The Methodist Episcopal congregation at Jamestown was organized by the Reverend W.S. Morrison in the spring of 1880. W.H. Robinson received the first appointment as class leader. Reverend Morrison served the first charge from March, 1880, to March, 1881. Reverend A. Ball was appointed in March, 1881, and served until March, 1884. In the first year of his pastorate the present church building was erected and dedicated.
There are three outside points included in the Jamestown work: "Prairie Gem" school house, four miles northwest, Macyville, ten miles Southeast, and Scottsville, nine miles southwest of Jamestown. A conservative estimate of the cash value of the church is about one thousand five hundred dollars, with a parsonage adjoining.
The enrollment on the church books is eighty-two full members and four probationers. The following ministers have been in charge beside the first two named: B.F. Hewlett, S.A. Green, J.C. Walker, G.H. Cheney, James Flowers, W.E. Jenkins, W.B. Eley, William D. Vandevost, C.E. Trueblood, H.A. Manker, F.D. Funk and F.A. Colwell, who is the present pastor.
The parsonage was built during the pastorate of Reverend B.F. Hewlett, in 1884. During Reverend F.D. Funk's pastorate it was remodeled, reconstructed and three rooms added.
The first Sunday school in Grant township was organized in June, 1871, with Peter Jones superintendent, C.I. Gould, secretary and treasurer. It was organized as a union Sunday school, held in a dugout and was largely attended; people coming seven and eight miles. During the first summer the attendance was from forty to sixty. The first Methodist Episcopal class was organized the following winter by Reverend Rose, a circuit rider preacher.
During the spring of 1872, their first meeting was held in May, at West Hope, in Mitchell county, eight miles west of the present Jamestown. The congregation struggled on holding meetings in dugouts, vacant cabins, houses and halls until 1881, when the present house was completed under the pastoral care of John A. Ball.
The church is a frame building with a seating capacity for about two hundred and twenty-five people. The church is self-supporting and is in good financial condition. They expect soon to remodel and reconstruct the church, enlarge the seating capacity, build a tower on the corner and various other improvements.
C.I. Gould is now on his second year as superintendent of the Sunday school. His enrollment is one hundred and thirty, with an average attendance of about one hundred; an Epworth League with junior department, C.E. Carpenter, president. Both are in fine condition. Clara Vogue is president of the Junior League. There is in connection a Ladies' Busy Bee society, with Mrs. Fink, president, Mrs. Annie Ansdell, vice-president, Mrs. Carroll, secretary, Mrs. Colwell, treasurer, and are doing good work.
September 6, 1881, a charter was taken out for the organization of the Church of Christ of Jamestown with the following members: William Spahr, Luther Bradley, Daniel French, Robert Barton and William French (the two latter are still residents of Cloud county), the corporation to be sustained by voluntary subscription.
The following year a church edifice was erected, a frame building with a seating capacity of about two hundred. The congregation is small and the church is not able to maintain a regular minister. At one time it was one of the strongest denominations in the city. Elder Beaver, of Glasco, ministers to the congregation twice a month and has many friends and admirers among the people of Jamestown.
During the latter part of 1882 or early in 1883, Reverend J.P. Finey began preaching irregularly for the United Presbyterians, who had secured homes in and around Jamestown. Even before this time Reverend Patterson, then pastor of the "Concordia Congregation," seven miles north of the city of Concordia, had preached a number of times in a school house five or six miles northeast of Jamestown.
By order of Concordia Presbytery a meeting in charge of Reverend J.P. Finey and the session of Concordia congregation was held at the French school house, two miles northwest of Jamestown, on April 18, 1882, to perfect the organization. After a sermon and prayer by Reverend Finey, fourteen persons were received by certificate from Concordia Congegation[sic] as charter members of the First United Presbyterian church of Jamestown, Cloud county, Kansas; of these fourteen, five still remain in the church, viz: Mrs. Mary E. McCall, Mr. Hugh L. Smith and wife and Mr. David Harnett and wife. In completing the organization, Messrs. J.H. McCall and Hugh L. Smith were elected elders and Messers William M. McCall, J.H. Coy and David Harnett, trustees. William M. McCall was chosen treasurer. At another meeting held in November of the same year, Mr. Smith was ordained an elder, which completed the organization.
On the 17th of March, 1884, a meeting was held at which a committee consisting of William M. McCall, C.I. Gould and David Harnett, were appointed to draft a constitution. At this meeting steps were also taken to secure a building fund. An adjournment was then made until April 7, on which date the committee on constitution reported and the report was accepted and adopted, and an application for charter filed. The building committee was not ready to report and was continued.
At a special meeting in the fall of 1884, to take action regarding the building of a church, it was decided to proceed and a new committee consisting of C.I. Gould, George A. McCall and David Harnett was appointed, to whom was submitted structures of various dimensions, for each of which they were to ascertain the cost of constructing and report at next meeting; they were also instructed to choose a suitable location for the building somewhere within the limits of Jamestown.
The congregation met February 4, 1885, to hear the report of this committee and it was decided to erect a frame building 32x54 feet, which was done on a lot donated by C.I. Gould in his addition in the north part of town.
Reverend H.T. Jackson, late of Stronghurst, Illinois, was chosen as the first pastor soon after the organization and held services each alternate Sabbath, he being pastor of the Concordia Congregation also. These two congregations have been united in one pastoral charge ever since, except a short time in which Hopewell and Fairview congregations were also a part of the same charge. Reverend Jackson was pastor about three years, after which the congregations were without a pastor until the summer of 1891, when Reverend J.P. Stevenson accepted a call and took up the work.
During this long interim a number of ministers were sent to supply the pulpit. Among them were Reverends Wellington Wright, Thomas McCague, D.D., J.G Torrence, R.G. Campbell, J. Henderson, W.A. Monks. __ McKnight, William Murchie, M.M. Milford and R.L. Wilson. Reverend Monks continued in charge of the work for almost three years. The time each supply remained on the field varies in length and one or two of them were there at different times. Reverends Murchie, Wilson and Milford were each theological students at the time they were in charge of the congregations and remained only during the summer vacation.
Reverend Stevenson was very successful during his pastorate of nearly three years and was highly esteemed by the people of Jamestown and Concordia congregations, and it was only at his earnest solicitation on account of failing health that the congregations agreed to release him. He was released by the Concordia Presbytery at its meeting in Hopewell in April, 1902, and Reverend H.A. Kelsey, a student of the Xenia Theological Seminary, Xenia, Ohio, was appointed to supply for the summer. His appointment terminates September 14, 1902.
The probability of Mr. Kelsey not returning is a source of regret to his congregations as he is a young man of exceptionally fine talents. His sermons are clear, forceful and replete with soulful thought.
Following is a brief history of the pride of Jamestown, an institution in which the city takes a great deal of interest:
September 8, 1898, eleven of Jamestown's fair women convened at the home of Mrs. Amelia Hartwell for the purpose of organizing a club for promoting study and mutual benefit. An organization was effected and the following officers were installed: Mrs. Mary E. Kelly, president; Miss Alice Fitzgerald, vice-president; Mrs. Annie M. Strain, secretary and treasurer; Mrs. Brotchie, historian. At a subsequent meeting the name "Current Literature and History Club" was unanimously adopted. In December the motto "Know Thy Opportunities" and the club colors, lavender and white, were chosen. Desirous of advancing the best interests of their people the ladies decided no one thing would tend more to promote good or be a more lasting monument in this direction than a public library. Accordingly by all assessment of twenty-five cents per member, a traveling library of fifty volumes was secured from the state secretary for six months use. The front room over the bank was offered, rent free by F.A. Lane.
The members alternately taking charge kept the library quarters open Saturday afternoons. Early in November, 1899, a social was held and out of the proceeds Munsey's, McClure's and the Cosmopolitan magazines were subscribed for. Many contributions were made by friends of the enterprise and other entertainments instituted for the purpose of securing funds, hence in May, 1899, they received their first order of books, which numbered forty, and the traveling library was returned. It was decided a room on the ground floor would be more convenient and the club consequently accepted Doctor Hartwell's proffered room rent free, and the library was removed to the building south of the drug store, where it remained until their present quarters were ready for use.
At the beginning of the second year, September 28, 1899, through the gift of numerous citizens and members of the club, along with an accumulated fluid, about seventy-five books and two hundred magazines had been collected. With these results the ladies felt encouraged to persevere in their cherished plan of establishing a free library and reading room. Through the solicitation of Miss Alice Fitzgerald, James Pomeroy, the founder of Jamestown, contributed one hundred dollars to the enterprise in December, 1899. This sum was used as a nucleus for a building fund. Subscriptions were then solicited from citizens of Jamestown and adjacent territory, and people were liberal with their donations of both labor and finances. Wholesale firms with whom the various merchants dealt were also generous in their assistance, giving in cash and articles to be sold and the proceeds applied - a total of three hundred and fifty dollars.
In April, 1900, the club incorporated under the name of "Current Literature and History Club" and on May 19, the instrument was signed by the following charter members: Mary E. Kelly, Ellen L. Nelson, Agnes Fitzgerald, Lizzie Fitzgerald, Annie M. Strain, Stella Lane and Ellen H. Patton.
Like most enterprises this commendable undertaking had its ripples. Shortly after the plans were well matured three of the club's members withdrew, leaving the burden to rest on fewer shoulders, but they assumed the responsibilities with increased zeal, and their efforts have not retrograded, but continued to thrive. Many who in the early stages of its career prophesied that, like Fulton's steamboat project, "it would not move," gradually came with helping hands to further a cause that was bound to succeed. Various societies and organizations in the town have aided materially in support of the establishment that was growing in popularity daily, and the people generally were awakened to the elevating and moulding influence it would weild for the good of society.
The society holds its meetings weekly in the club room of the building and new members have been received. The building is a one-story, two-room structure - library and reading room and a club room - which are so arranged that they may be all thrown together, making an audience room with a seating capacity of over two hundred. Lectures and various social functions are held here, the library building being the largest audience room in the city, outside the churches.
The following article regarding the Hessian fly and the Chinch bug is clipped from a Deering implement phamplet and will be of more than ordinary interest to wheat growers.
The Hessian fly is a fragile, dark-colored gnat or midge about one-eighth of an inch long, resembling closely a small misquito.[sic] Its operations extend to the entire wheat belt. It also exists in the form of a footless maggot or in what is determined the flax-seed state, appearing more or less hidden in the base of young wheat plants and other grains.
The Hessian fly is a wheat insect, but also breeds in rye and barley. There are two principle broods, viz.: A spring brood and a fall brood. There are, however supplemental broods in the spring and fall, especially in the southern wheat areas, but very often in the extreme northern areas there may be but a single annual brood, the progeny of the spring brood sometimes not progressing further than the flax-seed state, and so passing the late summer and winter. It is possible, however, that in the northern region an autumn brood may develop in volunteer spring wheat. There are four distinct stages in each generation of the Hession fly: the egg, the maggot or larva, the pupa or flaxseed and the mature winged insect. The eggs are very minute, being usually deposited on the upper surface of the leaf in rows of three to five or more. In the occurrence of the spring brood, the eggs are often deposited beneath the sheath of the leaves on the lower joints. Whitish maggots are hatched from the eggs in from three to five days and these crawl down the leaf to the base of the sheath and embed themselves between the sheath and the stem, taking the nutriment from the wheat and causing a distortion or enlargement of the point of attack. The fall brood works in young wheat very near or at the surface of the ground. The spring brood develops in the lower joints of the wheat close enough to the ground to escape the harvester.
The insect of the spring brood remains in the flax-seed state during midsummer, yielding the perfect insect for the most part in September. The latter phase of the insect's development into the adult fly is of particular importance because it presents the means of preventing loss by sowing late enough in the fall to avoid infestation. The latest date at which sowing may be attempted with safety will vary with the latitude and even the altitude of a place. The first indication, in the fall, of the insects presence in the wheat manifests itself in a much darker color of the leaves and a tendency to stool out rather freely. This gives the plants a rather healthy appearance, but later those infested turn yellow and die in part or completely.
The best preventative is late sowing. This method seems to be the most effective. Burning the stubble of an infested field, or turning it under by deep plowing has each its advantage. As above set forth, the second or fall brood secrets itself in the lower joints of the wheat and it is in the flax-seed state at harvest time. This brood may be completely destroyed by promptly burning the stubble. Plowing a field, turning under the stubble, and afterward rolling it, has also proved efficacious in burying the pest beyond resurrection.
The Chinch bug seems to flourish in seasons of drought, when its pernicious raids are more apparent and far reaching. The whole wheat belt is the scene of its operations. Wet weather is fatal to it and has often wrought its complete destruction. As these natural conditions are ungovernable, it is best to revert to such methods as are practical for allaying if not preventing loss from the scourge.
The Chinch bug is a native of this country, formerly confining its operations to wild grasses in whose stools it still hibernates. Where there are no wild grasses near, it is known to hibernate beneath such rubbish as straw, matted grass, hedgerows of leaves, and the like. It is especially harmful to wheat.
The following table compiled by a United States government entomologist after a careful study made in Kansas, is a clear exposition of the life cycle of the insect. These dates given hold for the middle region; northward there will be a retardation, southward an acceleration.
April 10-20, spring flight from hibernating quarters in the grass stools to wheat fields.
April 20-30, in coitu about the roots of wheat.
May 1-31, deposition of eggs on wheat beneath the surface of the soil, with young hatching from May 15 to June 15.
July 1-15, maturing of the first brood, followed immediately, by the midsummer flight, if a migration of immature and adult forms has not been previously occasioned by the harvesting of grain or the local failure of the food supply.
July 15-30, union of the sexes and deposition of eggs in the soil about late corn and millet, the young of this brood appearing in maximum numbers about August 5th.
August 10 to September 10, maturing of the second brood and partial flight of same to late corn or other green crops if in fields of corn already mature and dying.
September 15 to October 15, autumnal flight to grass lands and concealment in the grass stools for hibernation.
The most important preventative for practical control of the Chinch bug is to burn over and clean up all waste lands where these insects might congregate, also to burn grass lands, especially those growing wild grass which may have the stooling habit. This should be done in the fall, in order to expose the Chinch bugs that might escape the flames to the unfavorable action of the cold frost of winter. All rubbish in fence corners and hedge-rows should be raked out and burned, removing every possible place of refuge where the bugs might hibernate.
The church of Saron is located about three miles northeast of Jamestown. It is a Danish Baptist church which was organized July 30, 1871, with the following members: Reverend Nels Nelson, Sr., and wife, Nels Nelson, Jr., and wife, Christine Nelson, John O. Hanson and wife, Caroline Hanson, Peter C. Nelson and wife, Catherine Nelson and daughter, Trine Nelson, Jonas Goodman and Sophia Jensen.
The organization was incorporated in 1872. Its first pastor was Reverend Nels Nelson, Sr., and its first clerk John O. Hanson, with Niels Nelson, Jr., treasurer. The first trustees were Nels Nelson, Jr., John O. Hanson and Peter Shott.
Before the building of the church edifice the meetings were held alternately at the homes of the various members and in spite of hard times, drouth and grasshoppers they set to work to get a church built and through the kindness of Mr. N.M. French, they were donated one acre of ground for church and cemetery purposes, and at once got out rock from the hills and commenced the building.
October 14, 1877, this little church building was dedicated without any debt hanging over it, much to the satisfaction of its congregation and from that day have had regular services. Services are conducted in English and Danish, alternately twice a month by the Reverend G.B. Peterson, who has served the church for many years regardless of compensation.
To the zeal and determination of Nels Nelson, Sr., much credit is due for the accomplishing of this work, the erection of the church building, which is the only one of this denomination in the county. They have a Sabbath school and also young people's meeting. The cemetery in its bosom holds its first beloved pastor, Nels Nelson, as well as a good many of its first workers who helped to make the barren prairie blossom like a garden, where the buffalo and coyote roamed at will.
In the thirty years of its existence the following pastors have served: Reverends Nels Nelson, Sr., Laust Jacobson, A. Sorenson, Christ Lund and G.B. Peterson.
Transcribed from E.F. Hollibaugh's Biographical history of Cloud County, Kansas biographies of representative citizens. Illustrated with portraits of prominent people, cuts of homes, stock, etc. [n.p., 1903] 919p. illus., ports. 28 cm.
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