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Religion Collections in Libraries and Archives:
A Guide to Resources in Maryland, Virginia, and the District of Columbia

Table of Contents - Preface/Acknowledgements - Abbreviations
Lists of Entries: District of Columbia - Maryland - Virginia

United Methodist Historical Society
of the Baltimore-Washington Conference
Lovely Lane Museum Library

Address: 2200 St. Paul Street
Baltimore, MD 21218-5897
Telephone Number: (410) 889-4458
Contact Persons: Robert Shindle, Director of Archives and History

Access Policies

Hours of Service:
Thursday and Friday 10:00 a.m.--4:00 p.m. and by appointment
Open to the public: Yes
Photocopying:: Yes
Interlibrary loan: Yes

Most materials may be photocopied. We honor most interlibrary loan requests.

Reference Policy:
Telephone and mail reference questions are accepted. Long distance calls are not returned. Queries are answered if they are accompanied by a self-addressed, stamped envelope. Genealogists and those with involved questions will be charged a fee.
Borrowing Privileges:
Not a lending institution.
Background Note:
Founded as the Baltimore Conference Historical Society in 1855. The name has changed various times: American Methodist Historical Society (1856-1943), Baltimore Conference Historical Society (1943-1992), and the United Methodist Historical Society of the Baltimore-Washington Conference, Inc. (1992- ).
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Description of Collections

Books and monographs:
Approximately 4,700 volumes, primarily from the 18th to the 20th centuries, with a few earlier books. The Historical Society's printed collections relate to the history of the United Methodist Church. These are the Methodist Episcopal Church; Methodist Episcopal Church, South; Methodist Church; Evangelical Association; United Brethren in Christ; Evangelical United Brethren; Methodist Protestant Church; and the United Methodist Church.

The card catalog, organized by author, covers this collection. The Methodist Union Catalog: Pre-1976 Imprints contains a listing of the early books in this collection.

Periodicals and newspapers:
There are approximately 20 current subscriptions and 100 titles, many with long runs. Most are 19th and 20th century periodicals covering Methodism (see description above for full list of Methodist bodies). Of particular interest are annual conference records beginning in 1800. See also notes below on archives.

The Union List of Methodist Serials, 1773-1973 is a finding aid for this collection.

Archives, manuscripts, correspondence, and oral histories:
Approximately 280 linear feet. Inclusive dates for this collection are 18th to 20th centuries. The collection contains the Archives of the Commission on Archives and History of the Baltimore-Washington Conference and the Manuscript and Museum collections of the United Methodist Historical Society. Manuscript holdings include items written by John Wesley, Susanna Wesley, Joseph Pilmore, Thomas Rankin, John Fletcher, Francis Asbury, E. Stanley Jones, Thomas Coke, Henry Boehm, Nicholas Snethen, Jesse Lee, William McKendree, Joseph Dallam, Henry Smith, James Henry Brown, Henry Slicer, Isaac Collins, Isaac P. Cook, John Franklin Goucher, John Kobler, Levi Monroe, Nelson Reed, and many others.

The archives also includes circuit records (1794- ), district records (ca.1865- ), annual conference records (1800- ), membership records (1799- ), closed church records, class records, British Conference (Wesleyan Church), President Letters and Pictures and general conference records.

Finding aids include church record inventories and a finding aid for vault locations.

Rev. Edwin Schell is Executive Secretary of the United Methodist Historical Society. Arthur D. Thomas, Jr., is the Conference Archivist and Director of Archives and History of the Commission of Archives and History.

The collection contains 45 reels of microfilm, mainly of conference minutes and preacher's journals.
200 maps with inclusive dates from 1794 to the 20th century. Some maps on slides date from 1758. Maps are of the Baltimore-Washington Conference, which includes Maryland, the District of Columbia and West Virginia.
Vertical files:
40 vertical files dating from 1770 to the 20th century. Highlights include manuscripts, clippings, biographical sketches, and histories of institutions such as local churches, colleges, seminaries, schools, boards, agencies, and benevolent organizations.

The vertical file is organized alphabetically by subject.

Paintings, photographs, slides, and prints:
200 slides, 350 mounted pictures, oil paintings, statues, lithographs, and photographs. Inclusive dates of this collection are 18th to 20th centuries. Subject matter includes events, people, and churches, mainly of the area conference.

There are alphabetical inventories for part of the collection.

Other holdings not listed above:
A listing of United Methodist clergy, primarily from Baltimore and vicinity, on index cards with biographical and career information on ministers of the Methodist Church. Included in the listing are traveling preachers (1773-1994), local preachers (late 18th century-1990), and supply pastors (20th century), as well as traveling preachers for the entire United States (1773-1799).

The Society's collection also includes the Lovely Lane Museum with artifacts and exhibits concerning John Wesley, Susanna Wesley, Robert Strawbridge, Francis Asbury, Thomas Coke, and John Fletcher.

Subject Headings

African Americans--Religion; Asbury, Francis, 1745-1816; Church discipline--Methodist Church; Church polity--Methodist Church; Evangelical Association; Evangelical United Brethren; Methodist Church; Methodist Episcopal Church; Methodist Episcopal Church, South; Methodist Protestant Church; Missions and missionaries; Religious education; United Brethren in Christ; United Methodist Church; Wesley, John, 1703-1791; Wesleyan theology; Women in the Methodist Church


Batsel, John D., and Lyda K. Batsel, comp. Union List of United Methodist Serials, 1773-1973. Evanston, IL: Garrett Theological Seminary, 1974.

Rowe, Kenneth E., ed. Methodist Union Catalog: Pre-1976 Imprints. Metuchen, NJ: The Scarecrow Press, 1975.

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  June 22, 2017
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