Trinity Evangelical Lutheran-Smithsburg

Source: History of Western Maryland, J.Thomas Scharf, AM, Vol. II, 1882

Organized in 1822, the first preliminary meeting was held on the 1st of January of that year, at which a building committee was appointed consisting of Christopher Flory, Peter Mong, Jacob Little, John Flory, and John Etnoyer. John Welty and John Sigler were appointed collectors to raise subscriptions. Jacob Slessinger was chosen permanent secretary, and Peter Hammaker treasurer. John Welty and Peter Hammaker were appointed a committee to purchase a lot on which to erect the proposed building. The corner-stone of the new structure was laid on the 27th of May, 1822. The ministers present were Rev. Benjamin Kurtz, who was the immediate supervisor of the building efforts, and Revs. Jacob Schnure, Jacob Medtart, and Peter Recksicker of the German Reformed Church. Included in the cornerstone was a Bible, a German and English catechism, a memorandum with the names of the committees, builders, etc., and a proclamation indicating the purpose of the building and the name "Trinity," by which it was to be known. Coins then in circulation were also deposited. The church was dedicated on Whit-Monday, June 7, 1824. The ministers who took part in the services were Revs. Benjamin Kurtz, John Lind, from Greencastle, Pa., John Herbst, from Gettysburg, and Jacob Schnure, from Middletown.

About the same time the congregation organized, the elders elected were Frederick Fisliack, Conrad Mentzer, Peter Flory, and Conrad Flory. The

deacons were Samuel Mackin, Jacob Castle, George Fogier, and George Sigler. The parsonage was built in 1829. The first infant baptism of which there is a record was that of a daughter of Jacob and Catharine Sensebach. The ceremony was performed on the 17th of April, 1729, by Rev. S. K. Hoshour. The first communion was held some time in 1825, and the number of communicants was one hundred and one. The members who entered into the first organization had for the most part belonged to St. Peter's (Beard's) Church. Rev. Benjamin Kurtz, pastor of St. John's Lutheran Church at Hagerstown, served St. Peter's congregation, as well as other churches in the county. On the 26th of December, 1825, a plan of incorporation was adopted.The first church was of stone, and a newer brick structure built in 1851. Rev. Benjamin Kurtz, afterwards and for many years editor of the Lutheran Observer, was the first pastor, but he resigned soon after the dedication of the church.


Rev. Benjamin Kurtz

Rev. S.K. Hoshour 1828-1830

Rev. John Reck 1830-1832

Rev. J.P. Cline 1833-1846

Rev. J.J. Reimensnyder 1846-1851

Rev. L.H. Bittle 1851-1853

Rev. J.F. Probst 1853-1856

Rev. John Heck 1857-1861

Rev. W.F. Eyster 1861-1865

Rev. M.C. Horine 1865-1869

Rev. S. Henry 1869-1872

Rev. X.J. Richardson 1872-

Rev. Virgil Cain Current in 2015

Address & Contact Information:

16 N. Main Street

Smithsburg, MD 21783

Telephone: (301) 824-2799

FAX: (301) 824-2706


There is a cemetery on the same grounds as the church. For our transcriptions and photographs of the cemetery, click here.