vention of the Nebraska district at Hampton adjourned on August 28, 1894, many of the delegates went home by way of Seward in order to witness the laying of the corner stone, upon which occasion the Rev. Prof. A. Graebner of St. Louis, Missouri, and the Rev. F. Frincke of Lincoln, Nebraska, officiated. The building was completed by the Nebraska district without any financial assistance from the general body. The Rev. Geo. Weller of Maryville having been called as professor the building was dedicated, Mr. Weller inducted into office, and the institution opened, on November 18, 1894. In 1895, the first president's residence was built. In 1906, the present service building was completed, and the following year the administration building was dedicated. The music building was dedicated on January 18, 1914. Last year, preliminary to the incorporation of the institution, the appraisers appointed by the county court valued the property of the institution at $150,000. Owing to losses an account of the war, the total enrollment in the fall of 1918 had decreased to 109. The faculty of the present time consists of the following: The Rev. F. W. C. Jesse, president; the Rev. Geo. Weller, the Rev. A. Schuelke, the Rev. P. Rueter, Prof. V. Stricter, Prof. K. Haase, Prof. H. B. Fehner, Prof. J. T. Link, the Rev. M. H. Ilse, and Miss M. Haase.





   Complaint has been made that the Lutheran church neglects the higher education of its youth. But this charge is false. The Missouri Synod has fifteen educational institutions with property valued at $2,250,000. The Lutheran High School at Deshler was built and dedicated in 1913. The value of this building is $50,000. There is a teaching force of six professors. During the year 1917 more than one hundred students were enrolled.


   The Rev. P. Graef, second pastor of our church at Fremont, was the founder of this orphanage. He described the origin of this institution to a friend as follows: "Childless ourselves, we were hardly half a year at Fremont when two requests came to us urging us to adopt orphans, and at the same time a letter was received from a pastor, a widower, asking us in case of his death to provide for, and bring up, his two little daughters for Christ's sake. After considering the matter for some time, I finally came to the decision to establish a Lutheran orphanage at Fremont. I laid my plans before my congregation on March 7, 1892. They decided to support them and offered a sum of money for this purpose



and elected a committee which should take the matters in hand." Until the orphanage was completed, Mr. Graef's residence served as a home for the children. The corner-stone for the orphanage was laid in the fall of 1892, and on June 25, 1893, the building was dedicated. Many congregations of the Nebraska district contributed freely to the support of this institution. About fourteen of the surrounding congregations formed the "Lutheran Orphans' Home Society of Nebraska."
   Later, this Orphans' Home Society was changed into a Home Finding Society. In 1896 the Rev. Mr. Graef reported forty-eight children in the orphanage. Only three children could be admitted during this year, while forty-six had to be turned away because of lack of room. Fourteen years later, in 1910, in a single year, fifty-two children were received and provided with homes in Christian families. Since the organization, 517 children have been received. The congregations of the Nebraska district annually contribute about $3,500 toward the maintenance of this institution. The following have served as superintendents: Rev. P. Graef, 1892-1897; Rev. Nammacher, 1899; Mr. Trapp, 1900; Rev. A. Leuthaeuser, 1910; Rev. G. Wolter, 1915. J. F. Gnuse since 1915. The first president of this society was the Rev. J. Hilgendorf. He was succeeded in 1909 by the Rev. M. Adam, of Omaha. As secretaries, the following reverend gentlemen have served successively: G. Kuehnert of Omaha, F. Giese of Blair, E. Eckhardt of Blair, H. Hallerberg of Arlington, and F. Daberkow, of Cedar Bluffs, who is holding office now. On June 25, 1917, the twenty-fifth anniversary of the institution was celebrated, the Rev. A. Schlechte of Chicago, Illinois, the Rev. C. H. Becker of Seward, Nebraska, and the Rev. Prof. H. Stoeppelwerth of Winfield, Kansas, officiating.


   The need of a hospital at York having often been pointed out by the physicians and business men of that city, the Lutherans of York and vicinity set about to supply this need. The "Lutheran Hospital Association of York, Seward, Hamilton, and Other Counties" was organized in June, 1914. A private building was used temporarily as a hospital. In 1915 a hospital building which is modern in every respect was completed. It is located in the northern part of the city. At present it is continually over-crowded, and an extension has been planned. In connection with the hospital a training school for nurses with a three years' course is conducted. This school is accredited with the state.


   In June, 1913, the hospital of the United Brethren at Beatrice was bought by the Lutherans of that region, and on October 7th of the same year the "Lutheran Hospital Society of Beatrice" was formed and took charge of the institution, This society is composed of about one hundred members. Since there was accommodation for only thirty patients, the society resolved to build a new modern hospital, for which the corner-stone was laid on September 15, 1918. This building is to cost about $150,000. The money was collected from the neighboring Lutheran congregations. Officers of this hospital society are: The Rev. A. Kollmann, Beatrice, president; the Rev. P. Matuschka, Plymouth, secretary; the Rev. K. Kurth, Beatrice, chaplain; Miss Ida Gerding, superintendent; Miss Catharine Nielsen, assistant superintendent; Messrs. H. Dieckmann, H. Schewe, and C. K. Nispel.


   In conclusion, let us not forget that the Lutherans of Nebraska have, during the late war, shown their love and devotion to the country which offered them asylum when religious oppression drove them from the old world. They have contributed freely to the Red Cross. They have bought liberty bonds to the amount of about $4,000,000, and war savings stamps to the amount of about $2,000,000, 1058 of their sons have gone forth to battle for the cause of freedom, and forty-eight of these have given their lives in order that America's flag might continue to wave in unsullied beauty.




   The beginning of the Seventh-day Adventist church in Nebraska dates back into the '60s only. In 1865, Solomon Meyers and family located in Decatur, Burt county, and started a store. Mr. Meyers and his neighbor, a Mr. Harlow, were the first seventh-day Sabbath-keepers in Nebraska. Public meetings were held by Solomon Meyers for two or three years in schoolhouses near Decatur, but no ministerial help was received until in 1868 Elder Bartlett came across the river from the Iowa Conference and held meetings with Mr. Meyers in that neighborhood.



   In the summer of 1869, Elder Geo. I. Butler, who was later president of the General Conference, and Elder R. M. Kilgore organized, or partly organized, the first church of Seventh-day Adventists in Nebraska near Decatur. It was not, however, until 1873 that the church was fully organized and officered, and not until 1877 that the first church building was erected out in the hills about half way between Tekamah and Decatur, which building is still in use. This has been a strong church in the Nebraska Conference, having raised several efficient ministers from boyhood in its membership, besides four who have spent several years in foreign fields.
   On May 23, 1875, Elder C. L. Boyd organized the second church of Seventh-day Adventists in Nebraska at Seward. At this time the Sabbath-keepers in Nebraska were so few and scattered that the state was administered as a mission field of the Iowa Conference. Four ministers, one of them one of the first presidents of the Nebraska Conference, came from among the members of the Seward church, This was Elder A. J. Cudney who later sailed from a Pacific port for a missionary cruise among the islands of the Pacific, and who, with all members of his crew, was never heard from again; the ship presumably having been lost in a storm. Elder C. L. Boyd, who organized the Seward church, was elected as the first president of the Nebraska Conference of Seventh-day Adventists when it was organized in 1878.
   The third Seventh-day Adventist church in Nebraska was organized in Fremont in April, 1877, and in 1883 the church which is still used was built at that place. Owing to its central location at that time, Fremont was chosen as the location of the Conference Tract Society through which the denominational literature was handled. Miss Samantha Whitis, who afterwards spent several years in India as a missionary, was elected in 1882 as the first tract society secretary, and handled this work efficiently for some time. Just a year from the date of organizing the Fremont church, the Beaver City church, called at that time the Richmond church, was organized in the southwestern part of the state. The membership of this church has always been largely farmers and the church building which was built in 1893 was located five miles due south of Beaver City in the country.
   The four churches mentioned in this brief sketch have always been strong, healthy churches and each of them has furnished workers from the ranks of the members to carry forward their beliefs. From these humble beginnings, the work of this denomination has spread to all parts of Nebraska and at present, owing to its central location, geographically speaking, this state holds some of the largest institutions of a general nature in this denomination. The conference of churches which was organized in 1878 now



includes fifty-one congregations, with two thousand four hundred and forty-two members. There are ninety-seven Sabbath schools, with two thousand five hundred and ten members enrolled. Twenty-five of the Churches conduct church schools, enrolling about three hundred children, besides over four hundred students attending Union College at College View, near Lincoln. The offerings to missions for the year 1918 averaged over thirteen dollars per member throughout the conference.
   At the annual session of the General Conference in Battle Creek, Michigan, in October 1889, it was decided to establish a college under the auspices of the denomination at some point between the Mississippi river and the Rocky mountains. The locating committee, after looking at many sites, determined upon the city of Lincoln as the location for the new school which was afterward named Union College. The citizens of Lincoln and vicinity donated three hundred acres of land about four miles southeast of the state capital. April 10, 1890, ground was broken for the main college building and the 3rd of May the first stone was laid. There were many difficulties in the way, but all were overcome and the college building, with two large dormitories and power house, was ready for dedication September 14, 1891.
   In the lean financial years that followed, the young institution had a hard struggle for existence and there was a slowly increasing burden of inbebtedness (sic) hanging over the institution until in 1916 a special campaign was inaugurated to liquidate the debts of the college, and in the spring of 1917 an indebtedness of over seventy-five thousand dollars having been cleared tip, the college observed its jubilee ceremony.
   Union College now enrolls between four and five hundred students each year, has a teaching force of thirty-two, and property valued at three hundred thousand dollars. The institution offers regular college work and also a theological course leading to the degree of bachelor of arts. Shorter courses offered are: academy, oratory, commerce, academic normal, music, advanced normal, and medical preparatory. Union college has an excellent record as a training school for missionaries, more than two hundred of its former students being in foreign lands as missionaries and nearly two thousand of its students in all being directly engaged in the work of the Seventh-day Adventist denomination.
   A little city of over two thousand inhabitants has sprung up around the college which was planted on the bare hill-tops about twenty-seven years ago, and it is a matter of interest that the original survey for the Nebraska City branch of the Burlington railroad passed



directly through the spot later excavated for the basement of the college building. This survey was later abandoned on account of heavy grades and Lincoln was approached by a more circuitous, but more easily engineered, route.
   The Nebraska Sanitarium, a large hospital and nurses' training school, is also located in College View, near Lincoln, its main building being on the Union College campus. This institution employs hydropathic and therapeutic methods of treatment, largely, and benefits several thousand patients each year. It has a capacity of over one hundred guests and maintains a three year training school for nurses where about fifty nurses are continually in training for this line of philanthropic work. Another similar sanitarium with about half the capacity of the College View institution is located at Hastings, both of these institutions



being owned by the Nebraska Conference. The combined value of these sanitariums approximates a hundred and twenty-five thousand dollars.
   At the present time, 1919, an academy is being built at Shelton which, when completed, will represent an investment of about seventy-five thousand dollars and will accommodate about one hundred fifty students. It is planned to have this building ready for occupancy by the fall of 1919. The main building is two hundred and four feet long and forty feet wide, and is located on a fertile eighty-acre farm in the Wood River valley near the city of Shelton.
   The work of the Seventh-day Adventists in Nebraska is carried forward from a central office located in College View. The churches comprising the conference have no settled pastors but the members who believe and practice the tithing system for the support of the Gospel ministry pay one-tenth of their incomes into a general fund which enables the officers and executive committee of the conference to distribute the ministers among the churches where they will be able to give the most help and accomplish the most good. A



good percentage of this tithe fund, as well as large free-will offerings, are used in foreign mission work and there is hardly a church in the conference that has not seen at least one of its members leave for a foreign field.



   The German Methodist church is a part of the Methodist Episcopal church, governed by the same discipline and rules, is generally known yet not so universally understood as it might be. While we have our separate churches, district and annual conferences, colleges, and different beneficent institutions, we have the same general superintendents, or bishops, the same General Conference support, the same missionary and education boards as the mother church. We have ten German conferences in America.
   The beginning of German Methodism dates back to the year 1835, when the founder, Dr. Wm. Nast, began to preach among the Germans in Cincinnati, Ohio, who were then without any spiritual guidance whatsoever. They were then fast imbibing rationalism.



   The preaching of the Gospel to the people in their mother tongue meant not only much for the people in those days, but for the succeeding generations; meant much for the localities where the German Methodists have located and formed colonies or settlements; also has meant much for the mother church. The church from the beginning has insisted on genuine conversion, has aimed to instill a devotion and loyalty for the church and her teaching. These citizens have taken an active interest in the welfare of the community, educated their children, taken a pride in their family life. They have been thrifty, sober, and energetic. While the average individual church, on account of limitations has not been strong, most of the appointments are self-supporting.
   The beginnings in Nebraska were small indeed, as the Germans were few and scattered. The first missionary work was done from 1855 to 1857, Omaha and Nebraska City being starting points. From these centers the missionaries went westward preaching in private homes, mainly sod-houses; and under trees. Here and there small groups were gathered, being the nucleus out of which the congregations grew. Because of land being cheap, much of it $5.00 an acre and less, friends and relatives in the East and in the Fatherland, were urged and frequently assisted to come to these wide and fertile prairies to make their homes and seek their fortunes. So numerous settlements, especially in eastern Nebraska, were built up, the center of the social and religious life being the church. Our chief success has been in the country communities. Much attention has been given to Sunday school work and instructing the children in religious doctrine. Epworth Leagues are in almost every charge.
   Special features of German Methodism of former days were the annual camp-meetings. They were seasons of great awakening. They would last from five to eight days, were held out in the groves or under tents, people coming in lumber wagons for one hundred miles. Successful meeting places were Clatonia, Cremer, Osceola, and Sterling.
   Our people are liberal in their support of the church and all her benevolent institutions, of which the following statistics give evidence. These figures will bear comparison with those which show what the Nebraska Conference of the English-speaking Methodists in the same territory are doing.
   We gave for foreign missions per capita, $1.26; the Nebraska Conference, 44 cents; Home Missions, 72 cents; the Nebraska Conference, 29 cents; Women's Foreign Mission Society, 54 cents; the Nebraska Conference, 30 cents; district and city missions, 59 cents; the



Nebraska Conference, 15 cents. For all benevolences we gave $10, the Nebraska Conference, $3.63; for ministerial support we gave $9.13, the Nebraska Conference $5.93.
   Among the names of the earliest missionaries in the state we find Rev. C. F. Langer, Jacob May, John Hanson, Sr., Geo. Schotz, J. P. Miller, H. Muelenbrock, August Micke, Chas. Heidel, Win. Fiegenbaum, C. Lanenstein, H. M. Menger, C. Pothast, J. G. Kost, J. Tanner.
   J. Tanner was a pioneer preacher and presiding elder, who left the impress of his personality and enthusiasm on the work in Nebraska and who was in unbroken active service fifty years. He is in the superannuated relation and now lives in Kansas City. Other men who have been prominent in the work of



the state are Rev. C. Harms, Hy. Tiegenbaum, J. G. Leist, H. Burns and others.
   At times we have had two districts. At present we have one, the Lincoln district, Rev. Mather Herrmann being the district superintendent. There are thirty-seven preaching places, the ministers living in parsonages -- the properties of the church. The work in Nebraska is a part of the West German Conference. Lincoln, Clatonia, Papilion, and Eustis have entertained the annual confer-



ence. The work is being carried on in both languages in most of the churches of the district.
   One of the princely men of German Methodism in Nebraska, who has been a preacher of righteousness in unbroken service for fifty years is Rev. Chas. Harms. He was born in Red Bud, Illinois, in 1845. Besides attending the public schools near Quincy, Illinois, he attended Central Wesleyan College at Warrenton, Missouri, one of the church schools of his church. Besides pastorals in Illinois, Kansas, and Kansas City and St. Joseph, Missouri, his main work has been in this state, where be has been pastor and presiding elder. He served as secretary of his conference for eleven years; was delegate to the General Conference in 1896. Having a knowledge of medicine aided him in his work in those days when physicians were few. He served the Lincoln church in three different pastorates, where now he has six daughters who are either teachers or attending school or doing office work, all active in the church he formerly so ably served. Two sons are physicians, one in active service as lieutenant in France. He is stationed at Eustis where he is serving one of the strongest churches of the denomination.
   Rev. Henry Fiegenbaum, for many years one of the leading and outstanding figures in the German work in the West, was born October 16, 1821, in Ladbergen, Westfalen, Germany. He came to America with his parents in 1834. In St. Louis he soon came in contact with the Methodists and under their preaching was converted and joined the church, He married a Miss Kastenbund and for fifty years they lived happily together. in 1845 he entered the ministry and was in active service for over forty-one years, twenty of which he was a presiding elder, preaching in Illinois, Iowa, Missouri, Kansas, and Nebraska. He was a born leader, a powerful preacher in both English and German. He had but few school advantages, but was a wide reader and a good observer. Two brothers were also ministers. For fifteen years he was in the superannuated relation, yet in that time he preached over five hundred sermons. He died January 13, 1905, in St. Joseph, Missouri.



   The first Swedish settlers came to America as early as 1638, and settled in what is now the state of Delaware. They established churches and maintained their language for more than one hundred years. The King of Sweden, who had planned and also sustained this colony, sent the churches the ministers, who cared for the religious welfare of the col-



ony. In the course of time they lost their identity and were amalgamated with other peoples, yet we find some persons today who profess to be descendants from families in this early Swedish colony. Some individuals have come from Sweden to America now and then ever since that early date; but any real emigration did not begin until 1845. The reasons for emigration were mainly two: first the prosecution by the clergy of the state church of Sweden against dissenters, and second, the reports from those who had already come to the United States, that this was a "land of promise" for all oppressed people. Here liberty was granted everybody to worship God according to the dictations of his own conscience, and the prospects for the poor people were good to earn a living; and even to become owners of land for farming. Hence, the people emigrated whether they belonged to the prosecuted sects or not.
   No true student of history would consciously leave out of account any force or movement which has given direction and quality to the inner and most important impulses and latent moods of a part of that great mulitude of which this nation is composed, and no impartial student would hesitate to give due credit to such a movement of influence regardless of its extensiveness and numbers. The strength of any movement should not be measured by the number of followers, but by the motives, ideals, and the passions that make them followers.
   Even before the emigration of 1845, Swedish sailors visited New York by the thousands every year, and the missionary society of the Methodist Episcopal Church had planned to do something for their spiritual welfare. The church had at this time among its preachers a man who had come from Sweden in 1821, who was converted in 1829 and ordained in 1835. His name was Olaf Gustav Hedstrom, and he was appointed for the Swedish mission to sailors and emigrants in New York harbor in 1845, and thus became the founder of Swedish Methodism. An old ship was purchaesd (sic) and fitted for a church and named "The Bethel-Ship," In this floating temple Hedstrom preached for twenty-two years, and thousands were converted to God. He had a younger brother, who also was a preacher, a member of the Central Illinois Conference, and under his leadership, as well as that of his brother in New York, Methodist churches among the Swedish people did soon spring into existence in Knox, Henry, and Mercer counties, Illinois, and from there the missionary work has extended through Iowa to Nebraska and further west.
   Between 1868 and 1875 the Swedish settlers poured into Nebraska. According to the



custom further east, they tried to form themselves in settlements or colonies, so as to be able to organize churches and have Swedish preachers. Such settlements were made near where the following towns are now located: Sutton, Oakland, Genoa, Stromsburg, Ong, Shickley, Axtell, Haldrege, Davey, Concord, and many other places. Many settled also in the larger cities, as Omaha and Lincoln, where they found work in the trades they had learnt, and where many Swedes had gained prominence in business and professional circles.
   Among these settlers were many Methodists from Illinois, Iowa, and further east, and some came direct from Sweden. Some of the Swedish Methodist preachers from the East made visits to Nebraska and preached now and then, and a presiding elder from

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