Franconia Mennonite Historical Society

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The Franconia Mennonite Historical Society, originally called the Historical Society of the Franconia Con­ference District, was organized in October 1930 at the Plains Mennonite Church, Lansdale, Pennsylvania, with John D. Souder as president and Samuel R. Swartley as secretary. In 1952 the officers were Quintus Leatherman, president, David K. Allebach, vice-president, Herbert Derstine, secretary, and Ernest R. Clemens, treasurer. The Franconia Men­nonite Historical Library, established in 1950 and initially located in Souderton, contained the archives, books, and papers of the society.

The meetings of the society were held annually in the various churches of the conference district. Pro­grams consisted of addresses on local history of the churches and general Mennonite church history. The purpose of the society was to stimulate interest in the study of the historical background of the Mennonite Church and its bearing upon our church life today.

In 1935, through the inspiration of the president of the society, John D. Souder, the collection of sources for a Franconia conference church history was begun. John C. Wenger was selected as the writer, and by 1937 the work, History of the Men­nonites of the Franconia Conference, was completed and was published by the society.

It no longer exists as a separate society; its successor is the Mennonite Historians of Eastern Pennsylvania.

Author(s) Quintus Leatherman
Date Published 1956

Cite This Article

MLA style

Leatherman, Quintus. "Franconia Mennonite Historical Society." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1956. Web. 29 Nov 2023.

APA style

Leatherman, Quintus. (1956). Franconia Mennonite Historical Society. Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 29 November 2023, from


Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 2, p. 370. All rights reserved.

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