THE PARK CHURCH (DISCIPLES OF CHRIST).
The congregation of the Disciples in New Castle was organized in 1855
with twenty-four members. They first met with the Covenanter Church.
Afterwards they built a house 18x28 feet on a lot donated by Seth
Rigby, on North Street, where the residence of Dr.
McLaughrey now stands. The little house was afterwards moved to
Elm Street and is now used as a tenement. Subsequently they occupied
White Hall until the present house was built.
The old minutes show that on entering White
Hall a new organization was determined upon on December 10, 1864, at a
meeting attended by twenty-four members, presided over by Alex.
C. McKeever and served as clerk by J. B.
Nicklin, the following officers were chosen: As elders, E.
I. Agnew and Thomas W. Phillips; as deacons, Charles
M. Phillips, W. C. Harman and J. B. Nicklin. An adequate church
building was needed, and through the generosity of the Phillips
Brothers the present structure was erected. On the 14th of
February, 1868, it was formally opened by the late Isaac
Errett, editor of the Christian Standard. The first pastor
was B. J. Pinkerton, of Kentucky, who
remained one year. He was succeeded in September, 1871, by William
F. Cowden, who served until May, 1881. I. A.
Thayer was called and took charge July 1, 1881, remaining until
October 1, 1887, when he resigned to take the pastorate at Worcester,
Mass. On September 1, 1888, Frank Talmage was
called to the pulpit, which he occupied until November 30, 1889. On the
1st of May, 1890, I. A. Thayer was recalled
and continued to serve the church till January, 1900. He was succeeded by Earl
Wilfley, who served four years. Next came W.
L. Fisher, who remained three years. The present pastor,
C. S. Brooks, came in September, 1907. The present membership of
the church is 1,040; that of the Sunday-school, 400.
The needs of South New Castle led the church to
establish a mission in that part of the city, and on October 12, 1891, a
lot was purchased and preparations made for building. On January 12, 1892,
the house having been simply inclosed, a Sunday-school was organized. On
the following July, W. H. Hanna was employed
as assistant pastor with the Long Avenue Mission as his special work. He
remained until September, 1893, when he resigned to take the pastorate at
Century History of New Castle and Lawrence County, 1908, pages 223-224