The Photo Request has been fulfilled.

 Joshua Vaughan Himes

Joshua Vaughan Himes

Wickford, Washington County, Rhode Island, USA
Death 27 Jul 1895 (aged 90)
Elk Point, Union County, South Dakota, USA
Burial Sioux Falls, Minnehaha County, South Dakota, USA
Memorial ID 43619436 · View Source
Suggest Edits

Parents: Stuckley Himes Elizabeth Vaughn
Spouse: Mary Thompson Hardy

Church marks past, eyes future

Adventists pay homage to early leader while celebrating mortgage milestone
by Dorene Weinstein • • September 19, 2010

The headstone was covered with 115 years of moss and lichen.
The old, pitted surface, now scrubbed clean, was inscribed with faint words:
Who shall roll us away the stone. Mark 16:3.

Joshua Vaughan Himes, Born May 19, 1805. Died July 27, 1895.

With a tiny brush, a painter refreshed the etching Friday while half a dozen members of the Seventh-day Adventist Church talked in hushed tones nearby about the man buried there, an organizer who helped lay the groundwork for what became the Seventh-day Adventist Church.

The forgotten and neglected grave marked with two boulders on a grassy knoll in Sioux Falls is a modest recognition of a charismatic life, said Don Johnson, pastor of the Seventh-day Adventist Church in Sioux Falls. He studied Himes in college and located the grave a few years ago on the advice of Kathie Gulk, an elderly church member. Renewed interest in Himes was generated by the upcoming mortgage burning and dedication of the church Saturday.

Himes, a minister, was active in the Millerite movement of the mid-1800s. William Miller, leader of the movement, thought that Jesus was coming to cleanse the Earth by fire on Oct. 22, 1844, Johnson said.

Miller's teachings gained momentum, and the movement swept the country, attracting followers even in Europe.
Himes was fascinated by Miller and helped spread the word by organizing speaking engagements for him and arranging huge camp meetings. At least 54 revivals were held in 1844, captivating thousands of followers, according to

Himes holds the record for organizing the biggest tent event. The tent was 120 feet in diameter with a 55-foot-tall pole. It seated 4,000 people, with another 2,000 who crammed in the aisles.

As fall approached, Miller's teachings reached fever pitch. When Oct. 23, 1844, dawned and the world was still here, disappointed believers drifted back to their own churches or turned away from religion completely. Still others became Adventists.

"Twenty years later, the Seventh-day Adventist denomination formed," Johnson said.

Now 16.3 million strong, they believe in the second coming of Christ and honor the Fourth Commandment to rest on the seventh day, Johnson said. "We attend church on Saturday."
Not to be waylaid by a scrubbed second coming, Himes migrated west and ended up in South Dakota as pastor at an Episcopal church in Elk Point. He also was a prolific author and publisher and developed several magazines and newspapers throughout his lifetime.

Himes died of cancer at 91 and was buried at Mount Pleasant Cemetery on a bluff facing west and overlooking the city.

"We were really excited to find that a part of our history was in Sioux Falls," said Cathy Cottingham, church secretary. "If it wasn't for this person, our church may not have developed as it did. We're so pleased to be able to pay back our respects."

Reach reporter Dorene Weinstein at 331-2315.

Family Members





  • Created by: fargo
  • Added: 27 Oct 2009
  • Find A Grave Memorial 43619436
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Joshua Vaughan Himes (19 May 1805–27 Jul 1895), Find A Grave Memorial no. 43619436, citing Mount Pleasant Cemetery, Sioux Falls, Minnehaha County, South Dakota, USA ; Maintained by fargo (contributor 47136288) .