Monday, January 19, 2015
Joseph Chilson, Part Two, Baptist Minister
In yesterday's blog, I talked about my second great grandfather, Joseph Chilson, as a Civil War soldier. I am proud of him for his service to his country but I am also proud of him for his service to his Lord as a Baptist minister.
He was ordained in Kansas, before coming to Fallbrook, San Diego Co., California. I'm still looking for more information about this. He arrived in Fallbrook about 1886. Besides being a minister, he was also a carpenter and he helped to build Fallbrook's First Baptist Church in 1888 (pictured here). This church stood in Fallbrook until 1968 when it was replaced with a newer brick structure. I'm so happy I got to see it before they tore it down!
Joseph lived in Fallbrook most of the time he was in San Diego Co. but he also lived in Merle, a railroad village in San Diego Co., near Encinitas. In 1890, he is listed in the business directory in Merle as Rev. Chilson, Baptist. I'm not clear how long he served at this church but he did return to Fallbrook by 1894 and remained there until after 1905, when he still appears in the business directory.
Joseph moved to Los Gatos, Santa Clara Co. by 1908 and was still living there in 1911 when he was involved in a controversy at Los Gatos Baptist Church. According to an article in the San Francisco Examiner, the pastor of this church was preaching socialism and progressive religion. The members, including Joseph Chilson, who objected to this were asked to leave the congregation. It was quite an uproar! Apparently, Joseph did leave. He moved, briefly to Campbell and then to San Mateo where he died in 1915 at the age of 77.