IAGenWeb Project - Clayton co.

Salem's Evangelical Church
aka Prairie Church
Watson, Clayton co. Iowa


In the year of 1868 Rev. F.W. Kaufmann was sent here from Prairie du Chien Wis. by the Wisconsin Conference of the Evangelical Association to look over the situation and inquire into the religious conditions and needs of the people at this place. He at once started to hold regular services and immediately began to ... [line missing] ... soon thereafter the Conference saw fit to send Rev. Kaufmann an assistant that he might be able to carry out this missionary work to a still greater degree. Rev. A. Finger now used every effort to promote this good cause. God gave His blessing. The charter membership numbered 38. The need of a church building was soon felt and plans were at once devised and the building of the present church begun [built by Jacob Ulrich]. The land on which it was built was donated by Christian Luckermann and on Oct. 14, 1868 the property was deeded over to ... [the next section is missing but the article then resumes with a list of the ministers and presiding elders]


Friday, Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 11, 12 and 13 will long be remembered by the Salems Church of the Evangelical Association, commonly called the Prairie church. These days will go down into the history of this congregation long to be remembered as days of joy and blessings that come to only a few in this life, this was visibly proven to the large and enthusiastic audience that gathered in the church three times for divine worship and thanksgiving. When we realized that only three of the charter members were with us yet in the person of Grandmas Meyer, Eifert and Schneider, but with them we could rejoice indeed and in truth ..... [balance of article incomplete]

Ministers and Elders

Three ministers have gone out from this place to fit themselves for the ministry, namely: Rev. Carl Sch--ner, Rev. Gotfried Fritz, and Rev. Conrad Wiegand.

During this half a century the Presiding Elders who served this place are as follows: Rev. Fritzhe, Rev. Guelch, Rev. Huelster, Rev. Shelp, Rev. W---wyler, Rev. Brendle, Rev. John Nickle, Rev. Homuth, Rev. Kichofer, Rev. C. Schneider and at present Rev. H. E. Erffmeyer.

The pastors that served here these past 50 years, man of whom have passed to the Great Beyond, are as follows: F.W. He-fmann, J.P. Fiel, G. Uphoff, F. -usmann, F. Eilart, A.F. Piepenburg, G. Winkowitch, C. Schneider, F. Ilian, H.E. Erffmeyer, H. Best J. Hoffmann, W. Pifferkorn, H.M Schurman, H. Haag, H. Rabe, E.G. Glaeser, and at present P.F. Walther. Only one of these, Rev. A.F. Piepenburg, was called by the Angel of Death in the midst of his pastorate here.

[note: some names not complete because of a fold in the article]


~source: Monona Clayton County, Iowa October 1918
~contributed by Gary Sheffert

~Gary's notes: The frontal page of the church book refers to this as the Clayton Mission of the Wisconsin Conference and then the Monona Mission of the Wisconsin Conference. Church records for baptisms and marriages are available from the Family History Library in Salt Lake City. The Monona Methodist history (below) is inaccurate as to founding date.  The difference in land donor could be that one donated the original land, and the other donated the land where the church was moved to.


Watson Church History 

The Watson Church was started about 1870. Land east of Watson was donated by John Sawvell and the church was built in 1872. The Church was later moved to Watson. It celebrated its 50th Anniversary in 1922. This church had a bell in the tower, which later was moved to the Monona Church. The members of this church joined the Monona Church in the 1930's.

~source: Garden City United Methodist Church History, 1996
~contributed by Carol E. Chase


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