MELICK, REV. JUSTUS A., was born, of pious Methodist parents, in Light Street. Columbia county, Pa., Mardi 7, 1823, and thus at his death had completed by a few weeks sixty-three years of earthly pilgrimage. From early childhood he gave evidence of a devoutness of spirit in the daily reading of the scriptures and in a fixed purpose to lead a pure and upright life. It was not, however, until he was student in the academy at Harford, Pa., possibly in his twentieth year, that he received the assurance of his acceptance as a child of God. This so changed the current of his thought that he cheerfully surrendered his cherished plan-to adopt the profession of law-and gave himself to the ministry, to which he felt called of God. After graduation, with honor as valedictorian of his class, he attended, for a term of years, the Genessee Wesleyan Seminary, at Lima, N. Y., as preparative to his life work.
In 1848, with twenty-four other young men he was admitted on trial in the Baltimore conference. In 1850, at Alexandria, Va., he was received into full connection in the conference and ordained a deacon by Bishop Morris, and in 1852 was ordained elder, at Cumberland, Md., by Bishop James. His first appointment was Bellefonte circuit, as junior preacher, being a colleague of Rev. Thompson Mitchell. His subsequent fields of labor were as follows: 1849, Clearfield; 1850, Lycoming; 1851, Berwick; 1852-3, Luzerne; 1854-5, Lock Haven; 1856-7, Great Island; 1858, Manor Hill; 1859-60, Birmingham; 1861-2, Woodberry; 1863-4, Williamsburg; 1865-7, Newberry; 1868-9, Bloomsburg; 1870-1, Jersey Shore; 1872-4, Hollidaysburg; 1875-6, St. Paul's, Harris-burg. Here in the second year of his pastorate his health began to fail, and at the Williamsport conference in 1877 he became supernumerary, and a year later settled down into the most sorrowful conviction of a Methodist preacher-work done, supernumerated. The next eight years were spent in Harrisburg, cheered by the loving associations of a bright and happy home, the esteem of the church, the love of his brethren and the confidence of the whole community, doing such work as his strength would permit.
Rev. Jesse B. Young, his pastor during the last year of his life, in a memoir read at the memorial service held in the Grace church, Harrisburg, reviewed the character and achievements of Rev. Melick, paying an eloquent tribute to his unselfish devotion and loyalty to the cause of Christ.
Rev. Melick was twice married. The wife of his early manhood was Miss Emmeline E. Patchin, of Clearfield county. Pa., to whom he was united, October 28, 1851, and who shared for eleven years the toils and deprivations of his early itinerancy. She died in 1862, leaving him with three little children. He was married, secondly, in 1867, to Miss Emily Dunmire, who by her devotion to him in the years of their wedded life, and by her faithful and motherly care of the children, now grown to a beautiful, active Christian manhood and womanhood, has shown her eminent fitness for the delicate and responsible trust.
His end was calm and peaceful, and his funeral was held in Grace Methodist Episcopal church, Harrisburg, March 25, 1886. A deeply affected and sympathetic congregation filled the spacious edifice, and a large number of ministers of his own and other denominations by their presence expressed their appreciation of his worth and work.
Historical Review of Dauphin County
Transcribed by Becky Tuszynski email@example.com for The Dauphin County, Pennsylvania Genealogy Transcription Project - http://maley.net/transcription.
Date of Transcription: 10 June 2001
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