The Virginia Magazine of History and Biography
On July 27th, they journeyed from this place to Messinutty* [Massanutton], where Germans of all kinds of denominations live—Mennonites, Lutherans, Separatists and Inspirationists.† Bro. Joseph spoke to some of them, but they are very bad people. It is a dead place where their testimony found no entrance.‡ On July 28, they crossed the South or Blue Ridge, which are the mountains opposite Bethlehem, extending continuously through Pennsylvania and Maryland. They found an awfully wretched road, and it was a neck-breaking undertaking to descend the mountains. Below the mountains is a strong settlement of German and English people. It is called the "Great Fork of the Rappehannock."§ A regular Lutheran congregation is there, whose pastor, Magister Klug, is a disciple of the * As the missionaries make no reference to crossing the Massanutton range of mountains on their journey to the Massanutton district, they evidently passed near the present site of Harrisonburg, Va., traveling around the Peaked Mountain, which is the southern end of the Massanutton range. † Inspirationists are the members of a sect which originated in Germany, among people who had separated from the State Church. Their main leaders were E. L. Gruber at Himbach, near Hanau, A. Gross in Frankfort, J. F. Rock at Himbach and E. C. Hochmann at Schwarzenau, near Berleburg. In 1716 they took the name "Truly Inspired." A number of them, under the leadership of Gruber, Gleim, Mackinet and others, emigrated to Pennsylvania, where they settled at Germantown. From here they spread to other settlements. Their name was derived from the fact that they claimed to receive direct divine communications through the inspiration of the Holy Ghost. See McClintock and Strong, Theological Cyclopedia, Vol. IV, p. 616. The term Separatists refers more generally to all who had separated themselves from the established State churches. tThe diaries of other missionaries, to be published later, show that the people pf this district were strongly prejudiced against the Moravians, which fact may in some degree account for the severe judgment passed upon them by Bishop Spangenberg. § This is an error. The Great Fork of the Rappahannock was the name applied by Gottschalk to the old settlement at Germanna. The Bishop is referring to the German Lutheran settlement in the present county of Madison, mentioned in a previous note.