Nemaha County Lutheran Churches
ZION'S EVANGELICAL LUTHERAN, SABETHA
In 1886 Rev. Enos Rees began preaching for a few Lutheran
families in the "Ladwig" school house near the village post office
of Clear Creek, Saunders county, Nebraska. About the same time
he was approached by some Lutheran families by the name of Kerl
residing over the line in Nemaha county, Kansas, requesting his
services in their neighborhood. Accepting the invitation he
preached for a season in the "Allison" and the "Prairies Grove" school
houses. After a while these services were moved four miles north
to the. "Prairie Star" school house, located in Nebraska. Here on
the 4th of July, 1886, he organized "Zion's Ev. Lutheran church"
with the following charter members: Lewis Kerl, Martha Kerl, J. F.
Kerl, Mary Kerl, William Kerl, Charles Kerl, M. E. Kerl, I. C. Kerl,
David Wishard, Jane Wishard, Margaret Meiers, Charlotte Meiers,
John E. Meiers, Fr. W. Meiers, Chas. F. W. Meiers, Albert Ladwig,
Sarah Ladwig, Catharine Rees, John A. Long, and Eliza Long. The
church made formal application for admission into Kansas Synod
that fall and was duly admitted. It is referred to in various
minutes as "Zion's," "The Prairie Star," and the "Kerl" church. A
site for a church and cemetery was donated by Mr. Lewis Kerl and
steps were taken for the erection of a church. The corner-stone
was laid August 19, 1888, and a short time after that the building
was completed and dedicated. While serving this church Rev. Rees
preached at Clear Creek and Pawnee, Neb., and in order to do this
was obliged to drive a circuit of about 40 miles. He resigned on
January 20, 1889, and was followed some time later by Rev. J. F.
Kuhlman, under whose pastorate the congregation was transferred
to the Nebraska Synod.
Zion's Ev. Lutheran church of Sabetha, Kansas, was organized
by Rev. B. F. Pugh on the 14th of April, 1892, with sixteen
members. The elders elected were Mr. Abbott G. Rees and Mr. J. M.
Shenkleberger, and the deacons were Mr. M. M. Schultz and Mr. S.
H. Hoover. The congregation worshipped Sunday afternoons in the
Baptist church. In October it was formally admitted into Nebraska
Synod, of which Rev. Pugh was a member. Failing to get a
donation from the Church Extension Board in order to aid them in
erecting a church, the congregation became discouraged. After making
several unsuccessful attempts to secure a location Rev. Pugh
resigned after having preached for them a little over two years. This
was followed by a period of vacancy, owing to which the
congregation became scattered and having no property it soon
disintegrated. Mr. Hoover and wife united with the congregational church
and Mr. and Mrs. Rees continue loyal to their Lutheran faith.
This website created June 12, 2011 by Sheryl McClure.
� 2011 Kansas History and Heritage Project