Buena Vista County, IA
USGenWeb Project

History of St. Mary's Catholic Mission Church
Newell, Buena Vista County, Iowa

The Catholics have held services in and about Newell for nearly forty years, but not until about 1882 was the organization of the church effected.  The present church building was erected in that year, the building of the church following closely the organization of the church society.  The membership then consisted of thirty or thirty-five families.  For ten years prior to the building of the church in 1882, the priest from Storm Lake held services in the town hall and private homes.  For some little time before this a priest from Fort Dodge held mass in the homes.  Newell was then a charge in the Fort Dodge circuit.


There is now a membership of about eighteen families, aggregating one hundred souls.  Services are held every three weeks, the church being in the charge of the resident priest of Storm Lake.  Until 1908 there had always been a committee of three who looked after the affairs of the church, but now the priest attends to all affairs.  No further data is obtainable.


Extracted from:  Wegerslev, C. H. and Thomas Walpole.  "Newell."  Past and Present of Buena Vista County, Iowa.  Chicago:  S. J. Clarke Publishing Co., 1909, p. 173.




The Catholic church in Newell was in existence from 1882 until 1915, when it was disbanded and parishioners became members of either the Storm Lake or Fonda congregations. It stood on the corner of 2nd and Harrison in Newell; the building was torn down in 1922.  The small cemetery east of town that served the congregation is no longer in use, but is well kept.