Father Pitt is especially fond of Old St. Luke’s, partly for its history (its congregation was at the center of the Whiskey Rebellion), but mostly for its situation in a picturesque country churchyard.
Under layers of later accretions is a Revolution-era house that belonged to the Neville family. When General Neville, an old Washington crony, was appointed collector of the Washington administration’s very unpopular whiskey tax in 1794, the Whiskey Rebellion broke out: rioters burned Bower Hill, General Neville’s home, and he fled for his life to this house, which belonged to his son.
This was a southern gentleman’s house: the Nevilles were from Virginia, and settled here in Yohogania County when Virginia claimed this part of the world. They kept slaves in the 1700s; Pennsylvania abolished slavery in stages.