Pastor William Sharts, conducting services in the third church building, which, like the second one, was known as the "Church on the Rocks," because it sat on a rocky ledge overlooking the Sawkill (about ¾ mile east of our present location--that is, north of present-day Route 212, across from the country club). (To enlarge the picture, just click it.)
Above is a map of the Woodstock village, published in 1878, showing the Church on the Rocks on the east side of town, just north of current Route 212 (known then as simply Saugerties Road) and north of the Sawkill. It is identified simply as "LUTH. CH." (To enlarge the view, click it.)
The chuch celebrated its 75th anniversary.
It was about this time that the Bible School became a vital part in the church life, under the tutelage of Eveyln Cramer.
In addition to the detailed and meticulous minutes that Pastor Sharts entered in the pastoral record book, he also maintained a separate record of all the texts he based each sermon on, where he preached, what the weather and road conditions were, and an idea of the attendance. This record seems to indicate that he did evening services not only at the Pine Grove Church but also at the schoolhouse known variously as Herrick's and Overlook.
Annual fairs and festivals continued, as did the poor attendance at communion the pastor complained about.
At one point, Pastor Sharts laid a stone walk at the parsonage. For a water supply, he had a cistern built, requiring blasting.
Prospectors were exploring the Woodstock area for coal, oil, and gas.
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Rutherford B. Hayes (Republican) was President, succeeded during this year by James A. Garfield, who was himself succeeded by his Vice President Chester A. Arthur. The newly elected 47th Congress was in session. A dollar in that year would be worth $19.46 in 2006 for most consumable products.
Immigrants from the British Isles and western Europe (especially Great Britain, Ireland, and Germany)--the so-called "Old Immigrants," most of them boasting a comparatively high level of literacy and accustomed to some level of representative government, who were either Protestant (most of them) or Catholic, were arriving during this decade at an average annual rate of 275,300. The "New Immigrants," those from southern and eastern Europe (especially Italy, Austria-Hungary, and Russia), largely illiterate and impoverished, who tended to be either Catholic, Orthodox, or Jewish and who had little experience with representative government, were arriving at an annual rate of 92,600--34% of the Old Immigrants' rate, a threefold proportionate increase from a decade earlier and a fivefold increase in raw numbers. The New Immigrants huddled together in large cities, such as New York City and Chicago.
Through fraud and intimidation, solidly Democratic white supremacists held political power all over the South. The economically dependent blacks who even tried to vote (forget about being elected to political office) would be facing unemployment, eviction, and violence. Blacks (and poor whites as well) continued being forced into sharecropping and tenant farming; former slave masters were now bosses and landlords. Through the "crop-lien" system, the serflike small farmers could get food and supplies from storekeepers by agreeing to a lien on their expected crops, a lien they would never be able to fully pay off.
In the South, the daily discrimination against blacks grew increasingly oppressive. Blacks were continually assaulted by harsh reminders of their second-class citizenship, and Southern white supremacists dealt brutally with any black who dared to violate the customary racial code of conduct.
Larvae of the gypsy moth (Porthetria dispar) continued to spread from Medford, MA, where French naturalist Leopold Trouvelot had brought the insect from Europe 12 years earlier with hopes to start a silk industry in New England. The moth population was exploding and defoliating American woodlands.
Irish immigrant journalist Edwin Lawrence Godkin, 50, merged his 16-year-old liberal intellectual opinion publication The Nation into the New York Post. Godkin continued to crusade mercilessly for reform in the civil service and for honesty in government.
John Fairfield Dryden, 42, became the head of the 6-year-old insurance firm that he had helped to found, Prudential Insurance in Newark, NJ, writing sickness and accident insurance policies.
Cattle drives on the 700-mile-long Chisholm Trail from San Antonio, TX, to Abilene or Ellsworth, KS (two "cow towns" on the Kansas Pacific Railway, where cattle could be transported to Chicago), continued on a large scale, hundreds of thousands of steers driven north on the "Long Drive," moving at an average 12 miles per day through open, unsettled country.
Drought continued on a good part of the cattle range in the West.
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The coffee rust (Hamileia vastatrix), which had appeared in Ceylon (Sri Lanka) 12 years earlier, was spreading throughout the Orient and the Pacific, wiping out coffee plantations and causing coffee prices to soar.
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