CAMDEN, NEW JERSEY

Linden Baptist Church
Northeast Corner of North 9th Street & Linden Street

Illustrations for the proposed Linden Street Baptist Church from 1907

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Illustrations for the proposed Linden Street Baptist Church from 1907

CLICK ON PHOTO FOR ENLARGED VIEW

Linden Baptist Church

Right: Opening Day at the Church
Below: The 1909 Church

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A History of Linden Baptist Church to 1886
From
The Chapter entitled
Religious History of Camden
George Reeser Prowell's History of Camden County, New Jersey

     LINDEN BAPTIST CHURCH had its beginning November 22,1863, when Rev. R. S. James, pastor, David S. Stackhouse, Joseph Truman and M. S. James were appointed a committee of the North Baptist Church to look after the religious needs of the northeastern portion of the city, and reported a dearth of and desire for religious privileges, on the part of the people of that section. Religious services were held December 10th of the year named. Mr. James conducted the services in the Paper Mill Schoolhouse, and the owner, John B. Thompson, granting its use for the purpose, a Sunday school was organized December 19th. The officers then chosen were, —Superintendent, David T. Stackhouse ; Assistant Superintendent, Robert Charles; Secretary, Addie McCully; Treasurer, Mrs. S. A. Tustin ; Librarian, Edwin B. Robbins. 

The work began December 27th, with nine teachers and thirty-six pupils. In April 1864, the school was removed to the office of Furbush & Gage's machinery factory, and from thence to the house of Hiram McCormick, where it remained until December 4th, when the new mission building at Tenth Street and Penn was first occupied. In 1866 J. H. Kain became superintendent, and, October 19, 1869, was succeeded by John T. Bottomley, who still fills the office. In 1872 J. Willard Morgan was made secretary, and has since performed the duties of that position. Under this management the school prospered, and through it the North Baptist Church received quite an accession to its membership. 

In 1880 ground was purchased at Ninth and Linden, and a neat brick chapel erected, designed by Arthur Truscott, with a seating capacity of two hundred and fifty in the audience room. This chapel was dedicated free of debt, October 2,1881. The mission had now become strong enough to walk alone and, December 17, 1885, the twenty-second anniversary of the mission, a meeting was held, at which it was decided to constitute a church, to be called the Linden Baptist Church. John T. Bottomley and B. M. Denny were elected deacons ; Elmer E. Morton, clerk; William Hall, treasurer; and J. W. Morgan, F. W. Cramer, Dr. William S. Moslander, William Hall, Mary B. Howard and Agnes Nash, trustees. William H. Geistweit accepted a call to the pastorate, and was ordained January 25, 1886, by a council of Baptist Churches, which, at the same time, recognized the church, preliminary to its admission into the West New Jersey Baptist Association.

Additional Notes by Phillip Cohen - 2004

In the early 1900s Arthur Truscott was called on again to design a new church building for the Linden Baptist Congregation. The new church opened October 3, 1909. Besides founder John T. Bottomley,   Mrs. Lucretia S. Read was deeply involved in the church during these years.

Linden Baptist remained a Camden landmark for many years. On July 23, 1954 the church and school were destroyed by fire. Three area youths were arrested and charged with arson. A church and school building were built to replace the lost edifice and is still in use. This building, however, is hardly the architectural equal of the Truscott-designed building.

The Original Linden Baptist Church
9th & Linden Streets 1880 to 1909

The Original Linden Baptist Church
9th & Linden Streets 1880 to 1909
Certificate for Perfect Attendance 1887
Award to Lilly Thompson

Miss Thompson later married future Camden police chief, Arthur Colsey.

Click on Image to Enlarge


Philadelphia Inquirer - August 12, 1891

William T. Read - Mary Campbell - John Campbell


Camden Post-Telegram - October 4, 1909
Newspaper Account of the opening of Linden Baptist Church

Rev. George W. Peck Jr. John T. Bottomley

Left:
Linden Baptist Church School Staff, 1917

Below Left:
Vacation Bible School, 1927

Below Right:
Interior of Church Sanctuary

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Linden Baptist Bible School
Interior of Church Sanctuary

Philadelphia Inquirer - July 19, 1915
First Baptist Church - Linden Baptist Church  
Trinity Methodist Episcopal Church
- Rev. William Grum
Trimble Lodge No. 117 F. & A.M. - William I.J. Phillips - Odd Fellows
Daughters of Pocohantas - Improved Order of Red Men
Rev. John W. Lyell - Rev. Robert Henry Middleton

Philadelphia Inquirer - October 12, 1917
North Baptist Church - Linden Baptist Church - Viola Street - Hugh Greenan
Rev. H.J. Vosburgh - Rev. Trela D. Collins - Forest Hill Park - Y.M.C.A.

Philadelphia Inquirer - December 10, 1917

Mrs. Elizabeth E. Davis - James L. Davis

Click on Image for PDF File

Camden
Courier-Post

August 1, 1936

Linden Baptist Church fielded a baseball team in one of the many leagues that flourished in Camden in the 1930s and 1940s. 

The Laxton who was playing third base for Linden Baptist is most likely a relative of the father and son major league pitchers Bill and Brett Laxton.

Camden
Courier-Post

January 11, 1938

Linden Baptist Church also fielded basketball teams during the 1930s and 1940s. 

Camden Courier-Post - February 7, 1938

First Baptist Church Begins 120th Anniversary Celebration

Congregation Organized in Camden in 1818;
Seminary Head Preaches
REUNION SERVICE TO BE HELD FRIDAY

Organized February 5, 1818, when Camden was a village of fewer than 900 residents, the First Baptist Church of Camden yesterday began celebration of its 120th anniversary. It will continue with special services and music Wednesday and Friday nights. The program was arranged by Rev. Elwood A. Harrar, pastor since 1922.

A large congregation attended the opening anniversary worship service at 10.30 a. m., in the church edifice, Fourth and Arch streets, which succeeded the first meeting house built in 1818 and the second erected in 1839.

The anniversary sermon was delivered by Rev. Dr. James H. Franklin, president of Crozier Theological Seminary, Chester, Pa., of which Rev. Harrar is a trustee.

REV. ELWOOD A. HARRAR

     Citing the physical changes that have occurred in 120 years Dr. Franklin pointed out that the needs of man in respect. to his moral character and human relationships have not changed and that the church is as necessary today as it ever was.

"The message of the church today must deal with all phases of human relationships, social, economic and political, as well as religious," Dr. Franklin declared.         

At this service there was music by the junior and senior choirs of the church.

Celebration in the Bible School, also in the morning, was prefaced by greetings from Randolph Cramer, president of the Camden County Council of Religious Education.

Mrs. Bennett Speaks

Mrs. Harold W. Bennett, wife of City Commissioner Bennett, spoke on missionary activities and exhibited curios from the Congo, Africa, where she was born. a daughter of missionary parents, and where a sister and a brother-in-law are now engaged in mission work Rev. Chester A. Pennington was soloist and Miss Grace Hill violinist in a musical program.

The night service was a "Celebration in Music," at which Rev. Harrar spoke on the place of music in religion. The Baseler Harp Ensemble, one of Philadelphia's notable musical organizations, and the church choir provided the musical features of the celebration

On Wednesday night 'the program includes a spiritual fellowship service, reception of new members and communion service.

Reunion Service Friday

Rev. Ivan Murray Rose, D.D., pastor of the First Baptist Church of Philadelphia, mother church of the Camden body, will address the congregation at an anniversary reunion service Friday night. Greetings will be received from the churches which have grown out of the Camden church. These greetings will be extended by the pastors of the various churches. They are as follows:

Rev. Walter S. Dunlop, North Church; Rev. Walter L. Hunt, Tabernacle Church; Rev. Culbert G. Rutenber, Linden Church; Rev. C. W. Dannenhower, Parkside Church; Rev. Antonio Galloppi, Italian Church; Rev. Paul Bramball, Laurel Springs Church; Rev. David J. Davis, Oaklyn Church, and Rev. Gilbert L. Guffin, Merchantville Church.

Officers of the CAMDEN NJ - First Baptist Church are Atlie M. Ward, president of board of trustees; F. Y. MacCullough, president board of deacons; Frank B. Gail, treasurer; Ida M. Subers, financial secretary; Howard H. Westcott, clerk; Raymond B. Heston, organist and director of choir and J. Alpheus V. Harker, Sunday School superintendent.

MARKS PASTORATE

Tomorrow marks the close of the first year of the pastorate of the Rev. Eldon W. Koch at Linden Baptist Church, Ninth and Linden streets. Tomorrow also marks the start of the Happy Twilight Hour service at the church, with young people of the church in charge DC the first half hour. Mildred Anderson will have charge of tomorrow's services. Dolly Wilson will read from the Scriptures, Catherine Chadwick will offer prayer and Florence Stires will be soloist, Francis Uffelman will be the tenor soloist at the morning service

Camden Courier-Post
July 3, 1941


Camden Courier-Post
July 3, 1941


 

 

Camden Courier-Post
July 3, 1941

Mrs. James Muir
Carman Street

 

 

 

Camden Courier-Post
July 26, 1941

Rev. Eldon W. Koch - Virginia Raeuber
Ethelwyn Walton - Vincent Taylor
Ethel Richardson

July 23, 1954
The four-alarm fire that destroyed Linden Baptist Church

Camden Fire Department Photo by Robert Bartosz 
Click on Image to Enlarge

July 23, 1954

The four-alarm fire that destroyed
Linden Baptist Church

Camden Fire Department Photo
by
Robert Bartosz 

July 23, 1954

The four-alarm fire that destroyed
Linden Baptist Church

Camden Fire Department Photo
by
Robert Bartosz 

July 24, 1954 - The Day After 
The four-alarm fire that destroyed Linden Baptist Church

Photos courtesy of Warren Fairess
from the collection of his mother, Marie Fisbeck Fairess

Click on Image to Enlarge

July 24, 1954 - The Day After 
The four-alarm fire that destroyed Linden Baptist Church

Photos courtesy of Warren Fairess
from the collection of his mother, Marie Fisbeck Fairess

Click on Image to Enlarge

July 24, 1954 - The Day After 
The four-alarm fire that destroyed Linden Baptist Church

Photos courtesy of Warren Fairess
from the collection of his mother, Marie Fisbeck Fairess

Click on Image to Enlarge

July 24, 1954 - The Day After 
The four-alarm fire that destroyed Linden Baptist Church

Photos courtesy of Warren Fairess
from the collection of his mother, Marie Fisbeck Fairess

Click on Image to Enlarge

July 24, 1954 - The Day After 
The four-alarm fire that destroyed Linden Baptist Church

Photos courtesy of Warren Fairess
from the collection of his mother, Marie Fisbeck Fairess

Click on Image to Enlarge

July 24, 1954 - The Day After 
The four-alarm fire that destroyed Linden Baptist Church

Photos courtesy of Warren Fairess
from the collection of his mother, Marie Fisbeck Fairess

Click on Image to Enlarge

July 24, 1954 - The Day After 
The four-alarm fire that destroyed Linden Baptist Church

Photos courtesy of Warren Fairess
from the collection of his mother, Marie Fisbeck Fairess

Click on Image to Enlarge

July 24, 1954 - The Day After 
The four-alarm fire that destroyed Linden Baptist Church

Photos courtesy of Warren Fairess
from the collection of his mother, Marie Fisbeck Fairess

Click on Image to Enlarge

July 24, 1954 - The Day After 
The four-alarm fire that destroyed Linden Baptist Church

Photos courtesy of Warren Fairess
from the collection of his mother, Marie Fisbeck Fairess

Click on Image to Enlarge

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