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Curtiss-Wedge, F.; Jones, Geo. O. (ed.) / History of Dunn County, Wisconsin

Chapter XVIII: City churches and parishes,   pp. 146-163

Page 149

was not then accepted. In the next year he again tendered it, and as this time
his decision could not be changed. it was accepted and he terminated his pastorate
on Feb. 15, 1888, after a service here of eight and a half years. The Rev. S. S.
Hebberd, who answered the call on April 15 the same year, was a scholarly gentle-
man who did especially good work among the young people. He remained two
years and was succeeded on July 1. 1890, by the Rev. James W. White. In order
to do more effective work, because the membership of the church had grown to
be large, and the work had expanded, the Rev. Mr. White advanced the idea of
building a new church with greater facilities, which was met with enthusiasm, and
owing to the generosity of two of the lady members, the people were enabled to
erect a beautiful church edifice that was dedicated June 1, 1902 and is still in use.
It will seat 600 people. Mr. White remained in Menomonie as pastor of the First
Congregational Church for 11 years and five months, during which time the church
not only grew in numbers but gained a splendid reputation, as he was a very
effective minister who instructed and led his congregation in and to higher views
of Christian life. Under the leadership of Rev. R. L. Breed, who succeeded Mr.
White in November, 1901, the congregation made amendments to their by-laws,
arranged a new system of record keeping, and changed the order of services. An
address given to the society in January, 1903, by the Rev. J. W. Frizzell of the
First Congregational Church of Eau Claire, Wis., on "The Opportunities of the
Church of Today." was very instructive and aided the people in their subsequent
work. The annual state convention of Congregational Churches met in Menomo-
nie for the first time in October, 1903, nearly 300 ministers and delegates being
present. In 1904 amendments were again made to the regulations, uniting with
the church the allied societies, of which there were quite a number, each having a
large membership. After four years of successful work, Mr. Breed resigned,
preaching his farewell sermon on Nov. 1, 1905, and after hearing several excellent
ministers, the church on Dec. 7, that year, extended a call to the Rev. Lathrop C.
Grant of Eau Claire, who began his pastorate here Jan. 7, 1906. Mr. Grant was
an able and persuasive orator and proved an earnest worker on behalf of the con-
gregation. As a stout and aggressive foe of the liquor evil he rendered valuable
service to his fellowmen. He remained here until about the end of the year 1914,
and for about eight months after his departure the church had no pastor, but had
to depend on outside supplies. During that period some able ministers preached
here, but the need of a regular pastor for advancing the work of the church and
society was strongly felt, and finally the services of the Rev. Arthur E. Westenberg
were secured. He assumed charge on August 1, 1915, and has remained to the
present time. His work has been earnest and effective and under his direction
good progress has been made. In 1924 the interior of the church edifice was re-
decorated. The full membership of the church is now about 250, of whom 185
are resident members. There is a large Sunday school and several active societies,
including: the Christian Endeavor, organized some 30 to 35 years ago; the Woman's
Auxiliary, corresponding to a ladies' aid society, which under one form or another
has been in existence many years and was formerly known as the Social Circle;
the Woman's Missionary Society, and the Scritsmier Club, the last mentioned be-
ing intended to include all the young men and high school boys who have ever
belonged to the Sunday school. The parsonage, a commodious and thoroughly
modem residence, is situated on a lot adjoining the church on its south side. It
is owned by the society and has been in use in its present condition for the last
18 years.
Immanuel Baptist Church.-The origin of this congregation was a series of
meetings held in Menomonie in the winter of 1861 by Rev. Amasa Gale, a Baptist
minister, which aroused considerable interest in the denomination. In the fol-
lowing year the Rev. Morgan Edwards conducted meetings and baptized a num-
ber of converts to this faith. As a result the Menomonie First Baptist Church
was organized in December. 1864, with ten members. Occasional services were
held and in October, 1866, the Rev. W. W. Ames began his duties here as pastor.
About the same time L. L. Larkham became a member and was chosen first deacon;

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