HISTORY OF THE FIRST PLYMOUTH UNITED PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH
The Plymouth Presbyterian church was organized on August 11, 1872, when 15 persons gathered in a small vacant house about seven miles northwest of LeMars, and preceded to organize a church. A resolution was passed asking that a Presbyterian Church be organized, and made an application to the Presbytery of Fort Dodge to be taken under its care. The residing minister was the Rev. George Carroll, while the sermon was delivered by the Rev. A. R. Baird. A very impressive Service commemorating the event was held in August of 1947 during the ministry of T. Charles Seibert.
It appears that for several years no regular service was held, but Sunday school was continued, meeting in various homes in the community.
In November 1880 a tract of land, consisting of some 40 acres, was purchased from the railroad company, for a nominal sum, and soon plans for a church building were underway. Under the leadership of Rev. D. W. James the first Church was built. It was dedicated in November 1880, completely free of debt. The total cost of the first church building was $517.56.
Material for the church was hauled, some of it by ox team, from a saw mill near Elk Point, S.D., and the stones for the foundation came from about the same place along the Missouri River.
A second building was erected during the ministry of the Rev. W. E. smith, and was dedicated July 16, 1930. The cost of the building was $13,000.
In 1921 the congregation, without benefit of Pastoral leadership, erected a fine Manse in order that they might have a resident minister. Rev. A. F. Proett accepted a call and became the first resident Pastor.
Source: Dedication Program, First Plymouth Presbyterian Church (Akron/LeMars, Plymouth County, Iowa) of 02/23/1968.
Total Cost of building (5.500 square feet) including tree removal - dirt work - gravel - sidewalks - water and sewer - identification marker - bell tower - furniture - appliances - and drapery approximately $99,000.
The main part of the building is a laminated arch structure, includes (1) the chancel and the nave which has a seating capacity of 170. In the rear of the nave is a hanging balcony which accommodates the organ and a 24 member choir. All the windows in this area are cathedral glass. (2) the overflow room (30 ft. by 36 ft.) is separated from the nave, by sliding glass panels, and provides an additional seating capacity of 130. (3) a large mother's room (4) a kitchen complete with cupboards, stoves, sinks, etc. and an adjacent storage and serving area.
On the north side of the main structure is a flat deck addition (12 ft. by 45 ft.) which includes a fire proof furnace room and two large Sunday school rooms that by the use of folding partitions, can be used for small group meetings or additional dining area. On the south side of the main structure is a flat deck addition (26'4" by 55'6") which includes (1) a large narthex (2) Minster's office (3) rest rooms and (4) four permanent Sunday school rooms.
The entire building is of brick and block construction, trimmed with Georgia snow stone and white aggregate. The floor is a concrete slab. The entire building, except the rest rooms and kitchen, is carpeted with industrial carpet. The main structure - nave, fellowship hall, mother's room, kitchen and 2 Sunday school rooms are serviced by a built in speaking system. Three furnaces furnish heat for three zones of perimeter heating (each zone thermostatic controlled) and constructed so that air conditioning can be added without any additional duct work. All furnishing and trim are fruitwood finished oak.
The building was constructed and designed by the A. C. Dohrman Construction company. Jerry Wood was the designer.
~Submitter: Bruce Atkinson