Seattle Church History
The following account was written by C. H. Maust.
Feb. 14th, 1902 (The writer) left Le Mars, Iowa to look up a location in the Puget Sound country were the climate was not so changeable, and to fulfill a desire which was not met in may earlier life, to be on the frontier. Three days later we arrived in Seattle. The climate was so mild, the grass green, roses and dandelions in full bloom, I at once decided to locate there in the near future.
Looking at the wonderful resources with which God so wonderfully bless this city, I was made to wonder that the Brethren had not occupied it before.
December 4th, of the same year, Bro. E. Sharp (deacon) and wife, Sister Sarah Horton, writer and family arrived in Seattle. We missed the association of the brethren, but were not discouraged. So in January 1903, we organized the first Sunday School of the Brethren in Seattle. Bro. E. Sharp (Supt) C. H. Maust (Asst. Supt) Allie Sharp (Secretary) Winnie A. Maust (Chorister) from the time of our organization to the dedication of our church, Jan. 3, 1909, Sunday School and church services were held at the writer’s residence. The School prospered with about an average attendance of thirty scholars, both old and young, earnestly engaged in the work of the Lord, using the Brethren; helps and song books, with a collection of from $3.00 to $5.00 each Sunday.
In March 1903, Sister Mary Sharp of Westfield, Iowa, arrived there, making a total of five members and another family added to our school.
August 1904, Bro. E. Sharp and family returned to Minot, N.D. which left us without a deacon. This was very discouraging, leaving but four members to fight the battle of the Lord in this great city, which should be taken for the Lord, because of its great distributing facilities to all parts of the world by water.
In June, C. N. Stutsman and wife and Sister Dora Whitacre were added to our little band, Sister Whitaker had been living in Bremerton, Washington since Nov. 1902, a living Christian example showing to the world, though isolated from the people of her choice, yet wholly consecrated to the Lord, giving the tenth of their earnings to the Lord. Would to God that we had more consecrate workers.
December 17, 1904, Bro. L. W. Bowman and family located here. April 1906, Bro. A. M. Dickey (Elder) and wife, Bro. Ira Dickey and wife were located in the extreme southern part of the city, which give us much encouragement in the great work of the master and relieved us of the burden of the work, giving us an official working body. Sister Hannah Mohler was located at about the same time.
Jan. 1906, we were made to rejoice to find Bro. George Bowman (Deacon) and wife and son Curtis, and Bro. Walter Sisler and wife and two daughters, Alta and Martha, not only adding in number, but in spiritual strength, being good singers added much to our devotional services which is the very life and growth of the church.
July 21, 1806, Bro. A. Bush (Deacon) and wife of Talent, Ore, were added to our number. Oct. 12, 1906, Bro. Wm. Kensinger and wife and daughter Mabel, of Nappanee, Ind. were numbered with us, adding new timber to our little band worshippers, toiling with the great mystery of life which can only be appreciated by God’s chosen people
Bro. M. McKeever (Deacon) and wife of Surry, N. D. located permanently at this place.
Dec. 10th 1906 the Brethren of Seattle decided to purchase two lots on 72nd, St N. and Greenwood Ave. for the erection of a church building at some future date, costing $660.00
In Feb. 1907, our hearts were made to rejoice on the arrival of Bro. C. C. Nicholson (minister in the second degree) and daughter, Esther, from Worthington, Minn.
April 20th, 1907 Bro. F. F. Dull and James Newcomer of South Bend, Ind. were numbered with us.
Sept. 19, 1907, the church was organized at the writer’s residence. Bro. David Eby, of Sunnyside, Washington, and G. C. Car., of Portland, Ore. Presiding. Bro. A. M. Dickey, was chosen Elder for one year, C. H. Maust, (Foreman) F. F. Dull, (clerk) and Mr. Kensinger (Treasurer).
Nov. 9, 1807, we held our first Love Feast at the writer’s residence with 32 communicants. Bro. A. M. Dickey, officiating, assisted by Chas Wagner of Olympia, Washington and R. M. Schook of Deming, Wash., which was indeed a feast for the soul.
Nov. 10th, Bro. C. N. Stutsman and wife were advanced to the 2nd, degree of the Ministry.
Jan. 1st. 1908, Bro. S. A. Maust of Waterloo, Iowa, donated $300.00 towards the erection of a house of worship in Seattle, which was gladly received. Steps were at once taken by the church to erect a building and on May 14, 1908, the Virgin Soil was broken for the erection of the first church of the Brethren of Seattle, size 28 X 40. Sister McKeever gave an endowment note for $100.00 for the benefit of the church. The Lord will reward her gracious gift.
Nov. 1908, J. A. Gump (Elder) and wife and daughter, Ivy, Bro. Chas. McCoy and wife, Bro. Troxel, Bro. Yates, Bro. A. A. Dull and about twenty members living in Tacoma, Wash, presided over by Bro. C. N. Stutsman of Milton, Washington, were added to our number, and so the good work of the Lord continues at present. We number about fifty members and many more will locate her in the near future.
Our aim has partially been realized, to build a church home for the Brethren in this Great City, which will be dedicated to the Lord Jan. 3, 1909. Bro. J. A. Gump Officiating.
Affirmed by the Church Dec. 20th, 1908.
C. H. Maust.