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1890 Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Story County, Iowa

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The First Baptist Church of Ames was organized on July 11, 1868, by Dr. Nash, of Des Moines, with W. H. Pollard as moderator. The first members were Frank Hays and wife, J. A. Streight and wife, K. W. Brown, Gustavus Fritch and wife, Mary and Mina Fritch, and D. Alvord and wife. The deacons were Messrs. Stebbins and Pollard. The Methodists kindly offered their building for services, and the school-house served them for awhile. Rev. Day, of Boone, was the first regular pastor, and the church with its twenty-three members was received into the Upper Des Moines Association on the following October 4. On April 28, 1869, Rev. H. A. Barden became pastor, and held services on Sunday afternoons in the Congregational Church, but in December following the Rev. S. H. Mitchell took his place, to remain five years, during which time they used Tomblin's Hall chiefly. In 1871 lots were purchased, and in 1872 a building was erected on the corner of Kellogg and Story Streets. It is a frame structure pleasantly situated among Ames' group of churches, and cost about $4,000. The dedication occurred in October, 1873, with Rev. J. F. Childs, of Oskaloosa, officiating. At this time the church was already paid for, and a collection of $100 was taken for State mission work. In January, 1870, a Sunday-school was formed with Mr. D. A. Bigelow as superintendent, and all the Baptists' children in Ames to the number of seven, a complete number if not very large. Rev. Mitchell's pastorate was worthy of the old pioneer, as it doubled in membership and more. In June, 1875, Rev. D. D. Propee entered upon a two-years' pastorate, during which the church increased in numbers considerably. Rev. R. J. Reynolds succeeded him in December, 1877, and Rev. Amos Robinson followed next in October, 1879. In November, 1880, Rev. H. D. Weaver was called, and during his pastorate in 1882 a, church was organized at Kelley, which had some of the Ames members as a nucleus. A parsonage, costing $500, was also secured, and other improvements made. Rev. Weaver resigned, however, and in the autumn of 1881 Rev. George Starring assumed charge of the society, but was in turn succeeded in March or April, 1886, by Rev. H. W. Wilson. Among other improvements made during his pastorate was the addition of a bell, the gift of Mr. H. C. Huntington, formerly a member of the church at Ames. This was in honor of his wife, who was an active member during her connection with the church. Rev. Wilson resigned on May 18, 1890, to take charge of a church in Paola, Kan., and at this writing he has not been replaced (June, 1890). The society is in a flourishing condition, with a membership of about ninety, many also having removed. They have successful Sunday-school and mission societies. The superintendent of the Sabbath-school is Miss Letty F. Mount, and the school numbers over 100. Mrs. Huntington's children's mission band in early days was known as "Tee Way's Band," because they furnished the means to carry a boy through. the theological school at Tavoy, Burmah; the boy's name was "Tee Way."

The First Baptist Church at Nevada succeeded an earlier organization which became defunct. During the early seventies Rev. S. H. Mitchell and others preached there, and about 1874 an organization was effected, with the following among the members. Mr. and Mrs. W. R. Woodward, Mrs. Foster, Mr. Davis, Mrs. Jane Rodearmel, Mrs. S. E. Ogden, Mr. and Mrs. Miller, and Mr. E. Armstrong. The organization was effected in the Presbyteriaan Church, and that and the old court-house were used until about 1876, when their present neatly arranged frame church on Seventh Street was erected at a cost of probably over

Page 262 of 460

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