Eloping Ministers from Four Major U.S. Denominations
Between 1870 and 1914, at least 266 Protestant ministers abandoned their posts, homes, and families and, as newspapers reported it, "mysteriously disappeared." Most of them eloped with young, attractive parishioners. Some returned home repentant. Others were arrested in far-away cities. About half were never heard from again. This chart represents annual elopement rates among four major denominations represented whose representatives seemed to offend the most. Hovering over a particular date will provide statistics on the number of eloping ministers by denomination in the upper right-hand corner of the chart.