June 21 Today in OPC History

Old Stockbridge, Wisconsin


Among the earliest congregations of the newly formed Orthodox Presbyterian Church was the Old Stockbridge congregation in Gresham, Wisconsin. On June 21, 1937 the Old Stockbridge Presbyterian Church was received and enrolled as the third congregation of the Presbytery of Wisconsin and Upper Michigan. She joined the Merrill Community Presbyterian Church in nearby Merrill, Wisconsin, and Calvary OPC in Cedar Grove, Wisconsin as the member churches of the new Presbytery.

Christianity came early to the Mohican Indians of Stockbridge, Massachusetts through the missionary efforts of a Calvinist minister named John Sergeant. The famous Jonathan Edwards then ministered among them from 1751 to 1757. In the 1830s the Stockbridge Indians relocated to Shawano County in north central Wisconsin. In the 1930s two faithful ministers from the PCUSA carried on gospel ministry among the Stockbridge and Menominee tribes—the Rev. Arthur Perkins and the Rev. Harold Hillegas. Both of these men were disciplined by their presbytery for organizing a Presbyterian Bible camp that was true to the Scriptures. Their appeals were denied by the infamous 1936 General Assembly of the PCUSA.

After the formation of the OPC, the Rev. John Davies began conducting regular worship services at Old Stockbridge and doing outreach on the adjacent Menominee reservation. John and Hermima Davies ministered diligently at Old Stockbridge from 1937 to 1954. In 1948 the congregation erected a building at a cost of $3000. In 1981 the mission work on the Menominee reservation was organized as Menominee OPC in Zoar, Wisconsin.

Picture: Hermima Davies and members of the prayer circle



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