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Central City Friends Meeting
Centennial Celebration, 1899-1999
 

 

Some significant events in the life of Central City Monthly Meeting

1899 The Monthly Meeting was established August 31, 1899. H. J. Mott was the first pastor, paid $600. A collection was taken for window screens and insurance. Quarterly Meeting at Alda, May 20, and at Clarks, Sept. 19.

1900 Samuel Haworth - $40 a month as pastor. Joseph Phelps early treasurer. Weddings included those of Cyrus Norris and Stella L. Cowgill; Pearl Cowgill and Laura Ross; and Ida Phelps and John Wilhoft.

1901 Membership reached 157. Eleven church members used tobacco.

1902 Alvina Hoskins was Clerk, replacing Benjamin Abel.

1903 Church was moved a short distance, parsonage built to the back and side of the Meeting House. W. M. Perry, Minister.

1904 Wilfred D. Gibson, Clerk; Joseph S. Joyce, Treasurer. Miss Clara Wilder became member. 1905 Jessie A. Davis, Clerk. New hymn books were purchased.

1907 Decided to sell church and lot in Belgrade, not enough interest. Pastor Harley Moore resigned. Philip Mesner family moved to Central City from Hastings.

1908 Frank W. Dell, Minister. Building remodeled and parsonage moved. Nebraska Yearly Meeting was formed, with Central City named as headquarters. Mabel Solt and George Johnston were married. Dr. S. L. Hull purchased property in Central City, preparing to move.

1909 Frank W. Dell, Minister at $800 a year. Clarks property sold. Harrison Myers', William Willits', and Marshall Pickets' families transferred memberships from Prairie View Monthly Meeting. William C. Truesdell and Ella Emry married.

1910 S. L. Hull, Clerk. A. J. Thomas, Treasurer. Theodore Foxworthy, Pastor at $45. a month.

1911 Established monthly meeting at Fremont. Grace Mott transferred membership to Scott City, Kansas. Quarterly Meeting at Pleasant Hill, Sept. 19. Pastor's salary at $66 per month. Ray Barnes transferred from ME Church, Holyoke, Colorado. Recommended that Mattie Hadley and Charles Mesner be recorded as ministers. Platte Valley Quarterly Meeting held Nov. 18. Ruth Hull, Bessie Mesner, Belle Mesner, and Belle Workman became active members.

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1912 New pews provided with book racks, $500. Yearly Meeting business session at College, other meetings at Meeting House. Members: Male - 194; Female - 199. Recording Clerk, Nettie Jewell, resigned. Lindell Hockett appointed.

1913 L. Maria Dean, Pastor, served until 1915. Salary, $800.

1914 Eli Perisho and family transferred into Meeting. Mrs. Joseph Phelps, charter member, died.
Water from eaves damaged Meeting House and parsonage foundations.

1915 Ruth Hull, Pianist. March 31 - 351 members. Letters sent to all non-resident members inviting them to annual roll-call meeting. Letters received from several states.

1916 S. L. Hull, Clerk. Edna Townsend, Recording Clerk. Boulder Monthly Meeting asked for help to build church.

1917 The Eaton children and Archie Johnston accepted as Associate Members. Peace testimony stated in April.

1918 Central City was under flu quarantine, meetings limited in the fall. Ora W. Carrell, Pastor. Golda O. R. Carrell, Assistant Pastor. Average attendance, 130.

1919 Funeral held for infant daughter of Milo and Ora Crosbie. Delbert Charles Mesner taken in as Associate Member. John Mesner, Recording Clerk.

1920 Quarterly Meeting held at North Loup, 175 in attendance. Midweek meetings held.

1921 Carrells resigned as pastors. Homer J. Coppock, minister.

1922 R. S. Holding, pastor.

1923 Letter of transfer received from Archer ME Church from Erma Marsh Mesner. S. L. Hull, Clerk for 13 years, resigned. G. M. Mesner, new Clerk. Inez Foreman, Treasurer. Grace Gibson, Records. Addie Solt, Correspondent.

1924 Inez Foreman released from Recording Clerk. Vivian Watson, Clerk. Work stated on basement at Meeting House.

1925 Ralph Boring, pastor. Dan Neifert transferred from Kemma Monthly Meeting. other transfers included Orvil, Rosevera, Verlie, and Victor Roberts from Spring Bank, and Thomas and Estella Foxworthy from White Water Monthly Meeting, Richmond, Indiana.

1926 John Mesner appointed Treasurer. Mr. and Mrs. G. A. McConnell received into membership. Work on basement progressed slowly. Vivian Watson, Clerk. Father and Son Banquet held Nov. 12.

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1927 Ray and Bessie Barnes and family received into membership. Gilbert M. Mesner, Clerk. Vivian Watson, Recording Clerk. John E. Mesner, Treasurer. The minister, Ralph Boring, got $60 per month.

1928 Belle Marsh transferred membership to Fairview Methodist. Ralph Boring resigns. Walter H. Wilson served as part time minister.

1929 Bessie Brown, temporary pastor. Pastor's salary budgeted at $1500. Request for membership received for Lee and Lillian VanZant and children from Community Friends. Cecil E. Haworth, new pastor.

1930 Cecil E. Haworth resigned. Transfer of Don and Helen Ellis to ME Church at Juniata. J. Lindley Jones, new pastor.

1931 Fire inspector examined building. Louise Eaton, Recording Clerk. Furnace reset and new smoke pipes installed by Harlan Jones and other members, total cost $32.00 Evangelistic meeting held in April. Church interior repainted. Evelynn Mott appointed to Correspondent to American Friend vacated by Harriet Emery.

1932 Raymond Mesner, Clerk, succeeded Gilbert Mesner. Hazel Wright, Recording Clerk. Membership 314. John Mesner retired as Clerk of Finance Committee. Fiftieth anniversary at Spring Bank. Meeting had financial problems.

1933 The parsonage not rented at this time and no minister at this time. Anti-saloon league asked to use building. John H. Ferguson transferred membership to Philadelphia. Money and clothing sent to South Dakota for relief work.

1934 Budget proposed at $900. Gilbert Mesner and Nellie Solt deaths occurred. Ladies started fund to help fix the windows. Parsonage connected with city sewer system.

1935 Total budget for 1935-1936, $611.90. The women of the church reported the windows refinished at a cost of $10.75. Dr. S. L. Hull had served as janitor for several years. Dr. Ruth Hull was home on furlough from India.

1936 Dan Neifert asked to pastor for 90 days, $50 per month. Asked to continue in March. New Pilgrim hymnals ordered at $1 a piece. Meeting hoped to be out of debt soon. Dan Neifert attended summer school at Pendle Hill. Gertrude Jones, Recording Clerk.

1937 Angie Mesner, Recording Clerk. Vivian Watson, Clerk. Part of the parsonage shingled at a cost of $27.65. Aaron McKinney asked to hold evangelistic meetings in Oct. He was

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Yearly Meeting Superintendent. Wilda Mott asked for active membership. Mr. and Mrs. Victor Johnston transferred to Newbury, Oregon. Dan Neifert paid $25.47 salary in December.

1938 Men of the Meeting cut wood for heating, a continuing practice. The Elmer Gardner family moved here from South Dakota. Edith Hall transferred membership to Central City. Total membership, 279. Daniel Neifert to go to Friends University in the fall. Glenn Reece, Minister. Louise Eaton and Helen Schutz led young people in Christmas cantata.

1939 Glenn Reece to be caretaker of the Meeting House. Kenneth Mesner, Jerald Leonard Reece, Bonnie Jeanne Eaton, Ralph Milsap became members. Elizabeth E. Haviland transferred from friends School in Ramallah to mission station in Kenya Colony, East Africa. Fortieth anniversary of Nebraska Central College committee named.

1940 Harrison Myers, Marion Emery died. Muriel Lester visited from England. Ilene Currey, Don Hockett joined. Victor Roberts, pianist. Alice Watson, choir director. Nancy Mesner died.

1941 Grace Gibson, Clerk. Angie Mesner, Recording Clerk. Glenn Reece served half-time with Yearly Meeting. Edna Campain died. Andrew Stuart family and Stanley Gardner became members. Gas heat to 2 small rooms adjoining Christian Education room and pastor's study.

1942 C. Perisho family joined meeting. Church conformed to wartime in schedule of services. Monthly Meeting held first Thursday of month. Evangelistic meetings conducted by Willard and Caroline Trueblood. Sad and tragic period involving war. Leroy Reece, Warren Mesner, Neil Mesner, Elizabeth Mesner, Nellie Ann Currey, Milton Richards, and Selma Jean McConnell joined the Meeting.

1943 Evelynn Mott and Henry Schutz married. Milo Crosbie, Treasurer. Grace Gibson, Clerk. Lucille Engel, Recording Clerk. Charles and Lola Belle Widman, Viola Hemmingsen Johnston accepted as members. Dr. Hull had 90th birthday. Ella Eaton died. June Mott visited from Seattle Meeting. American Friend magazine sent to servicemen.

1944 Vigo Jensen joined. Howard J. Harris called as Minister, $900 per year and parsonage. Ed Johnson, Janitor. Henry Schutz, Clerk. Wilma Jensen, Recording Clerk.

1945 Friend Circle collected and sent clothes to Europe. Council of Church Women started in Central City. Peace and Social Concerns Committee (Evelynn Schutz, chair) and young people raised money for European Relief.

1946 Howard McKinney, pastor. Mildred McConnell became member.

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Harry Anderson spoke about CPS camp. Mildred McConnell and Kenneth Mesner married.

1947 Selma McConnell and Warren Mesner married. Opal Ferguson transferred membership to White Water meeting, Richmond, Indiana. Bible School Committee renamed to Christian Education Committee.

1950 Mrs. Mary McConnell joined Meeting. Willis Srack served as interim minister. Lindley J. Cook called to be pastor at $1800 plus parsonage. Membership, 208.

1951 Letter from Herbert Mott related request of daughter, AraBelle Patrick, to transfer membership to Meeting. Central City changed water mains from lead to copper. President Carrell left for fundraising in the East.

1952 Double wedding - Betty Watkins and Dale King; Barbara Watkins and Dean Sidders. Anita Mott Weddle requested Minute showing she is member in good standing as basis for worship in Paonia, Colorado. Grace Gibson resigned as Treasurer, Gibsons moved. Corona Cook's mother Odessa Pointer Rayle, died. Application for beer license rejected, citizen approach to City Council effective.

1953 Yearly Meeting held at Colorado Springs, Colorado. Carrells moved to Crete to be associated with Doane College.

1954 Sump pump installed in Meeting House basement. June Webb transferred membership from Seattle. Hazel Ferguson Roberts and John M. Ferguson died. Boy Scout troop started.

1955 Milo Crosbie died. Evelynn and Henry Schutz visited Spring Bank about possibilities of joining Nebraska or Rocky Mountain Yearly Meeting.

1956 Membership, 203.

1957 Appreciation of the Cooks' service mentioned. A letter of protest sent to President in regard to H-bomb testing.

1961 Plan for installing telephone approved. Annual treasurer's report: Pastor's salary, $1950; Utilities, $213.58.

1962 Used copies of the "Pilgrim Hymnals" obtained from the First Plymouth Congregational Church, Lincoln. Bible School had average attendance of 40+.

1963 O. W. and Golda O. R. Carrell transferred membership to Oskaloosa Monthly Meeting. M. H. and Vivian Watson moved to California.

1964 Letter from Honolulu Friends Meeting received protesting racial segregation U.S. Friends meetings. Reply sent

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assuring that many meetings do not practice segregation, and that integration is encouraged here. John Shaneyfelt and Julia Mesner Crosbie died. Memberships - Roger Soper, Mary Gomez, Janet Mesner, Marilyn Jo Mesner, Lois McConnell, George McConnell, Michael Mesner, Clifford Mesner, Dwain Olsen, James Olsen, Victor Olsen, and Gordon Olsen. Corona Cook, Zetta Travers, and Wayne Ostrander recorded as Ministers.

1965 Average attendance in 1964, 60.8 John Mesner died. Liquor-by-the-drink ordinance passed in Central City in spite of Friends campaign against. Donald Johnston died.

1966 Discussions about merging Iowa Conservative and Nebraska Yearly Meetings occurred. William Mesner reported on Peace Corps work in Tanzania.

1967 Corona Cook died. Discussed evangelistic services, seating arrangement. Thermostat was to be set at 55 degrees during week. Agreed that Marian Miner come as assistant to the Pastor. Don and Audrey Finley and family moved to Delaware.

1968 New Methodist hymnals arrived. Hugh Mesner, Raymond Mesner, and Marian Miner died. Arrangement with Meeting, Vernie Johnston and Lindley Cook resulted in change to present parsonage. Membership - 221. "Presence in the Midst" picture received and placed in front of Sanctuary.

1969 New pulpit completed, crafted by Henry Schutz. Lindley Cook took a month of vacation after 18 1/2 years of service. Quarterly Meetings discontinued around this time. University Friends (Wichita) accepted as member of Nebraska Yearly Meeting.

1970 Pastor's salary - $2775.

1971 James Newby hired as minister. P.A. system installed. Lindley Cook in June to live with son, Ralph, after 21 years of service. Lindley Cook died in August. Alda Friends closed their meeting.

1972 M. Herbert Watson died. Pastor's salary, $3480.

1973 Upstairs kitchenette completed. Membership, 187. James and Liz Newby moved to Ohio. Gordon Harris became Minister. Ninetieth birthday celebration for Ora Carrell. Lela McMurrin died.

1974 Ora Carrell died. Elfrida Vipont Foulds visited. Gordon Harris attended Sioux Falls area meeting. Friend in Washington project progressed, goal reached in November. Money left to Meeting by Ora Carrell and Robert Jones.

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1975 House to south of Meeting discussed as possible parsonage. Gordon Harris worked on the movement of Native Americans for Justice. Henry Schutz painted outside of Meeting House. Scott Reeves and Steve McConnell went to the United Nations. Gordon Harris observed Russell Means trial.

1976 New window screens installed. Harvey Hinshaw presented harpsichord concert. Weston Webb, Clerk. Erma Mesner, Recording Clerk. Clara Ferguson died.

1977 Gordon Harris resigned. Delano Cunningham new Minister. The emergency exit in the basement was repaired by Henry Schutz. "Friends of the America" meeting held in Wichita, 10 members attended.

1978 Parsonage was unoccupied. Ron Mattson approved for membership. Evelynn Schutz, Clerk. Kay Mesner, Recording Clerk. Milton (Pretz) and Marian Krause accepted as members. Lift installed in the southwest corner of the Meeting House.

1979 Dean Paulsen family lived in Friends House after their home burned. Vigo Jensen died. New pews suggested, no action taken. Church parlor insulated.

1980 The Penn College Choir was in concert here. Friends House rented to the Lovejoy family. Yearly Meeting held at Council House, Oklahoma. Peace Pilgrim visited.

1981 Memorial Committee worked with Weston Webb on a memorial plaque. Neil Mesner replaced Evelynn Schutz as Clerk. Esther Eaton Erickson died. Lyla Meerkatz rented Friends House. Rick Whittier and Bonnie Sand married.

1982 Lottie Gay died. The 75th Annual Session of Nebraska Yearly Meeting was held at Central City. James and Beth Zuehlke approved for membership. Central City Monthly Meeting became a formal part of Nebraskans Against the Death Penalty. Kenneth Mesner as representative.

1983 Delano Cunningham served as minister for Palmer and Wolbach Methodist Churches on shared basis. Lillian Van Zant died.

1984 Iowa Yearly Meeting held meeting for Quaker farms in regard to farm policies. Yearly Meeting held at Hominy, Oklahoma. Interchurch farm crisis program set up, including a "hotline". August Monthly Meeting held at Grace and Oscar McHargue's cabin.

1985 Total membership, 105. Beth Zuehlke led Meeting for Worship in June and July. Mikel Johnson from AFSC in DesMoines visited.

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1986 Beth Zuehlke to be called Ministering Secretary. Archie and Viola Johnston celebrated their 50th Wedding Anniversary. Katherine M. Honold transferred membership from Denver to Central City. The Denver Meeting was laid down. Nebraska Mid-Yearly Meeting held at Argonia, Kansas in Lenore Haines' home.

1987 The Meeting approved painting the Meeting House gray with white trim. Zuehlkes to do it. Selma Mesner, Clerk. James Zuehlke, Recording Clerk. Pretz Krause and Oscar McHargue died.

1988 Long-time member, Lois Mesner, died Jan. 7. Ted C. Reeves killed in pickup truck accident Jan. 20. Francis McConnell replaced James Zuehlke as Recording Clerk. North steps refinished with redwood lumber. The Zuehlke family left for Muncie, Indiana in July. Henry Schutz died Dec. 4.

1989 Reverend Lloyd Boyce asked to be part-time minister. George Olson died March 12. Richard Olson finished painting. Annual picnic held at McHargue's cabin. Michael Mesner married Glenda Starkey July 27. Miriam Mesner married Terry Allison July 29. Wesley Schutz died September 9.

1990 Carole Mlynar became member. Amy Lynn born to Clifford and Kathy Mesner February 23. Francis McConnell died October 24. Meeting held a "pound social" for the Boyce family.

1991 Meeting had a prayer vigil once a week on Mondays during Desert Storm until Easter. Warren Mesner ended 22-23 years faithful service as Treasurer. Wilma Jensen died March 26. Hosted area FWCC meeting, complete with wiener roast in Mesner/Reeves pasture. Hosted Chatauqua Sunday worship in July. Trees removed on south side of Meeting House.

1992 More discussion about using some of memorial money for new pews and/or pads. Meeting not in unity. Purchase new TV and VCR. Meeting approved "Sharing Fund" be used for members only, first year free, 2-3% after that. Erma Mesner died Nov. 26.

1993 Hosted community Easter sunrise service April 4. Discussion of whether FUM should continue membership in World and National Council of Churches. Total membership 76. Viola Townsend died Sept. 24. Gladys Solt Hamil died Sept. 27. Pearl Miller died Oct. 1. North porch and steps carpeted. J. Evelynn Mott Schutz died in December.

1994 Made plans for 95th anniversary. Ladd Reeves new member. Celebrated 350th birthday of William Penn Oct. 23. Discussed painting and needed work on cellar door.

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1995 Marty Mesner died Jan. 27. Volney and Mary Lofgreen gave gift of Bibles to Meeting. Members diligently writing to senators to oppose the death penalty. Made plans for church retreat. AraBelle Mott Patrick died Nov. 24.

1996 Successful retreat held at Covenant Cedars Feb. 4. Viola and Archie Johnston note 60th Wedding Anniversary in March, Meeting approves statement for FUM to stay in World and National Council of Churches. Meeting contributed to "Shoeboxes for Rumania" and Quaker Workshop projects. By August Meeting has new cellar door. Approved painting Meeting House. Approved buying additional Bibles for use in worship.

1997 Meeting participated in "Souper Bowl" in Jan. We celebrate "Bright Sunday" the week after Easter and wore red for Pentecost Sunday in May. Meeting donated $100 for flood relief in N. Dakota. The new Friends Hymnal donated by June Webb and Ruth Hull Bennett. Meeting House painted. Focused on peacemaking in the fall to celebrate 50th anniversary of Nobel Peace Prize.

1998 Held a successful retreat at Timberlake Camp in March. Mira Tanna from AFSC visited in April. New sign acquired for Meeting House. Approved gift of pews from Deer Trail church which was laid down. Helen Holding Schutz died April 9. Approved bid for new shingles on roof June and Weston Webb, Mildred and Kenneth Mesner appointed as Clearness Committee for the marriage of Cheryl Mesner and Paul Mallonee. Eric Jones new member. Ruth Hull Bennett died October 18.

1999 Lloyd Boyce for 11th year as part-time pastor. Warren Mesner died Jan. 6. Maggie Schutz and John Johnston married in Meeting House Feb. 6. Approved plaque acknowledging Deer Trail gift of pews. Approved starting a web site for Meeting on the Internet. Approve minute that sexual orientation should not be a barrier to leadership appointments in the yearly meeting. Continued efforts against the death penalty. Cheryl Mesner and Paul Mallonee married April 10 with approval of Clearness Committee and the Meeting. By June new shingles on roof and new doors installed. Prepared for hosting Nebraska Yearly Meeting June 10-12, and 100th anniversary celebration June 12-13. After two extended terms as faithful Presiding Clerk, Nell Mesner steps down. The other half of the father-daughter team, Cheryl Mallonee, moves to Wichita. The next 100 years starts with Don Reeves, Presiding, Lois Schank, Recording, Selma Mesner, Treasurer and Mildred Mesner, Statistician.

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