German Protestant Evangelical St. Jacobs Church of Fearing Township and Cemetery
Location: Lot 118, from Marietta N on CR 375 then a very short way east on CR 42, aabout 1 mile W of Stanleyville.
Founding of the church
From a 19th Century church record, authorship still to be determined:
"The St. Jacob's church originated in 1858, as follows: In the summer of that year a number of Germans of the southern part of the township met for the purpose of establishing a church. Several concluded to withdraw from the enerprise leaving only eight heads of families to continue the work. Nothing daunted, they undertook their great task. Their first step was to obtain a church site. This they did of Mr. Chapman who owned land a mile west of Stanleyville, and who gave a part of it for this purpose on very liberal conditions. The church was erected, a plat set apart for a graveyard, and when the building was complete it was dedicated by the Rev. David [sic] Hirsch. The eight builders organized and framed a constitution for a congregation.
"This was in the early part of January, 1859. The names of these eight founders are: Jacob Biehl, Theobald Mueller, Fredrich Bules, Mr. Trautner, Franz J. Spindler, Michael Mueller, George Adam Trautner, and Jacob Schumann.
"Since then nineteen families have joined the organization, making in all twenty-seven. Eight of these have withdrawn—three on account of removal from the township and five from a wish to be unconnected from the church.
"The nineteen familes comprising the church in March, 1881, include five of the original eight families and an admission fee of three dollars is charged for the privilege of membership.
"Six ministers, besides Mr. Hirsch, have attended the spiritual wants of the congregation. Mr. Hirsch, with a trifling exception has been pastor twelve years—the first six years of the existence of the church and also since April 1873."
According to the Fry compilation, the organizational meeting took place on February 7, 1957. The 9 members who signed the Constitution and By-Laws were George Trautner, B.A. Trautner, C.O. Trautner, George Barth, Daniel Wagner, Phillipp Knoch, Chris Trautner, John Trautner, and L.P. Miller.
"Mr. Chapman (see map below), who owned land a mile west of Stanleyville, sold a part of it for the site of the church. This land was deeded to the Committee of the German Presbyterian Church of Fearing Township. The church was erected and a plat set apart for the cemetery. Daniel Hirsch conducted a dedication service in January 1859. The original building was destroyed by fire and rebuilt some time after the new Berg Church in 1872. The Cemetery Association administers the church. The cemetery has been turned over to the Fearing Township Trustees."
Locating History on Today's Maps
I composed the map below from several sources. The orange lines demarcate the farms of four of the men mentioned in the above text: W. Chapman, who gave the land to St. Jacobs Church, and three of the original eight founders: J. Biehl, F. Spindler, and M. Miller (Mueller).