Rev. John Wesley Glenk

The Reverend Glenk was born on June 2, 1874 in Fort Hunter, New York. He received his Ph. B. at New York University in 1897, his M.A. in 1899, his B.D. at Drew Theological Seminary in 1900 the same year he entered the Puget Sound Conference. He was a professor at Puget Sound University in 1901-1903. During this time he married Phydelia Rebecca Treat on this day, July 11, 1901.

They then went to Alaska in 1903 and by 1905 he was preaching at the Methodist Church here in Skagway. His daughter Esther was born in 1906 presumably here in Skagway, but for sure in Alaska. She joined her sister, Charlotte who was born in 1905 in Bellingham. The Glenks moved back to Bellingham and by 1921 John was working for the State Department of Highways as a statistician. Later they moved to Vancouver Washington where they died in 1956 and 1958.

Seen above is the St. Saviours Episcopal Church in 1906. Perhaps they are pictured in the group.

Alumni Record of Drew Theological Seminary; Washington records; local newspaper.

Skagway Churches in 1898

Despite the stories of murder, prostitution and robbery, there were also quite a few religious centers in Skagway in the 1890’s. Here is a list:

Fathers Tosi, Robaut, Seghers, Gougis, Rene of the Catholic Church

Rev. C.J. Larsen of the Norwegian Danish Methodist Church

Rev.’s Young, Dickey, Grant, Thwing, Pringle, Sinclair, Turkington, Cock of the Presbyterian Church

Bishop Bompas and Rev.’s Ridley and Rev. Richard John Bowen of the Anglican Church

Rev.’s Lyon, Carter, Howard, Cameron, Stuck, and Wooden of the Episcopalian Church

Ministers Dowell, McGill, Ellery, Kenny, Aitken, Ross and Booth of the Salvation Army

Rev.’s Jorden, Latourette, and Clevinger of the Baptist Church

Rev.’s Ulery, Kline, Tooley, Yorba, Barnett of Peniel Mission

Rev.’s Leach and Yokum of the American Episcopal

Missionaries Mr & Mrs White in Dyea in 1888

Independent Preachers Green, Williams, Mortimer, Gardiner, Sehlbrede, Leaman, Wright, Kiernoff, Warrens, Weavers, Rega, and Tourney.

I have found no reference to synagogues or Buddhist centers, but who knows?

Hope I haven’t missed any! I have written blogs on several people, but some disappear after the gold rush. I am reminded of Ray McKinnon’s wonderful portrayal of the real Rev. Henry Smith in the HBO series Deadwood, seen above.

many sources

Rev. Wilmot Gladstone Whitfield

In the 1902 Report of the Commission of Education Rev. Whitfield was Superintendent of the “fine Methodist Episcopal Church and parsonage in Skagway”. They said it was worth about $4500, “In spite of the business depression in Skagway the church has been able to offset removals of valuable accessions to its membership, and is harmonious and hopeful for the future.”
Rev. M.A. Sellon was another preacher who worked with him and in Klukwan to “gather the Chilkat Indians into the Church.”
Wilmot Whitfield was born on this day, March 21, 1872 in either Luana, Clayton, Iowa or the Dakotas where his father, also named Wilmot Whitfield was the presiding Methodist Episcopal pastor for the Dakota territory.
After working in Skagway, Rev. Whitfield moved to Washington where he married and then became Superintendent of Schools in Yakima Valley, Washington in 1918. He died in 1931 in Tacoma.
Above is the Presbyterian Church in Skagway which I believe is the same church they are referring to here.

History of Yakima Valley online; famsearch; WA state records

Leonidas John Hamlin Wooden

The Reverend Doctor Wooden came to Skagway in 1898 and succeeded the infamous Rev. Campbell at the Episcopal Church. Dr. Wooden staffed the Bishop Rowe hospital.
He was also a member of the Arctic Brotherhood in 1900 but around that time he had moved to the Yukon. In the summer of 1904 there was a diptheria epidemic in Circle, Alaska and Dr. Wooden was appointed by Commissioner Nichols to be the Health officer there with full power to “quarantine and protect the public health by all reasonable ways and means”. He and his wife Frances had 6 kids, three who died young. They were all probably here, but there is no record of them.
Leonidas Wooden was born in Indiana in 1856 and died on this day, May 5, 1945 at the age of 89 in Montgomery Kansas.
The picture above is of the little church in Carcross which still has services on Sunday.

Klondike Mission, by Sinclair; 1901 Yukon census; Congressional Reports for the 59th Senate, 1905-1906; Familysearch

Dr. Archibald John Campbell

In February of 1898 Archibald John Campbell, a Scot, came to Skagway to be the Episcopal Minister and dubious doctor.
There was some controversy about Dr. Campbell.
When Presbyterian Minister John Sinclair came to Skagway in 1898 from Ontario, Canada, he found that the Reverend Doctor Campbell was firmly ensconced in the Union Church, that had been built in 1897 by Rev. Dickey. Campbell did not welcome Sinclair and told him the Union Church was Episcopal and refused to move out. Sinclair had been sent by Bishop Rowe because of odd allegations against Dr. Campbell.
Campbell was later fired by Bishop Rowe because of allegations of misconduct with females by a neighbor, George Aggers. Aggers and others said women were seen coming and going from the Reverend’s home at all hours of the night. The women supposedly were coming to Dr. Campbell for his famous internal massage or liver therapy. After some months of dispute, Campbell moved to a cabin on the hillside where he apparently was quite agitated and died on this day, February 22, 1899 of a heart attack.

The Sault Ste. Marie News; Thora Mills- The Church and the Klondike Gold Rush;