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News, events, updates, and tidbits from the Presbyterian Historical Society. Use tags to read related articles or sort by author for similar posts written by PHS staff members and volunteers.

September 18, 2017

--By Virginia Rainey

After its opening in September 1967, the faux-Colonial building at 425 Lombard Street looked like an iceberg broken free from Independence Hall four blocks up Fifth Street. The inside, pristine as it was, revealed surfaces and spaces worthy of the Old School-New School dispute.

To start with, money for construction had been tight. Department Manager Bill Miller once told me that United Presbyterian Church in the U.S.A. (UPCUSA) Stated Clerk...

August 3, 2017

--by Richard Poethig

The global conflicts of the twentieth century shaped the boundaries of nations and the relationship between former colonies and their overseers. This change in turn altered the way the mission of the church was viewed and conducted in overseas countries. The history of church mission had grown out of the expansion of Western powers into Asia, Latin America, and Africa. Christian mission had become characterized by the colonial relationship which European powers had with...

June 26, 2017
 

--by Ira Dworkin

I first visited the Presbyterian Historical Society (PHS) in Montreat, North Carolina, in 2002 when I began working on Congo Love Song: African American Culture and the Crisis of the Colonial State. The Montreat branch is now closed, but most of its holdings are at PHS in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, including the papers of the ...

June 11, 2017

I have thought that my coming West was a great mistake. I must be in the wrong place or work, or I would not be so forsaken. In the midst of all my affliction vc [sic] in Africa, I could feel that I was in God’s work: but not so here. The trouble is the trying to serve two masters.”[1]

This was the reflection of the Revered John Menaul, a Presbyterian missionary, after five years of service in the New Mexico and Arizona Territories. A former missionary to Corisco, an island off the coast of West...

June 8, 2017

--by Ed Wicklein

It is an amazing thing that Americans moved west from the thirteen colonies so rapidly, even before the Revolution. The Presbyterian Church had a challenge keeping up with the migration to organize churches and to follow up with the creation of presbyteries and synods. The experience of Missouri and Illinois was typical. Already by 1800, Americans outnumbered the French in Missouri and, surely also, in nearby Illinois.

We know that Scotch-Irish Presbyterians from...

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