CLOSED CHURCHES WITHIN THE PRESENT BOUNDARIES OF THE

SUSQUEHANNA CONFERENCE OF THE UNITED METHODIST CHURCH
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MONTOUR COUNTY PA


1. Bethel ME

Bethel.jpg 

Location: PA 44, west of White Hall
Municipality:
Anthony township
County:
Montour
State:
PA

Directions: 
    From the village of White Hall, go 1 mile west on PA 44.  The site is on the north side of the highway, in the V where Fairview Road goes off to the north.  The church stood about where the red metal shed now stands.

Historic Conference:
    Central Pennsylvania Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church 

Journal references:
    1930,59 - permission to sell
    1937,31 - permission to sell

Brief History:
    While this appointment was part of the Washingtonville charge for most of its existence, it began as an appointment on the Jerseytown charge and ended as a part of the Montandon charge.   This frame chapel was dedicated December 18, 1887.

Final disposition:
      The building was used by the Church of Nazarene until 1970, when they sold it and relocated.  The structure was then razed and replaced by the metal building that now houses Montour Construction.


2. Danville Emmanuel EV

 

Location: Front and Iron Streets
Municipality:
Danville borough
County:
Montour
State:
PA

Directions: 
    Front Street runs parallel to the Susquehanna River and is the first street to cross PA 54 on the Danville side of the Bridge.  Iron Street is about 6 blocks east of PA 54.

Historic Conference:
     Central Pennsylvania Conference of the Evangelical Church

Journal references:
    1887,16 - permission to relocate "to a more congenial locality"  [apparently not executed]

Brief History:
    In 1867, R.A. Stokes was appointed to establish a regular appointment in Danville.  Prior to that time Evangelicals in the town had been visited on an irregular basis by pastors from neighboring charges.  The first services were held in Thompson Hall, which stood on the southwest corner of Mill and West Mahoning Streets.  In 1869, the plot of land on the southeast corner of Iron and East Front Streets was obtained.  The building there was dedicated in the fall of 1871 and used until the congregation was merged into St. Paul's [former Methodist] in 1969.

Final disposition:
     


3. Limestoneville ME

Limestoneville.JPG

Location: 529 Limestone Road, village of Limestoneville
Municipality:
Limestone township
County:
Montour
State:
PA

Directions: 
    From Washingtonville, go 4.5 miles west on PA 254 to Strick Road.  Go 0.5 miles north on Strick Road to Limestone Road and the village of Limestoneville.  Turn right on Limestone Road and go 0.5 miles to the last house in town on the right.

Historic Conference:
    Central Pennsylvania Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church         

Journal references:

Brief History:
    The property on which the church was located was deed to the denomination by Daniel S. Schmeck and his wife Mary on December 28, 1841.  This small Methodist building was served by ministers from Washingtonville.  It was abandoned in 1878 and sold for use as a residence.  As property in nearby Mexico was deeded to the denomination in 1879, it appears that this closure represented a planned congregational move and/or consolidation.  It is reported that there once was a cemetery behind the church, but the ground has been plowed over.

Final disposition:
     The building as been resided and is a private residence.


4. Long's ME
   
long.jpg

Location: Columbia Hill Road
Municipality:
West Hemlock township
County:
Montour
State:
PA

Directions: 
    From PA 42, on the west edge of Bloomsburg between US 11 and I-80, go west on Frosty Valley Road 6.5 miles to Columbia Hill Road.  Turn right on Columbia Hill Road and go 2 miles.  The site is on the left, just past Welliver Road, in front of the cemetery.

Historic Conference:
    Central Pennsylvania Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church         

Journal references:

Brief History:
      Long's Church was erected in 1869.  For most of its existence it was on the Buckhorn charge whose May 17, 1927, quarterly conference authorized the sale of the building.  Some reports indicate this structure was also known as the Frosty Valley Church, but it is believed that the Frosty Valley building was on Frosty Valley Road in Columbia Vounty.

Final disposition:
      The building was sold to a John Arnwine on August 20, 1928.  It was used as the West Hemlock Township Community Hall for many years until 2008, when the township erected a new building to the north and tore down the old church.  The old church stood in the parking lot in front of the cemetery and to the left of the present township building.


5. Mahoning ME

[no picture]

Location: Bloom Road
Municipality:
Mahoning township
County:
Montour
State:
PA

Directions: 
    Go 2 miles east of Danville on Blood Street/Road to Kaseville Road.  The church supposedly stood along the south side of Bloom Road, about 100 yards east of the intersection with Kaseville Road.

Historic Conference:
    Central Pennsylvania Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church         

Journal references:

Brief History:
     This structure was also known as the "Little White Church."  It was erected in 1848 on land deeded by Solomon Rishel and his wife Sarah.  Originally on the Buckhorn charge, it later came under the care of the Danville Trinity congregation.  The appointment was discontinued and the building was sold and removed in 1912.

Final disposition:
     


6. McKees Heights ME
    [Fairview Union ME]

mckee.jpg 

Location: 345 Fairview Road, McKee Heights
Municipality:
Anthony township
County:
Montour
State:
PA

Directions: 
    From the village of White Hall, go 1 mile west on PA 44 to the Y with Fairview Road.  Bear right on to Fairview Road an go 3 miles to McKees Heights, at the intersection with the Exchange-Muncy Road.  The church is at the insection.

Historic Conference:
    Central Pennsylvania Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church         

Journal references:

Brief History:
    This appointment was part of the Washingtonville charge.  While secular histories identify the building here as Methodist, the official 1915 journal describes it as a union building owned in part by the Methodists and sometimes it is listed in the journal as the "Union" or "Fairview" appointment.  The 1896 cornerstone identifies the structure as the Fairview Union Church.  The other domination/group that had financial interest in the building is not known.

Final disposition:
     The building is now home to the Fairview Church of the Nazarene.


7. Mexico ME

mexico.jpg 

Location: village of Mexico
Municipality:
Liberty township
County:
Montour
State:
PA

Directions: 
    From Washingtonville, go 0.5 miles west on PA 254 to Mexico Road.  Bear left onto Mexico Road and go 4.5 miles to the village of Mexico.  The building pictured is the school house, looking west along Mexico Road.  The Billmeyer lands were west of the school house, and the church is believed to have stood about 0.3 miles west of the school house.

Historic Conference:
    Central Pennsylvania Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church         

Journal references:

Brief History:
    The property on which the church stood was deeded to the denomination by Daniel Billmeyer and his wife Christina in 1879.  This appointment was part of the Montandon charge.  A brick Methodist building stood not far from the Mexico one-room frame school building.   The last reported membership in the journal is 7, as part of the Montandon charge in 1925.  The appointment was then discontinued, and the building was removed. 

Final disposition:
     


8. Sharp Ridge ME

 

Location: Sharp Ridge Road
Municipality:
Mayberry township
County:
Montour
State:
PA

Directions: 
    From Elysburg, go north on PA 54 2 miles to High Road.  Turn right on High Road and continue north for 2 miles to the intersection with Sharp Ridge Road.  Go straight onto SharpRidge Road for 1 mile.  The site is on the left, in front of the cemetery/pavillion, opposite of where Sharp Ridge Road turns off to the east.

Historic Conference:
    Central Pennsylvania Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church         

Journal references:
   
 1961,48 - permission to dismantle the building and dispose of the property

Brief History:
    Early area Methodists met in the Osmond schoolhouse at Roaring Creek.  A church building was reportedly erected on the site in 1856 and supplied from Elysburg.  The building pictured above was dedicated November 26, 1882.  Services here were discontinued in 1945, LaRue Bender being the last preacher of record.  From 1945 to 1961, the last members continued to meet once a year for an annual picnic, the last one being August 5, 1961. 

Final disposition:
     A sale was held to dispose of the building's contents.  The building was sold to a Mr. Wildsmith of Catawissa, with the condition that it be dismantled and/or otherwise removed.  The land on which the church building stood reverted back to the Bird heirs, according to 1858 deed.  Peter Schleigh of Elysburg was the auctioneer for the sale of the building and the contents, the proceeds of which were turned over to the Sharp Ridge Cemetery Association, owners of the adjacent remaining cemetery and pavilion.


9. Sheep's EV
   [St. John's EV]

 

Location: PA 642
Municipality:
West Hemlock township
County:
Montour
State:
PA

Directions: 
    From the intersection north of Danville of PA 54 and PA 642, go 5 miles northeast on P{A 642.  The church is on the left.

Historic Conference:
     Central Pennsylvania Conference if the Evangelical Church.

Journal references:
    
1886,9 - "that Jerseytown, Trinity Chapel, Turbotville, Limestoneville, Sheep's School House and Salem church be taken from Danville and constituted a single-handed circuit to be called Turbotville circuit."  [Note:  Except for Sheep's, these appointments taken from Danville cannot be identified with certainty.  It is assumed there were no Evangelical buildings at Jerseytown or Limestoneville or Turbotville, and that the Salem reference is to Unityville Salem ― but Trinity Chapel remains a mystery, although it is also called Hurley-Trinity Chapel.]
     1916,58 - "that St. John's appointment be be detached from White Deer circuit and attached to Espy circuit."  [Note: The transfer appears to have been from the Milton circuit, which was being attached to the White Deer circuit.  As St. John's was so far east, it appears that it was to be assigned to the Espy circuit ― but it appears that further reflection made it seem like the Unityville would be a better choice, partly because that charge was struggling because of the denominational split and had been demoted to "mission" status.]
     1917,52 - "On Unityville Mission...new lights [were] placed in the St. John's church at a cost of $117."
     1918,60 - "that St. John's be detached from Unity Mission and be added to West Milton Mission."

Brief History:
      Sheep is a local family name.  The appointment existed as early as 1870, when the conference journal notes that it was transferred from the Danville mission and attached to the Northumberland circuit.  It appears on the records in 1883 with 18 members.  By 1885, the Sunday School was reporting 45 members.  The congregation met in the nearby Sheep's schoolhouse for many years.  The church building was erected in 1886, and the property was formally deeded to the Evangelical Association in 1887.  The church had been discontinued prior to the 1968 union that created the United Methodist denomination, but the building was not sold until 1975.

Final disposition:
      The building now houses the St. John's [Sheep's] Bible Church.


10. Washingtonville ME

washingtonville.jpg

Location: Church Street and Pear Alley, Washingtonville
Municipality:
Washingtonville borough
County:
Montour
State:
PA

Directions: 
    Church Street is the "upper" street that parallels PA 54.  The building is on the northeast corner of Church Street and Pear Alley.

Historic Conference:
    Central Pennsylvania Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church 

Journal references:
   
1926,243 - permission to sell

Brief History:
    The original building was erected in 1852 and destroyed by a tornado in August 1888.  A rebuilt structure was dedicated January 6, 1889.  The Washingtonville charge generally included buildings at Bethel, Hendrickson, McKees Heights and Washingtonville.  While Washingtonville was the largest town on the charge, and the location of the parsonage, the congregation was not large.  The first regular supplemental statistics in 1916 list the memberships at the four appointments as 15,30,28 and 7.  Other appointments earlier served from Washingtonville include Opps Mills (in Lycoming County) and Mahoning.  Beginning in 1925 Washingtonville was no longer a separate charge, and the remaining appointments were added to Montandon.  The last reported membership in the journal is 7, as part of the Montandon charge in 1925. 

Final disposition:
     After being sold, the structure was used for many years for feed storage.  It was then used as a Jehovah's Witness church building, and now has been converted into apartments.  The Methodist cemetery still exists behind the apartments.