The Americanization of the Philadelphia German Reformed community had its origins during the era of the American Revolution. Coming from a European Reformed tradition that had state support, the community found it difficult to maintain a church in the pluralistic environment of colonial Pennsylvania but the church’s charter of incorporation provided the needed modicum of support for the religious enterprise. Throughout the American Revolution, the Philadelphia German Reformed community supported the Patriot cause and its pastor, Caspar Weyberg, openly spoke in favor of independence during the British occupation of Philadelphia. However, the Philadelphia German Reformed community still valued aspects of its European heritage. The official language of the congregation remained German throughout the eighteenth century. In addition, the community was loyal to its theological and liturgical heritage embodied in the Heidelberg Catechism and the Palatinate Liturgy.

During the last half of the eighteenth century the Philadelphia German Reformed community underwent a substantive process of Americanization. The era of the American Revolution was particularly crucial in this process. The community rose from an immigrant group set apart from its English surroundings to become active participants in local, state, and national affairs. In the 1730s the German Reformed Church in Philadelphia worshipped in a converted butcher house it shared with Lutherans. During the capable ministry of Caspar Weyberg (1763–90), the creation of a charter of incorporation and subsequent construction of a second church building and schoolhouse on Race Street symbolized the community’s arrival. By the end of the Revolutionary era, members of the Race Street congregation such as Jacob Hiltzheimer, Lewis Farmer, and Jacob Lawerswyler enjoyed a high degree of respect as prominent leaders in the community and the city of Philadelphia.

The development of a distinctive German Reformed pattern began two centuries earlier, in the Rhenish Palatinate. During the early 1560s, under Elector Frederick the III, the Reformed way supplanted Lutheranism as the established or official religion of the state. To this end he authorized the Palatinate Church Order of 1563. Frederick commissioned two of his most distinguished professors at the University of Heidelberg, Caspar Olevianus and Zacharias Ursinus, to write a catechism. For the German Reformed, the Heidelberg Catechism remained the central confession or orthodox statement of belief. In addition to this creedal emphasis, the Palatinate Order included the Palatinate Liturgy as the standard of worship in local congregations. These forms of church order, the Heidelberg Catechism and the Palatinate Liturgy, definitely placed the German Reformed Church in the churchly tradition.1

German Reformed people came in significant numbers to Pennsylvania in the eighteenth century. By 1752, there were approximately 90,000 to 100,000 Germans in the British colonies. Philadelphia was the prime port of entry for them. The majority were of the Lutheran and Reformed persuasions.2 The Reverend Michael Schlatter estimated in 1752 that 30,000 emigrants in Pennsylvania were of the German Reformed faith.3 By the time of the Revolutionary War, there were approximately 65,000 to 75,000 ethnically German residents in Pennsylvania.4 Benjamin Franklin wrote that at least one-third of the Pennsylvania population was German.5

The Philadelphia that greeted the immigrant in the eighteenth century was the largest city in the English colonies. Its population had grown from approximately 11,000 in 1726 to between 35,000 to 40,000 in 1776. By the time of the American Revolution, Philadelphia was the second-largest city in the British empire, second only to London.6 Even before the Revolution, the Germans in Philadelphia had formed the first foreign-language area, along the Delaware River north of Race Street and the adjacent parts of Northern Liberties. Street signs had inscriptions in both languages and in some places in German alone. Franklin wrote in 1753 that unless the rate of their immigration diminished “they would overtake us.”7

Among the Philadelphia German people, the two most important religious groups were the Lutherans and the Reformed, with the Lutherans being the stronger. The Lutherans had two congregations. The largest was St. Michael’s Church, founded in 1743 and located at the corner of Fifth and Appletree streets. The second congregation was Zion Church, founded in 1772 at Fourth and Cherry streets. The German Reformed Church had only one congregation; their second building was completed in 1774 at Fourth and Race (Sassafras) streets.8 Although it is difficult to estimate the membership of the Race Street church prior to 1765, the number of Philadelphia German Reformed parishioners was 290 in 1750, which made it one of the largest German Reformed churches in Pennsylvania.9

The Reverend George Michael Weiss founded the Philadelphia German Reformed congregation in 1727.10 During the pastorate of the Reverend Michael Schlatter, the congregation constructed its first church building, a hexagonal structure, at the corner of Race and Fourth streets in 1747. After several decades of serious problems marked by factionalism and financial difficulties, the congregation achieved stability under the leadership of its pastor, the Reverend Casper Weyberg, whom it called in 1763. He continued to serve the congregation throughout the Revolutionary era until his death in 1790.11

The Philadelphia German Reformed community came from a European tradition of an established church or state sponsorship of the religious enterprise which often included financial and other means of support. The colony of Pennsylvania had an entirely different approach. William Penn’s liberal views on religious toleration guaranteed freedom of worship to all who believed in “Almighty God” and the right to hold office to all who believed in Jesus Christ. Therefore, all of Pennsylvania and its capital of Philadelphia became a haven for all types of diverse religious groups.12 However, neither Roman Catholics nor Jews were extended religious freedom in early Pennsylvania.13 The Philadelphia German Reformed church thus had difficulties in adapting to this new American environment in the formative years.

The colony under governors Thomas Penn and John Penn provided the support the church needed in the form of a burial ground and a charter of incorporation. Although the Race Street property was large enough for a church building and school, there was not enough space for a burial ground for the members. On June 8, 1741, Thomas Penn, acting as Proprietor of Pennsylvania, leased to the church a portion of the northeast corner of Franklin Square for use as a graveyard. This location was certainly advantageous to the congregation, located only two blocks west of the Race Street church. When the city began to develop Franklin Square as a public square in the 1790s, the city sued the church for the return of the graveyard portion. Litigation lasted from 1797 until 1836 when the Pennsylvania Supreme Court determined that the church had no right to the land. The ruling stated that Thomas Penn’s grant and the subsequent leases were illegal by virtue of Thomas Holmes’s original plan of 1682.14 Although one might question the wisdom of siting a graveyard on leased property, the granting of the lease did point to the prominence of the German Reformed people in the city of Philadelphia.


”Der vorigen Jahre Ps. 77.5” [The years of ancient times, Psalm 77:5]. Hand-painted representation on glass of the first Reformed Church building that decorated one of the windows in the fourth church building at Tenth and Wallace streets (1882–1915). Courtesy: Old First Reformed Church, UCC, Fourth and Race streets, Philadelphia.


”Der vorigen Jahre Ps. 77.5” [The years of ancient times, Psalm 77:5]. Hand-painted representation on glass of the first Reformed Church building that decorated one of the windows in the fourth church building at Tenth and Wallace streets (1882–1915). Courtesy: Old First Reformed Church, UCC, Fourth and Race streets, Philadelphia.

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The second indication of increasing stability and prominence occurred when Governor John Penn granted a charter of incorporation in 1765. Included in the charter was a provision for “Erecting and Supporting one Church more.”15 The governor subsequently included the right to take in subscriptions and receive contributions for charitable purposes in Pennsylvania and collections in Europe. It is notable that Anglicans, Presbyterians, and Lutherans in Philadelphia participated in the fundraising.16 Such support indicated Philadelphia’s Protestant community’s high level of regard for the German Reformed congregation. In 1772 the congregation approved plans to build a new church and school.17 The congregation dedicated the new edifice and school at Race Street on May 1 and 2, 1774. The completion of the second church building with capacity seating of 2,000 people at a cost of £7000, made it one of largest buildings in the city of Philadelphia.18 The acquisition of the burial ground and the new church with a school were symbols of the stability the community had attained by the mid-1770s. The number of church families increased from 125 in 1765 to 300 in 1772 and that level remained stable through the early years of the American Revolution.19


“Ich denke der alten Zeit” [I have considered the days of old]. Hand-painted representation on glass of the second Reformed Church building that decorated one of the windows in the fourth church building on Tenth and Wallace streets (1882–1915). Courtesy: Old First Reformed Church, UCC, Fourth and Race Streets, Philadelphia.


“Ich denke der alten Zeit” [I have considered the days of old]. Hand-painted representation on glass of the second Reformed Church building that decorated one of the windows in the fourth church building on Tenth and Wallace streets (1882–1915). Courtesy: Old First Reformed Church, UCC, Fourth and Race Streets, Philadelphia.

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No sooner had the congregation begun to enjoy the benefits of its charter than the Revolutionary government of Pennsylvania sought to redefine the status of religious and other nonprofit associations. This move threatened what the congregation had achieved during the colonial period. In July 1776 the provincial convention met in Philadelphia for the purpose of drafting a constitution for the new Pennsylvania government. At a meeting of clergy and other interested parties on September 17, Provost William Smith of the Philadelphia College remarked that there was no plan whatsoever in the proposed constitution concerning charters, privileges, legacies, and other pious causes that the congregations, corporations, and societies possessed under the former constitution and now might lose. Section 47 read:

Laws for the encouragement of Virtue and Prevention of Vice and Immorality shall be made and constantly kept in Force, and Provision shall be made for their due Execution.

The group deemed it advisable to petition the convention to add the following:

And all religious societies and Bodies of Man heretofore united and incorporated for the Advancement of Virtue and Learning, and for other pious and charitable Purposes, shall be encouraged and protected in the Enjoyment of the Privileges, Immunities and Estate, which they were accustomed to enjoy, and might, or could of right have enjoyed under the Laws and former Constitution of this State.20

The group decided to make this matter known to the other leading Protestant ministers and to meet again the next day. The Reverend Henry Muhlenberg spoke with Caspar Weyberg, the minister of the Race Street German Reformed congregation. After Weyberg conferred with his elders, he asked that his church be included in the petition to the convention.21 By having its name as part of the petition, the Philadelphia German Reformed Church thus began the process of preserving the legacy so hard-won during the challenging colonial period.

The group decided unanimously to present its addition to Section 47 and appointed one of their number to speak with Benjamin Franklin, the president of the convention. Franklin “was condescending enough” to agree to their request. After a meeting with his church council, Muhlenberg wrote the petition to the convention in the name of the Lutheran and Reformed congregations. He handed it to Franklin and requested that Franklin deliver and recommend it.22 The convention incorporated the provisions of Muhlenberg’s petition in Section 45 of the new printed plan of government, which the electorate accepted. Thus, the revision protected voluntary and benevolent endeavors including church charters gained during the colonial period.23

That the Race Street church was a large structure in Philadelphia did not escape the notice of the members of the Second Continental Congress, which convened in Philadelphia on May 10, 1775. It chose the site for the memorial services of February 19, 1776, held in honor of Major General Richard Montgomery and his fellow soldiers who fell in the Battle of Quebec, December 30, 1775, the culmination of a two-pronged unsuccessful invasion of Canada led by Montgomery and Benedict Arnold.24 The German Reformed congregation’s decision to open its doors to the gathering was a bold and rather dangerous move considering that there were many Loyalists in the area.25 The 11:00 a.m. memorial ceremony consisted of a procession from the State House on North Fourth Street, past Provost Smith’s house on Market Street, where the clergy of the city and the college faculty joined it. The procession included college students and professors in gowns, the clergy of the city, Congress, the General Assembly, mayor and the corporation of the city, committees of Safety and Inspection, officers of the Pennsylvania Battalions in the Continental army and the four Battalions of the City associations. The Light Infantry and Rifle companies marched on either side in order that the countless throngs of people might not interfere with the procession. The principal ladies of the city filled the galleries of the Race Street church. There was a tolling of all the bells in and around the city as a symbol of mourning. The edifice, although large, was much too small to hold the assembly estimated at 4,000 persons. In the church, vocal and instrumental music gave the impression of various scenes in the siege of Quebec interrupted the oration. The drums outside in front of the church joined in at given signals.26

Although the assembled dignitaries and the ceremonies were quite impressive, more interesting was the text of Provost Smith’s oration and its reception by his listeners. Those individuals who favored a break from England regarded him as a “secret so-called Tory” and his assignment to give the eulogy was presumably a test.27 Smith opened by characterizing Montgomery as a classical martyr. When Smith dealt with the rightness of the American rebellion, he unsuccessfully attempted to tread a middle path. On the one hand, he prayed for the restoration of the old ties with Britain and the re-establishment of the former harmony. On the other hand, he called for a redress of grievances against the British government. For many that time had passed. Smith characterized the Battle of Lexington not as an act of traitorous men, but as an act dictated by the immediacies of self-preservation. Rather than an attempt at military conquest, Smith believed that the Quebec expedition was simply an attempt to persuade the Canadians of the justice of the Continental cause in hopes that they would join their southern neighbors.28

John Adams and his friends in the Congress who favored a complete rupture with England interpreted Smith’s statements as bordering on treason. Adams called the oration an “insolent performance.”29 In Congress New Jersey delegate William Livingston made a motion to thank Smith and to ask him for a copy of the oration, but the delegates’ opposition was so great from every part of the room that Livingston had to withdraw it. The orator then printed it himself. Adams asserted that Smith had deleted some of the more offensive passages, but an examination of the document did not bear out the New Englander. For Adams, the appointment of Smith to make the oration was a “great oversight and mistake.” Another reason for the dislike of Smith’s oration was his reference to the alleged desertion in the Maine wilderness on the part of the Continental Army under Colonel Roger Enos. A court-martial later cleared Enos of all charges.30 Smith defended himself by stating that he did not say anything different from what the Congress had said in its last petition otherwise known as the Olive Branch petition to the English government of July 5, 1775.31 Although Smith had delivered his oration in the German Reformed Church’s building, the advocates of independence confined their hostility to the Reverend Dr. Smith and did not blame members of the congregation for his remarks.32

At the onset of the rebellion, the Philadelphia German Reformed community had to decide whether it would remain loyal to the British empire or actively support the protest movement. As early as August 1, 1775, the Reformed consistory with the Lutheran church council and the officials of the German Society openly declared their sympathy for the rebel cause.33 They even went as far as to publish a tract enlisting the support of the Germans in New York and North Carolina.34 The Continental Congress had requested this entreaty, which spoke of the importance of the German element in Philadelphia in furthering the Revolutionary cause. However, one should add that Muhlenberg and Weyberg had a significant objection. Both ministers protested vehemently that the document should not, and could not, appear under the names of the preachers, as it did not have their approval. Muhlenberg, at least, still considered himself and, indeed, “all intelligent members of our Lutheran congregations loyal subjects of His Royal Majesty.” He believed that such partisan statements were not appropriate for preachers. The publication of political matters was the province of newspapers and not church councils. As a result, the names of Weyberg or Muhlenberg did not appear in the document.35

Given such a strong statement of support by the laymen, it was not surprising that the rebels quartered their militia in the Reformed and Lutheran schoolhouses during the winter of 1776–77. The two schoolhouses served as assembly points for the militia recruited in the area. From there they joined the camp of the Continental Army. By January of 1777, the militia had evacuated the Lutheran schoolhouse and it was in operation again.36 Although the records don’t mention when the militia discontinued use of the Reformed schoolhouse, the assumption is that the militia continued to assemble at the facility.

In addition, a number of the leaders of the Race Street congregation held posts in the new government and in the military. Philip (John Philip) Boehm, the youngest son of the deceased minister of the same name, became an elder of the congregation on January 14, 1771. On February 14, 1777, the General Assembly elected Boehm and James Young from the middle ward as Justices of the Peace for Philadelphia County with jurisdiction over the city as well.37 The Justices of the Peace held extensive powers. Two of them had the authority to commit individuals to jail for short terms or for the duration of the war. As an example of the process of the office on July 9, 1777, Boehm and Young examined one Thomas Patterson on suspicion of being “inimical to American freedom.”38 Boehm continued in this office until ill health forced him to resign in September 1778.39

Jacob Hiltzheimer, a member of the consistory of the Race Street church, found a useful place in the First Battalion of the city militia and the quartermaster department because of his peacetime occupation as a prosperous farmer and breeder of riding stock. Hiltzheimer was responsible for the care of the horses of the Continental Army.40

Lewis Farmer, who later served as a deacon and secretary of the governing board of the congregation, arrived in Philadelphia sometime before 1771 and became naturalized on March 31,1771.41 He was a captain in the Pennsylvania State Rifle Militia of Foot Regiment, later a part of the 13th Pennsylvania Regiment, which was organized at Marcus Hook between March 7 and May 29, 1776, for the defense of Philadelphia. Its membership included recruits from Philadelphia and other counties in southeastern Pennsylvania.42 The regiment became part of the main Continental Army on July 4, 1776, and later attached to Stirling’s Brigade, an element of the main army on August 31, 1776. Farmer quickly rose to the rank of lieutenant colonel in the 13th Pennsylvania Regiment the following year and was part of the Continental Army, which wintered with the rest of General George Washington’s army at Valley Forge in the winter of 1777–78.43 Farmer’s regiment participated in a number of engagements including the battles of Long Island and White Plains, the battles of Trenton and Princeton, the battles of Brandywine and Germantown, defense of Philadelphia, and the Battle of Monmouth. The 13th Pennsylvania Regiment was incorporated with the Second Pennsylvania on July 1, 1778.44

An incident occurred in May and June 1777 regarding the appointment of Colonel John Bull to command the Pennsylvania Regiment of Foot in which Lieutenant Colonel Farmer was second in command. The junior officers were initially upset that there was a delay in the reception of their commissions. When they finally received the commissions, Bull attempted to “cultivate a little harmony” by entertaining the men with an “harmonious band of music, after passing the day in jolity.” However, the appointment of Bull continued to be a problem. The main concern seemed to be that the Board of War promised the junior officers that seniority within the unit would be preserved, and their commander appointed from within.45 The field and junior officers wanted Lieutenant Colonel Farmer to be the commander of the unit. They petitioned the Board of War and the Executive Council of the Pennsylvania Assembly but received little satisfaction.46 All of the junior officers threatened to resign if the Board of War would not rescind Bull’s appointment. On June 17, 1777, seventeen officers wrote out their resignations and marched to the State House to deliver them. On the way, Lieutenant Colonel Farmer stopped them and gave them the pleasing news that the Board of War had appointed Colonel Walter Steward to replace Colonel Bull. Farmer also informed them that Colonel Steward requested all officers of the regiment to meet him at 4:00 p.m. at the City Tavern. “After drinking some gallons of Madeira, [we] returned to our lodgings much satisfied,” wrote Lt. James McMichael.47 The incident pointed to two positive conclusions about Lewis Farmer’s military involvement in the American Revolution. First, Farmer was a field officer who had the respect of those who served under him. Second, his main priority was the cohesion of the unit and not whether he personally assumed the position as its commander. Both of these considerations said a great deal about the quality of his character.

Other members of the Philadelphia German Reformed congregation who served in the military during the American Revolution included Jacob Lawerswyler, Melchior Steiner. Peter Ozeas, Daniel Sutter, Christian Ritz, Peter Diehl, William Peltz, Jacob Maag, Michael Stimel, Peter Paris, and William Ritter. Lawerswyler attained the rank of captain and was the paymaster of the 13th Pennsylvania Regiment. His tour of duty was from October 24, 1776, till his resignation on April 11, 1778.48 Steiner served in August 1780 as a sergeant in Captain Andrew Burkhard’s company of the 3rd Regiment of Foot.49 On April 20, 1783, Peter Ozeas became a lieutenant in the 4th Battalion of the City of Philadelphia militia.50 In 1780–81, Daniel Sutter was a private in Captain John Geyer’s company of the 3rd Regiment of Foot.51 Christian Ritz was a member of the 6th Class, Philadelphia Militia on July 2, 1781.52 Peter Diehl was a private in 1779 in a Detachment of Unclassified Militia.53 Jacob Maag served as a gunner in Captain Andrew Summer’s 5th Company of Artillery, City of Philadelphia Militia, from August 13, 1777, till August 13, 1779. Mathias Stimel was a private in the Philadelphia City Guards under Major Nicholas and Captain Campbell’s Company in 1777.54 From August 1777 to January 1778, Peter Paris served in the Invalid Regiment of the Pennsylvania Line. Older individuals and veterans who could still provide limited military service composed invalid regiments for the Patriot forces during the Revolution.55 First Lieutenant William Ritter was in the First Regiment of Artillery under the command of Colonel Thomas Proctor from April 1, 1777, to March 11, 1779.56 The large number of these individuals at both militia and Continental levels indicated strong support among the Philadelphia German Reformed community for the Patriot cause.

In the communicant records of Easter 1780 for the Philadelphia German Reformed Church on March 26, one name that stands out is “Baron de Stubern” or Major General Frederick William von Steuben who served as the Inspector General of the Continental Army. In January General George Washington had ordered him to Philadelphia to make a proposal to Congress for the organization of the army in preparation for the 1780 campaign.57 Since von Steuben spent a great deal of time in the city and had a later affiliation with the German Reformed Church in New York City serving as an elder in his retirement, it is probable that he attended the Race Street church on a number of occasions.58

Philadelphians had their most direct contact with the military aspects of the Revolution during the British occupation of their city from September 1777 till the late spring of 1778. Lord William Howe, commander of the British forces, had a grand strategy for the 1777 campaign that contained four elements involving an ambitious sweep into the colonies. First, a force from Rhode Island was to move against Boston. Second, a force of 10,000 men was to proceed up the Hudson River to meet, at Albany, a contingent from Canada led by General Burgoyne. Third, 8,000 troops would be maintained defensively in New Jersey in the spring and then in the autumn attempt to take Philadelphia, the colonial capital. Finally, South Carolina and Georgia would be targeted for the winter. Primarily because of inadequate troops to conduct this ambitious plan and the expectation of wide Loyalist support in the Patriot capital, Philadelphia became the primary objective. In particular, Joseph Galloway, a Philadelphia Loyalist, encouraged Howe to focus on Philadelphia as early as December 1776, given that both Philadelphia and Pennsylvania had many Loyalists. After engaging Washington in battles in the Philadelphia area, including Brandywine and White Horse Tavern, Howe entered the city on September 26 as a conqueror with Galloway at his side. Howe remained firmly in possession of the city throughout the winter and spring, while the remnants of Washington’s army spent a bitter winter at Valley Forge.59

The war and the immediate circumstances of the British occupation caused much economic dislocation in the Philadelphia area. By mid-October 1777 there was a great lack of gold and silver, and the Continental paper money was practically worthless. There was a scarcity of wood in the city, and the people were beginning to demolish barns and old houses to get firewood. One hundred pounds of flour rose in cost to £6 but, generally, flour was unattainable. The British posted the houses of the inhabitants who served in the militia for sale as early as the end of October 1777. Especially unpopular were the Hessian soldiers’ wives who sold vegetables in the public market that had been fetched by their husbands from the gardens of the inhabitants. On one occasion, as many as forty women fled the city because of the lack of the necessities of life. This situation continued until after the British left and refugees began to return in June 1778.60 These general conditions affected many segments of the Philadelphia population including the German Reformed community.

The occupation greatly disrupted the religious institutions of the city and affected nearly every church. The British turned two English Presbyterian churches, whose preachers had fled the city, into hospitals for the wounded. Approximately a week after the British arrival, the Reverend Jacob Duché, rector of Christ Church, became a prisoner because he had spoken in his church in favor of the Continental Congress.61 The British destroyed the interior of Zion Lutheran Church and then used it as a hospital for the wounded. St. Michael’s Lutheran Church was a garrison church for German soldiers under British command and Pastor John Kuntz could hold services only at odd times. However, the British did spare the Quaker meetinghouse and also the playhouse. Provost Smith was able to maintain the college.62

Specifically, the German Reformed people in Philadelphia area suffered greatly under the occupation. This disruption affected all parts of the German Reformed community including the clergy, families, and even the church building. These effects included imprisonment, economic dislocation, the seizure of assets, and destruction of property. A number of German Reformed residents left the city in a state of panic.63

British troops plundered the home of the Reverend Michael Schlatter, a former pastor of the Philadelphia German Reformed Church, who had been living in semi-retirement at his home, “Sweetland,” in Chestnut Hill.64 The British authorities imprisoned him sometime prior to November 9, 1777, and he remained incarcerated until early February 1778.65 The reason for such treatment was twofold. In the French and Indian War, Schlatter had been a chaplain of the Royal American Regiment, and he still held that position nominally. When he refused to obey orders and to resume his former position with the British army, the British arrested him.66 In addition, rumors that Schlatter rejoiced and thanked God over the news that the Americans triumphed over General John Burgoyne and his troops in the North at Saratoga might have reached the ears of British officials. The British held his conduct in such disfavor that he was initially thrown into prison with the worst criminals. After he had been there for some time, the British removed Schlatter and placed him in prison with the other “so-called” rebels, all of whom had been weakened by hunger and misery. Schlatter experienced the same prison conditions and his daughter Rachel, fourteen years old, traveled ten miles on horseback from Chestnut Hill to bring him needed provisions. The damage to Schlatter’s estate was so extensive that in November 1778 he asked his friend Muhlenberg to write his fellow ministers to collect some provisions for him, such as flour, flax, hemp, potatoes, or buckwheat.67

During the occupation, Weyberg preached to the Hessians and other German auxiliaries who attended his worship services in large numbers. In his preaching he emphasized the rightness of the rebel cause. The British began to feel that the effects of his fearless appeals might lead to the desertion of many German auxiliaries. In order to stop his preaching, the British threatened his life and finally imprisoned him in the Walnut Street Jail for a brief period, most probably between January and mid-February 1778.68 According to legend, Weyberg’s son stood at the door of his father’s house and shouted as the British troops passed, “Hurrah for General Washington!” The soldiers replied in muttered tones, “You rebel!”69 The authenticity of this account might be doubted. However, the resulting imprisonment of Schlatter and Weyberg left little doubt about their sympathies.

Because the Philadelphia German Reformed community was quite open in stating its support for the Patriot cause, the British authorities were not at all hesitant to tear up the interior of the newly completed Race Street church and to convert it into a military hospital. Weyberg preached in the congregation’s schoolhouse to those members who had not left the city when occupation began. The text for the first sermon Weyberg preached after he had been liberated was Psalm 79:1, “O God: The heathen are come into thine inheritance, thy holy temple have they defiled.”70 Even as late as May 1779, members of the congregation were still returning and taking possession of their dwellings in the city. The slow return of the congregation during this period did not concern Weyberg for he said that strangers moved into the city and joined in the life of the congregation.71 Thus, the congregation’s membership remained stable in the latter years of the Revolution.

The war severely limited Weyberg’s participation in the meetings of the German Reformed Coetus. He was absent in 1775, 1776, and 1777 because he feared that the British might attack the city. Because of the hostilities, there were no meetings of the Coetus in 1778 and 1780. Weyberg was absent again in 1779. Not until 1781 did Weyberg attend regularly.72

In addition to having served as the location for William Smith’s oration in memory of General Montgomery and others killed in the Battle of Quebec, the Race Street church provided the site for a concert of sacred music on May 4, 1786. The “Grand Concert” consisted of 50 instrumentalists and 230 voices. Advance sales totaled nearly 1,000 tickets. The program of three instrumental solos and five anthems included “The Rose of Sharon” by William Billings of Boston, often called “the first American composer.” The concert concluded with one of the first renditions in America of the “Hallelujah Chorus.” The purpose of the event was philanthropic, benefiting the Pennsylvania Dispensary and the poor. The list of the managers of the event included representatives from the hospital, the dispensary, the overseers of the poor, Zion Lutheran Church, the trustees of the medical institution, the university, and the Race Street church. The concert was equal to any performance in Europe at the time.73 This event revealed the extent to which the German Reformed Church and its leaders had achieved Americanization in the Philadelphia community.

During and after the Revolutionary era, the role of the German Reformed people in Philadelphia in community, colonial, and later national affairs increased. Members of the church became more actively involved in the life of the larger Philadelphia community. They held positions in elective and administrative offices with benevolent organizations and the government.

As an example, Jacob Hiltzheimer was active in the German Society serving as an overseer, 1782–83, and as vice president, 1789–93.74 The voters elected him on October 11, 1786, as one of the representatives for the City of Philadelphia to the Pennsylvania General Assembly. He continued in that position for eleven consecutive years.75 In the Assembly, he served on the committee planning the erection of a house for President Washington at the corner of Ninth and Market.76 Although the committee intended this building as an executive mansion, neither Washington nor Adams ever inhabited it when the national government was located in Philadelphia, because it was not completed in time.77 As a leader of Germans in Philadelphia, Hiltzheimer dined a number of times with President Washington. On two of these occasions, he could not help remarking on the ease and great sociability shown to all by the president. Generally, Hiltzheimer appeared to be a Federalist and in complete favor of the changes toward centralization of the national government, including the new constitution of 1787 and the advent of Washington’s administration.78

Being a consistory member in the Philadelphia German Reformed Church did not prevent Hiltzheimer from leading an active social life common to the upper-class gentry of the city. Total abstinence or even temperance were not among his better qualities. For example, on February 14, 1767, he met several of his friends at the house of William Jones, had punch, and got “decently drunk.”79 On June 15 he drank to John Hughes’s marriage to Margaret Paschall, the daughter of Stephen Paschall.80 After a meeting of the Reformed Church consistory, Daniel Sutter entertained four consistory men including Hiltzheimer to a bowl of “good punch.” As a horse merchant, he did not feel it sinful to enter his horses in races for 100 guineas and later a purse of £50.81 His other sporting pleasures included cockfighting and foxhunting.82 Hiltzheimer and his associates formed a club that they patriotically named the Liberty Fishing Company. This group partook of gastronomic delights, as well as fishing on the Schuylkill River.83 Hiltzheimer, his wife, and his close Quaker friends also sought a more refined pleasant night’s entertainment at the theater in the performances of Cato and Romeo and Juliet.84 With these social habits and his success in the world of business, Hiltzheimer, an elder of the German Reformed Church, had achieved acceptance into the rolls of the Philadelphia gentry.85

Other members of the German Reformed Church also became prominent. Following Lewis Farmer’s retirement from the Continental Army on July 1, 1778, he returned to Philadelphia and resumed his occupation as an innkeeper.86 Before the Revolutionary War, he was originally a horse boy working at “The Stag” Inn on Second Street and eventually became its owner. After the war, he took over “The King of Prussia” Inn on Market Street.87 Both Farmer and Hiltzheimer were members of the Patriotic Association beginning in 1778. The more radical Revolutionaries dominated the Patriotic Association. It gathered evidence on individuals who engaged in traitorous activities and those who did not fully support the American cause.88 Farmer’s involvement with the military continued during this time, with his rank in 1779 elevated to colonel for his appointment as Army Commissar of Pennsylvania with supervision of the purchase of provisions, clothing, tents, etc.89

On February 2, 1786, Colonel Farmer married Elizabeth Fohrer at the Race Street church. Hiltzheimer recorded in his diary that on the following evening he visited Farmer and “drank punch and wine with a large number of gentlemen” who called to congratulate the groom.90 It would seem that given the substantial number of “gentlemen” attending the gathering that it included a variety of people drawn from the wide range of Philadelphia society. Farmer served in the important office of Judge of Elections for the City of Philadelphia, from 1786 to 1789.91 In addition, he was quite active in the Philadelphia German Society, founded in 1764, which had as its major goal the support of German immigrants. He served as its secretary, 1781–82, vice president, 1785, 1793–94, and president, 1783–84, 1786–87.92

Farmer directly expressed his concern of the plight of German immigrants who made the voyage to Philadelphia. Their journey was often very difficult. Their situation did not get better when they arrived at the port, particularly during and in the years following the American Revolution. Initially, the mayor’s office processed the immigrants. When this arrangement proved unworkable, three justices of the peace assumed the responsibility. This change proved problematic as well, given that often they were not conversant in both English and German. The German Society petitioned the Pennsylvania legislature in 1785 for a solution. As a result, subsequent legislation created a new office, the Registrar of German Immigrants. Two of the requirements for the office were that the person had to be a resident of Philadelphia and be able to speak the German and English languages. Meeting both of these requirements, Lewis Farmer was the first person to hold that office from 1785 to the early 1790s.93 The registrar also had the responsibility of setting the term of service for indentured servants. He managed this matter for two of Jacob Hiltzheimer’s servants in 1787 and 1791.94 Lewis Farmer became a distinguished member of Philadelphia society ably serving his country in wartime and his fellow German people in peacetime.

Jacob Lawerswyler, a sugar refiner associated with Frederick Augustus Muhlenberg, was a leading member of the of the German Reformed Church. He represented the congregation in the petition to the Pennsylvania legislature desiring the corporation of the City of Philadelphia to extend chains across the streets opposite churches during services of worship. It was known as the Chain Law, which became law on April 4, 1798, and repealed on March 15, 1828.95 In addition, Lawerswyler held responsible positions in the Pennsylvania German Society as overseer, 1797–98, and vice president, 1799–1800.96 In 1798 his community service included being secretary of the Guardians of the Poor, the governing board in charge of the House of Employment, and the Almshouse, as well as care of the general poor in the city.97 Politically, he was a Democratic Republican. Lawerswyler was the vice-president of the German Republican Society, which joined in Philadelphia protests against the federal excise taxes of 1794.98

Peter Ozeas was a grocer on Race Street near the German Reformed Church of which he was a member. During the Revolution, his name appeared in a case before the Committee of Inspection and Observation and a court-martial case both involving profiteering. In the first case, the committee charged him with buying and selling coffee above the fixed price. His reply acknowledging his error and his sympathy with the goals of the Revolution were in part as follows:

Gentlemen: The mistake which I have committed, in having bought and sold two barrels of coffee at a price higher than that limited by you, has given me extreme pain. Had I adverted to the fatal consequences of such conduct, the regard I have for the publick welfare, and the interest I have taken in the present struggle for liberty, would have wholly prevented my having any share in so destructive a measure. I now, voluntarily, offer to the publick, through this Committee, my sincere acknowledgment for this error, and declare the utmost readiness to acquiesce in any measure which may assure the publick of my exact conformity, in future, to such regulations as this Committee may judge to be for the publick benefit.99

As a result, the committee took no further action on the matter. These actions by Revolutionary committees were quite common during this period. In the second case Ozeas, again realizing his civic responsibility, was one of the witnesses in the court martial of Dr. William Shippen Jr., Director General of the Military Hospitals. Among other charges, the court martial accused Shippen of speculating with hospital supplies such as wine and sugar when the sick and wounded soldiers needed them. Ultimately, the military court acquitted Shippen of all charges.100 After the war Ozeas supported ratification of the United States Constitution and was scheduled to be part of the procession in honor of the establishment of the Constitution of the United States held in Philadelphia on July 4, 1788. He was to sit with nine other men representing the citizens of the ten states that had ratified the Constitution up to that point on a carriage drawn by ten horses bearing the Grand Federal Edifice. It was the centerpiece of the procession.101 For reasons unknown, an individual named Benjamin Fuller replaced Ozeas on the day of the parade.102

Although Ozeas did not ultimately participate in the procession, it was certainly a special honor to have been named in the original program. According to Francis Hopkinson’s account, an estimated 5,000 people marched in the procession and some 17,000 sat down to an afternoon dinner.103 It was the most elaborate celebration in Philadelphia until the centennial procession of 1876.104 Soon after the 1788 procession Ozeas served the national government for many years as a customs inspector in Philadelphia.105 In addition, as a member of the German Society, Ozeas was an observer, 1784–85, 1788, and 1793–94, and vice president in 1808.106

During the early national period of the United States, the German Reformed Church was the site of two other major events in Philadelphia. On Saturday, February 22, 1800, the Pennsylvania Society of Cincinnati held a noon memorial service at the Race Street church for the late General George Washington who died in December 1799. Following the December 30, 1799, resolution of the United States Congress as a day of national mourning for the president, this ceremony marked one of the first celebrations of Washington’s birthday as a national holiday.107 The impressive nature of the event was similar to the pageantry of the memorial service held in 1776 for the fallen of the Battle of Quebec. The First City Militia Troop marked the beginning of the procession from the State House to the German Reformed Church. Accompanied by appropriate mourning music and a rendition of “Washington’s March,” various other local military units came next. Following the Second City Troop Volunteer Calvary was a lead horse with full military war trappings representing the former general and president. The rear of the procession included members of the Pennsylvania Society of the Cincinnati and sister states with their badges covered with black ribbon, officers of the army and navy, as well as officers of the militia of the city and county.108

During the service, William Rogers, D.D., one of the members of the Society and Professor of English and Belles Lettres at the University of Pennsylvania, gave the opening prayer.109 Major William Jackson, the former captain of the Philadelphia Second Troop, the aide-de-camp to the late president and secretary-general of the Society, delivered the eulogy. Among those present were President John Adams, Vice President Thomas Jefferson, members of the Senate and House of Representatives, and His Excellency Robert Lister, the British Minister.110 Given that Philadelphia was still the seat of the American government, this event figured significantly in the Americanization of the Philadelphia German Reformed community.

The next year on March 4, 1801, the German Reformed Church in Philadelphia hosted a Democratic Republican Party celebration marking the inauguration of Thomas Jefferson as the third president of the United States. Again, there was a procession that marched from Independence Hall to the German Reformed Church to hear a reading of the Declaration of Independence and an oration. The precession included twenty companies of the Republican Legion of Militia, military and civil officers of Pennsylvania, a ship named Thomas Jefferson on a float and a host of Republican supporters wearing “Caps of Liberty.” The dinner which followed at another location attracted approximately two thousand participants.111

Following the Revolutionary War, the memorial service for General Washington in 1800, and the celebration of President Jefferson’s inaugural in 1801 were major occasions in Philadelphia. Thus, the German Reformed Church continued to achieve prominence in the city and the nation as a whole because the size and location of its building enabled it to provide the venue for these important cultural, civic, and political events. By this time, the Philadelphia German Reformed community had come a long way in the Americanization process.

The loyalty of the congregation to the Continental cause was matched only by its support of the Constitution and federal government of 1789. At the Coetus meeting held in 1789 in Philadelphia, Pastor Casper Weyberg and Lewis Farmer, his consistoryman, were members of the committee that sent congratulations to Washington on his elevation to the presidency.112 The Race Street consistory symbolically expressed this loyalty when it voted on August 26, 1790, to change the crown on the organ to a federal eagle.113

At the same time, the Philadelphia German Reformed community affirmed its favor of the newly instituted US government, the German Reformed Coetus in 1792 severed its ties with the Reformed Church in Holland. These bonds had their beginnings in the 1720s. As the years passed, a number of problems developed. One of the major difficulties, the geographic barrier of the Atlantic Ocean, caused many delays in the correspondence. The language difference resulted in a number of misunderstandings. The immediate reason for the separation was a constitutional difference on the right of ordination by the Coetus. Because of these obstacles, the Coetus reorganized in 1793 as the “Synod of the Reformed Church in the United States of America.”114

During the era of the American Revolution and the decades immediately following, the German Reformed community played a significant role in Philadelphia’s history. Many of their activities pointed to the extent of its Americanization in the new environment. Because of the size of its church building, it was the location of four important cultural, civic, and political events. These included: the memorial service for General Montgomery in 1776; a concert of sacred music that included one of the first renditions of the Hallelujah Chorus in America; the memorial service for George Washington; and a celebration of the inauguration of Thomas Jefferson, the third President of the United States. These events were possible because of the institutional stability engendered under the charter of incorporation and the ministry of its pastor, Caspar Weyberg.

Coming from a European Reformed tradition that had the support of the state, it was often difficult to maintain a church in the pluralistic religious environment of colonial Pennsylvania. The granting of lease rights to a graveyard in Franklin Square, the charter of incorporation, and subsequent granting of the right to solicit funds in Pennsylvania and Europe provided the needed modicum of state support for the religious enterprise. This stabilization of the congregation’s affairs enabled the church to survive the problems that arose as a result of the War for Independence.

Throughout the American Revolution, the Philadelphia German Reformed community supported the Patriot cause. The consistory expressed its support as early as 1775. The local militia was quartered in the church’s school, and that served as an assembly point for recruits. During the British occupation, Pastor Weyberg openly declared his support for the Patriot cause. A number of congregational leaders held responsible positions in the military and the government.

The Revolutionary movement stimulated the process of Americanization. The Coetus, its supervisory body, broke the European ties with the Dutch Reformed Church in the 1790s and formed itself into a synod centered in the United States. Leaders of the congregation, particularly Jacob Hiltzheimer, Lewis Farmer, and Jacob Lawerswyler, received acceptance in Philadelphia society.

Nevertheless, the Americanization process was not complete. The Philadelphia German Reformed community still valued aspects of its European heritage. It placed the greatest emphasis on its language as witnessed in its worship services and school. The official language of the Race Street church congregation, as well as for the Coetus and the subsequent Synod, remained German throughout the eighteenth century. In addition, the community remained loyal to its theological and liturgical heritage embodied in the Heidelberg Catechism and the Palatinate Liturgy.



Joseph Henry Dubbs, Historic Manual of the Reformed Church in the United States (Lancaster, PA: General Synod of the Reformed Church of the United States, 1885), 54–60, and “The Palatinate Liturgy,” trans. Bard Thompson, Theology and Life 6, no. 1 (Spring 1963): 49–67.


Historical Society of Pennsylvania (hereafter HSP), “German Settlement in Pennsylvania: An Overview,” Exploring Diversity in Pennsylvania History, hsp.org/sites/default/files/legacy_files/migrated/germanstudentreading.pdf.


Henry Harbaugh, The Life of Michael Schlatter with a Full Account of his Travels and Labors Among the Germans in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Maryland and Virginia; includes Services as Chaplain in the French and Indian War and in the War of the Revolution, 1716–1790 (Philadelphia: Lindsey and Blakiston, 1857), 201.


HSP, “German Settlement in Pennsylvania.” Some historians estimate the number as high as 100,000.


“The Examination of Doctor Benjamin Franklin before an August Assembly, relating to the Repeal of the Stamp Act . . .,” in The Papers of Benjamin Franklin, ed. Leonard W. Labaree et al., vol. 13 (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1969), 132.


Carl Bridenbaugh and Jessica Bridenbaugh, Rebels and Gentlemen: Philadelphia in the Age of Franklin, 2nd ed. (New York: Oxford University Press, 1965), 1–4. More recent estimates of the urban Philadelphia population during the American Revolution cite lower numbers. Sam Bass Warner gives a figure of 23,739 for 1775 and Joseph J. Casino’s total for 1777 is 35,023. See Warner, The Private City, Philadelphia in Three Periods of Its Growth (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1968), 12–13, 225, and Joseph J. Casino, “Panic in Philadelphia, 1777: Civilian Behavior and British Military Failure,” Pennsylvania History: A Journal of Mid-Atlantic Studies (hereafter PH) 88, no. 4 (Autumn 2021): 453–56 Casino’s conclusions are closer to the actual population of urban Philadelphia at the time of the Revolution. For some comments on the difficulties of population studies prior to the first census of the United States, see John K. Alexander, “The Philadelphia Numbers Game: An Analysis of Philadelphia’s Eighteenth-Century Population,” Pennsylvania Magazine of History and Biography (hereafter PMHB) 98, no. 3 (July 1974): 314–24.


Carl Bridenbaugh, Cities in Revolt: Urban Life in America, 1741–1776 (New York: Capricorn Books, 1964), 135. See also “Letter of Benjamin Franklin to Peter Collinson, 1753,” Papers of Benjamin Franklin, ed. Labaree, vol. 5 (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1962), 68. In this letter Franklin emphasized the need for the German immigrants to learn English. In addition, he was critical of the current wave of immigrants as being less desirable than those who came over in earlier decades. On the subject of intermarriage between English and German people, he felt that it would not be widespread given than Englishmen would not find German women desirable.


Nelson Waite Rightmyer, “Churches under Enemy Occupation: Philadelphia, 1777–8,” Church History 14, no.1 (March 1945): 44, 58.


Harbaugh, Life of Michael Schlatter, 64. During the Philadelphia pastorate of Michael Schlatter, there was a split between those individuals who favored his ministry to the congregation and a group that supported the ministry of the Reverend John Conrad Steiner. The number mentioned above was the total of the two groups.


William J. Hinke, “The Early History of the First Reformed Church of Philadelphia, Pa., 1727–1734,” Journal of the Presbyterian Historical Society 2, no. 6 (September 1904): 295–96, and Hinke, Life and Letters of John Philip Boehm (Philadelphia: Publication and Sunday School Board of the Reformed Church in the United States, 1916), 31.


Consistory Minutes, 1747–1753, 1,1, Call of Philadelphia Congregation to Caspar Dietrick Weyberg, October 25, 1763, no. 44. Letterbook, 1755–1886, and Church Record, Burials, 1786–1799, Archives of First Reformed Church (hereafter AFRC), 3:16, HSP, and Minutes and Letters of Coetus of the German Reformed Congregations in Pennsylvania, 1747–1792, Together with Three Preliminary Reports of the Rev. John Philip Boehm, 1734–1744, ed. James I. Good and William J. Hinke (Philadelphia: Reformed Church Publication Board, 1903), 447. Coetus refers to the representative assembly of clergy and lay members of local congregations. The Coetus was an administrative body subordinate to the Dutch Reformed Church’s Classis of Amsterdam.


Anson Phelps Stokes, Church and State in the United States (New York: Harper and Brothers, 1950), 1, 206–8 and Bridenbaugh and Bridenbaugh, Rebels and Gentlemen, 17–18.


J. William Frost, “Religious Liberty in Early Pennsylvania,” PMHB 105, no. 4 (October 1981): 422, 434–35; Frost, “Pennsylvania Institutes Religious Liberty, 1682–1860,” PMHB 112, no. 3 (July 1988): 332.


Gary M. Talarcheck, “The Philadelphia Landscape as an Artifact of the City’s Founding,” in The Philadelphia Region: Selected Essays and Field Trip Itineraries. ed. Roman A. Cybriwshy (Ephrata, PA: Science Press, 1979), 174; and Douglas C. McVarish, Rebecca Yamin, and Donald G. Roberts, An Archeological Sensitivity Study of Franklin Square, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (Philadelphia: John Miller Associates, 2005). This work contains an account of the cemetery’s history and numerous period maps showing its original location and later additions.


Charter and Bylaws and Rules of the Corporation of the German Reformed Congregation in the City of Philadelphia (Philadelphia: Printed at the Office of the Christian Observer, 1847). In terms of economic benefit to the congregation, the most important aspect of a charter of incorporation was the privilege of limited liability. The board of the corporation and not individual members of the congregation, as in a previous case, would sign for the congregation and be liable for any notes of indebtedness, thus property of its members would be secure. The previous case involved a splinter group from the Race Street Church initially under the leadership of its former pastor, Frederick Rothenbuhler. The trustees responsible for the debt in building a new church were thrown in prison. When their acquaintances looked through the prison windows and inquired, “For what were you put in jail?” they replied, “For building a church.” See David van Horn, A History of the Reformed Church in Philadelphia (Philadelphia: Reformed Church Publication Board, 1941), 40. For a discussion of the advantages of corporate organization, see Gilbert C. Fite and Jim E. Reese, An Economic History of the United States, rev., 2nd ed. (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1965), 55, 372–73.


Subscription Book, 1772–1775; Consistory Minutes, 1763–1808, 2:40–41 AFRC; and H. M. J. Klein, History of the Eastern Synod of the Reformed Church in the United States (Lancaster, PA: Published by the Eastern Synod, 1943), 63.


Consistory Minutes, 1763–1808, 2:31–32, and Appeal to Members for Erection of New Church, 1772, Letterbook, 1755–1886, AFRC.


Minutes and Letters of Coetus, 343–44.


Minutes and Letters of Coetus, 236, 333, 339, 346, 351, 356, and 363.


Henry Melchior Muhlenberg, The Journals of Henry Melchior Muhlenberg, ed. and trans. Theodore Tappert and John Doberstein (Philadelphia: Evangelical Lutheran Ministerium of Pennsylvania, and Adjacent States and the Muhlenberg Press, 1942–58), 2:742, and Francis Shunk, The Proceedings Relative to the Convention of 1776 and 1790 That Formed the Present Constitution of Pennsylvania, Together the Charter to William Penn, the Constitutions of 1776 and 1790, and a View of the Proceedings of the Convention of 1776 (Harrisburg: Printed by John S. Wietstling, 1825), 53.


Muhlenberg, Journals, 2:742; and Muhlenberg on the Constitution Convention, “Abstract of Muhlenberg’s Letter,” PMHB 22 (1898): 129–30.


Muhlenberg, Journals, 2:742–43, and “Abstract of Muhlenberg’s Letter,” 130–31. For copies of the petition signed by Muhlenberg and Weyberg, see “Abstract of Muhlenberg’s Letter.” Weyberg did not write the petition from the German Reformed congregation because he did not feel able to manage the English language. See Muhlenberg, Journals, 2:747.


J. Paul Selsam, The Pennsylvania Constitution of 1776: A Study in Revolutionary Democracy (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1936), 181, 218, and Shunk, Proceedings Relative to the Convention of 1776, 64.


John Richard Alden, The American Revolution, 1775–1763 (New York: Harper and Brothers, 1954), 49–56.


James I. Good, Historical Handbook of the Reformed Church in the United States (Philadelphia: Reformed Church Publication Board, 1897), 66.


Muhlenberg, Journals, 2:716, and The Pennsylvania Packet and General Advertiser, February 19 and 26, 1776.


Muhlenberg, Journals, 2:716.


William Smith, An Oration in Memory of General Montgomery and the Officers and Soldiers, Who Fell with Him, December 31, 1775, Before Quebec; Drawn Up and Delivered February 19, 1776 at the Desire of the Honorable Continental Congress (Philadelphia: Printed by John Dunlap, 1776), 2, 3, 12, 19, 24, 30–32.


Horace Wemyss Smith, Life and Correspondence of the Rev. William Smith, D.D. (Philadelphia: S. A. George, 1879), 1:559.


Actions of Enos’s Division: Leaving the Expedition Without Permission and Its Effect, https://www.darleybooks.com/Customer-Content/www/.


Smith, Life and Correspondence of Rev. William Smith, 556, 559–60; Smith, Oration in Memory of General Montgomery, 25n; Christophe A. Hunter, “William Smith: Catonian Loyalism, Race and the Politics of Language,” Early American Literature 52, no. 3 (2017): 1.


It is clear that Smith maintained a consistent attitude throughout the years preceding the Revolutionary War. He hoped for a reconciliation with Great Britain, while maintaining the need for the preservation of the rights of the colonies. See Albert Frank Gegenheimer, William Smith: Educator and Churchman, 1727–1803 (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1943), 179.


“Consistory” is a term in the German Reformed tradition that refers to the local governing board of a congregation.


Schreiben des Evanglisch-Lutherish und Reformirten Kirchen-Raths, wie auch der Beamten der Teutschen Gesellschschaft in der Stadt Philadelphia, an die Teutschen Einwohner der Provinzen von New York und Nord-Carolina (Philadelphia: Henrich Miller, 1775), 2–3; Philip Davidson, Propaganda and the American Revolution, 1763–1783 (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1941), 91; Albert B. Faust, The German Element in the United States (Boston: Riverside Press, 1909), 2:287.


Muhlenberg, Journals, 3:124–25. For a copy of the tract enlisting the support of Germans in New York and North Carolina in German and English, see William T. Parsons, The Preachers’ Appeal of 1775 (Collegeville, PA: Published by the author, 1975). Note that the only signature on the document is that of Ludwig Weiss. Weiss was one of the co-founders of the Philadelphia German Society and its first attorney (1764–77). See Oswald Seidensticker, The First Century of German Printing in America, 1728–1830. Preceded by a Notice of the Literary Work of F. D. Pastorius (Philadelphia: German Pionier-Verein of Philadelphia, Schaefer and Koradi, 1893), 52.


Muhlenberg, Journals, 2:547, and 3:5.


Consistory Minutes, 1763–1808, 2:30; Henry S. Dotterer, Rev. John Philip Boehm (Philadelphia: By the Author, 1890), 26; John Scharf and Thompson Westcott, History of Philadelphia, 1609–1884 (Philadelphia: L. H. Everts and Co., 1884), 1, 335, 388


Dotterer, Rev. John Philip Boehm, 26, and Aaron Sullivan, The Disaffected: British Occupation of Philadelphia During the American Revolution (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2019), 25–26.


Dotterer, Rev. John Philip Boehm, 26.


Jacob Hiltzheimer, Extracts from the Diary of Jacob Hiltzheimer of Philadelphia, ed. Jacob Cox Parsons (Philadelphia: William F. Fell, 1893), vii, viii, 33, 35, 38, 54, and Consistory Minutes, 1763–1808, ARFC, 2:80.


Note on Lewis Farmer’s arrival to Philadelphia, “Farmer History, Family Crest and Coats of Arms,” House of Names, https://www.houseofnames.com/farmer-family-crest. The date of his naturalization is listed in “Persons Naturalized,” Pennsylvania Archives, Second Series, 2, ed. J. B. Lynn and W. H. Egle (Harrisburg: B. F. Myers, State Printer, 1876), 480. However, the date of Farmer’s arrival in Philadelphia was difficult to determine. He was a deacon of the German Reformed congregation in Philadelphia in 1769 in Seidensticker’s work on the German Society and in 1771 in the records of the congregation. See Oswald Seidensticker, Erster Teil der Geschichte der Deutschen Gesellschaft von Pennsylvanien. Von der Gruendung im Jahre 1764 bis zur Juhelfeter der Republik 1876 (Philadelphia: Neudruck von Graf and Breuninger, 1917), 418, and William J. Hinke, “Extracts from the Consistory Records of the First Reformed Church, Philadelphia, Pa., 1749–1800,” typescript made June 1920, AFRC, 39. There was no mention of his name in the list of German arrivals in Ralph B. Strassburger and William John Hinke, eds., Pennsylvania German Pioneers, A Publication of Original Lists of Arrivals in the Port of Philadelphia from 1727–1808 (Norristown, PA: Pennsylvania German Society, 1934), which was not unusual if he entered the colony as a person under the age of sixteen or as a person whose name in German was later anglicized. One name, Ludwig Agricola, who arrived on October 5, 1763, was a strong possibility since the name is agrarian in origin. See Muhlenberg, Journals, 3:555; Joseph Henry Dubbs, The Reformed Church in Pennsylvania, pt. 9: A Narrative and Critical History (Lancaster, PA: Pennsylvania German Society, 1902), 230; Minutes and Letters of Coetus, 428; Consistory Minutes, 1763–1808, 2:32, 34.


“13th Pennsylvania Regiment,” American Revolutionary War Regiments, https://revolutionarywar.us/continental-army/pennsylvania/, and Revolutionary War Military Abstract File, Pennsylvania State Archives: Revolutionary War Military Abstract Card File Items Between Farmer, Lewis and Farrow, Charles (state.pa.us).


Revolutionary War Military Abstract File, Farmer and Field Officers, 13th Pennsylvania Regiment, Regiments, the Muster Roll, The Valley Forge Legacy Roll, http://valleyforgemusterroll.org/regiments/pa13.asp.

Lord Stirling was William Alexander who laid claim unsuccessfully to the earldom of Stirling in Scotland but still went by the title Lord Stirling in America; see “William Alexander,” Dictionary of American Biography(New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1928), 1, 175–76.


The extent of the 13th Regiment’s engagements is discussed in John B. B. Trussell and Charles C. Dallas, The Pennsylvania Line: Regimental Organization and Operations, 1776–1783 (Harrisburg: Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission, 1977), 164–89, and “13th Pennsylvania Regiment,” American Revolutionary War Regiments, https://revolutionarywar.us/continental-army/pennsylvania/.


“List of Military Commissions Held by Colonel John Bull, May 2nd to June 17, 1777,” in Anita Newcomb McGee, Colonel John Bull (1731–1824), A Preliminary Study (San Francisco: Privately printed, 1919), n.p.


James McMichael, “Diary of Lieutenant James McMichael, of the Pennsylvania Line, 1776–1778,” PMHB 16, no. 2 (July 1892): 143.


Ibid., 143–44. The Board of War appointed Colonel Bull Adjutant General of the Pennsylvania Militia effective June 17, 1777, thus clearing the way for Colonel Steward as his replacement. See Trussell and Dallas, The Pennsylvania Line, 167. It is interesting how the Board of War managed this very difficult situation to the satisfaction of all interested parties. Bull’s relationship with the Pennsylvania Regiment of Foot was not the first time he had problems when he was in a command position. On November 25, 1775, the Continental Congress elected Bull as 1st Colonel of the First Pennsylvania Battalion, which consisted of eight companies with seventy-nine men each. The Continental Congress received a memorial from the captains and subalterns “complaining of the conduct of Colonel Bull” and referred it to committee. On January 19, 1776, Colonel Bull offered his resignation, and it was accepted three days later. This command was his only experience in the Continental Army; see McGee, Colonel John Bull (1731–1834).


Seidensticker, Geschichte der Deutschen Gesellschaft, 521, and Francis B. Heitman, Historical Register of Officers of the Continental Army during the War of Revolution, April 1775 to December 1783 (Washington, DC: The Rare Book Shop Publishing Co., 1914), 342. The Lawerswyler name had various spellings in the historic record including Laverswyler and Lawersweiler, which all refer to the same person. The author chose Lawerswyler for consistency in this article.


Seidensticker, Geschichte der Deutschen Gesellschaft, 577, and Muster Rolls Relating to Associators and Militia, Pennsylvania Archives, Sixth Series, 1, ed. Thomas Lynch Montgomery (Harrisburg, PA: State Printer, 1906): 221, 229. Associators was a designation that goes back to the 1740s when Benjamin Franklin proposed the establishment of extragovernmental militia to be called “Associators” when Quakers and other persons often vetoed provincial defense bills. As many as 1,000 Philadelphia men volunteered for these militia groups. They provided their own weapons and provisions. See H. W. Brands, Our First Civil War: Patriots and Loyalists in the American Revolution (New York: Doubleday, 2021), 49–50.


Seidensticker, Geschichte der Deutschen Gesellschaft, 553–54, and Muster Rolls Relating to Associators and Militia1:330.


Marriage of Daniel Sutter, Senior, and Suzanna Muller, Marriages of Reverend Casper Weyberg, 1786–1790, AFRC, 18; Muster Rolls Relating to Associators and Militia, 1:254, 257; Hiltzheimer, Extracts from the Diary of Jacob Hiltzheimer, ed. Parsons, 146.


Muster Rolls Relating to the Association and Militia of the City of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Archives, Sixth Series, 1:968.


William Henry Egle, ed., Pennsylvania in the War of the Revolution: Associated Battalions and Militia, 1775–1783 (Harrisburg: E. K. Myers Printers, 1890); Pennsylvania Archives, Second Series, 14:596.


Pennsylvania Archives, Sixth Series, 1:541, 550, 594–95.


Pennsylvania Archives, Fifth Series, 3:856.


Heitman, Historical Register of the Officers of the Continental Army, 468. A comparison of military records with Subscription List to the Salary of the Minister of the Reformed Congregation at Philadelphia, September 9, 1756, and Names of Communicants Who Attended Holy Communion at the Reformed Church in Philadelphia, Congregational Records Written by Rev. Caspar Weyberg, Pentecost, 1771 and Easter 1780, AFRC, yielded the names of the individuals who served in the Philadelphia militia and various regiments. On the question of whether any individuals from the German Reformed community were among the disaffected or a Loyalist, one individual would be Peter Miller. He was a Justice of the Peace and a Loyalist and bankrupted by the colonial currency. However, it could not be determined if he was a member of the Philadelphia German Reformed community; see Sullivan, The Disaffected, 183–84.


Frederick Kapp, Life of Frederick William von Steuben, Major General in the Revolutionary Army (New York: Mason Brothers, 1859), 241.


Klaus Wust, Guardian on the Hudson: The German Society of the City of New York, 1784–1984 (New York: The Society, 1984), 15–16; George H. Bricker, You Will Find Us Willing and Eager: Contributions of the German Reformed People to the Cause of the American Colonies, Trinity United Church of Christ, York, Pennsylvania (York, PA: The King Press, 1976), 16; Paul Lockhart, The Drillmaster of Valley Forge, The Baron de Steuben and the Making of the American Army (New York: HarperCollins, 2008), 1, 295–96. Lockhart noted that Friedrich Wilhelm Ludolf Gerhard Augustus von Steuben’s baptism took place at Magdeburg’s Reformed Church on September 24, 1730, and his active membership as an elder in the German Reformed Church in New York City.


David Smith, William Howe and the American War of Independence (London: Bloomsburg Academic, 2015), 109; Theodore P. Savas and J. David Dameron, A Guide to the Battles of the American Revolution (El Dorado, CA: Savas Beatie, 2013), 55–68, 113–23; H. W. Brands, Our First Civil War, 313, 317. For an historical and sociological discussion of what occurred during the British occupation of Philadelphia, as well as its strategic importance, see Casino, “Panic in Philadelphia,” 447, 502.


Muhlenberg, Journals, 3:17, 90, 94, 106, 148, 168–69.


Ibid., 2:83. Muhlenberg stated that the British released Duché but arrested him again on October 24, 1777, see 91. The Continental Congress elected Duché as its chaplain but later he switched to the Loyalist side. For an informative biography of Jacob Duché, see Kevin Dellape, America’s First Chaplain: The Life and Times of the Reverend Jacob Duché (Bethlehem, PA: Lehigh University Press, 2013).


Muhlenberg, Journals, 3:625–26. For a more extensive account of how the British occupation affected the Philadelphia churches, see Nelson Waite Rightmyer, “Churches under Enemy Occupation: Philadelphia, 1777–1778,” Church History 14, no. 1 (March 1945): 33–60.


David Van Horn, A History of the Reformed Church of Philadelphia (Philadelphia: Reformed Church Publication Board, 1876), 46.


Harbaugh, Life of Michael Schlatter, 336–37. Schlatter was the second pastor of the Race Street Church (1746–55) and organized the first German Reformed Coetus in the colonies in 1747. In the German Reformed Church in colonial America, it had less authority than a Presbyterian or a Lutheran synod. Because of the poor conditions in the Palatinate, the Synods of North and South Holland had assumed responsibility for the German Reformed Church in America and appointed Schlatter to be the superintendent of the German Reformed congregations. See William J. Hinke, Ministers of the German Reformed Congregations in Pennsylvania and Other Colonies in the Eighteenth Century, ed. George R. Richards (Lancaster, PA: Historical Commission of the Evangelical and Reformed Church, 1951), 33, 38. Although Schlatter’s responsibilities took him to other locations, Schlatter, his family, and the Race Street Church considered him part of the Philadelphia German Reformed community as his burial in 1790 was at the German Reformed cemetery in Philadelphia. Harbaugh, Life of Michael Schlatter, 165, 357.


Harbaugh, Life of Michael Schlatter, 165; Muhlenberg, Journals, 3:98–99, 128, 131.


Harbaugh, Life of Michael Schlatter, 361, 336–37.


Ibid., 361; Muhlenberg, Journals, 3:98–99.


Muhlenberg, Journals, 128, 131; Joseph F. Berg, The Ancient Landmark, Being the Substance of a Discourse Preached September 29, 1838, on the Centenary Anniversary of the Organization of the German Reformed Church, on Race Street, Philadelphia (Philadelphia: Published by request, 1840), 15–16; Van Horn, A History of the Reformed Church in Philadelphia, 43–44. Prior to the occupation, Weyberg had preached to the American soldiers and was their chaplain. See Dubbs, Historic Manual of the Reformed Church, 230, and Hinke, Ministers of the German Reformed Congregations, 123. The validity of these assertions. seemed accurate given his close association with Lewis Farmer and Jacob Hiltzheimer, who were Patriot leaders in Philadelphia. Muhlenberg indicated on January 30, 1778, that Weyberg was still in prison and the British released him by February 14. Muhlenberg, Journals, 3:98–99, 128, 131. These dates conform to the First Reformed Church records of marriages and burials. There were no marriages between December 26, 1777, and March 1, 1778. The burial records had a gap between January 4 and February 19, 1778. Church Record of the First Reformed Church, Marriages by Caspar Weyberg, 1763–1785, 135, and Burials by Reverend Caspar Weyberg, 1764–1785, AFRC, 302–03. The city turned over the Walnut Street Jail, completed in part in 1776, to the Revolutionary government as a miliary prison. The British later used it for the same purpose, Harry E. Barnes, “The Criminal Codes and Penal Institutions of Colonial Pennsylvania,” Bulletin of Friends Historical Society of Philadelphia 11, no. 2 (Autumn 1922): 81.


Van Horn, History of the Reformed Church in Philadelphia, 44.


Weyberg to Classis of Amsterdam, May 5, 1779, in Henry Harbaugh, The Fathers of the German Reformed Church in Europe and America, 2nd ed. (Lancaster, PA: J. M. Westhaeffer, 1873), 2:103; Hinke, Ministers of the German Reformed Congregations, 110.


Hinke, Ministers of the German Reformed Congregations, 109. Although the British damaged the church extensively, the Race Street congregation recovered and met the repair costs of $15,000 without much difficulty. See Van Horn, History of the Reformed Church in Philadelphia, 46.


Minutes and Letters of Coetus, 349, 353, 359, 366, 372, 375.


Gazette of the United States & Philadelphia Daily Advertiser, February 19 and 24, 1800; Hiltzheimer, Extracts from the Diary of Jacob Hiltzheimer, 80; Oscar George Sonneck, Early Concert Life in America, 1731–1800 (Leipzig: Brentkopf and Hartel, 1907), 108–11; Louis Madeira, Annals of Music in Philadelphia and the History of the Musical Fund Society, ed. Philip H. Goepp (Philadelphia: J. B. Lippincott Company, 1896), 36. An earlier performance of the Hallelujah Chorus occurred at Christ Church in 1772. See Bridenbaugh and Bridenbaugh, Rebels and Gentlemen, 159.


Seidensticker, Geschichte der Deutschen Gesellschaft, 494.


Hiltzheimer, Extracts from the Diary of Jacob Hiltzheimer, vii, 100. It is interesting that Hiltzheimer wrote his diaries in the English language, which indicated that he was fluent in English and German and perhaps one of the reasons for his general acceptance in Philadelphia society. See Jacob Hiltzheimer Diaries, 1765–1798, American Philosophical Library, Philadelphia, Jacob Hiltzheimer Diaries: American Philosophical Society (amphilsoc.org)


Hiltzheimer, Extracts, 172. For a more complete discussion of the proposed Executive Mansion and its disposition, see Dennis C. Kurjack, “The President’s House in Philadelphia,” PH 20, no. 4 (October 1953): 380–94.


Joseph Jackson, Market Street, Philadelphia, The Most Historic Highway in America: Its Merchants and Its Story (Philadelphia: Published by the author, 1918), 148–51. The University of Pennsylvania later purchased the building. For an engraving of the structure, see 148.


Hiltzheimer, Extracts from the Diary of Jacob Hiltzheimer, 163, 171, 188, 193. Although Hiltzheimer in his diary did not declare openly in favor of the new government of 1789, his lack of negative comments and his affection for Washington strongly indicated his Federalist principles.


Ibid., 13. For an analysis of early Pennsylvania Blue Laws, see J. Thomas Jable, “The Pennsylvania Sunday Blue Laws of 1779: A View of Pennsylvania Society and Politics During the American Revolution,” PH 40, no. 4 (October 1973): 413–26.


Hiltzheimer, Extracts from the Diary of Jacob Hiltzheimer, 13.


Ibid., 13, 146, 193. He was the secretary of the Jockey Club and the chief factotum of Center Course or Canter Square where the races were held, see Bridenbaugh, Cities in Revolt, 365, and Jackson, Market Street, 69.


Hiltzheimer, Extracts from the Diary of Jacob Hiltzheimer, 20, 23. Hiltzheimer was a member of the Gloucester Hunting Club founded in 1766, see Bridenbaugh and Bridenbaugh, Rebels and Gentlemen, 221.


Bridenbaugh, Cities in Revolt, 363.


Hiltzheimer, Extracts from the Diary of Jacob Hiltzheimer, 13.


Bridenbaugh was of this opinion concerning Hiltzheimer when he wrote of the fluid nature of Philadelphia society in the eighteenth century, see Bridenbaugh and Bridenbaugh, Rebels and Gentlemen, 13–14.


Heitman, Historical Register of Officers of the Continental Army, 222; “Notes and Queries, American Generals and Staff Officers,” PMHB 6, no. 1 (1882): 126, and United States Census 1790, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 121. There are two reasons for his retirement. First, he received wounds in his first major engagement at the Battle of Long Island in August 1776, but he continued to serve (Heitman, Historical Register of Officers of the Continental Army, 222). Second, when the 13th Regiment became a part of the 2nd Pennsylvania Regiment on July 1, 1778, his position in the 13th Regiment was eliminated. Farmer continued as an innkeeper until 1794. The Philadelphia Directory and Register 1794, 2nd ed. (Philadelphia: Printed by Jacob Johnson & Co., 1794), 48.


Seidensticker, Geschichte der Deutschen Gesellschaft, 418.


“Rolls of Members of Patriotic Association of Philadelphia, 1778,” PHMB 23, no. 3 (1899): 357; Scharf and Westcott, History of Philadelphia, 387–88; Sullivan, The Disaffected, 204.


Seidensticker, Geschichte der Deutschen Gesellschaft, 418.


Marriage Records of Rev. Casper Weyberg, 1786–1790, AFRC; Hiltzheimer, Extracts from the Diary of Jacob Hiltzheimer, 170.


Pennsylvania Archives, Sixth Series, 11:324–28, 373–83.


Seidensticker, Geschichte der Deutschen Gesellschaft, 418; Minutes of Incorporated German Society (Directors’ Meetings), 1770–1801, 115–22, German Society of Pennsylvania Institutional Records, 1764–1996, Joseph P. Horner Memorial Library, German Society of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia.


Erna Risch, “Immigrant Societies Before 1820,” PMHB 60, no. 1 (January 1936): 20 n. 29; and Luther R. Kelker et al., “Lists of Foreigners Who Arrived in Philadelphia, 1791–1792,” PMHB 24, nos. 2 and 3 (1900): 187, 334. For copies of the German Society petition, March 18, 1785, and the law enacted by the Pennsylvania Assembly, April 8, 1785, see Minutes der incorparirten Deutschen Gesellschaft (Directors’ Meetings), 115–22.


Hiltzheimer, Extracts from the Diary of Jacob Hiltzheimer, 129, 183.


Charles A. Anderson, “Church Cooperation in 1797,” Journal of the Presbyterian Historical Society 24, no. 1 (March 1946): 3, 4, 7, 10.


Seidensticker, Geschichte der Deutschen Gesellschaft, 521. Frederick A. Muhlenberg was as active political figure in the 1780s and 1790s serving as a delegate from Pennsylvania to the Continental Congress, 1779–80, member of the US House of Representatives,1789–97, and its first Speaker, 1793–95. See Oswald Seidensticker, “Frederick Augustus Conrad Muhlenberg, Speaker of the House of Representatives, in First Congress, 1789,” PMHB 13, no. 2 (July 1889): 184–206.


Pennsylvania Gazette of the United States and Philadelphia Daily Advertiser, September 13, 1798; Charles Lawrence, History of Philadelphia Almshouses and Hospitals from the Beginning of the Eighteenth Century to the End of the Nineteenth Century, Covering a Period of Nearly Two Hundred Years, Showing the Mode of Distributing Public Relief Through the Management of the Boards of Overseers of the Poor, Guardians of the Poor and Directors of Charities and Correction (1905), 35.


Roland M. Baumann, “Philadelphia’s Manufactures and the Excise Taxes of 1794: The Forging of the Jefferson Coalition,” PMHB 106, no. 1 (January 1962): 13, 19–22, 31.


Seidensticker, Geschichte der Deutschen Gesellschaft, 533–34.


To George Washington from John Morgan, December 27, 1779, Library of Congress, (archives.gov); Whitfield J. Bell Jr., “The Court Marshal of Dr. William Shippen, Jr., 1780,” Journal of the History of Medicine and Allied Sciences 19, no. 3 (July 1964): 222, 235.


Order of Procession, in honor of the establishment of the Constitution of the United States, Broadside Printed by Hall and Sellers, July 4, 1788, Library of Congress, Image 1 of Order of procession, in honor of the establishment of the Constitution of the United States : To parade precisely at eight o’clock in the morning, of Friday, the 4th of July, 1788 ... | Library of Congress, https://loc.gov/item/90898142.


Scharf and Westcott, History of Philadelphia, 447–52; Francis Hopkinson, An Account of the Grand Federal Procession, Performed at Philadelphia on Friday the 4th of July 1788, ed. William Thomas Sherman, 5–6, 4th-of-July-1788.pdf (archive.org).

Because of the short period of time between the broadside and the day of the parade, the Benjamin Fuller mentioned in Hopkinson’s account was probably a merchant who resided at 162 North Front Street in Philadelphia. See Francis White, Philadelphia Directory 1785(Philadelphia: Printed by Young, Seward and McCulloch, 1785), 58; Cornelius William Stafford, The Philadelphia Directory for 1798 (Philadelphia: Printed for the editor by William W. Woodward, 1793), 58.


Hopkinson, An Account of the Grand Federal Procession, 25. It should be noted that Jacob Lawerswyler was the only member of the Philadelphia German Reformed mentioned specifically in Hopkinson’s account. He was one of the representatives of the sugar refiners in the procession. In addition, copies of a poem by Francis Hopkinson entitled “An Ode” in German, as well as, in English, were distributed to the spectators. The fact that separate copies were printed in the German language witnessed to the importance of the German element in Philadelphia and the nation as a whole. See 14, 15, 17. For an analysis of the Grand Procession of 1788, see Laura Rigal, “‘Raising the Roof’: Authors, Spectators and Artisans in the Grand Federal Procession of 1788,” Theatre Journal 48, no. 3 (October 1966): 253–77.


Albrecht Koschnik, “Political Conflict and Public Contest: Rituals of National Celebration in Philadelphia, 1788–1815,” PMHB 118, no. 3 (July 1994): 214.


Seidensticker, Geschichte der Deutschen Gesellschaft, 533–34; James Hardie, A. M., The Philadelphia Directory 1794, 2nd ed. (Philadelphia: Printed by Jacob Johnson & Co., 1794), 116; Cornelius William Stafford, The Philadelphia Directory for 1798, The Names, Occupations, and Places of Abode of the Citizens (Philadelphia: Printed by William W. Woodward, 1798), 108; The Philadelphia Directory 1824 (Philadelphia: Published by Robert Desilver, 1824), 296.


Seidensticker, Geschichte der Deutschen Gesellschaft, 533–34; “To George Washington from John Morgan, 27 December 1779,” note 15, https://founders.archives.gov/documents/Washington/03-23-02-0062.


Van Horn, History of the Reformed Church in Philadelphia, 55; Gazette of the United States & Philadelphia Daily Advertiser, February 19 and 24, 1800; Scharf and Westcott, History of Philadelphia, 503–4. There were other earlier ceremonies during the day, which included a Masonic service at Zion Lutheran Church and a Roman Catholic service at St. Mary’s Roman Catholic Church. For general information on the society, see Wallace Evan Davies, Patriotism on Parade: The Story of the Veterans and Hereditary Organizations in America, 1783–1900 (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1955), 1–27; Evan A. Hoey, “A New and Strange Order of Man,” American Heritage 19, no. 5 (August 1968): 44–49, 72–75.


W. A. Newman Dorland, “The Second Troop Philadelphia City Cavalry,” PMHB 49, no. 1 (January 1925): 75–77. For a discussion of the cultural significance of the death of the first president of the United States, see Gerald Edward Kahler, “Washington in Glory, America in Tears: The Nation Mourns the Death of George Washington, 1799–1800,” Ph.D. diss., William and Mary College, 2003.


William Rogers, D.D., The Prayer Delivered on Saturday the 22d of February, 1800, in the German Reformed Church, Philadelphia: Before the Pennsylvania Society of the Cincinnati Published by particular request (Philadelphia: Printed by John Ormrod, 1800), 1–11.


William Jackson, Eulogium, on the Character of General Washington, Late President of the United States; Pronounced Before the Pennsylvania Society of the Cincinnati, Before the President of the United States, and The Members of Both Houses of Congress; on the Twenty-Second Day of February, Eighteen Hundred, in the German Reformed Church, Philadelphia (Philadelphia: Printed by John Ormrod, No. 41 Chestnut St., 1800); Dorland, “The Second Troop Philadelphia City Cavalry,” 77.


Koschnik, “Political Conflict and Public Contest,” 243–44.


Minutes and Letters of Coetus, 428. For copies of the Address of the German Reformed Coetus to General Washington and the President’s Reply, see 434–35.


Consistory Minutes, 1763–1808, 2:121, AFRC.


Acts and Proceedings of the Coetus and Synod of the German Reformed Church in the United States, From 1791–1816 Inclusive (Chambersburg, PA: Printed by M. Kieffer, 1854), 10; Klein, History of the Eastern Synod, 82. For some suggestive comments on the effect of the Revolution on American churches, see J. Franklin Jameson, The American Revolution Considered as a Social Movement (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1929; Boston: Beacon Press, 1956), 94–100.