Biographies

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Philadelphia was a hub of activity when Archibald Alexander arrived in May 1807. His relocation from Virginia was to accept a call to the Third Presbyterian Church (Old Pine Street). As he settled into his new situation he was overcome by the poverty in The City of Brotherly Love. He responded by organizing and drafting […]

James Woodrow was born in Carlisle, England, May 30, 1828, the son of Rev. Thomas Woodrow, D.D., a native of Scotland. In 1886 the family moved to Canada, then the next year settled in the United States in Chillicothe, Ohio, where Rev. Woodrow was installed pastor of the First Presbyterian Church. James’s preparatory education for […]

Joseph was born to physician Joseph and homemaker Rachel Harker Caldwell, April 21, 1773, in Lamington, New Jersey. His paternal grandfather had emigrated from Ulster in the north of Ireland to New Jersey; his mother’s father was a Presbyterian minister and her grandfather, surnamed Lovel, was a Huguenot refugee from France. Joseph had commenced the practice […]

The recent death in Northern Ireland of former deputy first minister Martin McGuinness and the passing of Ian Paisley in 2014 are reminders of the more recent conflicts caused by England’s rule of the Irish. Some in the States will remember the days when the evening news often reported violence between English troops and the Irish Republican Army […]

Even though the United States did not enter the First World War until 1917, there were several Americans that defied President Wilson’s policy against U.S. involvement and left the country to help in the war effort. One of the many men and women that decided to cross the Atlantic and assist France in its fight against the […]

Thursday April 6, 2017 marks the centennial of the United States entering the First World War during the administration of Presbyterian President Woodrow Wilson. Known in its era as The Great War, it had been raging since August 1914. The number of casualties already numbered in the millions when the Doughboys entered the trenches to fight. […]

D. X. Junkin, David X., was born January 8, 1808, to Joseph and Eleanor Cochran Junkin in Hope Mills near Mercer, Pennsylvania. He had considerable competition around the house because he and his minister brother George Junkin were two of fourteen children. David’s earliest education was provided by Rev. Thomas L. Anderson in his academy near […]

George was born November 1, 1790, to Joseph and Eleanor Cochran Junkin on the family farm near Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. The spiritual ancestors of the Junkins were Covenanters that had entered the American colonies among the Scots-Irish. Eleanor Junkin was surely a busy mother because her fourteen children would have required every second of every day. […]

The year of Nash’s birth is not certain but is likely 1768. His great grandparents, Pierre and Judith Vril Le Grand, were Huguenots who settled in the Richmond area of colonial Virginia after fleeing France following the revocation of the Edict of Nantes. Nash’s parents, Peter and his second wife Lucy Nash, resided in Prince […]

Last week a biography of Dr. Abel McIver Fraser (1856-1933), who was for most of his ministry the pastor of First Presbyterian Church, Staunton, Virginia, was posted on Presbyterians of the Past.  This week a PDF copy of the book honoring him edited by William E. Hudson is available for download. At the time the book […]

Abel McIver Fraser was born in Sumter, South Carolina, June 14, 1856, to Thomas Boone and Sarah Margaret McIver Fraser. For many years Abel’s father was a Presbyterian ruling elder working in various judicatory committees and was a director of Columbia Theological Seminary, while professionally he was a lawyer, a judge for sixteen years, and he […]

Charleston, South Carolina, Map, circa 1892

The Huguenot Church at the corner of Queen and Church Streets in Charleston—the only extant Huguenot congregation in the United States—is a reminder of the importance of French Reformed Protestantism to the history of Charleston and the state of South Carolina. Huguenots began leaving France in 1685 due to the revocation of the Edict of […]