One of the great things about being a writer is the adventure of discovering al the wonderful things along the way. For example, did you know that in 1841 a machine was developed that allowed the manufacture of envelopes? You never knw when you can work that into a conversation!
Here is another story from pioneer days that give a wonderful picture of live in the "Black Swamp" of northwest Ohio:
During the forty one years of use, the original church building became a center of community life for the early pioneers and their families. The Sunday services were an all day event. “On the Lord’s Day, commonly called, Sunday everybody went to ”Meeting.” Patrons had a row of sheds to drive their tems under for shelter from the storm, and feed at noon, and would bring their dinner, for they always had two services, one at 10:00 and at one o’clock. Sunday school was at mid-day. After this was ushered in the 5:00 o’clock prayer meeting and preaching at 6:00 o’clock. Between services the children would be kept in the house reading literature to correspond with the solemnity of the occasion.” (Bryan Press February 26, 1914) For many of the families who lived on farmsteads outside of the village, the time in their church community was the only weekly contact with others and a chance to catch up on the new and events that affected their lives. The local church, then was the center of thier sense of community perhaps more than any other building in the area.
I discovered this story while researching the upcoming book on the Methodist Episcopal Church building that stands in Bryan, Ohio. Built in 1895, it is one of the town's most beautiful landmarks. I am excited to be writing this story and hope to had it ready before the holidays.
The current owner of the building, which is no longer used as a church, is determined to save the structure and preserve the beautiful interior, windows and original pipe organ for use and enjoyment by the community. Check out my M. E. Church page for more information on this project.