This is a photograph of the congregation of Witherspoon United Presbyterian Church in Indianapolis, IN in 1909, two years after they organized. This photograph is from the personal collection of my cousin Vivian Vaughn McDonald. My grandmother Pearl Reed Cleage is the third person on the top right. My grandfather, Albert Cleage is next to her. They wouldn’t be married for two more years. Next to Albert is his brother Jacob and next to him is their brother Henry. Directly in front of my grandfather Albert is Jacob’s wife, Gertrude. Three people over from Henry is James Cleage, their sister Josephine’s husband. He was from a different Cleage branch. In the second row, second from the right is Henrietta Cleage, oldest daughter of James and Josephine. Although the woman 4th from the left, front row, looks like Josephine to me, I’m told Josephine was not there for the photo but was home pregnant with Hattie Ruth, the youngest of her five children.
In the 1909 Indianapolis City Directory Witherspoon United Presbyterian Church is listed as located in Realty Hall with Rev. David White as Pastor.
Here is another photograph in front of the church. Also from my cousin Vivian’s collection. Josephine Cleage is on the far right, wearing a dark dress. The history below if from the Witherspoon web page, however they seem to have taken the history section down.
On April 30, 1907 the Presbytery of Indiana of the United Presbyterian Church held a called meeting at Realty Hall in response to a petition signed by 31 persons asking to be organized into a United Presbyterian congregation.
Begins With 31 Members
Prof. David Graham of Rushville was moderator and Rev. W. W. McCall of Greensburg was secretary. Other members present were Rev. Fred W. Schmuch of Milroy, Rev. N. B. McClung of Vevay, Rev. Mr. McDill of Madison, and Dr. Cowan of Indianapolis.
The petition was discussed at some length. By unanimous vote an organization was decided upon. The 31 members who signed the petition were as follows: Henry W. Cleage, Mrs. Carrie Perkins, Mrs. Emma Moore, A. T. Roney, Mrs. Cora Donann, Mrs. Cathern Crenshaw, Mrs. Daisy L. Brabham, Albert Cleage, Mrs. Gertrude Cleage, James Myers, Mrs. A. L. McElrath, O. F. Dennis, Mrs. Hattie Mitchell, H. M. Mitchell, Mrs. Theresa Finley, Othello Finley, Miss Edith Finley, Miss Luell E. Hibbett, Mrs. Mary Peterson, Mrs. Anna Bowman, John T. Fox, Miss Pearl Reed, Thomas H. Bransford, Mrs. O. F. Dennis, Miss Alice Mathews, Miss Hilda Reeder, W. J. Perkins, Henry Moore and H. L. Hummons.
For other fine Sepia Saturday photographs dealing with windows or lights or who knows click here. My family seems to have a habit of starting churches. To see a photograph of the congregation of a church started by the maternal branch of the family click Plymouth Congregational Church.