Jake and Betsy Roak

Jake and Betsy Roak were married 56 years. They died within 2 days of each other. They lived their lives fully and inspired in the service of others. Together they advanced a family legacy.

Shipwreck

Lost at Sea: James and Josephine Stewart

The words “lost at sea” are the most melancholy, and often the most mysterious, inscriptions on gravestones at Gloria Dei. In those cases, the stones are merely markers for a person who never came home and never saw their loved ones again.

Rhoda McCoy

In 1865, Rhoda McCoy, almost 90 years old, was buried in the Gloria Dei Churchyard. Rhoda must have had a strong constitution — she died of “old age” rather than an ailment or disease.

Bernard Dahlgren

Bernard Dahlgren

This stone commemorates Bernard Ulrick Dahlgren, although his body no longer rests here. His remains, with those of his wife Martha and their infant son Washington, now lie in West Laurel Hill Cemetery.

Isaac V. Culin

Descendants of Isaac V. Culin trace their lineage to Johan van Cöln, an early European settler who arrived on the Delaware around 1662. For most of his adult life, Issac made his living as a tailor, residing and working in the neighborhood of Southwark.

Marker 69

Henry Bennett

Henry Bennett, age 39, died of a heart attack on Jan. 5, 1847, while on his job at an ice cream parlor on Queen Street. Bennett was a mariner by trade.

Sophia Fisler

Born Feb. 24, 1752, Sophia Fisler was a younger unmarried sister of Hannah Collin. She lived with her sister and husband as a housekeeper and appears in church records as early as 1793.

Lizzie Martin

Born in 1837, Lizzie Martin was only 20 years old at her death. She had probably caught the eye of many a young man, but remained unmarried at her death and was still living at home with her parents.

A portrait of Jacob Jackson.

Jacob Jackson: A Navy Man In The War Of 1812

Jacob Jackson, whose body rests near those of his wife Catharine and several of their children, was a U.S. Navy veteran of the War of 1812. He was an active supporter of Gloria Dei (Old Swedes’) Church, elected as a member of the vestry in 1842.

The passenger pigeon

Sven’s Woods: Bringing More Wildlife To Gloria Dei

By Michael Schreiber The proposal to restore a portion of land at Gloria Dei (Old Swedes’) Church in Philadelphia to help attract wildlife is very timely. Its status as a National Historical Park and location within a big city can help make Gloria Dei a prominent example of ecological land management others can copy.

Kalmia latifolia

A Peach Of A Botanist

By Amy Grant Many local residents may not realize Queen Village is actually older than the City of Philadelphia. “Philadelphia’s First Neighborhood” was settled by Swedish immigrants in 1654, 28 years before William Penn founded Pennsylvania.

Jenny Lind

Jenny Lind

By Michael Schreiber Jenny Lind was the first international superstar of the musical world. The frenzy over her visit to the United States in 1850 even surpassed that of the “British Invasion” of the Beatles a century later. Yet those who met the “Swedish Nightingale” described her as being incredibly modest and generous. She gave large […]

George Ord, Ship Chandler

George Ord, Sr. was born in England in May, 1741 and settled in Southwark. He married Rebecca Lindmeyer on January 17, 1767. They lived in a three-story brick house with a large garden at 784 South Front Street, between Catharine and Clymer Streets. Prior to settling in Philadelphia he was a successful ship captain.

Marker 130

Captain Lodge Colton, Master’s Mate

Being a riverfront Church, Gloria Dei has a rich history that involves many people who were involved with maritime related occupations. Captain Lodge Colton was no exception. At the age of 14 he became a mariner on the clipper barque “James Cornor.” (sp. Corner?) He served the CSN being appointed in Baltimore, Maryland. Lodge Colton […]

John C. Hunterson, Civil War Congressional Medal of Honor Recipient

John C. Hunterson was born on August 4, 1841 in Philadelphia. He entered the Union Army on July 23, 1861, where he was mustered in as a Private in Company B, 3rd Pennsylvania Volunteer Cavalry. He was awarded the CMOH for his bravery June 5, 1862, a few days after the Battle of Fair Oaks. […]

Captain Morris Sheer

During the 19th century, Philadelphia’s waterfront was lined with wharves which were operated by numerous shipping lines. Smaller vessels designed for domestic use, called packet boats, carried mail, packages, and a limited number of passengers to major cities across the Eastern seaboard. Morris Sheer, a parishioner at Gloria Dei, was one of the first captains […]

Alexander Wilson, Father of Ornithology

Alexander Wilson was born on July 6, 1766, in Paisley, Scotland. At the age of 13 he apprenticed in the weaving trade spending ten years as a weaver. He then began traveling about Scotland as a peddler and writing dialect poems, which he published. Discouraged by poverty and by political persecution because of some satires […]

Galoshes

Recollections About Peter Cruse, Ship Captain

“My memory often reverts to many statements of my dear Aunt Isabella Cruse, as to the fact of my grandfather Captain Peter Cruse, being the first conveyor of rubber in America …”