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Colfax Church of Christ Homecoming 1937


Posted By: JCGS Volunteer
Date: 12/4/2020 at 10:52:39

Homecoming at Church of Christ Attended by 275
Interesting History of Local Church Was Read at Meeting
Last Sunday was the Homecoming day and program for Howard Street Church of Christ. Nearly two hundred and seventy-five persons attended the two sessions.
After a short Bible School period, the communion services was conducted by the pastor, Rev. Dale. Following this was a solo. “Oh, Happy Day: by a resident member, Patricia Stouffer. Mrs. Myrtle Tripp then read a letter from Rev. and Mrs. Harmon, who was pastor from 1895 until 1900. They thought they would be driving through Colfax soon, so may be able to extend greetings in person.
Mrs. Katherine Rinker read letters from Rev. Walters and Rev. Mrs. Harmon, who are now living on an irrigated ranch near Jerome, Idaho, from Rev. E. E. Mack, of Long Beach, California, Rev. Tom Foglesong of Muscatine and Rev. Vere H. Rogers, who recently accepted the pastorate of the First Christian Church, in Savannah, Georgia. There were letters of greeting and historical information from Mrs. Sadie D. Hurst of Escondido, California and Mrs. Annette Wells, who is visiting in Glasgow, Montana. A letter was received from C. L. Byers of Decatur, Illinois.
Mrs. Dota Boyd Falcon was the church historian and gave a comprehensive history of the church from the time of organization down to the present date.
Mrs. Vera Wheeler Phillips, of Valley Junction, sang a beautiful arrangement of the Twenty-third Psalm and the First Choir Director sang, “Deep River”. Short reminiscent talks were given by F. Aubrey Smith of Marshalltown, C. E. Young, of Des Moines, Mrs. Vera Wheeler Phillips, W. W. Angelo, of Des Moines, W. E. Brown of Mitchellville, Mrs. F. A. Smith, Mrs. Angelo Tiffen Hall of Des Moines, Mrs. Vera Tripp of Newton, Clara Tiffany of Collins. Others from a distance were E. H. Smith and daughter Lela from Ames, Rev. and Mrs. W. H. Zenor from Nebraska and one of the old faithful members, Jim Knapp and former pastor, Rev. J. B. Hockersmith of Hedrick.
Approximately one hundred enjoyed the bounteous basket dinner at the tables arranged by the young ladies
Bible School class and directed by Mrs. C. A Leseney.
In the afternoon, the churches of the county came together for the county rally. After a solo by Mr. Smith, Attorney R. E. Farrand of Des Moines brought the afternoon message. It was a missionary talk giving his opinion of missions as he saw the work on his trip around the world. He told why it is impossible for Missionaries to convert people until they have worked for considerable time in the field. He also gave some very pertinent and practical suggestions as to how a local church can help best in foreign missionary work and outlined a suggestive plan for a county missionary organization.

History of Howard Street Church of Christ (By Dota Boyd Falcon)
In attempting to write the history of Howard Street Christian Church, I found myself confronted by a well-nigh formidable wall, until I bethought myself of the possibility of enlisting the aid of some of those who were among the membership when the project of a new building was originally launched.
To Mrs. Sadie D. Hurst, of Escondido, California, a charter member and at all times during her long residence in Colfax, an enthusiastic and zealous worker for the Church of her choice, and to Mrs. Annette Wells, though not a charter member, one of long standing I am indebted for much of the information engrossed in this recital.
I quote Mrs. Hurst: “In 1899, there were living in this little city, several persons who had held membership in Christian Churches elsewhere, and through the persistent desires of Mrs. C. A. Dotson and Mr. and Mrs. Wesley Jordan, the first steps were taken to found a church organization and home for those earnest believers in the doctrines of their faith. Letters of strong appeal were sent to J. K. Cornell and J. B. Vawler, veterans in the ministry for help in the realization of their hopes, a Christian Church for Colfax.
It was a day of small beginnings. Little prayer meetings were held in the several homes, carpet rag sewings to call together the few who yet held to the tenets of the Christian Church and their friends. Some were found who had been out of touch with the Church for many years, but still faithful and anxious for a renewal of their faith and fellowship.
In February, 1890, a Rev. Wilson from Pleasantville, Iowa and Rev. J. K. Cornell from Newton, Ia., came to Colfax and effected thee first church organization. The Charter members were: Mr. and Mrs. Chas. A. Dotson, Mr. and Mrs. Wesley Jordan, Miss Cora Jordon, Mrs. Sadie Dotson Hurst, Mr. W. B. Wells, Mrs. Amanda Wells, Mrs. H. W. Flora Robinson, Mrs. Emily Myhill, Walter Hall, Mr. and Mrs. F. A. Smith, Mrs. Ann Penn and Mr. and Mrs. C. D. Snow, Mr. Snow and Mr. Jordon were elected elders. W. B. Wells and Walter Hall deacons, C. A. Dotson, treasurer and F. A. Smith, clerk. At the close of a short series of sermons by Bro. Wilson, there were some additions to the church and plans were laid for going forward.
During the summer, Prof. B. O. Aylesworth of Drake University was engaged to preach twice a month on Sunday afternoons in the Methodist church. In November, Bro. Brokaw, a well-known evangelist, held a successful meeting in Cain’s Old Opera House.
Then the old Presbyterian Church, which had been moved to a lot near The Mills House, preparatory to the building of the new Presbyterian church, was rented for $4.00 per month and regular services and a Bible school were established. Students from Drake U, and other speakers, with convincing doctrinal sermons, awakened much interest, and resulted in the addition of new membership, and fostering the good will and esteem of citizens, who had hitherto known little of this particular Christian plea.
Rev. T. H. Stockham of Des Moines was called to the pastorate of the church in 1897, and his push, and business ability, assisted the Church Board in securing a site and a building fund for the erection of the present Christian Church in Colfax. The contract was awarded to C. L. Byers, father of Mrs. Myrtle Tripp. It was not an easy task to meet the opposition that was advanced against the proposition of another church for Colfax, especially a “Campbellite” Church,” Jealously and disfavor were shown in many ways, but despite all, in August, 1891, the foundation was laid and on the 10th day of January, 1892, it was completed and opened for the sermon and dedication, by F. M. Rains, present of the Standard Publishing Co. of Cincinnati, Ohio, at a total cost of about $7,000.00, which payment was entirely arranged for on the day of dedication.
Well do I remember the happiness over the laying of the carpets and completing the finishing details left for the women to do. On the last night, we worked until the wee small hours of the morning.
Our hearts were filled with gratitude on the bright January Sunday morning when the beautiful new structure was filled with worshipers and smiling faces. Aubrey Smith led the choir in singing anthems of praise. Grace Fields Robinson was the organist and among the singers who assisted in the choir were Sadie Kiser, Mrs. Hattie Kendig, Sadie Hurst, Mrs. Carrie Brown, Dr. N. T. Weston and others. Rev. A. M. Haggard assisted in the dedication that was called as the first pastor of the new church. He followed with a series of meetings, which resulted in some 30 additions. I read a history of the church activities in 1908 at an anniversary meeting, when we recalled to memory among those faithful Christians, who had gone on, the saintly faces of Wesley Jordan and Mrs. C. A. Dotson with their earnest faith in the scriptures, good Mother Kiser, Sister Myhill and many others. A long list, until few remain of the early group, all leaving behind them a Benediction of Peace and Good Will.
Many of the furnishings of the church were gifts from different sources. The Communion table was given by the Dorcas Society, the clock was donated by a traveling salesman, who frequently visited Colfax, the pulpit and chairs were presented by Mrs. Gaston of Des Moines, she having solicited contributions for the, the silk flag was a gift of the Woman’s Relief Corps, presented by Mrs. Eleanor Hawk.
The Dorcas Society has always been a most helpful factor in the social and financial activities of the church. It was organized during the ministerial tenancy of Mrs. M. A. Harmon, Mrs. Belle Weirick, now of Anaheim, California, being the first present. Her administration was followed by that of Mrs. Chloe Dawson, who held the position continuously for sixteen years. The Society was recently merged with the “Christian Women’s Board of Missions” and is now functioning as “The Women’s Council” under the presidency of Mrs. Jennie Nichols.
The Bible school has perhaps been the strongest auxiliary of the church through the passing years, and has always been well supported. Among those who have well served in the capacity of Superintendent since its organization are Mrs. Sadie Hurst, Garner Tripp, J. D. Marquis, Walter E. Jones, Mrs. Myrtle Tripp, Mrs. N. E. Brown, Dota Boyd Falcon, Mrs. Eleanor Cox, C. E. Wornig, Willis E. Brown, W. W. Angelo, Dr. Davis, Mrs. Verla Pease, and Mrs. Katherine Rinker, the present superintendent.
The roll call of pastors presents names both numerous and varied. Rev. Wilson, J. K. Cornell, J. B. Vawter, Prof. B. A. Aylisworth, Prof. Adrain Newens, Prof. Ott, D. R. Dungan, J. H. Stockham, Rev. Laye, Sec. Denny, Prof. Stairs, Jesse Zader, J. H. Ragan, O. H. King, Vernon Harrington, Thos. A. Popplewell, Rev. D. E. jarnette, O. M. Pennock, Dr. M. A. Rose, Rev. Mrs. Harmon, LeRoy Munyan, J. Hollingsworth, C. S. Wycoff, C. R. Gaines, L. V. Williamson, Vere Rogers, F. W. Fogelsong, Earl Clark, J. W. Tanzeler, Rev. Hockeresmith and our present pastor, Rev. Dale and several outstanding evangelists but to my mind, the greatest was Rev. Jim Keyes, who held a tabernacle
Rev. Dale and several outstanding evangelists but to my mind, the greatest was Rev. Jim Keyes, who held a tabernacle meeting here that was unsurpassed in its far reaching influence. Each of these men and one woman in crossing the lives of their several congregations, have left their imprint on the souls contacted. What influence they exerted, no one dare say. Having committed their lives to the work of The Master, they have passed on to other fields of endeavor, leaving with us, the consciousness of a work well done.
The passing years as ever, have taken their toll. Many faces that were once found always in their places are absent today. Some have answered the last call. Some may be worshiping in some far away church. They were true to their faith and labored earnestly for the church they loved.
May I recall a few names within my knowledge. Grandpa and Grandma Wiley, Austin Whitehead, Mrs. Kinnie Hopkins, Mrs. Gwendolyn Davis, Mr. and Mrs. T. O. Marquis, Mr. and Mrs. E. E. Dotson, Dr. and Mrs. Edward Bawker, Dr. and Mrs. N. T. Weston, Mr. and Mrs. A. A. Penquite, Robert Dawson, Mr. and Mrs. Garner Tripp, Mr. and Mrs. Dave Tripp, Mr. and Mrs. D. Myron Tripp, Grace and Leo Tripp and the entire Tripp family, Mr. and Mrs. S. W. Dunton, Mr. and Mrs. Willis Brown, Mr. and Mrs. W. L. Davis, Mrs. Belle Weirick, Mrs. Mattie Kendig, Florence Hopkins, Dale Hurst, Glen Hurst, Mrs. Sadie Hurst, Mrs. J. R. Keasy, Mrs. Hattie Kendig, Miss Hattie Raridin, Vera Hopkins, Grace Hopkins, Mr. and Mrs. W. W. Angelo, Florence Angelo, Mrs. Anna Slavens, Mr. and Mrs. Iden Scarborough, Jim Knapp, Mrs. Vera Wheeler Phillips, Mr. and Mrs. F. A. Smith, Mr. and Mrs. S. A. Potts, Miss Gladys Potts, Mr. and Mrs. Ole Copeland, Mr. and Mrs. Chas. Watt, Mr. and Mrs. Charlie Keipp, Mr. S. H. Dunton, Miss Jessie Beeson, Mrs. Newton and Merle, Mrs. John Main, Mrs. Ora Emmack and Genevieve, Margaret Wells Near, Mrs. and Mrs. Joe Schroyer, Mrs. Jessie Stubblefied, Mrs. Clara Watt, Mr. and Mrs. C. E. Young and family, Mr. and Mrs. C. L. Byers, Mr. and Mrs. L. D. Snyder, Mrs. Dan Snyder, Mr. and Mrs. J. Ulrich, Mr. and Mrs. Fred Hart, Mr. and Mrs. Harvey Jennings, Lib Mahannah and Mrs. Gene Travers.
The history of a church after all is not so much the architectural structure of the building, its cost and style, but its impression on human minds who live and have lived under the shadow of its domain, upon the helpful influences that have emanated from its teachings and I doubt not that the teachings that have resounded from this pulpit and from the more quiet talks in the less resourceful Bible School, have borne their fruit in the lives of the ones contacted, both young and old, in such a manner as to enable them to more cheerfully bear the burdens and meet the trials of life. Personally I thank God for having been a member of this congregation, to have had the privilege of listening to these patriarchs in Christian faith and to hear them expound their interpretation of the scripture in the years that have passed. Howard Street Christian Church has ever been a power for good in this community. May her work forever carry on.
Source: Colfax (IA) Tribune; September 16, 1937


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