Sharon Presbyterian Church, Noble County, Ohio Historical Sketch
The Sharon Presbyterian Church, one of the two of this denomination in
Noble County, is perhaps one of the most thriving in this county, and is often referred to
as the "Mother Church", the local Presbyterian Church being an offspring from
the Sharon Church. The history is indeed an interesting one, being in existence previous
to 1820, with the one hundredth centennial being celebrated in an elaborate manner, July
29 to Aug. 2, 1931.
The early history of this church is involved in obscurity. It is known,
however, that many of the early settlers of the Sharon community were inclined to the
Presbyterian faith, there being at one time three separate bodies--United Presbyterian,
Reformed Presbyterian and the regular Presbyterian. One of the aims of this people being
higher education, a college was established and flourished until the Civil War.
From the Trustees record we learn that, "at a meeting held at
Samuel Long's in 1820, Alexander Greenlee, James Archibald and Edward Parrish were chosen
wardens, John Marquis, Sr., clerk and Rev. Moore being accepted pastor duty and according
to the ancient, established form, organized the meeting to be known by the name of Olive
Other meetings were, "at the Graveyard, August 9, 1821" and
"at the frame house, August 31."
From the 22nd day of August, 1831, meetings were held annually and in
1835 "a petition was presented to the Legislature of the State of Ohio, praying to be
incorporated as a body and known as the First Presbyterian church of Olive township,
Morgan County, Ohio, which petition was granted by the Legislature March 7, 1836."
On the 9th day of August, 1828, Alexander Greenlee and wife, "In
consideration of the many blessings and advantages derived from moral and religious
institutions," gave one half acre of land to the church, the present edifice
occupying this land, across from the home of Maggie McFarland, the first school teacher of
the present Common Pleas Judge, J. A. Okey.
On Nov. 2nd, 1836, it was decided to build a meeting house, 30 x 45',
and the list of subscribers follows: Alexander Greenlee, Peter Eckley, Samuel Marquis,
Reuben Boggs, Joseph Marquis, John Lyons, James Hopper, Nelson Timberlake, John Marquis,
Sr., William Lyons, Joseph Glennfi, Thomas Byers, Michael Morrison, Jonathan Lyons, Philip
Kapple, John Kain, John Cozard, James Archibald, James McGlashan, John Wills, John
Pidcock, Isaac Paxton, John Byers and Thomas Lyons.
Lewis Eckley was the carpenter and his reciept in full is given for
$153.75 as the cost of the building of the meeting house. Another reciept of interest
which shows that ministers of ye olden times were not troubled with the high cost of
living, was given by Rev. Reed for $133.33, amount of his salary for the year ending
It appears that the society had no regular pastor until 1837. Among the
supplies the names of Rev. William Wallace and Robert Rutherford are frequently given. In
March, 1837, Rev. John Arthur was elected pastor and served until 1838. His successors
were Revs. N. P. Charlotte, William Reed, J. P. Caldwell, Mathew R. Miller, Watson
Russell, Samuel Mahaffey, L. C. Rutter, William M. Galbraith and J. A. Baldridge. The
above ministers were successful in keeping up a fine congregation and inspired the people
to higher and noble things.
This church is looked upon as the mother of the Caldwell Presbyterian
church and these being the only two of that faith in the county have been shepherded by
the same pastors, whose names were given in the history of the local church.
Those taking part in the centennial program were, Rev. B. J. Yorke,
Rev. D. C. Marshall, Dr. McGrath and Rev. C. E. Nash. Others prominent in the program
were, Mrs. G. E. Marquis and Cyrus McGlashan who reviewed the history of the congregation,
Miss Jennie Aiken, Sharon's oldest Presbyterian, Mrs. J. W. Tipton, Mrs. E. N. Dye, Rev.
Carol Stewart, Rev. Charles W. Perry, Rev. Mike Danford, Rev. E. W. Lodwick, Miss Iva
Williams, Willis Beckett, Mrs. J. M. Hiss, Marjorie and Loene Parrish, Mrs. D. C.
Marshall, Homer Nichols, Miss Jean Yorke, Mrs. Alice Hart-Cook, Harold Lutz, Azel A.
Osborne as well as many other who aided in their wonderful manner.