Construction Heroes: The Vigo County Public Library Youth Services Department will be closed Monday, August 3 through December. The lower level will undergo a significant renovation to allow for more Youth Services space. Materials can be requested on the VCPL website, or visit the Teen Space to request youth materials.
Allen Chapel, A.M.E. Church
Allen Chapel, A.M.E. church organized by Negroes of the community and a small building was erected on South First Street near Crawford street, in 1837. Later it was moved to its present location at Third and Crawford streets. The Second Baptist church was organized in 1871 in a small building on South Second street. It is now located at Fourteenth and Oak streets. There are now 22 Negro church in Terre Haute.
Catholic Charities of Terre Haute
John E. Etling established the Terre Haute office in 1973 which is connected to the Indianapolis R.C. Archdiocese and operates as a non-profit service agency.
Church of Jesus Christ Latter-Day Saints
The church of Jesus Christ Latter-Day Saints, commonly known as Mormons, was founded by Joseph Smith in New York on April 6, 1830. Missionaries made their first Terre Haute converts, George and Lucinda Harris, in 1832.
Margaret Phillips may be considered to have founded the Terre Haute branch of the church in 1922 when she requested missionaries be sent and the establishment of a local Sunday School. The first convert after the establishement of the church was Laura Bird, a teen-age girl.
The Mormons remained without a church building until 1958. During those years, a small group would meet in rented lodge halls. Funds for the 20% to be paid by the local unit were acquired through bake sales, bazaars, and the Tiger Ear Project.
A genealogical society was founded about 1930 and held a distinctive place in the Terre Haute church until 1970. Two units, known as wards, were organized in 1982 after a period of membership growth. As of 1999, there are about 700 members of the two congregations.
Eastside Church of Christ
Members of two congregations of the Church of Christ in Terre Haute formed an additional congregation on the east side of the city in 1954. The new congregation first met on May 9 with fifty-three charter members. A new building was erected in 1962 and 235 people attended the first service in that facility on December 2, 1962. A third facility was needed by the 90s and was completed at 4025 College Ave. on April 1993 for the Easter Sunday service.
First Church of Christ, Scientist
The First Church of Christ, Scientist was founded in 1898 by Elizabeth Wright, Sarah L. Wright, Emma Reichert, Mr. & Mrs. T.W. Barhydt, Mr. & Mrs. J.O. Dougherty, Mr. & Mrs. Waginals, and James Dishon. The Christian Science Society, as the church was known in 1898, met at the home of Miss Wright until 1902 when meetings were moved to the back room over Paige's Music Store. Various other locations were used until the basement of the church was completed in 1921. In November 1981 the church was destroyed by fire and services were moved to the United Ministries Center until the new church was completed in April 1983.
A Christian Science Reading Room was opened for the use of the public in 1900 and is still in operation today. Semi-annual or annual free public lectures were begun in 1902.
Gideon International was founded on May 31, 1899 by Samuel E. Hill and John H. Nicholson. The Association was formed at a meeting called for July 1, 1899 in the Janesville, Wisconsin Y.M.C.A. at which Nicholson, Hill, and Will J. Knights were present when organization of offices and a formal name were taken. The purpose of the Gideons today is nearly the same as it was in 1899 - "to lead people to Salvation in Jesus Christ." The method by which Christian travelers were to be reached was by leaving a Bible at the reception desks of hotels - later to be placed in each bedroom. The plan to leave a Bible in each room was adopted in Louisville, KY in 1908 and the Ministerial Union voted to financially support the Bible placement program. Thus, the Gideon ministry became the "extended arm" of the church.
Lost Creek Baptist Church
Lost Creek Baptist Church was established in 1850 by Reverend Lewis Artis.
Maple Avenue United Methodist Church
Maple Avenue United Methodist Church began in 1889 when a small group of women met at the home of Miss Clara Hauk for the purpose of starting a Sunday School group. Later this group met in a building at Lafayette Avenue and 13th Street which, according to tradition was an abandoned saloon building. A frame church was built in 1890 and dedicated as the Maple Avenue Protestant Union Church. The actual birthdate of the church was January 24, 1892 when it was rededicated as the Maple Avenue Chapel of the Centenary Methodist Espiscopal Church. Rev. A.T. Briggs, Associate Pastor at Centenary served as the pastor for a congregation which blossomed from 25 members to 80 in one month. At the turn of the century, Rev. E.S. Shumaker, who later worked with the Anti-Saloon League and, in fact "suffered a martyr's death for the Temperance Cause," waged a fight against illegal liquor traffic at Twelve Points. Sunday schools and a mission were founded during this time also. During WWI, large numbers of the men and a few women served the Red Cross and other relief agencies. The church established Boy Scout Troup #4 in 1913, which continued until the 1970's, as well as a drama club, youth groups, study groups, and Bible Study.
Memorial United Methodist
Memorial United Methodist was the result of a merger in 1968 between Montrose Methodist and Otterbein United Brethren in conjunction with the merger of the Methodist Church and the United Brethren churches.
Montrose Methodist was founded in 1870 as the Montrose Society and built a church in 1875 which was associated with the St. Agnes Mission and later the Asbury Methodist Church. The church was destroyed by fire in 1880, rebuilt in 1892, and expanded in 1908 and 1968.
Otterbein United Brethren was organized in October 1922 as a "Home Mission" by Reverend William Todd. A permanent tabernacle was erected in 1924 for the congregation. After the merger in 1968 the new church at 2701 Poplar Street was named Memorial United Methodist Church.
A fire on January 28, 1973 destroyed all of the church except the sanctuary and the congregation began plans to rebuild. On February 24, 1974 a reconstruction service was held and on October 10, 1976 the church was presented the Guidepost Church Award and has been called "the church that rose from the ashes."
Methodists built their first church in Terre Haute on the corner of Fourth and Poplar St. in 1833.
Mount Pleasant United Methodist Church
Mount Pleasant United Methodist Church was founded in 1835 as Spring Hill, but was renamed in the dedication service on the second Sunday of May 1837 by Rev. Thomas Ray. Mt. Pleasant was part of a circuit embracing all of Vigo, and parts of Parke, Clay, and Putnam Counties and within this territory, the Methodists did not own a single frame building. Mt. Pleasant's original structure, acquired about 1836 partly due to the influence of Peter Cartwright in an August 1836 meeting, underwent three renovations, added a parsonage and was replaced in September 1967 at a site five acres north and across the road from the original site by professional mover, Elmer Buchta. A new parsonage was begun in 1977 and Rev. Arthur Collins with his family was the first to reside there. As of 1985 membership was 270 and average attendance was 180 requiring two services.
New Hope Community Church of God
New Hope Community Church of God began in 1910 as the First Church of God under the direction of Marion Boatman with thirteen members as a study group. The first church building was rented in 1915, the 1926 building was later destroyed by a 1960 fire, and property was purchased in October 1996 when the name change took place. The church sponors a food pantry ministry, Vacation Bible School, and fellowship activities.
Prairie Creek Wesleyan Church
Prairie Creek Wesleyan Church was founded February 1, 1914 by a group of Middletown Prairie Creek people as the "Apostolic Holiness Church, Mount Zion Chapel." There was a merger in 1922 which changed the name to Pilgrim Holiness and the final merger and name change occurred in 1968.
South Vigo Congregational Christian Church
The South Vigo Congregational Church was founded February 13, 1854 by eleven members. It is believed that the church was established when the local Presbyterian Church was divided over the slavery issue and those opposed to slavery withdrew. A frame church building was completed in 1858 on land donated by Josiah M. Black. Black also donated the "Black Graveyard" which is now the South Vigo Cemetery.
St. Benedict Parish
St. Benedict Parish was organized by a group of German Catholics in 1864 as St. Joseph parish had a large group of German-speaking immigrants who felt cut off from the English parishioners and others who were falling away from their Faith. Under Father Martin Marty, the first meeting for St. Benedict's was held January 17, 1864. The founders were John Burget, Ernest Bluemal, Mark Schoemell, Xavier Hahn, Henry Rotz, George Hoffman, George Goeting, John Leonberg, John Nische, John Kuntz, Mauritz Gasanoke, William Kilz, and Anton Held. These founders created the St. Boniface Building Society to raise funds for the new church, a school and priest's residence. The cornerstone was laid October 2, 1864 and the church itself was completed in 1865. Father Casper Doebbener, a diocesan priest was appointed the first pastor of St. Benedict parish in December 1865. The old building was demolished in 1896 and a larger, more elaborate one erected. The second structure was destroyed by fire July 30, 1930 and the current (as of 1999) one built using standing remains of the old. The current building dates to December 13, 1931, although it does not have the great dome nor the lavish interior of the 1896 version.
St. Benedict's Catholic Cathedral
St. Benedict's Catholic Cathedral at Ninth & Ohio streets was swept by disastrous fire that destroyed the great dome on which was mounted a statue of the Archangel Michael in 1930. The church was rebuilt without the great dome.
St. George Orthodox Church
St. George Antiochian Orthodox Church was founded in 1902 by immigrants from Ein el Charra, southwest of Damascus, Syria. The Terre Haute Parish was established in 1927. The church participates in the city's Annual Ethnic Festival held each September in Fairbanks Park, has a full cycle of litugical services throughout the year, and in August of 1999, sponsored the Summerfest festival in downtown Terre Haute.
Terre Haute Bible Center, Inc.
Terre Haute Bible Center, Inc. was founded by Pastor H.H. Drake of West Terre Haute in February 1935. The Terre Haute Bible Center, Inc. built a new building at 3111 Evans Avenue and moved into it on December 20, 1998.
United Church of God
United Church of God was established July 6, 1978 by approximately 80 members of the Worldwide Church of God from congregations in Columbus, Evansville, Indianapolis, Lafayette, Indiana and Champaign, Illinois. The first pastor was Steve Nutzman. The Terre Haute Chapter of the church was formed May 6, 1998 due to concern over doctrinal changes in the Worldwide Church of God when half of the 150 members left.
United Methodist Temple
Originally founded in 1826 as Asbury Chapel. The land, at 4th and Poplar, was set aside by the city to be given to the first church group to erect a building on it. In 1895, the church built a new building on the northwest corner of 7th and Poplar and was renamed First Methodist Episcopal. Repairs, increased need for parking, and the population shift were the determining factors in the decision to move the church
World Gospel Church, Inc.
Carl F. Froderman founded the World Gospel Church in January 1957 in the former Scottish Rite facility. In 1961 the church moved to its present facility at Gardendale Road and Highway 46. Additions were made in 1972 for Education and Fellowship and in 1999 for the Young Child and Community programs.