Monday, August 3, 2009

Immanuel Mohican Lutheran Church

This is the church building which was part of the Lutheran Indian Mission in the township of Red Springs, Wisconsin. Photo taken by Jeff Siemers, spring, 2009.

This is the church building that was part of the Lutheran Indian Mission. The congregation, you may remember, first got together in people's homes in 1892. By 1899 the parsonage was built with one room designated for worship services. The church building which you see above was dedicated on July 14, 1901. The congregation that had started out so informally eventually took the name of Emmanuel Mohican Lutheran.

The mission school began in 1902 and a dormitory was built in 1908 (see photo). (A bigger dormatory was built across the lake in 1922, but it is no longer standing.) According to Thelma Putnam (page 13), the mission eventually reached a census of 120 boarding students, plus 15 to 20 daily commuting students.

The mission was forced to close its dormatories in 1933 because it depended on contributions from people who no longer had anything to give. Nevertheless, the school remained in operation until 1958.

Over a two-year period (7th and 8th grades), one of the commuting students was Clarence Chicks (whose attendance at the mission school roughly coincided with the onset of the Great Depression). Clarence told me that in addition to Stockbridge Mohicans, the student body consisted of "a lot of Oneidas," and some "Winnebagoes" [Ho-Chunk] and "Chippewas."


Colon Hydrotherapy said...
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Jeff Siemers said...

I've been asked if this Lutheran Indian Mission was compulsory. The answer is that it was not.
For example, Clarence Chicks attended the mission school only in 7th and 8th grade, because the family decided it would be more convenient for him to attend a closer public school through grade 6.

Rick Gonzalez said...

My mother , an Oneida, attended this school. No record can be found of her attendance. I met with Bernice Miller; she remembered her, but, no official record. Her name was Mary Ann Elm with a nickname of "Hi," for Hiawatha. Can anyone help?