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Williamsport church celebrates bicenntennial

April 10, 2002

Williamsport United Methodist Church is celebrating 200 years of ministry in Williamsport.

The church was a worshipping congregation before Otho Holland Williams founded the town, according to Joan Knode of the Williamsport Town Museum.

Historical highlights include:

- Bishop Frances Asbury preached at WUMC in 1813.

- The church housed soldiers during The Civil War.

- The church was part of a circuit including Boonsboro, Smithsburg, Clear Spring and Chambersburg, Pa. A riding minister would travel the circuit preaching at a different church each week.

- Lula Brandt Harsh, who lived with her locktender father and family in Lock House 44, remembers coming up the hill from the Lock House to worship every Sunday at the church. Canal boat captains and their families docked at Cushwa Basin also attended services at the church.

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- An "Amen corner" was alive and well during the early worshipping years.

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