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Indiana Methodism : being an account of the introduction, progress, and present position of Methodism in the State; and also a history of the literary institutions under the care of the church, with s online

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that word was said. South Carolina, with assumed
dramatic dignity, announced her determination to secede.
On the 12th of April, 1861, the telegraph flashed the
intelligence through the Union of the bombardment of
Fort Sumter. Through the long Saturday that followed,
business was at a stand. With bated breath and anxious
look all waited for additional news. Telegraph-offices
and newspaper bulletin-boards were watched by anxious



INDIANA METHODISM. 151

crowds. Greater events than the bombarding of a single
fort, and the capturing of a small but brave garrison,
have occurred in the history of our country; but no
tidings ever thrilled the heart of the nation like the
dispatch that passed along our telegraphic lines at ten
o'clock, announcing that "Sumter has fallen." The
issue could no longer be evaded — treason or loyalty
must triumph. Treason had appealed to the arbitrament
of the sword, and from that tribunal loyalty would not
shrink ; and, though men's faces were pale, and their
eyes moist, yet were their hearts brave ; and wherever
our national banner was unfurled to the sight of our
people on that day, it awakened a deeper love for that
emblem of liberty and national unity than they had ever
felt before. A new meaning seemed to stream from its
folds. And when another dispatch came, saying, " Mr.
Lincoln will issue a proclamation to-morrow, calling for
seventy-five thousand volunteers," wherever the intel-
ligence was received, men cheered and shouted until
they were hoarse. Sunday morning dawned ; but what
a Sabbath ! From four hundred Methodist pulpits in
Indiana, on that day, prayers went up for the pres-
ervation of the Union, the maintenance of the national
life, and the suppression of rebellion, at whatever of cost
in blood and treasure it might require. And in not a
few instances, congregations, pastor and choir, united in
singing national songs, which on that day had a sanctity
and a significance that they had never possessed before.
Indiana's quota of the seventy-five thousand men was
six thousand.

Governor Morton's proclamation was the blast of a
war-trumpet indeed; and before its echoes had died
away along the borders of our state, fifteen tJiousand men
stood ready for the war. They were not soldiers, but



152 INDIANA METHODISM.

they were the materials out of which the hest class
of soldiers were made. Most of them made pecuniary
sacrifices, and many of them large ones, to respond to
their country's call. They did not stop to count the
cost; they stood ready to give all for their country.
Among these raw recruits, Methodism was in every
regiment, and perhaps every company. But as the war
grew in its proportions, and as the draft upon the men
and means of the country for the prosecution of the
war became greater, religious men in larger proportions
gave themselves to the support of the national cause.
In many cases, whole Bible-classes from the Sabbath-
schools enlisted together. Professors and students left
college halls and literary pursuits for the privations
of the camp and the perils of the battle-field. While
the Churches were generally truly loyal, Methodism
was intensely so, and being numerically the largest de-
nomination in the state, contributed more than any other
to the strength of the Union cause. The political value
of Methodism to the preservation of our national life
has not been fully estimated. The Methodist Episcopal
Church is in no sense a political Church, and interferes
with politics, in any justly objectionable sense, perhaps
as little as any of the Churches in the land ; and while
her members are as free as those of any Church, or of
no Church, to declare and advocate their sentiments, yet
the Methodist Church has never ignored moral ques-
tions because politicians had embodied them in political
platforms; and because of her numbers, her antislavery
doctrines, and her unswerving loyalty, she has been an
important auxiliary in saving the national life; and
even her friends have generally underestimated her po-
litical value in this respect. Chief Justice Chase re-
marked, in an address delivered in New York, shortly



INDIANA METHODISM. 153

after the close of the war, that " whatever was valuable
or praiseworthy in our institutions, or in our form of gov-
ernment, that survived the Rebellion, was indebted to
the Methodist Church." This was uttered in no spirit of
disrespect to other Churches, but in view of the facts in
the case. Look how this matter stands in our state.
There are over 100,000 Methodist communicants in
Indiana, including the German Methodists. It is usual,
in estimating the whole population, to add three non-
communicants for every communicant, as adherents of
the Church, and a moment's reflection will convince any
one that the estimate is not too high. We then have
a Methodist population of 400,000. The proportion of
voters to the entire population is as one to six. Accord-
ing to the calculations in the "United States Census for
1860," in the new states and territories, one-fifth of the
population were voters. One of the orators of the Rev-
olution said, "We are so many millions — one-fifth of
whom are fighting men." The voting population in any
community is greater than its fighting population. But
that no one may question the basis of our calculation in
this estimate, we place the proportion of voters at one in
eight of the population, and that gives Methodist voters
in Indiana, 50,000. Deduct, for Democrats and possible
overestimate, 10,000, and that leaves an unmistakable
Union Methodist vote of 40,000. That is to say, take
Methodism out of the state, and the election in 1860,
when Mr. Lincoln was elected, would have gone against
the Union party about 25,000 votes.

On the basis of this same calculation, look at the value
of the Methodist Church to the nation. We had in the
loyal states, in 1864, one million communicants. Count-
ing non-communicants, we had four millions. This gives
five hundred thousand Methodist votes. Mr. Lincoln's.



154 INDIANA METHODISM.

popular majority in 1864 was four hundred and six
thousand- eight hundred and twelve, or less than the
Methodist vote by ninety-three thousand one hundred
and eighty-eight. Of the more than four hundred pas-
tors in Indiana, there was not one that was not true to
the Government during the war. The antagonism of
Methodism to slavery, her outspoken testimony on all
moral questions, and her numerical strength, constitute
her a mighty force in the interests of humanity and of
good government. And the loyal men of the nation
cheerfully concede the valuable service which Meth-
odism has rendered in saving the life of the nation.

That the Church should have held her own during
the terrible years of the Rebellion would have been
matter of thankfulness; but her actual progress in all
the elements of true prosperity, is an occasion of re-
joicing. The drafts made upon the country during the
war developed an unprecedented spirit of liberality,
Avhich not only carried hospital supplies, sanitary stores,
and the ministrations of religion, to the soldiers in the
army, but it increased the Churches' contributions in
every department of Christian enterprise. The people
formed the habit of giving, and of giving with a fre-
quency and a generosity hitherto unknown. And a spirit
of Christian activity and zeal was developed by the
necessities of the war, as well as a spirit of increased
liberality. Christian commissions and Christian associ-
ations have been brought into being, or developed into
new vigor. Christians of different denominations have
been brought into closer union with each other, and de-
nominational jealousies have greatly abated. These are
some of the moral compensations of the war.

Methodism has passed through several distinct phases
in its progress of development in our state ; not in its



INDIANA METHODISM. 155

essential characteristics, but in its modes of operation
and its social characteristics, as these have been modified
by the improvements of the country and the progress of
society. The early circuits were necessarily large, the
settlements sparse and often remote from each other, and
it was the habit to preach every day in the week. The
preacher's duty consisted chiefly in preaching and in
meeting the class, which latter duty almost invariably
followed that of the sermon. The cabin homes of the
early settlers were the only churches, split-bottomed
chairs the pulpits, and the mode of worship of the most
free and unrestrained character. Our itinerancy brought
our preachers in contact with the whole people, and by
organizing societies in every neighborhood, as they were
enabled to do by the system of week-day preaching, our
societies rapidly increased ; and while some others were
directing their efforts to the towns, and the chief centers
of influence, Methodism was spreading over the whole
land; and while others were looking after educational
trust funds, and the patronage of those in power, Meth-
odism was seeking to get sinners converted, with a single-
ness of purpose and a zeal that was truly apostolic. But
few of the early founders of Methodism in Indiana took
statesmanlike views of the future. They took little
thought as to the accumulation of property for the
Church. Eligible sites for the erection of churches could
have been secured for the asking, or for a nominal consid-
eration, from the original proprietors of nearly every
town in the state ; and yet little thought was bestowed
on this subject. The first meeting-houses were built for
the accommodation of those who were then members of
the societies, with little or no reference to the permanent
centers of population ; and it so happened that in a few
years many of the churches were found to be wrongly



156 INDIANA METHODISM.

located ; and as the country became older, and the de-
mand for Sabbath preaching compelled the discontinuance
of week-day appointments, many of the churches ceased
to be occupied. They were built too close together for
Sabbath appointments ; and as roads became improved,
and farmers found themselves possessed of horses and
carriages, as means of conveyance to church, it made but
little difference whether the place of worship was one
mile or three miles distant from their residence. And yet
it was difficult, and in many places impossible, to unite
these small country societies and week-day appointments
in some common center, for the erection of a larger
church, and the permanent establishment of Sabbath
preaching. There were sacred associations around nearly
every log meeting-house in the land, that made it a sac-
rifice of feeling to abandon any of them. In them many
of the members had been converted ; by them were the
humble grave-yards, in which their cherished dead slum-
bered; and there were precious memories that made
these rude temples dear to the hearts of the worship-
ers ; and it is not strange that, in the discontinuance of
week-day preaching, and the consequent abandonment of
some of the country meeting-houses, the Church lost a
good many members. But the change was inevitable.
Sound judgment is as much needed in the suitable loca-
tion of churches as in the location of business-houses.
As a general rule, it is unwise for any denomination to
build its houses of worship in the country, nearer than
five miles of each other. If built much nearer, they can
not be self-sustaining, and give their pastors a reasonable
support, without making the contributions for Church
purposes burdensome. In many instances, week-day
preaching was doubtless discontinued sooner than it needs
to have been, and pastoral visiting did not take the place



INDIANA METHODISM. 157

of week-day preaching as effectively as it should have
done, and as was the intention of the Church in making
the change ; and yet the transition has been made from
large pastoral charges to small ones, and from week-day
preaching to nearly exclusively Sabbath services, with as
little friction as could have been anticipated.

In church architecture, Methodism has undergone a
great change. Our first churches, like the homes of the
early settlers, were made of logs. The second editions
of our houses of worship were usually plain frame or
brick buildings, without steeples or bells. Now the
finest and most costly Protestant churches in our chief
towns are those owned and occupied by the Methodists ;
their steeples are as high, and their bells as numerous
and as rich toned as any; and it is evident that Meth-
odists are investing more money in church-building than
the members of any Church among us. And while the
Methodist Church has required no high standard of liter-
ary qualification as a condition of admittance into the
ministry, it has come to pass that in our principal
Churches the highest ministerial qualifications are de-
manded, and that demand is as fully met as in any
of our sister Churches. We have also changed our cus-
toms in regard to sittings in congregational worship.
Formerly the sexes were separated, even of those be-
longing to the same household, while now not only
family, but promiscuous sittings, are allowed, and in
many of the churches the seats are pewed. There is a
gradual and commendable improvement in the support
of the ministry, and in the contributions to the various
enterprises of the Church. The vested funds for Church
purposes in Indiana amount to $3,650,969.

Each of the conferences has societies for the relief



158 INDIANA METHODISM.

of superannuated preachers and the widows and or-
phans of deceased preachers. These societies are in
their infancy, and their funds are being rapidly increased.
They stand as follows :

Indiana Conference $15,814

North Indiana Conference 16,000

North-western Indiana Conference 10,000

South-eastern Indiana Conference 12,000

Total $5.3,814

PAID FOR MINISTERIAL SUPPORT.

Indiana Conference $Y6,203 71

North Indiana Conference 88,542 00

South-eastern Indiana Conference 66,307 04

North-western Indiana Conference 75,798 00

That part of the Central German Conference included in Indiana 12,003 00

Total for ministerial support in 1869 $318,253 75

BENEVOLENT CONTRIBUTIONS.

Indiana Conference $11,769 61

North Indiana Conference 11,885 48

South-eastern Indiana Conference 11,080 63

North-western Indiana Conference 9,701 46

German work in Indiana 3,547 20

Total $47,984 .38

Ministerial support 318,253 75

Total for ministerial support and benevolence $366,838 13

METHODISM AND POPULATION.

Population 1,668,000

Methodists 113,800

To these are to be added the members of the African
Methodist Episcopal Church. Their statistics stand as
follows :

Ministers 42

Members 2,418

Sabbath-schools 31

Officers and teachers 204

Scholars 1,417



INDIANA METHODISM. 159

The growth of Methodism among the German pop-
ulation in Indiana has been remarkable. The record of
German Methodism in the state is as follows :

Ministers 23

Members 3,214

Churches 47

Value of churches $83,000

Parsonages 19

Value of parsonages $22,900

Sunday-schools 42

OfiBcers and teachers 48t

Scholars 2,440

The responsibilities of Indiana Methodism, in view
of her numbers and resources, are enormous. May she
prove equal to her position in the future as in the past !



160 INDIANA METHODISM.



CHAPTER X.

Retrospect of the Conferences — Indiana Conference — Number of
Preachers — Presiding Elders — Members — Value of Church Prop-
erty — Numbers of Sunday-schools, Officers, and Teachers — Super-
annuated Members of the Conference — Sessions of the Conference
from 1832 to 1851 — Time, Place, Presiding Bishop — Principal Secre-
tary — North Indiana Conference — Number of Preachers — Presiding
Elders — Church Members — Sunday-schools, Officers, and Teach-
ers — Value of Church Property — Superannuated Preachers — Ses-
sions of the Conference from 1844 to 1871 — South-eastern Indiana
Conference — Preachers — Church Members — Value of Church Prop-
erty — Sunday-schools, Officers, and Teachers — Benevolent Contri-
butions — Presiding Elders — Superannuated Members — Sessions of
the' Conference from 1852 to 1871 — Nortli-west Indiana Conference —
First Session — Number of Preachers — Superannuates — Presiding
Elders — Statistics of the Conference — Institutions of Learning un-
der the care of the Conference — Missionaries connected with the
Conference — Sessions of the Conference from 1852 to 1871.

INDIANA CONFERENCE.

THIS is the Mother Conference in Indiana. It should,
in justice, have antedated the organization of the
Illinois Conference ; but, as we have seen, although the
larger share of the membership was in Indiana, the soci-
eties in Indiana, Missouri, and Illinois were included in
the Illinois Conference, down to 1832. Indiana Confer-
ence comprises the south-western part of the state. It
numbers 121, of whom fourteen are superannuated.
There are seven Presiding Districts, supplied as follows :
Indianapolis District — B. F. Rawlins, Presiding Elder;
Bloomington District— J. H. Ketcham, Presiding Elder ;
Vincennes District — John Kiger, Presiding Elder; Ev-
;ansville District — W. F. Harned, Presiding Elder ; Rock-
port District — W. M. Zaring, Presiding Elder; New



INDIANA METHODISM.



161



Albany District — John J. Hight, Presiding Elder ; Mitch-
ell District — John Walls, Presiding Elder. Members, 25-
062 ; probationers, 3,363 ; local preachers, 224 ; churches,
303— value, $614,590; parsonages, 66— value, $117,450 ;
Sunday-schools, 314 ; officers and teachers, 3,049 ; schol-
ars, 20,006 ; A^olumes in library, 31,730. The superan-
nuated members of the Conference entered the traveling
connection at the following dates : John Schrader, 1814 ;
Asa Beck, 1828; W. V. Daniels, 1833; W. C. Smith,
1840; S. Ravenscroft, 1839; C. Cross, 1854; J. C.
Smith, 1830; H. S. Dane, 1832 ; J. Talbott, 1838 ; E.
W. Cadwell, 1842; Silas Rawson, 1837; W.F.Mason,
1850; R. B. Spencer, 1853; M. M. C. Hobbs, 1856.





INDIANA CONFERENCE RETROSPECT.




No.


Date of Session.


Place.


Bishops.


Secretary.


1
2


October 17, 1832...
October 16, 1833...


New Albany....


J Soule


C W.Ruter


J. Soule


C.W.Ruter.


3


October 22, 1834...


Centerville


R. R. Roberts...


C. W. Ruter.


4


October 14, 1835...


Lafayette


R. R. Roberts...


C. W. Ruter.


5


October 26, 1836...


Indianapolis....


R. R. Roberts...


C. W. Ruter.


6


October 25, 1837...


New Albany....
Rock vi lie


J. Soule


C. W. Ruter.


7


October 17, 1838...


J. Soule


J. C. Smith.


8


October 23, 1839...


Lawrenceburg..


J. Soule


E. R. Ames.


9


October 21, 1840...


Indianapolis

Terre Haute....


.1. Soule


E. R. Amfes.


10


October 6, 1841...


R. R. Roberts...


M. Simpson.


11


October 19, 1842...


Centerville


T. A. Morris


M. Simpson.


12


October 18, 1843...


Crawfordsville..


J. 0. Andrew...


M. Simpson.


13


September 25, 1844


Bloomington...


B. Waugh


L. W. Berry.


U


October 8, 18-15...


Madison


T. A. Morris


M. Simpson.
M. Simpson.


15


October 7, 1846...


Connersville....


L. L. Hamline...


16


October 6, 1847...


Evansville


B. Waugh

T. A. Morris


M. Simpson.


17


October 4, 1848...


New Albany....


F. C. Holliday.


18


October 10, 1849...


Rising Sun


E. S. Janes


M. Simpson.


1!)


October 9, 1850...


JefFersonville...


T. A. Morris


M. Simpson.


20


October 8, 1851...


Indianapolis....


B. Waugh


M. Simpson.


21


October, 1852


Bedford


0. C.Baker


L. W. Berry.


22


October 29, 1853...


Evansville


E.R.Ames


L. W. Berry.


23


September 13, 1854


New Albany....


E. R. Ames


L. W. Berry.


24


September 12, 1855


Vincennes


M. Simpson


T. H. Sinex.


25


September 3, 1856


Greencastle


B. Waugh


Daniel Curry.


26


October 1, 1857...


New Albany....


T. A. Morris


W. M. Hester.


27


September 30, 1858


Mount Vernon..


E. S. Janes


W. M. Hester.


28


October 5, 1859...


Bloomington ...


L. Scott


W. M. Hester.


29


September 26, 1860


Sullivan


0. C. Baker


W. M. Hester.



11



162



INDIANA METHODISM,



INDIANA CONFERENCE RETROSPECT-Continued.



No.


Date of Session.


Place.


Bishops.


Secretarj-.


30


September 25, 1861


Rockport


M. Simpson


W. M. Hester.


31


September 24, 1862


Greencastle


E. R. Ames


John Laverty.


32


September 16,1863


Washington


T. A. Morris


John Laverty.


33


September 26, 1864


Princeton


M.Simpson


B. F. Rawlins.


34


September 14,1865


New Albany....


L. Scott


J. J. Eight.


35


September 12, 1866


Vincennes


E. Thomson


S. Bowers.


36


September 11,1867


Indianapolis....


T. A. Morris


S. Bowers.


37


September 16, 1868
September 8, 1869


Bedford


C. Kingsley

E. R. Ames


S. Bowers.


38


Evansville


S. Bowers.


39


August 31, 1870


Bloomington ..'.


M. Simpson


S. Bowers.


40


September 13, 1871


New Albany....


L.Scott


S. L. Binkley.



NORTH INDIANA CONFERENCE.

This Conference, embracing the north-east quarter of
the state, is composed of 153 members, including four-
teen superannuates, and eleven probationers. The work
is divided into eight presiding elders' districts, with the
following elders in charge of them : Anderson District —
W. H. Goode, Presiding Elder ; Richmond District — M.
Mahin, Presiding Elder; Muncie District — N. H. Phil-
lips, Presiding Elder; Logansport District — V. M.
Beamer, Presiding Elder ; Fort Wayne District — W. S.
Birch, Presiding Elder; West Fort Wayne District — H.
N. Barnes, Presiding Elder; Warsaw District — L. W.
Monson, Presiding Elder ; Goshen District — H. J. Meek,
Presiding Elder. Besides the ministers appointed to pas-
toral charges. Rev. Thomas Bowman, D. D., is President
of Indiana Asbury University ; Rev. J. B. Robinson,
President of Fort Wayne College ; Rev. R. Toby, Agent
for Fort Wayne College ; and Rev. C. Martindale, Agent
for the State Temperance Alliance. Church members,
24,718; probationers, 6,231 ; local preachers, 273 ; Sab-
bath-schools, 366 ; officers and teachers, 4,119 ; scholars,
27,340; churches, 345— value, $762,375; parsonages^
87 — value, $122,930. Of the fourteen superannuated




N^.y




(^ C Cc^cyz^ o^Zje'^^^/




^^o-



c^, -^y^



C^-t^t



INDIANA METHODISM.



163



preachers on their list, they entered the ministry as fol-
lows : Robert Burns, in 1826 ; G. C. Beeks, Jacob Col-
clazer, and H. B. Beers, in 1836 ; G. W. Bowers, in
1837; JacobWhiteman, in 1841; E. Maynard, in 1845 ;
B. Smitli and J. W. Welch, in 1851 ; J. Maffit, in 1853;
and L. J. Templin, in 1858.

NORTH IXDIAN.\ CONFERENCE RETROSPECT.



No.


Bute of Session.


Pl.iee.


Bisliops.


Principal Secretary.


1

2

:5

4

5

G

1

8

9

10

11

12

13

14

15

16

17

18

11)

20

21

22

2-5

24

25

26

27

28


Oct. 16-21, 1844


Fort Wayne....

Lafayette

Laporte

Indianapolis....
Greencastle....

Logansport

Cambridge City

South Bend

Fort Wayne

Richmond

Peru


Waugh...
Hamline
Morris...

Janes

Hamline
Waugh...

Janes

Morris ...
Baker....

Ames

Simpson.

Scott

Baker....
Simpson.

Ames

Morris...

Ames

Janes

Simpson.
Morris...
Morris...

Scott

Clark

Ames

Thomson
Simpson.

Clark

Ames


M. Simpson.
S. T. Gillett.
S. T. Gillett.
S. T. Gillett. ■
S. T. Gillett.
John C. Smith.
J. C. Smith.
S. T. Gillett.
S. T. Gillett.
C. Nutt.
C. Nutt.
C. Nutt.
H. N. Barnes.
H. N. Barnes.
J. C. Medsker.
H. N. Barnes.
A. Greenman.
H.%. Barnes.
M. :Mahin.
M. Mahin.
M. Mahin.
M. Mahin.
M. Mahin.
M. Mahin.
M. Mahin.
M. Mahin.
M.H.Mendenhall
M H Mendenhall


Sept 21-29 1845


Sept. 10-22, 18-16

Sept. 15-22, 1M47


Sept 6-11 1848


Aug. 29— Sept. 4,1849...
Auo- 21-26 1850 . . .


Aua- 20-27, 1851


Sept. 20-28, 1852

Sept 21-24 1858


Sept. 20-23, 1854


Sept 14-19 1855


Goshen


Sept 24-29, 1856


April 8-11, 1857




April 7-14, 1858


Winchester

Logansport

Mishawaka

Newcastle

Fort Wayne....
Wabash


April 7-11, 1859


April 5-9 1860


April 3-8, 1861


April 10-15. 1862


April 9-13 1863


April 6-11, 1864


Knightstown...
KendallviUe....
Peru


April 12-17, 1865

April 5-9, 1866


April 10-15, 1867


Anderson

Warsaw.


April 15-20 1868



1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 12 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27

Online LibraryFernandez C. HollidayIndiana Methodism : being an account of the introduction, progress, and present position of Methodism in the State; and also a history of the literary institutions under the care of the church, with s → online text (page 12 of 27)