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Wesley Matthias Stanford

Reference: The Twentieth Century Biographical Dictionary of Notable Americans: Volume IX
*Contributed by Deborah Hollowbush

Stanford, Wesley Matthias, bishop, was born in Rockland, Pennsylvania, March 15, 1846; son of Abram and Susannah (Domer) Stanford, and grandson of Robert and Mary Stanford and of Matthias and Martha (Lusher) Domer. His mother was of German and his father of Scotch ancestry. He was graduated from Mount Union college, Alliance, Ohio, S.B., 1871, and was married, August 2, 1870, to Rosa Weimer. He entered the ministry of the United Evangelical church in 1872. He was associate editor of the Evangelical Messenger, Cleveland, Ohio, from 1882-1888; and in 1889 established the Evangelical, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. He was elected bishop of the United Evangelical church at the general conference in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in October, 1891, and his term expired by the law of the church in October, 1902, when the conference made him editor of the official church paper, the Pittsburg Conference Journal, president of the General Church Extension society and fraternal delegate to the general conference of the United Brethren church. He was a delegate to the general conferences of 1883, 1887, 1891, 1894 and 1898; delegate to the annual sessions of the board of missions; chairman of the publishing committee of the new “Evangelical Church Hymnal”, 1894; and alternate delegate to the Ecumenical conference of Methodism in London, 1901. He received the honorary degree of A.M. from Central Pennsylvania college, 1890, and that of D.D. from Mount Union college, 1896. He took a leading part in the establishment of Western Union college, LeMars, Iowa.

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