Brief Histories Of The Churches Connected With The Presbytery of New York. Pre: 1949 Part IV

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Eighth Church (Dissolved)

In August 1819 the Presbytery received a group that had formerly been a Reformed Dutch Church, which had begun its life in 1803 in Greenwich Village. This was the eighth Presbyterian Church in the city, and was so called. Its first meeting was in a school house at Hudson and Christopher Streets, but in 1821 it erected a building at 81 Christopher Street which it occupied until 1841, when because of debt the building was sold and was used by St. Matthews Episcopal Church. This has been the home of St. Johns Lutheran Church since 1854. The church was dissolved in 1842, many of the members transferring their membership to the newly organized Chelsea Church with their pastor.

The ministers: Stephen W. Rowan, 1819-30; Henry Hunter, 1831-34; Edward D. Smith, 1834-42.

Elizabeth Street Church (Dissolved)

The Elizabeth Street Church was in the fellowship of the Presbyterian Church from 1811 to 1813 when it was dissolved. Its early history began in 1804 as the First Congregational Church in Warren Street. After 1809 it was on Elizabeth Street, between Hester and Warren Streets.

Minister: Henry P. Strong, 1811-13.

Emmanuel Church

The Emmanuel Presbyterian Church has a history as a separate ecclesiastical body only since its reception by the Presbytery on October 25, 1918. The work, however, goes back to a meeting of the Mercer Street Church November 25, 1851, when the following resolution was adopted__"Resolved that it is our duty as a church and congregation to adopt immediate and efficient measures for carrying the Gospel to the destitute of our city." As a result of this determination, a Mission was opened at 118 Avenue D March 28, 1852, with a Sunday School and preaching services. At first it was called the Avenue D Mission, but later it was changed to the Dry Dock Mission, as it was called for many years. After the Mercer Street joined the University Place Church, provision was made for the erection of an adequate church building at 727 E. 6th St. The chapel was completed in 1874 and a Sunday School of 600 strong marched to the new building, which was dedicated as Emmanuel Church. It is reported that in 1895 there were 2200 scholars in the Sunday School with an average attendance of 1350. Various additions to the plant were made. It is affiliated with the First Church.

The ministers: Erastus Seymour, 1864-91; Daniel H. Overton, 1891-95; John C. Palmer, 1895-1911; George E. Schlbrede, 1912-23; Gustave A. Schnatz, 1924-1936; Donald J. Walton, 1937-43; John W. McCarthy, 1944.

Emmanuel Church (Dissolved)

The second Negro Church of New York Presbytery was organized June 1850 in the Howard Temperance Hall in Cottage Place and was known first as the Emmanuel Church. In 1850 it worshipped on Seventh Avenue and was called by that name, and in 1864-69 at 231 West 16th Street, when it was known as the Church of the Covenant, and from 1869 to its dissolution in 1873 at West Broadway near Houston Street, when it was known as the Church of Hope. This church never had a building of its own.

Its ministers: Henry M. Wilson, 1850-70; Thomas G. Oliver, 1870-73.

Featherbed Lane Church

The Featherbed Lane Church grew out of what was known as the Parkside Sunday School on University Heights, which began in 1919. The Church Extension Committee bought lots and built a chapel at the northeast corner of Featherbed Lane and University Avenue, and here the Featherbed Lane Presbyterian Church was organized January 30, 1921. The pastor was the Rev. Robert Bruce Clark, who came to this work with a considerable number of the members of the Church of the Puritans, of which he had been pastor. The church edifice was completed and dedicated in February 1929.

The Ministers: Robert B. Clark, 1920-24; Carlos G. Fuller, 1924-40; Robert E. Schwenk, 1940-46; Homer B. Ogle, 1947_.

Fiftieth Street Tabernacle Church (Dissolved)

This church was organized on January 24th, 1855, and was dissolved in 1859, although preaching services seem to have been continued for a few years. During the last years it was known as the Bloomingdale Church, Gardiner Spring Plumley was minister, 1855-57.

First Colored Church-Shiloh Church (Dissolved)

The records of the First Presbyterian, and other early churches, indicate that a number of Negroes were communicant members.

The first organized work for Negroes under the sponsorship of the Presbytery of New York dates back to the organization of the First Colored Presbyterian Church on January 13, 1822. For a year Samuel E. Cornish, a Negro preacher, had been working among people of his own race, meeting with them at a house on Rose street, between Frankfort and Pearl Streets. A brick church building was erected at 119 Elm Street, now Lafayette, at the corner of Canal Street in 1824. The financial burdens connected with this building, however, were so great that Presbytery had to come to the rescue of their Negro brethren. The growth of the congregation justified this confidence, and shortly a larger church building was required. It was found possible to purchase a German Lutheran Church edifice at the northeast corner of Frankfort and William Streets, a site now covered by the stone arches of Brooklyn Bridge. This church was known as the "Swamp Church," and this building was used until 1848. The next location was the building vacated by the Union Church, which had been dissolved a few years previously, at 61 Prince Street, corner of Marion Street, now Center St. For a number of years this was listed in the records of Presbytery as the Prince Street Church, but it had the name also of Shiloh Church. The church continued growing somewhat weaker with the passing years, and this building was sold in 1877. For a time it worshipped at 140 Sixth Ave., and at 169 W. 26th Street. Many changes in the pastorate took place until the church finally was dissolved in 1891.

The ministers: Samuel E. Cornish, 1824-30; Theodore S. Wright, 1830-47; James C.W. Pennington, 1848-56; Henry H. Garnet, 1857-64, 1866-81; J. Sella Martin, 1865-66; Reading B. Johns, 1883-84; William T. Carr, 1885-90.

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Website: The History
Article Name: Brief Histories Of The Churches Connected With The Presbytery of New York. Pre: 1949 Part IV
Researcher/Transcriber Miriam Medina


BIBLIOGRAPHY: From my collection of books: The Presbyterian Church in New York City by Theodore Fiske Savage; published by The Presbytery of New York 1949
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