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News, events, updates, and tidbits from the Presbyterian Historical Society. Use tags to read related articles or sort by author for similar posts written by PHS staff members and volunteers.

July 14, 2016

Every three summers, high school students from all over the world gather on a college campus for the Presbyterian Youth Triennium (PYT) to create a community of young Presbyterians committed to strengthening their relationships with God and the church. Participants this year are just now heading to Purdue University for the Triennium’s beginning on July 19, making this a great time to delve into our archives and learn more about the group’s founding.

While the Presbyterian Church has a rich history of youth work and Christian education (take, for example, the...

May 21, 2014

Sixty years ago, the Presbyterian Church in the U.S.A. held its 166th General Assembly in Detroit. The U.S. auto industry was booming, and the city had acquired considerable wealth and size. At the same time, however, Detroit was experiencing an “inner-city problem.” Presbyterian Life, in the May 15, 1954, issue, wanted to educate its readers and GA commissioners about these problems, even amidst the general glow of mid-1950s prosperity.

The magazine captured the great movement of people that had characterized Detroit during and after World War II. “Practically...

May 21, 2014

At the 1891 General Assembly in Detroit, the Reverend Henry C. McCook and other members of the Committee on the Seal of the Church presented their recommendation for a new church emblem. In their official report, the committee members described the proposed seal and laid out arguments for its elements that alluded to biblical history and texts; Greek, Egyptian, and Hindu mythology; and earlier Presbyterian seals.

In conducting its research, the committee had discovered a seal it believed to have been adopted by the Trustees of the General Assembly as early as 1799. Featuring a...

April 11, 2014

With only two months until the 221st PC(USA) General Assembly in Detroit, here is an incomplete list of online resources for those interested in all things GA. Please submit comments or any other useful resource links that may have been omitted.  

General Assembly

May 17, 2012

From the Executive Director...

We encourage Presbyterian congregations to celebrate Heritage Sunday on May 20. Why is it important to celebrate your congregation’s heritage?


Sinking Spring Presbyterian Church (Abingdon, Va.), RG 428, Postcard collection.


A congregation is a community of faith that...

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