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Robert Lusk (1781-1845)


Robert Lusk (1781-1845)

James Dodson

Biographical Sketch

Born near Londonderry, Ireland, March 8, 1781. He came to America with his parents, in 1792, settling in Cumberland County, Pennsylvania. In early life he manifested a thirst for knowledge, which could not be gained very extensively in the primitive schools of his adopted neighborhood. In 1804, he repaired to the Academy of Greensburgh, Pennsylvania, where he received his preparatory course of study, and graduated from Jefferson College in 1810. He studied theology in the Philadelphia Seminary, and was licensed by the Middle Presbytery, May 9, 1814. He was ordained by the same Presbytery, and installed pastor of the Conococheague congregation, Chambersburg, Franklin County, Pennsylvania, June 16, 1816. He resigned this charge, October 15, 1823, and was installed pastor of the congregation of Walnut Ridge, Washington County, Indiana, October 7, 1824. Upon the false charge of defrauding his neighbor, brought by a young man at the instigation of the masonic element of the area in order to discredit Lusk’s faithful testimony against secret societies, he was suspended by the authority of Synod, August 10, 1825. These weighty charges were thoroughly investigated by a committee of Synod, after the departure of numerous theological foes in the split of 1833, and he was restored to ministerial functions, October 15, 1834. He was re-installed pastor of Walnut Ridge, May 9, 1835. In 1840, he and David Steele, together with several ruling elders, declined the ecclesiastical courts of the Reformed Presbyterian Church due to ecclesiastical tyranny. They erected the Reformed Presbytery, June 24, 1840. His name was stricken from the roll by authority of Synod, September 18, 1840. He preached in the vicinity of his home as his health would permit, and died of erysipelas, December 14, 1845. Though not considered a pleasing preacher, yet he was a very instructive preacher and gifted in prayer. His literary acquisitions were both general and accurate, and he was a reputable scholar in science and medicine.