Phillipsburg Presbyterian Church, 1853 - 1903




        But seven pastors have served the congregation since the organization of the church in 1853, as follows:

Rev. Smith Sturges*
Rev. James Y. Mitchell, D. D.
Rev. James Petrie*
Rev. Henry B. Townsend
Rev. E. Morris Fergusson
Rev. Alfred N. Raven
Rev. Percy Young Schelly



        I Timothy 5:2--"Let the elders that rule well be counted worthy of double honour, especially they who labour in the word and doctrine."

        Rev. 4:4--"And round about the throne were four and twenty seats; and upon the seats I saw four and twenty elders sitting, clothed in white raiment; and they had on their heads crowns of gold."

        Twenty-seven Elders have served the church since its organization as follows, those published in italics being members of the present session, the dates referring to the time of their first election:

1853, Dec. 13 John Lander*
Benjamin Burwell*
John C. Bennett*
1855, Nov. 4 A. Ramsey Reese*
1858, Nov. 29 Dr. Charles Davis*
Thos. S. Whitenack*
Aaron Losey*
Lewis M. Teel*
Samuel Baker*
1874, Jan. 25 Robert S. Brittain*
Joseph Warne*
1875, June 20 John K. Stephens*
1884, Feb. 3 Charles A. Heckman*
Wm. F. Schlabach
William D. Hawk*
1886, Jan. 31 Joseph Ewing*
1887, Jan. 30 William Kline*
1889, April 14 James Drake
1890 Feb. 2 Benjamin F. Haines*
George W. Wilhelm*
1891, Feb. 1 Archibald Campbell
1894, Feb. 4 James L. Lomerson
1898, Feb. 15 Alexander V. Johnson
1899, Feb. 26 John Walton
1901, Feb. 17 John Souders
1902, Apr. 13 William J. Stevenson
1903, Feb. 22 Isaac L. Foster


      Many able and earnest men have served the church in the capacity of Trustees.  We regret that we cannot give a complete list from the time of the organization of the church on account of the absence of reliable data.
Among the records we find the following:

Benjamin T. Harris Wm. J. Stevenson
John K. Stephens Wilson W. Hunt
L. M. Teel James Drake
J. C. Butler James E. Moon
P. R. Hagerman George E. Meeker
G. W. Wilhelm Sylvester C. Smith
John Eilenberg Elmer E. Carhart*
Joseph Ewing John I. Blair Reiley
P. W. Skinner D. F. Stone
Alexander V. Johnson Isaac Vanatta*
John H. Hagerty Samuel V. Davis
Wm. H. Kellogg Andrew S. Pursel*
George Myers J. Harry Hagerty*
Frank B. Heckman Benjamin B. Metz*
William Kline, Sr. Lorenzo F. Heiberger*
John Warner George W. Smith*
*Members of present Board.


        "Remember now thy Creator in the days of thy youth, while the evil days come not,
nor the years draw nigh when thou shalt say, I have no pleasure in them."

        Insufficient data enables us to give only a partial list of the Superintendents of the Sunday School since its first organization, among which are:

Benjamin Burwell Rev. E. Morris Fergusson
L. Mashall Teel James L. Lomerson
Robert S. Brittain Rev. Percy Y. Schelly
Aaron Losey E. O. Jennings
George W. Wilhelm James A. Smith
Joseph Hoffman George W. Smith*
Frank R. Pierson

*Present incumbent.

The membership of the school at present is 271
Home Department membership                      72

                                            Total          343


Superintendent - George W. Smith
Secretary - Richard S. Casper
Treasurer - Miss Jeanette R. Laughland
Supt. Primary Department - Miss Ida Beers
Supt. Junior Department - Miss Minnie C. Mitchell
Supt. Home Department - Miss Minnie C. Mitchell
Librarian - Charles Elmer Stryker
Assistant Librarian - Clyde Stryker
Pianist - Miss Grace L. McClary


 "Praise ye the Lord.  Praise God in his sanctuary; praise him in the firmament of his power."

        Among those who have served the church as members of the choir we recall:

Mrs. F. G. D. Holmes Miss Lillie A. Wilhelm
Mrs. George Davis Miss Euphemia Harrison
Thomas DeWitt I. S. Mulholland
Mrs. George Sweeney Frank Z. Hermes
John W. Dean Samuel R. Fenton
Mary Wright David B. McCann
Mrs. J. S. Stewart John C. Moon
Helen DeWitt Harry W. Souders
A. D. Light Garry Bellis
George Sweeney W. A. Larue
Edmund Teel H. D. Eilenberger
Jesse K. Singer A. J. Brugler
Miss Mame Arndt Bessie Lerch
Miss Carrie Teel J. Harry Hagerty
Osiris D. McConnel Roland Firth, Jr.
Wm. L. Sanderson Miss Ada Miller
Miss Eddah Osmun Miss Lillie Savercool
Miss Ida Beers Miss Lizzie Firth
Miss Edith Beers Miss Julia Blake
Miss Lizzie Osmun Frank Mixsell
Miss Jessie B. Reiley Wm. C. Drake
Miss Margaret Lee Sweeney Mrs. U. R. Swengle
Miss Ella Wilhelm George F. Cole
Wm. Ochs J. Ellsworth Reaser
Mrs. Joseph Firth Miss Margaret Campbell
George W. Smith Mrs. P. Y. Schelly
Miss Margaret A. Wilhelm Miss Grace L. McClary
Miss Cora A. Huff

        The present choir is composed of

Miss Grace L. McClary--Soprano
Mrs. P. Y. Schelly--Contralto
Mr. Frank Z. Hermes--Tenor
Mr. George W. Smith--Bass
Mr. Alfred R. Case--Organist
Mrs. P. Y. Schelly--Director
        Mr. Case, the present organist, has served the church in that capacity for many years.  He has been faithful to duty and courteous and obliging in all his dealings with the choir and the congregation.  Being a thorough musician he has given entire satisfaction in his responsible position and his work is very much appreciated.

THE Y. P. S. C. E.

"They that seek me early shall find me."

        The Young People's Society of Christian Endeavor, reorganized under the pastorate of Rev. E. M. Fergusson, holds regular prayer-meetings every Sunday evening before the regular church services.  The present membership is 37.

        The officers for the present term are as follows:

President--Richard S. Casper
Vice President--Miss Helen Heiberger
Secretary--Miss Emma Casper
Corresponding Secretary--Frank Z. Hermes
Treasurer--Miss Elva Vanatta

THE Y. L. H. M. C.

        The Young Ladies' Home Mission Circle is doing good work.  This society sends annually to one of the training schools in the West boxes of clothing, etc., averaging in value $60.00.  Meetings are held bi-weekly.  By the use of "Mite Boxes" substantial sums of money are annually raised and given to Home Missions.  The benevolent contributions of the church are increased by about $130 annually through the efforts of this society.  The present officers are:

President--Miss Ida Beers
Vice President--Miss Nettie E. Pierson
Secretary--Miss Cora E. Shipman
Treasurer--Miss Lizzie A. Myers


"Where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them."

        One of the most encouraging aids to the pastor is the above Association, which meets in the Sunday School room at 9:45 every Sabbath morning.  It was organized in November, 1901, under a constitution and voluntary pledge.  Very interesting and helpful talks are given at the meetings, and men who before were unaccustomed to speaking or praying in a devotional service now do both freely.  The present officers are:

President--George W. Smith
Secretary--Frank Z. Hermes
Treasurer--L. F. Heiberger


        "The harvest truly is great, but the labourers are few; pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he would send forth labourers into his harvest."

        This is one of the oldest women's societies in the church, having been organized early in the pastorate of Mr. Townsend.  Mrs.. Townsend was the first President.

        Regular meetings are held every two weeks and consist of devotional exercises and talks on missionary topics.  A different leader is appointed at each meeting for the next.

    The society has done a remarkable work in the past.  The present officers are:

President--Mrs. Elizabeth Miller
Vice President--Mrs. Archibald Campbell
Secretary--Mrs. Margaret Tiffany
Treasurer--Mrs. Freeman Kinney


        In March, 1903, the ladies of the church met--a goodly number of them--and appointed a committee to draw up a constitution and by-laws, preliminary to the complete organization of a ladies' society.  At a subsequent meeting in the same month a permanent organization was effected, named "Ladies' Aid Society of the First Presbyterian Church," its object being to "further the social and material interests of the church."  The officers elected and installed were Mrs. Rhoda C. Young-Schelly, President; Mrs. Anna E. Carhart, Vice President; Mrs. Emma E. Hermes, Secretary; Mrs. Pearl G. Eilenberg, Treasurer.  The following are charter members:
Mrs. Rhoda C. Y. Schelly Mrs. John Laughland, Sr.
Mrs. Anna E. Carhart Mrs. William Miller
Mrs. Emma E. Hermes Mrs. James Drake
Mrs. Pearl G. Eilenberg Mrs. Francis J. Drake
Mrs. Margaret A. Tiffany Mrs. Isaac Foster
Mrs. Amanda Kinney Mrs. Belle Amey
Mrs. Mary J. Smith Mrs. Delphina Ayers
Mrs. Jessie B. Reiley

        To celebrate its organization appropriately, the Ladies' Aid Society served a banquet on the evening of April 3rd, 1903, naming the event "First Annual Banquet."  More than two hundred persons were entertained.  It is the purpose of the ladies to serve such a banquet annually.

        Although very young, the society now numbers about seventy members and is alert in every respect, promising to be of long life and a very prominent branch of the First Presbyterian Church of Phillipsburg.



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