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Monday, November 16, 2015

Rev. Isaac Oliver Sloan


 More particulars from the varied life of the Rev. Isaac Oliver Sloan.

Isaac Oliver Sloan (XIX 69) was graduated at Washington and Jefferson college, Canonsburg, Pennsylvania; studied theology at Union Theological seminary, New York; received license to preach from the Fourth Presbytery of Philadelphia, and was ordained in 1856 by the Presbytery of Hanover, Virginia. He was a missionary in Kent county, Virginia, for four years. His first pastoral charge was at Talleysville, Accomac(!!!) county, Virginia, where he remained till the outbreak of the Civil war. He was twice commissioned by President Lincoln as chaplain of the field hospitals within the lines of the army of the Potomac, and afterward by President Johnson chaplain of the officers' hospital in the Naval Buildings, Annapolis, Maryland. After the close of the war he went west, and spent the rest of his active life in Minnesota, where he reared two churches, and in North Dakota, where he founded three churches.

-Record of the Harris family descended from John Harris, born in 1680 in Wiltshire, England
by Harris, Joseph Smith


Besides the prominent chaplaincies the Rev. Sloan did yeoman service as a member of the United States Christian Commission during the the Civil War. Here is a mention of his work after the Battle of Gettysburg from a contemporary report . . .

After a pretty thorough examination of the work of the Commission at the General Hospital, the members of the Committee proceeded to the hospital, located at the Lutheran Theological Seminary. Here the work was found to be in excellent progress, under the charge of the Rev. I.O. Sloan, one of the most faithful and efficient of our delegates. Mr. Sloan was with Mr. Cross and others, among the first on the ground. They were sent with a full supply of stores to Westminster, before anything could be done at Gettysburg. Immediately after the battle, they were on the ground and at work. He has continued in the faithful performance of duty ever since and it was with great pleasure that the order with which he was pursuing his way, at the Seminary Hospital, was witnessed. The surgeons spoke of him in the kindest and most affectionate manner, and wrought with him very pleasantly in the performance of their mutual labors.
 -United States Christian Commission. Committee of Maryland. Report, Volume 2
J. Young, 1864


His work on the Great Plains after the war . .

Bismarck.-On Sunday November 5, memorial services were held in the Presbyterian church for the Rev. Isaac Oliver Sloan the organizer of the church. He was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, October 20, 1820, and died at his residence, 3118 North Sixteenth street, Philadelphia, October 27, 1899. He was honorably retired by the Presbytery of Bismarck, October 27, 1895, and spent the last four years of his life with his relatives. "Father" Sloan as he was familiarly called was emphatically a pioneer. He was the first Presbyterian minister in the state of North Dakota, and the church at Bismarck which he organized was the second in the territory of Dakota- afterwards formed into the states of North and South Dakota. He was stated supply at Bismarck from August 28, 1873, until September 21, 1878. But he was at work on the Missouri slope and further until his honorable retirement. He went as far west as Glendive, Montana; far north as Washburn, North Dakota, and beyond; as far south as Glencoe and Emmons county; as far east as the dividing line the James river and the Missouri river. He was a gentleman in every sense; neat, refined, loving, peaceful, never very strong. He was the Apostle of Love in the territory of Dakota. The value of such a man in the pioneer days can never be estimated. At the memorial the church was filled, and many who not entered a church door for years, heard from the Rev. Durrie the familiar and simple story of the good old man; and memory as well as heart was stirred. As a little token of appreciation to the Board of Ministerial Relief, which has deservedly helped him, $11 was raised.

-The Interior
Western Presbyterian Publishing Company, Chicago
November 30, 1899



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