Rev. A. J. Strain served as many as 10 churches in the area. His means of transportation was his horse. During a week of many rains, he became sick. Rev. Strain developed double pneumonia. He died on February 2, 1873. It is documented in the Jasper Courier, that over 1500 people attended the funeral. The people met in Ireland and followed the procession to Shiloh where he was buried. It is believed Rev. Strain's influence in educational and religious circles was probably greater than that of any other pioneer in Dubois County.
Rev. Strain was ordained as a minister of the Cumberland Presbyterian church, October 10, 1847, and Shiloh, Lemmon, Jasper, Hillsboro, Lebanon, Ireland, Gray's, Hopkin's, and McMahan's were congregations under his charge.
Rev. Strain for a long time lived at Jasper, but about 1868 moved to Ireland. His parents originally came from old Ireland, but came to Indiana direct from Eastern Tennessee. They never resided in Dubois county. The maiden name of Rev. Strain's mother was McMullin. Rev. Strain was school examiner of Dubois county from June 5, 1861, until his death, February 2, 1873. He had served several years before this as one of a board of school examiners, operating under an old law. Rev. Strain was about six feet tall; weight, about two hundred forty, blue eyes, with black and gray hair. His favorite hymn was " There is a land of pure delight where saints immortal reign." His favorite text was the twenty-third Psalm, " The Lord is my Shepherd; I shall not want, etc." He was very fond of saying " Hew to the line, let the chips fall where they may," and "A good name is more honorable than great riches." In politics he was classed as a " war democrat." He was a Mason and an Odd Fellow. He was a school mate and personal friend of the Hon. Oliver P. Morton, the great war governor of Indiana. Rev. Strain was instrumental in raising many troops for the Northern Army and was a great benefactor to the soldiers' widows and orphans.
In Rev. A. J. Strain was seen one of the mightiest pioneers in the educational and religious work in Dubois county. The northwestern part of the county, to this day, reflects his religious work, and his influence for good is still felt throughout the county. He was a collossal figure in his chosen field of labor, striding onward, head and shoulders above his contemporaries. His grand, manly character, his splendid achievements in public life, and his princely qualities as a private citizen, commanded unstinted admiration. In his day he was hardy, enterprising, irresistible; an able expounder of his religious, political and educational views, and a most typical representative citizen. He gloried in the cause of the Union, and was a true friend of the soldier during the Civil War. His teachings had a good effect upon the citizens of the county at large. At the time of his death it was generally remarked that he was, in every sense of the words, a just and good man. He was so lovable in his character and gentle in his disposition, that at his death the children of a county wept. What higher tribute could be paid to any man ? Nature had endowed him with a fine physique and stamped upon his brow, strength, grace, culture and dignity, such as would have marked him as distinguished in any assembly of men. In the soil of old Shiloh cemetery.