It as been a busy week around here with some 70 hours since last Friday having been spent updating ministers and congregation while at the same time adding three newly found ministers, two congregations and discovering an oddity of one of the congregations that was heavily involved in the Old Older and Conservative split of 1881.
Looking for one item of interest I found something entirely different, leading me down the researching-in-depth path from which there is no return. I loathe when this occurs, realizing it will lead me down other paths—eventually at times forgetting that which I was originally searching for.
On to other matters of a more important and immediate nature. Maintaining this site and the others on the domain, namely the German Baptist Brethren Almanacs, Annuals & Yearbooks site, the German Baptist Brethren Ministers & Congregations site, the Ashland University & Brethren Church Archives site, plus several other non-Brethren sites is costly. And of course that includes this site, the German Baptist Brethren Books web site. Additionally, our last professional level large format scanner has died thus it needs to be replaced. IF you can help financially your three administrators would appreciate any assistance and it would be deeply appreciated.
As before, I updated and/or created each of the ministers mentioned in this last passage.
I updated along the way some ten or so ministers and elders, but unfortunately lost the list due to a mid-night restart of my computer by Microsoft’s Update program. The only one I can still recall was the locating of the election to the ministry of Bro. John W. Click (1853-1911) of Virginia which led to numerous almanac and newspaper updates, as well as his natal and death dates.
I did find an interesting tidbit about the Wolf Creek church of Southern Ohio. I am referring to the German Baptist Brethren congregation, later the Church of the Brethren, not the Old German Baptist Brethren congregation. Contrary to the general order of A. M., this church, in 1886, served the supper after single-mode feet-washing. The following elders and ministers at this church, Samuel Garber (1818-1882), John A. Kimmel (1831-1898), Henry Garber (1842-1920), Conrad Brumbaugh (1809-1891), went with the Old Order faction in 1881.
It was at this congregation that the Old Order faction first met in 1868, culminating in the “Miami Valley Petition” of Nov. 25, 1879, at the Salem congregation. This last was at the meeting-house that was within the bounds of what, in 1914, would become the Pitsburg congregation. The church later was called the Ludlow church and the leader of this group was Eld. Samuel Garber, he having served as presiding elder of Wolf Creek from 1878 to 1881.
As I have been lead to understand, the Old German Baptist Brethren faction followed the time-tested supper after feet-washing while the Conservatives (German Baptist Brethren / Church of the Brethren) had the supper prior to feet-washing. What was truly astounding though is that fully one-quarter of this German Baptist Brethren church used the double mode of feet-washing. The congregation voted in favor of using single mode, changing from the double mode.
The church council, in which it clearly states: “Then came the ‘tug of “war.” One fourth of the church voted against changing from the double mode, however quite a number of these said that if the majority wanted the change they would accept it. . . It was decided to have the supper on the table hereafter at feet-washing, which is not the general practice in the Miami Valley.”
The presiding elder, Jacob Garber (1821-1909), a brother of Eld. Samuel Garber, though present, wisely chose to abstain from the deliberations allowing the congregation to choose its own course. Opening deliberations were on May 17th, tabled until May 29th, at which time it was determined that at the June 8th communion they would use the single mode of feet-washing and have the supper “on the table” at the time of it. Elder Garber was a very wise man in his leadership, in permitting the church to decide how to observe the Holy Communion. It was not uncommon at this time for some elders to rule with an iron hand.
Stated by the author, Bro. John C. Bright (1851-1919), is that “none of the twenty-two ministers in the adjoining churches were with us, though all live within a fine drive of the church.” Bro. Bright did, however, mollify any possible aversions cast by his statement by mentioning the upcoming Annual Meeting as a possible cause for neighboring congregation’s ministers not attending. It is doubtful that this many ministers would be needed in setting up A. M. If you read between the lines, only one conclusion comes to mind. . .
The Annual Meeting of 1886 was held just south of the village of Pitsburg, Ohio, on the farm of Eld. Jesse Stutsman (1833-1926), within the bounds of what would later become the Pitsburg church. At this time it was considered the Brush Creek church. The history of the parent church being somewhat murky. A. M. for 1886 began on Friday, June 11th and concluded on Thursday, June 17th.
As many have noticed while reading these blog entries, the links provided likely do not work. Or at least those pointing to those sites under my control. This is intentional. It costs a lot of money during the year to finance my German Baptist Brethren Digital Archives project. I do not feel that I should spend my time, money and effort to discover and record history so that others can “borrow” it for their own uses. Those who support these same efforts, reap the benefits.
It is reminiscent to what has happened with the Brethren Digital Archives, for which I was the original impetus, which has now devolved to a point where companies in America, Great Britain and India have taken Brethren material created by the Brethren Digital Archives from Archive.Org—and are selling it on the Internet. A course of events seemingly accepted by the committee.
But, in this one instance I feel that the Wolf Creek congregation article is so interesting when it comes to the turbulent opening of the 1880’s, I am going to unlock this particular article for a short term. In the online version I have added to the paragraphs above, adding additional information so please take the time to peruse it.
A. Wayne Webb
Oct. 19, 2014