Historical Markers
Dansbury Mission Historical Marker
Mouse over for marker text

Dansbury Mission

Poconos / Endless Mountains


Marker Location:
Main Street (US 209), Stroudsburg

Dedication Date:
June 15, 1947

Behind the Marker

An 1845 depiction of Stroudsburg, developed in the vicinity of the former settlement of Dansbury, which was burned in an Indian attack during the French and Indian War.
An 1845 depiction of Stroudsburg, developed in the vicinity of the former settlement...
In 1737 Daniel Brodhead, a "Licensed Trader" among the Indians and Captain in the militia, moved from New York to the wilds of Monroe County, Pennsylvania, where he purchased 640 acres of land and settled along Analoming Creek (now Brodhead's Creek). There he laid out a town and named the fledgling settlement Dansbury, after himself.

Seven years later, three Moravian missionaries passed through Dansbury on their way to preach to the Lenape Indians in nearby Dutchess County, New York. Inspired by their missionary fervor, Brodhead built a chapel and mission house for their use. The Moravian settlement of Bethlehem lay only thirty miles away, and soon Moravian brethren arrived to cultivate the spiritual growth of Dansbury's inhabitants and bring the message of Christ to those living in the surrounding countryside.

In the latter half of the eighteenth century, Moravian ministers continued to use Dansbury as a base for their missionary work among the Lenape. But increasing tensions among the British, French, and competing Indian nations threatened to upset their work. The leader of the Moravians, Count Nicholas Ludwig von Zinzendorf, had always encouraged his followers to face hardship and loss during the course of spreading the Gospel. Moravian missionaries accepted these risks and continued working to convert Native peoples to Christianity even as hostilities and mistrust increased.

Image of gravestones
Dansbury Mission Cemetery, 2005.
When the French and Indian War broke out in 1754, the Pennsylvania frontier became a dangerous battleground. After the French defeat of British General markerEdward Braddock in 1755, some of France's Indian allies attacked Pennsylvania's frontier settlements. On December 10, 1755, Lenape warriors attacked Dansbury and burned the Moravian mission chapel and Daniel Brodhead's outbuildings and barns to the ground. Both white settlers and Lenape died in a vicious gun battle.

After the Dansbury raid, many settlers left the area for safer ground. A brave and determined group, however, returned to live near Fort Hamilton, which the Pennsylvania government erected near Dansbury to protect white settlers from Indian attacks. In 1760, Jacob Stroud, a former indentured servant who had just finished five years of service in the British army, settled at the confluence of three creeks, where he set up a successful grist and saw mill. There he established a family compound that later became the town of Stroudsburg. Dansbury, too, was resettled, and eventually adopted the name East Stroudsburg.
Back to Top