Reverend Edward L.R. Elson Page 2 | Presbyterian Historical Society

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The National Presbyterian Church

The Reverend Dr. Edward L. R. Elson (1906-1993), pastor of the National Presbyterian Church (1947-1973) and Chaplain of the Senate (1969-1981), played a particularly active role in advocating for a Presbyterian program in Washington, D.C.

Portrait of Reverend Dr. Edward L.R. Elson, by Harris and Ewing, Washington, D.C., ca. 1950. Click for full image. [Image no. 1174]

He served on the Advisory Council of the National Presbyterian Church, fostered spiritual relationships with elected officials (including President Dwight D. Eisenhower, a member of the congregation whom Elson baptized into the faith), and enthusiastically reached out to potential donors.

Rev. Dr. Elson (far right) with President Dwight D. Eisenhower (center), Vice President Richard M. Nixon (second from right), and families at the Pre-Inaugural Service at the National Presbyterian Church. Photograph by Abbie Rowe, 1957. Click for full image. [Image no. 4307]

Cover of program booklet for the Pre-Inaugural service held at the National Presbyterian Church on January 20, 1957. Click for full image. [Image no. 4556]

Rev. Dr. Elson in front of the National Presbyterian Church, Washington, D.C., during construction. Photograph by Nicholas Penovic, ca. 1968. Click for full image. [Image no. 4316]