Historical Tidbits

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  • FBI Investigates Rev. King

    Rev. Joseph King was instrumental in organizing the Carlock Mennonite Church in 1914 and served as the church’s first pastor.  Most members of the new Carlock Mennonite congregation were previously members of the North Danvers Mennonite Church, which congregation had its original roots in the Rock Creek Amish Mennonite Church.  Rev. King was a grandson of an elder of the original Rock Creek Amish congregation and his parents, aunts, and uncles were leaders of the North Danvers congregation.

    In 1917 Rev. King, in his role as the pastor the Carlock Mennonite Church, came under the investigation of the FBI.  World War I had been declared and Rev. King was stressing in his Carlock sermons the Mennonite stand against military service.

    The FBI described Rev. King’s sermons as “pro-German activity”.  The FBI severely reprimanded Rev. King and demanded his consent not to speak so harshly against the U.S. government.  After a few weeks, Rev. King forgot the warnings and returned to his strong opposition to the war.  But the FBI was watching and soon returned to Carlock for a second round of reprimands.  Our best information is that this is the last incident of the FBI monitoring a Carlock sermon.