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The menu system utilized to access the books can be difficult to understand.  It could have been simpler in design, if only the various books themselves had fallen into one larger overriding category.  Such, however, is not the case.  This site will eventually house books covering those states for which there have been district histories and other more generalized books.

In the case of the various district histories there are many states that are split into three, or more, districts.  Pennsylvania has four districts: Eastern, Middle, Southern and Western.  And, each district may have more than one published history; such as the 1920 and 1955 histories for the Southern District of Ohio.  Thus there will be under the District menu link (when it is created) a link for Ohio > Southern District > 1920 as well as a 1955 menu item.  The menus will be logical in nature so that should be fairly easy to follow.

Such may not be the case for other Brethren historical works.  For instance, as of this writing there are two books online, The Minutes of the Annual Meetings of the Brethren — 1778 - 1917 and Some Who Led — Or — Fathers in the Church of the Brethren Who Have Passed Over.  One book is a biographical work while the other is non-biographical in nature.  Thus under the General menu link there will be a sub-menu item for each, Biographical and Non-biographical.

The only other envisioned menu item is one entitled "Congregational," or named something alike it, for the various and numerous congregations for which there are published histories.

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  • The Virginia Magazine of History and Biography, Vol. XII, No. 3 (Jan., 1905), page 278

    The Virginia Magazine of History and Biography

    The Virginia Magazine of History and Biography, Vol. XII, No. 3 (Jan., 1905), page 278 [Click for larger image]The Virginia Magazine of History and Biography, Vol. XII, No. 3 (Jan., 1905), page 278

    On Novenmber 12, we rose very early, and at three o'clock ate stewed pumpkin. Then we went again through thick and thin, often across steep hills, where we had to push our wagon with might and main. We avoided a large swamp, about a hundred feet wide, making a new way to the left across the mountain, which was a great help to us. We came to a creek, called Horse Pasture,7 which is somewhat larger than the "Manakis" [Monocacy]. It had been exceptionally high a few days before, but had fallen again. We here met one of the worst banks, of which the people had long told us, telling us that we would hardly be able to cross, but our picks and shovels served us well and we came across safely. Close to this creek is a new plantation. The people estimate the distance from this place to the Smith River as twelve miles. We drove four miles farther and ate dinner at Adam Loving's plantation. Here we bought ten bushels of corn. The people were very friendly to us. The man showed us the ford across the first branch of the Meho [Mayo] River, which is not much wider than the "Manakis" at Bethlehem. It has, however, such steep banks that we could hardiy cross in two hours. It is fortunate that the creeks have all subsided again since the last rain, otherwise we would be detained considerably. Three miles farther we came to the main branch of the Meho [Mayo] River, which is about as broad as the "Lecha" [Lehigh] at Gnadenhutten. The approach to the river was pretty good, but the exit was all the harder. We had to work till night, before we could make the opposite bank passable so that we could drive up. We passed the night here and as we had little wood we all lay down around the fire, and thus slept the last time in Virginia. We had traveled thirteen miles to-day. On November 13. we rose in the morning at three o'clock. It began to rain again but we started on our journey. We almost missed the way, turning too much to the right. At day-break we came to the boundary of Virginia and North Carolina. The road leads across a creek,8 two miles from our camp. Bro. 7 The Horse Pasture creek is in the extreme western part of Henry county. It empties into the N. Mayo river. 8 This creek is probably Crooked creek, which runs close to the boundary of Patrick county and North Carolina.

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  • The Virginia Magazine of History and Biography, Vol. XI, No. 3 (Jan., 1904), page 239

    The Virginia Magazine of History and Biography

    The Virginia Magazine of History and Biography, Vol. XI, No. 3 (Jan., 1904), page 239 [Click for larger image]The Virginia Magazine of History and Biography, Vol. XI, No. 3 (Jan., 1904), page 239

    line. For an hour and a half they climbed the very steep ascent, but when they reached the top they surveyed in every direction an exceedingly wide region, and it seemed to them as if the whole earth were at their feet.* On account of its remarkable height, they called the mountain "Fuersten Spitz" [Prince Peak]. In passing over the top and in their descent they spent four full hours. As it was evening and they missed the road, they happened to strike an "elk trail," which took them between two mountains.† Here they passed the night, hungry and thirsty, encamped at their fire. They were frequently visited by the elks, which are numerous in those mountains. On the following morning, July 26th, they came to a marked path. It brought them to a salt lick, which is frequented by the elks and where they are usually shot by the hunters. A kind spirit led them to the right way, by which they continued their journey, till they came in the evening to a German plantation. Here Adam Roeder‡ lives, whose mother, eighty-six years of age, lives at Makuntsche [Macungie, now Emmaus, Lehigh county, Pa.], and belongs to that congregation. * The region seen by the missionaries from the top of "Fuersten Spitz" is now comprised in the counties of Augusta, Rockingham and Shenandoah. † This was probably Brock's Gap, one of the most important passes through the North Mountain. ‡ Adam Rader. The missionaries were now in the vicinity of Timberville, Rockingham county, Va. About one mile west of this place stands Rader's Church, which is known to be one of the oldest places of worship in Rockingham, although the date of the organization of the congregation cannot be given definitely. The first reference to the Reformed congregation worshipping in Rader's Church is found in the diary of Rev. Charles Lange, pastor at Frederick, Md, who visited the congregation on April 17, 1768. See Fathers of the Reformed Church, Vol. II, p. 154. From the beginning until 1879 it was used jointly by the German Reformed and Lutheran denominations. In that year a new church was built by the Lutherans for their sole use, the German Reformed congregation shortly afterwards erecting a church at Timberville.

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  • The Virginia Magazine of History and Biography, Vol. XII, No. 3 (Jan., 1905), page 316

    The Virginia Magazine of History and Biography

    The Virginia Magazine of History and Biography, Vol. XII, No. 3 (Jan., 1905), page 316 [Click for larger image]The Virginia Magazine of History and Biography, Vol. XII, No. 3 (Jan., 1905), page 316

    IV, page 2404, in which place may be found a fair and discriminating account of the several sects in question: "The Tunkers are often confounded with the other peace sects, in Pennsylvania, of German origin, especially with the Mennonites, the Amish, Schwenckfelders, etc.; but they have no historical connection, and differ from them in some important particulars." Another quotation from Schaft-Harzog, Vol. IV, page 2403, may be allowed as fairly describing the Ephrata Society (the particular sect of Sieben-taeger with which we are here concerned): "The Sieben-Taeger, or German Seventh-day Baptists, are a secession from the Tunkers. They are now [1883], nearly extinct as a denomination, but at one time existed in considerable numbers at Ephrata, Lancaster county, Penn., where, under Conrad Beissel. they formed a monastic community in 1732; and colonies were afterward formed near York, Bedford and Snow Hill. Beissel, a native of Germany, came to this country in 1720, and settled at Mill Creek, where he was baptized by Peter Becker, the Tunker minister of the Germantown church, in 1725. He published a pamphlet protesting against the change of the sabbath from the seventh to the first day of the week, and also advocating celibacy as the higher order of Christian life." It was earlier than 1732, however, probably 1728, that Beissel, who had been baptized by the Dunker bishop, Peter Becker, in 1724, began the movement which formed the Ephrata Society. Community of goods was at first the rule at Ephrata, but was afterwards abandoned, at least in part. Celibacy was enjoined upon those who retired to the cloisters, and was recommended to others, but was not required of them. They adopted a garb similar to that of the Capuchins, and assumed, upon entering the order, monastic names. Having now succeeded, I trust, in setting the Dunkers clearly apart—showing what and who they are not—I have only left to tell, generally and briefly, who and what they are. The Dunkers (Brethren, or German Baptist Brethreh), are a large body of Christians, living chiefly in Pennsylvania, Maryland. Virginia, West Virginia. Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Missouri, Iowa, Nebraska, Tennessee, Texas, Washington, and California, with branch congregations and missons in Canada, Sweden, Norway, France, Switzerland, Asia Minor and India. They hold the Bible as the Word of God, and the New Testament as their creed. In faith they are orthordox and evangelical. They believe in the Trinity of the Godhead, in the divinity of each of the three Persons, in future reward and punishments. Faith, repentance and baptism are held to be the conditions of forgiveness of sin and the gift of the Holy Ghost. They administer baptism by trine, face-forward, immersion. They perpetuate the Apostolic agape, or

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