What is now Providence Friends Meeting developed from gatherings for Quaker worship in Upper and Lower Providence Townships, Delaware County, Pennsylvania. These gatherings may have been held as early as 1682, when immigrants from Britain, most of them Friends from Cheshire, England, began to enter William Penn's newly-established province. Previously there had been European inhabitants of the lower Delaware Valley, but not much Quaker influence west of the river.
The first recorded use of the phrase "Providence Meeting" appears in minutes of Chester Quarterly Meeting, in March 1684. The Meeting had evidently been in existence for some time. It was referred to under other names, especially "Thomas Minshall's Meeting," since it often met in Thomas Minshall's house. In 1700, by which time the structure of yearly, quarterly, monthly and preparative meetings was well established in the British colonies as well as in England, Providence was recognized as a preparative meeting under Chester Monthly Meeting, which included also Middletown and Springfield Preparative Meetings. Providence remained a preparative meeting under Chester Monthly Meeting until 1934.
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