Home | Mission & Goals | Meeting Schedule | Search | Contact Us | Submit A Story | Links

History of Emmitsburg's Lutheran Church

The Lutheran Church of this community dates its origin in the year 1757, on the banks of Tom's Creek two and one-half miles East of Emmitsburg. This primitive structure was built of logs. According to a historical letter. of Rev. John G. Young written to Rev. Dr. Helmuth, Philadelphia, and filed in the archives of Mount Airy Lutheran Seminary the year 1757 establishes the date of this congregation's beginning. At a later date a new church was built on this site by the Lutheran and the Reformed congregations.

The first pastor was Rev. John G. Bager, who was succeeded by no less than four ministers until in the year 1797.

In 1797, the congregation decided to build a new church in Emmitsburg. The present stone structure was erected conjointly by the Lutheran and the Reformed congregations and used by both on alternate Sundays until the year 1869, when the Lutheran congregation became sole owner by right of purchase.

The present stone edifice was remodeled in the year 1835, also in 1870. In the year 1897. the Centennial Celebration of the church was observed with a varied and impressive program, covering a period of four days, September 30 - October 3, 1897. A full account was furnished in the Chronicle October 8, 1897. In the Centennial year the church was renovated and improved by placing new circular oak pews, art glass memorial windows of beautiful design, new pulpit and chancel furniture.

Fourteen ministers have served the congregation since 1797, Rev. John F. Ruthrauff, Rev. John U. Grobp, Rev. John N. Hoffman, Rev. Samuel Finekel, Rev. Ezra Keller. Rev. Solomon Sentman. Rev. John Welficy, Rev. Chas. Collins, Rev. J. Henry Bishop, Rev. Washington V. Gotwald, Rev. F. S. Johnston, D. D., Rev. Luther DeYoe, Rev. 0. U. Klinger, Rev. Chas. Reinewald.

Recent improvements are a new heating plant, walls refrescoed, new carpet, new roof, new floor, a new concrete avenue from the Main street to the church, and other improvements within the present pastorate of 17 years involving an expenditure of about $3,500.

The membership numbers 340 persons. During the past year the congregation contributed for benevolent causes $368.00 and for all local and general work $2,170.00. The church property has improved with age, and continues to serve the sacred purpose of its erection through Winter's cold and Summer's heat.

Pastors of Emmitsburg Elias Ev. Lutheran Church. Rev. John George Buger, 1757-1759; vacant, 1759-1761; Rev. Ludwig Beck, 176 1-1767; vacant, 1767-1769; Rev. Charles F. Wildbahn, 1769-1782. Then Lutherans united with Reformed and built a new church on the old location, and also a school house, 1782. Rev. John U. Young of St. John's Lutheran

Church supplied the Emmitsburg church. Rev. Guenther Wingert. 1794-1795; Rev. John F. Enthrauff, Greencastle, 1797-1802; Rev. John U. Grobp, Taneytown, 1802-1828; Rev. John N. Hoffman. 1828-1833; Rev. Samuel D. Finekel, 1834-1837; Rev. Ezra Keller, 1837-1840; Rev. Solomon Seatman, 1841-1852; Rev. John Welfley, 1852-1854; Rev. George S. Collins, 1854-1855; Rev. Henry Bishop, 1855-1863: Rev. Washington V. Gotwald. 1863-1866; Rev. E. S. Johnston, 1866-1888; Rev. Luther DeYoe, 1889-1891; Rev. 0. G. Klinger. 1892-1892; Rev. Chas. Reinewald, 1892.

Read about other churches in Emmitsburg

Do you have any information to add to our history of Elias Lutheran Church?  
If so, send them to us at history@emmitsburg.net

Back to Previous Page >