foundland, in 1818, when the Rev. E. A. Osborn of that church took charge of the
work Seventy-two persons from Berkshire were taken into the Newfoundland
church before' 1828. In that vear the church of Berkshire Valley was regularly
organized bv the Newark Presbytery. The church building, commenced m 1833,
was well built and is in good condition to-day. after more than sixty years of
usefulness. The pews face the two entrance doors, between which stands a high
One Sunday, as Mr. Megie was driving to the Berkshire church, he found a man
lying in the road, helplesslv drunk. A wagon was moving slowly along, not far m
advance the driver bein? indifferent to the fact that he had lost his passenger.
Mr Megie overtook this man. and. after having, with considerable difficulty, induced
him to return to the assistance of his companion, drove on to his waiting con-
420 NEW JERSEY
gregation. A little later the more sober of the two appeared at one of the open
doors of the church, and, after standing for some time looking at the congregation
in a bewildered way, staggered into the room, turned ,and discovered Mr. Megie
in the pulpit. "Oh, there you are!" he shouted, shaking his fist; "come down and
have it out !'' The minister asked him to wait until the service ended. By that
time the intruder was in a more pacific mood.
After the organization of the church in Dover, in 1835. with the exception of
two years, 1839 and 1840. Dover ministers supplied the Berkshire Valley pulpit,
until the growing needs of the younger congregation compelled the pastor to give
his whole time to the Dover church alone. This church had prospered, and was
fully able to pay without assistance more money than it had ever given in con-
junction with Berkshire Valley. An increase of salary was offered to Mr. Megie
on condition that he should take charge of the Sunday school in this place. As that
meeting was always held in the afternoon, the arrangement made it necessary to
sever the connection between the two churches.
Eighth Article from the Dover Church Mews for October :
Two churches in this vicinity were once closely connected with the Dover
Presbyterian: the Mine Hill church, and the Welsh church at the Richard Mine.
The following account of them and of their relation to this church, is taken with
very little alteration from the published writings of Rev. B. C. Megie:
Before the year i860 the spot where the village of Port Oram now stands was
not more important than other farm and wood land, except where the road crosses
the canal. This was a central point for the shipment of iron ore from the numerous
mines in the neighboring hills, and weigh scales had been put there by the Thomas
Iron Works. Attached to the weigh scales was a room in which the Welsh people
of this part of the country used to meet to hear the Gospel preached. About the
year 1850, many Welshmen were employed in and around the mines of Mount
Pleasant and Mine Hill, among whom was a Welsh preacher, John R. Jenkins. He
had not had charge of a congregation, but on Sundays had held religious services
among his countrymen, in their own language, while he devoted the rest of the
week to mining.
After a few years Mr. Jenkins removed to Ohio; and in 1859 the little con-
gregation united w'ith the Presbyterian church of Dover. This movement seemed to
require an enlargement of the Dover church. An architect was consulted, and plans
were made; but the expense would have been so great that it was considered wiser
to build a liew church. Nothing was actually done to provide room for the growing
congregation until about ten years later. In the mean time Mr. Jenkins returned
to New Jersey, and resumed his preaching in the Welsh tongue. The Crane Iron
Company, which had Welshmen in it. sent from Pennsylvania a frame, doors,
windows' and roofing for a church, and the Welsh people put it up close by the
Richard 'Mine. On the second day of November, 1869, twenty-eight members of
the Presbyterian church of Dover took their letters of dismissal, and were con-
stituted the Welsh Presbvterian church of Richard Mine. The Rev. John R. Jenkins
was ordained and installed pastor, by the Presbytery of Rockaway. This was the
first church built for the benefit of the miners.
During the period when John R. Jenkins resided in Ohio, the late Pearce Rogers,
then a voung Englishman engaged in mining, conducted religious services '" the
school house^ at Mine Hill, and drew around him a goodly congregation. I here
was a prosperous Sundav school, under the superintendence of ^Ir David Jenkins.
Praver meetings were held Sundav evenings, conducted by Mr. Jenkins and Mr.
Rogers the former an elder and the latter a deacon of the Dover Presbyterian
church' The pastor of the Dover church often preached in the school house. In
1871 the Presbvterv of Morris and Orange licensed Mr. Rogers to preach. On
Mav 27. 1S74, twentv-four members of the church of Dover received their letters
of 'dismissal, and were constituted the Presbyterian church of Mine Hill, by a
committee consisting of Rev. B. C. Megie. Rev. Albert Erdman, and Rev. I. W.
Cochran of the Presbvterv of Morris and Orange. The Rev. Pearce Rogers was
ordained and installed' pastor. September 22, 1874. A church edifice was erected
costing more than six thousand dollars, and capable of seating about four hundred
oersons It was dedicated, free from debt, in the summer of 1878. . ,. j
Mr Rogers, who remained pastor of the Mine Hill church as long as he lived,
supplied the" pulpit in Berkshire Valley also for many years. He died at his home
'" ^Re'v.'john'R.' Jenia^sdied in 1874, aged forty-six years. The handsome menu-
The First Presbyterian Cluircli â€” Third Buildina;
The Hoagland Memorial
MORRIS COUNTY 421
ment which marks his grave in Orchard Street cemetery was erected by his fellow
The steady and rapid growth of population throughout this region has affected
the church in two ways. Many families have been added to our congregation, but a
few have withdrawn to aid in forming new churches.
Next to the Presbyterian church the first protestant religious organization in
Dover was the Methodist, 1838. After that came the Episcopal church, which held its
services in the room vacated by the Presbyterians in the old stone academy, and
which drew to some extent on the Presbyterian congregation for its members. The
late Henry McFarlan acted as lay-reader until 1832, when a rector was appointed.
The next were the Free Methodist church, and the Second M. E., or Grace Church,
both later than 1870.
For several years, dating from 1871, German services were held in the Pres-
byterian church, on Friday evenings. There \vere also services in the Swedish
language from 1872 to 1874. in the same building. One result of this was the
erection of the Swedish church on Grant street.
Ninth Article from the Dover Church News for November:
For more than thirty years after the separation of the Old School from the
New School Presbvteriaiis 'there were two bodies, each calling itself "The General
Assemblv of the P'resbWerian Church in the United States of America." and each
publishing its "Minutes" under that name. Many Synods and some Presbyteries
followed the same course; but the name â– 'S>Tiod of New Jersey" was retained by
the Old School branch alone. The Synod of New York and New Jersey was
formed in 1840. consisting of nine N. S. Presbyteries in and near New \ ork City;
one of them being the new Presbytery of Rockaway, to which the Dover church
had been assigned.
Conformablv to a declaration of the General Assembly (N. S.) that, other thmgs
being equal, it is undesirable that anv Presbytery should contain more than twenty-
four ministers, this Presbvterv was small. There was little direct railroad com-
munication, at anv time, among the different villages within its boundaries, and at
first none at all; but there was much sociability among its members. Mmisters and
elders attending meetings of Presbvtery usually remained at least one night as
guests of the congregation in whose church they met. The personal intercouse thus
brought about was pleasant and profitable to all concerned, and the number to be
entertained was not inconveniently large. , , . â€ž .
The pastor of the Dover church, Mr. Megie, was Stated Clerk of this Presbviery
from 185s until the Reunion, and continued to hold that office for eighteen yeai-s
after the Rockaway Presbytery was, in 1870, merged in the Presbytery of Morns
and Orange. . o o t
The Morris and Essex Railroad was extended to Dover in 1848; but many years
passed before the stillness of the Sabbath was broken by noise from that source.
Two passenger trains dailv. six days in the week, amply accommodated all travelers
from this vicinity, even after the road was opened as far as Hackettstown. Old
residents of the village used to remain calmly at home until the train was heard
approaching, and then walk to the station without undue haste.
Among those who moved into Dover when the coming of the railroad was as-
sured, was Jabez Mills, of Morristown, father of Mrs. J. L. Allen. He and his
family were Presbvterians; and their interest in religious matters may be inferred
from' the fact tha't among the sons, sons-in-law. and direct descendants of Mr.
Mills there have been eleven ministers, one of whom is the well-k-nown evangelist,
B. Fay Mills. One of the daughters, Mrs. S. G. Whittlesey, had gone with her
missionary husband to Cevlon, at a time when the journey was made only in a
sailing vessel. Being left a widow, she returned, with her two little boys, to her
father's care, soon after his removal to this place.
On coming to Dover Mr. Mills built, for his own use, the house on Prospect
street, which is now the residence of Dr. I. W. Condict; and Mr. Megie built, at
the same time, the one next to it, which is almost, if not quite, the oldest house
in Dover stilf occupied bv the family of the original owner. These two may be
considered the first dwelling houses erected on Prospect street, and nearly the first
on any of the hills within the city limits. Others followed in rapid succession.
There had once been a small house on the spot chosen by Mr. Mills, but it had
disappeared w^hen the road near it began to be known as Prospect street. Tradition
locates an Indian wigwam on the same ground, long ago. But when Mr. Mills
took possession of his" new home a fine forest stretched from his garden wall back
over the hills and out of sight.
422 NEW JERSEY
Tenth Article from the Dover Church News for December:
The prosperity of this church in its early years was largely due to the con-
scientious liberality of one man, Elder J. L. Allen. He and his wife were among
the most resolute of the twenty men and women who established the first church
that was ever organized in Dover. He paid one-fourth of the pastor's salary until
the church grew strong enough to render such aid unnecessarv; and at the' same
time gave liberally to other objects. However small his income might beâ€” and at
one time it was very smallâ€” a certain proportion was invariablv used for religious
and benevolent purposes. Riches, coming to him from an unexpected source in-
creased his ability for usefulness, without diminishing his zeal. A quiet, earnest
Christian, neither seeking nor shunning publicitv, he was aUvavs ready to give his
influence and his money to assist the pastor in his work, and to preserve harmony
m the church. The power for good of such a man can hardlv be overestimated
He died September 22, i86g, a little after midnight, from the effects of a fall the
previous day. By his will he left ten thousand dollars toward the erection of a
new Presbyterian church, to take the place of the original building, which was no
longer large enough to accommodate the constantly increasing congregation. He
left also five thousand dollars for a parsonage. These bequests were made on
the condition that work on the new church should be commenced within a year
from the time of the testator's death. The terms were accepted, more money was
subscribed, and the present house of worship was built, at a cost of thirty thousand
dollars. It was dedicated in 1872, President Cattell, of Lafayette College, preaching
the dedication sermon. The old organ was replaced by a new one, costing two
thousand dollars. When the church was opened for service, every pew was rented.
As a memorial to Mr. Allen, a large window was placed in the front of the
church, by ^I^s. Allen and her daughter, Mrs. Courtney. It has recently been moved
to the interior of the building, and a fine window in memory of the late Dr.
Megie has been placed opposite, by the former and present members of this con-
Some years after the completion of this building, an unusuallv violent wind
swept through Dover, doing much damage. The tall spire of the church was injured
to such an extent that it has since been removed. Some changes have been made in
paint, furniture, lighting, and ventilation; but with these exceptions the building
remains unaltered. The parsonage was built in 1878, at an expense of seven
thousand dollars. Although the house of worship itself is not changed, the sur-
roundings are. The adjacent gardens, and the "Park," once filled with endless
varieties of rare and costly flowers, and with fine old trees, have become building
lots, and are now almost covered by houses. The village has developed into a
busy town, full of noise, activity, and change.
In 1876, when Dr. Megie resigned the pastorate of this church and accepted a
call to the church of Pleasant Grove, there was no other minister in the Presbytery
of Morris and Orange who had remained in one church for so long a time ; and
there are to-day but two ministers in this Presbytery who came into it from the
Rockaway Presby-tery in consequence of the reunion. Rev. Dr. Stoddard and
Rev. J. A. Ferguson. Some have died, some have gone to other fields of labor.
Nearly all of the members of the Rockaway Presbytery, during the thirty years of
its existence, were known in Dover socially as well as professionally, and will not
soon be forgotten. Here are a few names, taken almost at random, of ministers
who were, at different times, included in that ecclesiastical body: Joel Campbell,
of Hamburgh; Josiah Fisher, of Succasunna: Robert Crossett; John M. Johnson,
of Hanover; John Ford, of Parsippany; J. F. Tuttle. of Rockaway, afterward Presi-
dent of Wabash College: Thomas S. Hastings, of Mendham, now of Union Theo-
logical Seminary; Peter Kanouse, of Deckertown ; David Magie, of Mendham, now
of Paterson; A. A. Haines, of Hamburgh; Samuel P. Halsey, of Rockaway; Theo.
F. White, of Mendham, now of Summit; J. F. Sutton and F. F. Judd. both of
Parsippany; D. E. Megie of Boonton, and W. H. Megie. brothers of the Dover
Eleventh Article from the Dover Church News for January:
Dr. Megie resigned his position in this church, and was succeeded by Dr.
Halloway. in 1876. He left a church strong enough financially to warrant a decided
increase in its yearly expenditures. In 1830 there were thirty-seven members ; in
1876 there were two hundred and twenty. There had been no marked revivals of
religion during the 37 years of Mr. Megie's pastorate, but every year had brought
additions to the church membership, amounting in all to five hundred and ninety-six.
The Swedish Lutheran Church
The First iletlioJist Church
MORRIS COUNTY 423
Of these, forty-one had died, and three hundred and seventy-two had moved away
from the place.
In the original agreement entered upon by this church with Mr. Megie, nothmg
was said about vacations, and none were ever taken by him. Before leaving Dover,
however, in accepting the call from the Presbyterian church in Pleasant Grove, he
stipulated that, before entering upon the duties of his new parish, he should be
allowed time for a long desired trip to Europe. The journey was made; and he was
temporarily free from the responsibility of conducting church services, personally
or otherwise, for the first time since his ordination, in 1838, if we except a part
of the summer of 1863, which was passed with the army, in Tennessee, as chaplam
under the U. S. Christian Commission. The church, on that occasion, provided for
the pulpit during the pastor's absence. ,t ^
Dr. Megie remained with the Pleasant Grove church until 1888. One hundred
and thirty-six members were added to that church on profession of faith, and thirty-
six by letter, during those twelve years. In the fall of 1887 he received the appoint-
ment of Superintendent of Public Schools in ]\Iorris County, and he returned to
Dover in the following April. He did not abandon his ministerial work, but
preached as stated supply in the Welsh church at the Richard Mine until his death.
He acted, for the last time, as Moderator of the Presbytery of Morris and Orange
at a meeting held in Mendham June 10, 1890. On the evening of the next day he
retired at nine o'clock, as he had an engagement for the foIlo^\^ng mornmg which
would have made it necessan,' for him to leave home at an early hour, had it been
fulfilled. But not long after midnight, almost without warning, and with no fare-
well words, he passed from his long, happy, and useful life on earth into the
mysterv of the spirit world.
His body was laid in the cemetery which he had helped to purchase and care
for, thirty-five years before, among the graves of men. women, and children who
had once 'worked with him. and through him, to promote temperance, morality, and
religion by means of the Dover Presb>'terian church.
HISTORY OF THE FIRST METHODIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH, DOVER, NEW JERSEY.
The first church built by any denomination in Dover was erected in
1838 on the comer of Sussex and McFarlan streets where Grace Church
now stands. It was named The First Methodist Episcopal Church. Previous
to this date Methodist class meetings and preaching services had been held
in the village school house.
On the first page of the oldest trustees' record book it is recorded:
"At a meeting of the inhabitants of Dover, Morris County, New Jersey con-
vened at the school house in said village on the fourteenth day of Julv 1838, agree-
able to public notice, according to law to appoint and elect a board of trustees for
the purpose of erecting a Methodist Episcopal IMeeting House in the village ot
Dover David Sanford named as chairman. T. B. Dalrymple appointed secretary,
the following persons were elected trustees: David Sanford, Aaron Doty, Henry
C. Bonnel, James McDavit, F. B. Dalrymple."
Later the records mention David Sanford as being president of the
board. A contracting committee was appointed and James Searmg signed
the contract to build a meeting house for fourteen hundred dollars. This
amount to include the entire cost with the exception of painting and furni-
ture. The financial records show that David Sanford, James McDavit and
James O. Rogers solicited money to cover the cost of the building. The
greater amount was raised by small subscriptions from all the inhabitants of
the village. The largest subscriptions were less than one hundred and
twenty-five dollars and were donated by David Sanford and Henry Mc-
Farlan. ... TVT
The corner stone was laid August 22, 1838. At this time Marimng
Force was the presiding elder, Rev. James O. Rogers was the first minister,
William Ford, Thomas Oram, Ezra B. Sanderson, David Little, John San-
ford and William Harvey succeeded the first boards of trustees, stewards
and leaders as it became necessary to elect or appoint others to fill vacancies
or new appointments.
424 NEW JERSEY
In 1849, during the pastorate of Rev. Jacob P. Forte, a new parsonage
was built on the lot adjoining the church on Sussex street.
The following pastors have successfully supplied the church : James
O. Rogers, James M. Tuttle, Rodney Winans, William E. Perry, M. E. El-
lison, J. Dobbins, William Burroughs, J. P. Forte, William W. Christine,
E. M. Griffiths, J. O. Winner, A. M. Palmer, Caret Van Horn, Stacy W.
Hilliard, John Scarlet, E. A. Hill, Martin Hurr, I. W. Seran, C. S. Coit.
During Mr. Coit's pastorate a lot was purchased on the corner of
Blackwell and Sussex streets. On this property a chapel was erected with
the purpose of building a large auditorium later as circumstances would
permit. A division of the congregation in 1876 resulted in the formation of
a new Methodist Society called the Second Methodist Episcopal Church
and prevented the completion of the enterprise. The name of the charge
until 1872 had been Millbrook and Dover, but with the erection of the
new stone chapel it became a separate charge.
Rev. C. S. Coit was succeeded in turn by David Walters, J. R. Daniels,
S. B. Rooney, John I. Morrow, H. D. Opdyke, Richard Johns and William
Blakeslee. During the pastorate of Rev. William Blakeslee, a parsonage was
built on the eastern end of the Blackwell street property leaving vacant the
large lot in front of the chapel. After Mr. Blakeslee the following ministers
served the charge: William Day, W. S. Galloway, Charles S. Woodruff
and William Eakins.
In 1906 under the leadership of Rev. A. B. Richardson, D.D., the
official board, after prayerful deliberation, assumed what seemed to them
an almost impossible task. This undertaking was the completion of the
chapel begun nearly thirty-six years before. A large auditorium was
needed and the large vacant space in front of the chapel could be utilized.
The church members and people in town responded generously, subscriptions
flowed in and faith was established. The building committee was organized
with A. B. Richardson, president ; Isaac W. Searing, vice-president ; Wil-
liam S. White, treasurer; Phillip H. Burrell, secretary; while A. G. Buck,
Isaac G. Moyer, J. H. Bickley and A. L. Shoemaker as trustees assisted
and upheld the executive action. Isaac G. Moyer died before the building
was finished. It would be impossible to name all who contributed time,
labor, and money toward the new church erection, for the entire congrega-
tion labored together as one man, ably assisted by members of other denom-
inations and interested citizens. The Ladies' Aid, the Epworth League and
the Sunday School raised several thousand dollars and a spirit of joyous
harmony prevailed. It was a crisis in the history of the church and all felt
the future existence of the church depended on the success of the under-
"We must arise and build a church of strengrth !
We must unite and wide extend our walls !"
The cry went forth until it rang at length :
"We must go on or backward we shall fall !"
The pastor rose, the general of his host,
And martialed all his forces to the front;
Summoned his band of stewards to their post
And organized a system for the fund.
The earnest came with cheerful words and aid;
The elders supervised and prudent cared;
The women on the altar service laid ;
The children gathered mites from everjTvhere.
View of Dover, 1850.
Richard Brotherton Home, later the Yail Home.
Quaker Church, Innlt 1;,
MORRIS COUNTY 425
New life, new hope, new courage seemed to glow
And shine abroad with bright inspiring light,
Until there came a time of joy, when lo !
The builders gathered round with busy might."
The verses quoted above are taken from a part of the poem written by
Miss Olive Searing and dedicated to Rev. and Mrs. Richardson in apprecia-
tion for services rendered to the church, 1904-11. The poem was read at
their farewell reception. One verse stands out triumphant and this history
would not be complete without it.
The building stands, a monument of grace.
Heroic in its consecrated work;
A noble structure, prominent in its place :
A stalwart ornament; "A LIVING CHURCH."
The corner stone was laid April 13, 1907, Rev. Bishop E. G. Andrews
officiating, assisted by Rev. Henry A. Buttz, Rev. George C. Wilding and
the presiding elder, Louis C. Muller.
The dedication took place the first week in June, 1908, Bishop Henry
C. Spellmeyer j)reaching the dedicatory sermon. The attending services oc-
cupied several days beginning May 31.
The entire cost of the new auditorium was $32,637.00 and almost the
entire sum was raised at the time of dedication. The total value of the
present church property, including the parsonage, is about $85,000.
The present membership is 518.
Rev. Frederick S. Simmons succeeded Dr. Richardson, but after a
very successful pastorate of two years, he was compelled to retire because
of ill health. In April, 1913. Rev. William H. Ruth was appointed. Rev.