From Salt City of the Inland Seas,
Published 1899 by the Manistee Daily News.
FIRST CONGREGATIONAL CHURCH
nucleus of the First Congregational Church of Manistee was gathered by the
preaching of Rev. Geo. THOMPSON, a missionary returned from the west coast
of Africa. The place of meeting was for several years in an old school house,
now destroyed, in which, on the 20th of July, 1862, the church was organized
with ten members. In October, 1862, Rev. J. M. McLAIN became pastor for one
year, with L. S. ELLIS, first deacon. He was followed by Rev. O. A. THOMAS,
who labored with the church about two years. In November, 1866, Rev. Herman
GEER began a pastorate of somewhat less than one year. During the autumn
of the same year the church occupied a building erected for its use near
the corner of First and Spruce streets. In November, 1867, Rev. John B. FISKE
became pastor of the church, continuing in that relation until May, 1872.
A church edifice was built and occupied during 1868, the church occupying
for several months a temporary building near the site of the church. Mr.
FISKE was succeeded by the Rev. J. F. GAYLORD in April, 1873, who labored
with the church until July, 1878. Rev. E. G. CHADDOCK was called by the church
and entered upon the pastorate in October, 1878. He closed his labors in
May, 1881. Rev. Theo C. JEROME commenced his labors in July, 1881, and remained
pastor of the church for one year. Rev. Edmund B. FAIRFIELD entered upon
his pastorate September 1, 1882. He resigned April, 1889 having begun the
work of erecting the new church. Rev. C. M. WESTLAKE succeeded and remained
two years. Rev. Andrew M. BRODIE, the present incumbent, entered on his labors
December 1st, 1891. The old church soon proved too small and steps were taken
to complete the present house of worship, which is one of the best equipped
in the state. It was dedicated free of debt December 11, 1892. The total
cost was $60,000.
REV. ANDREW M. BRODIE, D. D.
The Filer Town Congregational Church was the outgrowth of a Sunday School work around the lake, largely planned by Mr. and Mrs. WALKER of the First Church. A church and society were organized and incorporated Sept. 10th, 1883, with Rev. SILLENS as pastor and Calvin S. DAVIS, John McFADGEN and Matthew MULLEN as trustees. The church has had in all seven pastors:Revs. SILLENS, BOSWELL, GLEASON, HARROWER, McCLEMENS, EVANS and SHARP, each serving a short period. At present no regular service except Sunday school is conducted.
FIRST METHODIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH
First Methodist Episcopal Church in Manistee was organized by Rev. N. M.
STEELE in 1860, and was composed of five members. There had been regular
preaching services for two years previous to this time but there were not
enough members to form a class. Mr. STEELE was succeeded in 1861 by Rev.
A. A. DARLING, who conducted the first revival ever held in this city. In
1862 the first church building erected in Manistee was commenced under the
pastorate of Rev. H. H. BEMENT, on a lot given to the society by Mr. John
CANFIELD on First street. On the completion of the church the Sunday school
was organized with H. N. GREEN as superintendent. A succession of pastors
followed with varying success. In 1881 Rev. George L. HAIGHT was appointed
pastor. When he arrived he found no house to move into and no church to preach
in, the old church having been sold by the society to meet obligations against
it. With characteristic energy he rallied the somewhat discouraged membership,
and the trustees decided to purchase the present parsonage and the adjoining
lot for a church site. The purchase price was $2,800, of which they had in
hand $600 from the sale of the old church. They then proceeded to erect the
present commodious church edifice, and in less than three years the church
had acquired property worth $12,000.
ST. MARY'S CATHOLIC CHURCH
Mary's congregation was formally composed of all the Catholics of Manistee,
but in the course of time the Poles, and the Irish and Germans organized
separate congregations. The first missionary who visited Manistee was undoubtedly
Pere Marquette, who, with Joliet, discovered the Mississippi. After Marquette
the French missionaries, under the jurisdiction of the Bishop of Quebec,
continued to visit at long intervals, the country then called "the region
of the great lakes." The headquarters of these missionaries were, and are
yet, at Sault St. Marie. These missionaries, like Father Marquette, were
members of the Society of Jesus, commonly called Jesuits. The last Jesuit
missionary who visited Manistee before the first resident pastor of St. Mary's
church was appointed, was Father SALUMIERE, of St. Gall's church,
CHURCH OF THE GUARDIAN ANGELS
church of the Guardian Angels traces its origin to the very earliest settlement
of the white man in the vicinity. Even previous to the foundation of a colony
here the place is said to have been visited by Father Marquette and other
Catholic missionaries, whose object was the spiritual welfare of the Indians
who inhabited these shores.
ST. JOSEPH'S POLISH CATHOLIC CHURCH
Joseph's Polish Catholic church is one of the largest congregations in the
state of Michigan. An outgrowth of St. Mary's Catholic church of this city,
the early history of St. Joseph's is indissolubly connected with the growth
of the older congregation, a history of which will be found on the preceding
pages. In 1864 the congregation of St. Mary's had become so large that the
church could not accommodate the members - a majority of whom were Polish
people. Consequently, a separation of the Polish communicants was granted
and three thousand dollars having been pledged the new congregation began
the erection of a church under the direction of Father CALLERT, pastor of
St. Mary's. On May 14th, 1885, Father W. GROCHOWSKI was formally installed
as pastor, and on June 14th, following, a committee consisting of Valentine
PURGIEL, Felix KUKLA, Matthew SIELSKI and Stanislaus CICHY was appointed
as lay members to oversee the affairs of the new church. The church building
was completed the same year and also the first school building and the sister's
home at a cost of $2,500 and $1,500 respectively.
The growth of St. Joseph's school has been decidedly rapid. In 1887 four
teachers were employed. In 1890 six, in 1892 seven, and in 1893 eight teachers
were required. In 1893 a branch of St. Joseph's school was established at
East Lake and was maintained until 1898.
(There is some more information on St. Joseph's church societies and organizations, and also some more information on the background of Rev. Edward KOZLOWSKI)
HOLY TRINITY EPISCOPAL CHURCH
is not definitely known when the first services of the Anglican Church were
held in Manistee, but old residents tell of services being held in the very
early days of the city. In 1872 Rev. Joseph B. PRITCHARD, the pioneer missionary
of the church on this shore of Lake Michigan, visited Manistee and finding
a number of church people here, reported the fact to the Bishop, and Manistee
was added to his jurisdiction on May 26th of that year. The first organization
was perfected on June 20, 1876. It was under the charge of Father PRITCHARD,
who made regular visits to the city for week-day services until Dec.18th,
1881, when Rev. William S. HAYWARD was appointed missionary at Manistee and
became the first resident priest of the church in this city.He remained until
October 26, 1886. For about a year the mission was under the care of the
general missionary of the Diocese, but during the months of July and August,
1887, services were conducted by Rev. F. S. MALTOS, then the rector of a
church in Florida, and who was spending his summer vacation in Manistee.
A call was then extended to the Rev. H.E.S. SOMERVILLE, who took charge of
the mission in October, 1887. The services of the church were held in private
houses, and occasionally in other churches and in public halls. In 1887 a
room was leased in the Engelmann block and fitted up for use as a chapel,
and was so used until december, 1888. In the spring of that year arrangements
were made for building a church. St. Paul's mission was disbanded and the
present parish organized. A lot at the corner of Fourth and Sycamore Street,
owned by the parish, was sold and the proceeds turned over to the parish.
The church lot on Second street was then purchased and the stone church of
the parish was built, the first service being held therein on december 16,
1888. The rectory was built in the summer of 1890. The cost of the church
and its furniture and the rectory, including the lot was over $9,000.
GERMAN EVANGELICAL LUTHERAN CHURCH
|The German Evangelical Lutheran congregation is one of the oldest in Manistee. A certain Rev. SCHMIDT, at that time missionary of the denomination on the western shore of Michigan was the first German Lutheran minister to preach in Manistee. This was in 1867-68. The Reverend's KARRER and TOERVE, successors of Rev. SCHMIDT, also made a number of visits to this city. In 1869 the Rev. F.W. DENKE was stationed here and the same year organized the present Trinity Church. The church building occupied by the congregation was built in 1870, and dedicated on September 18th. In 1872 Rev. DENKE resigned and Rev. Hermann LEMKE, the present pastor, was called. The church is one of the largest of the denomination in the state and comprises 335 families, of which number 975 are communicants. There are 116 voting members. In connection with the church there is a parochial German-English day school. The first school house was built in 1872 and Mr. R. TREIBER was the first teacher. His successor was Mr. August HAISE. In 1876 Mr. L.F. BRINKMAN took charge of the school and under his able management the attendance increased so much that in 1878 it was necessary to erect another school room. Another teacher was called in the person of Mr. H.H. HENSICK. In 1883 it was necessary to further enlarge the building and the church then built the present structure facing on First street. It was completed in 1884. Mr. H.F. MERTENS was added to the list of teachers. All three teachers are graduates of the teachers seminary of the Synod. The present enrollment of the school is 225.|
DANISH LUTHERAN CHURCH
The first Dane arrived in Manistee in 1860.Others followed and soon there
was quite a colony. They united with the Norwegians and Swedes and a church
was formed. A lot was purchased and a building erected.On May 30, 1869, the
first meeting in the new church was held despite the fact that it was without
seats and was unplastered. Differences arose among the three nationalities
represented, and a separation followed, the Danes retaining the church property.
The Danish church in Denmark was appealed to and soon a pastor, Rev. Holger
ROSENSTAND was sent to take charge of the congregation. He arrived on November
30, 1873. During his pastorate the present parsonage was built. He was succeeded
by Rev. F.M. CHRISTENSEN, who served the church for two years. Rev. J.F.
LILLESO was the next pastor, and under his leadership a parochial school
was established. In 1883 Rev. J. HANSEN arrived from Denmark to assume the
pastorate. He died in 1888, and was followed by Rev. P. YOTKE, who remained
with the congregation for six years. Rev. K.C. BODHOLDT, the present pastor,
was called in 1895 from Omaha, Neb. Under his charge the membership of the
church has grown and the society materially strengthened. The church has
recently been re-decorated, and furnished in a manner creditable to the
MAPLE STREET BAPTIST CHURCH
The Maple Street Baptist church edifice is a neat little brick structure situated at the corner of Maple and Third streets. It was erected in the year 1882 at a cost of about $6,000, as a result of the tireless efforts of Rev. J. SNASHALL, who served the church as pastor for several years. He was succeeded by professor BRAYTON, Leroy H. WHITE, and a number of other temporary pastors. At present the pulpit is filled by Rev. J.D. FREY. The membership of the church is about seventy-five. It has a prosperous Sunday school with membership of one hundred, and also a flourishing Baptist Young People's Union. The Ladies' Aid Society and all branches of the church work are in good condition. In addition to the regular church organizations several special committees have recently been appointed. They are: A reception committee, a home mission committee and a visiting committee. The results of the labors of these committees has proved very satisfactory. The congregation is entirely free from debit, and in a very prosperous condition. Rev. J.D. FREY came to the church in August, 1898, from Holland, Michigan. He is a graduate of the Hillsdale college and theological school.
SWEDISH MISSION CHURCH
This society was organized on the 22nd of April, 1882, with nine members. Articles of incorporation were taken out July 19, 1883. The early period of the history of the church was one of trying struggle and perseverance. The congregation, having no place of meeting, was obliged to resort to the homes of the members for prayer and bible reading. In the spring of 1884 a lot was purchased, and the following year a building erected at a cost of $1,900. In 1896, the church, which was situated on McKee Street, was rebuilt, and now represents a value of about $2,500. The first pastor was Rev. HOGBERGH, and his successor Rev. LUNDQUIST who served for two years. He was followed by Rev. J.W. CARLSON, who served as pastor for seven years. Under his leadership the membership increased from 30 to 104 members. The present pastor, Rev. Carl SANDSTROM, came to Manistee in January, 1897. He was born in Wastergotland, Sweden, September 30, 1872, and came to America the spring of 1892. He graduated from Covenant's College, North Park, Chicago, in 1896, and his first charge was at Trout Creek, Mich. There are 151 members in the congregation and 110 in the Sunday school. The young people's society has a membership of 36. Mr. Emil JOHNSON is superintendent of the Sunday school.
The beginning of the Swedish Lutheran church dates from the year 1884, when
the Rev. V. VIXELL, of the Illinois conference came to Manistee and conducted
a series of revival services and cottage prayer meetings. As a result
of his labors an organization of the Swedish Lutheran church was effected,
and in 1885 the church was formally established. The church edifice is located
on the corner of Cypress and Magill streets. Rev. VIXALL was chosen as the
first pastor and served the congregation for several years. He was followed
by Rev. J. FORSBERG, the present pastor, who has ministered to the flock
for the past ten years. The membership increased and in 1889 the church was
rebuilt, making the church one of the most substantial owned by the denomination
in the state of Michigan. The membership of the church at the present time
is 573. The Sunday school is very prosperous, and conducts a branch school
at East Lake. Among the societies within the congregation are the Sick Fund
society, a ladies' Aid society and a Young People's society. The Dolkas
society is also a very prominent factor in the work of the church, making
a special feature of providing clothing for the poor of the city.
SCANDINAVIAN METHODIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH
This organization owes its existence to the large number of Scandinavian Methodists who emigrated to Manistee. The church is connected with the Methodist Church proper, the only distinction being that the services are conducted in the Scandinavian tongue. The first Scandinavian Methodists to arrive were E. NORDROW, his wife and son. Upon their invitation, rev. A.R. GUSTAVSON visited Manistee and held services in the old Maxwelltown school house in August, 1878. A class of five persons was also organized at that time. This class was temporarily connected with the English congregation. At the following annual conference Rev. A.R. GUSTAVSON was appointed minister to the new church. On Christmas day, 1878, a chapel costing $1,500 was opened for the first time to receive the new congregation. Rev. GUSTAVSON served the church two years and was succeeded by Rev. H. DANIELSEN, who remained three years. The church flourished and succeeding pastors were: Rev. E. ARVESEN, Rev. B. SMITH, Rev. E. ENDRESEN and Rev. A. HANSEN. During the latter's administration a new church was built and dedicated. Rev. C.H. MUNSON was the next pastor. The present pastor is Rev. Paul HAUGEN, a graduate of the Northwestern University Theological school. The church has a membership of 95 in full connection, and a Sunday school with 70 members.
ST. PAUL'S EVANGELICAL LUTHERAN CHURCH
St. Paul's Evangelical Lutheran church was organized in 1881, and at once
purchased the old Methodist church building on First street. This building
was used for a place of worship for a number of years, but it became apparent
that the location was not favorable for the growth of the society, and in
1890 two lots on the corner of Fourth and McKee streets were purchased and
a suitable building erected. The old church was torn down and the material
used to construct the present school building occupied by the church. In
1898 another building was added to the two already erected, and shortly
afterwards a fine church parsonage was built. At present the congregation
numbers about 120 families. The organization is in a very flourishing condition
under the able direction and ministration of the pastor, Rev. A. MOUSSA.
ST. PETRI'S GERMAN EVANGELICAL LUTHERAN
The German Evangelical congregation was established in 1898, but its real beginning dates from the previous year. Owing to a disagreement on the subject of secret societies, a number of the members of the St. Paul's Lutheran church withdrew from that organization and formed the St. Petri congregation. Others joined the new society and in June, 1898, a pastor was called. The first services were held in the Congregational church on Vine street, but soon the young church decided that it needed a house of its own and work on the new building was begun in September of the same year. On December 11, 1898, the building was dedicated, and the congregation comfortably housed. The building is 72 by 36 feet in dimension. The congregation is associated with the Evangelical Synod of Michigan and other western states. Among the supplies furnished the church by the Synod after its organization were: Praeses BOEHNER, Professor MERZ, Rev. ZINK, Rev. ECKERT, Rev, MAIER and Rev. LINSENMAN, director of the church seminary. Since the organization of the church the membership has doubled. A parochial school is conducted by the pastor, and the common branches are taught in both German and English. The present pastor of the church is Rev. Otto SITZLER.
NORWEGIAN LUTHERAN CHURCH
The Norwegian Lutheran church was organized in 1874. Up to this date both
the Norwegians and Swedes had been connected with the Danish Lutheran church,
but this year they severed their connection and organized a new congregation
under the name of the First Scandinavian Lutheran church. For a number of
years they worshipped together until the Swedes organized the Swedish Lutheran
church. The Norwegian congregation now numbers fifty families, and owns the
church and parsonage on the corner of Cypress and Fourth streets. The church
is free from debit. Services are conducted in the Norwegian language. One
Sunday each month the pastor conducts a preaching service in Brownton, where
a small congregation is assembled. A prosperous Sunday school with an
average attendance of 100 children and 12 teachers is an important feature
of the church work. A men's society, ladie's society and a ladie's sewing
circle are among the agencies at work in the congregation. The pastors of
the church have been: Rev. T.H. WALD, Rev. R. BULL, Rev. Ole AMUNDSON, and
Rev. O.H. STENSON, the present pastor.
The First Unitarian Church society occupies one of the most beautiful church edifices in the city. It is situated on the corner of Pine and Fifth streets in the center of the best resident portion of manistee. The first services of the Unitarian society were held in the old W.C.T.U. hall (now occupied by the Olympian club), in 1884-85. The first pastor was Rev. A.J. THOMPSON. He was followed in 1885 by Rev. Ira M. BILLMAN, who officiated as pastor for nine months. Rev. Albert WAKLEY was the next pastor, and during his pastorate services were held in the Englemann block. During the first year of his pastorate the plan to erect a church building for the use of the society was inaugurated, and the present beautiful edifice occupied by the congregation on the corner of Pine and First streets was soon after completed at a total cost of $13,466.30. In 1888, Rev. Albert WAKLEY resigned the pastorate, and Rev. Allen GOULD was called to the vacant pulpit. He continued to serve the church until 1891 when he also resigned to enter another field. The pulpit was vacant until 1895 when Rev. B.P. BYRNES was called and remained until 1897, when he left to take charge of the church at Genessee, Ill.
Church Group Photo 1
Swedish Mission, German Evangelical Lutheran, Danish Lutheran,
Maple Street Baptist, First Methodist Episcopal
Church Group Photo 2
Swedish Lutheran, Scandinavian M. E. Church, Norwegian Lutheran,
St. Paul's Evangelical Lutheran, St. Petri's German Evangelical Lutheran
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October - November, 1999.