(William Christopher; Willem; Berckenmeyer; Berkkenmeyer; April 14[?], 16871751). Father-in-law of P. N. Sommer*; b. Bodenteich, Lüneburg, Ger.; successor to Falckner in Hudson Valley chs. 1725. During his pastorate in New York, Trinity Ch., a substantial stone structure was built 1729. In 1731 he moved to Loonenburg (Looneburgh; later called Athens), in the N part of his extended parish. Representing the orthodox school of Lutheranism in Am., he became leader of the pastors in the Hudson Valley. In 1735 a Kerck-Ordinantie, drafted by him, bound the Dutch and Ger. chs. of New York and New Jersey together in a syn. that had only 1 meeting as far as the records show. Berkenmeyer sought to advance pure Lutheranism and prevent the ecclesiastical mingling of Luth. and Ref. Married Benigna Sibylla Kocherthal 1727. His journal, in Dutch, Ger., and Lat., contains much valuable hist. material. See also Knoll, Michael Christian.
H. J. Kreider, Lutheranism in Colonial New York (New York, 1942) and History of the United Lutheran Synod of New York and New England, Vol. 1 (Philadelphia, 1964).
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