Henry Petersen

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Henry Petersen was born October 20, 1901 in Chicago, Illinois to Anton Peterson and his wife Meta Mueller Petersen. In 1916, his home was 5801 Bernice St., in Chicago.


All children born (and died, unless otherwise noted) in Chicago).

  • Martin Petersen (b. 1890 - d. 1949 Fresno, CA)
  • Christina Petersen Sorensen (1895-1965) married Sor Kristian Sorensen, who served as an elder at Irving Park Gospel Chapel.
  • Peter Petersen (1896-1928)
  • Anton Nelson Petersen, Jr. (1899-1977)
  • Anna Petersen (1904-1984)
  • Marie Magdalena Petersen (b. 1908)


Father's family

Anton Petersen was born about 1863 in Denmark, and immigrated to Chicago in 1888. He married Meta Mueller on May 23, 1889 in Chicago, and was self-employed as a gardener and in the trucking industry. He died Feb. 6, 1946, in Chicago.

Mother's family

Meta Mueller Petersen was born July 31, 1861 in Denmark, and immigrated to Chicago in 1889. She died Dec. 23, 1923 in Chicago.


Henry married Alice Wilhelmina Berg.

Alice was born June 4, 1908 in Chicago, IL to Gustave John Berg (b. 1882 Sweden - d. 1968 Inglewood, CA) & Gunda Alvida Rockstead Berg (b. 1888 Chicago, IL - d. 1968 Glendale, CA).


  • Dr. Harold Alfred "Hal" Petersen (b. 1942 Milwaukee, WI - d. 1993 Lafayette, LA) graduated summa cum laude from Wheaton College in 1964, then received his master's and PhD from Northern Illinois University. He served on the History faculty of the University of Southern California 1970-1993.

He was a member of the American Historical Assoc. and the Canadian Studies Assoc. He also served as a member of the Exec. Council of the Louisiana Academy of Science, and as chairman of its Gen. Soc. Sci. Sec. in 1980, becoming its director in 1982. In 1985, Dr. Petersen was named the Louisiana Academy of Science's Teacher of the Year. An elder at First Presbyterian Church in Lafayette, LA where he resided 20 years, he taught adult religion classes and served as a lay minister.

He married Vicki Cormier, and had three daughters: Aimee (Galesburg, IL), Leigh and Bethany (Lafayette, LA) Petersen, and one son, John Petersen, of Lafayette.

  • Marilyn Petersen Kirshberger married Ferd Leon Kirschberger (b. 1942 Pasadena, CA - d. 2019 Amherst, VA) in 1969 in Los Angeles, CA. Ferd was the son of Ferdinand John Wilhelm Kirschberger (b. 1910 Lutherville, AR - d. 1987 Bloomington, CA) & Lorene Grace Zimmerman Kirschberger (b. 1919 Coldwater, KS - d. 1996 Wichita, KS). Marilyn & Ferd have three children.


When Henry was 18, he was self-employed as a truck driver. By 1930, he operated a greenhouse service, and was living at 5743 Irving Park Blvd.

Pre-PB Spiritual Influence


Henry was confirmed on May 7, 1916 into the Ebenezer Danish Evangelical Lutheran Church, which met on N. Rockwell & Wabansia Ave., in Chicago, and was part of the United Danish Evangelical Lutheran Church synod.

This church was organized in 1895, and merged in 1947 with Our Savior's United Lutheran Church (org. 1942 @ 2624 N. Fairfield Ave.), which is where Henry's wife Alice was confirmed on April 9, 1922. The merger became Atonement Lutheran Church, which met (1947) on 6740 W. North Ave in Logan Square, Chicago, which presently meets as Mosaic Lutheran Church, advertised as a multi-ethnic, multi-generational church.




In 1957, the Pomona Gospel Chapel was launched with Henry and William Bush as keynote speakers.



Henry is credited for developing a large Sunday School and Friday night children's meetings in the early years of Irving Park Gospel Chapel in Chicago, Illinois, founded by Harold Harper, of which, Henry's sister Christina's husband Sor Sorensen also shared in leadership. This assembly commended Henry to full-time ministry in 1932.


Henry was instrumental helping start the Melvina Gospel Hall in western Illinois in the early 1930's thru his effective visitation ministries around Melvina and nearby Montrose, which served those communities for several years.


Henry ministered broadly as an itinerant helping new works from the 1930's-1950's, and encouraging existing assemblies, including what is now Hope Bible Fellowship, in Seattle, WA. He is also remembered as having given a three week series on Pilgrims' Progress at what is now Tieton Drive Bible Chapel in Yakima, WA. He also served as a conference speaker in 1938 as what is now Cosmopolis Gospel Chapel, alongside Alfred Mace, George Landis, and Harold Harper.


British Columbia

At the dedication service for the launch of Granville Chapel in Vancouver in the spring of 1950 by Mount Pleasant Gospel Hall, presently known as Heather Bible Chapel, Henry was invited as the keynote speaker.


Henry visited South Windsor, Ontario for six weeks in 1969, to help with visitation and the launch of Oakwood Bible Chapel, a plant from nearby Turner Road Gospel Chapel.


Henry died on October 25, 1993 at the age of 92 in Long Beach, California. His wife, Alice, preceded him in death on July 11, 1977, in Glendale, California, where both are buried.