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History of York County Pennsylvania From the Earliest Time to the Present online

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Rev. W. B. Raber for three years. He was
an able clergyman. Rev. J. C. Smith be-
came pastor again in 1857; remained four
years. When he retired there were 237
members. Rev. Samuel Enterline, suc-
ceeded for two years, and Rev. Jacob Erb
two years, iintil 1866, when Rev. J. C.
Smith became pastor a third time. During
this pastorate, a new church was bailt at a
cost of $13,000. The building committee
were Charles Lafean, Rev. D. Eberly, Jacob
Allison, Henry Licking and Rev. Smith.
There were then 357 members. Rev. W. B.

Raber was called a second time, and was fol-
lowed by Rev. J. P. Smith, a very success-
ful revivalist, and he, by Rev. J. P. Miller,
an active worker. Under him the church
was remodeled at a cost of $1,500. Rev.
J. R. Meredith was nest called; he remained
three years, and in 1885 Rev. I. H. Albright
was chosen. The church membership under
him is about 400. So far as is known. Dr.
Ehrhart was chosen superintendent of the
lu-st Sunday-school in this church. D. W.
Crider is the present superintendent, and H.
Y. Kottkamp, assistant. The membership in
1885 is 410.

Tlie Second Church of the United Breth-
ren in Christ, of York, was organized by
Rev. John H, Young, in 1873. About fifty
of the original members of this congrega-
tion were drawn from the First United
Brethren Church. The Baptist congrega-
tion at that time had no regular pastor, and
Rev. Young conducted services in their
church until the building, in which this con-
gregation now worship, was completed on
South Duke Street, at a cost of $1,000. Mr.
Young had previously purchased the site for
$4,000 on which was located a comfortable
dwelling house. During two years of pas-
toral duty he collected and paid off $2,500,
or one half of the indebtedness of the con-
gregation, and increased its membership.
Rev. A. H. Rice succeeded in 1875, and
continued two years, when Rev. J. C. Smith
became pastor. The membership was then
ninety-eight and the debt was 13,200; of
this Rev. Smith succeeded in paying $1,700
during his pastorate of five years. In the
meantime the church was repaired. Rev.
H. B. Dohner was pastor two years, and was
followed by Rev. G. A. Burtner, an active
worker. The church membership numbers
nearly 200 per.sons. A Sunday-school was
started with the church. The membership of
the school, in 1885, was about 195 pupils and
teachers, with Jacob Houseman as superin-

Heidelberg Reformed Church. — Heidel-
berg Reformed Church, as a religious body,
had its origin coeval with that of its sister
church, the Lutheran and is one of the
oldest of the Protestant denominations.
Doctrinally it belongs to the great family,
that holds to modified Calvinism. Its doc-
trinal position is stated in the Heidelberg
catechism, a confession of faith three centuries
old. The Heidelberg Church of York based
upon the Heidelberg catechism, was estab-
lished in 1867. Its teachings must ever be
in harmony with-the catechism whose name
it bears in its chartered title; always under-


stood in its true historical sense. And to
this mission the church has always been faith-
ful. In harmony with these views the church
was organized in 1867. The first pastor,
Rev. A. S. Vaughan, served vintil 1869,
when he resigned and was succeeded by Rev.
A. Wanner, D. D., who served until the close
of 1874. It was dm-ingthis pastorate, that the
present beautiful chapel was built. The
third pastor was Rev. James I. Good, who
served until September, 1877. The fourth
pastor, Rev. F. J. Sauber, was installed in
October, 1877, and continues to serve the con-
gregation, which is in a prosperous condition.
It has about 250 members, and has a Sunday-
school of 300 pupils and teachers. A large
pipe organ has recently been purchased. The
congregation is also moving in the way of
building a new church.

The First Baptist Church. — In August,
1850, Rev. G. M. Slaysman visited York to
ascertain how many Baptists were residing
in or near the place, intending to return and
begin preaching. In November, following,
a room was rented in Hartman's Building,
Centre Square, which he fitted up with seats
and a pulpit. ]\[r. Hartman presented a
Bible, and T. D. Davis, of Chester, furnished
a stove. The room was opened for worship
in December, 1850. In January, following,
Mr. Slaysman moved to York. Finding a
few Baptists in town and in the country de-
sirous of forming a congregation, he contin-
ued with them. The church was constituted
May 21, 1851. The first person baptized
was Mary Ann Wireman, June 8, 1851. In
the fall of the year others joined the church
by baptism. The pastor, during this time,
was supporting himself by teaching. An
appropriation for the support of the pastor
was secured at the rate of $150 per year.
This was increased to $250, and again to

A lot of ground was ■ bought, in 1852, on
which to build a shurch. Mrs. Mary Young,
of Columbia, gave the first $5. The pastor
secured enough subscriptions to enable the
work to begin July, 1852, and in December
the basement was occupied for worship.

The building was dedicated on the 14th of
September, 1856. Rev. D. Williams, pastor
of the First Baptist Church, of Harrisburg,
preached the dedicatory sermon, assisted by
Rev. W. S. Hall, pastor of the Phcenixville
Baptist Church. Rev. Slaysman continued
until November 2, 1862, and was succeeded
by Rev. Henry Bray, Janviary 1, 1863, for
two years. Mr. Slaysman returned to York
April 1, 1865, and remained till January 1,

Rev. Andrew J. Hay was called August 1,
1870, and remained two years. The church
was without a pastor for nearly four years,
when Rev. Henry Colclesser was called. May
17, 1876. He served four years. For
another year the church held services with-
out pastoral care, when Rev. E. F. Crane,
general missionary for northwestern Penn-
sylvania, w?is sent to York. For three
months he continued preaching every even-
ing. The church then elected Rev. W. B.
Skinner, August 1, 1881, who labored two
and one-half years, when, on account of ill
health, he resigned, and Rev. L. 'B. Plumer,

; of Boston, Mass., a student at Crozer Semi-
nary, was called , July 13, 1884. The church
has received into its membership since its

I organization 268 persons. Its present num-

i bar is seventy members, having a church and
parsonage located on South George Street,
mainly due to the self-denying labor of Rev.
Slaysman. The Sunday-school numbers
about eighty-five, with an average attend-
ance of fifty. Superintendent, Andrew Watt;
secretary, William Hohenrine; librarian,
Frederick Hosbach, and Thomas Wood,

Bethlehem Church of the Evangelical As-

j sociation. — This church was built in 1841,
under the leadership of Benjamin Thomas.
It is 40x55 feet, and is located on North
Queen Street.

In the year 1842 George Brickley, who is
now a practicing physician of York, at the
advanced age of seventy-nine years, had this
charge assigned him. He labored until
1844. During his administration he and
the trustees of the church — B. Thomas, P.
Shafer, C. Strigel. H. Burger, M. Hoke and
J. Dunlap — had the church incorporated.
The names of ministers who served this con-

; gregation, from the time the church was

■' built until the year 1885, are as follows:
George Brickley, from 1842 to 1844; W. W.
Orwig, 1844-46; J. Boas, 1846-47; L. Eber-
hart, 1847-49; G. AVeirick, 1849-50; C.
Hammer, 1850-52; C. 1'. Deininger, 1852-

,54; E. Kohr, 1854-56; H. Althouse, 1856-

' 58; S. Wolf, 1858-59; D. Kreamer, 1859-60;
A. L. Reeser, 1860-62; B. Hengst, 1862-64;
J. Young, 1864-66; S. Smith, 1866-68; A.
Rairich, 1868-69; J. Bowersos, 1869-70,
who was then sent to the State of Oregon as
missionary; J. C. Farnsworth, 1870-72; G.
Brickley, 1872-73; S. Aurand, 1873-75; C.
F. Deininger, 1875-77; A: F. Leopold, 1877
-79; C. Philibar, 1879-80; R. Deisher,

j 1880-82; J. Koehl, 1882-84; J. Shambach
is the present pastor.

I The services were altogether German when



it W.18 organized. For some time they were
German in the morning and English in the
evening, until 1S71, when a part of the
membership was organized into an English

At the General Conference, held 1875, this
church was added to the newly- organized At-
lantic Conference, but in 1883 it was again
placed in the Central Pennsylvania Confer-
ence. While within the bounds of the At-
lantic Conference, the services were alto-
gether German, but now they are as before,
half English. The membership is 104.

In 1868, while Rev. A. llairich was sta-
tioned here, a brick parsonage, was built at
a cost of $2,700. Rev. J. Young, Joshua
Young and Jacob Sechrist constituted the
building committee.

Trinity Church of the Evangelical Asso-
ciation. — This church was established by the
Central Pennsylvania Conference of the
Evangelical Association, in INIarch, 1871,
Rev. U. F. Swengel became its first pastor,
who organized the church in the court house
August 5, 1871, with fifty- seven members,
most of whom had withdrawn from Bethle-
hem Evangelical Church, on account of the
services being conducted entirely in German,
in that church, and they preferred English.
A Sabbath-school was organized the same
year. The church services and the Sunday-
echool were held in the court house until the
Ist of October, 1871, when the congrega-
tion took possession of the chapel on East
King Street, which was dedicated on the
1st of October. The lot and chapel cost
$3,400. Rev. H. B. Hartzler preached the
dedicatory sermon, and Rev. Jacob Young,
P. E., dedicated the church as "Trinity
Chapel of the Evangelical Association."
Jacob A. Sechrist, Rev. U. F. Swengel, Adam
Sechrist, J. M. Ettinger and John Sechrist,
composed the building committee. Jacob
Sechrist, J. M. Ettinger, J. M. Young, Jacob
C. Shultz and John Sechrist, the board of
trustees, and soon afterward John F. Thomas
was added to the board, and at present is its
president. Jacob A. Sechrist has held the
position of treasurer in the church since its
organization. Rev. Swengel served the con-
gregation three years, daring which time the
membership increased to 120, and the Sun-
day-school to 150. In March, 1874, Rev. H.
B. Hartzler succeeded. During the second
year of his ministry, there was a great reviv-
al. Rev. A. W. Bower, a student of Union
Seminary, was appointed by the presiding
elder to till the unexpired term. In March,
1877, Rev. E. Swengel was appointed. Rev.
S. Aurand succeeded in March, 1878, and

remained two years, during which time a
parsonage was built. The membership and
Sunday-school were considerably increased
during his pastorate. In March, 1880, Rev.
P. W. Raidabaugh began a pastorate of three
years, during which time the remaining in-
debtedness on the church property was paid
off. In 1883 Rev. A. H. Irvine, the present
pastor was appointed. In Jtily, 1884, John
F , Thomas, P. W. Keller and John Sechrist
were appointed as a building committee, and
the church was enlarged and remodeled; fif-
teen feet were added to the audience room,
and an additional building, whose dimen-
sions were 18x30 feet, added to the rear of the
church, to be used by the primary depart-
ment of the Sunday-school, and for prayer
and class meetings. The main audience
room was frescoed and the entire floor car-
i peted. New furniture was placed in the pul-
I pit and altar. The present pastor, to May,
1885, received 102 members into the church,
which now numbers 203 members. The
Sunday-school has 300 pupils.

The Methodist Einscopal Zion Church.
— In the year 1819, the first colored church
in York was built on North Duke Street.
The building then erected was dedicated on
the 28th of November of that year. The
trustees of the church when organized were
John Joiee, John Lindenberger, Edward
' Young, Israel Williams and Richard Butler.
The church services and the colored school
were conducted in this building until the new
one was built.

The members of the congregation who had,
for more than half a century, worshiped in
this old landmark were now compelled to yield
to the onward march of the many increasing
manufacturing industries by which their little
frame fabric was surrotmded. A very liberal
offer for the purchase of their property hav-
ing been made by the Billmyer & Small Co.,
was accepted after mature deliberation.
Their present place of worship is on
East King Street, near Queen. It is a very
handsome brick edifice, two-stories high, and
built with architectural design, finish, and
comfort, at a cost of over S5,000.

J. A. Dempwolf was architect, and Jerome
Heidler, builder. The supervisory committee
for church was A. Howard, G. S. Robinson, I.
Gooden, R. S. Wilson and J. L. Smallwood.
Ground was broken September, 1880, and
corner-stone laid with impressive ceremonies,
October 24, 1880. The new church was
dedicated, Sunday, August 14, 1881, with
very appropriate services, followed by en-
couraging financial results, entirely liquidat-
ing its inde'



There is another colored church on the
west side of the Codorus.

The Young Men's Christian Association. —
An organization was effected in 1856, but it
soon ceased to exist. The present associa-
tion was formed March 7, 1869, in the U. B.
Church, by young men representing the differ
ent Protestant churches of York. A subse-
quent meeting was held in "Rupp's Building"
on May 14, of the same year, and a permanent
organization was effected as follows: Presi-
dent, David E. Small; recording secretary,
Charles G. Welch; corresponding secretary,
Arthur King; treasurer, J. J. Frick; repre-
sentatives of the different churches, O. P.
Weiser, E. C. Bender, H. C. Adams, M. B.
Spahr, H. A Ebert, Joseph Loucks, G. J.
Weiser, E. H. Moffat, J. A. Sechrist, John M.
Brown, Andrew Watt, C. C. Kottcamp,
George F. Leber, W. H. Welsh, C. L.
Thomas, W. Reisinger. The meetings were
held at first in the engine houses of the fire
companies and by special request in the
parlor of one of the hotels. Apartments were
secured in "Ebert's Building," where a read-
ing room was opened and a library estab-
lished. At the end of the first year's work
the membership was 198. The first anni-
versary was held in Beaver Street Methodist
Episcopal Church. Work was accomplished
in Freystown that eventuated in the building
of a chapel there at a cost $1,500. In 1871,
rooms were rented in "Spahr's Building." A
well supplied free reading room and library
were opened. The first convention was held
in May, 1871, in St. Paul's Lutheran Church.
David E. Small, the president, was an earnest
and devoted worker in the cause, and his
labors were very effective. The following
year open-air meetings were held on the
streets at four places in York, on Sunday
afternoons. The suppression of intemperance
and Sabbath breaking enlisted the attention
of the association. Samuel Small, Sr., pre-
sided at a meeting held May 26, 1873, whose
subject for discussion was the proper observ-
ance of the Sabbath. A petition, in relation
to Sabbath laws and intemperance, contain-
ing 3,000 names, was presented to the court,
by 150 representatives.

David E. Small, who earnestly labored in
behalf of the principles advocated by the
association, resigned the office of president.
May 8, 1877, on account of ill health, and
was succeeded by David Fahs. A picnic was
held in Bumgardner's Woods, July 4, 1878, at
which 4,000 persons were present.

In the year 1879, the mission chapel, on
Princess Street was built, under the auspices
of this association. It is a neat frame build-

ing, covered with slate, 70 feet front, and
40 feet deep, with a vestibule and belfry.
Its cost was $2,750 and was dedicated July
6. In the year 1875, June 20, Judge Fahs
began a Mission Sunday-school; at the time
of the dedication of this chapel it numbered
200 pupils. Mother's meetings were organ-
ized in connection with the school, and chil-
dren were taught to sew and make garments,
and much good was accomplished. On May
18, 1879, those who had been so successful
with the Princess Street chapel, considered
the advisability of organizing a mission in
Low Street, Freystown. Religious services
were first held in the house of Mrs. Greena-
walt, on that street. They prospered, and
soon after, through the beneficence of Samuel
Small, and the active exertions of Judge Fahs,
a neat chapel was built and dedicated.

George F. Stackpole took charge of the
affairs of the Y. M. C. A. August, 1879, and
continued until 1880. Henry Small, son of
the late David E. Small, was elected to suc-
ceed Judge Fahs, who then turned his atten-
tion to the two mission chapels. Mr. Small
worked earnestly to increase the financial
condition of the association, and in order to
effectively accomplish this object, declined
re-election, and J. G. Eisenhart became pres-
ident in 1881. In 1883 the board of man-
agers of the Y. M. C. A. deeded the two
chapels to boards of trustees. May 25,
1883, the association lost its most influential
member and warmest friend, in the death of
David E. Small.

A building known as "Temperance Hall,"
on North George Street, was rented and fitted
up. In September, 1883, S. B. Herr was
chosen secretary. Twelve thousand dollars
were raised, and the residence of the late Will-
iam Hay, at No. 122 West Market Street, was
purchased. In the public reading room of
this building, are now received eleven daily
papers, twenty weeklies and ten monthly
magazines. The library has 500 vol-
umes. The handsome book-case was pre-
sented to the association by Mrs. David E.
Small, in memory of her lamented husband.
The entire building is elegantly furnished.
In the parlor is a piano, and also an organ,
and everything tastefully arranged by the
members of the Ladies' Auxiliary Committee.
A hall and gymnasium were erected at the
rear of the building at a cost of $5,000. A.
R. Cochrane, of Boston,- is instructor in the
gymnasium. The new building with its ex-
cellent apartments fully equipped is greatly
due to Henry Small and his mother, Mrs.
David E. Small.

The officers of the association for 1885 are


as follows: M. B. Spahr. president; Jacob
Bastress, vice-president; G. W. Gross, re-
cording secretary: W. C. McClellan, treas-
urer; Seremus B. Herr. general secretary.
Board of managers: M. B. Spahr, W. H.
McClellan, Henry Small, Henry A. Ebert,
David W. Grider, Jacob Bastress, Frank
Geise, J. A. Dempwolf, William F. Weiser,
Robert L. Shetter. G. W. Gross, John W.
Buckingham, M. E. Hartzler, R, B. Sperry.
Total membership. 432. Members taking
gymnasium privileges, 156.

The officers of the Ladies' Auxiliary Com-
mittee are as follows, (March, 1885): Mrs.
George P. Smyser, president; Mrs. J.G. Eisen-
hart, vice-president; Mrs. John Gahring,
vice president; Miss Lizzie Buckiagham, re-
cording secretary; Miss Sallie Lanius, cor-
responding secretary; Mrs. Rev. F. J. Sauber,
treasurer. Membership over 100.

The mission schools in the chapels on
Princess and Low Streets, not now connected
with the Y. M. C. A., are doing an impor-
tant and valuable work in York. Prominent
among the persons who have been unceasing
in their interests as superintendents, teach-
ers and supporters of them are Mr. and Mrs.
George H. Sprigg, Mrs. Judge J. S. Black,
Mrs. Brooks and Miss McCoy. For a num-
ber of years these schools, by the courteous
invitation of Mrs. Black, held their annual
picnics on the broad and shady lawns around
"Brockie," where the distinguished jurist
himself was greatly delighted at seeing the
mission children enjoy themselves. He fur-
ther showed his philanthropy by defraying
the expenses incurred in purchasing refresh-
for the delighted children.

RIOT IN 1786.

An affray in the borough of York, in De-
cember, 1786, was occasioned by the excise
law then existing.

Jacob Bixler, of Manchester, was unwill-
ing to pay his tax or gather excise; his cow
was distrained for the payment. It was to
rescue this cow, that the affray happened.
The beast was driven by the otficer to York,
and was to be sold. A company of about
100 men set out from the neighborhood of the
animal's former home, armed, some with
clubs, others with pistols or guns, and di-
rected their march toward York, they crossed
Chicken Bridge, and in Indian file marched
into town. Their captain, Godfrey King,
led them on, with dread determination, and
to the place where her vaccinft excellence was
exposed to vendition. This was the square
where Market and Beaver Streets cross each
other. They had hardly proceeded to com-

mit violence when the whole town was as-
! sembled. The inhabitants met the riot-
ers with weapons, clubs, pistols, guns
and swords. Henry Miller, during the
affray, struck with his sword at one Hoake,
who, leaping over a wagon tongue, just
: escaped the blow; the sword falling upon the
wagon tongue, sunk into it about an inch.
After some boxing and striking, the party
dispersed, and the whole tumult ended.

Frederick Hoake was afterward severely
fined for cutting the rope around the cow's
j neck, and letting her loose, though the fact
was Peter Schneider, Jr., did it.

The rioters were taken before justices of
the peace, and bound for appearance at next
court, on the '2:5d of January, 1787; and
bound before the court of quarter sessions
in a considerable sum to appear at the next
supreme court to answer to such bills of in-
dictment as should be presented against them.
They appeared, and with others of their
brethren, were fined. Thus ended the affray.
It was in fact a cow insurrection; it brought
Manchester and York into a fond and loving


I On the 23d of February, 1803, a negro
woman named Margaret Bradley, was con-

' victed of a misdemeanor in attempting to
poison Sophia Bentz and Matilda Bentz, both
of York; and in consequence thereof, was
sentenced to undergo an imprisonment of
four years in the penitentiary at Philadelphia.
The negroes of the place being dissatisfied
with the above mentioned conviction and
sentence, determined to have revenge on the
whites, and sought it in the destruction of
their property.

They conspired together to burn the town
of York. On nearly every successive day or
night, for about three weeks, they set tire to
some part of the town. Numerous patrols
were established ; strong guards were kept on
foot, and the governor ordered out a detach-
ment of the militia, which was constantly on
duty. The governor of the State, Thomas
McKean, offered S300 to any person who
should discover those who were engaged in
the conspiracy. A negro girl, who had re-
ceived instructions to set fire to Mr. Zinn's
barn at 12 o'clock, mistaking midday for mid-
night, perpetrated the deed at noon; she was
arrested and confessed herself guilty, there-
by lending a key to the conspiracy. Several
other negroes were arrested on suspicion ; and
during the following week a number were
cast into prison, some of whom confessed.
Fires now ceased. One indictment was pre-
linst twenty-one negroes and mu-




lattoes, a part of whom were convicted and
sent to the penitentiary.

Among the principal fires in Yorli may be
mentioned the following:

On the night of Sunday the 20th o£ Feb-
ruary, the stable of Richard Koch was burned.

On the night of Monday the 7th of March
the stable of Mr. Edie, then in the tenure
of Dr. Spangler. The flames were commu-
nicated with rapidity to the stable of Dr.
Jameson on the west, and to that of the
widow Updegraff on the east. Those three
buildings were all on fire at the same time,
and sunk down in one common ruin.

On the 8th of March the academy was on
tire, but the flames were extinguished. This
was the fifth tire in the town within the period
of nine days.

On the l-±th of March, they set fire to the
barn of Mr. Zinn, whence the flames were
communicated to the barn of Rudolph
Spangler, Jacob Spangler, G. L. Loeffler
and Philip Gossler. These tive barns, built
of wood, filled with hay and straw, and
standing near one another, formed but one
tire. This was the fire which led to the im-
mediate discovery of the conspiracy.

After the fires had ceased, and most of
those who had been engaged in the conspiracy
were confined in prison, the justices of the
peace and burgessess of the borough pub-
lished a notice (on the 21st of March) "to
the inhabitants of York and its vicinity to

Online LibraryJohn GibsonHistory of York County Pennsylvania From the Earliest Time to the Present → online text (page 112 of 218)