Brethren Historical Library and Archives

Hidden gems: Images of Brethren baptisms from the early 1900s

Here are several photographic images of Church of the Brethren baptisms in the early 1900s. All are from the photographic collection of the Brethren Historical Library and Archives. Each minister baptizing was either already an elder or became one during the course of their ministry. The eldership was officially abolished by the Church of the Brethren in 1967.

Charles Nesselrodt baptizing in Stony Creek near the Stony Creek Church of the Brethren, Basye, Virginia, in 1905. William L. Mumaw, photographer.
Photo by William L. Mumaw

Charles Nesselrodt baptizing in Stony Creek near the Stony Creek Church of the Brethren, Basye, Virginia, in 1905.

The cover of Terrell Barkley's biography of Elder Charles Nesselrodt (Lot’s Wife Publishing, 3rd ed., 2004), which is now available from Brethren Press.
Book cover image courtesy of Brethren Press

The cover of Terrell Barkley's biography of Elder Charles Nesselrodt (Lot’s Wife Publishing, 3rd ed., 2004), which is now available from Brethren Press.

Elder Samuel Pence baptizing in Mill Creek near the Mill Creek Church of the Brethren, Port Republic, Virginia, about 1915. Elder Pence’s daughter, Esther Pence Garber, wrote the delightful Button Shoes and Counting My Buttons about her large Shenandoah Valley family, both books published by Brethren Press in the 1970s.
Photo by Thomas I. Bowman

Elder Samuel Pence baptizing in Mill Creek near the Mill Creek Church of the Brethren, Port Republic, Virginia, about 1915. Elder Pence’s daughter, Esther Pence Garber, wrote the delightful Button Shoes and Counting My Buttons about her large Shenandoah Valley family, both books published by The Brethren Press in the 1970s.

Madison Wine baptizing near the Fruitdale Church of the Brethren, Fruitdale, Alabama, in 1910. W. B. Stover Collection. Fruitdale is the oldest Brethren congregation in Alabama.
Photo from the W. B. Stover Collection.

Madison Wine baptizing near the Fruitdale Church of the Brethren, Fruitdale, Alabama, in 1910. Fruitdale is the oldest Brethren congregation in Alabama.