Lutheran Archives Center at Philadelphia

Lutheran Archives Center at Philadelphia The Lutheran Archives Center at Philadelphia, founded in 1792, is the Northeast Regional Archives (R

Exciting find today in the vault! Our director came across a lonely looking folder sitting all by itself in a back corne...
08/02/2023

Exciting find today in the vault! Our director came across a lonely looking folder sitting all by itself in a back corner, peeked inside, and WOW!!! It's a letter written in 1758 by German Lutherans in Reading, Berks County, Pennsylvania seeking a pastor for their congregation. Conrad Weiser's signature is at the top of the list, which is a who's who of prominent Berks County names. This historic treasure has now been rehoused into a suitable archival box and shelved along with its buddies.

Last week we were excited to receive 22 volumes of record books dating back to 1749 from St. Pauls Lutheran Blue Church ...
06/20/2023

Last week we were excited to receive 22 volumes of record books dating back to 1749 from St. Pauls Lutheran Blue Church in Coopersburg, Pa to be digitized as part of our partnership with Ancestry. We are still seeking Lutheran congregations in the Region 7 area who are interested in having their records scanned and made accessible online. Please contact us at [email protected] for more information!

Today marks the 119th anniversary of the General Slocum disaster. Some 2,000 members of St. Mark's German Evangelical Lu...
06/15/2023

Today marks the 119th anniversary of the General Slocum disaster. Some 2,000 members of St. Mark's German Evangelical Lutheran Church in New York City were aboard the steamboat traveling to the annual Sunday School picnic on Long Island when it caught fire. More than 1,000 people, mostly women and children, perished in the fire or drowned trying to escape. The St. Mark's congregation and the German-American community known as Kleindeutschland or "Little Germany" were devastated by this tragedy. The Lutheran Archives Center preserves documents related to the General Slocum tragedy, including this telegram from President Theodore Roosevelt sent to Pastor George C. F. Haas. You can also learn more on this website dedicated to telling the story of the families affected by the General Slocum: https://en.geneanet.org/genealogyblog/post/2023/06/general-slocum-genealogies-a-thousand-source-documents-added

Today our staff hosted colleagues from the American Philosophical Society to discuss The Revolutionary City: A Portal to...
05/25/2023

Today our staff hosted colleagues from the American Philosophical Society to discuss The Revolutionary City: A Portal to the Nation's Founding. We are looking forward to including documents from our collection in this database in the coming months. Learn more on their website: https://therevolutionarycity.org/

Our table for the Southeastern Pennsylvania Synod (SEPA), ELCA assembly is all set up and ready to go! Stop by to chat w...
05/05/2023

Our table for the Southeastern Pennsylvania Synod (SEPA), ELCA assembly is all set up and ready to go! Stop by to chat with our archivist, Sheila Joy, and learn about current projects at the archives including our partnership with Ancestry to digitize all of our church records and make them accessible online.

Exciting find yesterday while processing the backlog in our vault! This beautiful, hand drawn Pennsylvania German fraktu...
04/19/2023

Exciting find yesterday while processing the backlog in our vault! This beautiful, hand drawn Pennsylvania German fraktur was found hiding in a box of uncatalogued material. It's a birth and baptismal certificate for Jacob Krymer (Kramer), born September 12, 1811, in Rockhill Township, Bucks County, PA. He was baptized by a Pastor Roeller; no denomination is specified. We are still researching this name but believe it to be Lutheran pastor John George Roeller (1775-1840), who lived in Tylersport, which is located in Salford Township, Montgomery County, near the Bucks County border. The son of Lutheran pastor Conrad Roeller, John George Roeller was pastor of the Old Goshenhoppen, Indianfield, and Tohickon congregations.

Yesterday we were thrilled to host a visit from Dr. Jürgen Overhoff, a historian at the University of Münster in Germany...
03/01/2023

Yesterday we were thrilled to host a visit from Dr. Jürgen Overhoff, a historian at the University of Münster in Germany, and his wife Kerstin. Here Dr. Overhoff is looking at Henry Muhlenberg's journal entry from July 4, 1776. Several days later, the Muhlenbergs would leave Philadelphia and return to Trappe. In conjunction with the upcoming 250th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence in 2026, we are working on some big plans to celebrate the German contribution to the American Revolution. Stay tuned! Today the Overhoffs will visit our friends in Historic Trappe to continue their tour.

We'd like to welcome our new Processing Assistant, Amanda Creek! Amanda is originally a Florida native who moved to Penn...
11/15/2022

We'd like to welcome our new Processing Assistant, Amanda Creek! Amanda is originally a Florida native who moved to Pennsylvania in 2018. She received her MFA in Creative Writing from Southern New Hampshire University late last year and also works part time as a book cataloger for Historic Trappe. She has also worked as a website designer for the past twelve years. Her current project here at the Lutheran Archives is cataloging books from the Augustana Institute collection. When she’s not working, Amanda enjoys reading and writing children’s literature and honing her illustration skills. She also enjoys traveling throughout Pennsylvania with her husband of fifteen years, along with their two small pups.

We've been keeping a secret...we are thrilled to announce that we are partnering with Ancestry to digitize our parish re...
11/10/2022

We've been keeping a secret...we are thrilled to announce that we are partnering with Ancestry to digitize our parish records!! Soon birth/baptism, confirmation, marriage, and death records from hundreds of congregations will then be made fully searchable online via Ancestry.com. We are also seeking Lutheran congregations in the Region 7 area who are interested in having their records scanned. Please contact us at [email protected] for more information!

Boo! These two books belonged to Sarah and Catharine Steinauer who were members of St. John's (English) Lutheran Church ...
10/31/2022

Boo! These two books belonged to Sarah and Catharine Steinauer who were members of St. John's (English) Lutheran Church in Philadelphia. One was printed in 1817, the other in 1867. While lockets of hair might seem a bit spooky, in the Victorian era they were viewed as mementos! Individuals often gave hair as tokens of love and friendship. and Happy

Today's   is from the collection of St. John's English Lutheran Church, Philadelphia. Check out these Sunday service bul...
10/21/2022

Today's is from the collection of St. John's English Lutheran Church, Philadelphia. Check out these Sunday service bulletins from 1943 -- one is in Braille!

We'd like to welcome our new Processing Archivist, Juliana Rhinehart! Juliana received a B.A. in English and Medieval St...
10/11/2022

We'd like to welcome our new Processing Archivist, Juliana Rhinehart! Juliana received a B.A. in English and Medieval Studies from Dickinson College and plans to earn a Master's of Library Science in the next couple years. She worked as an archives assistant for Dickinson's Archives and Special Collections. She is currently processing the records of St. John's English Lutheran Church, Philadelphia. In her free time, Juliana enjoys cooking, reading sci-fi and short stories, and catching up on TV shows with her partner.

Happy Hispanic Heritage Month! Today's   is a statue of San Martín de Porres which is part of the collection of a Hispan...
10/07/2022

Happy Hispanic Heritage Month! Today's is a statue of San Martín de Porres which is part of the collection of a Hispanic congregation in Allentown that bares his namesake. San Martín de Porres is the first Black saint in the Americas and is known for seeking in*******al harmony and helping the poor. Check out our latest issue of the Archives Advocate for an article for Pastor Nelson Quinoñes to learn more about this saint and the congregation's history!

Our latest issue of our newsletter, the Archives Advocate has been hitting mailboxes! Have you received your copy?
10/04/2022

Our latest issue of our newsletter, the Archives Advocate has been hitting mailboxes! Have you received your copy?

We'd like to say a big "thank you" to our project archivist, Melissa Bergoffen who spent the last year cataloging the Mi...
09/29/2022

We'd like to say a big "thank you" to our project archivist, Melissa Bergoffen who spent the last year cataloging the Ministerium of Pennsylvania Collection. Finding aids will be going up on our website very soon! We wish her good luck on her next venture.

Dear congregations, here's what NOT to do: store your historical documents in a three-ring binder! Volunteer Linda Beck ...
09/09/2022

Dear congregations, here's what NOT to do: store your historical documents in a three-ring binder! Volunteer Linda Beck is processing the records of Old St. John's English, Philadelphia and came across their early 19th century financial records being housed in a way that can only add further damage over time. We recommend storing your records in acid-free folders and boxes.

Sharing this post from our friends at Historic Trappe. The Lutheran Archives Center at Philadelphia is the proud caretak...
09/07/2022

Sharing this post from our friends at Historic Trappe. The Lutheran Archives Center at Philadelphia is the proud caretaker of Henry Muhlenberg's orginal journals and correspondence!

It's officially   season! Check out this vintage Penstar composition book. They don't make them like this anymore!
09/06/2022

It's officially season! Check out this vintage Penstar composition book. They don't make them like this anymore!

Interested in researching your family history? We'd love to help! For more information about visiting in-person or our r...
08/23/2022

Interested in researching your family history? We'd love to help! For more information about visiting in-person or our research services, please check out our website: https://www.lacphila.org/research-fees

Did you know we have a newsletter? The Archives Advocate is our biannual newsletter and is free to all subscribers. Our ...
08/16/2022

Did you know we have a newsletter? The Archives Advocate is our biannual newsletter and is free to all subscribers. Our next issue is scheduled to come out soon. To subscribe, please email [email protected] with your name and address.

Check out this cool   from our Ministerium of Pennsylvania Collection. This is the original church book for Jacob's Evan...
08/13/2022

Check out this cool from our Ministerium of Pennsylvania Collection. This is the original church book for Jacob's Evangelical Lutheran Church in Pine Grove Township, Schuylkill County. Organized in 1780, their register (pictured here) was established in 1799. Notice the list of burials -- the entries switch from German to English!

We are officially open! You can now visit us in person to conduct genealogical or historical research by advanced appoin...
08/08/2022

We are officially open! You can now visit us in person to conduct genealogical or historical research by advanced appointment only. Please see our website for more information and how to schedule your visit: https://www.lacphila.org/research-fees

We recently updated our website! Now you can learn more about our research services, how to visit the archives in-person...
08/04/2022

We recently updated our website! Now you can learn more about our research services, how to visit the archives in-person, and there's even an easier way to browse our collections. Let us know what you think! https://www.lacphila.org/

The Archives staff is very excited to announce that starting August 8 we will be officially reopened to researchers by a...
08/01/2022

The Archives staff is very excited to announce that starting August 8 we will be officially reopened to researchers by advanced appointment only! We know this is a longtime coming and cannot wait to assist with your genealogy and historical questions in person again. Please see our website for more information on how to make an appointment: https://www.lacphila.org/research-fees

Today's   is a 1917 photograph of the Annual Ladies Night for the Lutheran Society of New York which was held at the Hot...
07/22/2022

Today's is a 1917 photograph of the Annual Ladies Night for the Lutheran Society of New York which was held at the Hotel Astor on January 24, 1917. Looks like these folks had quite the evening!

Who loves postcards?! Our processing assistant, Laurie Mueller recently processed the personal postcard collection of Th...
07/12/2022

Who loves postcards?! Our processing assistant, Laurie Mueller recently processed the personal postcard collection of The Rev. Robert Lamparter (1917-2010) who served St. John's Lutheran Church in Phoenixville from 1954-1967. The postcards
represent churches and seminaries in the United States (mostly Pennsylvania) and abroad (mostly
Scandinavia and Germany). To learn more about the collection check out the finding aid on our website: https://www.lacphila.org/collections/manuscripts/personal-papers

Today's   is a banner for the Syracuse Luther League of New York State "District Award" from 1927. For being over 90 yea...
07/08/2022

Today's is a banner for the Syracuse Luther League of New York State "District Award" from 1927. For being over 90 years old we think this textile is in pretty great condition!

We are excited to announce that we have officially launched our searchable online collections database, PastPerfect Onli...
06/30/2022

We are excited to announce that we have officially launched our searchable online collections database, PastPerfect Online! You can now browse our collections for free at this link: https://lacphila.pastperfectonline.com
This is a huge milestone for us as we have been working hard the past two years in preparing for this launch. We will be adding collections to the database as we process them, so new items will be added every month. To stay on top of what's new, just keep following along with us here on social media. Thank you to our archives team and our supporters (you!)

This week is the week! This Thursday, June 30 at noon EST we will be sharing our big secret that we've been working on f...
06/27/2022

This week is the week! This Thursday, June 30 at noon EST we will be sharing our big secret that we've been working on for over two years. It's something that will allow increased access to our collections and will provide researchers with a great virtual experience to engage with our collections, anywhere in the world. Okay, we better stop there before we spill the beans!

We are officially one week away from our big announcement! Associate Archivist, Sheila Joy has been working hard behind ...
06/23/2022

We are officially one week away from our big announcement! Associate Archivist, Sheila Joy has been working hard behind the scenes in preparation, but she's ready to share it with the world. Any guesses on what's to come? Stay tuned because next Thursday, June 30 we finally get to share our big secret!

A messy desk must mean that historical research is underway! Associate Archivist Sheila Joy shares a peak at her work sp...
06/21/2022

A messy desk must mean that historical research is underway! Associate Archivist Sheila Joy shares a peak at her work space while working on her article for our next issue of the Archives Advocate, coming to your mailbox in just few weeks time. To see digital back issues of our newsletter head to our website: https://www.lacphila.org/archives-advocate

Who else enjoys maps as much as we do? Today's   are two different maps depicting the city of Philadelphia.
06/17/2022

Who else enjoys maps as much as we do? Today's are two different maps depicting the city of Philadelphia.

We are two weeks away from our big announcement on June 30! Our project archivist, Melissa Bergoffen has been diligently...
06/16/2022

We are two weeks away from our big announcement on June 30! Our project archivist, Melissa Bergoffen has been diligently working away on her computer these past few weeks in preparation. Any guesses on what we're launching?

Today's   is a one-hundred year old baptismal certificate for Kathryn Lavina Baily, who was baptized at St John Evangeli...
06/10/2022

Today's is a one-hundred year old baptismal certificate for Kathryn Lavina Baily, who was baptized at St John Evangelical Lutheran Church in Tamaqua, PA on April 17, 1921. On the certificate you can see Kathryn's parents' names, her date of birth, where and when she was baptized, her sponsors, and the pastor who baptized her, Rev. A.E. Schmitthenner. These types of certificates are quite the historical treasure!

A picture is worth a thousand words! Processing Archivist, Laurie Mueller recently processed the collection of St. Luke'...
06/07/2022

A picture is worth a thousand words! Processing Archivist, Laurie Mueller recently processed the collection of St. Luke's Evangelical Lutheran Church in Dublin, PA (1869-2011) which contains many photos of pastors, confirmation classes, and church life. To see what's all included in the collection head to our website to view the finding aid: https://www.lacphila.org/collections/church-records/pennsylvania

Today's   is a 19th century Sunday School library record book from the collection of St. Luke's Evangelical Lutheran Chu...
06/03/2022

Today's is a 19th century Sunday School library record book from the collection of St. Luke's Evangelical Lutheran Church, Dublin, PA. To learn more about this congregation and other historical treasures in their collection, check out the finding aid on our website: https://www.lacphila.org/collections/church-records

Something very exciting is coming on June 30, 2022. We will be sharing clues from now until then, but in the meantime ar...
06/01/2022

Something very exciting is coming on June 30, 2022. We will be sharing clues from now until then, but in the meantime are there any guesses on what our big announcement could be?

We're bringing back the  ! We recently received a photograph we know to be of an early 1920s confirmation class of the G...
05/27/2022

We're bringing back the ! We recently received a photograph we know to be of an early 1920s confirmation class of the German Evangelical Lutheran Zion's Church in Syracuse, NY. The back of the photo contains the name "Howard John Pichaske" (1910-1998) who was a member of Zion's. Given that the photo was likely taken between 1922 to 1924, the pastor may be Rev. Dr. Herman Hustav Dattan. Thank you to photo rescuer Kate Keller of Forgotten Faces, Forgotten Places for donating this photo to us! https://www.facebook.com/groups/ForgottenFacesForgottenPlaces/

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7301 Germantown Avenue
Philadelphia, PA
19119

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