublin until 
March i, 1869. On April i, 1S69, the four congregations of the Turbot- 
ville charge, (Turbotville, Fulmer, Paradise and McEwensville,) North- 
umberland County, came under his pastoral supervision. He resigned 
June 20, 1870, and one vi'eek later preached his introductory sermon 
in the Manchester, Md., charge. After a pastorate of eleven years, 
during which time he organized a congregation and built a church at 
Snydersburg, he resigned March 26, 1881, moved to Ohio, and supplied 
the Philadelphia charge in Logan County for one year. From May, 
1882 to 1885, ^^ served the Fisher's charge, Allen County, Ohio, supply- 
ing also as circumstances permitted the Middlepoint charge in Van Wert 
County. In July, 1885, he following a call to the Fryburg charge, Clar- 
ion County, Pennsylvania, which on December 5th of the following year 
his impaired health, after several months prostration, forced him to re- 

He entered upon his last charge in May, i8go, as pastor of St. James' 

John Kohler, D. D. 151 

Lutheran church Chalfont, Bucks County, which he served until Novem- 
ber 12, 1893, when failure of sight constrained him to lay down the active 
work of the ministry after a service of fifty-two years. During his 
Trappe pastorate he was a member of the Ministerium of Pennsylvania 
and since then has been connected with the East Pennsylvania synod. 
For several years he served as a director of the Lutheran Theological 
Seminary at Gettysburg and as a member of the Board of Publication of 
the East Pennsylvania synod. 

Rev. Sill was married on March 4, 1845, '° Hannah M. Mulford who 
died December 23, 1892. She bore him nine children, four of whom 
died in infancy. In January, 1893, he buried his son Mulford who was 
born at Trappe. He now resides in his own home in Philadelphia where 
one of his daughters conducts the affairs of the household. Rev. Sill is 
still vigorous in body and mind, and frequently engaged in assisting other 
pastors and supplying vacant pulpits. 


John, son of .\ndrew and Anna M. Kohler, was born in Juniata 
County, Pennsylvania, May 27, 1820. He received his classical educa- 
tion in Pennsylvania College at Gettysburg, and after graduating in 1842 
took his theological course in the Lutheran Theological Seminary at that 
place. After his ordination in 1844 he was sent as Home Missionary to 
Williamsport, Pennsylvania. Services were held at this place as early as 
1816 and probably earlier, and in 1826 an organized congregation and a 
union church were in existence. But before Dr. Kohler's arrival there had 
been a long vacancy and most woeful neglect. Dr. Kohler, who entered 
upon his missionary duties November i, 1845, preached in German, and 
also introduced English services. So successful were his labors that after 
two years this mission became a self-sustaining congregation, out of which 
an English and a German congregation were subsequently formed. At Wil- 
liamsport Dr. Kohler held services every two weeks and on the inter- 
mediate Sundays preached at two other points five miles apart and six 
miles distant from Williamsport, to which stations he traveled regularly 
on foot. He resigned the charge October 31, 1849, ^"d o^i March ist of 
the following year became pastor of the congregation at New Holland. 
In addition to his services at New Holland, where during his pastorate 
a new church was built, he supplied two other preaching points on 
Sunday afternoons, where members of the congregation were living but 
not in sufficient numbers to form a congregation, averaging three services 
every other Sunday. In the Fall of 1.S63 he resigned and accepted 

152 The Old Trappe Chnrc/i. 

a call to the Trappe charge, wliich he assumed January i, 1864. During 
his pastorate here which closed September 27, 1873, ''^ 'o'' ^ number of 
years ])reached once in tour weeks at the almshouse. On October i, 
1873, '^^ ^odk charge of the congregation at Stroudsburg, from which he 
was called in the Fall of 1882 to fill the Principalship of the Preparatory 
department of Muhlenberg College, and after two years of academic ser- 
vice resumed pastoral labors at Leacock (formerly Mechanicsburg,) 
June I, 1884. While pastor of this charge he had church extensively 
renovated, the special improvements being re-roofing, frescoing and the 
addition of a recess to the building. On September 30, 1893, Dr. 
Kohler relinquished this field and since then, though actively engaged in 
preaching as opportunity offers, has been without a regular charge. He 
has served the church in various positions of influence throughout his 
ministry. From 1870-81 he was a member of the Examining Commit- 
tee of the Ministeriura of Pennsylvania and has served in the same capac- 
ity since 18S6. He enjoys the distinction also of having been a Director 
of the Lutheran Theological Seminary of Philadelphia since its inception. 
He was appointed a member of the English Hymn-Book and Church- 
Book Committee into which the former was merged. In 1890 the Doc- 
torate of Divinity was conferred upon him by Muhlenberg College, mak- 
ing the sixth of the pastors of the Trappe congregation who received this 
degree. Dr. Kohler has been industrious also with his pen, and his con- 
tributions to various church periodicals have been frequent and meritori- 
ous, the best known being " The Episcopate for the Lutheran Church in 
America" and a history of the New Holland church, which appeared in 
various numbers of The Missionary, published by Dr. William Passavant 
but long since discontinued. In 1869 the Ordination sermon which Dr. 
Kohler was ap[)ointed to preach at synod in that year was published by 
request. He has on various other special occasions delivered addresses 
and sermons, one of the latter being also in print. 

Dr. Kohler was married on February 26, 1846, to Louisa A. Baum, 
of New Berlin, Pennsylvania, who bore him five sons and four daughters, 
all of whom are living. Two of his sons are in the active ministry of the 


Oliver Peter, son of Frederick and Mary Smith, was born at Tri]ioli, 
Lehigli Coimty, Pennsylvania, September 4, 1848, and is the youngest of 
eight cliildren. He received his first instruction from his father, who 
was then a teacher in the public school of that place, and at the age of 

Oliver Peter Smith. 153 

ten his brother Theodore became his tutor. He prepared for college in 
the Allentown Collegiate Institute and Military Academy, entered Muh- 
lenberg College in the Fall of 1868 and graduated in 1871. For one 
year while at college he was engaged by the school board of Allentown 
as instructor of German in the public schools. After graduating from the 
Lutheran Theological Seminary, Philadelphia, in 1874, he was ordained 
to the ministry at Lancaster on June 3d. On the Sunday following his 
ordination he was installed as pastor of the Trappe charge and served un- 
til 1889, when he became Dr. B. M. Schmucker's successor as pastor of 
the church of the Transfiguration in Pottstown where he continues vig- 
orously to prosecute his pastoral labors. During his pastorate at Trappe, 
where he also served in the capacity of German Professor in Washington 
Hall Institute, the church was remodeled at a cost of §7000, a new union 
church built at Limerick at a cost of gio,ooo and a Lutheran church at 
Schwenksville costing about ^15,000. Since he has been pastor at Potts- 
town the church has been remodeled, the church property much im- 
proved and a fine parsonage erected. He was president of the first district 
Conference of the Ministerium of Pennsylvania, 1890-92, and for a num- 
ber of years has been a member of the Board of Directors of the Theo- 
logical Seminary, Mt. Airy, Philadelphia, serving for a time as secretary. 
He was married June 23, 1874, to Laura Afifie Barnes, daughter of 
Ezra R. Barnes, Esq., of Bridgeport, Connecticut. She died June 30, 
1884, and left him no children. Rev. Smith was again married on 
October 21, 1886, to Mary Matilda Hobson, and they are now 
the happy parents of two prospective candidates for the ministry. 
" The subject of this sftetch uses the English and German language with 
equal ease and fluency, which gives him the qualification for distin- 
guished usefulness in his church. His style in the pulpit is free and earnest 
accompanied with great force. When preparing his sermons he draws 
them up with great care in manuscript form, but never uses a note in the 
pulpit, which makes hnn especially popular as a speaker.""" 

(110) Hist, of Mont. Co., p. 1060. 

154 The Old Trappe Church. 


It is interesting to remember that the distinguished patriarch of the 
Lutheran Church in America was the head also of a distinguished 
family. As most of Muhlenberg's children spent their early years at 
Trappe, as two of his sons for a time sustained pastoral relations to 
the congregation as assistants to their father, and as several of his chil- 
dren have here found their last resting place, it will not be without per- 
tinency and interest to add some further biographical account of the 

Eight of Henry IVl. Muhlenberg's eleven children were born at 
Trappe, and the remaining three at Philadelphia. Three, John Charles, 
born November i8, 1760; Catherine Salome, born April 18, 1764 and 
Emanuel Samuel, born July 11, 1769, died in infancy, and John Enoch 
Samuel, born August 21, 1758, died in early childhood at the age of six 
years on February 16, 1764. 


Peter Muhlenberg — as the first-born son of Henry Melchior and 
Anna Maria Muhlenberg always abbreviated his autograph — was born at 
Trappe, October i, 1746. After a preliminary school training at Trappe, 
and a few years at the Philadelphia academy, he with his two younger 
brothers was sent to Halle on April 27, 1763. to be educated and pre- 
pared for the ministry. In a letter to the Halle authorities the father 
stated that Peter's chief fault was his fondness for hunting and fishing, 
and advised, that if Peter should not prove tractable, he should be sent 
to a well disciijlined garrison town where he might "obey the drum if 
he would not follow the Spirit ot God." .After some time, as the Halle 
discipline and the close application proved irksome, he was apprenticed 
to a druggist at Liibeck for a term of six years, but being soon disgusted 
with the limited opportunities of his apprenticeship, he took sudden leave 
of his employer, enlisted in a company of dragoons passing thidugh the 
town, and was soon engaged as secretary of the regiment. After his dis- 
charge h;id been obtained by a British colonel who had formed Muhlen- 
berg's acquaintance some years before in .America, Peter with his 

John Peter Gabriel Muhlenberg. 155 

rescuer returned to his native land in 1766. In obedience to his 
father's wish and to a great extent owing to the happy influence of 
Provost Dr. Wrangel, who personally conducted his theological 
studies, he gave himself seriously to the work of preparing for the 
ministry. Examined June 20, 1769, he was licensed to serve the 
New Germantown and Bedminster, N. J., congregations, where he 
had already for some time acted as his father's substitute. While 
here he married Anna Barbara Meyer, of Philadelphia, on Novem- 
ber 6, 1770. Resigning his charge to accept a call to Woodstock, 
Virginia, where the state laws required Episcopal ordination to enable a 
minister legally to discharge all the functions of his office, to " perform 
marriage ceremonies " and " enforce the payment of tithes," he set sail 
for England March 2, 1772, was ordained a priest in the King's chapel 
in London April 21st, and upon his return in the Fall entered upon his 
pastoral duties in his new charge. It is said that for recreation he occa- 
sionally indulged in the sports of the field and at times hunted in com- 
pany with Washington, who, skilled marksman as he was admitted that 
he was outmatched by the Lutheran pastor. 

Throughout the exciting preliminaries of the Revolution and the 
war itself he took a conspicuous and distinguished part. Elected a mem- 
ber of the House of Burgesses, and a delegate to the state convention in 
1774 where he became an ardent supporter of Patrick Henry, he in 
December of the following year was appointed colonel of the eighth 
regiment of the state militia, — his appointment being strongly urged by 
Washington and Henry. AVhen a short time afterward he concluded his 
farewell sermon to his people with the memorable words, " there is a time 
to preach and a time to pray ; there is also a time to fight and that time has 
now come," he threw aside his gown and stood before his awed congre- 
gation girded in his colonel's uniform. He was actively engaged in the 
battles of Sullivan's Island, Brandywine, Germantown, Monmouth Court- 
house, Stony Point and Yorktown. On February 21, 1776, he was 
appointed a Brigadier-general and on September 30, 1783, Congress 
recognized his efficient and heroic service by advancing him to the rank 
of Major-general. Whilst the army was in Winter quarters at Valley 
Forge he frequently visited his father at Trappe, spending the night with 
him and returning to camp in the morning. But when his movements 
were reported to the enemy, a carefully arranged plan was made to cap- 
ture him from which only the fleetness of his horse enabled him to escape. 
In 1784 he journeyed to Ohio to locate lands received for service during 
the war, with the intention of subsequently settling there, but his call to 
civil responsibility frustrated the plan. Under Benj. Franklin's presi- 
dency of Penna. , he was elected in the Fall of 1785 as Vice President, 

156 The Old Trappe CInirch. 

and re-elected until 1788. In December of this year he became a 
member of the first congress under the new constitution and was returned 
■to the third congress in 1793. On February 18, 1801, he was elected a 
member of the United States senate, but after a few months resigned and 
accepted from President Jefferson the appointment of Supervisor of the 
Internal revenue of Pa. In July, 1802, he was appointed Collector of 
the Port of Phila., retaining the position until his death, which occurred 
at Phila., October i, 1807. Two sons, Peter, a major in the war of 1812, 
and Francis, congressman from Ohio, and one daughter survived him. 
He was buried beside his father in the grave-yard of the Old Trappe 
Church. General Peter Muhlenberg was "tall in person, very active in 
body and of undaunted heroism. His coolness and determination made 
him one of the men on whom Gen. Washington relied for success." " He 
was brave and generous to a fault, cool in danger, sound in judgment, 
indifferent to fame, zealous in duty, — these were his distinguishing traits 
as a soldier.'"" He was one of the two most distinguished soldiers of 
Pennsylvania, whose statues were placed in the Capitol at Washington. 


Born on the evening of January i, 1750, baptized January 15th, the 
second son of the Patriarch received the name of Frederick Augustus 
Conrad in honor of his grandfather Conrad Weiser, and of Drs. Frederick 
M. Ziegenhagen and G. Augustus Francke, sponsors. After receiving a 
six years' classical and theological training at Halle, and a course also in 
vocal and instrumental music, he with his brother Henry Ernest at the 
meeting of the Ministerium at Reading, 1770, passed a highly creditable 
examination, conducted in Latin by Rev. J. L. Voigt, and was there or- 
dained on October ^sth. After serving a \&\s years as assistant to Rev. 
•C. E. Schultze, at Tulpehocken, Schaefifertown and Lebanon, he became 
the successful and highly esteemed pastor of Christ's church, New York, 
1773-6. To him belongs the honor of having made the first movement 
toward the organization of a Synod in New York, — a movement which 
was however not consummated until 1786 by Dr. Kunze. Upon the 
entrance of British troops into New York in 1776, he was compelled to 
leave the city because of his ardent espousal of the patriot cause, re- 
moved to his father at Trappe, and in the following year settled at New 
Hanover, assisting his father in his charge and soon extending his pas- 
toral labors to Oley, New Goshenhoppen and Reading. Yielding to the 

(111) Life of .Major-General Peter Mublenberg, by Henry A. Muhlenberg, p. 333. 

Gotthilf Heujy Ernest Muhlenberg. 157- 

pressure brought to bear upon him, chiefly by his German friends, he 
resigned the pulpit for the forum, being appointed to fill a vacancy in 
the Continental Congress, March 2, 1779, and elected lor the full term 
on November 12th. The following year he was elected a representative 
of Philadelphia in the State Assembly over which he presided for two 
terms. In 1783 a resumption of pastoral work was contemplated, but 
before the plan of sending him to Ebenezer could mature, he was elected 
to the Board of Censors of Pennsylvania and chosen its president. Re- 
signing the position of Justice of the Peace and Judge of Montgomery 
County after a few months incumbency in 1784, he served as Register 
of Wills until January 14, 1789. Under the federal constitution, adopted 
by the State Assembly December 13, 1787, when he again served as pres- 
ident, he was elected and three times re-elected to the House of Repre- 
sentatives, and as speaker of the first and third houses presided with dig- 
nity and marked ability. His casting vote, April 29, 1796, in the noted 
Jay Treaty with England, deserves 10 be specially mentioned as having 
in all probability averted another war. In 1798 his political activity 
ceased, and after filling a short appointment as Receiver General of the 
Land Office in 1800, he retired the same year to Lancaster, where he 
died, June 4, 1801. He was married to Catherine Schaefer, daughter of 
one of the elders of the Philadelphia congregation. Six of his children 
survived him. 

He was president of the German Society of Pennsylvania from 1790- 
1797, and was also a trustee of the University of Pennsylvania. He was 
twice a candidate for governor of Pennsylvania, 1793 and 1796, but the 
majority was on the other side. 

Hon. F. A. C. Muhlenberg was a man of high attainments and un- 
impeachable integrity, whose sterling character, admirable self-command 
and correct judgment specially qualified him for the presiding chair,, 
which he so frequently and ably filled. 


The Patriarch's youngest son was born at Trappe, November 17, 
1753. At the age of ten he was sent to Halle with his two brothers. 
The latter proceeded directly to Halle, but Henry under the care of an at- 
tendant was sent to Eimbeck to visit the home of his father. Abandoned 
by his faithless guide, he continued his journey alone and on foot, and as 
he approached the town, fatigued, hungry and despairing, a good Samar- 

158 The Old Trappe Church. 

jtan kindly took him on his back and carried him the remaining distance, 
charming away the lad's troubles by his entertaining stories. 

After a six years' thorough course at Halle, where his talents and 
diligence placed him at the head of his class, he returned to America 
with his brother Frederick Augustus and future brother-in-law Dr. Kunze, 
and when only seventeen years old was ordained to the ministry at Read- 
ing, October 25, 1770, his marked proficiency disclosed by the synodical 
examination overcoming any objections against his youthfulness. As 
assistant to his father he remained at Philadelphia until the occupancy of 
the city by the British when he was obliged to leave for safety. Under 
an Indian disguise, robed in a blanket and with a gun on his shoulder, 
the treachery of a tory innkeeper might have resulted fatally for the young 
divine had it not been for the opportune warning of a Whig occupant of 
the inn. He reached New Hanover in safety, and there devoted the time 
of his enforced leisure chiefly to a vigorous study of botany, until the 
withdrawal of the British troops at length permitted him to return. 

Early in 1779, after his brother Frederick Augustus had entered the 
political arena, Henry succeeded him at New Hanover, remaining only 
until the following year when he was called to Lancaster as Dr. Hel- 
niuth's successor. After a most diligent, faithful and successful pastorate 
of thirty-five years, winning the deepest attachment of his people, the 
universal esteem of his brethren in the ministry, and the admiring recog- 
nition of the world of letters, he succumbed to a stroke of apoplexy, and 
with his Bible clasped closely to his breast, gently breathed his last on 
May 23, 1815, in his sixty-second year. He was buried at Lancaster, 
Dr. Helmuth preaching the sermon at the funeral from Heb. ij : 7. 

He was a thorough theologian, an eminent scholar and specially dis- 
tinguished as a botanist, whose contributions to botanical literature gave 
him an international reputation and are still in authority. He published 
"Rede bei der Einweihung des Franklin Collegiums, i788;""Cata- 
logus Plantarum Amer. Septent, 1813;" "English and German Lexicon 
and Grammar, 1812;" " Descriptio Uberior Graminum, 1816," and left in 
manuscript " Flora Lancastriensis." His herbarium was purchased and 
is preserved by the American Philosophical Society. In 1780 the Uni- 
versity of Pennsylvania conferred upon him the degree of A. M., and a 
few years later the Doctorate of Divinity. On January 22, 1785,'" he was 
elected to membership in the American Philosophical Society, in 179S in 
the Naturforschender Freunde of Berlin, in 1802 in the Philosophical and 
Physical Society of Giittingen and in other Associations in Germany, Swe- 
den and elsewhere. He conducted a large correspondence with distin- 

(112) Od the same d»te General Kosciozko, William Hersbel, James Madison and Thomas Paine 

were also elected members. 

Christopher E7naimel Schultze. 159 

guished nmn of science of all lands, including among the rest the eminent 
naturalist Alexander von Humboldt. 

Dr. Henry E. Muhlenberg " was of medium height, of a florid com- 
plexion, a robust frame and remarkable physical strength." He was a 
great pedestrian, frequently making trips to Philadelphia and other places 
at considerable distance almost without fatigue. He was an earnest and 
able preacher, delivering his sermons from notes written in a clear but 
minute hand on narrow slips of paper, many hundreds of which are in 
possession of his grandson, Dr. F. A. Muhlenberg of Reading. His 
practical course at Halle in vocal and instrumental music, and in the 
science of medicine, stood him in good stead throughout his ministry. 
For the advance he made in the science of botany. Dr. Baldwin declares 
that he is vvorthy of the title of the American I,innaeus. 

He was married in 1774 to Catherine, daughter of Philip Hall of 
Philadelphia. Two of his sons attained distinction, Hon. Henry Augustus 
Muhlenberg, D. D."' (University of Pennsylvania, 1824), and Fred. 
A. Muhlenberg, M. D., of Lancaster, father of Rev. F. A. Muhlenberg, 
D. D., of Reading. 


Eve Elizabeth, eldest daughter of H. M. Muhlenberg, born at 
Trappe, Jan'y 9, 1 748, was married to Rev. Christopher Emanuel Schultze, 
Sept. 23, 1766, by Provost Wrangel. Schultze was born at Probstzell, 
Saxony, January 25, 1740. He received his education at Halle, and 
taught in the institutions there for several years. Called at length to the 
Pennsylvania field to fill the vacancy caused by the death of Handschuh, 
he was ordained at Wernigerode in the Summer 1765, and reached Phila- 
delphia October 24th. The general call was ratified by a formal and 
unanimous election as second pastor of the Philadelphia congregation on 
October 27th. With a decided preference for the country, he accepted 
a call to Tulpehocken in 1771 as successor to J. N. Kurtz. In 1784, 
when Dr. Kunze was called to New York, the Philadelphia congregation 
endeavored again to secure Schultze's pastoral service, but fearing he might 
not be equal to the responsibilities of the city charge, though well qual- 
ified for the work, and being in a poor state of health at the time, he de- 
clined the call. After a richly blessed pastorate of thirty-eight years at 
Tulpehocken and neighboring stations, he died March 9, 1809, in the 

(113) The three inter-paged volumes of his Hebrew Bible, (now in possession of the editor), con- 
taining his discriminating annotations, chiefly in Latin, hear testimony to his scholarly attain- 

i6o Tlie Old Trappc Church. 

sixty-ninth year of his age, the death of his wife a few months before 
probably hastening his end. Rev. Dr. Lochman preached the sermon at 
the funeral. 

In personal appearance, Rev. Schultze was tall, robust, and of a com- 
manding and dignified presence. He was a faithful, laborious, consci- 
entious pastor, an earnest and acceptable preacher of the Word and 
specially distinguished for his superiority in catechetical instruction. He 
was a man of pure and stainless character, of fervent piety, and loved and 
venerated by all his brethren. For a number of years he was president of 
synod and at the time of his death its senior. Part of his library was 
presented to Pennsylvania College by his heirs. Four of his nine chil- 
dren survived him. One of his sons, John Andrew Melchior, who had 
entered the ministry and abandoned it because of physical infirmity, 
became a member of the State legislature in 1806, and was twice elected 
governor of Pennsylvania (1823-29). 


Margretha Henrietta Muhlenberg — a namesake of her grandmother, 
Margretha Weiser, and of Henrietta Francke. wife of the eminent 
professor at Halle — born at Trappe, September 17, 1751, was married 
in the Summer of 1771 to Rev. J. C. Kunze, "one of the great- 
est and best men of his age." He was born at Artern, near Mansfeld, 
Saxony, .August 5, 1744. After a preparatory course at Halle, Rosleben 
and Merseberg, he studied theology for three years at Leipsic University; 
taught for three years in the classical school of Klosterbergen, and served 
a year as inspector of the orplianage at Greitz. Called as the third pas- 
tor of the Philadelphia congregations by the Halle faculty, he was or- 
dained at Wernigerode, and with the two younger sons of Muhlenberg, 
left Halle, May 5, 1770, for his appointed field. Arriving at New York, 
September 22nd, he declined the offered position of assistant pastor of 
Christ's church, and adhering to the terms of his call, began his pas- 
toral work in Philadelphia. 

His remarkable prescience and deep insight into the needs of the 
Church soon distinguished him as an enthusiastic advocate of the estab- 
lishment of a theological seminary and of the introduction of English 
services. The school of theology, which he succeeded in founding, en- 
joyed only a transient success and existence, whilst his ardent and persist- 
ent advocacy of English services — revealing a farsightedness in striking 
contrast to the prejudice and constricted vision of most of his clerical 
contemporaries — for a time alienated his colleague Dr. Helmuth, so that 

John Christopher Kunze, D. D. i6i 

in 1 784, after a pastorate of fourteen years, preferring peace to useless 
contention, he resigned and accepted a call to Christ's church, New 
York. Here he spent the remainder of his ministry, uniting the Luth- 
erans of the city and building up a strong congregation. In 1786 he 
organized the New York Ministerium with three clergymen and two lay- 
men. During his Philadelphia pastorate he held the German professor- 
ship in the University of Pen/ia. from 1780 to '84, and in New York 
was elected to the chair of Oriental languages in Columbia College ; 
but as there was a dearth here of both students and salary he resigned in 
1787. Five years later he resumed his professorship for three years more 
and served as trustee of the institution until his death, which resulted 
from pulmonary disease, July 24, 1807, in his sixty-fourth year. Rev. 
Wm. Runkel, Reformed clergyman, preached the sermon at his funeral, 
taking /><?«/(?/ /2 .• j, as his text.'" His wife and four daughters sur- 
vived him. 

Dr. Kunze was admittedly one of the most eminent scholars of his 
day, ranking as a specialist in the departments of Oriental literature 
and astronomy. He was the author of a concise history of the Luth- 
eran Church, a small volume of poetry entitled " Something for the un- 
derstanding and the heart," an English Lutheran hymn book, with cate- 
chism, prayers and liturgy, a short method for calculating the Eclipse of 
June 16, 1806, a brief Hebrew Grammar and a number of pamphlets. 
For a time he edited a German periodical"^ with Dr. Helmuth as associate 
editor. The University of Penna. recognized his theological attainments 
by conferring upon him the degree of Doctor of Divinity in 1783. In 
1779 he, together with Thomas Jefferson, Anthony Wayne and George 
Washington, was elected a member of the American Philosophical Soci- 

(114) His toinb-stone bears the following epitaph in German: "'And they that be wise shall 
shine as the brightness of the firiuanient, and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for 
ever and ever.' To the memory of their never-to-be-forgotten pastor, John Christopher Kunze, 
D. D., professor of the Oriental languages, senior of the Lutheran clergy in theState of New York, 
this stone is dedicated by the people of his late charge, in testimony of their veneration and love. 
He was born in the year 1744 and felt asleep 24th July, 1807, in the sixty-fourth year of his age. 
Here lies a servant of the Lord who loved his Saviour, was faithful to the grave, and gathered many 
iouls. Think, therefore, to your solace, ye who mourn his death, weahall tind him with our .Tesus." 
At the request of his widow, Hon. Samuel L. Mitchell, M. D., wrote the following epitaph which was, 
however, not used, as the vestry of Dr. Kunze's congregation preferred a German inscription : 
"Johannes Christophorus Kunze, sacro-sanctae theologiae doctor, ad aeternae regnasaliitis redibat. 
die 24, Julii 1807, aetatis annum 64 um. agens. Ille, dum inter mortales versaretur, numera fecit 
pfofessotis historiae ecclesiasticae atque literarum orientalium in collegio Columbiano; neenon 
clericis Lutheranis intra rempublicam, Novum Eboracum praefiiit; index locuplex rerum bibli- 
caruui; fidei christianae decus et tutamen. Coetus fidelium, quibus evangelium exponere lab-.ra- 
bat, monumentum amoris accommemorationis poni curat." (Alden's Amer. Epitaphs. Pent.'iile I, 
Vol. V,p. 2S0). 

(115). " Gemeiuiitzige Pbiladelphische Correspondeuz." It was published every We nesday 
" for two hard dollars a year,*' The first nurabor was issued May 21, 1781. 

1 62 Tlie Old Trafype C/airch. 

ety. He was also a member of the Society for Useful Knowledge, the 
German Benevolent Society of Penna., and of the New York Crerman So- 
ciety. When Congress met in New York in 1785, he was appointed Ger- 
man Interpreter. 

" Dr. Kunze was not above medium height, rather stout, and never 
rapid in his movements. He mingled little with society, and the time 
not demanded for pastoral work was devoted to his books. As a preacher 
he was distinguished rather for richness and comprehensiveness of thought 
than for a highly attractive manner. His voice was feeble, and he had 
little or no gesture, and yet there was an earnestness and fearlessness in 
his manner that showed that his heart was in his work. After a few rather 
unsuccessful attempts to preach English he confined himself to his native 

Dr. Samuel Miller paid the following generous and just tribute to his 
scholarship. " The various requirements ot this gentleman, and particu- 
larly his Oriental learning, have long rendered him an ornament of the 
American Republic of letters. He has probably done more than any in- 
dividual now living to promote a taste for Hebrew literature among those 
intended for the clerical profession in the United States, and ... is 
doubtless entitled to the character of a benefactor of the American 

Mary Catherine Muhlenberg, born at Trappe, Nov. 5. 1756, 
married General Francis Swaine, the first President of the Bank of 
Montgomery County, and sheriff of the county. She, together with her 
husband, lies buried in the Trappe Lutheran grave-yard. The marble 
slab over her grave bears the following expressive epitaph ; 
An affectionate wife — indulgent parent, 

and sympathizing friend ; 

Of mild and gentle manners, and of a 

feeling and benevolent lieart. 

She lived tenderly beloved and died 

deeply lamented. 

Mary Salome Muhlenberg, the Patriarch's youngest daughter, 
born at Philadelphia, July 13, 1766, married Mr. Matthias Richards in 
1782. She was the mother of Rev. J. W. Richards, D. D., whose son, 
Prof. M. H. Richards, D. D. of Muhlenberg College, Alleutown, and 
grandson, Rev. J. W. Richards of Lancaster, are actively and successfully 
engaged in the service of the Church. 

(116) Sprague's Aunnls, Vol. IX, p. 55.' 


Muhlenberg'' s Passport. 165 


I. — Seep. 123. Cf. fac. sitn. facing p. 160. — The Honorable John 
Penn, Esquire, Governor and Commander in Chief of the Province of 
Pennsylvania and counties of Newcastle, Kent and Sussex upon Delaware. 
To all whom these presents shall come Greeting : 

Whereas the Reverend Mr. Muhlenberg, First Minister of the Prot- 
estant Lutheran Churches in the City of Philadelphia, hath laid before 
me letters signed by the Reverend Michael Ziegenhagen, his Majestie's 
Chaplain in the German Chapel of St. James's in London and also by 
the Reverend August Wresperger Rector of the Lutheran Church at Augs- 
burg, wrote at the Instance & by the Approbation of the very Reverend 
Anastasius Frelinghausen and Frederick Schultz, Professor of Divinity at 
Hall in Saxony, setting forth that they being Members of the Honorable 
and Venerable Society established in London for the Promoting Chris- 
tian Knowledge have been requested by said Society to solicit him the 
said Mr. Muhlenberg to take a Journey thro' the English Colonies, as 
low down as Georgia, where there have been any Settlements or Congre- 
gations of German Reformed Lutheran Protestants. 

And whereas the said Mniisters in their said capacity have given him 
the said Mr. Muhlenberg, full Power to enquire of & examine into the 
present State and Condition of the Said German Reformed Lutheran 
Congregations, to preach & do all sorts of religious Duties amongst them 
to settle all differences if any have arisen between Ministers and People ; 
to observe what places are without Ministers ; and Finally to do all & 
everything in his power to promote the welfare of the said Congregations, 
ordering him to make report of all that he does to them that they may 
consul't in that manner the Professors of the Lutheran Reformed Religion 
in the English Colonies can best be assisted. 

And whereas the said Reverend Mr. Henry Muhlenberg hath in 
obedience to said Letters, proposed to undertake the said General Visita- 
tion of ye Lutheran Congregations as far as the Colony of Georgia, and 
hath requested me to give him my Passport and Letters recommendatory, 
I do therefore from the Character of the said Mr. Muhlenberg which is 
well known to me to be in all respects answerable to the Trust reposed 
in him by the Letters of the very Reverend Ministers whose Names are 

(117) Pennsylvania Archives, lat Ser., Vol. IV, p. 562. 

1 66 Tlie Old Trappe Clnirch. 

above set forth, not only grant unto him my permission to pass unmo- 
lested within the Limits of this Government, but also do earnestly, affec- 
tionately, recommend him to, and desire all Governors, Magistrates, 
Officers and Others whom it may concern within the several Governments 
thro which he may pass to grant him their Safe Conduct and Protection, 
and afford him all kinds of Assistance and other good Offices — 

Given under my Hand and Seal at Arms at Philadelphia, the 2 2d 
Day of August, in the Year of our Lord One Thousand Seven Hundred 
and seventy four. 


By His Honor's Command 

J. Shippex, JuN.', Sec'y. 


2. — See pp. 49 and 125. — Reverend Sir, 

Having the honor to be in Your Company together with Mr. 
Acrelius, etc., on the Evening of October 31st, a. c, and hearing you 
argue about Substantial Points of real Religion, I perceived something 
(quoique Sans Comparison) that made me think like the Queen of Shcba. 
I of Kings. Cap. 10, v. 7 : " Howbeit I believed not the words, until I 
came, and mine eyes had seen it : and, behold, the half was not told me: 
thy wisdom and prosperity exceedeth the fame which I heard.'"" 

And finding you. Reverend Sir, a downright Patriot of the Ch. Ch., 
a Fervent Wellwisher to Zion, and affected Mourner of its Breaches and 
agonizing Condition, I cannot Comprehend how your Conscience can 
acquiesce any longer in a Foreign Station, tho' of very high Importance 
yet as it seems inconvenient for properly laying out the peculiar and 
egregious Talents intrusted to You by the Eternal Sovereign for Trading, 
Gain and Usury, and so highly necessary for the Church of Christ, 
which in the approaching evil days, has and shall have to wrestle not 
only against Flesh and Blood but even against Principalities, Powers and 
Rulers of the darkness and Spiritual Wickedness in high places, etc. 

Please to impute, Reverend Sir, this my humble Sentiment not unto 

flis) Pennsylvania Archives, 1st Ser., Vol. Ill, p. 80. Beyond the interesting character of the 
contents, evidencing the courteous franliness of Muhlenberg's friendship, his judicious tact and 
the unhesitating performance of what he conceived to be his duty, this letter is of special interest 
as revealing his command aud style of English in a composition which is one of the very few in 
Boglish that have been preserved. 

(119) The letter quotes the Hebrew original. 

Muhlenberg s Letter to Peters. 167 

Presumiition, but rather to Simf)licity of Heart and pardon my Boldness ! 
What and where shall be the Reward for the innumerable Labours you 
have done night and day and the heavy Burdens you have borne so many 
Years hence in Your important Station ! A pacified God in Christ, 
abounding in Mercy and Goodness, will surely reward even a Cup of 
cold Water, but the World, yea even the politest part of it, is neither able 
nor willing to reward any Service, no she finds rather faults with the 
most honest and sincere Labours and Intentions, and gives at last " Stercus 
pro Solatio." There was found in a City a poor wise Man, and He by 
his Wisdom delivered the City ; yet no Man remembered that same poor 
Man. Then said I Wisdom is better than Strength : Nevertheless the 
poor Man's Wisdom is despised, and his Words are not heard. Give me 
Leave, Reverend Sir, You know the in-and outward Situation and Condi- 
tion of State and Church in America exactly, yea better than any Person 
of what Rank or Orders soever. You have candidly employed and spent 
the Flower of your Vitals for rendering the state of Pa. flourishing and 
happy as much as possible, and don't you think it your incumbent duty 
now, to Sacrifice and dedicate your Catholick Spirit, together with all 
the Faculties and intrusted uncommon Talents and Gifts, which have 
been, as it were, dormant to act the more vigorous in the Eleventh Hour, 
for the only use and Benefit of God's Vineyard or Christ's Church, in 
the present critical and dangerous Situation? I cannot but think, ac- 
cording to my humble Opinion, that you are the best and fittest Instru- 
ment to bring, by the concurring Grace and Assistance of God, real Re- 
ligion into a better Sway and a happy Union among Parties and divers 
Nations to pass, for the Glory of Christ, the Encrease of his Church and 
the Salvation of many thousand Souls in the American Empire or Wilder- 
ness ! As poor and unworthy I am I might perhaps lend a Hand in some 
Measure to your Directions concerning my poor Nation, which is scat- 
tered throughout America, like Sheep without true Shepherds ; and if 
there is not done anything in due Time by true Patriots, who have the 
real Wellfare of Church and State at Heart, and enjoy Ability to pursue 
proper Means, Atheism, Naturalism, Enthusiasm, Superstitution, Divis- 
ions, Disloyalty and Confusion, may surely become past mending. 
Sapienti sat. Every party encreases, but the Ch. ch. is left in too many 
places destitute, not for want of a happy Constitution, privileges and 
Means of Grace, but pray ye therefore the Lord of the Harvest that He 
will Send forth Labourers into His Harvest ! Matth. 9, 37, 37, 38. 

I am sure, Reverend Sir, it is Your hearty Desire that the most ador- 
able Name of Jehova in Christ might be hallowed, His Kingdom pro- 
moted, and his most gracious Will be done on Earth in general, and es- 
pecially In our American |)art as it is in Heaven ! And since you are 


The Old Trappc Cluirch. 

egregiously entrusted with Talents concerning these Objects of the high- 
est and everlasting Importance, walk therefore while you have the Light ! 
for in the Death there is no Remembrance — who shall give thanks in the 
Grave? Pardon my Boldness, and give me Leave to remain 
Reverened Sir, 

Your most oliedient Servant, 

Providence, Dec. 6, 1756. 


John K. Beaver, 
Daniel H. Shuler 

Addison T. Miller, 

Warren R. Rahn, 
Harry H. Stierly 


Pastor— Y.. T. Kreischmann, Ph. D. 


Jonathan Hoyer, 
AuGU?Tcs G. Markley. 
Ends H. Detwilek, Amos H. Wanner. 


A. Heiser, 
Edwin G. Hrownback. 


Pffsident — Addison T. Miller, 5c',-/r/'(7n — Edwin G. Browne \ck, 

Treasurer — Ends H. Detwiler. 

President — Rev. E. T. Kretschmann, Ph. D., 

Vitc-President — Hallie R. Vanderslice, 

Secretary — NoRA H. Shuler, 

Treasurer — Mrs. George Pennap.\cker. 


On the Poor. 
Chair, — Mrs. George Vanderslice. 
Mrs. Charles Spare, 
Mrs. Emiline Bechtel, 
Elmira J. Miller. 

On Visitation of the Sick. 
Chair. — Lizzie Kelter, 

Mrs. Daniel Shuler, 
Mrs. Emiliiie Crater, 
Mrs. Dora Cook, 
Mrs. Annie Wilson, 
Mary Ann Fry. 

Oil liiif^rovctiuiils. 
Chair. — Mrs. Addison T. Miller. 
Mrs. H. C. T. Miller, 
Mrs. George Penuapacker, 
Mrs. Mary Ann Knerr. 

On Afeml'ershif'. 
Chair. — Mrs. A. D. Wagner, 
Mrs. Horace Riniby, 
Cora K. Ramljo, 
Nora H. Shuler, 
Mary Tyson. 

Oi'ganizatio7is and Officers, 


On Decoration. 
■ —Mrs. Adela T. Miller, 
Mrs. William Bean, 
Ida Plank, 
Lillian T. Miller, 
Maggie McGregor, 
Kate Detwiler, 
Mame Beaver, 
Anna Shupe, 
Jennie Whitby. 

■. — Mrs. Joseph Shupe, 
Mrs. Henry Tyson, 
Mrs. Harry Stierly, 
Mrs. Williamson, 
— Mrs. Henry Rahn, 
Mrs. Horace Priest, 
Mrs. Milton Ranibo, 


On Collection of Dues. 
Chair. — Hallie R. Vanderslice, 
Mrs. Frank B. Miller, 
Mrs. E. L. Hallman, 
Ellen Detwiler, 
Lizzie Laux, 
Mrs. Frank Rahn, 
Irene W^agner. 

cal Work. 
Assets — Mary Hale, 

Sallie Heyser, 
Lottie Heyser, 
Eliza Missimer, 
Mary iMissimer, 
Elizabeth Deen. 

Pres. and Supt. — Edwin G. Brownb.^ck, 
Vice-Pres. — NOKA H. Shuler, 

Rec. Sec^y and Ass't Hupl. — Halue R. Vanderslice. 
Cor. Secy and Organist. — Cora K. Rambo, 
Treas. and Ass't Libr. —Mivio^ H. Keeler, 
Librarian. — John I. Bradford. 

TEACHERS -1893-94. 
Ida Plank, 
Mrs. Williamson, 
Irene Wagner, 
Mrs. Frank B. Miller, 
Alice B. Gross, 
Mrs. Harry Ringler, 
Cora Hoyer, 

^ible C/nsi— Rev. E. T. Kretschmaini, Pli. D. fnfant Department— Nors, H. Shuler. 
Nellie L. Williams, Carrie Funk, Hallie R. Vanderslice, 

Mame ZoUers, Annie Miller, Jonathan Hoyer. 

Kate Detwiler, 
Margaret McGregor, 
Cora K. Rambo, 
Clara Rahn, 
Elmira T. Miller, 
Mame K. Beaver, 

Nora H. Shuler, 
Edwin G. Brownback, 
Horace O. Williams, 
Harry Detwiler, 
Elmer Rambo, 
I. W. Wisler. 

Pres. — Rev. E. T. Kretschmann, Ph. D., 
Vice-Pres. — Edwin G. Brownback, 
Rec. Sec^y. — Cora K. Rambo, 
Finan'l Sec'y. — Elmira T. Miller, 
Treasurer. — Mrs. Fkank B. Miller, 
Librarian. — John I. Bradford. 



Academy of Phila. (University of Pa.), 

49, 12S, 129, 154 

Acrelius, 166 

Afstett, 10 

Albany, 1 30 

Allemiingel, 139 

Allen, Wm. (Supreme Judge), ... 79 

Allentown, 109, 153, 162 

Almanac, Lutheran 35 

American Army, The, .... 65 sq. 
American Philosoph. Society, . . . 158 

Amity, 26, 137, 139 

Amsterdam, 120, 132, 135 

Andreae, 6, 62 

Anniversary (100th) of Old Trappe 

Church, 32 

Annsville, Pa., 146 

Appeals of congregations to Europe, . 5 

Appel's church, 146 

Arms, Jacob, 136 

Armstrong, Gen., ...... 65, 66 

Arps, Missionary, 73 

Artern 160 

Assembly of Penna., . .157; act of, I 

Augsburg, 4, 148, 165 

Augsburg confession, . . . 11,54,85, 86 
Augustus church I et seq ; building of 
8; name 9; consecration 11 ; in- 
corporation 25 ; centennial 32 ; 
new building 34 sq.; remodeled 
41 sq. ; disruption threatened 36; 
present status 34. 
See Old Trappe Church. 

Baer, Rev. C. A 68 

Baetes, Rev., 14, 112 

Baker. IJ.D., J. C, 35, 145 

Baldwin, Dr., 159 

Baltimore, 138 

Barn services, 4> 8, 121 

Barnes, Esq., E. R., 153 


Barren Hill, 132 

Bastian, G. M 42, 50 

Basel, 64 

Battle of Quebec, i 

of Brandywine, .... 65, 134, 155 

of Germantown, 66, 155 

of Monmouth Court House, . . 155 

Bean, Mira, 61 

Bechtel, Philip, 59 

Becker, Rev. J. L., 29, 43, 76 

Rev. John C. , 

Bedminster (Kellar's) Bucks County, 

146. 155 

Beil, John, 131 

Bells, Church, 63 

Belleville, Pa., 150 

Bellows-blower 61 

Beneficence, System of, 4', 43 

Bengal 120 

Bequests, 57 

Berg, 13S 

Bergstrass 144 

Berlin, 158 

Berkemeyer, Rev. F. , 29 

Rev. William, 130 

Bible class, 41 

Bible, English, 35 

the first German 48 

original pulpit, 63 sq., 

Billing, John, 20 

Board of censors, 157 

Boltzius, Rev., 121 

Book of Common Prayer, . . 15,62, 132 

Borg, Rev., 129 

Boston, 129 

Bradford, J. I., 44 

Brandmiiller, John L. , 64 

Brandywine, Battle of, . . . 65, 1 ;4, 155 
Brauns, (Braunsius), Rev. J. E. L, 34, 141 

Bridgeport, Conn 153 

Bringhurst, Wright A., 58 





British Army, 65, 66. 156 15S 

Brownback, E. G., 44 

Brunner, Prof. David, .... 65 

Brunnholtz, Rev. P., . 8, 9, 10, 11, 
12, 13, 49, 60, 61, 112, 113. 117, 

122; biography, 126, 129 

Bucli des gemeinschaftlichen Gebets. 62 

Bucyrus, C)., 149 

Burk, John, 5^ 

Buskerk (Bu kirk) Van, Rev. J. iS s.|., 

117; biography, . . . 130 sq.; 140 

Capt. Jacob, 130 

By-laws, ■ • • 27, 3S, 40, 41 

Callenberg, Dr., 129 

Camp, . 1 29 

Carhsle,Pa., 27, 68, 137 

Carpenter shop, services in, ... . 121 

Carstown, O., 149 

Catechism, Luther's small, 35, 4S, 49, 109 
Cemetery, of Augustus church. 2, 55 

sq., 136, 144, 154, 156, 162 
of New Hanover Luth. church, . 136 
Charles Evans', Reading, . . . 145 
Centennial of Augustus church, ... '>,t, 
of Muhlenberg's death, . 42 

quarto-, of Luther's birth, ... 42 

Cenireville, 36 

Chalfont, Bucks Co., Pa., . . 151 

Charge, Division of the, 42 

Charity schools 49 

at Trappe, 50 sq.; at New Han- 
over, 51. 

Charleston, . 121 

Chest, The old church, 62 

Chew, Benj., 133 

Choir, The, 61 

Christ Church, N. \., . . . 142, 150. 1"° 
Christ Church (Towamencin) sketch 

of, 29; 30, 32. 144 

Christ Church, Tulpehocken, iii, 

112, 113. (See Tulpehocken). 

Church discipline, 16 

Church lots, 54 

Church of England, 61 

conformity to 62 

Churching of women, 62 sq. 

Church Record, of Augustus church, 

2. 114, '34 


Church Record, fac sim. first entry in, 3 

of Christ Church (Tulpeh.), . .113 

Church service, 15 

Citizenship, conditions of 122 

Clamer, F. J. , . . . . 74 

Cohansey, X. J 12 

CoUegeville 37 

Collegiate Institute and Military 

Academy, AUentown, 153 

Collier, Rev. R 1 38 

Columbia College, N. Y., 161 

Commencement, held in the new 

church, 37 

Communion vessels, 63 

Conference, First, at Trappe, 32,40,42.73 

at Pottstown, o'', '53 

Confessions of the Luth. Church. The, 

113, 126 
Congress, .American, ■ 134. 155, 157, 162 

Constitution, Federal, 156, 157 

Cooper, Rev. C. J. , 80 

address by, 108 

Corner-stone laying of the Augustus 

church . (Old), 9, 35; (New). 34 sq. 

Of Christ church (Tulpeh.) 113 

Court, Case at, '7 

Court chapel, St. James', (London), 62 

Craig, an early settler, I 

Craig, Mrs. J. v., 146 

Cressman, Nic. , ... 54 

Grossman. John, 4 

Cruse, Dr., ... 68 

Currie, Missionary \Vm., in 

Custer, D. Y., 41, 44. 68 

Custer (Kuster) Nic, '7, 5° 

Customs, Early Church 64 

Daliger, Rev., 23 

Darrtown, O., 150 

'Das A, B, C Buch,'' 48 

" Das Glaubens Lied," 48 

" Das Neue Testament,'' 48 

Dechant, Rev., 68 

Deck, Rev. J. P., 43 

Dedicatory stone, 11 

Defried, The widow, 58 

Demme, D.D., C. R., . 29, 143. 145- «47 

Deyling, Dr., 120 

' Dickinson, Pa., '49 




Diehl, Rev. M 149 

Diet of Augsburg, 148 

Dunkards, 93 

Dunlap, Colonel, 66 

Durham, Bucks Co., 146 

Dutch Luth. Church, The, .... 14 

of New York, 129 

Dylander, Rev. John, 5 

Eagle Point 112 

Earltown (See New Holland). 

Easton, . . . 137, 138, 139, 145, 147 

Ebenezer, 22, 121, 145, 157 

Eck church, 146 

Egypt, Pa 139 

Eimbeck, ... 119, 157 

Emmanuel's church, (Pottstown), . . 34 

Engelland, 6 

English services, I4I, I42, 160 

introduced at Trappe, .... 28 

increased, 29 

Enox, D.D., G., 95 

Episcopal Church The, corporation 
for the relief of widows and chil- 
dren of, ... 125 

Ernst, D.D., J. F., 144 

Essig, Amos, 53 

Evatigelical Review, The, .... 35,145 

Evansburg, 133 

Evening service introduced at Trappe, 37 
Eyer, Rev. W. J., 141 

Fac simile of first entry in the Trappe 

records, 3 

of Muhlenberg's entry upon as- 
suming the pastorate, 7 

of Muhlenberg's passport, . . . 144 

Fahs, Rev. J. F., I47 

Falckner's Swamp, (See New Han- 

Falk, Gabriel, Rev., 5 

Farrenstiidt, 126 

Female College (CoUegeville), ... 37 
'* Filial '' congregation, . . ... 9 

Fisher, Susanna C, 143 

Fisher's. Allen Co., O. , .... 150 
Fleckenstine, Rev. E. J., . . . . 29 

Fleischer, John, 51 

Foreign Missions, . . . 73, 105 sq., 114 


Forest, Pa., 146 

Fox, Rev. W. B 29 

Francke, D.D., Prof. G. A., 9, 63, 

114, 120, 126, 132, 156 
Prof A. H., (D.D.), ... 9, 120 

Henrietta, 160 

Frankenberg, (Hesse), ..... 4 
Franklin, Benj., .... 48, 49, 50, 155 

Frederick, Md., 18, 122, 129 

French and Indian War, 64 sq. 

French Creek, 22 

French War, The first, 129 

Frescoln, George, 74, 75 

Freyhnghausen, D.D., G. A., 67, 135, 165 
"Fruitful Retrospect, The,'' (See Ser- 
mon, Centenary, by J. W. Rich- 
ards, D.D.) 

Fruitville, 25 

Fry, D.D., Prof Jacob, 39, 40, 44, 

52, 68, 76 
Anniversary sermon by, ... 81 sq. 

Fry, Hoh. Jacob, 52 

Samuel G, ... 68 

Mrs. S. G., 41 

Major Daniel, 44 

Fryburg, Pa., 150 

Fulmer, Pa., 150 

VJachswungarorachs," 64 

Garber, Samuel 68 

Andora, 145 

Geigertown, Pa., . 146 

Geissenhainer, Rev. H. A., pastor- 
ate, 27; 34, 39, 56, 117, 134; bi- 
ography, 138 sq.; 140, 141 

Rev. A. T 139, 141 

F. W., Sr., (D.D.,) 26; pastorate 
28; 34,39, 117,136,138; biogra- 
phy, 140 sq. 
Augustus, 140 ; Sophia, 141 ; 
Anna Maria (n^e Reiter) 141 ; 
F. W., Jr.. (D.D.,) pastorate, 28 
S1-; 34, 39, 117; biography, I4[,- 
Hon. J. A., 143 ; F. W., Esq., 143 

Gensau, Von, Hartman, 126 

Gerhart, Paul, 148 

Gerhart, Rev., 147 

Germann, Rev., Ref'd clergyman . . 26 
\Vm., (D. D.,), 63. 


hid ex. 

German Reformed church, Trappe, 

25, 28, 30, 32, 46. 50, 67 

Schwenksville, 42 

I'biladelphia, 129 

German Settlers, 2, 93, 95 

German Society of Penna., . 137, 157, 162 

of New York, 162 

Gerraantown, 2, 6, 10, 21, 22, 30, 44, 

48, 51, 62, 122, 127, 132, 135. 

'39, '45- 

battle of, 43, 57. ^0, 155 

Gersdorf, Baroness of 120 

Gettysburg, 35, M? 

Gilbert, Bernhardt, . 135 

Gliicksburg, 126 

Goeranson, Provost A., ... • '33 

Gordon, Gov. Patrick, 4 

Goshenhoppen,(01d) 6, 32; (New) 140, 156 

Gottingen, University of, ... 119, 120 

Orphan House at, .... 120, 121 

Philosoph. Society at 158 

Grace l.uth. church of Koyersfor«l, 43. 73 

Graff, John, 55 

Gravesend, 127, 132 

Gray, Thomas, 57 

Greenwald, D.D., E., 147 

Greenwich, N. J., 137 

Greitz 160 

Grier, D.D., John 144 

Grindstone Hill, Pa., 150 

Groh, Rev. A. H., 34, 40 

Gronau, Rev., 121 

Groves, John, 55 

Gross, LL.D., Prof. S. D., 13S 

Rev. J. B., . 138 

F. S.; C. H., 41 

Grosshennersdorf, 120 

Guldin, Rev. I. C, 30, 32 

Gwynedd 131 

Haas, n., 42, 50 

1. H 57 

Hackensack, 122, 130, 131 

Haddens, Hans, 12 

Haldeman, (Esq.,) Matthias, . . 33, 44 

Hall, Philip, 159 

Catherine, 159 

Halle, 10, 17, 57, 63, 67, 106, 124, 

'28, 135, 154, 156, 15S, 160 


Halle, Orphan house at, 48 

Institutions at, .... 120, 126, 132 

Halk Reports, The 1 25 

Hallisclie Nachricliten, . . . . 63, 145 

Hallman, Mr., 143 

Hamburg, 126, 129 

Hamilton, Gov. James, . 49, 122.144 

Hamilton, O., 150 

Haiidscliuh, Rev. J. F., 51, 61 113, 

123, 127, 128, 129, 132. 159 

Hanover, York Co 26, 137 

Harpel, John, 54 

Rev. M., 141 

Harrisburg 37,112,137, Rev J. C, 18, 112, 117, 

122, 123; .logrph., .... 129 .,^q. 

Hartwick Seminary, i^jo 

Hassler, Rev. J. W., 68 

Hazard's A'ei^ister, 63, 134 

llecht. Rev. J. P., pastorate, 26 sq.; 34, 

117; biogrph., . . . .I36sq.;l46 

Anthony, 136 

Hecktown, Northamp. Co 147 

Heggeblat, Missionary, 20 

Heidelberg, Pa., 10, 65, 146 

Heillironii, 61, 127 

Heilig, Rev. G., 29 

Heilman, Anthony, 50 

Heilman, John, 50 

Heller, D.D., E., 148 

Helmuth, D. IJ., 23, 125, 137, 140, 

15S, 160 

Helvoetsluys, 120 

Henkel, Count, i.>o 

Henniger. Rev., 142 

Hennecke, Rev. C 142 

Herman, Rev. F. L., 136 

Herrnhuter (mission), 10 

Henry, Patrick, 155 

Heister, Mrs. Hetty, 33, 58 

Francis, 7,7, 

Hill Church, The, 135 

Hiizel, Rev. C. J., 77 

address by, 105 sq. 

Historic relics of the Old Trappe Ch., 64 
Historical Society of Pennsylvania. . 4s 

Hobson, Esq., F. G., . 64 

Hoch, Rev., 134 

Hoebner's tavern, 31 



Holy Communion, Epis. church of the, 

New York, 6S 

Home Missions 73, 102 sq. , 114 

How, Thomas, 54 

Hubner, John, 5° 

Hudson, The, .... 94, 122, 129, 130 
Humboldt, von, Alexander, .... 159 

Hummelstown, Pa., 149 

Hunsberger estate, 22 

Hunter, Mrs, J I43 

Hutter, Rev. E. W., 68 

Hymn-book Committee, .... 14S, 152 
Hymn-book, (Lutheran), 35 

of 1786, 95, 125 

Hymns of the Sesqui-centennial, . . 78 

Immigrants, 2 ; poverty of, ... . 5 

Indehaven, Harman, 54 

Indians, 5, 10, 64 

massacres by, 65 

Indianfield, 129 

Jacobs, D.D., LL.D., Prof. H.E., 17, 62 

Jay Treaty, The, 157 

Jefferis, Rev. C. W., 74, 79, 80 

Jefferson College, 145, 147 

Jefferson, Thomas, 156 

Jena, University of, 120 

Jews, 122, 129 

Johnson, Peter, 54 

Sarah, 58 

Jones, Mrs. Ann, Ti^, 

Jordan, Pa 1 39 

Jubilee, The seventh, of the Reforma- 
tion, 39 

Karthaus, Pa., 141 

Keeler, M. H., 44 

Martin, 42 

Keely, Henry, 42 

Valentine, 42 

Susanna 42 

Keely's (New Jerusalem) church, 30, 

33, 34, 36, 37> 39, 4i 
sketch of, .... 42; 43, 144, 146 

Keil, Rev. W. G., 150 

Keilar's church 146 

Kepler, John 42 

Kepner, Rev. D. K., 34, 79 


Kepner, John, ij 

Kingcess (Kingcessing), 49 

Klingelsack (Klingelsbeutel), ... 62 

Klosterbergen, 160 

Knoske, Rev. J., i^g 

Keener, Rev. C. , 34 

Kohler, D.D., John, 38; pastorate, 

39; 117 ; biogrph., 51 sq. 

Andrew, ijj 

Anna INI,, ici 

Mrs. L. A. (nge Baum), . . . 152 

Kooken, Rev. John R., 35, 68 

Koplin, John, 17 

Kraemmerer, Rev. W. B., 138 

Kraft, Valentine, . . . . 6, 94, iii 121 

Krause, Valentine, 42 

Kriiuter, Dr., .. 129 130 

Krissman, J G. , 54 55 

Krotel, D.D., Rev. G. F., 40, 142, 

•43, '47 

Krug, Rev. J. A., 132 

Kunze, D.D., J. C, 26, 123, 124, 125, 

140, 156, 158, 159; biogrph., 160 sq. 
Margretha H. (nee Muhlenberg), 160 
Kurtz, Rev. JohnNic, 11, 12, 20 65, 

112, 113, 126, 127, 159 
Kurtz, Wm., 128 

Lafayette College, 138, 145 

Laird, D.D., Samuel, 77 

address by 102 sq. 

Laitzle, Rev. W. G., 34 147 

Lancaster, 5, 6, 41, 46, 153, 157, 158, 162 

Landau (Landaw), . . 1 

Lansdale, 29 

Lane, Edward 12 

Lau, Samuel, 126 

Laver, Elias, 5 c 

Jacob C, 58 

Leacock (Mechanicsburg) Pa., . . . 152 

Lebanon, m, 112, 156 

Lee, Mass., 41 

Leipsic, 120, 160 

Leiter, Rev. George, 149 

Letter of Muhlenberg to Dr. G. Enox, 

Quotation from, 95 

to Richard Peters, 166 sq. 

Leutbecker, Rev., m 

Lewis, ^L^rgaret A 58 




Limerick-, 27, 28, 29, 30, 32, 33. 34, 
38. i% 41, 42, 65, 139, 141, 
143, '44, 145, «46, 153- 

Lincoln, Neb., 148 

Link, Rev. A. S., 29 ; pastorate, 36 ; 

38, 117 ; biogrph., 148 sq. 

John 148 

Catherine, 148 

Mrs. E. (ni^e Reimensnyiler) . 148 

Rfev. J. H., 148 

Lititr, 134 

Liturgy 15, 40, 42 

of 1786, IS, 95 

Livingstone, Hon. J. R., I30 

Lochman, Rev. Dr., 160 

Loeser, ].] 46 

Lonilon, 49, ill, 114, 126, 1:9. 132, 

133. '55, '65 

Longfellow 69 

Loonenburg, 95 

LiibecU, .- 154 

Luther, ... 82, 83, 99, 119, 124, 128 
Lutheran Church, The early condi- 
tion of, 5, 88, 94; growth of, 
100, 113 ; institutions of, lOO, 
loS, 124, 126, 137. 
Lutheran church (German), the first 

m the United States 8 

Lutheran Observer, 144 

Lyceum, The Young People's, ... 62 

Macungie, . 131, 139 

Manatawny (Reading turnpike), . . i 

Manchester, Md., 150 

MaughaUgsin, Indian chief, ... 2 

Mann, D.D., \Vm. [., 38, 68 

Manor, Gilbert's, 2 

Mansfeld, Ger., 132, 160 

Mansfield, 0-, 149 

Marckley, Esq., John, 58 

Marsteller, Fred. 54, 57 

Mattes, Schoolrtiaster, 146 

Mayer, D.D., P. F., 29, 143 

McEwensville, Pa 150 

McKnight, Mrs. J., I46 

Meier, A., 46 

Mennonites, 8, 93 

meeting hnuse of 147 

Mensch, Rev. Xich., 146 


Merseberg 160 

Meyer, Anna B., 155 

Michaelis, D.D., Prof J. D., ... 121 

Middlepoint, 150 

Millfer, Rev. H. S., 29 ; pastorate, 32 

sq.. 39, 40, "7. >37 ; biogrph., 

146 sq. 

Mrs. E. (nee Davis), 147 

Mrs. Camille (nee Clemens), . . 147 

Peter, 146 

Rev. J. C, 147 

Wm. H., (M.D.), 147 

Conrad, 3°, 3'. 34, 39 

George F, . . . 34, 38, 39, 68, 141 
Jacob, (D.D. \ .... 39, 141, 144 

J- F., . . 41 

Abraham 53 

Miller, LL.D , Samuel, »i62 

Millett, Rev., 68 

Millville, O., 150 

Ministerium of Pennsylvania. (See 
Synod, The Lutheran. ) 

Mrntzer, G. Rev 33 

Missions, foreign, 43, 105 sq. 

home 43, 102 sq. 

Missionary service, 73 

Misiionniy. The, 152 

Mitchell, M.D., Hon. S. L 161 

Mitlelberger, Gottlieb, . . 48, 49, 61, 69 

Mode (Muddy) Creek, 5, 144 

Mohawk Indians, 130 

Moldenke, Dr., 142 

Monocacy, . . 6 

Montgomery Co. , origin of name of, . 1 
Montgomery, Gen. Richard, .... I 
JMontgomery IVatchman, The, ... 35 

Moravians Ill 

Moser, George ; Margaret 56 

Mount Bethel, Pa., 147 

Mc'iint Vernon, O., 149 sq. 

Muhlenberg, D. D., H. M.,on the name 
Trappe, 1 ; pastorate, 5 sq.; en- 
try upon assuming the pastorate, 
6, 7 ; his house, 10, 19, 65, 119; 
marriage of, 10; labors and trials, 
12; prepares constitutions, 14, 
47 ; his support, 17, SO; removal 
to Phila.. 18; return to Trappe, 
22 ; death, burial, epitaph, 23 sq., 




Muhleuberg, D. D., H. M. — Continued. 
124, 40, 42 ; as schoolmaster, g, 
46 ; as catechist, 50, 54, 56, 57 ; 
as rector, 63 ; his Indian name, 
64, 65 ; experience during the 
Revohition, 66, 124; portrait of, 
74; 82, 83, 86 ; last sermon, 23, 
92, 124; organizes Synod, 94, 
122 ; prepares liymn-book and 
liturgy, 15, 95, 125 ; letter to Dr. 
G. Enox, 95; 96, 97, 99, 100, 
102, 103, 105, III, 112, 113, 
114, 117 ; biogrph., 119 sq.; 127 
—134, 145, 154; his passports, 
144, 163 ; letter to Rich.ird 
. Peters, 166. 

Anna Maria (n^e Weiser), 10, 25, 

122, 154 

Nic. Melchior, 119 

Anna M., 119 

Eve Elizabeth, 132, 159 

MargrethaH., 160 

Mary Catherine, 162 

Mary Salome, 162 

John Peter Gabriel, 19, 25, 55; 

biogrph,, 154 sq. 
Anna B. (nee Meyer), .... 155 

Peter, Jr. ; Kraucis, 156 

Henry M.; Mary Ann, EUzabeth, 58 
Frederick Augustus Conrad, 23, 
57, 66, 67, 112, 133; biogrpli., 156 sq. 

Wm. Aug., (D.D.), 68 

H. H., (M.D.), 67 

H. W., ■ 157 

Gotthilf Henry Ernest, 23, 123, 

133, 156 ; biogrph., 157 sq. 
Catherine (nee Hall), .... 159 

Hon. H. A., 33, 144, 159 

F. A., (M.D.), 159 

F. A., (D.D.) 15S, 159 

John Charles, 154 

Catherine Salome, 154 

Emanuel Samuel, 154 

John Enoch Samuel, 154 

Muhlenberg College, 40, 42, 109, 152, 162 
Muhlenberg missionary society, . . 45 

Miihlheim, 138, 140 

Miinchhausen, von Hr., . ... I20 
Myerstown, 112 

Nantes, 85 

Nantmeal, East, 139 

" Naturforschender Freunde " of Ber- 
lin 158 

Neff, Rev. J., 147 

Negroes, baptism of, 11, 12, 20 

Neiman, Rev. J., 43. 73 

New Berlin, Pa., 152 

New Germantown, 155 

New Hanover, 4, 5, 8, 9, 12, 17, 18, 
19, 20, 21, 23, 26, 46, 50, 51, 
6r, 66, 92, 94, III, 121, 122, 

124. 127, 131. '33, 13s, "36. 

140, 141, 156, 158. 
New Holland (Earltown), 4, 5, 30, 

144. 151 
New Jerusalem church, (See Keely's). 
'' New Measure " movement, . . . 36, 40 
New Providence, ....... 50 

Newspaper, German, (C. Saur), . . 48, 51 
New York, 6, 12, 26, 28, 122, 129, 

130, 140, 141, 142, 143, 156, 

159, 160. 

Nice's church, 139 

Nockamixon, Bucks Co., 146 

Nordkill, 5 

Norristown, ',35. 146. '47 

North Wales, . . .74, 80, 131, 138, 143 

Niibfil, 126 

Niimberg 4 

Nuss, Jacob 58 

Nyberg (Newberg), L. T., . . . . II, 12 
Nyce, G. S., 136 

Oakeley, Charlotte T., 33 

Offerings, Church, . . 35, 40, 42, 43, 49 
baskets and plates for, .... 62 
Old Trappe Church, The" plan of, 8; 
cost of, 8; debt on, 8; building of, 
8 sq. ; corner-stone laying of, 9; 
name of, 9; consecration of, II; 
debt paid, 19; description of, 60; 
during the revofution, 64; used as 
hospital, 65; first dashed, 67; re- 
pairs of, 67; fate of, 67; re-open- 
ing of, 68; 34, 37, 88, 92, 95, 96, 
"Old Yellow Church," The, . . 131 
Oley, 12, 156 




Oporin, Dr., 120 

"Order of salvation,'' 49 

Ordination, ,in the barn at Trappe, . 4 

in Augustus church, 20 

Organ, of Augustus church, 61, 66; of 
St. Michael's, Phila., 134; of 
Zion's, Chester Co., i34;of Kpis. 
eluirch, Phila., 61. 

Organist, 48, 61 

salary of, 52 

" Organ Church," The 134 

Organization, Earliest traces of, . . 2 

perfected, 14, 168 

Organizations and officers,- . , . . i6g sq. 

Orphanage at Giittingen 120 

at Orosshennersdorf, 120 

at Halle 126, 132, 135 

at Greitz, 160 

at Gerinantown, ...... 43, 44 

I alatine congregations, 129 

Paradise, Pa., ' . 150 

Parker's Ford, 65 

Parlin, Provost, 128 

Parochial school, at Trappe, 46 sq.; 

constitution and rules, 41 si|. ; 

text-hooks. 48; additional rules 

5»; '37. 

at Kingcess, 49 

at Pottstown, . . . ■ 137 

Parsonage, 30, 40, 42 

Passavant, D.D., Wm., 152 

Passport, Muhlenberg's, 122, 123, 144, 165 
Pastor, Earliest account of, 4; anmial 

election of, 38, 40 

Pastor's aid society, 45, 73 sq. 

Pawling, Mr., 11 

Peixoto, Rev. E., 32, 35 

Penn, William, 2, 54, 93 

Gov, John, . .■ 123, 165 

Pennsyhidnia Archi7f€s^ 10, 122 

Penmyl. Biriclite, . 12S 

Pennsylvania College 151, 160 

Pennsyl. Journal atid H'eeily Aikvr- 

tiser 65 

Pennsylvania Militia, 65, 66 

Perkionien, The, 2, 9, 50, 65 

Peters, Dr. K., 49, 51, ib6 

Pews, Renting of, 37 


Philadelphia, 4, 5, 6, 9, 17, 20, 23, 
35, 39. 41, 46, 58, 61,63, 65, 
66, 67, 92, 94, 109, III, 121, 
122, 123, 124, 127, 128, 129, 

n^~, '33, 135, 136, 139. 140, 

143. 147. 

Phifadelphia, Logan Co., O., . . . 150 
Philosophical and Physical Soci'ety of 

Giittingen, 158 

Phoenixville, . .- 147, 150, 120 

Muhlenberg's tract in defence of, 125 

Pike, Mr., 133 

Pikestown (Pikeland), 31, 22, 28, 51, 

'32, ^l<i 

Pittsburg 27, 139, 148 

Plilt, Rev. C. F., 139 

Poem, Anonymous, descriptive of the 

Old Church, 69 

Pohl, Missionary, 73 

Pools, Peter; Anna Elizabeth, . . 58 

Potts, J., 133 

Pottstown, I, 22, 23, 25, 26, 27, 2S; 
Eng. Luth. ch. organized,- 30; 32, 
33 ; sketch of f.uth. chs. at, 34; 

''5, 133, 134, >35, J3t'-»37.i39, 

140, 141, 142, 145, 146. 
Pound sterling. The equivalent of . . 60 
Presbyterian College, English^ . . . 131 

Printing Press, 50 

Probstzell, Saxony, 159 

Programme of the Sesqui centennial 

services. The 75 m|. 

Property, Church, 40, 54 

Protracted meeting, . . .30, 32, 37, 3S 
Providence (New), origin of nunie, 1, 

2, 18, 21, 51, 64, 67, 81, 92, 94, 

in, 121, 137, 133. 

Public School, 53, 138 

Pythias (I'ittius). Rev., .... 129, 132 

V^uakers, 93, 123 

Kaboteau, Chas. Cornelius, ... 50 

M.ary Elizabeth 50 

Cha*. Cornelius Henry Melchior, 50 

Raiiilx), Prof A., 45 

Kaphelius, Rector, ....... iig 

Rapp, Parson, .... 6, 62 




Raritan, The, 12, 21, 122, 123 

Raser, Michael, 30 

Rr\uss, Rev. I,., ...■.., 20, 113, 129 
Reading, 35, 3^, 38, 50, 51,52, 67. 

112, 132, 136, 140, 144, 145, 

146, 156, t58, 159. 

Reed's Church, 112 

Register of Pastors of Aiiijusius Ch., . 117 
Reichert, Rev. G. A , 147 

Reimensiiyder. Rev. <;., ..... 148 
Reiter, Michael; Eve; .'\niia Maria, . 140 

Reiiss, Count, 120 

Revolutionary War, Old Clnirch dur- 
ing the, 64; trials of, -85, 135, 155 

Khjnebecli, '. 122, 129 

Richards, D. D,, J. W., 2q; pastorate, 
30 S(|.; 32, 33, 35, 39, 43, 44, 
Ki, 117; biogrph., 144 sq. 

Hon. M. S., 33, 144, 162 

Hon. II. A., ....... 33, 144 

Trof. M. H., (D.IJ.,) 45, 77; 

address l>y 96 si| ; 145, 162 

H. Muhlenberg, .145 

Mary S. (nee Muhlenberg), 144, 162 

Richards, Capt., 66 

■ Rev. J. W., 162 

Richarisons, (family),. I 

Riegelsville, 138 

Rieser, Fred., 17 

Ries, Rev, II. W. 150 

Ringold Band • 44 

Roeller, Rev., ', . 23 

Rev. 1. G., 29, 3J, 141 

Roemhild, 135 

Rogers, Mrs 68 

Roman Catholics, 122 sq. 

Rosleben, 160 

Ross, Mr., 17 

Rotterdam, 120, 140 

Royer, Hon. Joseph, 52 

Hon. Horace, 68, 142 

Royersford, 43, 73, 142 

Rudolph, Karl, 6 

Ruetze, Rev. C. , 144 

Runl<el, Rev. Wm., 161 

Ruthrauff, Rev. F., 31, 146 

Oaccum (Saucon), . . . . 12, 131, 140 
Sacred concert, given in the oldch., . 37 


Salary of Pastors, 17, 25, 27, 32, 34, 

36. 37 
Salem's Church, Lebanon, .... 146 

Salisbury, 131 

Salzburgers, ... . 12I 

Sambo, ''der schwarlze,'' ... 12 

Samuels, ShadrAch, 17 

Saur, C, 48, 5t, 128 

Savannah, 121 

Savoy congregation, London, 129, 132 

Schaefer, Catherine, . , 157 

Schaeffer, D.I)., LL.IJ., I'rof ( '. VV., 

■5, 43, 142, 147 

Rev. Wm. A,, 73 

Rev. F. I) 13S, 141 

Sch.aeffertown, 156 

Schaerer, Anna Maria, ... 13S 

Schanlz, D. D., F. |. F., 80 

address by, Ill sq. 

Schaum, Rev. J. IL, 10, 11, 12, 18, 

23, 113, 126, 127. 131 
Schippach (Skipjiack), . , 8, 9, 12, 50 
Schlatter, Rev. Michael, . . . 23, 49, 50 

Sclileswig 126 

.Schmald, John A., 6i 

Schmidt, (quack doctor) 6 

Schmidt, Rev. Nelson F. , . . . . 39, 43 

Rev. J. F., 135, 137 

Rev. L., . 141 

Schmucker, D.LL, B. M., 28,. 34, 1 17, 153 

Rev. G. W., ....... 34 

Schoenberg, Von, J. C. A., .... 138 

School House, The, i, 109; the lirst, 
8, 26, 46; the second, 47; the 
third, 52. 
Schoolmaster, 46; salary of, 47, 50, 

51, 52; duties of, 47, 48, 49, 61 

.Schrack, J. j., . I, 2 

John 50 

Christian, i, 58 

Jacob, 4, 50, 54 

Hannah, 55 

Euphrosina, , . 57 

Schrenk, Rev. L. W., .... 12, 20, 113 

Schrink, Christian,^ 65 

" Schuh,'' 8 

Sehultze, John C 4 

Rev. C. E., 23, 112, 123, 132, 
156 ; biogrph., 159 sq. 



Schultze, ^ve E. (nSe Jlulilenlicrt;), . 159 
Gov. J. A. M., 160 

J-L.,(DD), 135 

Rev. F 165 

Schiisster, Rev. J. J., ... . 119 

Schiitzen, , 140 

Schwartzau, Count of, 126 

Schv^eitzerb.irth, Rev. J. C. G., . . 141 
Schwenksville, . . . 30, 42, 65, 144, 153 

Seely, Samuel I 

Seidel, Nicolas, 50 

Seidensticker, Dr. O., 57 

Seiss, D.D., LL.D., L.ll.D., J. A., 54,40 
Seminary, theological (Philadelphia), 

40, 41, 42, 43, 109, 128, 143 
at. Gettysburg, 35, 147, 14S, 140, 151 

Senecaville, 150 

Sermon, Centenary, by J. \V. Richards, 

n.D., 33, 35, 1 15 
Sesqui-centennial, by Dr. J. I'"ry. 

76, S. «|. 
Sesqui-Centennial celebration. The, a 

brief account of, 73 

Setzler, Fred., 17 

Shade, Henry, 30 

Shamokin, 143 

Sheaf, Catherine; Helen, 64 

Sheelich, Valentine, 42 

Sherer, Valentine, I?. 5° 

Shippea,}., 166 

Shoener, John D., 4 

Shuler, Jacob 58 

Shunk, Gov. F., i, 27, 52, 57 

Shupe, Michael, i9>3i!55 

Sibole, Rev. J. 1.., 76 

Prayer by, 90 sq. 

Sill, Rev. George, pastorate, 29, 37 sij.. 

39, 68, 117; biogrph., 149 sq. 

Daniel; Catherine, 149 

Mrs. H. M. (nee Mulford), . . 151 
Skirmish at Warren's Ta-vern, ... 65 

Smith, D.D., Wm., 49, 50, 129 

Rev. O. P., 34, 39; pastorale, 41 
sq.; 43, 44, 45, 77; address by. 
99sq., 117, 147; biogrph., 152. 

Frederick; Mary, 152 

Mrs. L. A. (nee Barnes), ... 153 
Mrs. M. M. (nie Hobson), . . 153 
Theodore, 153 


Snydersburg. Md., ....... 150 

Society for propagation of the Gospel, 49 
for the propagation of Christian 
knowledge, 10, 49; for useful 
knowledge, lOl. 

Muhlenberg Missionary, ... 45 

I'astor's Aid, 45, 73 

Siillner,, 134 

Anna Maria, 134 

Sp.ictb, D.I)., Prof .\., 5, 79; outline 

of ad<lress by. 92 s<|.; 147 

Spener, Phil. J., 148 

Spring Cily, 147 

.Springfield, Hucks (i) 146 

■Sprogel, L. Chr., ....'.... 61 

Spruce Run 13S 

Stanton, /Viigusta Co , Va 148 

Starmaii, Kev. J. \V., i ;i 

.Steeples, Church, ' . . O3 

.Sterling, \joxA, 65 

.■^till Valley, N. J., 137 

St. James', Episc, Evansburg, S, 11, 133 
.Court (Chapel, London. I20, 132, 

155. 165 

of Greenwich, 137 

of Limerick, (See Limerick). 

of Ciialfonl, Pa., 151 

St. John's church, Easton. . . .137, 145 

Phoenixvillc, 147, 150 

St. Matthew's church, Chester Co., 

-'9, '44 

of Philadelphia 68 

of New \'ork 142 

St. Michael's l.ulh. church, Philadel- 
phia, 61, 63, 94 sq., 122, 127. 
128, 129, 134, 147, 148. 
at Germantown, . . . 62, 131, 145 
Stoever, J. C, Jr., 2-; biogrph.. 4: III. 

Stoke Pogis, 57 

Stolberg, Count 126, 135 

Stouchsburg, . . 112 

.St. Paul's church. New York, . . ' . 142 
St. Peter'.s church (\V. Pikeland), 22, 
23. 25, =8, 29, >33, '34. 139, 
141, M.i, "44. >47. 

Streeper, William 54 

Strodach, Kev. H. B 76 

Stroudshnrg, 40, 152 

Suicides, burial of, 1 . 56 




Sunday-School, 37, 41, 44, 62 

Sunderland, LL.D., Prof. J. W., . . 37 
Swaine, Gen. Francis; Mary, . . 56, 162 

Anna Maria; Maria M 56 

Mary C. (n^e Muhlenberg), . . 162 

Swedes, 95 

Swedisli Luth. Church at Wicaco, The, 65 
Synod (Ministerium) of Pa., 37, 63, 

142, 144, 152 

atTrappe, .. 13, 113 

at Reading, 38, 15S; I40 

at Germantown, .... 30 

at Lancaster, 41 

at New Hanover, . . 131, 135, 136 

at Hanover, York Co., 137 

growth of, ..... 100, 112, 113 
organization of, ... - 94, 122, 129 
East Pennsylvania, .... 37, 151 

West Pennsylvania, 149 

Wittenberg, 149 

Miami, 150 

New York, 156, 161 

1 annenberg, David, 134 

Theological Seminary, Philadelphia, 

15^ '53, 160 

Thiel College, 148 

Thirty Years' War, The. . . .85,119 

Thiiringen, - . 129 

Tinicum, Bucks Co., 146 

Tippecanoe, O., 148 

Towamencin, 29, 33, 34, 36, 37, 39, 
144, 145, 146. ( See Christ 
church, Towmn.). 
Transfiguration, Church of the, (Potts- 
town), 34, 42,153 

Trexler, 139 

Trinity Church (German), London, . 129 

Trinity Church, Reading, . . . 144, 145 

Tripoli, Pa., 152 

Trumbaur, 140 

Tulpehocken, 5, 10, 64, 65, in. 112, 

113, 123, 129, 156, 159 

Turbotville, Pa., 150 

Tyson, Cornelius, 55 

Unger, Valentine, 26 

Union church proposed, ... -25 
Union Deposit, Dauphin Co. , Pa., . 149 


University of Pennsylvania, 49, 125, 

137, 141, 157, 161 

ofGottingen, . . . 119, 120, 140 

of Jena, . , 1 20 

of Halle, 126, 135 

ofGiessen, 140 

of New York, 143 

of Leipsic 160 

Upper l^ublin. Pa., . . . . 131, 138, 150 

Upper Milford, 131 

V agahonds, ' ' Ill 

Valley Forge, . . . . 66, 85, 134, 155 

Vanderslice, Hallie R., 44 

Vestry, First, II 

Vigera, J. F., 46 

Vincent 28, 30, 2ii, 5°. '34 

Voigt, Rev. ]. L., 21; pastorate, 22 
sq-; 34, 67; biogrph., 132 si].; 
135, J39, 156. 

'' Vorsinger,'* 61 

Waage, Rev. F., 141 

Wack, Dr. Philip, 30 

Wackernagle, D. D., Prof W., . . 43 
Wagner, Rev. Tobias, 10, II, 12, 

III, 112 

Dr., 129 

Walters, schoolmaster, 51 

Wampole, Rev. Jacob, Sr., 29; pas- 
torate, 29 sq., 31; 34, 45, 55, 56, 
64, 68, 117; biogrph., 143 sq. 

Elizabeth; Jacob, Jr., 143 

Isaac, 29 

Warren's Tavern, Skirmish at, . . . 65 

Warwick, Tp. , 29, 144 

Washington, General, . 65, 66, 155, 156 
Washington Hall Institute, Trappe, 

Pa., 153 

Washington, Pa., 148 

Warren, Pa., 14S 

Watt, Capt., 132 

Wayne, General, 65 

Weaver, Rev. Wm., 68 

Weiand, Rev., 143 

" Weiberstuhl,'' 62 

Weinland, Rev. J. F., pastorate. 25 
sq.;28, 34, 38, 56,64, 117, 134; 
biogrph., 135 sq. 



Weiuland, Susanna, 135, 136 

Weiser, Esq., J. C, Jr., biogrph., lO; 

49, 54, 64, 112, 122, 156 
Anna Maria, ... 10, 92, 112, 122 

Weisiger, Daniel, 4 

Welden, D.D., C. F., 33,14' 

Welsh settlers, 2 

Wendt, Rev. II., 34, 68 

Wenzel, D. D., G. A., 29; pastorate, 

34 sq.; 36, 39, 45, 117; biogrph., 147 

Daniel, 147 

Anna Maria, 147 

Mrs. U. 11 (nee McAfee), ... 148 
Wernigerode, . 126, 132, 135, 159, 160 

Weygand, Rev., 113, 131, 139 

Whitemarsh, Pa., 39, 64, 150 

Whitpain (Whitpen), . 27, I31, 138, 139 
Wicaco church (Gloria iJei), 5, 62, 65, 133 

Wildbahn, Rev. 23 

William-sport, I47, 151 

Williams, Roger, i 

Winchester, Pa., 129 

Winner, John, . . -55 

Wissahickon, g 

Wittenberg, 81 

Wittenberg College, 148, 150 

Womelsdorf, 112 

Wood-stove in the old church, . . 46, 64 

Woodstock, Va 155 

Wooster, O., 150 


Wrangel, Provost, ... 20, 127, 154, 159 

Wresperger. Rev. A., 165 

Wurtemberg, 6. 10 

1 eager, Rev. Conrad 146 

Rev. Nathan, 138, 147 

Yeagertown, Pa., 150 

Yocum, Mrs. Sarah, 58 

York, Pa., 6 

Yost, Conrad, 5°, 58 

George, 53 

Young, Margaret, 44 

Young People's Lyceum, 45 

Zellerfekl, 119 

Ziegel, 139 

Ziegenfuss, Rev. -S. A 29.40 

Ziegenhagen, D.D., F. M., 5, 10, 21, 

4S, III, 114, 120, 121, 132, 156, 


Ziegler, Counsellor, 126 

Ziegler, Mary, 137 

Zimmerman, Esq., J. M., . ... 136 
Ziruendorf, von. Count (von Thurn- 

stein), 10, 94, 120. 121 

Zion's church, Ches. Co., 22, 23, 25, 

28, 29. 131, 133, 134, 139 141, 

143, •4t'- 
Zion's Lmh. church, I'hila. , 93. 123, 

•-8, 137, 143