St. George's United Methodist Church, Philadelphia, PA



St. George's United Methodist Church, Philadelphia, PA


Historic St. George’s United Methodist Church of Philadelphia is the oldest Methodist Church in America. Located in Philadelphia, the Church was founded by Captain Thomas Webb and the Methodist Society of Philadelphia in 1769 for the purpose of practicing Methodist religion. In December of 1769, a Missionary of John Wesley, Joseph Pilmore, held the first prayer meeting at church followed later by Thomas Coke and Bishop Francis Asbury. Bishop Asbury was the first pastor of St. George’s United Methodist Church and ordained as many as 35 ministers in the Methodist faith within America during his travels.

Two African Americans, Richard Allen and Absalom Jones, licensed as lay preachers of Methodism eventually left the church because of racial tensions and formed two new congregations. Richard Allen formed Mother Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church. Absalom Jones turned to the Episcopal faith and established St. Thomas’ African Episcopal Church.

St. George’s is known as “the church that moved the bridge” as the Benjamin Franklin Bridge was rerouted in the 1920s, so the Church would not be demolished by its construction. St. George’s records consist of conference letters, account books, baptism, death, and marriage records as well as Journals, Diaries, etc.

Collection Items

Manuscript is the diary of David Dailey from 1817.

Diary of David Dailey from April 7th 1819 to March 7th 1820 in which he traveled on the Cambridge Circuit.

Manuscript is an Account of a Camp Meeting held on the Tangier Island in August 1819. Meeting was plagued with storm and heavy rains that affected daily plans for prayer, sermons, and other scheduled events.

David Dailey's Diary from April 5th 1813 - April 5th 1814. Diary covers the time he - David Dailey - travelled in the Dorchester Circuit.

Second Diary of David Dailey from April 5th 1814 - April 16th 1815. Diary covers the time in which he travelled on Smyrna and then the Cambridge Circuit.

Third Diary of David Daily spanning April 20th 1815 - April 16th 1816, which covers his first year's travels on the Snow-Hill circuit.

Fourth Diary of David Dailey spanning April 17th 1816 - March 16th 1817 and includes his second year on the Snow-Hill circuit.

Minutes of the Philadelphia Conference from 1800 through 1814, presided over by Francis Asbury and others. Includes an index of names at the rear created from the records in 1868.
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