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St. John's United Church of Christ (Genoa, Ohio) - MS 175 mf

Introduction | Agency History | Scope and Content | Series DescriptionOrder of Microfilming

 Introduction

The records of the St. John's United Church of Christ, Genoa, Ohio, date from 1870 to the present. The history of this religious organization is reflected in the collection which consists of congregational and organizational minutes, the church's vital statistical record, commemorative reuinion and history booklets, organ and pipe specifications, explanation of sanctuary window symbols, cornerstone contents, constitution and by-laws, mortgage and deed records, and blueprints of the present church structure.

The records of St. John's United Church of Christ were transferred for microfilming to the Center for Archival Collections, Bowling Green State University, in June 1981 with the cooperation of Rev. Paul Deppen, pasater, Mrs. Alta Schultz, church secretary, and Jare R. Cardinal, Graduate Assistant, Center for Archival Collections. The church representatives determined which of their records were to be included in this microfilming project; therefore, not all of the organization's historical documents are represented in this collection. Literary and property rights of this microfilm have been dedicated to the public. The collection was processed and the register prepared by Jare R. Cardinal, Graduate Assistant, in June 1981.

 Agency History

St. John's United Church of Christ began in 1868 when a group of Genoa families of German descent persuaded Rev. Gills of the Elmore Evangelical Church to preach to them in the village Methodist Church on Sunday afternoons. Three years later the congregation was officially organized and registered as "The German United Evangelical Protestant St. John's Church of Genoa, Ohio." The first church structure was completed at the corner of Sixth and Superior Streets that fall. In 1918, when the Church celebrated its fiftieth anniversary,there were 378 members in the congregation, making it the largest protestant church in the community.

By 1958 the old structure was no longer adequate for the church's needs. At that time a new educational facility was built on donated land on Washington Street. Four years later an addition of a sanctuary, chapel, and bell tower completed the building program. The church continues to flourish and its members are active in community and educational affairs. A more detailed account of its history may be found in the commemorative booklets in this collection.

 Scope and Content

The St. John's United Church of Christ collection provides the researcher with a number of records that reflect the various functions of the church within the community. There are some informational gaps, however, since not all the organization's documents were microfilmed. Such items as the Suday School Record, the Monthly Consistory (Council) Minutes, and financial records are available at the church office.

The Annual Congregational Meeting Minutes (1919-1980), the Constitution and its revisions and the miscellaneous legal documents provide a background of the church's administrative history. The Anniversary and Reunion of Confirmation Classes booklets detail the histories of this religious organization and its building projects. The Church Record (1870-1981), including two Kirchenbuchs written in German (1870-1959), provides statistical information on the births, deaths, marriages, and confirmations of church members.

The minutes of the Willing Workers and Brotherhood organizations offer some information on the importance of church societies to the growth of the church and the community. Other minutes for such vital groups as the St. John's Women's Club, the Ladies Aid Society, and the Board of Christian Education, were not available for microfilming.

For the researcher interested in historic preservation there are architectural drawings and floor plans of the present structure. An interpretation of the symbols found in the sanctuary windows, the organ and pipe specifications, and a listing of the chapel's cornerstone contents offer additional information about specific features of the church building.

 Series Description

PROCEEDINGS

ANNUAL CONGREGATIONAL MEETING MINUTES
January 1919-January 1980.
Arranged chronologically
Includes list of attending members, treasurer reports, and annual church business, as well as minutes of special congregational meetings.

CHURCH RECORD
1870-1981.
Arranged by category and chronologically within each group.
Includes lists of baptisms, deaths, marriages, and confirmations. First two volumes are written in German.

ST. JOHN'S BROTHERHOOD MINUTES
January 1938-January 1966.
Arranged chronologically
Includes program activities, financial reports and minutes of the monthly meetings.

WILLING WORKERS MINUTES.
April 1915-January 1937; January 1967-January 1972.
Arranged chronologically
Consists of roll call of members, financial reports, monthly business minutes, list of original membrs and constitution of this women's church group. Volume one is in reverse chronological order.

LITERARY PRODUCTIONS

COMMEMORATIVE HISTORIES
1918, 1958, 1968.
Booklets written for fiftieth, ninetieth, and hundredth anniversaries of church's founding.
Includes information about ministers, organizations, and highlights of church's history with text and photographs.

MISCELLANEOUS CHURCH PAPERS
1961, 1976, n.d.
Arranged chronologically
contains typewritten pages that reflect certain aspects of the church structure including contents of the cornerstone box of the chapel, the organ contract with pipe specifications, and an explanation of the meaning of the symbols in the sanctuary windows.

REUNION OF CONFIRMATION CLASSES.
1870-1968.
Arranged chronologically
Centennial booklet listing annual groups of people joining the church. Includes information published in first reunion booklet (1871-1936) and order of confirmation service held May 19, 1968.

LEGAL DOCUMENTS

CONSTITUTION AND BY-LAWS
1926-1978 (scattered)
Arranged chronologically
Includes original and revised constitution and by-laws of the church in both booklet and typewritten form.

MISCELLANEOUS LEGAL DOCUMENTS
1907, 1959-1977 (scattered)
Arranged chronologically
Consists of agreements for the construction of the old church building, land deeds, certificate of incorporation, Statement of Continued Existence, and various papers concerning a mortgage contracted between 1959 and 1961.

CHARTS

BLUEPRINTS
May 15, 1958 and July 15, 1960
Arranged chronologically
Architectural drawings of both the Educational Unit/Fellowship Hall, and the Church/Chapel addition to the present structure.

FLOORPLAN
n.d.
Consists of a diagram of the church and chapel designating room placement and use.

PLAT MAP
1965
Depitcts perimeter of five-acre lot on which the present church and educational structures stand.

 Order of Microfilming

Roll 1

  1. Annual Congregational Meeting Minutes, January 1919-January 1980
  2. Willing Workers Minutes, April 1915-January 1937
  3. Willing Workers Minutes, January 1967-January 1972
  4. St. John's Brotherhood Minutes, January 1938-September 1956
  5. St. John's Brotherhood Minutes, October 1956-January 1966
  6. Kirchenbuch, 1870-1911
  7. Kirchenbuch, 1912-1959
  8. Church Record, 1953-1961 (scattered)
  9. Church Record, 1961-1981
  10. Reunion of Confirmation Classes, 1870-1968
  11. Commemorative Histories, 1918, 1958, 1968
  12. Miscellaneous Church Papers, 1961, 1976, n.d.
  13. Constitution and By-laws, 1926-1978 (scattered)
  14. Miscellaneous Legal Documents, 1907, 1959-1977 (scattered)
  15. Educational Unit and Fellowship Hall Blueprint, May 15, 1958
  16. Church and Chapel Addition Blueprint, July 15, 1960
  17. Church and Chapel Floorplan, n.d.
  18. Plat of church lot, May 1965

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