St. George's Catholic Church

St. George's Catholic Church

As published in "The History of Racine and Kenosha Counties" (Chicago: 1879), p. 538

St. George's Catholic Church On the 17th of July, 1851, fifteen families, the members of which had, up to that date, been identified with the Diocese of St. Mark's, formed themselves into the St. George's congregation, and began worship in an unpretentious frame church at the corner of Chicago and Orange streets. One year later, the erection of an imposing edifice, said to have been the most expensive house of worship in the city, was completed, and took the place of the humble frame. This was supported by an increasing congregation until January 12, 1875, when it was destroyed by fire, together with the parish school adjoining, entailing a loss of $30,000. The ruins were razed, however, and almost before the fires had ceased to smoulder, the rebuilding of the church was begun. Before the year was over, so industrious had been the efforts employed in that behalf, the church was once more completed and ready for occupation. The building is a massive brick, 150x50, elaborately furnished, and capable of seating 1,000 persons. It was erected at a cost of $18,000, and is a worthy monument to the enterprise, industry and taste of the Catholics of Kenosha. The first Pastor was the Rev. Father George Rehre (after whom the church is named), who was followed by the Rev. Fathers Joseph Daniel Huber, who remained until 1853; Franciscus Fusseder, until 1854; Maximilian De Becke, during 1854; Thomas Frouhofer, until June 1, 1856; Gregor Haas, until March 8, 1857; Charles Shroudenback, until October 25, 1857; Simon Bartockz, until 1859; John Michael Obenmiller, until 1862; J. B. Haselbauer and F. Zuber, until 1863; J. Wetter and W. Bernard, until 1866; Michael Beitler, until 1876, who was followed by the Rev. Joseph Moder, present incumbent.

The parish school is on the church lot (as is also the parsonage, both of them handsome brick structures, completed in 1876), and enjoys a daily average attendance of 300 scholars. The school is taught by Prof. M. Nemmers, assisted by four Sisters of the Order of Notre Dame, from Milwaukee, and is spoken of in the highest terms. The term commences September 1, and closes on July 1.

The church cemetery is a handsome inclosure of eleven acres, on the lake shore, north of the city limits, handsomely shaded, and containing numerous tombs and monuments, in addition to a chapel. The Church Committee is at present constituted is as follows: Father Moder, Chairman; M. Huck, Treasurer; P. Jacobs, Secretary; John Meyer, Joseph Dennebacke, M. Beddessen and J. Spartzs, Collectors.

The congregation numbers 300 families, and the church property, schools, cemetery, etc. is valued at nearly $100,000.

Published in: "The City of Kenosha and Kenosha County Wisconsin: A Record of Settlement, Organization, Progress and Achievement" by Frank H. Lyman Vol. 2, The S. J. Clarke Publishing Co., Chicago, 1916. p. 308

St. George's Catholic Church
The German Catholic population, having increased to such an extent in the north part of the city, in the year 1849 determined to build a church. This house of worship was completed in the next year. The first German Catholic clergyman who officiated regularly was Reverend Roelly. Following him came: Reverends Huber, Schruntenbach, Fusetter, Fraurnhoffen, Haas, Pardoz, Obermuller, De Becke, Haselbauer, Zuber, Wetter, Bernard, Beitler, Moder.

The house of worship first used by the society was destroyed by fire on January 12, 1875, together with the parish school adjoining, entailing a loss of fully $30,000. However, it is said that almost before the fires had ceased to smoulder, the work of erecting a new building had begun, and before the year was past the new structure was ready for the congregation. The building was of brick, of massive architecture, and in dimensions 150 by 50 feet. The cost was $18,000.

The membership of this church now includes 390 families, or 1,950 people. In connection with the church there is maintained a parish school with 460 pupils in attendance and with nine teachers. There is a large hall maintained with the school, which is used for lectures and entertainments, is provided with pocket billiard tables, bowling alleys and other conveniences to insure its success as a social center.

Where to Obtain Records

The Mormon (LDS) Family History Library has microfilm copies.

Microfilm of originals at the church.
Records are in Latin and some English.
Baptisms have some marriages.

Film Notes

Vol. 1. Baptisms, 1866-1893 v. 2. Baptisms, 1893-1902 with index v. 3. Baptisms, 1902-1906 with index (to 101) - FHL US/CAN Film [ 1862991 Items 5-7 ] Vol. 3. Baptisms, 1906-1909 v. 4. Baptisms, 1910-1920 with index v. 5. Baptisms, 1920 with index v. 6. Baptisms, 1851-1863; marriages, 1851-1863 ; deaths, 1851-1865; baptisms, 1864-1865; confirmations, 1863 v. 7. Marriages, 1894-1920 with index v. 8. Deaths, 1866-1893 v. 9. Deaths, 1894-1920 in English v. 10. Communion, 1899-1920; confirmations, 1879-1901 v. 11. Confirmations, 1891-1920 - FHL US/CAN Film [ 1862992 Items 1-10 ] v. 12. Marriages, 1866-1893; communion, 1880-1883; confirmations, 1880 - FHL US/CAN Film [ 1862992 Items 1-10 ]

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