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Rev. Charles Freshman
Male 1819 - 1875


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  • Prefix  Rev. 
    Birth  1819  Micklosh, , Hungary Find all individuals with events at this location  [1, 2
    Gender  Male 
    Occupation  St. Paul's United Church, 450 King St. E., Cambridge, Waterloo Region, Ontario Find all individuals with events at this location 
    minister of Preston Methodist Church 
    Occupation  1864  Doon Wesleyan Methodist Church, Kitchener, Waterloo Region, Ontario Find all individuals with events at this location 
    minister 
    • At first, the congregation worshipped in the nearby Wesleyan Methodist Mission which had been built in 1864. The first minister was the Rev. Charles Freshman D.D. of the Preston Mission, Hamilton District, who ministered to the German Wesleyan Methodist congregation in Preston and area until c.1869. Rev. Freshman soon reported that English services were needed in Doon, and Doon was therefore attached to the Preston English mission along with Kirkland's and Ellis's. In 1868 the present red brick church was built on Durham Street just a short distance northeast of the Mission building. (The marker stone above the front door of the church reads: "WESLEYAN Methodist Church, A.D. 1868".) In 1888 the whitewashed interior of the church was painted for the first time. Further improvements were made, including gas lighting to replace the oil lamps in 1929 and electricity in 1949.1a

      1aAmbrose, Rosemary. Waterloo County Churches A Research Guide to Churches Established Before 1900. Kitchener, Ontario, Canada: Waterloo-Wellington Branch, Ontario Genealogical Society, 1993. [used the kind permission of Rosemary Ambrose 2011]
    Occupation  1867  Erbsville Methodist Church, Erbsville, Ontario Find all individuals with events at this location 
    minister 
    • In a letter published in the Christian Guardian of November 26, 1867, Rev. Charles Freshman the German Wesleyan Methodist missionary stationed at Preston wrote: "Last Sunday I was permitted to dedicate to the worship of the Triune God a new church (or meeting-house, as we would call it), in Erbsville, and to preach three times to a very large and devoted congregation".1a

      1aAmbrose, Rosemary. Waterloo County Churches A Research Guide to Churches Established Before 1900. Kitchener, Ontario, Canada: Waterloo-Wellington Branch, Ontario Genealogical Society, 1993. [used the kind permission of Rosemary Ambrose 2011]
    Occupation  1871  Lindsay, Victoria Co., Ontario Find all individuals with events at this location  [2
    minister 
    Eby ID Number  Waterloo-93053 
    Died  4 Jan 1875  London, Middlesex, Ontario Find all individuals with events at this location  [3
    Person ID  I93053  Generations
    Last Modified  13 Apr 2017 

    Family  Theresa or Matilda,   b. 1823, Micklosh, , Hungary Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Yes, date unknown 
    Children 
     1. Rev. Jacob Freshman,   b. 1845, , Hungary Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Yes, date unknown
     2. Sarah Freshman,   b. 1849, , Hungary Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Yes, date unknown
     3. Rachel Freshman,   b. 1851, , Hungary Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Yes, date unknown
     4. Sigmund Freshman,   b. 1852, , Hungary Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Yes, date unknown
     5. Maurice Freshman,   b. 1855, , Quebec Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Yes, date unknown
     6. Charlotte Freshman,   b. 1857, , Quebec Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Yes, date unknown
     7. Samuel Freshman,   b. 1859, , Quebec Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Yes, date unknown
     8. Benjamin Freshman,   b. 1861, , Ontario Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Yes, date unknown
     9. Mathilda Freshman,   b. 1863, , Ontario Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Yes, date unknown
     10. Charles L. W. S. Freshman,   b. 1865, , Ontario Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Yes, date unknown
     11. Nelley Therese Freshman,   b. 1868, Preston (Cambridge), Waterloo Region, Ontario Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Yes, date unknown
    Family ID  F10938  Group Sheet

  • Photos
    Rev. Charles Freshman
    Rev. Charles Freshman
    The Autobiography of the Rev. Charles Freshman, 1868

  • Notes 
    • Wesleyan Methodist and Methodist New Connexion St. Paul's United Church

      The earliest Methodist services were said to have begun in 1861 when the Rev. E.W. Frazee arrived in Preston. He organized a congregation which met at first in the upper room of a woolen mill on Eagle Street and then in the frame Lutheran church on King Street; members of the New Connexion Methodists began to meet in the Town Hall at about the same time. Rev. Charles Freshman, the German Wesleyan Methodist missionary, began preaching to English- and German-speaking congregations on May 3, 1862. In his autobiography Rev. Dr. Freshman is quoted: "I preached at St. George in the morning, Paris in the afternoon and at Preston in the evening. Our other regular appointments were Strasburg, Roseville, Conestoga [sic], New Dundee, Doon and occasionally in Princeton" (Freshman 1868:214).

      A stone church was built at the corner of Duke and Argyle Streets in 1864 on property which had been donated by Jacob Hespeler; the church was opened on September 25, 1864. Dedicatory services were held in English by Mr. Rice and Mr. Carrol and in German by Rev. Freshman. Four acres of land between King and Queen (now Queenston Road) Streets were purchased from Jacob Hespeler on July 15, 1868 by the trustees of the Wesleyan Methodist and New Connexion churches. A newer, larger church was built on this property and completed on October 18, 1868. Although union of the Wesleyan Methodist Church in Canada and the Methodist New Connexion Church did not occur until 1874 it is quite possible that the two congregations in Preston had already formed their own union with the building of the church in 1868. For some years it was a community church where other denominations also worshipped.

      In 1871 the church was enlarged; the tower and spire were added at the same time. A Sunday School was built in 1875-1879 during the ministry of Rev. James McAllister. In 1877 the congregation was given permission to sell the old New Connexion Church and to apply the proceeds towards improvements on the new church. The Circuit was divided in 1883 when Preston, Zion and Doon were separated from Hespeler. In 1887 Preston was by itself, but at the Annual Conference in 1897 of the Methodist Church, Guelph Conference, Galt District, Preston was divided into a circuit consisting of Preston and Doon. The church became self-supporting at that time. Preston later was with Hespeler until 1909 when each became an independent charge. The congregation of Preston Methodist Church became Preston United Church in 1925 and later, in 1933, St. Paul's United Church. The cornerstone for a new Sunday School was laid in 1921; the addition was completed in 1922. Further additions were constructed in 1955 and 1967.1

      1Waterloo County Churches A Research Guide To Churches Established Before 1900 By Rosemary Ambrose

      ____________________

      Knox Preston Presbyterian Church

      Rev. Charles Freshman, who served as a German Wesleyan Methodist missionary in Preston and area c.1860-1869, stated in his autobiography that the Presbyterian Church engaged a "young Swiss preacher and sent him out to evangelize the Germans in Waterloo County" (Freshman 1868:284). Dr. Freshman reported that the young Presbyterian preacher preached in the "Lutheran Church in that place [Preston] ... but he failed to establish a cause" (Ibid:285).

      According to the Minutes of the Second General Assembly (1876) of the Presbyterian Church in Canada, a German Mission was established in Preston on August 10, 1875 and an English one was begun on March 14, 1876. Rev. George Haigh was inducted as Minister to the combined congregations of Preston, Doon and Hespeler on April 24, 1876. Formal organization of this English-speaking congregation was on August 29, 1876. Services at the German Mission were "suspended" in January, 1878, "for want of encouragement", according to the Minutes of the Fourth General Assembly in 1878.

      Commencing in 1880, services were held by Rev. Haigh in a stone building at the corner of Duke and Argyle Streets in Preston. However, on March 20, 1883 Preston was separated from Doon and Hespeler which remained under the ministry of Rev. Haigh. Preston reverted to a Mission Station at that time, only to be "dissolved" on September 16, 1884, according to the Minutes of the Eleventh General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church in Canada in 1885.

      The congregation was reorganized in 1891 by Dr. James A.R. Dickson of Central Presbyterian Church, Galt; the first church service was held on April 5, 1891 by Mr. P.W. Anderson in the Royal Templars' Hall in the Schultz Block. The Town Hall was then used for a short time; the first Kirk Session was elected there on March 12, 1893. The Lyceum Hall on King Street was purchased in 1893, renovated, and dedicated on July 16, 1893. Preston and Doon were placed on a two-point charge in 1893; the first minister was Rev. Herbert Francis Thomas (1893-1898) who was ordained and inducted into Knox Presbyterian on August 21, 1893. The church was rebuilt in 1938 and was in use until 1965 when the new church was completed; the King Street property was then sold.

      The cornerstone for a new church on Argyle Street North, between King and Duke Streets, was laid on October 18, 1964. Dedication services for the new building held on March 27, 1965 included locking the door of the old church. In 1973 the name of the church was changed to Knox Preston Presbyterian Church when Preston joined with Galt and Hespeler to form the city of Cambridge. Dates on church: 1893, 1965.2

      2Waterloo County Churches A Research Guide To Churches Established Before 1900 By Rosemary Ambrose

      ____________________________

      Strasburg German Wesleyan Methodist Church

      The Strasburg German Wesleyan Methodist Church existed c.1860-1869 when Rev. Dr. Charles Freshman was in charge of the Preston Mission. A church was built during his time. In 1880, at the Annual Meeting of the London Methodist Conference, permission was granted to sell the Strasburg Methodist Church located "near Doon", and to send the proceeds to the Missionary Society.3

      3Waterloo County Churches A Research Guide To Churches Established Before 1900 By Rosemary Ambrose

      __________________________


      As we had now members of society at all our appointments, and many of these were considerable distances apart, I found it necessary, for the accommodation of the people, to administer the Lord's Supper, at intervals, at each of the appointments. On one of these occasions, as I was driving home from St. George, about Easter, a serious accident befell me, which might have cost me my life. I had my son's horse, which was, at times, given to shying. At this time, when driving faster than usual, in order to reach Preston in time for my appointment at half-past six in the evening, and collecting my thoughts for the service, unapprehensive of danger,-just as I approached a high snow-bank, which had not yet been dissipated by the vernal sunshine, and out of which protruded some old stumps, my horse took fright, the gig in which I was riding was upset, and I was thrown on the frozen ground with such violence that I lay insensible for a considerable time, and my horse became fastened in the snow-bank. Shortly after this disaster, some Germans, who were passing that way, discovered me, and, extricating my horse, they assisted me into my gig, and thus enabled me to continue my journey. They did not fail to observe that I had in my possession a bottle, containing the remainder of the wine after I had administered the sacrament of the Lord's Supper. In a day or two the news was dispersed in all directions, that the Methodist minister always supplied himself with a bottle of wine, or something of that sort, when he went on a journey ! This was but a little thing, and is only worth mentioning here, as showing how readily evil disposed people are to find some cause of accusation against ministers. But I took no steps to explain it away, remembering the example of Mr. Wesley, when a similar charge was brought against him, and only sorry that I had not a " guinea " to present to the poor creatures for their disinterested trouble

      The Autobiography of The Rev. Charles Freshman - Late Rabbi of the Jewish Synagogue at Quebec, And Graduate of The Jewish Theological Seminary at Prague; at Present German Wesleyan Minister at Preston

      ________________________________

      I was born in the year 1819, in Micklosh, a city pleasantly situated on the river Waag, in the kingdom of Hungary. My parents were both natives of Hungary, and very strict adherents to that form of belief peculiar to the Jewish religion. My grandfather on my father's side was a Rabbi of the Synagogue in Miskolz, a city in the southern part of Hungary. My grandfather on my mother's side was the sexton of a Jewish synagogue all his lifetime. I was the eldest of thirteen children with whom my father was blessed, only four of whom survive at the present day. My father was an only son ; but for some cause he left his father's house when very young, and removed to Italy, the land of bright skies and balmy breezes. There he remained until he grew to man's estate ; but although he enjoyed considerable prosperity in his business, he felt that it was not good for man to be alone. None of the fair daughters of Italy seem to have suited his fancy, for he returned to his native land and settled in St. Micklosh, where he shortly after married my good mother, who was at that time the handsomest maiden in the Jewish congregation. Here he resumed his business, subject to the usual vicissitudes of fortune, during a long lifetime. He never was rich, but always honest, and scrupulously exact in the discharge of his religious duties. He died triumphant in his faith, at the ripe age of seventy-one years. Peace to his ashes!


      According to a tradition handed down by our forefathers, our family is descended from the tribe of Benjamin. But this can never be proved. No Jew now living in the world is able to say to which of the twelve tribes he belongs. The greater number of them have not even a traditionary knowledge of their tribeship. Even the Levites, who retained this knowledge for the longest period, cannot at the present day be relied on ; and no doubt many lay claim to be descended from that tribe without the slightest foundation for such claim. This power to prove their connection with the various tribes was destroyed when Herod the Great burned all the manuscripts containing the genealogies. His object in doing so was to prevent any one from proving, as they could have done, that he was a usurper of authority to which he had no rightful claim.

      When quite an infant I was said to be such a pretty child that people came from far and near to see me. It is very hard for me to believe this now, if I am to rely on the testimony of the looking-glass ! All children are said to be beautiful ; and many people act upon the principle that the easiest way to gain the favour of the mother is to flatter the baby, and perhaps I got more than my share. When but three years old I was taken to school by a Gentile servant, whose duty it was to carry me on her shoulders there and back. In subsequent times I have often thought, how strange that a Gentile should be the first to bring me to a place of instruction ! There I commenced to learn the Hebrew alphabet, which is invariably the first lesson which a Hebrew child receives on entering school….



      The Autobiography of The Rev. Charles Freshman - Late Rabbi of the Jewish Synagogue at Quebec, And Graduate of The Jewish Theological Seminary at Prague; at Present German Wesleyan Minister at Preston

  • Sources 
    1. [S2474] The Autobiography of the Rev. Charles Freshman.

    2. [S2430] Census - Canada - 1871, Lindsay, Victoria, Ontario Div 2 Pg 15.

    3. [S713] Vit - ON - Death Registration, death certificate 4737 (1874)..

  • Event Map
    Event
    Link to Google MapsBirth - 1819 - Micklosh, , Hungary Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsOccupation - minister of Preston Methodist Church - - St. Paul's United Church, 450 King St. E., Cambridge, Waterloo Region, Ontario Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsOccupation - minister - 1864 - Doon Wesleyan Methodist Church, Kitchener, Waterloo Region, Ontario Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsOccupation - minister - 1871 - Lindsay, Victoria Co., Ontario Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsDied - 4 Jan 1875 - London, Middlesex, Ontario Link to Google Earth
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