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Harney, Richard J. / History of Winnebago County, Wisconsin, and early history of the Northwest
(1880)

City of Menasha,   pp. 215-229 PDF (10.6 MB)


Page 224


HISTORY OF WINNEBAGO COUNTY, WISCONSIN.
aticii, who inaugurated the erection of a log
church, and officiated until 1851, when he gave
place to Father Colton, now residing at Fond
du Lac. The congregation at this time was
composed of some twenty-five families, largely
from the Irish settlement in the western part
of the present Town of Menasha.   Father
Fusseder was the next in succession, and
uniting the Catholics of the two towns, and
different nationalities, the society, under his
administration, was considerably increased.
In 1854, Captain L. B. McKinnon presented
the society with one acre of ground, on the
Island, where the church now stands, and the
present building was at once erected, although
it has since been enlarged. Fathers DeBreca,
Cieppe, Dale, Wilkins and Uhlmire, now
succeeded each other in the order named,
and  under the  latter, the  society  was
divided  in 1867,  the  German   portion
purchasing the building first erected by
the Congregationalists of Menasha (mentioned
elsewhere), and under the lead of Father
Uhlmire, organized a separate church.  The
order of Servite Fathers, at this time, took
the original church under their charge, and
Father Morini was installed, and succeeded by
Father H. Venturi, who still remains at the
head of this organization.
In i868, a substantial brick school house
was erected on the same lot occupied by the
church and parsonage (the latter having been
built soon after the church). This school was
opened by teachers of the order of Servite
Sisters, from London, and connected with the
school were one hundred and forty scholars.
In 1877, the Servite Sisters removed to
Chicago and were succeeded by teachers from
the order of "School Sisters of Notre Dame,"
five in number.  One hundred and seventy
scholars are now connected with the school,
and one hundred and fifty -five in daily attend-
ance. This congregation now numbers one
hundred and twenty-five.
The German organization was presided over
by Uhlmire until 1871, when he was succeeded
by Father Joseph Neusspaum, the next in
order being Father John Yaster, who in turn
was followed March, 1875, by Father Andrew
Seubert. the present incumbent.
In I868, this society also built a commodious
brick school house, having purchased lots
adjoining the church property, until their
posessions covered twelve lots.  The school
was opened with about ninety scholars, by
teachers from the order of School Sisters of
Notre Dame.
In i876, a large brick parsonage was con-
structed upon the grounds, and at this time a
brick building is in process of construction,
designed for a residence for the teachers.
Five teachers are employed. The German
language is taught in the morning, the English
in the afternoon. The common branches are
taught in English. There are now connected
with the school three hundred scholars, two
hundred and forty of whom are in daily
attendance. It is conducted under the super-
vison of the resident priest and trustees.
There are now two hundred and seventy fami-
lies in this congregation.
CONGREGATIONAL.
The First Congregational church was organ
ized in 1851, and for the first two years they
worshipped in a rough board school-house, in
"Roby's Hall" the next five years, and in 1858,
commenced the building now occupied by the
Catholics, near the Central Railroad depot.
The Winnebago District convention had
appointed a meeting at Menasha, in December,
and it was desirable that the church should be
completed previous to that time. This wish
being expressed to Deacon Northrup, he
declared he would "eat all the plastering they
put on that fall," nevertheless the church was
plastemed, and the convention held there, at
the appointed time. All were too happy over
their success to require a fullfillment of the
Deacon's promise.
The cost of the house was three thousand
dollars, built with great personal sacrifice on
the part of a few.
After some eight years, the necessity for a
larger building became apparent, and the
present edifice was constructed, at a cost of
ten thousand dollars.  Commencing with a
dozen members the organization now consists
of one hundred and twenty-five members,
with an active sabbath school, and efficient
church work in various ways.
The present pastor is the Rev. S. V. S.
Fisher.
METHODIST.
The Methodist church of Menasha, was
organized in 1850, although circuit preachers
of this denomination had frequently held
divine service.
In 1856, the present handsome church was
erected. The present pastor is the Rev. G.
H. Moulton.
UNIVERSALIST.
The Universalist society of this place was
organized in i866. The Rev. C. L. Lombard
is resident pastor.
LUTHERAN.
The   Lutheran,  (German),  Church  of
Menasha was organized in i846. and the
224
fi854-66.
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