Wilmer - William - Montgomery InGenWeb Project

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Wilmer - William

Source: Portrait & Biographical Record, Montgomery, Parke & Fountain Counties, Indiana.  Chicago: Chapman Brothers, 1893 p 480.

Rev. William WILMER.   This popular and much esteemed minister of the Gospiel resides in Attica and presides over the Presbyterian congregation sin that city and in Williamsport.  He was born 4 miles from Cincinnati, Ohio on 19 Oct 1838, and is a son of Henry L. and Mary  Brown Wilmer, natives of Maryland and NJ respectively, the father born in Baltimore and mother in Salem, near Philadelphia.  When 21 the father went to Cincinnati, purchased a farm near that city and to this brought his bride.  They resided on this farm for 60 years, or until they were aged people.  Honorable and upright, they were highly esteemed by all who were favored with their acquaintance.  William Wilmer remained on his father's farm until 17 and graduated from Farmer's College near his old home in the class of 1860.  He had to depend mainly on his own exertions for an education and taught school for the means to take him through college.  In the year 1860,a fter graduating, he taught the full year near his home, after which he entered the seminary at Auburn, NY.  Later he returned to Cincinnati and entered Lane Seminary where he completed the course in the class of 1864.  He is an alumnus of each of these institutions and has recently attended commencement exercises at Lane.  Mr. Wilmer's first pulpit work was during his vacation in 1863 at Rockville, Parke County, Indiana where he was associated with Rev. John Hawkes, one of the best known ministers of Western Indiana. After graduating, he accepted a pastorate at Montezuma, Indiana in the Crawfordsville Presbytery where he was ordaned in Sept. 1865.  After psending two and a half years at Montezuma he had charge of the church at Monticello for one year. The year following was devoted to the Home Mission Work at Carroll co Ind.  In 1869 he assumed charge of the church at Williamsport to which he devoted two years exclusively, when he was asked to include the church at Attica in his charge. The latter church was not in a very prosperous condition at that time, and it was through his exertions and business tact that its condition was bettered.  He entered upon the double duty with misgivings but the result has shown the wisdom of the course.  For 20 years Mr. Wilmer has preached alternately at each church and during that time he has given faithful attention to every detail in business matters, has proferred sound advice and instruction to his auditors, and has cultivated relations of close, faithful friendship with his parishioners.  He has strengthened and improved the two churches in every way.  While it was at first intended that the arragangement be a temporary one, it has never been though advisable for either party to separate since. The membership in each church has kept pace with the growth of the country and a new church building has been erected at Williamsport.  Both churches are in fine healthy financial condition and the people take an active interest in both the church and its pastor. He has been instrumental in bringing many to the feet of Christ and is a man of strong will, clear conceptions, generous impulses and fine sensibilities that make him scrupulously tender of the rights of others.  Mr. Wilmer's sermons are filled with earnest religious appearls, biblical citations, historic references, poetic gems and sincere reasoning. He is a most pleasant gentleman to meet and is univesrally popular with his congregation.  His constant ministrations to his people for 20 years has endeared him to their hearts in ties of the closest friendship and love. Mr. Wilmer is a man of liberal views.   Though not in sympathy with the radical ideas of such men as Dr. Briggs he is in full accord with those who have worked for the modification and revision of the Presbyterian articles. He is not given to extreme views and while a stricdt Prohibitionist, he does not believe that th ebst results can be obtained through the Prohibition party.  In personal appearance Mr. Wilmer is tall, has a vigorous body and a fine open countenance. He was married in May 1865 to MIss Kate F. Wood, one of his former pupiles. She died on the 25th of Jan 1873 at Williamsport. On 18 Sept 1875 he united in marriage to Miss Lizzie K. Peabody, a classmate of his first wife at Oxford Seminary, Ohio.  Miss Peabody was born in Henneker, NH and is the daughter of a prominent physician of that place.  Mr. and Mrs. Wilmer are the parents of one child, now deceased and two daugthers, Edna and Lizzie, both of whom graduated at the Western Female Seminary at Oxford, Ohio the former in the class of 1886 the latter in 1888. Both are teachesr and very intelligent young ladies. They are by the first wife. (probably more to this biography) - transcribed by kbz
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