Stewart Bell Jr. Archives
Handley Regional Library
Winchester-Frederick County Historical Society
P.O. Box 58, Winchester, VA 22604
(540) 662-9041 ext. 17
Inventory created by Archives Staff 07/1983. Last revised 05/2018.
ACCESS RESTRICTIONS: Collection is open to all researchers.
USE RESTRICTIONS: Restrictions may apply concerning the use, photoduplication, or publication of items in this collection. Consult a member of the archives staff for information concerning these restrictions. The user assumes all responsibility for identifying and satisfying any claimants of copyright.
EXTENT: 0.21 linear feet
ALTERNATIVE FORM AVAILABLE: The Genealogical Society of Utah digitized selected materials from this collection in 2007. These copies are available on DVD GSU 009-03 in the Archives Room.
SCOPE AND CONTENT: The Opequon Presbyterian Church collection contains papers, speeches, bulletins, correspondence, histories, and news articles concerning the history of the Church’s buildings and grounds and its congregations.
BIOGRAPHICAL/HISTORICAL: The original Opequon congregation began meeting in a log house in 1736 on land donated by William Hoge just west of Kernstown, VA. It operated under the oversight of Donegal (PA) Presbytery. In 1755, John Hoge took over as the first settled minister of Opequon Presbyterian Church. The congregation grew, necessitating two new log buildings. By 1790, the congregation had torn down these buildings and replaced them with a larger stone building. The congregation remained relatively small through the 1800s and suffered some disruption during the Civil War. The church building was badly damaged when Union troops tore out the floor and woodworking for firewood. The soldiers also used the building as a stable and desecrated the cemetery. As a result there were no services conducted from 1863 to 1866. In 1873, the small congregation had nearly finished all the repair work when a fire burned the structure to the ground. For the next 24 years, the congregation met at Kernstown Methodist and Mennonite churches. In 1877, the present stone church was built and an educational facility was added in 1956. The church celebrated its 250th anniversary as a continuous congregation in 1986 and it continues to be active today.
CITE AS: Opequon Presbyterian Church Collection, 295 WFCHS/THL, Stewart Bell Jr. Archives, Handley Regional Library, Winchester, VA, USA.
ACQUISITION INFORMATION: Acquired as a gift
Bicentennial Commission—gift to Ireland
Building fund campaign, 1954, includes an historic paper read by Dr. H. M. White at the dedication of Opequon Church, October 30, 1897, 3 books, printed
Church bulletins, 2 items:
installation and ordination of Robert C. Bradford, Jr., July 9, 1950
250th anniversary banquet, October 5, 1986, includes list of pastors
Correspondence - letter to Mildred Hook from R. B. Woodworth, 1937, 2 leaves
"Historic Opequon Church," by Lennart Pearson, August 7, 1964, 1 item, typescript, photocopy
Historic paper prepared by Reverend Henry M. White, October 30, 1897, at dedication of the new church, 6 items, typescript
Historic paper prepared by Robert Bradford, Jr., October l3, 1961, 9 leaves, typescript
"(The) History of Winchester Presbytery," 1936, 21 pages, printed
"Old Burying Grounds of Opequon Church, 1736-1938," by G. Langdon Gordon, booklet published in 1996, 1 item, typescript
National Register of Historic Places Registration Form – Opequon Presbyterian Church, Aug. 30, 2000, prepared by Helen Lee Fletcher and C. Langdon Gordon, 18 leaves, typescript (photocopy)
Newspaper articles, 3 items, typescript, photocopy
Organization of Opequon Church by R. B. Woodworth, April 8, 1936
Sketch of the Historic Opequon Presbyterian Church, Winchester, VA, by C. Langdon Gordon, 1984, 3 items: 2 printed booklets, 1 item 5 pages, mimeographed