William G. Cutler's History of the State of Kansas


[TOC] [part 15] [part 13] [Cutler's History]


Lutheran Church (Swedish).--This society has a church edifice on the west side of Tyler street, between Second and Third streets; was organized prior to 1868 with ten members. Present church edifice was erected in 1869-70. Present number of members twenty-five. No regular pastor at present.

United Brethern Church.--This church was organized in July, 1869, with eight members. In the following autumn they commenced the erection of their church edifice, 30x45 feet, located on the corner of Van Buren and Fourteenth streets, and it was completed in 1870. Rev. Loren G. Condry was their pastor and in 1872 the church had a membership of eighty.

North Topeka Baptist Church.--This church was organized April 4, 1869, by Rev. J. Barratt, who came to Topeka in September, 1868, and preached three months for the First Baptist Church, which society then worshiped in a hall over J. C. Miller's store. This church then had a membership of thirty-five, and they desired Mr. Barratt to become their pastor, but finding them unable to build a house of worship, he went to North Topeka and there commenced a work which has ultimated (sic) in a very strong church. At the organization there were eleven member. (sic) Their names are, J. Barratt, D. Barratt, A. C. Beckwith, Anna Beckwith, O. Vaughn, Fanny Vaughn, Sophronia Vaughn, Esther Vaughn, Sevasta Vaughn, Daniel Scott and Jane Bickell.

The schoolhouse on the west side of Kansas avenue, between Laurent and Gordon streets, had first been used by them in common with other denominations as a house of worship; but, in 1871, the church occupied the basement of their edifice on the northeast corner of Laurent and Harrison streets.

In 1879 the building was completed. The main audience room has a seating capacity for 550 persons. The edifice is a beautiful two story stone building 40x75 feet; its cost was $11,000; it is entirely free from debt. Its bell cost $225; is one of the clearest toned ones in the city, and can be heard several miles from the church.

Rev. Mr. Barratt resigned his pastorate November 16, 1881, and his successor is Rev. C. W. Gregory. The present membership of the church exceeds 200, and there is an average attendance of 150 at its Sunday-school. The Superintendent, Mr. William G. Shaw, is a most efficient and indefatigable worker, and he has had his reward in the great success attending his labors.

The ladies of the church have a Mission Society, and their minimum contribution to the Home Mission cause has been five dollars per month, while to the Foreign Missions they make liberal contributions.

The First Swedish Church, (Topeka).--This church was organized December 31, 1880, with twelve members. Its pastor is Rev. ------ Dolcrist, a graduate from a Swedish theological seminary. Its present membership is about twenty-five. Their regular services are held in the Swedish language. Their Sunday school is of recent origin and comparatively prosperous.

Their church edifice on Sixth and Fillmore streets, was erected at a cost of $2,000. Its present indebtedness is $300.

The Madison Street Church (Topeka).--This organization was formed December 16, 1881, with a membership of twenty-eight. Its pastor, Rev. A. N. Petty, came from Meriden, Jefferson County, and he has been very successful in his fields of labor. The Sunday school has an average of 100 members. The church building is on the east side of Madison street just south of the Madison school building. It cost $2,000, and is free from debt.

The Perryville Church (Jefferson County).--The organization at Perryville, Jefferson County, sixteen miles east of Topeka, on the U. P. R. R., was formed December 16, 1881, with forty-two members. Their edifice cost $2,100, and they have two Sunday schools, averaging about seventy-five each.

Methodist Episcopal Church (North Topeka).--Rev. P. T. Rhodes, who had a large circuit, embracing Grantville, Jefferson County, Indian Creek, Half Day and Rochester, in the autumn of 1870, organized this church with a membership of seventeen. Ira Markham, Permelia Curtis, Elias Pierson, Benjamin F. Kistler, Cynthia Smith and Mrs. Kelser were some of the first members. Its membership rapidly increased and other religious organizations have grown out of this. The schoolhouse on Kansas Avenue was its first place of worship, and in 1874 an edifice was erected on the south side of Laurent street on No. 85 Quincy, which consisted of a lecture room and two class rooms and contiguous to it was a comfortable parsonage.

In 1880, this property was disposed of to a colored Methodist society and the congregation now worship in a very spacious and commodious structure which was completed in 1881, at a cost of $7,500 and is situated on Kansas avenue just above its junction with Central avenue. It is a brick structure lighted by gas, and is still somewhat encumbered by debts incurred in its construction.

Its first pastor was Rev. P. T. Rhodes, with the following successors: From 1871 to 1874, Rev. C. J. Lovejoy; in 1874, 1875 and 1876 Rev. J. B. Orwig; in 1877 and 1878, Rev. S. P. Jacobs; in 1879 and a part of 1880, Rev. George W. Henning; since then Rev. James Lawrence who resigned, was succeeded by Rev. C. S. King. Church now (1882) without a pastor. The Sunday school is largely attended and its management is in the hands of Mr. J. M. Baird, its efficient superintendent.

German Methodist Episcopal Church.--This church was organized in 1870 with ten members, Rev. John P. Miller pastor. A brick church edifice was erected by the society in 1871 on Jackson street, between Fifth and Sixth streets. It was 26x40; its cost was $3,000. The society has sold this property and it is erecting (1882) a frame house of worship on the northeast corner of Fifth and Tyler streets. The church has fifty members. H. Kreuger is its pastor. W. Vesper is the Sunday-school superintendent, and the school averages eighty members. The society expects soon to build a parsonage.

Unitarian Church.--The first Unitarian society was organized in August, 1871; articles of association were adopted; in November a minister was called and officers were elected. Rev. George Patton was the minister; the trustees were H. Bartling, C. Reed, E. S. Robinson, R. H. C. Searle and Mrs. A. P. Wilder. A. P. Wilder was secretary and treasurer. The place of worship was in Unitarian Hall, Kansas avenue near the corner of Eighth avenue. The Sunday-school, which was organized simultaneously with the society, had at the close of the first year nearly seventy-five pupils. Its superintendent was Mrs. A. P. Wilder. At a later period J. C. Collins, of Olathe, Kan., the Chief Clerk in the office of State Treasurer, was added to the force of workers, but a subsequent removal of many of the early workers from the city caused the movement to decline and die.

United Presbyterian Church.--The edifice belonging to this body of worshipers was built in the autumn of 1872, and dedicated under the pastorate of Rev. B. L. Boldridge. It is located on the corner of Eighth and Topeka avenues. The present pastor is Rev. W. E. Dunlap.

Lutheran Church German.--This society has a stone church edifice located on the southeast corner of Van Buren and Second streets, and it has a good frame dwelling for a parsonage. The value of the church property and parsonage is $4,000. The church was organized March 1, 1874, having nine voting members. P. F. Germaine was its first pastor. There has been a membership of considerable number who have removed to other places, and the present number is eighteen. Its Sunday-school numbers fifty, and the pastor, F. Temekamp, is its superintendent.

The Universalist Church North Topeka.--A Universalist Church was organized in North Topeka April 3, 1874, by the Rev. V. P. Wilson, and the parish contained about twenty families. The deacons were C. H. Bowen and C. S. (sic)Gregg. The trustees were C. T. Tompkins, J. S. Morey and J. G. Schoonover. The first members of the church embraced C. H. Bowen, Lucinda Bowen, S. C. (sic) Gregg, Matilda Gregg, Mr. and Mrs. J. G. Schoonover, and Mr. and Mrs. C. T. Tompkins and Allen Gregg. The services were held in the school building and the membership reached about thirty. Allen Gregg was superintendent of the Sunday-school, which numbered about seventy-five. Mr. Gregg returned to Springboro, Ohio, and Mr. Wilson to Dickinson County, consequent upon which events the church organization came to a dissolution, but during the years 1880 and 1881, Rev. T. W. Woodson preached at Union Hall and other places for the Universalists.

Southwestern Holiness Association.--At Bismarck Grove in June, 1878, an organization was effected embracing members who were residents of Missouri and Kansas, and the following named persons were among its officers: President, Rev. S. P. Jacobs; Vice-President, Rev. J. W. Caughlan; Secretary, Rev. R. E. O'Byrne; Treasurer, Rev. J. H. Poland; other members with the above as incorporators, Rev. A. M. Keirgan and H. C. McKinley. This organization held their first annual meeting in December, 1879, in the Methodist church in Lawrence; and in June, 1882 they became incorporated at North Topeka. Their trustees being H. C. McKinley, William Embree, John W. Smith, John Middaugh, and George H. Cramer. This association of Christians are quite numerous at St. Joseph and Chillicothe, Mo., and they are extending their work into Iowa, Illinois, Indiana and Ohio. They have as organs devoted to the propagation of their tenets the National Holiness Association, published by Inskip & Wood, at Philadelphia, Pa.; the Advocate of Holiness, by McDonald & Watson of the same place; the Guide to Holiness at New York. Their first president, Rev. S. P. Jacobs, being a former pastor of the North Topeka Methodist Episcopal Church, quite an impetus was given the movement here in consequence, and quite a number of the members of this church have gone into and helped develop this association. Mr. Jacobs is now a missionary in India, and his work has culminated here in the erection of a church edifice by a band of devoted followers, which is a neat brick building situated on the southeast corner of Grant and Jackson streets, twenty-seven by forty-four feet, capable of seating 200 persons, erected at a cost of $1,300. Rev. J. B. Williams is their pastor and their church services are held at the usual hours. Their Sunday-school has just been formed with a membership of about thirty. Members are coming in from various religious organizations and the tests required can be expressed in the following brief declaration: To be living in the clear light of Christian holiness.

North Topeka Presbyterian Church (North Topeka).--This church was organized by Rev. F. S. McCabe, late pastor of the First Presbyterian Church of Topeka, September 15, 1878, with twenty-six members. Their names are: Dr. M. R. Mitchell, Mrs. M. M. Mitchell, Mr. J. A. Miller, Mrs. E. J. Miller, Charles McDonald, Mrs. Mary J. McDonald, John N. Ross, (sic) Mrs. Rebecca Ross, Miss Alice Ross, Mrs. S. C. Arnold, Mrs. C. F. Lyman, Mrs. Lizzie M. Hale, Mrs. Elizabeth Norris, Mrs. Jane Taylor, Miss Annie Taylor, E. S. Ward, Mrs. Z. N. Ward, Mr. C. L. Ward, Mr. William A. Ward, Miss O. J. Ward, Miss I. F. Ward, Miss L. B. Ward, Miss M. E. Ward, Mrs. M. J. Ward, Mrs. Mary Sage, and Mr. O. P. Giffin. The Ruling Elders were M. R. Mitchell, J. N. Rose, (sic) and E. S. Ward. The church first worshiped in the school building on the avenue, but on November 16, 1879, they dedicated a neat, substantial stone building, 40x60 feet, which is located on Quincy street, between Laurent and Gordon, nearly opposite the Quincy School building. Its cost somewhat exceeded $3,000. In the southeast part of the edifice is a neatly finished and nicely furnished study and pastor's library, in which the weekly meeting of the Sunday-school teachers are held. Its pastor, Rev. J. C. Miller, began his labors for the church and congregation December 12, 1878, and he has been very untiring in his labors here, and at some outlying preaching places. Its Sunday-school is under the superintendency of M. R. Mitchell, M. D., and it numbers nearly one hundred. Rev. Mr. Miller preached for the Bethel Church until 1881, but since his labors have been exclusively devoted to upbuilding this work.

Wesleyan Methodist Church.-- This church society erected their chapel in 1878, on the east side of Jefferson street, between Third and Fourth streets. Rev. Mr. McIntosh is pastor.

The Topeka Society of the New Jerusalem was organized in October, 1880, with Rev. Howard C. Dunham as minister, and J. F. Goddard, J. F. Scott, and Edward Wilder, trustees. The first services, with this end in view, were held at the residence of Mr. Edward Wilder, No. 117 Harrison street, on the second Sunday of June, 1880, on which occasion there were nine persons present. Services were held in the same place for over a year. In the summer of 1881 an attractive little chapel was erected on the corner of Harrison and Sixth streets, which was dedicated on Sunday, the 9th of October. A parsonage, in architectural harmony with the chapel, is built within the same enclosure. This society, although small, is steadily increasing, attendance at Divine worship averaging about fifty. The Sunday-school contains over twenty children and an adult class. Meetings are held, during a large part of the year, on Thursday evenings, for the study of religious truth and the advancement of the interests of the society. The trustees for the year 1882 are G. F. (sic) Goddard, E. H. Davis and Edward Wilder.

First Christian Church.--The people known as the Disciples of Christ, Church of Christ, or the Christian Church, were few in number among the first settlers of Topeka. In November, 1870, a roll of members was found of twenty-two names. These brethren met in a hall until June, 1873, at which time ninety-four names had been enrolled. During this two years and a half the congregation was under the leadership of elders, with now and then an evangelist who would remain but a short time, until Elder J. W. Mousen was called to be their pastor, but whose stay was probably but a few months. All work having been suspended in June, 1873, as far as seen from the records, all traces of organization seem to have been lost up to the year 1880, during which period of about seven years, however, several brethren who were passing through preached in borrowed houses. On the 2d day of December, 1879, Dr. S. T. Dodd, of Leavenworth City, preached in the Lutheran Church, on Topeka avenue, and on the 11th day of May, 1880, began a protracted meeting in the same house, which continued one week, resulting in the enrollment of about eighty names, some of whom afterward proved to be of the Christian connection and Advent persuasion. There were three elders and three deacons with a clerk appointed by the minister at his closing meeting, with the concurrence of the audience, to act temporarily in securing a place of worship and the services of a minister to continue the work. From neglect of duty the above work was not performed, but by the persistent effort of a few individuals a call was extended to Dr. S. T. Dodd, dated December 14, 1880, with ten names pledged to his support and co-operation in a continued effort to permanently establish a church in this city. This permanent work accordingly began the 1st day of January, 1881, in the Y. M. C. A. hall, under the management of Mr. Dodd as evangelist, who by the 30th day of June, 1881, had enrolled fifty-six names, all of which were pledged to the work, at which time an organization was effected. A charter was secured for the "First Christian Church, of Topeka," December 17, 1881, with Ira B. Miller, David Eckert, E. H. Rodebush, W. H. Niccum, and G. W. Faught, as trustees.

Mr. Dodd having received a unanimous call to serve the congregation as pastor during the year 1882, entered upon his duties with a desire to secure, at least, lots for building purposes during the year, which result has not at this date, July 25th, been reached, the subscriptions for which are at present being taken, however. The present membership of this church is 140. It meets regularly in the Y. M. C. A. Hall, and has a Sunday-school of 175 members. There is also connected with the congregation a Ladies' Auxiliary Mission Society, and the Juvenile Band or "Helping Hands."

Third Presbyterian Church.--The location of the church edifice of this society is on the northwest corner of Third and Hancock streets. Was organized December 12, 1880, with sixteen members, by Rev. F. S. McCabe, D. D., and Rev. J. W. Crawford. Present edifice is a handsome stone structure, 35x53 feet, erected at a cost of $4,000. A Sabbath-school was organized in connection December 12, 1880, and has a present membership of 183 scholars, under the pastorate of its present pastor, Rev. J. W. Crawford. The church has a membership of thirty-five.

Third Baptist Church (colored).--This society owns its place of worship, at 79 First avenue, East.

Fourth Baptist Church (colored).--The congregation of this church have (sic) an edifice on the corner of Second and Jackson streets. Was organized in 1870, with thirty-five members. Present church edifice was built in 1871-72, at a cost of $1,200. Rev. William Bell, present pastor.

African Methodist Episcopal Church.--This is the oldest colored church organization in the city. Their church edifice is on Monroe street, between First avenue and Second. Rev. J. W. Wilkenson is their pastor.

Methodist Episcopal Church of America (colored).--Was organized October 22, 1882, with nineteen members, by Rev. B. Smith, P. E., and C. E. Wortchell, pastor. Regular services are held on the corner of Fourteenth and Quincy streets.

Parkdale Methodist Episcopal Church.--This church organization have (sic) a house of worship on the northeast corner of Seventh and Lime streets. An organization was perfected in the spring of 1881, with thirty-five members, by Rev. O. H. Call, who remained as pastor until spring of 1882. The present church edifice, a frame structure, 30x60, was built in 1879 by the Quincy Street Methodist Episcopal Church at a cost of $1,000. Its present pastor is Rev. J. Kester. Present number of communicants, 40.

Mount Olivet Methodist Episcopal Church (colored).--This society has an edifice on the corner of VanBuren and Fourteenth streets, which is used by the Methodist and Presbyterian denominations (colored), under the respective pastorates of Rev. J. Barton and Rev. S. Rutter.

Protestant Episcopal Church (North Topeka).--The "Church of the Good Shepherd" was organized March 6, 1881, Rev. Alfred Brown, rector, with eighteen members. The destruction of the rolling mills by fire in 1881 checked somewhat the growth of the church, as quite a membership, present and prospective, came from this. The church now numbers forty-five and its Sunday-school is about fifty. Their present place of worship is the hall of the A. O. U. W., but they own three lots on the northeast corner of Quincy and Laurent streets. They have the plans made and accepted for a chapel, which is to be a wooden structure costing about $2,500, which will probably be erected during the year 1883. The site for their church edifice is an excellent one; on the corner north stands the spacious Quincy school building and on the other side of the street is the Presbyterian Church edifice.

Faith Chapel; Faith Cure.--On the southwest corner of Van Buren and Park streets is located the buildings above mentioned; erected in 1881. The chapel is a one story frame, 20x30 feet; the Cure is a two-story stone building, 24x40, with a wing on the south, 18x20. Services are held at the chapel twice each Sunday; prayer-meetings are held each Friday evening, and there are special faith services held at the Cure each Wednesday afternoon at three o'clock. Rev. C. A. Sexton, one of the pioneers in the First Congregational Church, is the owner of the property, and he is the pastor, and humanly speaking, the healer. He publishes at the Cure Good Tidings, a weekly paper devoted to the system. Its issue is now about 1,400; its regular subscription list in the city is about 100, and it goes into nearly every State and Territory in the Union. It is gratuitously distributed to charitable institutions, including prisons and poor houses. The value of the whole property is about $4,500; it is a quiet resort, having pure air and a supply of good water. Mr. Sexton regards his work as under the organic control of the Holy Ghost, and his institution for the cure of physical maladies, and the obliteration of traditional false teachings, the accomplishment of these objects being through the power of the Holy Ghost, by the laying on of hands and the anointing of oil. It aims to bring the conformity of prayer to the direct coming of the kingdom of heaven on the earth, the fellowship of the Holy Ghost constituting membership, the subject to be tested by the fruits of the life. There are no numerical statistics kept of the worshipers, or those who have had bodily or spiritual healing.

Lincoln Chapel Mission (colored, A. M. A.).--The American Missionary Association is one of the co-operative Congregational societies, organized in 1846, to civilize, educate and Christianize the Indians, Freedmen, and Chinamen (sic) in America. The association has missions in Africa, and colleges, normal and common schools in the States, to forward the work of its missions in this country. In October, 1881, Rev. R. F. Markham, who has labored over seventeen years for the American Missionary Association, having had charge of the mission work for the last five years in the vicinity of Savannah, Ga., was sent to this state by the parent association of New York, to see what could be done for the Freedmen of Kansas. He visited Nicodemus, Graham County, and other parts of the State. After a careful examination, however, he resolved to begin work at Topeka, finding over 5,000 colored people here and nearly 50,000 in Kansas. In 1881 the chapel of the mission was completed, corner of King and Lincoln streets. Over $3,200 has been expended in the purchase of land, and the erection and furnishing of the building. Of this amount, the American Missionary Association have (sic) given over $800, while the Smith American Organ Company, of Boston, donated the organ. The chapel is 52x30 feet. Since April, 1881, when the Sunday-school was organized, the work has greatly prospered. Sessions at first were held in the old Congregational Church, Mr. Markham being assisted by Miss Lizzie Officer. The attendance then was one hundred and eleven. Since then Miss Officer has been obliged to resign, on account of ill health, and Miss A. D. Gerrish was appointed in her stead. The attendance has increased to over three hundred, and many who did not know their letters have been taught to read. Adults, who could not attend the public schools, have joined the mission night schools, and are making good progress. Musical instruction is also joined to religious and intellectual exercises. It is expected that the work here will be permanent. Rev. Mr. Markham is the general agent of the association in this State, and is greatly encouraged at the results of his labors in Topeka.

First Cumberland Presbyterian Church (colored, North Topeka) was organized in June, 1880, by Rev. P. Price. A frame church edifice was completed in October, 1882. Present number of members, fifty-five. Rev. P. Price, pastor.

Second Baptist Church (colored).--This society has an edifice on the southwest corner of Second and Jefferson streets. Its pastors have been Rev. Thomas W. Henderson and Rev. J. F. Thomas. Was organized prior to 1868. First church edifice, a frame structure, 20x40 feet, was built in 1868, and used until 1876, when the present frame building, 40x60 feet, was completed. Rev. J. F. Thomas, present pastor. Present number of communicants, five hundred.

Asbury Methodist Episcopal Church (colored, North Topeka).--This organization succeeded the congregation who now worship in the Avenue Methodist Episcopal Church, and its first pastor was Rev. W. O. Lynch, who came from the Gulf Region in 1879. The membership was about thirty, and its Sunday-school about fifty. Rev. Burr Williams, of the Holston Conference, Tennessee, was here a few weeks, and the church is now without a pastor, the small-pox taking off the Rev. F. Landor, whose pastoral labors were short.

The Redmanville Methodist Episcopal Church (colored, North Topeka).--Rev. W. W. Williams is the pastor of this church. Its membership is about fifty, and its edifice is a small building situated south of the water works, on the Union Pacific R. R.

Second Baptist (colored, North Topeka).--This church was organized in the spring of 1880, by Rev. John F. Thomas, now pastor of the Second Baptist in the Second Ward, situated on the corner of Second and Jefferson streets. Its membership was then about thirty, and now, under the pastorate of Rev. Sanford Griffin, it has grown to 105 members, and its Sunday school numbers 120. Henry Galloway is its present superintendent. The building joins the Ogee property on the north side of the railroad, northwest of the tank. It is a frame, 20x40; value, $1,500.

Mount Zion (colored, North Topeka).--This organization was formed in 1881. Its pastor is Rev. I. S. Watkins, and its site for an edifice is between Laurent and Clay streets. Its present membership is about fifty.

Thomas Shaw owns a small church edifice in Redmanville (western suburbs of North Topeka), which makes a place of worship of some of the sometimes called Ironside element in the Baptist Church (colored). Rev. Claiborne White is an occasional preacher for this congregation. The church members number about fifteen.

There is also in process of erection, another Baptist (colored) church, on Madison street, in Fairchild's Addition, and the society, numbering about thirty, employ Rev. E. Bradley as their pastor. He has also another small charge at Redmanville.

The Israelites.--This band of worshippers have not become sufficiently numerous to have a synagogue. Services on special holidays have been held in halls, and L. Dement, a clothing-house dealer at 162 Kansas avenue, has performed the duties of Rabbi. Sunday-schools have been held over the store of Rodgers Bros., 130 Kansas avenue.

[TOC] [part 15] [part 13] [Cutler's History]