Saturday, March 26, 2011

Notes on the Churches

I’m nearing the end of my transcription of my grandmother’s papers.  Although I plan to continue blogging about my family research, I feel a little sad to be near the end of this particular project.  After this one, only two more posts left from Frances.

Emporium area Churches-Frances Elizabeth Schwab Murray, with additions from Riley Murray, as told to Frances

Ed Dundon built a Catholic church in Sterling Run during early logging years.  It was used only a few years as the loggers and their families moved away.

Dr. James Brennan was the first priest in Driftwood at the St. James Church.

The first Catholic Church that I remember was located on the corner of East 6th Street and Chestnut Street, where years later Jack Quigley built his home.  Jack’s son lives in the home now (1972).  When the church was built, I do not know, but as a young boy, I remember the old empty church slowly rotting away.  I have no idea what year the present church was built, but I fought fire there in 1913 when the steeple was hit by lightening.  The high towering steeple was never rebuilt as it was before. (RM)  I remember so well the new steeple was finished and the bell rang for the first time.  Mrs. Mike Dolan, her daughters, Rose, Kathryn and Clarice, and myself stood on the back porch of the Hotel Dolan while the bell rang out so clear. (FM)

Church affairs at Cameron, before the present-day and only church ever built, was very few. Church was held in the schoolhouse so upkeep was nil.  We had church whenever the circuit minister was able to come Sundays.  The yearly picnic in the Rockwell Grove was the highlight of all of us kids.  Everyone went and spent the day.  School was every Sunday morning and up until 1915 we always had Wednesday night prayer meetings.  We took turns in conducting both the Sunday school and prayer meetings.  I understand service is now being held quite often in the little church and they have regular Sunday school each Sunday.

Emporium Presbyterian--Church ladies raised money for the church with quilting bees, ice cream socials and suppers.  We always had big crowds at our Christmas parties with Santa passing out the gifts.  Young and old looked forward to the Sunday school picnic at the Sizerville Park.  The rest of the town churches did about the same things, too.

Emporium used to have revival meetings in the Keystone Park.  I believe the Free Methodists were the ones who conducted the revivals.  There was also a tabernacle built where Acky McDonald has his garage.  Howards Saw Mill furnished the wood to build it.  The traveling evangelist was a very good speaker and a lot of folks went forward.

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