Four Mile Presbyterian Church
6078 Tuscarawas Road
Ohioville Borough, Beaver County, Pennsylvania 15009


Part I

Pastors

Pastors from the time of its organization, July, 1812, till November, 1820, the congregation was without a pastor, receiving their supply of preaching from Presbytery. Though in the meantime, the congregation made two efforts to secure a pastor, but failed in both cases. Four Mile, West Beaver, and Long's Run, now called Calcutta or West Union, were united as one pastoral charge. In 1817, these congregations united in a call, moderated by Mr. Imbrie for a Mr. William Craig, each one-third time. There was also a call for the same person from the united charge of Poland, Liberty, and Deer Creek. But neither of these calls was accepted by him.

July 17, 1819, these three congregations again asked for the moderation of a call which was granted, and Mr. Imbrie appointed to moderate, and the call was sustained at the next meeting of Presbytery, August 25, 1819, for Mr. Robert Douglass. But at the same meeting there was also a call from the united charge of Poland, Liberty, and Deer Creek, for the same person. At a meeting of Presbytery, May 2, 1820, these congregations again applied for the moderation of a call, and Mr. Imbrie was appointed to preach at West Beaver, second Sabbath of May, and moderate the call at West Union on the Monday following. This call was made for Mr. Elijah N. Scroggs, and was sustained May 16, 1820. The call was accepted by him at a meeting of Presbytery, at Mercer, June 28, 1820. After passing through the usual trials, he was ordained at West Beaver, November 1, 1820, and installed pastor of West Beaver, West Union, and Four Mile. Mr. Douglass preached the sermon from I Cor. 1, 24, and Mr. Imbrie delivered the charge to Mr. Scroggs and the congregation. Though the call was made for one-third of Mr. Scroggs' time, yet, it is said, that the congregation was not able to raise the amount necessary to pay for that portion; and that by private arrangement with the other congregations, he preached in Four Mile only one-sixth of the time for a few years. The relations thus formed was different from the pastoral relation of the present day, whatever may be the reason, whether the fault is with the pastors, or the people, or both. It was one of long continuance, though a change took place after a considerable time in his relation as to the three congregations. At a meeting of Presbytery, at Scroggsfield, September 13, 1837, commissioners appeared from the three congregations of the charge, praying for some new division of Mr. Scrogg's labors. Four Mile congregation was then recommended by Presbytery to correspond with the congregation of Fallston (I don't know what congregation now was called by that name then), in the Presbytery of Shenango, with a view to form a connection with them.

But at a meeting of Presbytery, at Bethel, April 3, 1838, on account of some difficulties in the congregation of West Beaver (which it is not necessary to recall in this history), Mr. Scroggs tendered his resignation of that part of his charge. And at the same meeting of Presbytery, there were petitions from West Union and Four Mile, each for half of Mr. Scroggs' time. Presbytery, therefore, accepted the resignation of Mr. Scroggs, and granted the request of West Union and Four Mile congregations, and Mr. Scroggs accepted the charge of said congregations.

Then at a meeting of Presbytery, at Allegheny City, May 21, 1849, Mr. Scroggs tendered his resignation of Four Mile congregation, and the congregation concurring in the request, his resignation was accepted, being pastor of the congregation twenty-eight years, six months and twenty-four days. He then continued in charge of the congregation of West Union till the time of his death, which took place on the fifth day of December, 1851, aged sixyt-five years and five months, and being an ordained minister thirty-one years, one month and four days.

The congregation was then vacant for nearly two years, and the next pastor was Mr. John A. McGill. The call was moderated by Mr. Scroggs on the Monday after the second Sabbath of May, 1851, and was made for whole time, and Mr. McGill was ordained and installed at Four Mile, October 7, 1851. Mr. Sawyer preached the sermon from Matthew 13,52. Mr. Harsha proposed the questions in the formula, and Mr. S. T. Herron delivered the charge to both the pastor and the people. Mr. McGill tendered his resignation of the congregation, October 4, 1853, and the congregation duly notified, his resignation was accepted by Presbytery, November 15, 1853, being pastor of the congregation two years and fourteen days. It is said that by private arrangement, Mr. McGill preached one-fourth of his time, for awhile, in Beaver, as some of the members of Four Mile congregation were nearer to Beaver. This was the beginning of Beaver congregation. After the release of Mr. McGill the congregation had a long vacancy. The union between the Associate and Associate Reformed churches took place in May 1858. Various changes then occurred in the names and boundaries of Presbyteries. For a time the Associate Presbytery of Ohio, continued under the name of the U. P. Presbytery of Ohio. But this did not continue a great while. Cleveland Presbytery was soon after this formed - about two years - and then this congregation, with a number of others, formerly under the Presbytery of Ohio, was thrown into the Presbytery of Allegheny. At a meeting of Presbytery in Pittsburgh, September 28, 1860, Four Mile and Darlington congregations asked for the moderation of a call. Mr. D. G. Bradford was appointed to moderate. At a meeting, December 25, 1860, at First Church, Allegheny City, calls from Darlington and Four Mile, each half time, for D. H. A. McLean were received and presented. He was given till next meeting to consider the matter. At the next meeting, February 21, 1861, calls from Palestine and Beaver, each half time for Dr. McLean, were received. Presbytery then formed Beaver and Four Mile into a pastoral charge, and Darlington and Palestine into a pastoral charge. All the calls were then put into the hands of Dr. McLean, and till next meeting of Presbytery given him to consider them. At next meeting in Second Church, Allegheny City, April 9, 1861, he accepted the calls from Beaver and Four Mile. June 11, 1861, Presbytery met at Four Mile, at which time he was installed over the united charge. Rev. J. B. Clark preached the sermon from the text, "Where is the Lord God of Elijah?" Dr. Pressley proposed the questions, led in prayer, and addressed the pastor, and Rev. S. Patterson addressed the people. At East Union, third Tuesday of June, 1866, a request from Beaver congregation for all of Dr. McLean's time was received, laid on the table, and the clerk directed to notify Four Mile congregation. At New Brighton, September 25, 1866, a paper from Four Mile was received, consenting to the dissolution of the pastoral relation existing between them and Dr. McLean. The pulpit was declared vacant by Rev. E. H. Stevenson, on the first Sabbath of November, 1866. Thus Dr. McLean's pastorate was five years, three months and fourteen days. At a meeting of Presbytery, at East Palestine, June 11. 1867, a call from Four Mile for whole time for Mr. J. C. Evans was reported and sustained, and being presented, was by him accepted. He preached his ordination trial in Fifth Church, Allegheny City, August 6. 1867,and was ordained and installed at Four Mile, September 17, 1867. Rev. J. B. Clark preached the sermon from John 10, 14, 15, presided and led in the ordination prayer. Rev. J. W. Witherspoon addressed the pastor, and Rev. J. G. Barnes the people. At West Union, June 13, 1871, he was released, and directed to declare the pulpit vacant on the last Sabbath of June; and so his pastorate was three years, eight months and twenty-six days. For your present pastor the call was made on the eleventh of November, 1874. He commenced his labors on the first Sabbath of January, 1875 and was installed the seventeenth of February, 1875. Rev. J. D. Glenn preached the sermon. Rev. J. C. Evans presided. Rev. G. McElheny addressed the pastor, and Rev. John Patterson the people. And thus the existence of the congregation from is organization, July 1812 to November, 1876, is sixty-four years and three months. During that time the congregation has had a pastor part time, or whole time, forty-one years and six months, being vacant twenty-two years and nine months. Or the congregation has had a pastor seventeen years, five months and two days for one-third time; five years, nine months and ten days whole time; sixteen years, five months and six days one-half time, and one year and ten months three-fourths time. Four of the five who have been pastors of the congregation, are still living and able to engage actively in the work of the ministry.


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