Winchester Friends Meeting Timeline

April 1873    Elkanah and Irena Beard, just back from India agree to move to Winchester to hold meetings for Friends in the city of Winchester

1873-1891    Pastors: Elkanah and Irena Beard, Henry Merrill

May 1873     First Sunday meeting for worship held with 30 Friends in City Hall



Dec 1874    Winchester Quarterly Meeting house dedicated (built on present location)

Feb 1875     Winchester Friends first meeting as a Preparative Meeting in the Quarterly Meetinghouse


June 1875    Cast iron bell from Buckeye Foundry in Cincinnati, Ohio was purchased for $172.14 and placed at the meetinghouse

1893            Pastor: Abijah Wooten



1893-1894    Pastor: Simpson Hinshaw

1895-1902    Pastor:  Charles E. Hiatt and Elkanah and Irena Beard 


1897            27 Friends Meetings in Winchester Quarterly Meeting with membership of 3700 Friends

June 1897    Winchester Quarterly Meetinghouse was torn down to begin construction of present building

Oct 1897      First cornerstone laid for present meetinghouse

May 1898     Present meetinghouse dedicated and present parsonage given to the meeting by Elkanah and Irena Beard

1903            Pastor: Edward Woodard


1903-1909    Pastor: William J. Sayers

1904            First pipe organ installed in the meetinghouse                     

1909-1911    Pastor:  George C. Levering                    


1911-1925    Pastor: Frank Cornell

Dec 1925     Fire in meetinghouse destroys organ, piano and northwest corner of sanctuary

1926  Fire damage repaired and meeting for worship resumes in meetinghouse with new Wick’s organ


1927-1934    Pastor: Fred E. Carter


1934-1946    Pastor: Aaron Napier                                        

June 10, 1946 Aaron and Inez Napier involved in car accident in North Webster on their way to Camp Quaker Haven.  Aaron died a few hours after the accident and Inez suffered body cuts and bruises.

1946-1947    Pastor: Inez Napier 



1947-1950    Pastor: Kenneth Pickering                                                         


1950-1953    Pastor: Wilbur Kamp


1953-1958    Pastor: Kenneth Pickering

May 1957     Purchase of property joining church on the west for a future addition         

1958-1960    Pastor: Charles Thomas                                                                                                   

1960-1961    Pastor: Inez Napier                       

1961-1965    Pastor: Homer Vail                       


1965-1975    Pastor: Raymond V. Breaker       

1970            Educational Annex completed


Left:  On August 10, 1969 Winchester Friends broke ground for the Christian Education Annex.  The completed addition was dedicated on May 24, 1970. Pictured left are Jim Passmore and Raymond Breaker.


Above middle, John Cook (Clerk of Trustees), Richard Hinshaw (contractor), Raymond Breaker (pastor) and Ennis Gulley at the dedication of the $80,000 project on May 24, 1970.

Above left: Gordon Keys (father of Norma Ludy) and Treasurer of Winchester Friends at the burning of the mortgage on Nov. 4, 1973.  Above right, Gordon Keys, Walter Mills, Keith Hinshaw and John Cook at the mortgage burning in the Fireplace Room.

1976-1985    Pastors: Keith and Judy Kendall 

July 1978     Purchase of property to the east on Washington Street for a future parking lot and new pews and new carpet were installed in the sanctuary.     



1985-1989    Pastor: Bruce Bray                        

1989-1990    Pastor: Harold Smuck                   

1990-1993    Pastor: Ralph Lohman    


1993-1998    Pastor: Max E. Huffman




1998-           Pastors: Ron & Pam Ferguson       



Thomas Franklin Moorman

Clerk of Winchester Friends Monthly Meeting in 1912

October 7, 2012  -- 100 Years a Monthly Meeting
From the diary of Winchester Friends' first pastor Elkanah Beard in April and May, 1873:
"We have concluded it right to go to Winchester and expect to move in a few days. The citizens of that place who wish us to hold meeting agree to furnish us a house free of rent, and the owner of the City Hall kindly lets us use it without charge for meeting purposes..... It will likely be a long time before we will see much fruit of our preaching or pastoral care, but I claim that my labor for the Lord will be blessed..... The attendance at (Meeting) is thirty to fifty. In a room large enough to seat 500, these folks look like a small audience, and if I was to look at vacant seats I might get discouraged, but my thoughts must run higher than chair backs..... I wonder what will come of all this."
Elkanah and Irena Beard came to Winchester in April 1873 and were a part of this meeting through its beginning years, from those first services in City Hall to the construction of the first Quarterly Meetinghouse in 1874, then intermittently through the building of the present Meetinghouse in 1898. Winchester Friends remained a preparative meeting under White River Monthly Meeting for 38 years from 1874 until 1912 when they finally sent a minute to White River requesting to become their own monthly meeting.
On October 2, 1912, Winchester Friends held their first monthly meeting for business with 122 Friends in attendance, including relatives of Walter and Ken Mills, John (& Pat) Engle, Rob (& Val) Pearson, Mary Alice Boomer (& David) Moore, Dallas (& Mary) Bailey, John (& Ardith) Coon, Tom (& Joann) Knoll, Letha (& Austin) Cox, Norma Keys Ludy, Betty Locke and Anne Moorman Riddle. Thomas Franklin (T.F.) Moorman, great-grandfather of Anne Moorman Riddle, was the presiding clerk for that first monthly meeting, and Frank Cornell was the pastor in 1912. The Cornells came from New Market, Ontario, Canada, to Winchester in 1911 and were here until 1926, making them Winchester Friends' longest-serving pastors to date.
Winchester Friends celebrated its 100th anniversary as a Monthly Meeting on Sunday October 7, 2012.