December-19-18 6:55:38 AM
Forest Grove United Church of Christ
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Established in July 1845, the United Church of Christ (Congregational) of Forest Grove, is one of the largest of its denomination in Oregon and the oldest United Church of Christ on the American mainland west of Iowa.
From a new log cabin erected in 1848 to be used as both a church and a school, to a 1859 New England Colonial style building which was surrounded by a fence to protect its windows and grounds from the cattle that roamed everywhere. In 1899 three rooms were added and other improvements made only to have the whole complex burn to the ground in July 1901.
By 1905, a new Congregational church was built in the “Midwestern” style only to be consumed by fire once again in 1919 which threatened to destroy the entire downtown. By 1920 an “Akron-style” building, modeled on the Congregational Church in Oregon City, was built.
By 1955, attendance for Christian Education activities made it necessary to build again. But not until 1959 was a new educational wing, the building presently facing Main Street, dedicated; and two years later the east side of that same building was finished facing College Way.
In 1976 the member of the church voted to build a new sanctuary to replace the 1920 building. Fire once again threatened that building in March 1977, but youth group members were able to extinguish the fire. One year later in April 1978, the now present sanctuary building was dedicated.