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Albany and Vicinity-The Capital District
BY PAUL B. MATTICE.
OME was set on seven hills, Albany is located on many. Governor Thomas Dongan gave Albany its charter in 1682. It became the State capital in 1797 and is the fifth largest city in the State. Within a 100mile radius of the City Hall dwell 1,350,000 persons today. This is known as the capital district. It is famed country. It claims such world-renowned figures as Hudson, Champlain, Anneke Jans, Sir William Johnson, Philip Livingston (signer of the Declaration of Independence), the Schuylers and the Van Rensselaers. In the Colonial and Revolutionary periods Albany was a center of military activity. The Albany Bar has been famed for its great names. Chancellors Kent and Walworth, Martin Van Buren, the Peckhams, David B. Hill, Amasa J. Parker and Samuel Hand were the legal leaders of the country in their day. The third law school in the United States was organized in Albany. William McKinley, Justice David J. Brewer, Chief Judge Alton B. Parker were trained there. Benjamin F. Butler practised law at one time in Albany.
The first of the noted hotels of Albany was the Tontine, built in 1800. DeWitt Clinton, Alexander Hamilton, Aaron Burr, Jerome Bonaparte and the celebrated Frenchman, Moreau, stopped at this hostelry. Congress Hall was next in importance; it was erected in 1815. Thurlow Weed and William H. Seward schemed law and politics under its roof. General Lafayette was given a dinner and a reception there in 1825 by the city. Stanwix Hall, the headquarters of the Luther League convention, was built in 1832 by Herman and Peter Ganzevoort and named in honor of the fort their father, Gen. Peter Ganzevoort, had commanded in the Revolution. The Schuyler mansion is one of the most noted of Colonial residences. Alexander Hamilton was married and General Burgoyne held a prisoner of war within its portals.
The first bank of Albany was organized in 1792. The total clearances of the banks of Albany for 1911 was $314,737,890. Troy has seventeen banks, Schenectady six; Cohoes, Hudson, Glens Falls and Saratoga are well supplied; all are in the capital district. As a banking center, Albany stands third in New York State.
Albany's first newspaper, the Gazette, made its appearance in 1771. Robert Livingston, of
Albany, was the financial backer of Captain Kidd, of piratical fame. Philip Sheridan, the great cavalry leader of the Civil War, was born in Albany. Scholars, statesmen, soldiers, authors and publicists, whose names and accomplishments are known to every child in school, have contributed to the overflowing treasury of achievement. Besides having the most costly and ornate building of any State in the Union, Albany also boasts of the most beautiful and expensive educational and departmental building in the world. The largest collar industry in the United States thrives in Troy.
The most famous summer resort in the world is Saratoga Springs. One of the few Government arsenals is located at Watervliet. The third largest mail depot and one of the biggest coal marts in the United States are located in Albany. One of the two bell foundries in the United States is a part of the industrial life of this district. Schenectady is distinguished for the largest manufactory of electrical apparatus and one of the largest locomotive plants. Albany is the only place in the United States where an official study and measurement of the stars is conducted. Albany has the oldest and largest bailing press factory in the world, and the largest factory in the world devoted to the manufacture of car heating apparatus, axle grease, aniline dyes, gas meters and photographic supplies. Agriculture is the chief pursuit of this district. The soil is almost as productive as the bottom lands of the Nile. Transportation facilities are the best and most diversified; State roads, auto bus lines, steamship lines affording the finest accommodations known for water travel, and six of the leading railway systems of the country enter Albany. More than 380 passenger trains enter daily. The tri-city section contains 53 hospitals, 144 schools, 228 churches, 942 societies, clubs and lodges, and about 600 acres of parks. This is a strategic point in a military sense; it is central in reference to transportation. Musical, educational and social interests are second only to New York. The completion of the 1,000-ton barge canal, the prospect of the United States Government deepening the Hudson, is but a meager promise of what the future holds in store for a district that has grown from the blockhouse of Rensselaerwyck to a community of 1,350,000 progressive and industrious people.
BY WILLIAM B. JONES,
LBANY today is not only one of the most beautiful cities in America, but also ranks in commercial and financial importance with cities many times its size. Albany is a city of homes. This is not only apparent from the appearance of the houses, but also from statistics of the United States census, in which Albany is credited with a larger percentage of house owners than any city of its size in the country. With railway facilities unsurpassed and at the terminus of the Erie and Champlain canals, Albany now ranks third in wealth among the municipalities of the Empire State.
The water supply for domestic and sanitary uses is unexcelled by any city of its size. Albany has one of the largest filtration plants in the country. There are in Albany 18 parks, covering over 306 acres. The principal one is Washington Park, which extends over 90 acres, and has nearly four miles of driveway and six miles of walk. This park is noted as being one of the most beautiful in the country. Albany has 85 churches. The city has five hospitals. The Albany Hospital is one of the finest equipped hospital buildings in the world, constructed on the pavilion plan, covering 16 acres of ground, and has over 200,000 square feet of floor space.
Few cities have such facilities for research as has Albany. The magnificent State Library
just being housed in the new State Education Building, with its almost innumerable volumes, will be at the convenience of the people at all times. There are also twelve other libraries in the city.
Albany is the center of six trunk lines of steam railroads with 380 passenger and over 350 freight trains each day; here also converge the river lines with passenger steamers during the summer season, making sixty-six trips in and out of the city each day. Albany has an extensive system of street railways that covers nearly every section of the city, and new lines are constantly being built. The city is also the center of a network of suburban lines. These roads pass through fifty-two cities and villages, directly connecting them with Albany.
Albany presents a thousand attractions to the student, patriot, statesman, wage earner, and greatest of all, to that most practical of philanthropists, the the enterprising capitalist seeking safe investments in real estate or in the establishment of productive industries. The time is not far distant when the present population of Albany and environs will have become doubled in number, and when of the United States it shall be what it now is of the great Empire State, the most attractive city for the display of industrial and commercial enterprise.
Lutheran Churches of Albany and Vicinity
BY GILES V. B. SCHUMANN.
IN view of the approaching celebration in Albany a short sketch of some of the Lutheran churches in and about the city may not be amiss. There are in all nine Lutheran churches, divided as follows: Four to the General Council, two to the General Synod and three to the Missouri Synod.
We are sorry that we cannot give a sketch of each. We start with St. John's. Her history dates back to 1854. Misunderstandings in St. Paul's (Missouri) led to thirty-two souls separating themselves with the determination to organize a new congregation. In 1857 the little band agreed to apply to New York Ministerium for admission. On May 4 of that year the Rev. Gottlieb Fachtmann was called
as pastor, who conducted services in an old building that was used as a city mission. The complete organization took place on June 2, 1857. Pastor Fachtmann, however, soon returned to Germany and the young congregation, upon the advice of the Ministerium, sought help in the services of Pastor Christian Hennicke, who was pastor in the south section of the city. The congregation felt the need of separate existence, and in October, 1858, was incorporated and immediately sought to procure a church home. The cornerstone was laid on January 25, 1859. Because the congregation refused to unite with the Buffalo Synod, of which Pastor Hennicke was a member, he refused to serve it any further, so the
congregation was compelled to call its own pastor. Hence on March 9 a unanimous call was extended to Pastor Ernst Hoffmann. It was accepted and on May I he took up the work, on which day the church was also dedicated.
With the growth of the congregation the need of a larger church edifice was felt. At a meeting held on June 22, 1885, it was decided to build, and on September 20 the foundation was laid. In the following May the new church was dedicated and the old one moved to the rear, its present position. Pastor Hoffmann, who since May 3 found an assistant in his son, Dr. Hugo W., did not long enjoy the fruit of his labors. As he was going, at the conclusion of conference held at Castleton, from the church to the station, he was suddenly stricken, and expired in the arms of his son, September 21, 1887.
The congregation soon after called his son, Rev. Dr. Hugo W. Hoffmann. Under his blessed labors the church undoubtedly reached the zenith of its growth. After his resignation Dr. Pick assumed charge, during whose pastorate the parsonage was purchased. This was afterward sold and a new one built next to the church. Upon his resignation, in 1901, the Rev. O. Krauch, of Saugerties, N. Y., the present incumbent, was called, who has labored with abundant success. In 1900 the Luther League presented the cl:urch with a beautiful organ at a cost of $3,500. In 1907, St. John's celebrated her fiftieth anniversary amid the great rejoicing of her faithful children. May she continue to prosper and be the light and comfort of those committed to her care!
The Church of the Redeemer held its first services in Sprague Chapel in 1888. The Rev. T. B. Roth, D. D., pastor of the Redeemer, Utica, N. Y., was elected provisional pastor, having virtually founded the congregation and serving both congregations for eight months. In November of the same year Dr. D. P. Roth, of Butler, Pa., assumed the pastorate, during which its finely located property was secured. A temporary church was located and the dwelling turned into a very comfortable parsonage. In 1895, the Rev. J. C. Seegers, D. D., became the pastor and organized Emmanuel's in the south end. In 1901, the Rev. H. D. Spaeth, D. D., entered upon the duties of pastor, giving to the congregation the longest period of pastoral service in its history, nine years. In this time the interior of the church was renovated, large church debt removed and
pipe organ installed. Congregation and pastor were active in the formation of the New York and New England Synod.
Rev. Ernest M. Grahn, present pastor, took charge of the work in 1910. Early in his pastorate a large addition was built to the rear of the church and improvements to church and parsonage made. The congregation will celebrate its twenty-fifth anniversary in April next and it is confidently hoped to do so free of debt. It is looking forward to a beautiful church home in the near future.
Emmanuel's is a child of the Redeemer, as has been already stated. Organized in 1899 by Dr. Seegers, the first pastor was the Rev. W. A. Lambert, who is now identified with the Slay work. Rev. J. Reichert served them seven years, then followed Rev. J. Stelljes, and now the Rev. A. B. Obenschain. The congregation numbers two hundred communicant members and has a neat church property.
A glance at Troy and then at Rensselaer, just across the river from Albany, will complete this sketch.
One hundred years ago there was a German Lutheran congregation in Troy, but it was absorbed by the English churches other than Lutheran.
Trinity celebrated its fortieth anniversary in 1911. In 1874, the original frame structure was destroyed by fire and the present brick structure erected, in the center of the collar industry. It numbers three hundred communicants and has a branch Sunday school in North Troy.
Although Rensselaer is so close to Albany that Lutherans living here can easily reach their own churches, yet it was deemed advisable to have our own church on the east side of the river. In 1901, missionary operations were begun and the field canvassed by our Troy brethren, and in September, 1901, the first services of St. Paul's were held in a G. A. R. hall. An organization was effected with forty-six charter members. In 1904, ground was broken for the present edifice, and on June 5 the cornerstone was laid. The Rev. J. M. Derrick was the first pastor and served ten years, when the writer of this article was called. They have a beautiful property valued at $10,000, nearly free of debt, and a membership which is growing. The Franckean Synod held its last session in this church before it lost its identity in the greater body known as the Synod of New York.
Seventeenth Convention at Jersey City, October 12, 1912
HE seventeenth annual convention of the
Luther League of New Jersey was held on Columbus Day, October 12, in the Church of the Holy Trinity, Jersey City, Rev. E. E. Neudewitz pastor.
After the devotional services, conducted by Rev. G. H. Bechtold, of Asbury Park, the address of welcome was made by the pastor loci. Carl E. Thorbeck responded and expressed the gratitude of the delegates for the cordial reception and the hope that the benefit derived would be mutual.
President Thorbeck in his report stated that he had made a determined effort to secure the membership of more Leagues. His recommendation to secure the services of National Secretary Kuhns for one month was adopted. Secretary Kuhns at this point brought the greetings of the various State Leagues, whose conventions he had recently attended.
The question of district leagues was opened and a spirited discussion followed, and the resolution was adopted dividing the State into two districts, the lines of division to be determined by the executive committee.
National President Stoever addressed the convention and emphasized the necessity for more earnest prayer in our work.
The Rev. F. H. Bosch, of New York City, discussed the question of the Junior League, setting forth as its aims the education of the minds of the children and the redemption of their souls. The social side is too much overdrawn and should be minimized and be given its proper place.
The election of officers resulted as follows: Rev. G. H. Bechtold, Asbury Park, president; Miss E. A. Busch, Jersey City, recording secretary; Miss Emma Rothfritz, Asbury Park, corresponding secretary; Miss Gertrude Krais, Newark, statistical secretary; Miss Mary Sarstedt, Riverside, treasurer.
The question box, conducted by Rev. Kuhns, brought forth many helpful hints for successful League work, viz.: Business should be transacted quickly; League must have a definite propaganda; raising of money should be a minor consideration; pastors must have a living interest in the League.
President Pestke, of State League, of Wisconsin, presented greetings from the Leaguers of his State.
At the evening session the keynote of the convention was sounded: "Lengthen thy cords; strengthen thy stakes." Rev. G. A. Genzmer described the return of the exiles from the Babylonian captivity to rebuild Jerusalem. Few in number, with a great task before them, they were not discouraged or even self satis fied, but were intent on growing and expanding. So we too must enlarge our tents and extend our work. After the first wave of enthusiasm is over comes the ebb tide, which calls for increased effort and labor. Therefore "lengthen the cords; strengthen the stakes." Enlarging means that we must also strengthen, so as we grow we must give the new members something to do, something that is solid. They can get all the flimsy things in the world. Bring them into touch with Christ.
Rev. F. V. Christ took as his theme "Intensity," and showed how the men of intense spirit in all ages could turn the world upside down. Just as men are interested in spreading evil, so we should be intensely interested in spreading the gospel. Laymen should put this intensity in their work. All can be preachers and deaconnesses by serving the Lord with intense earnestness."
In point of attendance the convention was not very large, but the interest and enthusiasm of those present fully compensated their presence for a strenuous day's work.
If you would increase your happiness and prolong your life, forget your neighbors' faults, forget all the slander you have ever heard, forget the temptation, blot out as far as possible all the disagreeable things in life. They will come but they will only grow larger when you remember them. Obliterate everything unpleasant from yesterday, start out with a clean sheet today and write upon it, for sweet memory's sake, only things which are lovely and lovable.
"None of us ever forget self when we go away in the summer. Let us not forget the Church in our prayers, in our offerings and support, and in our deepest interests. Who forgets his or her Church at such a time has little thought of the Master; for the Church is His, purchased with His blood, and dear to Him as the apple of His eye."-St. Mark's Messenger.
Twenty-five Years in Ministry; General Secretary Ten Years
BY E. F. EILERT
EVERY member of the Luther League will
join in the congratulations we have to offer to our genial General Secretary on the completion of twenty-five years in the ministry and ten years of valuable service in the Luther League work.
In October, 1897, Rev. Luther M. Kuhns was ordained by the Pittsburgh Synod and has devoted a quarter of a century of his life to the cause of Christ in a way that has endeared him to every Lutheran in this land and in many foreign lands. He has worked without ceasing and most unselfishly in the young people's movement of our Church since the organization of the Luther League of America, in 1895.
We print below what was said in the REVIEW at the time of the General Secretary's election:
"At a meeting of the National Executive Committee, held in President Stoever's office in Philadelphia on November 15, 1902, Rev. Luther M. Kuhns, of Omaha, Neb., was unanimously elected General Secretary and accepted the office to assume the duties as soon as possible.
"Rev. Kuhns is not unknown to Luther. Leaguers. He has been a member of the National Executive Committee from the date of the organization of the Luther League of America in 1895 at Pittsburgh. Those who attended the first national convention remember with pleasure the manner in which he spoke for the young Lutherans of the West and all alike were most favorably impressed. He has been greatly interested in the work of the National League ever since and has realized with the officers and other Executive Committee members the importance of having a General Secretary in the field. After prayerful thought the national officers were convinced that Rev. Kuhns was the man to undertake this work, and he also realized the great opportunities and possibilities which finally led to the determination to give up his charge at Omaha and accept the call to the National Secretaryship of the Luther League of America.
"Rev. Luther M. Kuhns was born in Omaha, his parents being the late Rev. Dr. Henry W. and Charlotta (Hay) Kuhns. For generations the family on both sides have been Lutherans. His grandfather, John Kuhns, was
REV. LUTHER M. KUHNS. Gettysburg, from which institution he graduated in '83. He received his theological education at the seminary at Gettysburg; was licensed by the Maryland Synod and ordained by the Pittsburgh Synod.
"In June, 1888, he was sent as missionary to Omaha, where he has enjoyed a most successful ministry. He is pastor of Grace Lutheran Church; has built and furnished two churches, and the congregation has today a splendid church edifice valued at $25,000 and, except a small loan from the Board of Church Extension, all out of debt.
"He has been chairman of the Education Committee of Nebraska Synod for a number of years, its Statistical Secretary for a long time, for twelve years secretary of the Committee on Traveling Secretary, for several terms secretary of the Nebraska Synod, and for three successive terms president of the Synod, the constitutional limit. He was the