Fernandez C. Holliday.

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

. (page 13 of 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 13 of 27)
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April 15-19, 1869




April 13-18, 1870

April 12-17, 1871


This Conference, as its name imports, includes the
south-eastern portion of the state. The statistics are as
follows: members, 21,118; probationers, 2,235; local
preachers, 151; churches, 283 — value, $701,938; parson-
ages, 48— value, $47,900 ; Sabbath-schools, 293; officers
and teachers, 3,285; scholars, 20,105; volumes in Sun-



day-school libraries, 31,039 ; aggregate of benevolent
contributions for the year, $11,080.63 ; traveling preach-
ers, 115, including 17 superannuates. The charges are
embraced in five presiding elders' districts, which are in
charge of the following elders : Indianapolis District —
R. D. Robinson, Presiding Elder; Connersville Dis-
trict — F. A. Hester, Presiding Elder ; Lawrenceburg Dis-
trict— J. B. Lathrop, Presiding Elder; Madison Dis-
trict — W. Terrell, Presiding Elder; Jefferson ville Dis-
trict — E. G. Wood, Presiding Elder. Of the seventeen
superannuated w^hose names are on the roll of the Con-
ference, they entered the ministry as follows : John Mil-
ler, in 1823; Joseph Marsee, in 1826; Joseph Tarking-
ton, in 1825 ; John A. Brouse, in 1833 ; Thomas Ray, in
1833; Lewis Hurlbut, in 1834; Asbury Wilkinson, in
1840; Elijah Whitten, in 1832; Isaac H. Tomlinson, in
1861; N. F. Tower, in 1846; M. A. Ruter, in 1841;
H. Richardson, in 1850 ; D. Stiver, in 1832 ; Samuel
Weeks, in 1838 ; A. Kennedy, in 1859 ; W. Long, in
1849 ; John W. Dole, in 1835. But few of these en-
tered the ministry in Indiana, but by the working of our
itinerant system they became members of the South-
eastern Indiana Conference, and they are beloved for
their work's sake.


Date of Session.

October G,
October 5,



28, 1854
27, 1855
23, 1857
28, 1859
18, 1861


Rushville ,


Greensburg ....

Shelby ville




Jeffersonville ..

shops. Principal Secretary.

0. C. Baker...
E. R. Ames...
M. Simpson...

L. Scott

B. Waugh

T. A. Morris..
E. S. Janes...

L. Scott

0. C. Baker...
T. A. Morris..
E. R. Ames...

F. C. Holliday.
S. P. Crawford.
J. W. Locke.
T. H. Lynch.
J. W. Locke.
W. W. Hibben.
W. W. Snyder.
W. W. Snyder.
T. G. Beharrell.
T. G. Beharrell.
J. W. Locke.





Date of Session.



Principal Secretary.


September 16, 1863


0. C. Baker...

J. B. Lathrop.


September 21, 1864


M. Simpson...
T. A. Morris..

J. B. Lathrop.


September 20, 1865


J. B. Lathrop.


September 19, 1866


E. S.Janes...

Geo. L. Curtis.


September 11, 1867


L. Scott

Geo. L. Curtis.


September 10, 1868


D. W. Clark..

Geo. L. Curtis.


September 15, 1869


M. Simpson...

Geo. L. Curtis.


September 7, 1870


L. Scott

Geo. L. Curtis.


September 6, 1871

Jeffersonville . .

L. Scott

Geo. L. Curtis.


The North-west Indiana Conference comprises, as its
name imports, the north-west portion of the state. The
Conference was organized in 1852, when the state was
divided into four conferences, and held its first session
in Terre Haute, in September, 1852, at Avhich Bishop
Baker presided. The Conference numbers 133, includ-
ing those on trial, and those on the superannuated list.
The superannuates are : Jacob M. Stallard, George Guild,
Moses Blackstock, G. W. Hamilton, H. S. Shaw, W. J.
Forbes, J. White, H. Smith, J. Ricketts, J. Edwards, W.
Copp, P. I. Beswick, D. Shankwiler, John Leach, Miles
H. Wood, W. H. Smith, J. B. Gray, David Crawford,
John S. Donaldson, Michael Johnson, B. W. Smith. For
1871, the work was comprised in the following districts,
which were under the care of the following elders : La-
ftxyette District — J. H. Hull, Presiding Elder; Terre
Haute District — William Graham, Presiding Elder;
Greencastle District — S. Godfrey, Presiding Elder;
Crawfordsville District — John L. Smith, Presiding Elder;
East Lafayette District — I. W. Joyce, Presiding Elder ;
Battleground District— J. W. T. M'Mullen, Presiding El-
der; Valparaiso District — W. R. Mikels, Presiding El-
der; Laporte District — L. Nebeker, Presiding Elder;
communicants, 19,531; local preachers, 198; Sunday-



schools, 285 ; officers and teachers, 2,916 ; scholars, 19,-
835. Besides the interest the Conference has in Asbury
University, it has under its care, Stockwell Collegiate In-
jstitute, and Battleground Institute, besides a good school
at Valparaiso, more or less under the care of the Confev-
ence. Two members of the Conference, to wit, H. B.
Jackson and Thomas B. Wood, are missionaries to South


Date of Session.

August 28,
October 8,
October 1,
October 11
October 10
October 9
August 29,

8, 1852
7, 1853
6, 185 J


29, 1858

29, 1859
, 1860...
, 1861...
, 1862...

30, 1863

30, 1868

8. 1869

7. 1870

Terre Haute....







Greencastle ....
Terre Haute....

South Bend


Michigan City..







Terre Haute....




Simpson ..



Waugh ...


Morris ....


Morris ....









Luther Taylor.
Wm. Graham.
Wm. Graham.
B. H. Nadal.

B. H. Nadal.
Joseph C. Reed,
J. C. Reed.

J. C. Reed.
J. C. Reed.
Clark Skinner.
J. C. Reed.
J. C. Reed.
Wm. Graham.
Wm. Graham.
Wm. Graham.
Wm. Graham.
Clark Skinner.

C. Skinner.
J. C. Reed.
J. C. Reed.



Sabbath-school Cause — Sabbath-school organized by Bisliop Asbury in
1786 — Resolutions passed by the General Conference of 1824 — Or-
ganization of the "Sunday-school Union of the Methodist Episcopal
Church" — "Sunday-Scliool Advocate" established — Sunday-school
Convention in 1844 — Superintendents admitted into the Quarterly
Conference — Rules of the Discipline on Sunday-schools in 1861 —
Sunday-schools in Indiana — Statistics.


METHODISM early fostered the work of Sabbath-
school instruction, both in England and in America.
It is interesting to note the growth of the Sunday-school
idea in the Church, and to mark the different stages of its
development. The Methodist Episcopal Church Avas the
first to give the Sabbath-school cause a distinct and direct
ecclesiastical recognition in this country. This she did
only six years after her organization. In 1790, we find
this question asked in the Minutes of the Conference :
"What can be done in order to instruct poor children,
white and black, to read?" The answer was, "Let us
labor, as the heart and soul of one man, to establish Sun-
day-schools in or near the place of public worship ; let
persons be appointed by the bishops, elders, deacons, or
preachers, to teach gratis all that will attend, and have a
capacity to learn, from six in the morning till ten, and
from two o'clock in the afternoon till six, where it does
not interfere with public worship." Previous to this
date, children's classes for religious instruction were au-
thorized. In 1784, in the first Discipline in our Church,
the question is asked, " What shall we do for the rising


generation?" and one of the answers given was, "Where
there are ten children, whose parents are in the Society,
meet them at least one hour each week." In 1786,
Bishop Asbmy organized a Sabbath-school in the house
of Thomas Crenshaw, in Hanover County, Virginia. This
was, perhaps, the first regularly organized Sabbath-school
in America.

To what extent the official exhortation of 1790 was
heeded, we can not say ; but for teachers to volunteer to
teach on the Sabbath, from six until ten in the forenoon,
and from two until six in the afternoon, would be more
than could be reasonably expected ; and the confinement
was such that but few children would submit to it, who
were allowed any discretion in the matter at all. The
schools were intended, chiefly, for the benefit of the poor,
and for their instruction in the rudiments of secular
learning. The Sunday-school idea was being gradually
developed in the mind of the Church, and accordingly we
find that the General Conference of 1824 passed three
resolutions on the subject of Sunday-schools. It was
made the duty of each preacher to encourage the estab-
lishment and progress of Sunday-schools. Arrangements
were made for the compilation of a catechism for the use
of Sunday-schools, and of children in general. The Book
Agents were instructed "to provide and keep on hand a
good assortment of books suitable for the use of Sunday-'
schools." By this time the Church had outgrown the
idea that Sunday-schools were intended for the instruc-
tion of the children of the poor. The schools had lost
much of their secular character, and were gradually as-
suming that religious cast by which they are now chiefly
distinguished. All limitations were taken off, and it was
made a part of every traveling preacher's official duty to
encourage the organization of Sunday-schools.


In 1827, the Sunday-school Union of the Methodist
Episcopal Church was organized in the city of New
York; and henceforth the Sabbath-school institution with
us assumes more of a Churchly character. The preach-
ers are charged " to aid in the instruction of the rising
generation, particularly in the knowledge of the Scrip-
tures, and in the service and worship of God." These
schools are no longer devoted, chiefly, to imparting secular
instruction, nor for the exclusive benefit of the children
of the poor; but they are still schools for children. In
1828, the Discipline made it the duty of every preacher
to form Sunday-schools. In 1832, it was made the duty
of presiding elders to "promote Sunday-schools, and of
the preacher in charge to report the statistics of his Sun-
day-schools to the last quarterly conference of the con-
ference year, and also to the annual conference." In
1840, the rules relating to Sunday-schools were entirely
remodeled. It was made the duty of the presiding elder
carefull}^ to inquire, at each quarterly conference, if the
rules for the instruction of children have been faithfully
observed. The preachers are charged to visit the Sab-
bath-schools as often as practicable; to preach on the
subject of Sunday-schools and of religious instruction in
each congregation, at least once in six months, and to
form Bible classes " for the instruction of larger children
and youth." Sunday-school teaching was no longer con-
fined to little children. " Larger children and youth" are
now included, and Bible-classes are organized for their
instruction. In 1840, the Sunday-school Union was re-
organized, and brought more directly under the con-
trol of the Church. In 1841, the child's paper, now so
widely known as the Sunday -School Advocate^ was estab-
lished. During the session of the General Conference,
in 1844, a Sunday-school convention met in the city of


New York, "for the purpose of adopting measures more
efficient!}^ to advance the cause of Sabbath-school instruc-
tion throughout the Methodist Episcopal Church." This
convention recommended to the General Conference the
organizing of " a distinct and separate department for the
editing and publishing of Sunday-school books." It rec-
ommended a competent editor for the Sunday-school
department, and requested that the Discipline be so
amended as to make Sunday-school superintendents mem-
bers of the quarterly conference. All of the recommen-
dations but the last one were adopted. In 1856, Sunday
school superintendents were, by the Discipline, recog-
nized as members of the quarterly conference. In 1852,
male superintendents, being members of our Church, were
admitted to the quarterly conferences, " with the right to
speak and vote on questions relating to Sunday-schools,
and on such questions only." It was not until 1856 that
these restrictions were taken off, and the Sunday-school
became fully incorporated into the working forces of the
Church. In 1860, the addition of a single word in the
Discipline shows the further progress of the Sunday-
scHool idea in the mind of the Church. The word
" adults" was now added, so that the rule should read,
" to form Bible classes for the larger children, youth, and
adults." This marks an advance worthy of special no-
tice. At first, Sunday-schools were intended for the
children of the poor ; next, they were to include all of
the children, whether rich or poor ; after the lapse of a
few years, " larger children and youth" are considered
worthy of special mention ; and at last the Sunday-
school idea becomes so expanded as to embrace adults as
well as children and youth ; and now the recognized idea
of the Sunday-school is, the Bible school for the whole
congregation, parents as well as children.


The Sunday-school movement has not only created a
juvenile literature of the most instructive and attractive
kind, but it has modified the general literature of our
times, and is training 1,220,000 scholars, in connection
with our own Church, in the lessons prepared by our
Sunday-school Union for the training of our Sunday-
schools. And the prevalence of Sunday-school institutes,
and the extent to Avliich maps and the blackboard are
used in our schools, shows the substantial progress that
is being made in this department of religious culture.

From this brief survey of the history of the Sunday-
school cause among us as a denomination, it is seen that
the institution was in vigorous growth at the time when
Methodism was being introduced into Indiana. But
where the societies where small, the population sparse and
poor (as Avas the case with most of the early settlements
in Indiana), Sabbath-schools could not be readily kept up.
But as soon as towns sprung up, and permanent societies
were formed. Sabbath-schools were organized, and Sab-
bath-school instruction became a legitimate part of Church
work. In the country, the organization of Sunday-
schools dates with the discontinuance of week-day
preaching, as a general rule. As the large circuits were
divided, pastoral charges made less, and preaching con-
fined to the Sabbath-day, the preachers had more leisure
for pastoral duties ; and in obedience to the instructions
of the Church, they bestowed increased attention upon
the religious instruction of the children, and upon estab-
lishing and building up the Sabbath-schools. At an early
day in the history of Sunday-schools, the needed requi-
sites, such as class-books, question-books, books of instruc-
tion, maps, and suitable library-books, could not be ob-
tained; but now they are abundant and cheap, and the
Methodist Churches in Indiana pay annually, for the


maintenance of their Sabbath-schools, more than $20,000 '
and few investments pay so well. The Sunday-school
statistics for the year 1870 were as follows : Schools,
1,312 ; officers and teachers, 13,996; scholars, 92,223.



Methodism in some of the Principal Towns — Jeffersonville ; by Rev.
R. Curran, M. D. — First Society formed — First Quarterly Meeting
held — First Church built — Celebration of the Centenary of Method-
ism — Present Statistics — New Albany — First Church built — Num-
ber of Churches at present — De Pauw College — Richmond ; by
Rev. Thomas Comstock — Settlement of Wayne County — Whitewa-
ter Circuit formed — First Church built — First Camp-meeting — In-
troduction of Methodism into Richmond — Present State of the
Churches — Indianapolis — First Place of Worship in Indianapo-
lis — Mention of Prominent Methodists — Relative Strength of the
Churches in the City — List of Appointments from 1821 to 1842 —
Washington, Daviess County — First Church built — Lafayette ;
by Rev. N. L. Brakeman — First Methodist Sermon — Church organ-
ized in Lafayette — Present Strength of Methodism — South Bend —
Account of John Brownfield, Esq. — First Prayer-meeting — First
Sunday-school — Church built — Enterprise of "Ladies' Mite Soci-
ety" — Value of Church Property — Anderson ; by Rev. W. H.
Goode, D. D. — First House of Worship — Present Church Build-
ings — Peru — First Class formed — First Church built — Terre
Haute — First Mention in the Minutes — Anecdote of Mrs. Locke —
Methodism in Terre Haute ; by Col. Thomas Dowling — First
Church Organization — Present Church erected — Early State of So-
ciety — Present Statistics — Madison — Early Methodists — Church
Statistics — Vincennes — Value of Property — Number of Mem-
bers — Fort Wayne — First Class formed — First Sunday-school —
Fort Wayne College — Names of Presidents — Evansville — Circuit
Preaching established — Present Charges — Statistics.

History of Methodism in some of the Towns
AND Cities of the State.



THE first society seems to have been organized about
A. D. 1807, by some minister, or perhaps a local
preacher, from Kentucky. The first official recognition


of this society seems to have occurred about A. D. 1810,
Tinder the ministry of the Rev. Sely Payne, who traveled
Silver-creek Circuit that year, which embraced Jefferson-
ville. The first society in JefFersonville was composed
of the following persons, to wit : Mr. Beman, L. P.,
class-leader; Mrs. Beman, Stephen Beman, Lyman Be-
man, Mary Toville, afterward Mary Taylor, Davis
Floyd, Mary Floyd, Bichard Mosely, Samuel Lampton,
Charlotte Lampton, Mrs. Leatherman. There may have
been other names on the old class-paper at that time, but
that important document having long since disappeared,
with other records, the above are all the names which can
be identified at this late day. Father Beman seems to
have been an earnest, humble Christian; a good represent-
ative of the Methodists of his time. The old members,
two or three of whom lingered among us to a late period,
spoke wdth enthusiasm of the happy times their little
band enjoyed under his faithful leadership. Thus the
good seed was sown which has since sprung up, resulting
in a glorious harvest.

In consulting the old records of the Silver-creek Cir-
cuit, the following items were thought worthy of being
transcribed : At a quarterly meeting held at Charles-
town, January 10, 1810, the Jefi'ersonville society is
credited with fifty cents quarterage. At the first quar-
terly-meeting in 1811, the amount was $1.25. At the
first quarterly-meeting in 1812, it had advanced to the
sum of $2. The first quarterly-meeting for Jefferson-
ville was held March 11 and 12, A. D. 1815. Charles
Holliday was presiding elder, and Shadrach Ruark and
James Garver were circuit-preachers. The circuit-
preachers at this quarterly-meeting received each |15.97,
and presiding elder nothing. This was truly the day of
small things. Still the holy men labored on through


poverty and obloquy, rejoicing in their work, and con-
tented if they might win souls for Christ. They have en-
tered into their reward, and we are still enjoying the
blessed fruits of their self-sacrificing and faithful labors.
The spirit of primitive Methodism was well repre-
sented for many years in this society, especially by the
female members, who had united with the society in its
infancy. Among these may be mentioned Anna Tuley,
who still lingers on the shores of time, standing as a
way-mark — a bright example of Christian meekness and
patience, like her ancient namesake, waiting in the tem-
ple, looking for the appearing of her Lord. There were
also Polly Taylor, Anna Wright, and Elizabeth Jackson.
These three sisters lived in the enjoyment of glorious
religious experience to the close of life. For a long
series of years, on entering the Wall-street Methodist
Episcopal Church, the first object that greeted the sight
was these three sisters, attired in costume severely pLiin,
occupying a slip near the pulpit; and they were rarely
absent from the house of God. Their tender, sisterly love
for each other, no less than their constant Christian zeal
and exemplary walk, was a sight beautiful to behold.
Many a minister has been made to feel the cheering and
sustaining influence of their presence and intercessions
while delivering his Gospel message. They have passed
from the Church militant to the Church triumphant.
Among the earlier class-leaders, we find the names of
Andrew Fite, James Keigwin, Charles Sleed.


The first record or notice of Church property belong-
ing to the society, is found in a letter, on file, from Rev.
William Shanks, Presiding Elder, to James Keigwin,
Charles Sleed, Andrew Fite, David Grisamore, Aaron


Applegate, and Nelson Rozzle, dated at New Albany, In-
diana, June 22, 1833, as follows :

"Dear Brethren, — Being informed by Brother Ames
that it is necessary to appoint trustees for the Church in
Jeffersonville, and the Discipline making it the duty of
the presiding elder or preacher-in-charge to appoint
trustees when and where the Church may need them, I
do appoint you to fill the office of trustees, according to
the Discipline of the Methodist Episcopal Church,

" William Shanks, Presiding Elder."

The certificate on the back of this paper runs thus :

" Came into the office June 25, 1833 ; recorded in
book A, 2d volume, page 254, number 28.

"John Douthett, R. C. C.


Two of these trustees lived in the country, as there
were not a sufficient number of male members in town
to constitute a board.

The time of the building of the first church on WaU
Street will be indicated by the following memoranda.
Having been informed that James Keigwin, one of the
trustees, had done most of the work on the Church, and
perhaps had full knowledge of all the particulars, I ad-
dressed a note to him, a short time before his death, ask-
ing him to communicate any information he might pos-
sess upon the subject. The following is a copy of the
letter, in reply to my inquiries :

"Louisville, September 10, 1860

" Dr. Curran, — Dear Sir: At your request, I here-
with submit a statement of facts in regard to the Meth-
odist church in Jeffersonville, of which I agreed to do
the brick-work as my subscription toward building the


same, which, at the customary prices of the time,
amounted to $516.28 ; but after the foundation was laid,
ready for the joists, I found the building would be
stopped unless I procured them myself, which I did.
Below, you will find a statement.

"amount over kegular subscription.

1833. November 13— To Mr. Young's Bill $48 03^

" 13— To James Ridge, for Plank 5 28

" 13 — To two boxes Glass 8 00

1834. December 9 — To turning Column and Plank 10 15

1835. June 22— To making live Window-frames 6 561

" 30— To Messrs. Ames and King's Bill 19 20

Eecording Deed 1 00

One-third of E. TuUey's Carpenter's Bill 16 00

114 22f
Add amount for Brick-work 516 28^

Total $630 51-1

"James Keigwin."

This record shows that the old church was not fin-
ished until the Summer of 1835. When the question of
building the present church was first agitated, there was
a conQict of opinion about the place of its location.
After a free discussion of the subject by the whole
Church, the present location was unanimously agreed
upon; the ground being doubly consecrated, having been
occupied by the private residence in which the first soci-

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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 13 of 27)