File submitted for USGenWeb/MOGenWeb Lincoln County Missouri History Page by Neal Underwood, 9 November 1998.  Link change or update: 4 Dec 2002

History of
The Presbyterian Churches in Lincoln County

From The History of Lincoln County, Missouri, (Chicago : Goodspeed Publishing Co., 1888) pp. 485-488.

The First Presbyterian Church of Troy was organized November 26, 1831, by Revs. William S. LACY and John S. BALL, the former the father of Rev. B. F. LACY, and the latter the father-in-law of Gov. Frederick BATES. There were ten constituent members, and Francis PARKER and Horatio S. LINN were elected and ordained ruling elders. Occasional services were held, with Rev. William BALL as minister, up till 1834; from that time till 1846, by Rev. James GALLAHER; from 1848 to 1850 Rev. David DIMOND had charge of the church; from 1850 to 1864, Rev. E. P. NOEL; from 1864 to 1868, Rev. J. V. PARKS; during part of the time from 1860 to 1870, Revs. C. P. B. MARTIN and James ROSAMOND; 1871-73, Rev. O. C. THOMPSON; from 1873 to 1888, Revs. W. B. Y. WILKIE, A. A. PFANSTEIHL and the present minister, C. Van OOSTENBRUGG, in the order here named. After the organization, until 1848, the congregation worshiped in the courthouse. On the 16th of September, 1847, the cornerstone of a brick building, on Court Street, was laid, and on the 23d of January, 1848, it was dedicated as a church. It cost $1,600. In 1868 the new and handsome edifice on Boone Street was taken in hand, and was finally completed in 1874, but not being wholly out of debt the dedication was deferred until after the debt was provided for. It was dedicated on a Sunday in July, 1875, by Rev. Dr. BROOKES, of St. Louis, his text being the second verse of the first chapter of Joshua. The building cost nearly $17,000. This society has received many members from time to time, and has lost many by dismissals and deaths, and now has a membership of seventy-five. It belongs to the St. Louis Presbytery. A session of this body was held in Troy in the first week of May, 1888, and the following is the Troy Herald's account of its proceedings:

"The presbytery met at the Presbyterian Church in Troy, Wednesday, and organized with J. G. CARR, of St. Louis, moderator, and J. A. SMITH, of St. Louis, clerk. Rev. T. Payton WALTON was received from the Palmyra Presbytery. Grand Avenue Presbyterian Church, in St. Louis, was allowed permission to call Rev. Dr. STRICKLER, of Atlanta, Ga., as pastor, J. Addison SMITH and Rev. Dr. William N. MCPHEETERS were chosen commissioners to the general assembly, with Dr. R. G. BRANK and Thomas M. BARROW as alternates. Rev. CLAGGETT, Palmyra, was allowed to work outside the bounds of the presbytery. Report of Rev. OOSTENBRUGG, from committee on bills and overtures, recommending no change in the book of church order, concerning union with other bodies, adopted. Interesting talk by Rev. WRIGHT, agent of the American Bible Society, who leaves the employ of the society in July, after a service of twenty-five years. Rev. T. P. WALTON substituted for Dr. HOLLIFIELD on education committee. Resignation of Rev. Thomas WATSON as pastor of Dardenne Church accepted, and Dr. R. P. FARRIS appointed in his place. Report of J. J. JOHNS and George PENN, Jr., committee to audit treasurer's report, accepted. Dr. FARRIS and J. H. WEAR appointed standing committee on the report of the treasurer. Statement of Mr. BOYD, of Hickory Grove Congregational Church, heard. He will put his letter in a Presbyterian church, and be taken under care of St. Louis Presbytery.

"Decided to ask presbyterial committee of the home missions committee for $200 to finish the church at South Dardenne.

"Joseph ALEXANDER, of St. Charles, was chosen superintendent of Sunday-schools of the presbytery.

"Rev. J. Addison SMITH preached an able sermon at 8 o'clock in the evening on the Christian evidences.

"The committee on Sunday-schools reported in favor of the use of lesson leaves and books of the church in the Sunday schools.

"Dr. R. P. FARRIS reported that the state of the religion among encouraging; also that there has been a gratifying growth in the membership of the churches. He condemned the purchase and reading of Sunday newspapers, as encouragement of the worst use of money and the most potent instrument of vice.

"The request of Rev. John W. STAGG, to be relieved from this presbytery and allowed to put himself under the care of the Nashville Presbytery, was granted.

"An interesting free conversation on the state of the churches was held, and showed an encouraging condition of affairs.

"The following resolution by Rev. J. A. SMITH was unanimously adopted:

"Resolved, That this body tender its manifold thanks to the good people of Troy for their elegant hospitality and for the sweet communion around their firesides. Judging the past by the present, we wonder not at the siege of Troy as told in classic story: Troy was work the siege. We invoke upon the pastor, his family and his people the enriching tokens of the Divine favor."

"Presbytery adjourned to Thursday, September 20, at 11 A. M., at Joachim Church, Jefferson County."

The Cumberland Presybterian Church at Olney was organized in the fifties at Mount Vernon schoolhouse, and was afterward moved to Olney. The first members were Charles HUDSON, Hiram HENDRIX, John H. DOWNING, Thomas HAMMETT and their wives. The present frame edifice, 34x54 feet, was erected in 1879, and cost $1,400. It was dedicated in 1880 by Rev. Ephraim PHARR, assisted by Rev. Taylor BERNARD, who held a revival at Olney, resulting in the acquisition of thirty new members, and through whose efforts, mainly, the church building was erected. Capt. John H. DOWNING was the leader in building it, and was the principal contributor in furnishing the funds for that purpose. The pastors, since the organization moved to Olney, have been Revs. Taylor BERNARD, Ephraim PHARR, J. W. DUVAL, Henson MCGEE and H. P. INGRAM. The present pastor is W. H. JONES. The membership is sixty-five. There is another church of this denomination located at Auburn, and preaching by its ministers is had at some other points.

There is an organization some miles northeast of Troy, called the "Reformed Presbyterian Church."

File submitted for USGenWeb/MOGenWeb Lincoln County Missouri History Page by Neal Underwood, 9 November 1998.  Link change or update: 4 Dec 2002

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