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Baker Valley Oregon Churches

Ministers of various denominations visited Baker County and held meetings at different places, but no one was a resident minister within the county prior to 1868. The Rev. Ellsworth, of La Grande, came to Powder River Valley frequently in 1864-5, and later Elder Newton of the Methodist church, south, held meetings, frequently at Auburn and in the valley. The Rev. Koger of the Baptist church preached at Wingville a number of times, but the Methodist Episcopal church was the first to appoint a resident pastor and hold regular services. The following sketch of the work of the church was kindly furnished by a minister who has been a pioneer laborer in the cause: “The first Methodist preacher who visited Baker City and Powder River Valley for the purpose of preaching the gospel to the people was Rev. John Flynn. He came in 1864-5, was acting as presiding elder, and several times each year crossed the mountains on horseback, from his home in Walla Walla to build up the church in this country. Following him was Rev. J. G. Deardorff in 1866-8, who occasionally preached in this part of Oregon. Also Rev. Wm. Roberts and Rev. I. D. Driver traveled through by stage in the interest of the American Bible Society, and preached at Baker City occasionally during the years from 1864 to ’69. The first Methodist class was organized at Baker City in the year 1868, by Rev. F. Elliott, who was pastor until 1870. Among the first members here were L. W. Nelson and wife and Wm. Brown and wife who yet live honored members of this pioneer...

Historic Churches of Washington

When the first American immigrants to Puget Sound arrived in 1845 at the head of Budd Inlet, they found the Methodist Mission at American Lake, near Nisqually, abandoned. The Catholics, however, still held their ground among the natives and H. B. Co.’s servants; and there was the mission church of St Francis Xavier at Cowlitz farm, and what was claimed, for preemption purposes, to be a chapel, on Whidbey Island. At Vancouver in 1840 the church of St James, begun the year previous, was completed, by which the Catholic Church subsequently endeavored to hold the town site of Vancouver, and the garrison grounds with property which was worth a million of dollars. This claim, as well as the one on Whidbey Island, failed after long litigation. East of the Cascades in 1846 were already established the mission of St Ignatius in the Flathead country, the chapel of St Paul near Fort Colville, while St Francis Regis in the Colville Valley was projected. These were the works of the Jesuits under De Smet. In the Stillaguamish Valley Hancock in 1849 found the Indians making the sign of the cross. Hancock’s Thirteen Years, MS., 160. The year previous Pascal Rieard of the Oblate fathers, with some lay brethren, established the mission of St Joseph on the east side of Budd Inlet a mile north of Olympia, on the 14th of June, securing by a continuous residence a donation claim for his church. At the same time or a little earlier the same order established the Ahtanam Mission in the Yakima Country. The Cayuse War and other causes operated against missionary work...

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