Former Methodist Protestant church

Location

479 N. Van Rensselaer St.,
Rensselaer, Indiana

Category

M.P. - Methodist Protestant

Description

One of two churches known to have been owned by the Methodist Protestant denomination in Jasper County, this church was erected about 1882 by Freewill Baptists who sold it to the Methodist Protestants in 1902. They worshipped here until 1918. In 1986 it became the headquarters and museum of the Jasper County Historical Society which welcomes visitors to see the interior (consult jchsmuseum.blogspot.com for days and hours). The exterior of the building may be seen at any time.

The Methodist Protestants who congregated here were spiritual descendants of Rev. John Alter and his daughter, Rev. Helenor Alter Davisson, who rode this circuit in the 1840s to 1860s, much too early for them to have preached in this building. Rev. Helenor was the first woman known to have been elected to Deacon's Orders in any branch of The United Methodist Church in America (1866). This historic frame building is one of a cluster of five locations in Jasper County associated with Rev. Davisson and the Methodist Protestants. In 2014, the cluster was designated as "United Methodist Historic Site No. 487" by the General Commission on Archives and History.

GPS reading: 40 56 26.24, -087 09 20.42.

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