< Episcopal News and Current Events -- News About ECUSA: A Bit More Early History of Epiphany and St. Paul's in Coffeyville Episcopal News and Current Events -- News About ECUSA: A Bit More Early History of Epiphany and St. Paul's in Coffeyville
Today's Quote

A Prayer For This Web Site
Almighty God, you proclaim your truth in every age by many voices; Direct, in our time, we pray, those who speak where many listen and write what many read; that they may do their part in making the heart of this people wise, its mind sound, and its will righteous; to the honor of Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
"For those who Influence Public Opinion,"
Book of Common Prayer, page 827

In our church, neither a person's gender nor their sexual orientation matter; what does matter is how they serve Jesus Christ as Lord.

Monday, October 09, 2006

A Bit More Early History of Epiphany and St. Paul's in Coffeyville

The first dozen years of our parish in s.e. Kansas (1872-1884), we shared priests-in-common with Coffeyville our neighboring community to the south. We attribute our founding to The Reverend Archibald Beatty, who met with a group of interested persons to form Friends of the Protestant Episcopal Church in Independence, Kansas on April 22, 1872.

St. Paul's Church in Coffeyville [which had been founded in 1869 by Colonel Coffey] was also started by Reverend Beatty, whom they have described in their historical documents as a missioner. Reverend Beatty served Coffeyville for two years in 1872-73.

But St. Paul's says that Reverend Levi Holden was their first full time vicar between 1873-76.

Our historical records show that Levi Holden was our second full time pastor, between 1876-78. Apparently, Reverend Holden left Coffeyville and 'came north' to Independence that year to stay with us for a couple years.

Then, Reverend Beatty returned to Epiphany in Independence for another year in 1878-79. In 1879-1880, Reverend Charles H. Canfield -- whom our records indicate was a missioner -- served Independence in that capacity, however St. Paul's records in Coffeyville show 'Reverend C.H. Canfield' was the rector there between 1878 and 1881. Apparently Reverend Canfield did 'double duty' during much of that time serving both Independence and Coffeyville.

On the first meeting of Epiphany Parish in April, 1872, Bishop Vail attended services, administered confirmation to a small class, and conferred with the newly formed Vestry regards other duties for Father Beatty. Father Beatty would be given a salary of $500.00 per year, and his duties would include missoner work in Neodesha, Elk City, Fredonia, and Coffeyville (my emphasis).

Reverend Beatty was primarily employed as a chaplain for the Santa Fe Railroad while all this was going on. Santa Fe, then as now, ran passenger trains from a terminal in Chicago, Illinois to the west coast, passing through Topeka, Kansas en-route. (Thus the name, 'Atchison [Kansas], Topeka [Kansas] and Santa Fe [New Mexico] Railroad'. Its a good thing Father Beatty had some other source of income (the railroad). Southeast Kansas was /still is a very rural area and we were not able to pay him all that well. Plus which, in 1873 his rectory burned to the ground, and among other tragedies for the Beatty family, an epidemic of Spiral Menengitis spread through town and affected one of the children.

Then November 23, 1879 through February, 1880, Reverend C. H. Canfield took charge of Epiphany Parish in Independence. He is listed as the third rector at St.Paul's in Coffeyville, 1878-1881.

Coffeyville then had a succession of pastors over the next twenty years through the early years of the twentieth century while Epiphany/Independence was essentially dormant. Arthur S. Freese, the pastor at St. Paul's in Coffeyville, 1903-1908 took on Independence as one of his responsibilities in 1903 for about one year.

Then, as you know, if you have been following this blog for a few months now, 1904 saw a renaissance at Epiphany Church in Independence, and lots of very nice, very major changes. But just as Epiphany and Ascension Church (Neodesha) have much in common from our early years, so does Epiphany and St. Paul's in Coffeyville. Where we were incorporated in 1873, St. Paul's was incorporated in 1878 and Neodesha in about 1900. St. Paul's opened their 'new' building at 7th and Elm in Coffeyville in 1912, Ascension in Neodesha opened their 'new' building in 1904 and of course we at Epiphany opened our new building in 1924-28 at 4th and Maple Streets in Independence.


Post a Comment

<< Home