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St. Clair County Missouri



Mt. Olive Church
Roscoe Township

Condensed early history from St. Clair County Library Files
Book by Derl H. Barnett:

The people of the community had been considering building a church building for some time.
In 1896 a meeting was held at the home of John Pyle. Mr. Pyle offered to donate the land
and $100 toward the church building. Others who pledged money were Allen Stewart,
Joseph C. Henderson, Thomas A. Baker, William W. Garver, James Madison Henderson,
Jim Clyde, Mr. Rudolph and several others. Cal Hargus, the Shady Grove School Teacher
at the time, wrote up the minutes of this first meeting.

They didnít have an architect but made up a diagram of the Roscoe church and used it with
some ideas of their own. John Pyle went across the Sac River Bridge toward Osceola, Missouri
and met with John Reynolds who was living on the Funkhouser place and asked if he would
donate the lumber, on the stump, for framework to build the church. Mr. Reynolds asked
Mr. Pyle if he had the dimensions of the lumber needed written down. John Pyle handed
the sheet of paper to Mr. Reynolds, who told him to come back in three days when he
would let him know of his decision. When Mr. Pyle went back on the third day,
Mr. Reynolds told him the trees had already been felled and cut to the proper lengths
outlined on the sheet of paper and ready to haul to the sawmill.

The fine pecan logs were hauled to the Harman Saw Mill in Roscoe. The saw mill sawed
the lumber and donated their labor toward the project. Others hauled the lumber to the site.
Stone for the foundation was quarried across the road southeast of the church near the school
ground on land then owned by Mr. Pyle. Mose Killebrew and William Winfield Garver with helpers,
laid the foundation. James M. Henderson and Allen Stewart hauled the pine lumber,
shingles and lathes from Collins.

Mr. Faurot, a carpenter, Ruff Moore, Walter Garver, Ed Moore, James Henderson and
others in the community put up Mt. Olive Church building during January and February of 1897.
The building was plastered when built but the plaster was later removed. Jim Clyde built the
Bible stand. The building was dedicated May 10, 1897 by R.S. Hunter which was also the date
Mr. Pyle deeded the land to the Church.

Some of the first preachers were: Mr. John Pyle, his three sons Rob, Richard and Will,
W.K. White, Bro. Troutman, Bro. Barr, Bro. William Birdsongís father, Bros. Bill Rudolf,
McGrew, Wright, Strohn, Hinkle, Tobie Tucker and Elmer Sutton who held a successful revival.

When the church was completed, all the bills were paid from the donations except for $316.00
which John Pyle paid. Later the church was deeded to the Methodists from whom the
community bought it.

(Photo of this building welcomed)

Submitted by Mary Zeiler