Rev. Ferdinand C.H. Lampe of Pottsville, Pennsylvania
accepted the call to St. Mark’s in May, 1863 and served until
September, 1864. Apparently, Rev. Lampe declined a call from
St. Matthew's English Lutheran Church of Brooklyn, N.Y. extended in
January 1863, in order to move to Williamsport.
Williamsport German Lutheran congregation, having ceased to worship
with the German Reformed church on Third Street now petitioned the
English Lutherans for the privilege of worshipping with her. The two
groups satisfactorily arranged for the division of the pastor’s
salary between them and the Germans were granted the use of the
sanctuary every alternate Sunday morning and evening.
Lampe who became pastor of both congregations was a man of great
oratorical power and an elocutionist of note. Tradition still
lingers, telling marvelous tales of the oratorical power of Rev.
Lampe. As all elocutionist many remember the laughter and the tears
he caused when he recited “The Shule-House on the Crick;” while his
rendition of Mark Antony’s speech over the dead body of Caesar made
the cold drops gather on their foreheads.
Williamsport was no longer the country town of the beginning of the
church’s existence. The river’s bank was crowded with saw mills;
Fourth Street had begun to don its aristocratic dress. Railroad
communication had taken the place of the old stage coach. The little
congregation, no longer now a mission, numbered 120 members in good
and regular standing, besides the 130 Germans who worship with them,
when Rev. Lampe left the church.
It appears that Rev. Lampe played a role in the formation of the
Lutheran Seminary at Philadelphia, as the historical records of that
President C. W. Schaeffer, D.D., in his annual
report to the Ministerium of Pennsylvania, meeting in Pottstown, Pa., called attention to
"the duty of making more ample provision for the education of pastors . . . . The
necessity of definite and liberal action is now upon us. . . ."
May 25th,  the Ministerium resolved, "That
in the Name of the Lord we now determine to undertake the
establishment of a Theological Seminary."
Historical records note that Rev. F.C.H. Lampe became pastor of The
First Evangelical Lutheran Church of Warren on the 19th of
September, 1875, and continued to serve this people until the
beginning of 1879.
A Committee consisting of the Revs. C. F. Welden,
W. J. Mann, F. C. H. Lampe, and Messrs. C. F. Norton and
Charles A. Heinitsh presented a plan the following day.
Consideration was postponed to a special meeting, held July 26th
in Allentown. The first three items, viz., that the Seminary
should be unreservedly based on all the Lutheran Confessions,
that it should be located in Philadelphia, and that instruction should be in English and in
German, were adopted.
Rev. Lampe was born December 1829
and died May 1884 in Warren, Pa., where he is buried. He was married to Emily Lampe and had one son, Emil.