Rev. William


REVEREND WILLIAM H. BURRELL was born in Pennsylvania around 1822. He entered the ministry at an early age, and in 1852 was the first pastor of Siloam Methodist Church in Bethel Township, in Delaware County PA.

Reverend Burrell was living in Hatboro PA in 1865 when his son William B.M. Burrell was born. There were at least 4 other children, Margaret, Lillie, Harry, and Alma. The Burrell family had moved to Philadelphia by 1870.

In 1879 Reverend Burrell was one of four Methodist ministers, the others being Ezra B. Lake, James Lake , and S. Wesley Lake, who chose the island known as peck's Beach as a suitable spot to establish a Christian retreat and camp meeting, on the order of Ocean Grove. Having chosen the name "Ocean City", the founders incorporated the "Ocean City Association", laid out streets and sold lots for cottages, hotels and businesses. The Tabernacle was built between Wesley and Asbury Avenues and between 5th and 6th Streets. Camp Meetings were held by the following summer.

Reverend Burrell and his family were living on North 13th Street in Philadelphia when the 1880 Census was taken. He moved to Camden a few years later. Reverend Burrell settled at 43 Cooper Street, near the ferries.

Reverend Burrell became known far and wide as Camden's "marrying parson". In the days prior to the civil licensing of marriage, Reverend Burrell performed thousands of marriages, and became quite wealthy doing it, in the parlor of his home at 43 Cooper Street.  Besides his work in performing marriages, Reverend Burrell is also remembered as one of the founders of Ocean City NJ.

Reverend William H. Burrell died in Camden NJ on October 14, 1909.

Philadelphia Inquirer * June 10, 1891
Charles W. Dreher - Market Street - Cramer Hill

Philadelphia Inquirer - July 18, 1891

Rev. William H. Burrell - James M. Cassady
Frank T. Rittenhouse - Alice Clayton

Trenton Times - October 15, 1909