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Early Churches of Tippecanoe County Indiana

Members of the Tippecanoe County Area area Genealogy Society are working on this list of early churches of Tippecanoe County.   We hope to add photographs of each one.  If you or someone you know has a photograph of any Church below we  would love to post it. This database is an effort to help others find genealogy resources in your search to find family information and preserve the history.  Please remember this information came mainly from early history books of the past. The beginning of many churches started in building of other denominations.  The main tables were created from TIPCOA members Susan Y. Clawson and Joyce Watterson.   Many photographs came from myself or Kathy & Keith Hiser, who enjoyed their trip around  Tippecanoe County finding what was left of the buildings.  Thanks ladies and Keith, we really appreciate your time and effort on this project. 

We would love help, connecting any additional information or webpage's.   I can link them to help us all learn the past history.  Already many links have gone bad.  Please share new ones at   E-mail: TIPCOA CHURCH INFO       

  FairfieldLauramie, Randolph, Sheffield, Shelby, Tippecanoe, Union, Wabash, Washington, Wayne & Wea.

Perry township



Church name

Origin date



Significant events / cemeteries

Address & possible
records available

United Brethren

Gideon Chapel aka Old Gideon

first preaching in woods at Daniel Underhill's house by Rev. Robert Brown (Howard); on 1878 map; Sec. 22

Rev. Robert Brown (Howard)

1834 Gideon Chapel built in Sec. 22 at N end of cemetery; frame building torn down 1889. (Howard; Spidle)

Gideon/Zion cemetery in Sec. 22

Closed; moved to Zion UB

United Brethren

Union Chapel

1846 in Sec 16 (Howard; Spidle; 1878), although Hershey began preaching about 1834

Rev. Joseph Hershey (Howard)

Union Chapel built on Hershey farm in Sec. 16; 1888 old Union Chapel building torn down (Howard);

Union-Hershey Cemetery in Sec 9.

On Hershey farm


United Brethren

Zion UB

New Zion Church building

1888 by Gideon Chapel, SR 26 and 900 (Howard; Spidle)

Gideon Chapel 

1888 1st bldg.

Continue to use Gideon/Zion cemetery 

Closed; building now Pentecostal Church of God

Original Women's Minutes book; exist. (Clawson)

Amish, Egly Amish, Defenseless Mennonite (Evangelical Mennonite)

Defenseless Mennonite

org. 1865 or 1870; met in homes in the Edna Mills area. Sometimes identified with Rossville or Buck Creek

Christian Zimmerman 1st minister

1885-88 brick church built in Sec 12, E of Fairview church (Howard)

Rev. John Zimmerman owned a 1536 Froschoeur Bible (Howard). Zimmermans not related, although often identified as bros.; women wore black prayer veils/caps and bonnets; Services in German until 1900s; Sunday School; closed and bldg sold 1941. (Gratz, Howard, Irick, Luthy, “Prayer Veil”)

1876, cemetery south of Edna Mills in Clinton Co.

Lafayette Evangelical Mennonite Church in Lafayette, also now closed. It was organized 2 Aug 1942 by Dist. Supt. N. J. Schmucker. 1st pastor was Reuben C. Cantrell. Concrete block building at S 26th and Kossuth erected in 1941. Closed and building sold about 1997 to Trinity Mission. (Steiner).


Oxford Presbyterian

1830; Sec 36 (1878); S E of Pettit on county line road

Rev. James A. Carnahan

built 1830, probably 1st church bldg in township (Howard)

Church closed by 1840 and members transferred to Dayton (Howard).

Cemetery near church.

Old Oxford Baptist Church (2010)
502 S 2000 E
Lafayette, IN 47905
Mulberry phone: 765-296-8181

German Reformed


origin 1840; moved into building vacated by Oxford Presbyterian (Howard); Sec. 36, SE of Pettit (1878)


Brick building erected 1871 (“Old Oxford Baptist”); building now a Baptist church

1928 the church was closed and most members transferred to the Reformed Church in Mulberry (Howard)

Cemetery near church.

Old Oxford Baptist Church
502 S 2000 E
Lafayette, IN 47905
Mulberry phone: 765-296-8181
See:  http://www.clintoncounty



1832 (Waltmann); used the Oxford building; Sec. 36, SE of Pettit (1878)

Early preaching by Rev. John J. Gruber (Waltmann)

Building now a Baptist Church

Cemetery near church.

Old Oxford Baptist Church
502 S 2000 E
Lafayette, IN 47905
Mulberry phone: 765-296-8181

Moved to Mulberry and Pettit. See above web site and Waltmann

German Baptist AKA Church of the Brethren (Dunkard)

Fairview German Baptist Church of Perry Township

began in September 1872, when the North Fork congregation at Pyrmont outgrew its building (J/C) Sec 11 (1878); 900 E CR 200 N

first services Rev’s. Daniel Neher, Allen Mohler, and John Metzger on 12 Jan. 1873 (J/C; DeHart

1872 Church built east of Buck Creek in Sec. 12 of native timber and brick (J/C; “Old Oxford Baptist”)

On May 1, 1933, a wind storm damaged the building; Sunday School. Church closed Sept 1, 1968 (J/C); Still in use as Fairview Community Center.

Old German Baptist Cemetery (Aka Ulery) in Section 11 in woods..


members went to other Churches of the Brethren (“Old Oxford Baptist”)


Wesley Chapel

origin at an early date (Howard); near Monitor (DeHart)


log church built in Sec. 16 (Howard) built bef. 1840 part of the Dayton circuit (DeHart)

did not last long (Howard)



Cedar Bluff Meeting House

Est. 1830; Sec 19

will of Geo N. Foresman, owner of Eagle Mill (Howard)

frame building erected; used by groups with no bldg of their own (Howard).

School also provided for but never built; church burned down sometime after the Civil War (Howard).

Cemetery was near the area. Now destroyed.



Bethel Lutheran

1862 (Waltmann) at Pettit, in Sec 24, north of 26E



1871-1928 per Tippecanoe Co Cemeteries, but listed in 1957 Directory, Rev. Joseph Radabaugh, who also served Zion Evangelical Lutheran at Colburn.

Cemetery behind church. Now destroyed.


Bibliography use for Perry township Churches

1878 Atlas of Tippecanoe County, Indiana. Knightstown, Ind.: Kingman Bros, 1878.
1941 Directory of Churches of Tippecanoe County, Indiana. Tippecanoe County Public Library. Lafayette, Indiana.
1957 Tippecanoe County Rural Directory. Lafayette, IN: Wabash Valley Rural Directory Service, 1957.
‘Biographical Record and Portrait Album of Tippecanoe County, Indiana. [BR] Chicago: Lewis, 1888.
DeHart, Richard P. Past and Present of Tippecanoe County, Indiana. Indianapolis: Bowen, 1909. 2 vols.
Gratz, Delbert L. Bernese Anabaptists and Their American Descendants. Scottsdale, PA: Herald Press, 1953. Elverson, PA: Olde Springfield Shoppe, 1994.
“History of Perry Township.” By Esther Best. TIPCOA Newsletter No. 4 (2007): 3-4.
Hooker, Brainard. The First Century of Public Schools of Tippecanoe County, Indiana. Lafayette, IN: Haywood, 1917.
Howard, George E., comp. A Hornbook of Early Perry Township History, Tippecanoe County, Indiana. [Tippecanoe County, IN]: Privately printed from
 typescript, n.d. Paging irregular.
Irick, Simon H., comp. Descendants of John Gingrich II: Family Record 1824–1952. Ed. Cora Gingrich Yost. Berne, Dayton, and Frankfort, IN: Privately
 Printed, 1952.
J/C Lafayette Journal and Courier article about Fairview Church closing. 1 Sept. 1968.
Luthy, David. The Amish in America: Settlements That Failed 1840–1960. Aylmer, ON and Lagrange, IN: Pathway, 1986.
“Old Oxford Baptist.” Heritage of Faith. Lafayette Journal and Courier 29 May 1976.
“Prayer Veil.”  Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1989. Global Anabaptist  Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 28 Aug. 2007 encyclopedia/contents/p739me.html
Spidel, James. “Churches: History of German Baptists in Tippecanoe County, IN, compiled by George E. Howard.” The Spidle’s Web. © 2004 James Spidle.
 Accessed 2 Jan. 2009.
— “Churches: The Fairview Church of the Brethren,” The Spidle’s Web © 2004 James Spidle, Accessed 2 Jan. 2009. Photo here:
— “Churches: The United Brethren Church in Perry Township.” The Spidle’s Web. © 2004 James Spidle. Accessed 2 Jan. 2009.  Photo here
Steiner, E. G. “Lafayette Evangelical Mennonite Church (Lafayette, Ind. USA).” Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online (GAMEO).  
1958. Retrieved 20 Mar. 2009,html
Tippecanoe County Cemeteries Database printout. Tippecanoe County Area Plan Commission. 2005.
Waltmann, Henry G. “The Struggle to Establish Lutheranism in Tippecanoe County, Indiana, 1826-1950.” Indiana Magazine of History 75.1 (Mar. 1979): 28-52.
Winger, Otto. History of the Church of the Brethren in Indiana. Elgin, IL: Brethren Publ., 1917; Accessed June 2009 on Google Books

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