Thursday, May 10, 2012

Jesse Halsey | Obituary

Southampton Press | January 1954
Dr. Jesse Halsey

The Reverend Doctor Jesse Halsey, one of Southampton’s most respected and admired citizens, died early Tuesday morning, January 12, at the Southampton Hospital. He had been ill for two weeks, following a stroke.

Dr. Halsey, who was seventy-one, had been living with Mrs. Halsey in the family home on North Main Street, Southampton, since his retirement in 1952 from McCormick Theological Seminary in Chicago.

A direct descendent of one of Southampton’s founding families, Dr. Halsey was born in Southampton in 1882, the son of Charles Henry and Melvina Terry Halsey. After graduating from local public schools, he attended Princeton University and the Princeton University Graduate School and Seminary, receiving his Bachelor of Divinity degree from Union Seminary.

After being ordained in 1910, the Rev. Dr. Halsey began his ministry with Sir Wilfred Grenfell in the earliest days of the Labrador Medical Mission. In 1913 he became pastor of the Seventh Presbyterian Church in Cincinnati, Ohio, where he served for 29 years.

Dr. Halsey served with the YMCA in Russia during the First World War and was American Chaplain with the British Navy. In 1940 he became Professor of Pastoral Theology and Liturgies at McCormick Seminary in Chicago, a post he held until his retirement in 1952.

In the latter years of his life Dr. Halsey shared with young ministers the wealth of his experience as a pastor. His advice on the planning of church buildings and sanctuaries was constantly sought after. In addition to his pastoral work, he was active in those Presbyteries of which he was a member, and was concerned with the larger activities of the church through the General Assembly. For many years he worked on the executive committee of the Board of Missions, and at the time of his death was a member of the Sixth Service Command for the Army and Navy chaplains.

Beyond his concern for the Presbyterian Church, the Reverend Mr. Halsey was active in civic and charitable organization in Cincinnati, Chicago and Southampton. As president of the Southampton Historical Society, he was instrumental in the founding of the Southampton Historical Museum in 1951. He was the author of many articles centered about his boyhood memories or topics of local interest for The Press.

Surviving Dr. Halsey are his wife, the former Helen Isham; a son, Charles Henry Halsey of Westhampton; two daughters, Mrs. Joseph Haroutunian of Chicago and Mrs. James A. Van Allen of Princeton, and eight grandchildren.

Funeral services will be held this afternoon at two o’clock in the First Presbyterian Church of Southampton, of which Dr. Halsey was a member and often served as guest preacher. Officiating clergymen will be Dr. John Christie, vice-moderator of the Presbyterian Church of the United States; Dr. Robert Worth Frank, president of the McCormick Theological Seminary; Dr. Joseph Haroutunian, professor of Systematic Theology at McCormick Theological Seminary and son-in-law of the deceased; the Reverend John L. Felmeth, pastor of the First Presbyterian Church; and the Reverend Herbert Moyer, pastor of the Bridgehampton Presbyterian Church.

Honorary pallbearers will include Leon P. Hildreth, Daniel Halsey, J. Foster Terry, Thomas Corwin Sr., Lewis E. Downs, C. Edwin Dimon, William K. Dunwell and David E. Halsey. Serving as pallbearers will be Dr. Kenneth B. Wright, Thomas White, Samuel F. Herrick, Malcolm Terry, Donald Seabury and Donald Corwin.

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