The Alamo Community Congregational Church was organized in 1849 by Reverend Isaac Crane, and the first meetings were held in the Center Schoolhouse or in homes. For unknown reasons, the church was inactive from 1856 to 1863. Records from 1865 indicate that the group attempted to switch to a Presbyterian denomination but were unsuccessful.
In 1867, they met with a group of local Methodists and entered into the joint effort of building a single facility for both assemblies. However, they were unable to settle their differences concerning what to call the church, as well as how to choose a minister, so the Congregationalists decided to withdraw from the joint endeavor and build their own building.
The present building was constructed in 1868. Aaron Tallman contracted the building job, engaging Erastus Davis as head carpenter. Davis had the help of 30 men. The Ladies Mite Society served meals for the men on tables outside. The first service was held on December 3, 1868. At that time horse sheds were built behind the church, containing 40 stalls and were removed about 1926.
In the decade following the erection of the church, membership rose to around 90.
They owned a parsonage as early as 1873, but the building was sold in 1943 to the Clyde Fullers after many years of being rented out and of housing ministers.
For a short time, all church records were kept in the clerk's home. Alvord Peck was the church clerk and when his home burned in 1889, many of the church records burned as well. At the turn of the century, the minister’s salary was $600—$700 annually, minus the cost of renting the parsonage. The church often had difficulty raising the salary, having to host many fundraisers and even having to borrow.
The church was modernized about 1902, as a beneficiary of Aaron Tallman's will, when a furnace was installed to replace the 2 wood heating stoves. The kerosene chandeliers remained until the advent of electricity in the middle 1920's. The interior was also wallpapered. Partitions at the back of the old sanctuary (east end) were built in 1932 and were the only Sunday School rooms supplied with privacy until 1950, when the basement was finished under the supervision of Reverend John Maters.
Under the inspiration of Maters, the basement was fully excavated, finished, kitchen-equipped, and dedicated on Easter, 1950. It was during the 1950 excavation that a near tragedy occurred. The north side of the excavation site caved in and that side of the church dropped considerably. The men worked most of the night and the danger of a collapsing church was over, leaving torn wallpaper as the only damage.
Reverend Richard Bowser inspired members to redecorate in June, 1956, with pink walls, ivory pews, and brown-tweed carpeting. On November 3, 1957, a Wurlitzer Electric Organ was dedicated, a gift from Roy and Harry Garrison and Emma Kisinger in memory of their mother and father. In March, 1958, tile was laid on the basement floor. In 1965, three rooms were partitioned off the basement for the use of Sunday School classrooms.
In 1979, Reverend Wesley Crocker came from England and helped the church to grow. In the fall of 1982, the original sanctuary was enlarged by removing the partitions in the back. The sanctuary was also redecorated at that time with new wallpaper and carpeting.
The 1980s was a period of transition for the church, with the building witnessing much construction, labeled as Phases A, B and C. When the congregation was beginning to tackle Phase B in 1988, building funds were at an all-time low. A group committed themselves to prayer, searching for an answer. Within 24 hours, two unknown women, who were not from the area, stopped at the parsonage (a second house was purchased at the end of the 1970s) and asked if the church was in need of money. They had never heard of Alamo Community Congregational Church. They had been driving down the road, randomly searching for a Congregational church. They attended the following Sunday service and presented the congregation with a monetary gift that was much more than what was needed to complete Phase B.
The congregation broke ground on the new addition in 1989; this construction included a new sanctuary, bathrooms, offices, kitchen, nursery, and extended the basement to make room for a youth area and several Sunday School classrooms. The upstairs construction was completed in 2002 and the first service in the new sanctuary was held in October of the same year.. The youth area in the basement was not completed until 2011 and construction on the remainder of the basement still continues today. The kitchen was the final major renovation. It was expanded from two rooms to one and completed in 2013 as Pastor Bill Walker’s final project in the church. A library was built off the old sanctuary during the late 1980s. As the congregation’s needs changed, the plans of construction did as well, resulting in several rewrites of design.
Looking at more recent years, the women’s bathroom was redecorated (2016), in the foyer a set of doors was removed and replaced by a window and the main entrance doors were replaced with new glass doors (2017). Repainting has been completed in various locations including the fellowship room (old sanctuary) and sanctuary, foyer and front doors.
Over the last few decades, ACCC has been home to several youth organizations. Daily Vacation Bible School (DVBS) was held at the church during the 1970s to the 1990s. Kidz Club was a program held on Wednesday nights and was for elementary-age kids. It was started in 1994 and stopped in 2010. Attendance numbers widely varied year-to-year, but at its peak, it approached 100 kids. Kids Worship occurs during service, following worship. Students preschool through 9th grade are invited downstairs for a lesson and activities. They are divided into three groups by grade : Preschool Church, Team Jesus (kindergarten through 5th), and Amplify (6th through 9th). ACCC has hosted at least 4 youth groups. Pilgrim Fellowship (called PF) ran for an unknown time but is definitely known to have been meeting during the 1970s and 1980s. The youth group continued to meet for several years but had no official title during the time. FUEL was started by Pastor Bill Walker in 2008 and ran until 2013. It was a middle school-focused group that had a fairly steady attendance of around 20 kids. Currently, a new youth group has been meeting, called Aftershock. They meet about once a month for a fun event and are considering seeking out a youth pastor.
Celebrate with Us!
Shirts have arrived and will be available for pick-up in the church office after service each Sunday. The sample shirts are also available for purchase. Checks for these should be written to Alamo Community Congregational Church. Contact Wendy or Kayla Bidwell with any questions.
We Would Love to Have You Visit Soon!
Sunday School: 9:30am-10:30am Service: Starts at 10:30am Office Hours: Wednesdays from 10:00am-3:00pm