Loyal Young


Loyal Young


REV. LOYAL YOUNG, D.D., was pastor of the Presbyterian church of Butler for nearly thirty-five years, and his name is a familiar one in many of the homes in Butler county. He was a son of Robert and Lydia (Gould) Young, of Charlemont, Franklin County, Massachusetts, where he was born July 1, 1806. When Loyal was five years old his parents removed to French Creek, Harrison county, Virginia. He obtained a good English education in the schools of that locality, entered Jefferson College in 1826, and graduated from that institution in the autumn of 1828. After teaching a private family school in Virginia one year, he entered the Western Theological Seminary, at Allegheny City, Pennsylvania, and was licensed to preach the gospel, by the Presbytery of Ohio, June 21, 1832. On the 25th of October following, he was married to Margaret P. Johnston, a daughter of Rev. Robert Johnston, the first pastor of the Scrubgrass Presbyterian church, Venango county, to which union were born seven sons and one daughter. Four of their sons, Robert J., Watson J., Torrence F., and James W., were soldiers in the Union army.

Mr. Young came to Butler county soon after he was licensed to preach, his first sermon in Butler being delivered August 29, 1832. The following summer he preached as a candidate, and was ordained and installed as the third pastor of the Butler congregation, by the Presbytery of Allegheny, December 4, 1833. For nearly thirty-five years he labored faithfully and assiduously in building up the church. During his ministry here he baptized about 800 children and adults, united in marriage over 200 couples, and nearly 450 persons were brought into the Butler church. He delivered his farewell sermon May 10, 1868, and the same month took charge of French Creek and Buckhannon churches, in West Virginia. He remained at French Creek eight years, and was then installed as pastor of the First Presbyterian church of Parkersburg, in the same State, which position he filled five years. His next charge was the Winfield, Point Pleasant and Pleasant Flats churches of West Virginia, which he ministered to from 1880 to 1885. He then removed to Washington, Pennsylvania, and became a supply for a few years. Here his wife died December 29, 1887, and soon after he returned to Butler, where he continued to follow the ministry up to within a few weeks of his death, which occurred October 11, 1890.

While pastor of the Butler church, in 1858, the degree of D. D. was conferred upon him by Washington College. Dr. Young was twice moderator of the Synod of Pittsburg, once of the Erie Synod, and represented the Presbytery at the General Assembly several times. He was also the author of the following works: "Commentary on the Book of Ecclesiastes," "Hidden Treasure," "Interviews with Inspired Men," "Communion," and "From Dawn to Dusk." A few weeks before his death he completed a commentary on the book of Proverbs, which has not yet been published. To Dr. Young more than to any other man was due the establishment of Witherspoon Institute at Butler. He was the guiding spirit in calling the convention which brought that school into existence, in preparing the charter, and raising money, and placing the Institute on a solid foundation. He was its principal for quite a long period, and his name is closely interwoven with its early growth and progress. In a sermon delivered July 2, 1876, Rev. C. H. McClellan paid Dr. Young the following tribute:

A man bold in the defense of truth, vigorous and active in frame, and indefatigable in promoting the interests of Christ's cause, his life and work in Butler will be remembered long after he himself shall have passed from earth. No better testimony to his ability as a preacher and pastor can be found than the well taught and strongly organized church he left in this place; no better proof of the reality of his piety and good works than the readiness with which all classes, young and old, rich and poor, Protestant or Catholic, speak his praise. He was an Israelite indeed in whom there was no guile.

History of Butler County, 1895, pages 681-683


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