THE HISTORY OF
CALVIN PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH
Part I: It started in the 50's
VERY FIRST SERVICE
Site of "very first service"
Where were you on May 15th,
1955? Twenty adults and six children met in an upper room of the Amelia
State Bank for the very first service of the Amelia/ Withamsville
Presbyterians, as they were referred to then. They had no minister, but
a layman from the Mt. Washington Church preached regularly. In those
days, the schools were filled to overflowing, and the church had to find
a new home at the end of the summer because the space was promised to
the schools. Their next (temporary) home was the Upper Clough Civic
Club, but when the weather turned cold, they had to leave because they
couldn’t keep the place warm. In October, 1955, the Rev. Mr. Schuler
began a year of preaching. Their next temporary home was in a house in
Amelia, where they worshiped from January 1956. If any of you old
timers know the location of that house, please let me know.
Rev. William Fogg
Cincinnati suburbs were exploding with growth in the 1950s, and
the Presbytery of Cincinnati was looking at new church
development around the city. We were a part of that new church
development and well on our way to becoming a church. The two
churches that aided us in our development were Knox and Mt.
Washington. The Rev. John Cowan was assigned to us as our
organizing pastor, and the Rev. William Fogg
became our first regular pastor on December 27th, 1956.
Rev. William Fogg
at 50th Year Celebration
On September 22nd, 1957,
a ceremony was held in the Amelia Methodist Church where the
Presbytery of Cincinnati conferred a charter upon the brand new
Calvin Presbyterian Church. We had fifty-five charter members.
Among them were Joyce Elliot, Eileen Horvath Thomas and Kate
Williams, who still worship with us regularly today.
formative period, there were two important property events that
helped us get started. The first was the purchase of a house on
Oakwood Drive to be used as a manse. In those days it was a
common practice for a church to provide a house to its minister.
The second event was the donation of six acres of land at our
present location by Dr. Milton W. Brown. Sadly, Dr. Brown died
in December, 1957, so he did not live to see the church built on
his gift of property.
BUILDING A CHURCH
By the end of 1957, the church had formed a
building committee, and in March, 1958, ground was broken
for our first sanctuary. On October 12th, 1958, the first
service was held in the beautiful new building which cost
$82,500. The congregation had grown from its original 55
members to 73 by the end of 1958. During the next year,
1959, the congregation almost doubled, and by the end of
December the congregation numbered 138. Rev. Fogg and the
congregation did an outstanding job of evangelizing to the
surrounding community. What a great story and inspiration
are those pioneers of fifty years ago who accomplished great
things so that we might worship God and enjoy our Christian
brothers and sisters here at Calvin Church.
On to The
A History of Calvin Church
During 2007, Bob Bridges, our
church's resident historian, reminisced about
each decade of Calvin’s existence. Although he
wasn’t at the church in the ‘50s, he's spoken
with many who were. He has pieced together a
sketch of those earliest years.In 2010, he
updated the church's history.