This Week In History

January 30, 1841

On Jan. 30, 1841, the Republic of Texas legislature chartered the second college in the state — Galveston College — organized by Presbyterian minister W. L. McCalla in December 1840 with five students. By the end of 1841, the school had 100 students. McCalla served as the first president. After a brief time, he went to England, then returned to Philadelphia to promote Texas. The college was short-lived and ceased operations by the 1850s.

February 1, 1823Betsey Stockton

On February 1, 1823, African-American Betsey Stockton (at right) was traveling with a mission group comprised of men and women from the Presbyterian and Congregational churches on a sailing ship to the Sandwich Islands (now known as Hawaii). Sent out by the American Board of Commissioners of Foreign Missions, Betsey Stockton's contract specified that she was to share in the mission's primary work as well as to act as a servant to one of the couples, Rev. and Mrs. Charles S. Stewart, who were expecting a child. When she returned to Princeton, Stockton created a Sabbath School at the Witherspoon Street Presbyterian Church.

February 2, 1981Rev. Dr. Richard C. Halverson

On Feb. 2, 1981, the Rev. Dr. Richard C. Halverson (1916 - 1995) was appointed chaplain of the U.S. Senate. He served as chaplain until Dec. 31, 1994. Rev. Halverson served from 1958 until 1981 as the Senior Pastor of Fourth Presbyterian Church, Bethesda, Maryland.

February 3, 1856

On Feb. 3, 1856, the Rev. Robert Hamilton Byers and 11 people formed the First Presbyterian Church of Dallas, TX. Stated supply pastor for Presbyterian churches in Rusk and Henderson counties, Rev. Byers and members met at in private homes, a blacksmith shop, a lumber yard, the courthouse, and a printing shop until the first church building was constructed in 1873.