2016-06-29 / Sesquicentennial Edition

Churches Play Major Roll In Community


The first church in the village was St. Martin’s Lutheran Church on South Defiance Street. The first church in the village was St. Martin’s Lutheran Church on South Defiance Street. (Editor’s Note: This article was reprinted for the July 27, 1966, edition of the Archbold Buckeye. Since that date, many of these congregations have remodeled or built additions. Several also added parsonages.)

The first church in Archbold was that of St. Martin’s Evangelical Lutheran, which started in 1868.

The first building, a frame structure, was erected the same year of Archbold’s incorporation at a site at 202 S Defiance St., and served until 1905, when the new brick structure was erected directly across the street.

It is in use today.

In 1872, the Methodists built a church on Stryker Street, which was used until in 1948 when the old frame structure was moved to the corner of Ditto and Walnut Streets and became a part of the new building, which was enlarged in 1954, 1966, and 1988.

Church records indicate that in the 1850s, J.C. Whitehorne, a teacher, held Methodist Sunday School classes and preaching services in the log cabin school.

St. Peter Catholic church began in 1859, the first church having been constructed northeast of Archbold in German Township, now Ohio Rt. 2, near the church cemetery.

This served until 1869, when a frame church building was erected on N. Defiance St.

It was replaced in 1896 by a large brick and stone structure and it is in use today.

An activity center was added to the church in the late 1990s.

St. John’s Reformed Church erected a modern church at the corner of South Defiance and Beech Streets in 1915.

The first St. John’s Church was erected in 1855, 15 rods north of Brush Creek on the west side of the road, and in 1875 a frame building was built at 506 South Defiance, on the east side of the street, serving until 1915.

In 1957, a large new edifice was erected at the corner of Barre Road and South Defiance Street, and eight years later, in 1955, a parish hall and chapel were added and dedicated.

It is known today at St. John’s Christian Church.

In about 1906, the Defenseless Mennonite congregation, which had built a brick church in 1880 on Barre (Bassinger) Road, purchased the former St. Martin’s frame building, moved it to Park Street, and began having services in Archbold.

Later, the brick church was abandoned, and in 1922, a modern building was constructed at the corner of Park and Franklin Streets and was enlarged again and dedicated May 12, 1957.

(Editor’s Note: Today this is the Archbold Evangelical Church, which moved into a new building on Lafayette Street in 2008. The church building on Franklin St. is now the home of Templo Cristiano-Assembly Of God.)

In 1905, the Missionary Church was built on Brussel Street.

It had been organized in 1904 and held meetings in the upstairs room of the F. Julius Dimke store building in the business area, which was torn down in 1960.

(Editor’s Note: This church closed its doors in 1986.)

Zion Mennonite Church was organized in 1955. On Aug. 26, 1956, a modern stone structure on Short-Buehrer Road was dedicated.

The Church of the Nazarene purchased the former St. John’s building on the corner of Beech and South Defiance Streets in 1961.

In the early 1990s, the Church of the Nazarene congregation could no longer support their old building. It was demolised in February 1993.

Plans were made to constuct a new church structure on East Lutz Road, but those plans never came to fruition, and in November 2001, the Archbold Church of the Nazarene was placed on inactive status by the Northwest Ohio District Office.

The church was later disbanded.

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