Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Fennimore Fremont Young & The Second Awakening – 1901

I’m in the process of reading France, Fin de Siecle by Eugen Weber and this sentence popped out at me “…By the end of the century, the end of the world seemed nigh…”.  In The World’s End Soon by Arthur Lautrec he promised it would happen in 1901.

So what does this have to do with the history of the Gig Harbor area?  Well, it jogged my memory about an article received and published in The Review, Mankota, Minnesota on August 18, 1896 that I ran across in the Resource Room at the Harbor History Museum.

The Review had received a Pacific Coast paper talking about a religious sect, the Come-Outers, located in Gig Harbor that were preparing for the Second Awakening which was to occur in the spring of 1901.  See the connection?  Only 144,000 faithful would be saved and “all poor unfortunates are to remain behind and suffer 3 ½ years of such tribulations and plagues as never seen before in Hades.”
In Gig Harbor the Come-outers were led by Mr. Fennimore Fremont Young, son of Postmaster A. W. Young. Fennimore was Gig Harbor's first minister in 1887.  He eventually left his Presbyterian faith of 32 years and joined the new Come-outers sect  approximately in 1893.  Mr. Young devoted himself to teaching the interpretation of Holy Scripture in accordance with the philosophy of the Come-outers.  He received no salary, and collections were taboo.  He existed on the donations of a few of the more generous members.

Mr. Young’s flock started with approximately 2 score members but gradually grew as more and more people were attracted to his teachings. And just as gradually members left until but a half-dozen or so were left.  Their meetings were held in the Grand Army Hall located a little back of People’s Wharf with picnic and dancing grounds.

Eventually Prophet Young’s beliefs lost their magnetism and his flock fell away especially when 1901 came and went.  When Mr. Young left for California there were still six Come-outers remaining in Gig Harbor. As a result, Mr. Young packed up his tracts and left for Oakland, California which proved to be his next abiding place, and there he is now apostrophizing (sic) the deity a colony of Fruitaleans.    

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