Return to History of the Evangelical
Reformed and Congregational
Churches of the New Orleans area
First German Protestant Church
and Congregation of New Orleans
 The original records are held by the church. They include baptism, marriage, and death records, but due to their
extreme fragility, they are not made available to the public. The existing records, described as fragmented and
incomplete, were microfilmed by the Historic New Orleans Collection. The records are not comprehensively indexed.
The microfilms are available to be viewed only at the Historic New Orleans Collection and the German American
Cultural Center in Gretna, Louisiana. The records of the church cover from 1844 to the late 20th century, and there
are significant gaps. The records from 1880 on are the most complete. There are 11 rolls of microfilm, of which, only
rolls 2 through 6 contain 19th-century birth, marriage, or death records. A description of the contents of the 11 rolls
of microfilm can be found here.

Organized in 1826 [1828 according to J. Hanno Deiler], this was the first German-speaking, Protestant congregation
in New Orleans. It was incorporated as the German Protestant Church of New Orleans. The first pastor was the Rev.
Heinrich Heistand of the Reformed Synod of Ohio. After nearly dissolving in 1833, the church was reinvigorated by
Pastor Johann Wilhelm Müller of the Reformed West Pennsylvania Synod. Their first building was dedicated in 1840.
This building was partly destroyed by lightning in 1858, but was restored and stood until 1872. By 1880, the
congregation was affiliated with the Evangelical Synod of North America. In 1886, the church was completely burned.
A third church building, dedicated in 1887, was also ravaged by fire in January 1905. These three early churches
were located on Clio Street, between Nayades [St. Charles] and Apollo [Carondelet] Streets, and thus the church was
often referred to as the “Clio Street Church.” The congregation then decided to move to Carondelet Street, where
their new church was finished in 1907. By 1951, the church had built a new structure at South Claiborne and
Jefferson Avenues. In 1936, they had joined the Evangelical and Reformed Church, and in 1957, became part of the
United Church of Christ. In 1991, what was now the First Evangelical Church merged with Trinity Evangelical Church
(founded in 1926) to become what is now known as First Trinity Evangelical United Church of Christ, located in

A 1925 centennial history of the church, Hitherto the Lord hath helped us, 1825-1925: First Evangelical Church, New
Orleans, Louisiana, is available in the Jones Hall Louisiana Collection of Tulane University. Call number: 976.31
(284.1) F527.

Other names of this church:
 German Protestant Church of New Orleans (1826)
 First Evangelical Church
Rev Heinrich Heistand
Rev. Johann Wilhelm Muller
Rev. J. E. Schneider
Rev. Christian Schrenk
Rev. Henry Kleinhagen
Rev. Christian Schrenk
Heinrich Hiestand
Ernst Berger
Dr. Kässmann
Anton Vallas
Ernst Berger
Alexander Kretschmar
J. M. Hofer
J. B. Erben
Hermann Pressler
Herman F. Perpeet
August Gehrke
A. H. Becker