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Our Methodist Heritage
 

Note: These records will show the newest addition to the series at the top of the page.
 
June 1, 206
continued from May 18...
 
On September 11, 1836, the church appointed a committee of five to serve as trustees. One of the five was James Pembroke. Mr. Pembroke and his wife, Elizabeth, had come to Mishawaka. They came with the family of F.G. Eberhart from Benton Center, Yates Co., N.Y. They were the first of about a dozen families from that place. The group was known as the "Benton Colony". At a Quarterly Conference in 1843, a committee was formed to "inquire into the expediency of building a parsonage in Mishawaka". Albert G. Hollenbeck was on this committee. He was listed as a class leader and a steward in the years 1840-1845. He was also named as an exhorter in 1842. The committee must have done its work. The next year, the Pastor
 
Orange V. Lemon- was instructed to collect money to pay for arrearages on the parsonage furniture. In that same year, Conference appointed a committee to find the cost of building a new meeting house in Mishawaka. A. Hudson, Morgan Hollenbeck and Ferris Pierce were the committee members. After Ten years, the Mishawaka M. E. Church began as a "point for preaching" in the St. Joseph Circuit. The circuit included a large tract of land in Elkhart, St. Joseph and LaPorte Counties as well as in the southern part of Michigan. In 1839, it was referred to as Mishawaka Circuit of LaPorte District. The next year it was called the Mishawaka Circuit of South Bend District, Indiana Conference. March 7, 1840, was the date of the Quarterly Conference of the circuit held at Elkhart.
 
It was decided to have a camp meeting at the Quarterly Conference in July. A committee was appointed to select a site. And on July 6, 1840, a camp meeting was held at Two-Mile Plain. This was a prairie just east of Elkhart. It extended for two miles along the St. Joseph River. North Indiana Conference held its first session at Fort Wayne, Sept 24, 1844. Most preachers came on horseback. H.B. Beers and Presiding Elder G.M. Boyd were in charge of arrangements. They also made arrangements for the horses. "There was straw and provender enough and room to lodge in".
 
At that time, ten years had passed since the first Methodists had settled in Mishawaka. The city had grown from 100 persons to around 900, and the church had grown. In the minutes of the 4th Quarterly Conference of 1844, we read: "Mishawaka Sunday School reported prosperous condition. Books, 300; scholars, 90; teachers, 13; superintendent, 1; asst supts., 2; librarian, 1. Our church had survived the financial panic of 1837 and the "sickly years" that followed”.
 
The future looked bright.
 
Richmond Tuttle was in charge of the building program and seems to have paid the bills and waited for the church to reimburse him. On Dec. 15, 1847 the trustees reported that they has settled with Mr. Tuttle and owed him $376.77. The report was accepted. A further report said that, due to the "embarrassed condition of the society," they could not agree to allow him $111 for personal services during the erection of the building. It was finally agreed to give him $5,000 as part payment of the claim. The original cost of this building was about $3,000. Later improvements brought the cost to more than $5,000.
 
On September 28, 1948, the Saint Joseph Valley Register announced that the Methodist Episcopal Church was to be dedicated Thursday, October 5th at 1:00 pm by Rev. J.A. Baughman. The old building on Main St. was sold to Nathan Russ, a grocer. He used it for a warehouse, later it was used as a print shop by Norman V. Brower, publisher of the Mishawaka Enterprise.
 
The building was burned in the great fire of 1872. Rev. Emanuel Hall was born in Lewis County, Virginia, January 26, 1824. In 1831 Emanuel’s father and mother (Elisha and Susanna Scott Hall) moved to what is now Kalamazoo, Michigan.
 
At that time, according to family history, there were but three white families living in the village. After some difficulty with his harsh father, Emanuel ran away from home. In 1842 he turned up in Mishawaka and became a cabinet maker.
 
At that time the Mishawaka Methodists were still worshipping in their first church, built in 1836. Emanuel was converted and baptized by the Rev. H.B. Beers. He was an active Methodist from the day of his conversion. Starting in June of 1843 and continuing through part of 1845, Emanuel was listed as a Class Leader in Conference records. In 1845 and 1846 he attended school in Lima, Ohio. On September 15, 1847, Emanuel was licensed to preach and was received into the Northern Indiana Conference at Indianapolis. He served eighteen charges in Northern Indiana, including Mishawaka in the Conference years 1853-54.
 
Emanuel kept a diary, and his records for the year 1852 were written up at length in a South Bend Tribune article by Evadne Scott Beebe dated March 21, 1976. Mrs. Beebe and her husband James lived in Mishawaka from September, 1926 to January 1928, and were members of the East Methodist Church. Her mother’s cousin, Rev. Earle Parker, was our minister 1917-1921, and her great-great Uncle Wesley, Rev. A.W. Lamport was a guest minister in our church, preaching in the summer of 1927.
 
On August 24, 1848, Rev, Emanuel Hall married Rosannah Luce Lamport, daughter of Ansel M. Lamport, a local Methodist Preacher. She travelled with her husband by horse and buggy in many of his journeys to pray with his charges and otherwise minister to their needs. In 1880, Rev Hall was pastor of the Osceola Methodist Episcopal Church. Since the fall of 1879 he had been in failing health.
 
In spite of his family’s objections, in company of his son Willie, he went to Anderson, Indiana for a brief visit with his brother-in-law, Rev. A. W. Lamport. He died there on March 29, 1880. Funeral services were held at the M.E. Church in Mishawaka, with ladies of the church arranging the flowers. He is buried in City Cemetery, Mishawaka. It would appear the Rev. Emanuel Hall was the first from our church to “go forth into full-time Christian service.”
 
His name is on the plaque in our Narthex. The portrait of Rev. Emanuel Hall (in our East Room) was painted by his son, Willie. It was donated to our church by one of his relatives.
 
May 18, 2016
continued from May 11.....Richmond Tuttle was in charge of the building program and seems to have paid the bills and waited for the church to reimburse him. On Dec. 15, 1847 the trustees reported that they has settled with  Mr. Tuttle and owed him $376.77. The report was accepted.  
 
A further report said that, due to the "embarrassed condition of the society", they could not agree to allow him $111 for personal services during the erection of the building. It was finally agreed to give him $50,00 as part payment of the claim.  the original cost of this building was about $3,000. Later improvements brought the cost to more than $5,000.  
 
On September 28, 1948, the Saint Joseph Valley Register announced that the Methodist Episcopal Church was to be dedicated Thursday, October 5, at 1 p.m. by Rev. J.A. Baughman. The old building on Main St. was sold to Nathan Russ, a grocer.  He used it for a warehouse, later it was used as a print shop by Norman V. Brower, publisher of the Mishawaka Enterprise.  

The building was burned in the great fire of 1872. ...to be continued on May 25.
 
May 11, 2016
continued from May 4.....In less than ten years, the Methodist congregation grew too large for its building on Main Street.  In 1844, the Quarterly Conference appointed a committee to estimate the cost of a new meeting house in Mishawaka.  Albert Hudson, Morgan Hollenbeck and Ferris Pierce were members of the new committee.  In that same year, the trustees secured the lot on the southwest corner of Second and Church streets.  It is possible they "secured" it by making a small payment on the property.  The lot was owned by John Ward and Arthur Bronson of New York. 
 
The trustees also made arrangements for putting up the new building.  But their plans were delayed by a business depression.  Money came in very slowly.  The owners of the lot died.  The executor of their estate sold the ground to Albert Hudson and George Merrifield in 1846.  On September 24, 1847, Hudson and Merrifield deeded the lot to the church for a sum of $250.00.  This was a very modest price at that time....to be continued on May 18.

 
May 4, 2016
continued from April 27.....After Ten years...
The Mishawaka M. E. Church began as a "point for preaching" in the St. Joseph Circuit.  The circuit included a large tract of land in Elkhart, St. Joseph and LaPorte Counties as well as in the southern part of Michigan.  In 1839, it was referred to as Mishawaka Circuit of LaPorte District.  
 
The next year it was called the Mishawaka Circuit of South Bend District, Indiana Conference.  March 7, 1840, was the date of the Quarterly Conference of the circuit held at Elkhart.  It was decided to have a camp meeting at the Quarterly Conference in July.  A committee was appointed to select a site.  And on July 6, 1840, a camp meeting was held at Two-Mile Plain.  
 
This was a prairie just east of Elkhart.  It extended for two miles along the St. Joseph River.  North Indiana Conference held its first session at Fort Wayne, Sept 24, 1844.  Most preachers came on horseback.  H.B. Beers and Presiding Elder G.M. Boyd were in charge of arrangements.  They also made arrangements for the horses.  "There was straw and provender enough and room to lodge in".  At that time, ten years had passed since the first Methodists has settled in Mishawaka.  The city had grown from 100 persons to around 900, and the church had grown.  
 
In the minutes of the 4th Quarterly Conference of 1844, we read: "Mishawaka Sunday School reported prosperous condition.  Books, 300; scholars, 90; teachers, 13; superintendent, 1; asst supts., 2; librarian, 1".  Our church had survived the financial panic of 1837 and the "sickly years" that followed.  The future looked bright. ... to be continued on May 11.
 
 
April 27, 2016
How they built the 1836 church....
On  September 11, 1836, the church appointed a committee of five to serve as trustees.  One of the five was James  Pembroke.  Mr. Pembroke and his wife, Elizabeth, had come to Mishawaka.  They came with the family of F.G. Eberhart from Benton Center, Yates Co., N.Y. They were the first of about a dozen families from that place.
 
The group was known as the "Benton Colony".  At a Quarterly Conference in 1843, a committee was formed to "inquire into the expediency of building a parsonage in Mishawaka".  Albert G. Hollenbeck was on this committee. He was listed as a class leader and a steward in the years 1840-1845.  He was also named as an exhorter in 1842.  The committee must have done its work. 
 
The next year, the Pastor-Orange V. Lemon- was instructed to collect money to pay for arrearages on the parsonage furniture.  In that same year, Conference appointed a committee to find the cost of building a new meeting house in Mishawaka.  A. Hudson, Morgan Hollenbeck and Ferris Pierce were the committee members.....to be continued on May 4.
 
April 21, 2016
From the files of 1835

The first society of the Methodist Episcopal Church in Mishawaka was organized on Sunday, July 19, 1835.  The members were: Joseph Skerritt and wife, Lucretia, Mrs. Susan Hurd, Elliott Hurd and wife, Fanny, Richmond Tuttle, Washington Oliver and Aaron Budlong. The Rev. Mr. Ball was the first pastor.  Richmond Tuttle was the first class leader. By September 1836, the group had grown too large to meet in most homes.  The members began to plan for a meeting house. Elliott Hurd owned some lots on the south side of the river.  He gave the north half of lot 22 on the west side of North Main St., (where Liberty Mutual is now) to the church.  The deed was dated September 16, 1836. Price was $1. In a few days, the Methodists began to build their church.  To be continued .......
 
-- Doris M. Clark, History and Records