St. John's Lutheran-Pimlico

Source: Centennial History of the Evangelical Lutheran Synod of Maryland 1820-1920, Wentz

On September 25, 1905, the Missionary Committee of the local Board of Church Extension of Baltimore City and vicinity, was instructed to look into the field on Park Heights Avenue, between Druid Hill Park and Belvedere Avenue. In November the report of the committee stated that the field was a great location for a Church and Sunday School. A lot was suggested and approved.

Unfortunately for the development of the mission, difficulties arose which delayed the work. In September, 1907, the local Board recommended the project to the Board of Home Missions and Church Extension.

On March 1, 1908, Rev. F. A. Hightman was placed in charge. After a preliminary canvas the first meeting was held at the home of Mr. August Snyder on March 19, 1908. Two weeks later, March 29 in Flautt's Hall, Park Heights Avenue and Shirley Avenue, the Sunday school was organized. The following officers were elected: Superintendent, Henry Hitter; assistant superintendent, Mrs. Arthur Droescher; secretary, J. Ferd Rossiter; treasurer, Arthur J. Droescher; organist, Miss Isabelle Snyder; superintendent of Primary Department, Mrs. Henry Ritter. The following teachers were elected: Misses Sophie Otto, Lillie Heinlein, Anna Hellwig, Mabel Hightman, Isabelle Snyder, Mrs. Henry Ritter and Rev. Hightman. The enrollment on this first Sunday was forty-two. Two scholars attended every Sunday during the first year, Leroy Droescher and Margaret Moore.

On May 10, 1908. St. John's Evangelical Lutheran Church, of Baltimore City, was formally organized with thirty-eight charter members. The following composed the first Church Council :

Messrs. August Snyder, August Ohlmeyer, J. Ferd Rossiter, Christian Heinlein, Louis J. Roth, and Henry Ritter.

The Ladies' Aid Society, whose assistance has been of inestimable value, was organized on June 29, 1908 with the following officers: President, Mrs. Louisa Vogt ; vice-president, Mrs. Louis T. Weis; secretary, Mrs. Arthur J. Droescher; treasurer, Miss Isa belle Snyder.

During the pastorate of Rev. Hightman, two lots were purchased on the east side of Pimlico Road facing Kate Avenue, for the future site of the church. Rev. Hightman resigned in June. 1909 but continued to supply until September. On September 3, 1909. Rev. H. E. Berkey was elected pastor, and served until March 1, 1910. Rev. G. Albert Getty, D.D., having supplied the pulpit from April. 1910, until June, was elected pastor, and assumed charge about June 1. Brother Getty entered the work with energy and planned wisely. On July 3, 1910 the following building committee was appointed: J. Ferd Rossiter, Arthur J. Droescher, A. F. Homer, Albert Weis, Rev. Getty, member ex-officio. The corner stone of the new church was laid on December 18, 1910 and the church was dedicated on June 18, 1911. The cost was $16.250. Rev. Getty resigned February 1. 1915. Rev. John G. Fleck, assumed charge on June 1. 1915.

The communicant membership of the church in 1918 was two hundred and twelve. The enrollment of the Sunday school was two hundred and fifty, with a staff of teachers and officers of thirty. The church was also enlarged at this time at an approximate cost of $30,000.


Rev. F.A. Hightman

Rev. H.E. Berkey

Rev. G. Albert Getty

Rev. John G. Fleck

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