St. Johns United Church of Christ

710 Pine Street

 

Architecture:

††† Style:††††††††††††††††††††††† Romanesque

††† Description:††††††††††††† The original wood frame church was extensively remodeled in 1904.The walls are orange red brick with white limestone accent.The roofline is front gabled, and the roof tiled.The original, eight sided white steeple stands slightly forward of the main structure.Two smaller corner buttresses with steep four sided tent roofs flank this.The centered front entry is one story, with semi-hexagonal wings.Semi-circular hoods frame windows on all sides of the church.On the north and south sides are lower cross gables.Within each is a blind arcade of Corinthian columns.

 

Significant Period:

††† Construction Date:†††† 1869-70

††† Architect/Builder:†††††† F. Zimmerman, original

††† Context:††††††††††††††††††† The congregation first known as the First German Free Christian St. Johnís Church was formed in 1864.Forty men signed the constitution drawn up by Pastor Charles Diehl, the first pastor.At first they met in a building on Butler Street which had previously been used by the Congregational Church.The Church Council was formed in 1868.A Sunday school was organized the same year.F. Zimmerman of Marine City supervised construction of a wood frame church building on the southwest corner of Seventh and Pine Streets in 1869-70.It was built at a cost of $5000 and was dedicated July 24, 1870.A schoolhouse was erected in 1873.The Ladies Aid Society was founded in 1886.In 1904, the wood frame church underwent major renovations that resulted in the current structure.The church was enlarged, exterior walls were clad in brick, and colored glass windows were added.The church hall, which no longer exists, was used as an emergency hospital during the flu epidemic of 1918.Church services were held in German as late as 1939.The old parsonage at 1013 Seventh Street was demolished and replaced in 1927.A new educational building attached to the church was built and dedicated in 1955.In 1957, St. Johnís became known as St. Johnís United Church of Christ.Rev. E. J. Soell, from 1926 to 1961, served the longest as pastor.This church was recognized by the State of Michigan Historical Commission, 1980.